Work Header

of whiskey and broken noses

Work Text:

Clarke Griffin was pissed.

She was utterly outraged, her face flaming red, and her small hand still curled into a tight fist.

Her knuckles were turning white and were a little bit bloody. She didn't care about that though.

She sits down at the bar, and looks to the broad back of the bar tender. He's tall, dark, and handsome. Clarke feels the frown forming on her face.

His eyes meet hers and she is overwhelmed by their depth.

"Whiskey," she orders, casting her eyes downward, desperate to look anywhere than the intense irises of the bartender.

He pours her the whiskey and moves on the the next person.

She takes a drink, wishing she were anywhere else.

Clarke has calmed down a bit.

Her hand is a bit swollen but that's not what's really bothering her.

She thought she really loved Finn.

He was like her stars and her moon. He was her everything, at least, she used to think so.

And then she found him in bed with another girl.

So, yeah, Finn broke her heart. But she broke his nose, so she figures it's probably a pretty fair trade.

The much too handsome bartender is staring in her direction. She makes like it isn't a big deal, because it isn't. She's just broken up with her long time boyfriend. She's not ready to get into something with anyone yet, even if the bartender is completely her type. She likes to pretend she doesn't have a type, but it's way too obvious that she does.

Instead, Clarke downs the rest of her whiskey in one swig. She doesn't want to be sober anymore.

Back when she and Finn started dating, she was a totally different person. She was happy, in a way she could no longer feel.

Her dad was still alive then.

She'll never be that girl again.

After that night, Clarke frequents this particular bar. She can't give a real reason, her friends always asking, "What's so great about this drab place?"

Clarke usually just shrugs. Her friends sit in the same booth in the corner of the bar.

She discretely glances toward the bartender.

Raven catches this, and Clarke will never hear the end of it.

"It's the eye-candy, isn't it?" she asks, wiggly her dark brows.

Clarke rolls her eyes, "Not really."

"He's totally your type," Raven continues. "All tall and dark and mysterious."

Clarke glares at her friend. Raven lets the topic drop, for now.

Clarke is never again asked why they frequent this bar.

One night, after a particularly grueling day in the OR, Clarke has a bit too much to drink. She doesn't have to be Dr. Clarke Griffin in the morning, so she drinks and drinks and drinks.

This gives her some liquid courage, and the pretty dark haired girl at the bar is giving her the once over. She thinks she can do this. She can totally go flirt with this girl and fall into her bed and let herself just go.

But when she makes her way over to the girl, the bartender shoots her a curious look. There's no judgement in his gaze, just sheer curiosity, the kind of curiosity that makes her stop in her tracks and turn toward the women's room instead.

She can't do it.

When Clarke finally resurfaces from the women's room, the dark haired girl is already chatting up someone else. Clarke shrugs it off. Perhaps it's better this way. She takes a seat at a stool at the bar.

"She moves quickly," says a deep voice.

She knows it's him, and she doesn't even have to look in his direction to know that.

Clarke turns her head and meets his gaze. His eyes are a rich dark brown that makes Clarke's fingers itch for paint.

"No big deal," Clarke responds, "not sure I was up for it anyway."

The man shrugs. "You up for some whiskey?"


He pours her the drink, leaning over the bar to hand her the glass. His lips brush her ear. "This is you're last one of the night. Make it count, alright?"

Then he pulls back, face emotionless, as if nothing had even happened.

The pounding of Clarke's heart in her ears tells her she is totally and completely fucked.

She doesn't even know his name.

She doesn't know his name, but she wants to. She wants to know about the small scar over his left eyebrow, wants to know just how many freckles dot his face, wants to know how he seems to see everything.

Tonight she decides she is going to find out.

She brings Raven with her to the bar, just for some back up. Clarke doesn't want to get totally wasted tonight, and she's much more responsible when she has her friend with her. Raven also gives her a bit of a pep talk, if you could call it that.

"Just go up there and tell him you have the hots for him. Then you two can go off alone, talk, have really good sex-"


She rolls her eyes. "You two are basically having eye sex right now anyway."

So Clarke gets up from the regular booth, she walks the distance to the bar, and of courseFinn fucking Collins is sitting at that bar. His nose is black and blue, and Clarke feels a swell of pride in her chest. She's glad to have really messed up his stupid face. Even the grin he's shooting the girl next to him is not enough to distract from the ugly bruise between his eyes.

The bartender sees her, sending her a small smirk.

She gives him a flirty wink, a small smile taking over her features.

Even Finn Collins can't mess this up for her.

She sits at the other end of the bar, eyes looking anywhere but in Finn's direction.

The bartender seems to read her like an open book, even though she hasn't said anything.

"Ex?" he asks.

"Yeah," Clarke says reluctantly. "He's a bit of a tool."

He looks her over. "The tool who's nose you broke."

She's taken aback. "Whatever do you mean?"

"Well, that's a nasty bruise he's got. And if I remember correctly, the first night you came in your knuckles were a bit bloody," the bartender says with a smirk.

She doesn't know how he noticed such a small thing about her.

"What's your name?" she asks. "It feels absurd that I don't know it."


"I'm Clarke," she responds.

"I know," he says.

"What?" She raises an eyebrow. "How do you know my name?"

He shrugs.

Raven's right. He is her type. Tall, dark, and mysterious, just how she likes them.

The next time Clarke comes into the bar, Bellamy isn't there.

The night is a total waste, she thinks. She's taken extra time with her outfit tonight, finding something both classy and sexy.

But after the bartender - not Bellamy - gives her her drink, she is met with those dark orbs that completely captivate her.

He looks a bit different tonight himself, wearing dark wash jeans and a loose button up. She's used to seeing him in khakis and black t-shirts, but he looks good in this too. She's not sure there's an outfit that Bellamy couldn't pull off.

Which gets her to thinking about his clothes and pulling them off and -.

She doesn't let her mind go there.

Instead, she makes her way to him, sitting down on the stool to his right.

"Didn't expect to see you here," she comments.

He looks her over. "You sure about that, Princess?"

She desperately hopes she's not turning red. "I'm sure."

He shakes his head a little, grinning. "If you say so."

They talk and they talk and they talk. It's as if they will never run out of things to say.

"I didn't really want to be a bar tender," he says. "I actually wanted to be a history teacher."

"Really?" Clarke asks. She can see it so clearly in her head. Bellamy with a pair of thick black reading glasses, standing in the front of a classroom, his eyes lighting up as he talks about his favorite moments in history.

Bellamy nods. "Yeah, but then my sister got sick and I just kind of had to stick with this. We needed the money, and I could always go to college later."

"What's her name?"

"Octavia. Octavia Blake."

That's when it all comes back to her. Octavia Blake, the girl who was having seizures. The girl who had a brain tumor. The girl she operated on and who gave Clarke so much hope. And Bellamy. Well he was there with Octavia every step of the way.

Bellamy is quiet, sipping his beer, not meeting Clarke's gaze.

"I'm so stupid," she says, smacking her hands to her forehead. "So, so, stupid."

"You're not," Bellamy whispers, finally meeting her gaze. "You're a doctor. You can't remember every patient's family members. You have your own life too. I was surprised to see you that first night. I just guess that I wanted... to thank you."

"You don't have to thank me. It's my job. And Octavia, well, she's one of my most memorable patients. She gave me so much hope. She was so strong. I wished I could be like her. I had just lost my father, thrown myself into my work. And she reminded me to be strong, that life is worth living."

Bellamy grabs her hand, his thumb rubbing small circles onto the back of her hand.

They don't have to say anything else.

There's a comfortable silence.

They exchange phone numbers and text constantly. The flirting makes Clarke blush, and Raven often takes her phone out of her hands to look at the messages.

Do you know what you want to do tonight?

yeah, you.

*yeah, you?


Raven drops the phone back into Clarke's lap.

"Just get married already," Raven says, making her way out of their shared apartment.

You're such a flirt.

you love it.

Movie at your place?

sure, princess.

Clarke and Bellamy are laying on his couch, not really paying attention as Dead Poet Society plays on the tv screen.

Clarke's fingers run over Bellamy's face. He's got 53 freckles, by her count. She runs her thumb over his small scar.

"What's this from?" she asks.

"I ran into a glass coffee table when I was four."

She think of a small four year old version of Bellamy. It brings a smile to her face.

She wishes she could have known him longer, seen him through his awkward phase. She's not totally sure she buys that he had an awkward phase, but he swears he did. She wishes she could have met him before her dad was gone.

Her dad would have really liked Bellamy.

Clarke Griffin is happy.

She's happy in a way she never thought she could be.

She glances to Bellamy's sleeping figure, his arms surrounding her and pulling her flush against him.

She's so glad she gave Finn a broken nose and ordered whiskey at the small bar.

Bellamy pulls her closer as he sleeps.

She can't think of anywhere else she'd like to be.