Actions

Work Header

it's so sweet (knowing that you love me)

Work Text:

clarke is still trying to process what just happened. if she is being fully honest, she is still trying to process her father finding out the ark was dying. clarke is just exhausted, clear as water.

 

and now she is alone. forever.

 

deep breaths.

 

“the sky is blue. there are white fluffy clouds. i can see the trees and i can smell them. it’s cold, soon my sturdy leather jacket won’t be enough. winter will be here before i notice. i-“ she stops talking. out of breath, stomach in knots. usually making a list of things helped her ground herself... but this wasn’t an usual situation.

“i... i n-“ clarke chokes on her own spit.

i’m alone now,’ she thinks, bewildered. ‘forever.

“i-“ ‘i need to find shelter for the winter.’ clarke tries to say. but all that comes out,: “i don’t wanna be alone.”

she waits, for anything to happen. she can’t find picasso, but she’s sure the little dog came this way.

she looks at the lake, taking the view in. she might have thought the scenery to be beautiful; her hands would have itched to draw it and carry it around for darker days. all she felt right then though, was despair.

she also felt a strange sense of closure. she was alone. no one depended on her anymore. no more deaths on her back. she would surely regret it later, when she had to sleep and wake up by herself. until she died.

clarke took off her clothes, not really caring where they landed, and went into the lake. the cold was biting, all her muscles tensing up to the point of pain. good, she wanted to wash off all the death and grime, along with the feeling of failure.

when her teeth started to chatter and her lips where turning a worrying purple blue, she left the water, skin reddened from scrubbing and fingers wrinkled. shaking, not only from the cold, but from the sobs that were trying to break free inside her chest.

she ignored the clothes she had left on the shore; they were tainted with blood.

madi’s blood.

a sob broke through. She would never see her little girl again. clarke could only hope that madi was happy wherever the hell transcendence took place.

she put on her shoes, not bothering with clothes (who was going to see her naked anyways) and walked back to search for clothes, hopefully warm enough for winter.

after ten minutes, she started regretting not dressing herself after her bath. she was cold, very. she feared she would die of hypothermia, although the idea of dying wasn’t exactly unpleasant at this point.

it took her almost an hour to find clothes, and even longer to find some that fit her and worked for the colder weather. after rummaging through all the stuff she had found, she decided it was time to find something to eat.

-

it was hours later when she had finally returned to the lake. it was the best option: clean, clear water meant fish, meant she could clean herself up often, she wouldn’t have to worry about drinking.

she checked the small rabbit she had caught and kept preparing the little nuts and roots. she was going to keep the skin of the animal, it would be useful for a little pouch, that way she could carry the plants she had seen setting up the trap for her dinner.

“look at this, not a bad dinner, the stars, the fire and me”.

her stomach churned, starved but also full of regret and anxiety. she had thought picasso would come back when she smelled the cooking meat, but apparently not.

“fine, it’s what i deserve”.

fine. fine. fine. all was fine.

her hands were shaking. she ignored it. placed the meat in one of the plates she had found along with the cloud and started munching her food.

‘it’s what you deserve’ bite.

‘couldn’t save your dad’ swallow.

couldn’t save wells’ bite.

couldn’t save finn’ swallow.

couldn’t save any of your friends’ bite.

couldn’t save your mom’ swallow.

couldn’t save your kid’ bite.

killed your best friend’ swallow.

got lexa killed’ choke.

she spat the rest of the food out, no longer hungry. she was shaking harder now, and her face was covered in tears.

“m-my name is cl-clarke” she was having a panic attack. “i-“ she needed to calm down.

lexa’s eyes flashed in her mind. warm, full of love and understanding. her breathing goes down a notch. lexa’s smile, gentle and rare and perfect. lexa’s hands. a safe place, a perfect fit with hers. she breathed deeply, coming down enough to realize that she had broken the plate and the food was everywhere.

she ignored it, exhausted. piled a few of the thicker clothes on the ground to make a makeshift bed, grabbing a few more to cover herself up to her ears. the cold was biting now. the wind picking up.

“gotta build myself some shelter or i’ll freeze to death in no time”.

the fire was close enough to give some resemblance of heat, and after everything that had happened... her eyes started to droop quickly... sleep taking her.

-

crack.

clarke blinked. she was still at the lake. dawn was going to break soon. what woke her? It couldn’t have been a a nightmare, she always remembered those.

she stayed put. nothing. the wind had calmed during the night. she was probably dreaming. she held herself closer. dreams were too real sometimes.

she hadn’t dreamt of lexa in so long, but after the test, her memories had come back with a vengeance. how did they manage to even get her smell perfect?

she tried to sleep again, but the ghosts of her dream were too recent, too close. as soon as the sun started breaking over the mountains, she got up and ready for the day.

she had too many things to do to sleep around.

-

the day went by too fast. the skeleton of a small wood hut looked back at her, almost mocking her.

she hadn’t noticed how late it was, but her stomach had started growling, making itself known. she should have eaten something for lunch, but she had gotten distracted, the prospect of not having to deal with the cold weather at night pushing her past her hunger. her small breakfast had been enough then, but now...

she sets the makeshift bed close to the fire, adding a few more logs to it before putting the last of her rabbit meat to cook.

she sat down on her temporary bed, glad to rest for a bit. eating, like everything else, was mechanical at this point, but she knew she couldn’t just let herself die.

‘you deserve to spend the rest of your long life alone. you deserve this. you’re nothing but a failure. always have. always will be’

no. she wasn’t going to die. she didn’t deserve the peace that would come with it.

-

days passed monotonously, even if she was keeping herself busy. she knew it could rain at any moment, she didn’t want to have to find shelter and abandon her little spot. after two weeks of working from the crack of morning until she couldn’t possibly see anymore, her little home was done.

it wasn’t all that great, just enough for a bed, the clothes she planned to keep, a little space to store food and a fire pit. she wanted to look for one of the stoves she had seen in her last trip to... never mind. maybe some other day. now, clarke was trying to stock the fire, ready to eat meat that wasn’t rabbit for the first time in weeks. she had also picked a variety of nuts and plants that were making her mouth water.

then, the door was scratched. every hair on her body stood. it must have been the wind.

scratch.

clarke got up and picked a knife (she would never use a gun again) ready to strike. she opened the door.

“picasso?” wonder. happiness. picasso was back. “you little shit, just wanted to skip all the work and come to a warm home, huh? come here. that’s a good girl. i missed you. you want some food?”

a relieved sigh. she wasn’t alone.

-

clarke’s days were... long. she checked her drying meat, added some. then she practiced throwing her knife, using her bow (she was trying to get better, it was hard to hunt with knives). she treated the skins of the animals she had collected so far, tired of sleeping with clothes instead of the fur of the dead bear she had encountered a week prior. thankfully it was dead, seemed to have been struck by lighting. clarke had carried it back home for almost a whole day, even if the trip there had taken her under two hours...

she had a few more skins hung, mostly rabbits and two boars. thanks to the bear she wouldn’t need to hunt in a while.

“what do y’say, picasso? wanna try to steal a bed from the city?” the dog looked at her, she would follow clarke, probably. sometimes she left for a few days. clarke never liked when that happened.

“alright, let’s go then, girl”

the dog did follow this time, moving back and forth, sniffing and moving her tail happily. clarke was glad she didn’t bark much, she didn’t do well with loud noises anymore.

finding a bed is easy. carrying it back to the lake, however, is not. it took her way too long, it started raining and now her bed was wet. great. no sleeping in a bed.

“it’ll have to dry next to the fire, maybe for a day or two...”

she had started speaking out loud more often, her own voice sounding raspy and almost foreign as days went by, but keeping her sane. or as sane as one could be in her situation.

the rain was tapping against the roof, making her feel drowsy, so she decided to start cooking something so she could feed herself and the dog before she passed out.

after a fulfilling meal, she yawned, her full stomach adding to the lulling sound of the rain.

i wish lexa could be here with me

the single passing thought startled her. she shook her head, complaining about how lonely it was before taking her place next to picasso on the bed.

“we’re gonna sleep on that comfy bed tomorrow. i can’t wait. i know you can’t wait either, you can’t fool me” she pet the fluffy ears and closed her eyes. she was out in seconds.

-

when clarke wakes, she knows she’s not alone. picasso seems to be fully asleep at her feet. the fire died long since. theres something bothering clarke, though, she feels like she’s being watched.

she feels around the pile of clothes she’s using as a bed until she finds the small solar battery flashlight and turns it on.

there’s nothing out of place in the small one room cabin. she looks around, gets up and looks behind the damp mattress, but there’s nothing.

she’s surprised by how disappointed she is, how sad and empty. and she realized that what had woken her hadn’t been fear but hope.

she gets dressed, dragging her own body outside, and she is incredibly glad she built the tiny porch roof, if you could even call it that, because the rain won’t stop falling, angrily. almost as if the weather was showing how disgusting of a person she was.

clarke rolls the lukewarm moonshine she had borrowed from one of the bunkers they had readied, just in case, and takes a long sip, her head is already spinning a little. she takes another sip.

she finishes the drink in another long gulp, stumbles… and sees a figure standing under the pouring rain. clarke freezes and readies her hand to throw the cup at the… person?

“who are you?” clarke tries, but it comes out with rasp that makes it impossible to understand. “who are you?” she repeats, and this time it comes out as an aggressive growl. the figure stands taller now, tense, and then flies away and disappears into the growing storm.

she stays there for a while, and ends up convincing herself that she was just too drunk. she goes back to bed with picasso, but not before blocking the door with all the firewood she had stocked inside.

she doesn’t really sleep much.

-

morning comes way too soon and way too late at the same time. she’s still exhausted when she gets out of bed but she can’t help but feel relieved that the sun is out.

she aimlessly walks around the forest, telling herself that she just wants some berries. it’s not like she actually saw anything. she’s not checking. she isn’t.

she is. she was. and she didn’t find anything. of course she didn’t. even if there had been someone there, the heavy rain would have erased any tracks.

“hey, picasso. you haven’t heard anyone around here, have you?” she says distractedly.

“h-hello?” says a tiny, timid voice. “i- i woke up alone a… a while ago. i don’t remember how long. i am not armed, i swear. i didn’t mean to scare you last night .”

clarke doesn’t move. doesn’t turn. stops breathing altogether. she knows that voice. she must be going crazy. sooner than she expected. she disappointed herself, again.

“hello?” the voice comes raspier now, tiny, apprehensive, as if scared that she’s seeing things. clarke understands the feeling, but she won’t move. she won’t give her broken brain what it wanted.

“i- i’m sorry if i… caused any… i’m sorry” she finishes quietly. she listens closely, steps moving away, clumsily, and then silence, only birds chirping and leaves moving with the wind.

once she is sure the hallucination is over, she turns around to get some food. it’s hard to swallow the dry meat when the lump in her throat feels bigger than herself. in the end, it’s picasso that calms her down, laying her soft head on her thigh and whining softly.

she chokes on a sob, infinitely thankful to have the little dog with her, before holding picasso as close as she can without hurting her.

she doesn’t know how long she stays like that, but the sun is low now. she guesses there's at least two more hours of light, but decides to start tidying things up for bed. she’s especially careful to not leave food in the open, knowing full well animals could not only take it but also attack her if she was unlucky enough to be around when that happens. and she knows luck has never really been on her side.

and yet, when she finally finishes starting the fire in her cabin, she prepares a small plate of food and places it on top of the chunky wood that works as a makeshift bench. just in case. just in case.

just in case.

she forces herself to have some food before bed, even if picasso is the one that eats most of it and the first to take the bed. she follows the dog to the mattress, and lays there. she feels more hollow than usual, and the mattress feels too cold and unwelcoming.

in the end, she ends up spending most of the night between dreams. they’re too vivid, too real. and lexa is in all of them. it’s worse than before. the judge had made her remember many things from her. the green eyes that were so expressive and always warm. the soft hair, held by impressive braids, framing her beautiful face. she could write songs and poems about lexa’s face. her nose and lips. everything. and then, then, there was her voice, her touch, her smell. the way she held her close. how her hands fit perfectly. her beautiful, small, shy smile.

she shakes her head, trying to clear her thoughts. obsessively thinking about the brunette would just make her hallucinations worse. she needed to stop.

so she rises from the bed, earning a whine from picasso, starts a fire, places stones there, ready to get clean water and heat it with them. she munches on some roots and fruits first, though. she can’t die. she won't die. that's her penitence.

she can hear the tapping of the rain on the roof. she can never be thankful enough for her time spent with the trikru learning how to actually build a good hut, else she would be soaked to the core.

she also hears a knock. all the hairs in her body rise at once.

not again. not again. not again.

not again.

"hello? i just wanted to thank you for leaving me food here. unless it wasn't for me, then i'm sorry." the blonde holds her breath. if she pretends she's not hearing things she will stop hearing things, right? "uh, well. I will leave now, I guess." but clarke doesn't hear steps this time. so she waits. it takes a few long seconds, but after a heavy, disappointed sigh, she leaves.

she lets out the air she had been holding for too long, feeling dizzy, crazy, and relieved that it is over. at least for now. so why does she feel like she made a mistake? why is her stomach in knots with anxious energy? the same energy urging her to chase the voice? it takes her a few minutes of convincing herself not to look, before actually looking. but much like the day before, there is nothing outside. she looks everywhere. no tracks. the food is gone, but that could have been an animal. she falls to her knees, she can't keep doing this. and she knows, she knows, that she will look one day. and it will break her.

can she even be more broken? is there a bottom to reach? is she supposed to keep falling forever, until the very day she dies?

she screams. so loud her throat hurts. lets her sobs break through freely.

picasso runs away, startled by the loud noises, so she screams louder.

then:

"a-are you alright? i- i can leave. i was leaving, but i heard... are you hurt?"

don't look. don't look. don't look. just stay still until she leaves. don't move. don't breathe. don't look.

"please, i just want to help. i will go if you tell me you are okay." she feels a hand on her shoulder and jumps, not expecting to actually feel anything, landing on her butt, she, accidentally, looks up.

it's not accidental, but she regrets it the very moment her eyes land on her. time stops, she doesn't think she's breathing anymore. the tears hadn't stopped falling, but they were worse now, completely blurrying her view.

she quickly wipes her tears away with her sleeve, and stares.

it's her. it's lexa. everything is as she remembers. and she knows it's a lie. lexa is dead, and nothing can change that. so she closes her eyes. waits for the telling signs that she's gone. but nothing happens.

she peeks another look, confused, and sees lexa offering her a hand with a perplexed look. she drags her body away, too stunned to run away.

"you can't- you can't do this." she shuts her eyes, even if it is the last thing she wanted to do. "please go away. go away. go away."

she isn't sure how many times she repeats it, but it's picasso that brings her back to reality, once more. and when she looks around, lexa is gone.

she feels too many things about it, so she decides to ignore it and pretend nothing happened. is it healthy? no. but it's not like she can get much worse, or like someone would care.

“i’m crazy. i’ve really gone mad.”

she laughs, softly at first, then louder, until it breaks into maniac laughter.

why? why was this happening? hadn’t she been through enough? couldn’t she just get a fucking break?

“whatever. whatever. i don’t care. i don’t,” she looks at picasso. “i really don’t. don’t give me that look.”

-

“picasso! you’ve been gone for days… you little shit. stop messing with my head.”

-

“look! the first snow of the winter! isn’t it beautiful? and cold…” yawn. “let’s start a fire and eat something. it’s gonna be a cold night, doggo.”

-

“i’m stupid, little girl. it’s been… so long. maybe over a month. but… i wish she came back. it’s haunting and yet… i miss her so much…”

-

“hey! HEY! are you there?! c’mon, just. i don’t want to be alone…” she feels her eyes water, its been two months since she last heard lexa. or at least, that’s how long she thinks it’s been. “i know you aren’t real… but please. please. please.”

nothing. nothing. she curls up, not caring about the cold snow. she just lays there.

-

“you know, picasso? i don’t know how long i’ll be able to stay here, once you’re gone.” clarke sighs, buries her head in her hands. “most days, i think i wouldn’t even get out of bed if it wasn’t to take care of you.”

“i guess i will just… die.” she smiles softly, full of sadness. “is it bad that… thinking about dying, makes me so happy?” the dog tilts her head, listening, but probably not understanding a single word. she pets the dog, softly humming.

“your voice is nice.”

clarke stills. takes a fortifying breath and turns around to face the voice she knows so well. screw fighting it. she was so done fighting it.

“h-hi.” clarke whispers. the girl looks surprised that she actually talked back. she couldn’t blame her.

(but could she? she wasn’t real, anyway.)

oh.” a small smile spreads on the brunette’s face, eyes shinning happily. “hello. i didn’t think you would be very happy to see me.”

“i’m sorry,” she really is. she could have had this. some kind of fucked up company. “i guess… i might’ve freaked out.”

“it’s okay.” lexa says, and her kind face makes clarke’s head spin.

“you’re so beautiful.”

“oh, uhm. thank you.” she says quietly, suddenly shy, a pretty blush covering her face. “you are very pretty.” clarke lets out a loud snort. wasn’t this a little bit… odd? her own subconscious complimenting her? but lexa’s smile falls, so clarke tries to force a gentle smile. she’s sure she doesn’t succeed.

what now? does she talk? kiss her? would it feel real? she shivers. lexa sees this, takes off her own jacket and covers clarke.

huh? weird. she feels warmer. how? she doesn’t care. the jacket smells like lexa. she sniffs as subtly as she can. why is she even being careful?

“so… what’s your name?”

what?

what does lexa mean? she doesn’t know who she is?

“i’m clarke.” she tells the girl, but it comes out more as a question than an answer. lexa lights up though.

“klark,” oh, god. “that’s a really pretty name.” she blushes. “i’m lexa.”

“nice to meet you, lexa.”

-

days stop feeling as long, as dire. nights are spent talking next to the cracking fire, laughing and eating. suddenly, life seems worth living.

lexa still doesn’t remember.

-

“hey.” clarke smiles. “soooo… i was wondering, where did you come from?”

lexa shifts uncomfortably.

“i’m not sure,” she murmurs, picking at her nails to avoid looking at the blonde. “i just… woke up. and no one was here. i looked and looked but, nothing.” she drops her head. after a bit, she peeks a shy look at her, “then, i found you.”

clarke heart flutters. she knows this is not real. it isn’t,

it’s not.

but still,

she closes the gap, puts her hand on lexa’s neck, leans in and kisses her before she can change her mind.

lexa tenses, taken aback, but then kisses her back. it’s gentle, and, even though lexa tries to deepen it, clarke just wants to enjoy it.

she didn’t remember how much she enjoyed this. her heart felt like it was going to beat out of her chest. she breaks the kiss, her breath shaky. her hand automatically moves to caress the brunette’s face, the other girl leaning into the touch, and then kisses her again. and again. and again. until lexa is a mess of giggles. clarke is about to burst from happiness. she never thought she would hear such a beautiful sound.

she doesn’t mean to say it. but she doesn’t regret it.

“i love you.”

silence.

lexa’s face goes pale. and she runs away.

clarke stays there, alone.

she fucked up. how did she even fuck up with someone that wasn’t even real?.

she wasn’t real. she wasn’t.

she refuses to even think about it.

because if she was real then…

lexa had been real all of this time, hadn’t she?

she wonders if she will ever see her again.

-

days pass. then weeks.

clarke can’t sleep. she passes out from exhaustion sometimes, but it’s always restless.

she can’t eat either. she tries, gets to keep enough in her stomach to not starve, but her ribs are starting to show.

picasso has started following her everywhere, which means, she follows her to bed and back. she doesn’t do much besides crying in bed these days.

-

it’s been a month.

clarke decides to forget about it. it wasn’t real. it was just a dream.

she takes all the stuff that belonged to lexa, puts it in a bag. takes it to the city and leaves it there.

there. nothing happened. it wasn’t real.

it wasn’t. it wasn’t. it wasn’t.

(it was. it was. it was.)

-

lexa comes back, with the first days of spring. clarke can’t believe it.

but lexa simply walks up to her, closer and closer and closer.

then a little bit closer.

then kisses her. clarke feels how everything stops. it’s a short kiss, much to clarke’s chagrin.

lexa leans her forehead against her. smiles. holds her so close, there is no space between them at all, and starts spinning them together.

clarke laughs, freely, and happy. lexa joins her.

when they finally stop, out of breath and hiding in each other’s necks, so close that clarke can feel everything, lexa whispers three words.

those words mean more that i love you. so much more.

“i remember you.”

-

it's taken them years, perhaps even lifetimes, of pain, sadness, loneliness, but they finally don't own anything to their people. or anyone else.

it comes out of clarke's mouth as easy as breathing:

'i love you'.

lexa's smile always reaches her eyes when she says it.