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Not Another College AU

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“God, they smell so good!” Lexa's voice is loud as she enters the kitchen, quickly snatching a hot cookie from the try on the counter and barely dodges the hand that reaches out to smack her own away.

Her mother glares at her, “they are for the fundraiser tomorrow. Tris came down with something so Mrs. Palmer asked me to fill in.”

Lexa grins, side hugging her, “you're too good to us, mom. Honestly though it's probably a good thing, her cookies are like rocks.”

“Do not let her hear you say that.”

Scoffing, Lexa lifts herself onto the opposite counter, taking another bite of the sweet snack and talks with her mouth full, “so what's up with Tris anyway?”

It earns her another glare and she smiles wide after she swallows. “Just a minor bug, it's going around the school, she will be just fine by tomorrow.”

“Mom! Tell Anya to stop-”

“I wasn't doing anything.”

They roll their eyes in unison as Aden, Anya and Raven enter the small room and Aden's eyes light up, running over to awkwardly hug the sitting Lexa in all his twelve year old energetic glory. “Lex! What are you doing here?”

Lexa jumps down, hugging him properly while Anya kisses their mother's cheek in greeting. “I missed my favourite little brother.”

“I'm your only brother,” he whines.

“Which automatically makes you my favourite.” Aden smiles wide and runs off to start his homework and she looks up to see Raven watching all of them with a small smile and nods at her, “Reyes.”

Raven smirks, “Woods. You coming tonight?” Lexa frowns and Raven rolls her eyes. “Grounders? Octavia and I are introducing Anya and Lincoln to our friends? You know, Bellamy, Jasper, Monty and Clarke.”

Recognition hits Lexa's expression, “ah yes, the infamous Clarke Griffin, how could I forget?”

“I don't talk about her that much.”

Anya snorts, wrapping her arms around Raven's waist from behind, “babe, you literally talk about her the same amount you talk about space. I swear if I was the jealous type.” She leaves the threat hanging and Lexa nearly laughs at the dreamy look that crosses Raven's face.

“So you in, Woods? I mean, I don't have any blood family so I'd really like it if my alternative family could get along with my friends,” she pouts, eyes pleading, “please.”

Lexa rolls her eyes, “are you seriously trying to guilt trip me into meeting your friends? Why you so bothered about me? Anya and Lincoln are the ones they're going to be judging.”

“Thanks, sis.”

“Because I want them to meet everyone that's important to me,” she answers softly, eyes cast to the floor but Lexa just stares her down, raising a brow until Raven huffs. “Fine. This is going to turn into the damn Spanish inquisition and I really do not need this one,” she pulls Anya against her harder, “to lose her temper and make them all feel two-feet tall, so be a good sister and do it for her.”

A small chuckle echoes from the direction of the stove, a poor attempt to be drown out by the oven door being closed and Lexa smiles, “chill, Reyes, no need to get all sentimental, I was going to go anyway purely to see Lincoln wither away under the protective, big brother stare down he's going to get.”

Raven pumps her fist, “sweet! We are going to get so-” a glare, “not drunk. So not drunk. We're going to drink soda and absolutely nothing alcoholic. Don't worry, Mrs. Woods, I'll make sure Lexa here has a clear head for tomorrow.”

“Child, how many times do I have to tell you to call me Indra?”

“One more time, as always, Mrs. Woods.”

Indra ignores her and glances to Lexa before looking back at Raven, “and alone. Make sure she gets home sober and alone. Lord knows I do not need another heart-broken girl asking after her, especially at the most important fundraiser we have had so far.”

Lexa crosses her arms over her chest, insulted, “I'm stood right here you know. And I am an adult, I'm more than capable-”

“Scouts honour, Mrs. Woods. Sober, alone and an early night so she can woo all the doctors into giving you ridiculous amounts of money.”

Anya smirks smugly at Lexa as Indra takes a cookie from the cooling rack and hands it to Raven, unspoken words in her mother's eyes and she grins against Raven's neck, “don't worry mom, I'm holding onto this one for as long as she can tolerate me.”

“Good, now get the hell out of my kitchen. It is hot enough in here as it is without you three crammed in. Anya, when you get back to the office please tell your father to pick up something on his way home, like hell am I cooking for six after baking hundreds of these things, and Lexa, take a damn shower.”

Making a show of sniffing herself, Lexa sighs in self-satisfaction, “it's the smell of achievement, mom.”

Indra huffs, “it is the smell of sweat and a groggy gym, now get upstairs before I whip your ass.”

Lexa moves to her, wrapping one arm around Indra's waist and rests her head on her shoulder, “you're the best, you know that right?” Indra nods causing Lexa to chuckle. She grabs another cookie, backing away quickly towards the door, “and you shouldn't threaten your children, it sends a bad message.” She darts out of the room before she's reprimanded. Again.

Anya laughs, moving away from Raven, “she'll do great tomorrow. You know Lexa, she could talk blood out of a stone if she needed to. Do you want anything specific for dinner?”

“Pizza,” Indra immediately answers, “no, wait. Chinese. No, pizza. Just get both.”

With a goodbye kiss on the cheek, Anya nods, “we'll be back in a couple hours.”

She takes Raven's hand, leading her out of the kitchen, “later Mrs. Woods. I promise I'll only let Lexa get marginally drunk and in no way will tequila be involved. Probably.”

Indra shakes her head in fond amusement, sighing at all the batter laid out in front of her.

-

The front door crashes open and Lexa pauses her game with Aden, “wife and children, I am home. Come and give the man of the house some love.”

Lexa automatically picks Aden up and squeezes him, laughing as he tries to wriggle out of her grasp and glances over to the offended look her dad gives her, “oh, were you referring to yourself?”

“Cute, Lex. Maybe I'll keep the beautiful cuisine I have from opposite sides of the world to myself.”

“Opposite sides of the street, more like,” Indra drawls, pecking her husband's lips before taking the bags off of him and laying them out on the now clean counters next to the plates because 'it does not matter if they are already packaged, we will eat like civilised human beings'.

He waves her off, “semantics.”

Aden runs off to the kitchen, ignoring his dad in favour of his stomach but Lexa moves to hug him, “how was work?”

“Slow,” he sighs, hanging his jacket and joining the others in the living room, “it's like people don't even want to steal cars anymore.”

Raven lines up glasses, pouring drinks into them as Indra and Aden finish setting up, “don't worry Mr. Woods, by the end of the month I'll have those babies looking sweet as hell. People will be banging down the doors to buy a car off of you.”

“I hope so,” he sighs again, taking his seat in his favourite old, worn and ripped recliner, completely mismatched to every other piece of furniture in the room but the one thing he refused to give up when Indra wanted to redecorate. He looks over to Lexa, “what about you, kid?”

She shrugs, “I mean, the gym still isn't in profit but it's not losing money either. I just really need tomorrow to work out, I had two treadmills pack up on me today. I desperately need some better equipment in there.” Raven looks her over before sticking her hand out in a 'gimme' motion. “Rae, I can't always ask you to fix my shit, okay? I'll figure something out.” Raven just raises her brow and stomps her foot and Lexa deflates, handing the keys to the gym over, “thank you.”

“What are family for, right?” She plops herself down on Anya's lap and Lexa smiles at the two of them. “Besides, what can you bring to the table if your business goes under?” She winks at Lexa, unnecessarily showing that the jab was a playful remark.

It amazes Lexa sometimes, just how comfortable they are with Raven and Raven with them in the short space of time they'd known each other. She still remembers the first night Raven came over for dinner after her first shift at her dad's shop, all confidence and a personality that just made them all gravitate towards her. Still remembers the following week when she was trying to calm Anya down about their first official date and the month after that claiming them all as her own. Adopted family, something they could all associate with.

Indra announces that dinner is served and as if time had sped up, they were all sat in the living room, plates full of a messy mix of pizza slices, fries, noodles, rice and sticky sauces.

The conversation flows as easily as it always does; Aden beaming about school, Indra telling her plans and meetings she has lined up for the community, Raven boasting about the latest machine she's working on at college, Anya and Lexa constantly bickering about this and that until, “so Raven, when are you going to make an honest woman out of my daughter?” The room freezes. Except Aden who is happily munching on his makeshift pineapple and curry sauce pizza. Lexa scrunches her nose in disgust.

Anya chokes on her drink. “Dad- what- I mean- just- mom!”

Indra shakes her head, “could you not have waited until she swallowed, honey? She could have spat coke all over my couch.”

“With all due respect, Mr. Woods,” Raven starts, “as much as I love your daughter, I don't think we're there at this particular moment in time. It has only been four months after all.”

He shakes his head, “when the heart knows, it knows. And seriously, is it too much to ask you to call me Ryder just once? Even Octavia calls me uncle and she isn't even my niece.”

Raven scoffs, “you have seen her around your brother right? It's all 'yes sir, no sir'.”

“Yes, Gustus does tend to have that effect on people.”

“Uncle Gus is a big teddy bear.”

Aden's happy quip sets the tone back to relaxed immediately, any mention of marriage left for now.

Almost.

Lexa looks over Anya and Raven again in fake distaste, soft words whispered between them and light kisses being placed on lips and cheeks and they both positively glow with happiness and- “it's probably a good job, we don't need them to get more gross than they already are.”

“You could only strive to achieve this level of grossness, Woods. When are you going to finally bring a girl home?”

She smirks with a wink, “I bring plenty of girls home.” She shrugs when Anya rolls her eyes at her from behind Raven's shoulder, “what? I'm a free spirit with a lot of love to give. There's nothing wrong with exploring my options.”

Anya scoffs, “can it really be considered exploring if it is only for a few hours and you avoid them at all costs after they leave?”

Smirk still present, Lexa chuckles, “it's not my fault they don't hear me when I tell them it's only going to be a one time thing. Also, sometimes it's way more then a few hours, and trust me, a lot can be explored in that time. You telling me you and Raven don't-”

“Enough,” Indra barks out, muttering to herself about how this is not proper dinner etiquette and how did she raise her children to have no shame, “I personally cannot wait to see the day that Lexa meets her match.”

“Settle in then, mom, 'cause you have a long wait ahead of you.”

-

She walks into the kitchen to see Anya and Lincoln both with a beer bottle in their hand, Anya chugging hers and Lincoln playing with a stray section of the label and she laughs. They're both dressed to the max, Anya in a dark grey power suit covering a black blouse that's open at her neck line, black heels accentuating her already long legs and Lincoln in his nicest pair of dark blue jeans and printed black, white and grey t-shirt, a blazer hanging lazily over his arm ready for the slight chill outside. “You two look ridiculous. You realise we're going to Grounders and not The Dropship, right?”

Anya glowers at her, Lexa dressed in black work boots with the lips hanging over to reveal the soft, grey lining and dark skinny jeans, her white muscle shirt with dropping arms showing through to her stomach and black sports bra, tight leather jacket slung over her shoulder. “Their friends are rich, Lexa, some of us actually care about our appearance.”

“If they're going to judge you for what you wear then maybe they aren't as great as they're made out to be.” She raises her brow and Anya knows she's right, but it doesn't stop her from taking another large gulp of her drink. Lexa grabs it out of her hand and places it on the counter before straightening Anya's collar. “I know you're nervous, but if these people can't see how much you care about Raven or trust her judgement, then they aren't worth your time in trying.”

“She's known them for years, Lex. They went to high school together and now they're at college together.”

Lexa shakes her head, “that doesn't matter. Raven loves you, for some stupid reason,” Anya chuckles, relaxing, “she isn't going to choose them over you, got it?” Anya nods and Lexa looks over to Lincoln, “you on the other hand, you need to make a good impression or the only time you'll be seeing Octavia's fantastic ass is when she's walking away. Honestly, how did you manage to get somebody so fucking high maintenance?”

“He's great in bed,” Octavia exclaims as she enters the room, pushing herself under Lincoln's arm to rest her head against his chest, “and thank you for noticing how truly gifted I am in the ass department.”

Raven comes in after her, mirroring Octavia's position against Anya, “well, Lexa, you're the only Woods' in the room without a beautiful girl on her arm.”

The kitchen is so small that they're all practically touching standing next to each other so it doesn't take Lexa much to wrap both of her arms underneath Octavia and Raven's elbows, pulling them away from their significant others and against herself. “Now I have two,” she grins, causing Lincoln to laugh and Anya to roll her eyes, “shall we ladies?”

Octavia and Raven make a show of over-exaggerated giggling as Lexa leads them through the front door and in the direction of Grounders, but it doesn't take them long to move away from her and back to their other halves, Raven not-at-all whispering about how hot she finds Anya in a suit and Octavia complaining that if the wind picks up her dress is going to reveal more than she's comfortable with.

It isn't a long walk to the bar, but it's enough to make them appreciate the warmth it offers when they slip inside, the two couples heading to their usual booth and Lexa to the bar for drinks. “Lexa.”

“Hey, Nyko,” she smiles large at him, “how's life?”

“Good. Sporting seasons aren't too great at the minute so it's calmed down in here a bit, but it's nice to have that calm time sometimes, you know?”

Her smile deflates slightly, wishing she had the same confidence in her gym, but she doesn't say that. “Yeah, totally. Anyway, can I get the usual for those guys,” she gestures over to their table, “and an orange juice for me please?” He looks at her in shock. “I'm on strict orders to not be hung-over tomorrow.”

“Oh shit, the fundraiser,” he sets about pouring the drinks, “I hope it goes well, you guys deserve this.”

“The neighbourhood deserves it.” She grabs the tray of drinks easily, “thanks, Nyko, put them on-”

“Octavia's tab,” he waves her off, “I know, I know.”

The chat idly for a while, Lexa biting her tongue about how late these so-called friends were when Octavia says she's going to go and phone Bellamy to find out an ETA and Raven texts Clarke. As if on cue the door opens revealing a young woman, a gust of wind blowing dead leaves in and blonde hair flowing wildly in it as she struggles to close the door behind her. Raven is just about to call her over when Lexa's voice speaks up, “wow.”

Raven clamps her mouth shut, looking over to Lexa in amusement.

“She's gorgeous,” Lexa claims when blonde hair is finally tamed and she looks around as if she's trying to spot someone, “I'm going to go say hi.”

“Lexa, wait. Lexa! Lex- and she's gone. Fuck.” Anya and Lincoln raise their eyebrows curiously at Raven. “That's Clarke.”

“Okay?” Raven hides behind Anya, “babe, what are you doing?”

Raven huffs like it's obvious, “hiding so Clarke doesn't see me.”

Lincoln snickers, “and you're doing that because...”

“Because she's going to turn Lexa down so hard and I've never seen that happen before. It's going to be fucking hilarious.”

Lexa glances at her reflection in the mirror behind the bar, checking to make sure her make-up is still on point and hair is still in perfect waves over her shoulder before sliding next to the woman, 'to die for' smirk firmly in place, “hey-” she stops short when bright blue eyes meet her own and she can't stop her words from spilling out, “fuck, your eyes are captivating.”

She laughs and Lexa has to bite her cheek at the deep, husky sound. “Thank you, but is that really the line you're going for? Not 'I haven't seen you around here before' or 'are you here alone because I could keep you company' or even do the classic thing and offer to buy me a drink?” And if Lexa had to bite her cheek at just a laugh, she damn near has to hold in a whimper at her voice.

“Well one; I haven't seen you around here before, two; I could quite happily keep you company, all night if you'd like, and three; I would offer to buy a beautiful woman a drink, but you don't strike me as the type to accept.”

“Then you'd be right. I'm actually here to meet some friends so if you don't mind.” She turns away from Lexa, clearly telling her that the conversation is over and it should probably click to Lexa who this is, but it doesn't.

The thought of leaving this woman doesn't sit well with her so she tries to carry on the conversation, “so where are they? Your friends?”

She shrugs, digging around in her bag to take out her phone, reading a message, “here somewhere.” She quickly types a reply before hitting send and leaves her phone on the bar top, turning to face Lexa in exasperation, “look, I don't mean to be rude or anything but this is the first time in nearly three weeks that I've actually been able to get a night off and I'd really just like to spend it catching up with friends.”

Lexa rolls her eyes, but accepts that, “at least let me stay until you find them, this is a nice place but there are some questionable people that come in here.”

“And you aren't one of them?” The woman eyes her warily before she nods, “alright, stud, you've got yourself a deal.”

“Stud? So at least you think I'm attractive.”

A groan. “I never said that, don't be cocky.”

“I'm not cocky, I'm confident.”

“You're arrogant. The two are vastly different.” And she doesn't mean to, but she smiles. A smile that has Lexa's insides melting.

“Lexa,” she introduces herself, the hand she holds out to shake ignored as she watches blue eyes widen.

“Lexa Woods?”

Lexa frowns, “yeah, you've heard of me?” Why won't her brain just connect the damn dots?

Another laugh tumbles from the woman's lips, this time laced with disbelief, “oh, I've heard all about you. And if even half of what I've heard is true, I can assure you I am most definitely not interested.”

“You shouldn't judge people based on what others say about them. And may I ask whom, exactly, told you these things?”

Just as her mouth opens to respond, another voice fills the air and Lexa's vision is interrupted by Octavia's face, “Clarke! You finally made it.”

“Sorry, O, got caught up at the hospital.” Clarke pulls back, “Lexa here was just keeping me entertained.”

Clarke. Clarke Griffin. Clarke Griffin the girl that Raven never shuts up about.

Shit.

Octavia smiles between the two of them, blissfully unaware that Lexa just managed to make a fool of herself in front of Clarke and tugs at her elbow, “c'mon, Griff, Raven's over there with Anya and Lincoln.”

“I'll be there in a second.” She waits for Octavia to leave, bouncing back to the table, and leans down to Lexa's ear, “so if I would've played along with your little game tonight, are you telling me I wouldn't just be another notch on your headboard?”

The shiver that shoots through Lexa's body at the throaty sound is something she'll never admit. Having Clarke this close, the subtle hint of vanilla that invades her nostrils, the trickle of hair that tickles her shoulder, makes her feel something new and she knows, she knows Clarke is different to any girl she's met, knows her usual tactics won't work and honestly, she doesn't want them to. Unfortunately for her, her heart, head and mouth aren't on the same page. They're not even in the same book. “Who said anything about my headboard?”

Clarke sighs and shakes her head and Lexa can do nothing but watch her walk away to their table. Can do nothing but watch as Clarke introduces herself to Lincoln and Anya. Can do nothing but watch her smile and laugh and talk and effortlessly make herself fit neatly into their small group and she can't stop. She can't stop and it's starting to get creepy but she's fucked. She's so fucked because everything she's ever done when it comes to women flies out of the window and all she can see is Clarke Griffin, the one she has the urge to make an effort with, the one she wants to get to know and she's intrigued. She's intrigued because Clarke didn't drop her panties like the others. She challenged her, shrugged her off, made her feel like she has to work for hours for just one minute of her attention.

The epiphany hits her like a train. She could easily fall in love with this woman.

She is so monumentally screwed.

“So what did you do to piss her off?” Raven's voice doesn't register next to her. She orders an apple martini and Nyko scoffs, pulling a dust covered bottle from the shelf and it's obviously for Clarke. Another thing Lexa stopped her from doing. Ordering a drink.

Monumentally screwed.

“Yo, space cadet?”

“I'm going to marry that girl, Rae.”

She doesn't pay attention to Raven's jaw dropping or her eyes darting back and fourth between the two because her gaze is still fixated on Clarke, and Clarke, her gaze is right back at her, burning into her, challenging her. “You literally spent like, five minutes with her and she already doesn't like you. Maybe. She didn't really say but I'm her best friend, I can tell. Lexa? Lexa!” She doesn't hear a word. “Fuck sake. Anya,” she shouts loudly, right down Lexa's ear and she jolts, slowly taking in her surroundings but still not breaking her eye contact with Clarke, “I think Griff broke your sister.”

Lexa clears her throat and blushes when Clarke smirks at her, Raven's tone leaving no doubt as to what she intended her words to mean. “Fuck, off, Reyes,” Lexa hisses.

Raven looks between them once more and laughs, “you are such a fucking gay disaster, Woods.”

Chapter Text

It's killing her. It's killing her that she wants Clarke to go with her to her apartment above the gym and just talk because Lexa doesn't do this. She knows instantly what kind of connection she will have with a person she's just met and this is the first time she's ever experienced this.

And she's loving every second of it.

After Monty, Jasper and Bellamy finally arrived, the conversation wasn't actually as bad as she thought it was going to be. She doesn't get a good feeling from Bellamy or Jasper, though.

Monty can stay.

He's on a full scholarship like Raven and, small world, his mom does some flyering for her mom when she has a bit of free time on her hands.

They've changed topics quite a few times, from the pretentious courses Jasper and Bellamy are taking,-Lexa wonders how the two Blake siblings' can be so different, Octavia totally down to Earth- to Raven, Anya and her dad working at the shop, her mother's non-profit organisation, Lincoln's work at the community centre and Octavia's start up business in party planning.

But Lexa's mind has been blanking the majority of it out, her and Clarke's gaze finding each other over and over again, each time more heated than the last.

She's at full attention when it's Clarke's turn, takes in every single detail of Clarke's dedication to becoming a doctor. Along with her course she finds out Clarke spends the majority of her free time volunteering at the hospital her mother works at. Finds out it's her fault that this meeting has been put off for so long.

Not a single person at the table blames her for it, even if Lexa can see in her eyes how much she wishes she had more time for her friends.

It's all going well, until their discussion turns to Lexa's gym and she's interrupted half way through explaining the free class she does every second Saturday.

“Wait, free?”

She looks at the empty bottles and glasses on the table and while everyone had two next to them, Jasper has six and she sighs, wishing she could swap her orange juice for a whiskey. “Yes,” she nods, “there are people in our area that cannot afford self-defence lessons, so once every two weeks Lincoln and I will run one.”

“But how do you expect to make money from that? Surely anybody with half a brain would just wait until then so they don't have to pay.”

The table goes quiet, Lexa gripping her drink and clenching her jaw so hard she isn't sure if the glass or her teeth are going to crack first, “money isn't everything,” she ignores the 'erm, yes it is', “the people in our community know that for us to strive, we must work together. They will not see anybody out of home if they can do something to help, and since I have the only gym here, they will not risk the chance of having the best way they can learn to protect themselves taken away from them. Our people are not brought up to be selfish, even if my class is free, they will try to do something to pay that does not necessarily involve money to show their appreciation.”

She waits a beat, and smiles grace the faces of the table, Bellamy included, but Lexa only sees Clarke's, tiny, hidden behind her martini glass (Nyko is not impressed he has to keep digging those out of storage), but there none-the-less.

Of course, Jasper has to ruin it, voice slurring, eyes drooping and what he must think is a sick smirk but looks more like indigestion on his lips, “what like, sex favours? 'Cause that's the kind of shit poor people do to pay for things, right?”

Lexa watches in slow motion, watches Lincoln clench his fist and Anya begin to stand and she knows she needs to knock this on it's head since they've both tried to make such a good impression for Octavia and Raven. Even if she knows they wouldn't be blamed for their next actions, she also has to stand up for her people, and her gym, but he's too drunk to appreciate the next level of bitch she could throw at him so she leaves it.

For now.

“I'll tell you what, I'm feeling nice today so I'm not going to degrade you because you won't even fucking remember this tomorrow, so what's going to happen is Bellamy is going to take you home, you're going to sleep this off, and when you're reminded of how you acted and what you said and you've gotten over feeling embarrassed after a couple days, I want you to come see me at the gym, and I'll show you exactly what the difference is between people like you and people like us.”

The silence around the table is deafening until Octavia kicks Bellamy's leg. Hard. He bolts into action, lifting Jasper and tugging him out, a quick nod to Anya and the worlds least threatening look at Lincoln.

He doesn't glance at Lexa.

She doesn't dwell on it.

Monty follows them and, damn it, he's a hugger. He squeezes Lexa and she pats him stiffly on the back. “I'm so sorry about him, I swear he's not always this much of a dick. I'll hide the advil tonight, let him suffer in the morning.”

“You're the hero this world needs, Monty Green.” He blushes before making his way out the exit.

It's awkward, so fucking awkward when the three of them leave. “Guys I'm-” Raven starts, opening and closing her mouth like a fish out of water and her lip trembles. “Can we refresh tonight? Re-do it one day when he's not invited 'cause I promise Monty's awesome and Bell can actually be kinda sweet once you get to know him and-”

“Reyes, calm your shit. There was no harm done. I'm sure we'd all be happy to do this again some time. Right?” Lexa stares down Anya and Lincoln until they agree and she tugs on her jacket, “I need to get home.”

She sees Clarke check her phone and sigh, “shit, I missed my last bus.”

“The gym's only a couple blocks away, I could take you there and drive you home if you'd like? I haven't had anything to drink.”

Clarke nods in thanks, finishing off her drink and she looks between Raven and Octavia, “we'll talk tomorrow? After the benefit?” She doesn't say it, but Lexa can see the acceptance swirling in Clarke's eyes and she's so happy that their best friend approves of their choices in partner, regardless of their backgrounds and-

The benefit? Benefit. Clarke is going to be at the same event as her tomorrow and she has to stand around trying her best not to be affected by her while she tries to talk herself up to all these important doctors. Including Clarke's mother.

So, so, so screwed. She rushes to say her goodbyes, wishing them a good night and telling them to get drunk out of their minds in her honour. It takes less then ten seconds for Raven to shout an order of shots over to Nyko. Lexa holds an arm out in a circle at her side, prompting Clarke to slide her own through it and she does so with a deep laugh, “lead the way, stud.”

The four at the table wait until the door is firmly closed and Anya is the first to speak up, “Clarke is great, I can see why you two love her so much.” She reaches into her purse and throws a five dollar bill on the table, “I give them a week.”

“No way,” Lincoln laughs, throwing his own down, “Clarke seems like a lady who won't put up with Lexa's shit, I give them two weeks.”

Octavia giggles, “Clarke is anything but a lady. Three days, easily.”

“You're all deluded,” Raven scoffs adding the last bill, “I admit, I called Clarke rejecting Lexa so wrong. Did you see the way they were looking at each other? There's not a chance in hell Clarke's going home tonight.” They give the money to Nyko for safe keeping and Raven feels the sudden need for a friendly gossip as she motions them all to lean in and listen, “okay, don't ever tell Lexa I told you this, but...”

The walk is quiet, comfortable and it's not until they're at the end of the block that Clarke begins to talk, “Anya and Lincoln are great. I'm really happy for Raven and O.”

“They are.”

“You know you're going to have to tell me the story about you guys right? I mean, I know you and Anya are adopted and you have a little brother but I don't know the details.”

Lexa shrugs, “there's not really much to tell. Mom and dad got me when I was first born from a teenager who couldn't afford me and Anya was officially adopted when I turned ten and she was thirteen after a tremendous amount of paperwork and meetings and arguments with social services. Aden came to be with us six years ago.”

“You know who your birth mom is?”

“Yeah. She lives in New York now, she's a hairdresser and she's married with one son.” She looks over to Clarke and for once she doesn't see the same thing she always sees- pity. It makes her feel relieved. “I get what she did, and I'm glad she did it. Who knows how we'd have turned out if she tried to keep me. Now I have a supportive family who love me and I wouldn't want to give that up for the world. She did what was best for the both of us at the time and I'll always thank her for giving me the chance to have what I have today.”

Clarke only nods, not questioning any further. Whether it's because she's satisfied with Lexa's response or because she doesn't feel like she has any right to dig deeper, Lexa doesn't know, but they're outside the gym before she gets to spend too long thinking about it. “So this is it then? Polis Gym? A bit unoriginal, but it's nice.”

Lexa laughs, “it's a dump, but it's my dump. And don't diss the name, the old owner called it that.”

“In that case it's a very nice dump.”

She can't help the stupid smile that graces her lips and they spend way too long staring at each other until Lexa finally goes for it, “it's getting late. You should spend the night and I'll get you home in the morning.”

Clarke bites her bottom lip and Lexa's gaze travels down to it, trying not to imagine kissing the mole that rests just above, “oh should I now? This is how you do it, huh? Lure women in with a false sense of security, pretending to be chivalrous when in reality you're just leading them to your bed?”

And fuck her mind for still not being on the same page as everything else. She steps closer to Clarke, backing her up until her back hits the glass door, “I don't know what you take me for, Clarke,” she holds back a grin at the shudder she sees go through her, “it doesn't have to be the bed. There's the couch, the floor, the wall, shower, bathroom counter,” she chances another step closer, testing if her read on Clarke is right and bends down to her ear, “the breakfast bar.”

Bingo. Clarke groans against her. “Lexa,” she warns, pushing her back slightly and Lexa cuts her off before she can say anything else.

“Seriously, Clarke, I'm not exaggerating when I say that Raven won't shut the hell up about you and tonight went a little... off track, shall we say. I'd really like to get the opportunity to know you. I promise I'll keep my hands to myself.”

“All I was going to say was,” Clarke leans in, fuck, she's going to kiss her. She going to fucking kiss her and Lexa's brain malfunctions and she swears she's going to turn into a damn puddle right now and- “does that line really work? Because I have to be honest, that was pretty weak.”

Maybe not. Lexa scoffs, stepping back to clear her head, “like hell it was.”

“You got alcohol up there? If I'm going to spend the night talking to you, I'm definitely going to need something strong,” she jokes and Lexa snorts out a laugh.

“Clarke, I run an establishment that promotes a good, nutritious, healthy lifestyle so obviously the only thing in my fridge is alcohol.”

Clarke smiles, “so do we go through the gym or?”

“You can get in that way, but Raven has the keys which means I'm going to have to take you down a dark alley.”

“Hm, all alone with a stranger in the dark and no way to escape?” Lexa tugs at Clarke's hands with a grin, walking backwards as she pulls her along and Clarke, Clarke just goes with. “No one to come to my rescue?” She's in what is perceived to be a dangerous neighbourhood, with a girl she's only just met and said girl is leading her down a dark, grimy alley to a thick steal door that has bars over the small window and she just... doesn't seem to care. “Nobody to hear me scream?”

Lexa's smile doesn't leave her mouth as she opens the door, turning on a light that flickers at the top of the stairs next to the door of her apartment. It's very horror movie-esque and she's had girls gripping tight enough on her arm to leave bruises before but Clarke just bounces up behind her and it's so refreshing, being here with somebody who is so sure of herself, who seems to grab life by the horns and ride the hell out of it.

She doesn't try to erase the self induced image of Clarke riding her out of her mind.

“If you want me to make you scream, Clarke, all you have to do is ask.”

Clarke just scoffs at her and rolls her eyes as Lexa opens the door, gesturing for Clarke to go first. She doesn't hesitate, she practically skips through and looks around in an almost awed shock after Lexa gives the room light. “This is yours?”

It's not that she thinks Clarke is being malicious, she's just so used to people looking down on the things she's work so hard at that it slips, “how the other side live, huh?”

Raising her brow, Clarke makes her way to the counter, lifting bottles and putting them back until she finds a label she deems acceptable. She works her way through Lexa's cupboards until she finds glasses and pours a decent amount of vodka in, forgoing mixers.

It should probably stress Lexa out how okay she is with Clarke going through her things like she lives here. It's not a bad thought.

A glass is handed to her and she chugs it, cringing at the burn that makes its way down her throat. “Is that really what you think about everyone that has money? That we're going to think less of you because your parents didn't raise you in a fancy house?”

“Not everyone.” She shrugs and looks deep into Clarke's eyes. She smirks, “Octavia's pretty cool.”

Clarke laughs and hits her shoulder, “jerk. I was actually shocked at the amount of colour in this place. I was expecting it to be all whites and greys and blacks, maybe even something fitting to the mysterious person you obviously pretend to be. Raven's words. But it's alive, Lexa. It's beautiful.”

Lexa glances around, the walls boring white, yes, but it only accelerates the mix of colours in the room, the picture frames of her family that line the walls. It's a complete bomb of mismatched colours of items from charity shops, but Lexa is a mismatched sort of person. It fits. It's home. Lexa's never looked at it the way Clarke does before. “I don't care what people think about me, Clarke. But it's privileged jackasses like Jasper that make you get sick of hearing it.” Understanding flows through Clarke. “Can I show you something?”

Head tilted, Clarke nods, downs her drink and follows Lexa, no judgement in her eyes at the beat up couch opposite a small TV or the orange side table that sits atop a purple rug.

She leads them over to a window that over looks a park and stands behind Clarke. “See that park over there?” It's lit up just enough that if you were walking through it, you could find your way, but you have to squint to see the many pieces of new-looking apparatus' within. Clarke nods again. “Four years ago my mom was a police officer, long story short, she got shot on duty one day and decided to hand in her notice.” Clarke gasps, looking over her shoulder to ask the obvious questions, but Lexa shakes her off, “a tale for another time.” She relents and Lexa can see that this isn't over. “What we didn't know was that, that same year, my dad would get laid off of work. It was near Christmas, Aden was too young to understand, so Anya and I did our best to get him some presents and we were going to have microwavable dinners because we couldn't afford anything else.”

“Lexa-”

“Let me finish. Even if that was the case, it still would've been an amazing day for us because we were together. However; Titus, the old gym owner, told us we were having dinner with him. What we weren't expecting, was the majority of our community in the gym, tables shoved together with food cluttering the tops. It was one of the best days of my life.” She clears her throat, “that park used to have a rusty swing set and a seesaw that didn't even rock equally. That particular Christmas day, my mother decided she was going to give something back to all of the people that came to help us. Bit by bit we got scrap metal and eventually turned it into what it is today.”

Clarke's silent. It seems like words are trying to escape her mouth but are stuck until she breathes deep, composing herself, “you are not what I thought you'd be.”

“I told you not to judge someone on what you've heard about them.” The air is too thick, too heavy and Lexa berates herself for letting this get deep. She wants a light, easy night and she's turned it into something it wasn't meant to be. She holds her now empty glass up with a shake, “another?” Not waiting for Clarke to confirm, she pours two more large vodkas, sits on the couch and taps the other cushion, grinning when Clarke rolls her eyes at the close proximity of the small space it's going to create between them. “So why medicine instead of art?”

A flick of the wrist waves her off, “oh that's easy. I see art as a hobby, but saving lives? Being the person that tells somebody's family that they get to love them for another day? That's what I want to do.”

It's easy after that, it's what Lexa intended when she first suggested Clarke come up here with her. It's drinks and laughs and if her rapidly increasing fuzzy mind isn't playing tricks on her, it's flirty looks and touches as they get impossibly closer to each other.

“Come on then, spill. What's with all the girls? Bad break up?”

Lexa rolls her eyes, chuckles louder that she thinks, “why are you so caught up on this?” Clarke just stares at her, playful interrogation lacing her features. “Look, it's as simple as this; when I meet someone, I know exactly what kind of relationship I'm going to have with them. I knew Anya was going to be my sister, I knew Octavia was going to be the lovable pain in my ass,” Clarke laughs, “I knew Raven was going to be a part of my family and I knew those girls were going to be nothing more to me than what it was. No bad break up, no hidden secrets, it is what it is. Don't get me wrong, a lot of the time they can't accept that-”

“Yeah I'll bet.”

But, most of the time we get what we want from each other and that's the end of it. I have needs, you know?” Fucking alcohol.

Clarke bites her lip and Lexa begs her brain not to look. It doesn't listen. “What did you think when you first saw me?”

Lexa's eyes dart back up and the look Clarke is giving her makes her want to lean over. She resists. Barely. “I knew from the moment I looked into your eyes tonight that you were going to change my life, Clarke Griffin.”

They're stuck in a trance, sounds on mute and the world fading around them until suddenly Clarke pulls back startled and squints her eyes, focuses on her hearing, “is that- is that singing?”

And of course it is. She'd recognise Anya and Raven's cat screeching anywhere and her head falls to thump against the back of the couch. The singing stops just below her window and they aren't whispering at all, “why the fuck is Lexa's light still on?”

Damn it.

“Told you, Ahn, that money is so mine!”

“Babe if they were fucking up there why is it the living room? Lexa's probably just stressed about tomorrow and can't sleep.”

“Yeah, you're probably right.” Her already shouting voice gains an octave, “g'night Lex! Try and get some sleep.”

She sighs in frustration, “idiots.”

Clarke's laugh brings her back and she opens her eyes slowly. “It is getting late, or early as the case may be. We should probably get some rest.”

Lexa hums with a nod and points down the short hall, “bedroom is at the end, you can grab something to sleep in from the top drawer.”

“No, Lexa I couldn't-”

“I insist. Plus I'm far too comfortable to move right now,” she lies. The couch is a spine's worst nightmare. The bed however, is ridiculously comfortable, it's the one thing she actually spent quite a bit of money on.

With a sigh, Clarke stands and looks down at her, studies her, wants to say something. Stupidly Lexa thinks it might be a joking jab about joining her, but nothing comes.

She can't resist it herself to Clarke's retreating form though, “if you get lonely you know where I am.”

“In your dreams, stud.”

“That's a high possibility right now.” Clarke's laugh echoes through the now closed door.

She doesn't sleep a wink.

-

The morning sun has her feeling energized as she rummages through the cupboards for something to make breakfast. She comes up short, frowning at everything she pulls out and decides to go and get something instead.

It's a short walk to the cafe down the street and she groans at the sight that greets her. “Aren't you four supposed to be nursing hangovers right now?” Octavia sags more against Lincoln who has his hand over his eyes to block out the horrendous lighting and Anya just groans into her elbow that rests on the table as she points at a beaming Raven who looks around every direction behind Lexa. “Clarke's not here.” Raven shifts into the same position Anya was in the same time Anya shoots up with a smirk and Octavia lets out a weak 'yay', air punch included. “She's at the apartment.”

“I don't care as much as I should right now.” Lincoln.

“Fuck this.” Anya.

“You couldn't keep it in your pants for two more days?” Octavia.

“I knew you wouldn't let me down, Woods.” Raven.

Lexa sighs, “nothing happened.”

Just as they open their mouths to gloat, Raven stops them, “I said Clarke wouldn't go home last night, I said nothing about them doing the dirty.” Lexa scowls because 'doing the dirty', really? “Loophole, bitches!”

“We just... talked.” A small smile makes it way to her lips.

Anya glares at her, “wait a minute. Wait a damn minute.” She stands suddenly and holds her head, “ow, oh fuck, that was stupid.” Lexa chuckles causing Anya to glare at her harder. “Raven was right, you actually like her.”

Lexa awkwardly points to the front of the cafe, “anyway I was just getting some breakfast before she wakes up so-”

Her breath escapes as Anya wraps her arms around her in a tight hug, sloppily stroking down her face, “shh, shh. It's okay. Let me appreciate this, I've never seen it before.”

“Gross, get off of me.” Lexa pushes Anya away with a laugh, “are you still drunk?”

Raven answers for them, “we carried on drinking when we got home last night and- oh shit, we were singing outside your place weren't we?”

“Yes, cringe worthy, you were also shouting about me fucking Clarke so thank you for that.”

“I'm not even sorry.”

They're interrupted by food being brought to their table and Lincoln shoves Octavia away so hard in favour of it that Lexa fears she might be knocked out of the booth. She can't help her through laughing. “I'm suppose to be your girlfriend you dick.” Yeah, Octavia's hangover makes her moody.

“Shush, baby. Food.” Lincoln's also a bit of a prick.

She leaves them to eat like animals to go and place her order, not convincing herself of what Clarke's favourite will be. She figures you can never go wrong with pancakes or waffles so she grabs both. By the time she leaves Octavia and Lincoln are cuddled up again and touching softly and Raven is lent back with her legs draping over Anya.

Disgusting.

She shakes her head at the cat-calls being aimed her way as she leaves and rushes back, hoping to get there before Clarke wakes up.

Her hopes are in vain. Clarke's wearing one of her tank tops and it's tight against her chest, with short shorts that are on the brink of showing her ass and... fuck.

“You're back. And here I thought I was going to be treated to the Lexa Woods morning after.”

“The Lexa Woods morning after now includes breakfast,” she smiles, “I'm sorry, I would've left a note but I didn't think I'd be gone long enough for you to notice.”

Clarke shrugs, taking the bag from her and looking through it, “do you have any whipped cream?” Lexa's mind freezes and a lump catches in her throat. Clarke looks over at her and tuts, “for the pancakes, Lexa. Blueberry pancakes are my favourite.”

“Right, er, yeah, right, of course.” Clarke snickers.

After everything is set up on plates, something Clarke looks at her strangely for, and they're eating, Clarke resumes her questioning from last night, “how old are you?”

“Twenty-three.”

“And you didn't go to college?”

Lexa shakes her head, “I said last night that people pay for things in other ways. Well the free class I teach is primarily for children and their parents saved up to get me onto an online business course. When I finished up, Titus retired from the gym and gave it to me. He's still a silent partner, but he's too old to run this place and he wanted to live out the rest of his days somewhere else. Didn't say where. Somewhere with a lot of woodland I assume.”

A satisfied hum fills the room as Clarke takes her last bite, “that was sweet of them,” and Lexa chokes on the bit of waffle in her mouth when she pulls herself to sit on the breakfast bar, smirk in place through a bit lip.

She has to know what that does to Lexa by now. Evil. “You alright there?”

“Yes.”

“You sure?”

“Absolutely.” This back and forth confidence game they're playing doesn't sit well with her.

“Okay, I'm going to go take a shower if that's alright?” Lexa nods dumbly. Clarke wipes a thumb at the corner of Lexa's mouth before running it along her bottom lip, “you had a little cream there.” She didn't. Clarke hops down and bends over to Lexa's ear, “try not to imagine me in the shower too much. Hot, steamy, dripping.”

She walks away. “That was cruel.”

“That was revenge for last night.”

“If it was revenge it means I affected you.” A chuckle. “You're playing a dangerous game, Clarke,” she shouts over the closing door, laugh still filling her ears.

She wonders how she suddenly became okay with being played.

-

The ride to Clarke's house is comfortable. She realises she could be comfortable in any situation with her and it's not long until they pull up outside the house. It's a decent size, but nothing show-y. It's modest.

She found out last night that Clarke lives in the dorms, spending her final year at the university experiencing the last bit of freedom she's going to get before medical school, so she can only conclude that this is her parents' doing, that this modest presence Clarke exudes is from them raising her to be that way.

She guesses she'll find out later when she meets Clarke's mom at the fundraiser.

That's another thing she has to worry about.

“Go on a date with me,” she blurts out as she stops the car.

Clarke turns to face her with her brow raised, “was that a request or a demand?”

“It was a question I'd very much like a positive answer to. Give me a chance, Clarke. Please. I guarantee it will be the best date you've ever been on.”

“Cocky.”

“Confident.”

“Arrogant.”

“You like it.” They stare off, and Lexa could drown in Clarke's eyes if she let her.

Clarke moves her hand to the door handle, and Lexa thinks she may have overstepped, but as the door opens, Clarke doesn't look away, “maybe.”

Lexa frowns, “maybe what? Maybe you like it or maybe you'll go out with me?”

She smirks. “I'll see you in a few hours, Lexa.”

The door is barely shut as Lexa shouts after her, “that wasn't an answer, Clarke.” She watches Clarke's retreating figure all the way to the front door. “Look back at me. C'mon, Clarke, look back at me.” The front door opens and Clarke steps in and if Lexa wasn't burning a hole into her head, she might have missed the very subtle flick of Clarke's eyes meeting her own before the door closes. “Good girl.”

She starts her car up for the trip to her mom's, smiling like a fool the whole way.

She's going to make this fundraiser her bitch.

Chapter Text

“What’s this?” Indra gestures around Lexa’s face with her hand.

“What’s what?” She’s barely been here two minutes before her mother corners her in the kitchen, just enough time to make herself a coffee and take a sip.

Indra waves her hand in front of Lexa’s face again, “this. This smile thing you’re doing.”

Lexa looks at her over the rim of her mug. “Am I not allowed to smile?”

It’s quiet for a moment, Indra studying her and crossing her arms over her chest with a huff, “no. Not like this you’re not. Something happened last night."

“Can I not just be exited about the fundraiser?”

She finishes off her coffee and pours herself a fresh one straight away just as Anya walks in, grabbing Lexa’s mug and taking a large gulp, wincing slightly at the heat and sighs in relief. “Raven is at the gym now, she said she’ll drop the keys off here when she’s finished.” Lexa’s nod goes unseen as Anya looks up to take in her surroundings and notices the atmosphere, “what’s going on?”

Indra beats her to it, “Lexa was just telling me about the girl she met last night.”

“Oh, yeah Clarke’s great. Ow!” She scowls at Lexa as she’s elbowed in the side and Lexa’s return glare makes her eyes widen, “I mean... what girl?”

A hum echoes around them before Indra turns on her heel towards the couch. She shuffles the cushions and blankets around and Lexa tilts her head in confusion, “mom what are you doing?”

“You told me yesterday to, and I quote, ‘settle in’ because I would be waiting a long time, did you not?” She finishes patting down a cushion and folding the blankets neatly over the back before standing straight with her hands on her hips, satisfied grin in place, “that is obviously not necessary anymore.”

Anya bursts out laughing, over exaggerated in Lexa’s opinion, and Indra just looks at Lexa smugly. “You two suck. Whatever, I’m going to go and get ready.” She sulks off upstairs to the spare room, examining her outfit for the day to double check that Indra has managed to get all the creases out.

“So Clarke?” Indra asks Anya as soon as Lexa is out of sight.

“Yeah she’s really nice, mom, and what’s best is that she didn’t take any of Lexa’s shit last night.” A glower. “It’s not like that, I think she’s interested, but she’s definitely going to make Lexa work for it.”

A nod and small smile, “good. Lexa needs a strong woman. I assume this is the same Clarke that has a doctor for a mother?”

“Yep. And she’ll be at the fundraiser later. I wish I was going to be there to see Lexa meet Clarke’s mom.”

Indra winks at her, “I will tell you all about it.”

Ryder interrupts them, “good morning half of my family. What are we gossiping about?” He tugs on his jacket and grabs his keys.

“How you and Anya aren’t leaving until you help me fill the car.”

He points up the stairs, “actually I forgot I need to get something from-”

“Now, Ryder.”

“Yes, sweetheart.” Anya snickers at him and Aden bounces down the stairs. Ryder leans down to stage whisper in his ear, “first rule about women, kid, never argue with them.”

Aden’s face scrunches up in confusion but he nods anyway, “does that mean Raven and Anya can never argue?”

Indra and Ryder stop and turn to Anya who looks conflicted on how to answer until she just sighs and rubs her forehead, “I’m too hungover to find an answer to that.”

When they eventually have the car packed full of everything Indra and Lexa need for the day, Anya and Ryder drop Aden off with Gustus and head into work. Lexa chooses that moment to reappear and Indra raises and unimpressed eyebrow at her, “I see you managed to time it just right so you didn’t have to help.”

Lexa scoffs, “I’m the smart one remember?”

Indra allows a fond smile to grace her lips and tugs at Lexa’s collar, straightening it before taking a step back to look over her; sleek black boots, pin striped trousers, white shirt with sleeves folded up to the elbows, black suspenders over the top and a skinny black tie to finish off, long, dark curls draped over one shoulder and she nods at Lexa, “very dashing.”

With a smile, Lexa blushes and examines her mom’s red dress that compliments her dark skin tone beautifully, “you look wonderful too, mom.”

“Have I told you how proud I am of you recently?” She places an affectionate hand on Lexa’s cheek that Lexa can’t help but lean in to before she quickly shakes herself with a smirk.

“Yes but I’ll never get tired of hearing it.”

Indra rolls her eyes, “get in the car.”

-

The anticipation is growing throughout all the volunteers the closer they get to opening the doors. The room in the community centre bright and cheery as possible with drawings from the children and photos of random people in random places scattered along the walls, the tables that are set up full of finger food and cupcakes and cookies and other baked goods with posters and pamphlets next to them all.

Lexa takes in a deep breath as she glances around, preparing herself for the surgeons that will be here in less than ten minutes.

She’s halfway through giving herself a pep talk when Indra announces she’s opening the doors and everyone takes their place behind their designated desks while Lexa and Indra will be walking around socialising.

The air is silent, stiff postures and white knuckled grips on tables until the room begins to fill slow and steady and the energy shift is instant. The buzz of talking and the sounds of money being exchanged for things that are homemade change the atmosphere but that isn’t what the intent is today.

No, their intent isn’t to make a couple hundred dollars from cookies, it’s to make enough money to spice their area up a little with some fresh coats of paint and new equipment for small business and computers for their schools.

They won’t be able to do this all in one afternoon obviously, but it’s a start because if today goes well, they can do another down the line.

Lexa is stuck talking to the head of cardio. Cage Wal- no Dante Wallace. He talks about his son so much Lexa feels herself getting confused. “Well, sir, I believe that everybody should know at least the bare minimum of self defense since there is trouble no matter what area you live in,” he nods along, “and as a cardio surgeon I’m sure you will agree that a healthy lifestyle is something that everybody should take seriously. I’m also sure that you will ask me why I need new equipment in my gym and the simple answer is that whilst there are many ways you can exercise for free like running, a person does not always know their body’s limit.” Still nodding. “A gym is a safe environment where a person can be monitored and use equipment that is suited to their body’s needs without over exerting themselves and causing more damage than not exercising at all. If I could just get some in there without the worry of it breaking I can-“

He holds his hand up to stop her from talking and she sighs out a breath she’d held in, “Lexa, Lexa, I completely agree with everything you just said. Obesity is one of the biggest causes of health problems we have and I think it’s fantastic that you care so much about the well-being of others.” He smiles wide at her. “Where do I sign?’

She gestures over to her table where one of her team, -she hates the word staff- John Murphy, (probably not the wisest choice with his lack of people skills but the only choice) stands looking bored and explains the different ways he can donate to her cause.

Clarke still hasn’t arrived and Lexa tries hard to keep the frown off of her face as she constantly looks around for her but a friendly face distracts her and she beams when she makes her way over to him, “Doctor Kane, I’m so glad you could make it.”

“I wouldn’t miss this for the world, Lexa, you know that.” She reaches out to shake his hand but he scoffs at her and wraps her in a hug. “I feel as though I haven’t seen you in forever. How’s it going so far?”

“Good I think. I’ve managed to get quite a few people over to my table, whether they actually donated or not I don’t know.”

He rolls his eyes at her, “I have no doubt that they did. Now where are you based?”

She stops him half way through him taking out his cheque book, “Marcus, I will never be able to thank you enough for saving my mother’s life, I can’t ask you to do this too.”

“You didn’t ask me to do anything,” he winks, “and I was just doing my job, Lexa, you never need to thank me for doing that. Indra is an incredible woman. She’s is also far too stubborn to die from a bullet.”

“That’s not the point.” A wave of blonde catches the corner of her eye and she grins because finally, finally Clarke is here and the blue dress she has on clings to her curves perfectly and she looks absolutely stunning. “Excuse me for a moment.”

Lexa walks slowly towards where Clarke stands, she tells herself it’s because she doesn’t want to just jump up behind her, but in reality it’s so she can spend those few extra moments appreciating what’s in front of her.

Clarke doesn’t bat an eyelid when Lexa steps behind her to whisper in her ear, “fancy seeing you here.”

“She says knowing full well I’d be here today.” Clarke doesn’t turn but Lexa can hear the smirk in her voice.

She places her hands gently on Clarke’s hips, turning her to face her and smiles, “you look beautiful, Clarke.”

“You don’t scrub up too bad yourself.” Clarke thumbs the suspenders on the sections that curve around Lexa’s breasts and Lexa’s sharp inhale makes her chuckle, “you okay there?”

“I’m always okay when there’s a gorgeous woman standing in front of me.”

Clarke chuckles again, “you never stop do you?”

Biting her lip, Lexa hums, “it appears I’m unable to control myself when you are involved.”

“Looks like you have a good turn out. I have to say I’m impressed,” Clarke says as she steps back from Lexa, “well done.”

Lexa shrugs, “mom organised this, I’m just here to look good.” She rakes her eyes over Clarke, “it was working until you walked in and stole everyone’s attention.”

Before Clarke has the chance to respond, a throat is cleared behind them and Lexa gulps, “would you care to introduce me to your friend, Lexa?”

Lexa tilts her head back, silently begging anyone or anything to help her out.

Nothing does.

She turns her head to the side, still stood slightly in front of Clarke as if protecting her but Clarke is having none of it as she steps in front of her with her hand extended, “hi, my name is Clarke Griffin.”

Indra side eyes Lexa, smiling politely and shakes Clarke’s hand with her own, “ah, so you are the girl that has had my daughter grinning like an idiot all morning.”

It isn’t a question, but Clarke lets out a deep laugh and responds with a nod anyway, “I’m glad to know I leave such an impression. It’s a pleasure to meet you, Mrs. Woods, Raven has told me so much about you.”

“Likewise. Your mother is head of surgery, is she not? That is a very respectable title, one I hope you strive to achieve one day.”

Lexa’s head darts between them as if watching a tennis match, distress more prominent each passing sentence. “She is. I’m a long way from that, unfortunately, but one day maybe.”

They exchange pleasantries for a few minutes, Clarke even managing to pull a ‘family only’ laugh from Indra until her mom sighs, “I’m afraid I will have to leave your company for now, many people to see. You should come round for dinner one night, Clarke.”

Clarke smiles at Indra with a sparkle in her eye, “I would love that, thank you.”

Indra looks satisfied with the answer and glares at Lexa, “do not forget you also have other people to speak to.”

“I promise I won’t keep her around for too much longer, Mrs. Woods,” Clarke replies instead.

Eyebrow raised, mom face in place, she looks Clarke over with a smirk and a wink, “do not make promises you cannot keep, child.”

She walks away. Clarke looks at Lexa dumbfounded, “what does that mean?” Clarke frowns when she sees Lexa’s almost distraught face and nudges her shoulder, “hey are you alright? Lexa?”

Lexa’s eyes focus on Clarke’s and her mouth opens and closes a couple of times, blinking rapidly and she shakes her head with a mumble, “what just happened?” She follows after Indra and tries her hardest not to hear Clarke giggle behind her.

She fails.

It feels like hours since she’s been here, most likely because it has been, and between trying to raise money, trying not chew somebody out if they say something offensive and trying not to stare at Clarke, she’s beginning to get both physically and emotionally tired.

She’s managed to avoid Clarke’s mom for now, noticed the man and woman that couldn’t be anyone but Clarke’s parents talking mostly to Indra and Marcus so she takes the opportunity to sit down with a cold drink, voice slightly hoarse from all the talking she’s been doing.

A weight falls on her and she grunts, but before she has the chance to ask whoever the fuck thinks whatever they’re doing, a desperate whisper hisses down her ear, “act natural.” One of Lexa’s arms automatically move around Clarke’s waist and the other- “Lexa your hand is on my thigh.”

“You told me to act natural,” she defends, “why am I acting natural?”

Clarke sighs, “see behind me? Don’t look!” Lexa huffs, about to ask how the hell she’s meant to see but not look when Clarke interrupts her, “that’s my ex. Not a bad break up but he doesn’t seem to get the fact that I don’t want to be with him anymore so you need to pretend to be my date.”

Lexa’s finger travels up Clarke’s dress clad thigh, the silky material soft against it, “we don’t have to pretend at all, you know.” Clarke scoffs down her ear. “Why is he here?” A shrug. “Okay, what do I get out of this?”

“What do you want?” Lexa smirks at the fact that Clarke is obviously trying hard not to squirm under her fingers, hand getting higher up Clarke’s thigh.

She moves down to hotly whisper to her, “you know what I want, Clarke.” Her hand stills and she applies the slightest bit of pressure causing Clarke to gasp against her. She smirks. “I want an answer to my earlier question.”

“What if I say no?”

Lexa shrugs, “then you say no, I’ll still put on the show of a lifetime to get rid of your ex and I’ll never ask you again.”

Clarke pulls back and bites her lip. For fuck sake. She stares deep into Lexa’s eyes and Lexa just waits, staring back. “Okay.”

“Okay as in you understand what I’m saying or okay as in you’ll go on a date with me?”

She swears Clarke’s eyes flick to her lips, “okay as in I’ll consider it.”

“Clarke,” Lexa whines but sobers rather quickly when she sees company approaching, “how far am I allowed to take this?”

Clarke’s nails dig into Lexa’s neck the same time she nuzzles her head into the opposite side and Lexa has to suppress the moan that nearly rips through her throat at the pleasurable pain. It seems Clarke has found one of her spots without even trying but she can’t let her know that. “However far you need to.”

To any outsider looking in, Lexa is whispering sweet nothings into Clarke’s ear. In reality the vibrating laughter against her body is because of the things she’s saying about Clarke’s ex. “So what’s with the hair commercial mop that’s on his head? Seriously, Clarke, what the fuck were you thinking? He looks like one of those guys they pick for that stupid pre-teen card game. And what the hell does he think he’s wearing? Does he not realise this is a formal event and not a fucking frat party? Honestly, Clarke, I can’t even scale how much of a trade up I am.”

“Clarke?”

Clarke lifts her head from Lexa’s shoulder and nods at him, “Finn, what are you doing here?”

“Your mom told me about this... thing. I thought I’d pop along to say hi.”

Lexa already doesn’t like him. Clarke mutters an ‘of course she did’ with an accompanying eye roll and Lexa speaks up, “I’m afraid you were misinformed. This fundraiser is invitation only.”

He glares at her, “and you are?”

She smirks at him and holds out her hand, “Lexa Woods, event organiser.” It goes unshaken. “I am also Clarke’s date for the day.”

“Date?”

“Yes. You know that thing where you ask one or more people, depending on your relationship preference of course, to partake in either a social or private session of getting to know one another in hopes of a future courtship? Date. The meaning of the word is in the dictionary.” Lexa tilts her head in fake confusion, like Finn really doesn’t know what the word means and Clarke snorts next to her.

Finn snarls, “I’m aware of the term, thank you. But Clarke, last night-“ he starts in an attempt to get a rise out of Lexa, unaware of Clarke’s whereabouts it seems.

“She was with me. I don’t mean to sound rude, sorry, Clarke, what’s his last name?”

Clarke silently chuckles, “Collins.”

“Right. I don’t mean to sound rude Mr. Collins, but Clarke and I are having a nice time. We are having a nice time, right?” She looks over to Clarke who nods with a smile and Lexa knows it’s genuine. “And I’d very much like to continue it. You have come to an event that you were not invited to, dressed inappropriately I might add, to see a girl who is not only not interested, but is on a date with somebody else. As an organiser, I am afraid I am going to have to ask you to leave.”

Finn looks livid, “I know what this is. Clarke you don’t have to pretend you like this girl. I swear I’ll try harder, I’ll even-“

“Finn,” Clarke sighs, “I don’t know how many more times I have to tell you that we’re over. Look, I’m sorry my mom told you about today, but it wasn’t a ruse on my part to get you back. Can you please just let me enjoy my date?”

“Whatever.” He storms off, but doesn’t leave and Lexa watches him watch them over Clarke’s shoulder.

She moves her head enough so Finn can’t see her speaking and looks at Clarke, “can I kiss you?”

Clarke wraps both arms around Lexa’s neck and glares at her playfully. “Ah, she does know how to ask for something.”

“Can I?”

“Lexa-“

She quickly glances over Clarke’s shoulder again to see Finn still watching them and she tightens her grip around Clarke’s waist, “he’s watching us. Clarke he won’t leave until he believes this might be real. Of course I wouldn’t mind causing a scene in your honour, but I’d rather not when the day has been going so well for my community.”

“Just a peck,” Clarke mumbles, already leaning in.

“Just a peck,” Lexa confirms.

‘Just a peck’ apparently isn’t what Clarke meant at all. Lexa starts out slow, just lips pressing against lips, a peck, but as she moves away, Clarke grips the back of her neck again tightly and this time Lexa doesn’t hold in her quiet moan as Clarke gently opens her mouth with her own and scowls when Lexa pulls back.

“Clarke-“

“Shut up.” Clarke drags her teeth against Lexa’s bottom lip and fuck. Fuck if she doesn’t want to drag Clarke to one of the coat rooms and pin her against the door. Fuck if she doesn’t near tremble against Clarke when a sigh is forced into her mouth and the grips between them tighten. Fuck if Clarke’s tongue running along her lip in a question Lexa is more than willing to answer doesn’t make her insides melt, doesn’t soak her underwear faster than any woman has been able to before.

Simply from an open mouthed kiss.

A smack on the back of her head jolts her from her daze just as she’s about to taste Clarke, properly taste her and she sneers to her side. It’s cut short when she sees her mother scowling at her and rubs the back of her head with a blush.

She probably shouldn’t be doing this in a room full of people she has to impress.

“Oh, god. I guess I’m not invited to dinner anymore.”

Lexa smiles softly at her, bringing her hand up to run a stray piece of blonde hair back behind her ear. “Don’t worry, I’ll explain what happened.” Clarke’s eyes are shining and Lexa has to force herself not to lean in again. Instead she clears her throat, “that was quite a kiss for somebody that won’t even agree to a date with me.”

“Well,” Clarke starts, “you said we had to be believable, right?” She glances over her shoulder and Lexa follows suit. Finn is nowhere to be seen. “I guess we were believable.”

“Hm,” Lexa doesn’t believe her for a second, “I guess we were.” Clarke’s eyes are still shimmering and Lexa feels herself drowning, “you truly are stunning, Clarke.”

Clarke bites her lip. Again. Lexa’s beginning to think Clarke is more obsessed with it than she is. “You’re only saying that because I’m a good kisser and you want me in your bed even more now.”

Lexa chuckles, “that may be true,” Clarke tuts and smacks her shoulder, “but it isn’t the only reason I think so.”

They’re trapped in a stare off once more and Lexa idly wonders if she could just sit here forever doing this.

She could.

A clearing throat breaks their trance, “Clarke.”

It would be comical, how fast Clarke stands up and runs a hand through her hair, if Lexa wasn’t staring into cold, hard, brown eyes, missing the bright blue ones that resemble Clarke’s own warm and soft ones. She stands up slowly, wiping down her trousers in a need to compose herself. “Doctor Griffin. I apologise that I couldn’t make your acquaintance, I was-”

“Sticking your tongue down my daughter’s throat?”

“Mom!”

“It wasn’t what you think, Doctor Griffin. Clarke merely asked for my help with-”

The woman ignores her, turning to face Clarke, “there has been an emergency at the hospital. All of us on call need to leave. You will be coming with me to help out.”

“Yeah, why don’t you ask Finn to help you?”

“We can discuss this in the car.” With that she turns to leave.

Clarke’s dad steps forward, “sorry about that. Sometimes Abby doesn’t know how to separate herself from work.” His words may sound harsh, but Lexa can tell by the wistful way he says them that there is nothing but pure affection in his tone. “Jake Griffin,” he introduces himself.

“Lexa Woods.”

“Your mother speaks very highly of you. I hope we can meet again under less... interesting circumstances.” He looks to Clarke, “come on, best not to keep your mom waiting.” He gently takes Clarke’s arm, leading her away and Clarke can only mouth an apology that Lexa waves off.

Indra comes up behind her, making her jump, “you deserved that. I mean, that woman seriously needs to take that stick out of her ass,” Lexa laughs, “but you deserved it.”

Lexa nods, she did.

“Lexa!”

“Clarke?”

She’s slightly out of breath, giving Lexa the impression that she rushed back in as quickly as she could. She tries not to imagine Clarke panting in a different manner.

Preferably under her.

“Mrs. Woods.”

“Clarke.”

Clarke looks between the two of them and finally settles on Lexa. “Wednesday.”

“Wednesday?”

Smiling softly, Clarke nods. “My class finishes at four and I’m not volunteering the night shift, so Wednesday.”

Realisation dawns across Lexa’s face, “really?” A grin. A nod. Lexa releases a breath she didn’t know she’d been holding since this morning when she asked Clarke to go out with her. “Wednesday it is.”

Clarke breathes out as well, and Lexa thinks maybe she was feeling the same way. She looks over to Indra again, “Mrs. Woods.”

“Clarke.”

Lexa watches her leave until she can’t see her anymore and turns to her mom, smile so wide she can feel her face splitting.

Indra rolls her eyes, “oh, dear Lord.”

-

“You guys are back early,” Raven remarks as they walk in the house, arms full of empty trays. “How’d it go?” Indra scoffs because of the emergency at the hospital but her excitement is also clear and Lexa practically floats. Raven looks at her strangely. “Anyway, I got your treadmills working, they should be good to go for a little while at least.”

Lexa hums, not really paying too much attention as she takes her keys back, “thanks, Rae.”

Raven studies her. Lexa doesn’t care. The slit in her eyes gets smaller and smaller until she eventually snaps, “oh my god. Oh my god! Clarke said yes!” She’s beaming.

She’s not beaming as much as Lexa. It catches up with her and Lexa frowns, “how did you-“ she stops herself at Raven’s quirked brow, “right, of course Clarke told you.”

“I’m meeting her later. She said she was going to let you stew for a few days before she said yes though. What the hell did you do, Woods?”

Lexa just winks at her before she makes her way to change back into her comfortable clothes. When she’s finished she looks herself over in the full length mirror. “I’m going to woo you so fucking hard, Clarke Griffin.”

A pillow hits her on the back of her head and she really wishes people would stop doing that. She turns to glare at Anya who shrugs, “stop talking to yourself, it’s weird.”

Lexa rolls her eyes, “aren’t you supposed to be at work?”

“Dad left his dinner in the fridge so I offered to come get it. So you got Clarke to say yes then?”

“God sake, I literally told Raven two minutes ago.”

Anya gloats, “I don’t need Raven to tell me shit. It’s written all over your face, little sis.” Lexa ignores her. She’s doing that a lot lately when it comes to discussing Clarke. “C’mon then, details, Lex. Where are you going to take her? What time? What are you going to wear? Are you picking her up or is she meeting you there?”

She can choose not to answer the first three questions Anya sprouts off because she doesn’t want anyone to spill the information to Clarke. But the last one, the last one sends her reeling out of her mind.

She didn’t get Clarke’s number.

She didn’t get Clarke’s number so she has no way of telling her the plan.

Fuck.

Fuck!

“Raven!”

Chapter Text

It’s Wednesday.

It’s Wednesday and Lexa is freaking out.

She was doing so well. So well until Anya phoned her this morning.

She was prepared. She had her clothes laid out, made the arrangements she needed to make and she was ready. But then-

So you aren’t going to tell me?

She rolled her eyes at Anya even though she couldn’t see her, “just like yesterday, and the day before that, and the day before that... no.”

But what if your plan is shit? You need approval, what if it turns out Clarke doesn’t like what you’re going to do?

“I’m sure it’ll be just fine.”

She remembers, she’d busied herself going through paperwork, distracting herself to not let Anya get to her. “But what if it isn’t? You’ve never taken a girl you actually like on a date before. This is Clarke we’re talking about here, Lex. She’s not going to accept anything below average. You should tell me, just so I can let you know if you’re going to blow it or not.

“Anya I swear to fucking god.”

I’m just looking out for you, little sis. Don’t want you embarrassing yourself.”

“You mean like you would’ve done with Raven if I hadn’t stepped in?”

Exactly!”

Lexa growled at her, “I’m not telling you.”

She heard Anya sigh in defeat and she grinned smugly, but it was wiped off of her face seconds later, “just remember that if you screw this up, you can say goodbye to marrying her one day.”

Fucking Raven.

Anya’s voice had taken on a sullen tone, “I can see her flying away now. Goodbye Mrs. Clarke Griffin-Woods. Enjoy your life while Lexa spends the rest of hers sulking behind a punching bag.”

“One; that isn’t going to happen. Two; you’re suppose to be my sister, that means you’re meant to encourage me, not make me doubt things.”

She could feel Anya shrug down the line, “where’s the fun in that?”

“I’m hanging up now.”

Later, Lexa Woods, forever alone and never to be Lexa Griffin-Woods if you fuck up.”

She hung up the phone and threw it on the couch.

Fucking Anya.

So now here she is, pummelling away on the punching bag, trying her hardest not to go over and over in her head what will happen if she doesn’t sweep Clarke off of her feet.

It’s not even as if Anya said anything to really get under her skin, she’s doing that all by herself.

She’s half way through a roundhouse kick against the bag when a voice startles her, “hey.” It lands wrong and she feels the pain shoot from her ankle up to her thigh. She winces as she drops to the floor, rubbing at her leg. Just a pulled muscle. “Oh, shit, Lexa I’m so sorry! I didn’t mean to distract you.”

Clarke rushes to kneel in front of her, grabbing her ankle and inspecting it. Lexa smiles over to her, “it’s okay, you’re a good distraction.”

“I think you’ve just pulled it, let me stretch it out for you,” Clarke says, too worried to rise to Lexa’s bait.

Lexa gulps, stopping her from moving forward, “no it’s fine. I just need to walk it off.”

“I’m training to be a doctor, Lexa. I’m sure I can handle a pulled muscle.”

She moves forward again and Lexa pushes softly at her shoulders with a smirk, “and you’re going to be an amazing one. But Clarke, I don’t think I can handle having you on top of me.”

Clarke pulls back and bites her lip. That fucking lip. “This might be your only chance, you sure you want to pass that up?”

“It won’t be my only chance.”

It’s said with determination, matter-of-fact and Clarke hums, “knew you’d be a bottom.”

Lexa scoffs, “I am anything but.” She moves to stand, pulling her leg up behind her and she can already feel it loosening. She looks over to the clock with a frown. Three pm. “Not that I’m complaining about seeing you sooner, but you’re early.”

“I couldn’t wait to see you.”

Lexa’s eyes snap up, grin excited, “really?” It takes her a moment to see the teasing glint in Clarke’s eyes and she laughs at herself, “I walked right into that one didn’t I?”

Clarke chuckles, “my last class got cancelled and it was easier to come straight here than sit in my dorm bored.”

“Well I have to wait for Murphy to take me off and then I have to go up and get showered and stuff-”

“Lexa it’s fine,” Clarke cuts her off, “I knew I’d be waiting around for a bit.”

As if on cue, Murphy walks through the door, grumbling about this and that as usual and raises an eyebrow at Lexa, nodding for her to go away as he drops his bag behind the desk, luckily not making a remark about how she’s obviously been stress punching the bag.

He’s a good guy really. She thanks Emori for that.

“Want to come upstairs?” Clarke nods and follows her so close behind her that Lexa can smell a slight hint of the perfume she’s wearing. Clarke smells amazing. Lexa, not so much. “I’m just going to go and shower real quick,” she says as she opens the door.

Clarke pushes past her, lifting herself on to the breakfast bar and Lexa’s beginning to think she played herself more than Clarke with her comment the other night. She leans her elbows on the top ledge and spreads her legs to rest either side of the chair and her intense gaze makes Lexa gulp. “Is it bad that I kind of don’t want you to?”

She’s bluffing. Clarke is bluffing because if Lexa sits down she’ll be face-to-face with Clarke’s magnificent tits. She has to be bluffing.

Lexa calls it.

Moving one of Clarke’s legs to the side, she sits on the stool and looks up at Clarke through her lashes, hands moving softly up and down Clarke’s thighs, “oh yeah? Why’s that?”

“You downstairs just now, getting all hot and sweaty?” Her hands move to clasp behind Lexa’s head with a tug, forcing Lexa to stand up. “Those muscles flexing with every punch and kick, your abs tensing at every twist? That tattoo on your back rippling with every turn? Fuck.”

Lexa gulps again, hands moving to Clarke’s hips to pull her close enough for the ‘v’ of Clarke’s thighs to wrap around the low waistline of her shorts. Lexa’s eyes flutter shut without her control and her head moves to rest on Clarke’s shoulder. “How long were you stood watching me?”

Clarke begins to pant down Lexa’s ear as Lexa’s thumbs start tracing circles on her hips under the shirt, periodically squeezing and pulling Clarke further against her. Lexa noses the crook of Clarke’s neck, lips ghosting along the skin until she meets the underside of Clarke’s jaw. The hold on her neck tightens when she places a soft kiss just below the dimple in Clarke’s chin. “Long enough to see a bead of sweat make it all the way from your hairline to your sports bra.”

She damn near whimpers when she pulls back as she locks on to Clarke’s now dark blue gaze, pupils blown and breath heavy against her own. She feels pathetic when she almost whines out Clarke’s name.

Taking the leap, she moves forward but grunts out in frustration when Clarke holds her back with a smirk, her nose playfully scrunched up, “actually yeah, you do need a shower.” She shifts away from Lexa, hopping down and makes her way to sit on the couch.

Lexa can only stare after her, mouth gaping and shaking her head to clear it of the fog. She blinks rapidly, “there is legitimately no word to describe how evil that was.”

Clarke’s eyes are still blown wide and her breath still comes in sharp pants so Lexa can tell she affected herself just as much as she had Lexa but she shrugs anyway, “I don’t know what you mean.” Lexa scoffs, going to the fridge to pull something out and launches it at Clarke. She catches it with a fumble and incredulous look, “the fuck was that for?”

“To help that thirst you pretend you don’t have.”

She walks away, listening to Clarke’s echoing laugh when she looks at the bottle of water, the sound following her into the bathroom, “enjoy your cold shower, Lexa!”

It’s the coldest shower she’s ever had in her life.

-

“Clarke I’ve told you multiple times that I didn’t ask you to wear something suitable for swimming because I plan on taking you skinny dipping.”

“But I just don’t understand why I’d need it. Unless we are literally going swimming because if we are you can take me home right-”

Lexa rolls her eyes, “we’re not going swimming. Well... technically.”

Clarke huffs, “what does technically even mean?”

“It means that we will not be swimming in a swimming pool, but we will be swimming. Look you’ll find out soon, just trust me.”

Thankfully, Clarke stays quiet for the rest of the ride until she sees the sign and throws a half dubious, half excited look at Lexa. “The sea life centre? Are you going to throw me to the sharks?”

She laughs at her own joke and Lexa finds it adorable, but she smirks, “I will if you don’t stop asking questions.” Clarke makes a show of zipping her lips.

They enter through the back, skipping the queue of over-hyper children and Clarke’s eyes light up when she sees they have the tunnel to themselves, her gaze not knowing where to land. “This is amazing.”

“I know you’ve probably been here loads of times but-”

“Lexa, over here.” Lexa watches as Clarke’s eyebrows crinkle at the foreign voice, as if scolding it for taking her concentration away from all the beautiful aquatic animals moving seamlessly through the water around them.

Lexa smiles at the newcomer before hugging her, “hey, Luna. Thanks for doing this today. I know it’s going to be busy pretty soon.”

Luna waves her off, “it’s cool. Anything for you.” She playfully winks and Lexa looks far too smug at Clarke’s glare. Luna turns her attention to Clarke, “we still have half an hour before we open the doors again for the night shift,” she explains, “we use this time for feeding and making sure none of them have gotten too stressed during the day so they can use this time to float freely without having to look at kids’ snotty faces.” It gets a snicker from Clarke, but the glare is still there. “So what’s your favourite?”

And luckily Luna has always been good at disarming people because Clarke’s glare turns sheepish at Luna’s charming smile. “Manta rays.”

“Well,” Luna chuckles, “I’m used to people saying dolphins but I can work with that.” She taps her chin thoughtfully before snapping her fingers, “actually, I have the perfect idea. Follow me.”

They do as instructed but Clarke holds Lexa back a little, “she one of yours?”

Lexa smirks, “wrong Woods sister, actually.” Clarke only hums in acknowledgement, glare now completely gone. Lexa raises her brow, “are you going to do this with every girl we come across?”

“Do what?”

Her innocent question is so blatantly feigned it hurts. Lexa plays along anyway, “ask in a not-so-subtle way if I’ve had sex with them?”

Clarke’s fake face of understanding is comical to say the least. “Oh that? Absolutely. I need to know who I can compare notes with about that thing you do with your tongue.”

Lexa’s brow furrows in confusion, “what?”

“Oh, Lexa. That line is in every decent wlw story ever written. Even you must know that.”

Shaking her head, Lexa rephrases, “no, no. You said that as if you were implying you’d find out by yourself.”

Luna is further ahead of them now so it’s highly unlikely she can hear them. It doesn’t stop Clarke from leaning down to hotly whisper into Lexa’s ear, “maybe I wasn’t implying anything.” She lightly smacks Lexa’s on the ass causing her to freeze, before she jogs to catch up with Luna.

Lexa grumbles to herself, “you’re a fucking tease, Clarke Griffin.” The wink she receives from Clarke is enough to tell her she didn’t say it as quietly as she thought.

“Here we are.” Luna opens the door to reveal a room that is mostly water, just enough of an edge to walk around. She lets Clarke go in front of her and lets the door close on Lexa. Lexa side eyes her through a playful glare. “This lovey dovey look you have is cute as fuck, Lex,” she whispers as Clarke makes her way around the room carefully.

“Shut up or I’ll let Raven blow you up.”

Luna scoffs, “Raven loves me. She’s just playing the part of jealous girlfriend.”

“Seriously, Luna the only reason you’re still able to get a WiFi connection in your house is because Anya made her stand down.”

“That is so not true.”

Clarke frowns over at them, “oh please, Raven is the least jealous person in the world.”

Lexa and Luna stop to look at her and Lexa raises her brow, “no, that would be Anya. How can you and Raven be best friends and know shit all about each other?”

“Excuse me? I’ve known Raven since she first became somebody’s beard.” At confused looks she elaborates, “Raven hit puberty before any of us and one of the guys on the football team was too scared to come out. Miller got his girlfriend and Raven got out of being hassled by guys.”

“Fine, I’ll prove it to you later. For now...”

Lexa gestures to Luna who makes some weird sounds and the next thing Clarke knows there’s a manta ray in front of them. “Whoa. That was so cool.”

Luna smiles, “Clarke meet Karma. Karma, this is Clarke.” Luna leads the animal over and carefully places Clarke’s hand on her, the awed gasp that leaves her lips echoing in the room. “We rescued Karma from the sea. She got trapped by fishermen,” she runs her fingertips along a large scare down the animal’s fin, “she couldn’t swim properly and she was bleeding so much that it was drawing in sharks. We kept her until she was healed and went to release her but she wouldn’t go. She’s been here since.” Luna’s smile doesn’t leave her face as she watches Clarke gently run her hand back and forth across the manta ray’s back. “She likes you.”

Lexa steps forward to get a closer look, passing Luna the bucket full of food she asks for.

“Do you want to swim with her?”

Clarke looks taken back, and suddenly Lexa wanting her to wear something suitable makes sense. “Haven’t people like, died because of them?”

Smiling softly again, Luna pours the bucket into the giant mouth that’s presented to them, “only when they feel attacked. Stay in her line of sight and they are some of the friendliest and most playful creatures you can meet. I’ll be there the whole time.”

Hesitating only a moment, Clarke lifts to take her top off and Lexa is having such a good time watching Clarke enjoy herself that she can’t even conjure up a dirty thought. Next go her jeans and she stands nervously with her hands across her stomach, waiting for Luna to do the same.

After Luna kits Clarke out in all the safety gear she needs, Clarke casts a beaming smile in Lexa’s direction, head tilting curiously. Lexa shakes her head, “I don’t want her to get scared by having too many people. Go. Have fun.”

It isn’t possible for Lexa to get bored on her own, not when she can see watery silhouettes moving around under the ripples. She doesn’t know how much time has passed when Clarke and Luna finally emerge, she can hear distant sounds meaning the doors have reopened.

Clarke is positively glowing as she takes her gear off. Still in a skimpy blue bikini which now, now Lexa can appreciate. Clarke wraps her up in a vice grip hug, practically squeaking down her ear, “thank you, thank you, thank you! That was the best experience of my life.”

Lexa pulls back and a calm quiet surrounds them. Clarke’s eyes are even more blue than normal if that’s possible and they’re only highlighted by the shimmering of the rippled water behind her.

“If you two love birds are done making heart eyes at each other,” Luna drawls, “I’ve got to go and make sure stupid ass children aren’t banging on the glass.” She pounders for a second, “as well as the offspring they brought with them.”

With a grin, Lexa pulls back as Clarke goes to redress, “thanks, Luna, I owe you.”

“You don’t owe me shit, Woods.” Luna raises a voice to Clarke as she points at Lexa, “look after this one, yeah? She’s a rare breed.”

Clarke bites her lip as she comes to stand next to Lexa once more, “only if I can come and see Karma again.”

Luna laughs with a nod and they quickly and quietly make their way to the back entrance. She gives Lexa another hug before she leaves, “I like this one.”

Lexa nods, “me too.”

As they turn to leave, Luna shouts out once more, “tell your sister she’s still smoking hot. Tell Raven the same.”

“I’ll be sure to tell them both you want a threesome at some point.”

“I didn’t say that! I mean, I wouldn’t say no but I didn’t say it."

Clarke chuckles beside her as she opens the door for her, waiting until she’s snug with her seat belt on before closing the door and getting into the driver’s seat. “That was so much fun. You didn’t do too bad after all.”

With a scoff, Lexa puts the car into drive, “what you think that was it? That was only activity one.”

“Of how many?”

Lexa hums in thought, “three. Maybe four depending on how the rest of the night goes.”

“Lexa-”

“What? I just meant that if you weren’t too full from dinner you might accompany me for a walk around the park.”

Clarke raises her brow, “of course you did.” They’re quiet for a few minutes, letting the music play softly through the speakers and it doesn’t surprise Lexa that Clarke is a channel surfer.

It also doesn’t bother her.

She finally settles on some smooth jazz, which does surprise Lexa, before speaking again, “so Anya and Luna, huh?”

Lexa laughs, “I always make it out to be a bigger deal than it actually was. They were high school sweethearts but then they ended up drifting apart. Anya doesn’t do drama.”

“Anya doesn’t seem to do a lot of things. Drama, jealousy...”

She can only shrug, not really knowing what to say, “that’s just the kind of person she is.”

“And what kind of person are you?”

“I guess you’ll find out.”

“Cocky.”

“You’re here aren’t you?”

Lexa’s eyes don’t leave the road, but she can feel Clarke’s gaze burning the side of her head. “I guess I am.”

She tries to lift the tension, “so what’s with you and Finn?” Tension not lifted. Fuck sake, Lexa.

Clarke laughs though, and Lexa breathes out a sigh of relief, “isn’t it bad date etiquette to bring up exes?”

“it’s bad date etiquette to bring up your own exes. Not other people’s.”

A flick of the wrist waves her off, “semantics. I don’t know, his dad is a shareholder is some form of computer thing. I wasn’t really paying attention. Mom set me up with him and he was a nice guy, we had an okay time so I thought ‘what the hell?’ but Jesus Christ he is so boring.” Lexa laughs loud. “Seriously, he once tried to start a conversation with me about the traffic. The traffic, Lexa.” She genuinely sounds mortified, and Lexa laughs louder. “It’s not funny. He firmly believed that I cared it would take an extra fifteen minutes to get to New York if I wanted to go at that exact moment in time.”

Lexa can’t stop, it’s actually not that funny but the way Clarke is exaggerating brings tears to her eyes, “well just in case you weren’t aware, the roads are clear to our next destination.”

Clarke flicks her shoulder, “jerk. And you? Have you never had a real relationship?”

“Nope. Is that a problem?”

The reply takes longer than Lexa likes. “Not really. I guess I just like to know the person’s name before I jump into bed with them. “

Lexa feigns offense, “hey, I knew their names.” Clarke stares her down. “Most of the time. “

Thankfully, their next pit stop comes up and Lexa slows the car to a halt. “A bowling alley?”

Lexa rolls her eyes, “just trust me.”

She takes Clarke’s hand, leading her through the loud sounds of balls hitting pins and loud cheers of strikes to a quiet back room.

It’s lit only by candle light and there’s a small stage set up in the corner. Clarke’s curious gaze causes Lexa to smile as she leads them to a table in the corner. “It’s a live music night this place does twice a week. I thought it’d be a nice calm and they sell food here too. It’s not much, just like, burgers and stuff. I’m not really one for fancy restaurants, sorry.”

“Oh no, give me pizza and beer any day.”

Lexa’s kind of girl. “You drink martinis.”

“It’s a figure of speech, Lexa.” She looks around, “it’s nice. Cosy.” They settle in and Clarke actually orders a beer with a grin. She orders a stacked burger after and the food arrives just as the music starts up.

The mood is comfortable. They hardly speak except for the occasional comment about the artist, venue or short childhood story. They both change to soft drinks even after Lexa tries to convince Clarke that she doesn’t need to. Lexa is the one driving after all.

Clarke learns more about Lexa’s upbringing -she doesn’t ask about what happened to Indra- and Lexa learns more about Clarke’s. Before they know it it’s nearing eleven pm and the last act is wrapping up his song for the night.

A respectable round of applause fills the air before everyone finishes up, Clarke and Lexa being the last to leave. “It’s getting kind of late, we can skip the park if you want?”

It’s only a short distance away, she doesn’t need to drive to it and Clarke must realise that because she grabs Lexa’s hand in her own and pulls her along. “You’d better protect me if some stranger is lurking.”

“I doubt you need somebody to protect you, Clarke. If you do want some classes though, you know where I am.”

She almost shudders at the electricity she feels shoot through her when Clarke squeezes her hand gently, “I might take you up on that.”

Lexa doesn’t know how to ask the world why it hates her. Sure enough, it does.

“Well, well, well, what do we have here?”

Clarke laughs and Lexa groans. They’d just sat down on one of the benches and Lexa was explaining how they came to rejuvenate the park section by section. “Anya, Reyes. Isn’t it past your bed times? Especially you, sis, you’re getting old as fuck.”

Anya rolls her eyes, “I’m literally three years older than you.”

“Yes. And you always will be.” She glares at the two of them, “now do you mind?”

Raven shrugs, “no actually. Seeing as though we’re not heading home until now for your benefit.”

Clarke frowns next to her, “what does that mean?”

As fast as Lexa tries to stop her, she can’t, “well miss ‘I can’t reschedule’ over here made enough money at the fundraiser to get the new equipment she needed for the gym-”

“Really? That’s great Lexa.” Lexa blushes.

“And guess who had to sit assembling it all tonight so she didn’t have to cancel on you?”

Clarke looks at her in shock now, “what? You didn’t have to do that for me. I could’ve just helped instead.”

“I couldn’t ask you to do that, Clarke.”

Lexa doesn’t quite understand the determined look that glazes Clarke’s features, but Raven speaks before she can try to decipher it, “anyway. So it’s your fault we’re here right now, but I’m-” a sudden distraught looks crosses her face, “wait, I just realised I don’t know who to give the best friend speech to.”

They all stop as if contemplating it before Clarke snaps her fingers, “I know. You give it to me because Anya is Lexa’s sister and Octavia can give it to Lexa.”

Just as Lexa starts to veto that option, Raven interrupts again, “perfect. You and me on Saturday, Griff.”

“You’re free on Saturday?”

Clarke winks at her. Raven gags, “ugh, yeah, you know what? I think we are going to leave. C’mon, babe.”

She drags Anya behind her, her sister with a far too smug grin on her lips and a Lexa can’t resist, “Luna says hi by the way.”

Raven freezes and Lexa can see her grip tighten even in the dark night. She whispers a ‘told you so’ to Clarke before Raven turns around and takes a deep, steady breath, “I don’t even care.” Liar. “You took her to the sea life centre?” A nod. “And did you get to swim with...” Another nod. She whistles low and looks at Anya, “damn, babe, Lexa blew our first date out of the water.” She winces, “no pun intended.” A chuckle. “Actually, pun totally intended. Whatever, night losers.”

“I’m sorry about her,” Lexa says, “she-"

She’s wrapped in a warm embrace before she gets the chance to finish. It’s an awkward angle in the way they’re sat, but it works, “thank you for forcing our friends to do your shitty work for you just so you could take me out,” Lexa chuckles, “that was very sweet.”

Lexa feels a shudder go through Clarke, and she knows it’s because of the chill the night sky brings. She holds her closer, “you can stay the night at mine if you want. I can get you back in the morning in time for your class.”

Clarke pulls back and for a minute she looks torn, eyes flitting between Lexa’s own and her mouth. She bites her lip and Lexa has to restrain herself no to lean in and bite it for her. It doesn’t take long for Clarke’s attitude to make a reappearance, “I don’t have sex with people on the first date, Lexa.”

“I just meant to sleep, Clarke.”

“Of course you did.” Clarke rolls her eyes with a smirk. “I should go home, though. I’m volunteering tomorrow night so-”

“Say no more.” Lexa stands and extends her hand to Clarke, “m’lady.”

The drive back is shorter than Lexa wants it’s to be and Clarke looks embarrassed after every small yawn she lets out. Lexa could quite happily just sit and watch Clarke in complete silence until she falls asleep.

It sounds less creepy in her head.

They pull up and Lexa insists she walks Clarke to her dorm room. She eventually agrees. Clarke leans against the door, pulling a Lexa into her by the lapels of her jacket, “I actually had a nice time tonight. Thank you.”

“You say that as if you’re shocked.”

“Call it pleasantly surprised.”

Lexa moves forward, one hand resting on the door frame above Clarke’s head and the other moves to her hip as she pushes herself into Clarke. She’s rewarded with a small gasp. “Can I take you out again on Saturday?”

Clarke’s grip tightens, “I’ll let you know.”

“Clarke.” Lexa is going to have to start keeping a tally on how often she whines Clarke’s name like that.

A happy smile graces Clarke’s mouth and she lifts a hand to cup Lexa’s jaw before she tilts it to the side to press a lingering kiss on Lexa’s cheek, “goodnight, Lexa.”

Clarke opens the door and makes her way inside, keeping eye contact with Lexa until the very last second.

Once it’s closed, Lexa’s forehead rests against it, “goodnight, Clarke.”

She taps on the doorframe twice before she heads down to her car and it’s only when she presses the accelerator a tad too hard and a twinge shoots through her ankle that she remembers her earlier tumble.

She’ll have to ice that when she gets home.

It’s definitely not going to be the only thing she has to ice.

Chapter Text

Lexa: So tomorrow? Yes or no?

Clarke: I might be able to shift some things around.

Lexa almost rolls her eyes at the response. A smile plays at her lips as she gets her breakfast ready.

Lexa: What time are you meeting Raven?

Clarke: We’re going to lunch.

Lexa: So after?

Clarke: That could work. I’ll let you know when we’re done.

Accepting that and not wanting to disturb Clarke during her class, she puts her phone away and heads down to open the gym, sloppily eating her cereal as she does so. The new equipment looks clean and fresh, now she just needs to get a good paint job to match and she’ll be happy with how it looks.

Fridays are usually pretty slow at work, there’s always some form of student night on Thursdays but the few stragglers that come here in the morning are always an amusing sight.

Grunts, moans and mocking laughs fill the air as the younger members try to work off their hang over and the older members watch on with smirks at the amount of effort it take them to do something that is so easy any other day of the week.

There isn’t really much she can do with it just being her and Murphy the majority of the week until Friday afternoons when Lincoln can take some time away from the community centre to watch over the gym whilst Lexa trains a female only class.

She has a lot of respect for John Murphy, he works with her practically full time as well as doing classes at the university and he only asks for time off when it’s necessary. She’s very lenient with him, doesn’t mind if he’s running late, which is more often than not, because when he is here he works his ass off and she has a bit of a soft spot for his girlfriend also. Especially when she brings in brownies or dinner, scolding them both constantly for forgetting to eat when time runs away from them.

So here she is, playing games on her phone behind the desk while she waits for Lincoln. She knows that if she were desperate enough, there are those that come here that she could trust to keep an eye on things if she needed to run off.

Not that she would unless it was a dire emergency, the people that come here are like a little family to her. There are those that were loyal to Titus and have the upmost respect for Lexa and there are new members that sometimes only come in to get off the streets.

Their community has a bad reputation for thugs, true, and as in every area there is always going to be a ‘wrong crowd’ to get involved with, but thanks to places like this and the centre, over time there has been less and less incidents.

Lexa’s always been a firm believer that children that do go around causing trouble is mostly because they’re either bored or don’t want to be stuck at home. The more they have to do in places where people of all ages and social status attend, the more likely they are to behave.

It seems to be working, when she hears stories of how it used to be when her mom and dad were growing up compared to how it is now, her faith in her people can only grow.

A throat clears next to her and she holds up a finger as she finishes this level and a large smile appears on her lips at the face that greets her, “Monty Green. To what do I owe the pleasure?”

“Hey, Lexa.” And yes, she forgot he’s a hugger. “We erm...” His gaze shifts to the doors and Lexa’s jaw locks. “We came to apologise.”

“You have nothing to be sorry for,” she mumbles before raising her voice, “so are you just going to block my doorway or come in, Jasper?”

Jasper scoffs as he enters, his expression still one of self-importance and Monty looks half way between pissed off and apologetic. He glares at Monty, obviously being forced to come here, “this is nice.” The monotone drawl causes Lexa to raise her brow and he winces when Monty elbows him. “Yeah, so, sorry about last week I guess.” Rehearsed. “I didn’t mean it. I hope you can forgive me.” His eyes are focused on the ceiling like he’s trying to remember the check list of what he has to say. “I don’t want it to cause a split between our friends. What was that other thing? Oh yeah, I’m sorry if I offended you by practically calling poor people prostitutes, that wasn’t cool.”

Lexa bites the inside of her cheek and looks to Monty, “is he for real?”

“Dude you said you genuinely wanted to apologise!”

“That’s only because you wouldn’t stop bugging me about how ‘rude’ I was.”

It’s quiet between them until Lexa stands up and she has to smirk at the flinch that goes through Jasper. “Quint!” The large man drops the weights he’s been lifting and turns to face her and she has to hold in her laugh at the look of fear in Jasper’s eyes. “I’m just popping outside for five minutes.”

“You got it, Lex.” He turns back to his weights but shifts so he can see the whole of the gym.

She tilts her head in a gesture for Monty and Jasper to follow her and leads them to the side of the building. Next to the door that leads her to her apartment and there in large, messy graffiti, are the words ‘Arkadia fucking rulez’ and she sighs, “they couldn’t even spell it right. This, Jasper, this is the kind of shit your people come into our territory to do.”

Jasper shrugs, “you could just clean it off.”

“Why should I? Why should I waste my time scrubbing at something people like you think it’s okay to do? What is the point of doing that just for them to come back in a week or two and do it again? This kind of distasteful crap is what we have splattered across the buildings in our area and it’s those like you who won’t take responsibility for your actions. Sometime I like to have it up there, just to show the blatant disrespect the privileged have for us.”

“You can’t prove that was from our people.”

Lexa hums, “and why would my people write ‘Arkadia’? They are not so juvenile as to blame their work on others.” She walks off, leaving the two to trail behind her until she stops at the other side of the building, the wall facing the street, easy for any passers by to see. Covering it is nothing short of art. The large graffiti piece is a mix of people of all different ages, all different ethnicities joining together across the span of the wall and as high as the second story. The background shows pieces of activities from footballs to music instruments to paint brushes to martial arts. It’s all blended together with light blues and purples, greens and oranges and it’s one of the most beautiful things Lexa has ever seen.

She couldn’t get rid of it even of she had no choice. She never found out who created this masterpiece, has never been able to thank them. If it was her that did it, she thinks she might stay anonymous also.

“I cannot prove that your people were the ones to write that, but this is what our people create.”

Jasper looks torn, but as quickly as that look appears it’s gone, “whatever. I came here to say sorry and I did so...”

He walks away and Monty casts his eyes down in embarrassment, “sorry, Lexa. He acts out when he’s put on the spot. He has been telling me all week that he feels bad about what he said. Apparently he doesn’t know how to say it to anyone else.”

Lexa clasps his shoulder until his gaze locks on hers, “I believe you, but there is only so many times you can stick up for him before he ends up alienating all of his friends. I just hope that he will not take you down with him.”

-

Lincoln walking through with his bright smile is like a summer’s breeze to Lexa.

Fuck she must be bored if she thinks like that.

“Hey, cous’.”

She cringes, “God I hate it when you talk like that. Stop spending so much time with Octavia.”

He leans his elbows on the desk facing her, “impossible. Heard your date went well with Clarke.”

Lexa beams at him, “I think it did.”

“Oh no, it did,” he winks, “Octavia said she wouldn’t shut up about it yesterday.” He makes a show of clasping a hand over his mouth and widening his eyes but Lexa can see his smirk , “oops. Oh I don’t think I was suppose to say that.”

“Really?” She bites her lip to hold her grin and he just nods at her. She glances at the clock. She still has fifteen minutes before the class, “do you mind?” Lincoln shakes his head and practically pushes her out of the chair. She laughs good-naturedly and pulls out her phone.

Lexa: So a little birdie told me that you haven’t stopped talking about Wednesday.

Clarke: Would that little birdie be a play on Raven’s name by any chance?

Lexa: No actually, but it’s nice that I could ask her for information too.

Clarke: One; I’m going to kill that sneaky Blake. Two; I can neither confirm or deny what comes out of her mouth. She is obviously not to be trusted.

Lexa: You trusted her enough when she was gossiping about my sex life.

Lexa had already deduced it was Octavia that had mentioned her bed partners to Clarke. She isn’t mad at her, knowing Octavia it was probably just said in passing and it’s not like her and Clarke knew each other at the time. Plus the fact that Lexa doesn’t care who knows nor is she ashamed about it. But damn, Clarke’s right in calling her a sneaky Blake, putting dents in plans she didn’t know she had.

Clarke: Something that has apparently been non existent since you met me.

Lexa: Clarke, I haven’t even noticed there are other girls in the world since I saw you.

Clarke: Could you get any more corny?

Lexa: Definitely. Meet me tomorrow and find out for yourself.

She sees her class begin to trickle in and Clarke doesn’t text her back before they all arrive. Lexa figures she’d started her next class.

It’s not that she doesn’t love teaching women (and all the other self-defence classes she runs) how to protect themselves, it’s just that for some reason she’s not feeling it today as she usually does. A part of her just wants to close up and spend the rest of the day binging on some mindless program with a bottle of beer.

She’s still as enthusiastic as always, of course, but she thanks whatever might be out there when the day is over. She doesn’t know how people like Raven and Clarke can always be so bubbly and awake when they work nearly all hours of the day. If it were her she thinks she’d end up collapsing on one of the training mats.

Just like what she feels like doing now.

The gym is open twenty-four hours Friday morning to Sunday night and it nears one a.m. when Murphy comes in to take her off for the graveyard shift.

Clarke still hasn’t text her back but Lexa knows she went straight from her last class to volunteer at the hospital. She changes into sleepwear before she grabs a beer and skims through Netflix over and over again, nothing really grabbing her attention, not knowing what she’s in the mood for.

She jumps when her phone dings and she frowns at it, groaning at the effort of having to move.

Clarke: Can I come up?

The frown is still on her face as she automatically goes downstairs. Murphy wolf whistles at her and she glares at him.

She probably should’ve put some sweats over her boxers or something.

The back of a blonde hair covered head turns her frown to a grin, “Clarke?”

Clarke spins and Lexa smirks at the once over she gets. It’s quickly masked and Clarke holds up a box of pizza, “you hungry?”

Her stomach grumbles on demand and she blushes when Clarke chuckles. “Sure, come on up.”

“Don’t stay up fucking all night, Lex, you have a seven o’clock with Octavia.”

“Shut the fuck up, Murphy.” Clarke is quiet when they enter the apartment as she sets the pizza on the table and sits on the couch. She smiles soft at Lexa but her eyes aren’t as bright as usual and Lexa frowns again. She grabs two plates and joins Clarke, causing a small chuckle to escape which makes Lexa’s lips tilt upward. “Is everything okay?”

Clarke hums, patting the seat next to her. After Lexa sits, Clarke leans her head on her hand and just looks at her, “yeah, it’s just been a long day. Can I stay here tonight?”

Lexa’s breath stops and if her eyes weren’t already on Clarke’s they would’ve snapped up to meet them. “Of course, you don’t have to ask me that. You know where everything is.”

It’s all a bit odd for Lexa, she isn’t exactly sure what’s happening right now as Clarke is in her room getting changed. She’s even more confused when Clarke comes out in an outfit similar to her own and leans on the wall with her arms crossed, looking Lexa over until she starts to squirm. “Lay down.”

Any form of cockiness, playful or otherwise, leaves Lexa in a flash and she can’t do anything but follow instructions. Clarke watches her move in silence and it isn’t until Lexa is flat that she makes her way over. Lexa freezes when Clarke lays on top of her and she basks in the fact that she’s the perfect fit, legs tangled and Clarke nosing her neck until she ends with her head on Lexa chest and it takes a minute for Lexa to realise Clarke is listening to her heartbeat. “Clarke?”

“Is this okay? I just need, I need...” She trails off, snuggling deeper into Lexa and Lexa’s hand moves to stroke up and down Clarke’s back.

It’s comfortable. Clarke’s weight on her is nice, but she knows now isn’t the time. “Do you want to talk about it?”

“It was just, it was a hard day. Working at the hospital is usually amazing even though it is often full of death. Working as a volunteer, you tend to get close to patients that have been there a while and when they go, it’s... it’s awful. Sometimes it make me wonder if I can do it. I can’t be that robotic doctor with no feelings and I worry that I’m not going to be able to handle losing a patient when the time comes.”

Lexa sighs, trying to think of the right words, “you told me that the reason you wanted to become a doctor was to see the smiles on families faces when you can give them good news. You have a huge heart, Clarke. People die, that’s how the world works, but I don’t think for one second that you wouldn’t do everything you possibly could to try and save them. When you can accept the bad, it just makes the good all that more meaningful.”

Clarke squeezes her waist, “thank you. I know it’s late and you were probably getting ready for bed. I just didn’t want to be alone tonight.” Lexa is about to wave her off, but Clarke speaks up again before she can, “I mean I tried Raven and O but neither of them answered.” Lexa can feel the smirk through her tank top and she knows Clarke is relaxing a little more. “The pizza is going to get cold.”

“We can have it for breakfast,” Lexa assures, “do you want to watch something?” Clarke nods. “Orphan Black?”

“Too serious.”

“Brooklyn Nine Nine?”

“Perfect.”

The pizza does go cold, her beer goes flat and the knots she’s going to get in her back from the couch are already starting to form. Lexa is more than content though, feeling Clarke’s breath even out and she sags heavier on top of her telling Lexa she is finally asleep. She doesn’t move to turn off the TV or lights, not wanting to disturb Clarke so she just holds her tighter until she eventually drifts off herself.

-

She’s cold when she wakes and she groans loud when she sees she’s up half an hour earlier than her alarm is due. Her mind is fuzzy as her eyes adjusts to the light, blinking rapidly against it.

“Morning.”

Lexa jolts up, wincing at the ache in her neck and smiles, “Clarke. Here I thought I just happened to have an amazing dream that a beautiful woman fell asleep on me.”

Clarke hums with a shake of her head, “go brush your teeth before breakfast, stud.” Lexa grins and stands, pops her neck and stretches her back.

She may or may not have stretched just that little bit more so her abs were on show.

“Lexa?” Clarke waits until she has Lexa’s full attention. “Thank you.”

“Any time.”

A toothbrush is next to hers and Lexa raises her eyebrow at it even though it’s pretty obvious that Clarke has found where she kept the spares, it’s more the fact that it’s hung in the holder.

It doesn’t bother her. Nothing seems to where Clarke is involved.

She decides to have a quick shower too, and the sight that greets her as she towel dries her hair is something she wants to wake up to every morning. Clarke is leaning against the kitchen counter in Lexa’s shorts and a baggy t-shirt with a large mug in her hands, raking her eyes up and down Lexa’s form over the rim of the cup. Lexa sees the pout of Clarke’s mouth as she blows the heat of the coffee away.

She’s not expecting it. She’s not expecting any of it. She’s not expecting Clarke to put the mug down, she’s not expecting her to stride over with purpose and rip the towel out of her hand, throwing it over her shoulder where it lands somewhere on the floor. She’s not expecting Clarke to grip the back of her neck.

She is expecting the groan that tears through her throat.

Clarke’s eyes burn into her and Lexa chokes on nothing when those eyes flick to her lips and back. “Clarke?”

“Kiss me.”

Lexa doesn’t waste time, she’s not even sure if she let Clarke finish before she dips that inch needed to catch her lips with her own.

Although the kiss itself is slow and gentle, Clarke’s soft moan and slight catch of breath causes their movements to become frantic. Lexa’s hands find their way to Clarke’s hips and hold tight in a needless effort to keep her there and Clarke’s other hand weaves through Lexa’s damp hair.

As the angle of the kiss changes, Lexa runs her tongue along Clarke’s bottom lip before she sucks on it and the answering groan she receives is enough for her to deepen it. She pulls Clarke harder against her and wraps her arms around Clarke’s waist, fingers dipping under the t-shirt, one hand spread across Clarke’s lower back, trailing up her spine and the other moves so that her middle and ring finger find their way below the waistband of the shorts.

Lexa fucking melts when Clarke’s tongue finally meets her own and they both moan into the kiss.

A blaring sound makes them jump but they move as one as Lexa takes a deep breath through her nose and leans down to grab Clarke’s thighs, hinting for her to hop up which she does so immediately, grunting into Lexa’s mouth as her legs wrap securely around Lexa’s abdomen.

She walks to the couch, dropping heavily onto it and it places Clarke in a position of straddling her. Clarke reaches back blindly to find the phone, eyes slammed shut in concentration, trying to multitask and failing miserably when the phone falls to the floor instead, still producing the horrendous sound.

A noise of frustration leaves Clarke’s lips as she pulls back to reach over to the phone, quickly stopping the sound and slams the phone back on the table.

Lexa’s chuckle is cut off when Clarke’s mouth returns to hers and her head implodes when it makes its way across her cheek, down her neck and nips, a soothing tongue following suit.

Feeling the hem of her shirt being played with, Clarke joins Lexa’s hands and helps her to pull it over her head and bites her lip at the stutter it causes.

She’s very happy she went with the new black lace number that holds her tits wonderfully. She may have also picked it out when she saw these tight shorts in Lexa’s drawer last week and thought they’d go well with it.

Anyone else would probably start to feel self conscious under a gaze like Lexa is giving Clarke, but she relishes in it. She knows she has a good body and she’s damn proud of it.

“You’re stunning, Clarke.”

Clarke bites her lip as she locks eyes with Lexa’s hooded gaze but she can’t hold it, Lexa is too busy letting it travel all over her and she smirks, “I know.”

“Now who’s the one that’s being cocky?”

Shutting her up with another kiss, this one more needy and desperate, Clarke can’t help the shudder that goes through her when Lexa’s hands start to explore. Her breath becomes more harsh the longer Lexa’s fingers travel in a feather light touch. The goose bumps follow the line up her thigh, across her hips, up her stomach, along her collarbone, down her spine before Lexa settles them in a grip on her ass and gently squeezes.

It’s not until that moment that Clarke has to break the kiss but Lexa can’t take her lips off of the perfect skin and repeats Clarke’s earlier actions of nipping down the neck presented to her.

A particularly harsh bite forces Clarke’s hips to snap forward and the loud moan that follows spurs Lexa to start moving them for her and the moans turn to pathetic little whimpers as Clarke squirms against her.

Clarke’s grip in Lexa’s hair tightens and the rocking motion against those incredible abs increase and the pressure on her neck gets more rough.

Whatever marks Lexa is going to litter her neck in are going to be a bitch to cover up.

“Lexa.”

And that’s what causes Lexa to snap. Not the tug of her hair, not the rhythm of Clarke’s hips, not the hot wetness she can already feel making its mark. No, it’s that pleading whisper that makes her roll Clarke until she’s laying down with Lexa towering over her and kisses her deep enough that teeth are slightly knocking and she feels as if she’s being swallowed whole, Clarke’s yelp at the sudden movement going unheard.

She feels like a fucking teenager when her leg fits between Clarke’s and they start a push/pull that has them grinding against one another on the couch and she knows her grey boxers must have a decent sized wet patch on them by now, probably worse than what she feels from the shorts Clarke is still in for some stupid reason.

Her imagination runs faster than her mind, because the image of pushing her hand down those shorts and feeling for herself clouds her brain and everything flexes. Her thigh pulses against Clarke harder than she intends and Clarke’s head rolls back in a moan, lifting her hips as high as she can. “Fuck, Lexa,” she whines.

“I know, baby,” she whispers and then her eyes widen at the slip and Clarke’s eyes dart to look at her but the small smile lets her know that she didn’t completely mess up. Everything slows and Lexa brings a hand to run over Clarke’s cheek, “so fucking beautiful.”

Clarke playfully rolls her eyes, “you’re not too bad yourself, Lex. Now as you were.”

Lexa nips her lip, “bossy.”

She gets back to work, albeit much more sensual than before, as her lips trail down Clarke’s chest and above the lace of the bra she can’t wait to take off. She can feel Clarke getting frustrated under her ministrations until she purposely lifts her own leg to press pointedly against Lexa’s already throbbing clit and she jerks at the unexpected stimulation but regains herself quickly.

“Not so funny when you’re the one being teased, is it?” Lexa doesn’t give Clarke time to answer, not when she can feel Clarke’s nipple stiff against her chin, so she angles her mouth to suck on it, grins to herself at Clarke’s hiss.

Of course, the universe decides to hate Lexa at that moment in time because her phone starts ringing.

Fucking Octavia and her stupid seven a.m. runs. “Ignore it,” Lexa mumbles as she sucks harder, the lace already drenched as she moves to the other, replacing the now abandoned nipple with her thumb.

Clarke obviously ignores her, warning Lexa through near black eyes not to stop as she answers and puts the phone on loud speaker, “hey, O, Lexa’s a little busy right now.”

Clarke?” Her tone is bewildered at first but she scoffs. “I don’t give a shit if Lexa is three fucking fingers deep right now,” Clarke’s eyes roll back at the thought and Lexa locks that away for later.

She did tell Clarke to ignore her. This is her own fault.

We have a damn routine so tell her to get her ass outside before I tell Indra.”

Lexa decides to have a little fun and drags her teeth down Clarke’s stomach, keeping their eyes locked until she bites Clarke’s hip and laughs when Clarke squeaks.

Did you just... no. Nope. Not getting that image stuck in there. Lex if you aren’t down here in five minutes I’m coming up!”

Octavia hangs up the phone and Lexa moves up to kiss Clarke languidly. She knows she’ll never get bored of this. “I told you to ignore it,” she says between pecks, not getting enough.

“She’s butt-dialled me enough times when her and Lincoln have been having sex, I thought she deserved some kind of payback.”

Lexa leans her weight on Clarke, the moment gone but still not ready to break their bubble, “may I ask what that was for so I know what to do in future?”

Clarke hums, playing with a strand of Lexa’s hair, “you deserved it.”

“Because?”

“Because you’re you.”

A loud knock disturbs their silence and they bolt into action, Clarke pulling the shirt back over her head and Lexa rushes to her room to swap her now uncomfortable boxers for some running shorts and glares as Octavia crashes through the door. “I waited five minutes. It’s been five minutes. Come on! Lexa we’re already behind.”

“Good morning, Octavia. Thank you for using the key I gave you for emergencies.”

“This is an emergency. My metabolism isn’t half as good as your ridiculous god-esque DNA, just standing here is already disrupting it so chop, chop.” Lexa sneers when she literally claps along with the words. “Hi, Clarke. Bye, Clarke. I would be sorry for interrupting the blatant sex hair you’re beginning to rock but I actually have to work at this pure perfection.” Octavia gestures up and down her own body before she spins on her heel and stomps back down the stairs.

Lexa smacks her head against the wall. “It’s a shame,” Lexa lifts her head to watch Clarke run her hand over her stomach, “that you won’t be here while I imagine you getting all sweaty. Maybe I’ll even think about you getting wet in the shower.”

Walking over, Lexa places a hand either side of Clarke’s head, “if I knew all it would take was you seeing me wet, Clarke, I’d have just taken my jeans off that first night and every day since.”

Clarke pulls her down for one last, messy kiss before she pushes her away, “don’t want to keep O waiting.”

“Not cool, Clarke. Not cool.” She stands and makes her way to the door. “Feel free to help yourself to whatever. Just give Murphy the keys when you’re done. Unless you want to blow Raven off and still be here, preferably naked, when I get back.”

She waits until she knows Lexa has left before she pulls out her phone, ignoring Raven’s protests of how early it is, “quit whining, I’ve got an idea and I need your help.” Raven grumbles some more. “I have cold pizza.”

“Fine.”

Chapter Text

“The fuck is wrong with you, Woods?”

It’s the third time Lexa has slowed down her jog and Octavia is less than impressed. “I’m tired, Octavia. I got like, three hours sleep after a nearly seventeen hour shift and then you came barging through my door for this shit."

Tired Lexa is a little snappy.

“And whose fault is that? Suck it up, Lex.”

Lexa grumbles but continues anyway, determined not to let Octavia get under her skin. “Is this you wearing me out so I’m more compliant when you give me the best friend speech?”

Octavia scoffs, “yeah I’m not going to be doing that.” Lexa tilts her head, silently asking for an explanation and Octavia shrugs, “you didn’t give one to me when I started dating Lincoln. Besides, you’re too much of a gay disaster to intentionally hurt Clarke.”

She makes a mental note to kill Raven for starting that crap. The genuineness of Octavia’s statement warms her enough to overpower her annoyance though, “thank you, Octavia.”

Four hours, yes, four hours later Octavia decides to let Lexa go back and sleep for a while before she has to take Murphy off again. She really needs to look in to getting somebody part-time to help cover weekends.

Shock is evident on her face when she sees Lincoln at the front desk, Murphy nowhere to be seen. “Hey, Lexa. Raven asked me to cover until tonight. Said something about lunch with Clarke and Anya.”

Her brow furrows, “what? Where’s Murphy?”

“Did you not hear what I just said? I sent him home earlier so he could get some decent rest. He said he’d take the night shift to make up for it.” He rolls his eyes at her still confused look. “That means you get the day off, appreciate it.”

“So let me get this straight, Murphy has gone home,” Lincoln nods, “and you’re covering the rest of his shift and the couple hours that I would’ve been here for his break before his early evening shift,” another nod, “but I don’t need to take him off because you’re doing it for him and then he’s going to do the whole night shift,” another, “and I get the whole day off just so I can go to lunch with Raven, Anya and Clarke?”

“That’s pretty much exactly what I said, Captain Obvious.”

Lexa’s brow relaxes as the words register and she softens, “in that case, thank you.”

Lincoln’s smirk makes her feel uneasy, “don’t thank me just yet. Did I forget to mention that your mom and dad will also be there?”

Her stomach drops. “Lincoln please tell me you’re joking.”

“Wish I could. Now get your ass upstairs, there’s a cute blonde waiting for you.” Deciding not to make a comment about how Lexa’s eyes light up at that, he just laughs after her. His laugh turns to a bellow at the middle finger raised in his direction.

Clarke glances up at Lexa with a smile from her position on the couch when she walks in and Lexa playfully scowls at her, “you being fully dressed is the exact opposite of what I requested if you were still here when I got back.”

“We have plans,” Clarke shrugs, standing and making her way over to push Lexa against the door, “and there’s no way we’d be able to make them if I wasn’t.” She leans in and noses Lexa’s neck, “you smell good.”

“I smell like sweat.”

She feels a grin against her and closes her eyes with a shudder when Clarke’s tongue peeks out to run up it until she gets to her ear and tugs on the lobe with her teeth, “like I said, smells good.”

Lexa breathes out softly and her head falls back against the door as Clarke’s teeth leave her ear and trail a path along her jawline. She’s in a daze until she hears the random flushing of a toilet and frowns, “Clarke?”

Clarke pulls back with a giggle and cups Lexa’s jaw, “oh yeah, Raven’s here too. That’s another reason why I’m dressed.”

“That’s still not a good enough excuse. So care to explain to me how you and Raven going to lunch turned into the six of us?”

“Seven actually. You forgot your brother.” Lexa groans. “Sorry, you left your phone here and your mom rang. Obviously I didn’t answer it but she rang twice more one after the other and I thought there might’ve been an emergency or something. There wasn’t by the way. But we got talking and here we are.”

Raven walks down the hallway a second later and smirks between the two of them. “Woods.”

“Reyes. Why the hell are you in my apartment?”

“Griff and I had things to discuss,” she says mysteriously and glances between them again, scrunching her nose at the fact that Clarke is pressed tight against Lexa and looks like she has no intention of moving. Their eyes aren’t even on her and she has a feeling that they’ve already forgotten that she’s even here so she clears her throat, “I’ll just be sat here awkwardly waiting until you two are done eye-fucking each other. Let me know when that is.” They make no recognition of hearing her and she locks her jaw, tapping her foot impatiently. Her patience runs out quickly when she watches Lexa pull Clarke in by her hips so she’s snug against her, head tilting to lean down but jumps as Raven clicks her fingers as if calling a kitten, “yo, Clexa, as hot as you two will be together, we don’t have time for that shit.”

Lexa grunts as she leans her forehead against Clarke’s, “she did not just call us that.”

Clarke laughs, pulling herself away, “she definitely did.”

A fond smile finds its way to Lexa’s lips as Clarke places a gentle kiss on her cheek before sitting next to Raven. She glares at the latter, “you suck, Rae.“

“Not as much as you wish you could right now.” She flicks Clarke’s boob for emphasis and grimaces at the matching glares she receives, “yeah okay, even I’ll admit that was awful.”

“Whatever, I’m going to go shower.”

Raven waits until she can hear the water running in the bathroom before she glances knowingly at Clarke. “What, Raven?”

“If she thinks I’m going to make it easy for her she’s got another thing coming,” Raven quote mocks in a poor imitation of Clarke’s voice. “It really looks like you’ve got that under control, Griff.”

Clarke folds her arms in a huff with a mumbled, “shut up.”

Lexa smirks to herself behind the closed door. It’s like Raven forgot how good her hearing is.

Or did she?

-

Lexa feels so out of place in her own mother’s home.

Because of fucking course her mom and dad love Clarke, so of fucking course that means they’re going to bring up every embarrassing thing Lexa has ever done and of fucking course Anya and Raven join in with the teasing.

The only one Lexa can’t be mad at is her precious Aden because as a twelve year old his playful words are filled with such innocence and his eyes shine so brightly in his excitement that Lexa just can’t find it in herself to be annoyed with him. Plus the way he’s been staring at Clarke after his initially whispered ‘she’s so pretty’ to Lexa has her gleefully amused.

Her parents’ however, different story.

Clarke has tears streaming down her face when they recall the tale of an eight year old Lexa storming up to them in determination about girls. “Honestly, Clarke, I can’t even make this up,” Ryder starts through his laughter, “Indra and I were watching the TV and Lexa comes to stand right in front of us, arms crossed and foot stomp included and says, I kid you not this was her exact quote, she says, ‘mommy, daddy, it has been brought to my attention at school that at some point I am to have a boyfriend. I am bringing this forward to tell you that in no way will I ever have one of those. I may someday get a girlfriend but I have to focus on school first, but I thought I should let you know that I will never have a boyfriend and that is something you are both going to have to live with. Thank you and goodnight.’ And then she marched to her room to continue her homework.”

“Stop exaggerating, dad, as if I was that articulate at eight.”

“Oh but you were. You had a stage of trying to talk like your mother-”

“There is nothing wrong with being well-spoken, honey.”

Ryder playfully rolls his eyes but nods in agreement. “Why don’t you tell Clarke about how Anya told you she was gay, huh?”

Anya sneers at her and Lexa smirks. Indra takes over the memory, “they were her first words to us. We met her and a social worker at the cafe down the street and Anya strolled in full of attitude, sat down and slammed her fist on table and said ‘I’m gay. If you have a problem with that then you can send me back to the home right now’,” Anya blushes while the rest of them giggle, “it made it even more funny that her voice was quite high in pitch so she just came across as a little chihuahua, it was too adorable for us to not keep her.”

“So you both knew pretty early on then?”

“Yep, us Woods’ know what we want.” Lexa winks at Clarke and high fives Anya over the table.

Clarke smiles and sighs wistfully, “God, I wish my mom was like you two.”

“Is she not accepting of you?” Indra frowns and Lexa can see the instant she turns into mama bear.

“It’s not that. It’s just that she’s always tried to set me up with people I have no interest in and-”

“I do hope you are not seeing my daughter as some sort of rebellion against your mother, Miss. Griffin.”

Eyes wide and words stuttering, Clarke holds her hands up in defence. Lexa has to hold back a laugh at Clarke obviously missing the teasing glint in Indra’s eyes. “N-no. Of course not, Mrs. Woods. I would never- I could never.”

Anya butts in, “whoa, hold on a minute, mom. Before you start grilling the poor girl, why is it that the first time Lexa brings somebody home, she gets the ‘don’t hurt my daughter’ warning but when I brought Raven home I was the one that got it? Favouritism much?”

“C’mon, babe, look at your face.” Raven holds Anya’s jaw between her middle finger and thumb, “you’re all sharp cheek bones and resting bitch face.” She releases the jaw and points to herself, “whereas I’m like a puppy. You don’t want to see this face sad.”

“Plus the fact that we already knew Raven before you started dating,” Ryder supplies.

“My version made more sense, Mr. Woods. It’s okay to admit how cute I am.” All eyes turn to her in exasperation. “Aren’t we suppose to be embarrassing Lexa right now?”

Lexa scoffs, “I think you’ve all done enough for one day.” Aden’s wide eyes meet hers and she glares at him, “even you, brat.” He pouts and Clarke chuckles next to her as soon as she sees Lexa’s exterior soften, “don’t look at me like that. You know I can’t stay mad at you.” One by one, they all turn to pout at her, starting with Raven, “I’m not falling for this,” to Anya, “nope,” Ryder, “definitely not,” Indra, “even you, mom, seriously?” She forces herself not to look at Clarke. She knows she’ll break if she does. Clarke nudges her shoulder against Lexa’s persistently until Lexa’s eyes shift without her permission to see Clarke’s pout, bottom lip stuck out and eyes shining trying to contain her grin. “You know what, screw the lot of you.”

Clarke leans down to her ear to whisper, “don’t be mad, Lex. It’s sweet that they care enough to embarrass you.”

“Hm maybe, guess we’ll see when it’s your turn.”

“My mother does not need childhood stories to embarrass me, she’s perfectly capable of that on her own.”

Indra breaks their trance, “so, Clarke, do you have an idea of what field you would like to specialise in?”

Clarke takes her time chewing on the best lasagne she’s ever had to contemplate her answer, “I’m torn at the minute to be totally honest. I can’t decide between trauma and plastics. I mean trauma can be very fulfilling and it would be an honour to work under Doctor. Kane, but surgeries are ‘fix as quickly as possible’ which is amazing obviously but there’s something artistic and meticulous about plastics that draws me to it. When I start my internship I’ll be training in all the different areas so I suppose that will help me decide.”

“Both are very honourable. It irks me when people think of plastic surgery and can see no further than nose and boobs jobs,” Indra chuckles to herself.

It creates a smile from Clarke, one so genuine that Lexa can only assume she has heard similar accusations before, “exactly!”

The rest of lunch goes swimmingly, save for a few stories Lexa would rather stay hidden for eternity, and after Ryder, Anya and Raven have to head into work and Aden was back playing his games, Indra gives Clarke a huge hug and tells her to come by whenever she wants, regardless of Lexa being there.

“Thank you, Mrs. Woods, lunch was lovely.”

Indra waves her off, “call me Indra, child.”

“Oh, Mrs. Woods, I do believe we are moving too fast.”

Lexa rolls her eyes, “if you two are done being best friends, may I escort the beautiful woman to where she wishes to go next?”

“I am already where I need to be,” Indra replies and Clarke snickers.

“Probably should’ve seen that coming.” Lexa leans forward to place a kiss on Indra’s cheek, “bye, mom. Love you.”

“Love you too, sweetie. Drive safe.” Lexa pulls Clarke out to the car and freezes when she hears her mother’s voice shout out to them, “and, Clarke, you have my number, don’t forget to call me at least once a week so I know you’re okay.”

Clarke beams back at her, “will do, Mrs. Woods. Thanks again.”

Mouth gaping open, Lexa looks between them bewildered, “what. The fuck. Is happening?”

“I think I like your family more than you,” Clarke says as soon as she’s in the car and has her seat belt on.

Lexa nods with a shrug, “totally understandable. I’d be more concerned if you didn’t.”

“What? No remark about how that implied I like you?”

“I had your nipple in my mouth this morning, Clarke. I think we’re past the point of you pretending not to like me.” Clarke smirks at her. “There is an event happening at the community centre right now. It’s an art program for the kids, I think you’ll like it. Would you like to go?”

Clarke smiles at her, reaching over the console to place her hand on Lexa’s thigh as she drives and Lexa shivers slightly. “That sounds great, can we join in?”

“Sure, Mrs. Palmer is pretty laid back as long as you can overlook her rock hard cookies.”

A laugh fills the car as Lexa drives them there. They’re greeted enthusiastically when they enter the room and Clarke breaks away from her to look at all the bright work littering the walls while Lexa talks to Tris, asking her how she’s feeling before helping some of the younger children with their finger painting.

A soft smile graces Clarke’s lips when she glances over and sees how good Lexa is with them.

Her brows furrow as she looks at one particular piece, definitely not done by a child and she calls the teacher over as she points to it, “may I ask who this belongs to?”

Mrs. Palmer nods, “of course. That is one of Lincoln’s.” And Clarke can see it now, it’s very subtle but once she knows it’s easy to tell that this is Octavia. Something hits the back of her mind though at why this style seems so familiar to her. “Lincoln’s lines are astounding and as you can see by this his forte is charcoal. However,” she gestures Clarke to follow her and Clarke’s eyes widen at the cartoon styled portrait of a proud Jamaican woman dressed in all greens, blacks and yellows and it smacks her right in the face, why she knows his style, not overly noticeable to the untrained eye, “his graffiti art is just as spectacular.” Mrs. Palmer ponders to herself, “why that boy doesn’t what to become an artist baffles me.”

“Who is that?” Octavia had already told her once that Lincoln’s mom had died shortly after childbirth, but she didn’t want to assume.

Clarke receives a sad smile in return and follows the eyes that are pointed to the name of the piece, “Tamila Woods. Gustus always kept a photo of Lincoln’s mother in the nursery and a year or so ago Lincoln decided to put his own spin on it. I never had the chance to meet her.”

“It’s beautiful.” She glances to Lexa when she feels eyes on her and smiles in reassurance, even if she is trying her hardest to keep in that one stray tear. She notices a blank canvas stood untouched, “can I?”

Mrs. Palmer’s answer is a smile before she turns back to the class. Clarke takes a deep breath before sorting out the pencils she’s going to need. It’s been a while since she’s drawn a portrait, mainly focusing on landscapes, but the scene in front of her is making her fingers itch. She shakes her head in the negative when she sees Lexa stand to join her, silently telling her to stay where she is and carry on what she’s doing.

Lexa can’t help but glance over every now and again, each time receiving a playful glare from Clarke in return.

She isn’t sure how long she’s been here by the time her hand starts to cramp and she should probably call it a day when the children start leaving one by one but she doesn’t care, she has to get this finished, it’s not something she can just come back to and she doesn’t feel as though she’s exceeded her time here.

A voice startles her as she works on the last bit of shading, “that is lovely.”

Clarke turns to Mrs. Palmer thankfully, “it’s a bit rough, I haven’t done a portrait in a long time.”

“You really like our Lexa, don’t you?” Clarke nods, returning Lexa’s smile when it’s cast her way. “I’ve known that family a long time and for what it’s worth, I’ve never seen her smile quite like that.” A comfortable silence falls upon them while Clarke finished her piece and signs the bottom with a content sigh. “Will you be taking that with you?”

“No,” Clarke says, glancing over at Lexa once more, “I will need it back next week though, can you keep it away from Lexa for me?”

A hum of confirmation is sent her way before the piece is taken into the back. Clarke walks over to lean down next to Lexa, making happy small talk with the remaining children until Lexa looks her over, “just let me know when you’re ready to go.”

“I think I’m good now.”

They make their way back to the car and Clarke pulls out her phone as Lexa settles in.

Clarke: Why haven’t you told Lexa you were the one that painted that mural?

Lincoln: Sometimes the mystery makes things more special. How did you figure me out?

Clarke: I saw the painting of your mom. It’s beautiful by the way.

Lincoln: Thank you, Clarke. Please don’t tell her. Even Octavia doesn’t know.

Clarke: Your secret is safe with me. Speaking of O, did she tell you about next week?

“What were you working on in there?”

Clarke smirks, “it’s a surprise.”

Lexa scoffs, “anything to do with who you’re texting right now?”

“Maybe.”

Lincoln: She did. Count me in.

“So where to now?”

Clarke bites her lip, “take me home, Lexa.”

The look of disappointment Lexa can’t quite mask is almost comical to Clarke. “Yeah, sure, okay. Are you volunteering early?”

“I am, so we need to go back to my dorm, but that’s not what I meant.” She waits until they’re at a red light and cups Lexa’s cheek to face her, “take me home, Lexa.

Lexa’s eyes widen and she gulps, grips the steering wheel until her knuckles are white, “oh. Oh. I can do that.”

Clarke chuckles, “you sure, stud? You look a little nervous.”

A booming beep of a car horn behind them startles Lexa and she moves to drive again.

She might break a couple of speed limits.

Chapter Text

Lexa is backed into the door as soon as they’re both through it and Clarke wastes no time attacking her lips. The moan that rips through her is embarrassing to say the least but it only seems to make Clarke kiss her deeper, harder.

She’s never been a fan of comparing how somebody tastes. ‘Sweet’, ‘this with a hint of that and something hidden’, but in this moment, as Clarke’s tongue clashes with her own accompanied by tiny whimpers and heavy breaths, Lexa can’t help but think of how perfect Clarke does taste. There’s nothing specific except the slightest bit of mint from this morning and the well seasoned lasagne with the freshness of a crunchy salad that they’d had earlier. It’s just... Clarke.

And Clarke’s tongue is the best thing she’s ever had in her mouth so far.

Hands are roaming all over the place, Clarke’s based around the area of Lexa’s hair, shoulders and neck and Lexa’s changing their grip from Clarke’s waist, ribs and lower back.

The chain reaction that leads to Lexa pulling her head back to thud against the door is unexpected but not unwelcome as her hands drift to squeeze Clarke’s ass and the thumb that was softly resting against the base of her throat pushes down hard enough for air to get trapped.

Clarke pulls back to look at her then, all hooded, dark eyes and slightly parted lips panting into Lexa’s own before they turn to a smug smirk. She keeps the pressure of her thumb in its place and Lexa’s trachea pushes against it through her gulp.

Lexa takes that moment to look around the room; small twin bed, desk, wardrobe and some shelves filled with medical books, a typical single dorm room but she doesn’t have time to properly take it in after Clarke presses harder and she gasps again, hip buck accompanied, “Clarke.”

“Sorry.”

Thumb taken away and Lexa being able to breath again, she rolls her eyes with a smirk of her own, “no you’re not.”

There really isn’t any point in Lexa bending down to lift Clarke up, legs wrapped securely around her waist and arms crossed over behind her neck, to walk the very short distance to Clarke’s bed, but she does so anyway, revels in the hum that vibrates around them through the silence.

She lays Clarke down slowly before she leans over her, runs her fingers across Clarke’s cheek, “beautiful.”

“Careful, if you keep calling me that my ego is going to get as big as yours.”

“With good reason.”

Lexa expects her cocky words to be met with a scoff or an eye roll, but Clarke just bites her lip and rakes her eyes over Lexa’s figure, “definitely.”

The scoff comes from Lexa instead, “I’m beginning to think you only want me for my body.”

Clarke’s orbs are sparkling when she locks their eyes again and a teasing grin graces her lips, “of course I do, it’s the only thing you’ve got going for you.” Lexa decides to play along and gets up off of Clarke, hands toying with the button of her jeans. “What are you doing?”

“Giving you what you want.”

She starts off slow, kicking her shoes away as she teases the bottom of her tank top, holds back her smirk when Clarke shuffles up so she’s sitting against the headboard, eyes glued to Lexa’s hands. Her eyes close when she drags her blunt nails up her stomach along with her top, suddenly realising just how sensitive her body has become after a week of being wound up, not even taking matters into her own hands, pun intended, except that one morning in the shower.

It’s not that she wants to rush, because she really, really doesn’t, but the way Clarke is looking at her, gripping at the bed, causes her to practically rip the top off and Clarke whimpers as if it’s the first time she’s seen the top half of Lexa’s body before she moves to stand from the bed. “Stay,” Lexa orders.

Clarke playfully pouts but does as she’s told, raising her brow in demand for Lexa to continue and Lexa chuckles softly.

Her hands take their time travelling down her chest, down her stomach and Clarke’s gaze is flitting between her own and the hands that are currently running back and forth along the waist line of her jeans and she waits. She waits until she sees the frustrated glare and a tongue gliding smoothly across a bottom lip before she pops the button and drags the zip down, slowly tugging the jeans down after.

Slowly because she wants to tease Clarke, not because skinny jeans are a bitch to get off and she doesn’t want to trip over.

Obviously.

“Lexa,” Clarke whines as soon as she’s stood in just her underwear, “come here.”

Clarke doesn’t wait for Lexa to follow orders, simply reaches out and pulls Lexa to straddle her, forgoing bringing their lips back together in favour of trailing kisses down Lexa’s neck and back up until she nips at that sweet spot just behind her ear.

Lexa thinks she should be keep score on these. So far Clarke has only found the back of Lexa’s neck and the area behind her lobe and Lexa’s only found the crease that joins Clarke’s neck and shoulder and the curvy bone of her hip.

They’re two for two, and Lexa’s too competitive to let Clarke win.

Her fingers tangle up in Clarke’s soft locks before they reach down to pull at Clarke’s top, helping her lift it over her head with a grunt at the fact that lips had to leave skin for a literal second.

Clarke’s mouth moves down teasingly, nipping, sucking, kissing and licking her way to the top of Lexa’s breast and her hand trails up Lexa’s back in a ticklish touch until it reaches the clasp of her bra when it suddenly hits Lexa. Looking down at blonde hair, blue eyes occasionally peaking up to catch hers, it hits her.

She’s nervous.

She’s nervous when it comes to sex, for the first time in her life and she knows why. Finally understands what she’s been told time and time again.

The movements stop, and it isn’t until Clarke pulls back to look at her in concern that Lexa realises her hands are shaking uncontrollably and her body is rigid. Clarke’s hand moves to cup Lexa’s cheek, “hey. Are you okay?” Lexa doesn’t answer. “We can stop if you want, we can wait.”

And that snaps Lexa out of her haze, “fuck no.” Clarke laughs. “It’s just... I get it now. How different this feels when,” she pauses with a gulp, “when it’s with someone you care about.”

She curses her brain since they haven’t even had sex yet and she’s already acting like a mushy, well, Lincoln.

Gross.

Clarke’s small smile and glimmering eyes makes her feel like she said exactly the right thing though, and soft lips against her own help confirm that. “Yeah,” Clarke whispers against her mouth, “it is.”

Lexa should probably stop underestimating how sneaky Clarke can be because the next thing she knows she’s on her back with Clarke on top of her, feather light touches of fingers following a path up and down her sides and gentle lips moving with purpose before Clarke finishes her task of getting Lexa out of her bra.

She tugs at Clarke’s jeans and chuckles when a huff hits her chest as Clarke struggles to wiggle out of them.

Skinny jeans. Massive bitch.

Her chuckle is cut short when Clarke surges back up to kiss her and she groans at not only the feeling of warmth from Clarke’s skin on hers, but at the rough fabric suddenly rubbing against her rapidly stiffening nipple, causing her to bite down hard on the lip between her teeth.

The moan that fills the room next could be from either of them, or both of them, when the fabric is replaced by a palm and soft kneading commences. Lexa whimpers into Clarke’s mouth and almost loses it when she feels Clarke smirk into the kiss at the same time she twists to pinch Lexa’s nipple instead.

Lexa has to pull away to catch her breath and Jesus Christ, she’s honestly never felt so sensitive.

A thigh soon finds its way between Lexa’s and Clarke’s head moves lower, sucking just once on Lexa’s other nipple, wetting it, before swapping sides and Lexa doesn’t know what to do with her hands. She’s torn between gripping the bed sheet and running them through Clarke’s hair but eventually they decide for her as they reach to make their state of undress equal. The moan against her shoots straight down to her core and it suddenly feels like her whole body is on fire after Clarke’s bra is off and the stiff buds that scrape against her abs cause Clarke to start rocking into her.

She’s panting with every flick on one nipple, every lick on the other, every grind that hits her throbbing clit perfectly and she can’t help but think in the back of her mind how their positions should be reversed. How Clarke should be under her. How she should be the one with her tongue flicking and swirling. How Clarke should be the one squirming and whimpering in a needy mess. How she should be the one currently running her hand down Clarke’s stomach to the waistline of her boxers.

Wait.

“Clarke,” Lexa whines, bucking her hips not to get more friction, but to knock Clarke enough to flip them over.

Clarke’s mouth trails down Lexa’s stomach, wet tongue pressing firmly between each dint of her abs and fingers playing with elastic before she shushes Lexa, “let me take care of you.”

They hold eye contact as Clarke pulls Lexa’s underwear down her legs, following with close-mouthed kisses until they’re off and she repeats the action the opposite way, hands gliding after, before she tugs at Lexa’s thighs, bringing her closer.

She spends a few minutes caressing Lexa’s skin, not moving her eyes away from the forest green, a silent question in them and it takes her a press of her lips just above the heat she feels radiating from Lexa to get her answer. One swift nod. She grins. “You’re stunning, Lexa.”

“You’re... fuck,” Lexa gasps and throws her head back against the pillow as she feels Clarke take a long swipe up her slit, ending with the faintest suck directly on her clit, “you’re taking my compliments.”

Clarke chuckles against her and her hips buck again, higher, at the feeling, forcing Clarke to grip her hips to steady them.

Lexa’s never really been loud, but her movements are all over the place. Soft moans, sharp intakes of breath, head not knowing to tilt right or left and hands clenching and unclenching in frustration as Clarke builds her up slowly, teasingly.

The tongue firmly against her clit feels like it’s been fused there permanently with only enough wiggle room to circle, shift side to side or up and down and Clarke... Clarke has no pattern in her technique leaving Lexa surprised at every change.

It’s embarrassing how close Lexa is already. Can’t remember a time when she was this close this quickly.

Of course Clarke senses this, can already read her like a book, so she shifts down, tongue pointed as it traces the edge of Lexa’s opening and she groans at the rush of wetness that coats it shortly after because fuck if Lexa isn’t the most amazing taste she’s ever experienced and she wants to gloat, she wants to smirk as she looks up and sees the sweaty, incoherent mess she’s greeted with but she doesn’t. She concentrates on lapping shallowly into Lexa to start, barely going inside her and revels at the clench she feels at the tip, closes her own eyes to focus.

She’s the first to admit that she isn’t necessarily the best at getting somebody off with her tongue so it’s slightly unexpected when Lexa jolts against her, almost banging her nose, when she finally enters her as far as she can go.

Clarke’s tight grip on Lexa’s hips wavers momentarily when she glances back up and sees Lexa struggling to find a place for her hands. She moves cautiously, not wanting a sudden move to startle her and brings them to her head as Lexa’s eyes snap open in question and Clarke answers by angling her head so that when she nods, her nose catches the painfully pink clit that she can swear is twitching with every heart beat.

The way Lexa holds onto her is almost too rough to pull Clarke back up an inch and her back arches when Clarke wastes no time in sucking her in, flicking her tongue in rapid succession to distract Lexa from the fingers that come to play, tingling in excitement as they rest idly at the deliciously tight opening, just waiting to be wrapped in warmth.

If Clarke’s mouth wasn’t preoccupied she’d grin with an insane amount of smugness after she finally, slowly, begins to enter Lexa and poor Lexa whimpers out her name in the most pathetic whisper Clarke’s ever heard.

She feels as though she has a right to be smug about reducing somebody with Lexa’s sex prowess to this.

Lexa’s eyes close in relief and her head lolls back as soon as Clarke starts properly moving, catching her in all the right places and she refuses, she flat out refuses to beg Clarke to start going faster, harder, deeper and the boiling sensation in her lower stomach is berating her for being so stubborn but she knows that’s what Clarke wants. She wants Lexa to give up any ounce of self control she has and she refuses to do it.

Clarke fingers are fucking magic as it turns out because she doesn’t even register that she’s distractedly voicing her wants out loud and whines when Clarke abruptly stops all movement.

“Look at me, Lexa.”

It’s instantaneous as soon as she opens her eyes to Clarke’s blown pupils and parted lips panting heavily between her legs, and her mouth drops open as Clarke picks up right where she left off, fulfilling everyone of Lexa’s demands all at once and the scream traps in the back of her throat to the point where she probably sounds like she’s being choked and she knows the grip in Clarke’s hair must be hurting her but she can’t bring herself to loosen it.

Clarke’s grunt tells her she actually likes it.

Her entire body shudders and quakes before it freezes and white static clouds her vision as her eyes roll back and hips jerk against Clarke’s mouth desperately trying to bring her impossibly closer until the gentlest scratch of Clarke’s teeth against her clit and twist and curl of her fingers hits Lexa in exactly the right area causes a quiet yelp to escape her before all she’s able to do is tighten her thighs around Clarke’s head and let her already taut muscles tense to breaking point as her orgasm washes over her until everything eventually goes limp.

Lexa can’t quite tell if the white static that changes to black means she passed out, even for a second, but she doesn’t care, not when Clarke’s fingers are still moving so carefully, precisely inside her and her mouth has moved to kiss all around her, cleaning her up.

She lets Clarke bring her down slowly and she can’t place the last time she felt this relaxed. She gets impatient quickly, however, and pulls a smiling Clarke up to kiss her languidly, moaning at the taste of herself.

Clarke’s grin is goofy and eyes shining when she rests her forehead against Lexa, “hi,” she breathes out.

The self satisfied look causes Lexa to roll her eyes with a grin of her own, “don’t look so proud of yourself.”

“I have every reason to be.”

A shiver runs through Clarke when Lexa’s nails drag up the back of her thighs and she presses tight against Lexa, the boxers she stole from her this morning completely soaked and useless and Lexa rushes to strip her of them, looking at Clarke in total awe, savouring every curve, every mole, committing them to memory, and her earlier thoughts of teasing Clarke fly out the window when she sits up and Clarke is practically dripping in her lap.

Lexa leans forward to pull Clarke’s bottom lip into her mouth, sucking on it lightly and watches as her eyes flutter shut with a soft sigh. She doesn’t wait, surprising Clarke as she expertly moves her thumb with excruciating slowness around a twitching cluster of nerves before she lets go of Clarke’s lip, “can I?”

“Please do,” Clarke nods enthusiastically against her and Lexa giggles, moving in to kiss her again. Clarke’s eager mouth messy, dirty, hot, sexy as fuck, proves that she’s more wound up than Lexa thought so she decides to put her out of her misery and flicks her wrist so that just her middle finger presses into Clarke who is absolutely not above begging, “more.”

Smirking, Lexa manoeuvres herself so she is properly sat up against the headboard to wrap her arm around Clarke’s waist and press them together, basking in each displeased sound that leaks out of Clarke at her slow moving, single finger. “More?”

“That’s what I said,” Clarke growls, swaying her hips back and forth in an attempt to get some form of extra friction. She leans into Lexa, turning to bite on her lobe hard.

Clarke three, Lexa two.

Clarke’s voice lowers to something that is down right sinful, “please, Lexa,” she squirms with purpose and scratches her nails along Lexa’s shoulders, “fuck me.”

Lexa scolds herself for how quickly she gives, pulling out her finger and replacing it with two, a sharp, marginally curled thrust up into Clarke and bites the inside of her cheek at the yelp that echoes around the room.

She sets a brisk pace, finds Clarke’s spot fast and concentrates on hitting it over and over and over again as she rubs her clit in the same momentum until Clarke is shaking on top of her with a sheen of sweat glowing on her skin and her wrist is drenched with wetness.

Where Lexa is all soft, quiet gasps and erratic movements, Clarke is loud moans and calculated motions. Where Lexa is hips jutting with zero rhythm, Clarke is slow, deep rocking. Where Lexa is tight holds and digging nails, Clarke is profound scratches and slack grips. Where Lexa hardly speaks, Clarke won’t stop talking.

“Fuck, Lexa. Yeah, right there, right... fuck... there. Don’t stop. Please, Lex.”

Lexa may not speak when she’s the one seeking release, but she’s an excellent talker when she’s bringing someone else’s. “God, baby,” she doesn’t care that the word slips this time, “you look so fucking hot like this. All desperate, needy, begging me to let you come.” Clarke whines, drops her head on Lexa’s shoulder as she increases the speed of her hips. “You gonna be a good girl and wait until I say you can?” The gush of wet that pools on Lexa’s stomach makes her smirk and mumble, “knew you’d have a praise kink.”

“Orgasms now. Kink talks later.”

Extra force behind Lexa’s thrusts comes with her own hip raising each time because damn. Talks. Multiple. Multiple talks about multiple kinks that Lexa prays matches her own and Clarke practically screams at the added pressure. Lexa’s reaching places that she hasn’t even been able to find herself.

Lexa counts that as a win. Lexa three, Clarke three.

Clarke’s thighs are shaking so much Lexa wonders how she’s still able to move and takes pity on her. She lowers her head to suck one perfect nipple into her mouth, words wrapping around it, “come for me, Clarke.”

She does. She does and it’s the most glorious site Lexa has ever witnessed. Her back curves like a meticulously crafted bow ready to be pulled to the point it can’t be anymore, the tension tight and muscles rippling just waiting to give way and slump but Lexa doesn’t want that to happen yet.

Clarke’s walls are fluttering around her fingers like crazy, incoherent shouts of ‘fuck’, ‘Lexa’. ‘shit’. ‘so good’, clit twitching manically, no relief on it since Lexa has moved her thumb away and she tries to grind down against something, anything to take her over that final, final edge but there’s nothing, nothing to take her to that point of no return until she starts to calm, starts to feel her breath again, starts to registers the slick sounds producing between her legs, starts to hear her own heart beat and her hips stop searching until-

“Lex-ah, oh, oh fuck.” Lexa’s thumb returns to press hard against her and everything spasms.

Lexa doesn’t feel the deep, red welts that litter her shoulder blades and Clarke doesn’t feel the teeth marks being created around her nipple. She can’t decide if that was a second orgasm or a prolonged first.

She really doesn’t care either way.

The slump Lexa was expecting eventually happens and she gently turns them so she can support Clarke’s body fully. “Shh, I got you. It’s okay, I got you.”

Clarke’s breathy laugh when she comes back to herself causes Lexa to grin, all teeth and wrinkled nose and Clarke leans forward to kiss it. “Hi,” she repeats her earlier greeting.

“Hi back.”

“Fuck.”

Lexa chuckles, bringing her non-soaked hand to run through Clarke’s now sweaty hair, “yeah, you said that a few times. More than a few times actually.”

“Shut up.” Clarke smiles, taking Lexa’s other hand and sucking the fingers into her moth one-by-one, moaning at the taste, watches in fascination as Lexa’s pupils dilate. She’s loves how expressive Lexa’s eyes are.

Likes. Likes how expressive they are.

“Clarke,” Lexa warns, “what are you doing?” Clarke has already abandoned the now adequately clean hand and is making her way down Lexa’s stomach.

“Cleaning up after myself.”

“That’s not fair. Why do you get to have all the fun?”

The blush on Clarke’s face when she remembers the absolute wreck between her legs doesn’t last long as she bites her lip, “want a taste?” Her eyes accident catch the time and widen, “damn it, I’ve got to be up in like, four hours.” She crosses her arms on Lexa’s stomach before resting her head on them, looking up in apology.

Lexa shrugs, “that’s plenty of time.” The glare she receives makes her smirk, “what, can’t handle staying up all night?”

“My mother would kill me.”

Lexa scrunches her nose, “and just like that the mood has gone. Congratulations, Clarke.”

Clarke pulls herself up with a smile, pecking Lexa once before she rests her head on her shoulder, “bathroom’s down the hall if you want to clean up. Careful though, my neighbour is a total perv and I haven’t got the energy to enjoy watching you beat him up.”

“Ah, so you want me for my body and my super awesome fighting skills?”

“I mean, I’m not going to say no.” She cringes as she throws a leg over Lexa’s waist and can already feel things drying up. “I’m too lazy to move, looks like you’re going to have to suffer too.”

Lexa chuckles, “that’s fine, I like having you all over me.”

“That’s a little gross.”

“Then we’ll be gross together and squeeze in a joint shower in a few hours, you know, to save water or whatever bullshit people come up with to have shower sex.”

“I’m not having shower sex. What kind of lesbian are you? You know it doesn’t work.”

“Totally does.”

“Nope.”

The rooms quietens to a comfortable silence, Clarke drawing lazy circles on Lexa’s abs and Lexa running her hand through now knotted blonde hair. “I haven’t forgot that we get to talk about kink stuff.”

“I can’t hear you I’m already asleep.”

Lexa nudges to top of Clarke’s head with her chin and puckers her lips when Clarke lifts her head. With an exaggerated eye roll, Clarke complies, leaning down to kiss Lexa idly, neither letting it lead anywhere until they pull back and Clarke’s eyes are shining. “You’re magnificent, Clarke.”

“Oh no, don’t tell me you’re ones of those people that get soppy as hell after you get off.”

“You’d better get use to it,” Lexa teases.

Clarke scoffs, “had I?” She takes her place back on Lexa’s shoulder with a wistful sigh, “small price to pay I guess. ‘Night, Lexa.”

“Goodnight, Clarke.” She snaps her mouth shut before she says something stupid because yeah, turns out that with Clarke she’s soppy as fuck at any given time and knowing Lexa’s luck she’ll blurt out that she loves her or something as equally ridiculous because it’s way, way, way too early for that.

Right?

Fuck.

Chapter Text

Lexa wakes to soft kisses and wet hair trailing up her spine and lets out a content sigh, “you showered without me.”

“I tried waking you up but you told me to fuck off and swatted at my head.” Clarke grins against her shoulder, barely having time to move when Lexa spins around.

“I did not!” Her eyes are mortified and it isn’t until Clarke smirks at her that Lexa rolls her eyes and presses a gentle kiss to the still slightly puffy lips in front of her, “good morning, beautiful.”

Clarke hums against her lips, “morning yourself, stud. I did actually try to wake you up but you were so cute mumbling about even ‘Heda’ needing sleep sometimes. Whatever the fuck that means.” Lexa flushes in embarrassment, cheeks hinting red and Clarke raises her brow, “well now you have to tell me.”

“It’s nothing, just a stupid language Anya and I made up when we were both teenagers and wanted to talk about shit without mom and dad understanding, we haven’t used it in years.” Clarke lets it go, but reminds herself to ask Anya about it later. “Why are you dressed?”

A nod to the clock has Lexa groaning when she sees how early it is, “I have to head out soon. You can stay here if you want.”

Lexa shakes her head in the negative and rolls Clarke onto her back, hovering over her, “I have to get to the gym anyway, I’ll drop you off and we can get coffee on the way.”

She relishes at Clarke’s quiet moan as she begins placing kisses up her neck as if soothing the deep bruises she’d marked it with yesterday until she’s brought out of it by Clarke’s fingers trailing up her bicep, over her tattoo, “what does this mean?”

“Wisdom,” Lexa says as she leans back to straddle Clarke and points and the top of the design, letting the sheets fall to expose herself and smirks when Clarke’s eyes rake over her. “Compassion,” middle, “and strength,” bottom. “It’s the three pillars of martial arts, three traits that you need to balance out between body and mind.”

Clarke studies her for a moment, frowning more each passing second, “you’re bullshitting me.”

Lexa laughs loud, “I’m totally bullshitting you. I thought the design looked cool and then I made up a story to go with it.”

“Jerk,” Clarke says as she hits Lexa’s shoulder, only to move her hand and pull Lexa back down to trace her fingers at the back of Lexa’s neck, “and this one?”

A shrug. “Infinity symbols were in at the time.”

An eye roll. “This one?”

Goosebumps appear on Lexa’s skin as Clarke skims down her back, “this actually does have a real story. I saw the main design, without the circles, in one of Lincoln’s sketch books and completely fell in love with it. It reminded me of some kind of interconnecting spaceship falling from the sky or something and coming together on the ground and it felt so personal, how my family kind of came together. The circles stand for everyone who has had an impact in my life.”

Clarke’s eyes soften before closing, trying to recall how many she kissed on her way up to Lexa’s shoulder, “seven circles.”

“Yeah. My mom and dad, obviously, Anya, Aden, Uncle Gus, Lincoln and Ontari.”

“Ontari?”

Lexa doesn’t comment on the subtle hint of jealousy in Clarke’s tone and leans down to kiss her instead, “she was my best friend growing up. Still is, really. We literally did everything together before she moved to Florida for college, and she liked it so much she moved there permanently, but she’s still that friend that you can go months without speaking to and when you do, it’s like no time has passed at all. It was because of her that I started training in the first place.”

“That’s sweet.” A blaring sound disturbs them and Clarke rolls her eyes, leaning over to shut her phone off, “that’s my ‘get your ass out of bed right now or you’re going to be late’ alarm.”

“Guess I’d better get a move on then.” Lexa goes to get up from Clarke but she’s held still as Clarke leans up to kiss her, bringing Lexa down so her whole body is laying on Clarke.

She lets it go on for a few minutes until Lexa’s hand makes it’s way under her top and she pulls back in a gasp, “yeah, no, fuck you’re right.” Lexa chuckles against her lips. “Come on, you can borrow something to wear if you want.”

“It’s cool, I can get showered and changed before I start work.” Clarke stares at her intensely as she dresses, leaning back on her elbows on the bed with her eyes moving up and down Lexa’s body, unable to pick a spot to focus on. “Are you enjoying yourself?” Lexa laughs when Clarke shakes her head to bring herself out of her daze before she holds a hand out, silently asking to be pulled up and causing Lexa to snort before she complies.

The drive to the hospital is too short for either of their liking, even with the added coffee stop. Lexa is quick to get out and run around to the passenger door, opening it before Clarke has the chance, “and they say chivalry is dead.”

Lexa grins and holds Clarke against the now closed door, resting her hands on Clarke’s hips, “when can I take you out again?”

Clarke takes a moment to think and frowns, “I don’t know.”

“Oh, come on, Clarke!”

Giggles tell Lexa how whiny she just sounded and Clarke moves to push a stray curl of hair behind Lexa’s ear, “I don’t know because I promised one of the girls that if she couldn’t get a babysitter for Thursday I’d cover her.”

“Oh.” Now Lexa feels stupid. “That’s okay.”

“Is it? Thanks for your approval.”

“You know what I meant,” Lexa groans, leaning in to kiss Clarke once more before she receives a snarky comeback. Again.

A throat being cleared pulls Lexa away from a grumbling Clarke and her eyes widen as she notices the familiar woman, practically ripping herself away a good foot, back straight. “Miss. Woods, this is the second time I’m meeting you and the second time it has been with your tongue down my daughter’s throat. I assume this isn’t what I think it is though?”

“Good morning, Doctor. Griffin. Actually this time it is exactly what you think.”

“Lexa!”

Abby glowers and stares off against Lexa while Clarke wishes the ground would open up and swallow her, shocked that Lexa spoke to her mother like that.

Even if deep down she does find it pretty hilarious.

“Clarke,” Abby eventually starts, not removing her eyes from Lexa, “in future I suggest you keep your private affairs private and not parade them in front of my hospital.”

“Yes, Chief. Sorry.” Clarke only receives a swift nod and a pointed look at the large clock that hangs above the hospital sign before she watches her mother walk away and winces at Lexa, “she’s really not a bad person. She just... she’s sometimes a bit too professional.”

Lexa softens and cups Clarke’s cheek, “it’s okay that she doesn’t like me, Clarke. I get that she doesn’t think I’m good enough for you. That I’m not rich enough or successful enough. I’m sorry if I was out of line.”

“It was actually kind of funny. And Lex, I don’t care about any of that. My mom doesn’t either, she just likes having a say in my personal life.” Clarke rolls her eyes after she says it, realising how juvenile it sounds.

“Well,” Lexa brings Clarke’s hand up to her mouth, pecking at her fingers a couple of times, “I don’t need to prove to her that I’m going to be the best girlfriend you’ve ever fucking had.”

Clarke hums, “just because we’ve been on a date and seen each other naked you automatically assume we’re girlfriends’?”

“I’m not assuming anything. I’m a damn catch, Clarke, you’d be an idiot not to snatch me up.”

She tries not to smile, she really does, but her attempt is futile and she finds herself doing it anyway, “cocky.” Clarke glances at the clock and sighs, “I’d better go. I know for a fact she’s watching us and I really don’t want to piss her off. I’ll call you later?”

With a quick kiss to her lips and no chance to say anything back, Lexa watches Clarke make her way towards the door, forcing her to shout, “Clarke Griffin, will you do me the honour of being my girlfriend?”

It catches the attention of a few passers by, acting like they’re watching a tennis match as they look between Lexa and Clarke, who is frozen at the entrance.

Lexa’s breath stills, waiting, watching as Clarke slowly turns, cheeks flushed as she notices the attention on her. A barely there nod, a wink, a kiss blown in her direction is all the confirmation Lexa needs before Clarke makes her way inside.

Lexa does not do an air punch as soon as she’s in the privacy of her car.

Nope.

Absolutely not.

-

“Gross. John wasn’t kidding when he said you looked like the cat that got the cream.”

Lexa stops her yelling at Dax to turn, instructing him to carry on, on the treadmill, “hey, Em. Can I help you with something other than the insults you’re about to throw at me?”

Emori smiles at her, “no insults, it’s cute as fuck.” She holds up a bag, “I brought you dinner, there’s some in there for John when he gets in too so don’t eat it all.”

“You’re the best.”

“I know. So tell me about Clarke.”

“I want to know about Clarke too.”

“Dax I swear to fucking god I’m going to add an extra mile every time you open your mouth.” Lexa leans over to the control panel and presses a plus button, grinning at how amazing her new machines are. She turns her attention to Emori again with a shrug, “yeah, she’s... good.”

Emori laughs in her face, “please, Lexa, you don’t have to play coy with me. I’ve known you, what, three years now? I can tell you’re just begging to gush about her.”

She tells Emori everything, from the first time she saw Clarke up until she’d asked Clarke to be her girlfriend a few days prior, “but I haven’t seen her since because she’s been busy with school and the hospital and stuff, we have been talking on the phone though.”

“Wow, you are so smitten. I’m really happy for you, Lex. It’s about time.”

Lexa grins but a hint of a scowl makes its presence known, “she’s just... I feel like I’m fucking obsessed with her and that’s not normal, is it? It’s too soon.”

Tilting her head, Emori regards her cautiously, “well, I mean you’ve never even been remotely interested in taking things further with anyone before, you have no idea what you’re like in a relationship and these kind of feelings are completely foreign to you. This is a whole new territory.” Lexa furrows her brow slightly. “I’m not saying it’s a bad thing, just that maybe, maybe because you haven’t had time to explore what it’s like to be with somebody it’s all kind of hitting you at once and you haven’t quite grasped how to categorise things. It’s like saying you’re in love in middle school with the person you’ve been dating for two days and it feels like you’re going to be together forever, but then as you get older you learn the feelings aren’t quite as rushed and needy as they used to be.”

“But I never wanted to.”

Emori nods, “that’s my point. You didn’t experience that so now everything is just like,” she mimics an explosion before she shrugs with a smirk, “or you could just be an obsessive person who’s fallen hard and fast at that’s okay too. You’ll figure it out as you go along. Anyway, you aren’t the only person obsessed with her, Reyes could definitely give you a run for your money.”

Lexa contemplates her words before biting her lip, “when did you get smart?”

“After many failed relationships before meeting John.”

The tune of Lexa’s phone makes her frown as she looks at her mom’s name on the screen, “hey, mom, what’s up?” Emori watches on silently. “What? Is he okay?” She frowns in concern as Lexa listens to Indra. “Good. Fuck, alright. Murphy isn’t going to be here for another,” Lexa checks her watch, “hour or so, so I won’t be able to get there until then. Yeah, yeah love you too. See you in a bit.”

“What’s wrong?” Emori asks as soon as Lexa hangs up, rubbing her forehead.

“Aden’s in the hospital, he’s broken his arm in three places.”

She’s cut off with a hand in her face, “say no more. I can stay here until John gets in, I was going to hang around for him anyway.”

“Are you sure?” Emori nods. “Thank you, I could fucking kiss you right now, Em.”

“Ew, hard pass. Anyway, I’m a happily engaged woman.”

Lexa rolls her eyes, “don’t act like you’ve never thought about- wait- what? Engaged? Since when?” She now notices the small ring on Emori’s finger and smiles wide, “oh my god, congratulations.”

Emori huffs out a breath as Lexa wraps her up in a hug, words mumbled against Lexa’s shoulder, “last night and I would be mad about you not seeing the ring that I’ve been practically shoving in your face at every opportunity but I know the world revolves around you.”

Not caring about the sarcastic tone aimed towards her, Lexa squeezes tighter before finally letting her go, “I want to know every detail. Well up until you said yes, I don’t need the image of what happened after to be stuck in my head. Nobody wants to hear about Murphy’s dick.”

“I do.”

“Dax for fuck sake, can’t you see this is a private moment?” Lexa adds another mile and ups the speed, ignoring his complaints. “Make sure he does it, Em. I want proof you lazy shit,” she directs towards Dax as she makes her way out the door. “I’ll come by tomorrow to talk, thank you again.”

Emori smiles fondly at Lexa’s retreating figure before raising her brow at Dax, “bet you regret asking her to be your personal trainer now, don’t you?” She looks at the bag of food and sighs, “stupid Woods.”

-

“You are so fucking weak, Griff.”

Clarke sighs as she changes the bedsheets of a discharged patient. “Excuse me?”

Raven scoffs, “I spent the past month, month, trying to set you up with Lexa and you were all ‘I’m not going to be a notch on her headboard, Raven’, ‘I don’t want a one night stand, Raven’, ‘I won’t sleep with someone who’s only interested in sex, Raven’, ‘I have to get to know a person first, Raven’, ‘somebody like her would never be my type, Raven’, and then you finally meet her and act all impassive and shit and spouting off like you were going to make her work for it, then I find out not only did you sleep with her like, a week after meeting her, kudos for that by the way, I didn’t think you’d last that long, but you agreed to be her girlfriend literally the morning after?”

“Are you quite finished?”

“No, no I’m not fucking finished.” Raven opens her mouth, finger pointed at Clarke and stops. “Actually, yeah I’m finished.”

Clarke pushes past her to move to the next room, greeting it’s occupant, “how we doing today, Ms. Walker?” The woman smiles at her tiredly but doesn’t verbally respond so Clarke goes about her usual routine of cleaning around her. “You and O didn’t exactly paint her in a good light you know. All you said was how hot she was and how she’d be the perfect person to help me,” she hesitates, glancing at the old woman before looking back at Raven in a hiss, “de-stress.”

“Don’t be a prude, Clarke.” She looks at the woman, “how’s your hip replacement working out for you, Ms. Walker?” A toothy grin. “Yeah I bet you’ve seen some action you saucy old minx.” Ms. Walker gives her a thumbs up and Raven cackles. “So what changed?”

With a shrug, Clarke replaces the flowers on the window ledge before moving on to the next room. “My opinion of her that first night. You and O were so proud of her sexcapades, which is disgusting frat boy behaviour by the way, but you never said how passionate she was about everything. The way she spoke about her family and work and her community, the fire in her eyes like she’d do anything for them and wanting nothing in return for it, it just, she’s special.”

“O and I only said those things in fun, we weren’t like, supporting her or anything, even though, and I cannot stress this enough, she never treated those girls like shit and is still good friends with some of them,” Raven smirks as Clarke bristles at that, “and we definitely wasn’t expecting her to actually fall for you.” Clarke looks at her in offense. “Not like that. We haven’t known her for a long time, but she’s made it very clear she wasn’t interested in anything else so we thought it would’ve been the perfect set up for the both of you. As it turns out, all you succeeded in doing was ruining her for anyone else.”

Clarke hides her smirk through a bit lip. “Rae, when have you ever known me to sleep with someone I didn’t know?”

Raven sighs in defeat, “I know, I just thought that a no strings attached thing might have been good for you since you’re always moaning that you don’t have time for a relationship, but I guess that is mute now, huh?” Clarke nods. “That girl probably would’ve waited forever for you, you know that right? She was smitten from the moment you walked through the bar door.”

“I really like her. I know it’s fast but... I can’t help myself. She’s just,” she sighs out in bliss, “magnetic. Even if she is a cocky, arrogant know-it-all.”

“Always the romantic, Clarke,” Raven jokes, “plus the fact that she’s super hot.”

Clarke groans in agreement, “so hot.” She suddenly blinks likes she’s only now realising that Raven’s in front of her, “wait, why are you here?”

“Oh, right, Aden broke his arm, he’s upstairs getting x rays right now, looks pretty bad. I probably should’ve lead with that.”

After an exaggerated eye roll, Clarke shoves her way once again past Raven to make her way upstairs, ignoring Raven’s calls of goodbye as she has to get to her evening class. She slows down when she spots Indra in the waiting room reserved for the paediatric wing of the hospital, “Mrs. Woods, how’s Aden?”

Indra scoffs, “proud of himself for landing off of the swing further than his friends. Just like his sister.” She shakes her head in amusement as she looks at Clarke, “how are you, Clarke? Lexa said you’ve been very busy.” She pats the seat next to her, indicating for Clarke to sit.

It’s not until she does that she feels just how much her feet are throbbing and grunts, “yeah, I’ve literally been sleeping between classes and studying and I can catch the odd half hour in an on call room.”

“I understand that you want to gain as much experience as you can before you finish college and your residency begins, but do not risk harming your own health in pursuit of your career.” Indra looks her over, “when did you last eat?” She cuts Clarke off before she speaks, “a real meal, Clarke.”

“Erm,” Clarke starts, rubbing the back of her neck nervously with a mumble, “at your house.”

“Unacceptable. I swear you children get worse at looking after yourselves in each generation.” She pulls out her phone just the doctor comes back with Aden. “What is the damage?”

Aden’s arm is in a temporary splint and he grins when he sees Clarke. “His arm is broken in three places. We’ve given him something for the pain for now and we’ve set up a room until we can prepare his cast.”

“He said I can pick my own colour but I think I want to leave it plain so I can get lots of people to write on it, isn’t that cool, Clarke?”

“Totally.”

“It might be a while,” the doctor continues, “the breaks look much worse than they actually are and as long as he doesn’t move his arm, the splint should keep the bones in place until casting.” Indra winces at that but relief floods her at the knowledge that he wouldn’t have to go under to have his bone reset. “I can get one of our-”

“I’ll take him,” Clarke answers.

He nods at her, “very well, Miss. Griffin, and I assume if I see your mother-”

“You haven’t seen me.” He smiles at her, pulling Indra aside to explain in further detail and Clarke smiles down at Aden in a wheelchair, “so you were jumping off of swings?”

Aden’s eyes widen in his excitement before Clarke moves behind him to push him down the hall, “it was so cool, Clarke, I went so far it felt like I was flying.”

She opens the door and helps to lift him on to the bed before she looks at him seriously, “it was also very dangerous. I’ve seen people who have done the same thing you did and they came out of it much, much worse. I’m sure your mother will give you a proper telling off at some point.”

When she’s come down from the relief that her son didn’t break his neck instead, she silently adds.

Aden has the sense to hang his head in guilt and Clarke feels bad, “hey, did Raven ever tell you I’m an artist?” His eyes light up again and she smiles, “how about I draw something on your cast when it’s been fitted?” An eager nod. “What do you like?”

“Spaceships.”

“Okay. You can’t go to sleep just yet, even when the stuff they gave you makes you feel tired so why don’t we put some cartoons on?” Aden nods again so Clarke sorts out the TV, plugging in the headphones for him.

Indra walks through the door moments later with a sigh, “I’ve spoken to Lexa, she’s going to bring some leftovers with her but she won’t be here for an hour or so, can you stay available until then?”

“Mrs. Woods you don’t have to-” Indra glares at her. “Yeah. Yeah that sounds good. Thank you.”

“I had hoped to never see the inside of a hospital again.” Clarke stays silent as she watches Indra take a seat next to Aden’s bed, reaching out to clasp his good hand in her own. “Did Lexa tell you I was in the police force?” An affirmative nod. “And that I was shot?” Affirmative. “Did she say how or why?” Negative. “My partner and I were called out to what we thought was a simple fight, a disturbance in the neighbourhood. There were two young men. To this day I have no clue as to what the fight was about. Anyway, we tried to break the fight up, let them stew in a cell overnight unless one of them wanted to press charges, as if they actually would.”

Indra scoffs at herself at the thought.

“We finally managed to tear them apart but one of them pulled a gun, so my partner did the same in return, as if that has ever calmed a situation down,” she adds bitterly, “typically, like in every film or series, a car backfired and suddenly a gun was shot. I did not realise until my partner caught me from hitting the floor that it was me that had been hit, I still don’t really recall the pain.”

Clarke’s throat closes up and her words are choked, “did you catch the guy?”

Indra shakes her head, “we didn’t need to, we knew him personally.” Clarke’s mouth gapes. “His name is Roan and his mother,” she pauses, scrunching her face is disgust, “was, is the captain of my old precinct.”

“So he just got away with it, just like that?”

“It was never my intention to press charges. We live in a country where owning a gun is legal and it was a cruel timing of fate and circumstances that lead to the event. I simply wished for him to own up to what he had done, to work with us in our community and realise that you cannot walk around acting like they both did without somebody suffering the consequences of their choices and actions, but Nia refused to accept my report, claimed it would be bad for our reputation if the story got out. My partner agreed with her, in hopes of getting the promotion he’d been after for years. He didn’t. When Doctor. Kane told me I was in the clear for active duty once more, I knew then that the best way for me to help my people, was to hand in my badge.”

“That’s... I’m so sorry that happened to you.”

Indra hums quietly, a hint of a smile gracing her lips, “He’s never told me what possessed him to do it, but weeks later Roan turned up at the centre. He did not apologise with words, but he picked up paint and brushes, looked me straight in the eye and said ‘what do you need me to do?’ and he’s been an asset to us since then, I do not think his mother has ever found out about his work with us.”

Clarke tilts her head, “why are you telling me this?”

“Lexa, Anya and even the pacifist that is Lincoln all threatened to kill that boy when they saw him and I truly believe he would have stood there and let them. I honestly don’t know why I’m telling you this. Lord knows Lexa never would,” Indra chuckles and Clarke can’t help a small smile of her own. She squeezes Aden’s hand again but he’s too engrossed in the screen in front of him. “I would do anything for my family, Clarke, and we only grow stronger every passing day, even those Reyes and Blake girls.” Clarke does let herself laugh this time.

“Thank you, Mrs. Woods. For sharing your story with me. It couldn’t have been a good time for you all. You’re all so strong.”

Indra shrugs, opening her mouth to respond but closes it just as quickly when Lexa rushes through the door, dropping a bag on the table and bends down to kiss Clarke’s cheek, “hey, beautiful.”

“Lexa,” Clarke breathes out, “I thought you couldn’t get here until later.”

“Emori offered to help me out until Murphy gets in. Mom told me to bring food but I didn’t know what you’d want so there’s meatloaf, mac’n’cheese with bacon, or chicken curry.” She frowns when she feels the silence in the room, “did I interrupt something?”

Clarke shares a smile with Indra and shakes her head, “nope, your mom was just telling me more of your embarrassing stories.”

Indra nods happily as she tells Lexa that she told Clarke about the time she pretended to be a firefighter and tried and failed many times to climb a lamppost so she could slid down it like one, inadvertently telling Clarke anyway and it isn’t until then that Aden finally tears his eyes away from the screen, “Lexa! I flew, Lex.”

Lexa scowls at him, “I heard. Do you have any idea how seriously you could’ve injured yourself?”

“I just wanted to be as cool as you and Anya,” he pouts and Lexa deflates instantly.

“You’re already way cooler than both of us combined, kid, you don’t need to do something that could hurt you to prove that. You’re the best little brother in the world.” She rubs the top of his head, messing up his her and he playfully tries to bat her hand away after he moves his own out of Indra’s. She ignores his attempts and leans down to hug him, whispering in his ear, “I’m glad you’re okay, but next time, don’t do something stupid yeah?” He nods against her and she moves away, lifts Clarke up from the chair to sit down herself and places Clarke on her knee, “how long have we got you for?”

Clarke sighs as she plays with Lexa’s hair, both Indra and Aden making gagging motions behind her, “not long, I’m sure my mother has already noticed I’m not around and unfortunately you can still get fired even from volunteering.”

“What time do you finish? Anya and I will probably be going back to mom’s and let Aden watch what he wants while inhaling ridiculous amounts of junk food. I’m sure Raven will come over after her class has finished and we can all camp out in the living room.”

“Yes, score.”

“Only for tonight,” Indra drawls.

“Aw man, that sucks.”

Lexa grips Clarke tighter, “and I mean this as lovingly as possible because you always look stunning regardless, but you look exhausted.”

“I won’t be very good company, I don’t finish until eleven and I have to be up again at six. I’ll probably pass out as soon as I sit down.”

“You don’t have to, but I can come and pick you up when you finish, there’s not much more distance between here to your place and mom’s and I think Raven has a morning class too so I’ll be giving her a lift anyway, I could even pick you up and drop you off at home.”

Clarke kisses the underside of Lexa’s jaw, neither paying attention to a smiling Indra in the corner or Aden eagerly awaiting Clarke’s answer, “you’re sweet, but I couldn’t ask you to do that.”

“I’m offering. At least then I’ll feel better knowing you’re actually getting some sleep.”

“And a proper breakfast,” Indra pipes up.

Clarke rolls her eyes, “I’m pretty sure this is emotional manipulation.” Three pairs of eyes stare her down until she groans, “fine, fine, I’ll come so you two can feel better about me not running myself into the ground.” Her phone buzzes and she drops her head, moaning into Lexa’s neck, “I believe I am being summoned.” She stands and makes her way to Aden first, bending down to kiss the top of his head, “feel better soon, buddy, I’ll have a word and make sure you’re home as soon as possible.” She leans down to hug Indra, “thank you, Mrs. Woods.”

“Do not forget your dinner, child.”

Her stomach grumbles on cue and she blushes, “I’ll steal the mac. Thanks.”

Lexa stands to meet her, pulling her in by the hips, “text me when you’re done and I’ll let you know when I’m outside.”

Clarke moves forward to kiss her and lets it linger, Indra glancing away respectfully and Aden already back on his cartoons. “You’re amazing,” she whispers against lips, already counting down until she can get out of this place, the small rest she had already taking its toll on her body.

Caffeine. She needs so much caffeine.

She can get through this week until Saturday and she reminds herself to stay pumped for Lexa’s surprise.

“I know.”

A playful shove to Lexa’s chest and Clarke grabs her food, “I’ll text you later, stud.”

Lexa watches her go with a sigh before she grabs the meatloaf out of the bag for herself, planning to use it as her defence when Emori yells at her for forgetting her own food. She’s half way through a mouthful when she glances up and sees her mom and brother staring at her, “what?” They look at each other and then back to Lexa before they both start making kissy faces at her and she scoffs, “whatever.”

-

“Hey, Anya?” Clarke asks from her comfortable position on Lexa’s chest, waiting until Aden had fallen asleep so she wasn’t talking through the movie, surprisingly awake now that she’d settled down and her mind wasn’t running wild with work. A grunt answers her and she smirks, “what does ‘Heda’ mean?”

Anya smirks back and Lexa’s eyes widen, “Anya, no.”

Raven sits up, knowing the story well and rubs her hands together, “Anya, yes.”

“Well, when we were younger....”

Lexa’s head lolls back as she accepts her fate.

Chapter Text

Clarke: Hypothetically; if my colleague managed to find a babysitter so I could finish early and I didn’t want to go home and study, could I do so at yours?

Lexa: That depends. Can I sway your hypothetical situation to join us at Grounders instead?

Clarke: Only if we can leave after I attempt to cook the chicken parmigiana I begged your mom for the recipe for.

Lexa: You’re going to cook for me?

Clarke: Hypothetically, of course.

Lexa: Of course. I have a class soon but if you get here before I finish just come to the back and grab my keys. Don’t listen to anything Murphy says by the way, we all only pretend to like him.

Clarke: Whatever you say... Commander.

Lexa: Stop it!

Clarke: God I can just imagine you taking down multiple guys twice your size looking all savage and untamed, war paint surrounding your eyes.

Lexa: I didn’t wear war paint to my competitions.

Clarke: You do in my mind.

Lexa: Clarke......

Clarke: Command me, Lex.

Lexa’s eyes widen at her phone and she nearly drops it when her first student walks through the door. She shakes her head to clear sudden images even though she knows Clarke’s probably laughing on her end.

She’s just about managed to clear the fog that surrounds her brain and gets her class through their warm ups when the sight of Clarke walking towards her catches the corner of her eye, “alright guys, pair up and practise what we went through last week. I’ll be walking around to check your stances so no slacking.”

Clarke’s biting her lip through a smirk when she comes to stand in front of Lexa and her gaze sweeps the class with an amused frown, “not that I’m criticising, but why are your students wearing normal clothes?”

Lexa follows the gaze, looking at all the jeans and t-shirts in front of her, choosing to wear skinny jeans and a tight top herself just for this session before she looks back at Clarke, “I do this once a month. It’s all well and good wearing baggy clothes for training, but your everyday clothes can be restricting so you need to be comfortable moving in them if something should happen to you in the streets. It’s pointless using a high kick if your trousers aren’t flexible enough to allow you to do so.”

“Hm, I never thought about that.”

“Do you want to join us?”

Clarke bits her lip again, “I think I’d prefer a private lesson.”

Lexa gulps back her retort and moves to take her apartment keys off of the chain to hand them to Clarke, “then go away, you're distracting.”

A laugh fills the air, “sorry, Commander.” Clarke laughs harder when Lexa glares at her and it brings a bit of attention their way. Clarke holds up the bag of what Lexa can only assume is ingredients, “what time should I have this ready for?”

“I’m on lock up and then I need to shower and change, so eight-ish?”

Clarke nods, calculating how much time she has to study, “alright, I’ll play housewife and have dinner on the table for when you’ve finished.”

Lexa stops still because- wife.

Wife.

It’s all she can cling on to and it forces a feeling in the pit of her stomach that she can’t comprehend. Clarke seems to notice and Lexa watches her eyes darken. “Clarke.”

With a quick glance around, Clarke makes sure they aren’t being watched before she takes a step forward to invade Lexa’s space, her body, the heat from it, pressed deliciously against Lexa. The way Lexa says her name like that does unspeakable things to her and she can’t help but bring that plump bottom lip between her teeth and nibble slightly, grinning at the groan she’s rewarded with. She pulls back, Lexa following but stops her with a hand on Lexa’s chest, gazes at the suddenly heavy dark green eyes and barely parted lips and chuckles, “control yourself.”

“I can’t around you.”

“Smooth.” Lexa smirks and Clarke rolls her eyes, taking a breath and stepping back, “enjoy the rest of your session, babe.”

It’s the first time Clarke has used a proper pet name for her and the lust that’s still minutely present gets replaced with something else. Something calm and warm and giddy. She follows Clarke as she leaves, eyes glued to her ass and she can’t help but notice there’s an extra sway in those perfect, curvy hips walking away from her. She clears her throat and turns back to her class as soon as Clarke is through the door, noticing the few hidden smiles from her students, “did I say you could stop?” She claps her hands twice loudly, “get back to work before I have you running on the spot for the rest of your lesson.”

Her students snap back to attention in fear, even if there is amusement lacing their features.

She glances at the clock, the next three hours are going to be a bitch.

-

“Are you joining us tonight?”

Murphy looks up from his spot behind the desk once Lexa has finished tidying up after her class and rubs the back of his neck nervously, “no. I’m taking Emori to The Mountain.”

Lexa whistles low, “am I paying you too much?”

It goes ignored. “I want to propose properly.”

She grimaces, if she’d known then what she knows now she never would’ve asked Emori for details. “What, was proposing during sex not romantic enough?” He raises an unimpressed eyebrow at her. “Go on then, get out of here before I have your fiancée on my back.”

He grins with a short thanks before rushing out the door, taking a moment to straighten out his hair in the mirror causing Lexa to scoff at him. She looks at the clock again. Two hours. She can totally get through them.

The buzz of her phone distracts her and she frowns when she sees Clarke’s name pop up with an attached image.

She shouldn’t open this.

She knows she shouldn’t open this.

Her fingers move of their own accord and she sags in relief when it’s just a picture of Clarke pouting adorably, underneath reading ‘studying is so boring’.

Lexa bites her lip to suppress her smile and saves it as her home screen.

Two. Fucking. Hours.

She’s lucky she loves her job.

-

Lexa isn’t sure what has her mouth watering more as she makes her way into her apartment; the smell, or Clarke looking at home in her kitchen.

Clarke turns to look at her over her shoulder as she’s chopping up some bits for a side salad and smiles playfully, “rough day at the office?”

“Well I had a photo of a stunning blonde to help me through.” Lexa walks up behind Clarke and wraps her arms around her waist, accepting a slice of red pepper offered to her.

“Yeah? Should I be jealous?”

Clarke’s head lolls to the side to give Lexa more room to kiss up her neck, “absolutely, she’s the most beautiful person I’ve ever seen.”

“Damn, I’d better hope my cooking skills are enough to keep you around then.”

Lexa’s hands move to Clarke’s shoulders and start a soft kneading motion and she basks in the moan she receives. “You’re so tense, baby.” Clarke hums softly, putting down the knife so she doesn’t accidently cut herself. “Maybe after dinner I can give you a proper massage, to thank you.”

“Massage huh? Is that code for something?”

“Not if you don’t want it to be.” She finds a large knot just under Clarke’s shoulder blade and Clarke groans out, gripping the counter tightly before spinning around and grabbing Lexa’s chin, kissing her fiercely in promise before she pulls back and pushes Lexa away.

“Go shower, dinner will be done in twenty.”

With a laugh and salute, Lexa grins, “yes, ma’am.”

She feels good when she’s out of the shower having used her special, expensive but completely worth it, shampoo and body wash and her whole apartment smells amazing with the food from the kitchen invading it.

Only bothering to put on sweats because she sees no point in getting ready for tonight just yet, she dries her hair just in time for Clarke to call her and she gasps when she enters the room.

Clarke has set up the breakfast bar- now she wishes she had a dining table- with a white cloth and some candles littering the upper shelf, a bottle of wine in an ice bucket with two glasses next to it, with just one large plate of chicken parmigiana between two sets of cutlery, salad bowl off to the side.

Lexa has to tilt her head in pleasant confusion as Clarke stands there nervously, a first for Lexa to see. “Clarke?”

“You’ve been so good to me. Being there for me when a patient died last week and bringing me dinner and giving me lifts... pretending to be my date to get rid of my ex,” she chuckles and Lexa joins her, “you’ve done so much already without wanting anything in return that I thought I’d be the one to dote on you for a change.”

Lexa fucking melts on the spot.

“Plus,” Clarke says as she clears her throat and holds up the bottle of wine to regain some of her confidence, “we definitely need to pre-game if we’re meeting Raven and O later.”

The anticipated moan is down right sinful when Lexa takes the two long strides towards Clarke and presses her against the counter, the glasses threatening to tumble over and wine almost escaping her grasp, and Lexa’s tongue is quick to cut off the gasp of her own name as it forces its way into Clarke’s mouth, flicking up to roll along the roof. Clarke is just as eager as Lexa, clumsily placing the bottle down before she grabs the back of Lexa’s neck to deepen the heated kiss, matching her tongue stroke for stroke until they’re panting heavily against each other and have to break away to catch their breaths.

Lexa is the first to move to one of the stools, patting the other in a patronising way and Clarke scoffs at her while she tries to control her breathing. She pours two glasses of wine before she sits down and hands Lexa’s over, keeping eye contract as they both take a sip.

Fire infused glances are shared through the entire meal and Lexa knows that if any of her friends ever told her that they and their partner fed each other, she’d drag them so hard and call them disgusting. Yet here she is, being fed more than she’s feeding Clarke and the flavour on her taste buds has her closing her eyes in ecstasy, Clarke’s eyes darkening with every bite she takes.

It’s in this moment that Lexa realises Clarke gets off on pleasing just as much as she gets off on being pleased and the text telling Lexa to command her wasn’t just sent to rile Lexa up.

Her last swallow of food almost goes down painfully at the thought so she rushes to take a large gulp of her second glass of wine, emptying it.

“Good?” Clarke asks in that deep, husky voice that settles right between Lexa’s legs.

“So good,” Lexa replies, standing and running her hands up Clarke’s thighs, squeezing periodically along the way, “now I believe I offered a massage in thanks.”

Clarke smiles softly at her, hands snaking around Lexa’s neck. “I’m the one that’s supposed to be doting on you, remember?”

“Please, baby,” Lexa leans down so that she’s whispering in Clarke’s ear and takes a risk, “it’d make me so happy if you let me do this for you.” Her words are slow, cautious, said in a way that if Clarke doesn’t want to, it won’t happen, but if she does, Lexa is going to be there every step of the way.

A shudder and whine against her is the confirmation she needs and she grabs under Clarke’s thighs to pick her up, her eyes burning into Clarke’s in constant questions of ‘are you sure?’ and Clarke’s burning back in an answer of ‘yes, I trust you’ all the way to her bedroom until she lays Clarke down gently on her bed.

It hits her that while they have been in Clarke’s room, this is the first time they’re together in hers.

Clarke’s blonde hair is such an aesthetic against Lexa’s dark sheets and her eyes blend perfectly with the walls.

But she doesn’t have time to fully appreciate that train of thought. Not when Clarke is looking up at her like that. “Take your clothes off and lay on your stomach.”

Lexa’s hands sweat as Clarke moves to follow her orders. It’s not like she hasn’t done anything like this before. It’s not even like it’s anything heavy or anything that requires a safe word other than stop... yet. They’ll get around to discussing that when they grow more comfortable in that particular direction of things. It’s just that, this is Clarke’s, and Lexa doesn’t want to fuck it up.

She waits until Clarke is settled, her eyes raking over the figure spread out on her bed, “you comfortable, baby?” A nod.

The room is silent apart from Lexa opening her drawer to contemplate what fragrance she wants to use. She decides on lavender, not only knowing how soothing it is, but how nicely it’ll go with Clarke’s natural vanilla scent and takes her top off, leaving her in just her bra and sweat pants before she lathers up her hands, warming the oil up as she climbs to straddle Clarke’s ass.

Clarke groans when she settles down on top of her and starts working in slow circles on her neck.

The air gets thicker as Lexa’s hands glide along Clarke’s back, applying pressure where needed, the body below her becoming more limp when Lexa trails from shoulders, down each vertebrae of a spine, bones cracking and knots loosing under her palms.

It doesn’t take long for Clarke’s moans to be heard and she begins squirming under Lexa’s ministrations, trying to push back and forcing Lexa to bare more of her weight down to keep her in place.

Clarke whines Lexa’s name as fingers graze the top of her ass before Lexa shifts completely off of her to start on her calves and works her way up.

Lexa lets her mind wonder aimlessly as her palms slide up and down Clarke’s body, not doing anything else beside appreciating the gorgeous curves under her after she’s tweaked out all the tension Clarke was carrying and she waits until Clarke is a withering mess before she speaks up again, “is something wrong?”

“You know there is.”

“Nope,” she grins, “you’re going to need to give me a clue.”

“Lexa. Fuck. I need you to touch me.”

She attempts to push back to prove her point but Lexa holds her hips down with a tut, “good girls usually ask for the things they want, Clarke.”

Clarke groans out at the emphasis put on her name and looks back and Lexa nearly falters at the almost black pupils she’s greeted with. “Just fucking touch me, Lexa.” She smirks with a hint a defiance in her gaze, “please.”

Well, Lexa’s having none of that.

Her hands move to grip Clarke’s ankles and spreads them out and she moves to lean back on her own legs, just staring at the glistening sheen between Clarke’s legs before she raises her brow, “would you like to try that again?”

After a small sigh of defeat- Lexa can still see the defiance but lets it go for now- Clarke drops her head back to the pillow, “please touch me, Lexa. I promise I’ll try and be good.”

Try.

Try.

Yeah right.

Lexa gives in anyway, not quite sure on the boundaries yet and she doesn’t want to go too far and make Clarke uncomfortable.

She leans over so she’s covering Clarke, her nails dragging up a thigh along her way causing Clarke to shiver.

The angle is awkward, but she leans down to kiss Clarke, her gentle lips asking ‘okay?’ and Clarke’s responding ‘keep going’.

A unexpected sweep of Lexa’s fingers against Clarke’s clit has her hips bucking as much as she can with Lexa holding her down and Clarke’s hand moves back to Lexa’s hip and before she knows it both wrists are above her head, Lexa nowhere near where she needs her to be. “I didn’t say you could touch me. Are you going to keep your hands here or am I going to have to tie them to the bed?”

And fuck if that image doesn’t have them both letting out a shaky breath. Lexa barely manages to hold hers in to stay strong, but Clarke lets hers out freely, “I’m sorry.”

She doesn’t sound it. Not in the slightest. Lexa’s tempted to give her a warning spank, but she doesn’t think they’re quite ready for that yet.

Instead, Lexa moves her thigh so it’s between Clarke’s and gives an experimental push against her. Clarke whines and drops her head heavier against the pillow, but other than that she doesn’t move.

“That’s better. If you move again, I’ll stop. Understood?”

Clarke nods rapidly. “Yes, Heda.”

It slips out. It slips out and Clarke looks mortified because she was definitely meant to lead up to that further down the line. It slips out and Lexa should not feel it heat her whole body because it’s a stupid nickname that her stupid sister gave her after that stupidly intense competition that she won and claimed herself the Commander in her stupid teenage years.

But now it’s out there. Now Clarke’s eyes darken back to what they were and Lexa bites her lip to control the sudden throb between her legs.

“Good,” she manages through a chocked tone and Clarke takes mercy on her by not saying anything to ruin the moment.

She shakes her head to clear it and focuses back on her goal, kissing slowly down Clarke’s spine, hands following suit until she moves them under Clarke’s breasts and pinching the already rock hard nipples she finds.

To Clarke’s credit, she does nothing more than twist a little so Lexa has more room. “Your tits are fucking magnificent, Clarke.” A whimper. “They fit so perfectly in my hands.” She opens her hands, lets the weight of them rest in her palms. “So full and soft.” She squeezes them lightly at the same time she bites just above Clarke’s ass.

Clarke twitches in an attempt to stay still and Lexa smirks in her spot.

Lexa four. Clarke three.

Yes. She’s still keeping count.

She bites down again an inch lower and looks up to see Clarke gripping the pillow tightly, her eyes begging and breath harsh. She sees the word ‘please’ play on Clarke’s lips even though she doesn’t voice it so Lexa regrettably moves her hands to spread Clarke’s thighs further apart.

Lexa licks her lips at the sight and breaths in deeply, shuddering as she does.

“You have the most incredible pussy I’ve ever seen, Clarke.” Clarke whimpers again and her hips buck into the mattress and Lexa can’t wait any longer. She’d gotten a small taste of Clarke when she’d kissed her the other night but nothing, nothing could prepare Lexa for the taste that coats her tongue when she leans forward and drags it through Clarke’s lower lips before she moves away when Clarke pushes back into her. “Now, now. What did I say?”

“I’m fucking trying.”

That tone is going to cost her if she’s not careful. “Such language for somebody who said she’d behave.”

She doesn’t give Clarke the chance to make a retort, just gets back to work between Clarke’s legs, gloats in the high-pitched squeak that escapes Clarke’s lips. Her movements are calculated, precise, tongue varying from light, ticklish circles, to heavy, pointed flicks, to long, deep licks that end with dipping just inside Clarke’s entrance that has her moans increasing and nails practically ripping into the pillowcase.

The thing is, Clarke thinks she’s won. She thinks she’s clever as her motions against Lexa start off small, nearly unnoticeable until they’re jutting in the opposite direction of each swipe of Lexa’s tongue and Lexa lets her believe it. She sees the triumphant smirk Clarke currently has on her face and she waits. Waits until Clarke’s loud moans start to turn into quiet screams. Waits until she can feel those beautiful, silky walls clamp down tighter on her tongue every time she goes inside. Waits until Clarke’s wetness is dripping down her chin and her fingers clench and unclench on the pillow.

She waits until Clarke is on the brink of the edge, ready to topple over at even given moment.

Then she pulls away.

Clarke whines pitifully, hips still trying to find some form of friction against her pulsing clit before Lexa pushes them down, stilling them. “No.” Her voice sounds broken, but there’s still that glint in her eye that’s ready to fight and Lexa leans back over her again. “Why’d you stop?”

“Bad girls don’t deserve those kinds of rewards, Clarke.”

“I was being good,” she breaths out in a blatant lie, “I was being so good for you, Heda.”

And screw her initial embarrassment, she doesn’t care anymore.

Lexa’s fingers replace her tongue, circle Clarke’s clit again to build her back up slowly.

“You are good for me, Clarke.” The actual words fit in the moment, but the meaningful tone behind them do not and Clarke’s eyes flutter closed as Lexa places just one soft kiss in the crook of her neck. Her own eyes follow because Clarke is so fucking wet that she could easily fit-

The fingers on her hand must have a mind of their own because before she can even finish her thought, three fingers are surrounded in wet heat and Clarke throws her head back as far as it can go, cursing Lexa’s name in a shout to the ceiling.

Lexa groans against Clarke’s shoulder, not moving her hand until Clarke gives her the go ahead. A small nod tells her she’s okay to move but she still starts a slow thrust, twisting her wrist each time.

Clarke gets impatient fast and repositions herself so she can reach round and tug Lexa’s hair, “faster,” she pants out and Lexa is just about to reprimand her before Clarke cuts her off, “please, Lex, just let me have this one.”

She’s pulled in for a messy, dirty kiss, forced to agree to Clarke’s one condition.

Not that she’s complaining too much.

Her movements speed up as per Clarke’s request and she uses her hips as extra leverage to hit Clarke deeper until Clarke is reduced to panting against her mouth.

It’s not until a hand is half way into her sweats that she notices Clarke has moved again and she pulls out abruptly, ignoring Clarke’s pleas, “don’t stop. I just wanted to touch you.”

She grabs Clarke’s wrists roughly and pushes them back above her head, “I make the rules, not you. This is your last warning, Clarke. If you move one more time I won’t even let you finish yourself off.”

“I’m sorry, I’m sorry.” Finally, there isn’t an ounce of control left in Clarke voice and Lexa grins. “I promise I won’t move again. Please just let me come.”

Straight away Lexa plunges in again and Clarke wails under her. She has a tight grip on both of Clarke’s wrist as she moves in and out. “Stay there,” she orders, grabbing a pillow and placing it under Clarke’s hips. She uses her left hand to spread Clarke’s folds so that her clit rubs directly against the pillow on every thrust, and Clarke fucking screams when it does.

She’s never been more thankful that she doesn’t have neighbours to worry about.

Lexa’s hand moves back to grip her wrists and continues her onslaught and Clarke zones out in her euphoria for a second because Lexa draped over her like this not only makes her feel so safe and protected, but she can’t help but imagine what it would be like if both of Lexa’s hand were up here, holding her, securing her, grounding her whilst her nipples rub painfully against the sheets and her clit scrapes along the pillow, Lexa rutting into her with a- she groans aloud, unable to stop her back from arching. “Where’d you just go, beautiful?” She tries to answer but the words get stuck in her throat at another harsh thrust. “Use your words, baby.”

“You,” Clarke grits out, “you. Like this. But with,” Lexa’s fingers twist and curl inside her, the tips of her fingers hitting her back wall while her knuckles hit her front, “fuck, Lexa. Like this, but with a strap-” she cuts herself off, still proud of herself for stringing some sort of sentence together.

“A strap-on?” Clarke nods and jerks at the word. “We can look one up if you want,” Lexa breathes out, “I think it’s only fair you should be the one to pick it out since you’re the one who’s going to be taking it.”

That imagine combined with Lexa’s tone, the heat flowing through her body, and the loud, echoing smack of what’s going on between her legs has her so close, so fucking close that all she needs are those three little words.

No, not those ones.

Lexa, of course, does the opposite.

She slows down. She slows down and Clarke growls, “don’t you dare try and edge me, Lexa. I can’t handle it.”

“You look so breath taking like this,” she says instead. She gets it. She understands that she can’t push Clarke any more. Understands that she hasn’t prepared herself to be in the mind frame for the after affects it will cause if she does. “You ready to come for me, beautiful?”

Clarke slumps down, pushing back weakly against Lexa’s fingers, glad she hasn’t been told off for doing so.

Lexa kisses her shoulder, anchoring Clarke, “you’ve been so good, baby. You taste fucking amazing and when I let you come, it’s going to be all for me.” She swallows hard, knowing how risky her next move could potentially be. “Only for me. Because you’re mine.”

“Fuck, Lexa.”

Her wrist flicks again, fingers turning inside Clarke, “say it, Clarke. You’re only going to come for me because you’re mine.”

That look of defiance is back in Clarke’s eyes, “I’m my own.” She doesn’t stop Lexa though, doesn’t tell her that’s going a step too far at this stage of their relationship.

However; she was still ready for that rebuff, “not in here you’re not. In these four walls you belong to me. Say it. Say it and mean it and I’ll let you come.”

Clouded eyes challenge her and Lexa starts to get worried that she pushed it too much, but as she starts to slow down, mentally going over her apology in her head, Clarke slackens and relents in a whisper, “I’m yours, Lexa.”

Clarke’s body is shaking with the force of holding back until she’s been given permission and it feels like forever before Lexa gives her it. “Let go, Clarke.”

With one last push in, Lexa stills. Clarke’s body locks and quakes and quivers under her, shaky breaths gasping for air beneath the drawn out moans, mouth wired open, knuckles white in their grip and brow scrunched in what looks like a brief moment of pain before it smooths out and relaxes.

Clarke is hypnotising when she comes.

The sheen of sweat that makes her body glow cools until she’s slightly shivering and Lexa makes sure she’s fully come down before gently removing her hand and wiping it on her sweats, wrapping Clarke up against her and kissing the top of her damp head.

They lay in silence as Clarke tries to slow her breathing and bring her heart rate down. “Are you okay?”

She smiles up at Lexa as she leans in to kiss her, soft, slow, a complete contrast to earlier. “Yeah,” her voice is deeper than she’s ever heard it and she blushes, “thank you.”

“You’re thanking me for an orgasm?” Lexa looks amused, but there’s still that wariness in her eyes.

Clarke pokes her chest, “I’m thanking you for,” she stops short, looking for words she can’t find. “Just, thank you.” Lexa smiles and kisses the top of her head again. “You can go a bit heavier next time though,” she starts timidly, “I won’t break.”

“I didn’t want to make you uncomfortable.” She locks away the comment of a next time for later.

“Lexa,” Clarke smiles, “I promise I’ll let you know if you’re taking it too far. That’s what safe words are for.” A cheeky grin in Lexa’s direction has Lexa rolling her eyes. “I’m a classic kind of girl. Traffic light system all the way.”

Lexa bites her lip, “noted. Same.” She glances at the clock and groans, “we are so late.”

Clarke reaches over to grab her phone and sighs, happy she put it on silent when she was studying, “O and Rae have been blowing up my phone.”

“Are you good to go out still? We can stay in if you’re, you know, a bit sensitive.” She cringes but at Clarke’s nod, Lexa stretches and gets up from the bed.

A grip on her waist stops her and she turns around to a sight she’ll never tire of, a naked Clarke, dropping to her knees in front of her and her eyes darken. “We’re already late,” Clarke shrugs, “and I owe you.”

Clarke bites her lip, loosening the string of Lexa’s sweats but a flickering catches the corner of her eye. “Shit!” She rushes away from a now confused Clarke, laughing as she comes back in, “we forgot to blow out the candles.” Clarke blushes. “As incredibly sexy as you look on your knees, if we’re going to get out it needs to be now.”

“But,” a pout, “I want to taste you.”

“Clarke.”

“Fine,” she exaggerates, standing up, “but you’ve only got yourself to blame when you’re fidgeting all night.”

Lexa smirks now that she’s fully aware of Clarke’s need to please her significant other, “we’ll see about that.”

Clarke grimaces as she runs a hand through her hair, “can I take a shower real quick first? I’ll be so fast you won’t even be dressed by the time I’m done.”

“Sure,” Lexa shrugs, “I’ll clean up in the living room. Oh, by the way,” she reaches out to pull Clarke into her, inhaling that ‘freshly fucked’ scent, “dinner was amazing.”

“Yeah,” Clarke kisses her before she makes her way to the bathroom, “remind me to thank your mom for helping me get laid.”

“Gross, Clarke.”

-

Lexa hates student night at Grounders. There’s bodies everywhere and it’s a nightmare to get to the bar, never mind finding a table but luckily it looks like the other four have been here for a while.

In their usual booth.

Surrounded by drinks glasses.

And shot glasses.

“I think we might need to catch up,” Lexa says to Clarke as they reach the table.

Octavia spots them first, “well look who finally decided to show up,” she slurs.

Lexa rolls her eyes, “I’m not going to apologise.”

“What are you drinking?” Lincoln asks politely.

“Whiskey.” She needs it.

Clarke just grins at him sweetly and he chuckles. “Apple martini. Got it. I’ll tell Nyko to get a few glasses out in advance.”

“Hey. Hey!” Attention is drawn to Octavia as soon as Lexa sits down, Clarke on her knee. “You know what I’ve just realised?” Her eyes gleam in drunken excitement. She points to Lexa first, “gay,” Clarke, “bi,” Raven, who rolls her eyes, knowing exactly where she’s going with this, “pan,” Anya, “gay,” and finally Lincoln who is waving down Nyko, “bi. I’m the only straight person in our little group.”

“And your point is?” Anya drawls her question, sounding so much like Indra it’s scary.

“Well, I’m like, the minority now.” The three burst out laughing, Anya just stares, and she pouts in confusion, “what?”

Raven scoffs, “that’s not how it works, O. You’re lucky you’re pretty.” She leans over to pinch Octavia’s cheek cutely but it’s swatted away as Octavia slumps back with her arms crossed.

Anya’s eyes are just staring at her, glazed over.

“They’re all so drunk,” Clarke whispers in Lexa’s ear.

“Regretting coming out now?”

“Nope.” Clarke’s fingers trail up Lexa’s thigh in an attempt to tease her, but with her newfound knowledge, she cockily leans back and lets Clarke play herself.

Raven’s studying them and points at them accusatory, “something’s changed. What were you two doing... well we all know what you were doing, but what were you doing before- oh my god.” Her eyes dart to Clarke and her mouth opens in a gasp. “You didn’t.” Clarke blushes and clears her throat, silently begging Lincoln to hurry up with their drinks. She might text him and ask him to get her three. “You did. Oh, Griff.” Raven shakes her head in disappointment as Clarke glares at her. Lexa laughs, confirming Raven’s theory. “It took you over three months to tell Niylah about your-”

“Raven!” Clarke’s hiss of her name causes Raven to close her mouth and mime zipping it and Clarke really, really hopes that they all forget this tomorrow.

“Three months? Consider me flattered,” Lexa whispers hotly down her ear.

“You found out by yourself. It doesn’t count.”

Lexa hums, “she couldn’t have been paying that much attention if she didn’t pick up on it.”

Clarke can see the question in Octavia’s gaze and the snide remark on the tip of Anya’s tongue but something out there must take pity on her because Lincoln stumbles back to the table with a tray full of drinks and a proud smile “shots.”

She needs to get drunk tonight. They both do. They deserve it.

“Oh, thank god.”

Chapter Text

They’re all drunk. They’re all so fucking drunk. They’re all so drunk that Raven is currently challenging Lincoln to an arm wrestle, Octavia is touching her own face over and over again because ‘it feels weird’, Clarke is gazing mindlessly at the make shift dance floor and Anya is off either throwing up or waiting at the bar for more drinks.

Lexa lost track of her fifteen minutes ago.

She should probably go and look for her.

Her head feels fuzzy as she lifts Clarke off of her lap to stand on wobbly legs, giggling at herself slightly as she’s forced to grab the table to steady herself and Clarke tilts her head adorably in question. “Anya. Going to go find her.”

Words are hard when she’s been drinking.

Clarke doesn’t verbally respond, just watches Lexa try and navigate her way through endless sweaty bodies until she finally makes it to the bar and strains her neck to look around for Anya.

A frown appears on her face when a woman makes her way to Lexa’s side with a huge grin, tapping her furiously on the shoulder until Lexa finally pays attention to her and greets her with a hug.

She watches them talk for what seems like hours but has been mere minutes. Watches the girl lean in just a little closer each time she speaks as if acting like she’ll be heard better. Watches the hand that was resting on the bar top move to begin touching Lexa every time words are exchanged, starting innocently on Lexa’s wrist until it makes its way up her arm and Lexa lets her do it.

Her frown deepens when Lexa leans her head back in a full laugh and the woman uses that to take a step closer, practically draping herself over Lexa and she starts to see red when Lexa only laughs again when the hand that was on her arm moves to the zip of her jacket.

“Hey, Lincoln? Who’s that?” Lincoln, without stressing his arm as Raven tries using both hands to get his on the table, looks over to her with his brows furrowed so Clarke points over to the bar. “That girl talking to Lexa. Who is she?”

Lincoln darts his eyes back and forth before a smirk breaks out on his lips, “oh. That’s Costia.”

Clarke rolls her eyes at the vague answer, “and who would Costia be?”

He seems to sober up slightly at the venomous tone of her words and shakes his head with a small smile, “don’t worry about her, Clarke. Lexa’s never slept with her. I mean, she might be known for... certain things, but she’d never sleep with somebody she knows has feelings for her.”

Shit.

Octavia’s eyes widen at his words and she elbows him in the ribs, causing him to lose his match with Raven. “Yes! You loser. I thought you were supposed to be strong.” She glances around when nobody is paying attention to her and Lincoln talking to Clarke finally registers, “when he says feelings he obviously means-”

“There’s no other way to interpret what that means, Raven,” Clarke seethes, not taking her glaring eyes away from Lexa.

“Clarke come on,” Octavia tries, messily patting Clarke’s shoulder, “so what if Costia likes Lexa, she obviously doesn’t return them and she’s whipped as fuck for you.”

It calms her a little and Lexa seems to take that moment to look over at Clarke, smiling gently with a small wave, but when Costia looks over in her direction with practically a snarl, Clarke snaps, “that’s it, I’m going over there. If she thinks she can put her hands on my girlfriend she’s got another thing coming.”

-

Lexa huffs as another body slams into her, they’re not even on the fucking dance floor, why do they think it’s okay to just take up all the space in front of the bar?

This is all Anya’s fault.

When she eventually gets there, she tries to flag Nyko down and scouts the bar for her sister with no luck.

Throwing up it is then.

She groans to herself, dreading the crowd on the way to the toilets but tapping on her shoulder distracts her from her mission and she’s greeted with an over-friendly face, “Lexa, hey! What are you doing here tonight? I feel like I haven’t seen you in ages.”

Lexa smiles politely, “hey, Cos. Yeah it’s been a while.”

They make small talk, the usual ‘how’s work, how’s life’ awkward conversations when you don’t particularly want to talk to the person in front of you and Lexa frowns when she feels Costia’s hands start to move up her arm in a flirtatious way and she tries to back up but there’s too many bodies surrounding them. She attempts to laugh it off but Costia just moves closer, “so, have you changed your mind about us yet? I swear, I’m over the whole feelings thing but I still think we’d have a really good time together.”

Lexa can’t help it. She laughs. Loud. Right in Costia’s face and it’s so disrespectful that any normal person would probably scoff at Lexa and walk away with a few choice slurs. But Costia, Costia just moves in closer and Lexa stops abruptly, slowly taking Costia’s hand away from her and trying her best to back up, even if she can feel the glare aimed at the back of her head in response. “Look, Cos, I’m sorry, I don’t mean to sound like a bitch, but how many times have you said that when we both know it isn’t true and even if it was, I have a girlfriend.”

“Bullshit. Lexa Woods settling down with a girlfriend? You could just be honest with me and tell me you aren’t interested.”

Lexa snorts in disbelief, “I have told you that. Multiple times. You’re the one that chooses not to listen. And I hate to break it to you, but the girlfriend is most definitely real, and she’s beautiful and nice and a good person and she’s sat right over there.” She points to Clarke, giving her a gentle smile and small wave when she sees anger in those stunning baby blues.

A gulp makes its way hard down her throat when Clarke stands with a locked jaw and starts making her way towards them and at first she thinks she’s done something wrong, but Clarke’s steely gaze is focused solely on Costia and she smirks.

Clarke is jealous.

It doesn’t take long for her to wedge herself between Lexa and Costia, fitting her form against Lexa with her back to the other girl, acting like she doesn’t exist, “hey, baby.”

Lexa’s smirk doesn’t leave her face, not even caring that Clarke is accentuating the pet name purely to rile Costia up. “Hi, beautiful. We were just talking about you.”

Clarke plays dumb, “who’s we?” She makes a show of looking around and widening her eyes when she sees Costia, “oh, I’m sorry. I didn’t see you there.” Costia scoffs and Lexa has to hold back a laugh. Clarke sticks her hand out, “Clarke Griffin. Lexa’s girlfriend. Are you one of her friends?”

“You could say that,” Costia replies, shaking Clarke’s hand.

“We met in high school, had a few classes together.” Clarke leans into Lexa more at that, brings Lexa's arms to wrap around her waist tightly before Lexa continues, “anyway, I was just looking for Anya so I should get back to doing that. It was nice seeing you again, Cos.”

With a snarl towards Costia, Clarke grips Lexa’s hand to move her away, but Costia grabs Lexa’s arm to stop her, “don’t be a stranger, Lexa. You know where I am when things don’t,” she side eyes Clarke, “pan out.”

Clarke glowers and spins around, grabbing Lexa’s face before anyone can even register what’s happening and pulls her down to a sloppy, teeth and tongue infused kiss, moaning loud enough into Lexa’s mouth to make sure she’s heard by all before pulling away just as quickly, preening at the dazed look in Lexa’s eyes and she briefly looks at Costia in victory before addressing Lexa again, “let’s dance.”

“But, Anya-”

“Is at the end of the bar,” Clarke finishes for her. Lexa follows her gaze and sees her sister swaying on the spot as she orders shots, obviously ready for more now she’s emptied her stomach. “I really want to feel you grinding against me.” Clarke smirks when Lexa licks her lips and faces Costia, “bye, Cynthia.”

“It’s Costia.”

“I don’t care.”

Lexa lets herself get dragged to the dance floor, shaking her head in amusement the whole way until they’re among the sweaty moving bodies and her front is pressed to Clarke’s back, sighing at the feel of that perfect ass pushing into her. “You’re so fucking hot when you’re jealous.”

“I’m not jealous.”

A shiver runs through Clarke when Lexa nips her neck and her head lolls back into Lexa’s shoulder, “of course you aren’t.”

They’re immune to their friends watching them from afar as they grind into one another, Lexa’s hands running up and down Clarke’s body and Clarke gripping the back of Lexa’s neck to pull her into awkward angle kisses through pants until she gets frustrated and turns around, legs locking together, Lexa’s hands finding place on Clarke’s hips to move her against herself until they’re squirming against each other and breathing heavily in the short space between their lips.

Raven fans herself down as she watches the scene play in front of them just as Anya sets down a try of shots and drinks. “Hot damn, I think I picked the wrong Woods sister.”

Lincoln gracefully looks away to Octavia who raises her brow, “I think I’m questioning my sexuality.”

“You always do when you’re drunk.” Raven’s comment goes ignored and she turns to Anya, “sorry baby, I’m leaving you for Clarke and Lexa.”

Anya rolls her eyes, looking everywhere but the dance floor and groans, “I do not need to see this.”

Raven wiggles her eyebrows, “want to give them a run for their money?”

“Oh, I will,” Octavia shouts in excitement, “c’mon, Reyes, show me what you got.”

Lincoln and Anya look at each other in exasperation until Anya grumbles, “our girlfriends are insane.”

He lifts a shot in toast, “I’ll drink to that.”

It isn’t until the lights turn on and the music stops that everyone in the bar seems to realise they aren’t the only ones there and Lexa is far too worked up to separate form Clarke. Between numerous amounts of alcohol in short breaks from dancing and having Clarke writhing against her, she’s not sure she trusts her legs to walk her home and she’s using a just as unsteady Clarke to lean against.

“I think we’re being kicked out.”

The crowd is already starting to disburse, but Lexa doesn’t notice, too wrapped up in kissing and biting up Clarke’s neck until she’s at her ear, “so perfect. So fucking perfect for me.”

Clarke gasps but tries to keep a clear mind. That is until she catches Costia’s eye and she growls. “She’s been watching us all night.”

Lexa shrugs, nibbling at Clarke’s ear, “that’s her problem. Not ours.” She feels Clarke’s hesitation and sighs. She’ll blame her stupid drunken brain in the morning for this. “You’re it for me, Clarke Griffin. Don’t you get that?”

“Lexa.”

Stupid. Stupid drunk brain. “I’ll spend the rest of our lives proving that to you if I have to,” she pulls back to look into Clarke’s shocked eyes but her word vomit doesn’t allow her to register what she’s saying, “you’re the only one I want, Clarke. You’re the only one who plagues my thoughts all day and all night.” God damn it. “I’m completely and utterly obsessed with you and nobody, nobody, will ever come close to making me feel the way I feel about you.” A tear comes to Clarke’s eye and Lexa smiles softly as she wipes it away. “I probably shouldn’t be saying this when I’m drunk and hopefully we’ll both forget tomorrow how totally embarrassing I’m being right now, but even if you decided you didn’t want me anymore, it’s always going to be you.”

Clarke’s quiet for a long time. The intensity in which Lexa is looking at her, the pure passion behind her words, has her voice trapped, has her gulping and making her mouth imitate that of a fish, trying to find some way to either reciprocate or ease the tension, she isn’t sure. All she knows is that Costia is still looking at them and she ends up lightening the mood with a tug at Lexa’s jacket and a grin, “I still don’t like the way she looks at you.”

Lexa laughs, seeming to relax, “good. I already told you you’re hot when you’re jealous.”

“I’m not jealous.”

Before Lexa can repeat her earlier statement, Raven pushes her way between them, “come on, lovebirds. Nyko’s being mean and going on about some licensing crap or something.”

Stumbling home is not fun. Lexa is just thankful that her stop is first. She’ll never understand Raven and Anya’s need to belt out current hit songs into the quiet nights or Octavia having to bounce along making Lincoln’s job of carrying her piggyback style even harder.

She likes drunk Clarke though, clinging onto her for dear life knowing full well that Lexa can hardly keep herself walking in a straight line, never mind helping somebody else.

Raven abruptly stops her singing and looks at Clarke and Lexa with an evil grin, “I bet those two get married next.”

Anya frowns at her, “are you saying that if I propose before Lexa you’ll say no purely for the sake of winning?”

“Oh yeah, good point.” She snuggles into Anya’s side, giggling to herself at Anya’s scoff. “Bet revoked.”

Lexa shakes her head in confusion, “what just happened?” They stop outside the gym before anyone attempts to answer and Clarke yawns against Lexa’s shoulder, “let’s get you to bed, beautiful.”

“Are you trying to take advantage of me whilst I’m drunk, Miss. Woods? Because I am one hundred percent okay with that.” She yawns again and Lexa takes that opportunity to say goodnight to the others.

They flop heavily on the bed, only just managing to rid themselves of their clothes without falling over and Clarke shifts to little spoon in front of Lexa, eyes drooping.

The silence that surrounds them leads Lexa to believe that Clarke has fallen asleep until she speaks up, “if I’m up before you can I wake you up by going down on you?”

Lexa chuckles into Clarke’s shoulder, “it sounds better than my alarm.”

“Awesome.”

-

Her alarm rings heavily down her ears and she groans, flailing an arm out to turn it off and shields her eyes from the bright sun invading them, using her other arm to pat at her side, trying to reach out for Clarke only to find it empty.

Lexa’s head is pounding and her stomach feels off, her mouth is dry as hell and she’s pretty sure she’s still drunk to add, but she soldiers through, cautiously lifting her arm and blinking against the harsh light as she attempts to sit up only to sink back down into her pillow.

She’s almost certain this is the pillow that was between Clarke’s legs yesterday and she quietly moans at the thought.

A chuckle finally forces her to get her shit together and open her eyes, smiling when she sees Clarke scratching a pencil against paper, “what are you drawing?” God her voice is rough.

“You.”

She smiles again, tilting her head as Clarke bites her lip. “You’re awake and my alarm woke me up. What’s up with that?”

Clarke blushes hard and clears her throat, “we were drunk when I asked that. I didn’t want to assume.”

“Well in my half sober mind I can honestly say that you can wake me up in any sexual way you want.”

“Any?”

“Within reason.”

A chuckle fills the room before Clarke sighs and sets the paper to one side, “Lexa. About what you said last night...”

“I meant it,” she says without hesitation, “I, I probably shouldn’t have said anything when we’d been drinking and I know we’ve known each other for less than three weeks, but I meant every word.” Clarke opens her mouth to speak but Lexa cuts her off, “you don’t have to say anything. I’m sorry if I made you uncomfortable.”

“You didn’t.”

Lexa breathes in through her nose, studying Clarke’s posture until she’s satisfied, “okay.”

“Okay.”

It’s an unspoken agreement that they’re going to leave this discussion for now. “How are you not hungover?”

Clarke shrugs, “I don’t get hangovers.”

“Lucky.”

Lexa’s second alarm goes off and she huffs, only now noticing the bottle of water and pills on her bedside table and smiles gratefully at Clarke before getting ready for the day. Clarke stops her at the door after they’ve had breakfast, pushing her against it slowly and kisses her just the same.

It feels different to any kiss they’ve shared but Lexa can’t quite put her finger on why, all she can say is that it’s something... more. “What was that for?”

“I have a slight confession to make.” Lexa furrows her brow and strokes the back of her knuckles down Clarke’s cheek for her to continue. “My hours are completely packed for the next few weeks. With studying for finals and trying to fit as much time in at the hospital as I can, I don’t think I’ll be free until Octavia’s birthday.”

Lexa holds her, wondering why it’s such a big deal but knowing Clarke believes it is. “Well if you get sick of looking at your dorm room walls you know you can always study here, even if I’m down at the gym or whatever. At least that way you don’t have to rely on take-out and you can actually use the bathroom without perverted neighbours stalking you,” she jokes and Clarke sags against her.

“You’re not mad that I’m not going to be able to spend much time with you?”

“Mad for you chasing your dreams? Why would I be?”

Clarke shakes her head, “you laugh but that’s what ruined my last real relationship.”

Lexa hums, “Niylah?” Clarke nods. “I am not fool enough to let go of a good thing when I have it, Clarke. If she couldn’t appreciate what was in front of her, then I’ll take her loss as my gain.”

She’s met with an annoyed Quint and her usual bunch of hungover student members waiting for her to open the gym after Clarke finally lets go of her lips, and snarls at the large man when he places down a cup of coffee, with a snarky remark about her needing it after last night.

The speed that gossip travels in this neighbourhood is ridiculous.

She thinks back to half an hour ago with Clarke’s lips fused against hers and smiles.

Worth it.

-

Lexa doesn’t hear from Clarke all of Friday except from a good night text when she knew Murphy had taken Lexa off for the graveyard shift and before she knows it Octavia is banging on her door Saturday morning.

Her head is still pounding.

Two day hangovers are the worst.

She’s barely dressed by the time Octavia lets herself in and she glares, “seriously?”

“What? I told you that working on this perfection is an emergency.”

Lexa rolls her eyes with a grunt, “fine, but we can't be out as long as we were last week, I have my free class this afternoon and I'd like to get some sleep before it.”

They run in silence for a good hour before Octavia finally speaks. “So,” she pants through her jog, “what's up with you and Clarke? You seemed pretty intense when you were dancing at the bar.”

“I may have said some things that were a bit soon maybe? But we're okay. I think.”

“Jesus Christ, Woods, you didn't tell her you loved her when you were drunk did you?”

Lexa clears her throat. “not in those exact words.”

Octavia stops still, hands on her waist and glaring at Lexa, “you are so fucking useless.”

“Excuse me? Didn't you tell Lincoln you loved him on your first date?”

“Well yeah. But I already knew Lincoln for ages before we started dating, remember? That was different.” Octavia stands her ground, almost offended that Lexa would even consider comparing Lincoln and hers epic love story with this. “You and Clarke hardly know each other, even if you are admittedly disgustingly cute together.”

Lexa looks solemnly to the ground, playing with a rock with the tip of her shoe, “O-”

That's all she gets out before a punch is delivered to her shoulder followed by Octavia's manic laughter, “I'm just fucking with you, Lex. Oh god, you should've seen your face.” She laughs louder when Lexa's eyes slit in her direction. “Now stop slacking, I need this ass to be perfect for the dress I'm getting myself for my birthday.”

“Your ass is already amazing and you know it.” Octavia air kisses her before she bolts off and they continue their run for another hour before Lexa slows them down, “I need to head back soon.”

If Lexa notices Octavia's eyes widen in panic, she doesn't say anything and Octavia thinks fast, “actually, do you mind if we grab a coffee or something before we do? I wanted to talk to you about something.”

“If it's ridiculing me about Clarke you can go fu-”

“No. No. It's about me and Lincoln actually.”

Relenting with a sigh, Lexa nods and follows Octavia to the nearest coffee shop, ordering and taking a quiet spot in the corner. “What's up?”

“Well you know how I was going to have the party at my house?” Lexa nods. “I was wondering if it was okay to use your cabin by the lake instead?”

Lexa raises an unimpressed eyebrow, “is that it?”

Octavia shrugs, “I know how sacred that place is to you.”

“It's just a place to escape every now and again, Octavia. Titus might've left me the keys to it when he left, but it's for the whole Woods family. Mom and dad use it all the time,” Lexa chuckles at how urgent Octavia made this request out to be.

“I know but obviously there's going to be other people there. My brother for instance.”

Lexa hums in contemplation, “as long as I can approve the guest list, go for it. I thought you said it was about you and Lincoln, though?”

Oops.

So she did.

It's not like Octavia wasn't already planning on doing this, she just wasn't quite ready to tell anyone, but if it keeps Lexa away from the gym for a little while longer, she figures now is a good a time as any, “I was actually going to see if it was okay for the two of us to have the cabin for the weekend. I'm going to ask Lincoln to move in with me.”

“Oh. Yeah of course, I'm sure he'll be ecstatic,” Lexa smiles wide.

This is not how Octavia expected distracting Lexa to go. “But his dad-”

“Please,” Lexa waves her off, “Uncle Gus will be happy to finally get him out of the house. It might make him actually go out and get a life. If that's all can we go now?”

“Yep. Let me just use the toilet real quick.” Lexa rolls her eyes. Octavia is on her phone as soon as the door shuts behind her.

Octavia: Aunt Indra, I bombed so hard. You're up.

Indra: My face is one of shock right now.

Indra: That was sarcasm by the way. I was unsure if it came across as such in a text message.

“And yet another reason the older generations shouldn't be allowed technology,” Octavia mumbles to herself as she heads out to meet Lexa.

She smiles at seeing Lexa already on the phone, “mom, I have an afternoon class. Can't dad or Anya look after him?”

Lexa! He is your brother, show some care,” Indra reprimands and Lexa winces at the tone. “Also, I have tried your father and sister but they are not answering which means they may possibly be with a client. I promise you I'll be back to get Aden in time for your class, and you know I would not ask this of you if there was any other choice.”

Lexa smacks her head against the wall with a grunt, “fine, bring him to the gym. At least that way if you're running late he can just sit in on the class.”

No, he is too ill to travel. I will come and pick you up and bring you back to the house. Where are you?

With a sigh, Lexa relays the information to Indra before forcing Octavia to wait with her.

Indra pulls up ten minutes later and Octavia stands up with determination, “right, I have shit to do. See you later, Woods.”

Lexa grumps her way to the car and settles in. “He is upstairs playing games at the minute. He won't need any medication before I get back, but just pop your head in every now and again to make sure he's okay and he isn't doing any damage to his arm.” Lexa nods. “Thank you for this, sweetheart, I really didn't have anyone else to ask.”

She suddenly softens and sinks into the seat, “no problem, mom.”

As soon as she's in her mother's house, she does a quick check on Aden, who doesn't seem ill at all in her opinion as he excitedly drones on about how awesome the design that Clarke drew on his cast is. Again. She can't blame him, it does look incredible, and moves downstairs to watch whatever abomination of reality TV is on at the moment.

Introducing her parents to Netflix is a must.

She can feel herself beginning to doze off and sets an alarm just in case before she actually does but unbeknownst to her, Aden comes down and turns it off after she's asleep.

The door opening stirs her from her sleep and she shoots up when she sees the time on her phone, wrecking her brain because she's adamant she set her alarm and it hasn't gone off. “Mom! Fuck, mom I'm so late for my class. I needed to get over there like a half hour ago.”

“Calm down, Lexa,” Indra soothes, “I called Lincoln and he's started it without you. Don't worry yourself.”

“I need to leave. Now.” She rushes through the door with Indra and a surprisingly perky Aden behind her. “Shit. Come on.”

Indra holds back a grin at Lexa's panicked state, driving calmly even with Lexa chewing her ear off, letting her get away with it this once. She'll definitely be having words about the language used in front of her son later, however.

Lexa frowns when they pull up at the gym, seeing it closed down and the windows covered in paper, “what's this? What the hell happened to my gym?”

“Please don't be mad at her.”

“Mad at whom, mother?”

“Just... follow me.”

Lexa's jaw locks all the way to the door and she can feel her teeth grating together.

It turns to shock as soon as they walk through and her jaw drops. Her eyes frantically look all over the gym, from the people that are stood around, waiting on her reaction- her dad, Anya, Raven, Octavia, Lincoln, Murphy, Emori and a few regulars- to the now bright walls occupied by different patterns that blend into the different styles of exercise above each relevant piece of equipment that contrasts beautifully against said new equipment, to the brand new front desk with the gym's logo on it and finally, finally to Clarke stood behind the desk fidgeting anxiously. “Do you like it?”

She feels like she's walking over to Clarke in slow-motion, her voice no more than a whisper, “you did all of this?”

“I just thought, you worked so hard to bring this place up to date that you could do with a fresh look and I know your next job was to have it painted and there's a paint inspired charity shop I know where people can leave anything extra that they aren't going to use for others that can't afford it and I mean, it's not dry yet so don't touch anything, and obviously I had loads of help and Raven made the desk, and I wasn't lying when I said how busy I was going to be the next few weeks, this is my last afternoon off and I need to get to the hospital soon but-” she cuts herself off from her own rambling and lets out a breath, repeating her question, “do you like it?”

“Clarke.” It's said softly, so softly because she can't find words and she's not sure Clarke even heard it.

“I've been planning this since your run with O last week, it was a bit rushed because of the short amount of time and trying to keep it hidden from you was a nightmare and just, will you just say something?”

“You... fuck.” The only way she sees fit to express herself is by darting forward and grabbing Clarke's jaw in her hands, kissing her soundly and not caring about anybody else in the room, not caring about Indra covering Aden's eyes or Raven's cat-calls and Murphy's wolf-whistles.

Octavia clears her throat loudly, “we helped too, you know.”

Lexa pulls away from Clarke sheepishly and addresses the room, “thanks guys. This, this is, wow.” She eyes the room as a whole in appreciation, unable to believe that her worn out gym has turned into something you'd find in the city. She turns to Indra with slight regret, “sorry for acting like a jerk.”

Indra waves her off and after an awkward amount of silence, chatter picks up in the room before Clarke leans down to whisper in Lexa's ear, “there's a couple more things.” She leads Lexa over to where a girl no older than eighteen stands, “this is Charlotte. She's studying to be a personal trainer slash physiotherapist and she's looking for some hands on experience. I told her you might have an opening for an internship.”

“Sure,” Lexa says gratefully, smiling at Clarke. Relief at having somebody else that could help take the pressure off, even if it's something as simple as keeping her eye on the gym while Lexa has a class so she doesn't have to ask Lincoln to do it or sorting out memberships when Lexa is with a client, fills her bones. “Can you come in tomorrow and we can go through some basic stuff, figure out when you can work or not?”

“I'd like that. Thank you so much, Lexa. Thanks, Clarke.” She rushes off after her enthusiastic confirmation, blushing furiously.

Clarke takes Lexa's hand and drags her to the back room and Lexa gapes again.

She figures her mouth should just be wired open at this rate.

The back room she uses for her classes is painted similarly to the gym, only instead of people painted to be training on the walls, there are multiple forms of martial arts littering them. “I had to get Lincoln's help the most for this bit as I don't know what styles are what. Obviously.”

Lexa bites her lip, attempting to joke through the knot in her throat, “you've got this all wrong, Clarke. I was supposed to be the one wooing you.”

Clarke chuckles, “I'm sorry for shutting down your gym for the day. I hope it won't affect you too much.”

“If anything, Clarke, this is going to bring me more business in than I could've ever hoped for.” Lexa glares at her playfully, “you totally stole my game.”

Arms wrap around Lexa's neck and Clarke places slow, precise kisses against her lips, knowing she regrettably has to leave soon so she can't take it further, “you can't win them all, babe.”

And Lexa realises that no, she can't. She'll have to concede this match, but it's far from over. “Game on, baby, game on.”

Chapter Text

Lexa: Remind me again why you want to be a doctor instead of an artist.

Clarke: I take it you like it then?

Lexa smiles as she looks over Clarke’s painting of Lexa playing with the kids from the community centre hung in her small hallway.

It is truly magnificent.

Lexa: I love it, Clarke. Thank you. Do you think you’ll have time to talk later? Once you’re finished?

Clarke: Honestly I don’t know. I won’t be done until the early hours and then I only have three hours to rest before I’m back at it again. Some exciting news though, Kane cleared it so I can sit in on one of his consults and take notes. I shouldn’t really be allowed to, at least not until after I graduate.

Lexa: That’s okay, beautiful, only if you’re feeling up to it, doesn’t matter what time, I’ll answer. That’s amazing and hey, if I were you I’d take every advantage I could get, there has to be some benefit to having your mom as the chief, right?

Clarke: I mean, I don’t want to get by on my mother’s name alone, you know?

Lexa: Clarke... You’re already working ten times harder than anyone else in your class. I know you’ll be putting in more hours than any other intern and I also know you’ll be the first resident to put your name down for surgeries when that time comes. Everything you are rewarded you will get because you’ve earned it, not because your last name is Griffin. Fuck what others might say. You’re going to be an amazing doctor one day, baby, regardless of your last name. I’m just saying, if an opportunity presents itself, even if it’s from your mom, take it, she doesn’t seem the sort of person to give you special treatment just because you’re her daughter.

Clarke: No, she’d make me work harder to get it.

Lexa laughs at that.

Clarke: I didn’t realise how much I needed that pep talk until you gave me one. You’re amazing, thank you. I do have to get back to work now though. Sweet dreams, babe.

Lexa: Have a good night, beautiful. And don’t forget, I’ll answer no matter what time you call.

Clarke doesn’t call and Lexa’s okay with waking up to a text that simply reads ‘tired. Sorry. Good luck with Charlotte tomorrow, will call you when I finish.’

She’d told Charlotte yesterday to get in an hour before she reopened the gym, having to wait overnight for the paint to dry and the fumes to leave, and even though she’d obviously already seen the new décor, her eyes still widen as she takes in the surroundings, whistling happily as she spins her keys around her finger.

Charlotte is nervously waiting outside, shifting from foot to foot and talking to herself and Lexa laughs when she startles at the sound of the door unlocking. “Hi, Lexa.”

“Hey, Charlotte. Come on in.” She leads them to one of the weight benches and motions for Charlotte to sit. “Would you like a drink or anything?” Charlotte shakes her head no and Lexa has to hold back a chuckle as she watches her fidget. “So, tell me a little bit about yourself.”

“Oh, well, er, I’m a senior in high school and I’ll be starting college in the fall.” She starts to relax a little as she talks about herself. “I’m going to be taking a physiotherapy and sports rehabilitation course.”

Lexa hums, “may I ask why you’re interested in doing that?”

“My brother was in the army and his jeep got turned over a few years ago. He had an injury to his spine the rendered his right leg almost useless. I tried to help him recover as much as I knew how and he’s still a long way off, and he’ll have to wear a brace on his leg probably for the rest of his life, but he can walk short distances without too much pain now and I guess, going through that process with him, and continuing to go through that process with him, knowing how hard it is, makes me want to do... more, I guess, for people that go through that kind of thing.” Charlotte looks down with a blush after she’s finished, thinking she’s bored Lexa with her rant.

Lexa clears her throat and smiles softly when Charlotte looks back up at her. “That must’ve been very difficult for you. I know how a person’s personality can change so rapidly when they’ve suffered such a trauma, no longer being able to do what they loved.”

Charlotte nods at that, “there were times when it felt like he’d given up. Some of the things he said to me when I was only trying to help made me want to give up too. But I pushed through, I knew it wasn’t my brother saying those things and like I always tell him, ‘an event doesn’t make you who you are, the way you react and handle it does’.”

“That is very wise.” Lexa smirk when Charlotte blushes again. “Anyway, back on track. As you know this isn’t just a gym, I also hold self defence lessons here, do you have any experience with any style of martial arts? It’s obviously not necessary to do so, but sometimes we will get an enquiry about what styles I teach.”

“I always wanted to, but my family are very old fashioned. My dad practically forced my brother to enlist because all the men in our family should serve their country,” she rolls her eyes, “and fighting isn’t for girls so I wasn’t allowed. The only reason they are letting me take a course that isn’t quote, lady like, unquote is because my brother convinced them to let me. But he did used to sneak me into his room and we’d watch Bruce Lee movies without my parents knowing,” she laughs, thinking back on the times they’d play fight.

They don’t realise how fast time has flown until Lexa’s alarm beeps for her to open the gym and it shocks them. “Do you have anywhere to be today?” Charlotte shakes her head. “Well how about you stick around today, get a feel for what you’ll be doing and later we can have a one-on-one session. I teach three different styles, two of which are for beginners and we can see which suits you more, okay?”

Charlotte’s eyes light up in excitement, “seriously?” Lexa nods. “That’s awesome. Thank you, thank you, thank you.” And fuck, she’s a hugger just like Monty.

Lexa pulls away to open the door, eyes shocked at the queue formed outside and turns to Charlotte. “Guess you’re going to be signing up more members than I thought.” Quint is through the door first, of course, handing a coffee to Lexa. “This meat head is Quint. If he’s not here attempting to make himself look like a cloud,” Quint glares at her, “he’s working. He has zero life outside of those two things but if something looks as though it could potentially escalate between either our members or with you, we unfortunately do get ones that think they’re the shit, and you can’t get to Murphy, Lincoln or I, it’s his name you shout first, got it?” Charlotte nods rapidly and Quint winks at her in reassurance before moving to start his usual routine.

“Gym looks great by the way, Lex.” Quint shouts as he sets down his bag.

Lexa introduces her to the regulars that come in and sends the newbies to line up at the desk.

She wonders where the hell all these new people suddenly came from.

Charlotte is quick to learn how to set up the new members and the day rushes by faster than Lexa can comprehend as she’s running through tutorials of the equipment until Murphy strolls in with his mouth agape at the full gym. “Who did you have to sleep with to make this happen, Woods?”

Lexa rolls her eyes with a groan. “I know you met yesterday but I’d officially like to introduce you to Charlotte, our new intern.”

Murphy tilts his head up in acknowledgement as Charlotte waves at him timidly.

She’s still got a lot to do with her new recruits and looks at Charlotte apologetically. “I’m sorry, I don’t think I’ll have time to do a session with you today, but you have my number so let me know when you’re able be here and we can work something out. I can give you a quick demonstration though.” She shouts Quint over. “Like I said earlier, I teach three different styles, although I do know more.” Charlotte’s eyes widen. “The advanced one I teach is called Kyusho-Jitsu. It’s a pressure point style that focuses on impact and attacks to the nervous system. If you know where you are hitting, you can knock somebody unconscious with one hit. All styles of martial arts use it, but it’s designed to make you progress as a martial artist.”

“Isn’t that style dangerous?”

Lexa chuckles softly, “don’t believe everything you see in movies. It gives you a deeper understanding of the human body, which would be excellent for your future as a physiotherapist. It’s only dangerous depending on which way you choose to use it. You could use it as an attack, but, like Lincoln, you could want to use it as an escape, which brings me on to the other two styles.”

She brings Quint next to her, ordering him to punch her and he smirks. “Oh you do know how to talk sweet to me, Lex.”

“I also love kicking your ass after, but this is just a demonstration so move slowly.” She turns back to Charlotte. “Now you’ve obviously heard of Judo. It teaches you to take down and subdue your opponent.” She motions at Quint to throw a punch and she opens her palm to push it to the side of her. “In a competition, your goal is to flip your opponent onto their back, but this is the real world and Quint is much, much larger than me so as soon as I attempt to do that, he’ll focus his weight to his legs. There are two options, I could go street and break his nose with the heel of my palm and whilst he’s distracted with the pain,” she lets go of Quint wrist and tells him to do it again faster. As he does she moves it to one side again with one hand, fingers open, and closes the fingers of her other as she pushes forward with her palm to stop short of Quint’s nose. The hand at his wrist tightens and the hand at his nose moves to push at his shoulder the same time she hooks a leg behind his, the momentum forcing him to the ground with a slight groan.

“I though this was just a demonstration,” he whines.

“Well I didn’t actually break your nose did I?” He rolls his eyes and gets back into position. “The other way I could immobilise him would be to twist his arm behind him and put him in a choke hold.” Quint repeats his actions and this time, after Lexa has pushed his hand out the way she ducks under his arm, pulling his wrist behind him and kicks him in the back of his knee, making him fall down before her other arms wraps around his neck, tugging until he taps out when he needs to breath.

Lexa stands up and winks at Murphy. “Do I have to?”

“What’s wrong? You scared?”

Murphy scoffs. “I’ve seen you at competitions, Woods, I’d rather face Quint.”

An eye roll and a grumble later, Murphy stands in front of her. “You see how he’s roughly the same height and weight as me?” Charlotte nods again, her eyes full of fascination. “The odds are that I can flip him even without training. Use the momentum of his punch. This will need to be fast in order to do so, so pay attention.” Murphy throws the same punch as Quint, but Lexa grabs his wrist straight away and uses her other hand to grip under his armpit as she twirls so her back is against his front and one leg goes between his as she pulls him over her shoulder and he lands with a grunt, breath taken away from him.

“That was so cool.”

Lexa smirks at Charlotte as she helps Murphy up. “The other style I teach is Wadō-ryū. It’s not as common as other styles of self-defence, but it’s extremely affective. This style is Lincoln’s specialty since it’s more of a harmonic, minimal damage approach. That’s not to say that you’re a pacifist if you like this style, it’s just a less violent approach with the same outcome. Where as a lot of styles teach you to move against an attack, this teaches you to move with one. It’s all about body manipulation, using your opponents strengths and techniques against themselves.”

She moves into stance, relaxing her shoulders and fists, hands half open and focuses her centre in her hips and on her feet.

“This is about speed and agility. Quint’s go-to is brute strength, if he gets a hit against me, it will probably knock me out so I can’t give him the chance to do so.” Quint moves to punch her once more and in a similar move of locking his arm behind him, Lexa instead uses her dominate hand to grab Quint’s wrist and ducks around his arm, rather than under it, and she holds it straight out at his side and twists until he drops to his knees. She smirks as she holds him in place with just one hand and walks around him, causing him to wince until she’s done a full circle. She brings her other hand to rest her palm against his elbow. “I could break his arm with very little strength in this position, giving me more time to get away.”

Charlotte cocks her head to the side in confusion. “Get away?”

“Self-defence isn’t about hurting the person that’s trying to hurt you. It’s about defending yourself to the point where you can safely run away and report it. You should never, ever underestimate your attacker. If you have the opportunity to escape, you escape. Don’t be a hero.”

“Are you planning on giving me my arm back any time soon?”

Quint’s voice reminds her that she’s still stood holding his wrist in an uncomfortable position and laughs. “I was planning on keeping it hostage for a little while.”

He glares at her and she relents. “She’s right, kid. Any decent instructor won’t teach you how to fight, they’ll teach you how to protect yourself.”

“Personally if the person who attacked me had balls, I’d kick them in them and if they weren’t too tall, head butt and bite the bridge of their nose. Gross, but effective.” Lexa rolls her eyes at Murphy who just shrugs and goes back to what he was doing, Quint following after.

Lexa addresses Charlotte again. “Look up some competition videos when you can. Personally I’d consider Wadō-ryū, it’s more likely to focus on pressure areas which would be good for your course but it’s whatever you feel more comfortable with.”

Charlotte smiles and grabs her bag before hugging Lexa again. “I’ll text you later and let you know what days I can do. Thanks, Lexa, this is going to be great.”

She looks at her busy gym again with a grin, hoping that it won’t calm down once the novelty of a new looking gym wears off.

-

It doesn’t wear off, Clarke finds out as the days- or is it weeks? She’s lost track- pass and she’s incredibly happy for Lexa. It turns out that Octavia’s Instagram followers actually do pay attention to what she uploads and the thought of ‘fresh, good value for money and pretty awesome team of people’ steals business from the inner city gym.

She sighs as she gets ready for her following Thursday class, sending a quick text to Lexa to wish her a good morning before her phone goes on silent and decides that tonight she’ll take Lexa up on her offer of studying at her apartment because texts and tired phone calls are not enough and poor Lexa has been working every hour possible at the gym with how busy it’s suddenly become, going as far as opening until ten on the weekdays.

Clarke misses her.

It’s been over a week and a half since she’s physically seen Lexa and she already misses being in her company. She misses how light and breezy she feels, how relaxed and stress free her mind gets, how Lexa smells and just generally looking at her face and she’s already so tired because she hasn’t stopped her routine of get up, get dressed, go to class (to volunteering at the weekend), volunteer, get home, eat cold pop tarts, study, study more, maybe have time to sleep if her brain isn’t racing in every direction, and repeat.

And honestly, she just wants to lay her head on Lexa’s chest and fall into a blissful slumber for a few hours.

She knows she can’t complain, knows she only has herself to blame and she could cut down her hours at the hospital if she wanted to but in her head she can’t. The consult she sat in with Doctor Kane was achieved by the sheer amount of effort she puts in and it’s going to look incredible on her résumé.

But Clarke just really fucking misses Lexa and it’s starting to get to her.

Her classes go by in a blur and before she knows it she’s at the hospital. “Clarke, may I steal you for a moment?”

Kane doesn’t give her a chance to respond as he motions for her to follow him into one of the x-ray rooms and she looks at the walls with a frown. “What’s going on?”

“I’d like you to look these over. Tell me what you think.”

She eyes him suspiciously. “Why? No offence, Doctor Kane, but shouldn’t it be a resident doing this? I’m not even in Med School yet, or at an intern level.” He looks away and her features become a frown. “What is my mother up to?” She doesn’t wait for him to reply as she storms to her mother’s office, knocking on the door lightly and waits to be told to enter. Abby looks surprised to see her, but regains her composure quickly. “Chief.”

“Clarke. What can I do for you?”

Abby gestures for Clarke to take a seat as she straightens out the papers on her desk. “I was wondering why Doctor Kane had me look over x-rays I’m not licenced to have an opinion on.”

“Yes. I’m sure you’re aware of the intense training course they run in New York?” Clarke nods with wide eyes because yes, she’s aware. She’s also aware that only five college students every two years are selected to go on it and her heart plummets at the thought that her mom might have recommended her for it. It’s a two year course instead of the usual four and it’s quite a distance away, a distance she doesn’t want. “As I’m sure you are also aware that this hospital has the best training program this side of America.” Clarke nods again, Abby’s words slowly clicking. “We have been given the opportunity to incorporate the same course here and I have recommended you to be on it.”

Clarke stops for a moment, the reality of the situation clouding her head. “I- wait- what? Why?”

Abby pulls out a sheet of paper that is obviously Clarke’s grades. “You have been at the top of your all of your classes throughout your entire college career, it isn’t possible that you won’t graduate top of your class, your volunteering has worked wonders for your application and your notes from Doctor Kane’s consult are near perfection. I have no doubt in my mind that you are the perfect first applicant and will do this hospital proud.”

It hurts Clarke a little, that Abby has to look at a sheet of paper for these facts but she swallows the sting in her chest. “I need to ask, is this you recommending me as Chief, or as my mother?”

“As your Chief, obviously.” Well that didn’t take any thought. “This hospital has a stellar reputation, I look forward to seeing you excel and add to that. As a soon-to-be graduate, you should be extremely proud of yourself.”

“And as your daughter?”

Abby softens momentarily, but her Chief facade is quick to re-emerge. “As my daughter, there is always room for improvement. This course will demand your full attention. No outside distractions. You will need to be solely focused on your career without the influence of others.”

Clarke grits her teeth. “Like Lexa you mean?”

“She teaches violence, Clarke.”

“She teaches protection. She’s out there trying to keep people away from being brought in on a stretcher to places like this.” A heavy sighs fills the room as they both try not to say something they might regret. “What if I don’t want to do the course? What if I’m happy with the four year program?”

Abby stares her down. “We both know you won’t turn something down that will have a positive impact on your future.”

She’s right. Damn it she’s right and Clarke knows she’s right. She stands from the chair and wipes down her trousers. “I’m finished for the day. Thank you for this amazing opportunity... Chief.” It’s the first time she’s ever felt sick using Abby’s title. “I will do you and this hospital proud.”

“I’d expect nothing less, Clarke. You’re welcome.”

The rain is pouring but she still decides to walk home.

When did her parents turn into this? When did her mom stop giving her encouraging smiles when she aced a test? When did her dad stop inviting her to watch whatever shitty sport was on and they’d spend a couple hours cheering and booing.

Clarke hated sports, but she loved spending that time with her dad.

She knows when. When she started college, when she moved out and became an adult.

It’s starting to make her wonder if they’ve always just felt like they had to be loving, supportive parents. Like being a parent was their job that they didn’t need to try and work at anymore because they’d already completed the task. They raised Clarke, she’s a good person, a dedicated person, a loving person.

They achieved their goal.

Her mind is frazzled, she’s so exhausted that she’s probably making all of this up in her head and by the time she’s half way home, the tears are running down her face as fast as the rain.

She decides against seeing Lexa tonight, she’s far from the best company right now.

Blaring lights and an echoing horn invade her senses and she blinks against the downpour enough to barely make out Indra in the driver’s seat of the car that pulls up next to her. “Get in the car, Clarke. I’ll drive you the rest of the way.”

Clarke smiles softly at her. “I’m nearly home, I don’t mind walking.”

Indra rolls her eyes with a huff. “Child you get in this car right now. I will not allow you to make yourself ill because you are being stubborn.” Clarke laughs painfully but follows orders, thankful that the car is heated as she starts to shiver in her drenched clothes. “What were you thinking walking out in that?”

“I needed to clear my head a bit,” she admits. Indra raises her brow as she drives past Clarke’s building and Clarke can’t find the strength to argue. “It’s nothing. Thanks for the ride, Mrs. Woods, but we’ve already gone by my dorm.”

“I know. You’ve lost weight.” It’s left at that and the drive is silent, but comfortable. Indra turns up the heat when Clarke shivers more, watching the downfall through the window. They arrive at Indra’s house and head through the door, the smell from the kitchen making Clarke’s stomach growl and she blushes in embarrassment but Indra laughs. “Ryder is cooking tonight so I can’t promise it will be as good as my food.” It brings a much needed chuckle from Clarke. “Why don’t you go upstairs and dry off? I think Lexa has some clothes in the spare room you can change in to.”

Indra’s light features turn to a scowl as she watches Clarke until she can’t see her anymore and heads into the kitchen, a questioning look from her husband as she sets another plate. “Oh no, you haven’t brought home another stray have you? I thought we agreed on three.”

A frown. “I found Clarke out in the rain as I was coming back from the store. She’ll be joining us for dinner.”

His frown matches her own. “Is everything okay?”

“I don’t know,” she sighs.

Clarke comes down to dinner being plated and glances at the three plates with her head tilted. “Where’s Aden?”

Ryder smiles fondly. “He caught his arm pretty hard earlier trying to show off. You’d think he’d learnt his lesson but no. I gave him his dinner early and sent him to bed with some extra pain meds, he’ll be fine for school tomorrow.”

“Is he okay? I can go and check him over if-”

“Clarke, sit down and eat. Aden will be okay and if it still hurts in the morning, I promise I’ll take him back to the hospital. If you ask me I think he was trying to get a little extra sympathy from some of the girls in his school.” Ryder winks at Clarke and she relaxes, mouth watering at the food presented to her. “Now I must warn you, it is obligatory in this household to pretend to enjoy my disastrous attempts at cooking.”

She moans at her first bite.

Her eyes widen to the knowing smiles she receives from the Woods parents. “I’m so sorry.”

“At least someone appreciates me.”

“She is starving, it doesn’t count.” They eat with small talk and Clarke is grateful that they avoid the topics of college and the hospital, as if they know she needs to talk about anything other than that.

After her plate has been scraped clean, literally, she feels like a fucking savage, Indra sets about taking some tupperware containers out of the freezer. “Mrs. Woods, I hope that isn’t for-”

“Would it make you feel better if I told you they were for you to take to Lexa tonight?”

It’s a ploy, she decides. She knows full well that Indra is taking them out so she knows Clarke is eating something with nutrients and she sighs. “Actually, I was going to go home tonight. Lexa has been working so hard lately and I don’t want to burden her. I’ve already done that enough with you two.”

Indra scoffs and Ryder softens, placing a hand on her shoulder. “It’s okay to be selfish sometimes, Clarke. It’s okay to worry about yourself above others for once. Lexa will be delighted to see you in any way she can.” She glances at him doubtfully. “Look, has Lexa been stressed lately? Of course she has, any sudden rush of business that you haven’t prepared for would do that to anybody. But she also has a bunch of people who are there to help take that stress off of her.” He waits a moment, unsure if his next sentence will make Clarke feel worse but he can see it’s something she needs to realise. “Who do you have to help alleviate your stress?”

She chokes out a sob before she can stop herself and wipes furiously at her eyes. “God, I’m sorry. I’m fine, honestly.”

“You aren’t a burden to any of us, Clarke. Indra and I enjoy having you here and Aden is going to be gutted he missed you when I gloat about it tomorrow.” Clarke laughs through her tears. “You can come to us for anything you need, even if it’s to get away from Lexa,” he jokes, “but I think you need your girlfriend right now, and we all know she’s a total nightmare without you.”

He grunts when Clarke rushes forward to wrap her arms around him and he squeezes her in response and it’s warm and it’s safe and, fuck, it makes her miss Lexa more. “Thanks, Mr. Woods. I think you’re right.”

“I’m always right.” Indra raises her brow over Clarke’s head. “Unless Indra is right, then I’m wrong.” He pulls back to look at Clarke with fake fear in his eyes and a stage whisper, “Woods women, Clarke. Scary.”

“So where am I driving you to?”

Clarke takes a steady breath, composing herself. “To Lexa’s please, Mrs. Woods. And don’t listen to them Mr. Woods, I liked your cooking.”

“I’ll hold that against you the next time you’re over for dinner and have eaten something other than pop tarts for a week.” Clarke’s eyes widen and he smirks. “A father knows, Clarke. A father knows.”

“He didn’t really know right?” Clarke waits to ask her question until her and Indra are in the car and Indra shakes her head, reaching into Clarke’s bag to pull out a wrapper and Clarke feels like an idiot. “Yeah. That makes more sense.”

They arrive at the gym and Clarke doesn’t realise she’s leaned over to kiss Indra’s cheek until she’s pulled back and grabbed the bags Indra had given her for Lexa. She blushes in embarrassment.

Again.

This fucking family.

“I... don’t know why I just did that. Thank you, for dinner and letting me steal some of Lexa’s clothes. And dropping me off here. And for the food we’re going to pretend isn’t for me. And-”

“Clarke. You are more than welcome. Also, do not think I’ve forgotten that you promised to check in with me once a week. I will let you off this time but in future, I will hunt you down. I know where you work.” They sit in silence for a minute longer, Clarke feeling anxious about seeing Lexa for some ridiculous reason. “If you do not want Lexa to know about tonight...”

“No, I’ll tell her. I mean she’ll probably figure it out with her clothes and dinner and whatnot, but I appreciate it.” She opens the door, the rain still flowing gently.

She thanks Indra once more before making her way into the gym and Lexa looks up at her in surprise, rushing forward to embrace her and Clarke melts. “Hey, beautiful. Not that I’m complaining but I didn’t think I’d be seeing you until Octavia’s birthday.”

Clarke drops the bags and grips tightly onto Lexa, breathing her in. “I missed you.”

Lexa pulls back, pushing a still wet strand of hair behind Clarke’s ear and her eyes turn concerned. Fuck Clarke’s missed her eyes the most. “I missed you too. What’s wrong?”

“Nothing. Well not nothing, but in this particular moment?” She smiles. “Nothing.” She leans down to grab the bags with a smirk. “Your mom gave me your dinner. I’ll leave it on the side for when you finish.”

Lexa frowns. “I’m confused.”

“Dinner. You know that thing you eat usually when you’ve finished work.” Clarke already feels lighter. “I had dinner with your parents before your mom dropped me off here. She saw me in the rain and told me I could steal some of the clothes you left at her house.”

“I still don’t-”

Clarke kisses her to shut her up and holds back a moan at how good it feels to be able to do this. “Can we talk tomorrow? I’d just really like a hot bath before I continue studying and you said it was okay if I used your apartment didn’t you? Or did I hallucinate that?” She frowns at herself because that’s actually a serious question.

“You can use my place whenever you want, baby.” Lexa hands her the key. “Don’t lock the door behind you though, I still need to get in later.” Clarke nods, leaning in to kiss her again until Lexa feels dazed. “I’ll see you soon?” She glances over at the clock, only a few hours.

-

Lexa snorts quietly to herself as she enters her apartment to a passed out Clarke on her couch, biology book heavy on her chest before she looks at the container on the side.

She’ll have it tomorrow.

She locks the door and turns off the light, the street light giving her enough vision to lean down and pick Clarke up bridal style before she leaves the book open on her coffee table and carries Clarke to her room, laying her down as gently as possible, trying not to disturb her.

The nagging feeling of concern won’t leave as she watches Clarke nuzzle into her pillow and she makes a decision as she gets changed.

She slips into bed and Clarke automatically moves to hold her tee in a vice grip and noses her neck but she’s jostled just enough to stir her as Lexa reaches for Clarke’s phone. “Lex?”

“It’s okay, go back to sleep, baby. I’m turning your alarm off and you’re having a sick day tomorrow.”

“No sick day. Perfect attendance. New course. Work harder. Proud parents. Like yours. Achieve. Goals. Course. Grades.” The words are mumbles through yawns into Lexa’s neck and she hesitates with her thumb over the alarm. She doesn’t understand most of what Clarke is saying, but her broken voice tugs at her heart.

“One day isn’t going to damage your overall record, Clarke,” she soothes. “You’re no good to anyone if you collapse in exhaustion, beautiful. Take a day and let me look after you.”

Clarke sniffs against her shoulder and Lexa needs to make sure she’s awake enough to be coherent before she does anything. She feels Clarke’s eyes flutter open, lashes tickling her neck, her cheek and then Clarke’s slightly chapped lips are moving lazily against her own and a hand comes to cup softly at her cheek. “M’kay,” Clarke whispers against her lips, eyes blinking until they’re fully shut and she moves back to her position on Lexa’s shoulder, holding tightly around Lexa’s waist and a leg thrown over Lexa’s own. “One day.”

Lexa lets out a relieved sigh and switches off the alarm before snuggling down and holding Clarke tighter against herself.

Tomorrow.

She’ll help Clarke work through things tomorrow.

Chapter Text

Lexa’s phone rings once, Raven’s name barely having time to register before the sound stops so that it wouldn’t be enough to stir Clarke.

She would’ve put it on silent, but she knows she would’ve missed the screen lighting up with how long she’d been staring at the top of Clarke’s head, running her nails up and down the soft skin covering her spine.

With a sigh, Lexa manoeuvres herself slowly from under the weight on top of her causing a whine to escape Clarke’s lips and her brow to furrow before she replaces her body with a pillow, smiling at the way Clarke grips on to it and inhales deeply.

Her feet pad along the floor almost silently as she makes her way to the door, opening it as quietly as she can to a concerned looking Raven holding up a heavy rucksack. “Thanks for this Rae, I owe you.”

“Just take care of my girl, Woods.” Raven hands the bag over and crosses her arms over her chest, tapping her foot impatiently, waiting for Lexa to respond.

“I’ll try my best.”

Raven nods once before relaxing, “good enough. I’ve told everyone not to contact either of you unless it’s an emergency. I’ll grab anything Clarke needs from the classes she’ll be missing today and Monroe is filling in at the hospital for her. Abby is off today so there shouldn’t be an issue there.”

“Okay. Is there anything I need to know?”

“Just... don’t pressure her into talking or she’ll lock down. Whenever she shows any form of weakness, the next day she acts like it never happened and she’s happy, smiley Clarke again so it’s better to pretend that nothing is wrong and let her open up in her own time.”

Lexa breathes in harshly through her nose, taking Raven’s words into consideration because obviously she doesn’t want to force Clarke to talk, but if Clarke doesn’t, this day would’ve been pointless and Clarke wouldn’t have worked through anything. “Right, noted,” she says instead and laughs when Raven gives her a double thumbs up and a quick ‘good luck’ before heading downstairs.

It takes Clarke less than ten minutes to notice she’s alone in bed and she pats the cooling empty side sleepily through a frown before willing herself to sit up. She rubs her eyes and lets out a satisfied yawn along with a crack of the neck, feeling more awake each passing second until the only exhaustion she has is emotional.

The strong smell of coffee makes her smile and after finally getting her body to cooperate, she gets out of bed, brushes her teeth and attempts to tame her hair before making her way down the short hall, giggling when she sees Lexa dancing in a baggy tee and tiny boxers, humming her own tune. “You seem happy.”

Lexa looks over her shoulder at Clarke with a grin, shimmying her way across until they’re stood face-to-face and reaches out to spin Clarke in a full circle. “Why wouldn’t I be? I get to spend the whole day with the second best girlfriend in the world.”

“Second best?” Clarke raises her brow, swaying with a playful Lexa.

“After myself, of course.”

Clarke snorts, even while she locks her wrists at the back of Lexa’s neck. “Oh of course, how did I not know that?”

“Don’t worry, I’ll make sure to remind you.” Lexa chuckles at Clarke’s eye roll, sliding her hands down Clarke’s tank top and over silky shorts until they dip under to rest on the skin of Clarke’s thighs and steals a kiss, “morning, beautiful. How’d you sleep?” It’s a ridiculous question and they both know it. Lexa spent most of the night holding Clarke tighter with gentle words every time Clarke whimpered restlessly in her sleep.

“Alright,” she says in a lie they both accept. “Coffee smells good,” Clarke hints, eyes leaving Lexa’s in favour of pouting in the direction of empty mugs.

Lexa steps away and pulls Clarke over to the counter, picking her up and setting her down on it. “It tastes even better. I think I truly outdid myself. Maybe I should be a barista.”

Clarke shakes her head fondly as she wraps her legs around Lexa’s waist to pull her flush against herself, moaning quietly at soft skin covering hard muscle. “As long as you still work out every day I don’t care what job you do.”

“Yeah? What about when I’m old and wrinkly and my muscle has turned into flab?”

“I could still decide to be a plastic surgeon, I’m sure I could get you a good deal.” She frowns as Lexa reaches over her to start pouring the coffee, her earlier words registering. “What do you mean the whole day? What about work?”

A shrug. “Lincoln’s covering.” Clarke doesn’t even have time to open her mouth before Lexa’s finger is on it to silence her, “trust me, he was practically begging for an excuse to get out of dress shopping with Octavia.”

“Okay,” she replies, not fully believing Lexa, but as she breaths in the scent of coffee now in front of her nose and takes a sip, her mind trails off in wonderment. “This is my favourite coffee.”

Lexa leans down to kiss Clarke’s neck as she sips the hot drink. “I had Raven pick up a few necessities for the day. We have your favourite coffee, your most comfortable sweats, books because I know you won’t let me get away with not letting you study at least a little,” Clarke laughs at that, “and chocolate and popcorn for when we watch cartoons later.” Clarke gapes at her. “First though,” Lexa leaves Clarke to rummage through her cupboards and fridge before returning with a bowl of cereal, “breakfast.”

Clarke scrunches her nose in disgust, “this looks healthy. What part of a restful day includes healthy food?”

“Who said anything about resting? Eat up, you’re going to need the energy.”

“Oh?” Clarke quirks her mouth in a smirk.

Lexa’s smirk matches her own. “Yeah, I have plans to sweat this frustration out of you.”

A squint of Clarke’s eyes in her direction has Lexa holding back a laugh but she can’t stop it when she shoves a spoon full of cereal into Clarke’s mouth, watching her shudder at the taste and taking a painful looking swallow. “We’re not talking about sex, are we?”

“No, we’re not.” She gestures over to the couch where Clarke had missed the laid out basketball shorts and jersey. “Not yet anyway.”

Lexa turns and makes her own breakfast, grinning around a mouthful as she watches Clarke glare at the now soggy flakes on her own spoon. “Seriously, Lexa? Do you hate your taste buds or something?”

“Shouldn’t you be more concerned about your health as a future doctor?”

Clarke shrugs, gulping down another bite with a grimace. “If I was going into cardio or something sure. But seeing as though I’m not, give me all the junk food.” She gulps down the rest of the cereal, trying her best not to gag and holds up the empty bowl, “happy?”

Teeth shine bright through Lexa’s smile and Clarke holds her stoic face not to match it. “Extremely. Now get changed.”

“Ah, I see we’re back to you not asking for things.”

Lexa strides up to Clarke, back between her legs before kissing her soundly until Clarke is slumped awkwardly. “Will you get changed for me, baby? I really want to help you de-clutter your head.”

Clarke groans and pushes her away, “fine, but you’d better make it up to me later.”

After begrudgingly changing, Lexa leads Clarke out of her apartment and down the corridor of her gym to a secure door with keypad access. She enters the code and bites her lip as she looks back at Clarke, “just remember that I’m doing this to help you.”

The room is full of old equipment that’s been stored, but there’s a corner sectioned off that holds nothing more than a worn out punching bag and Clarke scoffs, “you really think punching a sack of foam is going to help me?”

Lexa huffs, “will you just try at least? If it doesn’t work I promise we’ll go back upstairs and binge on shitty TV and eat double our body weight in junk food okay?”

Clarke glares at her and then the bag and back again before she sags her shoulders, relenting. “What do you want me to do?” Lexa smiles at her and produces a roll of wrist tape, wrapping Clarke’s hands before covering them with a thin pair of padded gloves.

Once she finishes she moves to her wrap her own, forgoing the gloves, and stands behind Clarke, angling her body the way she wants. It’s a bit strange standing with her right foot in front of her, but she moves so that she’s moulded against Clarke’s back, right leg forward, left leg back, right hand covering Clarke’s in front of her chest and left hands at Clarke’s hip, upper body facing straight and lower body twisted slightly. When she’s finally happy that Clarke is in the right position not to hurt herself, she jabs their right fists against the bag, pulls back and swings with their left a few times, correcting Clarke’s form when she tucks her thumb in. “Keep your thumb outside of your fist or you’ll break it.” After a couple more punches, her hands move to Clarke’s hips and she lets her do it on her own. “Go through your day yesterday.”

“Well... I woke up,” right, “put the coffee pot on,” right, “brushed my teeth,” left, “got dressed,” right. She groans in frustration and spins in Lexa’s arms. “This is stupid, Lexa. I’m fine.”

“You’re not fine. Start again.”

Clarke bites her lip at the small fire in Lexa’s eyes, “you’re really hot like this you know. I’m sort of jealous of your students.”

“Clarke...”

“I’m just saying.” Clarke leans down to place light kisses up Lexa’s neck, smirking at the quiet moan she’s rewarded with and she makes her way up until she’s tugging hard at Lexa’s ear lobe, the grip on her waist tightening, “would it help change your mind if I told you I haven’t had an orgasm since I made you dinner?”

Lexa gulps. “N-not even by your- fuck.” Clarke bites a little harder. “By yourself?”

Clarke shakes her head, “been too busy.” She works Lexa’s neck again until she can hear mumbling and pulls back with a frown, “are you telling yourself to stay strong?”

“I’m apparently the only one who listens to me,” she pants. “I know what you’re doing, Clarke.”

“I thought that was obvious.”

“You’re deflecting.” She spins Clarke around so she’s facing the bag. “Start again.”

With a sigh, Clarke does, using as little effort as possible as she punches the bag while recalling the day. It’s not until she begins recalling events at the hospital that her punches are more precise, harder. “And then just before my shift ended Doctor Kane came up to me and asked me to look at some x-rays which I’m not qualified to look at.” Lexa slips away from Clarke to hold the moving bag. “So I went and asked my mom what was going on.” Clarke’s breaths are heavier, grunting with each punch. “She told me about this course they do in New York that they’re bringing here.” She talks through the course, the sound of the bag echoing in the room.

“That sounds amazing.”

“It is. It would only take me two years to complete but it’d mean I’d have even less free time than I already do. And then- then she- my life outside of the hospital isn’t any of the Chief’s fucking business.”

It’s starting to fall into place for Lexa as Clarke batters the bag, complaining about how her mom always has to be a doctor, even outside of the hospital and how she doesn’t like Lexa and how her dad just goes along with whatever Abby says and how work comes before everything else in her life, even before being a wife and parent and how Jake has the same principles and how that’s just not who Clarke is.

Tears are beginning to form in Clarke’s eyes as her punches get sloppy, “I’m a fucking adult, I’m a good person, I’m more than capable of making my own decisions, I’ve done everything she’s ever expected of me and it still isn’t good enough.”

Clarke slumps against the bag, holding it, breathing harsh through sobs and Lexa proceeds with caution, removing Clarke’s hands from the bag and letting the tears soak her shoulder. “Clarke, baby, I’m only going to ask you this once, seriously... do you want to be a doctor, or are you just doing it because you think it’s what your mom wants?”

A rapid shake of Clarke’s head answers her, her breaths deeper as she sniffs away tears. “No, I want this. It doesn’t matter to them what I chose as long as I’m the best at it. I just wish she’d recognise it as my mother, not my boss.”

“She might not show it the way you need, but anyone can see how proud she is of you.”

Clarke scoffs, “she’s proud of what’s on a piece of paper, not the person attached to it.”

“Your mom loves you, baby. She wouldn’t be so protective over you dating me if she didn’t, and I don’t think she’d recommend you for this programme if she didn’t think you could do it.”

“My mom and dad used to, you know? It started changing in high school. If I got a B on a difficult test they’d be so happy, take me out for dinner or whatever. Then it was ‘well why didn’t you get an A?’ or ‘being second in your class isn’t good enough’ even if it was a class I didn’t need for college. You know, they didn’t even come to my high school graduation. ‘It is not an achievement to do something that the majority of American students are capable of’,” she mocks. “I’m sorry, I just sound like I’m whining about something stupid.”

Lexa cups Clarke’s cheeks, “hey, hey. The way you feel is never stupid, beautiful. I think... I think you should sit down and talk to them. You wear your heart on your sleeve, Clarke. Just because they’re robotic it doesn’t mean you have to be.”

Clarke clears her throat, pulling away, “that won’t work. Are we done here?”

“Yeah,” Lexa sighs, “we’re done. We need to cool down though so that your muscles don’t cramp up.”

She takes her place back behind Clarke, turning her into her own personal marionette as she flows through a cool down routine until Clarke is putty under her hands, letting Lexa move her however she wants. “I’m sorry I’m such a disaster today. And for embarrassing the hell out of myself in front of your parents last night.”

Lexa chuckles down Clarke’s ear, “if this is you being a disaster I dread to think about when it’s my turn. You shouldn’t feel embarrassed, baby, that’s what family is for.”

“I hate it when this happens. Usually I study and go to sleep and the next morning I’m fine. I don’t know why this is effecting me so much.”

“Because you’re not okay when you wake up. You shove it to the back of your mind and let it build up rather than doing something to help you work through it.”

Clarke snorts in a joking manner, “huh, I didn’t know you took psychology too.”

Lexa stops moving them to squeeze her arms around Clarke’s middle, “I am but a humble gym owner with many talents. One of those talents includes having to listen to people’s problems. Honestly, those that work behind a bar have nothing on me.” Clarke grins as she turns to face Lexa, the blue in her eyes still haunted but less so and she fidgets on the spot. Lexa smirks at her, “you want to study don’t you?”

“So bad.”

“I can help you if you want. I mean, diseases and shit I’m useless at, but bones, muscles and joints I could probably be like an orthopaedic surgeon or something.”

“You know the point of ortho is to fix bones, not break them, right?”

Nuzzling her nose against Clarke, Lexa scrunches it, “not from what I’ve seen on 'Grey’s Anatomy'.”

Clarke rolls her eyes, pecking Lexa’s nose until it’s not scrunched up anymore. “Alright miss know-it-all, you can help. After I’ve showered though, not all of us can smell amazing drenched in sweat.”

“You always smell amazing.”

-

Lexa’s asleep on the couch by the time Clarke has deemed herself clean enough, the scent of Lexa’s body wash and shampoo filling her senses and the hot water that soothed her muscles relaxed her enough that she only feels a slight irritation.

She’s mad at herself more than anything. She’s used to how her mother is and Jake by association, it shouldn’t be getting to her at this point in her life yet she still let it and made a fool of herself in front of her girlfriend and her girlfriend’s parents.

She has got to stop thinking like this.

Clarke watches Lexa sleep until she feels like a creep and moves to lay on top of her, kissing her neck gently and runs her nails along Lexa’s ribs and Lexa sighs in content. “Clarke.”

Well, at least she still thinks of Clarke when she’s sleeping.

Lexa really is good for her, she can admit that now. Even if she is cocky and arrogant and egotistical and every other variation of the word.

Although she’s quick to berate herself because as it turns out that is exactly her type.

She wonders how she ever got with the likes of Niylah or any of her other exes since they are the polar opposites of Lexa.

Ah, yes, her mother set her up with all of them.

“You’re thinking too loud.”

“Sorry,” Clarke mumbles against Lexa’s skin, “didn’t you get any sleep last night?” Lexa looks at her guiltily. “Lex.”

“I was worried about you. And before you start to blame yourself that’s on me. I’m a worrier and I have no plans on stopping that when my girlfriend needs me.”

Clarke sits up to straddle Lexa, taking her top off as she goes and smirks when Lexa’s jaw drops slack. She knew not wearing a bra was a good idea. “Speaking of your girlfriend needing you.”

Lexa’s hands immediately tug at Clarke’s waist and she idly thinks she might as well have a permanent imprint of them. “What happened to studying?”

“I’d rather study you.”

“That was terrible.”

“Two weeks, Lexa. Two weeks.” Lexa growls and tries to flip them over but Clarke’s hand on her chest stops her and she pouts. “Not this time.”

The next growl from Lexa’s lips is cut short as Clarke pulls her up by her tee and connects their mouths in a desperate kiss, wasting no time teasing or asking for entrance as her tongue invades Lexa’s mouth, moaning at Lexa stroking back just as eager.

They break apart just enough for Clarke to rip Lexa’s top over her head before their lips are fused back together and Clarke bites down hard enough to bruise, causing Lexa to pull back in a gasp and stare into lust infused, begging eyes.

Both know this isn't going to last long, both know Clarke needs this control, and Lexa is nothing if not a willing participant.

Lexa’s stripped of her sports bra next and Clarke pushes at her shoulders until she’s laid fully on her back with Clarke nipping down her chest and she groans through a grimace when a nipple is sucked hard into Clarke’s mouth. “Just tell me if I go too hard, okay?”

“You’re good,” Lexa pants out in reassurance, so Clarke sucks harder, her teeth scraping along the stiff bud as her hand comes up to pinch the other and moans when Lexa arches into her, a hand in her hair tugging Clarke as close as possible.

She abandons the nipple with a pop, teeth and nails dragging down Lexa’s abdomen, creating raised red lines in her wake.

It’s not as if she doesn’t want Lexa naked, but this sudden primal need to take, to claim, it’s something she’s never felt before and it has her hand fumbling under the waistline of Lexa’s boxers as she soars back up to reclaim Lexa’s lips, moaning into her mouth at the wetness that coats her finger tips. She smirks as another gush seeps out of Lexa when Clarke moves to dig her nails into the top of Lexa’s thigh, knowing she’s leaving painful marks, “I think you’re a bit of a masochist, babe.”

“It’s not that, necessarily,” Lexa wheezes through another bite of her lip.

She’s going to need some heavy make up tomorrow.

“I- it’s... the sensations I think.”

Clarke angles her thumb to brush over Lexa’s clit, grinning at the jolt of Lexa’s hips that she pins down with her own and the grunting vibration that rumbles in Lexa’s throat. “You think?”

Lexa nods, tightening her grip in Clarke’s hair as two fingers move to play at her entrance. “It isn’t exactly something you’d try out with a one night stand.” Her head flings back when Clarke pushes in, in one quick thrust the same time she tilts to leave a generous hickey at the crook of Lexa’s neck.

So much make up.

“Jealous?”

“No,” Clarke lies as she pulls back, staring deep into Lexa’s eyes as she starts a slow rhythm with her fingers, as if subconsciously apologising for her rough treatments. “So, what, like wax and ice and stuff?”

“And stuff.” Lexa whines when Clarke slows her movements to an almost stop, raising her brow for Lexa to expand, “can’t we talk about this another time?”

Clarke smirks because no, no they can’t. There’s something incredibly hot about talking about this whilst she's moving in and out of Lexa. “I want to talk about it now.” Her fingers pick up their pace, the scenario in her mind. “I can imagine it,” she starts and Lexa’s eyes close to let Clarke share the images, thighs spreading as far as the couch allows, “you all tied up and blindfolded.”

“Clarke,” Lexa whispers, her hips attempting to move to match Clarke’s momentum.

“I’d use all these different objects on your skin. Hot, cold. Rough, smooth. Sharp, blunt. Textures.” She reaches down to bend Lexa’s knee, grinding on the thigh and relishing in Lexa’s strangled groan into her hair when she feels the slick through Clarke’s shorts. “I could make you guess what I’m using, reward you if you get it right, but if you get it wrong...” Her fingers twist and scissor, thumb pressing down on Lexa’s clit in tight, shaky circles.

The sheen of sweat has their bodies gliding together seamlessly and Lexa lets out moan after moan, whimper after whimper and her hand trails over Clarke’s spine until it reaches the curve of her ass, squeezing and pulling as their speed increases.

Clarke’s pants are rapid down Lexa’s ear. Feeling Lexa squirming, thighs twitching, walls pulsing, clit beating in sync with Lexa’s heart is becoming too much for her and there’s not enough friction between her legs.

She tears herself away to rid them of what little clothing they have left on, Lexa whining at the loss briefly before Clarke places herself back in position, grabbing Lexa’s wrist to cup her.

“Finally.” Lexa’s breathy word would’ve made Clarke chuckle if she wasn’t so desperately seeking her release, like Lexa was purposely holding off until she could touch Clarke.

She totally was.

“Is that something you’d want, Lex?”

“If it’s something you want.”

Clarke rolls her eyes. Really? “I’m asking you, Lexa. I’m asking if you’d trust me to do that for you.”

“I’d trust you with a fucking knife at my throat, beautiful.” Clarke’s hips rut sharply, not at the statement itself, but at the sure way Lexa says it.

Lexa trembles at the added pressure, wanting nothing more than to sink her fingers deep into Clarke and force her to tilt over the edge with her but her open hand is trapped between Clarke and her thigh, Clarke rubbing herself on Lexa’s palm. Her prayers are answered by the time Clarke has worked herself up enough to lull her head onto Lexa’s shoulder, lifting her hips so there’s a tiny gap where Lexa can curl three of her fingers for Clarke to rock back on to. “Fuck.”

Wet heat instantly surrounds the digits and Lexa plants her feet, one on the couch and the other on the floor, to accompany Clarke’s sway. Clarke in, Lexa out. Lexa in, Clarke out. Grunts, gasps and moans fill the room and their visions blur as their movements become faster and harder and unoccupied hands are grasping and clenching, bruises and scratches following until the wrists trapped between their legs ache and tingle and the couch is moving back and forth with every push and pull until Lexa can't take it anymore. “Look at me, baby.”

Clarke lifts her head and rests her forehead against Lexa's and Lexa smiles at shimmering blue eyes almost back to normal, pain and anger brought to the surface and evaporating whereas they were hidden deep earlier. She can feel Clarke getting sloppy in her thrusts, torn between concentrating on Lexa and the feeling in her lower stomach getting hotter, watches Clarke's eyes flutter shut and mouth drop, lazily kissing Lexa through her laboured breathing and it sounds like she's praying when she whispers, “come with me, Lex.”

“Waiting on you, beautiful.”

“Yeah, yeah, just need...” she trails off, hand settling below Lexa's throat as it meets the top of her chest, anchoring herself, but the sweat causes it to slide up slightly so the skin between her finger and thumb is cushioning Lexa's trachea and she inhales harsh at Lexa's choked intake, “fuck, sorry.”

Lexa's hand comes up to cover Clarke's, keeping her in place and adds a little more pressure, growling when Clarke's eyes snap open, near black and she surges up to kiss her again.

It's all Clarke needs to fall, joints locking, hand stilling, lips resting open against Lexa's without a sound and Lexa uses her own hips to push against Clarke a couple times before she allows herself to follow while still trying to focus on bringing Clarke down steadily but Clarke starts moving again, “keep going.”

Walls are already clamped so tightly around her that Lexa has difficulty moving her fingers. “Clarke,” she warns wearily.

“Please, Lex.”

Lexa gulps down her concern and pushes through resistance until Clarke bends down to bite her wrist at Lexa's neck, grunting into it with each rock and Lexa tugs at Clarke hair, angling her head until it's at her shoulder, “use me.”

She hisses through the pain of Clarke's teeth clamping down and she's pretty sure it sent her into a second orgasm but she's too distracted at the feel of Clarke's furrowed brow in the side of her neck. “Lexa.”

“I know it's not the same, but I am so, so proud of you, baby.” Clarke freezes once more, every last ounce of tension leaving her body as she lands heavily on top of Lexa until she stops twitching and regains some control over her ragged breaths.

They lay in silence as their surroundings come back to them sense by sense and Clarke manages to have the will power to lift her head and nuzzle her nose against Lexa's, “hi.”

Lexa removes her hand from between Clarke's legs, smirking at the soft moan, wipes it on the throw on the back of the couch and pushes blonde hair behind Clarke's ear, smiling softly at the loving eyes she's come accustomed to. “There she is.”

Clarke does the same and Lexa pouts at the emptiness, causing her to laugh before she cuts herself off as she looks at the marks littering Lexa's body. “God, I am so fucking sorry. Why did you let me do that?”

“I wasn't exactly complaining, Clarke.”

“Lexa-”

“Stop it. Besides,” she blushes, “I obviously enjoyed it.” Clarke frowns and Lexa brings her thumb up, stroking along the creases until they smooth out and grins, spinning them so Clarke's under her before she stands up, “now, I don't know about you but I'm starving. Lunch?”

Clarke's mouth opens and closes like a fish before she nods dumbly, watching Lexa walking away, eyes zoned in on Lexa's ass while she licks her lips. “Erm, so about what I said, when we were, erm.” Lexa chuckles, wondering how the hell Clarke can go from sexily describing what she wanted to do to Lexa to, well, this. “I'll do some research?”

It's a question and Lexa turns with a smirk, two of the tupperware containers her mother gave Clarke yesterday in her hands. “You do that. Lasagne or noodles?”

A scowl. “You're an idiot.”

-

True to her word, after lunch and a(nother in Clarke's case) shower, Clarke is spread out on the couch with a biology book in hand, half paying attention to the words and diagrams on the pages and half on 'How To Train Your Dragon'. Lexa is sat with her head against Clarke's stomach, legs dangling over the arm of the couch, practically purring as Clarke runs her fingers through her hair, pausing briefly to reach for a hand full of popcorn from the bowl in Lexa's lap.

Lexa has been randomly pointing at different areas of her body, asking Clarke to name either the muscle or bone and pops a square of chocolate in Clarke's mouth if she gets it right, her own if she gets it wrong.

It's so domestic.

Lexa loves it.

Clarke hums as a thought comes to her and she puts her book down, staring at the back of Lexa's head until she gains her attention. “What?”

“To say you've never been in a relationship before, you're not doing too bad at this girlfriend thing.”

“Excuse you? I'm doing great at this girlfriend thing. Face the facts, Clarke, it's only a matter of time before you fall head over heels in love with me.” She grins and turns around to straddle Clarke who scoffs at her, begging that her suddenly thumping heart can't be heard.

“Cocky.”

“Confident.”

“Arrogant.”

“Charming.”

“Egotistical.”

“Self-aware.”

With a shake of her head, Clarke steals a kiss, “mine?”

Lexa cups her jaw. “Yours.”

Chapter Text

“Oh, god! Fuck, Lexa, fuck!” Clarke’s head slams back against the wall, the hand in Lexa’s hair and the thigh slung over her shoulder tightening and the hand on the wall grasping on nothing.

“So how many orgasms have you had consecutively? Or in one session,” Lexa shrugs, “I could understand needing a food and water break.”

“Four.”

“Challenge accepted.”

She doesn’t know if answering Lexa was the best or worst thing to ever happen to her.

It’s well into the early morning and she’s definitely going to be sore for her class later and she absolutely knows how much of a mess she is, littered in possessive bite marks and gripped bruises but she’s currently hurdling towards number six and she doesn’t give a shit because she feels so mind-blowingly good and Lexa’s tongue has been relentless between her legs for nearly an hour.

Clarke definitely has to give her props for that after such a long night.

Her legs feel numb, her hands shaky, chest tight in need of air and voice hoarse from screaming into the cosy space of Lexa’s apartment as Lexa’s tongue flicks just right and her teeth scrape with that tiny amount of pressure that causes her eyes to roll to the back of her head and a grunt to escape her lips, her abs to flex and thighs to clench and she’s screaming Lexa’s name once more as her body vibrates.

Lexa stands after bringing Clarke down gently, not even getting the chance for a courtesy wipe before Clarke is nipping and licking at Lexa’s mouth and chin, moaning at her own taste, body still twitching slightly and the heat of her skin cooling to a weak shiver.

Before she realises what’s happening, Lexa is at her neck with a hand trailing up her stomach. Can she go for a seventh?

Her back arches when Lexa grazes her nipple. Yes. Yes she can.

Clarke’s eyes open slowly and the light feels blinding before her gaze lands on the opposite wall and she freezes in embarrassment before pushing Lexa away. “Wait.”

Lexa pulls back straight away with a concerned look, “what’s wrong?” Clarke shifts her eyes between the wall and Lexa until Lexa finally follows and bursts out laughing.

“It’s not funny. They’re watching me.”

“You put it there, Clarke.” Clarke glares at the painting and it feels like the eyes of the children are mocking her. “Have I told you how amazing I think that is?”

She tries to force her gaze to focus on Lexa and Lexa alone but can’t help looking at it over Lexa’s shoulder. “You have. And you’re welcome. You’re very easy to draw.”

Lexa blushes, “well thank you.” She looks at the time with wide eyes. “How about I go down to the cafe and grab us breakfast while you get ready for your class?”

“Blueberry pancakes?”

With a smile and a peck to Clarke’s lips, Lexa confirms, “blueberry pancakes.”

Lexa’s grin doesn’t leave her face as she makes her way down the street to the cafe, thankful that it’s open 24-7. The past few days with Clarke have been more than she could’ve ever hoped for and she’s glad she could get her girlfriend to open up about her personal demons, glad she could make her comfortable enough to leave her dorm behind and spend her free time at Lexa’s apartment, whether Lexa was there or not.

The cafe is quiet, obviously, as she makes her way through the door, a few construction workers here and there grabbing breakfast before their shifts and a bright smile greets her at the counter. “Morning, Lexa. You’re here early. Or late, depending on your point of view.”

“Good morning, Echo,” she replies, not bothering with mentioning the time. “May I get a stack of blueberry pancakes, extra whipped cream and a strawberry waffle please?”

“Coming right up.”

Lexa plays on her phone while she waits but a gruff voice makes her look up with a frown. “Bellamy. What are you doing here?”

He returns her look. “Octavia asked me to meet her here to help set up the lake house for Friday. You?”

She hates small talk. “Breakfast.” Duh. “It’s five am, what is wrong with your sister?”

Speak of the devil. “Lexa!” She’s knocked back by the force of Octavia’s hug. “Finally got out of your sex cave to greet the world?”

“I have still been working you know. Why are you so hyper?”

“I couldn’t sleep and Lincoln wouldn’t even wake up for sex.” Lexa smirks at Bellamy’s grimace. “And I knew Bell would be awake so I decided to start setting up for Friday.” Echo returns before Lexa has the chance to call Octavia insane. “Hey, Echo. You’re still coming right?”

“You finally turning twenty-one and realising that drinking legally is boring as hell? Of course.” She hands the bag of food to Lexa with a wink, “there’s something special in there for you.”

Lexa grins wide and opens the bag, taking a long, content sniff. “You know my mom still bugs me about your secret ingredient.”

Echo laughs, “she can pry my brownie recipe from my cold, dead hands.” She shifts her gaze too look Bellamy up and down with a smirk. “Who’s your friend?”

“He’s not my-”

“Well hello, gorgeous. Bellamy Blake,” he holds his hand out with what he seems to perceive as a charming (creepy) smile, “Octavia’s brother. And you are?”

The smirk turns to an unimpressed look at that. “Suddenly regretting asking. Do you often speak over other people when the question is not directed at you or is Lexa just special?” Lexa snorts. “I’ll see you Friday, Lex. I can’t wait to meet the girl that has you smiling like a fool.” Eye roll. “Octavia? Usual?” Octavia nods and Echo lands her gaze back on Bellamy. “You get what you’re given.”

With that she turns her back and makes her way to the kitchen. Lexa bids them good day and Octavia raises her brow at her brother. “Smooth.”

“Shut up.”

-

Clarke is sifting through some paper on the coffee table when Lexa walks in. “Are those my accounts?”

“Yeah,” she answers distractedly. “Sorry, they were just sat here.”

“It’s fine. As long you don’t illegally look at Murphy’s salary we’re all good,” she jokes. Kind of. Clarke doesn’t respond and Lexa smiles fondly as she sets up their plates, joining Clarke on the couch after she’s given her the pancakes. “What’s got you so interested?”

A questioning hum fills the air, Clarke not looking at anything except the papers in front of her as she tears bits of pancakes to shove in her mouth so Lexa nudges her to get her to pay attention. “Huh? Oh, well I was just looking at the income reports and since the mini revamp your profit margin has sky-rocketed. You could easily afford to have another part-timer, or even somebody full-time if you wanted to take the risk. More hands, more work done and all that.”

Lexa nods her agreement. “I was planning to ask Lincoln to come and officially work for me in a few months. He hates his job, but I’ve never had the means to be able to offer him something. I just want to wait and make sure that business stays constant. The last thing I want is to get him to leave his job and in a couple weeks time have to tell him ‘actually, I can’t afford you anymore’. I know he does it for free anyway when he can, but I want him to get something out of it since he’s always been there to help me out and he’s going to need the extra money if he agrees to move in with Octavia.”

Oops.

Her eyes widen as she glances at Clarke’s shocked face. “I didn’t tell you that.”

Clarke smirks, “tell me what?”

Lexa leans over to kiss her gratefully, “that’s my girl.”

“I think you’ll be okay to hire Lincoln. The gym looks good, you’re amazing at running it and you have a great team behind you. I don’t see it calming down any time soon.”

“Maybe. I’ll talk to him on Monday depending on how this weekend goes. I’m looking forward to getting out of here for the night.”

Clarke scoffs, “are you saying you’re sick of being cooped up in here with me?”

A grin graces Lexa’s mouth. “Never.” She takes Clarke’s plate away and moves to straddle her. “But it would be nice to take you on another date.”

“I might stop volunteering at the hospital.” Lexa quirks her brow. “The application has already gone through and I could really do with focusing a lot more on studying for finals. It’d also mean I don’t have to call you in the middle of the night to pick me up.”

“I’m happy to do that,” Lexa says. “I’d rather know that you’re safe than have you walk here or even get a cab. I don’t trust them.” And Clarke knows. Lexa made that point very, very clear when Clarke brought it up. “But if that’s what you believe is best for you, then I fully support having you here all the time... when you aren’t in class that is.”

Clarke smirks, “all the time?”

Lexa confirms only slightly joking, “all the time.”

“You are such a lesbian,” she laughs and Lexa shrugs. “Speaking of class, the library opens soon and I need to get some new books. Raven is bringing me back later so I’ll get some groceries on the way. Your cupboards are a little empty.” She nudges Lexa to stand and follows on shaky legs, causing Lexa to smirk through a bit lip. “Don’t look so smug.” Lexa doesn’t listen and bends down to pick Clarke up until her legs are wrapped around Lexa’s waist. “God, I love how strong you are.”

And that’s something else Clarke has taken to doing the past few days. ‘I love how’, ‘I love it when’. Lexa has to hold her tongue every time. “And I love it when you play housewife. You don’t have to go to the store though, I can get my own food.”

She begins to move around her apartment, grabbing all the things she needs as Clarke clings onto her. “No. I’ll feel guilty if I don’t repay you for letting me use your place somehow.” Lexa scoffs and opens her mouth to talk but Clarke cuts her off. “Not what I meant.”

“Oh, I forgot.” Lexa carries Clarke to the kitchen counter and reaches inside the bag and feeds Clarke a corner of a brownie. “Best brownies ever, right?”

Clarke groans, “what is this magic happening in my mouth?”

“One of the girls at the cafe is a fantastic baker. She wants to open her own little shop one day.”

“Is she hot? If she’s hot, single and bakes like this I might consider leaving you for her.”

Lexa rolls her eyes. “Hot, yes. Single, yes. Also straight, sorry. You’ll meet her at Octavia’s birthday party so you can droll over her baking skills then. She was interested in Bellamy for point two seconds so that should be a show. Unfortunately for him she prefers the shy type.”

With a confused frown, Lexa quickly explains the event until she mentions Bellamy’s smile and Clarke stops her with a laugh. “Wait, wait. Was it this one?” She mimics the most portentous, cocky smile she can and Lexa chuckles, telling her she got it spot on. “Yeah, that’s the arrogant smile he sports when he thinks he’s going to score. Huh, I guess you two do have something in common after all.”

Lexa drops Clarke heavily on the counter and tickles her until Clarke is begging Lexa to let her breathe.

-

“And I have three chargers with me so there’s no way my phone will die. Even if it does Anya and Lincoln will be there and I know mom has Raven, Clarke and Octavia’s numbers and-”

“Lexa go away. You’re cramping my style.”

“I’ve left Murphy and Emori’s number in the drawer also so-”

“Lexa,” Ryder scolds, “your baby will be fine in your mother and I’s hands. Go away and have fun for a night.” Lexa anxiously looks around the gym and Ryder crosses his arms over his chest, firm father scowl in place. “If you don’t leave now I’m telling Clarke on you.”

Her hands shoot up in defence, fear evident in her eyes and Ryder holds back a laugh. “Alright, alright. I’m going. Jeez.”

Clarke chooses that moment to bounce over to them and kisses Lexa’s cheek. “You ready?”

“Please get her out of here,” Ryder begs.

Lexa huffs but willingly starts moving out of the gym when Clarke gently pushes her before looking over her shoulder, “see you tomorrow, Mr. Woods. Tell Mrs. Woods I’ll text her when we get there and record anything embarrassing that happens like she asked.”

“She asked what?”

Ryder laughs with a small wave in their direction, glancing around the gym with a proud smile on his face which beams more after a text from Anya tells him she’s organised an interview with a small car magazine that’s interested in doing a feature on the custom cars Raven has been working on for the past few months.

It’s all beginning to look up for the Woods’.

-

Lexa scoffs as she drives, glancing warily at Clarke studying the banana, needle and string grasped firmly in hand and tongue poking out in concentration. “Baby... what the fuck are you doing?”

“Practicing sutures.”

“I can see that. But we’re in a car. And that’s your third banana.”

“We are? I couldn’t tell,” Clarke says sarcastically. “And what if I decide to go into trauma and I’m required to do stitches in a moving vehicle? Should I tell them they have to wait and hope they don’t bleed out because I never practiced?”

Lexa rolls her eyes, reaching over to place her hand on Clarke’s and take the banana away regardless of the protest she receives. “Stop. Tonight is supposed to be about relaxing. At the lake. Getting drunk. Making Octavia do loads of stupid shit. Cuddling in the moonlight by a fire. Letting the stress roll off of us into the ripples of the water.”

Clarke sighs, “that does sound good. I was just distracting myself though, honestly. Long car rides bore me. And practicing is a therapeutic kind of stress. So may I have my banana back?”

“Fine. Just don’t stab yourself.”

A gasp in offense causes Lexa to chuckle. “My hand are very steady, thank you.”

“Oh. I know.”

Clarke blushes. “So what are the sleeping arrangements?”

“Well it’s only two bedroom and the couch turns into a sofa bed. I’d usually let the couples take the three beds but, you know,” Lexa winks and Clarke chuckles. “I’ll let Octavia and Lincoln have the master bedroom with it being her day, we’ll take the spare room and Anya and Murphy can fight over the couch. Echo usually takes one of the recliners where I used to take the other which Monty or Luna can have. Everyone else can sleep on the floor for all I care. There’s also a comfortable piece of grass outside for Jasper.”

“He might be a bit of a dick, but he does have some good qualities.”

“Yes. Monty is his only good quality. Anyway, the back of the house looks over the lake and it’s going to be a warm night so Octavia wants a barbecue. I think Echo is bringing the food and Raven is bringing the alcohol.” She grimaces at the last part, stumbling home one too many times after Raven’s ‘whatever infused vodka’ mixed with her own designed shots. “Rae also said you like hiking, so if we’re... sorry, Miss ‘I don’t get hangovers’, I’m not too hungover, we can go up the trail tomorrow morning. It’s got a spectacular view at the top of the hill that I thought you might like to draw.”

Silence fills the car after Clarke’s smile and nod at that. They’d already been driving for an hour so they only had another half to go. They were currently going down a long, country road with soft music playing in the background and Clarke sews her banana until she feels her hand start to cramp. “I’ve arranged to meet my mom on Tuesday to tell her I’ll no longer be working at the hospital until my internship starts. She probably won’t be happy about the space between graduating and my course starting, but I’m sure I can convince her that I’ll use that time to study old cases to appease her.”

The road comes to an end and Lexa turns onto a bumpy dirt road and soon they are surrounded by trees. “If that’s what you feel is best for your future, I don’t see how she can disagree. I can help you study too, as long as there’s nothing gross in there.”

“I will refrain from showing you pictures of an intestine full of tapeworm and myiasis then.”

Lexa frowns, “what’s that?”

“Maggots inside your body eating away at your flesh.” Lexa turns a little green and Clarke smirks. “I will however show you stomach x rays of the stuff people swallow. Some of it is insane. Nails, toys, spoons, rings, keys...” she lists.

“No way! People actually do that? I thought that only happened on TV.”

Clarke laughs loud as she recalls one of her days at the hospital, “nope. I remember once a husband came in with a set of car keys. He and his wife were going through a divorce and she claimed the car so he swallowed the keys so she couldn’t take it.” Lexa giggles along with her. “The best part is, just before he went into surgery to remove them, the wife strolls in and we all thought she might be a little concerned or something. I mean they were married right? But she reaches into her bag, pulls out another key and says ‘you forgot the spare set, moron. You can’t even do petty well’, she then throws the set to what we now know is the new boyfriend and goes ‘at least now both of us will get turned on’ and storms away leaving the boyfriend babbling and the husband seething.”

Lexa snorts, “the human race is crazy.”

When they finally pull up to the house, Clarke’s jaw slacks. The quaint wood cottage styled house is exactly how she pictured it.

With the exception of the many, many different ‘21st birthday’ banners and party popper string decorating it. “Octavia and Lincoln better make sure this place is fucking spotless when they leave.”

Lincoln and Octavia are already inside, but Clarke and Lexa are the first of the party to arrive and Lexa is blinded by all the bright decorations covering the eloquent walls. “Hey guys. Lincoln is in the kitchen setting up for the barbecue. The others are all on their way.”

“Happy birthday, O.” Clarke produces a present that Octavia puts to one side for later, Lexa’s wrapped gift following. “So, you’ve finally reached the age where you don’t need a fake ID if you go anywhere other than Grounders. How does it feel?”

Octavia slumps with a pout. “I went to that place in the city to get a keg earlier and they didn’t even ID me.”

The others eventually tipple in until everyone is crowding around the area set up in the back, introductions being made. “Clarke, it’s nice to finally meet the girl that puts that smile on Lexa’s face.”

“Shut up, Echo.”

“It’s great to meet you too. You’re by far the best thing to ever happen to my mouth.”

“That was the weirdest sentence I’ve ever heard. I mean, you aren’t wrong, but still weird,” Luna says, walking up to them. “It’s good to see you’re still putting up with this one, Clarke.” Her head tilts in Lexa’s direction as she hugs Clarke. “Where’s your sister, Lex?”

Lexa rolls her eyes, “refusing to move off of the couch until everyone accepts that it’s hers and Raven’s for the night.”

“She can have it for all we care, we’re going to sleep outside,” Emori states, joining them and handing out drinks. “John and I love the outdoors and it’s going to be a nice night. Plus, as a newly engaged couple, we don’t think it’d be cool to make love with other people in the room.” They all gag.

Clarke makes the mistake of taking off her high necked jacket. “Jesus fuck, Woods, what did you do to my poor girl’s neck?”

A wild Raven appears. She grabs Clarke’s chin and inspects the littering bruises, ignoring Clarke’s attempts to swat her away. Lexa huffs, “you should see my back.”

“I don’t care about you. Have you seen how perfect her skin is? Why do you want to ruin that with your teenage-like antics?”

Clarke chuckles, pushing Raven away. “Get off of me.”

Raven twirls around, hands curling around her mouth to shout, “who called Woods being possessive?”

Octavia jumps up and down by the barbecue. “Oh, oh, me! Yes bitches.”

Lexa glares at them all. “Raven, why haven’t you said hello to Luna yet?” Raven snarls and mumbles a short greeting to Luna who grins a toothy grin back at her as Raven walks off to probably wrap herself around Anya. “My work here is done.”

“At least she’s consistent,” Luna shrugs. They turn to a loud ruckus on the water edge, rolling their eyes as Bellamy fights off two of Octavia’s invited friends, Atom and Nathan. Luna snorts, “do they think this is fight club or something? You should get in there, Lex, show them how it’s done.”

“Do you remember that time Lexa was like, fifteen, and she was still scrawny as hell but she still ended up breaking that grown man’s arm when he tried stealing that old woman’s bag?” Echo.

Clarke’s brow quirks.

“Or last year when that homeless man was getting bullied because of his clothes by that group of downtown women and she took on all five of them?” Emori.

Clarke’s other brow joins it.

“Or when she-”

“Alright, that’s enough,” Lexa stops Luna. “I’m going to see if Lincoln and Murphy need any help.” Emori follows her, cuddling up to Murphy as he chugs a beer.

Clarke watches Lexa leave with a soft smile until she feels Echo and Luna’s gaze burning a hole in the side of her head. “What?”

Echo smirks. “You’re falling for her.”

“What? No. I-I’m... what? No.”

The two share a look, brows wiggling.

Oh no.

“No chance, no way, I won’t say it no, no,” Luna sings.

“You swoon, you sigh. Why deny it? Oh, oh,” Echo follows through a giggle.

Clarke can’t help but laugh along with them. “Are you two seriously singing Disney at me?”

They can’t sing much more after Clarke puts her hands on their mouths. “So,” Luna glances at the crowd, “what can we expect from your friends?”

Clarke taps her chin before picking them off one-by-one. “Monty is an awesome drunk. He’s really giddy and just an all round nice guy. Miller, Nathan tends to speak his mind and it can come across as rude but it’s general interest and observation, he doesn’t say it maliciously. I don’t know his boyfriend enough to judge. Atom is a bit of a frat boy but he’s one of those ‘dudebros’, he’s actually really sweet but also a little shy when he’s on his own, you know? He’s the kind of guy that will offer to walk a girl through a dodgy area just to make sure she’s safe, even though he respects they might not need it.” Echo grins at that, looking him over. “Jasper can be a real dick, but he’s promised to be on his best behaviour tonight, though I doubt it’ll last after a few cups of Monty’s moonshine, and Bellamy gets over confident. Like really over confident.”

“I can’t believe I almost found him attractive,” Echo jokes.

“He’s not a bad guy. He’s very protective of those closest to him, especially his sister.” Bellamy must feel eyes on him because he looks up from a head-locked Atom with a small frown before he smiles at Clarke and continues his game. “Obviously you already know O and Raven.” Lexa glances over at them warily and waves Clarke over, dreading what her friends might be saying about her. “I’m just going to...” She trails off as she walks away.

Echo and Luna smile at each other. “How long until she realises?”

“She already knows, Echo. She already knows. Admitting it however, different story.”

-

Octavia eventually gets impatient enough to force everyone to sit down while she opens presents. The evil smirk she sports when she receives Raven’s is enough to make Lexa, Anya and Bellamy squirm uncomfortably because they don’t have to know what it is to know it’s something for both her and Lincoln.

The drinks have been flowing freely and Monty’s moonshine has been known many times to make Octavia cry for no reason. So it comes as a surprise to no-one that she bursts out crying when she opens the portrait of herself as a warrior and that wasn’t Clarke’s original expectation when she drew it. “Oh, Clarke. This is beautiful. I look so fierce and regal and wow. Thank you so much.”

“You’re welcome. I actually got the idea after I heard Lexa’s nickna-” She clears her throat to cut herself off and bites her lip at the flush in Lexa’s ears. The knowing smirks from those in on the private joke mocking her. “Anyway, I thought it’d be cool.”

“It’s almost as beautiful as you,” Lexa whispers in her ear.

Clarke blushes.

She finishes off with Lexa’s present, gasping in awe as she looks at the MMA styled gloves, “does this mean?”

Lexa nods, “Lincoln is too soft on you. It’s time to train properly.”

“I don’t think so,” Bellamy’s voice interrupts. “You aren’t learning to fight, O.”

“Excuse me?” It’s Lincoln that steps in now. “Are you saying you don’t want your sister to be able to defend herself in the streets? ‘Cause I’m sure as hell happy my girlfriend wants to.”

“It’s my job to protect her. It always has been.” Lexa leans back and smirks, wishing she had popcorn. “I could take anyone here.”

Over confident Bellamy. Check.

“No way man. I’d put you after Lexa, Lincoln, Anya... Echo looks kind of scrappy too,” Monty giggles. Giddy Monty. Check.

Luna nods, “she’s a hair puller.”

“I’ll challenge any one of you. Right now.”

Lexa sighs and begins to stand but Clarke pushes her down by her chest, “don’t you dare.”

“You scared, Woods?”

Bellamy’s smirk is ridiculous and Lexa laughs, “of Echo’s hair pulling? Hell yeah. Girl fights dirty as fuck.”

“Lexa would destroy you, dude. Stand down.” The group that know Lexa agrees with Anya.

Dick Jasper. Check. “Nah, men are stronger than women. It’s scientifical.”

“That’s not a word, dumbass.” Say it how it is Nathan. Check.

Bellamy’s jaw locks as Lexa leans back on one elbow, slowly sipping her whiskey with a challenging brow and although Octavia looks thrilled at the progression of this, Raven decides to cut it short. “As hilarious as this throw down would be, I brought a killer sound system with me that’s feeling pretty neglected.”

Octavia downs a shot of something Raven created and stands up with a sway, “yeah! Let’s get this party started.”

Murphy pulls away from Emori with a glint in his eye in Lexa and Clarke’s direction. “Tonight should be fun.”

Chapter Text

“Wait. Wait. Before you do that, Raven, I have an idea.” The haze in Bellamy’s eye makes everyone groan.

Why can’t he just let this go?

“Since everyone obviously thinks women are better than men-“

“Literally nobody said that even if it is true,” Murphy drawls.

Bellamy ignores him, “there’s eight each of us right? What about we make a game out of this? Boys versus girls.” He stands, putting on a deep, voice-over tone and circles the group with his hands out. “We will compete in a series of seven events, putting up our strongest contender to the challenge. Both sides will pick a representative for fair judgement. The boys, I mean, the winners, get bragging rights.”

Octavia stops her music-less dancing and grins at her brother, “you know what, Bell? That actually sounds really fun. As the birthday girl, I get to pick them.” Heavy sighs fill the spacious air, knowing full well they have to give Octavia what she wants and Lexa pouts against Clarke’s shoulder, sniggering at the pitying tap of her shoulder in response. “So, first competition; push-ups. Second; darts. Third; arm wrestle. Fourth; dance off. Fifth; trivia. Sixth; beer pong. And seventh,” she smirks, looking directly at Lexa and deepening her voice, “a fight to the death.”

“O,” Clarke warns.

She holds her hands up in surrender, “alright. First to three points?”

“Octavia.”

“Come on, Clarke! Stop being boring.”

“Yeah, Clarke,” Lexa whispers, “let her have her fun.” Clarke eyes Lexa warily. “I’m not going to be fighting Bellamy.”

Lexa smirks at the hidden look of disappointment despite Clarke’s reluctance to this. “You’re not?”

“It’s not a fight if I knock him on his ass in seconds. I might even play with him a bit before I do.” Clarke glares at her. “We all knew this was going to happen as soon as he opened his mouth. And we all know it’s me he wants to go against so sit back and enjoy drooling over my abs.”

Octavia is fidgeting on the spot as she waits on them, the rest of the group looking at Clarke expectantly, but it isn’t until Bellamy pipes up that Clarke gives in. “I promise I won’t hurt your girlfriend too much, Griff.”

Clarke snorts, “it’s not her I’m worried about.” She sighs, “fine, but first to tap out loses.”

Everyone pouts at her until she holds up her hand to stop them. “You know how much I love you, Clarke,” Raven says, “but I hate that you’re the mom friend.”

They break into their teams and set about who is doing what when Lexa’s hands move up to rub Clarke’s shoulders, “what’s got you so serious, baby? Tonight’s supposed to be fun.”

“I know what Bell’s like when he gets like this. He’s going to feel embarrassed and then he’s going to get angry and he’ll start to take the fight personally and it’ll escalate quickly. I don’t want him to ruin Octavia’s night.”

Lexa’s arms come to wrap around Clarke’s waist and join on her stomach, Clarke’s hands covering her own as she leans back into Lexa. “I won’t let that happen,” she promises. “Besides, Octavia is obviously enjoying herself and if he does start to act up like a six year old we’ll throw him in the lake to cool off.” Clarke chuckles and relaxes. “He isn’t your responsibility. This night isn’t your responsibility. Let your wild side run free, beautiful.”

Clarke spins in Lexa’s arms with a smirk, voice dropping to that husk she knows gets Lexa squirming, “you want to see my wild side, Lex?”

She bites her lip when, as planned, Lexa attempts to subtly shift her weight and gulps. “More than anything.”

“Raven,” she shouts, keeping her dark gaze on Lexa’s, “put me down for beer pong.”

“Yes! Party-girl Griff makes her reappearance.”

“Party-girl Griff?” Lexa brow quirks with an amused smile.

Clarke rolls her eyes at the nickname, “I had a late rebellious stage my first year of college.”

“I want to know everything.”

Before Clarke can respond, an argument distracts them. “I could totally beat him.”

“Seriously, Rae, Lincoln will destroy you.”

Anya wraps her arm around Raven’s waist and pulls her tight against herself, “just let Luna take this one, babe. We’d be better off having you on the trivia anyway, we can all admit you’re the smartest one here and you’re full of completely useless facts.”

“Yeah but-”

It isn’t often that Anya gets frustrated with Raven. She usually just lets it roll over her head until Raven gets bored of herself. But she wants to win this. She wants to win and even Raven isn’t going to stand in the way of that. She huffs, tearing herself away from Raven and stalks over to Luna, shoving her shirt sleeve up. “Flex,” she orders, ignoring the blush that graces Luna’s features and her arms are put on show. Octavia and Emori gape at the mountain of muscle on display, Clarke, Lexa, Echo and Anya having already seen her bare arms, and Raven grumbles from her position. “Luna is doing it.”

“How the fuck are you so ripped?”

Luna shrugs, “I spend the majority of my time swimming with sea life.”

“Fine,” Raven sneers, “whatever.” She reaches out to pull Anya back against her, glaring at Luna who just winks in response with a toothy grin.

Once each person is assigned a competition, Octavia makes one final rule. “After each event, the losing team has to have a shot of,” she holds the bottle of bright green liquid up and looks at Raven, “what is this again?”

“Honestly? I haven’t got a fucking clue, I just kept adding random things.”

“I love that. The losing team has to have a shot of this. Let the games begin!”

Emori and Murphy make their way to the makeshift judges table to discuss the rules of each round. Lexa leans back against a log since she’s going last. Clarke sits on her side next to her, knees bent over Lexa’s, arm thrown around her shoulders, stroking up and down Lexa’s arm as Lexa leans her head in the crook of Clarke’s neck, holding Clarke’s other hand with both of hers in their joint laps, running her thumb back and forth over Clarke’s wrist.

Clarke pulls her hand back for just a second to retrieve her phone. She unlocks it and stands it up to face the circle they made from sticks and presses record before her hand finds Lexa’s again. “What are you doing?”

“Recording this for your mom.”

Lexa huffs in playful exasperation but snuggles further into Clarke’s neck as they watch Anya strip off her shirt and laugh at the way any irritated frustration Raven was showing suddenly morphs into a different frustration as her tongue runs over her lips at the sight.

Anya wipes the floor with Miller at the first to thirty push-ups, opting to do it one handed half way through. The first round of shots cause the guys to grimace and the girls laugh until Octavia fails miserably at darts against Bryan. Lexa’s shot almost comes straight back up whilst Clarke takes it like it’s water, even ‘mm-mm’ing after it.

When it comes to round three, there’s a tense silence. Lincoln and Luna flexing their upper muscles to show off until Raven breaks the atmosphere with a look at Anya. “Okay, I kinda get it now.”

“Told you.”

Luna coughs awkwardly as the rest of the girls wolf-whistle at her and Lincoln gasps in offense. “Where are my wolf-whistles?”

Tumble weed could’ve rolled past if Lincoln had to wait for a response, even his own girlfriend stays quiet. Murphy saves the day though as he whistles at Lincoln, “you’re sexy as fuck, Linc.”

Lincoln nods once, firmly, “thanks, man. At least someone appreciates me.”

At some point during the stalemate of the century, one of Clarke’s hands shift to play with the short hairs at Lexa’s neck as the other moves under Lexa’s top to draw circles on her abdomen and Lexa’s hands massage the top of Clarke’s thighs. Raven wrinkles her nose at them. “You two are disgusting.” She glances at Anya, “are we that disgusting?”

Anya shakes her head, chuckling, “I don’t think we are.”

Raven’s eyes widen, “what? We have to rectify that right now!” She quickly climbs on Anya’s lap and snuggles in, sighing dramatically against Anya’s bouncing chest. “Ah, much better. If you could stop laughing so my head isn’t rocking that’d be great, babe.” She rolls her eyes as Lincoln and Luna remain unmoved, “can we hurry this along please? O, do something.”

A smirk plays at Octavia’s lips and she waits until she holds eye contact with Lincoln before reaching into a glass and pulling out an ice cube, running it slowly along her bottom lip and watches him falter as a drop makes its way down her chin, throat and chest just enough for Luna to gain the advantage and slams his wrist on the table.

“That’s cheating!” Jasper and Bellamy yell.

Lexa feels the need to do some form of countdown tune as Murphy and Emori hold a silent conversation until Murphy nods. “Tactical advantage. Luna wins.”

“Are you fucking kidding me?” Murphy shrugs at Bellamy the same time Jasper shouts. “This is bullshit. You probably want the girls to win.”

Murphy shakes his head, “you’re taking this way too seriously. Chill out.”

Lincoln looks unapologetic as he sits down next to Octavia now that both of them have had their turn.

“As the girls won the last round, Echo, heads or tails?” Echo choose tails and Emori grins at her, “song choice is yours.”

“Single ladies.” Echo turns to grin cockily at Atom but her stomach drops as she met with an equally cocky smile. “This isn’t good.”

He grabs his t-shirt to reshape it into an early 2000’s bra style and twists his cap so it’s out at the side, “oh, sweetheart,” he says and rather than the usual offence Echo would feel at the condescending pet name, she only feels amusement, “you have no idea what you just got yourself into.”

The group watch in a mix of shock and horror as Echo struggles to keep up with Atom’s flawless performance until they end up laughing with tears streaming down their faces because the further into the song they get, the more flamboyant Atom’s moves become and Echo gracefully steps back two-thirds of the way through, conceding her point and joining in on the laughter as Atom finishes the song off with a snap of his fingers and arched back at the end.

They all cheer and holler loudly and Atom bows at the praise. “My basketball team had to learn that routine for a charity event we did. You literally could’ve picked any other song and you probably would’ve beat me.”

Echo shrugs. “Worth it.”

Raven and Monty set up next as Murphy and Emori put together a list of trivia questions. Lexa feels Clarke randomly sigh and pulls back with the pretence of taking a drink but instead studies Clarke.

She studies the way the fire from the pit reflects in Clarke’s eyes, the way the last of the day’s sun angles a shadow of a tree’s leaves over the side of Clarke’s face, the way the light from the water ripples down her arm.

It vaguely registers that Raven and Monty have begun their game, but she pays it no mind. She watches as Clarke breathes through slightly parted lips, watches her smile when Raven answers a question right and jut out her bottom lip when Monty does.

And something happens.

She doesn’t know what it is. But she knows it’s something. Something important. Something that doesn’t feel new, but at the same time it does.

Something that causes Clarke to look at her, as if in slow motion. Something that makes her brain crazy and heart beat faster every time she looks or thinks about Clarke expand to her stomach, fluttering wildly when Clarke’s gaze latches onto her. Something different in Clarke’s eyes when her favourite shade of blue shimmers. Something in the way that Clarke breathes out Lexa’s name softer than she ever has before.

Something.

Something.

Clarke’s lips meet hers in the middle before she has a chance to think of what just happened between them. The kiss is slow, deliberate, more gentle than anything Lexa has experienced before and it’s addictive.

There’s no push and pull between them. There’s no fight for control. They’re simply enjoying the feel of each other as Lexa’s hand comes to rest on Clarke’s cheek and Clarke’s arm wraps around Lexa’s ribs until deep cheers disturb their bubble and they pull back only far enough for their lips to separate. “What was that?” Lexa asks as if Clarke knows the answer. She asks as if Clarke has felt something like this before, because Lexa certainly has no idea what the hell just happened in that sudden shift between Clarke’s sigh and now.

But Lexa is wrong in her question. Clarke sniffs out a short, one breath laugh, “I don’t know.”

The thing is, they know. They both know, their brains are just taking a while to communicate with the rest of them.

It was so random, so out of nowhere, so sudden.

So perfect for them.

Lexa has already practically declared her love for Clarke, and now... now Clarke is starting to catch up.

“You’re so beautiful.”

“So are you.”

Raven clears her throat, forcing them apart and shoves a shot at both of them. “You’d better win the next battle, Griff, or we won’t have a chance to win the war.”

Clarke downs her shot in one fluid motion, but Lexa drinks hers slower, casting a glance in the boys direction and catches Bellamy’s dark glare and locked jaw and her eyes widen in surprise.

Now it all makes sense.

“So that’s what his problem is.”

“What whose problem is?” Clarke’s head tilts adorably in Lexa’s direction and Lexa hadn’t realised she’d spoken out loud.

She could play this off, pretend it’s nothing, let it fester and eat away at her until- “how long has Bellamy had a thing for you?” Or not.

Clarke howls. Laughs straight in Lexa’s face and Lexa has every right to feel offended. “Babe are you insane?”

Lexa lurches forward, gripping Clarke’s chin harsh as she kisses her deeply until Clarke moans and she pulls away just as quickly, angling Clarke’s head to see Bellamy divert his gaze. “See?”

“He’s just protective of us.”

“Yeah? Then why isn’t he glaring at Anya and Lincoln? Why isn’t he challenging them? I think it’s a little more than being protective where you’re concerned.”

Clarke bites her lip through a smirk, gaze darkening as she looks between Lexa’s eyes and lips, “so what if he does have a thing for me? You’re not jealous are you?”

A snort makes its way through Lexa’s nose, “of him? Not a fucking chance. I know exactly whose bed you’ll be in tonight.”

“Do you now?” Clarke’s lips trail up Lexa’s neck, skimming the skin until Lexa’s head lolls back. “And whose bed might that be?”

Lexa grips Clarke’s thighs, pulling her over to straddle her and catches Clarke’s bottom lip between her teeth. “Mine,” she growls through the gap and they both know she’s not talking about the bed, but Clarke lets the possessive word pass over them as she pulls away from Lexa, standing up when Octavia calls her over to the beer pong set-up.

She bends down to whisper in Lexa’s ear before she leaves her. “Yours.”

Echo and Luna corner her either side as soon as Clarke is lining up for her first shot. “Damn, Lex. That was kind of hot.”

“Even I have to agree,” Echo says before nodding at the phone, “you might want to edit the sound out before your mom sees that though.”

“Both of you suck.”

Jasper and Clarke end up looking like it’s going to be a tie. “Do I have to remind you who the beer pong champion was for three years running, Clarke?”

“Do I have to remind you who knocked you off of that pedestal?”

To anyone not focusing solely on Clarke, she looks completely sober, composed and in control whereas Jasper is swaying and squinting to line up his shot. To anyone not focused solely on Clarke, she has this is the bag.

Lexa is focused solely on Clarke though, and she can see the subtle white-knuckled grip on the table, the way she breathes primarily through her nose to try and control the gassy beer swirling around her stomach that isn’t sitting well with Raven’s concoction and her previous drinks, how her eyes flick over to Lexa after each of Jasper’s successful shots, begging for this to be over already so her head can be fuzzy while she’s sat down instead of pushing all of her weight to her feet to stand up straight.

She watches as Clarke takes a deep breath, sinking her shot into Jasper’s last cup and looking at her own in worry. If Jasper gets it, it’s sudden death. If he misses, she wins and there’s nothing they can do to make him miss. There’s no ‘tactical advantage’ they can use because Jasper made sure he faced the guys.

The anticipation is stifling as Jasper lines his shot, everyone on the edge of their seats. If Jasper gets this, it’s over for the girls.

The ball sears through the air, breaths are held and it takes them a moment to realise that the ball bounces off the rim of the cup, bounces onto the table before it settles and rolls onto the grass, stilling.

It’s quiet as every pair of eyes zone in on the stationary ball until Octavia jumps up with a squeal. “Yes! Yes! Suck on that!”

Jasper’s head hangs down in shame and Clarke sags in relief as Raven and Octavia rush her, her face paling at being jostled around as they hug her. “Knew you wouldn’t let me down, Griff.”

Clarke accepts the praise for a few moments before it becomes too much and she stumbles her way over to Lexa, dropping down with an ‘oomph’. “My wild side tolerance obviously isn’t as good as it used to be.”

Lexa laughs, trying not to rock Clarke and holds her tight, “well done, baby.”

“Guess it’s down to you to bring us the trophy.”

“Is there really any point in this? We all know it’s an easy win.” She nuzzles into Clarke’s hair.

“You want to back out?”

“I want to stay here and cuddle with you. I might genuinely hurt him now I know he wants my girl.”

Clarke pulls her head back, closing her eyes against the light-headedness and smiles, “you won’t do that.”

Lexa cocks her brow, “won’t I?”

Shaking her head, Clarke plants a few short and sweet kisses on Lexa’s lips. “No. That’s not the kind of person you are.”

“What kind of person am I?”

“The kind that will fight for a homeless man she doesn’t know on the street. The kind that will do anything for her family. The kind that brings her girlfriend dinner when she knows she has a long day.” Lexa rubs her nose against Clarke’s gently. “The kind that has a huge heart even though she only lets her closest truly see it.” Clarke pauses momentarily, glancing at Jasper and back. “The kind that lets somebody she doesn’t like into her home just because her friend asked her to give that person one last chance.”

Lexa smiles, “you try saying no to Monty’s pouting face.”

Clarke rolls her eyes because- yeah, fair point. She bends down to whisper against Lexa’s lips, “the kind that won’t do anything stupid because somehow she already got the girl,” she jokes. “And the girl isn’t going anywhere even if she does think you’re being absolutely ridiculous about her friend having feelings for her.”

“Wait and see, baby. One day you’ll see I’m right about this.” Clarke stares her down. “Fine. I’ll go easy on him. I might even be nice and let him get a hit in.”

“Whoa, let’s not be drastic about this.”

Octavia bends down and makes them jump when they see her face an inch away, “are you two quite done being the gayest couple ever?”

Lexa leans back and sees multiple eyes on them, glad their words were whispered so nobody heard what they were talking about. “You’re getting far too much enjoyment out of me kicking your brother’s ass.”

Octavia shrugs, “I have to get my entertainment somewhere. Besides, Bell could sometimes use being brought down a peg. I love him, but he needs to realise he’s not the alpha male he thinks he needs to be.”

Bellamy is waiting patiently in the circle, stretching out his muscles, causing Lexa to chuckle and lift Clarke off of her. She cracks her back and knuckles. “Last chance to back out.”

“In your dreams, Woods. I’m not scared of you.”

“So be it. Raven, get their shots ready.”

A chorus of ‘oohs’ fill the air and Clarke looks over the scene with an artistic eye. The orange glow of the sunset shining down on the two, Lexa and Bellamy’s dark clothes and hair highlighted by the colour in a silhouette and she thinks it’d be the perfect scenery for an intimate fight sequence in a movie.

She bites her lip as she watches Lexa bounce of her feet, bating Bellamy. Arrogant smirk matches arrogant smirk as they wait until the other makes a move. Lexa isn’t going to listen to a damn word Clarke just said.

Bellamy’s impatience wins out and as soon as he shifts his weight to attack, the sparring match is over before it’s even begun.

Lexa moves like a predator playing with its next meal. A tiger that prowls around its trapped prey waiting to strike.

Every attack Bellamy makes, Lexa pushes away and waits for the next. She side steps every lunge forward, hits aimed with a precision that knocks Bellamy off of his game without knocking him over.

It’s cruel, in a way, how she puts on a show.

But this is what they’ve all really been waiting for, isn’t it? The games beforehand a minor lead up to this original challenge that Bellamy just couldn’t let go.

He brought this on himself.

“How long do you think she’ll keep this up for?” Echo’s whisper sounds like a fog horn in the quiet of the lake.

“Wait for it...” Luna answers, enraptured by the display.

She bides her time, waiting for the perfect opportunity to bring Bellamy down. She could’ve done this in two seconds flat, but what would be the point? He’s somehow managed to piss her people off in one way or another. Whether it be going too far in his play fighting with Atom earlier- maybe not one of her people but he’d complained about how Bellamy was like a cat, playful at first until the playful turns aggressive- to insinuating that the women in his life should only be protected by him, i.e. Octavia, to... well, looking at Clarke like she deserves better than Lexa.

That might be true. In Lexa’s eyes, Clarke deserves the fucking world, but it sure as hell isn’t him.

She’s not imagining this.

Sometimes a lesson can not be learnt by words. Words won’t make him relent, won’t make him calm his attitude down because he doesn’t feel like he’s doing or saying anything wrong. Doesn’t see that his words can make somebody feel weak, feel like they need a hero.

Lexa will be damned if he says something to make Octavia doubt herself.

In the back of her mind she knows Octavia is stronger than that. That she’d handle herself well against her brother and any other day Lexa would sit back and let her.

But today is Octavia’s day, and she won’t allow fighting with her only blood family she has contact with to derail that.

She can see the frustration building in Bellamy’s eyes and figures now is a good a time as any to make her move. On the next swing she takes his arm and brings it behind his back, lifting it as far up as it’ll go without causing too much pain but enough to drop him to his knees. “Tap out.”

“No.”

Lexa sighs, “come on, Bellamy. Look at Octavia.” Octavia sits there happily sucking on a straw, eyes dancing in amusement because she’s too drunk to see the anger radiating from him, thinks that this is still part of the game even though it’s obviously much deeper than that. “You got what you wanted. You got a rise out of me, and we both know why you wanted that.” His eyes flick to Clarke briefly and she knows her assumption was correct. “But it’s your sister’s birthday, and if there’s one thing I believe about you it’s that you’d do anything to make sure she’s safe and happy. Don’t ruin it because you’ve had too much to drink and you think you need to prove yourself. Tap out gracefully so we can all get back to having a good night.”

She looks around her friends, sees the worried glint in Anya’s eyes, her sister asking her if this is going to go too far with them and Lexa squinting to tell her to wait a minute before she feels Bellamy sag and tap the ground three times. Anya, Lincoln and Clarke let out a breath they didn’t know they were holding as the other girls cheer in celebration and the guys slump in defeat but congratulate them good-naturedly.

“Even if you did fucking cheat.”

“Let it go, Jas.”

“It’s like you and Lincoln wanted the girls to win. You didn’t even want to compete.”

“I’m comfortable enough in my masculinity to not need to prove myself,” Murphy shrugs.

Emori winks at him. “Which, ironically, you just did with one sentence.” She leans over and kisses him, getting lost in it.

Lexa holds her hand out as a peace offering and smiles when Bellamy accepts.

And why? Why can’t she just keep her mouth shut and accept Bellamy’s defeat wordlessly?

This is going to come back and bite her in the ass.

“One more thing.” She glances at Clarke. “She’s mine. I mean, of course she’s her own person with her own mind and emotions and choices and I claim no ownership over her,” she takes a breath to stop her ramble, “but for all intents and purposes, she’s mine, as I am hers, and I’ll do everything in my power to keep her affections. Are we clear?”

He grits his teeth. “Crystal.”

“Bell!” Octavia side tackles him in a hug. “Come and have a participation shot with me.” Her smile beams and Bellamy feels himself relax at it, paying no attention to Lexa as Octavia leads him away.

“Do you feel as though you thoroughly won your pissing contest?”

Arms snake around Lexa’s waist and she turns in Clarke’s hold, feeling guilty at the look of disappointment aimed at her. “I’m sorry. That wasn’t my intention, I just wanted him to focus on Octavia having a good birthday. I didn’t mean for it to come across as anything else, but then I just, I had to say something. Forgive me?” She pouts until she sees a crack of a smile.

Clarke sighs, aware she’s probably over reacting. “If you hadn’t told me about Bellamy, I wouldn’t have seen it that way. I saw him look at me, you know? I don’t know what you said to him, but I still think you’re seeing things that aren’t there.”

She isn’t. Bellamy's gaze towards Clarke confirmed as much, but she doesn’t want to talk about this now as Raven gets giddy at finally being able to blast music out and another drink is shoved into her hand by somebody passing by. “Dance with me?”

They dance until it’s dark. Eventually everyone seems to be on the same page of enjoying themselves, even Bellamy and Jasper who are bouncing alongside Octavia with large grins.

They dance and they drink. They drink until Anya and Raven sing- screech- along with songs. They drink until they no longer have eyes on Echo and Atom. They drink until Luna and Monty get into a long discussion about what should be done about pollution in the water. They drink until Clarke is whispering all the dirty things ‘Party-girl Griff’ wants to do to Lexa hotly down her ear and Lexa drags Clarke away to their room.

They drink until they can’t remember stumbling away to bed.

Minus a few bumps in the road, Lexa has to admit that all-in-all, it was a successful night.

-

The morning brings headaches and dry mouth and a pleasurable soreness between Lexa’s legs as flashbacks invade her mind and a content sigh leaves her lips as she sniffs in Clarke’s scent, nosing her hair and neck until Clarke stirs and turns with a tired smile, “morning.”

“Good morning, beautiful.”

Clarke’s phone flashes with a notification and she frowns as she unlocks it, wincing slightly at the light it produces. Her eyes widen when she sees the email. “Erm, Lex?”

“Yeah?” She twists the phone to show Lexa the confirmation of their purchase and Lexa laughs through her pounding head at the strap-on on screen. When did they decide to order that? And what made them think last night was a good idea to do so? “At least our drunken selves have good taste.”

“Oh my god,” Clarke groans.

Lexa pulls Clarke closer and strokes her hair, “we can always send it back.” Clarke wrinkles her nose. “Or we could use it.” Clarke smiles. So there’s that. “I’m sorry again if I got too possessive last night.”

She isn’t talking about their bedroom activities and Clarke sighs because thinking back on it, Lexa didn’t really do anything wrong or anything Clarke was truly uncomfortable with. Honestly, sober Clarke actually sort of likes the possessiveness, it apparently appears that drunk Clarke has a tiny issue with it. “Don’t apologise. I was being stupid. It actually feels kind of nice to be wanted like that.” Lexa opens her mouth to argue against it. “You didn’t treat me like I was something to be owned, I don’t even know exactly what it was you said to Bellamy. I can imagine but...” She trails off, tracing Lexa’s jaw with her finger. “I don’t really have any right to be mad when I got crazy jealous over Costia.”

“So you admit you were jealous?” Lexa wiggles her eyebrows.

“Never to be admitted again and I’ll deny all knowledge of saying it. You don’t need to worry about anyone else.”

Lexa smirks, “I’m not worried.” She rolls them over and hisses at the deep welts she feels littering her back on the cool sheets. She leans up to kiss Clarke but a loud grumble shocks them and she stares pointedly at Clarke’s stomach. “Breakfast?”

“God yes.”

Anya, Raven, Octavia and Lincoln are hanging over the kitchen counter as Emori and Murphy work on breakfast. “How’s everyone feeling?”

“Like Death and Satan had a love child that holds a personal grudge against me,” Raven moans into her elbow, glaring at Lexa through red eyes. “The whole fucking house heard you two.”

Clarke flushes a deep red and hides her face in Lexa’s shoulder. “Just you, Rae. I was dead to the world,” Octavia pipes up, earning thankful nods of agreement from Lincoln and Anya.

Lexa relaxes because yeah, that would’ve been awkward as hell. “Everyone else still asleep?”

Anya shakes her head. “Monty, Luna, Nathan and Bryan went for a walk to clear their heads. Bellamy is becoming best friends with the toilet.” A wince. “Echo and Atom are AWOL and nobody has seen Jasper since he went to bed.”

A shrill scream invades their ears and they all rush out the back of the house fearing the worst but mouths tightly shut to hold the giggles of Jasper struggling on top of his air mattress.

In the middle of the lake.

“How the fuck did he get out there?” Raven looks around the equally bewildered group.

Lexa snorts when his fight ends and he splashes into the cold lake. “Why do I have a feeling that something big happened last night and none of us remember?”

Octavia shrugs, “or it happened after everyone had settled in for the night.”

They look between each other as Jasper re-emerges, sputtering out water.

Who did this? Lexa wants to personally thank them for their service.

Chapter Text

“Wow. This is incredible. Can we just move here?”

Lexa’s heart leaps to her throat at Clarke’s question. Her mouth gapes as she watches Clarke sit down with her legs crossed, looking out over the view the hill gives them with the sunlight highlighting her hair in a way Lexa doesn’t think any romance novel can describe.

Clarke looks over at her with a questioning frown, “you okay?”

“Yeah. Yes, I just, it’s nothing.” She smiles reassuringly at Clarke before sitting next to her and leaning back on her elbows, closing her eyes as she lets the heat of the sun flow against her skin.

It isn’t long after that she hears the now familiar scratching of pencil against paper and she feels herself drifting off to the soft sounds of almost silence.

Clarke asks three questions before she realises she’s receiving no response and smiles softly. She flips the page of her sketch book and bites her lip as she unnecessarily studies Lexa’s form before her hand begins to create lines with her pencil of its own accord.

She decides to wake Lexa up when she feels the temperature rise a few degrees, not wanting her girlfriend to burn even if she does look adorable mumbling to herself. “Babe.” She nudges Lexa only for her to grumble in her sleep and turn on her side. Clarke chuckles. “Babe,” she drags out through a laugh, shaking Lexa’s shoulder until her hand is slapped away. She rolls her eyes. Deciding to try a different approach, she spoons herself behind Lexa and trails her lips up Lexa’s neck. “Lexa. You need to wake up before you burn.”

“Five more minutes, beautiful.” Clarke grins at the fact that Lexa says this still asleep.

“Lexa...” Clarke’s grin is all teeth at the back of Lexa’s neck and she squeaks when Lexa rolls over with a speed she can’t comprehend and pins her to the grass, nuzzling into her neck.

Still fast asleep.

“Lexa! Wake the hell up, you’re heavy.”

Lexa shifts on top of Clarke, taking a deep breath through her nose- a clear sign she’s waking up- and lowers her head to Clarke’s chest, “and you’re comfy, so no I refuse to wake up.”

Her head bounces as Clarke laughs, running her fingers through Lexa’s hair. “Are you talking to me or my boobs?”

“All three of you.” Lexa reluctantly lifts her head and leans down to peck Clarke’s already waiting lips. “Can we go on a date later when we get home?”

“What did you have in mind?”

Lexa smirks, “it’s a surprise.” She pushes herself off of Clarke and holds her hand out to pull her up, the drawing catching her eye. “Do you draw anything other than me?”

“Well I was tempted by a pretty bird that landed a few feet away but it didn’t stay still long enough so you were the default option.”

“Raven was here?”

Clarke quirks an unimpressed brow, “that was lame even for you.”

Taking Clarke’s hand, Lexa begins walking them back to the house. “It’s early and I’m hungover, let me have this.”

They make their way down to the lake in a comfortable silence and giggle when they hear loud voices from inside. “No way she’s so much better off with Gina.”

“You’re fucking insane, Rae. They should bring Marcus back.” Octavia smirks at Raven’s wide eyed offence.

“I’d kind of like to see her with Doug Judy to be honest.”

“What the hell is wrong with you, Murphy?”

Amused features grace their faces as they walk into the living area, watching the debate play out as Lexa takes the last free seat, unfortunately next to Jasper, and pulls Clarke on top of her before Raven looks at them both in exasperation. “Woods, please tell these idiots that Gina is the only one for Rosa.”

Lexa scoffs, “you’re all wrong.”

“I swear to god if you say Pimento-”

“Amy.” Lexa and Clarke speak up at the same time and they wince at the collective ‘what?!’ from the room.

Octavia puts her hand over her chest in shock, “but... but Jake.”

Lexa shrugs, “yeah but Amy seems like the type that just needs a good, hard fucking and I don’t think Jake’ll be able to give her that.”

Clarke hums in agreement as she eyes Lexa and bites her lip. “Maybe something involving handcuffs...”

“In the interrogation room.”

“With the mirror.”

Neither notices Lexa’s hand moving of its own accord up Clarke’s thigh until Raven loudly clears her throat. “Okay if you two are going to start having sex right in front of us I need to know so I can start the popcorn.” Anya playfully slaps her thigh as she does her best not to look near her sister. “I mean so I can get out of here. Nobody wants to see that shit.”

Octavia snorts from her position on the floor between Lincoln’s legs, “I told you Clarke wasn’t a lady.”

Lexa’s eyes widen as a memory from last night invades her mind.

She’s aware of the voices outside the door, their attempt at being quiet futile in their drunkenness but it’s fuzzy in Lexa’s mind all the same because the only thing in her head is forcing her body to move faster, rock her hips, not caring about them banging against the door on every thrust. One hand grips the handle and the other pulls her own hair as she tries to find a release Clarke refuses to give her. “Clarke, please baby.”

She’s been reduced to begging and whining for the past fifteen minutes and the only movement Clarke makes is to smirk from between Lexa’s legs.

The voices are closer to the door now and she can make out Octavia’s voice. “If that little pick thinks he can get away with grabbing my ass he’s got another thing coming- wait, what’s that?”

But Lexa doesn’t care. She doesn’t care that Octavia and a mystery person slump against the door, obviously pressing their ears to it because Clarke isn’t fucking moving and she feels like crying in frustration. “Clarke can you just do something?”

Clarke pulls her head back, the fingers inside Lexa still frozen in place and Lexa looks down with a groan when the moonlight catches the shine of Lexa’s juices on Clarke’s lips and chin, her deep, husky voice causing Lexa to flood even more. “Is this me not doing something?”

“It’s not and you fucking know it. Please just move.”

With a roll of her eyes and a tut, Clarke twists her fingers minutely, her chuckles at the way Lexa’s hips thrust forward and slam back against the door drowned out by giggles from the other side. “You know the rules Lex, I give you the tools you need, but you have to earn it yourself.”

Lexa whimpers when Clarke’s tongue returns to her clit, again unmoving. “I really don’t want to listen to this, O.”

If Lexa wasn’t so deliriously turned on, she’d feel genuinely sorry for the now confirmed Monty.

“Nobody’s forcing you to be here.”

“You are.”

Clarke grunts in annoyance and it hits Lexa directly where she needs it if the long moan is anything to go by and she almost looks apologetic as she pulls back again, looking in to Lexa’s pleading eyes. “Fuck off, Octavia.” She can practically feel the pout through the door before she smirks, “unless you want to join in, that is.”

“Ew. Gross. Hard pass, Griff.” Octavia scrunches her nose and Clarke hums happily, telling Lexa silently to continue riding her fingers as her head moves back and nails scratch over Lexa’s ass, relenting to give her a little assistance in the way of guiding Lexa’s hips and throwing a leg over her own shoulder. “Fine, whatever. You win.” Octavia finally pulls her ear away from the door and glances to a pale Monty. “Let’s go teach Jas a lesson.” They finally make their way down the hall before Octavia lets out another scoff, “I fucking told Lincoln, Clarke is anything but a lady.”

Lexa’s pulled out of the memory, the debate on to a different topic and she glances quickly between Octavia and Jasper before she laughs loudly, causing Clarke to jump and the others to look over at her in concern but she waves them off, “sorry, sorry. I just remembered something from last night is all.” She winks at Octavia who blushes, knowing instantly what Lexa is referring to and being caught out in her ‘I slept like the dead’ lie.

She wraps her arms around Clarke’s waist. “We should probably head off soon.”

Clarke nods against her, “I’ll go a pack our stuff up.” She looks pointedly between Lexa and Lincoln before she stands and makes her way to their room.

Lexa gets up after, catching Lincoln’s attention and makes her way into the kitchen, him following behind with a frown. “What’s up?”

“Can you stop by the gym tomorrow?”

His frown deepens, “sure. Is everything okay?”

“Yeah, yeah. Just want to run something by you. It’s nothing important. Well, it is. But it’s nothing to worry about,” she rambles.

Before Lincoln can open his mouth to reply, Bellamy stumbles through, scratching the back of his neck nervously, “erm, hey guys, any chance I can speak to you along for a minute, Lexa?”

Lexa flares her nostrils slightly and it’s enough of a confirmation for Lincoln to receive the hint to leave. “Oh, Linc. Congratulations by the way.” She smirks at Lincoln’s confused face as he goes before staring Bellamy down. “Are you going to try apologising for last night? Because if so, you can save it.”

He looks taken back for a moment before clearing his throat. “I am actually. You might not want to hear it, but I am sorry for the way I acted and I just want you to know that the feelings you think I have for Clarke isn’t true.”

Yeah. Right.

Bellamy must sense the disbelief because he holds his hands up in surrender. “No, seriously. I don’t like Clarke like that. She’s likes a sister to me and sometimes I can get a little over protective. Octavia, Raven and Clarke are all my family, you know?”

She sighs. In a way, of course she gets that, but in another- “then why weren’t you calling out Lincoln and Anya? I don’t care if you have feelings for my girlfriend, Bellamy, as long as you understand that’s she’s my girlfriend and this alpha male shit you’re trying to pull isn’t going to stand with me.”

“It’s cool if you don’t believe me, but I really don’t have those kind of feelings for her. I guess I’ve just seen her hurt more than the other two and I don’t want her to go through that again. You don’t have to accept it, but I really am sorry, I can tell you’re different from the rest of them and I’d like to try to at least be civil, for Clarke’s sake.”

Lexa breathes in deep to stop herself from lashing out. “That’s all Anya, Lincoln and I have tried to do since the three of them keep insisting you’re good people and you and Jasper have been nothing but judgemental and rude to us.”

He nods rapidly and plays with the hem of his t-shirt, “I know. And I can’t apologise on behalf of Jasper, but I’d really like to be involved in the other aspects of my sister’s life if she’ll let me be. And... I’m just happy that Clarke’s happy and I approve of your relationship.”

“Well gee, thank you for your approval,” she drawls just as Clarke enters the kitchen wearily and she smiles. “You ready to go, beautiful?”

“Yep. Am I interrupting something?”

“You could never be an interruption to me.” Clarke playfully rolls her eyes at that and walks over to Lexa, the silent question in her baby blues asking if everything really is okay and the answering yes in Lexa’s own green causing her to relax. “Come on, let’s go say goodbye to everyone, I have a date to take you on.”

Lexa simply nods at Bellamy as she leaves the kitchen and Clarke tiptoes to kiss his cheek, whispering something that Lexa doesn’t hear but by the look on his face and Clarke’s shit-eating grin, she has a vague idea.

Clarke’s hand slinks into her own and they exchange goodbyes with everyone- except Jasper who still sulks on the couch of course- until Lexa frowns, “we’re missing somebody.”

“Echo and Atom still haven’t come back,” Monty snickers.

“Go Echo,” Luna pipes up before she settles down beside Raven, draping her legs over both Raven and Anya.

Lexa smirks, “don’t tell me you two are friends now?”

Raven scoffs with no attempt to shove Luna’s legs away. “What happens at the Lake House stays at the Lake House. I’ll go back to hating her tomorrow.”

-

After checking over the gym and Ryder and Indra practically shoving Lexa away, she eventually joins Clarke upstairs and laughs when Clarke scowls at the outfit Lexa picks out for her. “What kind of date involves exercise, Lexa?” Before Lexa has a chance to quip, Clarke holds her hand up, “don’t answer that. Seriously though, if you’re taking me on a damn jog or whatever stupidness you’ve brewed up in that pretty head of yours, I’m leaving you.”

Lexa rolls her eyes, “when are you going to learn to trust me?” And Clarke can only grumble as she changes, leaving an amused Lexa behind her as she turns her back.

The old, abandoned looking warehouse has Clarke side-eyeing a grinning Lexa. She’s never been one to judge ‘dodgy areas’, but seeing this building has her admittedly a little on edge and questioning Lexa’s sanity. Lexa laughs at her as she opens the car door and holds her hand out for Clarke to take it, Clarke hesitating as she looks back to the building.

“Stop being a wimp,” Lexa chides playfully, smug grin in place as Clarke’s features turn to one of challenge as she slaps Lexa’s hand away with a huff, rising from the car in determination.

Lexa’s grin doesn’t waver and she opens the heavy steel door and steers them down hallways with flickering lights like something from a horror movie, but the closer they get to their destination, the clearer Lexa’s date idea becomes.

It begins with a steady, rhythmic thump through the walls, flowing into a quiet beat that gets louder until the different instruments blend together and it clicks to Clarke just as Lexa opens a large, burgundy, wooden door and Clarke’s jaw hangs open as she peaks inside to see multiple couples following the same dance in a circle.

“You’re taking me dancing?” Clarke asks with wide eyes, looks to the couples dressed in suits and dresses and stilettos before she looks at herself and Lexa. “You’re taking me dancing in sweats? Wait, you can dance? And I don’t mean like club dance, but like, dance, dance.”

Lexa smile is proud and enthusiastic. “I am. Sweats are easier to move in. And dancing isn’t that different to fighting really, it’s still about body movement and placements and hand-eye coordination,” she shrugs. “Plus, it’s the tango, and I’ve heard that can be kind of romantic.”

“In sweats?”

“In sweats.” Lexa leans forward and steals a kiss off of Clarke.

Clarke watches the couples, the way they move flawlessly with each other, bending and stretching and lifting and god. “I don’t think I can do that.”

Lexa grabs Clarke’s elbow and leads her into the room, none of the dancing stopping to pay them any attention, too busy focused on each other. “I promise I won’t drop you, and I know for a fact you can do this. I’ve seen first hand how flexible you are.” Clarke blushes at the wink Lexa sends her way before she stops them in front of an older woman. “Room for two more?”

The woman spins in shock at the question, her long red dress flowing beautifully with her and her smile is all teeth. “Is that Lexa Woods I see before me or has my old age compromised my vision?”

“You haven’t aged a day, Mrs. Garcia. Sorry I haven’t been around for a while, with work and-”

“Oh, nonsense,” she waves off, “and don’t think your charming ways work on me, Lexa. You tend to be immune when you’ve changed a person’s diaper.” Lexa blushes fiercely and Clarke chuckles beside her. “And who is this stunning, young woman?”

Clarke smiles and holds her hand out, “Clarke Griffin. Sorry about the lack of dressing up, it doesn’t feel like proper dance etiquette.”

The woman scoffs at the hand and pulls Clarke in for a fast, unexpected hug. “Don’t be silly. Besides, I assume this was all Lexa and she wouldn’t know proper etiquette if her mother drilled it in to her. Oh, wait, she did.” She raises a pointed brow at Lexa who shrugs.

“You know I’d rather be comfortable than wear that sh-”

“No swearing in my class, Lexa.” She glares at Lexa before addressing Clarke again. “It’s nice to see Lexa finally bring a girl here. Although, I believe Mrs. Draper will be ever so upset.” The mischievous glint has Clarke following her line of sight to an eighty year old woman happily bouncing along in a chair to the music and Clarke bursts out laughing. “Don’t let this one fool you, Clarke, she thinks she’s hotter than she is.” Any attempt Lexa makes to glare at her is cut off and she shoves Clarke and Lexa forward, “now go on, show me my years of lessons weren’t wasted on you.”

Lexa shakes her head as they join the group, taking Clarke’s hand and placing them where they need to be before securing her own on Clarke’s body as she starts them off slowly with a gentle sway. Clarke smirks at her, “I like her.”

“You like her because she was making fun of me.”

“Of course. I like anyone who knocks you off your game.”

A small smile is thrown Clarke’s way, “you managed to do that the moment I laid eyes on you.”

Clarke scoffs sarcastically but her eyes show something different. “Aren’t you sweet.” It’s a statement, but Lexa stills nods. “About at the lake last night...” She trails off, not sure how to phrase the shift she felt in the kiss during the games.

“We don’t have to talk about this now, Clarke. I’m okay going with your pace.”

“I do want to talk about it, I just... you scare me.” And the innocent way Clarke says that almost has Lexa melt.

She probably would’ve done if she didn’t have to keep them dancing. “Is that a bad thing?”

Clarke shakes her head, “not bad. Good. Definitely good.”

“In that case take your time. You don’t have to have everything figured out straight away, Clarke.”

“Now dip.” The command echoes over the music and Lexa smirks at Clarke as she does as instructed by their teacher and Clarke yelps in fear of her head hitting the ground that’s an inch away from where Lexa stops.

“I told you I wouldn’t drop you.”

With a huff, Clarke smacks her on the shoulder, “congrats, stud. You can lift me up now.”

They spend the next couple hours letting loose and having fun twirling around, giggling (being told of for giggling), creating their own rhythm even if they were constantly scolded for it.

Clarke has to sigh in relief when they class is over. She isn’t kidding when she says she doesn’t do exercise and she gulps from the bottle of water Lexa brought with her.

She’s sweaty and gross and out of breath and so not made for this torture, but she has to admit she had a lot of fun just messing around and letting her brain just... stop for a while.

Lexa gives Clarke her car keys and tells her she’ll meet her there because Mrs. Garcia wants a word.

She waits until Clarke leaves with a ‘thank you, I had a great time’ and a hug before turning to Lexa. “So you finally found her, huh?”

Lexa’s brow furrows in confusion, “what do you mean?”

The woman smiles at her knowingly. “Oh, little Lexa. You’ve always had so much love to give and even if your family or friends, or hell, even you didn’t realise it, it was obvious you were just waiting until somebody came along who deserves that love.” A smirk follows, “and I have no doubt that she’s just as in love with you as you are with her.”

“How do you even-”

“I teach the dance of love, Lexa.” She turns on the spot in the most dramatic way she can muster, causing Lexa to laugh. “It’s my job to know these things.”

Lexa lets out a short chuckle with a tear in her eyes that she clears her throat to rid, “have you always been this observant?”

Mrs. Garcia winks at her and sends her on her way. “Bring Anya, Lincoln and their girlfriends with you next time. I’d like to meet this Octavia and Raven.”

Lexa salutes her as she makes her way back to her car, Clarke glancing at her in question and she starts it. “Everything good?”

“Couldn’t be better.” She takes Clarke’s hand over the gear box, interlacing their fingers as she drives them home.

She spends that night holding Clarke just a little tighter than usual and swoons at how Clarke grips Lexa against her in the same way.

-

Monday morning brings a new sense of motivation for Lexa. She’d dropped Clarke off at college with a much too long kiss that caused Raven to kick the back of each seat with a groan. She’d opened the gym to a waiting cup of coffee from Quint, a enthusiastic Charlotte in tow and an unenthusiastic Murphy, obviously. Lincoln had text Lexa telling her that he would be free in the afternoon since he and Octavia need to ‘christen’ their home.

“Is there really anywhere left for you two to fuck?”

“That was before we moved in together, Anya. It doesn’t count.”

“That’s vile.”

“Oh as if you and Raven didn’t do the same.”

Disgusting.

The vibes she was getting from the gym today felt different. Energy was coursing around every square inch, passionate punches against bags and dedicated feet thundering against plastic.

She realises that she’d needed this weekend more than she thought.

She’s dripping with sweat when she finishes her class before Lincoln arrives, having gone harder than usual with her new-found energy.

Her students weren’t overly happy with that since they’re all moaning into the floor, faces heavy against it as they try to catch their breath. “This is nothing. Wait until you’re experienced enough to join my intermediate class.”

Okay, maybe she’d gone a tad heavy on the beginners.

Lincoln strolls through the door just as she throws a towel over her shoulder and takes a long chug from her water bottle.

She gestures to him to follow her and Murphy squints his eyes at them as they go, already guessing what it’s about and prays that Lincoln says yes.

He has a damn wedding to plan.

“What can I do for you, cous’?”

Lexa groans but refrains from telling him again to stop speaking like Octavia.

She pulls out a stack of files and gently places them on the desk, the bright red line of the graph steady at first before shooting up. “I’ve been going over my accounts since the refurbishment and my profits, though not sky-rocketed, have significantly improved. Improved enough to hire a part-timer.” Lincoln stares at her. “Or if I wanted to take a risk, a full-timer.” Still staring. “I know you hate your job, but I also know it gives you a comfortable salary, especially now you’ll be living with Octavia and I don’t know how long I’ll be able to guarantee that wage. It might not even be for the next month, but Lincoln... I’m asking you to take that risk with me.”

“Are you offering me a job here?” His face still shows nothing and she hates it when he does this.

Lexa nods anyway, gulps. “I am, you’re the only person I trust.”

Large arms wrap around her instantly, squeeze her until she can’t breathe and he laughs, letting up. “I’d be happy to come work with you, Lex.”

“Are you sure? It’s a huge risk-”

“I’m sure. And it is. But, and this is a huge but because I know it will, but if it doesn’t work out, I can get a new job. You seem to be forgetting that Octavia’s rich.”

Lexa quirks her brow, “are you saying you’re a gold-digger?” He glowers at her. “Kidding. I also know that you’d refuse to let her pay for anything while you looked for work.”

He shrugs, stepping back from her, “I won’t need to look for work because this? This is going places, Lexa.”

She’s flying high still as Clarke walks through the door slightly exhausted but she can’t help rushing towards her and wrapping her up in a hug. “He said yes.”

“To you or Octavia?” Lexa rolls her eyes. “I’m joking, Octavia hasn’t let up on my phone all day. Did you honestly think he wouldn’t say yes?”

Lexa holds her index finger and thumb apart, “maybe a little.” She kisses Clarke with a blush to her cheeks, “hi by the way.”

“Hi to you too. What are we doing for dinner?”

“Mom wants us to go round if you aren’t too tired.”

Clarke smiles and kisses Lexa again, “I’m never too tired for your parents.”

-

“I had an interesting chat with Gloria earlier, Lexa,” Indra remarks as she sets the plates down.

“Who’s Gloria?”

“Mrs. Garcia.”

Raven grins from the other side of the table, “Gloria Garcia is a fantastic name.”

Clarke scoffs, “you’re just biased because it’s an alliterated name like yours.”

“Keeping it in the alliteration family.”

“Anyway,” Indra bring the attention back to herself, “she said you and Clarke appeared to have a good time yesterday, do you have plans to continue going?”

Lexa looks at Clarke before she speaks, not wanting to assume that she does. “It may be a once every couple months thing. Depends on work obligations.”

Anya snorts as she creates her perfect taco, “ha, that place is so ridiculously cheesy.”

“You weren’t saying that when you won that dancing trophy,” Lexa snarls, earning a scowl, “besides, she told me I had to bring you, Rae, Lincoln and Octavia next time.”

Raven’s eyes light up in excitement, “babe that sounds so cool. Can we go? Please can we go?”

Lexa reaches over to grab Raven’s chin, mimicking her pout, “how can you say no to this face?”

“Fine, but I get to choose our next movie night theme.”

“Worth it.”

Indra and Ryder look at them all with a sparkle in their eyes and Anya holds a pointed finger at them. “No. No way you two are coming with us. It’s bad enough I’m going to be forced on a triple date with these losers without my parents being there.”

Aden looks up from his plate in glee, “I like dancing.”

He goes ignored as Raven mocks offence, “excuse you? One of those losers happens to be your girlfriend.”

“I obviously wasn’t including you in that, baby.”

“Damn right you weren’t.”

Clarke observes the bantering in joy as she grips Lexa’s hand under the table, squeezing it gently until Lexa wipes her mouth with a napkin and clears her throat. “I asked Lincoln to come and work for me today. He said yes.”

Ryder is the serious one for once and Lexa already knows what his question will be. “Will you be able to afford that?”

“It’ll be tight for a couple months, but as long as we’re still getting regular and new clients we should be okay. What about you, have you arranged a time for the magazine to come down?”

Steer the subject away from the topic. Always a good move.

“They will be coming tomorrow to have a look around the place, an informal chat so to speak, and then we can sort a convenient time to do a proper interview and have pictures taken.”

Raven quips up. “I’ll have those cars looking damn majestic for that, Mr. Woods.”

Ryder thanks her and Indra turns to Clarke, “and what’s going on in your life?”

“I’m meeting my mom for dinner tomorrow to discuss dropping my volunteer work. I need to focus on my studies now more than ever and I think it’s a smart career move, I just hope she agrees.”

Indra hums, absent-mindedly wiping at Aden’s messy chin, “I believe it is a smart move, there’s no reason she will not see that also.”

“Yeah but my mom-”

“You’re over thinking this, Clarke. I bet she will be happy with your decision. Call it a mother’s intuition. And even if she isn’t, you still have us.” She looks at Raven and thinks of Octavia. “You all do.”

Clarke and Raven do not let a tear escape. Lexa and Anya do not ‘aww’ them. Indra and Ryder do not acknowledge the emotions they cause.

Aden does smear his taco with super spicy hot sauce and runs to the sink to let the water roll over his tongue.

-

Tuesday dinner with Abby comes around far too quickly for Clarke as she sits at the table twiddling her fingers while food is being placed down and Jake fills their glasses with water.

She’d rather it be wine but it’s probably for the best that it isn’t.

“So,” Abby begins before they even start plating, “what did you want to talk to us about?”

Clarke has a terrible habit of picking the skin around her nails when she’s nervous and damn it why didn’t she take Lexa up on her offer to join tonight?

Jake obliviously reaches out to spoon some mashed potatoes onto his plate while Abby waits patiently for Clarke to speak, slowly sipping her water as she keeps eye contact with her daughter, knowing all too well it’s only a matter of time before she blurts everything ou-

“I’m going to quit volunteering.” She clenches her eyes shut and winces as soon as she says it.

The room is silent and she refuses to open her eyes to meet Abby’s gaze but soon she hears the sound of Jake continuing to pile his plate up and cautiously opens them to find her mother’s steady eyes. “I see.” Is all Abby states and waits until Clarke’s lids are fully open before she carries on. “Why do you feel the need to do that?” She puts her glass down, without breaking away from Clarke’s eyes and addresses Jake. “Can you pass me the broccoli please, honey?” Jake grunts and does as asked.

“So I’m going to be on this placement in a few months.” Abby nods. “And while volunteering has been some of the highlights of my life, I think I need to crack down and study. The next two years of my life... well, there is going to be a distinct lack of life and I think my time between now and then will be best served by studying for files and preparing myself with old cases.” She feels her confidence growing the more she speaks, can hear Lexa in the back of her head going ‘keep going, baby. You got this’ and even though her mother’s silence usually fills her with anxiety, for once Abby almost looks... in agreement with Clarke’s decision.

Her mind runs before it walks though, because as she calms down and reaches to fill her own plate, Abby’s voice surrounds them again. “And this has nothing to do with any... outside influences?”

Clarke grits her teeth and rolls her eyes, “no, mom. Lexa has nothing to do with this. I know it may come as a shock to you but I am capable of making my own decisions.”

“That isn’t what I meant, Clarke, don’t talk to me in that tone of voice,” Abby sneers and Clarke recoils slightly, willing herself to stand strong. “I’m merely stating that you’ve been spending a lot of time with this girl, don’t think I don’t know you haven’t been back to your dorm in nearly a week.” Clarke blushes at Abby’s pointed gaze. “I’m just worried that spending time with her has shifted your priorities and I’d hate to see you lose all the progress you’ve made because of a current infatuation.”

It takes a lot for Jake to glare at his wife, but even he can tell that her tone is nothing but hostile. “Lexa isn’t a ‘current infatuation’ to me-”

“Are you in love with her?”

“Abby.”

“Mom!”

Abby shrugs as if her question is valid, “it was just a question. Are you in love with her?”

Clarke sputters, fork full of green beans hanging in the air. “I- that’s not- what- that has nothing to do with this.” She takes a long breath to help compose herself. “Look, I’ve been thinking about this since you offered me this position. Dropping my volunteer work will give me the time to crack down on my studies and prepare for what is inevitably going to be two of the hardest, most intense years of my life. I need as much of a head start as I can get.”

They stare off long and hard until the corner of Abby’s mouth quirks the tiniest amount. “Very well. I personally thought you would have taken a step back some time ago, I would have.”

“What? Why didn’t you say anything?”

Abby smirks in that playful way Clarke feels like she hasn’t seen in years, the teasing glint in her eye so rare that Clarke thought it was innocent, childish imagination. Yet here it is, right in front of her as though it had been there the entire time when Abby jokes, “you’re more than capable of making your own decisions, are you not?”

Clarke’s jaw hangs open as Abby takes a bite of her chicken and she has to shake her head to rid herself of her stupor. “Right. Yes. I am. Thank you, you will have my official resignation tomorrow and I will of course work until you can find someone to replace my hours.”

“Good.” Jake pipes up. “I think that’s enough business talk for today. Can we please enjoy this family dinner? It has been far too long since the three of us had the chance to sit down together.”

Clarke smiles, a huge sense of relief flowing through her as they talk about things, still work related but more stories about work than discussions and she can’t recall the last time she felt this relaxed around either of her parents.

“So, Clarke, do you still plan to move in with Octavia once you’ve finished your finals?”

Her eyes widen and she tries not to choke as she gulps down her mouthful.

She completely forgot that she planned to ask Octavia that.

Octavia her joint best friend with whom she had no shadow of a doubt would’ve loved to have Clarke live with her.

Octavia who is now going to be living with Lincoln.

As a newly moved in couple.

Wanting their own space.

Together.

Fuck.

Chapter Text

It’s been nearly three weeks and Lexa has no idea what to do.

Clarke has been... distant.

Not in the same way she was after her mom, and she’s not really doing anything much different but Lexa can tell she isn’t exactly... here. Like she’s here, but she’s not here, here, like her head is in the clouds and she won’t come back down.

Each time Lexa has asked her if something is wrong, she’s met with the same answer;

“Stop worrying, Lex, I just need to focus on finals, they’re only a month away.”

Or when Lexa asks, “have I done something wrong?”

It’s only a small relief when Clarke smiles and answers, “you’re perfect, babe.”

And that was fine for the first week, but Lexa knows there’s more to it than that.

She’s tried all she can. Helping her study, giving her massages, has taken her back down to the punching bag, tried to get her to have a girls’ night with Octavia and Raven, planned dates that Clarke has declined, polity of course, because she’s ‘too busy to do normal people stuff’. So she’s had to resort to something she didn’t want to do.

“I just don’t know what to do, Rae.”

Raven sighs as she places her coffee on the table and leans her elbow on the back of the couch, head resting on her hand, “you’re probably over thinking this. Clarke’s always disassociated herself from the outside world when she has exams coming up. I’m sure she’ll be back to our Clarke in no time.”

“No. There’s something else, I just don’t know what it is. She’s been off since she had dinner with her parents.”

“Then Abby probably said something to piss her off. Wouldn’t be the first time.”

Lexa shakes her head in the negative, “I don’t think that’s it. She’s not mad, she just seems defeated and whatever it is that caused it, she’s focusing all her energy on studying to keep her mind off of it and I’m scared she’s going to overdo it.”

“Look, Woods, you know I love you. You know I love Clarke. And you know I love you both together, but trust me, the more you push her into opening up, the less likely she will. Just let her ride this out, she’ll come back to us when she’s ready. Until then, keep doing what you’re doing. I mean, she’s still coming over right?”

A nod. “She’s been here every night.”

“Then it’s obviously nothing you’ve done.” Lexa slumps down into the couch and Raven sighs again. “If it’s really getting to you that much, I’ll force Clarke to have a movie night. I’ll throw Anya out and she can come here and I’ll make Clarke talk whether she likes it or not,” she shrugs, “I don’t give a flying fuck if she gets pissed at me.”

Lexa perks up with a smirk, “you’re going to throw my sister out of her own house?”

Our house, thank you very much,” Raven smirks back, “that’s how good a friend I am. I’m willing to let Anya pout and complain at you all night because she won’t be with me so I can sort out your love life.” Lexa scoffs. “You’re welcome.”

“Thanks, Rae.” Raven jumps over her, landing on top and laughs when Lexa struggles, “get off of me!”

They wrestle around for a few seconds before Raven lays behind her and pins Lexa’s arms in a cross over her chest, “no, let me cuddle you.” Lexa giggles as Raven snuggles into her shoulder with a content sigh and reaches to grab the remote, switching on Netflix and both settling into soft breathing as Raven secures her arms tighter around Lexa. “Love you, Woods.”

“Love you too, Reyes.”

Lexa can feel the smirk against her shoulder. “Does Clarke know you like being the little spoon?”

“Fuck off.”

-

“Get off of my girlfriend, Raven.”

The two had fallen asleep somewhere through the third episode of whatever she put on and Raven blinks sleepily up at Clarke after hearing the door open, only snuggling further into a still sleeping Lexa, “but she’s so comfortable. And smells really good.”

“I’m aware,” Clarke remarks dryly, “get off of her.”

“You always know how to ruin my fun, Griff.” It takes some gentle manoeuvring, but Raven eventually manages to pull away from Lexa without disturbing her sleep and follows Clarke into the kitchen. “She’s worried about you.”

Clarke shakes her head as she fills the coffee maker, “she doesn’t have to. I’m fine. I’m just-”

“Studying for finals?” Clarke nods. “Don’t lie to me, Griff.” Raven rolls her eyes when Clarke stays silent. “Right, we’re having a move night tonight.” Clarke’s mouth opens to protest and Raven holds her hand up to stop her, “nope. Not having it. Me, you, popcorn, chocolate and cheap ass wine. I’ll even put on those crappy rom-coms you like. Seriously, Clarke,” she takes note of her more than usual pale features, dark eyes and greasy hair, “you look like shit.”

“Thanks.”

Raven looks her over, “I mean it. You need to get out of this funk you’re in, and I’m going to make that happen because you can’t say no to me.”

Clarke rolls her eyes and her gaze flits to the couch as she hears a ruffling followed by a groggy voice, “Rae?” She smiles fondly as Lexa sits up and rubs the sleep out of her eyes before she grins softly when she sees Clarke, “hey, beautiful.”

With a halting glare in Raven’s direction, Clarke makes her way over to Lexa to peck her softly on the lips. “Apparently Raven is kidnapping me tonight.”

And god Lexa isn’t subtle at all when her eyes widen in faux shock, “she is?”

Clarke hums softly, “you wouldn’t happen to have anything to do with that, right?”

“Me? Nope. First I’ve heard about it.”

The ‘uh-huh’ Clarke gives her tells Lexa she sees right through her and Lexa grins innocently before she gets up and kisses Clarke properly until a throat clearing breaks them apart. “As hot as this is, I’m still here.”

“You don’t have to be.”

Raven gasps in offence, “you wound me, Woods.” She looks to Clarke next, “go grab a shower and shit. Then we’ll head out.” Clarke opens her mouth to protest and Raven cuts her off, “also no text books. You need a break from studying, it’s not healthy.”

Clarke scoffs and leans into Lexa who smiles at her with a kiss. “I need to go out and grab groceries so you’ll be gone by the time I get back.” Clarke pouts at her and Lexa can’t resist kissing her again. “Have fun tonight, beautiful.”

-

Anya doesn’t bother knocking before she enters the apartment. “Beer?”

“Fridge.”

Lexa hears the door open and close and then Anya slumps next to her, placing four open bottles on the table and bites her lip at Lexa’s raised brow. “Octavia and Luna are coming. If I have to put up with your miserable, pouting face I’m going to need company.”

“Thanks, sis,” she scowls and Anya chuckles as the door flies open again.

Octavia’s grin is large and toothy as she falls to the floor with Luna shaking her head in amusement before they each take a bottle. “’Sup, bitches?”

“Don’t you have anything better to do?”

The grin turns into a gasp, “that’s the way you treat me when I went out of my way to be here for you in your time of need? I see how it is, Lex.” Lexa cocks her head to the side and Octavia rolls her eyes. “Fine. You know Lincoln’s working tonight and I’m bored because Bellamy has the boys round for game night.”

Lexa glances to Luna next who shrugs as she takes a sip of her beer, “I just like gossip.”

“And Raven is okay with this?”

Anya scoffs and waves her off, “of course she is.” Lexa hums in disbelief. “What? I’m okay with her spending the night with a girl she’s completely obsessed with.”

“Aw, you’re obsessed with me?”

A scowl. “Not what I meant and you know it.”

Luna laughs at Anya’s attempt to be intimidating and changes the subject. “So you have zero idea what’s wrong with Clarke?”

Lexa sighs heavily, “she hasn’t even hinted at what it could be.”

Octavia shrugs, “you know Clarke would rather bottle things up. She doesn’t like to feel like she’s a burden on people.”

“She doesn’t need to feel like that with me. I know she’s had some shitty dating experiences, but isn’t this the whole point of being in a relationship? Being able to lean on each other when things are rough?”

“Just give her some time, Lex,” Anya says, patting her on the shoulder, “Raven’ll sort her out, and we are...” she leans into her bag and pulls out a bottle of tequila, “going to get drunk and have a good time.”

Octavia squeals and reaches out to take the bottle before she stands to rummage for shot glasses, “I knew one day you were going to prove to me that you’re my favourite future cousin-in-law.”

“Rude.”

Anya smirks and Lexa looks at Luna but Luna simply holds her hands up, “c’mon, Lex, you know Anya is my favourite Woods. Except your mom, obviously. Maybe you should try Echo, you might come a close second to Aden.”

“Where is Echo?”

“She has a date with, Atom,” Luna smirks, “they’re really hitting it off.”

Lexa smiles, “good, it’s about time she stopped dating assholes.”

Shots get poured as the conversation dies off and before Lexa has time to process anything, it’s three hours later, beer bottles clutter the table and the tequila is nearly empty. “I’m going to propose to Raven.”

What?” Lexa sputters, Octavia squeaks and Luna’s eyes widen in glee. “What happened to ‘it’s too soon’ and ‘it’s only been four months’... well around six now.”

Anya sighs wistfully, “I know, but what dad said has been playing on my mind and like... being engaged doesn’t mean we have to get married right away. We could wait a few years or whatever. And everything is going so well at the minute, you know? With the business and at home, and Raven will be finishing up university soon and it just... it just feels right.”

“Wow, you are drunk,” Octavia giggles, “I think that’s the most you’ve ever said in one sitting. So how you going to do it?”

Luna laughs and mocks Anya’s voice, “so we should probably get married at some point.”

Lexa laughs too and joins in, “I’d like to spend the rest of our lives tolerating each other. Do you agree?”

A glare greets them both before Octavia snorts out a chuckle, “can you be a pain in my ass for the rest of our lives?”

“Seriously? You can’t give me more credit than that? Thanks, guys.” She downs another shot and refills the glasses with the last of the amber liquid. “I don’t know what I’m going to do yet, I just know that I am. I love her.”

“I love Clarke.”

Three pairs of eyes turn on Lexa but it’s Anya that speaks up, “yeah, no shit. Why don’t you tell her?”

“I don’t want to scare her off. I’m going to let her come to me. I’m okay with waiting for her. She’s worth it.” Octavia stands and drops ungraciously on top of Lexa and Anya before Luna does the same and they’re a heap on the couch. Lexa suddenly starts laughing and they all look at her like she’s insane, “I’m sorry, but I can’t believe you said you were going to propose to Raven in front of O, the world’s worst secret keeper.”

“Hey! I can keep a secret. Plus I probably won’t even remember this tomorrow.” She sighs and looks at the clock, “speaking of, Lincoln is finishing so I’m going to go.”

Luna groans from her spot, “god I’m so fucking single. Even Echo has somebody. You lot suck.” She stands too and glances at Octavia, “can I get a ride home?” A nod answers her and they both kiss Lexa and Anya’s cheek in a goodbye.

“Thanks,” Lexa whispers as they open the door and they both turn to smile at her before stumbling through it with giggles. Anya grins as she reaches into her bag again and takes out another bottle, this time whiskey and Lexa’s stomach churns, “I can’t drink any more.”

“Sure you can.”

Well if Anya insists on twisting her arm...

-

With the exception of the sounds playing in the background and the crunching of snacks, it’s been silent for half of the movie as Raven waits patiently for Clarke to begin talking. She side eyes periodically until Clarke huffs in frustration. Raven bites her lip to hide her smile and starts nudging Clarke’s thigh with her toes. “Stop it.”

“Nope.” She continues until Clarke grips tightly at her ankle. “Is it your mom?” Head shake. “Stress?” A pause. Head shake. “Lexa?”

“God no.”

“Then what is it, Griff?”

“It’s nothing.” Clarke stares pointedly at the TV as if she has any idea what’s even playing right now.

Raven hums and decides to switch topic. “Have you told Lexa about the gala yet?”

Clarke groans and throws her head back as she closes her eyes, “fuck! I completely forgot about that.”

“It’s a week away, Clarke.”

“I know. I just... it slipped my mind. I’ll tell her tomorrow.”

The silence surrounds them and a thought hits Raven, “is it because Niylah will probably be there? Is that what’s wrong? You’re worried about your current meeting your ex?”

Clarke takes a healthy sip of wine, “no. Maybe a little. I honestly forgot about the gala, Rae. I wasn’t purposely not telling Lexa.”

Raven stares her down with a hum. “It’ll be fine, Griff. Knowing Lexa she’ll do something ridiculous like thank her for splitting up with you because she wouldn’t have you if she didn’t.”

A laugh escapes Clarke because that’s exactly something Lexa would do. “My mom, Lexa, Niylah and Finn all in the same room. What could possibly go wrong?”

“Well your mom could go on about how much she loves Niylah and how good you were together. Then Finn will somehow get involved with his puppy eyes and try to say you and Lex aren’t a real thing and how he’s better than her. Woods will end up getting possessive and you’ll get caught fucking in one of the bathrooms by your mom who will in turn hate Lexa more than she already does for corrupting her innocent daughter and blame her for you getting distracted from your career. You’ll cause a scene in front of loads of important doctors and investors and Lex will either make some form of sarcastic comment or she’ll chew Abby about how you deserve to be happy above everything else. Then-”

“I get it, Rae,” Clarke chuckles, “it’s going to end in disaster.” She finishes her glass and pours another. “I don’t have anywhere to live after I graduate.”

Raven frowns, “what do you mean?”

The sigh that fills the room is loud before Clarke throws back her glass again, Raven watching her curiously. “I was going ask O if I could move in with her after graduation. She has the space and I think it’d work out well and I know she’d love rooming with me, but-”

“She asked Lincoln to move in with her and now you think she’ll say no? Clarke that’s ridiculous, you know Octavia would still be like a kid in a candy shop happy if you asked. She’d probably throw Lincoln out of bed for you.”

Clarke shakes her head rapidly, “it’s not that. This thing is a new adventure for them and I don’t want to impose on that. I’m not going to be able to afford a place on my own on an intern’s wage and I can’t let my mom help because that’s another thing she can hold over me.”

Raven purses her lips, “O would never see it that way, but I get where you’re coming from.” She takes a second, sipping her own wine as she tries to phrase her next sentence without pushing Clarke. “Have you... have you thought about asking Lexa?”

Brows raise to Clarke’s hairline, “to move in with her?” Raven nods. “Are you insane? It’s way too soon for that.”

“Why?” Raven shrugs, “I moved in with Anya.”

“That’s different.”

“How?”

Clarke stutters. “You... She.. It just is. You’re different to me. You were willing to take that risk and it worked.”

“So you’re saying Lexa isn’t worth the risk?”

A glare. “I don’t mean it like that. You and Anya were all in straight away. But Lexa and I? She’s never been committed before and I still need time.”

Raven scoffs, “damn, Griff, in all the years I’ve known you, I don’t think I’ve ever seen you so deep in denial.”

“Excuse me?”

“You’re already in deep. You both are. When was the last time you properly seen your dorm?” No answer. “Clarke, the only thing that means you aren’t already living together is the label. Most of your stuff is at hers, you spend every night there, you’re together every spare second you get. You spend a significant amount of time with her family.” Raven sighs. “Be honest with yourself for a second, if you did move in with O before the whole Lincoln situation, how often do you think you would’ve actually been there? Paying rent for a room you never see?”

Clarke gulps and locks her jaw, “what if we have an argument? What if she starts to realise that I won’t always have time for her and she gets sick of it? Misses the freedom of being able to sleep with who she wants without a girlfriend holding her back?”

“Is that still how you see her? You think this is something new and shiny that she’ll get bored of and want to move on?” Clarke gaze diverts. “She’s not that person, Griff. How many times do you need to hear this before you accept that you’re it for her? She gets how time consuming work can be more than any of us and you need to start believing in her and yourself because I’m telling you now, Lexa would do anything for you and as much as it pains you to admit it, you’re exactly the same for her.”

The movie comes to an end and Raven switches them out before Clarke finally speaks again. “She terrifies me.”

Raven nods, “I know. But that’s not always a bad thing. Give your heart a chance over your brain for once, I think you’ll be pleasantly surprised.”

Clarke smiles wryly, “when did you get smart?”

“I’m a fucking genius, Griff. Plus Anya is romantic as fuck and always comes out with these kind of speeches, it rubs off on you.”

“Anya? Really?”

Loud laughs fill the space as Raven nods, “oh yeah. Behind closed doors she’s more of a sap than she lets people see, but don’t let her find out I told you that.”

It’s quietens as the movie plays out and Clarke shifts to rest her head in Raven’s lap, sighing in content as Raven plays with her hair and asks if she’s going to tell Lexa. “Maybe tomorrow. We haven’t been on a date in a while so I could take her to The Dropship? I can ask about the gala then too.”

“Can I come to the gala? I’ll bring popcorn and watch gleefully from the side lines.” Raven winces when Clarke slaps her thigh through a chuckle. “I can keep Abby distracted and Anya can make Finn feel like a chihuahua with that beautiful death glare she has. I’ll leave Niylah for Woods.”

They spend the remainder of the night gossiping about random things until Clarke’s phone rings hours later and she smiles as Lexa’s grinning face greets her before she presses answer and laughs at Raven’s grunt when she uses her legs as momentum to stand and make her way down the hall, “hey, babe.”

Hi, beautiful,” Lexa sighs dreamily, “are you having a good time with Raven?”

Clarke chuckle as she hears the slur in Lexa’s tone, “I am. It sounds like you’re having fun with Anya too.”

I was. She fell asleep about fifteen minutes after Luna and Octavia left. Some girls just can’t handle their whiskey, tequila and beer.”

Jesus Christ. “Oh,” she says in amusement, “and you can?”

I’m a,” hiccup, “I’m a badass, Clarke Griffin.”

Lexa giggles as Clarke hums. “Do you want me to come hom- back to yours?” Damn it, Raven.

You don’t have to do that.” There’s a pause and Clarke hears Lexa’s sheets crunching as she obviously gets in to bed. “Are you okay now? Did Raven fix you? Shit... that wasn’t the word I was looking for because you don’t need fixing. I mean did she help you get through what was bugging you because fixing you would imply that your aren’t already perfect and you are. Perfect that is. Everything about you.”

Clarke lets Lexa rant until she can imagine the adorable crease in her brow as she tries to organise her words. “She did. I was thinking maybe we could go on a date tomorrow if you’re feeling up to it and we can talk?”

I’d love that. I love going on dates with you and spending time with you even if all we’re doing is sitting on the couch.” Lexa settles down into the bed and Clarke waits because she can hear Lexa wants to say more. “I, uh, I was also thinking we could do something.” Her voice lowers and Clarke gulps because she knows that tone, even through the drunken slur. “I thought maybe after you graduate we could spend the weekend at the Lake House. Just the two of us and,” Clarke can picture Lexa bite her lip, “and maybe we could use our present finally? It’s burning a hole in my drawer, Clarke, begging to be inside you.”

“Fuck,” Clarke moans lowly but isn’t capable of much else.

And, and also we could try that thing with me.”

“Sounds like an eventful weekend.” Clarke sags back against the wall, suddenly picturing Lexa blindfolded and cuffed to the bed. “Are you sure you don’t want me to come home?” Even though she wouldn’t let Lexa do anything because she sounds incredibly intoxicated and Clarke is barely tipsy after a couple bottles of wine between them, but she has a need to be close to Lexa right now.

Lexa sighs and Clarke can hear the pout, “no, I don’t want to cut your night with Raven short. Plus I’m about ready to pass out and Anya is here. Good night, beautiful.”

“Night, babe. I’ll bring you some coffee in the morning.”

A heavy sigh crackles through the speaker and Clarke knows Lexa is already dropping off, “you’re the best.” And the phone goes dead.

Clarke shakes her head as she re-enters the room to Raven looking at her curiously, “they’re both drunk and asleep.”

“So coffee run in the morning?”

“Coffee run in the morning.”

-

Echo laughs at them as soon as they walk through the door. “I got an interesting text from Luna last night complaining about how painfully single she is. Do I have your girlfriends to thank for that?”

“Ah, Luna’s hot, she could have anyone she wanted.”

Clarke and Echo look at Raven like she’s grown a second head. “Since when are you Luna’s fan?”

Raven shrugs, “I’m allowed to change my opinion without having to explain myself. As long as she doesn’t go near Anya of course.”

“There she is,” Clarke grins when she sees the hint of venom in Raven’s eyes before she faces Echo, “can I get four coffees please? Two as strong as possible, like, make them evil, and two normal ones.”

“Get that bad did they?”

“I mean, I can only talk for Lexa-”

Raven cuts in. “And Anya isn’t even human before caffeine when she hasn’t been drinking the night before. She’s like the fucking devil when she has.”

Echo chuckles as she puts some pastries in a bag and hands them over, “new recipe, let me know what you think.”

She turns to make the coffees and Clarke pulls out her phone, laughing loud and boisterous as she opens Instagram. “Oh, god.”

“What’s up?”

Raven’s eyes widen when Clarke shows her before she joins in with the laughter. “Lincoln’s going to kill her.”

They scroll pass image after image of Lincoln sleeping with a duvet barely covering the V of his hip line with tags of ‘look how hot my man is’ and ‘yeah you should be jealous of me’ and ‘you should see what’s under here’ and ‘boy can go all night, #stallion’. “Can we make it a new rule that O isn’t allowed her phone when she’s drunk?”

“As long as she isn’t taking pictures of me asleep and practically naked I don’t care.”

Echo returns moments later and Clarke shows her the phone. “Oh wow. Lincoln’s going to kill her.”

“That’s what I said.”

Raven chuckles, “I can just imagine it now,” and her voice deepens, “I’m more than just my body, Octavia.”

“I’m know, babe,” Clarke voice pitches up, “and I love everything about you, but it’s one the world deserves to see.”

“Including my dad,” Raven continues, “because you remember he follows me on all social media, right?”

“Damn it! I can’t believe Lexa and Anya let me do this.” Clarke’s voice returns to normal, “because you know she’s going to blame them for her getting drunk and doing stupid shit.”

Echo raises her brow at their antics, “did you two get drunk, too?” They shake their heads simultaneously and Echo watches them like she doesn’t believe them before she adds brownies to the bag, “don’t forget to let me know about that new recipe.”

“Why do you have to be straight?” Raven speaks and Clarke agrees instantly, mouth already watering at the brownies.

“You only want me for my brownies.”

Raven cocks her head and skims her eyes over Echo, “what else would I want you for?” And then a sly smirk, “the chocolate treats are a bonus.”

Echo rolls her eyes at the innuendo and ‘shoo’s them away.

They giggle down the street until they reach the gym, saying a quick hi in greeting to Murphy and Charlotte before they’re outside Lexa’s door and Raven gets a mischievous glint in her eyes.

She pounds on the door loudly, laughing when they hear Anya shout through to Lexa that someone is there and receiving nothing in return.

Raven carries on banging until the door is suddenly ripped open and Anya’s glaring face is in front of them, “what the fuck do you wan- oh. Hey, baby.”

“I come baring coffee, pastries and brownies. I might keep all the brownies for myself but you can have the others.”

“Fuck I love you.” She stands to the side and gives Raven a long kiss as she passes before she acknowledges Clarke. “Lexa is still dead to the world,” she grunts, “pouring cold water over her is the only way to wake her up.”

Clarke scoffs, “yeah I’m not doing that,” before she takes her coffees off of the tray and puts the bag of pastries and brownies she fights Raven for between her teeth in a rush to Lexa’s room as Raven and Anya say hello properly.

Lexa is curled up like a burrito with her nose pressed tightly against the pillow Clarke uses to sleep, breathing heavy and deep and Clarke melts at the sight. She places the coffee gently on the bed side table along with the bag and slowly lays in front of Lexa, playing with a loose strand of hair as she takes in the soft features. It’s not until she’s running her thumb along Lexa’s hairline that eyes blink open sleepily before Lexa nuzzles back down into the pillow. “Feels nice.”

“How’s your head?”

“Hurts.”

Clarke giggles at the whiny word and leans over to kiss Lexa’s cheek, “I have coffee and breakfast.”

“I would jump for joy but I don’t trust my body.” It’s looks like the hardest struggle ever for Lexa to sit up and rest against the head board and Clarke leans over her to grab the disposable cups, handing Lexa hers who takes a deep sniff and sags down with a grin, “you got Echo to make it evil.”

“Sure did. I need you awake and alert for our date tonight.” Lexa eyes sparkle back at her as the recollection of last night’s phone call comes back to her and then she blushes fiercely. “Has everything just come back to you?” She nods sheepishly and Clarke takes one of the twirling baked goods out of the bag, instantly hit with a sweet cinnamon smell and breaks a piece off to feed to Lexa. “I think a weekend away sounds amazing.” Lexa moans, and Clarke isn’t sure if it’s the taste of the puffy substance or the thought of a weekend away. When she moves to straddle Lexa and takes a bite of her own, she isn’t sure what hers means either.

Lexa’s free hand automatically moves to Clarke’s hip, “so are you alright now?”

The nod Clarke gives her is nothing but genuine and Lexa finally allows herself to relax after three weeks. “I’m sorry I’ve been so distant.”

“I was worried about you.”

“Yeah. I’m sorry about that too.” Lexa doesn’t verbally respond, just give Clarke that look that has her rolling her eyes. “I know, I know, I never need to apologise to you. But if you pick me up for our date tonight, I’ll explain everything and I’ll make it up to you.”

Lexa frowns as Clarke shifts to get off of her, “you aren’t staying?”

Clarke smirks in that playful way Lexa has missed, “not a chance in hell, Woods. We’re doing this properly. I’m going to go to spend the day in my dorm and get ready there, then you’re going to pick me up at eight, we have reservations at The Dropship for half past.”

“The Dropship? That isn’t really-”

“Your scene, I’m aware. Let me be the doting girlfriend and treat you to a fancy dinner for once please.” Lexa pouts. “Don’t be a brat,” Clarke chuckles and opens the door, her retreating form shouting as she leaves, “and don’t be late, Lexa.”

A grimace hits Lexa as she takes a large sip of the coffee, momentarily forgetting how strong it is before she attempts to get up and head down to the gym for a work out before her shift.

Anya is asleep again, her head in Raven’s lap as Raven flicks through Netflix and combs Anya’s hair. “You’d better be gone by the time I finish work. I need to get ready for my date.”

“Aye, aye, Cap’n Woods. I can help you get ready if you want.”

“Hard pass, Rae.” She only looks mildly offended.

“By the way, have you seen O’s Insta?”

Lexa shakes her head as she takes out her phone and is torn between laughing and gagging as she scrolls through, “Lincoln is going to kill her.”

Chapter Text

It’s fifteen minutes before eight and Lexa’s pacing in front of Clarke’s dorm.

She has to admit, she’s a little nervous for what’s coming. It’s more the fact that she doesn’t have even the slightest inkling about what has been wrong with Clarke rather than being worried that it’s something to do with her, since Clarke has been very clear it’s nothing to do with Lexa.

But still, there’s a weird feeling at the pit of her stomach as she anxiously waits for eight to roll up.

She doesn’t have to wait, it seems, as the next time she turns to pace, Clarke is leaning on her doorframe with a small smirk and her arms crossed over her chest. Lexa didn’t even hear her open the door and she jumps a little. “I thought I’d save you the suffering of wearing down the soles of your shoes for another ten minutes.”

Lexa doesn’t hear a word as her mouth gapes. Clarke’s curly hair hangs low on her collar bones, the silky, dark blue dress, much like the one she’d worn at the benefit, only cut lower so her breasts are pushed together, clings in all the right places, a sliver of silver catching the light from her necklace that dips into the crease, and a slit that ends at the top of her thigh. “Wow, you... you look incredible.”

Clarke blushes slightly and even though Lexa feels inadequately dressed in comparison, Clarke still somehow manages to make her feel like she’s wearing a thousand dollar suit instead of black slacks and a nice shirt with one of Anya’s blazers thrown over the top, “you don’t look too bad yourself, stud. Let me just grab my purse and shoes.”

The silver shoes and purse Clarke comes back out with really tie the outfit together and Lexa smiles inwardly at the fact Clarke has managed to coordinate herself with the surprise Lexa has outside for her without even knowing.

She takes Clarke’s hand and pulls it to hold her elbow as they make their way down the stairs and she bites her lip when Clarke glances around in confusion, “Lex, where’s your car?”

Lexa watches Clarke watch as her lip slowly pops back out from under her teeth before a sly grin makes its way to her mouth and she digs in her pocket to pull out a new set of keys, clicks on them to deactivate the alarm and sees Clarke’s eyes widen and brows lift as the matt black Audi with silver detail flickers its lights to show Clarke what they’ll be arriving in. “I got Raven to let me borrow one of the cars she’s been working on before it ends up in the next magazine. I thought it would be nice to arrive in style instead of my old, beat up piece of junk.”

“Oh,” Clarke says as she wraps her arms around Lexa’s neck, “you are so getting laid tonight.”

“That was the plan.” Lexa opens the passenger door for Clarke to get in and breathes deep at that ‘new car’ smell as she takes Clarke’s hand with a kiss to her knuckles before Clarke gracefully slides in and buckles her belt before Lexa closes the door behind her and practically skips around to the driver’s side.

She could definitely get used to this.

Lexa feels like a fucking celebrity when they pull up outside ‘The Dropship’, valet waiting for them as she runs back around to open Clarke’s door for her, Clarke blushing again at the act as Lexa passes off the keys with a warning that has the valet gulping through his nod.

Clarke laughs, “that was mean.”

“I’ve never got to do anything like this so I wanted to test out the stereotype,” Lexa jokes, causing Clarke to shake her head, “plus if anything happens to the car Raven would have my head.”

“Like you couldn’t take her.”

“That girl knows how to make a bomb, Clarke, I’d rather not risk it.”

Clarke grips onto Lexa’s elbow again with a light chuckle, pulls Lexa along with her until they’re at the front desk and the woman behind it smiles at them. “Hi, reservation for Doctor Griffin. We’re a little early.” The fact that it’s because Lexa decided to test out just what the car is capable of on the way goes unsaid.

“Of course, Doctor. We’re just clearing down your table now if you’d like to get a couple of drinks from the bar and I’ll call you when it’s ready.”

They both smile in thanks and Lexa hangs her jacket over a chair at a free table to secure it before her eyes widen at the selection of whiskeys along the top shelf. She loves her whiskey, evidently, and some of the brands up there are ones she could only ever dream of trying. “What can I get for you?”

“Apple martini for me, please. Lex?” Lexa doesn’t hear her. “Lexa, you alright there, babe?”

“Clarke... there’s... so many.” She can’t decide if she’s in heaven or hell to be honest.

Clarke snorts next to her as the barman looks on confused. “She’ll have whichever whiskey you recommend, neat, one ice cube, thanks.”

He grins with a wink and sets about making their drinks as Lexa spins to face her with a hiss, “Clarke, he’s just going to pick the most expensive.”

“Stop it.”

“Stop what?”

A cocked brow, “you know what. If he picks the most expensive, he picks the most expensive. Stop calculating how much tonight is going to cost or I’m not going to let you look at the menu and I’ll order for you.”

“But-”

Clarke cuts Lexa off with a peck that instantly relaxes her and mumbles against her lips. “Stop.”

“Okay,” Lexa sighs.

Their drinks are in front of them moment later and the barman smirks, “it isn’t the most expensive, by the way, I’d never disrespect whiskey like that just to gain a profit. Well, I might to rude, stuck-up businessmen that order it to pretend they’re better than they are, but they often don’t know what they’re talking about.”

Lexa blushes, “sorry.”

He waves her off and thanks Clarke for the larger than normal tip she gives him for his honesty before moving on to the next person. “Shall we, Miss Woods?”

“We shall, Doctor Griffin.”

“I mean, I wasn’t exactly lying, I will be in a month.”

Lexa pulls Clarke’s chair out for her and kisses her on the cheek from behind, “you will, and it sounds hot as fuck.”

“You realise that’s my mom’s title too, right?” Clarke wiggles her brows and Lexa scrunches her nose as she sits opposite.

“Rephrase, it sounds hot as fuck on you.” Lexa swirls the amber liquid in her glass. “So, uh, did you want to talk now or wait until after dinner?”

There’s a deep sigh that surrounds them after Clarke takes in a breath, “I don’t have anywhere to live after I graduate.”

And Lexa should be used to this by now, the way Clarke simply blurts things out without any build up, but the sentence still has her hand freeze in mid-air, the slowly melting ice cube clanging against the glass. “What?”

“I- I was going to ask Octavia, but then she asked Lincoln to move in with her, and I can’t afford a place of my own without my mother’s help, which I refuse to ask for, and obviously I won’t be able to stay in the dorm. A lot of interns usually rent out a place with each other, but I don’t feel comfortable living with somebody that I don’t know.”

“Clarke...”

“And Raven lives with Anya so she’s out of the equation.”

“Clarke...”

“And there’s no way that I can move back home, I’d go insane. I suppose I could ask Bellamy as a last resort but sometimes he can be so-”

“Clarke!” Lexa chuckles as Clarke’s mouth snaps shut and she looks up through long lashes. “Breathe.” She reaches across to take Clarke’s hand and holds it in the middle of the table, thumb brushing along the knuckles. “Is this what’s been bothering you?” Clarke nods. “Why didn’t you tell me? Wait, scratch that, I know why you didn’t tell me.” She shakes her head at herself as Clarke focuses on her untouched drink before Lexa bites her lip. “You know O would kick Lincoln out if it meant living with you, right?”

Lexa slides over to the next seat so that she’s closer to Clarke, and tries to force some playful teasing into her tone as she brushes a lock of hair behind her ear as Clarke’s eyes flit back up to hers with a wry grin, “I’m sure he’d love that.” Clarke sighs, “I can’t move in with a newly living together couple, Lex. I know both O and Lincoln would be fine with it, but-”

“You wouldn’t be.”

“Yeah.”

There’s a small silence between them, and Lexa knows what she’s going to say, knows Clarke knows what she’s going to say, and thinks she already knows the answer, but can’t stop herself, finally takes a sip of the most amazing whiskey she’s had in her life and closes her eyes at the burn before a satisfied hum vibrates in her throat and she opens her eyes to see Clarke smiling at her. “You know, you could always-”

“Don’t,” Clarke cuts her off gently, “don’t say it. Because if you say it, then I might consider it, and if I consider it, I’ll probably say yes, and if I say yes... it’s too soon, Lex. What, what if it goes terribly wrong? What if we get into an argument because I’m too busy working and never see you, where will I go then?” She knows she’s just reiterating what she’d said to Raven yesterday, but she can’t stop herself. “What if you realise that I’m not worth it, that your feelings-”

Lips on her own cut Clarke off and she quickly finds herself grabbing the back of Lexa’s neck to deepen it before Lexa pulls back with a small giggle, seemingly the only one out of the two still aware of their surroundings. “You can question a lot of things about me, Clarke, but don’t ever question the way I feel about you.” Clarke shudders against Lexa’s lips to compose herself. “So what if we get into an argument? It’s bound to happen, it does in every relationship. And I know how busy you’re going to be, I knew that before we became official, just like you know how busy I am. There could be days or even weeks when we don’t see each other properly, but I know we will more than make up for it when we do. I’ll still bring you lunch when I can, and we’ll still find time to go on dates. You spend every night at my place anyway and I love having you around. The only thing that would change is the label.”

“That’s what Raven said,” Clarke says hoarsely, “Lex, babe, it’s a huge risk.”

Lexa shakes her head, pecking Clarke again, “it’s not a risk, it’s a journey.” Clarke rolls her eyes and Lexa pulls back with a toothy smile. “Besides, failing that you know full well my mom would take you in.”

That gains a genuine laugh out of Clarke, “well, she does prefer me to you.”

“I can’t even deny that.”

A throat being cleared pulls them from each other, and the woman from the front looks between them sheepishly, “your table is ready, Doctor Griffin.”

“Excellent,” Lexa replies instead, “I do believe I was promised to be wined and dined this evening.” The woman takes Lexa’s jacket as they’re lead to their table, Lexa looking around the dining room in amazement. “This is stunning, Clarke, it complements you perfectly.”

Clarke rolls her eyes as they reach the table and Lexa pulls out the chair for her before taking her own seat as a server makes his way towards them. “Good evening, ladies. Can I start you off with a drink?” They both order water since Lexa is driving, even if she insisted that she didn’t mind Clarke having alcohol.

The atmosphere feels light and they exchange playful remarks throughout, Clarke happy that she decided to bring things up before they sat down for their meal and smiles as Lexa finally relaxes in a place she feels like she doesn’t belong in, sits back and lets Clarke dote on her as promised.

It isn’t until dessert rolls around and Lexa moans at the gooey chocolate that sticks to her mouth that Clarke remembers the other thing she needs to bring up. “So, there’s a gala next week.” Lexa hums as she raises her brow for Clarke to continue. “It’s going to be full of doctors and some people associated with them like investors, or even friends and family and-”

“Is this your way of telling me that Finn will be there?”

Clarke stutters, “how are you so fucking perceptive?” Lexa smirks. “But yes, Finn will be there... so will Niylah.”

“Okay.”

“Okay?”

Lexa tilts her head with a fond grin, “okay. What, did you expect me to be pissed that your exes will be there even though it’s out of your control? You’re the jealous one in this relationship, Clarke.”

“But you’re the possessive one.” Lexa hums in agreement. “Anyway, that’s not why I brought it up. Will you be my date for it?”

“Won’t your mom get mad?”

Clarke scoffs, “I really don’t give a shit. You’re my guest, not hers.”

“In that case,” Lexa leans over and takes Clarke’s hand again, “I’d be honoured to be your escort, Doctor Griffin.”

A lip gets dragged into Clarke’s mouth and Lexa pauses with her spoon near her lips, mouth open as the chocolate drips onto her plate when Clarke’s eyes darken. “I could get used to you calling me that.”

“Bill?”

“Definitely.”

-

Lexa kisses Clarke slow and deep as soon as they’re in the apartment, and Clarke instantly sags against the door. “Thank you for dinner, beautiful, it was amazing.”

“You’re welcome, for the fourth time.” Once after the bill was handed to them. Once when the car came back unscathed. Once when Lexa had shut the car off, and now.

“Is it so wrong to let my girl know how appreciative I am of her?”

Clarke leans forward, nipping down Lexa’s neck as she begins unbuttoning her shirt, “I’m sure there are other ways you can do that.”

Lexa hums softly as Clarke’s mouth presses heavier along her newly exposed collar bone, takes the shirt with it so it falls off of Lexa’s arms into a heap on the floor before unclasping her bra and allowing it to follow. Lexa’s hands glide up Clarke’s back to unzip her dress to join them, leaving Clarke in a matching blue strapless bra and underwear which has Lexa’s mouth watering.

Expecting tonight to be a blur of tangled limbs, Clarke is slightly taken back by Lexa’s fingers tickling up her stomach, across the bulge of her bra and up her chest until Lexa’s hand cups the back of her neck to pull her back in before she takes a step forward and the cold buckle of the belt holding Lexa’s slacks makes her heated skin shiver.

“Beautiful,” Lexa mumbles against Clarke’s lips before Clarke whimpers when Lexa stays where she is, silently begging her to properly kiss her, sighs when she finally does and it’s so soft and gentle, so precise, that it distracts Clarke to the point that she doesn’t actually remember Lexa leading them towards the bedroom until she’s spun around and Lexa gently lowers her onto the bed, following after until Clarke feels the comfortable pressure of Lexa’s body on hers.

A moan that neither can tell comes from echoes around them when Lexa settles in between Clarke’s legs, her hips automatically nudging into Clarke as their kiss grows deeper through the slow pace. Lexa’s hand starts to make its way down Clarke body in the opposite direction from a minute ago and her palm spreads over Clarke’s hip to help her rock against her before she hisses into Clarke’s mouth when nails drag down her back and Clarke whines into her mouth, hips taking on a rhythm of their own when Lexa’s hips slip and the buckle catches her clit through her underwear. “Lexa.”

Clarke’s head flies back in a moan when Lexa takes that as her cue to push deeper, angles her head to move along Clarke’s jaw until it finds its way to her ear and her teeth snatch the lobe, “what do you want, baby?”

“You, just... you. Fuck.” Hands dig into Lexa’s hair, pants in the otherwise silent room as Lexa leans back on her knees to undo her belt, shimmying out of the slacks, socks and her boxers with lightning speed before her fingers are fumbling at the blue lace of Clarke’s lower body, drags them down and over her legs as she loosens herself from Clarke’s grip to pull them free, laughs a little when the fabric gets caught on Clarke’s heels that after a moment of deliberation, she decides to leave on. Clarke bites her lip at the cloud that seems to take over Lexa’s pupils, spreads her legs more and digs the heels into the mattress as she bucks her hips impatiently. “Lexa!”

The snap of her name seems to spur Lexa into action, albeit dazed and unfocused, “right, sorry.”

Clarke rolls her eyes with a tut, “I swear sometimes you’re still a teenager.”

“I have the sexiest girl in the world spread on my bed in just her bra and fucking heels, Clarke, you’ll have to forgive me for short circuiting in awe from time to time.”

“Tell me again how you managed to get all those girls, Casanova.”

Lexa growls, drapes herself back over Clarke so that her hair frames their faces, “I’ll show you.”

Clarke’s snarky reply is cut off when Lexa sucks her bottom lip into her mouth with a light, reprimanding bite, and Clarke gasps as the heat between Lexa’s legs settles against her own before pushing once more and her hands are back to anchoring herself on Lexa’s back while her legs wrap themselves around Lexa’s waist.

It doesn’t take Lexa long for her hand to slide under the cup of Clarke’s bra, softly kneading her breast as she thoroughly wrecks Clarke with the way she flicks her tongue against the roof of Clarke’s mouth, sucks Clarke’s own in until Clarke’s eyes roll back behind closed lids, nibbles at her lips and repeats the process over and over again whilst her other hand joins to mimic the motions on Clarke’s other breast, all while continuing to gently push her hips into Clarke until she’s panting into Lexa’s mouth through moans, hips stuttering as they push up to meet Lexa thrust for thrust, the nails on one hand slicing down Lexa’s back to claw at her ass, prompts Lexa to move faster until she can no longer breathe and tears her lips away to suck in a long, shuddering breath as Lexa begins to lightly pinch Clarke’s nipples.

Lexa takes the break in the kiss to move down Clarke’s body, teeth gently scraping down Clarke’s throat, chest, abdomen, not feeling the need to mark her as she usually does because it doesn’t feel like that sort of energy. It feels nice, calm, and Lexa finds herself enjoying the serenity just as much as when they can’t seem to control themselves. Even with Clarke impatiently tugging at every part of Lexa she can get her hands on.

This would be the perfect setting to tell Clarke she loves her, but they’re going at Clarke’s pace and she doesn’t want to ruin it.

She doesn’t realise how much time she’s spent kissing along Clarke’s hips until Clarke adds a little pressure to the back of her head. “Lexa,” she quietly whines, a complete contrast to how verbal she normally is, “please.”

It’s in this moment that Lexa would usually tease, make Clarke beg for what she wants, but she looks so open right now, blue eyes shining as she looks down, that Lexa can’t bring herself to do it, instead gives into what Clarke’s eyes are so desperately asking for, and she kisses the inside of Clarke’s thigh just once before her tongue swipes through her folds, a moan finding its way up her throat as her eyes close at the taste and Clarke’s head sags back against the pillow with a sigh of relief.

“Oh god,” the pant comes from above Lexa, thighs clamping on either side of her head as Lexa uses just the tip of her tongue to circle Clarke’s clit, expecting Clarke to try and rush her but nothing comes, and as Lexa opens her eyes to check on her, she melts when all she sees is Clarke facing the ceiling, eyes closed as she bites her lip to control her whimpers, obviously feeding off of the same energy Lexa is.

Clarke’s fingers run smoothly through Lexa’s hair, just the slightest hint of a tug when Lexa adds a little pressure before she sucks Clarke’s clit into her mouth, her hands running up and down Clarke’s thighs with a feather light touch and she releases the suction, begins again with patterns of her tongue before her lips drag up and down until she’s kissed every inch of Clarke’s lower lips and ends back up at her clit.

She could’ve been down there for ten or thirty minutes for all she knows, basking in the slowness of it all, but eventually Clarke tugs harder on Lexa’s hair and she knows that it’s no longer enough, that Clarke needs something else, her body trembling and a light sheen of sweat causing her body to glow and when Lexa moans against her, a fresh gush of wetness lands on her chin as Clarke’s hips snap up and she breathes out Lexa’s name again, more needy, more desperate.

Lexa leaves to make her way back up Clarke’s body and Clarke groans in disappointment, furrows her brow in confusion, but then Lexa’s thumb replaces her tongue and Clarke gasps in synchronisation of Lexa reclaiming her lips and two fingers circle Clarke’s opening.

They both know Lexa could easily slide in, but Clarke still doesn’t rush her, allows Lexa to run her fingers up and down a couple of times until she finally slips in to the first knuckle and Clarke whimpers into her mouth. They aren’t kissing, simply close enough to touch the other’s lips, but it’s enough for Lexa to catch all the quiet noises Clarke is making and it’s enough for Clarke to smell herself on Lexa’s mouth until she can’t resist any longer, angles her jaw to taste herself on Lexa’s chin first, shudders when Lexa pulls her fingers out and slips in further, then her bottom lip, moans when Lexa repeats the action until she’s almost flush against Clarke. Then her tongue, which has Lexa growl gently and Clarke’s back arches when she feels the fingers push all the way in with a slight curl to them.

The next kiss is messy, all teeth and tongue, bit still somehow so soft, and it has Clarke feeling dizzy. Well, that and the fact that Lexa as begun a slow, deep pace with her fingers accompanied by her hips that Clarke can feel everywhere. Her entire body feels heightened, sensitive in a way it hasn’t felt before and she forgot she was still wearing heels until they dig into Lexa’s lower back and Lexa grunts into the kiss, which adversely only makes Clarke dig in harder and Lexa move harder and it’s all just suddenly harder.

Clarke wails as Lexa’s fingers twist inside of her, clings on like a koala as Lexa growls through the pain of Clarke’s heels and in the back of her mind Clarke knows she should let up, but her muscles feel seized up, too tense to be able to do anything but hold on tighter until the tense muscles start to shake and she rips her mouth away as Lexa curls her fingers up, thumb still circling over her clit and her steady pace stutters into a rut as her head falls to Clarke’s shoulder, pants into the skin as her free hand wraps around the back of Clarke’s neck to give herself some sort of balance. “Lex,” she attempts, “fuck, I’m so close, come on.”

Her hand is back on Lexa’s ass, hips bucking in any way they can before Lexa’s hand shifts so that her palm is smacking against Clarke’s clit instead of her thumb each time she thrusts back in and Clarke silently moans as a slapping sound joins their mutual pants and she can’t place what it is, whether it’s the noise, the way Lexa’s pace seems to match her heartbeat, the sounds of Lexa caught somewhere between grunting and whimpering against the vein in her neck, the scrape of fabric on her nipples, or the fact that Lexa is hitting her spot so perfectly, so meticulously that Clarke is practically tearing Lexa’s back up.

She doesn’t know what it is, but something in her gives, and suddenly her back would be arching if it wasn’t for Lexa’s weight against her, her thighs are clenching, and she sucks in a breath that gets trapped in her throat as her eyes squeeze shut and all she can see is colours exploding through her eyelids.

Lexa watches on as Clarke comes apart beneath her, coos gently down her ear and her fingers slow their pace until she feels Clarke begin to relax again and kisses her soft until Clarke become responsive to her lips, kisses back lazily until she stops twitching and finally manages to open her eyes as she tries to regain her breaths and Lexa pulls back to nuzzle her, “that was... different.” Clarke chuckles, hoarse and low. “But I think we should do the heels thing sparingly.”

“Fuck, I’m sorry,” Clarke winces, but Lexa shakes it off. “Did I hurt you?”

“I’ll live.”

Clarke shakes her head at the answer and makes a mental note to grab some cream when her legs are functioning. It takes a while, but she eventually calms down enough to stretch, Lexa waiting patiently as she does and she smiles with a small giggle, “the whole point of tonight was supposed to be me thanking you.”

“Oh, trust me, getting to watch you come like that is thanks enough.”

She pushes at Lexa’s shoulder until she grunts and rolls off, snorts when Clarke stands and wobbles. “Shut up, it’s because of my shoes.”

“Of course it is, beautiful.”

“Just you wait, Lex, let me get these things off and freshened up and I’ll show you how wrong you are.”

Lexa smirks, rests her head on her clean hand, “looking forward to it.”

Clarke laughs and throws one of her now free shoes at her before she turns to head to the bathroom. It’s only when she grabs her toothbrush, the one that replaced the spare she’d used all those weeks ago, and notes just how much of her is in Lexa’s bathroom; her own robe, towel, skin products, hair products, hell... she even knows that a few dirty pairs of scrubs are in the laundry basket, that Raven and Lexa’s words hit her. There’s a part of Clarke in every section of this apartment. She has two drawers here, both full, space in the closet, also full, DVDs, her own mug, some of her paintings hanging up, a picture of her, Octavia, and Raven in the living room. They’re right. They’re both so right.

The only thing missing is a label.

Lexa is idly flicking through her phone by the time Clarke finishes up and she frowns when Clarke stops at the door, mouth slightly parted and a light furrow in her brow. “Let’s do it.”

“I thought that’s what I was waiting for,” Lexa says through a smirk and Clarke shakes her head, the determined look halting Lexa’s playful exterior.

“No. I mean us. Me. Here. With you. Let’s do it.”

“Wait,” Lexa slowly lowers her phone onto the bed, “are you serious?”

Clarke gulps, breathes through her nose, “yeah... yeah I think I am.” Lexa is staring at her in a different kind of awe, eyes bright and gleeful and Clarke knows she’s making the right decision. “Let’s move in together.”

Chapter Text

Living with Lexa is... no different to not living with Lexa.

It's only been a week so far, and Clarke still has a few things left in her dorm, purely for appearance sake until she finds the balls to tell her mother that she's moved in with the girl Abby isn't a fan of.

That's a conversation she wants to put off until she absolute has to tell her.

She doesn't really see much of Lexa in private. Lincoln insisted that he help move the majority of Clarke's load to the apartment above the gym- with a smile so bright that it could give Clarke a tan- and practically forced Murphy to help out too, meaning Lexa was mainly stuck in the gym and of course Clarke was between studying and packing/unpacking.

And Indra and Ryder? Well, Ryder all but squeezed Clarke to death in a gigantic hug and Indra baked them a 'moving in' cake, telling Clarke that she couldn't be happier to incorporate her into their ever growing family.

Clarke maybe nearly cried at that.

It's light and easy. The first night they went over to Indra's house for dinner because they're all tired from rearranging things for Clarke in Lexa's apartment. Clarke had rolled her eyes at the cheeky grin Lexa gave her because she doesn't have that much stuff. Raven and Octavia pounced on her as soon as she walked through the door and Anya just gave her this little, knowing smirk from the sidelines before she brought Lexa into a headlock and began to ruffle her hair. The rest of the week pretty much consists of Clarke staying up far too late to study until Lexa comes out and drags her to bed or Clarke getting bored of the words in front of her before she skips downstairs to make Lexa take a break when she's craving one of Echo's delectable pastries.

Part of her wonders what all the fuss was in the first place, why she was so adamant about everything moving too quickly... then she remembers the other part...

“Stop worrying, Griff. It's not like mama G is going to be able to tell you two are living together.” Raven rolled her eyes as she licks her fingers clean of the powdered sugar from her doughnut. “Besides, she's going to be way too busy fluttering around to take much notice of you.”

The gala. The gala which is happening in roughly three hours. The gala that she's invited Lexa to and sort-of-maybe forgot to tell her mom that Lexa will be coming. Add the fact that not one, but two, of her exes are going to be there. If she counts Finn as an ex that is.

Because that's going to go down well.

“Gee, thanks, Rae.”

“Mommy issues aside,” Raven smirks, eyeing Clarke as she finishes the last curl of her hair through a glare, before a serious look graces her features, “what are you going to do about Niylah?”

Clarke shrugs, “if she talks to me I'll be polite, if not I won't lose any sleep over it.”

Raven chuckles, “always the diplomat.” Clarke sets the curlers down and spins so her hair waves out around her, raising a brow at Raven. “You're wearing the red dress, right?” Clarke nods. “I'd go straight.” Clarke snorts and Raven smirks, “there's a gay joke in there somewhere.”

Rolling her eyes, Clarke changes over to her straighteners before she sighs, “maybe going tonight is a bad idea.”

“What? No way, Griff, this is your party too,” Raven exclaims, “go and have fun and wow all of the important doctors. There's worse people to have by your side than Woods. Plus, you know, free champagne.”

Clarke laughs, “you know just what to say.” She nods to herself as she begins to straighten out the curls she's just put in. “You're right-”

“Usually am.”

A glare. “Once graduation comes around and I begin my course, I'm not going to have time to even watch an episode of 'Orange is the New Black', never mind actually go out and enjoy myself.”

“That's the spirit, Griff! It's going to be just fine,” Raven pops another doughnut into her mouth, talking around it, “trust me.”

-

It's not fine. It's not fine at all.

Fucking Raven.

One, Lexa isn't here yet and Clarke can't get a hold of her. Two, Niylah keeps glancing over at her with this smug fucking smirk like she's done nothing wrong and deserves to be there more than Clarke does. Three, Finn... enough said. Four, Abby glares at her every time she so much as lets her fake smile drop. Five, creepy, old surgeons and investors. Six, creepy, old surgeons and investors wives. Seven, where the fuck is Lexa?

Clarke's currently sitting at the open bar, vodka and tonic left untouched in front of her as she watches the drips from the condensation slither down the glass, idly plays with the plastic stirrer inside the glass and taps her fingers along the bar top.

“Excuse me? Is this seat taken?”

She glances off to the side to see a woman with an all-too-familiar smirk, her hand placed neatly on the back of the chair next to her. “My girlfriend is sitting there,” Clarke replies, but it doesn't seem to deter the woman.

No, instead, she playfully looks around, “really? Is she invisible or something?”

Clarke rolls her eyes, fiddles with the bracelet on her wrist, “she's running late.”

“I can't believe it,” she says in shock, and Clarke tilts her head in confusion. “I don't understand how somebody could leave such a beautiful woman waiting.”

A large, unbelieving laugh escapes Clarke and the woman grins broadly at her. “Oh wow, did you really just go there after I told you I have a girlfriend?”

She winces, but Clarke can tell it's all for show, “I know, I'm sorry, but at least it brought a smile to your face. Let me buy you a drink to make up for it.”

“It's an open bar,” Clarke shakes her head, unable to stop her own smile from creeping up and gestures for the woman to sit down as she looks at the now dismal looking drink in front of her, “but the ice in this has completely melted so it's practically water at his point.”

“In that case,” she sits as she flags down the bar staff, “can the lady have another, and I'll go for a spiced rum and coke please, no ice.”

Clarke raises her brow and the woman tilts her head in question. “It's nothing, you just don't strike me as a rum person.” She checks her phone again, still nothing. “My girlfriend is a whiskey drinker.”

The woman scrunches her nose, “can't stand the stuff. So what's she like then? This girlfriend of yours?”

“She's sweet,” Clarke begins, a fond smile spreading across her lips as the woman looks on in interest, “kind, gentle but could totally kick your ass if needed.” A not-so-subtle warning but it simply earns her a chuckle. “Funny, charming, cocky, and she would do anything, absolutely anything for the ones she loves.”

“She sounds like a catch.”

Clarke snorts, “as long as she has a damn good reason for being late she is.”

“Would you believe her if she said that traffic was fucking insane?” The facade drops and Lexa's wide, green eyes and pouting lips cause Clarke's features to soften, “I'm really sorry, beautiful. My Bluetooth wouldn't connect so I couldn't answer the phone and cars just weren't moving and it was a total nightmare.” Their drinks come to them and Lexa grimaces, “why did I order this?”

“I have no idea, but I feel like you having to drink that is punishment enough,” Clarke laughs, reaching out to take Lexa's hand to bring the attention back to herself, “I'm glad you're here.”

Lexa's grins softly and brings their hands up to kiss Clarke's knuckles, “I don't think I'd dare be anywhere else if that look of death you gave me when I came in is anything to go by.”

A sound of glass being tapped on by something metal echoes around the bustling room and they shift their focus to the other side where there's a small stage that has Abby tapping away with a glare at anybody still talking until the room is silent and Clarke squeezes Lexa's hand to keep herself grounded because she knows what's coming. “Attention everyone! Attention everyone!” Abby clears her throat and smiles as she looks down at all of the guests. “First of all I'd like to thank each and every one of you for being able to attend this... fabulous gathering tonight.”

“You're welcome, Abby,” Marcus shouts up and it brings a much needed relaxing vibe across Clarke's posture when most seem to laugh.

“She sounds like she's announcing something from 'The Purge',” Lexa remarks and Clarke shushes her.

Abby playfully glares at him. “Now, some of you have already heard about the wonderful news and exciting adventure that the hospital is about to embark on, but as for the rest of you, it's my pleasure to announce that we will be taking on the two-year intern and residency programme.” There's a few hushed, excited whispers through the crowd as Abby waits for them to settle down.

Lexa smiles over at Clarke before she leans over to kiss her cheek and Clarke squeezes her hand again.

“If you want more details, me or my heads of departments will happily answer them, but for now, I could not be more proud to introduce the first of our students. A student who will be graduating at the top of her class in a few weeks, a student that has spent every waking moment she has volunteering at the hospital to learn anything she can.” Clarke groans, but can't help the way her chest beats in excitement at the praise. “A student who I know spends more time studying and preparing than even I did, a student who cares about her patients and her work ethic and the people around her, a student from this area, a student whom most of us in this room watched grow into the fine, young woman she is today and hold near and dear, a student who I could not be happier to call my daughter...” Abby searches for Clarke with the most genuine smile she's had all night, until she finally does and it falters into a frown when she spots Lexa.

Fuck. Clarke knew there was something she was meant to do before Lexa got here.

Abby clears her throat, recovers quickly, “ladies and gentlemen, Clarke Griffin. Come up here, Clarke.”

The small round of applause feels weak in Clarke's ears as she sits there frozen until Lexa nudges her to get up and she does so on shaky legs, Abby glaring at her the entire way to the stage. Clarke plasters on a smile as she faces the crowd, Marcus hollering over everybody and she laughs to herself.

“You didn't tell me you'd be bringing a guest,” Abby leans down to whisper.

“I'm sorry, I totally forgot but er, mom, Lexa's going to be here tonight.”

Abby sighs, “we'll talk about this later. Now smile for the people.”

Clarke throws on the same, fake smile as a few people come over to congratulate her, some she knows, some she doesn't. “Well, you did it, I knew you would. Congrats.”

Her stomach drops at the voice from behind her and she closes her eyes to compose herself before she spins and greets her ex. “Niylah, how are you?”

“I'm good,” Niylah smiles, “thanks. And you?”

“Yeah, you know... busy,” Clarke nods, feeling more awkward by the second and darts her eyes around for Lexa, anyone really. “How's the erm, that thing you were, you know the thing.”

God, that was lame. Niylah laughs, “it's going well, final stages of testing.”

Arms wrap around Clarke's waist and Clarke sends a grateful sigh into the air. “Have I told you yet that you look beautiful tonight?”

“Not yet, you're slacking, Lex.”

“How terrible of me,” Lexa smirks, fully putting on a show for their audience, “is there any way I could make it up to you?” Clarke rolls her eyes at the suggestive tone and nudges her a little in a silent communication of 'pack it in' and Lexa blinks like she's only just noticed Niylah. “My apologies, my manners seem to be all over the place tonight.” Lexa hold out her hand. “Lexa Woods.”

Niylah takes the hand with a curious tilt of her head, “Niylah. You're here with Clarke?”

Clarke hums, “she's my girlfriend.”

“And you're her ex,” Lexa acts surprised, as if she didn't ask Raven and Octavia to dig out a picture so she knew who she was looking for, “I've heard a lot about you.”

“Really?”

Lexa scrunches her nose, “well, no actually. I've heard a couple of things, not good.” Clarke hisses Lexa's name under her breath, but Niylah seems to simply laugh it off. “What do you do?”

“I design 3D printing for amputees. Find new ways to make life easier, a way to feel like the limb is a part of you. It's how Clarke and I met. Right, Clarke?”

Clarke clears her throat, “uh, yeah. Niylah's main focus was soldiers, and of course you know I'm interested in trauma so I sat in on one of her classes once after mom recommended it and... yeah.”

“I have to admit,” Lexa says, “that's pretty cool. So are you a doctor, too?”

“Oh god no,” Niylah snorts, “being a doctor is far too time consuming. No, I just do the designs and sit it for trial runs, make adjustments and such. I mean, I do have a doctorate, but not surgical. What about you?”

Lexa grins, pulls Clarke closer, “I own a gym, very busy, so I understand how tight Clarke's schedule can be and can fully appreciate and support her because I know what it's like to chase your dream. Huh, I guess I have you to thank for that.”

There it is, the pissing contest Clarke was expecting, the one Raven told her would happen. She watches as Niylah's lips curl before she drags them into her mouth. “I guess you do.”

Niylah and Lexa have some strange kind of staring contest that begins to make Clarke feel uncomfortable. But of course, it's bound to get worse, right? Obviously it is, because not two seconds later Abby's voice interrupts them. “Oh, Niylah! It's so wonderful to see you.” Abby brings Niylah into a hug before she acknowledges Lexa. “Lexa.”

“Abby.”

“Niylah, it's been so long, I must say it's strange not to see your face around the hospital. You must come and visit us some time.”

Lexa turns her head into Clarke's shoulder and snickers as Clarke tries to contain a smile of her own, leans into Lexa's side more as both women in front of them seemingly ignore their presence. “Well I was just telling Clarke that my latest project is undergoing testing, once it passes you know you're my first call.” Abby's eyes widen and Niylah chuckles, “nu-huh, it's a surprise. Although Clarke did get a little sneak peek when I first began designing it.”

Abby turns to her in shock, “and you didn't tell your mother? Clarke...”

“Yes, well, the Chief had other priorities,” Clarke replied dryly. Abby's gaze lowers for a fraction of a second. “I need another drink, c'mon, Lex.”

“I would say it was nice meeting you but that would be a lie and I don't like liars.”

Clarke hisses, “Lexa.” She drags Lexa back to the bar and allows herself to loosen up at Lexa's smug smirk, “don't say it.”

“I wasn't going to say anything. Especially nothing about how once again you traded up. At least Niylah is super smart though, I'll give you that. Obviously not smart enough to keep you around, but smart.”

“Flatterer,” Clarke whispers against Lexa's lips after she leans forward to kiss her. “At least those two will hopefully leave us alone, they can talk for hours.”

Lexa shakes her head, “did you not hear your mom up there? She's proud as fuck of you, baby.”

“She was just saying that to make herself look good, and if she looks good, the hospital looks good.”

“I don't think you're giving her enough credit.” Clarke glares as she orders two more drinks, a whiskey for Lexa this time. “Okay, okay, I don't want to start an argument, I'm just saying.”

Clarke sighs, changes the subject, “doesn't Aden get his cast off tomorrow?”

A nod. “Yep, he's really looking forward to getting one of those metal wrist splints, says it's going to make him look like an MMA fighter or something.”

“Your brother is so weird.” Lexa agrees with a fond shrug. “Do you want me to be there? I can get him sorted quicker.”

“Thanks for the offer, beautiful, but we'll be fine waiting. Anyway, I think mom secretly likes reading all the old magazines.”

Clarke giggles, “okay, but if you get board let me know and I'll make a couple of calls.”

Lexa's joins her giggles, “my girlfriend, holding all the power for special treatment.”

“Clarke?” Both of them groan as Clarke mumbles out a 'fuck my life'. “You've been avoiding me.”

“You don't say, Finn. You remember Lexa?” Lexa nods at him, stands closer to Clarke as he takes them in.

“Oh, that was actually real? Like, real, real, not just a stunt to get me to back off?”

Okay, yes, technically, it was a stunt at the time, kind of, but it's not like Finn ever needs to know that and that fake stunt did turn into something real so it's not like Clarke should feel bad about it all. Plus it's already been a really long fucking night and they aren't even a quarter of the way through it. Unless she can conjure up some excuse to leave which would be a damn miracle because there's not a chance in hell her mother would believe her. “Nope, we're together, and we're kind of serious so...”

Lexa smirks, “kind of serious?”

Clarke squints her eyes in a playful scowl, “very serious.”

“Come on, Clarke, you have to be joking. I thought me and you had something special going on.”

In what universe? “It's 'you and I',” Lexa corrects. “I don't know, first I have to tell you what the word 'date' means, and now this.” She snaps her fingers and Clarke looks baffled. “I could've asked Finn about the traffic report, then I might not have been so late.”

Clarke laughs loud, thinking back to their first date. Finn glowers, “this gala isn't a plus one unless you are married or family, and you aren't a doctor or an investor-”

“Guess I'm just special.”

“Finn Collins?” Finn nods at the new voice. “Your dad's looking for you.”

Who would've thought Niylah would be the one to save the day? “If that boy is anything like his dad I feel sorry for him. Clarke, may I have a word?”

Clarke looks to Lexa who frowns. “I'll be right here, beautiful.”

“God,” Niylah groans in exaggeration, “I'm not going to try and kill her or anything.”

Lexa raises her brow before Niylah takes Clarke away, who tries to be casual. “So what's up?”

“Look, your mom has just tried to get me to get back together with you.” Clarke's heart drops. She should've expected this really, but to do it when Lexa is in the room with her is just in poor taste and it unsettles her. “I told her that wasn't going to happen, that you look happy.” Niylah takes in a deep breath. “I don't regret breaking things off, Clarke, I think it's what was best for both of us.” Clarke is cut off before she can respond. “But, I do regret the way I handled it and I just wanted to say I'm really sorry about that. Genuinely. I should've been more tactful and more respecting of your feelings. I've been wanting to apologies since it happened but I guess I just couldn't rack up the nerve to do so. I'm sorry about that too.” Clarke chuckles. “I- soon, I'm going to be doing some work for the hospital, your mom doesn't know about it yet, I'm still going over the contract with the board, but I'd like for us to be able to work in the same building without resentment and I didn't just want to show up one day and knock you off of your game. What I'm saying is I hope that we can be friends at some point down the line, I'd even settle for friendly acquaintances, if that's okay with you.”

Clarke chuckles, “is this why you kept smirking at me earlier? Because you knew you'd be working at the hospital?” Niylah grins in confirmation and Clarke shakes her head at herself. “You always did like knowing things before others.”

“So what do you say? Keep that professional fighting girlfriend of yours from attacking me and I'll deal with Abby?”

Eyes widen in shock, “how did you-”

“Know Lexa was a martial artist? I'm friends with a friend of hers, you might know her. Luna?” Clarke nods dumbly because what a small fucking world. “Yeah, as soon as I heard the name 'Lexa Woods' I knew who she was. Luna says a lot of wonderful things about her, I even knew about you and her but I thought I'd keep our past to myself until I spoke to you about it. She seems like good people.”

“She is,” Clarke says with a fond hint, “wow, this is insane.” She can see Lexa checking up on them out of the corner of her eye. “I should get back, but we'll definitely be talking about how you know Luna.”

Niylah bites her lip, “does that mean we can be friends?”

“That means I'll think about it.”

“I can live with that. I'd better be going myself, there's only so much of these people I can take in one night. It was good seeing you, Clarke, it really was, and I understand why you might not feel the same but, congratulations again, I know you're going to kill it. Lexa's a lucky woman.”

Clarke smiles more genuinely now, “thanks, Niylah.”

“For what it's worth, your mom wasn't just singing your praises to try and get us back together, she truly is proud of you, Clarke.” Niylah rests her hand on Clarke's shoulder for a second as she leaves before she spins back around with a smirk, “oh, and if you want to leave early,” she dramatically holds her stomach, “period cramps, never fails because it always makes people uncomfortable, even doctors.”

Lexa's head tilts in surprised confusion when Clarke gets back to her, still lightly sniggering to herself, “this was not the reaction I was expecting. What did she want?”

“I'll tell you when we get home. Now come on, we're going to enjoy ourselves for another hour or so and then I'm going to get period pains so we can get the hell out of here.”

“It's the first time you've said that since you moved in,” Lexa grins, “home. Feels good.”

It feels right.

-

Fuming is an understatement of how Lexa feels when she strides through the doors to the hospital the next morning.

She probably should've stayed home, but she'd promised Aden she would be there with him to get his cast off. “I mean, what kind of person does that? It's one thing to pretend I don't exist, I don't care, I can handle that, but to try and get Clarke and her ex back together behind Clarke's back while I'm there with her is just down right...” She lets out a long groan of frustration into the empty hallway as Indra looks on. “I'm not overreacting, right? Like, this is just ridiculous and pathetic and undermining to Clarke.”

“You are not overreacting.”

“Then can you tell me what to do?”

Indra hums, “you are going to do nothing. Not here. It will help no-one if you storm up to her office all guns blazing in the mood you're in. It won't help you, and it certainly will not help Clarke. She's Clarke's parent, this is her fight.”

“But, mom-”

“No 'but's, we're here for Aden today, not your temper.”

Aden's attention is taken away from the game on Lexa's phone, completely oblivious to his surroundings until his name is mentioned. “Uncle Gus is going to build me a frame for my cast so I can keep Clarke's drawing, how cool is that?”

Lexa forces a cheery tone into her voice as she answers, “so cool, Clarke will love that you're keeping it.” He smiles and turn back to the game. “She just- she had no right to do that, and now that Niylah's going to be working here she's going to be even more persistent.”

“Are you okay with that? With her doing work here?”

“Yeah, of course,” Lexa waves it off, “I trust Clarke, it's her mother that I don't.”

Indra hums again, “and Clarke? How does she feel about all of this?”

Lexa sighs, “she's hurt, that her mom would go behind her back like that, but she's not surprised. As for Niylah, she said that there's a high chance she won't see her much anyway since Niylah's job is more after the surgery.”

“Maybe she should tell Abby that the two of you are living together, it could make her back off a little.”

“I always try,” Lexa huffs, “I always try and give Abby the benefit of the doubt, you know? I always tell Clarke that she does have her best interests at heart, that she is proud of her and that she does love her. But after last night I'm worried. Abby's the Chief, she could literally make the next two years of Clarke's life a living hell if she wanted to, and telling her could make her back off, but it could also make her act colder towards Clarke than she already does. Personally, I'd tell her just to see that look on her face.” Indra scoffs. “But this is all Clarke's decision.”

Before they can discuss things further, they make it to the paediatric waiting room. Aden instantly goes to play with some of the other kids in the room, being the social butterfly he is, and Indra pulls out a couple of bills from her bag. “Why don't you go and get us some coffees from that little cafe upstairs? The vending machines here are atrocious.”

Lexa snorts, “sure thing, your highness.” Indra swats at her and she barely dodges it with a giggle as she makes her way towards the cafe.

She groans as soon as she enters however, because of course there are several attendings at a table, and of course Abby has to be sat with them. The one good thing is that Marcus is with them and he grins large a bright when he sees her before he stands. “Lexa! What are you doing here? Is your mom okay? Your dad? Anya? Aden? You?” The last one is a bit silly and he must realise it because obviously Lexa is okay, she's stood right here.

“Everyone is fine, Doctor Kane.” He glares at her. “Marcus. Aden is getting his cast off today.”

“Oh lovely, have you been waiting long? I could get-”

“No, no,” she stops him, “it's not a big deal, there's more important patients.” She can feel Abby's gaze burning into them, confusion evident because she's missing something, she just doesn't know what it is.

Marcus brings her into a hug before he spins her around to introduce her and sometimes she wonders how he isn't the head of paeds, since he's always so happy and pleasant to be around. “Guys, this is Lexa, her mom is one of ours in the police department and the one who held that benefit a while ago. I forgot to ask, you must introduce me to the person who baked all of those brownies, I'd quite happily spend all of my salary there. I told Abby she should've used them for the gala.”

Lexa learnt at a young age that 'one of ours' meant somebody in the emergency service field. “She was, was one of yours, but she's retired.” She smirks at Abby who bristles under Marcus' sentence and steals a pen and pad from his white coat to write down Echo's number. “I'll let Echo know I've given you her number, she does do deliveries and I'm sure she'd love to do catering for any future events. She's actually hoping to open her own bakery one day so anything like that would really help her out.”

“Oh I'm going to get so fat, please tell her she already has her first loyal customer. And retired or not, she'll always be one of ours. Is she here? I haven't seen her since the benefit and I'd love to go and catch up.”

“She's in the waiting room with Aden.” Marcus hugs her again before he turns to go and see Indra, Lexa shaking her head as the other attendings give her a small nod of acknowledgement, Abby still staring at her and she should resist, but she can't. “Chief, always a pleasure. Clarke says hi.”

Another set of eyes flick up to her, kind eyes. Lexa doesn't remember seeing this woman at the gala, but there were a lot of people there, even Marcus didn't get a chance to come and speak to her. “You're a friend of Clarke's?”

Lexa smirks, Abby's hold on her coffee tightening to the point that the cardboard is wrinkling. “We're dating.”

“Well I'm glad to see she's doing something other than this hospital.” Lexa's eyes widen and a blush covers her skin, Abby's coffee spurts back up as she chokes and the others around the table snigger. “Oh you're all professionals, get your minds out of the gutter. My name is Becca, I'm the head of plastics here.”

“Ah,” Lexa smiles knowingly, “so you and Doctor Kane are going to be fighting over Clarke.”

Becca winks, “that man doesn't stand a chance. Come, I'll get you the discount-”

“You'll do no such thing, Doctor Blood.”

Lexa's mouth gapes, “such a cool name.”

Becca laughs and waves Abby off, “lighten up, Chief, it's only coffee.” She leads them away, Lexa with one last grin in Abby's direction as she seethes. “Honestly, that woman needs to unclench, that much stress isn't healthy.”

Laughs echo around the room as they wait in line until Becca leads them back towards the paediatric unit. “Is this just a ploy to get me to sell you to Clarke?”

“And she bagged herself a smart one, too. So I take it Abby isn't a fan of your relationship.”

It's not a question. “Nope,” Lexa clicks her tongue, “I'm not the right level of social class she wants for Clarke, apparently. Owning my own business that's only rising each day isn't enough, she'd rather have Clarke with somebody who lives in a nice area and is from a similar background or something, I don't know. What I don't get is that according to Clarke she's really down-to-earth in everything else.”

“I can verify that,” Becca adds and Lexa quirks a brow. “I grew up on the streets. I won't get into detail, but I managed to get into Med School and survived that by living in the back of my car before I moved here. Abby was an attending when I began my internship and she really helped me through it all. I'm one of very few that can get away with talking to her like I just did- mostly because I'm brilliant and she can't afford to lose me.” Lexa snorts. “She doesn't know you, and she doesn't like not knowing things, she doesn't like not having control about the way things are run, but she's also too proud to make that first move because like I said, she needs to unclench.”

“Clarke needs to hear this.”

Becca chuckles, “children like to think they know everything about their parents, but they barely scratch the surface. You should hear the way Abby talks about Clarke in private. She's hard on Clarke because her mother was hard on her, and only Clarke can tell her that, that isn't what she needs. As long as Clarke lets Abby act this way, Abby won't stop because she thinks that's what is helping her daughter.”

Lexa soaks it all in, slowly nods her head back and forth in understanding but a frown makes its appearance, “but how can she not see that it isn't what Clarke wants?”

“Cardio surgeons are the worst when it comes to real emotions. If you don't spell it out for them, they don't get it. I'm not sure why it's like that, but they are just terrible at the whole 'picking up on feelings' thing. Maybe we could get neuro to do a study,” Becca winks, nudging Lexa with her elbow as they round the last corner, and Becca groans, “we were supposed to be getting you to convince Clarke to join me. Oh well, next time.”

“Don't worry, I'll put in a good word,” Lexa jokes, “she can't say no to me.” Becca gives her a disbelieving look. “I know, that's a flat out lie. But, Becca, seriously, thank you. Hopefully one of them can stop being so stubborn, I don't like seeing Clarke upset.”

“You'd be a shitty girlfriend if you did. Wait, are you the one that always brought lunch in for Clarke?” Lexa nods. “So it's safe to say I'll be seeing you around a lot when she officially starts here.” Another nod. “Great. When she's on my service you should know that my favourite lunch is a turkey wrap, all the salad and light mayo. Thanks.”

Eyes roll playfully at Becca's cheeky grin, “you'd better tell my mother that, she's the cook.”

They say their goodbyes. She's still livid at the stunt Abby pulled yesterday, but if anything is ever going to be sorted between mother and daughter, Clarke is the one that needs to make the first move. Now comes the fun part where Lexa tries to convince her to do so.

-

Seven missed calls from Clarke.

What the fuck?

Three missed calls from... Ontari?

What. The. Fuck?

Four texts from Clarke.

Clarke: Lexa I know you're at the hospital but you really need to answer your phone.

Clarke: Your friend Ontari is here.

Clarke: She won't stop crying and I don't know what to do.

Clarke: Lexa!!!

“Shit,” Lexa hisses, ignoring Indra's concerned gaze, “I have to get home, Ontari's here.”

“Is she not-”

“Suppose to be in Florida? Yep.”

Indra's concern heightens, “okay, go, go. If you need me to for anything-”

“I know, mom,” she quickly kisses Indra's cheek before she leans down and does the same to Aden, then gets in her own car, “I'll let you know.”

She races home as quickly as she's legally allowed... a little over legally in reality, and crashes through the door to a sniffling Ontari on her couch, Clarke in front of her, shushing the quiet sobs best she can. “Ontari what happened?”

Ontari's head snaps up and she's barely set the cup down before she collides with Lexa's body, jilts her slightly as her arms squeeze around Lexa's waist and her sobs increase into Lexa's neck. Lexa looks helplessly at Clarke who shifts her gaze, mumbles something about making more tea.

And Lexa knows instantly, whatever Ontari is about to tell her, she isn't going to like. Still, she strokes gently through Ontari's hair to soothe her and leads them back to the couch, Ontari curling into her before she pulls back with a depressed laugh. “God, I'm such a mess. I'm sorry, Clarke, this isn't what I wanted my first impression to be.”

She hiccups a little as Clarke makes her way back over, kissing Lexa on the head in greeting before she turns to Ontari, “it's fine. Just take your time, okay?”

“Would somebody like to fill me in?”

Ontari sighs, wipes at her tear stained eyes, “you're going to hate me.”

“Not possible.”

Clarke rubs her hand on her jeans, one of her nervous habits, and points to the bedroom door, “I'm going to give you guys a minute. Lexa, just, go easy on her, yeah?”

“Why do I need to do that? Can you just... tell me what's happening please? Is it Iian?” Ontari's boyfriend. “Did he do something?”

“No, no not at all,” Ontari insists as Clarke sneaks away. “It's me. A while ago, I- I've been cheating on him for the past few months.”

Lexa looks at her in shock, because that isn't something the Ontari she knows would do. But Ontari is her best friend, and the last thing she needs right now is for Lexa to judge her. “Okay, that's- wow, okay. Did he find out or something?”

Ontari shakes her head, “he doesn't know. This other guy... it's complicated. He doesn't live in Florida and we, well we were thinking about moving away together. Maybe moving back home.”

“Back home?”

The question is skipped over and Lexa feels her stomach sinking as Ontari whispers her next words. “I'm pregnant, Lex. I'm- fuck, this is only the second time I've said it out loud. I'm pregnant, and I don't know what to do.”

Lexa gulps, “do you know-”

“Yeah. It's not Iian's.”

She brings Ontari into her, holds her close as Ontari begins to sniffle again. “It's okay, we'll figure this out. You know we're all here for you, that we'll support you, you know that. Does the father know?”

Another shake of Ontari's head. “I'm going to see him tomorrow, I just... I needed to see you first, Lex. I need to know you have my back, that you'll still be my best friend.”

Lexa closes her eyes, “Ontari, what aren't you telling me?”

Ontari's cries become loud, she gasps for breath and she bawls into Lexa's neck, words almost unintelligible, but Lexa hears them loud and clear.

Rage soars through her, her already sour mood from earlier back at full force and this really is the last fucking thing she needs right now. How could Ontari do this? After everything?

“It's Roan's, Lexa. The baby is Roan's.”

Chapter Text

“Get out.”

“Lexa-”

Lexa growls and Ontari sits back with wide eyes because she's only seen that look in Lexa's eyes once, and that was when she visited after she found out Indra had been shot. Shit. “Get the fuck out, Ontari! God, I can't even look at you right now.”

Ontari gapes helplessly as she watches Lexa turn her back on her and the fresh flow of tears that had already been building break and stream down her cheeks. “Lexa, please-”

“How could you do this to me?” Lexa's whisper cuts through the room, broken and hurt. “To us? To mom? After everything she did for you?After she let you stay with us night after night because your own mom was too strung out to take care of you?”

“It just-”

“Don't you dare tell me it 'just happened'. Once, maybe yeah, but a full-blown affair doesn't 'just happen', Ontari. And especially with somebody like him.” Lexa still doesn't turn to face her, settles her gaze on a picture of her and Clarke that Raven snapped when they weren't looking. Ontari goes quiet, her sobs lowered to a small, uncontrollable sniff, but Lexa can't find it in herself to give a shit. “I'd like you to get the hell out of my apartment now. We're done.”

Ontari sighs in defeat, “I'm really sorry, Lex.”

Lexa hisses, “it's Lexa. No, you know what? It's nothing to you, because I never want to see you again. You were on about moving home with him, right? Well you can find somewhere else, the middle of the fucking ocean for all I care, you're no longer welcome in this community.”

It stays silent with the exception of Ontari's cries, as she shuffles to grab her stuff and Lexa keeps her eyes on the picture to keep herself relatively calm. The door opens and there's a pause, a sigh, Lexa's shoulders stiffening in expectation of Ontari saying something else, something to get the last word in, but nothing comes, and she sags once the door closes and loud footsteps run down the stairs.

The bedroom door opens seconds later as Clarke re-emerges, hands snaking around Lexa's waist and Clarke's chin rests on her shoulder from behind and her voice filled with pity, “Lexa.”

“Don't tell me I'm over-reacting, Clarke. If you knew what he did-”

“I do know,” Clarke cuts her off, and her breath catches because how? “Indra told me what happened.” Of course she did. Lexa rolls her eyes. “I was just going to ask how you're feeling.”

Lexa scoffs, “betrayed. Hurt. Angry. She's supposed to be my best friend and she willingly slept with the man who almost killed my mother. I just- I can't-”

There they are, the tears that she tried to keep away, seeping from her eyes as she shudders through her breaths and Clarke holds her tighter, secure and comforting. “Do you want to go and punch something?”

A chuckle escapes her, “you know just what to say.” Clarke laughs and Lexa sighs, “but I need to talk to mom first.”

Clarke nods, “okay, but maybe you should take a shower or something first.”

Lexa spins in Clarke's arms with a teasing smirk, “are you saying I smell, Miss Griffin?”

“No,” Clarke drags out, “but it'll help relax you, clear your head a little so that you don't go off on a rant as soon as you get there.”

“I do not rant!” Lexa gasps in offence, but Clarke raises a brow, unbelieving and beautiful and fuck, Lexa's so fucking lucky. “Whatever, you going to wash my back for me?”

Clarke rolls her eyes, “I'm going to make you something without caffeine, and then I'm going to call Anya to get her and Ryder to meet you there because they deserve to hear this too. Then I'm going to text Echo and say your car broke down because you shouldn't be driving when you're this angry and I don't trust you not to go and find Roan. Hence why I'm also not going to get Anya to drive you.”

“He deserves it,” Lexa mumbles without apology, but winces because that's probably exactly what she was going to do, even if she didn't know it herself yet.

“He does,” Clarke agrees, “but now isn't the time.”

Lexa frowns suddenly, “you're not coming with me?”

“Lex, I love your family, but this isn't my place.” Just like the Abby situation isn't Lexa's place. Lexa grumbles and pouts until Clarke kisses it away. “Also, you know you can't tell Ontari she's not allowed to live here, right? Even you don't have that much power.” Lexa snorts and Clarke's voice lowers to a whisper, “it's not the baby's fault.”

She knows that, but god, why does Clarke have to be the voice of reason now? “She's not the person I used to know.”

Clarke shrugs sadly, “people change. Sometimes for the better and sometimes not. It's up to us to decide if we want these new versions of them in our lives.”

Lexa's eyes squint as Clarke plays with the hairs at the back of her neck, “you've been spending far too much time talking with my mother.”

“She's a smart woman.” Lexa bites her lip when Clarke smirks at her. “I see where Anya and Aden get it from.”

“Rude.”

-

A coffee is shoved into Lexa's hand as soon as she enters the car and she groans, “fuck I love you.”

Echo laughs, “don't let Clarke hear you say that, I don't think I could take her.”

Lexa scoffs, “oh please, you have all the girls obsessed with you and you know it, including Clarke.” Echo shakes her head with a grin. “Speaking of love, how's it going with Atom?”

“It's good,” she smiles, “really good. I'm uh, I'm meeting his parents in a couple of days. It's his dad's birthday so...” Lexa grins, happy to see Echo finally happy with a decent guy. “I can get him to look at your car when Anya drops you off if you want.”

Oh yeah, her 'broken down' car. She plays it off, “Raven would kill me if I let anybody else touch it.” Echo nods with a laugh and Lexa settles more comfortably in her seat. It's been a while since the two of them have had some alone time and it's nice. Plus, it's the prime time to get some gossip she's been itching to get since Clarke told her about Niylah. “Hey, has Luna said anything about seeing somebody?”

Echo frowns in confusion, “no, why?”

“Just wandering,” Lexa shrugs. Okay, so why is Luna keeping it a secret? This definitely requires further digging. “Oh, by the way, I gave your number to one of the surgeons at the hospital so expect a call. I told him you do deliveries and I expect you'll be his first call about any catering events they'll be doing in the future. His name is Marcus Kane.”

“Why does that name sound familiar?”

Lexa gulps, feels all of the previous rage rise once more and grips tightly on her coffee. “He's the one- with mom- with-”

“Ah,” Echo exclaims with a snap of her fingers, “of course. In that case I'll be sure to give him the discount. Thanks, Lex.” They pull up outside the Woods' residence and Lexa hesitates to get out, vice grip on the door handle and Echo frowns at her, “you okay?”

Her voice squeaks, “yeah. Yep. Fine. Absolutely.”

“Alright, weirdo. Stop by the bakery on your way back, I have a new recipe I want you to try.”

Lexa nods as she forces herself to leave the car and stares up at the house, bracing herself to break the bad news and prepares herself for the reactions all whilst trying to keep her own emotions in check because Clarke is right, the last thing any of them need is for her to start blowing up and making matters worse.

She takes a deep breath before she enters, forcing down the rage and pain this situation is causing and Indra and Anya rush to her as soon as she closes the door behind her. Indra starts. “What happened? Is it Ontari? Is she okay?”

“Why do you look like you want to kill someone?”

Okay, maybe she hadn't pushed it down as much as she thought. She sucks in her lips in a thin line, shuts out Indra's worried gaze and Anya's confusion as her dad waits patiently in his chair with a supportive smile, knowing more than any of them, Indra included, to let Lexa get to things in her own time. She clears her throat, “you guys might want to sit down.”

Indra bites her lip, still scouting her eyes across Lexa's frame to try and piece together a puzzle as she sits and takes Ryder's hand in her own and Anya simply crosses her arms and leans against the wall. “So?”

“Ontari's pregnant.” Might as well just get it over with. Three different looks greet her. Anya's 'is that it?', Ryder's 'is this not a good thing?', and Indra's 'what aren't you telling us?', and she clears her throat again. “She came to my apartment to tell me and she was crying. I thought maybe it was something to do with her boyfriend but then... she told me the father is Roan.”

Anya's jaw clenches, Ryder's fist digs into the arm of the chair, and Indra's eyes close slowly and Lexa feels all of that rage disappear at her mother's saddened expression. Anya growls, “how? She doesn't even live here!”

Lexa shrugs, all she's capable of because she doesn't know, didn't really have it as her priority to ask because she doesn't care how they got back in touch or what events happened that lead to... this. At the minute, all she cares about is Indra's still closed eyes and deep breaths from her nose. “Mom?”

“I'm fine,” Indra grits out, sounding more in agony than she did when she was shot, than everything that happened after. “Ontari's a grown woman, she can make her own decisions.” Anya's eyes bulge and Lexa's join because she can't be fucking serious right? “Now if you'll excuse me, I need to bake some cookies for the hospital, as a thank you for taking such good care of Aden.”

It's a bullshit excuse and they all know it. All Aden did was break his arm, it's not like they cured a rare disease he has. They watch silently as she moves to the kitchen and suddenly Anya is pushing herself off of the wall, fury in her usually stoic gaze. “I have to leave too.” The door slams behind her.

Lexa exchanges a glance with Ryder and quickly moves to follow, “I'll go after her.”

Ryder laughs, “oh no you don't. I don't trust her not to talk you into going after him. You go make sure your mom's okay.”

She sighs and trudges to the kitchen, hands shoved deep in her pockets as she watches Indra measure out ingredients. “Hey.”

“Grab the eggs out of the fridge would you?” Lexa nods and complies, standing as close to Indra as possible while still giving her room to work. “How are you feeling?”

The question shocks Lexa slightly. “Betrayed. Hurt. You know, the usual when your best friend goes behind your back like this. What about you? It can't be easy for you either. You were just as much an influence in her life as you are in ours.”

Indra places her tools down, takes a second to think. “Life throws us challenges, challenges that shape the people we become, and it's the people that we become that decides our actions against new challenges.”

Lexa smirks, “a never-ending cycle.”

“It's the way of the world. Now you have options. You could either forgive her and try to move on with her still a part of your life, or not. You could either go after Roan and become the person you've fought so long for others not to become, or not.” Indra smiles slyly, “you can stay and help me bake these cookies, there is no 'or not' option on that.”

Lexa giggles with an eye roll and proceeds to crack an egg to lightly beat. “I told her I never want to see her again. What she did... I can't have that kind of toxicity in my life.” Indra hums and turns back to the bowl, a light grin on her face that tells Lexa she made the right call. “Can't promise I won't kick Roan's ass if I see him though.” Indra shakes her head, chuckles, but doesn't tell Lexa not to do that, it's all in her expression.

Ryder walks in with Anya a few minutes later and Anya slumps against the wall in defeat as Ryder kisses Indra's cheek. “Sorted.”

“Did he give you some fortune cookie inspired speech too?” Lexa asks as she stirs the batter and Indra smacks her arm with a tut.

Anya huffs, mumbles, “worse.”

“I threatened to call Raven,” Ryder chuckles, loud and proud and it has them all laughing except Anya who slumps further in a groan, bringing a much needed, lighter atmosphere to the room.

-

 

“What do we do?”

The car ride back had been silent until Anya's question. “I don't know.”

Anya huffs, changes the subject. “How was the gala?”

“It was okay. Clarke looked beautiful.”

“Gross,” Anya snorts and Lexa reaches over to flick her ear. “Ow! I'm driving here.” Lexa laughs. “So did her ex show up?”

Lexa nods, “Finn was pretty much waved off straight away by her other ex.” Anya's brows shoot up. “I know, I was surprised too. Hate to admit, but Niylah is alright, she apologised to Clarke for everything that went down. They're going to be working together at the hospital, and Clarke seems fine with it all now. I'm glad she got some closure from it.”

Anya groans, “when did we grow up and become mature?”

“I was old before my time, but when it happens to you, let me know.” Anya glares at her. “She knows Luna you know.” She will get to the damn bottom of this.

Why does she care so much?

It's Luna, her friend, she has to care.

“Huh.”

Lexa eyes Anya warily at the acknowledgement. “What do you know?”

“Me? Nothing. Why would I know anything?”

“You're the worst liar in the world, I swear to god.”

Anya sighs, “look, Luna texted me for some advice, but I didn't know who it was about until now.”

Lexa gapes, “she texted you? For advice? You? Did she want to fail?”

“Ha-ha,” Anya remarks dryly.

“What kind of advice did she want? Luna's usually smooth as fuck.”

Anya shakes her head, “it wasn't dating advice. It wasn't really... any advice to be honest. I think she just wanted somebody to talk to about it and Raven and I are already fully settled into our relationship so she didn't feel like she was disrupting yours or Echo's.”

Lexa frowns, “that's stupid.”

“It's Luna,” Anya says as a matter-of-fact, “you know what she's like. She hates making things all about her.”

“But they are seeing each other?”

Anya shrugs, “early days. There's flirting and shit, but no official dating. Damn, can you imagine the look on her face when she finds out Niylah is Clarke's ex? She's going to be traumatized.”

Lexa chuckles until the silence settles over them again and her thoughts drift back to Ontari. She glances back to Anya, “want to go spar?”

“Why not? It's been a while since I kicked your ass.”

“Yeah like, eight years, old woman.”

-

Clarke makes her way into the hospital in determination. She probably should've told Lexa, but she has her own things to deal with at the minute.

Her mom has gone too far this time and enough is enough. She can't work in the hospital, with her mom and her ex, and expect to just be okay with Abby trying to get them back together. It's not fair on her, Niylah, or Lexa.

Of course, Lexa has told her time and time again last night that she's fine with Niylah being there, that she trusts Clarke and fuck if that didn't make Clarke feel things, thing like lo-

Nope. Not going there.

She's here on a mission.

As she storms her way up to Abby's office, a few nurses and doctors greet her, look at her strangely when she tries to rush the conversation along, always known for being happy and talkative except for today.

“Clarke!”

Right, so this is a voice she can't ignore. She spins with a fake smile, “Doctor Blood, hey.”

It earns her a firm scowl, “it's Becca and you know it. Why are you suddenly calling me- wait, you're nervous about something.”

Sometimes she hates how well the woman knows her. “I'm here to talk to the Chief,” she says sternly, chin up.

Becca raises a brow, “what's she done to piss you off this time? Anything to do with Lexa? Wonderful girl, that one. I see why you like her.”

“You met Lexa?” When did this happen? Did Lexa tell her and she just didn't listen?

“Yeah,” Becca says slowly, “she was here earlier for her brother. Did she not tell you?” Becca places her hands on her hips with a huff. “I take it back. She isn't wonderful. She was supposed to be putting in a good word for me.”

Is Becca... pouting? Seriously, what the fuck has Clarke missed?

She scratches the back of her neck, “yeah well, today has been pretty eventful already. The past couple of days actually.”

“Oh, the gala,” Becca snaps her fingers, “sorry I couldn't be there for you. Surgeries,” she shrugs, “you know how it is. Or is going to be. Sorry, ignore me, far too much coffee today and two more surgeries to go.” Clarke snickers at the energy radiating off of her. “So what did she do this time?” Becca nudges her head to the side, a gesture for Clarke to walk with her.

Clarke rolls her eyes, “tried setting me back up with my ex behind my back, while I was with Lexa.”

Becca whistles low, “yep, that'll do it. So I take it you've finally grew a pair and are ready to lay down the law with her.” Clarke blinks... is it really that obvious to everybody how strained their relationship is? “Look, Clarke, just be honest with her. If there's one thing Abby respects more than ambition, it's honesty. Tell her how you feel about Lexa, and tell her she can either get on board with it and be supportive, or she can stay the hell out of your business because you're a grown ass woman capable of making your own way in life.”

“I've tried!”

“Try harder,” Becca demands, then softens, “you're not her. You can't cope with the overly tough-love, you're too sweet for that.” Clarke bristles and Becca smirks unapologetically. “Make her listen. Make her see that you need to live your life, not hers.”

Clarke slumps, Becca's right. “I thought you were a plastics surgeon, not a therapist.”

“Do you know how many insecurities I have to listen to in my line of work? How many people think that plastic surgery will help them feel happy? Sometimes it can, but a lot of the time they want it for other people. Maybe when you've spoken to Abby, you'll realise that you have a lot in common with some of my patients mentally.”

She thinks back to some of those people, mainly women but not always, who have been in a consult with Becca, their partners in the room with them and how many of them leave and never come back because Becca won't operate like that unless she knows they truly want it for themselves, and a newfound understanding passes through her because there's even more to plastics than Clarke originally thought. “You're right. Thanks, Becca.”

Becca smiles softly, “you're welcome. And by the way, if this doesn't make you want to work under me, I have already failed as a teacher.”

“Wow,” Clarke scoffs, “add a little guilt trip while you're at it why don't you?”

“In life, trauma allows a patient to survive it, plastics lets them live it. Think about that.”

Clarke hadn't realised until now that they're outside Abby's office and Becca gives her a double thumbs up as she walks away. Becca's right, as always-

Know-it-all-

- she doesn't just want to survive, she wants to live, and she wants her mom to be a part of that experience, wants her to back off but still be there if Clarke needs her, without judgement. She wants Lexa, the entire Woods' clan, and the others she's met along the way to be on this journey with her. Wants to be on their journey too. Wants them all. And it would really fucking help if she could get her mother to accept her girlfriend as a starting point.

Three knocks. Heavy, loud, final. “Come in.” Clarke cautiously opens the door, gages Abby's mood and relaxes when Abby smiles. “Clarke, this is unexpected.”

“I need to talk to you.”

A small frown graces Abby's brow and she gestures for Clarke to sit. “What's wrong?”

“Niylah told me what you did yesterday, trying to get us back together.”

Abby pauses, places her pen on her desk and links her fingers together. “Yes.”

Okay, so she's just going to... confirm it without regret.

Fantastic. Good start.

“I'm with Lexa, mom! You can't just go and do something like that. Especially behind my back. Do you know how much that hurt?”

“Oh, Clarke,” Abby waves her off, “there's no need for the dramatics.”

Clarke's jaw hangs open. “Dramatics? Are you serious?”

Abby huffs, “you know very well how I feel about that girl, Clarke.”

“I don't get you sometimes.” Clarke stands, paces the room. “One minute you're supportive and proud, the next minute you're... this. Cold and hard.” Abby sits back in her chair, slight shock evident. “I don't know where the Chief ends, and the mother begins. I don't know which version of you I'm going to see next. You want me to be happy, but only when you decide what me being happy means. You want what's best for me, but only if you approve. You didn't come to my graduation because it's something that the majority of the population accomplish, but you'll parade me around to your friends and co-workers and tell them how I was at the top of all my classes when it's convenient. You treat me like your daughter, and straight after you treat me like your project and it isn't right. It isn't right and I'm sick of you looking down on something you don't deem acceptable. It isn't right that you think you can dictate who I do or do not date. It's my life, my relationship. I like Lexa, mom. I really, really like her. And she's good. She's so good. Her entire family are. They welcomed me in like I was one of their own, without question, just because Lexa likes me, just like they did with Raven, and Octavia. They work how a healthy family should work. They support each other, rely on each other and most importantly they communicate with each other. They've been through so much and they're stronger for it.”

And, wow, okay. She should probably take a breath because she wasn't expecting to go off quite like that when she came in.

Her voice lowers to a whisper. “You don't like her? That's fine, you don't have to. But stay out of my relationship with her. She doesn't deserve you disrespecting her like that when you don't even know who she is, and I don't deserve you undermining me the way you did and acting like it was for my own benefit.”

She should leave. She's probably blown all chances she could've ever had to rebuild her relationship with Abby now anyway.

Clarke makes her way to the door, opens it, but can't leave without saying one last thing. “You know the difference between Lexa, and you and Niylah?” When she looks up, Abby's jaw is locked, eyes downcast, refusing to meet hers, but she tilts her head up enough for Clarke to know she heard her. “Lexa's never hurt me. She's never wanted me to be anyone but me.”

It isn't until she long gone from the hospital, taking a slow walk back to the gym, that everything hits her.

“Oh god. What did I just do?” A man at a bus stop close to her looks at her like she's lost her mind, but she's suddenly walking faster to pass him when her phone vibrates.

Raven: Get back to the gym, Griff. Your thirsty ass is gonna want to see this.

She wrinkles her forehead at the phone, confused beyond belief because it can't be anything urgent.

What?

Murphy is at the desk when she walks in and he greets her with his usual drawl, but places a bottle of water on the desk in front of him with a smirk, “Raven said you're going to need this.”

“What's happening?”

He yawns and points in a direction he thinks is the back room but is actually the toilets. “Go find out for yourself.”

She's still bewildered, but does as she told and she suddenly, desperately, understands the whole water thing.

Because there is Lexa. Dressed in only basketball shorts, a sports bra, and wrist wraps. All sweaty and panting and swinging at an equally bare Anya who is dodging the strikes.

Raven, of course, is sat atop a pile of mats with her mouth hanging open and- “is that drool? Are you drooling?”

Clarke's question brings Raven out of her stupor but she doesn't turn to face her, instead mindlessly reaches out in a weak attempt to put her palm over Clarke's mouth and ends up patting her face. “Be quiet. I found them like this twenty minutes ago. I have money on Lexa.”

“Wow, Rae, you're going to go against your girlfriend like that?”

“I'm not an idiot.”

Clarke smirks, “fine, I'll take that bet. Drinks on the loser?”

Raven matches her smirk, “you're lucky you're rich, Griff.”

This is the easiest fucking bet Clarke has ever won, and Raven really is an idiot. The smartest idiot she knows.

It isn't going to be hard to win this, and as she bites her lip, and as she watches Raven's eyes widen in fear at her smug grin, she does one thing. Just one.

She clears her throat.

Lexa's head snaps up to see her before a large smile takes over and she drops her guard. “Hey, beaut-” Anya strikes against Lexa's jaw and she goes down since she lessened her weight in her legs. “Holy... Fuck! Anya what the hell?”

“Shouldn't drop your guard, sis.” Anya smirks over. “Thanks, Clarke.”

Clarke laughs and Raven's too busy spluttering about how she cheated to care. “You're welcome. Drinks are on Raven.”

“You bet against me?” Lexa stands, rubbing her jaw as she walks over with a pout.

“Not technically. Raven bet against Anya.”

Raven snorts, “drinks not enough for you, eh? Have to go and drop me in it too? Some friend you are.”

Clarke ignores her and sticks out her bottom lip as she replaces Lexa's hand with her thumb, soothing the soon-to-be bruised area, “sorry. We'll get some ice on it when we get back upstairs.” Lexa hums, wraps her arms around Clarke's waist and rests her head on Clarke's shoulder. “Feeling better?”

“I am now.”

Raven groans, “god you two are disgusting.”

Lexa swats out but misses by miles and Clarke giggles into her temple.

Her phone vibrates again and Lexa frowns when she opens her messages.

Mom: Dinner. Tomorrow. 7pm on the dot. Bring Lexa.

“Clarke?”

Clarke can only give her a sympathetic glance.

What has she gotten herself into?

Chapter Text

The sound of the punching bag echoes loudly around the room, Lexa's breathing only just matching it as her fists connect against the leather over and over and over again until even her wrapped knuckles feel raw.

“Whoa, what did that bag ever do to you?”

Lexa ignores Murphy as he enters the room with a coffee in hand, simply continues to hit it like she's trying to make it split and cause sand to spill out onto the floor.

“Quint brought this in for you.” He places the coffee on the shelf. “Charlotte's fine out there on her own and Lincoln is teaching his class, so you have me for five minutes to unload. Go.”

She grits her teeth, punches the bag on last time before she brings it to a halt and rests her forehead against it. “There's just a lot going on right now.”

“Is this about dinner with Clarke's parents tonight?”

Murphy stays patient as Lexa tries to control her breathing, reaches over for the coffee again to pass over to her and she takes it with a grateful smile. “It's a bit of everything. I don't want to lose my cool with her and make Clarke uncomfortable, you know? She's putting so much into her finals and graduation is so close now and the last thing she needs is for tonight not to go well.”

“Uh-huh, and what else is it?” Lexa scrunches her brow. “C'mon, Woods, I think you sometimes forget how well I know you.” She rolls her eyes. “What's going on?”

“Ontari's pregnant.”

His brows shoot up in excitement. “Oh! Wait, is this not a good thing?”

Lexa scoffs, relishes in the burn the hot beverage trails down her throat. “Long story short, it's Roan's.”

“Oh,” he hisses, frown taking over, “not a good thing, then.”

“And like, I know I shouldn't give a shit, like, fuck them, but I can't help it. I'm still angry and I still want to go and beat the living crap out of him, but I also don't want to turn into him. I don't know, I just feel kind of... useless.”

Murphy nods, hums, chuckles, “well, now you know how the rest of us sometimes feel. You can't fix everything, Lex, even you aren't that good.” He glances at his watch, “when did you find out?”

She sighs, “yesterday.”

“Does your family know?” A nod. “And I'm assuming your mom and dad want you to stay away from him.” An eye roll. “Thought so. I can always go and do it for you.”

Lexa laughs, “Murphy, I wouldn't even put my money on you against Charlotte. Your future wife might be a good call though.”

A dopey grin spreads over his lips, “yeah, what a woman. You know she's hired Octavia to plan our wedding?” He shakes his head.

“O loves all that shit, you couldn't have anyone better, and you know she won't try and get you to go over budget.”

“I know, but damn, my fucking living room is like a confetti party. I've had glitter in my ass crack for three days.”

“That's disgusting.”

He shrugs, “and that's your five minutes.”

“Asshole.”

“You love me.”

Lexa rolls her eyes, “whatever. Congratulations about making this all about you.”

He taps her nose and she swats it away, “got you to laugh though, right? Forget about Roan and Ontari, they're in your past. Focus on your future.” Lexa stops the cup at her mouth, stares in shock at him and he huffs, crosses his arms. “Em's decided she wants fortune cookies to greet guests at the reception, I'm practically a walking Chinese proverb right now.”

“You should talk to my mom, I swear she could right her own book with all that insightful stuff.”

Murphy groans, “please don't give Em any ideas. Hey, I have to bounce early today, we have to go,” he uses jazz hands over his monotone voice, “cake tasting. Yay. Lincoln said he's cool to cover for an hour.”

“Tell Echo she'd better save me some.”

“You know it. Has she told you her and Atom are doing a games night tomorrow?” Lexa nods even though she'd totally forgotten about the text she'd received last night. “Apparently Luna is bringing a date.”

Lexa chokes on the last sip of her coffee but plays it off as best she can at Murphy's confusion. “That's great. Look at us all. Growing up and finding people.”

Murphy makes an 'ugh' sound in the back of his throat, “right? We're so gross.”

He turns to head out and Lexa chuckles to herself. “Thanks, Murphy.”

“Don't mention it.” He squints his eyes. “Ever.”

Lexa slowly unwraps her hands and dabs herself off with a towel before she throws it around her neck and rushes up to her apartment to Clarke sitting on the floor, paper and books spread out all around her as she looks up at Lexa with an appreciative hum, the dark gaze all but forcing Lexa to forget why she came up here in the first place. “Clarke,” Lexa warns.

“Yes, baby?” Ah, so she's going to go the innocent route.

“Stop it.”

“Stop what?”

“Looking at me like... that.”

Clarke hums again before she stands up, walks over to Lexa and tugs her forward by the towel still draped around her neck. “Like what?”

She glances swiftly at the clock before her eyes dart back to deepening blue, “like we're going to be very late for dinner with your parents.” Clarke smirks. “I'd been expecting you to be stressed out about this. Why aren't you?”

“Because you're going to be there with me.” The towel is tugged again. “Besides, we have hours before we need to start getting dressed.” Another tug and Lexa stumbles forward, her hands moving to Clarke's hips to steady herself. “So why don't you,” she leans forward, kisses Lexa's jaw, “get the water running while I,” another to the corner of her mouth, “tidy this up before I join you.”

Lexa raises a brow, “what happened to, and I quote, 'I’m not having shower sex. What kind of lesbian are you? You know it doesn’t work'?”

“Now is your chance to prove me wrong.” Clarke takes the towel away and saunters, fucking saunters, towards the washing machine, stops behind Lexa first to curl it up and whips it against her ass causing a yelp to leave Lexa's mouth and she grins to herself. “Well what are you waiting for? Go on.”

“I'm going to get you back for that.”

“How?”

Lexa bites her lip, turns to see Clarke leaning back against the counter sporting a smug grin. “You said we have hours, right? I can think of a few ways.”

Smug grin firmly gone, Lexa blows a kiss in Clarke's direction and strips off her loose tank to throw it behind her as she makes her way into the bathroom to turn on the water.

Steam fills the bathroom quickly and Lexa takes in a few deeps breaths of it, basking in its comfort before she turns the tap to cool it down a little, knowing Clarke doesn't like her water as scolding as she does, before she begins to strip off the rest of her clothing, frees her hair of its tie and checks the temperature with the back of her hand before she steps inside, allows the steady stream to run over her skin.

It isn't long before a cool breeze hits her back and seconds later Clarke is coming in behind her, her arms link around Lexa's stomach and she melts into the soft kisses on her shoulder before she spins them so that Clarke is under the water and brings their mouths together, as hot and wet as the shower pouring above them, skirts her fingers over Clarke's hips as Clarke's hands tangle in Lexa's hair, tug slightly when Lexa nips at Clarke's bottom lip and she moans into Clarke's mouth, presses herself closer until her leg slips between Clarke's and her hands slide to a smooth ass with a firm grip, smirks at the whimper it gains her.

“Turn around,” she gently orders, waits for Clarke to gather her bearings and when she finally turns, Lexa brings them out of the stream and reaches for the shampoo, pours a decent amount into her palm before massaging it into Clarke's hair, Clarke moaning at the stimulation, until all of the silky blonde hair is covered and she rinses it out, does the same with the conditioner and whilst that's moisturising, she makes quick work of her own hair.

As her own conditioner settles, she fully rakes her eyes over Clarke's body, the water highlighting all of her assets, Clarke's head thrown back and she follows one droplet down, down, down, until she can't take it any more and steps forward with a low groan, the only warning Clarke gets before teeth are at her neck and she gasps at Lexa's teasing nibbles, hips shooting forward and eyes fluttering as she grips onto Lexa's back to keep herself grounded. “Lex,” she whispers through a pant, eyes slamming shut as Lexa bites and they roll behind closed eyelids, “oh god.”

Lexa turns them, pushes Clarke up against the cool tiles without stopping her attack on Clarke's neck and Clarke hisses at the cold, trails off into a moan when Lexa pulls her against her, pushes her thigh up and starts them off in a push-and-pull grind, blindly reaches back for the body wash, forgoes the loofah in favour of running her hands all over Clarke's body after she lathers them up, begins at Clarke's shoulders and neck once she moves her mouth back to Clarke's lips, trails down her arms, links their fingers and lifts Clarke's arms above her head. Tells her, “stay,” and uses her thigh to keep Clarke up when her knees buckle, runs her hands down Clarke's arms again, skips past her chest to go around and clean her back before they come to her stomach, and she smirks into Clarke's mouth when she pouts.

“Mean,” is what Lexa is called and she rests her hands on Clarke's stomach, unmoving.

“Should've thought about that before you used a towel to whip me.”

Clarke's eyes struggle to open, but once they do, Lexa marvels at their colour, darker than anything she's seen so far, predatory even, hungry, wanton. “Next time I'll use a proper whip.”

More body wash is added to Lexa's palm as she licks her lips, licks Clarke's also with how close their mouths still are, voice barely heard above the splashing on the floor, “oh? That part of your sensory research, is it?” Like Lexa hasn't done her own.

“If I tell you that you're going to ruin the surp-” Clarke voice catches as Lexa uses the hand that hasn't got soap on it to rest between Clarke's legs, cupping her centre, “rise. Fuck.”

“Surprises are overrated.” She removes her hand and lathers them up again, reaches up to take Clarke's and rubs them until they're just as foamy as hers, grabs her wrists and leads them to Clarke's chest, “your tits look lonely, you should keep them company.”

Clarke wastes no time in palming over her own chest, tugging periodically at her nipples as Lexa sinks to her knees, watches Clarke watch her as she leans forward and take a single swipe up Clarke's slit with her tongue, holds Clarke's trembling thighs and starts to massage them, stokes them up and down from the bottom of her ass to her ankles in sync with her tongue until bubbles coat every inch of Clarke's skin and Clarke is struggling to keep herself standing up, shaking and gasping and twitching as her own hand squeeze her breasts and she's moaning in the small space.

But Lexa doesn't let up, doesn't do anything but focus on Clarke's clit as her whines reach a high pitch. “You going to come for me, beautiful?”

A whimper answers her, but it isn't good enough for Lexa so she pulls away, wipes her mouth against her bicep and stares at Clarke until Clarke seems to realise there's nothing between her legs any more and then she's nodding so fast it causes Lexa to chuckle. She wants words, though, and she's willing to wait as long as it takes.

Something akin to words escapes Clarke, and she growls when Lexa lilts her head as though she doesn't hear her. “Huh? What was that, Clarke? I didn't quite hear you.”

Clarke growls again through her teeth, “yes. Yes I'm going to come for you.”

“But I thought shower sex didn't work?”

Lexa!” Lexa chuckles again and begins to stand before Clarke grips at her shoulders, her eyes fucking begging and Lexa shakes her head, gently takes Clarke's fingers in her own and pulls them back under the spray with Clarke's back against her front. “What?”

“I'm just getting rid of the bubbles before I touch you,” she whispers, rubs down Clarke's body slowly and meticulously which makes Clarke shiver all over again until her skin is free of any lingering chemicals and only then does Lexa feather her finger through Clarke, preens at the small gasps when she reaches her clit and Clarke throws her head back onto Lexa's shoulder in an attempt to kiss her.

It's messy and uncoordinated, but Lexa loves it equally as much as every other kiss they've shared and she keeps her touch light, teasing, drags it out for as long as she can before the water starts to turn cold and once she feels the temperature drop, she moves her fingers to Clarke's entrance, sighs into Clarke's mouth when she feels the silky wetness and Clarke lets out the most adorable sound of relief after Lexa finally enters her.

They both know it won't take much, Clarke's skin is already over sensitive after her thorough rub down and Lexa can feel her clit pulsing against her palm as she slowly moves in and out until Clarke is unable to kiss her properly, reduces herself to simply pressing her lips against Lexa's as she pants into the minimal space between them and with a slight curl of her fingers, Clarke's thighs clench and her abs tighten as she shakes, falling back into Lexa's strong hold as her pelvis twitches and she moans low, coming apart in Lexa's arms.

Lexa keeps her fingers inside, strokes across Clarke's stomach as she comes down and only removes her fingers when Clarke's eyes blink open and she smiles dopey before she turns off the water without removing her gaze from Lexa, voice deep and husky as she bats her eyes, “your turn.”

“We don't have time.”

“We have plenty of time.”

-

Lexa screeches to a halt outside the Griffin residence, glares at Clarke the entire time she shuts off the car, “I fucking told you we didn't have time, Clarke.”

“We still have a few minutes.”

“On time is late.”

Clarke drops her jaw, “what does that even mean? Lex, we're fine. What do you care anyway? You don't even like my mom.”

“I don't like being late,” she grumbles, leaves her side at Clarke's giggles and opens the passenger door with a smirk, “m'lady.” Clarke rolls her eyes and pecks Lexa's cheek as she gets out. Lexa then opens the back door and pulls out a pyrex dish and a bottle of wine and Clarke shakes her head. “What?”

“I can't believe your mom made dessert and gave you that wine.”

Lexa grins, “it is not proper-”

“Etiquette to show up empty handed. Yes, I know. She's a damn saint though, I know for a fact mom would have made something super healthy. Dad will appreciate the calories.”

“Oh, didn't I tell you?” Lexa frowns and Clarke's eyes widen in worry. “This is sugar free, gluten free, and vegan.”

Clarke squints, “Lexa, now would be the perfect time to tell me you're fucking with me.”

Unable to keep a straight face, Lexa laughs and Clarke smacks her shoulder before she takes a hold of Lexa's elbow and they walk up the path to the house. “Thank god, I was about to text Echo for delivery.”

Lexa's eyes widen and she'd snap her fingers if she could, “that's what I meant to tell you! You know how Echo is having that game night tomorrow?” Clarke nods. “Well Murphy said Luna was-”

She's cut off as the door swings open to a tight-smiled Abby. “Clarke, I'm glad you could finally get here.”

They're one minute late.

“Lexa.”

“Abby.” Clarke elbows her side and Lexa clears her throat, holds up the dish. “Thank you for inviting me, I brought cobbler and wine.”

Abby blinks for a second before she seems to remember herself and takes the items out of Lexa's hands, “oh thank you. I have to admit, we're not big dessert people in this family, but this is a welcomed surprise.”

Clarke scoffs, “you're not a big dessert person. Give me all the brownies.”

“Did somebody say dessert?” Jake comes to stand behind his wife and takes everything away from her. “Abby, why is my daughter still stood outside? Come in, come in. Oh my god, is that peach cobbler? I haven't had a good cobbler in years.”

“Lexa brought it,” Clarke states proudly, tugs Lexa in after her.

Jake nods, “you made this?”

“My mom did, she's a great cook.”

“She's an angel is what she is,” Jake sets the items down and Lexa hums in agreement. “Can I get you girls a drink?”

Clarke groans in thanks, “wine.”

“Just a water for me, thanks. I'm driving.”

“I told you we should've got a cab,” Clarke says as she links their fingers together and squeezes.

Jake frowns and turns to Abby, “I thought you were setting up Clarke's old room for them tonight?”

Lexa steps in before Abby can make a remark, “it's fine, I have to be up super early tomorrow anyway so I still wouldn't be drinking. But thank you for the offer.”

“Well next time we do this, you'd better book the next day off, Lexa. Dinners with the Griffin's are nothing without drunk pictionary.”

“Only if I'm on Clarke's team.”

Jake snaps his fingers jokingly, “dammit I was going to choose Clarke, I was hoping I'd get a chance to win for once.”

Clarke glances between the two with a light glint in her eye. Of course her dad is nowhere near as closed off as her mom, but he's definitely never been this... open or relaxed, and she stalks forward to grab his arms, pulls him away from the kitchen, “may I have a word?”

Abby and Lexa look at each other for a moment, challenging, until Lexa relents with a sigh because she's a guest, “can I help with anything for dinner? I have pretty decent knife skills,” she shrugs, “you know, for somebody who isn't a surgeon.”

Surprisingly, Abby chuckles at that and nods towards a bowl on the counter, “there's some chillies and scallions over there, can you slice them thinly for me? And roughly chop the cilantro next to it?”

Lexa rolls up her sleeves, “of course. What are we having?”

“Grilled miso salmon on a bed of rice noodles.”

“Damn,” Lexa whistles low, “makes me wish I got mom to do something better than a cobbler.”

Abby waves her off, “honestly? It's really easy to make, it just sounds good.”

They hear hushed whispers coming from another room. “What do you think they're talking about?”

“Probably about what Clarke said to me yesterday.”

Lexa shifts on her feet, “right.”

It stays quiet after that.

-

“What the hell, dad?”

“What did I do?”

Clarke gapes, “we've never, never, played pictionary, drunk or otherwise. Why are you being weird? What's going on?”

Jake sighs, “your mother told me what happened yesterday.”

Oh.

“And I just, I... I'm trying, Clarke. Your mom was so upset last night, and I think she, we both, realised that we've been going about raising you all wrong. Work never should've come before you and I'm sorry we've made you feel like this.”

She sighs, “you raised me just fine, dad. I just wanted some support now and then. A 'good job, Clarke' or a 'we're proud of you, Clarke' without there being an ulterior motive for it, not 'what could you have done better, Clarke?', you know?”

“I know, I get that now, and we're both going to try harder, I promise. I never wanted my baby girl to be upset because of us. Things are going to be different from now on.”

“Okay,” she breathes, “okay. Good. But, dad, the Woods' don't play games after dinner, or act the way whatever that was.” Jake chuckles. “They talk, about their day or about life in general, and they watch movies and banter with each other, they just chill, alright? If you want to get to know Lexa, then talk about martial arts, or communities, what you do for a living. Or whiskey, she loves whiskey so you two definitely have that in common.”

He nods, stray tear wiped away, “noted. We should get back in there before they kill each other.”

Clarke eyes widen, “oh god, I can't believe I left them unsupervised.”

The kitchen is quiet as they re-enter and Clarke makes a beeline for Lexa, wraps her arms around her waist as she finishes chopping and Lexa is quick to ask, “everything okay?”

“Yeah, we're good. Everything okay in here?”

Lexa nods, leans back as she places the knife down, “it's great, I was helping with dinner.”

“I can see that.”

“Shouldn't be long now,” Abby announces, “why don't you show Lexa the rest of the house while I finish up, Clarke?”

Clarke holds Lexa's hand with a tug, “come on, I'll show you my childhood bedroom.”

“Literally the only reason I agreed to come tonight.” Clarke rolls her eyes and drags her away from her parents' laughter.

-

Lexa fidgets with her water as Abby places the plates down in front of them, replies with a polite 'thank you' and Clarke squeezes her thigh in reassurance. She waits until Abby sits down before she says anything. “This looks amazing, Abby.”

“Thank you, Lexa.” Abby gestures for them to start and the salmon melts in their mouths. “So, Lexa, you own a gym?”

She wipes her mouth with the provided napkin and takes a sip of her drink, “I do.”

“Is... business well?”

“Yeah. Yes. We uh, it was a bit rocky to begin with, but we've really turned it around thanks to Clarke.”

Clarke rolls her eyes, “I only put some paint on the walls, Lex. O is the one who spammed her social media. And the fundraiser got you all that new equipment.”

“Sure, but you took it to the next level, made it look reputable.”

“And you're the one that keeps clients coming back for more. It was a team effort, babe.”

Abby asks more questions, “you're young still, do you not find it difficult running a business by yourself?”

Lexa shakes her head, “it may be my name on the papers, but I'm not by myself. I also have a business degree so that helps.”

“You do? You went to college?”

“No. I teach a free class and as a thank you the community banded together to get me an online course.”

“And what happens when one of your clients starts a fight? How do you control that?”

Clarke scowls. “Mom,” she warns.

“It's a genuine question, Clarke. Is it wrong of me to be concerned for your safety? I've seen the kind of people that go to those places.”

Lexa rubs Clarke's back to calm her, “I assure you Clarke is safe with me, Abby. In all the years I've been at the gym, and in all the time I've owned it, I've possibly had three of four incidents that were swiftly resolved. I don't know if Clarke has mentioned how close our community is, but we all look out for each other, and those 'people' you've seen go in there, I can protect Clarke without breaking a sweat if they ever tried to hurt her. I'm very, very good. I've won multiple competitions and I'm qualified to teach three different styles, and I have loyal customers who I'd trust with my life. There's literally nowhere else Clarke would be safer than in my gym, with me, or with my family.”

Jake attempts to change the atmosphere slightly, but it only saddens Lexa. “I spoke to your mother quite a bit at the fundraiser, ex cop, right?”

“Yes. Clarke told me you're an engineer, how's that going?”

A swift change in subject is exactly what the room needs and they all continue to eat as Jake rambles on about work, Abby watching Clarke and Lexa with a curious expression.

-

Between talking and eating, nobody realises how much time has passed and Lexa curses when she looks at her phone, “shit. I'm so sorry, but we really need to get going, I do genuinely have to be up early tomorrow.”

Jake glances at Abby and senses she isn't ready to let Clarke leave yet. He clears his throat and catches Lexa's eyes, “before you go, Clarke tells me you're a whiskey girl. I have an amazing collection I'd love to show you if you can hang on an extra five minutes.”

Lexa looks at Clarke who nods, also catching on to the fact that Abby wishes to speak with her in private. “Go, I'll be fine.”

They wait until the footsteps reach the top of the stairs and Clarke waits patiently, knowing how difficult this conversation is going to be for Abby. “She's very protective.”

“Yeah,” Clarke smiles softly, “she is.”

Abby nods, plays with her wine glass. “I am sorry, Clarke.” Clarke chokes. “My own mother was very strict, you know this. Much, much more strict then even me. I tried to tone it down, but I guess it wasn't enough. But I promise you, everything I did, I did with best intentions. I never once thought that you'd feel as though you were... paraded around like a... a trophy of some sort, like you being my daughter wasn't enough for me.”

Clarke swallows, “mom.”

“Let me finish. You have always been enough, and although I feel it is my job to push you to be the best you can be, I also realise that pushing you too far will ultimately drive you away from me and I couldn't live with myself if that happened. The awards, the achievements, they wouldn't mean anything to me if I couldn't share them with you. And I can't promise things are going to change overnight, but what I can promise, is that if I begin to push too hard again, tell me and this time I will listen. I will show you off because I am proud to call you my daughter-”

Abby huffs out a breath as Clarke's arms wrap around her and before they know it they're both crying, clinging on to each other as tightly as they can for as long as it takes them to hear footsteps again and they pull back. “Love you, mom.”

“I love you, too, Clarke. And for what it's worth, I believe Lexa is very fitting for you.”

Clarke hums, “she's pretty great. Probably going to keep her around for a while.”

“Uh, I think you mean 'forever', beautiful,” Lexa corrects as she walks back in, wiping the tears from Clarke's cheeks and Clarke smiles at the concerned question in her eyes. “I hate to break this up, but we really do need to be going, even if I could spend hours talking to your dad about his collection.”

“Of course, of course,” Abby answers instead, “I'll just grab your pyrex from the dishwasher, please pass on to your mother how delicious dessert was. It... was nice to meet you, Lexa. Properly meet you. I hope we can do this again sometime.”

Lexa slings an arm around Clarke's waist and pulls her against her side just to see if there's any form of a sneer on Abby's face to contradict her words, happy when she sees nothing and tugs Clarke closer. “Likewise.”

“Look after my daughter while I'm not around, Lexa.”

“As long as you look after my girlfriend while I'm not around.”

Abby laughs, “deal.”

Clarke snorts, “you both know I can look after myself, right?”

As they're leaving, Abby shouts them back one last time, “oh, Clarke, Niylah told me she's going to be working at the hospital, is that going to be a problem for you?”

“No, we've already spoke about it. We're fine, mom, just no more meddling,” she points a finger and Lexa's eyes widen again.

Abby holds her hands up, “no more,” before she closes the door.

Lexa's furiously hitting Clarke's arm to get her attention, “babe, what?”

“Luna's bringing Niylah as her date to game night tomorrow. That's what I was going to tell you earlier.”

Clarke gapes, blinks. Gapes again. Blinks again. “Luna's doing what now?”