“While it may seem tempting Anya, I really don’t think that killing him is the solution here.”
Lexa shoulders open the door to the coffee shop, one arm holding her phone to her ear. She lets out a breath of relief at the warmth before hurriedly stepping into line, hand digging into her coat pocket for a few bills.
“I don’t believe you. It would be so easy, I could just catch him on his lunch break, stuff him in the janitor’s closet or something. Gus would help me clean up the mess, and everyone would be so much better off.”
She pauses in her search for cash to sigh exasperatedly into the phone. “I think I’ll ignore the implication that you’ve already planned out Tristan’s murder, with your co-workers no less.” She draws a few stares from the other people in line, but she ignores them in favor of pulling out the five-dollar bill she found. She hears Anya chuckle over the phone, and resists the urge to smile at the familiar sound.
“Oh, you know me Lex, I’ve always been good at making friends. Which is more than I can say for you.” Lexa rolls her eyes at that. She steps up to the counter and orders a latte before turning her attention back to whatever Anya was saying. “Speaking of friends, of which I’m sure you have plenty, you talked to Lincoln recently?”
“No, unfortunately we’ve been a bit busy with class and midterms, so I haven’t seen him in a while.” She notices how the barista’s head practically snaps up to stare at her. Feeling slightly annoyed by the attention, she walks over to the other end of the counter to wait for her coffee. She can feel the girl’s eyes following her slightly. “Any particular reason why you asked?”
“Actually, yeah. Indra’s been hounding me to ask you when you guys would be coming back to visit. She says it’s been way too long, and that you’ve both been working way too hard, and if you don’t come back soon she’ll fly over there personally and kick both of your asses.And those are my words, not hers.”
Lexa smiles at the image of Indra casually threatening Anya to bring her home. It had been a while since she had visited, and admittedly, she could use a break from the stressors of college. “That sounds reasonable, by her standards.”
“I’ve certainly heard worse from her. She must be missing you guys a lot, for her to actually ask you guys to come over.”
“It has been too long,” Lexa admits. “I’ll call Lincoln and see if he has any plans over break.” She grabs her coffee, throwing a thank you over her shoulder before walking out. As she sips at her coffee, she glances down at the marker on the side of the cup. She frowns. “Hm, that’s a first.”
“Apparently the barista was incompetent enough to spell my name wrong.” The slightly smudged ‘Alex’ seems to be taunting her. “Certainly surprising, I mean it’s not like my name is hard to spell.”
“Aw, don’t worry Lex, it happens to everyone, you’ll get over it,” Anya mocks. “Anyways, it’s kind of a tradition or something. It was probably just a joke.”
“Joke or no, it’s still rather unprofessional.” The sound of Anya groaning, followed by what was probably her falling onto the couch, is almost enough to make Lexa smile again. Almost.
Back in the coffee shop, after taking care of the last of the customers in line, Clarke suddenly found herself cornered by Raven, who had a hand on her hip and a smirk on her face. “So? What was her name?”
“What was whose name now?”
“Don’t give me any of that, Griffin. My leg might be shit, but my eyes and ears still work, and I could totally tell that you had a thing for that girl.”
Clarke raised an eyebrow. “I don’t know-”
“Can it, Clarke, you know who I’m talking about. Your eyes were practically glued to her. To several specific parts of her, I might add.”
“Can’t say I blame you, Clarke,” Octavia added, poking her head around the corner. “Like, I’m not trying to objectify anyone, but she had some fine-ass legs. No pun intended.”
Clarke buried her face in her hands as Raven and Octavia cackled and high-fived each other. “Thanks for your input, O. And contrary to popular belief, I was not staring at her body.” She adamantly ignored the skeptical look on Raven’s face. “She just caught me by surprise. I mean, it’s not everyday that someone walks in holding a phone conversation in fluent French.”
“Oh, so you have a thing for people who speak French, huh?” Clarke considered the fact that she was too often on the receiving end of Raven’s shit-eating grins.
“Never mind Clarke’s French fetish,” Octavia said, brushing aside Clarke’s protests. “What was her name? Was it something fancy with a lot of accents or something?” Raven turned to her expectantly.
“Well, actually,” Clarke began sheepishly, “I… didn’t really hear it that well?”
Raven let out a groan of disbelief. “Seriously, Clarke?! I mean, come on, you’re a fucking barista, it was literally a giveaway.” Octavia was shaking her head, muttering disappointedly to herself.
“Don’t look at me like that,” Clarke protested. “It’s not a big deal, I just got… distracted.”
“By her smokin’ hot bod?”
“Shut up, Octavia. It was just that she was on the phone and I couldn’t really tell what she was saying-”
“So it was the French.”
“I just-… you two-… it wasn’t-… UGH.” Clarke stormed past them, busying herself with cleaning up the few dirty tables in the shop. Octavia and Raven turned to face her, speaking without looking at each other.
“She’s definitely embarrassed.”
“Yeah, definitely. She totally has a crush on her… whatever her name is.”
“She was pretty hot, and that was before she started speaking in French. Like, madamn.”
Raven rolled her eyes at the pun. “She definitely wasn’t hot enough to deserve that terrible of a pun.”
“Aww, you jealous babe?”
“Jealousy has nothing to do with it. And it doesn’t change the fact that she had a butt that could rival yours, dear.”
“You take that back.”
“Alright fine. You have the most beautiful ass in a room full of asses. Satisfied?”
“What does that mean?"
“For God’s sake, could you two maybe not flirt somewhere I can hear?” A voice rang out from the back. “THANK YOU,” Clarke yelled in return.
“Sorry, Bell,” Octavia called back cheekily. Raven sighed.
“Well. Back to the daily grind.”
“Oh, there are so many puns I could make right now.”
Clarke was busy taking orders for the morning rush when the door opened. Normally she wouldn’t have paid any attention, but nothing could have made her miss the somehow already familiar voice speaking rapid French. She looked up at the sound, trying to catch a glimpse, but the girl was already at the back of the line. She turned back to the current customer, trying unsuccessfully to ignore what the girl was saying.
Clarke had studied French in high school, and had taken a class freshman year to fulfill a foreign language requirement, so she considered herself pretty well-versed in the language. But this girl definitely sounded like a native speaker, with the way she pronounced certain words and the more casual grammar structures she used. She didn’t understand all of what the girl was saying, but she managed to catch part of it. The girl was talking about traveling somewhere for vacation (or was it holiday?), and Clarke briefly wondered if she was a student, and if she also went to ARK. Then she suddenly remembered that it was probably very rude to listen in on what was probably a private phone call, so she directed her attention back to the long line of disgruntled people waiting for their daily dose of coffee.
When the girl finally made her way to the front of the line, she was still on the phone. Which normally wouldn’t have bothered Clarke, but there was something about that day, or that week in general, that made the seemingly insignificant action incredibly irritating. Maybe it was the two hours of sleep she’d had the night before. Maybe it was the pent-up frustration over her lab partner’s insignificance. Maybe it was the fact that this girl was somehow infuriatingly attractive, or maybe it was Octavia and Raven’s incessant teasing. Whatever the case, when the stranger rattled off her order without even moving the phone from her ear, something prompted Clarke to respond.
“Sorry, I didn’t quite catch that,” Clarke said drily. She sees Raven freeze out of the corner of her eye. The girl stopped her rapid-fire conversation, meeting Clarke’s challenging gaze with a blank stare.
“Excuse me,” she muttered into the phone, before finally taking the damn electronic away from her ear. She leaned forward, an almost condescending look in her eyes. For some reason, Clarke found herself leaning forward as well, raising an eyebrow as she did.
“A medium latte. For Lexa.” Her voice is incredibly even and controlled. Clarke would have found it hot, if she hadn’t been in a mood to fight someone. Instead, she meets Lexa’s glare evenly before flashing a sarcastic smile and picking up a cup. With a small smirk on her face she writes “Alexa” on it before handing it to Raven, who takes it from her cautiously as if she were a wild animal.
With a scoff, the girl (Lexa, she now knows) accepts her change before walking away to continue her phone call. Clarke narrows her eyes at her back before turning to the next customer in line, a mildly cooperative look pasted on her face.
When Bellamy takes over cashier duty, Clarke moves next to Raven to help prepare drinks. Raven’s eyes flicker to her repeatedly for several minutes before Clarke loses her temper again.
“Will you quit side-eyeing me Raven?!”
This makes Raven turn to face her full on. “You know, normally I would just let you get this out of your system, but you’re acting extremely pissy today Clarke.”
Clarke sighs, closing here eyes and taking a moment to compose herself. “I’m sorry, Raven. I’ve just been having kind of a shitty week,” she admits. “You know, with school stuff and art stuff, I’ve just had a lot on my mind recently.”
Raven quietly nods her head in acceptance of the apology, and they both return to mixing drinks. After a moment, Raven tilts her head, a grin on her face.
“A lot on your mind, huh? Wouldn’t happen to be some French in there too, would there?”
“Oh for God’s sake-”
“Don’t deny it, she was totally the cause of your sudden outburst there. What was her name? Alexa?”
Raven pauses, a confused look on her face. “Really? I could have sworn her cup said Alexa.”
“Then why-” She stops, staring at Clarke for a moment before rolling her eyes. “Wow, real mature Griffin. You know, maybe you should go to a counselor and find other ways to deal with stress. You know, besides such petty things as misspelling people’s names on their coffee orders.”
“Shut up Reyes.”
The rest of the day goes rather smoothly, and she doesn’t harass any more customers. But for some reason, Clarke can’t seem to stop thinking about her. About Lexa.
That Saturday, Clarke finds herself watching Amelie, one of her favorite movies from high school. It was probably due to nostalgia. It definitely had nothing to do with it being a French film.
Lexa had to admit, Elysium had some of the best coffee in the city. She normally didn’t stay longer than to pick up a latte on the way to class, but the café had a rather nice ambience, and it was much calmer and quieter than any Starbucks. Most importantly, it seemed like the kind of place where she wouldn’t be bothered. Despite the brief nature of her frequent visits, it was quickly becoming one of her favorite spots. The café was practically perfect, after all.
Except for that barista.
Lexa hadn’t seen her since their last confrontation. She was completely unaware of anything that she may have done to offend the girl, aside from existing. Ultimately, whatever reasons the girl may have for hating her were insignificant; her opinion was irrelevant to Lexa anyhow.
So when she sees that the girl is once again manning the register, Lexa is somewhat surprised that she doesn’t lash out like last time.
The girl looks up, giving Lexa a quick once-over. Then, to Lexa’s surprise, she gives a slightly crooked smile. “No phone this time, I see.”
Lexa starts a little at the strange observation, before falling back into the usual icy persona that she reserves for strangers and people that piss her off. “No,” she replies curtly. But before she can place her order, the barista gives a small sigh before leaning forward, an embarrassed look on her face.
“Listen, I’m really sorry about how I acted the last time we…talked, or whatever you call it. I was having a really bad day… well, week really, and I was just… I just kinda snapped, and I’m sorry about that, it was really rude of me. It won’t happen again, I promise.” She bites her lip (which Lexa mentally berates herself for noticing so clearly) before looking up sheepishly. “Forgive me?”
Lexa is pleasantly surprised by the girl’s apology, but she doesn’t let it show. Clarke, as the girl’s nametag reads, appears to be sincere in her words, so there doesn’t seem to be any reason not to accept her apology (a small voice in the back of Lexa’s head tells her that that isn’t the only reason she wants to forgive her). Lexa nods her head, letting a small smile slip through. “Apology accepted… Clarke.”
Clarke looks startled for a moment, before glancing down and remembering that the uniforms come with nametags. There’s a pause, and suddenly Clarke is laughing at herself. It’s a quiet laugh, but with the way that she is shaking her head and the way her eyes are closed, the simple movement seems so warm and full of life. The action displays an openness that Lexa was not very familiar with, and had not seen in many people. At that moment, Lexa realizes that she doesn’t know as much about this girl as she thought she did. And for some strange reason, that excites her (the voice in her head is happily shouting its agreement, but she does her best to ignore it).
Despite being occupied with Clarke and her laugh, Lexa feels a bit of curiosity nagging at her mind. “Although I can’t help wondering,” she begins, and Clarke straightens, looking to her expectantly. “What exactly was it that I was doing that bothered you so much?”
At that, Clarke’s eyes dart to the side and she laughs nervously. “Oh, it was stupid, it’s not really important.” When Lexa raises an eyebrow at the obvious evasion, Clarke relents. “It’s just that, you know, you were always on the phone whenever you came in, and I guess that kind of annoyed me a little? Like I said, it’s stupid, and it’s really not a big deal, just a bit of a pet peeve I have or something,” Clarke rambles, and Lexa finds the other girl’s embarrassment a bit… endearing.
Lexa had gotten used to not getting attached to people. Being a kid in the system meant moving around constantly, from family to family, and always leaving behind any attachments. Making friends would inevitably lead to pain and sadness when they parted, and so Lexa had learned early on not to be friendly with anyone. It was easier that way. But now that she was in college, now that she finally had some autonomy and control over her life, things were getting easier. And there was something about Clarke, how she was so open and confident and totally not emotionally repressed, that made Lexa want to get to know her better (also that Clarke is totally a hottie, she admits to herself). So instead of simply giving her order, and walking away, like she normally would, Lexa surprises herself. She keeps talking.
“I didn’t think that a person making a phone call would be such a remarkable phenomenon.”
“Normally it wouldn’t be, but not everyone speaks fluent French. That’s pretty noteworthy. I mean, we’re not exactly in the most diverse town here.” Clarke tilts her head. “Speaking of which, if you don’t mind my asking, how come you speak French? You don’t have an accent, so I’m just curious.”
“My guardians taught me and my siblings in order to keep us busy. I’m not actually French.” She can see a brief flash of interest and confusion in Clarke’s eyes, and Lexa stiffens. She hadn’t meant to reveal so much, and that was the most that she had ever talked about her personal life to a complete stranger. She quickly redirects the conversation.
“You’d think that someone who is so easily annoyed wouldn’t exactly be cut out for customer service.” Clarke frowns, and is about to defend herself when she sees the twitch in the corner of the girl’s mouth and realizes that she’s joking. She can clearly see that Lexa is trying to change the subject, but she doesn’t push the matter.
“Well, usually it’s more bearable. Usually, the annoying ones don’t come back.”
Lexa quirks an eyebrow. “Well, you spelled my name wrong on my drink. Both times. I felt it my civil duty to try and remedy such indiscretions.”
“Wow, it’s almost like you’re taking it as a personal offense,” Clarke mocks lightly.
“Wasn’t it?” Lexa smiles to show that the statement wasn’t accusatory.
“Well, what can I say? Accidents happen.”
“Hmm, then maybe I’m not the one who needs to be paying more attention.”
“Hey, you can’t really blame me,” Clarke protests. “Like I said, the annoying ones usually don’t come back that often. How was I supposed to know that you would actually like it here?”
“Who said I like it here?” Lexa asks lightly. “Maybe I just came back to make sure you spell my name right.”
“Well if that means you buying more coffee, that’s not exactly an incentive for me to get it right, you know.”
“Well maybe if you get it right, I’ll finally leave you alone.” She notices Clarke tense slightly, but she brushes it off, not wanting to read to far into the conversation.
Clarke looks her in the eye, a hint of a challenge behind her smile. “It’s worth a try.” She picks up a cup and a marker. “And your name would be?” she asks exaggeratedly.
“Lexa.” She watches as Clarke writes on the side of the cup. “Do you need me to spell it for you?” She teases.
Clarke scoffs at that. “Please, your name isn’t that hard to spell.”
“Yes, because you’ve done such a good job of that in the past.”
Clarke rolls her eyes at her before walking away from the counter to the drinks station. Lexa tries to avoid awkwardly staring as Clarke prepares her drink, but the café is practically empty, and there isn’t much else to do. She distracts herself by focusing on the preparation of the drink itself, which is much more complicated than she originally thought.
Finally, Clarke walks back to her, handing her the latte. “Here you go. See you again, Lexa.”
Lexa is intrigued by the confidence in her voice. “What makes you so sure I’ll come back?”
“Oh, you’ll be back,” Clarke assures her. She’s curious, but instead of asking for clarification, Lexa merely nods a goodbye before heading towards the door. She’s just about to exit when she looks down at the side of her cup. There, written in bold, intentional letters, her name is spelled Leksa.
She sighs dramatically at the horrific and infantile error before turning to glare at Clarke. She receives a wink in response. Fighting to ignore the blush that’s suddenly threatening to creep up her neck, she quickly exits the coffee shop, sipping at her latte as she goes.
Clarke watches Lexa walk out, coffee in hand, and smiles to herself. A voice comes from the door leading to the back.
“Wow, well whaddaya know. Griffin actually has some game.”
“Shut the fuck up, Raven,” Clarke sighs.
“No, she’s right. Hell, even I’m ready to jump you after witnessing that.”
“Eh, it was kinda awkward at the beginning, but you made a nice recovery by the end. I’d give you about a 6.5 out of 10.”
“Are you kidding? I mean, that thing with the name and the cup? That was pretty smooth, at least a 7, maybe 7.5.”
“Eh, it was a little too obvious for my taste. Maybe 7. Depends on whether or not she comes back.”
“What, are you kidding? With a line like that—”
Clarke turns, causing two pairs of eyes to snap to hers. “You know, instead of standing around gossiping like old ladies, why don’t you two go back to, oh I don’t know, making out in the stock room, hm?” She saunters away, leaving Raven and Octavia sputtering behind her.
As time passed, Lexa’s visits became more and more frequent, and more and more lengthy as well. Lexa began to learn all there was to know about the Elysium Coffee House. She became familiar with the people who worked there: Bellamy Blake, the owner, who had named the place after his first love, Greek mythology; Raven, who was some sort of mechanical genius, and whose knowledge reduced the costs of repairs and maintenance by 50%; Octavia, Bellamy’s fiery younger sister, who was involved in various sports and athletic programs at the nearby community college (she was also apparently involved with Raven, but that was a whole other story).
Elysium was gradually becoming a second home for her. She began to become privy to certain secrets that a person only knows by becoming intimately familiar with a place. She knew exactly what time the baked goods came out of the oven, and when they would be freshest. She had memorized the layout of the lounge area: where the outlets were, which seats were close to the heating vents, but not too close, where to sit to minimize glare from the sun. After some coaxing, she had even managed to get the password to the employee Wi-Fi, and occasionally Bellamy let her print her assignments out on the office printer. The café had become a place where she could let go, where she didn’t have to worry about keeping up appearances or being disturbed. It became a place where she could completely relax.
Well, not completely.
Somehow, Clarke Griffin always managed to keep her on her toes. They had formed a sort of routine: Lexa would get in line and order her drink (after a while, she had begun trying every item on the menu, much to Bellamy’s delight). She would go to her spot and set up her computer. Eventually, Clarke would come over with her drink, and they would talk, exchange news about their days or interesting points in their lives. Clarke would go back to work, and Lexa would do the same. Later, Clarke would come back to clean up, and they would talk some more, and then they would leave. It was a simple routine. Comforting. Safe.
And yet, Clarke always managed to surprise her, in some way or another. She had surprised her when, after Lexa came back from holiday, she had asked how her vacation had went. That was when Lexa learned that Clarke could speak French (this had led to a conversation about eavesdropping, which had only ended when Lexa had received yet another phone call from Anya). Another time, Clarke had been reading one of Lexa’s reports over her shoulder, and then proceeded to point out all of the flaws in Lexa’s analysis of The Picture of Dorian Grey (that argument had only ended when Raven and Octavia had simultaneously yelled at them to shut up. Lexa later went back over her paper that night and revised her argument). For some reason, Lexa was never able to predict what Clarke Griffin would do next.
Another important, yet silent part of this game they played involved Lexa’s name. Or rather, the continued misspelling of it. Clarke seemed to have made it her mission to find as many ways possible to avoid writing Lexa’s name correctly. After she had run out of plausible (and implausible) misspellings, she had resorted to puns and rhymes, presumably with the help of Octavia. These puns were often accompanied by small, yet incredibly detailed cartoons and drawings (that was how Lexa learned Clarke was an artist). At first Clarke had drawn them directly on the cup, but after a while, she began leaving them on napkins and on the cup sleeve (Lexa suspected this was because Clarke had seen her snapping a picture of a T-Rex doodle one day). Lexa had a small drawer in her desk at home where she kept the napkins and sleeves.
Lexa’s friendship (relationship?) with Clarke was somehow both simple and complex at the same time. It was simple in that they understood each other. Clarke understood that Lexa wasn’t one to share too much about herself, and she respected that. Likewise, Lexa saw how Clarke wasn’t the kind of person to vent or rant when stressed or frustrated. It was at times like these when Lexa would find herself opening up a little, talking more about herself or her day in an effort to distract Clarke. Their relationship was simple in that they never had to talk or ask about these kinds of things. It was easy for them to read each other, and Lexa was surprised at how… secure she felt in having that kind of connection with someone.
On the other hand, things were also much more complex. While the lack of overt communication was much appreciated, it also made things more confusing. Particularly the state of their feelings towards each other. At this point, Lexa had resigned herself to acknowledging her growing feelings for Clarke. The only issue was, she was in the dark as to what Clarke may feel for her. Octavia and Raven had made a few comments here and there, but Clarke had always easily brushed them off with a laugh, or an eye-roll, or a snarky comment of her own. But Lexa still had no idea whether Clarke was into her, or into women at all. But she didn’t want to jeopardize their friendship by asking her outright. So Lexa did what any person would do in that situation: she decided to repress her feelings until she could figure out exactly what was going on. Which worked fine. For a time.
The first thing that Lexa notices that day when she walks in is that it’s Raven, and not Clarke, who is at the register. She’s busy saying something to Octavia (most likely something inappropriate for the workplace) when she hears the door open. A grin slowly spreads across her face when she sees who it is. Lexa gulps before slowly approaching.
Raven starts speaking as soon as she’s within earshot. “Before you ask, Clarke’s got a cold, since apparently the girl doesn’t believe in wearing a scarf, so she’s taking the day off.”
“I wasn’t going to,” Lexa responds coolly, willing her face to not give away the fact that she’s lying. The shit-eating grin is still plastered to Raven’s face, which just makes her more nervous.
“Suuure Woods,” Raven chuckles, before typing in her regular order by memory. She turns to make eye contact with Octavia, and they seem to share a quick non-verbal conversation using mainly eyebrow raises and various winks before both quickly turning to her. Lexa barely manages to stop herself from jumping. Her stomach drops at the barely contained overly-gleeful looks on the two employees.
“One medium latte, coming up,” Raven says, far too chipper, as Octavia all but bounces away to make her drink. Lexa moves to the side, trying to keep an eye on both of them at the same time, but Raven forcibly draws her attention by practically throwing herself across the counter in order to look Lexa in the eye.
“Soooo,” Raven begins, the unsettling grin still on her face. “How’s life?”
Lexa blinks. “Bearable,” she responds. She hears Octavia muffle a laugh, and she shifts to try and catch a glimpsed of her, but Raven quickly moves to block her.
Lexa stares her down, and Raven gulps, but manages to sustain eye contact.
“Is there a problem?” Lexa asks quietly. Raven’s grin seems frozen onto her face now, and her eyes dart nervously. She opens her mouth, but before she can say anything, Octavia materializes over her shoulder.
“Nothing’s wrong,” she pipes a little too quickly, holding out a coffee cup. “Here’s your latte.”
Lexa reaches out to accept her drink, eyeing them both suspiciously. They appear to be smiling more out of habit and necessity than anything at this point, but Lexa isn’t sure if she wants to know whatever it is those two are in cahoots about.
“So, I’ll see you two later then,” she says tentatively.
“Sure!” they both say in sync, and Lexa pauses to narrow her eyes at them before heading out. She can already hear them whispering behind her back, but she forces herself to keep facing forward. As she raises her cup to take a sip, she notices a line of marker poking out beneath the cardboard sleeve. Curious, she gingerly lowers it to see what is drawn underneath.
She does a spit-take right outside of the coffee shop.
Written in Clarke’s handwriting are the words Sexy Legs, bordered in a heart with a winky face drawn next to it. Lexa sputters a little to herself in shock.
As the door closes behind her, she faintly hears Octavia say “Clarke is gonna kill us.”
Clarke’s expression when she next sees Lexa is one of sheer horror and mortification.
“Oh god, I am SO SORRY,” she begins in a rush, her face quickly turning red in embarrassment. “That was all Raven and Octavia’s doing, I had no idea they were planning that, that isn’t why I didn’t show up at work that day, I really was sick, and honestly I had no idea, and I’m really sorry…” Clarke trails off when Lexa just continues to stare at her for several moments. Finally, Lexa opens her mouth, and Clarke braces herself for whatever scathing remarks Lexa may have prepared for the occasion.
“In retrospect, I should have known something was going to happen from the way those two were acting.” Clarke watches nervously as Lexa continues speaking in an even tone. “They were acting like a newly-wed couple that had just been caught. Granted, that’s how they always act, but still. And I must admit, I’m rather impressed by their forgery skills. Although that somehow makes me even more wary of what they do in their spare time.” She nervously watches Lexa, but the other girl remains impassive and blank-faced.
“So… you’re not mad?” Clarke asks cautiously. “Or offended?”
At that, Lexa finally cracks a small smile. “Shocked? Surprised? Embarrassed for you? Yes. But no, I am not angry at you, Clarke.” She shrugs, and the casual movement is so unexpected and disarming that Clarke finds herself smiling in relief. “As for offended,” Lexa begins tentatively, “I found the sentiment to be rather complimentary. And… not entirely unwelcome.”
Clarke blinks, taken aback slightly, as Lexa averts her gaze sheepishly, a small blush creeping up her neck. She feels a rush of warmth flow through her at the sight of the normally composed woman in front of her fidgeting like a nervous teenager. “Well, of course,” Clarke bragged lightly, just to see Lexa roll her eyes. “Anyone would be happy to be hit on by me. Although I would have preferred to hit on you in person, instead of Octavia and Raven doing it for me.”
Clarke realized the implications of what she just said at around the same time Lexa does. Lexa blinks surprisedly at her as Clarke hurriedly drops her gaze to pretend to focus on putting in Lexa’s order. When she looks back up, she is taken aback by Lexa’s expression. Lexa is watching Clarke with a mixture of happiness and adoration in her eyes, and Clarke knows that this is the most open she has ever seen Lexa be with her emotions in the (albeit brief) time that they’ve known each other. Unable to help the swell of happiness inside her, she smiles at Lexa, and it is glaringly obvious to Clarke just how hard Lexa is trying to restrain herself when she returns the smile.
Their attention is diverted from each other at the sound of more customers opening the door and entering. The moment having been broken, Lexa quickly moves to the side to wait. Clarke picks up a cup and a sharpie before realizing that she had forgotten to come up with a pun or variation on Lexa’s name. Turning to look at said girl, Clarke thinks back to the moment they just had, and an idea pops into her head. Smiling to herself, Clarke scribbles quickly on the cup before handing it off to Raven. Raven reads the writing and grins, winking at Clarke before walking over to Octavia. Clarke gives them both a warning look before turning back to take care of the next customer.
Lexa looks up when she hears a cough to see Octavia holding out her drink. Lexa is surprised when she sees that, instead of her usual teasing look or mischievous grin, Octavia has a genuine smile on her face. She becomes even more confused when she sees that Raven has a similar expression on her face.
Right before she walks out the door, Lexa can’t help but turn around to look at Clarke. The blonde is ringing up orders, but when she sees Lexa standing in the doorway, she offers a soft smile. Lexa, heady with that feeling that she always gets when she’s around Clarke, feels the corners of her lips move up in response.
“You’re letting the cold in!” Octavia calls jokingly, and Clarke’s head tilts back as she laughs. Lexa watches her fondly for a moment before giving her another smile and turning around. Out on the sidewalk, she takes a deep breath before gingerly shifting the cardboard sleeve to read the writing. For what seems like the thirtieth time in the past fifteen minutes, she feels her mouth stretch into a smile at the familiar curvy letters and, for the first time, numbers.
Lexa hides her smile behind her coffee as she walks to class.