Chapter 1: Curiosity
Clarke entered the clearing with hesitation. She had never seen so much water before coming to Earth. On the ark it had been rationed. They had fallen to the ground weeks before and seen little sign of life. The blonde leaned over and brought the water to her face. It was refreshing and cool and no mutant serpent creature had ever attacked them in this place.
She pushed her hair back, letting the water drip over her and twisted her hair to drain the excess, running her fingers through the wet waves.
"Clarke! Quick! Finn was injured. We need you."
It was Octavia. The young brunette's voice was urgent. Clarke got up and followed her. Since she was the only one with any real medical knowledge, everyone turned to her in a crisis, despite Bellamy being in charge most of the time. She had few friends. They all called her Princess in a mocking tone, thinking her more privileged than they were. They knew nothing about her and yet they judged her.
Lexa watched the blonde stride away with her friend, ready for action. She seemed so serious, so determined. She had been crouched in the undergrowth after her change, searching for her clothes. She'd been half way through dressing, pulling the top over her head when she'd spied the blonde.
At first she had just been curious at catching the scent of a stranger in her vicinity, her wolf senses still heightened from her change. Anya was a little ahead of her, Lincoln lagging much further behind with Indra, Luna, Gustus and Ryder. Then the blonde had brought the water to her skin and the sun had glistened on her. She opened her eyes and they were as blue as the water and Lexa hitched her breath as time stood still.
When she ran her hands through the damp, blonde waves it was like the world was moving slower than usual and Lexa was enthralled by the image of her.
It had been so long since she'd felt this way, since she'd felt anything. Her heart had been encased in ice. Now it was beating fast in her chest and she felt a surge of desire she knew she shouldn't.
To be Heda is to be alone.
She still heard Titus' voice in her head even though it was no longer relevant. She wasn't the Commander. She was pakstoka. Either way it wasn't possible. Lexa slinked away as soon as the brunette appeared. To be seen was dangerous for their kind. No one must know she was still alive.
"Keep him still. We don't have any meds and this is gonna hurt."
Finn flailed as Bellamy and Atom held him down. He'd fallen in one of their traps, impaling his leg on a wooden spike. Clarke removed the object with difficulty and cleaned and stitched the wound. Finn passed out and Clarke rushed out into the woods to compose herself. She kneeled by the river to wash the blood from her hands, pushing her hair out her eyes with her wrists. She was sweating. She was no real surgeon, her mother was but she was all they had.
She heard the snap of a twig nearby and turned to see a deer. Her heart stopped and a smile spread across her face. She'd never imagined seeing such a creature. It was beautiful and so innocent and then it turned and she saw the mutation, a second head that snarled at her and she flinched back. The deer sped away and she exhaled. She got to her feet, wiping her hands dry on her black trousers and that was when she saw two green eyes staring back at her.
It was a woman. One of the grounders as they called them. Clarke froze, her hand moving to her gun. The woman frowned at her actions and then sped away, disappearing through the trees.
"Wait! I'm not going to hurt you."
Clarke chased after the woman, catching only glimpses of tattooed arms and long, chestnut hair as she slipped away. She reached to grab her arm to stop her but suddenly she was flipped on her back and landed with a thud with the woman on top of her.
The woman's was practically straddling her, long, toned thighs holding her in place, her lips pulled back in a snarl. Clarke could feel her strength. She wanted to speak but the danger that had been in the stranger's eyes was replaced with curiosity and she leaned in to Clarke's neck inhaling deeply.
Clarke froze where she was, not sure what to do.
Was she-? Was she smelling her?
When the woman rose, green eyes bore into hers and Clarke couldn't describe the rush of desire she felt. She knew nothing of this woman but her body responded to her presence as if she did. The woman lifted her head high and turned as if hearing something. Clarke couldn't hear anything but a few seconds later Bellamy's voice called her name through the woods and before she knew it, the woman was gone.
Clarke spun around trying to spot the mysterious stranger but as Bellamy made his way to her, she got to her feet in embarrassment brushing herself off.
"You taking a nap on the ground Princess?" he asked, quirking an eyebrow.
"I tripped," she lied. "What do you want?"
"Are you okay? That was pretty intense."
Clarke glared at him, her bottom lip pouted.
"Do you care?"
Bellamy leaned against a tree, resting his head on his forearm.
"I know we've had our differences but we need you. We can't survive out here alone."
Clarke didn't meet his eyes. He was trying to be better. She got that. They'd argued over everything since they'd landed.
"Besides. If something happens to you, who'll be there to tell me I'm being dumb when I make a mistake."
"Your sister, Finn, Wells..."
"Alright, I get it. Don't stay out here alone. It's getting dark soon. There are wolves."
He glanced up at the sky a wide smile on his lips and Clarke's serious demeaner cracked.
"There are no wolves," she said with cynicism. "We haven't seen a single one since we landed."
"Just because you haven't seen, them it doesn't mean they aren't there. Jasper swore he heard howling."
Clarke shook her head.
"Jasper has been eating the wrong sort of mushrooms. Half the time he doesn't know what he's seeing."
They walked back to camp as night began to fall, Clarke glancing back over her shoulder at where she had last seen the stranger. She wondered if she would ever see her again.
Lexa stopped running once she was nearly home. She was out of breath but not from her run. She had nearly been discovered by more of the humans. She hadn't even intended for the blonde to see her but she had been caught by surprise, not expecting to see her again.
Once she'd caught her scent again she hadn't been able to resist moving closer. Lexa had edged closer, watching the bluest eyes she'd ever seen light up with wonder at the sight of the deer. She'd flinched back in surprise when she'd seen the mutation.
I should've moved sooner she thought. I was careless.
"Hey. What's with you?"
Lexa kept her face a mask of indifference. It was worrying that she had given anything away, even to someone as perceptive as Anya.
"There are new people in the woods. There are many new scents by the river."
Anya narrowed her eyes in concern.
"Heda..." she started, ready to give Lexa a warning about being too close to humans.
"Don't call me that!" Lexa snapped. "Nou laik heda. Ontari is heda."
The blonde wasn't happy with this answer but they had discussed this over and over again. The pakstoka saw her as their leader because she was still natblida, out of respect for her position but she had no real rank anymore, no authority and yet Anya in particular refused to accept it.
"Ontari is only heda because you wouldn't go back for the conclave. You would have won and you know it."
Lexa raised her hands in frustration.
"We've discussed this. A pakstoka cannot be heda. It is unheard of."
"You are the rightful commander. No one would dispute that. The only reason you refuse to return is Costia."
Lexa snapped her eyes to Anya's, snarling with fury. She stepped closer and Anya turned her head, avoiding eye contact.
"Don't mention her name. I will not speak of it. Costia is no longer mine. She never will be. She is married to the new Heda."
Anya didn't reply but Lexa could feel her gaze as she stormed into the large caves they called home.
Those words resonated inside her. She still mourned for the loss of her lover but Costia was gone and Lexa was only a wolf now.
I'm a fool she thought as she lay down on her bed of animal furs and turned to her side. First Costia and now this blonde.
Clarke. She had heard the boy call her that and was sure that was her name. He'd called her a prisa. Was she royalty of some kind? She didn't appear to be. She was a mystery to Lexa. When she'd grabbed her, Lexa had flipped her out of instinct and she'd carried a weapon of the mountain men, one of their greatest enemies.
Lexa gripped her makeshift pillow and shifted her head. She closed her eyes unable to get the woman's scent from her memory. It had been heavenly. Like the feeling she had when she was running as a wolf with her pack. Like a fresh meal, like a cool drink by the river. It was intoxicating.
She allowed herself to dream of the moment by the water, to relive the sight of her, droplets glistening on her pale skin. Her mind drifted to the woods, to the moment she had leaned in to Clarke's neck. In her daydream she pressed her nose against her skin and inhaled deeper before nuzzling and then kissing her soft skin. Lexa allowed herself the fantasy telling herself that she could never act on it and for the first time in forever she felt her broken heart beating again.
Mine she thought rubbing her nose into her pillow as she indulged the fantasy further. She could be mine.
She never could be yours a small voice told her. To be pakstoka is to be alone too. You can never love her.
Chapter 2: A Captive Audience
Lincoln is captured by the delinquents to face the crimes of the other grounders. Clarke decides to free him when no one will listen to her and Lexa and the Trikru pack attempt an escape.
Skaigoufa - sky girl
Nou Indra. Klarke na ste kik raun. Osir no laik em - No Indra. Clarke will live. We are not them (meaning we aren't like they are).
Clarke could not get the thought of the strange woman out of her mind. She had been tanned, with long, athletic limbs and black paint across her face as a mask. She was sure the paint was to aid camouflage. The way she had stared at her. How she had leaned in to her neck... it had been confusing the desires that had arose in Clarke. The last thing she had been expecting was for a veritable goddess to pin her to the ground in the forest.
And those eyes....
Clarke had been captivated by the way they'd flickered over her as if she was some interesting new specimen to examine. She could've sworn she'd seen signs of intelligence in them, despite her primitive behaviour. There had been a sense of danger to her too. She'd pinned Clarke so easily, as if it were absolutely nothing and had moved so fast that Clarke couldn't possibly have seen in which direction she went.
How did she hear Bellamy before I did? she wondered.
She knew someone was coming before he even said a word. No one's hearing was that good.
"Hey Clarke. Finn was asking for you."
Atom was a lanky boy with curly brown hair, one of Bellamy's goons. Clarke found herself growing to like him despite his tendency to follow Bellamy without question, even against Clarke's advice.
"Thanks. I'll go and check on him."
She headed into the fallen dropship that had become their home but then she heard a commotion outside and Octavia yelling. She rushed outside to find Bellamy and his militia dragging a grounder inside. The grounder had dark skin and was bald. He snarled at them but his brown eyes were warm and lacked aggression and he had similar dark marks across his face to the woman she'd seen in the woods.
"Wait. What are you doing?" Clarke yelled.
"He was caught sniffing around outside. He's one of them. A spy!"
Bellamy and the others dragged him into the dropship despite Clarke and Octavia's protests.
"Bellamy. Think about this," she pleaded, following them as they chained him to the wall.
"What are you doing here? Tell us your name."
There was a crack as Bellamy's fist connected with stranger's body.
"Stop! We don't even know if he speaks English."
Bellamy's temper was getting the better of him as he yelled again and punched him in the face. Clarke grabbed his arm.
"This isn't us Bell. We don't do this."
His jaw clenched as he glared defiantly.
"He's the one who set that trap. Finn could've died."
"He didn't and we don't know that it was him!"
Clarke tried to plead with him but when Bellamy found the notebook containing a sketch of his sister he saw red and it was Atom and Murphy that dragged him away. Clarke bent down to pick up the book and flicked through the pages. In it she found images of several people and landmarks. There were images of fauna probably noted for their medicinal usages. When she flipped the page she found a single image of the woman she had seen in the woods next to an image of a large brown wolf.
Clarke blinked. When she heard someone coming she tucked the book in the waistband at the back of her trousers and pushed her blue bomber jacket over it. Murphy gave her a look of suspicion.
"What?" she asked, feigning annoyance.
"Nothing," he replied. "Bellamy says go and check Finn."
Clarke didn't move. Bellamy wasn't going to give her orders and Murphy certainly wasn't.
"Fine. Don't check on your boyfriend," he said sarcastically. "Let him die for all I care."
Clarke glared at him but moved anyway. She did need to check on him. She ignored the 'boyfriend' jibe. Finn really wasn't someone who interested her and she had no time for romance. He was a good tracker and one of the few people who seemed to actually listen to her. She left, the book still concealed in her pocket, passing Octavia at the bottom of the ladder.
Atom and Murphy guarded Lincoln constantly, refusing to allow anyone access to him. Clarke tried to think of a way to stop them. She feared they would torture him but nothing she did seemed to sway Bellamy and she understood his motives. He saw them as the enemy. They'd been attacked by grounders before, shot at with arrows, some had been killed. All of their interactions with the grounders so far had involved violence. All but one.
The woman with the green eyes. Clarke skimmed through the pages studying the images but when she got to her image she lingered over it. Who were they? What did they want?
She could have easily killed Clarke that day but she didn't.
Clarke heard the commotion as they dragged the prisoner outside and tied him to a post. Bellamy was rousing the crowd, stirring them up again against the backdrop of the large campfire.
"These grounders think they can kill us. They think they can come into our territory and set traps and shoot arrows into us and we'll just sit back and take it. Well I'm here to tell you, we aren't taking it! I charge this grounder guilty of the crimes which I speak of. He will be left outside to die a slow, painful death and then they will know that we will not stand by while they kill us!"
The crowd cheered as Clarke feared they would.
Mob mentality she thought and no one stops to question what they're doing.
She stared into those big, brown eyes. He was afraid but he refused to show it, tensing his jaw in determination. It was then that Clarke decided to let him go.
Lexa snarled when she approached the skaikru territory late that night. It was quiet but skaikru were everywhere, their scents littered everywhere around her. He had only two guards around him and could have shifted to escape if he chose but avoided doing so to protect his pack. If people knew there were pakstoka in Trikru, they would hunt down every one of them, sending search parties and Lincoln was too loyal to put his pack in danger, even to protect himself.
Anya flanked her in her grey wolf form and Indra, a darker brown wolf. Gustus was pure black, as was Ryder and Lexa led them carefully towards Lincoln. Anya and Ryder, two of the fastest were to take distraction if needed, while Indra and Gustus would keep watch while Lexa released Lincoln.
The darkness helped her to remain in cover but as she entered the camp she noticed that something was wrong. Many of them smelled wrong, drugged she would guess. They were half-asleep, drowzy and slow. She kept to the shadows until she saw the familiar blonde exiting the metal structure, scanning around her carefully.
Lexa watched her, her tail flicking gently as she remained entirely out of sight. Clarke began to untie his hands, checking over her shoulder a few times.
"I'm sorry," she said. "They're scared and angry but they shouldn't have done this to you. Tell your people to leave us alone and we will do the same."
He remained mute. It was the smarter option. Let the strangers think that they couldn't understand their tongue, say nothing to betray your people.
Lincoln glanced in her direction and Lexa knew that he had detected her scent the moment she had entered the camp. Clarke placed the book in his hands and his stared down at it in surprise.
"Here. This is yours. Leave now before they wake up."
He took it from her and Lexa watched as Lincoln sprinted away into the woods. Clarke turned to leave but frowned and stopped. Lexa remained low but she knew what Clarke had heard. It was Anya's call, telling her that Lincoln was safely in cover. Lexa was about to slink away when the other boy Murphy saw her and yelled.
"You let him go! Are you crazy? He's going to bring back all of his grounder friends and kill us all."
Lexa felt a growl coming to her lips. He was advancing on Clarke, yelling and pointing at her. They argued but when the one with the black curly hair that acted as if he was the leader appeared, she knew that they would soon find her and that she was trapped if she didn't do something.
She shifted and Clarke caught sight of her changing from wolf to woman, her eyes wide with shock. The change was quick and Lexa snatched the knife from Clarke's waistbelt and had it against her throat in an instant. She was nude, only Clarke's body covering her from their sight. The taller boy surged forward but she tightened her grip.
"Don't move," she snarled at them.
She could see from the tension in his face that he was afraid.
"It's okay Bellamy. She just needs a hostage. You'll take care of the others."
As she spoke, Lexa realised that she was reassuring him and that she had misunderstood their power structure. Bellamy seemed like the leader because the majority thought him the strongest and followed him, yet he relied on Clarke and looked to her for guidance. Clarke was a leader just as Lexa had been and still was to her pack.
She saw my change she thought sadly. Even if she wanted to she cannot return to her people now.
Lexa walked back slowly towards the wood, the knife at Clarke's throat. It was tense as the two boys watched with fury and helplessness. Despite his anger towards the blonde, even the other one seemed unhappy with the situation.
"Keep quiet," Lexa urged her.
"So you can understand us," Clarke whispered. "Why not just kill me the first time?"
Lexa would've been offended if not for the fact that she had asked herself the same thing. This was survival. She would do what was best for her pack so why had she not killed her?
It was slow travelling in human form and Lexa found the others waiting for her back at their den.
"Who's the girl?" Anya asked, lying on her back on a flat, stone surface.
"She saw me change," Lexa said, her tone laced with bitterness.
The pack all sat up alert. They had been careful and safe for so long and now Lexa had risked that.
"Why does she still live?" Indra snarled. "If she knows what we are we must end her life so she can tell no one."
Lexa shook her head slowly.
"Nou Indra. Klarke na ste kik raun. Osir nou laik em."
Lexa threw the knife to the ground in front of Indra to show that she meant it. Clarke saw her chance and spun to run away but Anya pounced and landed on her in a second. They were so fast. Clarke fought with all she had but Anya pinned her easily. Anya bared her teeth and a growl escaped her lips.
"You are wasting your energy. You are our prisoner now. Whatever you try to do, you cannot escape us. We could track you across half the world if we wanted."
Clarke shot a look at Lexa in alarm and then turned away again, realising immediately that she was still undressed.
Anya noticed and chuckled.
"The skaigoufa is embarrassed by your nudity Lexa. I think she likes the sight of a naked woman as much as you and I do."
Lexa didn't reply but Clarke had to fight to conceal her embarrassment. She had only seen a glimpse but the image was in her memory now and she was conflicted at her feelings for her captor.
"Take her inside," Lexa commanded. "Keep watch over her until she understands."
Anya dragged Clarke to her feet by her jacket and took her into the cave. Lexa could sense Indra about to lecture her on her decision but she raised a hand and moved to find some clothes.
Chapter 3: The Life We Leave Behind
Clarke spends the first night with the pack who aren't used to having a human around. When Clarke escapes Lexa makes a decision that she's a threat to their pack but finds herself unable to act on it. Lexa sees a familiar face that brings up difficult emotions and Clarke finds a way to get to Lexa.
Pakstoka - werewolf
Skaigoufa - sky girl
Heda - Commander
Anya threw the meat towards Clarke. It was uncooked and raw.
"I can't eat this. I'll get sick."
"Oh right. I'll get something else. Stay here."
Clarke was in a large cave. It was dark but cozy and they had clearly lived there for some time. She shivered. They seemed to have no need for fire. She assumed they ate in their wolf forms. She would have tried to run but she doubted she would get far.
"Cold skai girl?"
The one she heard them call Luna was lying on her bed of furs on her front, resting on her elbows. Her brown eyes were focussed on her and there was a spark of curiosity.
Clarke didn't answer. Lexa strode in. They were settling down to go to sleep. The others all had their beds closer together but she noticed Lexa place herself down on a pile of furs apart from the others. Clarke noticed she avoided even looking in her direction as she lay down and closed her eyes.
"She's human," Luna told the group. "She needs better clothing for the cold if she is to live."
"Let her freeze," Indra muttered as she entered and lay down too.
Lincoln and the others soon followed and Anya returned some time later with a selection of fruit. Clarke took it grateful they weren't going to let her starve at least.
"You will sleep here," Anya told her, patting a pile of furs next to her own. "We all go to sleep at the same time save for Ryder who is keeping watch. If you value your limbs do not make any sudden movements near us while we sleep."
Clarke finished her meal and lay down in the pile of furs pulling them over her body. They were soft but not nearly warm enough and she shivered. She could just about see the figure of a dark wolf guarding the entrance. There was no chance of escape while they slept with him there.
Lexa listened to the shivering of the human a few feet away. She had forgotten that wolves had higher body temperatures than people, that they needed cooked food and fire and adequate winter clothing. She kept her eyes closed, trying to ignore the obvious discomfort Clarke was in as she tried to wrap herself in the furs as tightly as possible to keep warm.
I'm never going to sleep with her moving around all night like that.
It was difficult enough to ignore her scent. They were all unused to it. Their den had smelled only of their pack for so long and wolves disliked strangers in their territory. She opened one eye and saw Clarke struggling with her furs to get comfortable.
"Klarke, here!" she commanded.
Clarke lifted her head in confusion, not moving from her bed. Lexa softened her tone and lowered her eyebrows.
"We will find warmer clothes for you tomorrow. For tonight you will sleep beside me to keep warm."
The blonde still didn't move. Lexa wasn't used to having to ask someone twice. She was used to people following her orders without question. She frowned, trying to understand the blonde. Was she afraid of Lexa? In her culture it was normal to share body warmth if sleeping out in the cold. It was often necessary. Did the sky people have a different custom?
"I will not harm you," she said. "The low temperature can be dangerous for humans during the winter."
Clarke moved, dragging her furs with her and lay hers down beside Lexa's bed. Luna lifted her head as Clarke moved, clumsy in the dark. She settled on her side facing away from Lexa. She felt Lexa shift so that her body was lightly pressed against Clarke's and suddenly she understood the gesture. Lexa's body was warm. She felt a hesitant arm slip around her waist.
She should have stopped Lexa then. Should have asked her what she was thinking and separated from her touch but she found herself drifting. It was like sleeping with a hot water bottle and her shivering subsided as she warmed up.
"What are you going to do to me?" Clarke whispered, despite knowing that the others could probably hear.
"Nothing," Lexa replied. "As long as you remain with us."
It was not meant to sound as a threat but Lexa knew that it did. She was holding Clarke hostage against her will. She had seperated her from her people and yet she had this urge to protect her from harm. This urge to bury her nose in her neck and...
Lexa was alarmed at the sudden desire she had to treat Clarke like a mate. A human! She ignored it and turned her head away, trying to block out the sweet scent eminating from the blonde beside her.
When she slept she dreamt of Costia and of happy memories but then she saw her with Ontari, marrying her instead of Lexa.
She awoke early to find the blonde gone. Lexa arose with a growl. She headed over to Ryder who was asleep next to the remnants of raw meat Anya had given her the night before. She brought it to her nose and smelled the same drug she had detected the night Clarke had freed Lincoln.
How on earth did she do this without anyone noticing?
Lexa scowled, the wolf inside her growing angry. She was not used to defiance. She was never challenged like this. She had offered a mercy and the skai girl had refused it. She left Lexa little choice.
She caught the blonde quite some distance from their den, heading back towards her people. She didn't know the terrain but she seemed to navigate well and was sensible in her approach through the woods. Lexa slipped into wolf form and followed silently. It was early and the sun was just rising. She made no sound as she grew closer to her, readying herself for the inevitable.
It gave her no joy to kill but she knew that a hostage who ran away would try to run again and again and that posed a threat to her pack's safety.
Lexa was about to spring out when she caught another scent that was far more familiar, several of them. One in particular brought back painful memories.
She followed it to it's source and saw Ontari on horseback travelling through the woods, Costia on another horse behind her. Many Azgeda marched with them heading towards Polis.
Clarke she thought with panic. She will alert them and they will know I live. Costia will know.
Lexa sprang on all fours through the undergrowth towards Clarke. She saw the blonde hiding in a bush as Azgeda passed by and Lexa barrelled into her. She opened her mouth and bared her teeth, fulling intending to deal with her when the procession passed. Instead she spotted the neat curly brown hair of her former lover and whined.
Costia was as beautiful as she remembered. Her skin was like cocoa and her eyes the colour of hazelnuts, rich and deep. She was dressed in thick Azgeda fur and was the image of grace. In her eyes though there was something missing. That spark of innocence, that softness. Costia looked annoyed, resentful. She glared at Ontari, one brow raised. It shook Lexa to her core, not only to see her again but to see her unhappy.
Her only comfort had been the belief that Costia would at least be well treated as the wife of the Heda.
"It is too cold here," Costia said, in a clipped tone.
"Be quiet or I will send you to Azgeda where you will feel real cold. This is nothing."
Lexa whined, her eyes fixed on her first love. Costia had changed. Her behaviour, her manner. She had been light and kind when Lexa had known her. She had been sweet and had laughed easily and been so hopeful. She could see no sign of that in her now. The Costia she knew was truly gone.
Clarke had thought that Lexa was going to kill her. Sharp, elongated teeth hovered over her menacingly and she readied herself to go down fighting. Then the procession had passed and the wolf had changed, closing it's mouth and staring at the woman on the horse, who seemed to be throwing daggers at the young brunette leading the warriors.
Several whines escaped the wolf and Clarke felt the sorrow in them vibrate through her body. Lexa's eyes were still green in this form but much darker. There was longing and regret in them, a desperate pining for something lost.
Clarke had assumed she was always a werewolf but maybe she was wrong. The look in her eyes was one of love. It was deep and real and Clarke felt herself moved by it. Had Lexa loved this woman and lost her? Was she forced to leave her because of what she was?
The procession passed and the wolf still whined. Clarke didn't know what to do but reached up out of instinct to brush Lexa's soft fur. Lexa turned to her curiously as she gently stroked the back of her head before becoming awkward and pulling back her hand.
Lexa gazed into those eyes. In them she saw something she recognised in herself. Longing, a desire to be loved but a refusal to put her needs first. She backed away and huffed, deciding then that she was going to let her live despite the criticism she would get from the others. She bared her teeth at Clarke in warning but there was no real anger behind it.
"Alright, alright. I'll come back. Clearly trying to run away is not going to work out well for me."
Lexa waited patiently for her to move and escorted Clarke back to where Lexa had left her clothes. Once there she shifted back, noticing Clarke's embarrassment again at Lexa's nudity as she dressed. The blonde kept her head turned and Lexa found it odd.
"Why do you fear the naked form?"
Lexa pulled her top back on.
"What?" Clarke asked. "I'm not - it's just - we tend to be more private about it, my people I mean."
"My people see it as natural and do not fear it. We live in close groups. Privacy is rare."
Clarke turned her head now.
"Your people? Which ones? The wolves or the humans?"
Lexa snarled moving forward and into her space.
"How do you know who I am? Are you working for Azgeda? The Mountain men?"
Clarke furrowed her brow, blinking twice rapidly.
"What? Who are you? What do you mean?"
Lexa shook her head, realising her error and turned away walking towards her den. Clarke followed and they were both quiet for a few moments, the only sound the chirps of small birds as they started their morning.
"So, I don't know anything about you but I'm guessing I can figure some of it out."
Clarke followed Lexa as she spoke, stepping over the obstacles on the path as she did. Lexa didn't reply, obviously still irritated by her sudden show of emotion.
"I can guess," Clarke emphasised, "that you were not born like this and that you had a life before."
"You know nothing of what you speak."
Clarke's eyes were on the ground, following each of Lexa's footsteps carefully.
"I can also tell that you hate to show emotion and that the woman you were staring at meant something to you."
Lexa spun around, her jaw tensed. Clarke saw the struggle she had, trying to control the warring emotions inside her.
"So I'm right," she said softly. "You were in love with her."
Lexa turned away and continued walking without a word.
"And you can't be with her because something happened. Something turned you into a pak- pak-"
"Pakstoka," Lexa corrected, still marching ahead.
She heard the blonde mutter the word under her breath, trying to memorise it.
"What happened? Could she not handle you changing into a wolf? Does she even know?"
Lexa turned and surged forward on eye level with Clarke now.
"None of this is relevant. You are my hostage, nothing more and Costia is none of your concern."
"Costia..." Clarke repeated. "So that's her name."
Lexa could've cursed herself for falling into such an obvious trap. She hadn't meant to reveal anything but Clarke was infuriatingly persistent and seemed to know just how to antagonise her.
They moved in silence as they entered the camp. Lexa refused to look at her as she strode over towards the group who were undressing, ready to hunt.
"Who's going to watch your skaigoufa while we hunt?" Anya asked as Lexa began to undress.
Lexa's eyes darted towards Clarke. She was facing away, avoiding the sight of the pack removing their clothes. She was looking down at the ground and then up at the sky and then off into the distance.
"I will," Luna offered. "I can miss the hunt for today."
"Very well," Lexa stated. "We will return soon and you can join the evening run. Lincoln will take over then. Tell Ryder to follow if he's recovered."
"Have a good hunt guys," Clarke called out in a chipper tone. "I'll get a fire ready to cook it this time."
Lexa glanced at her. The blonde was still averting her eyes but there was a confident smile forming on her lips. She would have to watch her. This one was clever and had already managed to drug her guard and interrogate her about her past. She was much more dangerous than she appeared.
Chapter 4: Mechanic on the Ground
Raven lands on Earth. Clarke convinces Luna to investigate and Lexa find herself at war with her desire to protect her pack and to keep Clarke safe.
Heda - commander
Pakstoka - Wolf/werewolf
Skaigoufa - Sky girl
Goufa - Girl
Raven was sure that she was't going to make it. Getting down to Earth was both dangerous and illegal at this point. If not for Abby's persistence and absolute belief in her,she would have never gotten this far. The pod rattled and crashed to the ground. Raven closed her eyes expecting the worst.
Luna and Clarke spotted the pod as it soared through the sky.
"What is that?" Luna asked.
"Let's go and find out," Clarke replied.
The brunette shook her head.
"Please. One of my people could be injured in there. It's from the Ark, my home."
"Fine," Luna replied, her curiosity getting the better of her, but say nothing of this to Lexa. She will be angry."
Clarke and Luna set off towards the pod, unsure what they would find. When they got there, the ground around it was cracked and the pod door damaged.
"They're trapped in there," Luna said, as they hid in the undergrowth. "They're trying to get out."
Clarke glanced at her. So she was right about them having incredible hearing. She couldn't hear a thing.
"Wait here," Luna said. "Stay out of sight."
She made her way over to the pod and wrenched the door off as if it was nothing. When she lifted it, a young brunette was inside with blood dripping from her forehead.
"Hi I'm Raven," she said with a note of humour. "You wouldn't happen to know a Clarke or a Finn would you?"
"No," Luna replied after a pause before throwing the door to one side and walked away.
Raven climbed out, one hand on her head.
"Wait. How did you do that? The seal was damaged on that door. It shouldn't have opened."
Luna just walked away and disappeared into the undergrowth.
"It's my friend Raven from the ark. She must've come down to find us."
Clarke kept her voice low and remained hidden. Luna stared at her surprised she hadn't tried to escape.
Clarke was watching Raven as Bellamy appeared with some of the other delinquents. Raven was asking him something. She seemed saddened by his answer.
"Why did you not call for help?" Luna asked as Raven left with the others.
"Because then she would be a hostage too or even worse Bellamy would have seen us and started shooting and who knows who could have got hurt."
Luna regarded her words carefully. She was protecting her people even at her own cost.
"Does it not hurt you to be without your pack? I could not imagine to be without mine."
"Yes. I miss them but Lexa is only keeping her pack safe. I would have done the same in her position."
Luna was looking at her as if just seeing her for the first time. Her gaze was penetrating as if all at once she understood something she hadn't before.
"You have feelings for Heda."
Clarke spun her head around.
"What! No! Wait, who's Heda?"
"Lexa," Luna replied with a smirk.
The blonde tilted her head as she looked to one side thoughtfully.
"That's what I guessed. What does it mean Heda?"
"Commander," Luna replied. "It is a title of honour we give her. Now let's go skaigoufa."
They walked back through the peaceful woods and Clarke had to say it was pretty pleasant not having to worry about everyone else for once. The sun shone through the trees as she followed Luna.
"Is she your Alpha? Is that why you call her Heda?"
Luna had to give it to Clarke. She was persistent.
"What is an Alpha?"
Clarke waved her hands.
"You know a leader of wolves. The alphas rule the pack and there's betas and omegas. Alphas are in charge, then betas and omegas are at the bottom. It's a power structure."
Luna turned to face her with amusement and pity.
"Oh... goufa. Pakstoka do not have leaders. We follow Lexa because she is a natural leader. Pakstoka are a family as are the wild wolves. A wolf pack is usually two parents and their children. Ours may be more unconventional but we follow Lexa out of choice not obligation."
Clarke blinked as Luna looked down at her patiently as if she were a teacher.
"How did you become pakstoka?"
"We are born or bitten. I was born Pakstoka as was Anya, Lincoln and Indra. Ryder was bitten by another wolf and we found him wandering with Gustus who was born a wolf and found him alone."
Clarke raised an eyebrow.
"You will have to ask her. It is not my place."
Luna turned away and continued walking towards the den, Clarke following close behind.
Lexa returned from the hunt with the others in wolf form and to her alarm found Luna and Clarke missing. She sprang towards the woods following their scent and relaxed when she saw them walking back towards the den, not far away. Fear had gripped her for a moment and she did not understand why. Luna was watching her and would not let her escape but her pounding heart told her otherwise.
Luna lifted her head, picking up her scent and she nodded at Lexa in acknowledgment. All pakstoka did this out of habit, greeting members when they returned to camp.
"Aww... you're cute in this form," Clarke teases kneeling down to Lexa as they were passing.
She reached out her hand again and Lexa remained motionless, unsure how to handle this but then Clarke scratched under her chin and she pulled away, secretly a little pleased at the contact. She was not a dog. She was a werewolf.
"Goufa, it is disrespectful to behave this way to Heda. She is still Lexa even in this form. You must treat her with respect."
Clarke sighed and stood up.
"Sorry. I didn't think. There were no animals on the Ark, er the place I lived in space."
Luna said nothing but just nodded towards the den and Clarke followed her and Lexa found herself unable to tear her eyes away from the blonde, her tail flicking softly.
When she returned with them Lincoln and Ryder were playing, wrestling and laughing as they vied for dominance in their games. Anya was training with her staff, perpetually interested in doing something physical.
"Klarke!" Lexa said, once she was in human form and dressed. "Come."
The blonde seemed flustered at her words which she did not understand but she nodded towards the woods urging her to follow.
"Where are we headed?" Clarke asked, bouncing beside her.
Lexa gave her a sideways glance.
"You need supplies. We are going to a trading post."
She noticed Lexa had put on a hood that covered her hair and face, clearly not wanting to be recognised. She threw a hood at Clarke and demanded she put it on. Clarke just followed her lead, thinking it best that she not defy Lexa for now.
"So she's gone. Taken? Why the hell haven't you gone after her?"
"We did," Bellamy replied. "We've sent search parties but there's no trace of her."
To say Raven was agitated was an understatement. She had risked everything to find her friends, her head still throbbed from the impact of the crash and now she was being told that Clarke had been kidnapped by some -
What did they call them? Grounders?
"The Ark is dying," Raven told them. "They think you're all dead so there's talk of floating people. We need to get a message them somehow to let them know Earth is survivable."
Bellamy shook his head.
"Absolutely not. There's no way. I'm wanted for murder."
"They caught the guy that put you up to it so he's the one that will take the blame and the chancellor lives."
His eyes widened and his anger dissipated.
"Yeah. You didn't do a very good job at it but if we don't radio them a load of our people are gonna die and then you will be responsible for their deaths."
He seemed to be thinking, his hand on his chin.
"Fine. We'll go and search for the radio. Can you get it working?"
"If it's in one piece, yeah."
Raven had her doubts that it was but she was clinging on to her last thread of hope. They had to save the Ark. They had to bring their people to the ground and they had to find Clarke in the meantime.
Chapter 5: The Princess and the Mechanic
We see how Raven and Clarke meet on the Ark. Lexa and Clarke run into trouble on their way to the trading post which leads to them being trapped together.
Pauna - The mutated gorilla.
A few years before
"Hey, can I sit here? The other seats are taken."
Raven played with her food rations. Her mother was gone. She had no one now. She looked up to see a blonde girl smiling at her, holding her tray
"If you want," she shrugged.
The blonde sat down and Raven noticed an open sketchpad on the side of her tray. In it were several drawings of the Earth.
"Hey did you do these? They're really good."
"Yeah," she replied in a low voice. "Thanks. Do you like to draw?"
Raven laughed out loud.
"Not well," she replied. "I'm more into getting my hands dirty than drawing. I'm hope to be a mechanic one day. You?"
Clarke raised a brow, clearly impressed.
"I'll probably end up being either a doctor or engineer like my mom and dad."
"Wow," Raven said. "You must be pretty privileged having parents with such fancy jobs."
Clarke just nodded.
"You know what I really want," she said, leaning forward. "To see the ground. The sky , the water, the trees, if anything survived that is."
Raven smiled. There was something so genuine about her manner and most of the more privileged girls her age would never sit with someone like her let alone talk so openly.
"Well what I would really like is to be a zero-g mechanic. In fact I want to be the youngest one ever."
Raven expected her to be dismissive. Most didn't believe she could do it.
"You'll get there. I can tell. You're determined enough and you know what you want. Clarke Griffin by the way."
She reached out her hand and Raven shook it with a grin.
"Raven Reyes. You in Earth skills with Pike?"
"Yeah," she groaned. "You?"
She shook her head.
"I did it last year. Did well on all the tests and they fast tracked me through the courses."
"Ah you're the genius he keeps talking about. You know he raves about you every lesson."
"Let me guess. He says I'm a genius but too cocky and that intelligence is no guarantee of survival, only strategy."
Raven made a stern face as she imitated him and Clarke laughed.
"Something like that. He's a good teacher but he has very fixed ideas and he doesn't like to be challenged."
"No he really doesn't. Well I gotta go Clarke but I'll be here same time tomorrow if you wanna hang out some more."
Clarke gave her a broad smile.
"Sure. I'll see you then."
"See ya Griff."
Lexa talked even less than usual and Clarke found herself feeling more than a little rejected as her attempts at small talk failed. She couldn't figure her out. One minute she was offering to keep her warm in case she froze to death and the next she was barely speaking to her.
"How far do we have to walk?"
"It takes as long as it takes."
Clarke glared at the back of Lexa's head. She was infuriating. Suddenly there was a harrowing sound just off in the distance and they both stopped dead in their tracks. Lexa placed one arm in front of Clarke, shielding her.
"Pauna," she whispered. "Come on."
She grabbed Clarke's hand urging her to run and they sped away. Clarke could not see the beast but from the deafening sound of it's cry, it was very large and very dangerous.
Lexa led her through the undergrowth, pushing aside branches to make a path. They reached an open plain and there was a sudden change in the air. Clarke noticed Lexa raising her head as if sniffing the air.
"The fog," she exclaimed, pulling her by the hand. "It's deadly."
Clarke didn't have to be told twice. She had seen the effects of the acid fog before and had narrowly escaped it. Lexa kept hold of her hand as they ran.
"Here," Clarke urged her, pulling up the door of the van that lay buried sideways in the dirt.
She grabbed Lexa and yanked her inside and closed the door just as the fog passed over them. A few seconds later and they probably would have both been dead. They stared at each other, trapped together in the small space.
"How long does it usually last?" Clarke asked after a period of silence.
"It varies," Lexa replied. "It can be hours sometimes. We could be here for a while."
Clarke huffed and then her eyes lit up as she noticed a bottle of alcohol in the abandoned vehicle. She reached out and grabbed it and opened it. Lexa turned up her nose almost immediately.
"That smells awful. What is it?"
"Alcohol," Clarke replied, bringing it to her lips and taking several gulps.
She handed it to Lexa who stared at it. Lexa took it carefully, sniffing it again and then pulling her nose away in disgust. She lifted the bottle and took a swig and then choked.
"That is awful. How can you drink it?"
Clarke took it back and took another mouthful.
"You don't drink it for it's taste. It's for enjoyment. We use it at celebrations. Don't you?"
Lexa expression was blank as if she had no idea what she was talking about. Clarke offered her the bottle again and to her surprise she took it and took another drink.
"So tell me about this custom Clarke. Is this 'alcohol' symbolic? Does it have meaning to your people?"
"Erm no. It's basically a substance that people drink to get intoxicated, to er loosen up. It's not good for you at all in large quantities. Some people have been known to drink too much but it's really just done for fun."
Lexa's eyes were fixed on her as she spoke. They were so close. There was no escape inside the small space as they sat next to each other.
"Fun?" Lexa asked. "How do you have time. Do you not need to train each day?"
"Well, we have classes to learn useful stuff and one of those was where we played sports but we have time for enjoyment sometimes too."
They passed the bottle back and forward and Lexa began to feel a little weird.
"Tell me. What is a sport?"
Clarke turned to her, shifting closer and placing one hand on the surface between them.
"It's a game or competition, usually physical where people compete to win a prize. Some people play for fun with their friends, like how Ryder and Lincoln were playing earlier."
Lexa nodded thinking of her conclave. The one she was supposed to attend. The one she was supposed to win.
"Is that how your leaders are chosen? Do they fight to the death."
Clarke opened her mouth slightly, her teeth showing as she smiled.
"No, they have an election. Those who want to lead put themselves forward and the people have a vote and no one dies."
Lexa raised a brow staring forward wistfully.
"Must be nice."
Clarke couldn't figure out what she was thinking about so deeply but something was on her mind. She put a hand on Lexa's knee leaning closer. Lexa glanced down at it, her body stiffening at the touch.
"Look. I get why you had to take me. You were protecting your family but I have people I care about too. I have friends and family and my people need me so I have to try to escape again. You know that."
Lexa swallowed, caught in a trance as she fell into blue eyes and her own flickered down tempting lips. She found herself staring, lost in her desire and she leaned in and cupped Clarke's face and kissed her. Their lips met and she moved softly, not wanting to presume too much. Clarke seemed caught off guard but closed her eyes and began to respond, her lips moving gently against Lexa's as they lost themselves in the kiss.
Lexa leaned into the kiss feeling Clarke move forward and then draw back as they both pressed and retreated. She moved to change angles, skimming past Clarke's nose with her own and tilting her head to reconnect their lips.
Clarke pulled away suddenly and Lexa snapped back as if struck, sensing that something had changed. Clarke opened her eyes as she yanked her head away.
"We shouldn't do this. You're not used to alcohol. It has a way of lowering your inhibitions."
Lexa closed her mouth and nodded slowly, despite how dizzy and hungry she felt for more. She would respect Clarke wishes but something burned in Lexa, something deep in the recesses of her mind and heart.
Mate her wolf side said plainly.
It was stating a fact to her that she had already known but had tried to ignore. Clarke wasn't just anyone. Lexa wanted her to be her mate.
It's impossible she thought turning her head away and shifting in her seat. She is human for one thing and this can never happen.
But Lexa could not tear her eyes from Clarke, the feeling of her lips still fresh in her mind.
Mate she thought, giving in to the feeling. She is your mate and you will protect her no matter what happens.
When the fog passed they had both fallen asleep, Clarke leaning on Lexa's shoulder. Lexa woke to find her there and glanced up through the dust-covered window. It was clear. She woke Clarke by shaking her gently and the blonde lifted her head.
"It's time to move," she said in a low voice.
Lexa reached up and pushed open the door climbing out. She reached back to help Clarke up but the young woman had already clamboured out and was brushing her trousers off.
The sun was just setting but they were both wide awake now. Lexa led the way but after a while she huffed and stopped.
"We won't make it there before dawn now. It's best to avoid being seen at trading posts during daylight. We'll have to stop for the night."
Green eyes flickered to her.
"Follow me. This way."
Clarke pulled her coat around herself, shivering as she followed her. Lexa found a concealed cave and led her inside. It was much smaller than the den but better than the inside of the van they had spent several hours in.
"Can you start a fire while I hunt?" Lexa asked. "Are you able?"
Clarke looked at her as if mildly insulted.
"Of course I can."
"Do not stray far from this cave. I'll be back soon."
The blonde wasn't looking at her, already scanning the ground for twigs to build a fire.
Lexa gave her a second glance as she left the cave. She was entirely focussed on her task, her blonde hair falling over her face as she bent down to pick up pieces for the fire.
What is happening to me? Lexa thought. How am I falling so fast?
Chapter 6: Talking and Teasing
Lexa hunts for dinner while Clarke makes a fire. When Clarke catches Lexa taking a swim, Lexa finds her embarrassment amusing. Lexa tells Clarke how she was bitten and about Costia but omits a few details about her past.
Pakstoka - wolf/werewolf
Heda - Commander
Natblida - Nightblood
Yu laik yuj gona - You are a strong warrior.
Ai sis yo op - I'll help you
Lexa stalked her prey in wolf form. It wasn't usual for her to hunt alone but when necessity demanded it she went for smaller game and it wasn't long before she was returning to Clarke with a rabbit in her mouth. She dropped it to the ground in front of the blonde who looked surprised. Lexa had already hunted and devoured something for herself so the gift was purely for the blonde's benefit.
Sitting back on her haunches she opened her muzzle, her tongue lolling to one side. Clarke smiled suddenly.
"Thanks er - Lexa."
Lexa slipped away to wash in a nearby lake and retrieve her clothes. It was dark and she shifted in the water, the stars overhead as she swam out. She ducked herself under the water and then emerged, throwing her hair back. When she opened her eyes Clarke was in front of her on the bank her mouth hanging open.
"I'm sorry," she said hurriedly averting her eyes. "I wanted to ask if you wanted me to keep some raw for you."
Lexa smiled at the blonde's sudden awkwardness.
"You've seen me naked before," Lexa replied, emerging from the water and twisting her long, brown hair to one side.
"I never looked before," Clarke said, staring up and to the right at absolutely nothing.
Lexa walked past her, collecting her clothes and leaned in.
"Are you looking now?" she whispered.
Clarke's inhaled sharply but kept her eyes averted and Lexa was filled with triumph. It seemed she wasn't the only one affected by whatever was happening between them.
She dressed unable to supress the smirk that was painted on her lips.
"I'm clothed now and I have already eaten thank you."
Clarke turned but still seemed a little uncomfortable even when Lexa was dressed.
"Okay. I just wanted to check."
Lexa raised her head with a slight nod, the smirk not completely gone. Clarke didn't understand that the gesture was more serious to wolves. To offer food was a big deal to pakstoka. Only packs shared food and even then they tended to squabble over portions. Their survival depended on hunting efficiently and starvation could be a real threat to a pack if they weren't successful.
"We should return inside and remain concealed. It will be a cold night even for me. Snow is about to fall."
"Really?" Clarke asked. "What's it like?"
"Cold," Lexa replied gesturing, with a single eyebrow.
Clarke groaned as she followed Lexa back into the cave.
"I know that Lexa but I've never seen it or felt it. There's no snow in space."
Lexa seated herself gracefully on the ground, cross-legged, noticing that Clarke had made not only a fire but used some heather to create beds and placed stones neatly around the edge of the fire. The rabbit was on a makeshift device that allowed her to turn it. Lexa was impressed that she was so apt at this despite her lack of experience living in the wilderness.
"No snow. No wolves. What did you have in the sky? What was it like?"
Clarke leaned back from turning the spit a big smile on her face and began to describe the ark and how they lived as best as she could to Lexa. All supplies had been rationed. There had been no weather, no outdoors and the same view of the Earth from a distance and yet Clarke'd had access to knowledge Lexa's people didn't. They had technology far superior to their own.
Lexa listened enjoying the sound of her voice as she talked excitedly about her home. It sounded as if Clarke had been very limited in the sky. Lexa could not imagine living in the same four walls for so long without having access to the wonder of nature. It was no wonder Clarke was so curious about everything. She was often seeing it for the first time.
Clarke ate and talked and Lexa listened, diverting attention away each time Clarke tried to ask her questions about her own past.
"I know what you're doing," Clarke said finally. "Avoiding telling me about yourself. What are you afraid of? I already know you're a werewolf."
Lexa wasn't sure what to say. She had left the life of being a potential Heda behind yet it was still dangerous for anyone to know she lived.
"They think I'm dead," she said, settling for some of the truth if not the whole story.
Clarke turned her head.
Lexa had her hands placed in her lap.
"My people. Costia. They cannot know what happened to me. I was not always pakstoka."
"So they all think you're dead. Why can't they know? What happened?"
Lexa had to tread carefully with the truth but she did not want to lie if she could avoid it.
"It happened three years ago..." she started.
Three Years Before
"Cos, we have to reach Polis by nightfall. We don't have time for more."
Costia was busy kissing her neck, her hands moving teasingly low down her front as they rode on horseback together.
A sudden cry rang out across the forest. The warriors that they travelled with who had been lagging behind screamed and the two in front disappeared in seconds as a group of Reapers descended upon them. Being the only two left, Lexa spurred the horse with her legs and turned, galloping it into the trees at full speed, Costia holding onto her for dear life.
Reapers appeared in front of them and all around, surrounding them almost completely.
Lexa dismounted her horse, drawing her sword and standing in front of it to protect Costia. She cut down several reapers creating an opening for escape.
"Go! Fetch help. I will hold them back."
Costia was terrified but she didn't want to leave her.
"Go!" Lexa urged and Costia turned around and galloped away.
The reapers surrounded her now, snarling, no sign of humanity in their eyes. They were like beasts. They moved closer to her and she swung at them, cutting down one after the other after the other. Their numbers had grown. There was too many even for Lexa and soon she was overwhelmed and a dagger plunged in her back as they descended on her life a swarm.
Lexa heard several barks and the sound of fighting but could barely open her eyes. She forced herself to stay awake and saw a blonde woman standing over her with a mouth dripping with blood. It was quiet, the reapers all dead around her and she leaned over Lexa.
"Natblida? Yu laik yuj gona. Ai sis yu op."
Anya shifted back into a wolf in front of her and sunk her jaws deep into her shoulder. It was agony and Lexa cried out but then she blacked out and awoke in a den of people, chained.
She shook her chains but could not escape.
"Easy there. They are strong enough to hold you until the change takes you but you could make it worse on yourself. The first time is difficult."
Lexa spat at them and raged but they would not release her and then she felt a heat rush through her body and began to change.
She could barely recall the events of her change but she remembered how terrifying it was and then remembered being a wolf and barely remembering who she was for some time, only aware of being a wolf. When she finally was herself again and she understood what had happened she wept for she knew she had lost everything she held dear.
It was some time later she tracked down Costia, despite Anya's warning about the danger. She concealed herself, covering her face and hair with cloth as she followed her scent for miles and found it in Azgeda. It was at a ceremony. Costia was in front of the crowd, one arm raised in front of her and Ontari in the same pose next to her. A ribbon was tied around their wrists, joining them in marriage and Lexa's heart broke. Costia was no longer hers and Ontari wore the mark of Heda. She had refused to attend the conclave now she was pakstoka and it was too late.
Lexa told Clarke about everything but the conclave, her nightblood and being in line for the position of commander. The blonde listened attentively seeming moved by her tale.
"So she just married someone else after you risked your life to save hers?"
"She thought me dead," Lexa replied. "She was the daughter of a great warrior among our people who fell in battle. It is customary for such sons and daughters to marry and bear children young. It is expected."
"Did they give her a choice?"
Lexa gazed at her realising how little of her culture Clarke truly understood.
"No one is forced into marriage. She would have been given a choice but only a fool would refuse the opportunity to marry a Heda. They would want for nothing."
"I would refuse if I had loved someone like that."
Lexa's mouth formed into a wide smile.
"You would refuse to marry a Heda?"
"Pffft. So what, they're the commander? It doesn't mean I have to like them. Who says I want to have everything given to me anyway?"
Clarke did not know that Lexa would have been Heda had she fought and that she was talking about her. She found teasing Clarke in this way highly amusing, unused to people not aware of who she was. Despite herself she leaned in closer.
"Food, wealth, clothing..." she teased, "you wouldn't want these things."
"I can get all those for myself."
Lexa leaned in even closer.
"A warm comfortable bed with furs and a big room filled with candles, large, luxurious baths of water to bath in..."
Clarke's eyes sparkled with amusement. She knew Lexa had won this game.
"Well... it would be nice but it doesn't compare to love I imagine."
She was staring at Lexa's lips now and Lexa knew this was heading in dangerous territory again.
"We should rest. We need to make up for lost time tomorrow."
Clarke was still staring at her lips and Lexa could feel her heart beating faster. It took every ounce of control not to give in to her desire again.
"Hmmm... right. I made up the beds."
She turned her head now.
"I noticed," said Lexa. "It is still very cold and we have not yet purchased you better clothing. You will have to use my body heat to keep warm again."
The blonde gazed at her and her eyes were like blue flames, desire blazing behind them. Lexa's body tingled all over. She could feel the heat in that gaze and she knew what Clarke was thinking but it had never happened, a pakstoka and a human. Who knew where it would even lead?
Both of them looked away as Clarke moved to make up what qualified as their sleeping spaces into one large bed. They laid down rather awkwardly beside each other. Lexa noticed Clarke was already shivering, her body barely touching Lexa's.
"Clarke," she said. "Turn around. You need the heat."
The blonde turned over to face Lexa, not sure where to put her arm. Lexa took it and placed it just under her chest shuffling closer. Clarke seemed unsure but didn't pull away and instead shuffled closer so that her thigh was against Lexa's and their bodies were touching. She rested her head on Lexa's shoulder in the crook of her neck and Lexa closed her eyes feeling a deep sense of satisfaction at their closeness.
She had not known she needed this until she had it. The blonde's scent filled her nostrils. She could feel Clarke's steady breaths as her chest moved in and out against her. Lexa could not describe the happiness she felt, her arm moving around Clarke's back and resting her there.
Mate she thought. My mate is safe and warm with me.
Clarke seemed at peace too. Neither of them moved a muscle, falling asleep warm and comfortable in their embrace.
Chapter 7: Suspicion and Jealousy
Raven tries to work out how to find Clarke after communicating with Abby on the Ark and her suspicions turn to Octavia. Lexa takes Clarke to Niylah's trading post and experiences jealousy which leads to an interesting situation.
Gaf laik otaim? - Give like always (Meaning - same as usual?)
Sha hon ai op flufi kova - yes give me warm cover up (Meaning 'yes and give me warm clothes too')
Gon yu - for you?
Nou em - No her. (Meaning no they're for her)
Em na meizen nou? - She is beautiful no?
Mochof - Thank you
Pakstoka - wolf/werewolf
"Gone. What do you mean she's gone? Who took her?"
Abby's voice was demanding on the radio. Raven had been unable to fix the one from her pod but her and Monty managed to find a way using the dropship and were now able to communicate with the Ark.
"Someone took her. We're searching for her everyday but there's no sign of her. We won't give up."
"I know you won't."
Raven could hear the emotion in her voice despite Abby's attempts to conceal it.
When the call ended Raven's mind began to work on the problem. Finn was still injured but recovering and he was an excellent tracker. Then there was that woman who had saved her. Raven had seen her pull the door right off and she knew exactly how much it weighed. She shouldn't have been able to so much as move it.
Something didn't add up about the story Bellamy and Murphy told her. The woman she had seen had been dressed. The other grounders they'd encountered were fully clothed. Why on Earth would the woman fight nude? From Bellamy and Murphy's description of her she had appeared from nowhere and Clarke had freely let the other grounder go free. Someone must know something.
As Raven exited the dropship to get some air she noticed Octavia returning to camp. Raven hadn't seen her all morning and the girl had a habit of disappearing without being seen and reappearing just as mysteriously.
Where does she keep going? she wondered.
One detail still bugged her. Murphy had said Bellamy lost it that day because the grounder'd had a sketch of Octavia in his book. That meant he must've been watching the camp, studying her. Octavia attracted the attention of most of the male population and some of the female delinquents too.
Raven had seen Monroe's eyes linger on her when she wasn't looking.
Maybe the grounder found her just as appealing she thought.
She could see Octavia falling for the mysterious, forbidden type.
Clarke trailed behind Lexa who was giving her the silent treatment.
"We are nearly there. We can rest once it's done."
The blonde knew that the werewolves were stronger but Lexa's endurance in walking was ridiculous. Clarke had more endurance than anyone she knew and even she was fatigued. Lexa never took a rest. They had been walking for hours, Lexa determined to get there before the sun rose.
"I'm not like you. I can't keep this pace all night."
Lexa stopped as they reached a small wooden structure.
"We're here," she said. "Let me do the talking."
Clarke rolled her eyes and followed as Lexa entered the trading post with her hair and face covered. Only her eyes were visible but once inside Clarke could tell that the woman behind the counter recognised her.
"Gaf laik otaim?"
"Sha hon ai op flufi kova..."
Clarke couldn't understand their words though she was getting better at it. The woman trading them was blonde and a little older.
"Nou em," Lexa replied, gesturing to Clarke with her head.
The blonde smiled broadly at Clarke and moved from behind the counter and in front of Clarke. She was sizing her up as if she was measuring her for something.
"Em na meizen nou?"
Clarke was still clueless but something changed in Lexa's face. She almost flinched at the words and Clarke could see her jaw shifting as she tensed it. The blonde went behind the back for a moment.
"What did she say?" Clarke whispered.
Lexa's face was a mask but Clarke could tell she was annoyed.
"It doesn't matter."
Clarke stopped speaking as soon as the blonde returned. She was holding some clothing which she handed to Clarke. It was thick and lined with fur and she collected together several other items, many of which Clarke noted where to keep her warm.
The woman handed her the coat to try on and Clarke beamed as she took it and brought it around her back. It was warm and thick and much more comfortable than her other clothes.
"Mochof," she said in a low voice.
The woman grinned and said a string of words she didn't recognise leaning into Clarke's space and Lexa exchanged a small piece of metal for it. It looked worthless to Clarke but she had noted that the grounders seem to value metals, furs and meat particularly and used them greatly in their clothing styles. They also seemed fond of technology if the bizarre collection of items in the woman's post was anything to go by.
Lexa collected the items seeming in an even fouler mood now and they left.
"Thank you," Clarke said as they began their trip back. "Mochof."
Lexa cursed herself mentally. She was letting her feelings run away with herself. Clarke had been quiet and polite and was trying to make things easier for them both but she didn't understand what Niylah had been saying the whole time they were in the shop. She didn't understand that Lexa'd had to stand there and say nothing as Niylah had shamelessly told Lexa how attractive 'this one was' and asked if she was looking for a marriage partner.
Niylah had been clear in her intentions toward the sky girl and Clarke had been completely oblivious to her attempts to seduce her. It had taken all of Lexa's self control not to grab Clarke in her arms and snap and growl at Niylah and stare her down.
"Can we rest before we set off?"
"The sun will be rising soon," Lexa stated. "We will return to the cave on the way back and sleep through the day. Once it's dark we will return to the others."
Clarke lowered her head as she walked, something clearly on her mind.
"So you move during the day without being seen by anyone in the woods but out in this territory you will only travel at night. Why?"
Damn she was too smart sometimes. Lexa seemed unable to keep anything from her.
"You don't want to be recognised," Clarke continued. "You can stay hidden easier in the woods. Are you afraid your friends and family will see you?"
"I had no friends or family," Lexa replied.
Clarke stopped walking, touching Lexa's arm. Lexa glanced down at it, inhaling sharply.
"You didn't tell me that. No one? Only Costia?"
Lexa thought of her advisors and teachers. They were not family or friends but they were all she knew. She nodded slowly, her eyes fixed upon the blonde's lips, Lexa trying desperately not to let her gaze drop any lower.
"That's awful," Clarke said. "No wonder you were so devastated to lose her. I can't imagine."
Lexa couldn't bear it. She surged forward and swept Clarke up into a kiss, growling with frustration as she spun her around. She backed her into the forest out of sight and lay her down on her back on the grass. Her hands slipped beneath the warm fur coat as they made out, hidden by thick undergrowth. Clarke kissed her back, surging upwards to meet her lips as desperate and hungry as Lexa.
Lexa sighed as she pulled back, skimming past Clarke's nose slowly as she changed angles and went back in for more. Their hands moved over each others' body, exploring. Lexa pulled back and then buried her nose in the side of Clarke's neck, finally inhaling her scent fully. She opened her lips and nipped with her with her teeth not breaking the skin and that was what woke her up from her trance.
She got up suddenly, leaving Clarke confused and began to walk away. Clarke got to her feet and followed her, still out of breath from their intense make out session.
"What's wrong? Why did you stop?" she protested as Lexa marched away.
Clarke caught up to her and reached for her arm but Lexa turned sharply, pulling it away.
"Talk to me Lexa. What just happened?"
"I wanted to bite you," Lexa snapped. "I almost bit you. Do you know what would have happened? How could I be so careless?"
Clarke ran a hand through her tousled, blonde hair, a little unsteadily.
"You didn't. It's fine."
"It's not fine!" Lexa barked back. "I wouldn't do that to you. I would never turn you into one of us. I would never."
Those blue eyes narrowed and Clarke lifted her head moving into Lexa's space to challenge her.
"Why? Am I not good enough to be one of you? I'm just a silly human right?"
Lexa shook her head.
"No Clarke, you don't understand."
Lexa reached for her arm, imploring her to understand.
"I couldn't take your life away like that," she half-whispered, her voice low and deep. "I lost mine. I would never condemn you to the same fate."
Clarke pulled her arm away.
"But you have. I'm a prisoner remember."
Lexa raised an eyebrow and straightened herself.
"Not forever. If the others begin to see that you are trustworthy, one day you could go back to your people."
The blonde seemed stunned by this, her eyes darting away suddenly.
"I thought this was forever. You're planning to let me go?"
There was a note of vulnerability in the way she said it and the way she met Lexa's eyes again.
"I don't know. I believe that you will not betray the pack. You are a good person, you were born to be a leader like me. I cannot tell you about my past but I understand what it's like the shoulder such a responsibility. You would make a fine pakstoka but it would mean never returning to your people."
Clarke didn't know how to respond, caught between a desire to stay with Lexa and her pack and a desire to return to her people.
"So you were some kind of leader, before I mean?"
"I was supposed to be. I had been prepared my whole life for it but then we were attacked and-".
Lexa didn't meet her eyes now, the memory too painful. Clarke moved closer to her, taking her by the hand.
"You won't bite me. I trust you. You haven't harmed me once."
"You can't know that. A werewolf is ruled as much by their wolf heart as their human one and the wolf heart it wild. It doesn't listen to reason or logic. It follows instincts and feelings only. I may go too far."
Clarke's heart sank as she realised that Lexa was right. The danger for them was too great. They weren't even the same species. How could they even work?
"It's not that I don't want to," Lexa said, her back turned to Clarke now. "I want to..."
Lexa didn't finish her sentence and Clarke could see that she found this difficult, admitting that she was just as human and just as fallable as anyone else.
"Let's not talk about this anymore," Clarke said. "We have a long hike back."
Lexa turned and met her eyes with a smile. Clarke smiled back but the smile didn't reach her eyes as something inside her hated the sudden distance between them.
Chapter 8: Pack Problems
Raven follows Octavia and lands them both in trouble. Clarke tries to sleep in the cave but finds difficulty with the sudden change in sleeping arrangements and Lexa gives in.
Contain scenes of a sexual nature. Well, one scene...
Skaikru - sky people/clan
Raven had watched Octavia's every move for hours before giving up and going to sleep. When she awoke early that morning she checked on Octavia and found her slipping away again she followed her trying desperately to be quiet as she sneaked through the woods. Raven was not designed for stealth but she kept far enough away and kept track of her and followed her to a cave entrance, hidden out of sight.
Octavia slipped into the cave and Raven moved closer and peered inside wondering what the hell she was doing there. It was dark but she could hear voices. There was a male one and Octavia's and they were clearly seeing each other by how they greeted one another with a kiss.
She listened to their conversation after the kiss. They were talking about Clarke or rather Octavia was trying to convince him to tell her where she was being kept and he was refusing to spill.
"She is safe and well," Lincoln told her. "I can tell you no more. It is not safe."
"They're going to find your people. I don't know why you think they won't. We should just leave. We'll go away, somewhere no one will find us."
"Octavia...," he replied in a low voice, "they are my family. I cannot leave them and you cannot leave yours."
Raven couldn't see much and tried to edge forward to hear them better, crawling forward on her belly. Suddenly something grabbed her legs and dragged her out and Raven was on her back before she knew it, a blonde woman standing over her. Two other women appeared behind her. One of them was the woman who had saved her from the pod.
Raven pointed at her.
"Wait. It's you! You saved me!"
Anya turned her head sharply, her lip curling back against her teeth and Luna looked away like a scolded puppy.
"Lincoln. We know you are in there. Bring her out with you. You don't want us to have to come in there."
The one they calles Lincoln appeared, rather sheepishly, Octavia following behind him. Anya leaned in to Octavia's neck.
"Hey! What are you doing?" Octavia replied in confusion, pulling away.
"You have mated with her," Anya snarled at Lincoln. "Do you understand what you have done?"
"Hey. Back off!" Raven snapped coming to Lincoln and Octavia's defence as her anger began to rise.
Anya growled ferociously and Lincoln just lowered his head.
"We have three prisoners now. When Lexa returns she will be furious. Take them away."
Luna and Indra obeyed and Lincoln did nothing to stop them despite Octavia's pleas for him to help her. Indra dragged her away, warning her to behave while Luna kneeled down to Raven, her long, dark curls spilling down over her face.
"I'm sorry Raven Reyes," she said, before picking the brunette up and slinging her over her shoulder.
Raven protested and struggled but her strength was ridiculous. If she hadn't been so annoyed she might even have been a little turned on. She wondered how the woman could have known her name.
Anya glared at the sky girls as they were slung into their den, observing the curiosity with which Luna and Lincoln seemed to have for them. They had to tie up the two, who fought them constantly, not knowing what they were and what they were capable of. Clarke had seemed to know it was pointless to try to fight them and had at least tried to escape while they slept.
Lexa will not stand for this she thought. I will find her and tell her what's happening before we decide what to do with them.
She headed out into the woods, barking orders at the others and searched for Lexa's trail wondering just how in such a short time, they had gone from living in relative peace to all of the trouble skaikru seemed to have brought upon them.
Clarke shuffled in her bed as they tried to sleep in the cave that day. She glanced over at Lexa who lay apart from her now that Clarke had better clothing for the cold, dozing on her stomach. She had been sleeping next to Lexa ever since she was taken hostage and now sleeping alone again felt strange.
"Stop moving and go to sleep," Lexa grumbled. "You are keeping me awake."
The blonde shifted over on her side. She was warm enough now but for some reason she couldn't settle, too many thoughts going through her mind.
Lexa raised her head off the furs.
"Clarke, why do you have such difficulty resting?"
Her tone was clipped. One thing Clarke had learned about Lexa was that she hated to have her rest disturbed.
"I don't know. I can't stop thinking about stuff."
"You slept fine yesterday," Lexa said, with a exasparated sigh. "Are your clothes not warm enough?"
Clarke met her eyes.
"No, they're fine thank you."
Lexa was staring at her now trying to figure out what was wrong.
"Then what's different?"
The blonde took a breath, her heart beating faster suddenly.
"You," she replied.
Lexa's eyes widened and the air became thick between them. There was a pull drawing them together. Lexa could sense the blonde's arousal, could feel the wolf within her stirring. She lifted her covers and held it up, allowing Clarke space to climb in beside her. Clarke moved immediately, removing the fur coat she had been in and lying down next to her. She settled in as Lexa brought the furs over her.
Normally Lexa would feel Clarke calm and settle down to sleep by now but this time they were both worked up. Between their makeout session and the sexual tension that had been building between them evrr since they'd met, something broke and Lexa rolled Clarke over and kissed her, meeting her lips like it was inevitable.
Lexa moved slowly, delicately tasting her lips, peppering the side of them with sweet kisses. She trailed down, leaving sensual kisses on her cheek, on her chin and just under her jaw. The brunette leaned sideways over her, listening to her delicate moans as she tasted Clarke's skin. She unbuttoned the clothes she wore slowly and Clarke made no move to stop her.
Lexa was panting, her heart racing and her body was on fire as she slipped off their remaining clothes, feeling Clarke's naked body beneath her own. She hovered above Clarke, gazing at her with wonder as she ran her hands over soft, smooth skin. Clarke stared back up at her, faring no better than Lexa as their eyes met
Lexa didn't move as they just gazed at each other before something in Clarke's eyes changed and she pulled Lexa back down to her lips and they moved against each other under the furs.
Clarke gasped beneath her as she moved her hands down and slipped inside her, using her other hand to guide Clarke's to her own entrance. She groaned with the contact and leaned her forehead on Clarke's, closing her eyes and Lexa forgot about her wolf side, ignoring it in favour of her human side for once, blocking out everything but the sensations of Clarke writhing under her touch and her own body responding to Clarke's seeking fingers.
It was when they were both at the precipice, completely at mercy of each other that Lexa's wolf began to urge her to bite Clarke. It repeated in her mind trying to force her to but she turned her head away to one side, keeping her eyes tightly closed and biting into the furs instead. She sank her teeth into the covers, gripping them between her canines as her and Clarke shook against each other more than once.
It seemed to last much longer than she remembered and it was such a relief when she felt her muscles relax and her body become limp. Her jaw slackened to release the furs she had been clenching between her teeth and Clarke leaned her head back, facing skyward as she caught her breath. They were both a mess unable to say or do anything as they lay together.
Lexa felt languid now and completely calm. She nuzzled Clarke's cheek with a whine and placed a single lick on her neck.
Mate she thought again, this time hearing her own voice in her thoughts and not the wolf's.
Lexa kissed Clarke gently on the cheek, never wanting the feeling to end.
I love you she thought. My beautiful mate. You are mine.
Clarke opened her eyes and they held eye contact and Lexa inhaled, deeply affected by the powerful feelings that held her at that moment. The blonde said nothing but just smiled and Lexa smiled back, her mouth wide with joy and Lexa knew it was okay. Clarke did not regret it and neither did she and she had controlled her wolf.
A small noise like a hum eminated from Lexa's throat and she tilted her head to kiss Clarke on the lips, languishing in the aftermath of their intimacy.
Clarke kissed her back, her right hand slipping around the back of Lexa's neck as her left one lingered on Lexa's right shoulder.
Lexa was caught up in the sensation of what they were doing but then her ears pricked up at a sound and she drew back from Clarke and turned her head towards the entrance of the cave. In the dark she could easily see Anya standing there, well aware of what they had just finished doing. She looked grim and disappointed as if she had expected better from Lexa. Then she turned around to give them privacy and Lexa knew that the moment was over.
"Anya is here," she whispered to Clarke. "Something must have happened."
Clarke smile faded as quick as Lexa's own had and they moved apart to get dressed in silence. Lexa hurried over to Anya who was waiting just outside with her hands on her hips, staring out into the woods.
"We have a problem Lexa. The pack needs you."
Chapter 9: What Happens Now?
Anya has a talk with Lexa and Clarke and Lexa discuss what happens next.
Heda - Commander
Pauna - Gorilla
Pakstoka - wolf/werewolf
"What's wrong?" Lexa asked gravely. "What has happened?"
Anya's expression was deadly serious. She was usually so good natured that it wasn't often you saw her angry.
"Two of the sky people. Lincoln mated with one of them and we caught the other following them. We had to take them hostage."
Anya gave her a look to remind her that she was as guilty of carelessness as Lincoln was and Lexa felt a sudden deep sense of embarrassment.
"You were gone longer than expected?" Anya said dryly. "Now I understand why."
Lexa lifted her head and met her eyes.
"The Pauna was near and then we got caught in the fog that kills. It delayed our journey."
"I got here in no time at all."
Lexa lifted a brow, growing a little annoyed with the conversation.
"You didn't have to walk here in human form. I forgot how slow it was to travel as such."
"What of Clarke? She will not be happy you have taken her people and the others will be able to tell you have mated by your scent."
Lexa pressed her lips together, unsure how to respond. She knew Anya was right. They would know.
"I will return soon and deal with the situation," she replied. "Thank you for coming to tell me. For now just keep them hostage."
"They do not know we are wolves Heda," Anya said. "That may save their lives at least and we covered their heads before taking them back to the den so they do not know their location. Can you be sure Clarke will not tell them what we are?"
Lexa could hear the doubt in Anya's tone. She was right to question her about Clarke's loyalties. She was loyal to her people but that was precisely why she could be trusted. She would never put them in danger and would know that Lexa might let them go if they were no threat to them.
"I'm sure," she said. "Return to the pack. Give them the order to keep them safe but share no information with them and do not change forms in front of them. I will talk to Clarke."
Anya nodded but did not move to leave.
"Heda, I know that the mating instinct is strong but you know that she is not one of us. You cannot keep her."
"I know," Lexa said under her breath. "But I would not harm her either just to keep her for myself. I will never do that."
Anya frowned but Lexa knew she understood.
"I did not mean to steal your life from you."
"You didn't," Lexa replied. "You saved me. It was the Mountain that stole my life. They created the reapers. Had I not been attacked you would not have had to save me. I am grateful for your gift."
Anya gave her a weak smile and turned to go. Clarke appeared at the cave entrance once she was gone, watching Lexa. The brunette had been aware of her eavesdropping during the conversation as Anya likely had been too.
"What are you going to do to my people?" Clarke asked, leaning against the entrance.
Lexa met her eyes. She wanted to tell her that she wouldn't harm them but it depended on what they knew and how big of a threat they were.
"I don't know," she said honestly. "Anya thinks they don't know what we are. If that is true I may be able to release them."
"So no nudity or wolfyness around camp then? Shame?"
Lexa couldn't help but smile despite her concerns.
"She said they will know, about us I mean."
The blonde was a little awkward now, seemingly a little nervous around the topic.
Lexa exhaled, a puff of air escaping from her nose.
"Pakstoka can hide little from each other. My scent is all over you and there's a distinct scent when mating. We must hope Lincoln has not bitten her."
Lexa's eyes went skyward and sensing her concern Clarke moved over to her, touching her forearm.
"Hey. We'll work this out. You didn't bite me. We don't know that Lincoln bit his human either. Anya said mated but that means sex right?"
Oh she doesn't understand Lexa thought. She doesn't know.
"Mating involves more than just sex or biting with us," she said softly. "I don't know how to explain it to you. It's scent. It's sharing food. It's keeping them safe. It's play and caring for them."
"Oh," Clarke said finally understanding. "Do wolves mate with more than one?"
Lexa shook her head.
"Rarely. Occassionally it happens that two wolves fall for the same mate and will either fight over them or both care for them but that's unusual. Wolves are generally monogamous creatures."
Clarke was still rubbing her arm absent-mindedly.
"So... now that we've er... we're considered mates in your culture?"
Lexa leaning forward so that their foreheads were almost touching.
"That depends on you," Lexa said softly. "And what you want."
Clarke thought deeply about what she was offering.
"I can't abandon my people and I know you won't turn me either but I wish..."
"Me too," Lexa whispered sadly. "If only things were different. Do you wish to return to your people?"
Clarke raised her head, their foreheads pressed together now.
"Would you let me go? Would you trust me?"
"I would," Lexa replied. "I know you would keep our secret. We both want the same things Clarke. The safety of our people."
Clarke had one hand around the back of Lexa's neck now and had pulled back a little. She smiled and leaned in to kiss Lexa who kissed her back, her hand resting on Clarke's back. When they separated, Clarke rested her head on Lexa's chest, closing her eyes as Lexa held her there.
"I don't want to leave you but-"
"But you must. I understand. They're your people. That's why I-"
Clarke raised her head, holding her breath in expectation.
"That's why you're you," Lexa continued.
The blonde nodded slowly, biting her bottom lips saying nothing in response.
Chapter 10: For Our People
Clarke tries to find out how much Raven and Octavia know about the pack. Lexa makes a decision to let the sky people go free and Clarke and Lexa make the best of the time they have left together
Bliden Hodness - Red Love
When Raven saw Clarke enter the hideout she felt so relieved. If she had been untied she would have run over and hugged her.
"Hey Raven, Octavia. This is Lexa, my jailor," she joked.
Lexa gave her a sideways glance but didn't disagree.
"Skaikru. What has Lincoln told you of our people?"
"Nothing," Raven said. "Not a thing."
Lexa analyzed her, checking for signs of deceit. She was telling the truth. The younger brunette however refused to even answer.
"Octavia, answer the question?" Clarke implored her.
The brunette glared at her.
"Why? She's one of them. They're the enemy."
"So is Lincoln," Clarke said. "They are just trying to survive like we are. If we answer their questions they may let us go."
Octavia turned away refusing to speak and Lexa narrowed her eyes before turning and leaving the cave. A moment later Luna and Lincoln returned both of them wearing serious expressions.
"Clarke of skaikru. You will speak with your people while I discuss this my people."
Clarke met Lexa's eyes. To anyone else she seemed unaffected, hiding any sign of emotion on her face but to Clarke she could see concern. Concern at what she might have to do.
"Of course. We won't run."
"Like hell we won't," Octavia scoffed.
Lexa stared at her as if to stare her down. The smaller sky girl was worse than Clarke for refusing authority. She seemed determined to be as difficult as possible. Lexa leaned in to Clarke.
"I will be right outside."
To the others it would sound like a threat. Clarke knew that Lexa meant it as reassurance.
Clarke watched her leave and then turned around.
"What the hell? Why aren't you tied up like us?"
Raven seemed both happy to see her and angry that Clarke wasn't trying to fight her way out.
"I found another way. They only took us because they want to remain hidden. They want to make sure you haven't been spying on them."
"Why would we spy on them?" Octavia asked. "Who are they hiding from?"
"What did Lincoln tell you?"
Raven's eyes widened and her lip curled back in disgust.
"Are you - are you interrogating us for them?"
Clarke could feel their judgment, their disappointment but she had to know either way what they knew.
"Maybe when they aren't looking I can untie you. Think you two can fight your way out?"
Clarke had no intention of letting them fight the pack but she wanted to gauge their reaction to the question.
Clarke realised then that neither of them knew Lexa's people were werewolves. If they did they would know that three humans would be useless against the whole pack.
"I'll be right back," Clarke said. "I've been talking to their leader. Let me see if she's willing to let us go."
Clarke turned away and exited the den, taking a breath. Lexa was outside with her pack gathered. She walked past them over towards Lexa.
"Wait," Indra snapped as Clarke moved past. "She has mated with Heda."
The others all perked their heads up staring at her. Clarke tried to ignore their eyes.
"What is the meaning of this?" Ryder asked. "Have you taken her as your mate?"
"Yes," Lexa said plainly, meeting Clarke's eyes.
Clarke didn't say anything in response. She understood why Lexa was telling them this instead of explaining the whole situation. It was both to protect Clarke and to protect herself. If she let her own mate go as well as Lincoln's they would understand how serious she was.
Still it was hard for Clarke to ignore the shock that this knowledge seemed to ripple through the pack.
"They don't know anything. If they'd known they would have never said what they did. I know you heard us talking."
"I never told Octavia," Lincoln said in a low plea. "She knows nothing and I did not bite her. I only wish for her to be safe."
Lexa raised her chin, her shoulders squared.
"We will release them, Clarke included. They are no threat to us."
"Heda. She knows what we are. It would be safer to strike her down."
"Indra," she snapped staring her down.
She snarled and paced around, challenging each member with her eyes. They each lowered their heads.
"Clarke is mine," she said through gritted teeth. "No one will harm her and no one will question me on this decision."
They all kept their heads lowered, none of them wanting to challenge her. Clarke watched her carefully. She had a natural dominance that they all seemed to respect and yet she was never cruel with it. Lexa lifted her head even higher, glancing at Clarke.
"We will take your people to the woods near your camp and release them and you with them. We will take them by cover of darkness. Today we will rest out here."
Clarke nodded slowly.
"Gustus, Ryder. Guard them until I return. I wish to speak to my mate alone."
Lexa maintained eye contact with Clarke silently imploring her to follow. They walked into the woods together until Lexa said they were far enough away.
"What did you want to talk about?" Clarke asked.
"I didn't," Lexa said softly. "I wished to show you something. Sit down."
When they had both sat down, Lexa reached beneath the long grasses and plucked a delicate red flower from the ground. It resembled a peony but then Clarke saw that it was mutated and resembled two peonies intwined.
"We call them bliden hodness, meaning Red Love," Lexa told her. "Our legends say that two warriors from rival clans fell in love and refused to fight each other upon meeting on the battlefield . They say these grow where they made love in secret."
"Er- thank you," Clarke replied, taking the flower. "Bliden hodness?"
Lexa seemed amused by Clarke's fumbled attempts to speak her language and smiled broadly, her eyes half-closed.
"We will never be enemies," Lexa whispered to Clarke, suddenly becoming serious.
Clarke placed the flower down carefully beside her and took Lexa's hand guiding her to lie down with her. They held each other, Clarke nuzzling into her neck.
"I wish that I could stay with you," she whispered.
"I know," Lexa replied. "I wish things were different but wishing never changed reality. I will be still be nearby even if you cannot see me."
Clarke closed her eyes, breathing in Lexa's scent as if doing so would keep her close. Neither of them wanted to face reality but this was best for both their people.
When she opened her eyes, Lexa was moving on top of her, surging forward to kiss her as she had earlier that morning. They kissed and touched and rolled over in the grass, Lexa taking her again and again, her fingers inside her as she made Clarke cry out. Clarke tried to reach for her too but Lexa held her hands away.
"I will not be able to control myself," she said, shaking her head. "Let me satisfy you."
Clarke was too far gone to argue and submitted to her wishes, the long grasses around them, the only cover they had from prying eyes.
They remained there, Lexa with her head laying on Clarke's stomach as they slept afterwards until Lexa woke her.
"It's time," she whispered, looking down at Clarke.
Her eyes seemed greener in this light, her pupils larger. Clarke could lose herself forever in the depth of them and the sorrow she saw there.
They returned to the camp in silence holding hands, only separating from each other when they entered.
Lexa had her pack put black covering over Octavia and Raven's heads and the pair led out into the woods not far from the skaikru camp. Clarke walked besides Lexa silently and at the last moment put one over her head too to keep up the illusion that she had still been a prisoner.
"Goodbye Lexa," she whispered, knowing that she could hear Clarke even if she spoke under her breath.
The bags were pulled off and their hands unbound. In a split second the pack were gone. Clarke heard distant howling and fought back the sadness. It was over. She would likely never see Lexa again.
Chapter 11: Barely Gone A Minute
Clarke returns to find out that some of her people were taken by the Mountain Men in her absence. When the reapers are sent to force them into a trap, Clarke has a risky idea that may just save them.
Warning scenes of violence, weapons and fire. Take care if this is a trigger for you.
When Clarke returned to camp with the others they all seemed pleased to see her, even Murphy. Raven rushed to show her that she has gotten the radio working and that she could talk to her mom but Clarke honestly didn't want to. As much as she enjoyed being back and put on a brave face, she'd left a part of herself with Lexa and her friends would never even know.
"What did they do to you?" Bellamy asked in a deep, low voice.
"Nothing," she replied. "They just kept me hostage until I convinced them we weren't a threat to them."
"What if we are?" Bellamy staring off into the distance with his arms crossed.
Clarke felt something stir in her heart, something protective. She would not let them go after Lexa, no matter what.
"Don't be ridiculous. If we go looking for war we'll find it and we'll lose. Wait where's Monty and Jasper. Where's Wells?"
"Someone took them. Probably the same people that took you."
Clarke shook her head.
"No. It wasn't them. The Mountain Men have technology but not the grounders."
Clarke couldn't believe it. She had barely been back a few minutes and already her people were in danger.
"All I know about them is that they control the acid fog and have technology like ours. The grounders fear them and they don't scare easily."
"We're going to mount a rescue. We've got enough guns and enough people but we don't know where they've taken them."
Clarke knew where they were headed. From studying her maps there was only one location in the area that they would take them.
"Mount Weather," she said. "But how can we get inside?"
"I don't know. Raven might have some ideas."
Before she could respond Clarke heard a distant sound. It sounded like a horn of some sort. A war horn. Before they knew what was happening reapers descended on the camp.
"Back to the dropship," she yelled. "Everyone inside now!"
The remaining delinquents rushed back into the dropship and shut the door, the reapers banging on the metal in droves.
"What now?" Monroe asked.
Clarke turned around. Most of the delinquents were looking to her and Bellamy for answers.
"They did this to trap us here. Wait maybe we can use the dropship. There's fuel in those rockets, right? Enough to build a hundred bombs."
"But he said we got no gunpowder left." Raven said skeptically.
"I don't wanna build a bomb," Clarke said lifting one eyebrow. "I wanna blast off."
Raven's eyes lit up and a smile spread across her face.
"Draw them in close. Fire the rockets. A ring of fire."
"I think they're close enough," Murphy said with sarcasm. "So let's do it."
"There's one problem," Bellamy said. "Listen. No banging. How do we make sure they're close enough?"
Clarke knew what had to be do. So did Bellamy but he didn't want to say it so she did.
"Someone's going to have to go out there and draw them close. That means they'll be locked outside."
The room went quiet. No one wanted to volunteer.
"So how do we decide?" Bellamy said. "Who goes out there?"
"I'll do it," Clarke said. "I'll draw them close enough and then make a run for it."
"No," Raven protested. "We just got you back. That's crazy."
Clarke walked closer to her friend putting a hand on her shoulder.
"If we don't do this, all of us will die, either from we'll starve to death or they'll kill us the second we step foot outside. This is our best chance. Please."
Raven lowered her eyes.
"Can you do it?" Clarke asked.
"Yeah," the mechanic replied not quite looking at her. "Could take me some time."
"Get started then. Bellamy what guns do we have? I'll need as many as I can carry without being weighed down. Murphy get me the map. I need to work out the best escape route."
Clarke didn't have time to think when making the preparations. They all followed her and she tried to say goodbye to Raven just in case but the brunette refused to let her even think that she would fail and pulled her into a bear hug saying that there was no way she was going to give up on her best friend.
When the time came she had an assault rifle with two handguns on her belt. The rifle had barely anything left in it but it would be enough to get her a headstart. From what she'd heard from Lexa about the reapers they were wild and crazed.
When the time came she waited by the metal door, her heart pounding, the younger ones behind a line of delinquents with the few weapons they had left pointed at the door.
"Raven? You ready to go?"
"Ready. Just tell me when."
Clarke pressed the button on communication device, holding it up to her face.
"May we meet again," she said, not just to Raven but to everyone.
They opened the door and Clarke raced out the door shutting immediately behind her. Suddenly she was alone as a large group of reapers roamed their camp. One of the turned and saw her.
"That's right. Come on get me."
Several of them rushed forward until the whole group surged at her. Clarke shot the first few waves of them until the assault rifle was empty and when they were close enough she banged the metal, throwing the assault rifle and ran full speed away from the blast. The ship's rockets blazed, a wave of fire scorching the surrounding area, Clarke barely outrunning the blast and still chased by the group of reapers that had survived.
It had worked but now she had to survive over a dozen reapers chasing her through the woods.
Clarke ran and ran, fuelled by fear and adrenaline, trees whipping past her. She used her handguns to shoot any that caught up to her but once she heard the clicks that told her they were empty she discarded one of them in favour of trying to outrun them.
She almost made it. She almost escaped. Only a few remained, no more than four or five. But then one of them just caught her, one of them was just a little bit faster and grabbed her leg and she tumbled and fell badly against a rock, twisting her ankle and damaging her left arm. She cried out with the pain that flooded through her and tried to get to her feet but her ankle failed her and she fell back down, the reapers descending upon her.
She was done for. Clarke could see no sign of escape anywhere, no one to aid her. She pulled a knife from the side of her boot and held it with her less dominant hand awkwardly. She was damned if she was going to go quietly.
"Think you can kill me?" she said to the mindless creatures that were edging towards her. "Have at it."
Chapter 12: What Must be Done
Lexa races to find Clarke after finding she is in danger but arrives too late and has to make a painful choice.
Thanks so much for all your nice comments so far. I didn't want to leave you hanging with Clarke's life in the balance so here's the next chapter.
The pack were hunting that evening when they heard the commotion. Lexa had been in no mood to hunt but they'd proceeded to anyway and her ears pricked up.
The other wolves glanced at her communicating as pakstoka mostly did, with body language and action. Lincoln whined and Lexa knew what worried him. She lowered her nose to the ground. Nothing smelled different but then there was a deafening sound and in the far distance she could smell fire and something sickening. Death.
Clarke! she thought, realising that it was coming from the dropship. She pushed back on her hind legs and sprang forward, running at full speed in her wolf form. She dodged each tree as she searched for the familiar scent, following it to the dropship.
When she arrived, her pack arrived seconds later and they all saw the devastation of several hundred reapers burned beyond recognition.
She followed Clarke's trail terrified now and could smell her stronger now. The wind rushed through her fur as she arrived to the sight of Clarke fending off reapers with just a knife, a few of them already dead but Clarke badly wounded and bleeding heavily. Lexa growled and sprang onto them ripping at them with her teeth, before the entire pack descended on them, killing each one of them.
Lexa moved over to Clarke cautiously, the blonde was panting heavily, fading out of consciousness. Lexa whined at the sight of her so badly hurt. She wouldn't make it. They could all sense it.
Anya padded up beside her.
Lexa you know you must do.
She whined again. She had never wanted this. She never wanted to do this to Clarke but she couldn't just let her die.
I'm sorry Clarke, she thought shifting into human form.
Her lips parted and she sunk her teeth into Clarke's neck. Clarke cried out and then sank into unconsciousness and Lexa lifted her body and carried her back to her hideout, her pack following closely behind her.
"This will be difficult to watch," Anya said as Lexa placed Clarke down gently on a pile of furs in her den. "I can stay with her."
"No," Lexa said in a hushed tone. "I will not leave her until she wakes."
Anya wore a grim expression but did not argue.
"Very well heda. I will take care of the others while you stay with her."
Lexa lowered her head onto Clarke's stomach and clutched the blonde's hand in her own.
"I'm sorry," she whispered. "I'm so sorry."
When the first scream came she had to restrain Clarke. Her body began to change as shifting for the first time but the process was extremely slow. Lexa held her until it stopped, feeling the increasing strength each time she fought. By the fifth time Luna and Indra helped to hold her, her strength growing even to rival theirs.
When it finally stopped Clarke passed out again and Lexa just nestled in beside her using a washcloth and basin Ryder had fetched her from the river in offering to gently clean the blood from her. Her wounds healed quickly as pakstoka's often did. She was recovering and the spirit of the wolf was taking her as it had Lexa but the worst was not yet over.
For three days she was in a sort of inbetween state, resembling Clarke but not Clarke, her teeth now canines and they had to chain her and keep her under constant guard leaving food within reach of her but keeping their distance. Lexa stared into those blue eyes as Clarke reached the end of the chain to snarl at her. She was searching for some sign, any sign that Clarke was still in there but so far nothing.
"It will pass," Anya told her sitting down beside Lexa. "You were like this for a week. The change is happening faster for her. She will come back to you."
"That's not what I'm concerned about," Lexa said plainly. "It's what happens when she does."
Anya patted her thigh.
"Be patient Lexa. All will be well in the end."
Lexa wanted to smile at her efforts to comfort her but she couldn't. Not while Clarke was so far gone.
It was a week later when she finally completed the physical part of the transformation. Lexa had fallen asleep in wolf form on the ground across from her. She heard the chains pulling and whimpering and looked up to see a light blondish wolf with blue eyes in front of her completely free of her restraints now.
Lexa stood up on all fours and padded closer. her ears pricked up. Clarke sniffed her and Lexa sat down on her back legs and let her smell the ruff of her neck. Clarke's snout was burrowing in her fur checking her scent carefully. Suddenly Lexa felt a lick and Clarke yelped in excitement and leaned back on her hind legs with her rump raised.
Clarke was being playful, trying to tempt her into a game. Her mouth was wide open, her tongue hanging out as she barked at Lexa.
Come and play. Come and play.
Lexa just slinked forward and nudged her with her nose and Clarke fell on her back, showing her belly in submission. Lexa blinked and then began to lick her muzzle, moving to clean around the still visible bite mark that was the last thing to heal.
You're beautiful Clarke.
Mate. Mate. Play.
Clarke's mind was more wolf than human. Lexa could tell she had not returned fully yet. She was boisterous like a puppy but did not know who she was. The transformation was strange like this. It took a while for the first transformation to complete and then when it did those bitten would be completely wolf for some time while their human mind returned. Only then would they shift back.
Clarke was rolling over now, scratching her back on the ground and then springing towards a nearby rock as if she was pouncing on prey. She was adorable and Lexa could have watched her all day if she didn't need to start teaching her how to behave as a wolf and introduce her to the pack in this form.
Clarke had a piece of Lexa's sleeping furs between her teeth. She growled at it as she shook it with her head and Lexa was glad at least that she seemed more happy now and that the physically painful part was over.
You have much to learn Clarke.
Chapter 13: Meeting the Pack
The delinquents fear the worst when they find Clarke's bloody trail in the woods and Lexa introduces wolf Clarke to the pack.
The pakstoka don't actually communicate in words in wolf form but use body language and behaviour. The times where they appear to speak is their human minds' interpretations of what they are communicating non-verbally.
Skaigoufa - means skygirl but in a juvenile manner. Skaigada would be sky woman/girl and skaigoufa would be like sky child but Anya uses it as if to say 'young Sky girl'
Raven and Bellamy opened the door watching it drop to the ground when all sounds had stopped. The sight that met them was horrific. Charred bodies lay everywhere and everything they had built was destroyed.
They followed the path Clarke had planned to take, scanning the bodies they found for any signs it might be her.
They found several bodies deeper in the woods next to fabric from Clarke's torn clothes. On the ground lay a knife, Clarke's knife and the discarded guns.
"They caught her," Murphy said with a grim expression.
Raven glanced at him. She had never gotten on with him since they'd landed thinking him selfish and callous but even her seemed grave about their discovery.
"We don't know she's dead," Raven said.
"Raven. Look at the blood. Her guns, her knife. Piece of her clothing. She's - she's gone."
The brunette pointed to the ground angrily.
"Oh yeah. Where is she then? Someone moved her but they didn't move them. Why bother?"
No one answered her but she could tell they all thought that she was clutching at straws. Raven thought about what she was going to tell Abby when she returned. How could she break it to her that she'd returned only to ne lost again?
Lexa found Clarke to be endearing in this form. The blonde wolf seemed happy and playful most of the time, content it seemed to be in Lexa's space as much as possible. She decided it was time to introduce her to the others and opted to do so in wolf form asking the others to remain in those forms too.
Clarke followed her out of the den at Lexa's urging and she sprang out, dancing around Lexa as if to impress her. When she saw the other wolves she stopped, her tail stilling for a second.
Carefully Lexa urged the others. She has no sense of her human mind just now. She may not remember you.
Luna, always curious, approached first. Slowly and carefully moving around to sniff her and allowing Clarke to do the same. She wagged her tail lightly and then Clarke yelped and wagged hers back urging her to play. Luna chased her, Lincoln and Ryder following suit and they began to chase each other, the others watching her behaviour carefully.
She seems to be doing well. She's a playful thing.
Anya padded up beside Lexa as they observed the new member of their pack.
Indra seemed less impressed and growled in a low tone. When Clarke heard the sound she stopped in her tracks and bared her teeth, growling in return.
Lexa moved between them facing Indra, warning her to stand down. She understand her lack of trust in Clarke but she would not tolerate aggression between them. Clarke's hackles were raised and she seemed to be edging closer to Indra, no sign of fear evident in her stance. She snarled at Gustus who was beside her and spun around to growl at the others.
If Lexa didn't know better she would think that Clarke was establishing dominance over them all, warning them that she wasn't afraid to fight them. Lexa growled at her in a low tone warning her too. Clarke's growled back and the whole pack tensed. No one ever stood up to Lexa. No one ever challenged her.
Just like Clarke to refuse to submit she thought.
She growled louder edging up to Clarke and staring her down. Those blue eyes met hers refusing to give in and then as Lexa's hackles rose, Clarke seemed to lose interest in dominance and licked the side of her muzzle with a whine. It was a peaceoffering to say that she would not fight her. As she licked Lexa and Lexa allowed it, the pack began to calm again sensing the change in the blonde.
Clarke seemed only interested in Lexa now, trying her hardest to get her affection. Luna approached her again and Clarke made no move to threaten and Luna presented her neck in submission. The others seemed to follow suit, only Anya, Gustus and Indra not doing so. They were older and more seasoned warriors and Lexa had expected as much.
When Anya moved towards Clarke, the blonde did not try to challenge her probably sensing her strength. Anya had after all led the pack long before Lexa had come along. In fact Clarke seemed to like her and licked her ear rather affectionately.
Welcome skaigoufa. We will not harm you.
At this sight, Indra and Gustus finally edged over to her, realising that she meant no harm to Anya or anyone else as long as they did not try to harm her.
They greeted her more formally but Clarke responsed as she should and Lexa felt a great sense of relief knowing that they had accepted her.
The next step would be to show Clarke their human forms and see how she reacted to that. Wolves were shy creatures that usually avoided humans. Clarke may not be so apt at recognising scents yet and may not recognise the difference in their other form.
Lexa shifted into human form, the others remaining as wolves for the time being.
"Clarke," she called.
The blonde wolf who had been showering Luna with affection turned, startled at the sound and didn't seem to know what to make of her but she was brave and edged over to her. Lexa held out her hand allowing Clarke to sniff her and then fell back with a thud on her back as Clarke sprang on her licking her face. She held the wolf at arms length trying to hide her embarrassment from the others.
"You recognise me then," she said wryly.
Clarke just began to lick her hand repeatedly as Lexa sat up. She nodded at the others and they changed forms. Clarke glanced around at them but seemed unaffected as if she already understood.
"She learns fast," Indra said suddenly. "She will be a great hunter I expect."
It was rare Indra gave compliments but no one had expected Clarke to be throwing her weight around so early. Most wolves were shy and cautious. Clarke was boisterous and bold yet clever and the pack seemed to like her. If she hunted well their respect for her would grow. Maybe it would turn out alright after all. Lexa hoped more than anything that she was right.
Lexa lay down on her back on her furs in human form to rest just as the sun was rising. Clarke who had followed her into the den lowered her heard as if she checking she had permission and Lexa moved aside offering her the space beside her. Clarke lay her head on her stomach and Lexa put a hand on the back of her head.
"I wish you'd come back to me," she whispered. "I miss you."
Clarke didn't understand her and only fell fast asleep there. Lexa's human side longed for Clarke to be herself again. To be able to kiss her and hold her like she had that night they'd spent together in the cave.
Come back to me she thought. The world needs you.
Chapter 14: I Never Meant For This
Clarke comes back to herself, confused and disorientated. When she remembers what happened Lexa has to chase her.
Clarke may seem unfairly angry at Lexa in this chapter but she is confused and doesn't have all of her memories of the incident. Lexa is aware that the shock of what has happened means that Clarke isn't seeing things clearly.
The last thing that Clarke remembered was the reapers descending upon her and the pain as she blacked out. She had flashing of images in her mind, memories of agony, of being chained and of being lost and then she remembered nothing but being a wolf.
All her memories were fragments. The scents of her pack, learning to hunt with them, the confusion of how her mate seemed to keep her at a distance though she allowed Clarke to sleep beside her and lick her muzzle and groom Clarke when she was a wolf too. Sometimes they were people.
Her mate seemed sad but she didn't know why so Clarke tried to lift her spirits with play and when one of her pack had growled at Clarke she threatened them to show them she was strong enough to be Lexa's equal and would fight to the death to prove it.
There was the three wolves who played with her frequently, the female and the two males, Luna, Lincoln and Ryder who seemed to enjoy running with her. Indra and Anya loved to play fight with her to keep her skills sharp and Clarke often succeeding in drawing Anya into a chasing game. They were fast and strong. Gustus preferred to be quiet and still but did not bother her.
They were her family but something was not right. Some part of her was absent. She felt it. Maybe that's why her mate was saddened.
When Clarke's human side reappeared it was when they were returning from a journey to inspect the bounds of their territory. They had been travelling for days, Lexa and Clarke at the front when she became overwhelmed with a flood of memories.
Her father being floated, the ark, her mom handing her dad in to the council. Raven, Finn, Bellamy, the delinquents. All of it hit her all at once and she shifted in the snow into human form to find herself naked with a pack of wolves around her. She cried out with fear at the sight, not knowing what was happening and then watched as they turned into humans before her eyes.
Lexa was kneeling before her in an instant.
"Clarke, Clarke. It's okay. You're okay. You're safe."
Clarke stared at her and then down at herself, blushing.
"Could you all turn around at least? What the hell happened? Last thing I remember."
Her hand shot to her neck where Lexa had bitten her, only a faint silvery scar remaining and Lexa looked away filled with guilt.
"You - you bit me. You said you would never do that. You bit me."
Lexa wanted to reach out to her but she let her arms hang at her side. She looked at the snow-covered ground.
"You were badly injured. You were not going to survive."
"I can't believe you did this, without even asking me."
Anya stepped forward and Clarke blushed again, averting her eyes from her naked form.
"She was left with no choice Clarke. You were dying. You could not have given us an answer."
The betrayal stung in Clarke's heart. She had never believed that Lexa would ever do this to her. She was changed forever. She could never return to her people.
Clarke remembered all of a sudden that her people were being held hostage by the Mountain Men. She had to save them.
She set off changing into a wolf before she knew what happened.
"Let me," Lexa advised her pack as they readied to chase her. "It is me she is angry with."
Clarke ran as fast as she could towards the direction of the Mountain. She knew how to get there. If she just ran fast enough it may not be too late.
She was at full speed and just beginning to think she would succeed when Lexa pounced on her in wolf form and Clarke rolled over landing on her side. She flipped and shifted to human form but she still felt the wolf there and snarled at Lexa.
Lexa shifted too and they were face to face, blue eyes holding green ones.
"I never meant for this to happen," Lexa said.
Clarke growled at her, baring her teeth.
"How could you do this to me? I trusted you! God I slept with you. Was all that you told me a lie?"
Lexa seemed pained by Clarke's accusation.
"I understand that you're angry. I felt the same after I was bitten but I never lied to you. You would have died."
"And what now? I'm a prisoner again, just like that."
"No," Lexa said softly. "You are free to go as you wish but that would not be wise. A wolf needs a pack. They cannot survive alone."
Clarke turned her head to the Mountain.
"They have my people," Clarke said staring at Mount Weather. "I have to get them back."
"Clarke... you can't. You have no idea what you are dealing with. The Mountain Men are not like us. You saw the army they sent for you. They turned our people into reapers. Imagine what they would do with our blood."
Clarke shook her head. That couldn't be right. She couldn't just abandon them there.
"What is your plan? How will you attack? They have guns. I have clothes stashed nearby for us both in case you changed out here. Let's dress and discuss this."
Her tone was reasonable and the more she remembered who she was the more Clarke knew that she was right. She needed clothes. She needed a plan.
"Return with me. Rest. Eat. Your human side is still returning to you. Things will become clearer."
Clarke was still furious but she was still confused and hungry.
"Fine but don't think for a second I've forgotten about this."
Lexa nodded, pressing her lips tightly together as if this displeased her.
"The clothes are close. Follow me."
Clarke agreed and they both shifted to a stranger now only appearing as a blonde and grey and brown wolf running together in the snow.
Chapter 15: Lectures and Mistakes
Clarke's behaviour gets Lexa and Clarke in trouble as Lexa struggles to reason with her.
Thanks so much for all your great messages.
Lexa and Clarke slept apart that day. They were both quiet and Lexa gave Clarke her space to figure things out. Despite her anger, Clarke found herself wishing for the comfort of Lexa's furs but stubborness refused to let her go to her for comfort.
In the evening they argued, Clarke refusing to believe that she should leave her people in Mount Weather and Lexa saying it was too dangerous.
"No! I will not leave them behind."
"If you go there you risk your own safety and the safety of the pack. What if they torture you for information? What if they harness our abilities? We've discussed this."
"At least tell me I can check on the dropship. I need to know that my plan worked."
Lexa exhaled. This was more difficult than she had expected. Clarke was strong-minded and never seemed to quit even in the face of sound logic.
"Fine but I will go with you and we must not be seen."
"I don't need a babysitter," Clarke scoffed turning away.
She didn't know why she was so angry at Lexa. The more she learned the more she realised how ridiculous it was to take this out on her but the wolf growled within her unable to deal with the excesses of emotion that she had about the situation.
Maybe it was because she had never saved her dad. Her mom had told her not to worry, that the council would be lenient. Clarke had believed her but her instinct told her it was a lie.
Shad been helpless to stop them floating him and when she'd learned her mother had turned him in she had swore never to trust anything but her own instinct ever again.
"We should go now while it's dark," Clarke said. "In human form. I've had enough of being a wolf for a while."
Lexa nodded, her head slightly lowered, her hands behind her back.
"We should set off then. It will take longer that way."
Clarke agreed and they headed off towards the dropship.
"Your people appear to be safe and well," Lexa said softly as they both kneeled in the long grasses.
Clarke could see the damage, the scorch marks, the aftermath of her plan. Her people were rebuilding but then Bellamy and Raven exited the dropshop carrying guns, a handful of the delinquents with them.
They're going to get our people back she thought.
"Let's follow them," Clarke said in a hushed tone.
Her blue eyes were fixed totally on her goal, the colour of ice, her will to protect her people absolute. Lexa found herself staring, her pupils dilating and her eyes half-closing as she got caught up in her feelings for her. It took her a second to realise what Clarke had said.
Clarke was already moving and Lexa had to move fast to keep up with her. She trailed her people at a distance following their scents. They followed them for quite some time, Lexa trying and failing to reason with Clarke.
"This is madness," Lexa hissed. "They will see us."
"No they won't," Clarke replied.
So infuriating Lexa thought. So maddening. Why doesn't she listen? Maybe if I try to reason with her again.
She thought of how Titus always got through to her when she had trained as a child.
"Clarke I understand your desire to save your people but this course of action is foolish. We must be strategic and choose our actions wisely."
"Do me a favour Lexa. No more lectures."
Lexa didn't know how to respond to such flagrant disobedience. All her life people had obeyed her commands as a natblida, even her teachers had always treated her opinions with respect.
"I feel your pain," she continued anyway. "I went through this too. It's hard to let the past go but you must. They are not your pack anymore."
Clarke spun as if Lexa had angered her.
"So what? I just give them up. Like you did with -"
Clarke stopped herself as Lexa expression became a mask, the pain in her eyes still evident.
"I didn't mean that," Clarke said apologetically. "I shouldn't have brought her up."
Lexa's eyes met her own and Clarke knew that she had almost crossed a line. Some parts of Lexa's past were still too painful for her.
"Wait. What are they doing?" Lexa asked as she watched the delinquents walking straight up to the entrance to Mount Weather.
They placed their guns on the ground and raised their hands.
"Step back. Keep your hands up."
The voice boomed from a speaker and then men in hazmat suits with guns took the weapons and escorted them inside.
Clarke was about to rush forward but Lexa yanked her back.
"Think Clarke. They are armed and we are outnumbered. You cannot help them if you are dead."
"You cannot help them at all."
The voice was deep and male and something clicked behind them. Guns. Clarke could not smell them. Maybe it was the suits they wore but she knew that they were armed and that there was a group of them.
"You are making a mistake," Lexa said. "We wandered into your territory by accident. If you let us go on our way we will not return."
"Yeah right," the voice scoffed back. "To your feet. Start walking."
Clarke's heart was pounding as she understood the gravity of her mistake. They were caught both her and Lexa. Why hadn't she listened? Why hadn't she been able to think it through? The werewolf transformation was playing havoc with ability to make clear decisions.
"Stay calm Clarke," Lexa said low enough that only a wolf could hear. "We will survive this."
Chapter 16: Mount Weather
Clarke and Lexa see each other again after being released from quarantine while the Bellamy, Raven and Clarke plan their escape.
Clarke sat in the chair in Mount Weather resting her head on one hand. They had given her new clothing and told her to eat but she didn't believe as her people did that they were safe.
Come on Clarke. Try to eat.
Monty had tried to get her to eat their food but she'd eaten the bare minimum they left in her room where she could sniff it first.
Clarke just glanced around the room nervously, observing all the detail she could. It was then that Lexa entered. It was the first time she'd seen her in a week since they'd put Lexa in quarantine. Clarke had even kidnapped one of their people, the one Jasper liked called Maya and held a shattered piece of glass to her throat in a vain attempt to find Lexa.
Monty and Jasper were thrilled with their new living arrangements. To Clarke it felt like a prison.
Lexa looked so different without her facepaint. Clarke had seen her without it before but her hair had been loosened from her braids and pinned up in a bun and she had been given a classy dress. Clarke's eyes lingered upon her as she struggled to look away.
She was beautiful, regal almost and when their eyes met Clarke realised just how much she had hated not knowing if Lexa was okay or where she was. She moved over towards the wall near where Clarke sat picking up an ornament and keeping her back turned so that no one noticed them communicating. If they spoke low they could hear each other but no one else could.
"Are you okay? Did they hurt you?"
"No," Clarke said. "They just did a load of tests on me. was unconscious through most of them."
"Me too," Lexa replied and Clarke could see the corners of her lips curving in distaste.
Lexa turned her head slightly and then did a double take glancing at Clarke oddly.
"What?" Clarke asked out loud this time.
The brunette turned away again frowning.
"Raven and Bellamy are calling me over. Don't turn around. She might recognise you. I think it's safer if we keep pretending not to know each other."
Lexa seemed hesitant now.
"Are you well? Have they treated you kindly?"
The anger and confusion of Clarke's transformation had subsided now and she saw clearly just how unfair she had been on Lexa. She felt a pang of something familiar. Just knowing that Lexa was concerned about her and how she was filled her with both a great warmth and regret at how she had spoken to Lexa a week before.
"I'm well. I - er better go. They're expecting me to sit with them."
"Take care Clarke."
Clarke passed by Lexa, resisting the surges of desire she felt for her. She wanted nothing more than to take comfort in her strength and reassurance but they had to keep up appearances.
"Hey guys," she said as she seated herself down.
They had all embraced her the first day she had been released from quarantine thrilled to find her alive. She made up a lie that the Mountain Men had kidnapped her and kept her in quarantine to explain her absence but she noticed the glare Maya gave her as she heard her tell it.
"Griff. You gotta try the food today. This is amazing."
Raven was tucking into a piece of chocolate cake. She had a second tray which she pushed it towards Clarke who stared at it.
Fine she thought. Let's try it.
When she brought the utensil to her mouth and the taste of chocolate hit her senses Clarke closed her eyes.
Oh my God.
"That good?" Bellamy chuckled. "Don't get used to it. Did you get the plans?"
Clarke produced a piece of paper she has been sketching on. She had seen it the back of something and memorised it. Only her closest friends and family knew that she had such a near photographic memory.
Raven took the copy of the sketch, studying it in her lap before slipping it in her pocket, glancing around at the guards.
"There's more than one way out. Thers's another entrance that leads underground and the access point at the top of the dam. Since none of us know how to swim that's out so we need to find a way to get to tunnels."
Raven scratched a spot on her arm and Clarke noticed an injection mark there. She took Raven's arm. Something didn't smell right about it. She wasn't sure what she was picking up but they had done something to her.
"When did they do this?" Clarke asked.
"A couple of days ago. Why?"
Clarke let her arm go and shook her head. She was letting her fears get to her.
"There's something familiar about that girl."
Clarke stopped mid-bite. She had to mean Lexa. She waited for Raven to realise how she knew her and for all hell to break loose.
"Can't figure it out. Don't know who she reminds me of?"
Raven shrugged and Clarke continued eating her chocolate cake unable to believe how amazing it tasted.
Lexa listened to Clarke with her friends, her back facing them. She could hear multiple conversations if she focussed but one caught her attention. It was one of the guards talking to Cage Wallace, a man she severly disliked. The guard she knew they called Emerson.
"Good she's eating the food now. We have to make sure no harm comes to her until it's over."
Lexa had to bite her lip to keep from growling out loud. They were talking about Clarke. What were they up to?
Clarke turned her head slightly as if to listen to them and she knew that the blonde had heard them too. Lexa yearned to be alone with her, to check what they had done to her. They had both been kept in quarantine longer than the others. Lexa had heard them saying it in the hallway outside her contained room.
They had to escape and fast she thought before their plans come to fruition.
"Clarke they're giving us a masquerade ball like on the ark."
Monty seemed thrilled. Bellamy was far too concerned with his sister, who he'd left behind at the dropship.
"Great," she replied dryly.
She glanced over at Lexa who was resting at the other side of the room. They had spent days pretending not to know each other, only communicating at a volume beyond human hearing. Lexa was resting on her bunk, her back turned to Clarke, her scent distracting Clarke constantly.
Clarke had loved to dance but she'd always found the masquerades boring. Raven and Finn had dragged her to a few and she'd danced with a few guys but none of them ever seemed to be on her level and she'd had no patience for them.
She wondered what Lexa was going to wear. Clarke felt so weird recently. Lexa slept at the other end of the room but she could swear she could still smell her scent on her skin. It was faint but distinct. Lexa had been acting strange too. Someone has knocked her by accident when rushing past Clarke to their bunk. They'd apologised but Lexa had immediately looked up in alarm. She seemed overly concerned about Clarke.
Chapter 17: Masquerade
The delinquents have a masquerade ball thrown for them which leads Clarke teaches Lexa to slow dance and Clarke nearly reveals a secret she had been keeping.
I'm left/mixed-handed but I'm a very weak left-hander closer to being mixed-handed than left-dominant. I write with my left but often switch or have learned to be right-handed in many tasks.
I noticed that Eliza Taylor seems much more strongly left-handed so I had to really think about the dancing part if I was imagining it the right handed way or the left handed way because my mind switches with different tasks and she more than often use her left hand as her dominant one.
(See the end of the chapter for more notes.)
The room did look beautiful, Clarke had to admit. It was decorated in white glittered banners and balloons and everyone was dressed in smart clothes their faces covered with various masks. Clarke felt invisible, not like herself for once and it was almost freeing to not be seen. Maybe this was why Lexa wore her warpaint so frequently.
"You look beautiful Clarke."
Lexa's voice was soft. They had grown used to speaking in this secret tone. Clarke turned her head and saw her standing across the room in a fitted black dress, her thighs showing through slits at the sides. She wore a black mask that reminded her of Lexa's warpaint and her hair fell down around one side of her neck, thick and lustrious. The sight of her took Clarke's breath away
"You look incredible."
She saw a small smile appear on Lexa's plump lips.
Clarke herself was in a stylish blue dress, v-shaped at the front. She wore a decorative blue and silver mask. They were a contrast, the pair of them as they gravitated towards each other.
"It's custom to dance in pairs at these event. Do you want to - er with me?"
"Of course but you have to teach me this type of dancing. We grow up with little time for celebration in our culture."
Clarke's lips parted in a smile, her teeth showing and she put Lexa's right hand on her waist. She reached up with her right hand and joined it with Lexa's left. She began to move in slow steps guiding Lexa to move with her.
"Other people are doing it differently," Lexa observed.
"Oh. I'm left-handed. Somethings I do differently to other people because of it."
Lexa was looking down at her feet calculating the movement as if she was learning a new fighting technique.
"What does left-handed mean?" she asked glancing up for a second.
"Here try it this way."
Clarke's left arm was on Lexa's shoulder and she guided Lexa to put her other hand on Clarke's waist freeing the blonde to put both arms around Lexa's neck. This felt so much better. They were closer now their faces a few inches apart.
"Left-handed means that your left hand is the one you favour for performing tasks. We usually judge it by which hand you write with."
"You should always train both hands to be an efficient fighter. What if one is injured?"
Clarke blinked twice rapidly. She was feeling a little dizzy with Lexa's scent so close to her now.
"No. It means it's the one you use more commonly although most left-handers tend to have mixed dominance and switch between left and right for different tasks."
"Oh," Lexa said. "I think I understand. It is still better to train both sides equally."
Clarke couldn't help but smile at her, her eyes half-closed. Lexa liked to teach those she thought had less knowledge about a topic than her and it was never to be condescending but helpful. She always meant well.
"Lexa... I'm sorry for the way I reacted. I blamed you but all you did was save my life."
Green eyes darted away from her own. She could see it still pained Lexa that she'd had to make that decision.
"I know what it's like to have to make the difficult decision and never get any thanks for it. So thank you for everything. Taking care of me. Teaching me. Saving me."
Lexa swallowed awkwardly but continued to dance with Clarke slowly. Clarke leaned in to kiss her but she pulled back.
"Someone may see," Lexa said glancing around the room. "It is not safe."
Clarke got the feeling that Lexa wasn't used to displaying affection so publicly, not in her human form anyway. It was easy as a wolf. Wolves had a clear code, they were much more sensitive to each other's behaviours and physical affection was normal between pack members. They played together, they slept as a group, they hunted and ate together. There was little confict or confusion save for the odd squabble.
"Lexa, there's something we need to talk about..."
The brunette pulled away sharply as she saw Raven entering the room and moved through the crowd out of sight. Clarke was left with the words on the tip of her tongue.
They did something to me. I'm pregnant. I know it sounds crazy but it's yours.
How could she possibly explain it to Lexa? It wasn't supposed to be possible but she could tell. Her wolf could tell. They had taken Lexa's cells somehow and used it to impregnate her. As far as she knew it was possible with two female mice using stem cells and gene editing but had never been done with humans.
I'm not human anymore she reminded herself. Maybe Lexa was right. They aren't my pack anymore.
Lexa could sense Clarke's concern at her abrupt departure after their dance but she would take no risks with her mates safety and remained vigilant as she observed the festivities. She tried not to let her eyes wander towards Clarke but she was a vision in that blue dress that seemed to magnify the blue of her eyes.
They would be executing their plan soon and that concerned her more and more each day. Would Clarke remain with her or would she return with her people and leave for good this time? Lexa found herself unable to bear even the thought of it.
Don't you understand how I feel about you? she thought. Don't you know what you are to me yet?
Clarke didn't appear to understand just how special she was to Lexa and how far she would go to protect her and their child.
Our child Lexa thought wistfully.
She didn't know how it was possible but she could smell that it was hers and Clarke's. Her wolf knew the truth long before she realised. Clarke may not even realise. She had not been a wolf as long as Lexa had though she seemed to be a very fast learner.
No one will harm them Lexa thought. I will kill them if they try.
See same sex reproduction in female mice, stem stells and problems with imprinting. I'm no scientist but I took this from some science articles to try and make it a little more realistic and that the child is only Clarke and Lexa's and has no sperm donor.
Chapter 18: You Must Decide
The delinquents make their escape and Clarke faces a tough choice.
"Who were you dancing with?" Raven asked Clarke as she met her at the masquerade.
"No one. She just asked me."
Raven gave her a look.
"And you agreed. Don't you normally hate these things?"
"Usually," Clarke replied. "But aren't we trying to blend in?"
Raven scratched her neck where she had been injected and Clarke furrowed her brow in concern. She had noticed it still itched her. It shouldn't still be bothering her.
"Damn, this music is so loud. It's hurting my ears."
Clarke cocked her head sideways. She had great hearing and it sounded fine to her.
"Raven... have you been getting any symptoms since they let you out of quarantine?"
The brunette shook her head, rubbing the side of her neck.
"No. It's just damn itchy and it's too warm in this stupid place and all I can smell is body odour and alcohol."
Raven rotated her shoulders, trying to ease the tension and Clarke let it drop. They had other things to think about.
"Is Bellamy in position with Monty?"
"Affirmative," Raven replied. "He managed to get a guard uniform and a walkie. Monty will contact him once he's disabled the security locks and we can make our escape in the craziness. There's still problem."
Raven nodded towards Jasper who was dancing with Maya.
"He won't leave her behind and she can't survive outside."
Clarke considered this.
"We can't stay here any longer. If we put her in a hazmat suit how long survive?"
"A few hours at most."
"Long enough to get her to the dropship. It's sealed for radiation isn't it. Could we find a way for her to survive there until we have a solution?"
Raven's eyes widened.
"I can seal the upper area. She would have to be locked in but it would be just until our people got here. We'd have to make provisions so that she could survive in there but it could be adapted."
"Make sure she takes spare oxygen with her. Enough to return here if we can't adapt it for her. I'll Jasper of the plan. Everyone needs to be ready."
Clarke knew that Lexa was listening from across the room and gave her a quick glance. She was blending in, trying not to attract attention but the blonde could have spotted her in any crowd easily.
The plan was simple. Shut down the security so that they could escape. Have Monty create a diversion and then get everyone out. It worked for the most part. While the guards were distracted, on the radio being told that the security doors were down, her people rushed them and took their weapons. They were outnumbered and overwhelmed and the delinquents roared down the corridors like a small army.
They had worked out the quickest routes to avoid the most guards and were nearly then when one caught them off guard stepping in front of them to block them. He tried to radio for help, his gun pointed at them but Monty had blocked their communications.
"Don't move or I will shoot. Stay right there."
Before Clarke could blink a wolf leapt onto him snarling and biting his hand. He aimed towards the wolf blindly and Clarke's heart stopped for a moment terrified her would hurt her but she but down on his wrist and he screamed and Clarke took her chance to surprise her and push him back into the wall to slam the gun from his grip.
She picked it up and pointed it at him with her left hand ready to shoot. Instead she swung it against his head knocking him out clean her strength as a pakstoka far greater than she had imagined.
Lexa had disappeared from sight, clearly to retrieve her clothes and the delinquents all filed out, including Maya in her hazmat suit. Clarke shut the door behind them heading straight for Monty knowing that Bellamy and Raven were already headed towards him.
When she reached him he was struggling with a guard who had him by the scruff of his shirt demanding her undo whatever he did. Clarke pulled him off and threw him against the wall as if it were nothing, Monty staring at her in astonishment.
"Adrenaline," she said quickly.
Whether Monty believed her she didn't know because they had no time to spare and raced towards the exit, finding Bellamy there.
When they were outside in the tunnels, Bellamy moved to close the door.
"Wait," Clarke exclaimed in panic.
Lexa was still in there. She wasn't leaving her.
"Clarke, we have to go. I set the programme to lock them in after we go. It will take them forever to get reconfigure the system but for it to work the door has to be closed."
"Go on without me," Clarke said. "I'll follow in a minute."
They left her hesitantly and once they were far enough away Lexa exited the door closing it behind her. Clarke heard the locks enable and exhaled in absolute relief. They did it.
"This way," Lexa said taking her hand. "They have taken then longer route."
Clarke followed her without hesitation and they raced down the tunnels towards her people past carts of bodies.
They both heard a roar in the distance.
"Reapers," Lexa said in horror. "Let's move."
It was a gauntlet. Every turn they made they found reapers. They avoided them, fighting any who attacked them and Clarke heard shooting.
"It splits into two here," Lexa said stopping.
Clarke had no idea where they even where. The tunnels were a maze. How Lexa managed to navigate she had no idea.
"The first one leads to your people," Lexa continued. "The other one leads out to cover a little distance away. I will have to take the second one if I'm to avoid being seen in this form."
Clarke's head turned at the sound of gunshots but Lexa put a hand on her arm, only focussed on her.
"Clarke. This is where you must decide."
The blonde turned to face her, torn between her people and Lexa. She understood what Lexa was saying. She was saying that this was it. This was her chance to return to her people. The fact she even trusted Clarke to let her go, given what she was now blew her away.
I have to tell her about the baby. She has a right to know.
Clarke's hand move instinctively to her stomach and Lexa put her hand on top of hers.
"I know," she whispered. "I've been able to tell for a while. Whatever happens I will protect our child? Whatever you decide is best I will respect."
Clarke gazed into those deep, green eyes and what she saw there helped her make her choice. She chose Lexa and their child. She chose family.
"Let's go home to our pack," she said with certainty.
Lexa nodded, her eyes lit up with some emotion Clarke had never seen in them before and they joined hands and races out of the tunnel until they were free.
Clarke watched from far off in the distance, hidden by the trees as her people escaped the other tunnel. Raven she could hear was protesting to go back for her. Bellamy told her it was madness and that Clarke would take care of herself. He wasn't wrong but watching them leave without her broke her heart.
I'll miss you she thought but I have to think of my child.
Lexa's hand touched her shoulder and Clarke turned into her, hugging her. Lexa said nothing but only held her knowing that this was very difficult for her.
Chapter 19: The Breeding Pair
Abby makes it to Earth as the Ark lands but finds that Clarke is missing again and Raven has a fever. Clarke and Lexa adapt to their new circumstances.
Warning - Some scenes of a sexual nature
When Abby crashed to the ground, Earth was more beautiful than anything she had ever seen and Marcus was the one to share it with her. Arkadia was the first thing they found and their people began the process of settling there, checking who had survived and who had not.
When she got to the dropshop she was startled by what she found. They had turned it into a home. It had been weeks since they'd lost communication with the 100 and Abby had no idea what was happening or if Clarke was okay.
When she entered the dropship, Raven bounded towards her and hugged her and the others gathered around to find out what had happened.
"I can't believe you're here," Raven grinned. "I thought I'd never see you again."
Raven coughed and Abby noticed that she seemed pale, feverish. She touched her forehead and checked her glands.
"Raven, you're feverish. How many others are sick?"
"Just me," said Raven. "We got captured and ever since then I've been like this."
"And Clarke? Is she sick?"
Raven's smile faded.
"We don't know where she is. We escaped Mount Weather and she was just behind us but we've found no sign of her. We checked all the tunnels, searched all around the area."
"So she's missing? Again?"
Abby knew her daughter. She would not go down without a fight. Something wasn't right. This was the third time she had gone missing. How could this happen again?
"We'll find her," she said, refusing to give up on her daughter. "If we have to comb every inch of the woods we'll find her."
"Stop. Stop. I'm trying to finish my food. It tickles."
Clarke was seated up in the den, propped up by pillows. Lexa had sent Luna back and forth to Niylah's trading post multiple times to get her some human food, concerned that the baby may need more than just meat and fish.
Lexa had doted on her since they'd return and was now tracing Clarke's belly despite the fact that she wasn't even showing yet. She was laughing as she spoke, trying to finish the selection of grounder food they had brought her this time. Fruit, cheeses, breads, cakes. The grounders seemed to love their fruits and were inventive at finding ways to add it to their food.
"I will stop while you eat but I cannot promise anything after."
Lexa placed a kiss on Clarke's belly and gazed up at her adoringly. This was the softest Clarke had ever seen her. She seemed thrilled at the strange pregnancy and though the pack had been initially shocked they rallied around Clarke protectively.
It was kinda nice for Clarke to be pampered for once in her life and they showered her with affection, sniffing her belly with curiosity when Lexa actually let them near her.
To say Lexa was protective of Clarke in her current state was an understatement. Lexa snapped at anyone who was even a little rough around her. She refused to allow her to join the hunt, concerned she may injure her child if it went wrong and she consistently brought Clarke's flowers when returned as well as extra food to store. She was pushing the pack hard to make sure they were well stocked and Clarke was sure she had planned for every scenario possible.
Their relationship had been very good since they'd returned, Clarke returning to sleep beside her though they had been still a little distant when it came to sexual intimacy.
Clarke thought it was Lexa didn't want to assume anything when it came to their relationship but she spent an awful lot of time tracing Clarke's stomach with her fingers, resting her head there with a slight smile. She seemed more content than Clarke had ever known her to be.
Clarke finished eating and leaned back with a groan. Her appetite had been increasing though she shouldn't be getting cravings so early. She was sure it was because it wasn't a human pregnancy.
"What do you think we should name her?" Lexa asked, lifting her head.
Clarke glanced down at her, one hand in Lexa's hair.
"How do you know it's a her hmmm...?"
"I just know. It's a girl. My wolf can tell."
"Mine can't," Clarke joked. "Okay since you're so sure let's think of names. Abi after my mom. No let's not go there. Ray after Raven?"
Lexa's lips curled back in distate.
"What about Tris or Alex?" Lexa suggested. Those are fine names. Or Becca or Madi.
"Madi?" Clarke repeated. "I like that what if it's a boy."
Lexa shifted, sitting up so that she was eye to eye with Clarke.
"Jake after your father as a way of honouring his memory."
Clarke blinked twice, deeply moved by the sentiment. She leaned forward and kissed Lexa bringing their lips together.
"We've chosen our names then. Jake or Madi depending on if it's a boy or a girl or we could be gender neutral and use either no matter what."
Lexa gave her that confused look she did whenever Clarke used terms she was not familiar with.
"What is gender neutral?"
Clarke thought about how she would explain it to Lexa and decided it would take her a while and she was getting tired.
"Never mind. We should rest. It's getting light."
Lexa moved aside as Clarke shifted over to their bed of furs and lay down beside her. She lay her head on Clarke's stomach, her fingers making circles there.
"Madi," she repeated. "Our daughter will be called Madi. We will teach her to hunt and to fight and you will teach her your healing skills and how to draw. She will be a fierce and strong wolf."
Clarke swallowed a lump forming in her throat. Never in a million years had she expected Lexa to be this way about the pregnancy. She acted as if Clarke and their child were the most important things in the world and for that Clarke loved her.
Clarke's eyes shot wide open and she stiffened as she realised what she had just thought.
I love her she thought. Why didn't I realise until now?
The knowledge of her feelings seemed to hit her all of a sudden as she watched Lexa still talking to 'Madi' about all the things they would teach her.
Clarke urged Lexa up to her lips and they kissed, Lexa propping herself above Clarke, one arm holding up her weight. When their lips naturally parted Clarke hugged her, wrapping her arms around her and nuzzled in to Lexa's neck. She inhaled her scent, her strong, distinct scent rubbing her nose into her skin and felt the urge to part her lips and bite the skin with her teeth.
Mate her wolf said. Claim her as your mate.
Clarke gave in to the urge and nipped the brunette's neck gently and Lexa pulled back in surprise staring down at Clarke with wonder. She could see the struggle in Lexa's eyes. She was trying to work out if Clarke knew what her actions meant, if she undersood that she was saying that Lexa was hers and hers alone.
Clarke turned her head and offered her neck to Lexa in return, pulling the furs up over the brunette's back. The others were still outside giving the pair time to be alone and they knew they would not be disturbed yet.
Lexa inhaled sharply and ran her lips along the column of Clarke's neckline and then pulled back her lips and sank her teeth in just a little. She didn't hurt Clarke but it would leave a mark and it was a declaration for them both. They were fully mates now. They belonged together.
This seemed to spur Lexa on and she rushed to kiss Clarke, moving her lips with as much desperation that she had, when they'd made out in the long grasses after leaving Niylah's post. Lexa's fingers were grazing down her thighs, running down the outside and then up the inside as if to tease her. She moved lower, her lips on Clarke's collarbone pressing desperate kisses around her neck, her jaw and above her breasts before moving lower.
A few moments later and Lexa was under the furs and her lips were on Clarke's breasts, exploring ea, every inch of them as if she had longed to do so forever.
Clarke felt Lexa kiss her stomach, more delicate, more careful in that area and a thrill shot through her at the thought of where Lexa was headed. When Clarke felt her lover's mouth move between her legs she gripped the furs below her, throwing her head back.
She was already so worked up, so sexually frustrated. It seemed like forever since they'd lain together. The last time was just before they'd parted and she was almost on the verge already.
She cried out her as it hit her, Lexa's name escaping her lips as her body trembled. Lexa drew out her orgasm to its last ebb, making the feeling last and her legs tremble as she made Clarke shake beneath her. It was so good - so so good. Each time Clarke thought it couldn't possibly be any better, Lexa took her to a higher level and she couldn't stop from crying out, her hands clenching the furs until she could take no more.
She felt her muscles relax as she sank back into the furs, sated beyond her wildest dreams. Her body was limp, completely satisfied from the contact and Clarke languished in the warmth of having her needs fulfilled
Lexa shifted up, appearing from beneath the furs with a large beaming smile across her lips though Clarke could not see it. She caressed Clarke's forehead with her hand, brushing the delicate strands of blonde from her eyes and settled in beside her, one arm draped across her lovers waist. Clarke already had her eyes closed and was drifting off and Lexa could not wipe the smile from her face or ignore the elation she felt to have Clarke like this.
She pressed a gentle kiss on her mate's neck, just below her ear and closed her eyes to rest with a contented sigh.
Chapter 20: Family
Lexa and Luna talk while Clarke rests and Clarke tries getting more comfortable with her wolf form having spent most of her time in human form since rejoining the pack. Clarke thinks of how different life with the pack is compared to life with the delinquents.
Skaikru - sky people/clan
Lexa returned from her hunt one evening to find Clarke already dozing on her side in her human form fully clothed. Lexa smiled at the sight of her sleeping so peacefully. She was beginning to show now, her belly growing larger and Lexa found herself already thinking about Madi as a person despite her not even arriving yet.
Lexa seated herself down on the ground nearby stretching her legs out in front of her to watch over her, not ready to sleep yet. She let out a small sigh and Luna bounded in, a spring in her step.
"Do you think I'm not aware why you have made so many trips to the trading post?"
Luna stopped, immediately looking guilty.
"I won't tell you who you should or should not sleep with," Lexa told her, a note of authority in her tone, "but make sure you aren't seen."
Luna lowered her eyes.
"Her scent upsets you for some reason. When I travelled with you to the trading before you saw her as harmless but last time you acted as if she was a threat."
Lexa felt embarrassed not wanting to admit why Niylah's scent truly bothered her on Luna.
"She - she is attracted to Clarke," she admitted.
"Who isn't?" Luna teased.
Lexa glared at her intensely as if to challenge her.
"Not me though," Luna said quickly. "No one here thinks of her that way. I was joking."
The commander of the wolf pack turned her head away, still defensive but calming down. Luna seated herself beside her.
"You care for them very much. We do too. No one would betray you like that. I will talk to Niylah, let her know that Clarke is with you. She will be respectful."
Lexa turned and met her gaze.
Luna smiled wistfully.
"You are very lucky. This would not be possible for many female lovers. A child from both of you."
"If something ever happens to me..." Lexa said in a low tone. "If Ontari ever finds I'm alive and..."
Luna put a hand on her shoulder.
"We will protect them with our lives Heda. They are our family now too."
Lexa smiled at her. Luna was often the more playful, light-hearted one of them but she was as loyal and fierce as any member of the pack.
"I have to say I'm surprised at your choice of mate," Lexa said, quirking an eyebrow. "I assumed that you were more interested in Raven."
"Ha! She is very attractive and most interesting but I would have to fight Anya for her and that is one battle I would lose."
Lexa turned around suprised.
"Anya? She likes Raven?"
"Claims she doesn't. Acts all indifferent and shows nothing but I saw her watching Raven when she was our captive. She was definitely interested in her despite what she says."
Lexa thought about this for a moment. Anya was careful enough she was sure but more and more people were getting entangled in this.
"She has stayed away and so has Lincoln but he struggles to leave his sky girl. He is in love I'm afraid."
"What is it about these skaikru that entices us all so much?" Lexa asked.
Luna tilted her head.
"Well they are very attractive. Might be something to do with that."
Lexa glanced at Clarke. No it was more than that. Much more. Clarke had fascinated her right from the beginning and it was more than just her beauty that had entranced her.
Clarke shifted suddenly and opened her eyes sleepily.
"Hey," Lexa replied. "Did we wake you?"
"No," Clarke said her voice low and husky. "I was just napping. Was it a successful hunt?"
Lexa smiled. Clarke had been obsessed with food more and more recently.
"Yes. Would you like it cooked?"
Clarke lifted herself up to her feet with a yawn. Once Lexa would have rushed to help her but Clarke had insisted that she wasn't that pregnant yet and could manage perfectly well.
"No. I'll just eat in my wolf form. I'd love to stretch my legs for a while anyway."
Clarke stretched her arms out and then shifted turning into a beautiful blonde wolf. Lexa changed to join her, thinking it high time their wolf sides got acquainted fully too. Since they'd returned Clarke had been hesitant to shift so much, still getting to grips with that side of her.
Clarke's ears pricked up in curiosity and she approached Lexa. This was different. Clarke was in control of the wolf now. Her mind was still there. She moved to Lexa's neck and buried her nose in there before brushing her body against her mate's. Lexa's tail wagged in response and she licked Clarke's ears calmly. Clarke whined and rubbed the side of Lexa's head with her own, bringing her muzzle up underneath Lexa's chin and pushing her snout up.
I'm still hungry Clarke teased but you smell so good and I have this desire to rub my scent all over you.
You said you wanted to stretch your legs. Let's eat first and then we will go for a run. It will be good for the pup.
Clarke's ears flicked back as she tilted her head.
Aren't you the boss wolf here? Does that mean I have to obey everyone in this form?
Lexa pushed Clarke's muzzle with her own.
Most of them recognised your strength after your first turned and submitted to you. Only Anya, Gustus and Anya did not but they are the strongest wolves in the pack.
So where do I fit into this pack structure? Clarke asked sitting down.
Lexa fussed around her affectionately, sniffing her stomach as if checking all was well.
Why the obsession with hierarchy? We are a family and you are my mate and you are also a fierce wolf. Most wouldn't dare challenge you anymore than they would challenge me.
Lexa nudged her nose, opening her mouth to harmlessly spar with Clarke's jaw.
Besides. You are bearing our child. That makes us both the pack leaders. We are a team.
Clarke sparred back, lightly nipping Lexa's neck with her teeth. The blonde was getting impatient waiting for her dinner and some exercise. She walked ahead and Lexa followed, her tail fully erect as they joined the pack.
When Clarke and Lexa walked towards the feast, other members of the pack moved aside leaving a slight space for them both as they ate. Luna wagged her tail slightly and playfully yelped and licked Clarke's muzzle cheekily before moving aside too.
They seemed to treat her different now, Clarke noticed. In human form she was still learning to decipher their behaviours. In wolf form she understood them easily.
They were reverent towards her, protective and often even curious, edging towards her to sniff the unusual mix of Lexa and Clarke's scent that lingered around Clarke's stomach. Lexa pulled her lips back and growled when Lincoln and Ryder played a little too boisterously near Clarke, getting excited at the change to their family.
They immediately lowered their ears, their tails low and moved away and Lexa calmed, her head held high as she sat protectively beside Clarke.
Clarke had never felt so safe, so cared for. Lexa's presence seemed to reassure her constantly. For so long with the 100 she had been the one who'd had to protect everyone, always on edge, always on the end of their criticism of her decisions. The pack were so endlessly loving and supportive. Everything was about working as a team and surviving together and they were very respectful towards each other. Clarke was beginning to think of them as her family.
Indra was wise and quiet but proud and fierce if challenged. She was loyal to a fault to Lexa and a warrior at heart in every way.
Anya who was tough and strong who saw life for what it was and observed everything. Nothing escaped Anya's watchful eyes. She protected the pack above all else.
Luna who was cheeky and playful and the most affectionate. She loved to tease, to antagonise a little but seemed to know her limits and never went too far.
Lincoln who was shy and quiet but could be playful and boisterous when relaxed. His heart was pure and he seemed to dislike aggression of any kind though he was a strong fighter when it was necessary.
Ryder who loved to play fight with Indra and to chase Luna. He was younger and energetic and Lexa had to warn him sometimes to curb his enthusiasm when he went too far in his play.
Gustus was the oldest, the quietest often sitting at a distance from the others but he stood guard over the entrance many days like a sentry keeping them safe as they slept. He seemed to take his role seriously and rarely engaged in play with the others.
Clarke brushed past Lexa as she moved forward towards her meal, giving the pack a slight whine as she joined them. Anya nudged her gently in response to show her mutual affection. She could communicate how she felt to them without even speaking. It was liberating not to have to hide away, not to have her intentions misunderstood or questioned. Clarke wagged her tail and lowered her head to her meal.
Chapter 21: True Love
Anya makes a decision that could have far reaching consequences and Clarke and Lexa enjoy some alone time.
Skaiga - Sky girl
Pakstoka - wolf/werewolf
Ai hod yu in - I love you
Anya was roaming the woods that morning, not quite wanting to rest yet. She was more restless than usual. Lexa was so happy with Clarke and the blonde was bringing more joy to the pack than they could ever imagine but something inside her seemed out of sorts, some instinct that something was off. She roamed through the woods more to shake off the feeling than anything.
It was very early and still dark yet though it would be light soon. She sniffed the undergrowth trailing the ground with her nose, checking the safety of their territory. She did not scent mountain men and had not since Lexa and Clarke had returned but the sky people still left trails everywhere and she kept track of their movements into their territory daily.
One particular scent kept intriguing her. There was something not quite right with it. She recognised it as Raven's but the woman had smelled perfectly normal when she had been hostage. She had a rather inticing scent and Anya had found it distracting her from time to time when the brunette had been in their den.
Few traces of her remained in their den now. She hadn't been there for long enough to leave a distinct scent but Anya still recognised it.
Yet something wasn't right. Each day it seemed to change a little and Anya had found herself concerned, though she wasn't sure why.
She followed it as it circled away from the dropship and towards a pile of debris where the escape pod had landed and found the brunette lying unconscious on the ground on her back next to her tools.
Anya whined and moved over towards her sniffing her carefully. Something was definitely wrong. She was paler than usual and her breathing was heavy. Anya ran her tongue over Raven's cheek, trying with persistant licks to wake her.
"Hey... what the-?"
Raven regained consciousness and sprang back in terror when she saw the wolf. Anya wagged her tail to show she was friendly but then as Clarke had told her, the sky people had little experience or understanding of wolves and Raven tensed as if waiting for her to strike. She grabbed a spanner and closed her eyes as if expecting the worst.
"Just get it over with," she said with closed eyes. "I'm too sick to fight you."
Anya licked her face twice to show her she meant well and wagged her tail again.
Raven opened one eye, in surprise, quickly followed by the other eye.
"What do you want? You not gonna eat me? Can you sense that I'm sick?"
Raven seized suddenly clutching her side and Anya whined in concern. Her body twisted and she began to shift but it wasn't like a normal pakstoka change. Anya could find no sign of her having been bitten and the change seemed to be going wrong as if it had not been done properly.
"I don't know what is happening to me," she said, closing her eyes.
She was on the ground now, helpless. Anya could not understand how she smelled as if she was bitten but not fully. The scent was only half as strong as a normal pakstoka bite. Anya had never seen it before.
There was only one possible way to save her now but Anya knew that it would cause strife amongst their happy pack.
The brunette groaned in agony beginning to lose consciousness again and Anya made her decision. She was one of Clarke's people, someone Clarke cared for. She would not let her die.
Anya shifted into human form. The bite was always done in this form though no one knew why. It had always been this way. Raven half-opened her eyes, barely able to focus.
"You again?" she slurred. "There was just a wolf here a minute again. I thought it was going to attack me."
Anya brushed back her hair from her face. It had fallen loose from her ponytail. There were beads of sweat on Raven's forehead.
"Hush skaiga. No one will harm you."
Anya lowered her head and sank her teeth into the brunette's neck. Raven cursed and cried out and began to fight in her weakened form but then the pakstoka took her completely and she passed out.
Anya lifted her up and carried her, preparing herself for the anger her heda would have when she brought Raven to their home.
I could not let her die she thought glancing down at the unconscious woman in her arms.
This had been Anya's weakness. Taking pity on those who she found suffering. First Lexa and now Raven but with Raven it seemed to be different. Lexa was a warrior. Her bravery inspired Anya. She had fought better than any warrior she had ever encountered. Raven was not a warrior but she was strong in another way. She was energetic, brave despite her shorter stature. Anya only hoped the transformation would be swift and less painful than Clarke's was.
Clarke and Lexa had gone running together after their meal, bounding through the long grasses, chasing each other, Lexa rolling over on her back as they played and sparred as wolves. Somewhere along then line it had turned into something else and they'd made love, at first as wolves and then as humans.
Clarke was working Lexa with her fingers, her other hand on the brunette's breast. Lexa cried out, giving herself to Clarke in a rare moment of submissiveness. Clarke kept her eyes on Lexa as moved, watching her unravel before her. She was beautiful as her back arched and her moans rang out higher.
Clarke withdrew and Lexa's eyes snapped open. The brunette was practically pouting in protest, obviously unhappy that she had stopped.
"I'm not stopping. I just wanted to try something. Lie on your back."
Lexa exhaled in controlled frustration but lay down on the grass her eyes fixed on Clarke's. The blonde shifted as she continued her ministrations, Lexa closing her eyes with relief as she slipped back inside her. Clarke pressed her lips to Lexa's and then turned her head to kiss the side of her jaw.
"Your jawline. Ugh, so hot," she muttered before moving down to Lexa's thighs.
Lexa was breaving heavier now as Clarke's hand skimmed the inside of her thigh as her other hand continued to work. Lexa felt her legs pushed slightly apart and a tongue slip inbetween her folds and her eyes shot wide open in surprise but only for a second as they drifted back closed and she arched up moaning louder this time.
"Clarke," she gasped.
"Oh Clarke. Just there. Clarke!"
She came within seconds, not having had anyone do this to her before. Sure she had done if for Costia and for Clarke but she'd never been on the receiving end and now she was she couldn't believe how quickly it was destroying any illusion of self-control she had.
Clarke seemed only spurred on by her erratic calls slipping deeper before drawing back. When she begin to play with the small bump at the top of entrance with her tongue Lexa saw stars and lost it altogether.
This was too good. Lexa could not imagine anything better. She was in absolute heaven and a complete wreck and it was all Clarke's doing.
When she came, it was hard and mind blowing as she held onto the back of Clarke's head, tangling her fingers in her hair to have something to hold onto. She practically screamed Clarke's name and then collapsed on her back, her hair fanned out behind her.
Clarke emerged with a satisfied smile that was almost a smirk and moved to join Lexa on the ground, propping herself up on one elbow.
"What was that for?" Lexa asked still catching her breath.
"For being you," Clarke said still smiling dreamily. "You've been so good about all this and you've taken care of me and the baby. You're going to be a great mom."
"We both are," Lexa replied turning her head to the side.
"I don't know what I would have done without you through all of this. I love you so much."
Lexa's eyes lit up at her words and she smiled as if those words meant everything to you.
"I love you too," Lexa said, almost in a whisper.
Clarke bent down and kissed her on the cheek once, playing with Lexa's hair as she gazed into her eyes.
"You know for someone so tough, you're so soft."
Lexa smiled at her again.
"Hmm you should never call a warrior soft. They do not like it."
Clarke ran her forefinger down Lexa's nose and then tapped it playfully.
"You do like it. I know you do."
Lexa was beaming now as she stared up at her sky girl in adoration.
"How do you say I love you in your language?" Clarke asked in a light tone.
"Ai hod yu in," Lexa said, still gazing at her.
"Ai hod yu in."
Clarke fumbled over the familiar words but Lexa thought that they had never been spoken so beautifully by anyone before and wondered if she should teach Clarke more of their language. She had already learned a little but there was always more to teach and the words sounded so different from her lips.
The thought lingered but then Lexa suddenly had another one. Her lips parted into a mischievous grin as her hands wandered lower to tickle Clarke's stomach where she knew she was notoriously ticklish.
"Lexa!" Clarke yelled, half-protesting, half-laughing.
The brunette laughed, wrapping her arms around Clarke to pull her closer and they both collapsed into laughter, falling into each other in the grass.
Chapter 22: The Storm
Clarke and Lexa return from their alone time to find trouble with the pack and Clarke offers a possible solution.
Heda - Commander
Skaikru - sky people/clan
Teik emo tiyas - Take them inside
Nau! - Now!
Pakstokas - Wolves/werewolves
Clarke and Lexa returned from their peaceful time together to chaos. They had rested in the grasses together for some time before they'd dressed and returned.
The first thing they saw was Anya carrying Raven bridal style into the camp. Lexa and Clarke both halted and Lexa took Clarke's hand clasping it in her own protectively.
"What is the meaning of this?" Lexa demanded.
"She was sick, it was as if she had been bitten but not fully. I have never known anything like it."
Lexa stepped forward her eyes narrowing.
"You bit her?"
Anya was never anything but calm but they all sensed Lexa's anger.
"You have put the whole pack in danger by bringing another skaikru here."
"I did not do this lightly," Anya said. "She would have died."
A few moments later Lincoln rush in carrying Octavia.
"I'm sorry heda," he said in a panic. "I lost control. I never meant to bite her. My wolf couldn't resist."
Though Lexa appeared calm to someone who didn't know her well, her body was stiff and she worked her jaw, her eyes betraying her true emotion. She was livid. She gripped Clarke's hand standing a little in front of Clarke as if to protect her.
"Teik emo tiya. Nau!"
Anya and Lincoln both obeyed hearing the warning in her tone.
"Both of them?" Clarke protested. "What were they thinking? What are we going to do?"
"This is nothing we can do but await their change. You can already smell it upon them. You may not want to witness it. It is unpleasant. They will need to be changed."
Clarke shook her head.
"Something was wrong with Raven in Mount Weather. I could smell that same scent on her but it was much weaker. I thought pakstoka were only created from being born or bitten."
"They usually are. They must have attempted to recreate it in Raven and failed. Maybe that was their reason for impregnating you."
"They couldn't turn her so they tried to see if pakstokas could be born. They were experimenting with the process. What if something's wrong with Madi? What if they got that wrong too?"
Clarke was beginning to get worked up so Lexa placed a steady hand on her stomach.
"She's fine Clarke. I would have be able to tell if something was not right. She smells just like a full pakstoka and completely healthy."
Concern still clouded those blue eyes but Clarke exhaled and nodded.
"You're right. Other than the conception everything seems normal. I need to check on Raven, see how she is."
Lexa's eyes burned fiercely and Clarke thought that she wanted nothing more than to forbid Clarke from being anywhere near them.
"I will make sure they are chained first. Do not get too close."
"I won't," Clarke replied gratefully. "I just want to check her symptoms. She seemed feverish when Anya brought her in."
All of a sudden there was the sound of screaming and Lexa and Clarke looked at each other then ran inside, Lexa keeping Clarke behind her with her arm as she entered.
Raven was chained and raging. She was pale and seemed crazed. She shook the chains as if trying to break them.
"Raven. It's me Clarke."
Clarke approached slowly keeping her eye on the length of the chain and keeping to a safe distance. Raven showed no sign of response but just rattled the chains repeatedly.
"Was I this bad?" Clarke asked under her breath. "Makes me glad I don't remember anything."
"Something is wrong," Luna said edging closer to Raven. "Anya is right. She was sick, as if she had been bitten but much weaker. Something is preventing the change that would save her."
Clarke turned to Lexa.
"Has this ever happened before? Has anyone ever resisted the change?"
"No," Lexa said with concern. "Never."
"We have to help her. We have to do something."
Lexa turned to her mate.
"It's your nature to want to fix everyone and everything but you can't fix this. There's nothing more we can do but wait."
Clarke closed her eyes and turned away shaking her head. She turned back and met Lexa's gaze.
"There is something we can do but you aren't going to like it."
Clarke glanced over at Raven thinking it better to try something than nothing.
Abby was doing her rounds that morning when they grabbed her. How they had gotten inside the perimeter she didn't know but before she knew what was happening someone put some sort of cloth sack over her head and ordered her to stay quiet as they bound her hands behind her and took some of her basic medical equipment with them.
The journey was slow and Abby didn't recognise her captors. When they stopped someone pulled the cloth from her head and she raised her head blinking.
The sun was directly in her eyes but when she focussed she saw Clarke and another woman, a brunette with a dark bank of paint across her face like a mask. Clarke was seated next to her alive and well. Abby felt a wave of pure relief flood through her as her daughter smiled awkwardly at her.
"Hi mom," she said sheepishly.
Abby recognised that look in her daughter's eyes, the one she wore when she had done something that she knew would get her into trouble. It was then that Abby noticed the slight swell of her stomach.
"You're pregnant!" she said getting to her feet.
Indra glared at her for daring to move without permission but Lexa waved her hand to gesture that she would let it go.
"Unbind her hands," Lexa commanded.
"It's not what you think. I can explain," Clarke said.
Abby's hands were unbound and she rubbed at her wrists.
"Oh. You better explain. What happened to the birth control implant? Why would you remove it?"
"I didn't," Clarke said trying to explain. "It was-"
Her mom stepped closer ready to go into full blown lecture mode.
"Who was it? Bellamy? Finn? Oh please tell me it wasn't that boy Murphy?"
Lincoln exited the den hearing the commotion and Abby spun to accuse him.
"Him? Was it him? Did he do this?"
When she began to accuse Ryder and even Gustus, Clarke knew she had to put an end to it.
"Mom! It was Lexa. I mean the child is ours."
Her mom didn't seem to know how to respond but Clarke told hold of Lexa's hand to show her she meant it and Abby's lips curved downwards.
"How?" she asked in with restraint. "Intersex? "
"What is inter-...?"
"I'll tell you later," Clarke said glancing at her. "No she's not though it wouldn't matter if she was. Anyway Mount Weather, they captured us. They must've fertilised my egg with Lexa's dna."
Her mom stared at her as if trying to work it out.
"Clarke that is extremely difficult. No one had managed to do that. Even with the imprint problem and stripping half the dna... "
Her mother went into medical explanations and Clarke could see that this was going to take a while.
"Mom. This is Lexa. She's er- she's my partner and the baby's hers too."
Lexa stood rather gracefully to face Abby.
"I assure you Clarke will be well cared for and protected. Our child will have everything they need."
Abby glanced at Clarke then back at Lexa.
"Why would the Mountain Men do this? What would it achieve?"
Clarke glanced at Lexa inhaling sharply. Lexa bowed her head in a slight nod and she glanced back at her mom.
"Well... you see I was badly injured a while ago by the Mountain Men and Lexa and her people here are unusual in that they are - they are."
Clarke struggled to find the words knowing how crazy it would sound. Her mom believed in science like her but one thing she had learned since landing on Earth was that it had evolved in ways they couldn't have imagined.
"It may be better if we show her."
Lexa nodded and shifted into wolf form in front of her. Abby flinched back, her eyes wide.
"They are called pakstokas or wolves and they are usually born able to be in both forms or they are bitten and undergo the transformation. If someone is near death the bite can save them."
Abby was speechless for once and Clarke got up and stood in front of Lexa as she changed back thinking that her mom seeing her girlfriend naked the first time they meet would be a step too far.
When she was dressed, Clarke stepped aside.
"Did you bite her because you wanted her for yourself?"
"No," Lexa told her meeting her eyes directly. "I would never have. She was dying. The reapers had- she wouldn't have survived. I never intended for any of this."
She exchanged a glance with Clarke who rubbed her arm in reassurance.
"I need time to process this," her mom said. "This is a lot to take in. It's not even scientifically possible, to transform every cell in your dna to that of a wolf's. It's not even logical..."
"You don't have time," Clarke told her. "They did something to Raven. They tried to turn her at Mount Weather but it didn't work and she was dying so Anya bit her to save her life but she's still feverish. We need your help."
Her mom seemed unsurprised to hear that something was wrong with Raven."
"Take me to her," she said.
"This way," Lexa urged walking in front of the two Griffin women.
When Abby saw her she was unrecognisable as Raven. She was in pain and snarling like a wild beast as if Raven wasn't even there.
"I tested her blood several times and found the same problem in her cells. She had a virus that seemed to be attacking them so I treated her for it but as the virus weakened and the treatment worked her symptoms got worse."
"So it comes from a mutated virus? If so why would it heal people? Why would it make them stronger and faster and healthier?"
Her mom was scanning Raven for any symptom she may have missed?"
"I don't know Clarke. Maybe they used too little and it acted like a vaccine instead. Explain to me what happens during the change, everything. I need every detail."
"I don't remember mine but Lexa was with me the whole time. She didn't leave my side."
Abby got to her feet.
"We need to weaken the antibodies that are fighting the virus for the change to proceed. Curing it seems impossible. I tried multiple times. We need to give her a stronger dose of the virus again. Enough to overwhelm her system but it will be unpleasant for her."
Abby glanced over at Octavia who was passed out in the corner on a rock, curled up like a kitten.
"That was my mistake," Lincoln said stepping forward. "I lost control when we were together. I never intended to bite her."
"Hmmm..." Abby replied as if she wanted to lecture him but thought it none of her business. "I will need to take samples of all your blood and work out how much she will need to negate her antibodies."
Clarke turned away to leave glad to escape the inevitable interrogation her mom had in mind for her.
"Once I'm done, you and I are still going to talk Clarke."
Damn it. So close Clarke thought.
Chapter 23: The Mother-Daughter Chat
Clarke and Abby have a lengthy conversation and it is revealed that Lexa has nightblood.
Pakstoka - Wolves/werewolves
Did they ever mention Becca's last name? I considered calling her Becca Prime as the grounders called her Praimheda but I ended up just not using a last name.
"So," her mom said sitting across from her daughter after spending quite some time tending to Raven. "What happened? From the beginning?"
"I saw Lexa one in the woods and she ran away. Lincoln got captured and tortured by Bellamy and I let him escape. As I was doing that Lexa came to rescue him and I accidentally saw her shifting. They stay alive by staying hidden so they brought me back here. Lexa let me go and then the reapers attacked me and..."
Abby watched her rambling for a moment aware of what she was avoiding saying.
"I didn't mean that. I meant when did you fall in love with her."
Clarke became very quiet avoiding her eyes.
"I don't know," she said. "Something was there from the beginning. When I was captured I guess is when it started but we knew that it couldn't work and she let me leave."
Her mom seemed surprised at this admission as if she'd expected more resistance from her daughter.
"She let me go Mom. She never mistreated me. Lexa did not want to take my life away but I was dying. She saved my life. You should see how she is about Madi. She fusses over me all the time. It's so sweet."
"Madi?" her mom asked with a smile. "Is that the name you've picked?"
Clarke smiled, her gaze still lowered and then lifted her head.
"Lexa is convinced we are having a girl and we've got used to calling her that."
"It will be a girl," her mother said. "No y-chromosome."
Clarke glanced down at her belly, placing her hand on it. She smiled as the knowledge flooded through her.
"Madi it is then. Lexa was right."
"Can I?" her mom asked.
Clarke nodded and her mom placed her hand on the bump checking it over.
"Any symptoms yet?"
"Sleeping a bit more, eating a bit more, some mild cravings but that's about it."
"I would give you an ultrasound if we were back at Arkadia but you seem pretty healthy. I'd say you're about eight weeks along."
Clarke pushed her top back down over her stomach as her mom removed her hand.
"Arkadia? Is that what they've called it."
Her mom scoffed.
"Originally it was called Camp Jaha but everyone wanted to change it. Kane is currently in charge. Jaha didn't make it to the ground."
Clarke thought about Wells and it saddened her that she couldn't be there for him.
"Mom, you understand that I can't return to our people. I'm something else now and other grounders may hunt us if they learn of our existence here. You can't tell anyone not even Kane."
"I won't," her mom replied. "But next time I visit tell them to arrange it with me first and I can bring some more medical equipment."
Her mom still seemed as if she was holding something back.
"Clarke, there's something else. I took everyone's blood. Lexa's - it's black."
The blonde frowned.
"What do you mean black?"
"I mean the colour black. It's more resistant to radiation somehow and it's seems likely a rare inherited trait but something about it seems - manufactured."
"By who? The Mountain?"
Abby shook her head.
"The only person in our recent history who would have had the ability to create blood like this was a doctor named Becca. I forget her last name..."
Abby waved her hands dismissively.
"Anyway she was a genius in artificial intelligence and biotechnological advancement. All we know of her is the few digital medical papers that we have in the Ark computer systems but she may have been one of the survivors."
"Are you saying that she may have altered the survivors to resist radiation?"
"It would explain how life had managed to thrive down here. It was some of her research that was used to help our people survive the radiation up there."
Clarke was dumbfounded.
"Black blood? It's literally black and she seemed very resistant to giving her blood. I suspect she knows hers is unusual."
"Completely. Which means your child may inherit the trait."
Clarke thought about this for a moment and if she should bring this up with Lexa.
"How's Raven doing?"
"As well as can be expected but she's strong. She's had a much larger dose from both Anya and what I've given her. It should be enough to tip the balance and complete the process."
Clarke frowned. She had never thought her friends would get involved in this. She had deliberately kept away to avoid this very sort of incident from occuring.
"Lexa is not happy about this. She fears that Raven and Octavia will bring danger to the pack and to me and Madi. She might be right. If that happens we would have to move somewhere else. Somewhere safer."
Her mom looked at her as if to say something about the possibility of her leaving but didn't say a word.
"Are you happy here with these people?"
"I am," Clarke said. "Lexa got me some art supplies and gets the pack to bring me fruit and other food so that I'm not just eating meat. They're like family and they accept me for who I am."
Her mom smiled as if she recognised exactly the feelings that Clarke was describing. She remembered Jake being similar when she was pregnant with Clarke.
"That's all that matters then."
Her mom placed a kiss on the top of her head before moving to check on Raven again.
Chapter 24: You're Kidding Me
Raven has a shock when she finds out the truth and Clarke and Raven talk.
Ban au - get out/outside. Lexa uses it as a command.
Pakstoka - Wolf/werewolves
"This is the worst transformation I have ever seen," said Anya. "Octavia has already turned to her wolf form. She will regain her mind soon enough."
Lexa wasn't sure what to think about the brunette. She was wild and swung at her chains wildly. It had been some time and Abby assured her that it was working but it should have happened by now.
"Let me out of here you! I swear to God if you don't let me out..."
Lexa glanced at Raven in alarm. She should not be able to speak let alone be able to form full sentences.
Clarke entered the cave readying to go to sleep, standing behind Lexa. Raven spotted her suddenly and her head jerked up.
"Clarke. What the hell?"
The blonde stopped and Lexa turned her head.
"How does she know my name? She hasn't changed yet."
"Changed? What the-"
"This was an unusual transformation. We don't know how many changes will occur?"
"Changes?" Raven echoed.
Clarke and Lexa acted as if they hadn't heard her continuing to talk between themselves and Raven snapped.
"Hey! Stop talking about me. I'm right here."
Clarke edged closer and Lexa shadowed her protectively.
"Do you know you name?" Clarke asked.
Raven rolled her eyes.
"You disappear after all this time and that's the firsy thing you ask me? Raven Reyes now can you please take these chains off me?"
Clarke glanced at Lexa as if to check that was okay and Lexa seemed unsure but slowly nodded.
"Stay back. I will do it." Lexa said.
Raven hopped rather dramatically when her ankles were released. Lexa turned back to glance at Clarke.
"I'll be okay," Clarke told her. "You can let us talk and Octavia is going to be like that for a while before she's herself again."
She glanced towards a smaller black wolf that was pawing at Indra trying to get her attention.
Oddly Indra seemed to have taken to the spirited young wolf and had been spending time with her. Lincoln was still sulking because Lexa had forced him onto guard duty every day as punishment for his rash actions. She'd also refused to let him join their daily hunt until he learned his lesson.
Lexa didn't move at first, glaring at Raven in warning but Clarke put a hand on her arm.
"Really, we'll be fine."
"Very well. Ban au."
The others followed her without hesistation, Octavia following Indra as she left and Lexa pressed a kiss to her cheek and headed out giving her one last look. Clarke watched her, keeping her back to Raven and sighed as she held eye contact with Lexa until she turned and exited.
"I want an explanation for this now! Where have you been? Why the hell did you - oh."
Raven saw the growing bump as soon as Clarke turned around and stopped mid-sentence. Her eyes shot down to Clarke's stomach and then back up to her face.
"Yeah. Oh," Clarke repeated. "We have a lot to talk about."
"Yes we do," Raven replied staring at the bump.
"Let's sit down. Over there."
They sat down on a spare bed of furs that they had prepared for Raven if the process was successful.
"Why did you leave Clarke? We didn't know if you were dead or alive. I thought they let you go."
Clarke avoided her eyes and lowered her head. She had lied to Raven and now she has to tell her the truth.
"I wasn't kidnapped. Well the first time I was, the second time I wasn't."
Raven's mouth became a thin line as her anger grew.
"That woman. She was the one who kidnapped me and Octavia."
"Technically that was Anya," Clarke corrected.
Raven glared at her and she realised that she wasn't helping.
"I saw her at Mount Weather. She was the one you danced with. How long has this been going on?"
"It's hard to quantify..."
Clarke exhaled slowly.
"Since the first time. I saw them change and I was kidnapped. You see Lexa was only trying to protect her people. When you and Octavia were taken she agreed to let us go."
"Because you were screwing her."
Clarke blinked and her eyes darted away to the side.
"Yes but you don't understand."
"Damn right I don't understand. How could you do this?"
"She's a werewolf Raven. It was dangerous for us to be together. Dangerous for me. She might have bitten me so she let me go. She trusted me."
Raven grinned increduously as if it was a joke.
"That's the best you could come up with."
Clarke sighed and stood up. She quickly turned into a wolf and Raven sprang back in shock. Then she spun around and pushed herself under some furs and changed back near enough to her clothes to dress again without Raven seeing too much.
"Did she do this? She turned you."
"Yes," Clarke said pulling on her top rather awkwardly. "But she had no choice. The reapers... I wouldn't have survived. There's something else you should know too..."
Raven crossed her arms not letting Clarke finish.
"So who's the daddy? Which one of these mutts knocked you up? First Lexa and then one of her people. I bet she was thrilled. Go on. Who is it?"
"Lexa," Clarke said, knowing how it sounded.
"Fine. Don't tell me but at least don't treat me like I'm an idiot."
"Mount Weather did it with Lexa's dna. They experimented on us. I guess they were trying to see if werewolves could be created by impregnation given that they failed with you."
Raven's jaw dropped.
"You're serious. Wait what do you mean failed with me?"
"That's what I've been trying to tell you. You were sick, dying. Anya bit you because she was trying to save you. Basically they infected you with the virus to make you one of us but didn't give you enough to complete the process."
Raven got up and paced across the room.
"Wait so I'm a werewolf. I can change like you just did."
"We don't know. Pakstoka - werewolves are usually born or bitten. Because of how it happened with you the transformation has been different."
Raven turned, her hand pressed to her forehead, pushing her hair back.
"What do you mean different?"
"First your body reacts to the virus and the change starts in your cells and there's pain and you become pretty much feral. Then you change into a wolf but you don't remember your human side. Eventually you become human again and your memories return and you - well you're a werewolf."
Raven seemed lost for words for once.
"That's why we chained you," Clarke offered. "We were trying to protect you."
"So what now? I'm just gonna wake up a doggie one day and you're gonna take me for a walk?"
Clarke who was now dressed and out of her bed stood awkwardly in front of her.
"You know. It's not so bad being a pakstoka. We have to live apart from everyone in secret but they're like a family. Everyone protects each other."
"I'm a zero-g engineer not a wolf!"
Clarke reached for her but she pushed her hand away and she remembered how angry she had been when she had first regained her memory. It had seemed as if her whole world had caved in but in the end she would not change anything now for a second.
"It's a girl," Clarke offered trying to bring her out of her sullen mood.
"Congratulations," Raven said with dry sarcasm.
"We even have a name. Madi. You'll be the closest thing she'll have to an aunt."
Raven gave her a quick glance warming a little to the idea.
"Her super badass aunt," she mumbled.
"Is there anything you need? Food? Water? You're probably hungry. The pack has already eaten but we have some extra food for me and the baby."
Raven uncrossed her arms.
"I could go for some food. What do you have?"
Clarke smiled with a sigh of relief. She was still Raven. She was still her friend. She calmed feeling much more hopeful now as they talked and ate until Lexa and the pack began to wander back in to sleep.
"We sleep during the day," Clarke told Raven. "We're nocturnal.
Clarke caught Lexa's gaze. Her lover looked for her as soon as she entered, a small smile appearing at the corner of Clarke's lips as she noted the slight relief in Lexa's eyes at seeing her safe.
She worried Raven might attack me. She probably listened to our whole conversation to make sure I was okay.
"Wow. You really have it bad for her don't you."
Clarke didn't look away from Lexa.
"Clarke Griffin in love. Who'd have thought it?"
"Lexa's special..." Clarke said, lost in the warm feeling she had when she thought of her mate.
Raven smiled as the blonde completely drifted off. She glanced around the room, taking in her surroundings fully now and caught the eye of the tall, blonde woman whose face was the last she remembered before she had passed out.
Anya she thought.
The woman stared not just at her but through her and there was a note of remorse in her eyes before she turned away and headed to her bed.
Clarke yawned suddenly.
"I better get some sleep," Clarke said. "I'm pretty tired lately. "Will you be okay?"
"I don't need a babysitter Clarke."
The blonde nodded back at her and then moved to her bed, Lexa moving as soon as she did.
Raven watched as they both lay down together both on their side. Clarke snuggled into Lexa who seemed very gently with her and they were spooning, Clarke curled up against the front of Lexa's body. It was strange to see Clarke being protected by someone. She was usually the one looking after everyone else.
Clarke seemed to fall asleep pretty quickly and she saw Lexa brush back the blonde's hair from her shoulder and sweetly place a kiss there , burying her nose there afterwards. Raven thought that Clarke had never appeared so content.
Raven didn't feel any different. Nothing seemed to have changed yet according to Clarke she had changed. She didn't know what to make of it. Was she just gonna turn some day? What happened now?
Chapter 25: Moving Forward
The pack have to move when Azgeda return to trikru lands and Clarke talks to Lexa about Costia.
Thanks for all of your lovely comments. I've been a bit busier this month. Just to let you know upfront, there will be no cheating in this story.
Azgeda - Ice Nation
Skaikru na laik heri gon osir - Will the sky people be a threat to us?
Heda - Commander
Skaikru - sky people/sky clan
Trikru - Tree clan
When Octavia turned back she took it much better than everyone had expected. Having been an outcast her whole life she seemed happy to just belong somewhere. Raven, however still hadn't turned and was complaining that since she wasn't turning into a wolf she should be allowed to leave but Lexa refused.
"You smell like a werewolf Rae. It's definitely changed you. We've no idea when it will happen."
Clarke tried to get Raven to accept that this was their life now but she seemed sullen, moody as if she was unfulfilled and Clarke realised that she needed something to do. She was about to suggest that she train with Anya when Ryder ran into the den.
"We need to go. Azgeda's here! Ontari is visiting the clans."
Lexa started ordering everyone to move without hesitation.
"Wait. What's happening?" Clarke asked. "Why do we need to leave?"
"I'll explain later but it's not safe here now. We will head towards one of our other dens until it is safe to return. We have to leave now while we still have the cover of night."
Clarke sighed and got to her feet. She was getting heavier now and her back was beginning to ache more.
Lexa led the pack ordering the others to form a shield around Clarke as she led the way. They moved in wolf form with Raven trying to keep up, Anya hanging back to check on her every now and then.
They were halfway there when the Azgeda's passed by. They hid out of sight of the warriors, the commander Ontari leading her people on horse. Lexa stiffened when she saw Costia riding by Ontari's side on a small, grey horse. She was focussed ahead and looked as displeased as last time Lexa had seen her.
For a split second Lexa was caught in the past, in memories of her time with Costia but then Clarke pushed her gently with her nose and she was overwhelmed with the strength of her feeling for her mate.
She turned and led them away, focussing on their safety and heading towards the cave Clarke and Lexa had first slept together in.
When they reached the cave it was the early hours of the morning and still dark. The pack turned human and Raven protested at their sudden nudity.
"My eyes! I did not want that picture in my head. Tell me when you've got your clothes back on."
"This den is larger," Octavia observed as she dressed. "Why don't we live here?"
Clarke caught Lexa's eye and glanced towards the bed of furs that they had spent the night together in the last time they were in the cave.
"Sometimes we do," Lincoln replied. "We go where the hunting is best."
"Can I talk to you alone?" Clarke asked Lexa.
Lexa nodded silently and gestured towards the entrance.
"We are far enough away from Azgeda now. We will walk for a while."
The couple walked out together, Lexa still stuck in her thoughts. When they were far enough away Lexa stopped and turned to her.
"Costia," Clarke said carefully. "You still have feelings for her."
Lexa stiffened as if not sure how to respond.
"I- Clarke, I love you. I would never betray you."
Clarke put her hands on Lexa's arms rubbing them up and down.
"Hey I know that but I get that you don't just turn those kind of feelings off. You loved her."
Lexa frowned, her lips pursing together tightly.
"We were barely adults. I thought we would always be together..."
"She was your first love. I get that it must be hard. I mean if you hadn't been bitten you would still be with her and you and I..."
Lexa who had been staring off to the side, snapped her eyes to Clarke surging forward.
She cupped Clarke's face in her hands softly, brushing her cheeks with her thumbs.
"Clarke I love you. What we have I've never had with anyone. My heart only belongs to you.".
"I only want you," Lexa told her in a low voice.
Lexa reached for Clarke's hand and brought it to her pregnant belly, holding it there.
"Both of you."
Clarke blinked and lifted her chin speechless before they both leaned forward to join their lips.
Costia felt sure that someone was watching them every time they moved through Trikru territory. Maybe it was just bad memories of losing Lexa there. Ontari insisted she join them each time they travelled there despite her protests.
"Skaikru na laik heri gon osir?"
"English," Ontari rebuked. "How many times have we discussed this? You are the commander's wife."
Costia rolled her eyes.
"Will Skaikru be a threat to us?"
"Not if they're smart. We will offer them a deal to keep them on our side for now. Nia wants to know their every move."
Costia groaned. She despised Nia. The woman seemed to have an unnerving amount of control over Ontari.
"You are heda not Nia."
Ontari turned her head sharply at her words. Costia constantly tried to tell her to ignore Nia's orders but the woman had raised her to be a commander and Ontari had few else on her side.
"I'm aware," she said with sarcasm as she focussed on the road ahead of them.
Costia frowned. How long was this going to happen between them? Each time she asked Ontari to even question Nia's intention she deflected from the subject. She felt powerless. Nia had threatened her more than once if she continued to try to sway Ontari's opinion of her.
Lexa was the true commander she thought with a note of sadness. Ontari rules just fine but Lexa would not have allowed Nia so much power.
She glanced behind her, wishing she could return to her home in Polis. She was deeply afraid of this new skaikru. She had heard they had managed to escape the mountain and trap them. Surely such people must have great power. Ontari pretended to be fearless but Costia knew that she was fooling herself. She knew little of the sky people and what she did know made her uneasy.
"How long are we staying?" Costia asked.
"For as long as it takes to make them our friends or destroy them as our enemies. Either way we stay here until it is done."
Costia had thought as much but it was the last thing she wanted to hear. Trikru lands only brought memories of Lexa to the surface, memories she wished she could forget. Her marriage with Ontari was far from perfect but she did care about her and for the most part they were amicable.
Chapter 26: A New Perspective
Raven wakes up to a few changes and watches the pack sparring and Luna and Raven talk.
Yongon - Young one/child
Pichu - Pet
Skaiga - Sky girl/woman
Skaigoufa - Sky child
Skaikru - Sky people/clan
Raven woke up as soon as it turned dark, a first for her. She stretched and walked outside to find most of the pack sparring. Indra was training Octavia and Anya was making a fool out of Lincoln.
"You fight like a pup, do not let your guard down."
Raven rubbed her eyes sleepily. She had been having weird dreams about chasing small creatures through the woods. When she focussed she saw Anya as if for the first time. Her cheekbones were high and her body lithe and long and muscled. She was tanned and moved swiftly to avoid each strike. Even when Lincoln managed to surprise her and land a blow she just grinned and adapted.
Raven could feel her pulse racing and suddenly she was overcome with a desire to be closer to her.
"Can I train too?" she asked.
Anya narrowed her eyes appearing aloof.
"Fine but I will not go easy on you."
Lincoln bounded away towards Ryder and Raven put up her fists with a grin. She rushed forward but Anya shoved her aside in seconds. She tried again but Anya disabled her and had her on her back on the ground, her body on top of Raven's in seconds.
"You fight like a yongon Raven Reyes," she said leaning in closer to her.
Raven was stunned by the reaction her body was having to this woman. Her heart was pounding, her breathing heavy. When Anya whispered in her ear she caught a scent of her and it was powerful. The scent filled her with arousal and she wanted nothing more than to lose herself in it.
For a second she thought she saw Anya's eyes flicker with something similar but then she pulled away and Raven sat up, still dazed by what had happened.
She got to her feet, a sudden plethora of scents hitting her senses. She could identify every member of the group by scent, could track their movements, could sense their emotions. It was as if someone had switched something on in her and it was incredible.
She lifted her head and sniffed the air then realised that two scents overpowered the others. Clarke and Lexa and when she turned her head to the source it was Clarke seated behind her watching Lexa train with Gustus. Lexa's scent was all over her and she could even smell their child.
She was telling the truth. It's definitely Lexa's and hers.
Raven could suddenly sense emotions in her friend she wasn't used to. It was as if the person she thought of as Clarke was not the same as her true self and suddenly Raven could see her clearly.
Every time she had yelled at her for not making the 'right' decision, every time they had blamed her for what had gone wrong since they'd been on the ground. Raven understood now that she had been doing her best, that she had given everything to protect them and never received any gratitude.
The other thing she understood was how strong the feelings were between Clarke and Lexa. As Clarke watched her mate train she wore a half-smile and Lexa searched for her every now and then as if to check she was still there. Lexa's eyes were hidden as always behind her black mask of paint but she could not hide the tenderness that shone in them as they met each others' eyes.
They really are in love.
"Hello again little one."
Raven smiled. It was Luna. She still remembered how Luna had saved her when her pod had landed.
"I saw you sparring with Anya. Do not take her words to heart. She doesn't let people very close to her, even those she likes."
"I don't think she likes me very much. She's barely said two words to me."
"What's so funny?" Raven demanded.
"She bit you. There are few people who Anya would save. It is just her way. She doesn't trust easily. Do you know that she was in charge of the pack before she bit Lexa?"
"No. What does that have to do with anything?"
Luna smiled glancing towards Anya.
"It was her role to protect us all for years. She was alone in the task but she led us and devoted her every waking moment to keeping us safe. She had no time to play like the rest of us. Even now she is always vigilant. She takes it upon herself to be so."
Raven considered this. Anya did always seem so serious.
"So can she hear our conversation right now. Don't you have like super hearing?"
"Yes but we are used to it. There are no secrets in the pack. It is impossible to keep much from one another. You get used to it."
"Like the woman's scent that is on you right now?" Raven joked. "New girlfriend?"
Luna's eyes widened in surprise but she still grinned.
"You are becoming more wolf. Have you transformed yet?"
"No," Raven said, more disappointed than she expected.
"You will little one. It will happen."
"Okay," Raven protested. "I gotta ask. What's with the pet names?"
"Nicknames. Yongon, little one, skaiga, skaigoufa, skaikru?"
Luna smiled as she rattled off the names.
"Terms of endearment. Do you wish to learn our language? We can teach you?"
"Why the heck not? I need something to do. and I'm not used to sitting around all day."
Chapter 27: Welcome to the World
Clarke is heavily pregnant and becoming more irritable. The pack return to their former territory and Clarke goes into labour. Lexa gets emotional.
Noumou - No more
Hodness - Lovew
Azgeda - Ice Nation
Seingeda - Family
Ai keryon na shied klin yu otaim - My spirit will shield you/protect you always
Yu gonplei stot au - Your fight starts/begins
"You're very good at that," Clarke moaned. "Don't stop."
"That's what you always say."
Clarke opened her eyes as Lexa's fingers continued to massage her lower back.
"Did you just make a joke?"
"Hmmm..." Lexa just replied, as she worked her way up Clarke's back, easing the tense muscles there. "Don't get used to it."
"She's kicking again. She's was kicking me non-stop for an hour last night. She gets that from you."
Lexa smiled and reached one hand around to place on her swollen belly. She was still awed whenever she felt the movement of her unborn child inside Clarke. She no longer thought of Costia at all. Clarke and Madi had become her entire world along with the pack and she would not trade that for anything.
They had been living in relative peace for months, planning to soon return to their former den in preparation to bring her mother there when the time was near. Clarke was nearing the end of her pregnancy and Lexa was being incredibly attentive, asking Anya to lead the hunt, wanting to watch over Clarke personally in case she went into labour.
They were readying to go to bed, both sat up on their furs as Lexa massaged Clarke's aching back muscles. Clarke had become more agitated recently, her body aching more and the blonde frequently uncomfortable. Lexa sensed that her time was very near now and that the child would soon arrivd.
"I'm so hungry right now," Clarke said. "Do we have any of the bread and cheese left? Or that apple pastry thing?"
"I will check but I think you ate those already," said Lexa. "There is still some fruit bread."
"Bring that," Clarke instructed her. "And the cheese and some of the fried fish with the breadcrumbs that Lincoln cooked for me. For the baby."
Lexa got to her feet smiling to herself at Clarke's increased appetite. She had been demanding more food for the baby despite telling Lexa only weeks earlier that it was a myth pregnant women needed to eat for two.
She returned with everything Clarke requested and watched as she demolished every item of food in front of her. Lexa continued to rub her bare back and shoulders content as Clarke happily ate her fill.
Raven sprang into the den and immediately glanced down at the remnants of Clarke's food binge. Clarke just raised an eyebrow, jutting out her bottom lip.
"Hey don't judge me. I'm eating for two here."
Lexa smirked and buried her nose in Clarke's shoulder. She glanced up and saw Raven grinning at them both. She sat down beside Clarke and patted her tummy carefully.
"Your mom is eating everything in sight. Don't worry your Auntie Raven won't let you starve."
Clarke patted her hand away.
"Hey. She's just stopped kicking for a second. Don't wake her or I'll have another hour of her playing soccer with my uterus."
"Your mom is also very grumpy at the moment," Raven teased.
Octavia entered the den in human form and saw them both sat next to Clarke.
"Is the baby kicking again?" she asked loudly.
Clarke groaned raising her arms.
"Well now she is!"
Octavia and Raven shared a look. Clarke had been getting more irritable by the day with everyone but Lexa.
"Have you eaten enough, hodness or do you wish me to fetch more?"
"No. I shouldn't overeat but could you massage my shoulders. My neck is still a little stiff."
Lexa who seemed to remain absolutely calm no matter Clarke's mood immediately moved her hands to the side of Clarke's neck and began to work the muscles there. Clarke closed her eyes, tilting her head sideways moaning a little.
"That feels so good Lexa. Right there."
When Clarke groaned louder, Raven and Octavia burst out laughing.
"You having a massage or an orgasm Griff?" Raven teased.
"Or both," Octavia said with a grin.
"Noumou," Lexa said with a slight warning to her tone, raising an eyebrow as she spoke. "She needs to rest."
The pair both looked away, their wolves unable to ignore the note of authority in Lexa's voice. She rarely yelled or even raised her voice but they all submitted to her authority. Sometimes she only had to even raise an eyebrow to make her point.
"We're just playing but you're right. We'll let you rest. It's almost dawn anyway. Time for us to get to bed."
Clarke was not even listening her eyes still closed as Lexa rubbed her muscles in circular motions, using her thumbs to ease the tensions there. It was heaven and always seem to calm both her and the baby.
"Night Griff, Madi, Lexa," Raven said getting into her bed.
Clarke had drifted off and it took a second for her brain to register what she was saying.
Lexa brushed her thumbs up Clarke's shoulder all the way up to the back of her neck and the blonde sighed.
"We will travel tomorrow evening but Anya will lead the pack so that I can remain by your side. I don't want you to fall behind alone."
"Okay," Clarke said, too relaxed now to offer any resistance.
"Luna will send for your mother as soon as the birth begins."
"Okay," Clarke repeated.
"Everything has been prepared. Lincoln and Ryder moved all the supplies. Anya checked that Azgeda has definitely left the area and Indra is patrolling then territory daily for signs of any threats."
Lexa didn't get a response from Clarke and stopped the movements of her thumbs on the back of Clarke's shoulders. She leaned forward and saw that the blonde was already asleep against her. Lexa smiled and lay her down gently, pulling the furs up around her. She gazed adoringly at her lover. Clarke's eyes were closed and she watched her chest lightly rise and fall. Lexa placed one hand on Clarke's stomach. Madi seemed settled too.
Lexa nuzzled into the side of Clarke's neck not moving her hand, wondering as she had many times in the last nine months how she had become so lucky.
"Seingeda," she whispered to no one but herself. "Ai keryon na shied klin yu otaim."
When they were just getting back to the other den Clarke's water broke and her contractions started and her cry rang out throughout the dark. Lexa rushed to her side and began barking out orders as Clarke cried out in pain.
Lexa moved her inside to a more comfortable position in case of a long delivery but Clarke grabbed her jacket pulling her closer.
"Mom. Get my mom. She's coming fast."
"Luna is already on her way. Do not fear. I am with you."
Clarke cried out again and reached for Lexa's hand gripping it with all her strength.
"Soon our child will be with us and this pain will be forgotten."
"Lexa. Stop talking!"
Clarke's breathing was erratic and when Lexa saw Abby enter the den their eyes met and Lexa was glad that she had arrived so soon. The older woman kneeled before her daughter checking her over.
"The contractions are very close. This will be a quick delivery. Clarke listen to me. You are almost fully dilated already. Just listen to my voice."
Abby talked with her daughter through the whole delivery, Lexa remaining at her side tightly holding her hand. Clarke screams could probably be heard for miles and when it was finally over they heard a cry. Her mom placed a baby girl on her chest and Clarke held her exhausted but relieved.
"She's healthy," her mom said removing the cord and finishing up her checks. "You did great. You have a baby girl."
Clarke couldn't stop herself from crying and Lexa reached out a hand to touch the soft dark patch of her on their baby girl's head.
"Yu gonplei stot au," she murmoured, leaning down to place a kiss on the top of her head.
"Madi," Clarke voiced almost in a whisper.
Lexa and Clarke spent what seemed like ages just gazing at their child, the love they felt for her indescribable. Abby was smiling as she observed her grandchild and soon the rest of the pack began to enter nervously.
"Not too many visitors at once," Abby told them in a hush tone. "Don't crowd them."
Gently each member of the pack met Madi, the pride visible on Lexa's face as they each approached her.
"She is our child," Lexa said in a low tone as if it had just hit her. "We have a child."
Clarke choked out a weak laugh.
"Yes she is. We're mom's."
Lexa met her eyes and the love that shone from them, Clarke would never forget. Clarke leaned forward and kissed her on the lips tenderly grateful beyond measure that it was Lexa who was Madi's parent and not someone else.
"I love you so much," Clarke whispered to Lexa.
She saw a single tear fall down Lexa's cheek as she gazed back Clarke, her eyes full of wonder.
"Marry me Clarke," she said suddenly.
Clarke's mouth fell open, unsure what Lexa even understood marriage to be.
"I know it doesn't really matter as we are mates in the eyes of the pack but I want..."
Clarke waited for her to finish her sentence, holding her breath.
"I want to marry you."
"Yes," Clarke said calmly.
Lexa's eyes widened as if she couldn't believe her response.
Clarke smiled and nodded.
"Yes," she repeated. "My answer is yes."
Clarke could see that Lexa had expected more resistance from her but she had never been more certain of any decision in her life. Lexa had been supportive and attentive through her whole pregnancy. She had never wavered in her responsibilites and had endured every time Clarke had snapped at her and every request with a dignity Clarke didn't think she would have managed. She was unyielding in her dedication and Clarke had never known what it was like before to share the burden of responsibility, to not have to deal with it all alone.
No, Clarke was absolutely certain. She wanted to be with Lexa for as long as she could. There was no one else who could ever compare.
Chapter 28: The Rebellious Pup
Madi tires Clarke out with her boundless energy and Lexa takes over to give her a rest. When Clarke hears a noise as the others sleep she investigates and runs into trouble and some familiar faces.
Noumon - Mother (I figured Clarke would be Mom and Lexa Noumon
Azgeda - Ice Nation
Skaikru - Sky People/clan
Pakstoka - Wolf/werewolf
Clarke and Lexa spent the next few months happily raising Madi, despite the lack of sleep she brought them. Clarke breastfeed her and often sang to her as she did, despite saying that it was often painful. Lexa often listened to her singing amazed at the effect it had on her. Her singing voice was somehow light but husky at the same time.
She changed into a wolf cub after only a few months and began to shift back and forward with ease. Unfortunately for Clarke and Lexa that meant that she was able to run as a wolf before she could walk as a human and Madi often liked to run off, sending one of them chasing after her before she hurt herself.
After a year had passed, Madi had grown into a little black cub with a fuzzy coat and was more energetic than ever. Clarke spent many days waking to her crying only to found that she was only demanding more attention or more food and exhaustion began to hit the young mom as she rarely got moments to herself even with the help of Lexa and the entire pack. Lexa did more than her fair share of the work but it was Clarke who Madi seemed to want to antagonise during the time she would normally sleep and her fatigue had begun to catch up to her.
"Come back here! Madi!"
Clarke chased the small black puppy through the grasses in her human form but Madi was too quick. She was about to change and run properly when Lexa sprang out in front of Madi in wolf form, picking her up with her teeth and carrying her back to the den.
"Thank you!" Clarke huffed, knowing that Lexa would be watching her for a while to give her a break.
"Child from hell strikes again?" Raven asked as she returned.
Raven and Anya were training again and Clarke couldn't help but notice that they were growing closer each day, Raven finding constant excuses to be in Anya's orbit.
"Yes," Clarke replied with frustration. "I barely looked away for a second and she'd turned wolf, jumped out of my arms and started running after a rabbit."
Raven chuckled and even Anya seemed amused.
"She's a rebel like her mom," Raven said with a grin.
Clarke seated herself down with a sigh, lying flat on her back on the ground.
"I'm going to nap. It's Lexa's turn," she muttered. "I was awake all day with her."
Octavia walked past Clarke lying on the floor.
"What's with her? Madi at it again?"
"Of course she is?" Clarke said wryly. "It's payback for all the times I rebelled against my parents. I understand what I put them through now."
Octavia just shook her head in sympathy and walked past as Clarke sprawled out with a hand across her face hoping she would finally get a good day's sleep.
Lexa licked the side of Madi's ears, dragging her back with her teeth as she tried to escape her noumon's grasp. Lexa was gentle but firm. Madi was full of energy and Clarke was near exhaustion. The little black pup's fur was fluffy and thick and her eyes were gray-blue. Madi whined in protest and pawed at her but Lexa only nudged her onto her back with her nose.
Madi yelped in excitement and pawed at her mother to play and Lexa mock bit her sparring with her.
I love you so much. Let's give your mom a break though. You have worn her out.
Lexa played with her rolling her over on her side to keep her occupied every time she started to jump up and tug on her ears Madi just pawed and nipped at her, growling fiercly. Mother and daughter rolled over each other, Madi clambouring over her and wagging her tail at the attention she was getting from her noumon.
Clarke dozed for a little while then caught a distant yell with her sensitive ears. She awoke and turned around and headed straight into the den finding Lexa asleep with Madi curled up into her side, also napping.
Not wanting to wake them Clarke shifted into wolf form and crept out into the woods to investigate the disturbance.
Clarke slipped out into the undergrowth towards the direction of the noise, concealing herself as much as possible.
"Tell me the truth? Which one of your people attacked us?"
It was Ontari with some of her warriors and they had someone bound up against a tree. He yelled as they dragged a knife across his skin.
"It wasn't us. Why would we break the alliance?"
"Some of your skaikru weapons were found at the scene. The Mountain Men are still trapped and its forbidden for our people to touch them. Who else could it be?"
"Maybe he's telling the truth. Someone could be setting them up."
"Not now Costia," Ontari snapped. "He will answer our questions even if he does not survive the process."
Clarke lifted her head, glancing at the person on the tree. His scent had seemed familiar. It was then that she realised.
Wells! They're going to kill him.
Clarke growled as Ontari moved to cut him again and she leapt out in sheer instinct biting down on her hand until blood poured from it. Several warriors tried to attack but Clarke was faster and stronger and brought them down viciously. She was winning but then she felt something hit her neck and her limbs become heavy. She changed back without thinking, realising that pulling the dart out and trying to escape would be her only shot and Costia gasped.
"Clarke!" Wells said in surprise.
Clarke glanced up at him as she remained on all fours on the ground and passed out falling sideways into the dirt.
The last thing she heard was a familiar howl.
It was Ryder.
He was on guard and must have followed her trail when he found her missing. She wasn't far from the camp but more of Ontari's warriors were arriving, having heard the screams and that there was no way the pack could risk attacking. Ryder could only howl from a distance alerting the pack.
Lexa heard the howl and awoke instantly along with the others. Indra and Gustus immediately took care of Madi putting their bodies in front of her as Lexa raced towards Ryders call. When she saw Clarke being wrapped in a blanket and bound in chains she whined and howled alerting the whole pack of the danger.
She howled at the capture of her mate wanting nothing more than to spring out and defend her even if it meant her own death.
Lexa's heart was breaking and but she glanced back knowing that she had to move Madi to safety first. They were vulnerable now. Azgeda would scour the woods for them until they found them. Clarke would prioritise Madi above all else, even her own safety.
I will come back for you Clarke she thought. I promise.
With that Lexa made her decision and raced back to the den and picked up Madi in her mouth and the pack followed her without question to a safer territory.
Chapter 29: The Earth and the Sky
We see a flashback to Lexa and Clarke's wedding and Costia develops a fascination for the captured pakstoka.
Leksa kom trikru - Lexa from the tree clan
Klark com skaikru - Clarke of the sky people.
Leksa kom trikru, yu laik ai houmon, ai tombon, ai hodness feva - Lexa from the tree clan. Yu are my wife, my heart, my love, forever.
Trikru - tree clan
Skaikru - sky people/clan
Chich yu op gonasleng? Trigedasleng? - Do you speak English? Trigedasleng?
Several Months Earlier
"You nervous yet?" Octavia asked as she watched Luna add the finishing touches to her facepaint.
"No," Clarke replied.
It was true. She wasn't worried at all. Lexa assured her that the ceremony was legal as long as the pack witnessed it but given that only the pack and her mom were going to be there it felt so much less intimidating than a larger wedding would have.
"Done," Luna said.
"How do I look?" Clarke asked turned standing up.
She was wearing a figure hugging dark and bronze dress and her hair was braided elaborately. Pink tips adorned her hair and her eyes were marked with dark, smoky lines under her eyes that flicked across, crowned with faded pink.
When she exited the den and headed towards the sheltered meadow where the ceremony was taking place she brought with her some of the bleeding hodness flowers, remembering the day that Lexa had told her the story behind their name.
Lexa was waiting for her, Anya by her side and she wore a dark dress, her eyes were covered in dark make up but she appeared much softer without her fiercer war paint and her bare arms were by her side as she waited patiently.
When they met eyes, Lexa seemed dumbfounded and was visibly staring at her. Clarke saw her swallow as if nervous and push her shoulders and head up high.
"Lexa Kom Trikru and Klark kom Skaikru..." Gustus voice was steady and deep as he conducted the ceremony in trigedasleng.
Clarke understood the majority of the words but the occassional ones passed her by but when she glanced at her friends and her mom, Raven was visibly moved.
"What?" Raven whispered as Octavia glanced at her. "What he said about their spirits being joined until their fight is over was really moving."
Octavia nudged her to remind her to keep quiet and the ceremony continued.
"According to our traditions, each partner will received a tattoo to mark their joining. Clarke I believe you have your own tradition."
Clarke glanced towards Luna who fumbled for the rings in her pocket and passed them to the blonde. Clarke slipped one on Lexa's finger and recited the words both her and Lexa had decided up.
"Leksa kom trikru, yu laik ai houmon, ai tombon, ai hodness feva."
"Clarke Griffin," Lexa said taking the other ring and slipping it on Clarke's finger. "Yu are my wife, my heart, my love forever."
Abby who was holding Madi on her knee was smiling broadly as the two women drew forward and kissed on the lips to complete the ceremony.
"You are joined," Gustus said. "Lexa and Clarke will now receive their tattoos to signify the completion of the ceremony."
Raven cheered yelling 'way to go Griff!', earning her a few odd looks from the rest of the pack.
Clarke had expected the tattoo to be small and simple but it was elaborate and adorned her left shoulder with geometric patterns. Lexa said that they marked her as bound to a member of trikru. Lexa had a delicate pattern involving black circles of different sizes and shapes. She told Clarke they represented her family. One for Clarke, one for Madi, one for trikru, one for her pack, one for skaikru, one for Anya as the one who bit her and one for all those she had lost.
They spent the evening together alone in the open air making love to each other under the stars.
"Clarke there's something I should tell you about my past," Lexa said as they lay in each other's arms staring up at the night sky.
"You don't have to tell me anything," Clarke said. "The past is gone. It doesn't matter to me anymore."
Lexa kissed her cheek, holding her tighter across her chest. She was so happy that she didn't want to spoil it but she had thought maybe Clarke should know that she was in line to be the commander if ever found. It hadn't been the first time she had tried to broach the subject but something always deterred her.
Costia had covered the blonde woman with blankets as much as possible to preserve her dignity until she could fetch some clothes. Her arrival had distracted Ontari enough for Wells to be spared and she was glad for deep in her heart she knew that skaikru was not to blame for the assassination attempt. It was all too sloppy, the evidence left too deliberately.
When the blonde moaned and shifted in her chains in the village hut they had placed her in, the blanket fell and Costia saw several trikru markings adorning her back. She traced them with her fingers curiously. Wells had recognised her and Ontari had forced him to admit that the blonde was skaikru but she bore trikru marriage markings which meant that she was bonded to Costia's own tribe.
Clarke yanked back as she awoke instantly and pulled the blankets up over her. The first eyes she saw were warm and brown and familiar.
Costia she thought. Best to say pretend I don't understand them.
"Chich yu op gonaslang? Trigedasleng?"
Clarke didn't say a word deciding that silence was the best option.
"Where did you get those markings?" she asked gently. "They represent trikru and the earth but some of the symbols seem to represent the sky too. Are you bonded with someone from trikru?"
The blonde again said nothing and Ontari growled at them from the corner of the room.
"She likely doesn't even understand what you are saying. Pakstoka live like the wild animals."
Costia seemed fascinated with the creature much to Ontari's annoyance.
"I thought all pakstoka had been hunted. That she exists means there could be others."
Ontari walked over and Clarke watched her every movement not taking her steady blue eyes off her for a second.
"She senses that I'm in charge at least. Look how wary she is of me."
"We should get her some clothes and some food."
"Why ever would I do that?" Ontari scoffed. "She's a beast."
Costia who had been kneeling, stood up and faced Ontari appearing displeased.
"You said that we would try to be better, that we would try to maintain peace. If she is just a beast then what harm would it do?."
Ontari scowled but her tough demeaner seemed to diminish at Costia's determined manner.
"Fine but don't get too close. You saw what she did to our men. She will follow us to skaikru and they will tell us who she is. The boy seemed to know her well."
"Clarke, he called her," Costia said.
Ontari glared at the blonde and then returned to pick at her meal.
"I don't care what her name is. Just keep her under control or I'll be forced to deal with her and you will lose your pet."
Clarke glared intensely at Ontari, deeply offended and Costia narrowed her eyes and turned back and forth between them. She was sure the blonde could understand what they were saying but if Ontari knew this she would likely torture her for information and Costia could not bear to witness another one.
Chapter 30: Allies and Enemies
Lexa leaves Madi with the pack, deciding to go after Clarke and Costia tries to talk to the pakstoka. Clarke forms a plan to protect her family and friends.
Clarke's mistake in the last chapter was really down to fatigue and her being newly werewolf and more liable to follow her wolf instincts without question. In that form actions are more instinctive than rational. Also Lexa has told Clarke a lot about politics and her past but omitted all about her being in line to be the commander and what night blood means.
Pakstoka - Wolf/werewolf
Natblida - Night bleeder
When Madi and the pack were safely hidden away Lexa picked up her baby girl and kissed her on the forehead, both of them in human form. Madi had dark, unruly hair and gray-blue eyes that reminded her of Clarke.
Lexa clung to her child, flushed with concern for the mother of her child and what would happen to their family now. She spent some time with Madi not wanting to part with her.
She finally left her in Luna's safe arms, trusting that the pack would give their lives to protect her then she dressed for battle.
She had not done this for some time. She smeared warpaint across her face and attached her dual swords to her back. She had a small knife and wore her old clothes, her black jacket and pants, warrior clothing. It brought back memories of training and sparring. She had kept up the practise but it had been a long time since she had worn those clothes.
She glanced back at Madi one last time before she left and Luna nodded at her, her eyes blazing.
I'll protect her with my life.
I know you will.
Lexa turned and headed out into the woods to follow Clarke's trail in human form. They would be searching for other wolves now but they would find none. Lexa the natblida had been presumed dead for a long time. No one would be looking for her.
"Come on! She's gone. You can speak now."
Costia had put a bowl of water and some scraps of food in front of Clarke but the blonde just stared at it.
"You're probably wondering what happened to your friend," Costia said. "He's alive. You saved him for now. One of your people has arrived to discuss releasing him."
Clarke raised an eyebrow wondering where they were keeping him.
Costia seemed frustrated and turned her head and it was silent for a moment.
"I was betrothed to someone else," Costia muttered. "Ontari was never supposed to be the commander, Lexa was."
What? Lexa was supposed to be the commander! Clarke thought in alarm. She said that she was some sort of warrior primed to be a leader but the commander!
"She would have been a great ruler," Costia mused. "I care very much for Ontari but she is too rash. Lexa was far more careful about her decisions."
Clarke smiled to herself thinking about Lexa, Costia's head turned away from her. She desperately hoped that Lexa and Madi would just leave so that they would be safe. Clarke would gladly remain a prisoner if it meant that they were out of harms way.
"We were young and naive," Costia muttered. "It would never have worked. She gave me everything but she needed someone who was her equal and I never was."
Clarke raised her head, thinking about her words. Lexa had not seen it that way.
"I know that you may not be able understand me," Costia said, suddenly turning around. "But I feel like I can talk to you about this. I don't know why. There's kindness in your eyes."
Costia was gazing off to the side as if remembering something.
"Lexa always told me I was too trusting," she continued with a smile, "and she was right. She was always right. It would be frustrating if it wasn't so comforting.
I know that feeling Clarke thought. I miss her already.
Clarke could not be jealous of Costia or hate her, even though a part of her wanted to. Both Lexa and Costia had been young and neither had been at fault in the situation. Costia was very pretty and Clarke could certainly see the appeal. She seemed nice enough and Clarke knew that what she and Lexa had went far deeper than Costia and Lexa's relationship ever did.
And then there was Madi. She was a connection that they had between that Costia and Lexa had never had.
Several people suddenly entered the hut, one of them Clarke recognised as Kane. The others were Wells and Ontari.
"We wish to speak to her alone," Kane said. "As a sign of good faith while you conduct your investigations."
Ontari agreed but issued him with a threat that if her tried anything she would cut all their throats. She commanded Costia to leave too and once the door was closed, Clarke rushed to the front of the cage.
"What's going on? Ontari said there was an assassination attempt and it looked like skaikru? Is someone trying to set us up?"
Kane seemed more than surprised at seeing her alive.
"Clarke, first we have to talk about you. You show up after all this time and Ontari and Wells said - they said you're a werewolf."
Kane stumbled over the last word as if he couldn't believe it.
"It sounds crazy but I saw her. She was a wolf and then she changed into a person."
Kane considered Wells' words.
"I can't explain right now. Is everyone okay? My mom? Bellamy? Monty?"
"Clarke they all think you're dead, even your mom," Wells said. "How could you do this?"
Kane put a hand on his chin which was growing rough stubble. His hair was longer than when she had last seen him and he seemed to be looking at Clarke as if he just realised something.
"Your mom knows," he said in a low voice.
"Yes," Clarke replied. "We had to ask for her help."
"We?" he asked.
Clarke closed her eyes and shook her head at her lapse.
"I had to ask for her medical help," she said, hoping that they wouldn't question it too much.
"Azgeda and skaikru agreed to an alliance. Ontari wanted to share our technology and live in peace but someone is trying to sabotage the treaty. We think it's the Ice Queen."
"Nia?" Clarke asked. "She controls Ontari from what I've been told. What would she have to gain?"
"Nia was in control but recently Ontari has been having ideas of her own and trying to make peace instead of war," Kane told her. "Nia wants a war with us. She means to destroy us as a show of strength to the other clans. Only Ontari that is preventing it."
Clarke considered this and thought of what Costia had said to Ontari about trying to be better. It was Costia's influence. Ontari did seem to care about her. The only time Clarke had seen even a hint of mercy from her was when Costia had asked it.
"How are the commanders chosen?" Clarke asked, thinking of what Lexa had concealed from her.
Wells and Kane glanced at each other and then Kane stepped forward.
"We don't know much but they chose children born with black blood - natblidas they call them. They are taken from their families and have to fight to the death in what's called a conclave. The winner becomes the commander."
Fight to the death. Lexa would have had to do this. If she hadn't been bitten... this would be her life. That's why they call her heda?
Clarke then recalled something her mother had told her about the black blood, that it was passed down genetically.
Madi. Oh God if they find out she could be a natblida they will take her away. I can't let that happen.
"Clarke?" Wells asked noticing her change in mood.
"We have to keep Ontari on side," Clarke said. "Kane, Wells, I have to ask you for something. Don't tell anyone I'm alone or what I am. Not a soul. It's important. You do that and I'll fix this. I'll fix it all."
"How are you going to do that?" Wells asked. "You're chained up in case you didn't notice."
"By offering her something she wants," Clarke said. "The assassin who tried to kill her."
Kane rubbed his chin and then seemed to make a decision.
"Okay but be careful. Nia is very smart and she has been manipulating Ontari for a long time."
The pair left and Clarke began to think over her options. She couldn't suggest her plan outright to Ontari. She did not trust her. She had to earn her trust by getting Costia's trust first and having her speak on Clarke's behalf. She seemed kind-hearted. If Clarke could get her to listen it might help her case but how without revealing anything she shouldn't.
Chapter 31: I Need You
Lexa tracks Clarke but finds her unwillingly to leave yet and Clarke talks to Costia while Lexa is in earshot.
Pakstoka - Wolf/werewolf
Natrona - Traitor
Lexa tracked Clarke in her human form recognising several of the scents as she moved. She moved under the cover of darkness and hid whenever warriors passed her by. When she got to the village she saw one of Skaikru talking with Ontari. She had placed a hood over herself to conceal her features as she listened to them discussing terms.
"You ask me to let a pakstoka go free in our territory. They are unpredictable beasts. It would put my people at risk."
"Clarke is no danger to your people. She may be pakstoka but she is one of our people. She can be trusted."
"We'll see but for now she stays with me until we find the natrona who tried to assassinate me."
Ontari dismissed him with a gesture and then moved to her war tent. Lexa managed to get much closer, circling around to just below the window. Lexa avoided the guards surrounding the hut, taking down the one at the back who was checking the perimeter and concealing his unconscious form.
She peered up over the window ledge and Clarke turned to her immediately catching her scent. Lexa climbed in quickly, alert to everything around her and hurried towards Clarke.
What are you doing here? Clarke asked low enough for only another Pakstoka to hear.
I could ask you the same but I already know the answer.
I'm so sorry. I reacted out of instinct. I didn't think. I've put everyone in danger.
Lexa kneeled on the floor beside her chained lover embracing her.
"This is all my fault," Clarke said in a whisper now. "But I'm going to fix it. I have a plan."
"What plan?" Lexa asked examining the chains for a way to remove them. "I'll get you out of here and then we'll discuss our options."
Clarke put her hands on Lexa's forearms to stop her.
"No," she said, shaking her head. "If I escape now, Ontari will send people looking for me. The pack will never be safe. You have to leave me here."
"No," Lexa protested, "I won't leave you here. Madi needs you. I need you."
"And I will come back to you, I promise but I have to make sure Madi is safe first. Nia is trying to frame skaikru and if they find out you're alive... Lexa, I know about the conclave. I know what you were meant to be."
Lexa stared at her, displaying a vulnerability in her eyes that she rarely let anyone else see.
"Clarke...," Lexa shook her head. "I can't-"
Clarke raised up her hand, her palm open and Lexa intwined her fingers in her wife's, not wanting to let her go.
"I'll come back to you both. I swear it."
"If you are going to do this I'm staying around to make sure you're safe. Madi is safe with the pack."
"I knew she would be," Clarke said with a smile. "I knew that you would protect her."
Clarke and Lexa both heard distant footsteps, their wolf hearing exceptionally sharp.
"You have to go," Clarke said. "Now before someone sees you."
Lexa leaned forward and kissed her, bringing their lips together hungrily. Neither of them wanted to part and it was agony when Lexa's hand slipped from Clarke's own. Lexa leapt out of the window just as the door was opening, hiding in the bushes just under the frame.
I love you she heard Clarke say. Nothing will keep me from coming back to you both.
"Still pretending that you don't understand me?" Costia said in a rather cheerful tone.
She was carrying a tray of food and placed in down in front of Clarke and backed away. Clarke eyed it but didn't move to take it.
Clarke could practically sense Lexa tensing under the window.
"Costia," Clarke said, breaking her silence. "That's your name isn't it?"
What are you doing Clarke? Lexa asked.
Costia's eyes went wide and a smile spread across her face. Her eyes were practically twinkling.
"You do speak English. I knew it! Wait until Ontari hears of this!"
"No," Clarke said. "Please don't. I'm talking to you because you seem trustworthy but no one else can know. It's important."
Costia frowned and then smiled again.
"If that's your wish. I have never met one of your kind. It's interesting. We know little about you."
"My kind stay secret for a reason. Your people would hunt us to extinction. How do I know that I can trust you?"
Costia shifted closer, sitting demurely on the floor in front of her.
"I won't say anything. I am just fascinated to learn. I know that Nia is responsible for the assassination attempt not skaikru. I just can't prove it and Ontari will not believe ill of Nia."
"What if I can help you prove it?" Clarke said . "My senses are stronger than a humans. I could help you find the true assassin. Would Ontari believe it then?"
So this is your plan Lexa said wryly. This is a dangerous game you are playing. Costia may be naive but she is not foolish. She knows that even talking to you about this is considered treason.
"She might but I would have to convince her to allow an investigation first. If I go behind her back I could be implicated. Nia wishes nothing more than to separate us. She awaits a good excuse."
Clarke thought about this. She didn't want to put Costia in harms way unnecessarily.
"What about if you say that you can help find the assassin but don't mention that you suspect Nia? Just tell her that you had an idea to use me to sniff out the evidence."
"I may be able to persuade her of that," Costia said. "But we must be careful. Nia has spies everywhere. Even our own warriors cannot be trusted."
Clarke nodded and she heard Lexa sigh quietly with frustration. Costia lowered her head and Clarke sensed that something deeper was bothering her but didn't want to ask.
"Can pakstoka fall in love?" she asked suddenly raising her head.
Clarke raised and eyebrow still very aware that Lexa was listening to the whole conversation.
"Yes. Both wolves and human can love. In fact wolves love almost deeper than humans do."
Clarke had to be careful not to give too much away. Costia was very easy to talk to. She imagined this was what had drawn Lexa to her in the first place.
"Wolves don't need words. Actions are everything. Love is expressed differently. It's hard to explain..."
Clarke found it difficult to frame her wolf experiences into words because wolves rarely thought in such a way.
"Have you ever known what someone was thinking and feeling without needing to ask? Wolves communicate a lot through body language and scent so everything's much clearer."
"Sounds nice," Costia said turning her head towards the door and back. "Ontari is my wife and I care for her but we seem to have problems communicating. She's in charge and rarely wants to listen."
Clarke felt a pang of sympathy for Costia. She had been trying to make the most of the marriage but seemed to be struggling and it was clear that she was oblivious to how strongly Ontari felt for her. Ontari was closed off, cold and their relationship was clearly strained.
"You have to make her listen," Clarke advised her. "A marriage is a partnership. You're a team. If she can't get that then it's never going to work. You have to tell her that."
Costia still seemed at a loss.
"I mean do you communicate regularly? Does she treat you with respect?"
"She protects me," Costia said. "I want for nothing."
"But does she respect your opinion or does she just treat you like a trophy wife - er like just to make her look good."
Costia became quiet again and Clarke had her answer.
"Right. You need to make her listen to you. I'll teach you how. I have a few tricks."
I can't wait to hear this Lexa said suddenly. Do you use these these tricks on me?
"First of all you need to be more assertive, learn to communicate that your needs aren't being met. You should probably set aside some alone time."
"You think sex will solve this? Ontari seems very happy with that part of our relationship.
I bet she is.
Clarke frowned, trying not to focus on Lexa's sarcasm.
"That's not what I meant. I meant like a date where you can spend time learning about each other, like you could have dinner together or going for a romantic walk."
Or massage their aching shoulders while you bring them food, Lexa said.
Clarke smiled at the memory, knowing that Lexa was smiling too.
"Oh like Lexa and I used to when she would ask me to walk alone with her under the stars. She was very thoughtful."
"And smooth," Clarke muttered to herself.
"That's a good idea. You really think this would help."
"Yes," Clarke said. "It isn't enough just to be bonded legally and have sex, you need to really get to know each other. Haven't you even done that?"
Costia shook her head shyly and Clarke felt even more sorry for her. She frowned suddenly less sure of her plan. Lexa as always was right. This was a dangerous game and Costia was innocent and right in the middle of it all.
"Will you help me, advise me how to assert myself?" Costia asked not quite meeting her eyes.
"If you wish," Clarke said.
Costia beamed and made an excuse to leave.
I won't put her in danger, Clarke said to Lexa, once Costia was gone.
I know but sometimes things do not go as we plan and you cannot forsee every possibility. I'll be close by if you need me. You can continue with your plan but I will not leave you right now not while you are in danger.
Lexa? Clarke said softly.
There was a pause between them.
I need you too.
Chapter 32: Mating Rituals
Anya and Raven take guard duty which leads Raven to discover the more primal part of her nature.
Ranya in this chapter. Mild smut and gentle biting.
It was the early hours of the morning and Raven and Anya were taking watch over the pack as they settled to sleep for the day. Anya stated that she could take watch alone but Raven insisted that she wanted to help.
"Hey, you wanna train for a bit?" Raven asked.
"We really should keep a low profile," Anya said. "We're supposed to be on watch."
When she saw Raven's expression, Anya wished that she didn't have to refuse her. The brunette seemed agitated even more than usual and Anya couldn't figure out why.
Without her wolf form she was still difficult to read.
"What's that?" Raven asked, turning her head suddenly at a noise.
"It's a small animal."
"What about that?"
Raven seemed overwhelmed with all the noises around her. Anya knew that she had some of her wolf senses and the strength and speed but she still seemed to be lacking the ability to shift.
"Can you not distinguish their scents yet?" Anya asked her, looking forward out into the woods.
"Maybe you have not learned that sense yet. Can you follow trails yet?"
Raven shook her head.
"I've tried but I can smell is you. It overpowers everything else."
Anya turned her head sharply. Raven clearly had no idea what that meant.
"Me? You mean as you can smell the rest of the pack?"
"No," Raven said with a shake of the head, "yours is stronger than anyone else. No matter where you are I can smell you. It's weird."
Anya blinked and took in the length of Raven's body, glancing up and down.
"Do you know why that is?" Anya asked, moving into Raven's personal space.
Raven's didn't answer which suggested that she did. Anya leaned in slowly, brushing her thumb across Raven's cheek.
"It means that you want me as your mate," she said in a low voice.
Raven threw her arms around Anya's neck and pressed her lips against the blonde's, finally giving in to her desires. Anya immediately responded, moving forward and pushing Raven back. It became heated quickly and Raven pushed off her short jacket and began to strip as Anya pulled her top over her head. They removed their clothes as fast as possible and Anya surged forward as Raven lay down on her back, the blonde following her down to the ground.
Anya began to kiss her again furiously, placing one slow, lingering kiss on her lips and then diving in for more.
She pressed her lips to the side of Raven's neck and inhaled deeply. Raven heard a low growl that sent a chill through her.
Was Anya angry at her? Didn't growling mean anger.
Anya rubbed her nose up and down against Raven's skin and then gently nipped her before soothing her skin with her tongue.
"Is this some kind of weird wolf mating ritual?" Raven asked panting.
"Yes," Anya said. "To be this close, this intimate, to let someone have their teeth at your throat when it is not an act of dominance, only mates would give this to another wolf."
"Oh..." Raven replied, finally getting it. "So it's about trust not submission."
"It's both," Anya whispered in deep tone. "We submit to each other and show absolute trust, absolute loyalty. This is not to be taken lightly."
Raven bit her lower lip and closed her eyes as she felt Anya's breath on her neck before her lips. She wanted to say something smart and cocky. She wanted to doubt Anya's words. Her experiences of love were usually of disappontment, of watching them self destruct like her mom had. Much as she didn't want to believe her words she couldn't deny the allure that drew her towards Anya each day.
"Wolves mate for life," Anya whispered. "Do you want this?"
Anya was staring into her eyes and Raven understood all at once what she meant, how deeply wolves connected.
Raven put one hand around Anya's neck and brought her back down to join their lips and fell into the feeling. This was beyond anything she had ever felt. She could smell Anya's scent all over her own body, melding with her own. It made something stir in her, something primal and she parted her lips as Anya moved to her neck again, hungrily kissing her skin as if she couldn't get enough of her.
Raven pressed her canines to Anya's neck and sank them into her skin lightly. Anya growled in arousal and Raven felt as something inside her had been switched on. The wolf part of her felt awake for the first time since she had been been bitten and she growled back in return as Anya kissed down her body lower and lower until she was between her legs and Raven gasped with pleasure.
When Octavia came to take over guard duty later that day it was obvious that something had changed between the pair. They were dressed and Raven grinned at Anya and it was clear that they had mated, their scents now mingled.
"Time for our nap?" Raven asked with a grin. "Your furs or mine?"
A large smile spread across Anya's face.
"Ours," she said.
She picked up Raven and slung her over her shoulder rather unceremoniously and carried her inside with a laugh. Octavia noted that Raven didn't seem to mind.
They slept in a roll of both their furs, tangled up in each other, Raven with one arm across Anya's chest. She dreamed of being a wolf, running through the woods chasing her prey, tumbling with Anya in play, untamed and free. It was the best night's sleep she had ever had for once her mind not keeping her awake, working on scientific theories when she wanted to rest.
Mate she thought as she dreamt of Anya and her in wolf form. She sighed in her sleep comforted by the warmth of having her mate by her side.
Chapter 33: Closure
Clarke and Costia have a discussion about Nia, Ontari and Lexa. Clarke finds listening to Costia talk about her past with Lexa more difficult than she expects and Lexa ponders how differently she feels about Costia and Clarke.
This chapter is more about Lexa and Costia both moving on from their past. At this point Lexa really has gotten over her but this is her realising that this is a difficult situation for Clarke.
Also Costia has no friends because grounders value healers and warriors more than scribes and she is not a warrior at all.
Lexa has a different attitude towards being the commander in this story with the flame absent (there will be no A.I this time), not being at the conclave and Titus having had less of an influence on her. Also because Costia was never murdered she doesn't have the guilt or fear that someone she loves will be targeted, hence she doesn't have the whole 'love is weakness' and only remembers the phrase vaguely from Titus.
Lexa had spent the day sleeping in the long grasses, one ear open listening for danger. In the evening she returned to watch over Clarke, hiding under the window.
"So did you convince Ontari to let me help?"
Costia seemed distracted but Clarke persisted in her questions.
"Yes. She agreed as long as you are supervised."
Costia turned her back to Clarke playing with some papers and Clarke observed her behaviour. She was uncharacteristically quiet as if something was on her mind.
"You don't seem happy about it."
The brunette didn't turn around but continued to shuffled the papers around.
"It's not that. It's Nia. She's arriving tomorrow."
Clarke understood now. She shifted, her chains rattling on the floor as she tried to scratch her ankle underneath them.
"You're scared of her," Clarke replied. "Has she threatened you?"
Costia turned around and met her eyes just as Clarke looked up.
"Many times. If I tell Ontari of it she threatens to have me murdered in my sleep."
Nia was always dangerous Lexa said from beneath the window. She wouldn't hesitate to carry out her threats.
"I can tell," Clarke muttered out loud the persistent itch driving her crazy.
"You can tell she threatens me?"
Clarke's head shot up as she realised her mistake.
"Er - yes by how scared you are of her."
Costia became quiet again, not wanting to talk of it.
She hates admitting to being afraid Lexa told her. She was never a fighter and many teased her for it. It makes her feel useless.
Scholars are not useless and she seems keen to learn. Knowledge is important too.
You and I know that. She does not.
Clarke tilted her head to the side, jutting her chin out as she pondered this. Then she glanced up at the curly-haired brunette.
"Did you decide what to do on your date yet?" Clarke asked her, changing the subject.
"I thought walking together under the stars as you suggested but Ontari would say it's too dangerous. Maybe when we return to Polis."
Clarke frowned again. Costia seemed to be putting off spending time with Ontari as if afraid to get too close to her romantically.
"Is this about Lexa?" Clarke asked suddenly. "Do you feel guilty for moving on?"
Costia looked at her sadly but did not reply.
"Ah," Clarke said. "You do. You know that she would want you to be happy. She would not want you to hold back because of her."
Keep me out of it Lexa said wryly.
"How could you know?" Costia asked. "You never knew her."
"From how you've described her she seemed the selfless kind. She would want you to have happiness."
Costia smiled shyly.
"She was always so protective, so thoughtful. I always felt safe with her. Maybe you are right. She would never want this for me."
"What was she like when you knew her?" Clarke asked, genuinely curious about Lexa's past.
Costia moved to sit on the floor on her knees in front of Clarke so that they were eye to eye.
"She was training for the conclave. She worked tirelessly every day and was the fiercest warrior. She was very serious much of the time."
Clarke nodded with a slight smile. That sounded like Lexa.
"How did you two meet?"
"I was often copying scrolls by the training ground. I worked for Titus as a scribe and he would make me do errands frequently. I would watch her fight. One day I dropped them all in the fighting arena and Titus was angry with me. After he left, Lexa helped me to collect them and helped me to carry them home."
Clarke didn't interrupt, happy to let Costia speak but she heard Lexa sigh and didn't know if it was out of frustration or regret.
"We began to talk and discuss many subjects. She has a keen mind and loved to debate topics with me. It was when we were arguing that she kissed me."
The blonde wasn't sure how comfortable she was talking about this. She knew Lexa loved her and Madi but Costia had been her first love. Clarke had thought she could be mature about this but hearing about their relationship seemed to twist a knot in her stomach.
"She surprised me," Costia said quietly. "Most warriors fight first and think later. Lexa was smarter than that."
"Hmmm,"Clarke said, wishing she could think of something to change the topic and not keep picturing her wife and Costia kissing.
She didn't even remember why she had brought it up.
Clarke it's in the past. You have no reason to be jealous.
Lexa's voice was reassuring as if she knew Clarke was feeling insecure.
We are mates. That is deeper than anything Costia and I had.
I know Clarke replied but inside there was doubt. She loved Lexa so much. The thought that there was even a chance of losing her to another hit her deeply.
"What?" Costia asked. "I thought your lips moved but I didn't hear you speak."
"What?" Clarke asked feigning ignorance. "I didn't say anything.
Costia glanced at the floor as if a little embarrassed suddenly and then got to her feet. She really was a very shy young woman.
"I must go. Ontari has requested some time alone with me this evening. I may not return until late. Do you need anything before I leave? Food? More water?"
"No, I'm fine thank you."
Costia bowed her head graciously and exited the hut and Clarke sighed.
I didn't mean to bring up your past. She seemed like she needed someone to talk to.
Lexa moved and in seconds Clarke saw her leaping in the window, landing with silent ease as if it was nothing. Clarke's eyes widened in alarm.
"It's okay," Lexa whispered, moving towards her. "Ontari and Costia have just left on horseback and the guards never enter the hut."
"It's still a risk," Clarke whispered back, ignoring the fact that she was now face to face with Lexa and deeply distracted by her lips just inches away.
"I know," Lexa replied taking Clarke's wrists and checking under the chains.
Clarke had bruises and some redness where the chains had been chafing. Lexa examined her wounds, ghosting her fingers over them and then moving them up Clarke's arm slowly. She traced her shoulders and neck then cupped her lover's face with one hand. Clarke leaned in to the touch having sorely missed it.
"I hate that they are keeping you like this," Lexa said. "I just want to break you free and then we can run back to Madi and our pack and never return here."
"I know," Clarke replied, gazing into forest green eyes, memorising the slights flecks of brown she saw in them and the gray tints there, "but we would be running forever. They would find us eventually."
"There is another way to ensure our safety," Lexa said softly. "I could challenge Ontari."
Clarke's jaw tightened and she pressed her lips together.
"You can't... you would be giving up your freedom. You would have to become commander. I know that you don't want that."
"I want you," Lexa said earnestly. "And Madi and our pack. If this is the only way to keep you all safe I would gladly make the sacrifice."
Clarke shook her head, closing her eyes for a second. She tangled her fingers in Lexa's, the fear of being separated from her again too great.
"We'll stick with the plan," Clarke said. "It may never come to that."
Lexa's gaze was fixed on her, unmoving, unyielding.
"If it does I will not hesitate. You know that."
There was such certainty in her tone, a finality to it.
"And Madi? She's a nightblood too. Would she have to become commander?"
"Only if she wished to," Lexa said tilting her head. "We would change the conclave though. I would never allow her to go through that."
Clarke nodded slowly. One thing she could count on was that Lexa would keep Madi from being harmed no matter what. She wrapped her arms around Lexa with a sigh and felt a hand rest on the back of her head. It was such a relief to be in her mate's arms. Mates slept together each night and their forced separation made it difficult for Clarke to rest. Nothing in the room smelled of Lexa or her pack and her wolf struggled to relax in someone else's territory.
"Whatever happens we will all be together," Lexa whispered suddenly. "Nothing will keep us apart."
Clarke just buried her head in her shoulder and Lexa lay her down slowly, realising that she had barely slept. Clarke closed her eyes and curled into Lexa's side, her head resting on her shoulder and her arm sprawled across Lexa's stomach, Lexa's hand placed over her own to keep it there.
"Sleep," Lexa whispered. "I am here. You can rest."
Clarke felt herself drift off, relaxing into the comforting strength of the woman beneath her. Lexa remained awake, keeping alert to the movements around them in case anyone returned to the hut. The blonde was warm and comfortable in her arms and she let out a deep breath relieved to hold her again.
It was odd hearing Costia talk about their relationship. Those memories had once been everything but they were distant now, replaced by many new memories with Clarke and Madi. Clarke was the mother of her child. She had watched her feed Madi at her breast. She had heard her sing their child to sleep, rocking her gently in her arms. She had seen her lick Madi's ears and roll her over to clean her belly despite Madi's attempts to escape.
Even before Madi was born, before she was pregnant, Clarke had been making her way into Lexa's heart and the memories of her love with Costia seemed to pale in comparison. She had loved Costia but she was not Clarke and never would be and Clarke was special beyond measure to Lexa. That Clarke still didn't understand this, amazed her. She had practically sensed Clarke's feelings of insecurity when Costia had talked of their past.
How would you react, she thought, if you were to meet someone you knew Clarke had loved in that way? You would be jealous. You would be concerned she loved them more than you? Does Clarke still worry about this?
She felt Clarke shift in her sleep, her head moving to one side and then resting back on Lexa's chest. Lexa caressed the soft skin on her back tenderly.
How could she ever worry that I would leave her? she thought, her lips in Clarke's silken, blonde hair, kissing the top of her head.
I could never leave her.
Chapter 34: Costia - The Keeper of Knowledge
Following Clarke's advice to be more assertive in their relationship, Costia asks Ontari to go on a moonlight picnic and try to open up to her but Ontari has been keeping something secret from Costia a long time, her true feelings.
Flashback to Ontari and Costia's wedding night. No smut this time (sorry)
So I didn't plan to write this relationship in this way but I liked the idea that Costia doesn't fit in because she's more of a thinker than a warrior and that Ontari has difficulty sharing her feelings or affection because of how Nia raised her. Ontari is out of character more in this story because of Costia's influence.
"This is a bad idea," Ontari said as she helped Costia down from her horse. "We don't have time for frivolities."
"We haven't spent time alone like this for ages."
Ontari lunged forward to kiss her but Costia put a hand on her chest to stop her.
"There's time for that later."
Ontari scowled at her response. She was not a patient woman nor was she good at making small talk.
"Then why are we here?"
Costia's hand still rested on her chest. Ontari found herself gazing into those sparkling brown eyes. They were so soft. Costia had such a gentleness about her. Ontari had known nothing but cruelty her entire life. Nia had wanted her to be strong.
"Sit and you'll see."
Ontari obeyed still a little frustrated and watched as Costia spread out a blanket and an assortment of food. She motioned for Ontari to join her on the blanket and share the meal.
"It's called a picnic. I read that long ago it was considered romantic."
Ontari frowned. Costia had such strange ideas but she was hungry and she did enjoy spending time with her wife even if she was fairly unconventional."
"Now what?" she asked.
"Now we talk," Costia told her. "We tell each other our experiences, our feelings and our thoughts and learn more about each other."
Ontari wasn't sure what was happening. She wasn't much of a conversationalist. In truth she preferred actions to words.
"So I'll start," Costia said, placing her hands in her lap gracefully. "I wish that we would be more intimate. We have sex but we rarely touch otherwise and I would like to be closer to you."
Ontari was unsure how to respond but Costia gestured for her to reply and she wanted to try.
"I was taught that affection was weakness, that kindness was weakness. I was taught to be ruthless yet I... do not see you as weak."
"You don't?" Costia asked.
"No," Ontari said hesitantly. "I value your kind and open nature. It is a rare quality."
Costia lowered her head shyly smiling to herself in that way that Ontari found irresistable.
"I value your dedication to your people but I fear for you. I don't believe that Nia truly cares for you. That is why I insist on knowing the truth and-"
Ontari frowned again as Costia seemed fearful of telling her.
"I have never told you the truth of how she treats me. She threatens me. She thinks that I am holding you back from greatness."
Ontari felt an anger welling deep inside her. She knew Nia could be cold but to attack someone like Costia, to threaten her wife. Ontari valued loyalty above all else. She had always been loyal to Azgeda for training her, for taking her in as a child. She had always believed Nia to be on her side.
"What did she say to you?"
Costia still refused to meet her eyes and Ontari touched her cheek and turned her towards her.
"Tell me," she replied. "I will not be angry with you. I must know."
"She said that she would have me assassinated if I got in the way of her plans for you. That's why I never talk to you of politics anymore. I'm afraid to."
Ontari could not describe the anger she felt. She had been angry all the time when she had first become heda. She had been bold and ruthless, believing it to be the only way but then she'd married Costia. It had been suggested by Nia who thought it would wipe any doubts that Lexa was gone from the people's minds. Costia had been betrothed to Lexa and she would become Ontari's to signify that she was now the true heda not Lexa.
Ontari had been skeptical but she'd begrudgingly agreed thinking that it would be simple. She knew little of marriage then and had expected only minimal contact between them, mostly out of formality. The reality had been very different.
Several Years Earlier
Costia had seemed nervous. That was all Ontari thought when they entered their bedchambers as wives for the first time. She had been graceful and sweet but Ontari didn't know what to say. She was harsh, blunt. Sweet words were not her strength, neither was affection and when she'd slept with others she had been in charge and demanded they please her.
Costia was so soft hearted and timid that Ontari found it difficult to exert dominance over her despite what she had been taught.
"What's wrong?" Ontari had asked finally as Costia had seated herself demurely on the edge of the bed. "Have you never done this?"
"I have," Costia replied. "But I fear I will not please you. I am likely not what what you are used to. I hear women in Azgeda are fierce and strong."
Her new bride lowered her head and Ontari felt a twinge of some new feeling in her. She rarely felt compassion but she knew what it was to feel that you did not live up to others. Nia had reminded her for most of her life that if she was not the best warrior she was a failure and each mistake had been punished severely.
"If I wanted one of them, I would have married them," Ontari replied, attempting to sound reassuring but knowing that her tone always came off as blunt anyway.
Costia lifted her head and met her eyes. Then she surprised Ontari and leaned over lightly and kissed her on the cheek. It was so soft, so delicate. Ontari had rarely known gentleness and Costia was the epitome of gentle. Ontari surged forward her hunger for Costia growing. She had always thought her attractive but they'd rarely spoken yet Ontari had noticed her often when she was in Polis and her eyes lingered too often on her.
Costia's lips moved against her own and she pushed Ontari on her back slowly, lying on top of her as they kissed. It was that moment that Ontari fell. When Costia had kissed her something had changed. Her whole life had been violence, war, battle. Costia was the antithesis of all of that and it terrified her how it opened her heart and how much she craved it.
Her feelings for Costia were the reason she could never yell at her, could never ignore her requests for time together even when she should focus on her responsibilites. Since Costia all of Ontari's rage had disappeared and she had calmed significantly from the brutal warrior she had once been. Nia called it weakness but Ontari felt stronger than ever with Costia by her side.
"If she ever threatens you again tell me immediately," Ontari told her as her fingers caressed her smooth skin.
Costia nodded shyly. She was by far the most beautiful woman she had ever seen and her softness melted Ontari's heart. Ontari wished nothing more than to protect her but she knew that Costia was far stronger and braver than anyone gave her credit for.
"What else do we talk about?" Ontari asked, changing the subject. "You are the one who has knowledge of this custom."
Costia's eyes twinkled as they often did when Ontari brought up her love of learning and she leaned in, her enthusiasm growing.
"We tell each things we would never tell others to develop our sense of trust and of understanding."
Ontari had a secret she had wanted to admit to for a long time. She was in love with Costia but she had never dared say it out loud.
"I do have one secret," she said.
Ontari paused as Costia waited for her to tell her the truth.
"I have a fear of heights," she admitted in a low voice avoiding her wife's eyes.
"That's your secret. That is nothing. I have many fears."
"It is deeply shameful for a heda to be afraid. We are taught to conquer fear."
Costia touched her arm lightly.
"It is not shameful to be afraid. Everyone fears something. Do you wish to know my secret?"
Ontari nodded, a part of her desparately hoping it was Costia confessing that she felt the same.
"I have never felt like one of my people. I am different from them. Trikru raised me and for that I am truly grateful but they are fierce warriors and I can barely hold a spear let alone throw one."
Ontari smiled at her. She knew what it was to feel different. As a natblida and an adopted child, she knew what it was to not fit in with her people. She had been bullied until she had learned to make people fear her so that they dared not say a word. Nia had been proud when she'd stood up for herself.
"Your mind is your spear," Ontari said. "A tribe cannot be made up of warriors alone."
"Yes but I am not a healer or a fleimkepa or a cook or good at building homes or even making clothes."
Ontari took one of her hands rather awkwardly. Learning to show physical affection was one of the things she had most struggled with in her marriage. It did not come naturally to her but Costia seemed to need it.
"Your skill is knowledge. You can find answers that others can't. You can learn languages, trace histories, preserve our ways in written form for future generations. Few have that skill."
Ontari ran her fingers along the back of Costia's hand and the edge of her wrist, tracing the lines of her lover's form carefully.
"You have more value than you know."
Costia was watching her now. There were words between them still unspoken but everytime Ontari tried to voice her feelings, she could hear Nia's voice like a whip insulting her for her stupidity.
She doesn't love you You must be ruthless to survive. Stupid girl. You think this is good enough to repay all I've done. I raised you to be Heda not to fall for some foolish girl with naive ideas.
Ontari ignored the thoughts determined not to let it ruin their pleasant evening. She rarely got as much time as she wished with Costia and she would not let Nia's ambitiousness ruin it for her. Not this.
"What next?" Ontari asked when she realised that neither of them had spoken in some time.
"Now," Costia said, "we lay back on the blanket and stare up at the stars and I will tell you what I know of their names and their stories."
Ontari lay down in the blanket on her back, her gaze fixed on Costia as she lay down beside her staring up at the night's sky.
"That group of stars was known as Leo and represents a lion."
"It looks more like a mouse."
"It's a loose representation based upon old stories and myths. Those three in a row are Orion's belt. Orion was a mythical hunter. He's supposed to be holding a weapon but I often imagine it looks like someone drawing back a bow."
Ontari gazed at her, leaning on her side now and brushed a hair from her face. Costia was full of knowledge and imagination and stories.
"You were right," Ontari said. "This was a good idea."
Costia smiled at her and then continued to tell her the names of the stars and their stories as Ontari gazed at her resting on one elbow, Costia seemingly oblivious to how she was silently worshipping her.
I love you. Why can't I tell you that? she thought. Would you love me if I was not heda? If Lexa had lived would you choose her over me?
Chapter 35: Belonging
Nia visits Ontari but finds her influence over the Heda and Raven finally shifts and meets the pack as a wolf.
Thanks for all your great comments on the last chapter and the Costari scenes and thank you for the ship name hufflepuff415. Many of you were right in that Raven is indeed a kind of hybrid in that she has three forms not two. She can be wolf, werewolf and human whereas the others can only be either wolf or human.
Nia's arrival put everyone in on edge. The woman was tall and had an air of superiority about her. When Ontari led her to see Clarke it was midday and the blonde was sleeping.
"This is her?" Nia asked. "Have you attempted to extract information?"
"She does not appear to speak yet Costia has found a way to communicate with her."
"Wake her," Nia ordered.
Clarke had woken the second they had entered but had pretended to be asleep. Ontari called her name loudly and she pretended to wake and sat up.
"Can you make her transform?" Nia asked, walking around her with a sneer.
Ontari glanced at her. She had not forgotten what Costia had told her about Nia's threats but it would serve no one to make her aware that she no longer trusted the Ice Queen.
"I haven't tried. It would be unwise. She is more dangerous in that form."
Nia glared at Clarke, kneeling to state into her eyes. She inspected her as if she would a wild animal, with absolute disdain. She stood up straight and faced Ontari.
"Have Costia brought here? I want to see how they communicate."
"Costia is resting," Ontari said. "It will have to wait."
Nia's eyes widened and her jaw clenched at Ontari's refusal to follow her command.
"Fool," she said with a scowl, "Skaikru plans to assassinate you as we speak and we found a pakstoka in trikru territory. There is no time for rest."
Anger still burned in Ontari's chest. She had spent the night with Costia under the stars, talking and kissing and then making love to her wife until the sun rose. She wanted nothing more than to have Nia arrested for her treason but she needed proof first or Azgeda would turn on her.
"I am the commander. I do not fear Skaikru assassins or pakstoka."
Nia's mouth was a thin line but she didn't push the issue further. Ontari knew her. If you showed the slightest sign of weakness she would take advantage of it. If you stood your ground she would be more accomodating.
"Fine," Nia conceded. "The journey from Azgeda has been long and I am hungry. I will return when she is awake."
Ontari held her shoulders back until Nia exited and then deflated her chest. This was going to be a long, difficult visit. When she turned she caught a pair of icy blue eyes watching her.
"Sometimes I think that you do understand me beast," she said. "You better hope that Nia does not believe that you do."
Ontari turned and exited the room heading straight towards her tent. Costia slept peacefully on her side on the bed, one hand in front of her face as she lay curled up. Ontari sat on the bed beside her and reached to caress her forehead with her fingertips. She brushed her thumb across her skin slowly and leaned down to press a kiss to her cheek.
Nia will not hurt you - ever.
Raven and Anya were both giddy as they wrestled on the floor, kissing inbetween bouts. Anya won everytime but Raven didn't mind as she hovered over her. When Anya pinned her for the seventh time in a row, Raven felt a sharp pain shoot through her lower leg and she cried out.
Anya shot back, fearing she had hurt her but when she saw Raven's body shifting she knew that it was finally happening. The process seemed to happen differently for Raven. Pakstoka's shifted straight from human to wolf almost instantly while Raven seemed to be shifting into a midway form before reaching full wolf. When the shift was finished, Raven was a small, brown wolf. Anya removed her clothes and allowed herself to transform until they were face to face as wolves.
This is just weird Raven communicated.
You're still you? You remember? Normally there is only the wolf at this stage.
Raven's mouth opened and her tongue hung out of the side of her mouth. Anya circled her as if greeting her for the first time and then licked her shoulder and pushed her body against Raven's. The brunette barked as if trying to speak.
Wolves do not bark to speak. You cannot use your voice.
How do I understand you then? Are we psychic?
No. We are not saying any words, we just understand each other as wolves do but interpret it into words.
I want to run. Why do I want to run?
Raven barked in excitement and leapt up and fell back down as if testing out her new body.
This is awesome. I feel so springy. Let's run.
First you must follow me.
Raven leapt again and when Anya moved towards the cave, Raven followed, her tail flicking excitedly, unable to contain her excitement.
Anya entered the den and Raven followed behind her licking her paws and following her tail.
Remain still Raven. The pack must accept you in this form.
Luna was the first to sit up, Madi in her wolf form curled up against her side. The black puppy rotated her ears rather sleepily and yawned, sniffing the air and then returning to sleep when she released it was just Raven. Luna crept over followed by Lincoln and Ryder and Raven bounced and wagged her tail rather energetically. Octavia crept over more cautiously sniffing her back leg and then scuttling away when Raven turned before edging forward again, moving closer each time.
Indra and Gustus sniffed her and did not move to close but showed no sign of aggression towards Raven.
Raven made a sound of excitement and bowed before Octavia her tail wagging. Octavia who had been sniffing cautiously lifted her head and then leapt onto Raven with a playful yelp. They rolled over as they played like puppies, nipping at each other before Octavia set off running and Raven chased her. Anya's tail flickered and she held her head high as she observed them calmly.
Luna watched them as if she wished to join in as most of the others went back to sleep but Madi was still sleeping beside her and she licked the pup and then lay her head back down.
When Raven returned to human form it was after hours of running around testing her new form as much as possible. She even tired out Octavia eventually and when Raven had finally had enough she shifted much faster this time but still moving through an extra midway stage first. She lay naked on her belly on the grass panting and Anya shifted too.
"That was awesome! No wonder Clarke and Octavia love being wolves."
"There is more you need to learn. You must learn to hunt and how to behave with the pack."
"I have so many questions..." Raven continued staring down at her hands. "I mean how am I stronger and faster even in human form. My muscle mass hasn't increased. Where is the extra force coming from?"
She was so hyped up Anya just listened to her ramble for several minutes about scientific theories.
"I thought that nothing could be better than a space walk but that is so much better. I feel like I could run anywhere."
"Your shift was unusual," Anya told her narrowing her eyes. "You have a middle form."
Raven pushed herself up off the grand and sat back, finding that she no longer even embarrassed by nudity.
"You were inbetween wolf and human. No other pakstoka can do that."
"Huh," Raven replied as she thought about it.
A broad smile spread across her lips and she grinned suddenly.
"I'm the only one that's a real werewolf. I'm a total badass monster. Ha!"
The brunette laughed as if the idea was hilarious and then threw her arms around Anya.
"Do you still love me even though I'm a freak?"
Anya smiled at her as she held Raven on her lap.
"Of course. What is a freak?" she asked in a deep voice.
"And that's why I love you."
Raven laughed and fell forward onto her Anya knocking her backwards. Her arms were wrapped around her mate's neck ass they fell in a heap on the ground.
I have a pack Raven thought. They will never betray me or let me down. We will protect each other always.
Raven felt light, happy. She belonged here with them. They were her family now.
Chapter 36: Enemies Everywhere
Ontari and Costia travel to Arkadia with Clarke but are attacked on the way there and Clarke saves Costia.
Clarke noticed Costia's concerned expression the second she entered behind Nia and Ontari later that day. Nia ordered guards to bring Clarke outside and they watched her carefully, swords and spears aimed at her throat in case she moved.
"This is not wise," Nia snapped. "Bringing this creature with us to Skaikru will only embolden their attempts to kill you. Last time they tried to assassinate you as you left Arkadia. They will try again."
Clarke glanced towards Costia, her eyes wideneding in alarm. She could not be seen by her people. Most of them thought her dead and she had no wish for them to know otherwise. She had told Costia as much in one of their previous conversations.
She glanced over her shoulder towards where Lexa was hiding in the grasses in wolf form. Clarke could hear her snarling at Nia.
Don't Lexa, she urged. Stay hidden.
Lexa gave a low growl in response but remained concealed, her grey fur barely visible in an ocean of green glades.
Some time later they were travelling towards Arkadia on foot this time when Clarke became aware of many unfamiliar scents around them. She pulled at her chains trying to delay them from moving forward, knowing Lexa would deal with them.
several arrows came flying out of the trees. Warriors with their faces concealed in warpaint leapt from the trees as arrows took out several warriors around them.
As an arrow hit the last warrior guarding Clarke, she spun around and saw one archer remaining in the trees, her arrow pointed directly at Costia. Clarke leapt with a growl and knocked her to the ground shielding her with her body. The arrow skimmed her side but it worked and it missed Costia and only scratched Clarke's hip.
Ontari threw her sword furiously at the figure but they dodge and disappeared off into the woods as the heda ordered some of her remaining men to chase them. Clarke moved from Costia who was shaken and examined the wound at her own side. It stung but it would be fine but when she saw that her she was bleeding she ripped a strip from the bottom of her shirt and wound it around herself to cover it.
I'm okay she said to Lexa, practically able to sense her fury at the attack.
Ontari rushed to helped Costia to her feet and Clarke stepped back to show that she meant no harm.
"See," Nia yelled. "It is Skaikru. They mean to ambush us before we even arrive. We should wipe them all out."
Costia picked up the the arrow that had been intended for her and examined the shaft. She held it up for Ontari.
"This is an Azgeda arrow," Costia said in a low voice so that Nia couldn't hear. "It is made from a tree only found in Azgeda territory. It is the same kind Echo uses."
Ontari's eyes clouded other with what Clarke could only describe as murderous rage. She side-eyed Nia, understanding now that what Costia had suspected was true. The Ice Queen wasn't even being subtle.
This is how little faith she has in me she thought. She thinks me a fool.
"We will discuss this with Skaikru when we arrive."
Nia opened her mouth to interrupt but Ontari didn't allow her time to speak.
"It has been decided."
Clarke glanced behind her, the idea of running away seeming more favourable than the idea of facing her friends. She made a quick decision and turned quickly into wolf form, the chains and her clothing falling from her. Ontari shielded Costia immediately.
"No, no," Costia said. "She will not harm me. She saved my life."
Ontari stared down at the blonde wolf suspiciously. She didn't move and Clarke could understand her actions better in this form. She could see exactly who Ontari was and how she felt for Costia and that Costia had absolutely no idea that Ontari was in love with her. Clarke wagged her tail and Costia smiled and moved Ontari aside.
"See. She will not harm me. We are friends."
Costia reached down to scratch one of Clarke's ears and the blonde darted away but showed no sign of aggressive.
"Costia, she is not a pet," Ontari told her. "She is a wild creature."
"I know," Costia said. "But you must admit that she is cute in this form."
Ontari sighed and Clarke wagged her tail again.
"We should keep moving. They may try to attack again," Ontari said.
They began to move towards Arkadia, Ontari and Costia side by side and Clarke trotting at their heels, her wound already healing rapidly. Costia had bundled up Clarke's clothes for later and packed them with her things while Nia just glared at them all for most of the journey.
Chapter 37: Chapter 37 - Hidden in Plain Sight
Clarke enters Arkadia in wolf form but is recognised by her mom. Costia learns about Skaikru's advanced technology and Clarke assists Ontari and Costia with their investigation.
Noumon - Mother
Abby had spent most of her morning treating several patients who had been injured trying to hunt wild animals. She pulled off her gloves and cleaned up brushing the sweat from her forehead with her arm.
Marcus had asked her to be there with him to greet Ontari, the commander of the current shaky alliance between the clans. She wondered where her daughter and granddaughter where right now and imagined them happily playing with Lexa and the rest of the pack. It was the thought that gave her strength on the tougher days. Her daughter was happy and safe and that's what mattered to her.
She arrived to stand beside Marcus just in time as the gates opened but when she saw the familiar blonde wolf by Costia's side and her daughter's icy blue eyes staring back at her she searched for Marcus' eyes and saw them dart away with guilt.
They greeted each other formally and Kane introduced her as their best healer. It didn't take her long to figure out that Clarke was avoiding being seen by the rest of her people and that Ontari thought her unable to speak.
"We were attacked on the way here by assassin's," Ontari told Kane. "Nia thinks your people are at fault."
"She's mistaken. We didn't do this," Abby replied dryly.
Nia stepped forward, her marked face now intimidatingly close to Clarke's mom's.
"You speak out of turn healer," she warbed.
Clarke growled at her tone and bared her teeth. Abby glanced down at her. She was circling around her legs as if to protect her from Nia.
"Nia," Ontari snapped. "You are angering the wolf. Step back."
Nia turned away sharply, still glaring.
"The beast should be caged. It is not safe to be loose."
"That is for me to decide," Ontari replied. "Now Chancellor Kane. I think we should talk in private. Abby, you will show Costia your healing technology She wishes to learn more of your methods."
"Of course," Abby replied. "This way."
Costia followed with Clarke just behind her and Abby gave her a small tour of the medical bay discussing various treatments. When Abby led her to a private area to show her the medicines they stocked, Clarke shifted and her mom glanced at her in surprise.
Clarke panted touching her side which was no longer bleeding. She reached for some antiseptic and something to apply it with and pressed it to her side.
"Hi Mom. She knows I can talk. Ontari doesn't. It's a long story."
"She's your noumon?" Costia asked with excitement. "I was not aware."
"Um, Clarke. First of all you are naked. Second of all what the hell is going on? Is that an arrow wound?"
Her mom's face was almost comical but Clarke had nothing to conceal her nudity and was so used to it now that it now longer concerned her.
"Nia is trying to frame skaikru and I'm here to help prove that we didn't do it. They sent assassin's to kill her and one skimmed my side."
"She saved me," Costia said innocently. "It was very brave."
Her mom didn't appear in the slightest bit surprised as if she expected.
"How is she?" she asked.
"She doesn't know about that," she emphasised making it clear to her mom not to say anymore.
"Who?" Costia asked puzzled.
"No time," Clarke said. "Ontari."
Clarke shifted back into wolf form never giving Costia an answer. Ontari entered clearly just checking on Costia. Clarke had seen her fear when she had pushed Costia to the ground. She had been terrified she would lose her.
"Costia, is Abby showing you everything you wish to see?"
"Yes. She has shown me many things. Their knowledge is far beyond our own. We could learn much from each other."
There was a hint of a smile on Ontari's lips and Costia turned to Abby and thanked her before leaving with Ontari.
"Are you sure she can do this?" Ontari asked some time later as Clarke sniffed around the spot where the first attempted assassination had taken place.
"I am certain. Give her time."
Clarke followed the scent easily and it led her to a cave. Ontari and Costia followed as she ran into it and dragged some skaikru clothing out with her teeth. She led them through the cave and out through another entrance and started to dig at the ground. When she unearthed a buried gun and a half-burned piece of parchment Ontari rushed to pick it up.
"It's been burned but this is used by Azgeda assassins to communicate targets," Costia told her. "See the symbol there. That is a mark for an attack but not a kill. They use a code of symbols to communicate."
"So this is Nia's doing," Ontari said bitterly. "She was trying to manipulate me into a war with skaikru."
"We must collect all evidence to present to the other clans. She will try to get out of this."
Ontari exhaled deeply. Costia had been right all along. Nia was a traitor. She had been wrong to ever trust her.
Chapter 38: This is A Coup
Nia shows her true colours as she attempts to take power and Lexa makes a life-changing decision when Clarke is in danger.
Nou heda nou mou - No heda no more
"She's unhappy," Luna said to Octavia as she watched Madi lie on the floor in puppy form her head on her paws.
"It's understandable. She misses them but there's nothing we can do about it."
Luna nodded but she kept watch over the pup and understood the feeling. She was missing Lexa and Clarke too. They had been gone much longer than she had expected.
"They will return little one," she said stroking Madi's ears. "Be patient."
Madi lifted her head and gave her hand a lick. Her gray eyes were fixed on her curiously as her ears rotated back, listening to the strange sound of human language on her wolf ears.
"Is it safe to have that animal in here?"
Bellamy had his arms crossed as he and Kane met with Ontari and Costia late that evening. They had made sure that Nia wasn't aware of the discussion as Ontari told him what had been found and how they were going to proceed.
Clarke wagged her tail at Bellamy and he raised an eyebrow. Her blue eyes focussed on him and he blinked and shook his head at how familiar they were.
"Not really. Pakstoka are dangerous beasts," Ontari told him glancing towards Clarke, "but Clarke seems to be happy to help us right now."
Bellamy froze his jaw clenching as his eyes flicked down towards the wolf.
"Clarke? It's called Clarke?"
Ontari nodded and Kane tried to steer him away from the coversation.
"She," Costia corrected.
"Pakstoka? What is that?" he asked.
"Bellamy," Kane interrupted. "We don't have time to discuss the wolf."
Ontari watched his nervousness suspiciously. She knew that Kane had recognised Clarke yet he seemed to be keeping her existence from some of his people.
"It's a hybrid," said a voice from behind as the door opened. "A person by a wolf who can become a wolf."
They all turned to see Nia standing in the doorway. Clarke's tail stiffened as she saw her. It was clear that she wasn't there as an ally.
Bellamy's lips widened into a disbelieving smile.
"A werewolf? You expect me to believe that?"
"I don't care what you believe skaikru. What is this Ontari? Have you lost your loyalty already?"
Ontari met her gaze without fear. She was heda after all.
"I could ask you the same question."
"You may wish to come outside before you make your move against me. The other clan leaders are here and they have heard all about your betrayal of your people."
"My betrayal. How have I betrayed them?"
"By allying with our enemy. It's clear you are no longer fit to be heda."
Several warriors entered the room and Ontari ordered them to stand down. They ignored her and when she repeated the command and they didn't move she knew that Nia had turned them against her.
"Take them outside," Nia said. "Bring the wolf to me."
A few moments later and Ontari and Costia were bound together back to back and tied to a wooden post before the clan leaders. Nia stood in front of them addressing the clans.
"I call this meeting of the clans to bring attention to the weakness of our heda. She means to give our lands to skaikru, she allows them to use the same weapons as the mountain men. She has turned her back on her ways and her people."
"It is not true," Costia pleaded. "Nia framed Skaikru. We have evidence of this. She has planned for this all along. Skaikru is an ally."
Ontari held her head high, stilling herself.
"It is no use," she said in a low voice. "They believe her. This will not end well."
"No. We can't give up," Costia said.
"How say you?" Nia asked.
"Nou heda nou mou," said one rising to his feet.
"Nou heda nou mou."
One by one each clan ambassador got to their feet.
"It is unanimous," Nia announced. "The sentence is death to the traitors."
"Costia, I have to tell you," Ontari said suddenly.
"You can tell me when we get out of this," Costia told her.
"No," she replied. "I can't die without you knowing how I feel for you. I love you. I'm in love with you. I have been for some time."
Costia turned her head back in surprise. She reached for Ontari's fingers with her own.
"At least our spirits will remain together," she replied. "I love you too."
Their fingers entwined and they both raised their heads waiting for the inevitable.
Clarke struggled fiercly as they tried to force her out before the warriors, jabbing her with their daggers to make her move. Once in front of the clans they moved back and Nia pointed towards her. She could see Ontari and Costia tied up together, waiting for their own executions.
"This beast is a pakstoka, a dangerous predator that must be executed. Ontari has neglected her duty in keeping this creature alive. Execute her!"
The warriors all surrounded her, moving towards her with their daggers and swords clutched tightly in their hands. They were fearful, rightly so at the creature but Clarke was deeply outnumbered and if she made a wrong move a blade would be in her side.
As they edged closer she spun around at each man who neared her snarling in warning. They were getting closer and closer and Clarke thought it was over for her.
"No..." she heard her mom cry.
Kane and Bellamy held her back as she fought to rush forward.
"You can't do this," she yelled.
I'm sorry Clarke thought. It was for everyone. Her pack, her friends, her mom but most of all for Lexa and Madi.
There was a loud cry and a figure suddenly leapt into the warriors, swirling in her long black jacket as her twin swords slashed and cut down each man until they had all fallen.
Clarke shifted almost immediately as Lexa helped her up and she took her jacket off and placed it around Clarke's body.
"Lexa no...," she whispered. "They've seen you. Now everything will change."
Lexa pulled the jacket tighter around Clarke patting the collar down calmly.
"It will be okay Clarke," she told her, her green eyes blazing fiercly behind her the black mask that marked her skin. "We will make this right."
Chapter 39: Ai Laik Leksa
Lexa challenges Nia for leadership. Costia realises that Clarke and Lexa are married and Clarke has to face Bellamy again.
Ai laik Leksa - I like Lexa
Non na throu daun gon ai - No one fights for me.
Lexa turned from her mate and scowled over her shoulder at Nia and the ambassadors.
"Hello Nia," she said coldly. "Still ambitious I see."
Nia's face was was on pure shock as was everyone else's including Clarke's own people who now knew what she was.
"Lexa?" Costia exclaimed. "But it's not possible. You died."
Lexa didn't reply but raised her head, her lips pressed together firmly as she addressed the clans.
"If Ontari is no longer heda, who have you planned as her replacement without another natblida of age? Nia I suspect."
"We need no natblida," Nia scoffed. "And we do not need a long dead one too cowardly to attend her conclave to tell us what to do."
Lexa stepped forward spinning and them sheathing her bloody dual swords on her back.
"I was not afraid," she sneered. "I was bitten by a pakstoka."
Nia gave her an icy glare.
"Are you issuing a challenge Lexa or will you show weakness and run again?"
"I challenge you for the title of heda," Lexa said coolly. "Do you accept?"
Nia smirked and walked closer so that she and Lexa were eye to eye.
"I accept. Prince Roan will fight for Azgeda as my champion. Who will be yours?"
Lexa leaned in closer to her, intimidating so.
"Ai laik Leksa. Non na throu daun gon ai."
"Very well. The challenge is accepted," one of the ambassadors replied. "The fight will take place tomorrow in Arkadia. The winner will become heda and will decide Ontari and Costia's fate. Let them loose for now."
Lexa nodded closing her eyes briefly and then walked back towards Clarke. Her eyes briefly met Costia's as she passed by them and she untied the ropes around them, Clarke rushing to assist.
"I'm sorry Costia," Clarke said. "I should have told you but it wasn't safe. No one could know."
Costia rubbed her now unbound wrists a little stunned now as she faced Lexa.
"The tattoos, trikru and skaikru. Clarke is your wife."
"Yes," Lexa replied. "As Ontari is yours."
Lexa met Ontari's eyes and nodded in recognition and then turned away following Clarke as she strode over to her near frantic mom and hugged her.
"Hello Abby Griffin," Lexa said rather formally as Clarke and her mom separated from their hug.
"Lexa," she replied reaching to hug her. "I am so relieved to see you. Thank you."
Lexa bowed her head in acknowledgement and the three of them became aware of Bellamy staring at them, appearing in a very bad mood.
"Is someone going to tell me what the hell is going on?"
His eyes were wide and his jaw was set hard. Clarke sighed knowing that it was going to be worse when he found out that Octavia hadn't just run away with Lincoln and that Raven was also with them.
"We need to talk," she said in a low voice. "Alone."
"Oh, this better be good," he said in a stern tone. "This better be really good."
Clarke glanced at Lexa who was watching the interaction. She was looking Bellamy up and down as if assessing if he was a threat and if she needed to be worried about him wanting more than friendship with Clarke. The blonde met her eyes and silently communicated that it wasn't like that and Lexa lifted her head with that slight nod she often did.
"I won't be far. I need to tell him about Octavia and Raven," she whispered under her breath.
Clarke leaned in and kissed Lexa on the cheek still aware that Costia was staring at them both from afar. She looked as if she was wrestling with mixed feelings seeing the pair together and Clarke felt slightly guilty that she had not been fully honest with Costia. After all she had been nothing but kind to her when she'd had no reason to be. She made a mental note to find some way to make it up to her as she headed inside with Bellamy to explain what had happened to her.
Chapter 40: Moving On
Clarke worries about the fight and how things are going to change. Lexa and Costia finally talk and Clarke and Lexa realise how much they are missing Madi.
Yu laik ai houmon, ai tombom, ai hodness fever - you are my wife, my heart, my love forever.
Floudonkru - Boat clan
"Are you sure this is the only way? What if you lose?"
Lexa searched through the box of Clarke's things, trying to find the item Abby had been talking about.
"It's the only way. Here it is."
It was one of Clarke's old toys, a small cuddly lion with her name stitched into it. Her dad had given it to her and Abby had mentioned to Lexa one or twice that Madi might like it when she was older.
They were in a room Abby'd had made up for them for the night. Clarke had spent some time explaining things to Bellamy and he'd eventually calmed down. She had seen Monty and Wells and Harper and even managed to say hi to Monroe. Overall it had gone better than she'd expected but her concern for Lexa was growing and she still hadn't talked to Costia.
"I'm just concerned. I don't know anything about this guy you have to fight but everyone says he's good and you'll be in human form."
Lexa turned around passing her the small lion. Clarke took it with a small smile remembering her dad and how he used to tease her with it.
"Madi will love this if she doesn't tear it to shreds."
Lexa sat down on the bed in front of her. The space was more cramped than she would have liked but it would be suffice.
"Clarke, I'll be fine. I'm still stronger and faster than any human."
Clarke placed the teddy bear on a box besides her bed. She reached to take Lexa's hands, holding them in her own.
"I can't lose you," Clarke murmoured. "Even if you win, things will change."
Lexa leaned forward entwining their fingers and rested her forehead on top of Clarke's.
"Yu laik ai houmon, ai tombon, ai hodness feva."
Lexa's voice was a whisper, her warm breath against Clarke's lips.
"I will win this, for us, for Madi and for our pack. We will have peace and we will no longer be hunted."
Clarke reached up to meet her lips releasing one hand to bring it up around the back of Lexa's head. Lexa tilted her head in response covering Clarke's body with her own.
Lexa turned her head to see Costia standing at the door her head down and her shoulders half-turned away in embarrassment. She needed to look to know who it was. She moved to let Clarke up.
"I can come back later," Costia said awkwardly. "I wanted to talk to you. Both of you actually."
Lexa raised an eyebrow and let it fall. She glanced at Clarke who nodded.
"Very well. Take a seat," she replied gesturing to a small chair in the corner of the room.
Clarke, who was seated beside Lexa now felt more awkward than she ever had. She liked Costia but this was difficult. What if she wanted her back? What is she was angry that she'd not told her?
"Ontari has no wish to challenge you if you win the fight. We talked and she is - she's content for us both to go away and start a new life."
"You don't have to do that," Clarke said softly.
Costia gave her a weak smile.
"We do. If Ontari stays, Lexa will be under pressure to enact punishment. We will go to floudonkru. We will be safe there."
Clarke shook her head glancing to the side. She had never meant to turn Costia's life upside down or put her in danger.
Costia must have noticed her feelings of guilt because she reached forward and placed her hand over Clarke's own.
"You are not at fault. Nia has been planning this for a long time."
Costia moved back her hand sharply aware of Lexa's watchful gaze over the interaction.
"We are still friends Clarke," she told her. "You helped me more than you know. Your advice helped me talk to Ontari and now-"
Costia shied away all of a sudden not finishing her sentence. She had her head lowered but her eye had a twinkle in them and she seemed unable to stop smiling.
"Once I am heda you will both be granted safe passage to floudonkru. You have my word."
Costia lifted her head, meeting Lexa's eyes. Clarke saw that somewhere deep down, Costia would always feel something for Lexa just as Lexa would for her but she had a dreamy look in her eyes when she talked of Ontari.
"Thank you Lexa."
Sensing that they still had words to say to each other Clarke got to her feet.
"I'll give you two a minute. I'll be right outside."
Lexa didn't reply but when their eyes met they were full of gratitude.
A moment later the door was closed and Lexa and Costia were alone for the first time in years.
"I had thought you dead. Why did you never return?"
"When bitten pakstoka lose themselves to the wolf. By the time I came to find you it was too late. You were with Ontari."
Costia glanced at her. She had her hands resting on her lap in front of her.
"I see," she said looking down at the floor.
There was an awkward silence until Costia raised her head.
"I can see understand what you see in her. She is good and kind and every bit the match for you."
Lexa smiled to herself.
"You have no idea."
Lexa met her eyes suddenly. She knew that Costia deserved the truth but she found it difficult to tell her everything.
"I did not plan this," Lexa told her. "I didn't move on right away. I kept the memory of you with me for so long."
"And I mourned you for years. You have no idea how relieved I am that you live. You told me to flee and I did but the guilt stayed with me."
Lexa pressed her lips together and lowered her eyes.
"You did nothing wrong. I chose to protect you. I did love you-"
Costia didn't meet her eyes now.
"But I am in love with Ontari and you love Clarke. I guess it wasn't to be our fate."
Lexa lifted her gaze now.
"There's something else we haven't told you. The Mountain Men impregnated Clarke to study pakstoka births. The child shares both our heritage."
Costia seemed confused thinking about it for a moment, her eyes narrowed. Then a wide smile spread across her face.
"You have a child? How amazing? I have never heard of such a thing being possible."
"It was a surprise to us too believe me," Lexa said dryly.
She stared deep into Costia's eyes.
"They are my family. I will always care for you. I will always remember but they are everything to me now."
Costia gave her a wistful smile.
"I am just glad that you have found happiness again and with someone who I know will make you happy."
Costia got to her feet and Lexa stood up in front of her. It was awkward and formal but they faced each other for the last time.
"I wish you well Costia. You deserve happiness."
"Thank you so do you. I should leave now or your wife may start to get concerned."
Lexa made a noise of amusement.
"She can likely hear us anyway. Clarke isn't one for leaving things to chance. She will want to know how it went."
"I really do like her," Costia said turning around to reach for the door handle. "Farewell Lexa."
Costia opened the door to find Clarke standing there waiting. She was smiling and Costia stopped in front of her. Clarke wasn't sure what she meant to do but then the woman hugged her.
"Protect her," she whispered.
"I will but you know she can hear you right?"
Costia pulled back with a smile.
"I keep forgetting how good your hearing is. May we meet again Clarke."
"May we meet again."
Costia walked away heading down the hallway and Lexa held the door open for Clarke. Green eyes met blue and Lexa reached for Clarke and yanked her inside and into a kiss, a self-satisfied grin on her lips. They kissed up against the door, Lexa fumbling for the locking mechanism as Clarke's hands wound up against her neck and they kissed passionately.
"The fight," Clarke said gasping for breath. "It's tomorrow."
Her back was against the door and Lexa was millimetres from her lips. She gazed at Lexa, her icy blue eyes darkened with arousal.
"Hmmm... I guess I better make the most of tonight then," she said.
"I'm serious," Clarke said with a laugh, her hand pressed on Lexa's chest to hold her back. "Don't you need to conserve your strength? I read that historically fighters did that before fights."
Lexa frowned but her eyes were fixed low on Clarke's ever so tempting pink lips. The blonde was still speaking but she found herself only half-listening as she imagined losing herself in those lips for hours.
"It may just be a superstition. Athletes were known to..."
Lexa could no longer hear the words as she growled and leapt back in, kissing Clarke before she could protest again.
"Okay," Clarke breathed out as Lexa kissed her neck, making animalistic sounds as she ravaged her skin with her lips, "shutting up now."
Lexa continued savouring the taste of her skin against her lips, nipping her lightly with her canines, her scent mixing with Clarke's.
"I've missed this," Lexa murmoured into her neck. "I've missed you."
Clarke would normally have pointed out that they hadn't truly been apart from each other but she was too far gone to utter a word. Lexa's sensual lips worked their magic as they trailed down her body and Clarke's head fell back against the door, a moan escaping her lips as Lexa unravelled every ounce of her self control.
It was some time later, after Clarke and Lexa had both brought each other to levels of esctasy they hadn't imagine possible that they lay in bed, curled up together. Both of them would still have preferred to sleep during the day but Lexa held Clarke in her arms as they tried to rest knowing that the fight grew closer with each minute they spent together.
Lexa lay behind Clarke, her arms around the blonde's waist as Clarke faced away from her, her arms tucked under her chin.
"I made the right choice," Lexa whispered. "That night in the cave."
Clarke smiled, her eyes still closed.
"I wanted you so badly that night. It seems like so long ago now."
"I wanted you from the first moment I saw you. You were collecting water for your people. You were so beautiful."
Clarke opened her eyes and turned over to face Lexa.
"Wait. So you were stalking me?"
The blonde's lips parted, her tongue darting between her teeth as she grinned in amusement.
"No," Lexa protested. "That's not what I meant. I-"
Clarke laughed out loud at how flustered she was. She leaned in and placed a kiss on Lexa's cheek.
"I'm just teasing," she said. "Please win tomorrow."
Clarke eyes were gazing towards her own as she faced Lexa now, her head on the pillow beside her. Lexa shuffled forward keeping her eyes on her.
"I won't ever leave you," she whispered. "Even in death my spirit will never leave you."
"Do you always have to talk about your death so casually, like it doesn't matter. It does. You matter."
Lexa exhaled her hand resting on Clarke's hip now.
"I miss Madi so much," she said. "I wonder what she is doing now. Luna will probably be playing with her."
"She'll be running off like she always does," Clarke chuckled. "Annoying everyone, making them chase around after her."
"It's hard being away from her this long."
"It's really hard," Clarke admitted. "I think about her every second of the day."
Lexa pulled her closer wanting to be as near to her as possible.
"Me too," she muttered.
She closed her eyes as Clarke curled up into her side and felt herself drift off to sleep, the blonde's head resting on her chest.
Chapter 41: The Return of the Commander
Clarke decides to have a backup plan in case Lexa loses the fight and Lexa fights Prince Roan
Taim yu wan op, taim yu nou na wan op kom hainofa! Yu wan op kom bushhada!
If you die now, you don't die a prince! You die a coward!
Jus drein jus daun - Blood must have blood
The fight loomed over her from the moment Clarke awoke. Lexa slept peacefully beside her, facing away from her. She brushed her fingers up and down the brunette's arms. It always struck Clarke how young Lexa looked while she slept, how innocent. She was formidable and it was easy to forget that she wasn't much older than Clarke and was only young herself.
She saw Lexa stir and shift.
"Are you ready for today?" Clarke asked gently.
"Mmm," she replied not wanting to wake yet.
Clarke smiled and traced the tattoos down Lexa's back.
"Beautiful," she said to herself, studying the image as she had done many times before.
Lexa exhaled and opened her eyes. The fight was playing on her mind and she would not be able to sleep now anyway. She turned over to find Clarke watching her, resting on one elbow. Lexa gazed up at her and into those warm blue eyes.
"Promise me one thing," she whispered. "If I lose you will take Madi far away so that no one can find her."
Clarke's smile faded at her words.
"I promise," she replied, a fierce protectiveness flashing behind her eyes.
Lexa nodded and then got up to prepare for the fight. Clarke didn't follow her knowing that she needed space to focus but she reached under her bed and found a small handgun.
I won't let you die even if you lose she thought. That isn't happening.
Not long later Lexa had meditated and was dressing for the fight. Clarke had braided her hair intricately, tied and now applied the war paint, drawing it down into two fierce spikes at each side.
"You're welcome," Clarke said, fastening the buckles on her leather armour.
"Will you watch?"
Clarke lifted her chin blinking. Lexa had her head turned and was staring at her.
"I wouldn't miss it."
Lexa nodded and focussed in front of her, her head held high as she exited the room. Clarke retrieved the handgun and tucked it down the back of her trousers, pulling her jacket over it to conceal the weapon.
The fight felt like it took forever yet it was over so fast. Clarke watched from the crowd as Lexa and Prince Roan were announced standing side by side. Lexa glanced over at Clarke who moved forward in the crowd. Their eyes met as Lexa unsheathed the sword being held out for her, using her whole body as she slipped it from it's sheath.
Prince Roan hadn't waited and Clarke saw him charging for Lexa already but she turned and met his sword and the fight began.
It seemed to go well at first with Lexa easily winning. She spun and twirled and counterattacked each move he made, disarming him. The Prince recovered quickly punching a nearby warrior and taking his spear, spinning it elaborately.
It was then Lexa seemed to falter as he gained the advantage several times and she stumbled backwards and fell.
Roan stood over her, the spear aimed at her and Clarke growled so aggressively that several crowd members backed away from her in fear. Her wolf was ready for action, ready to protect her mate. She ran her fingers under the back of her jacket, ready to draw her weapon if necessary but Lexa spun her legs and kicked Roan hard in the ankle and sweeping his legs from under him. He recovered but by then it Lexa had his weapon and slammed it upwards into his face knocking him down.
Lexa hovered over him as he stared up at her dazed and helpless.
"Taim yu wan op, taim yu nou na wan op kom hainofa! Yu wan op kom bushhada!"
The crowd was cheering for her to finish Roan and Nia was on her feet yelling at her son in fury.
Lexa glanced down at him.
"Jus drein jus daun," she said.
She threw the spear at Nia and it hit her in the chest, the crowd gasping.
Clarke relaxed her fingers from the gun letting her hand fall back down to her side with a sigh of relief. It was over. The crowd was chanting cheering. Lexa had won them over.
Lexa gave Roan her hand and helped him to his feet.
"The Queen is dead. Long live the King."
The crowd roared at Lexa's words chanting heda over and over again. Clarke understood then what Costia had meant when she said that Lexa was the true heda and why the pack had continued to call her that. Her eyes blazed with glory as they chanted. The people were awed and inspired by her. She was the true commander. The true leader. She had always been.
Lexa glanced over to Clarke and rushed for her and brought her into a wild kiss, adrenaline still coursing through her veins. She pulled off her armour showin the crowd her back tattoo and Clarke did the same.
They had discussed this. They were still covered but seeing the matching tattoos would show the people that they were bound together. Lexa had explained that it was sacred, that they would accept a heda who was married if it had happened before the ascension ceremony.
"Today is a new day," she yelled addressing the crowd. "Today is the day we make peace between all of the clans and welcome Skaikru as the thirteenth clan. We will forge a new future one in which blood must not have blood and in which our children can flourish without the threat of war. Today the kongeda becomes complete."
"Heda. Heda. Heda."
The noise was deafening. Clarke had never seen anything like it and even her own people were impressed.
Lexa put an arm around Clarke's waist bringing her closer to her.
"Let's get our family back," she whispered.
Clarke smiled and they both shifted into wolves, their clothes falling from their bodies as they raised their snouts skywards. They howled in chorus, the sound carrying long and loud. Somewhere in the distance a howl returned. It was Anya followed then by Raven's and Ryder and then the rest of the pack followed. The two wolves stopped and ran back into the ark to dress again and to prepare for the pack's arrival.
Chapter 42: Reunions
Clarke and Lexa reunite with Madi and the pack. Bellamy finds a more friendly, well adjusted Octavia and Costia and Ontari start a new life together.
Laik noumon laik goufa - Like mother like daughter.
Note about Madi
Pakstoka age differently. Their true age is their human age but they develop their wolf form much more slowly than real wolves and so Madi appears like a 7 week old wolf but in human form is an advanced 1 year old. They develop their teeth earlier than regular humans and are able to process both milk and meat. Their motor functions are more developed and their bones and muscles are stronger. In other words she's not a normal baby even in baby form.
Clarke felt almost giddy with excitement as she held the lion teddy bear waiting for Arkadia's gates to open. The guards had been instructed to open the gates as soon as they were in sight and she could hear them and smell them getting closer each second. Lexa was beside her as thrilled as she was to be seeing them again but doing a much better job of hiding it.
When she saw Luna carrying the yapping wolf pup in her arms, clearly having thought it best the pack arrive in human form, Clarke and Lexa didn't wait but started running and Luna let a very excited Madi down to let her run into their arms.
Madi yapped and licked her parents incessantly as they bundled her up in their arms and hugged her.
"We missed you," Clarke said in a high voice. "So much."
She began to sing and Madi tranformed allowing her mother to hold and carry her and Lexa pressed a kiss to her forehead a large smile on her face. Luna ran over and hugged Lexa and then Clarke and the whole pack followed, giddy at seeing their pack members safe again. Octavia ran over to Bellamy and threw her arms around him much to his surprise and kissed him on the cheek.
"You look well," he said awkwardly.
"I am," she said. "I finally found somewhere I belong. You need to meet the pack but not yet. Let them all catch up first."
"Where's Raven and Anya?" Clarke asked suddenly.
"They're running a little behind. They were ah- busy bonding when you called and needed more time."
"Really?" Lexa asked with surprise. "Anya?"
Luna nodded and turned her head as Anya races in with Raven by her side and headed straight for Clarke and Lexa.
Clarke saw the smile on Raven's face and knew right away.
"You turned... and you mated too. I'm so happy for you Rae."
Raven hugged her but taking care not to bump Madi. Clarke bundled her up in blankets and waved he lion teddy at Madi. The little girl grabbed it and immediately tried to bite it and shake it in her mouth with a snarl.
"Laik noumon laik goufa," Clarke said glancing at Lexa.
Lexa smiled proudly her hand under Clarke's elbow to support it as she held Madi and began to hum to her.
"I should feed her," Clarke said. "She'll have been on wolf food for too long. She needs milk."
Lexa nodded and gave Anya a look to let her know that she was in charge. They returned to their room with Madi and Clarke rocked her at her breast as she fed her, humming softly. Lexa resting her head on Clarke's neck as she did.
"Ow, Madi, no wolf teeth!"
Lexa had her eyes half-closed and did not move.They were together again and she was happy. This was everything. There was a gentle knock at the door and some of Clarke's friends opened it, curious to see her child. Clarke covered herself just enough to allow Madi to continue to feed while preserving her modesty.
It was Monty, Harper, Wells, Jasper and Maya who all smiling.
"We're not disturbing you are we?" Monty asked.
Clarke beamed with joy.
"No. Come in. Come and meet her."
They all moved towards her keeping a respectful distance.
"She's incredible," Harper told her. "She looks like both of you."
"I still can't believe that part," Monty said. "It shouldn't be possible scientifically but your mom confirmed it."
Lexa had lifted her head from Clarke's neck but kept one arm around her waist. She could tell that she made the delinquents nervous but she wasn't moving from Madi's side just yet.
They all fussed around her, making jokes, some of which prompted a warning glare from Lexa. Clarke didn't seem to mind and Madi seemed unaffected by their presence falling asleep in Clarke's arms as Lexa played with her wild brown hair.
"Anya says she appears about 7 weeks old in her puppy form but as a human she's 1 year and a month old so she can eat solids as a wolf but not when she's like this. She has teeth already though, sharp teeth."
Lexa let her explain everything to her friends content just to listen.
"She usually sleeps during the day. Most wolves do. We really should put her down for a rest."
Lexa took that as a cue and moved to let Clarke put her into the small bassinet that her mom had put in her room. She glanced at Lexa.
"Are we going to nap too and get back to our usual schedule," Clarke said with a yawn.
"We are," Lexa said. "Anya will keep watch over the pack. Most of them have had rooms prepared near ours. When we get to Polis we will arrange something more suitable to our needs."
"Mmm..." Clarke replied stretching. "Sounds good to me Commander."
Lexa turned her head in a shot. Clarke was smirking.
"We'll leave you two alone," Monty said with a smile.
Clarke nodded and told them she'd 'see them later'.
"We leave for Polis at dusk," Lexa said. "I've explained that we will need no escort. We can go as a pack, hunt on our way."
"It will technically be Madi's first hunt though I'll let her watch from a safe distance."
"You are right."
Lexa picked up the lion teddy and placed it into the bassinet beside Madi.
"You will be a fine hunter," she said softly bending down to kiss her sleeping daughter's forehead.
They both stripped to their underwear and returned to their beds despite having slept the night before placing the bassinet close to the bed. Somewhere in the middle of their nap Lexa heard Madi whine and looked down to see the small black wolf begging to join them on the bed. Clarke was flat out unconscious beside her and so she picked up Madi and placed her on her abdomen allowing her to curl and settle there. Lexa shifted put one hand on her back with a smile. She felt Madi relax and sigh as she went back to sleep and Lexa closed her eyes feeling her daughter's steady heartbeat and listening to Clarke's breathing thinking that there was nowhere else she would rather be at that moment.
Costia pushed open the door and glanced in before she was to leave. She had seen how happy they had been to see their daughter again. Lexa and Clarke now lay fast asleep side by side, Clarke turned into Lexa, Lexa lying on her back and a small black wolf cub curled up on Lexa's stomach with both the women's hands resting over Madi protectively.
Costia smiled at how sweet it was and silently bade them well before closing the door and joining hands with Ontari.
"I'm ready," Costia told her with a smile. "Let's go and start a new life."
Ontari pushed the bag she was carrying back up on her shoulder and nodded, a small hopeful smile on her lips.
They left Arkadia hand in hand while the new heda slept with her wife and child.
Chapter 43: Prologue - Happily Ever After
Raven leads Madi astray causing Lexa to have a talk with her daughter and everyone gets a happy ending.
Noun, fiyanes, en uf - Wisdom, Compassion, Strength
Reshop - Goodnight
Bliden hodness - Red love
Several Years Later
The young brunette bounded down the halls of Polis in her human form with a giggle as Clarke chased her. Her hair was braided and she was dressed in black clothes. She ran past Raven and Anya who were heading for the elevator.
"She at it again?" Octavia asked as the elevator doors opened and Raven and Anya got in. "What did you show her this time?"
Raven was laughing, barely able to breath.
"I told her how to-" Raven doubled over waving her hands and Clarke appeared at the lift entrance her clothes and hair dripping in red dye.
"Quick press the button," Raven.
The door started closing but Clarke thrust her hand in and held it open.
"Stop teaching her how to build this stuff. Seriously! It's getting old now!"
"Alright," Raven said. "I wont teach her anymore science pranks."
Clarke exhaled and then turned away holding the ends of her hair up, wondering how she was going to wash it all out.
Lexa walked down the hallway towards her room after a busy evening of meetings. The clans had not been happy at first at the changes to their schedule but she functioned better at night now and they dared not to question her too much.
As soon as she saw Clarke and the dye in her hair she knew that Madi had been causing trouble again.
"I'll speak to her," she said reassuring Clarke. "Have someone prepare a bath for you. I'll put an end to this."
"Thank you!" Clarke said kissing Lexa's cheek.
Lexa nodded and watched her leave and then her eyes steeled over.
"I don't think you should have done that," Aden told her when he saw the Heda approaching looking serious.
Lexa had been training her own nightbloods for succession, Madi included. Aden, a quiet, serious boy who had been orphaned was a dutiful student. Madi seemed more wilful and rebellious.
"We need to talk," she said. "Alone."
Madi huffed and followed her noumon as they went on a walk. Lexa took her to an open, grassy area.
"Why are you doing this to your mother? You have played tricks on her every day this week."
Madi lowered her head, playing with a blade of grass.
"It was just a game. Raven thought it would be fun."
Lexa huffed and leaned forward looking the young brunette right in the eye.
"What are the three pillars of the commander?"
"Noun, fiyanes en uf," Madi replied unenthusiatically.
"Wisdom, compassion, strength," Lexa repeated. "Do you think that your actions today relected that?"
Madi shook her head.
"No," she replied in a low voice.
"We are pakstoka," Lexa told her. "We care for each other. We protect each other. We still play but not in this way. Play brings us together. It doesn't tear us apart."
Madi blinked and stared up at her noumon full of remorse now.
"You should apologise and make it right," Lexa told her.
"Should I wait? Let Mom cool off first?"
Lexa smiled at her earnest expression. She could be wild but her spirit was more like her mother's than she knew.
"That would be wise," she said raising her eyebrow.
Madi had her head lowered thinking about what she had done and then Lexa smirked and pounced on her playfighting with her daughter. The young girl giggled loudly as her noumon tickled her, protesting but laughing.
After a while Lexa let her up and kissed her on the forehead gently.
"Come on. Let's go and find her a peace offering. It is always good way to start negotiations with gifts."
Madi just smiled as Lexa took her hand and led her to pick some flowers for Clarke.
A little while later and Madi apologised to an unimpressed Clarke and handed her several handpicked flowers. Clarke glanced up at Lexa as she dried off her wet, now pink tipped hair.
Madi was being very sweet and saying all the right words but Clarke knew her daughter. She was good at being tactful when she needed.
"Are you mad at me?" Madi asked.
Clarke looked into those gray eyes and saw that she was genuine now. She knew that she had been pushing Clarke to her limits and that Lexa'd told her it was time to stop. Despite herself she found her anger disappearing as Madi looked up at her.
"No but this stops now. Do you understand?"
Madi nodded and moved to hug her and Clarke blinked holding her tightly.
"It's time for bed," Clarke said. "Don't forget to brush your teeth."
"I won't Mom. I really am sorry."
Madi kissed her on the cheek and Clarke's heart melted. She was becoming more and more like a mini Lexa despite having Clarke's tendecy to rebel against authority.
"Reshop," Clarke said softly.
Madi gave Lexa a hug and wished her goodnight before setting off running towards the door.
Once it was closed Clarke sighed taking off her robe.
"I'm guessing you told her what to say."
Lexa seated herself down on the end of the bed taking the symbol of heda from her forehead and placed it carefully aside on a small bedside table.
"Was it that obvious?"
"Well she may be a mini version of you but she talks more like me so yeah, it was a little more formal than usual."
Lexa glanced back at her thoughtfully. She would have to teach Madi to be better at diplomacy when she got older. Her shoulders and neck ached from Aden managing to strike her during training. It had been a proud moment that had surprised her. He was gifted for his age.
"Are you okay?" Clarke asked noticing her stiff movement as she undressed.
"Yes. Aden managed to land a strike on me today. He will become a fine warrior one day. It hurts."
Clarke began to examine the injury Pakstoka healed quickly and the bruises already fading.
She ran her fingers over the muscles carefully checking for any more serious signs of injury. When she was satisfied there weren't any she leaned forward and wrapped her arms around Lexa's waist kissing the top of her shoulder.
"I'm still grateful you know," she whispered.
"For talking to Madi," Lexa asked.
Clarke rubbed her nose against her mate's skin, inhaling her sweet scent and closing her eyes.
"No for giving me Madi. If you hadn't bitten me and saved me and followed me that day when we got caught by Mount Weather she wouldn't exist."
Lexa held Clarke's hand which was still around her waist and turned her head slightly.
"I love you," Clarke said. "I don't regret anything that happened."
Lexa smiled broadly at her, her eyes flicking down to Clarke's lips and back up again.
"I may have picked a flower for you too."
Lexa suddenly produced a single flower than she had been concealing and handed it to Clarke. The sight of the familiar red flower brought back warm memories of that day Lexa had told her the story.
"Bliden hodness. You rememered."
"I could never forget. That day was special."
Clarke smiled as she twirled the flower between her fingers and gazed down at it lovingly.
"Every day with you is special," Clarke said pulling her into a kiss.
Their lips met and Lexa fell on Clarke taking the flower and placing it on the side table next to the symbol of the commander. They kissed hungrily, Lexa's hands grazing up along Clarke's thighs and slipping in between them.
Mate Lexa's wolf said as they kissed.
Mate Clarke's wolf said as she guided Lexa's to rest on her waist.
She pulled her closer wrapping her arms around Lexa's back, feeling a gentle nip at her neck and a growl as the commander of the thirteen clans began to kiss down one side of her body.
They were alone though the pack occupied the rooms closest to their own.
About an hour later Lexa and Clarke shifted and headed towards the large room where all their furs lay. Most of the pack slept in wolf form, Raven and Anya tangled up together. Lincoln, Octavia, Luna Indra and Ryder always close and Gustus on guard. Clarke circled and lay down besides her sleeping cub licking her ears, Lexa settling behind her pushing Clarke with her nose. Clarke lifted her head and licked her muzzle in response and then settled down feeling Lexa relax.
My pack Clarke thought as she drifted off. I love my pack.