The moment Clarke saw the tense expression on Lexa´s face when the girl walked in the house with Maddy following closely behind, she knew something had happened. Clarke was about to follow the distressed girl to the bathroom but was soon intercepted by Madison, who asked to give her daughter a moment. The woman saw the concern on Clarke´s face and it warmed her heart to know Lexa had a person who sincerely cared for her.
Maddy led Clarke to the kitchen and began explaining everything thet ocurred through that day. Clarke was a little incredulous at the beginning but then everything started to make sense as every detailed description Maddison gave coincide with what she earlier heard in the news. Every word that came out of the woman´s mouth sent a cold shiver down her spine. It all sounded like a bad dream, it was terrifying.
Her heart constricted when she heard what Lexa had to do earlier in the school in order to protect her mother. She was not surprised though, in fact it was pretty much something Lexa would be selflessly willing to do to protect someone she loved but still, it increased Clarke's need to comfort her.
They briefly discussed the plan of getting out of the city. They would call Clarke´s mother, explain the situation and wait for her return so they could travel together. There was absolutely no way Lexa was leaving without the Griffins.
"Hey, what are you guys talking about?". Nick rounded the kitchen counter and joined the women. He was a man on a mission, and that was to gain Lexa some time to leave the house. "Did you tell my mom how good I behaved while she was out?". He joked and when neither of his companions followed his banter his expression fell.
"You can tell her yourself" Clarke replied to the boy. "I´ll go check on Lexa real quick and then I'll call my mom" . She addressed the other woman and started to walk out of the room but was soon blocked by Nick.
"So... you and your mom will tag along in our little field trip. That gonna be fun, huh?". Nick said with a big grin.
"Nick, I really admire your capacity to see the bright side on this messed up situation but right now I need you to move out of my way, please". Clarke said impatient. She had a soft spot for Nick but sometimes he could be a little too much.
"Rude!". He mocked being hurt by her words while placing a hand on his heart. "And here I was, always saying you were my favourite sister in law..."
"I´m your only sister in law. And the best you´ll ever get". Clarke interrupted, before he got carried away. Noticing he had no intention of steping aside she suspected there was a reason he was keeping her from leaving. Another fact that made her suspect he was hiding something was the way he looked down to his feet a couple of times while rubbing the back of his neck. It was a trait she recognized from Lexa. The green-eyed girl acted the same way when nervous. When Clarke was about to throw another snarky remark Maddy interceded.
"Nick, why don´t you grab a glass of water so you can take your pills?". Maddy dragged her son toward the fridge, allowing Clarke to walk out of the room.
Clarke gave the woman an appreciative smile as she passed her by and made her way to the bathroom. She knocked softly on the door while she rested her other hand against it, waiting for a response. When she got none she tried calling louder. "Lex, can I come in?". Then again nothing. "Lexa?". She decided to step in and when she glanced through the half open door she found it empty.
A strange feeling grew at the pit of her stomach, something was off. Clarke gave a swift look around the house but Lexa was nowhere in sight.
"Where is she?". Clarke asked standing in front of Nick. "Tell me where she is, Nick". She insisted when the boy averted his gaze.
"I don´t know-". The boy started but was soon was interrupted by his mother.
"What is going on?". Madison stepped in, noticing Clarke and Nick´s staring contest. "Where´s Lexa?".
Knowing Lexa was already gone, Nick grunted and decided to tell the truth as there was no point in trying to deceive his mother, also his job was already done, Lexa did left unnoticed. "I don´t know where she is..."
"But you saw her leave, didn´t you?. And you didn´t stop her!". Clarke said raising her voice. A million thoughts ran through her mind as to where Lexa might have gone to. She just found out the girl killed someone, and that was a heavy load on someone´s conscience. Lexa should not be alone at the moment.
"She´s not picking up... " Maddy informed after trying to get a hold of Lexa on the phone.
"Well, she won´t be able to if she´s driving..." Nick mumbled while fidgeting with a thread of his shirt.
"She took my car? ". Maddy asked alarmed while looking out the window, and sighed gratefully when she saw the car still parked outside.
"Dad´s old bike..." Nick clarified. "But I´m sure she took the helmet, ". He tried to ease the sharp look his mother gave him. "and before you keep asking... no, I don´t know where she went. She just said she would be back soon and not to worry". Nick shrugged downplaying the situation.
Clarke´s heart shrank in her chest as the light of day slowly faded outside. With those dangerous people roaming around and being aware Lexa was out there did not please her at all. She lost count of how many times her fingers dialed Lexa´s number on her phone. She had a vague idea of where Lexa could be and the fact that the girl was not answering her calls got her pretty irritated. The suspicion sat cold and bitter in her mind.
Clarke paced anxiously in front of the window with her phone in hand, her atention focused on the street. To aggravate her stressfull mood, telephone lines were collapsed and electricity went out every few minutes.
What gave her some relief was being able to communicate with her mother. Before the line went down again Abby told Clarke she was on her way home with the Blake family. The Blake´s siblings showed up at Abby´s hospital with their mother, who due to some turmoil in the streets ended with a wounded leg. And on her way out of work, by chance, Abby saw them between the sea of people in the waiting emergency room and with the impossibility of admiting new patients at the hospital, Abby decided to attend the woman herself in her own house, where she at least had some medical supplies.
From her place by the window, Clarke spotted her mother´s car arrive and park in the driveway. She got outside by the time Bellamy and Octavia stepped out of the vehicle carrying their wounded mother, Abby instructing them to follow her inside her home while Maddy and Clarke wasted no time and offered their help.
"Place her on the couch" Abby said as she approached with her medical kit in hand.
Aurora laid back against the armrest with a painful effort. Her children standed close with worried expressions on their faces. Bellamy placed a soothing hand over Octavia´s shoulder, trying to give some reassurance while Abby worked on their mother´s leg with Clarke´s assistance. Blood was pouring out of the nasty wound as the doctor used some gauze and tweezers to clean it.
"Is she going to be ok? " Octavia asked with a small voice when the doctor finished bandashing Aurora´s leg. The woman fell in a deep slumber after receiving some pain killers.
"It´s too soon to tell... We have to wait and see how she evolves. I did everything in my power with the supplies I had but I strongly recommend a check-up at the hospital to garantee everything is under control". Abby wanted to bring some relief to these kids, but as a doctor she had to make sure the family understood the severity of the patient state.
"Hospitals are in chaos right now..." Maddy reminded the doctor with corcern in her eyes. Right now it wasn´t safe to be in public places, much less in hospitals.
"I know. It would be pointless to go there right now. But I promise you-" Abby stared right to the kids eyes. "I will do the best I can to help her"
"Thanks Abby. We know you will." Bellamy said with a grateful smile. Still, his rigid posture betrayed his feelings. The young man had taken responsability for his family since early years. He grew watching his father mistreat his mother everytime he came home after spending the day in dingy bars, drinking his life away. After bearing his beating for so long Aurora made the dicision to get the man out of their house and lives, giving priority to her children safety. And as hard as it was she, with great effort, managed to balance her time to raise her children and run her small bakery on her own. The sacrifice was not unnoticed by Bellamy, who vowed to protect his mother and sister from harm at any cost. So, watching his mother lie so defenseless in that couch was taking a toll on him.
"As soon as she wakes up we´ll move her to the guest room so she can rest properly. Im the meantime I suggest you rest as well. Eat something..." Abby invited while giving Clarke a prompting look, who soon caught the hint and led the Blake siblings toward the kitchen.
"We can´t wait here until she gets better..." The words came heavy with apprehension from Madison, who stepped closer to her friend to be sure they were out of earshot. "We must leave as soon as possible. You were able to witness the crisis at your hospital, Abby. We have to keep the kids safe and we can´t do that here "
"I know..." The doctor said understanding Maddy´s line of thinking. Then she gave a look to the injured woman to make sure she was still asleep. "but her chances are not good if she doesn´t get proper assistance. She needs special medication to prevent further infection. If she doesn´t respond well in the next 24 hours her situation will get pretty critical and any treatment she get´s will be pointless"
It was not nessesary further explaination of what could happen.
"You are her best shot right now" Maddy reassured her friend squeezing her hand. "We are in this together. We will take her with us and we´ll do our best to help her, ok?". She received a nod in response.
"Oh, God" Octavia gasped at hearing Clarke update her on Lexa´s part take at the school earlier. Even though they came from different backgrounds it hadn’t taken them long to become friends. They were a tight group, Bellamy, Octavia, Clarke and Lexa, always taking care of each other. So there was no wonder in Octavia´s concern. "Is she ok?"
"I don´t know cause she left before I could talk to her-" Clarke started but was soon interrupted.
"She left?!--" The girl asked-yelled before toning her voice down. Bellamy excused himself a minute earlier and went out to get some fresh air but still Octavia didn´t want to risk him hearing their conversation. "Where?" She continued in a hushed tone.
"She didn´t say. But I have a slight idea of where...." Clarke focused her eyes on the glass of water between her hands. Octavia remained silent, waiting patiently for Clarke to continue. "She started talking to Costia again recently"
And there it was. Realization downed on Octavia as to why her friend has been so miserable lately. She was one of the few people who was able to witness Clarke and Lexa´s ups and downs throughout their entire relationship, she was there even long before Clarke returned to Lexa´s life. She was there when Lexa dated Costia and also when she took the decision to end the relationship to persue her feelings for Clarke. To say things did not ended on the best of terms between them was an understatement. The evidence of Costia´s slap against Lexa´s cheek remained engraved in Octavia´s memory until today. That´s why she was surprised to hear Lexa was back in touch with the girl.
"Is that the reason you´ve been moping these past few weeks?. I mean, besides the other little thingy only you and I know about... " Octavia raised her eyebrows and gave a subtle look towards Clarke´s stomach.
The blonde soon catched the gesture and turned to make sure no one noticed the action. She could not afford to bring another complication to this tangled day. She surely wasn´t ready to deal with the consequences if her mother happened to casually discover she may become a grandmother in the middle of a zombie outbreak. God, she was not ready at all. Her plan was to talk things through with Lexa and then figure out their next step together. But now, she hadn´t been able to talk to Lexa, there were about to leave town to god knows where, there were people killing each other in the streets, Lexa was out there doing god knows what and she was sitting in her kitchen counter in front of her best friend trying to keep it together. "I haven´t been moping as you put it..." Clarke said with a frown and let out a sigh before resuming. " it´s not the fact that they talk what bothers me. I trust Lexa, so is not jealousy. But yes, there is a deeper reason why I´ve been weird lately. Though I´m not ready to talk about it yet " She explained and hoped Octavia didn´t pushed the subject.
" I understand. Just know that you can talk to me whenever you want, ok?. I mean, if we survive this madness that is..." Octavia finished with a tightened jaw.
"Ok, this is the plan..." Maddy explained to the group of people present in the middle of the Griffins living room. They decided it wast best to lock the doors and wait all together in one house. Minutes earlier they were witnesses of how the neighbour across the street was assaulted by one of the inffected (that´s how they decided to call them) and that was reason enough to make the decission to stay put and dust off the old shotgun Abby kept hidden in the back of her closet. Said weapon used to belong to her late husband, wich although never been fired it remained clean and oiled, and hopefully functional. Power has been off for an hour now and the only light they counted with was the moon´s and two candles placed over the small table in the center of the room.
Octavia sat on the couch with her mothers leg on her lap. The woman have been awake for a few minutes, the pain of the injury keeping her from resting properly. Bellamy and Clarke remained attached to the front window, looking after any sign of movement while Abby guarded the door with the gun clutched to her chest. They all focused their attention on the woman speaking. "...as soon as Lexa and Travis are back we´ll get in the cars and-"
" If ... Travis and Lexa come back " Nick added from his spot on one of the couches under a blanket. He has been sweating cold profusely and throwing up every now and then. The effects of abstinence on full display just like his dark sense of humor. After his comment the whole room turned to him with deep frowns implying a halt in his speech. "Ok, that was out of line. I´m sorry mom I don´t know what I´m saying. Go on..." He shifted in his spot and brought the blanket up, covering half his face after sending a guilty smile to his mother.
Before Maddy could continue Bellamy stood up abruptly, gaze fixed on something on the street.
" Bell?-" Clarke asked but Bellamy shushed her raising one of his hands.
" Look " He instructed pointing his finger towards the front yard of the Clark´s house.
" Is that- What is he doing? "
A mans figure could be spotted walking aimlesly over Lexa´s driveway for a bit before slowly heading to the front door in an unsteady pace. Both, Clarke and Bellamy, followed his track until the bushes covered their view. Not wasting a second, Bellamy ran to the kitchen, where the window faced the side of Lexa´s house and where they had a better sight.
" There is someone in the house "
" What? " Asked Maddy, who followed them and stood next to the boy, squinting her eyes for a better look.
" Should we go there? Try and get him out ? " Bellamy tried.
" No. It´s too dangerous. No one is getting out of this house, ok? " Madison ordered with a pointed look. " We will wait and hope he leaves on his own "
" Oh shit. Isn´t that Travis´s truck? " Clarke then asked beside the pair when she noticed lights aproaching from the street.
" No..." Maddy managed to whisper. " No, no, no ". She retreated back to the living room where she bumped into Abby. " I need the gun. Travis is back and there´s a intruder in my house. I have to warn him " She said not taking a break to breathe. The rest of the ocupants in the room stood up alarmed at hearing her.
" Mom, you can´t go out there alone " Nick cut in.
" She´s not. I´m going with her " Bellamy added.
" Me too " Clarke joined.
" Ok, everyone stop! " The doctor exclaimed. " You are not leaving this house " She said sternly to her daughter before giving a look to Bellamy. " Maddy and I will go. And the rest of you will stay here and lock the door until we get back. Is that understood? " She only got a grunt as response from Clarke and a curtly nod from Bellamy. " Let´s go " Abby finally said to her friend before exiting the house.
Once Bellamy did as instructed and closed the door Clarke went back to the window, arms wrapped around herself in resignation as she watched her mother dissapeared into the night. Bellamy noticed this and stood next to his friend. Clarke vaguely registered him watching her with a troubled expression. She was too focused on mantaining her feelings from spiraling.
The room was quiet, as any minimun sound could disrupt their repressed unsteadiness. A couple of secods passed before Bellamy broke the silence. " She will be back " He said, conviction in his eyes.
" I know. I trust my mom " Clarke´s reply was dry. Slight annoyance tainting her words. She was exhausted and could no longer hide her surly mood.
" I meant Lexa... "
Clarke sighed and turned to him. Bellamy and his ability to read her like an open book. He didn´t deserve her outburst, none of this was his fault. So she forced a smile. " I´m s-..." She began but was cut short when a loud bang was heard from next door. Her eyes swam erraticaly over his face, words stuck on her throat. She felt how her blood rushed to her head in the matter on seconds, making it hard to distinguish the veracity of the situation. Did she just heard a-
" Gunshot " Bellamy let out in a whisper. " Clarke, no! . Wait! ". Before he could react the blonde ran passed him towards the kitchen. When he caught up to the room it was too late, the kitchen door was open. The girl was crossing the short distance that separated her house from Lexa´s and made her way inside through the side door. " Close this door, O. " He instructed his sister with finality in his tone when he noticed the young girl had joined him after the commotion. As soon as Octavia nodded he ran off after the blonde.
Darkness surrounded Clarke as her feet carried her through the dark halls. After spending great part of her life in this place, she trusted her memory to guide her. The only distinguishable sound was coming from her shoes as they made contact with the ceramics, soon harmonizing with the thumping of her wild heart. Realizing with every step that she wasn´t sure of what she would come across when she reached her destination. The thought took her breath away for a second but soon she worked up her courage and placed the fear on the back of her mind. Just for a little longer. She thought.
When Clarke reached the main room she was forced to a halt, stopped by the sudden brightness. Power came back then and there, lights coming alive again. Instinctively, Clarke covered her face to protect her eyes, taking her a few seconds to get used to the change.
The image she came across exceeded any imagined expectation. Any resemblance to a thriller movie was pure coincidence.
A dark, wet stain splashed over the wall and curtains was the first thing she noticed. The second thing was Travis standing next to a dead mans body, gunshot tightly gripped between his hands.
The third thing she noticed was that the living room was packed with people. In her quick survey she spotted an old man and a girl, she´d never seen before, in a corner. Not far Travis´s son and ex wife made their presence known too.
The world around her started to spin and she could swear the ground beneath her feet was shaking. She was about to faint. She knew it. Her previous worked up courage had ran out.
Her heart beat was out of control, the cold sweat that covered her hands and the shortness of her breathing were the clear symptoms before fainting.
Before Clarke lost her balance, she felt a pair of strong arms wrap around her, holding her up. Thanfully her mother was close enough to offer assistance and hold her tight to her side. She could hear the doctor giving her some soothing words but in her frenzy state she was unable to distinguish them, barely able to stomach what just happened. She almost didn´t noticed Bellamy had joined her side, the boy was just as paralized as her.
Time seemed to have stopped for a while since everyone remained frozen in place until Travis broke the spell. " Is everyone ok ?" . He asked without removing his eyes from the body splayed on the floor. " Is anyone hurt ? " He asked again, this time giving a look at each of the presents and receiving a few noes as answer. Travis let out a deep sight, taking a second to gather his force to continue. " We have to check every entrance is lock before we clean this " They had no time to dwell on moralities, they had to stay safe.
They shared a look between themselves before getting ready to follow Travis´s instructions. But when they intended to leave the room, two inconsistent blows resounded on the front door, making everyone stop in their track. Maddy, who was standing close to it, took a step back, fear clear in her eyes. Fear that another of those things was trying to get inside the house too.
Travis must´ve felt the same fear and as quietly as possible stood in front of Maddy, gunshot firmly aimed toward the wooden door. The rest didn´t dared to emit a sound, silently praying whoever was on the other side just walked away. Those prayers were aparently unheard cause the next second the doork nob began to turn. Holding his breath Travis straightened his posture, tensing his muscles getting ready to fight any threat that could come through the door.
But when his pointing finger grazed the trigger the door bursted open, startling everyone and revealing a dishveled Lexa. Face covered in blood, features not conveying any emotion. Her breathing hard as strong shoulders heaved with each intake. If she noticed the gun pointing at her face, she didn´t show... or didn´t care. Her eyes unfocused, appeared lost, void of light. She looked extremely exhausted.
" Lexa ? " . Maddy softly called, urging Travis to drop the gun with a hand and taking a small step towards her daughter. Maddy´s eyes traveled all along the girl´s body, inspecting for any visible wound. Wich was difficult cause her skin and clothes were dirty and ripped at some edges and made impossible to tell with precission if there was an injury. Plus the girl was carrying a backpack on her front, held securely with an arm against her chest as another bag rested over her shoulder.
Worry washed over Maddy as the girl in front of her kept unfazed. " Honey ? " She tried again after sharing a look of concern with Clarke ( who remained atached to her mother). And as a switch have been activated Lexa reacted, though her moves became desperate while removing the straps of the backpack the moment she acknowledge all eyes were on her. As soon as the staps were free, she held the item protectively between her arms and slowly approached Madison.
" Don´t drop this " Lexa said in a droning voice as she handed the backpack to her mother. Leaving the room right after.
Maddy glanced back to her retreating daughter when a barely audible weeping coming from inside the backpack drew her atention. Maneuvering the bag on one hand she was able to use the other to slide the zipper open, allowing her to see it´s content. What she saw made her gasp in shock.
" What is it ? " Travis questioned after Maddy´s reaction.
" It´s a baby "