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Clarke showered every day back on the Ark. She didn’t feel completely human without her shower first thing in the morning. But now, on Earth, bathing is secondary to surviving, or so the ever prevalent stench of body odour around the camp would seem to suggest. Still, she doesn’t go more than two days without making a trip to the one lake they’ve found that isn’t infested with giant snake creatures or used as a boundary marker by the Grounders.

Unfortunately, due to it being the only not lethal water source, there’s almost always people there. Even at night, lovebirds who want to try a hand at being romantic decide to watch the waterfall by starlight. The day she’d discovered that had been embarrassing for her and the couple, so much so that they still avoid making eye contact to this day.

So Clarke ends up going a few hours before the sun rises. It’s the coldest time, so no one stirs outside their tents unless they have to. She hates it, hates getting up earlier than everyone else when she already has to stay up later, planning for their continued survival. She hates how cold it is, hates how the water that should be pleasant is like icy blades on her skin. But she can’t go without it for long, so she bathes in icy waters, away from prying eyes.

This is Clarke’s routine for so long that she takes it for granted. Of course no one else would need water that early in the morning, it’s the time that she cleans away the dirt that collects way too quickly. She assumes that the universe and her have some sort of unspoken bond, an agreement that as long as she cleans herself at a certain time, nothing will go wrong.

But then things change. Specifically, the seasons. Water that was icy before is impossibly cold now. Clarke can’t bring herself to stay in the water at her normal time for more than a minute as the temperatures drops. So she suggests to Bellamy that they set up a schedule for water retrieval. People can still go to the river at any time, of course, but she tells Bellamy that the schedule will help them keep track of everyone and reduce the chances of Grounders picking people off without them noticing. He agrees without complaint, not even looking up from the report scrawled in charcoal on bark in front of him.

Her plan works. People tend to stick to the schedule, sitting next to the river far less attractive when your breath fogging on the air obstructs the view. So Clarke goes when no one is scheduled to be there and enjoys her baths, frigid as they might be. She’s always fast, not trusting the delinquents to stick to the schedule, but at least she gets to clean herself without risking hypothermia too much.

One day, the water isn’t as cold when she slips in. Maybe she’s building up a tolerance, or maybe the sun has decided to give one last shot at warming them before it hides for winter. Either way, she loves it. Clarke takes her time, knowing the next gathering group isn’t due for a few hours. She swims and laughs, her problems left behind with her clothes on the shore.

And then she hears a boot scuff on the rocks. She turns quickly to see who it is, but catches only a glimpse of a familiar jacket and short curly hair receding into the trees. Even that quick look is enough to tell her who it is, the one guy she sees every day. Of course it’s Bellamy, because the universe hates her. But why had he turned away? Clarke would have thought he’d be all for ogling her and cracking jokes.

She stares at the treeline for a while, hands dangling limply at her sides. She thinks she can still see the curve of a shoulder peaking out of the shadows. Definitely a shoulder, the owner remaining silent and stationary. Suddenly, a thought comes to Clarke. He’s watching her.

Her heart beats fast at the idea, the concept that he’s hiding in the forest to watch her bathing in the river. She knows he probably stumbled upon her by mistake, but he hasn’t left. He had tried to make her think he had, though, so clearly he wants her to go on as if he weren’t there. Apparently Clarke’s impulse control has joined her clothes and problems, because she wants to.

She turns away from him, pretending she doesn’t know he’s there. She can feel Bellamy’s eyes on her, taking in the sight of her standing in the water. Normally she would splash and giggle or just clean herself and get out of the water, but this is different. Now Clarke is putting on a show.

She gathers water in her hands, pouring it slowing over her head and smoothing her curls. Goosebumps raise on her skin as the cold air meets the moisture. She runs her hands over her hair and gathers it over one shoulder while moving to shallower waters. She stops when the water comes to just below the curve of her ass, knowing that Bellamy will be drinking in every new inch of flesh she exposes to him.

Clarke bends down slowly to rub water up her thighs, making sure that he gets a good long look at everything that he can’t touch. She moves her hands up her body as she turns to face towards the trees, but not exactly facing where she knows Bellamy still lurks. She lets him see her hands ghosting over her pussy, smoothing over her stomach. Water trails down her chest as she rubs her hands over her breasts, lips parting on a soft moan as she tweaks her nipples.

There’s a soft sound from the trees, a sigh so quiet that Clarke can’t be totally sure she actually heard it. But the idea that it was there, that it came unbidden from Bellamy’s lips, spurs her on. She bends slightly to dip her hands in the water and trail it over her arms, skin tingling at the thought of his eyes following the path her fingers take over her skin. She takes her time with her “bathing”, hands touching every inch of her body so he’ll see all of her.

Her hands warm the water that she drags over her skin, its passage over her body adding to her sensuous enjoyment. Her hands assume more of a purpose in their wanderings, one lingering on her breasts and the other swiping a finger at the damp heat between her legs. She licks her bottom lip slowly and bites it lightly before releasing it. She moans softly, her noises inspired by the fact that he can’t make any noise without breaking the spell of this moment.

She strokes slowly at her pussy with two fingers, enjoying the feeling of her sensitive flesh parting for the calloused digits. At the end of each long stroke she moves her fingertips in a quick burst across her clit, an enticing tease. She teases herself in order to tease Bellamy, who she can see part of in the corner of her eye. Apparently staying completely hidden wasn’t worth the obstructed view.

She smiles to herself and moves her fingers faster, bringing her arousal from its slow simmer to a boil. She spreads her legs more, careful of her footing. Clarke lets out breathy moans and sighs as she strokes her fingers over her clit. He still remains silent, but she expects nothing less at this point. She knows he’ll be pleasuring himself, jerking himself off in the forest. She wonders if he’ll try to draw it out, to come at the same time she does. She hopes he will.

But the teasing isn’t enough for her anymore, so Clarke gives in. She rubs her clit quickly, setting a pace she knows will get her off quickly. She would love to tease Bellamy for hours, but she feels the burning desire deep within her and wants to let it out. Her staged moans become lower and louder as her climax builds, no longer caring about anything other than the feel of her fingers and Bellamy’s eyes upon her.

With a few more quick flicks to her clit and a shouted wordless exclamation, Clarke’s orgasm breaks over her. She hears a muffled grunt and she grins as she comes down from her high, knowing he held off for her. She sinks to her knees in the water, lacking the strength to stand for the moment. When she scans the trees again after a few moments, there’s no longer a lurking figure. She sighs and climbs out of the water, pulling her clothes back on and heading back to camp.

Bellamy blushes when he sees her in camp, and Clarke knows that she’ll have the upper hand in all their battles of wit for the foreseeable future. She thinks she might enjoy flustered Bellamy, and wonders if she can manage to arrange a change meeting like that again.