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Stolen Moments

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The first time she ever laid her eyes on golden hair and deep blue eyes, she could literally feel her heart skip a beat. Clarke Griffin officially joined the advertising company as a graphic designer and easily made her way into Lexa’s life when her desk was conveniently placed right across from Lexa’s.

 

Clarke was beautiful, no doubt about that. She found herself stealing glances at Clarke every so often. The way her nose crunched up and her lips formed a small pout when she was focused gave Lexa that weird ‘butterflies in your belly’ feeling and made her heart flutter. It didn’t really help that Clarke looked absolutely mesmerizing when she was working, pouring her heart and soul onto the blank computer screen. Lexa didn’t like the way Clarke made her feel. Not one bit

 

Against all reasoning and self-control, Lexa kept doing it.  Looking up from her stack of paper work to look at Clarke. Inching her head, a little bit to the left, past her desktop screen, just for a peek of Clarke gluing her blue eyes to her own screen. Sometimes, and it happened more than Lexa was proud of, the blonde would look back at her and they’d exchange smiles. Lexa hated to admit, but Clarke’s smile was probably the highlight of her days.

 

Clarke was friendly, energetic, amazing at her job and everyone in the office loved her instantaneously. Before Clarke, Lexa was the youngest hire of the company, being only 23. But now, Clarke had taken her place as the office’s baby, at 21. Not that Lexa minded the shift of attention, Clarke was new and inexperienced so of course she needed some help. However, she couldn’t ignore the way her skin crawled whenever Finn leaned over Clarke’s desk, putting his filthy hand on Clarke’s shoulder, and “helped” her with whatever she was having troubles with.

 

Lexa never had a problem with him, but now she couldn’t stand the sight of the guy with stupid parted hair and a dopey grin on his face. But Finn was nothing more to Clarke than an “overly-friendly” coworker. Here’s the real problem: Wells Jaha, aka the boyfriend. They had been dating for 1 year and before that they grew up together. Classic boy/girl next door story.

It took Lexa some time but she was finally able to admit to herself that she was having a crush on Clarke Griffin, a huge one at that. She berated herself for having this crush and knew she shouldn't be pining so hard on Clarke, because Clarke was straight and had a boyfriend. A boyfriend Lexa couldn't even fault, try as hard as she may, because Wells is such a great guy. But every time Clarke was around, all of her sense of self-control went right through the windows and she just wanted to know more about the blonde. They can be friends, right?

//

As time went by, she got to know Clarke better and discovered more about her. The blonde was a giant manga nerd and she loved Dragon Balls Z and her favorite character was Vegeta. While Lexa found Clarke’s choice to be rather questionable, she found it endearing none the less. One day, she came to the office early, pulled out a Vegeta bobble head that she spent all weekend hunting down, and placed it on Clarke’s desk

 

“Found it at a random comic store, tucked behind all the other cool characters like Gohan and Trunks, so I thought he could provide you some entertainment in stressful times. He would be much more help to you than in battles, I’d say :) – L”

 

She smiled at the post-it note and neatly stuck it at the feet of the bobble head. That day, Clarke wrapped her in a tight hug and thank you’s were murmured in her ears. Lexa tentatively returned the embrace, and slowly let the feeling of holding Clarke so close take her over.  ‘Stay away’ her head screamed; ‘Make her happy’ her heart whispered. And for the first time in her life, Lexa chose to listen to her heart

 

//

 

The idea of a Corporate retreat is quite possibly the dumbest thing known to mankind. The guy that came up with it was probably Satan himself. She groaned as she threw the sticks on the ground, frustrated at how she couldn’t even set up a freaking tent.

 

A hand on her arm made her jump. She turned around, only to see blonde hair peeking past her shoulder at the disaster that was supposed to be a tent. Clarke laughed and all the heat in her body rushed to her face, but she couldn’t help but be captivated by the melodic sound coming from Clarke. 

 

“I don’t know about you but I don’t think we can sleep under that, whatever that is.”

 

“We?”

 

“Yeah, Bellamy didn’t bring enough tents for everybody so I volunteered to share and since you snatched the biggest tent, it was only logical. It’s okay with you right? If not, I can just share with Octavia or something” Clarke said, with a bright smile on her face. The smile made Lexa’s heart flutter and filled her head with all the scenarios that sharing a tent with Clarke could bring.

 

“Ah, no, don’t ask them, it’s fine. I don’t mind” Lexa replied a little too eagerly.

 

Clarke’s smile grew wider as she brushed past Lexa and crouched down to the mess of sticks and sleeping bags.

 

“As much as I love sleeping under the stars, I would still love having a roof over my head. Don’t want birds to poop into my open mouth tonight. Come on, help me sort these out”

 

Snapping out of her daze, Lexa crouched down and sorted through the different sizes of sticks. They worked as Clarke told her the story of Raven “accidentally” pushing Finn in the lake after his shameless attempt to volunteer to share a tent with her. Clarke let out a laugh and Lexa tried to ignore the sudden spike in her heart rate. She would never get tired of the sound. She chided herself for getting too close to Clarke. She wanted all of it to go away. The way her breath hitched when Clarke’s arm brushed against hers needed to stop. The way Clarke managed to make her blush just by smiling needed to go. In conclusion, her feelings needed to disappear. Feelings always lead to trouble, and Lexa much preferred her life to stay trouble-free. But right here, right now, with Clarke being so close and laughing at her stupid jokes, the troubles didn’t seem so…troubling.

 

That night, they all gathered around the campfire grilling marshmallows. Bellamy broke out his guitar and strummed a couple chords to some songs that Lexa didn’t recognize. Her eyes fell on Clarke sitting on the other side of the fire. The young graphic designer had her head on Raven’s shoulder, her eyes glued to the fire in front of her. Lexa didn’t want to be jealous, she really didn’t. But, the way Clarke was laughing at Raven’s jokes and leaning close to whisper in Raven’s ears made Lexa uncomfortable. Really uncomfortable

 

Clarke was always the touchy-feely type, she knew that. Sometimes, she would flop down on Octavia’s lap in the lunchroom, or wrap her arms around Bellamy’s shoulders and rest her chin on his head whenever he showed her his work on the computer screen. With Lexa, it was no exception either. She would hug Lexa from behind, or link their arms together when they walked. While Clarke’s gestures of affection looked the same for everybody, but Lexa felt like with her, the blonde’s hugs were longer, tighter, and tenderer. The idea was shrugged off just as fast as it came up, though. Lexa kept telling herself that it was just her imagination. Clarke did that to everyone, and it meant nothing.

 

She decided to call it a night after another stupid team building game and retreated to her tent. She let her body drop against the sleeping bag with a thud, and frowned at how uncomfortable it was. She tossed to her side, trying her best to fall asleep before Clarke got in, because she knew full well, there was no way in hell she could sleep with Clarke right next to her. After 5 minutes of trying, and failing, she let out a groan and at that right moment, the tent unzipped and Clarke walked in.

 

“Hey” Clarke said, and even in the darkness that surrounded them, Lexa still saw the flash of a smile from her lips. “Can’t sleep?”

 

“I’m more like a mattress and AC kind of girl” She replied, trying not to sound so bothered. Clarke chuckled and unzipped her own sleeping bag. Instead of settling in, she opened it all the way and folded it in quarter

 

“Get out of your bag” Clarke told her and she obliged, intrigued to see what the blonde was trying to do.

 

Clarke opened her bag all the way too, but then pushed it to the entrance of the tent. She put her folded bag down in the middle

 

“Since my bag is humongous, we can use it to sleep on and use yours as a blanket. We’d have to sleep really close though, I promise I won’t kick you in my sleep” She grinned as she grabbed Lexa’s bag and draped it over herself.

 

Lexa’s jaws were agape at how much space they have now, which was the size of a twin size bed. She cleared her throat as she settled right next to Clarke, who was so close to her, oh so close.

 

“Night, Lexa”

 

“Good night, Clarke”

 

She closed her eyes and willed herself to sleep. But it was no use. After only 5 minutes, she could feel Clarke’s breath even out while she laid rigidly in the tiny space that they shared. Clarke suddenly shifted, slung her arms across Lexa’s stomach, hand resting on her hips and pulled her close. Her leg swung over Lexa’s and entangled them. Her heart fluttered as she felt Clarke’s breath on her chest. The girl was pretty much on top of her. Hesitantly, she brought her arm up and placed it on Clarke’s shoulder as the girl nuzzled closer to Lexa. Tonight, Lexa allowed herself to feel. To feel how right it was to have Clarke’s in her arms, and to feel herself fall asleep to the sound of Clarke’s even breathing. And most of all, to feel herself fall in love for the first time in her life.

 

//

 

2 sugars, no cream. She kept her focus on stirring the coffee in front of her, humming to the tune that Clarke made her listen to just 2 days ago. She wasn’t happy, no, but, she was content. The way that Clarke and she were, it was enough. They were friends that cuddled, told each other everything, and spent most of their free time together. Of course she wanted more, but she would never risk losing Clarke. She would rather have her this way, than not having her in her life at all. This was enough. At least that was the lie she kept telling herself to make herself feel better.

 

She could feel arms wrapped around her waist from behind, holding her tightly and head resting against her back. She chuckled, only one person would do that in the whole office.

 

Clarke sighed and Lexa just knew something was wrong “Why are you upset?” She asked, hands busy making another coffee, for Clarke…3 sugars, 2 creams.

 

“I just got reamed out for missing the deadlines for the Milton contract. It’s not like I turned it in a day late, just by a couple of hours. There was one part that I couldn’t get right so I kept fixing it until I was satisfied. By the time I realized I was late, Kane was already at my desk with smoke coming out of his ears.”

 

“Aw come on, it’s not that bad. He knows your work is always A+, that’s why he’s so hard on you” She turned in Clarke’s arms and held the girl tightly, inhaling the apple shampoo that Clarke loved so much.

 

“Want to have lunch together? You always make me feel better”

 

Lexa opened her mouth to say yes, but an idea came to her head. She let go of Clarke and handed the blonde her coffee “I can’t. I promised my mom I’d have lunch with her. I’m sorry”

 

“Oh, that’s okay. Maybe tomorrow. Thanks for the coffee” With that, Clarke made her way back to the office. Lexa tried not to think too hard about the look of disappointment on Clarke’s face. They were friends. Friends get disappointed when friends couldn’t spend time with each other. Right?

 

She bolted out of her seat the moment the clock hit 12:00. Of course she wanted to make Clarke feel better, so instead of just having lunch with her, Lexa wanted to kick it up a notch by making her a care package full of her favorite foods. First stop, the grocery store. She hurriedly grabbed a box of cherries, Cheetos, salted peanuts, a jar of Nutella, chocolate mint ice cream and 3 bottles of Pepsi (yes, Clarke preferred Pepsi over Coke. Weird.) The time was tight since her next destination was 15 minutes away. She stopped at her favorite bakery and bought 2 tiramisus, Clarke loved that stuff. She put them all in a box, smiling to herself, thinking how happy Clarke would be to have all of her favorite junk food in one place.

 

Lexa got back to the office with 20 minutes to spare. She set the box under her desk and waited for the blonde to return. Just moments later, Clarke walked in from the break room, coffee in hand. Her face lit up when she saw Lexa and quickly made her way to the desk.

 

“How was lunch with your mom?” She asked, leaning on Lexa’s desk.

 

“There was no lunch. I have something for you” She grinned as she pulled out the box from under her desk. She watched as Clarke’s face broke into a smile as her eyes swept through all the items in the box. “It’s an impromptu care package. I hope it’ll make you feel better”

 

Before she could process it, arms were thrown around her shoulders and holding on to her tight.

 

“Thank you so much. I love it. Nobody’s ever cared about me this much”

 

“I do. I care about you, more than you know, Clarke” She closed her eyes at the feeling of Clarke nuzzling in the crook of her neck, trying to pull Lexa impossibly closer to her.

 

After a long moment, Clarke pulled away, wiping an un-fallen tear from her eyes and a smile plastered to her face.

 

“Let’s go to the roof and devour these tiramisus!” With that, she grabbed the box of desert and spoons, and pulled Lexa to her feet, making their way to the roof. They took their seats next to each other on the ground, backs against the railing. A grin broke across Lexa’s face as Clarke hum appreciatively at the first taste of her favorite desert

“This is heavenly” She mumbled with a mouthful of tiramisu

“I can make a much better one” Lexa said, enjoying the way Clarke turned to look at her in amazement

“I didn’t know you bake. You gotta teach me, or rather make me some!” Clarke winked and she thought her lungs were going to malfunction

“I love baking and of course I’ll make you some” She replied enthusiastically, but it was a flat out lie. Lexa Woods hated everything that had to do with a kitchen. She could barely make fried eggs without setting off the fire alarms. But ever since she found out that the blonde loved tiramisu, she was determined to learn how to make the intricate dessert, just for Clarke. And now, after numerous of failed attempts, Lexa could proudly tell Clarke that her tiramisu was indeed, out of this world.

As they eat the tiramisu in silence, Lexa was filled with joy, seeing how happy the care package made Clarke. Or rather, how happy she made Clarke. She glanced over, taking in Clarke’s beauty in the blinding sunlight. Her hair glowed and her eyes shone even brighter. Lexa’s fingers ached to reach out and pull Clarke in her arms, to tell Clarke about the overwhelming feeling that was drowning her slowly. But she couldn’t. They were friends, and that was all they would ever be.

                                                                                        

A few stolen moments like this with Clarke was enough.

 

It had to be

Chapter Text

She groggily opened her eyes and was instantly assaulted with a pounding headache. Her whole body was in pain and it felt like she was on fire. As Lexa started to get up, everything around her started to spin violently. She had no choice but to throw herself back to bed while trying her hardest not to puke. ‘Great’ she groaned to herself.  Getting sick was exactly what she needed right now, especially with all the work she needed to get done at the office.

Even though she hated getting sick, the reason that got her sick was well worth it. She spent the previous night with Clarke sitting in the cold on the roof of the blonde’s house, comforting her after she had a huge fight with Wells. Clarke didn’t tell her the reason of their fight, and Lexa didn’t pry. She didn’t want to know anyways. She tried to ignore the way her heart tugged at her chest when Clarke went on and on about how insensitive Wells was. Guess the guy wasn’t perfect after all. Lexa could do better than. She would treat Clarke much better than that.

They only talked about Wells for the first 30 minutes. After Clarke let out all of her rage, they fell back into their usual conversations, which covered just about anything and everything. With Clarke, it was easy. She didn’t have to try or force any of their conversations, they just flowed. Clarke taught her about the stars and constellations. Her eyes glowed under the moonlight and sparkled with passion as she expressed her love for space and the Universe. If Lexa thought Clarke was breathtaking while basking in the sunlight, she was dead wrong.

The night ended at 3am when Clarke fell asleep, with her head resting on Lexa’s shoulder. She smiled when Clarke mumbled something in her sleep, cutely pursed her lips, and snuggled closer to Lexa, seeking warmth. She let herself enjoy the moment for 10 minutes before waking Clarke, helped the sleepy girl climb down the roof, tucked her in to bed, and then, bid her goodbye.

Lexa grunted as she blindly searched for her phone on the nightstand and dialed Kane’s number. After a quick conversation, he agreed to let her take a sick day, maybe even a couple if she wanted to, since she had never taken a sick day before. She threw her phone back on the nightstand and buried herself back in the blanket, hoping the headache would be gone when she woke up.

//

She was asleep for what felt like 5 minutes when the doorbell rudely interrupted her slumber. Lexa buried her head further into the pillow, hoping whoever it was would leave her the hell alone. Not even a minute later, the bell sounded again and again, more forcefully this time. She begrudgingly threw the cover to the side and got out of bed. Thankfully the headache wasn’t as bad as before but she still leaned against the wall for support as she made her way to the door.

“I’m not interested in whatever you’re selling, so please-” Her words died in her throat at the sight of the person standing on the other side of the door

“Special home care service for Lexa Woods” Clarke smiled brightly at her, hands gripping 2 groceries bags.

She didn’t wait for Lexa to reply as she brushed past the stunned brunette and made her way into the kitchen.

Lexa finally snapped out of her daze, closed the door quickly and turned to Clarke, who kept herself busy with pots and pans she just pulled out from the cabinet

“What are you doing here? Aren’t you supposed to be at work?”

“Kane said that you were sick, so I took a personal day and came to take care of you. It’s my fault you got sick after all.” Clarke shrugged, popping a cherry in her mouth.

“You didn’t have to Clarke. I can take care of myself.”

She sat down at the stool on the island. Clarke fed her a cherry, and Lexa strongly suspected she only did so, so as to shut the brunette up

“Right. You can take care of yourself with-” Clarke opened the fridge and Lexa blushed lightly “-2 eggs, a carton of milk, orange juice and half an apple.”

She gave in, feeling a great sense of appreciation toward the blonde for going through all that trouble for her. And of course, she felt that familiar little flutter in her heart, the one that was always present whenever Clarke was near.

“Thank you, Clarke” She said, to which the blonde looked up from the chopping board and smiled shyly at her.

“Get some more sleep. Lunch will be ready soon.”

Lexa glanced at the clock and it was already well past 11am, she had slept for another 3 hours but her body desperately wanted more.

“Are you sure? I can help” Lexa offered, despite her body and mind violently rejecting any form or thought of doing any work.

Clarke raised her eyebrow challenging her. Lexa merely responded by holding her hands up as a sign of surrendering to the blonde’s whims, or in this case orders.

“Thank you, Clarke”

With that, she padded over to the couch, threw the blanket on top of herself and fell asleep to the sound of Clarke expertly dicing tomatoes.

//

She woke up again to the mouthwatering smell of delicious food. The headache and pain momentarily forgotten as her stomach grumbled furiously.

“Rise and shine sleeping beauty” Clarke moved swiftly, placing a tray of food on the coffee table, and settled next to Lexa on the couch. “I have oven roasted tomato soup with mozzarella, and a grilled cheese sandwich”

“Thank you Clarke. Now let’s hope it tastes just as good as it looks.” She joked, earning a playful nudge to the shoulder. She took her first bite and her taste buds exploded in pleasure “This is amazing!”

“What? Are you surprised?” Clarke cockily smirked and focused on her own bowl of soup.

The food was gone within minutes and Lexa felt her energy coming back to her. Clarke got up, cleaning up the tray and bowls when Lexa reached out and stopped her.

“You cook, I clean. Can’t let you break our pattern now.” She smiled. That was their system, since Lexa was a disastrous cook, cleaning was her forte.  

“You’re sick, I can’t let you clean. I’m just going to leave them in the sink if that makes you feel better.” Lexa nodded and settled back to the couch.

Clarke came back moments later, Advil and a glass of water in hand, extending them in Lexa’s direction with one simple instruction… “Drink.”

Lexa’s eyes darted to the pills, then back at the blue orbs looking at her expectantly. She raised her eyebrow at Lexa’s hesitation “Really? You? Lexa Woods is afraid of taking pills?”

“Who likes taking pills Clarke? That’s right, nobody. Do I really have to? Your food made me feel much better all ready.” Lexa whined in response.

“Flattery won’t work this time Woods. Hurry” insisted Clarke.

Lexa finally gave in at the pleading in Clarke’s eyes and grabbed the two pills, popping it into her mouth and quickly chased them with water. She shuddered at the taste

“There. Not so bad is it? Now, what do you want to watch?” Clarke turned on the TV and nonchalantly browsed through Netflix.

“Are you sure you want to spend time with me? I don’t want to get you sick.” Lexa asked in a feeble tone. She was hoping Clarke wouldn’t pick up on her vulnerability, or for that matter answer her question with a ‘No.’ However, the logical and rational side of her was chiding her for her selfishness and reminded her that getting Clarke sick would be the worst thing she could possibly do.

“I have a killer immune system. Now help me choose a movie” Lexa smiled at the girl’s stubbornness.

“I always watch Moulin Rouge when I’m sick. The DVD is on the shelf”

“As you wish” Clarke bounced to her feet, it took her no time before finding the DVD and putting it in Lexa’s PS4

Lexa smiled contentedly as Clarke automatically snuggled closer to her and they fell into a comfortable silence.

At some point during the movie, they shifted positions, both laying on the couch and Clarke had her arm wrapped protectively around Lexa’s waist from behind.

And that was how Lexa woke up, happy, headache-free and wrapped in Clarke’s arms.

//

“Are you sure Subway is a good idea? You were bed-ridden yesterday…” Octavia asked, raising her eyebrows at Lexa while they wait for their turn to order at Subway.

“I wasn’t bed-ridden, just a slight cold and I’m feeling much better now.” Lexa responded.

“Looks like Clarke is a better nurse than I gave her credit for.” Octavia teased, and Lexa’s face instantly reddened.

“How did you know?” She looked everywhere but at Octavia, avoiding eye contact would be best in this situation.

“Kane told her you were sick, and not even 10 minutes later she claimed to have an emergency and left without giving him time to even answer. Come on, give me some details” Octavia smiled deviously, thoroughly enjoying the way Lexa’s face got redder and redder by the minute.

“She came over, made me soup, and we watched a movie until we fell asleep. She made me dinner too and left at almost midnight.” She muttered, eyes trained to the floor.

Before Octavia had the chance to say anything, it was their turn to order and relief momentarily washed over her as the other girl placed her order and paused the teasing.

“A six-foot Spicy Italian, Swiss cheese, lettuce, tomatoes, sweet onion sauce please. And a six-foot black forest ham, American cheese with lettuce, green peppers, no sauce, just salt and peppers. Thanks” Lexa placed her order and when she looked back at Octavia, the girl had her eyes narrowed and her mouth hanging

“Really? You’re telling me you know her Subway order by heart?” questioned Octavia.

“Shut up” She muttered, as she gave her credit card to the young cashier and left the store with Octavia in tow.

“You’ve got it bad Lexa, and she does too. The way she looks at you when you’re not looking can simply be described at endearingly nauseating” Octavia chuckled as they got in the car to head back to the office.

“Don’t give my head any more ideas to fixate on, Octavia. She has a boyfriend, who is very good for her, might I add. We’re just friends. It’s just a simple crush, O. It’ll go away soon enough. Remember that crush you had on me when you first started?” They both laughed at the memory. Octavia had just started at the company working with PR, one floor down from Lexa’s graphic department, and somehow, the young girl always found a reason to come up, whether to bring a document or just to say hello.

“I was young and impressionable then. I see pretty girls with green eyes bat their eyes at me and I swoon” chuckled Octavia in response.

“Oh, so now it’s pretty girls with brown eyes and a cocky attitude, isn’t it? I’m hurt” Lexa grinned, glancing over at Octavia, who had an equally big smile on her face

“Don’t think I haven’t noticed the way you guys look at each other” Lexa added.

“I’m working on it Woods. What Octavia Blake wants, Octavia Blake gets.” Octavia winked and they burst out laughing. That wasn’t too far from the truth. Raven, despite her cocky demeanor, was a lovesick puppy when it came to Octavia.

“But I’m calling it now. You owe me $50 when you guys finally realize how stubborn and stupid you’ve been, get together and make babies. Don’t forget to name one of them after me as a gesture of gratitude” Octavia stated.

Lexa chuckled “Yes O. I’ll get to you when that happens” She said sarcastically, but her mind couldn’t help but wander. A little house on the hill with a big back yard for the kids. They’d come home to each other every night, unwind on the couch with a glass of wine while the kids do their homework. Now that looked and felt perfect…almost too perfect to be real.

Too perfect to be real

//

December 22nd, the day Lexa had been waiting for the past 8 months had finally come. It was Clarke’s 22nd birthday, and she couldn’t be more excited.

Her actual birthday was going to be spent with Wells. Of course Lexa understood, but it didn’t stop her from being salty as hell when Clarke told her about his plan. Museums and dinner.

Psh my plan is going to blow his out of the water’ she thought to herself.

First off, they would start with indoor skydiving. Clarke had told her before how much she wanted to experience skydiving, but her fear of height was a big problem. She paid for the most expensive package, ensuring that Clarke would get the full experience of skydiving without having to deal with jumping off a plane. After that: lunch at Clarke’s favorite café. Then Lexa would take her to Uncle Gustus’ ranch to teach Clarke how to ride a horse. Finally, dinner would be at Lexa’s place with platonic candles and homemade pasta. Correction: homemade pasta made by her cousin Anya, who was a chef. She wasn’t going to risk setting her apartment on fire with her cooking skills. The day would finish off with Lexa’s heavenly tiramisu, followed by presents.

Her plan was perfect.

However, plans sometimes were made to be ruined.

Her phone vibrated at around 6pm on Clarke’s birthday and the sender was none other than the birthday girl herself.

C: What are you doing?

L: Swooning over how perfect Ben Wyatt and Leslie Knope are. How’s the birthday date?

C: It was going well, but, before we even made it to dinner he got called into work :( can I come over and can we swoon together?

L: I don’t even know why you still ask. Let yourself in

Not even one minute after she hit send, the lock on her door turned and the door swung open, revealing Clarke, beautifully clad in a tight navy strapless dress and high heels. Lexa’s eyes darted to the key clutched in the blonde’s hand, and couldn’t fight the smile etching on her lips. She had given Clarke her apartment’s key for emergencies, but the blonde had been using it so much (with Lexa’s permission of course) that Lexa couldn’t help but think about how crazy domestic they were being. Platonically domestic.

“Why am I even surprised anymore?” asked Lexa.

“I know you wouldn’t say no.” Clarke grinned. “I’ll go change and wash up really quick.”

Clarke padded to Lexa’s room, where her clothes were stored neatly in a drawer. Again, they were platonically domestic. Lexa let her eyes wander down, appreciating how the dress hugged Clarke at all the right places. She shook her head, pushing all inappropriate thoughts away. Or at least, she tried to.

Clarke came back moments later, joined her on the couch, wearing sweatpants, Lexa’s baggy hoodie and face fresh with no makeup. It was Lexa’s favorite look of Clarke.

“Happy birthday” Lexa smile as she leaned over, enveloped Clarke in a tight hug, to which the blonde returned the embrace tenderly  

“Thank you. I’m just kinda sad that I didn’t get to blow out candles.” Clarke said as she pulled back, disappointment evident on her face.

An idea popped in Lexa’s head. She had the tiramisu ready for tomorrow, but giving it to Clarke on her actual birthday would mean so much more.

“Close your eyes.” She instructed Clarke.

“Why?”

“Just do it.”

Clarke gave her a questioning look but still did as she was told.

Lexa got up, grabbed the 9-inch tiramisu she made earlier from the fridge then rummaged through her pantry for candles. She quickly placed 3 candles on top and lit them, and then ran to flip the lights off.

“Eyes still closed?”  

“Yeah, yeah. Just hurry up, I’m curious”

She sat down next to Clarke, tiramisu held up to her line of sight and Lexa started singing Happy Birthday. The blonde’s eyes fluttered open and instantly teared up at the sight.

Clarke sniffed, trying to keep more tears from falling as Lexa finished the song with a wide grin on her face.

“Happy birthday, dork. Make a wish.”

Clarke chuckled through the tears, closed her eyes for a moment then blew out the candles in one go.

“Thank you so much, Lexa. For everything”

“I was saving I expect my birthday to be ten times more awesome… just saying.” She said and they both laughed at the joke.

She got up, flipped on the lights and picked up 2 forks on her way back

“What do you say we swoon over Ben and Leslie while chowing down on delicious homemade tiramisu?”

Clarke took the first bite straight out of the cake pan and moaned at the taste. Lexa felt her face heat up at the sound and quickly looked away before Clarke could notice.

“Did you really make it?” She shoved another forkful into her mouth.

“I did. I told you I make a killer tiramisu. And to think that you doubted my superior skills.” Lexa said feigning hurt while Clarke laughed out loud and fed her a forkful of tiramisu.

“You certainly make these to swoon the ladies huh?” Clarke teased, nudging Lexa’s shoulder with hers

“No, only for you, Clarke” Lexa said with all her seriousness. The playful atmosphere was suddenly replaced with something so much heavier as Lexa’s eyes found Clarke’s and they fell into a silence. Lexa had never felt so vulnerable in front of anyone. All of her emotions, and thoughts were laid on the table, and Clarke could clearly see it.

“Promise you only make it for me?” Clarke whispered, and her face was still so close to Lexa’s. She could easily lean it and capture Clarke’s lips between hers. If only it was that easy.

“Of course” Lexa whispered back and she swore that she saw Clarke’s eyes darted to her lips. Just for a moment, but she saw it. She was sure.

Clarke cleared her throat and broke their gaze, effectively snapping them out of their trance. Their attention turned back to the tiramisu as both of them tried to pretend like the moment they just shared didn’t exist. If only it was that easy

They eventually moved pass the slight awkwardness and eased back to their usual dynamic.

They chatted and laughed animatedly as they devoured the tiramisu. Clarke ended up spending the night, seeing that it was too late to head back to her apartment. Besides she was already in her pjs anyways.

They fell into bed and Clarke automatically gravitated towards Lexa. Her head nuzzled in Lexa’s neck and a goodnight was sleepily whispered. Lexa smiled as she wrapped her arms protectively around Clarke and listened to the girl’s steady heart beat and even breath.

Why she let Clarke get so close was beyond her. It was probably the smile, the hair, or, (Lexa really didn’t want to be crass) her ridiculously hot body. Or maybe, it was because Clarke was Clarke…Beautiful, talented, quirky, funny, and amazing Clarke. There was no use denying or fighting it anymore: Lexa Woods was completely, utterly and hopelessly in love with Clarke Griffin.

And for the first time in 8 months, Lexa thought, and it was just a thought, that maybe friends weren’t ever going to be enough.

Chapter Text

“I still don’t know why we gotta drive 30 minutes to get coffee, Clarke. There’s a perfectly good place down the street from my place” Lexa huffed

“This place is new. Raven and O said their green tea latte is really good, and I know how my favorite girl loves her green tea latte” The blonde wiggled her eyebrows as she nudged Lexa with her elbow, bright smile on her lips. Lexa couldn’t help but drop her annoyed façade at the sight of Clarke being all adorable, but she still didn’t forget to send a playful glare at the grinning blonde.

“You owe me dinner if this turns out to be a bust” Lexa said, to which Clarke replied with a silent nod against her shoulder.

Lexa let out a sigh as she tried her best to still the fluttering of her heart.

They had grown much closer since Clarke’s birthday, if that was still possible. Lexa’s plan went marvelously well and Clarke might have said that it was the best birthday she ever had. Yep. Lexa did that, and she was extremely proud of herself.

She knew that she shouldn’t have gone all out like that, Wells only took Clarke to the museum for crying out loud. But Lexa, being the hard headed hopeless romantic that she was, wanted Clarke to have the best day of her life, and she did just that.

Lexa knew she was digging a grave for herself, and a super deep one at that.

This thing with Clarke was unhealthy. She knew that, she couldn’t help it. All she wanted to do was see Clarke, spend time with Clarke, fall asleep with Clarke, make Clarke happy. Clarke. Clarke. Clarke. Freaking Clarke.

She wanted desperately for Clarke to love her back. But who was she kidding? Clarke had a perfect life planned out with an amazing guy. Lexa could never give Clarke what Wells could.

Raven, unlike Octavia, had been telling her to move on. For the time being, at least.

“The best way to get over someone is to get under someone else. Get out there, sleep around, live a little! Maybe if she sees you with someone else, she’ll get crazy jealous and realize her undying love for you!” Raven had said.

She couldn’t help but think that Raven was right. Lexa was young, attractive, so why should she spend time pining over one girl when she could have so many more?

Clarke cut her train of thought by lacing their hands together and tugged her towards the counter to place their orders.

Right, because that girl is freaking Clarke Griffin.

“You guys are cute together.” The barista offered them a tight-lipped smile as she punched in their orders.

Lexa could feel the tips of her ears redden and her heart picked up its pace at the words. The fact that Clarke threw her arm around Lexa’s shoulder didn’t help one bit.

“We are, aren’t we? Too bad we’re just best friends though.” Clarke grinned widely and Lexa still found herself at loss of words.

“So I guess you wouldn’t mind then if I say that your best friend has the most beautiful eyes I’ve ever seen.” The barista winked, as she shot Lexa the most charming smile, making her almost choke on air. She could feel Clarke stiffen beside her and her arm dropped from Lexa’s shoulder. The brunette instantly missed the warmth of her touch but chose to ignore it.

“Um, thanks” She replied lamely, hoping the tinge on pink on her cheeks will go unnoticed. She retrieved her credit card from the cashier, who still had a smile plastered on her face. Lexa had to admit that the girl was beautiful: big intriguing chocolatey brown eyes, curly hair neatly tied up in a ponytail, perfect teeth, and, to top it all, she was quite charming.

The barista retreated to the machines and started making their drinks, which were done not even 2 minutes later. She placed their drinks on the counter and slid a piece of paper towards Lexa,

Call me,

xxx-xxx-xxx

Costia ;)

Clarke didn’t say anything as she grabbed her drink and wordlessly headed to the door. Lexa smiled politely at the girl and quickly put the piece of paper in her back pocket then bid her goodbye to catch up with Clarke.

“Where are you going Clarke? I thought we were going to stay there?” Lexa said when she finally caught up to the blonde, who was power walking her way through the crowd.

“Too loud for my taste.” Clarke shrugged, and then took a sip of drink.

 
“She gave you her number?” She tried her best to be casual but Lexa could see that something was bothering the blonde. Clarke was always so easy to read.

“Yeah, not sure if I’ll call her though” Lexa replied honestly. She didn’t know if she was ready for any type of relationship right now.

“’Kay. Let’s go back to your place. I’m in the mood for a ‘How I Met Your Mother’ rerun.” Clarke responded.

Clarke tugged on their clasped hands and led them towards the car. Lexa’s skin was tingling at the way Clarke’s thumb was tracing circles on the back of her hand. All the while she tried her best to clear out her head with the irrational thought that resided at the back of her mind.

‘Was Clarke jealous?’

//

“You should totally bang that girl!”

“I’m not like that, Raven.” Lexa stated before she gulped down her scotch and signaled the waitress for another one. She turned her head to face Raven, who had a smug smile etched across her face

“Is she hot?” Raven questioned.

“Yes Raven, she is very attractive. But you know my situation, I won’t be able to fully commit to her.”

“I’m telling you to sleep with her Lexa, not bring her to your family reunion and adopt cats together.” Retorted Raven.

Lexa rolled her eyes and took a big gulp out of her newly refreshed drink. Her attention turned to the door, where Octavia just walked in.

“Here comes your girl.” She stated.

Raven’s eyes lit up as soon as they connected with Octavia’s and both girls smiled brightly at each other.

The past 2 months had been nothing but rainbows and unicorns for the new couple. They were so disgustingly cute that Lexa seriously envied them.

“Hey beautiful!” exclaimed Octavia.

Octavia slid in the booth and quickly wrapped her hand around Raven’s waist, pulling her in for a kiss. It lasted too long for Lexa’s liking and she had to break them up by throwing peanuts at them.

They weren’t just disgustingly cute, they were quite disgusting as well.

“Hello to you too Octavia.” Lexa said mockingly as they finally broke up the PDA.

“Hey Woods. Where’s Clarke?” Octavia smirked, knowing full well that Clarke and Lexa spent their day off together.

“Date night with the boyfriend. We went to that coffee place you guys suggested though, it was alright.” Lexa shrugged, trying not to think about what Clarke was doing. Was Clarke having a good time? Was Wells treating her right?

“Speaking of coffee place. DO HER LEXA!!!” Raven excitedly said as Lexa sighed, and they were back on the wretched topic.

“Do who? What did I miss?” Octavia asked, looking confusedly between Lexa and Raven awaiting an explanation…

“Nothing to get overly excited about. The barista at the coffee place gave me her number this morning. Your girlfriend here is insisting that I sleep with said barista, and I, do not want to pursue that kind of a relationship.” Lexa replied, before exhaling deeply.

“She hot?” Octavia asked, earning an eye roll and a hesitant nod from Lexa.

 “Then sleep with her, go have some fun. Clarke isn’t going anywhere” Octavia shrugged.

“I need to have an emotional bond in order to bed someone. I’m not like you animals” Lexa smirked at the couple, knowing that they did it before they even got the chance to go on their first date.

“Please, don’t make me laugh. You know we were pining over each other at least 4 months before that. And it’s not my fault she looked so hot in her dress when I came to pick her up for our date.” Raven quipped, earning a kiss on the cheek from Octavia.

“You two are gross” Lexa snickered at the two grinning brunettes in front of her.

“Seriously Lexa! Go on a date with that girl, and see if you two are compatible. You don’t know what you’d miss if you don’t try. No use on wasting your youth loving someone who probably isn’t going to love you back” Raven said.

“Nah, Clarke totally has the hots for you. Give her some time. Maybe make her jealous with that hot piece of arm candy” Octavia cut in and Lexa rolled her eyes for the 50th time that night. Raven had told her the exact same thing. God these two were meant to be.

“If, and I’m just saying if, I end up in a relationship with her, I feel like I’d still put Clarke first. That’s not fair for her. She seemed like a really nice girl.” Lexa stated.

Lexa knew full well Costia could never replace Clarke. She could be a distraction, a very beautiful distraction, but Lexa’s heart already belonged to someone else. And that, wasn’t fair to Costia.

“I don’t know Lexa. We don’t want to see you so sad all the time with your heart eyes looking so hopelessly in love with Clarke like that. Just do whatever you need to do. We support you no matter what.” Octavia reached over and squeezed Lexa’s hand encouragingly.

Lexa was always so thankful for her friends. Even though they were super annoying and grossly in love, she still appreciated their support.

“Never know if I don’t try right?” She said, pulling the neatly folded piece of paper from her back pocket.

She quickly punched in the number and typed out a text, asking Costia out for a lunch date. If things wouldn’t turn out right, she’d earn herself a new friend. What’s the harm in that?

“Aren’t you supposed to wait 3 days?” Raven teased right after Lexa had hit send, chuckling at the way Lexa’s face lost 3 shades of color.

“Shit! She’s gonna think I’m desperate now. Shit!!” Lexa buried her head in her hands but before she could whine any further, her phone lit up, notifying her of Costia’s response. She exhaled deeply and a and a small smile made its way to her lips. The smile didn’t quite reach her eyes but it was enough, for now.

Costia: Glad to know you aren’t one of those snobby ‘wait for 3 days’ people. And yes, I would love to go on a lunch date with you J

//

“Who is that?” Clarke asked taking her eyes off the screen to look at Lexa, who was typing away on her phone.

“Nobody” Lexa shrugged, setting her phone on the coffee table and smiling sweetly at Clarke.

“You’re texting during Parks and Rec. I’ve never seen you text during Parks and Rec before.” Clarke said and Lexa almost snorted at the statement.

Lexa never texted anyone when she was with Clarke before, no matter what they were doing. A smile still tugged at her lips at the fact that Clarke caught on to her efforts

“Fine. It’s the barista from that new coffee place you wanted to try. Her name is Costia.” Her phone buzzed again, but she chose to ignore it to focus on Clarke.

It was 3 days after her lunch date with Costia and they had been texting each other every day. The date went really well. Lexa found out that Costia actually co-owned the coffee shop and she was planning to open more shops if everything ran smoothly. Lexa found the girl’s tenacity and determination very admirable.

They had a lot in common and their personalities were somewhat on par with each other too. They both enjoyed endless hours of Parks and Rec, video games, and Disney movies. Costia seemed like a very nice girl. In any other circumstance, Lexa could totally see herself having a relationship with Costia. In this circumstance though, things were a tad bit more complicated.

“Barista girl? I thought you said you weren’t going to call her.” Clarke said, her shoulders slumped as she leaned back on the couch, her eyes avoiding Lexa’s.

“Well, I haven’t dated anyone in quite a while now and she is a very attractive woman. So I thought it would be worth a shot. We went on one date.” She shrugged as Clarke drew her legs up and wrapped her arms around them. Lexa’s heart dropped at the sight. The blonde was in defense mode, and Lexa knew too well that that, was never a good thing.

“How was the date?” Clarke asked curtly, still refusing to look at her.

Lexa sighed, dropping herself against the couch next to Clarke.

“It was okay. She is really nice and we have a lot in common”

“You gonna ask her out on another date?” Clarke followed up.

“I think so. I want to see where this goes.” Lexa replied with a sigh.

“Okay.” Mumbled Clarke in response.

And with that, their conversation came to an end. A weird straining tension fell upon them and Lexa felt like she couldn’t breathe. It had never been like this with Clarke before. Their usual playful banter and light dynamic was replaced with awkward fidgeting and stolen glances.

“Hey…Clarke?” She reluctantly called, turning her attention to Clarke.

“Yea?” Clarke, on the other hand, busied herself with the Netflix selection.

“Are we okay?” She reached over and grabbed the remote out of Clarke’s hand, forcing the blonde to look at her, annoyance evident in her eyes. Lexa swallowed the lump in her throat as she stared into the blue of Clarke eyes. She felt like she was suffocating under their intensity.

 “Of course we are. We’re friends. Best friends.” Clarke said, merely a whisper. 

Lexa turned away, refusing to let Clarke see the welled up tears. She stood up, hastily gathered her things and headed for the door.

“I gotta go. My mom needs me” She mumbled over her shoulder and quickly let herself out. She couldn’t be around Clarke, not right now. The feeling was too much for her to bear and if she didn’t leave, she would probably break down right in front of Clarke.

It hurt so damn much. Loving someone who would never love you back fucking hurt.

Even though she already accepted that her relationship with Clarke would be nothing more than that of friendship, the pain never lessened. She felt like she was in the middle of a black hole of hopelessness and agony, and it was sucking her dry continuously. Some might say that it was a slight exaggeration, but that’s what it really felt like. Just constant pain, all the dam time, and to be honest Lexa was exhausted of always feeling that way.

She wiped away the fallen tears on her cheeks and quickly let herself in the car.

Even the goddamned car smelled like Clarke too.

Her phone buzzed, notifying her of a text from Clarke.

C: I’m sorry if I said anything wrong. Please come back, we can talk about it.

C: Lexa, please.

L: No, you didn’t say anything. My mom needed some errands done. Sorry for leaving like that.

C: Okay. If you say so. Let me know if I can help with anything.

L: Thank you, Clarke. I’ll see you at work tomorrow.

She sighed, dropping her phone in the cup holder, silently cursing herself. She rested her head against the steering wheel and closed her eyes, hoping to calm the erratic beating of her heart. 

‘How the hell did it get so messed up?’

 

Chapter Text

Lexa couldn’t sleep at all that night. The events from earlier kept replaying in her head: the cold and distant look in Clarke’s eyes, the way she withdrew herself and raised her shields up. It broke Lexa’s heart.

The morning after, she dragged herself to work, feeling like she was half dead from lack of sleep, and a hollow feeling at the pit of her stomach.

Lexa didn’t think that her morning could get any worse than it already was.

That was until the moment she came in to work, finding the office empty and her desk filled with an assortment of breakfast foods. French toast, muffins, scones, pancakes, bacon and eggs, you name it, you found it on her desk.

She looked up and of course, none other than Clarke Griffin stepped in from the break room, sporting the biggest, brightest and prettiest of smiles.

Freaking Clarke.

Clarke gestured for Lexa to look on her desk, and there, hidden behind all the baked goods was a bobble head of Son Gohan, her favorite character in Dragon Ball Z.

‘Who needs to gather 7 Dragon Balls when I already have you to grant my wishes – CG’

Lexa snorted at the corny line written on the sticky note on top of the pile of food. She wondered for a brief moment if her heart was still pumping blood, since it was too busy swooning and fluttering and doing all that routine sappy shit.

Freaking Clarke

After last night she had decided to give this thing with Costia a try. A real try, you know do the adult thing and make a commitment. But after this morning’s antics, it was going to be hard for her to focus on committing herself to Costia, if Clarke just kept being Clarke! Amazing, gorgeous, and full of surprises Clarke.

“Good morning sunshine!” Clarke bounced to where Lexa was standing. “I know you’re always early on Mondays, so I got you breakfast. I didn’t know what you want, so I got a little bit of everything” She winked, and Lexa swore she felt like the air was knocked out of her lungs.

She took a few moments to gather her thoughts and took in a shaky breath and calm her mind

“Listen, Clarke. I’m really sor-”

“Shhhh, don’t say anything. I just want you to know that I felt like shit after you left last night, knowing that I had upset you. I was a dick when you were telling me about Costia because part of me was mad that you didn’t tell me you went on a date with her. The other part was jealous, because I didn’t want to lose you. You always give me your full attention whenever we hang out, but yesterday, you were texting, and I guess I didn’t take that very well. I know it silly, almost childish even and was selfish of me, so I’m sorry.”

Lexa was speechless. She stared right into the blue of Clarke’s eyes and she saw that the intensity of last night was gone, replaced with sincerity, warmth, and love. Oh so much love.

“I’m sorry I texted during our quality time and for leaving like I did. I should have stayed and talked” That was all Lexa could get out. She was afraid if she said anything more, it would probably come out to be broken babbling.

Clarke simply nodded, a bright smile plastered on her face and pulled Lexa in a tight hug, her head nuzzling in the brunette’s neck. Lexa wrapped her arms around Clarke’s waist, pulling her impossibly closer. Her heart was hammering in her chest, and she was sure that Clarke could feel it too.

“Can we eat now? I’m hungry.” The blonde said after she pulled away, earning a chuckle from Lexa.

They sat next to each other, eating breakfast, and giggling at silly jokes in an empty office at 7AM on a Monday morning.

Lexa swore it was the worst Monday morning of her life. Because that was the day she knew, without a doubt in her heart, that she could never love anyone else the way she loved Clarke Griffin.

She loved Clarke deeply, and passionately. She loved Clarke beyond all rationality. She loved Clarke, no matter how much it destroyed her, because, she knew only Clarke could put her back together.

Freaking Clarke

//

“Woody, how was the date? Spill the beans!” Raven plopped down on the chair in the break room, reaching out to steal one of Lexa’s leftover baked goods. Her hand was quickly swatted away and she earned a death glare from Lexa causing her to huff. “Don’t be so selfish. Sharing is caring!”

“First of all, do not call me that. Secondly, you can have the blueberry muffin, Clarke and I don’t like that, dunno why she got it.” Lexa said, then she took another bite out of her Danish.

“And why would Clarke buy you a year’s worth supply of baked goods? And where is she anyways?” Raven questioned, in the middle of wolfing down the blueberry muffin.

“She’s at a lunch meeting with a client, and something happened last night so she bought me breakfast as an apology. And no, I will not say what, so don’t bother asking.” She narrowed her eyes at Raven, who was sporting a shit eating grin on her face.

“Ooh ooh, can I guess?!?! Let’s see…” Raven exclaimed and rubbed her fingers under her chin, pretending to be thinking about the cause of Lexa and Clarke’s fight the night before.
“Does it have anything to do with a certain hot barista?” she asked with a twinkle in her eye.

“I hate you” Lexa mumbled and that was all the confirmation Raven needed to burst out laughing.

“I told you! I freaking told you! She would get hella jealous!! What did I tell you Woody?” Raven exclaimed, slamming her fists against the table, effectively earning glares from all the others in the break room enjoying their break time…

“Shut up!!! Jesus Christ!” Lexa hissed. “We’re not discussing this. And I’m not going out with Costia to make Clarke jealous. I certainly didn’t expect that reaction from her but it doesn’t necessarily mean that she is jealous. Plus, Costia is really nice, and we have a lot in common. I can actually see this going somewhere.” Lexa continued in hushed tones, so as not to attract any more unnecessary attention towards Raven and herself.

“What’s up with the intense whispering guys?” A voice from behind Lexa questioned, and she immediately froze.

Shit

“Clarkey! How was the meeting? Come join us!” Raven exclaimed, trying to give Lexa some time to cover and wipe the panic off her face.

“It went well. They’re happy with the progress of the project.” Clarke shrugged.

“Anyway, what were you guys talking about?” asked Clarke, while tearing off a piece of scone and popping it in her mouth.

“Nothing, Raven wanted to play a prank on Bellamy because he interrupted her and O’s love making session the other day. Speaking of which, where is O?” Lexa sputtered quickly, hoping to God that Clarke didn’t hear what she and Raven were talking about. It was a wonder she didn’t bite her tongue. She glanced nervously at Raven, hoping the girl would play along

“Uh, yeah sure, I’m gonna make him pay! And O’s eating lunch at her desk to finish up some project.” Fortunately, Raven caught on and played along. She glanced nervously at Clarke hoping the girl wouldn’t see through their lies.

“Whatever you do, just remember that I sit 10ft away from him. Keep me out of it and we’re cool.” Clarke said and Lexa let go of the breath she didn’t realize she was holding.

A few more moments went on with them casually chatting about work and Raven, being a little shit that she was, steered the conversation towards Costia.

“Woody, what’s up with you and hot barista? Is there gonna be a second date for you two?” Raven inquired, with a shit eating grin plastered on her face.

“Her name is Costia, Raven. And I was gonna call her and ask her out again tonight.” Lexa clenched her jaws as she finished the sentence.

Clarke visibly stiffened, and she drew her bottom lips between her lips, indicating that the topic was still uncomfortable for her, but she was trying.

“Hey, Clarke” Raven called, and Lexa paled at the look on Raven’s face. She knew that look. She could recognize that look anywhere. That was the signature Raven Reyes look whenever she was up to something, and it was never a good sign. “Remember that thing we talked about a while ago? You know, the double date? Since Woody is dating now, we could totally do a triple date! Me and my boo, you and Wells, Lexa and hot barista. Dinner party at my place then board games, what do you say?”

Shit, this is not happening

Hanging out with Clarke and her boyfriend, along with the girl she was dating was number 1 on the ‘Lexa Woods’ most disastrous scenarios’ list. That list included things like being eaten by sharks, and getting shot by a stray bullet. So, it was safe to say that if a shark came out of nowhere and ate her whilst she was on her way to this triple date, she would die happily.

To be quite frank, she didn’t want to hang out with Wells. He was a nice guy and all, but Lexa wasn’t a masochist, she didn’t need that kind of pain in her life. She had hung out with Clarke and Wells once, and after a few moments of pure agony, she had noticed that there was something off about their interactions, but she couldn’t quite put her finger on it, so she just chose to ignore it. She hadn’t hung out with them since, and that was almost 6 months ago.

“Uh…” Clarke hesitated, she was clearly caught off guard with the proposal. “If that’s okay with Lexa, I think it’ll be fun” She smiled sweetly but the expression behind her eyes was unreadable.

“I don’t know. I’ve only been on one date with her, not sure if she’s down to meet my friends” Lexa was desperately trying to find a way out of this bear trap.

“Text her, right now, we’ll see what she thinks” Raven urged.

Lexa’s eyes went wide and her mouth agape. She knew for sure that Costia would happily agree. She was a people person, and she did mention during their date that she would love to meet Lexa’s friends.

‘What the hell is Raven trying to do?’

She hesitantly pulled out her phone and quickly typed out a text to Costia, or as Lexa would put it… ‘/Typing out her own death sentence.’

A reply came almost instantaneously, sealing her fate.

“She said yes.”

Raven squealed excitedly, and Clarke tried her best to put on a smile, which to anyone with eyes, looked forced...

“It’s a date then. Saturday night, be at my place by 8PM. I better go tell my boo” With that, she was gone in a flash, leaving Lexa dumbfounded and Clarke awkwardly picking at her scone.

“It’ll be fun, right?” Clarke smiled at her sweetly, but something about that smile seemed unsettling to Lexa.

“Yeah, so much fun.” Lexa responded with as much enthusiasm as she could muster.

Shit

//

L: I really hope that triple date is your lifelong dream, because I will kill you.

L: Slowly and torturously…

Raven: Come on Woody! It will be fun! For me at least ;)

L: You’re a little shit, you know that?

R: I’m the Buzz Lightyear to your Woody! You love me <3

//

The week flew by within the blink of an eye and before she knew it, Lexa’s execution day had arrived.

She felt like she was going to throw up.

She threw on her leather jacket, laced up her boots and left her apartment with a dull headache. She came to pick up Costia and the barista looked beautiful in black jeans, a simple white blouse and black trench coat. She leaned in and placed a kiss on Lexa’s cheek, and Lexa smiled at that. But it didn’t give her butterflies. It should…shouldn’t it?

She couldn’t help but think it would be so much easier if she were in love with Costia. If only feelings worked that way.

“So is there anything I should know about your friends? I don’t want to offend anyone by saying the wrong thing” Costia asked as Lexa put the car into drive, heading for Raven’s place.

“No, my friends are really nice when they want to be. You already met Clarke at the café, her boyfriend’s name is Wells. Octavia is the brunette with blue eyes. And Raven, well, you’ll know it’s Raven” Lexa said, chuckling at the antics Raven would put Costia through.

“What do they do? I wanna be prepared.” Costia urged on with a hint of anxiety slipping in to her tone.

Lexa smiled as the barista’s obvious uneasiness “Relax, they’ll love you. If you must know, Octavia works with PR and Raven is our IT Manager. Clarke is a Copywriter, and she’s really good. She’s only been with us for almost a year and there’s already talks of promoting her to Creative Supervisor. Her Creative department shares the same floor with my Account Management department, and that’s how we met.”

Lexa could have gone on and on about Clarke and how talented she was, but she realized it wasn’t exactly a good idea to gush about another girl to your date so she kept her mouth shut.

“Sounds great. I’m excited to meet them.” Costia happily said.

Then an unfamiliar song came up on the radio came up and the barista squealed, stating that it was her jam. She turned up the radio and started singing along, nailing every note. Lexa was pretty impressed by that.

‘Gosh, she’s cute. But Cla- No, Bad Lexa. No buts. Costia is cute. Period.’

By the time they pulled up to Raven’s apartment complex, she could literally hear Wells’ flashy and incredibly loud Aston Martin rounding the corner. By the time Costia and Lexa exited the car, Wells pulled up right next to them and Lexa’s heart started pounding again.

“You didn’t tell me he was rich?” Costia whispered

“Well, meet Wells Jaha. He’s the heir of Arkadia Inc., it’s a technology and innovation company.” Lexa said, trying her best to hide the bitterness in her voice.

“Holy shit! He’s the son of Thelonius Jaha, the fifth richest man in the country? Clarke is so lucky!!” Costia exclaimed. She was still talking in a hushed voice but stopped abruptly once Clarke and Wells exited the car.

“More like he’s the lucky one.” Lexa muttered to herself.

“Hey Lexa!” Wells greeted her with a small smile on his face and offered his hand for her to shake.

Lexa took the outstretched hand in hers and gave him a firm shake. Maybe firmer than she intended to given the slight wince on his face but eh, she could be the least bit bothered.

“Hi, you must be Costia, my name is Wells.” He greeted Costia the same way, to which the barista returned the gesture politely.

“Costia, you remember Clarke?” Lexa looked at Clarke nervously, who had been observing the interactions quietly while standing behind Wells.

Costia quickly turned her attention to Clarke and offered the blonde her most charming smile. The blonde simply nodded, a tight-lipped smile on her face, and reached out to shake Costia’s hand.

‘God, this is awkward’

“Let’s go inside. It’s freezing out here.” Lexa quickly said, trying to somewhat alleviate the tension.

Well, maybe it wasn’t tense for Wells and Costia, but she could tell just by looking at Clarke wrapping her arms around herself, making her look small and vulnerable.

They made their way to Raven’s first floor apartment and rang the bell. The door immediately swung open, revealing Raven Reyes with a mischievous smile etched across her face.

 “My people! It’s an honor to welcome you to my humble abode” She exclaimed, then diverted her attention to the beautiful dark-skinned barista “And you must be Costia! Woody here has been gushing about you for like a week now, and it’s safe to say that she undersold you quite a bit.” Raven winked, making Costia giggle.

“Well, you must be Raven. Lexa was right, you are quite unique. Nice meeting you Raven” Costia said, extending her hand, which Raven took enthusiastically.

 “I hope she’s not embarrassing me already.” A voice called out behind Raven(,) and Octavia came into view, sporting the friendliest smile “Hi, I’m Octavia. Please come in, dinner is almost ready.”

They were all ushered inside and each took a seat on the couch, after thanking Raven and Octavia for their hospitality. Lexa acted out of habit and took a seat right next to Clarke on the loveseat, leaving Costia and Wells awkwardly sitting on the couch. She immediately cringed when she realized what she had done. They sat like that for a few minutes, nobody moved a muscle until Lexa couldn’t bear the tension anymore.

“Anybody want wine?” Lexa ran her eyes from Wells, Costia then to Clarke, who all had fairly uncomfortable looks on their faces. “Let me get you guys some wine.” She sprung up from her seat and ran for the kitchen. Lexa couldn’t get out of there fast enough.

Stepping in the kitchen, she was greeted with the sight of Octavia and Raven trying their best to withhold their laughter. Lexa immediately lunged for Raven, putting the IT manager in a headlock. She proceeded to give Raven a noogie, but the girl couldn’t stop laughing, which only fuelled Lexa’s irritation and anger even more.

“I’m going to keep doing this until all of your hairs fall off!” Lexa hissed, careful not to let the people outside hear the antics.

Octavia doubled over, hands clutching her stomach, with tears in her eyes that were at the brink of falling…

“Oh my god Lexa! 5 seconds in and you already managed to make it awkward as fuck! This is even better than I expected” Octavia said, while trying to catch her breath. 

Lexa finally let go of Raven’s head and slumped against the kitchen island.

“What did I do to deserve this?” she sighed defeatedly.

“Woody, all jokes aside, you need this. I’m Team Clarke and Lexa all the way, but this thing you’re doing is not good for you. I think you need to see that you and Costia could be more, so you can move on from Clarke. Even if it’s only for a moment.” Raven rubbed her head, slightly in pain from the noogie. She smiled sadly at Lexa.

“But could you have found a less awkward and less painful way for me to do so though? This is torturous Raven.” Lexa said, pouring herself a glass of wine and chugging the whole thing on the spot. “I need more wine if I’m gonna survive this night.” She mumbled, grabbing 4 glasses in one hand and the bottle in the other and then made her way back to the living room.

She sighed in relief, seeing that Wells had moved to the loveseat to sit with Clarke. She set the glasses and bottle on the coffee table and settled on the couch with Costia.

“Thanks Lexa.” Wells said, reaching to pour each of them a glass. “So Costia, Clarke said you own a coffee shop right? That’s rather impressive for someone who is so young.” Wells addressed Costia, making small talk while pouring out the wine.

“Thank you. It’s been a dream of mine since I was a kid to own a coffee shop, so I, decided not to go to college at all and worked 2 jobs to save up money. After 5 years, I finally had enough to partner up with my best friend and we opened our first coffee shop. Running a business is hard work, but at the end of the day, it’s worth it” Costia said and Lexa felt her admiration for this girl grow even more. Lexa reached over and laced her fingers with Costia.

She made a mistake by looking up and catching Clarke’s gaze. The blonde stared at Lexa and Costia’s joined hands and those blue eyes were a turbulent of hurt and agony.

Clarke looked up and found Lexa looking right at her. Blue met green and then everything else started to fade out. Sights turned to blurs and sounds were muffled. Lexa knew that Costia and Wells were having a conversation about business, but she didn’t care. All that mattered was the way Clarke looked at her, and for a moment, everything felt right again.

“Dinner is served! Please join us at the dining table” Raven announced as she made her way out of the kitchen, effectively snapping them out of their gaze.

Lexa took in a shaky breath as she downed her glass of wine, hoping to slow the erratic beating of her heart. Costia stood up and tugged at their joined hands. The barista was smiling at her, so sweetly and affectionately. But it felt wrong. Lexa forced herself to smile back as guilt coiled violently at the pit of her stomach. Costia wasn’t Clarke, she would never fill the Clarke-shaped hole in Lexa’s heart. She never could.

She stood up, letting Costia lead her back to the dining room. She could feel Clarke’s gaze on the back of her head, but she refused to turn back and meet those eyes again, not now. Not when Costia was holding her hand. Not when she was trying desperately to move forward. Especially not when she was starting to believe in Octavia’s words. She was starting to believe that maybe, just maybe, that Clarke loved her too.

//

Against all odds, dinner went spectacularly well. The conversations flowed naturally with the help of the two most effective social lubricators: alcohol and Raven Reyes.

Lexa found herself somewhat at ease for the first time that night. She laughed along to jokes, joined in on conversations. But she still couldn’t bring herself to look at Clarke. She was finally having a good time, and she knew one look at Clarke would send her on a downward spiral of emotional commotion again.

After dinner, everyone pitched in to clean up, then, they all settled down on the couch, ready to play a game of Monopoly laid out on the coffee table. Lexa’s competitive nature rose to the surface, she could feel it in her veins, and, she was ready be as cutthroat as she needed to be in order to win.

Two hours into the game and everything was getting heated as each piece of land had houses or hotels on it. This was the make or break moment, and Lexa, with the most pieces of land owned, could feel that victory was within her grasp.

She had wiped out Octavia and Wells and took over their properties when they repeatedly landed on her properties. A sense of smugness bubbled in her stomach when Wells grumpily handed her his deeds and money.

‘So much for Mr. Big Bad Corporation.’ She thought to herself. Sure, she only beat him in Monopoly, but still, she had the right to gloat. Maybe if he hadn’t wrapped his arm around Clarke’s waist, or Clarke hadn’t planted kisses on his cheeks, Lexa would have let him live. Just maybe.

Lexa knew she was being childish, but then again, what exactly about Monopoly was mature.

The game finally came to an end when Raven literally flipped the board when she landed on Lexa’s Boardwalk with a hotel, causing a $2000 damage. The IT Manager was broke, so she resorted to the most juvenile way to solve her problems. Lexa was announced the victor anyway, and everybody, despite their bitterness about losing, cheered for her. Everybody, but one.

Costia didn’t cheer. She simply grabbed Lexa’s face and brought her in for a searing kiss. After a moment of surprise, Lexa was finally kissing her back, ignoring the wolf whistle from Raven. The kiss ended just as fast as it started, and Lexa was still surprised by Costia’s actions. Sure it wasn’t their first kiss, but she didn’t take Costia to be the PDA type. The barista pulled back and placed a kiss on her cheek.

“Okay, break it up lovebirds. Help us clean up and you guys have our permission to leave” Raven said, not forgetting to insert the fake gagging noise at the PDA.

“What was that for?” Lexa asked, green eyes searching brown ones for answer. It wasn’t like she didn’t enjoy it, she just found it strange.

“I’m just really proud of you” Costia simply shrugged and smiled mischievously. With that, the barista was up on her feet and made her way to the kitchen to join Raven and Octavia to help them clean up

Lexa finally let her eyes dart across the table and realized that Clarke and her were the only ones in the room. Lexa could feel her whole body tense up at Clarke’s lack of expression.

“So I take it that it’s going well with you two?” The blonde asked, her hands busy with sorting the Monopoly money.

“Uh, yeah. I guess.” Lexa answered, her eyes never left Clarke.

“That’s great. I’m happy for you.” Clarke finally looked up, smiling at her. And with that Lexa’s heart was broken into a million pieces.

She usually prided herself in being able to read and know Clarke the best. But she wasn’t so sure anymore. The smile Clarke was giving her looked like every other smile they had ever exchanged, but somehow, this one felt out of place. It felt wrong, almost like it was Clarke, but it wasn’t quite Clarke.

Lexa didn’t know what else to say, so she just nodded and they went back to cleaning up. Within 15 minutes, they were already out the door, saying goodbye to each other. Wells, Clarke, Costia and Lexa made their way to their respective cars, politely promising each other to have another date night like this again some time.

Lexa couldn’t get out of there fast enough. She pulled her car out of the lot as soon as they said their goodbyes, and headed for Costia’s apartment. She was surprised that she was still in one piece. Sure, she did something embarrassing in the beginning of the night, but she was glad that she didn’t audibly whimper in pain whenever Clarke and Wells shared an intimate moment. Lexa considered that a win.

“Lexa, can I ask you something?”

Costia’s voice brought Lexa out of her deep thoughts. She wasn’t sure what the barista wanted to ask, but she was certain that it was not a good thing. She hummed in agreement and ignored the slight spike in her heart rate.

“I really like you. I know we’ve only been on 2 dates but I can see myself being in a relationship with you. There’s a question I really need to ask, and I hope it won’t offend you or anything. So, you and Clarke, do I have to worry about that?” Costia didn’t hesitate to ask. She was very confident, and Lexa admired that about her. Not so much now, though

She didn’t want to lie, but telling Costia she was in love with her best friend was not the best idea either.

“There is nothing going on with Clarke and I. As you can see, she is happy with Wells, and I’m happy with you. So no, you don’t have anything to worry about.”

It wasn’t a lie. Not really.

Clarke and Lexa were friends, so of course, there was nothing else going on there. Not now, not in the future, Lexa was sure of it. The momentary thought that Clarke might love her back was long gone as the night progressed. She saw how well Wells treated Clarke, and how much Clarke adored him by the look in her eyes.

“Is that why you kissed me in front of everyone?” Lexa quirked an eyebrow and asked amusedly

They came to a stop at the light and Lexa glanced at Costia, who was blushing profusely

“Maybe…” She mumbled “I’m sorry if that made you uncomfortable. I didn’t know what came over me”

“That’s fine Cos. But maybe give me a warning next time” Lexa chuckled, reaching out with her free hand and laced it with Costia’s. Lexa brought their joined hand to her lips and pressed a kiss on the barista knuckles.  

Costia smiled at the gesture and the rest of the ride was filled with laughter and bad singing from both parties. Lexa walked Costia to her apartment door and they kissed goodnight. Just as she was walking back to her car, her phone buzzed.

Octavia: Wasn’t that bad, was it?

L: Almost whimpered in pain a couple times, but other than that, it was good. Food was amazing by the way.

O: Haha you’re welcome. But did you notice something weird about Clarke and Wells?

L: Like what?

O: They didn’t act like a couple. At least that’s how Rae and I saw it.

L: What? They kissed, they hugged, they gave each other gross looks. She looks at him with adoration written all over her face.

O: Adoration isn’t love, Lexa. They don’t look like they’re in love. But the way she looks at you? A freaking plus Woods. And you probably didn’t notice because you were too busy shoving your tongue down hot barista’s throat but Clarke looked like she was drilling holes in Costia’s head when you guys were kissing.

L: No she didn’t. Again, don’t give me any ideas.

O: Whatever helps you sleep better at night, Woods.

L: Good night, O.

Their conversation came to an end but Octavia’s words were still ringing in her head. She didn’t want to believe Octavia. She couldn’t. Not after she felt like she was making a little bit of progress. She just couldn’t fall into that black hole of hopelessness and agony again.

‘She looks at him with adoration. And you, with love’

The words etched in her mind when she finally managed to fall asleep that night. She slept soundly, dreaming of Clarke.

Chapter Text

Lexa softly knocked on her boss, Marcus Kane’s door, and she pushed it open after hearing a muffled permission to come in

“You wanted to see me?” She asked, taking a seat in front of Marcus.

“Yes. Give me one minute.” He replied, quickly putting aside the paperwork in front of him and turned to her with a wide smile, “So Lexa, you’ve been with us for quite some time huh?”

“Yes sir, 3 years and counting.” Lexa nodded, still unsure still unsure of what she was called in for

“Well, I have to say that your performance in the last 3 years has simply been outstanding. Which is why, when my boss asked me if I know anyone suitable for the position of Office Manager at the new branch in New York, I suggested you.”

The words leaving Marcus’ mouth didn’t seem to register with her very well. She was confused, to say the least.

“Sir, there are more people in the office that have much more experience than I do. I’m honored that you considered me, but I don’t think I’m qualified for the job.”

“I see a lot of potential in you, Lexa. I know you don’t have seniority in the office, but you’re ambitious and talented. I know you might be afraid of people talking, but I assure you that they all think you deserve this opportunity.” Marcus smiled warmly at her, and handed Lexa the paperwork he set aside earlier.

“Now, before you say anything, please read this. The job description, benefits, salary and more are all listed in there. If you decide to take the job, Corporate will take care of your housing for the first 6 months, so you don’t have to worry about that. I know this is a big move, but this is a huge chance for you to flourish in your career path. The job is yours if you want it, just let me know as soon as possible please.”

 “Thank you so much sir. I will let you know as soon as I make a decision.” Lexa replied, completely overwhelmed and grateful with what Marcus told her.

Marcus nodded with a smile, as she took the paperwork and left the room.

As soon as the door closed behind her, her eyes immediately searched for Clarke. Lexa’s grip on the papers tightened when Clarke looked up and smiled brightly at her. It was the Lexa smile as Raven often called it. The smile Clarke had was for her, and only her.

Lexa knew she had to take the job. Opportunities like this one wouldn’t come twice. But she couldn’t bring herself to think about leaving the life she has behind.

She couldn’t think of leaving Clarke behind.

But Clarke would never love her, at least not the way Lexa wanted her to.

New York was a whole 6-hour drive away. But maybe, that was just the thing she needed…A fresh start.

//

“Third date? You know what that means Woody!!!”

Lexa huffed. She could already imagine Raven’s smug smile and her suggestive eyebrow wiggle at the end of the other line

“You really are thirteen, aren’t you?”

She set her phone down on the bed after setting the call on speaker and rummaged through her closet, looking for an outfit for her date with Costia.

“Are you going to tell her about the job offer?”

“Maybe, I don’t know. It’s not like we’re officially dating, plus I haven’t decided if I’m going to take it. I don’t want to drag her into this.” Lexa explained, or tried her best to do so.

Lexa pulled out a simple white blouse and black skinny jeans

“Have you told Clarke?”

Her heart sank upon hearing Raven’s words. It had been 3 days since Kane offered her the job. She had yet to make a decision…And she had yet to tell Clarke.

She had a perfect chance last night when they were having their weekly movie night, but, when she opened her mouth, she couldn’t form a coherent sentence.

“I’ll tell her once I make a decision.” She said tersely and Raven took the hint and didn’t dwell on the topic.

“Okay. Remember that the decision you make should be for you. Don’t let her hold you back.”

“Thanks Raven. I’ve got to go now, talk to you later”

“GO GET LAID WOODY!”

She chuckled at Raven’s antics as she ended the call. She sat waiting for Costia to arrive as a small weight settled at the pit of her stomach. The possibility of being intimate with Costia made her anxious. Her last relationship was well over 3 years ago. Sure, there were a number of random hookups, but that ended when she and Clarke got closer. Physically, she knew she was more than capable, however, emotionally, she wasn’t so sure.

A knock on her door pulled her out of her deep thoughts and she realized that it was time for her date. She jumped to her feet and hurried to the door, not wanting to keep Costia waiting in the cold.

Costia looked beautiful as ever standing at her door, hands clutching a radiant bouquet of lilies. They exchanged greetings and Costia placed a quick peck on her cheek. Lexa accepted the flowers with a slight blush on her face. She was in and out in a flash after finding a vase for the flowers and they headed out for their date. The barista insisted on keeping their destination a secret from Lexa, and the brunette didn’t dwell. She loved surprises anyway.

Costia drove, and they sang their hearts out to the soundtracks of High School Musical. Lexa was Gabriela and Costia was Troy, and they made a damn good team. Off tune singing was laced with giggles and teasing and they were at their destination before Lexa even realized it.

She smiled widely when she realized that Costia had taken her to a drive-in theater just on the outskirts of town. After purchasing their tickets, the barista found a perfect spot to park her truck. She hurriedly grabbed the blankets and pillows from the backseat and lay them on the bed of her truck. She grinned triumphantly when she tested the cushion and they were perfectly comfortable. Lexa’s heart swooned a little when she climbed onto the truck and sat right next to Costia, with a picnic basket wedged between them.

“You really thought all of this out huh?” Lexa said with a shy smile as she watched Costia fish out 2 sandwiches from the basket.

“Anything for my beautiful date.” Costia said with a wink, and Lexa could feel the butterflies fluttering their wings in her stomach.

But accompanied with those butterflies was all the guilt she had been trying so hard to hide. There was a possibility that she would take the job, and move away, and Costia deserved to know that. And there was also the whole thing where she was in love with someone else, but she could save that for another day.

Lexa hesitated for a moment and she could see Costia frowning in confusion. She opened her mouth but was stop by Costia leaning forward and placing a chaste kiss on her lips.

“Lex, whatever you need to say, save it for the end of the night. I also need to talk to you about something, but for now, let’s just enjoy the movie okay?” The barista said and Lexa could do nothing else but nod.

She took a bite out of her sandwich and turned her attention to the big screen. She smiled when she felt Costia drape a blanket over both of their bodies and cuddle up to her. This girl really was special, and she deserved better.

Much better than Lexa could ever offer her.

//

“I had fun tonight” Costia grinned, swinging their clasped hands like 12 year-olds as they made their way to Lexa’s apartment.

“Thank you so much for planning the night. The movie was awesome” Lexa turned to face Costia when they reached her apartment door.

“I have something to talk to you about. Wanna come in for a bit?”

Costia didn’t hesitate when she gave Lexa a solid nod.

Lexa smiled timidly as her heart suddenly picked up the pace. Her nervousness was evident in the way she fumbled with her keys and took an embarrassingly long time to get the door open. Behind her, she could hear Costia chuckle, making her blush even more.

“Do you want anything to drink? I have wine.” Lexa said as she quickly moved to the kitchen, trying to hide the crimson of her face while Costia made herself comfortable on the couch.

“Wine pleaseeee!!” Costia responded and Lexa intentionally lingered in the kitchen for a bit longer than necessary, in order for her face to return to its normal color.

She walked out when she was sure she wouldn’t make a fool of herself in front of her date yet again. Lexa set two wine glasses on the coffee table and took a seat next to a waiting Costia.

“Thanks Lex. What is it that you want to talk about?”

 Lexa fiddled with the hem of her shirt, finding a good way to deliver this not so good news to Costia. Well, good for Lexa’s career, but not so good for their growing relationship. To her surprise, Costia leaned over and placed an encouraging hand over hers. The barista smiled, and suddenly Lexa felt better.

“I’ve been offered a promotion.” The words literally tumbled out of Lexa’s mouth.

“That’s great, Lex! Congratulations!” Costia beamed and dived right into her for a big bear hug.

She returned the hug, just as tight, and just as genuine. And she wondered, just for a brief moment, what would have happened if she had met Costia first, not Clarke.

Maybe Lexa would love Costia with all that burning passion, just like the way she loves Clarke. Maybe she would turn down the job right on the spot because she wouldn’t want to leave Costia…And maybe they would be happy.

“I’d have to move away if I accept the job.” Lexa murmured and she could feel Costia flinch.

The barista let go of Lexa and retreated back to her seat.

“How far?” Costia smiled sadly.

“New York. They’re opening a new branch there and they want me to be the office manager” Lexa said.

“You should take it. It’s a great opportunity.” Costia reached for her hand and interlaced their fingers.

“But-”

“No buts. Lexa, I-” Costia hesitated for a moment, struggling to find the right words to say… “I haven’t known you for a long time and even though we’ve only been on 3 dates and all, but, we hung out together a lot and the more I got to know you, the more I realize that you’re the kind of person that always puts others ahead of yourself. I think it’s time for you to start living for you.”

“Which brings us to the topic I want to talk to you about. I also realized that you and I could never work out.” Lexa frowned as her heart sank upon hearing Costia’s words “You’re in love with Clarke” Costia deadpanned.

Lexa’s head immediately shot up, finding big brown eyes staring right back at her understandingly.

“You don’t have to say anything. The way you talk about her, the way you look at her, how your posture change whenever she’s around, always more relaxed and at ease. And especially how you look like you want to kick her boyfriend off of a tower. Dead giveaway to be honest” Costia chuckled, giving her hand a gentle squeeze.

Lexa was still at loss of words. Her mouth hanging ajar and gaping.

She tried. She really did. She tried to make it work with Costia. She tried to bury her feelings for Clarke. She tried so hard to pretend she wasn’t head over heels in love with her best friend.

“I’m really sorry Cos. I didn’t mean to hurt you.” Lexa apologizes, tone heavy with sadness and guilt.

“You didn’t. We had a lot of fun together, don’t you think? You’re an amazing person Lexa, and you deserve to be happy. Whether you find happiness here with Clarke, or in New York in some fancy new office, you always have my support as a friend”

“If only I had met you first.” She mumbled, to which Costia chuckled in response,

“Please, you’re destined to love that girl. Deep down, you already know that.” With that, Costia gulped down her glass of wine and stood up, pulling Lexa in a tight hug. “Good luck Lexa.” The barista placed one last kiss on Lexa’s cheek and headed for the door.

“Costia, thank you for everything. I’m sorry I dragged you into this mess.” She said with all the sincerity she could muster.

“You know what makes you happy, Lexa. I don’t have to tell you that. Go get her” With that, Costia turned and walked away, leaving Lexa at the threshold of her door with a dopey grin, feeling lighter and freer than ever.

Lexa knew that she had 2 options.

Fight or flight

Fight for the girl she loved or leave everything behind, and start a new life

Head or heart

Any sensible person would be choosing head right? If she turned down the job, she would probably have to wait 5 more years for another shot like this.

But Clarke was a once-in-a-lifetime kind of girl.

Right now, her heart seemed to be beating louder and louder with each passing moment.

Maybe her chance of true happiness was far more important than some fancy office overlooking Central Park.

//

This place's about to blow, oh-oh-oh!

Blow-oh-oh-oh

This place's about to blow

Blow-oh-oh-oh

The deafening tune pulled Lexa out of her slumber that night. The ringtone belonged to none other than Raven Reyes and Lexa contemplated on just shutting her phone and going back to sleep. But it was 1:30 in the morning, Raven wouldn’t call at such an ungodly hour without a very good reason.

“You better have a good reason Reyes” She picked up, wincing a bit due to the loud noises in the background wherever Raven was. Oh right, Raven, Octavia and Clarke were having a girls’ night out tonight.

“Woody, don’t kill me but you’ve gotta come help us. Clarke is drunk off her ass and wouldn’t let us take her home. She’s sitting on the sidewalk as we speak. She wants to see you.”

Lexa sighed, already out of bed. Using her shoulder to hold the phone against her ear, she slipped on a pair of sweatpants and a hoodie.

“Dropship?” Lexa clarified.

“Yeah, drive safely Woody.” came the response.

//

As soon as she rounded the corner, the loud dance music and chatter from the Dropship assaulted her still half-asleep ears. She immediately spotted Clarke sitting on the pavement a little bit down the street with Octavia next to her and Raven leaning on a nearby streetlight pole.

Raven’s face lit up as soon as she saw Lexa’s car pull to a stop in front of them. Lexa hurriedly grabbed a jacket from the backseat and exited her car.

“What the hell Clarke? It’s like 40 degrees right now!” Lexa immediately covered Clarke’s scantily clad body with her jacket and soothingly ran her hand up and down Clarke’s arms.

She turned to Raven “You should have called me earlier. She’s out like a light!” Lexa tried to press down her anger when she heard Clarke quietly whimper in her arms.

“I’m sorry ok? She didn’t want to wear her jacket and she didn’t want to go inside. We didn’t think she would drink this much. We turned around for a second and she downed like 4 shots!” Raven exclaimed.

Lexa immediately felt her anger deflate as she saw the frustration in Raven’s eyes. “I’m sorry I snapped, it’s just-”

“I know Woody. It’s fine. Now hurry up so I can take my girlfriend home.”

Octavia was doing a little bit better than Clarke. At least she was still conscious.

“Clarke, hey. I’m going to take you home okay?” Lexa lightly shook the blonde, who cracked her eyes open and smiled at the sight of Lexa

“Lex? You’ve come to get me?” She slurred, wrapping her arms around Lexa’s neck.

“Yes Clarke. Let’s go home okay?” Clarke nodded and Lexa immediately scooped her up bridal style and carried the blonde to her car.

“You don’t smell like sex.” Clarke giggled and Raven roared out in laughter. Lexa was caught off guard by the drunken statement that she almost dropped Clarke on the sidewalk.

“Okayyyy. Let’s get you in the car okay?” Lexa said hastily, internally grateful for the dim, flickering streetlight above their heads, as it didn’t really reveal the crimson on her face. She didn’t want to give Raven any more ammunition.

Raven opened the car door and she safely deposited and buckled Clarke in the passenger seat. Lexa then turned to help Raven carry Octavia to Raven’s car.

“I take it that your date didn’t go well?” Raven teased as soon as Octavia was safely put in the car.

“It went well, but it didn’t end the way you predicted. She broke it off, saying we were better as friends, and well, you know why.” Lexa tiredly shrugged.

“Awww, I’m sorry Woody.” Raven cooed.

“Eh, it’s alright. But Costia did say something that got me thinking. I’ve decided to fight for her, Rae. I’m going to tell her I love her, ask her to choose me. And well, if all that ends up in flames, I move to New York and never see her again. Amazing plan right?” Lexa chuckled dryly, her eyes darted to the blonde dozing off in her car.

Raven’s smile widened as she gave Lexa multiple pats on her shoulders. Lexa winced a bit.

“Final-fucking-ly Woody!! Oh my god, team Clexa all the way! Excuse me but which way to happy ever after because IT IS SO ON FOR MY GIRLS!”

Raven’s antics never failed to lighten up her mood.

“Hold your horses, Reyes. We’ll see how it goes. Who’s to say that’s she going to choose me over millionaire playboy with abs and loud ass sport cars?”

“Because she’s in love with you, and you love her. And you have abs too! Don’t undersell yourself” Raven excitedly, but not so lightly, tapped her in the stomach.

“Thanks Raven, for the boost of confidence.” Lexa chuckled, rubbing the sore spot on her stomach.

“Well thank you for coming to get her. Woody, go get your girl!”

“You ok to drive right?”

“Not a single drop. I’m DD, duh.” Raven jogged to the driver’s side and let herself in. The car was started and Lexa was about to walk away, when Raven’s head poke out from the window, “And something’s up with Clarke. I’ve never seen her drink like that before. Talk to her when she’s sobered up ok?”

Lexa nodded “Thanks Reyes. Drive safely” Raven shot her a smile and started driving away.

When Lexa got back in her car, Clarke was out like a light. The girl was snoring lightly with her mouth slightly open. Lexa chuckled and felt her heart swell at the sight. She reached over and tucked a strand of hair behind Clarke’s ear. She jumped a bit when Clarke stirred and opened her eyes. Lexa could feel her face redden as she quickly retracted her hand but Clarke’s shot up to stop hers.  The sleepy blonde held their clasped hands against her own cheek.

“Thank you for coming to get me Lexa. You always take good care of me.” Clarke mumbled.

Lexa smiled and lightly rubbed her thumb on Clarke’s cheek, who let out a content sigh.

“Rest Clarke. I’ll take you home ok?” Clarke nodded as she turned and placed a kiss on Lexa’s palm.

The brunette almost jumped at the gesture of affection. Her skin burned where Clarke’s lips were at and the fire was rapidly spreading. Suddenly her throat was dry. Very dry

“Jacket smells like you” Clarke pulled the jacket tighter around herself and buried her nose in it and just like that, the blonde was fast asleep again.

Lexa cleared her throat as quietly as possible and started the car, heading for Clarke’s apartment.

During the ride, Clarke might or might not have sleepily reached over and interlaced Lexa’s fingers with hers. And Lexa might or might not have been grinning like an idiot the whole ride home.

She totally did

//

When Lexa finally pulled up to Clarke’s apartment, the girl was still snuggled up to Lexa’s jacket and lightly snoring. She quietly let herself out of the car and made her way to Clarke’s side. It was a bit of a struggle but she managed to lift Clarke up bridal style and carry her towards the apartment.

Lexa realized she didn’t think it through when she got to the door and her hands were full with a sleeping beauty. She tried and successfully fished out the keys but she couldn’t seem to find the keyhole.

“I know you’re awake. I’m going to put you down and open the door.” Lexa said teasingly when she saw a corner of Clarke’s mouth curve up.

The blonde chuckled lightly as she looped her arms around Lexa’s neck, refusing to let go.

“Nopppe.” Clarke said with her eyes still closed, letting the P pop cutely.

“Okay, I guess we’re going to have to stand here all night then” Lexa said, but honestly she would be perfectly happy standing like this the whole night, with Clarke sleeping soundly in her arms.

“Fineeee. You may let me down.” Clarke said dramatically.

Lexa carefully let Clarke down but the blonde’s arms were still looped around her neck and her face was buried in Lexa’s chest. Finally realized that she wasn’t going to win, Lexa let out a breathy laugh and successfully opened the door.

“So drunk, can’t walk…” Clarke said, her legs suddenly gave in, dragging Lexa downward with her. The brunette was caught off guard and but acted out of reflex and swiftly scooped Clarke up by her thighs. Clarke giggled as her legs wrapped around Lexa’s waist.

“Such a needy drunk” Lexa sighed, but, internally her heart was doing its routine of somersaults and flips.

Lexa carried Clarke inside, closing the door with her heels. “Where do you want to go your highness?”

“Anywhere as long as it’s with you.” Clarke said without missing a beat.

Lexa didn’t realize it but her grip on Clarke tightened, not willing to let go of her warmth.

“Your heart is beating really fast.” The blonde added.

“Anyone would be if they had such a beautiful girl in their arms” Lexa boldly answered as she made her way to Clarke’s bedroom. “Now let’s get you to bed okay?” Lexa gently set Clarke down on her bed and moved to back away but the blonde’s grip was persistent.

“Stay with me. Please?”

There was something in Clarke’s voice that wasn’t quite right. The sentence came out, almost like a plea.

“Okay” Lexa nodded.

It was only then that Clarke let go of her neck, but immediately grabbed a fistful of her hoodie. Something was definitely wrong. Clarke had never been like this. Ever.

“Clarke, go change into something more comfortable okay?” Lexa bent down and took off Clarke’s heels. The blonde let out a sigh of content and wiggled her toes cutely as they were freed from their prison.

“You’ll be here?” Clarke asked once more, with a hint of uncertainty in her voice.

“Yes, Clarke.”

The blonde reluctantly let go of Lexa’s hoodie. Lexa stood up and grabbed Clarke her favorite monkey pajama pants and a sleep shirt. Clarke took them and headed for the bathroom while Lexa propped up against the headboard of the bed, waiting patiently.

30 minutes later, Clarke came out, face freshly free of makeup. It looked like she had significantly sobered up.

“Lex, I’m sorry for disturbing you at such an ungodly hour.” Clarke said, running her hand through her damp locks.

“Don’t be. You can always call me whenever and wherever you need me.” Lexa reassured her.

Clarke threw herself on the bed and of course, snuggled up against Lexa.

“Thank you, Lex.” Lexa hummed, running soothing circles on Clarke’s arms. “I hope I didn’t disturb your date. How was it anyways?” Clarke asked.

“You didn’t. And it went well. But yeah, she kind of ended things between us though.” Lexa said casually as Clarke’s head snapped up from her shoulder.

Clarke stared at her wide-eyed and even with the only source of lighting came from the slightly ajar window, Lexa could feel that her heart skipped a beat from Clarke’s beauty.

“I’m sorry. That sucks” The blonde said, with not even a hint of sorrow in her voice.

“Clarke, you’re smiling” And well, Lexa was smiling too.

“I am not.” Clarke lightly shoved her shoulder and Lexa noticed just a hint of blush on her cheeks “Why did she break if off?” Clarke asked.

Lexa hesitated for a moment, not really sure if she wanted to tell Clarke the truth right now. She kind of envisioned a far more romantic setting when she profess her love. Clarke could sense her hesitation and decided not to dwell on the topic. The blonde move to rest her head back on Lexa’s shoulder. And then Lexa made her decision.

It’s now or never

Lexa’s arm shot up to wrap around Clarke’s shoulder, effectively keeping the blonde at her place

“She broke it off because I am in love with someone else.” Lexa said, her eyes never left Clarke’s. And that was when she saw it.

The thing that Raven and Octavia, and even Costia talked about. The thing that she had been so blind to see. Or maybe, she had been refusing to see it. But she saw it now…so much more clearly than ever before.

Love

The love in Clarke’s eyes when Clarke looked at her. She saw it now. She kicked herself for not realizing it sooner but the sudden acknowledgement gave her a great boost of courage and confidence. Clarke might love her back, so she just had to go for it and hope for the best.

Tell the girl you love her

“Clarke…” She took a strand of Clarke’s hair and twirled it around her fingers, their eyes never left each other, “Clarke, I lo-”

“Lexa, I’m marrying him.”

And with that, the happiness that she thought was within reach, slipped right through her fingers.

Chapter Text

Chapter 6

Lexa tossed the roll of tape to the corner of her living room and wiped away a bead of sweat rolling down the side of her face. She stood in the middle of her empty apartment, hands on her hips and looked around. There were boxes stacked upon boxes spread all over the apartment and her heart clenched at how easy it was to erase all evidence of her life in just 3 short days. The apartment was her home for the past 4 years, but now it felt like the place was just another roof over her head.

Pictures were removed from their spot above the fireplace; potted plants on the balcony found a new place on the dashboard of the U-Haul she rented. The only indicators that the apartment was still being occupied were the air mattress in the middle of the living room, a pile of clothes that she wasn’t sure were dirty or clean anymore, and the growing boxes of takeout and pizza.

She sat down on the air mattress and her eyes immediately found a lonely box on top of the kitchen island, the only box without a label.

She didn’t need to label it; she knew exactly what was inside… Clothes, shoes, makeup, lotion, shampoo, stuffed animals, some pots and pans…All the things that belonged to Clarke.

She sighed, throwing herself on top of the air mattress, her heart couldn’t help but sink at the thought of the blonde. After all, the wound was still fresh.

After Clarke told her that she was marrying Wells that night, it felt as if she was struck by a lightning bolt…Still alive, but, all the newly found fight and hope had abandoned her body. She stayed though, just like she had promised Clarke, but she knew for sure none of them got any sleep that night. They lay with their backs facing each other on top of the bed that they had shared so many nights before. But this time there were no giggles, no teasing and no cuddling. The silence was deafening until she heard Clarke’s muffled cries, but, she couldn’t bring herself to comfort the girl simply because she was too busy containing her own

The morning after, she left when the sun barely cast its first rays upon the city. She knew Clarke was awake then, but Clarke didn’t ask Lexa to stay, so she didn’t.

Lexa didn’t go home though. She drove around the city without a purpose. She subconsciously drove to the places that she and Clarke liked to go. The places they dubbed as their place.

She drove to their favorite burger place on Kirby. She parked outside for a good 20 minutes watching the building in its slumber. They came here the very first time they hung out together outside of work, and returned often for its divine burgers. Needless to say, the place was filled with memories…Painful memories now, but beautiful nonetheless.

Next stop was their favorite BBQ place just down the street. She tried to suppress the pang of hurt in her chest as she drove past their favorite table sitting by itself under the string lights, right next to the big oak tree. She didn’t know why, but she kept driving.

One last time for the road, she supposed

She came to their favorite Half-Priced Books store on University Place, where they liked to sit in the History section on the second floor and just talk about anything and everything. She came to Dun Huang Plaza where their favorite coffee shop was. She sighed when she remembered that one time when after the shop was already closed and Clarke wanted to finish her half-told story, so they just ended up sitting in the parking lot and talked. They ended up losing track of time and sat there for hours, until a security guard came and check on them to see if they were okay.

Lastly, she came to Herman Park. She exited her car for the first time in the last hour of driving around and was taken by surprise by the blistering cold. That didn’t stop her though; she pulled the hood of her hoodie up to cover her head and pressed on towards their favorite bench at the side of the lake.

She sat and watched the morning joggers make their rounds and was secretly glad that she wasn’t the only one crazy enough to be out this early in the cold. It was so peaceful and quiet. So much so that she almost forgot about the unbearable pain in her chest.

She sat down and every moment, every memory of her and Clarke came rushing into her mind. Every smile, every hug, every gentle brush of lips on her cheeks burned fiercer than ever before.

And then without even realizing it, she cried. Hot tears were rolling down her cheeks and she didn’t even bother to stop them. She brought her hand up to clutch her chest, trying to sooth the excruciating pain that was quickly spreading all over her body. A couple of joggers stopped and asked her if she was okay, but between gasping breaths and choked sobs, all she could manage was a couple of nods and a wave of hands, indicating that she was okay and wasn’t dying or anything dramatic of the sort. Lexa didn’t know how long she sat there, but by the time she ran out of tears, the city was fully awake and bustling with life.

She wiped away her tears with the sleeves of her hoodie and realized she had lost feeling in her hands because of the cold. She buried her hands in the front pocket seeking the minimal warmth it offered, and headed back to her car. She froze when she passed by the rental bike rack at the entrance of the park, recognizing a blue bike, despite it being identical to all the other ones. The bike had a long scratch along its front fender, and the culprit responsible for that scratch was, none other than Clarke Griffin.

She stood in silence as the memory of that warm spring morning washed over her. The night before it happened, Clarke had admitted to Lexa that she never actually learned how to ride a bike, and while the confession shocked her, Lexa found it endearing and quite adorable watching Clarke Griffin blush. The next day, Lexa dragged Clarke to the park, determined to teach her how to ride a bike. Clarke got a handle on pedaling and turning, fairly quickly, which made the blonde beam with pride. As the day progressed, she was getting better, until a row of ducklings came out of nowhere, making the blonde swerve the bike to dodge them. When Lexa realized what was happening, she ran as fast as she could, unfortunately, it was too late. Clarke lost control of the bike, sending her and the poor bike right into the creek.

Lexa, unable to do anything, helplessly stood by and watched on as Clarke fell, which in turn sent a wave of mixed emotions coursing through her. She was beyond worried of course, but as soon as she saw Clarke was sitting in the shallow creek seemingly alright and injury free, she burst out laughing. She bent over, clutching her stomach, and trying hard (yet failing miserably) to contain her laughter.

After Clarke recovered from her initial shock, she stood up, and tried shaking some of the mud off her clothes, huffing as she kicked the bike and narrowed her eyes at Lexa in annoyance. Suddenly, Clarke fell down, clutching her leg and painfully whined and that immediately set Lexa into action. She was kneeling beside the blonde in a flash, worry written all over her face and over-running her mind. Little did she know, Clarke had gathered a handful of mud while she sat in the shallows earlier. The next thing Lexa knew was having said handful of mud smeared across her face while melodic laughter filled her ears as the blonde bolted from her grasp.

She was quick to react though, as she was hot on the blonde’s heels and tackled both of them into the creek. They struggled to win dominance in the play-fight as laughter and shrieks filled the park. One would dunk the other, while the other would get back by throwing mud at their face. They didn’t stop until they saw a park ranger standing with arms crossed, a dead serious look on their face, standing right next to the NO SWIMMING sign.

And that’s the story of how Clarke and Lexa almost got banned for life from Herman Park for not only swimming in a supposedly alligator ridden creek, but also for almost ruining a rental bike.

Lexa tried her best to hold back her tears as she ran her hand along the scratch on the bike, the memory feeling like it was just from a couple weeks ago. A couple weeks ago, when she was still happy with a hopeful heart, and life was still vibrant and colorful like the blue of Clarke’s eyes and the gold of her hair. And now, it was just a big blob of grey and everything just…sucked

Who was she trying to kid?

She wanted to fight for Clarke, she really did. But how do you fight for someone who didn’t want to be fought for? After their night shared in silence, Lexa knew that Clarke did indeed have some sort of feelings for her, but knowing that wasn’t enough.

Life wasn’t a goddamn fairytale where you declare your undying love and ride into the sunset and live happily ever after. For someone who called herself a realist, Lexa sure built her hopes up too high, only to have it shattered in front of her very eyes.

Now, she sat in her empty living room two weeks later, thinking if it would ever stop hurting.

Naturally, she took the job. Marcus was ecstatic for her the moment she said yes, and Lexa tried her best to put on a brave face when he announced her promotion. Everyone in the office rushed over to congratulate her. Well, everyone but one person. She couldn’t say the fact that Clarke left immediately after the announcement didn’t disappoint her, but then again, she shouldn’t expect anything more than that.

She sighed as she stood up from the air mattress and started gathering the boxes together, waiting for Raven and Octavia to arrive, so that they could help her move them to the U-Haul.

This is it

Her last day in this godforsaken city with everything filled with Clarke. Tomorrow would be a new city, new life, and, new Lexa.

The new branch wasn’t going to open for another month, but she couldn’t bear to stay in this city any longer. Not after 2 whole weeks of her and Clarke deliberately avoiding each other. Not after 2 whole weeks of feeling like she was going to suffocate every time she saw blue eyes accidentally look up and met her greens. 

The sound of the door opening tore her attention from the idle ceiling fan and none other than Raven Reyes walked in, with Octavia not far behind.

“We come bearing pizza! And, you really need to lock your door more often. Just because you know Krav Maga or some shit like that doesn’t mean they can’t rob your ass.” Raven announced as she barged into the apartment like it was her own. Lexa rolled her eyes but a smile spread across her lips.

In the past two weeks, Raven and Octavia had always been there for every drunken night, and every tear shed. She looked on at the couple, as they unceremoniously sat down on the floor, chewing on their pizza slices and the mere sight of this moment had her heart cracking. Without even realizing it, these two pizza chowing idiots had become a huge part of her life, heck Lexa dared called them her family. And leaving family is never easy.

“How are you doing? Excited?” Octavia asked as she picked a piece of cherry tomato from her slice and put it on Raven’s, who gladly accepted it. These two were born for each other.

“I’m not sure if excited is the right word. How about low-key dead inside?” Lexa chuckled dryly and was awarded with a packet of Parmesan cheese in the face for her sass.

“I’m glad you find this situation amusing Lexa.” Octavia picked up another packet and aimed it at Lexa who held her hands up in surrender.

“I like to laugh at my own pain, what can I say?” She just shrugged and they all fell silent, eyes fixed on their own piece of pizza.

“Have you even told her you’re leaving tomorrow?” Octavia asked as she finished her slice and moved to grab another.

Instead of answering, Lexa just shook her head, avoiding the eyes of her friends.

“You don’t think she deserves a goodbye?” Lexa was sure that Octavia didn’t mean for the simple question to hurt her. But it did. So much

She was being a coward. After everything she and Clarke shared, the girl deserved so much more than a simple goodbye, but Lexa couldn’t even give her that. She couldn’t bring herself to say goodbye to Clarke. Not to that warm, husky voice that she longed to hear every day for the past year. Not to those blue eyes that she got lost in countless times before. She just couldn’t say goodbye to what they had. She wasn’t just losing the girl who she loves more than anything, she was also losing her best friend, and, her partner in crime.

The move was supposed to help her forget Clarke, but somehow in Clarke’s absence, Lexa could still feel her presence everywhere. At the office (of course), in her car, and in every crook and cranny of her apartment. That was why she couldn’t say goodbye, because if she had to look deep into those blue eyes again, she would break.

“I’m sure she would want to know. These past 2 weeks haven’t exactly been a vacation for her either, you know.” Raven said nonchalantly with a shrug, but Lexa could sense some uneasiness in her voice. Her suspicion was confirmed when Octavia gave her a discrete nudge and a glare that didn’t go past Lexa’s eyes.

“What? She’s gotta know! Listen here Woody, your girl has been crying and whining to us for the wholeeee 2 weeks. So yep, we’ve been the crying shoulders for both of you. If we’re not with you then we’re with her. It’s not that I’m complaining or anything because I’m a great friend, but, I am complaining because you guys are such thick headed dumbasses that won’t sit down and have a proper talk! I get it! She’s getting married, but don’t you think there’s some reason that she’s marrying him? You told me you’d fight, but now you’re leaving like a coward! She’s clearly in love with you!” Raven snapped, her voice almost screaming, her whole body tensed up and her breaths rugged.

Lexa’s eyes were burning holes on the hard wood floor, letting each and every single word from Raven’s lips sink its teeth into her skin. And then, she snapped too.

“I was going to tell her I love her, I was going to ask her to choose me and then she told me she was marrying him! What do you want me to do Raven? Kidnap her? Beg for her love?” She screamed, hot tears gathered at her eyes, and threatened to fall, but she wiped them away before they even got the chance to roll down her cheeks. And then she lowered her voice, feeling as if all the energy had left her body, “I want to fight, I do. God, that’s all I want to do. But I can’t keep fighting a losing battle, Raven. I’m too tired, I just can’t.”

And with that, they all fell silent. Lexa tried her best to keep the tears at bay, while Raven and Octavia looked at her with sympathy.

“I just hate to see both of my best friends hurting like this.” Raven finally spoke up after what seemed like forever wiping her own tears away.

“Not for long. I’m moving, she’s getting married. I’ll find somebody new and she’ll be with Wells, and we’ll be happy. Just not with each other.” She said, sincerely hoping that it would come true. She wanted Clarke to be happy, even if she wasn’t the one who’s lucky enough to spend eternity with her.

“Okay” Raven nodded and stood up, walking towards Lexa’s stacks of boxes at the corner of the room “Move your asses, we have got some boxes to move!”

She wiped the last tear away, determined that this would be the last time she’d cry about Clarke. Octavia offered her a hand to help her stand up (after 3 slices of pizza, she needed it) and an understanding smile. She took both gratefully.

After a whole hour of lifting, pushing and dragging, all of Lexa’s boxes were down in the U-Haul and the apartment was completely empty, with the exception of her air mattress and of course, the lonely box on top of the kitchen island.

Lexa glanced at the clock, and it read 2PM. Her last day in the city was flying by, and the mixture of sadness, anxiety and excitement was making a mess of her head. Octavia and Raven offered to stay with her, but she wanted to spend her last night here alone with her thoughts.

“I still think she needs to know” That was the last thing Raven said before she disappeared behind the door. They planned to meet up for breakfast tomorrow before she drive out, so, the goodbye wasn’t teary and sappy yet.

She sat on the mattress, tossing her phone from one hand to the other, contemplating calling or texting Clarke. Raven and Octavia were right; she had to tell Clarke, but how?

Text her? No, nobody liked to receive this kind of news over text. She wouldn’t do that to Clarke.

Call her? No, this had to be a face-to-face conversation.

Her thumb hovered over the dial button next to Clarke’s name, but she hesitated. She had decided to call and ask her to come over so they could talk. No matter how much it would hurt her, she had to say goodbye. She had invited Clarke over countless times before, hell, the blonde even barged in without permission with her spare key, but all of a sudden, it felt weird and out of place.

Her mind was racing, heck it was jumping miles and miles per hour with so many thoughts, and she finally decided to set the phone down and go for a walk to clear her head. Just when she slipped on her shoes, an urgent knock at the door had her frowning.

Maybe Raven and Octavia forgot something. But they never knocked.

She swung the door opened and her heart immediately sank at the sight of the person standing on the other side. The only person who could literally solve 80% of her problems right now.

Clarke Griffin stood before her, chest heaving as she took in the cold winter air, vapor leaving her lips when she breathed out. Clearly Clarke had run here.

“You’re leaving tomorrow.” It wasn’t a question. The words left Clarke’s lips with certainty and Lexa nodded, dumbfounded. “And you weren’t going to tell me.” Yet another statement, and Lexa opened her mouth to explain but nothing came out, so she nodded again.

“Wow, just fucking wow.” Clarke shook her head, her blue eyes now clouded by anger and hurt. “And here I thought you were better than that. I thought we meant more than that!” Clarke hissed.

The words sent ice shards through her heart. Lexa still stood there, struggling to find the words to say. Something, anything, to sooth the hurting girl in front of her, but she got nothing.

Clarke turned on her heel to walk away, but Lexa was quick to close her hand around Clarke’s wrist. Lexa pulled, and in a flash, Clarke landed in her open arms. It was a cliché move, but she couldn’t find the words, and she didn’t want Clarke to leave.

Lexa’s arms moved to wrap around Clarke’s shoulder, pulling her closer and only now had she noticed that Clarke was wearing her blue hoodie. Clarke didn’t hug her back, her arms lay slack by her side, but she still didn’t push Lexa away.  

“I’m sorry.” Lexa whispered. “I’m so sorry.” She murmured again, her nose nuzzled in the crook of Clarke’s neck, breathing in the intoxicating scent of the blonde and her head got a little dizzy. She wondered how had she lived without it for 2 whole weeks, as she held the blonde impossibly closer.

She could feel Clarke’s arms tentatively come up and wrap around her waist, holding her close. They stood at the threshold of her door, holding each other for possibly the last time ever.

“I miss you so much.” The blonde sniffed, and Lexa wasn’t sure if it was because of the cold or if she was crying. “Can we... just…” Clarke’s voice broke mid-sentence and that was all the confirmation she needed.

She pulled back, and was glad to see her favorite eyes back to its hopeful shade of blue, no longer clouded by hurt and anger. They were brimming with tears now, but at least Clarke wasn’t angry anymore. She moved her hands to cup Clarke’s cheeks, wiping the fallen tears away with the pads of her thumb.

“Can we just spend the rest of the day together? Just as Clarke and Lexa? Everything else forgotten, just for this one last day, please?” Clarke pleaded, looking at her with those puppy dog eyes, so she quickly nodded her assent.

Maybe she shouldn’t, but Lexa was weak and Clarke was Clarke. After all, she was leaving tomorrow and besides where was the harm in spending her last day in the city with the very same person who was the primary reason why she was leaving in the first place…Right?

This is totally not a bad idea.

Right?

 

Chapter Text

Fact: Lexa Woods had no self-control. To be more precise, Lexa Woods had no control when it came to Clarke Griffin. When Clarke Griffin looked at you with those puppy dog eyes and pouty lips, and told you she wanted to cook for you on your last day together, you don’t say no. No matter how bad an idea it was.

Not even 15 minutes later, Lexa found herself resting her elbows on the handlebar of a grocery filled shopping cart, waiting patiently, while Clarke closely examined every single avocado in the store. A small smile unknowingly formed at the corners of her lips as Clarke let out a discontented huff, clearly unhappy with the quality of the avocadoes.

“Do you need me to go get you a magnifying glass so you can further examine them?” Lexa teased, causing Clarke to whip her head around, and fix Lexa with a death glare.

“Do you want bomb ass guacamole?” The blonde narrowed her eyes, her hand held up an avocado threateningly. Lexa couldn’t help but let out a chuckle and nodded, “Then I suggest you stop teasing and let me focus.”

Lexa tried her best to put on her serious face and saluted Clarke, who rolled her eyes, but Lexa still caught the grin that took over the blonde’s face before she turned away, once again giving the avocadoes her full attention.

“What are you making?” Lexa asked when her patience gave in, eyeing Clarke curiously.

“Your favorite.”

“All of your food is my favorite.”

“Guess you’ll just have to wait and see then.” The blonde deposited a bag of avocadoes in the cart and looked at Lexa with a mischievous smile, which the brunette returned with an amused smirk of her own.

It was safe to say that they were back to their normal dynamic. The teasing banter, the playful eye rolls, the melodic sounds of their combined laughter… Oh dear God how Lexa had missed all of that. So much so that being with Clarke again made her almost forget the situation they were in.

Almost.

Her heart clenched at the thought of tomorrow. She knew for sure that it was the right thing to do, for both of their sakes. But why did it feel so wrong?

“No pouting, Lex. Today is supposed to be fun remember?” Clarke said without even looking at Lexa, her eyes trailed along the selection of fish the store offered.

Fact: Clarke Griffin knew Lexa Woods better than Lexa knew herself.

“I’m not pouting.” Lexa blushed, pretending to read the ingredients on the package of tortillas that they picked up earlier.

“Whatever you say Lex.” Clarke shrugged, putting a tray of Mahi Mahi fillets in the cart.

Lexa’s face lit up like a kid on Christmas morning as she immediately realized the main course of the evening. “Fish tacos?” She asked, a dopey grin plastered on her face.

Clarke chuckled and nodded her head in confirmation, and, Lexa squealed excitedly. Suddenly, an idea popped in Lexa’s head and she literally bolted towards the baking aisle, leaving Clarke confused with a package of cilantro in her hands. She came back not 5 minutes later, satisfied with the handful of ingredients in her hands: eggs, flour, mascarpone cheese and cocoa powder.

“Tiramisu?” Now it was Clarke’s turn to squeal when she recognized the familiar ingredients in Lexa’s hands.

“Guess you’ll have to wait and see” Lexa shrugged, earning a playful shove to her shoulder. She caught an incoherent mumble that sounded suspiciously like jerk when Clarke turned away and her smile grew even wider.

The rest of the shopping trip went by in a breeze. All the ingredients they needed tossed haphazardly into the cart, and of course, wine. It wouldn’t be a proper goodbye party without cheap grocery store wine, right?

As soon as they got back to Lexa’s apartment, pots and pans were pulled out of the Clarke’s box on top of the kitchen island and Clarke busied herself with the food prep necessary to make her world famous fish tacos. And Lexa, well, Lexa was determined to make THE tiramisu of all tiramisus. They fell into a comfortable silence and moved seamlessly around the small kitchen while focused on their task at hand. Dinner was ready in the blink of an eye as Clarke put some finishing touches on the tacos and Lexa placed her tiramisu in the fridge, extremely proud of how it turned out.

They ate at the kitchen island while chatting animatedly. They each took turns recalling the memories they shared together, laughter echoing off the walls of the empty apartment.

So far so good

The two of them quite successfully and skillfully managed to ignore the pink elephant in the room. The fact that Lexa was moving tomorrow and Clarke’s sudden engagement were never brought up, just like they had agreed to earlier. Just one last night together as Clarke and Lexa, where nothing and no one else mattered except for each other.  

An hour and a bottle of wine later, fish tacos devoured, disposable plates thrown out, pots and pans cleaned and packed away into the box where they came from. While Lexa busied herself preparing dessert in the kitchen, she tried her best to ignore the tick of the wall clock behind her. With every second passed by, her heart sank just a bit lower, knowing their time together was coming to an end. However, Clarke didn’t leave her much time to wallow in pity as the sound of the blonde throwing herself on the air mattress followed by a groan of discomfort put the smile back on Lexa’s face. 

“How the hell do you sleep on this? This is like laying on a rock” Clarke whined as she wiggled on the mattress, trying to make herself comfortable, which at that moment, seemed to be an impossible task.

Lexa chuckled, handing Clarke her piece of tiramisu, and sat down next to the blonde, who was squealing happily at the sight of the delicious dessert.

“You’re literally the best in the whole world!” exclaimed Clarke as she accepted the plate greedily and shoveled down forkfuls of tiramisu in to her mouth in record time. She hummed and her eyes fluttered shut at the taste, which only made the smile on Lexa’s face widen. “What do I do when I can never taste this heaven again?” 

At the blonde’s admission, Lexa froze, her whole body went rigid at the blonde’s slip-up. And Clarke, coming down from the tiramisu high, realized what she had just said and shifted uncomfortably, trying to put as much space as she could between her and Lexa on the tiny mattress.

“So, New York huh? Are you excited?” Clarke asked. She grabbed the wine glass on the floor and gulped down the whole thing.

It seemed like the magic of the night was broken, as the pink elephant had finally become too hard to ignore. Lexa nodded as she reached out for the bottle of wine and refilled both their empty glasses. Suddenly the scorch mark above the stove that she created the second day she moved was much easier to look at than Clarke’s magnetic, beautiful and mesmerizing blue eyes…

“Are you going to come back? You know…to visit?” Clarke’s question snapped Lexa out of her daze.

Lexa contemplated the question, absentmindedly swirling the wine glass in her hand. Maybe she was being melodramatic but the thought of coming back never actually crossed her mind. She couldn’t bear the thought of seeing the possible love of her life married to someone else. Just the image Mr. and Mrs. Jaha hand in hand walking down the aisle surrounded by the cheer of their friends and family sent shivers down her spine.

“No, I don’t think so.” The words slipped through her lips, barely a whisper.

With that, Clarke let out a gentle hum of acknowledgement and they fell silent. Lexa, not finding enough courage to look into Clarke’s eyes, turned her full attention on the bottle of wine. At this rate, she might as well be drinking it from the bottle.

Suddenly, she felt movement next to her as the mattress shifted. Before she could register what was going on, Clarke leaned over grabbed the wine glass from her hand and set it on the floor. The blonde then stood up, offering her hand to a very confused Lexa.

“Dance with me Lex.” Clarke said, with a sad smile painted on her face, and her eyes a dark stormy blue.

“What?” Lexa blinked, clearly taken aback by the sudden suggestion.

Clarke just shrugged, her hand still hovering in the space between them. Lexa let out a breathy laugh, and reached out to clasp Clarke’s hand in hers. The blonde pulled her up, with a little too much force. That, combined with her alcohol clouded mind, sent her tumbling right into Clarke’s open arms. They giggled as they straightened up, her arms circled around Clarke’s waist, pulling her close, and Clarke linked her hands together behind Lexa’s neck. They stood motionlessly in the middle of the empty apartment, close enough for Lexa to feel Clarke’s warm breath against her cheeks, but still far enough for Lexa’s heart to quicken its pace as she gazed into Clarke’s sapphire eyes.

 “There’s no music” Lexa deadpanned, struggling to swallow the lump that suddenly formed in her throat.

Clarke chuckled, and the sound did nothing but causing butterflies to erupt in Lexa’s belly.

“Sing.” The blonde said tersely, and Lexa couldn’t say she was surprised by the request.

She cleared her throat, racking her brain to find the right song to sing, and suddenly it popped in her head. Their favorite song

‘Why do birds suddenly appear

Every time you are near?

Just like me, they long to be

Close to you

Their bodies started swaying together and Clarke rested her head at the crook of Lexa’s neck, while Lexa’s grip tightened around the younger girl’s waist.

‘Why do stars fall down from the sky

Every time you walk by?

Just like me, they long to be

Close to you’

This would be the last time that she’d have Clarke in her arms, that she would feel her gorgeous golden hair tickle her cheek and have that melodic laugh fill her ears. The thought of it alone made it hard to breathe as she struggled to sing the next verse.

‘On the day that you were born the angels got together

And decided to create a dream come true

So they sprinkled moon dust in your hair

Of golden starlight in your eyes of blue’

Clarke’s lifted her head slowly and rested her forehead against Lexa’s. Their bodies came to a halt, when Lexa’s eyes found Clarke’s, gleaming with unshed tears and her heart broke all over again.

And suddenly, it was all too much.

The intoxicating smell of Clarke’s perfume. Clarke’s soft and delicate skin, where Lexa’s thumb had been absentmindedly drawing circles on her waist. Clarke’s hot and uneven breath against her cheeks. The unshed tears brimming at Clarke’s eyes. Lexa felt as if her lungs were closing in as each breath became shallower and rushed. She tried to get away, to put some space between her and Clarke, but the blonde’s clasped hands behind her neck kept her in place.

“Lexa, I-” Clarke whispered, and then Lexa felt like everything was reduced to slow motion. The tears in Clarke’s eyes finally rolled down her cheeks as she leaned in, pressing her lips tentatively against Lexa’s, and then her heart stopped.

She blinked once, twice, thrice and by the fourth time, she finally accepted that this was real. Clarke Griffin was kissing her in the middle of her empty apartment, hours before their impending separation.

Before Lexa even have time to react, the kiss ended faster than it started. Clarke drew back, cerulean pools filled with emotion gazing back into her stunned forest green.

 “What are you doing Clarke?” Lexa managed to croak out, willing to not let her voice break.

“Let me have this one night, Lex. Just this one night, to pretend like I deserve you. To pretend that just one night with you is enough for me.” Clarke pleaded, the tears she tried so hard to keep at bay just moments ago, now flowed freely down her cheeks. 

Lexa ran her eyes across Clarke’s features, speechless from the sudden turn of events. She moved her hand to cup Clarke’s cheeks, wiped away the tears with the pads of thumbs and the blonde leaned into her touch.

Lexa didn’t know she could feel like this. Completely elated, yet utterly heart-broken at the same time.

“Answer me this Clarke…” Lexa paused, waiting for the blonde’s response, to which she nodded, eyes never leaving Lexa’s “Do you love him?”

“No.”

The answer was terse, but full of certainty. Lexa couldn’t say that the answer didn’t catch her by surprise but she kept her composure. Countless questions swirled around her head but they all died at the tip of her tongue.

Why are you with him?

Why are you marrying him?

Is it the money?

The fame?

Finally, she decided on one, the one that mattered most.

“Do you love me?” Lexa asked, her hands trembled, and her heart thumped against her ribcage.

As soon as the question left her tongue, an answer was supplied instantaneously, with much more confidence and honesty than the last.

“With all my heart.”

With that, all of her self-control and sensibility went out the windows.

Screw New York

Screw Wells

Screw everything

She wanted Clarke. She needed Clarke. Even just for one night.

The moment their lips met again, there were no fireworks nor trembling knees. Instead, an overwhelming feeling of home took over her. Lexa felt light, so light that she felt like she was floating.

The kiss was slow and tentative but filled with certainty. Clarke’s lips were slightly chapped but soft and she tasted like wine, sugary sweet and salt. The blonde held her impossibly closer as their lips moved against each other and Lexa decided that if she were to die tomorrow, she’d die the happiest girl on Earth.

Lexa pulled back, her forehead resting against Clarke’s and she realized the blonde was crying again, this time, a sad smile pulled at her lips.

Clarke searched her face, looking for any sign of hesitance, but Lexa was sure Clarke would find nothing but love gazing back at her. Lexa nodded her assent against Clarke’s forehead and leaned in again.

This time it was more desperate, more rushed as the tangle of fumbling limbs fell onto the air mattress. Clarke groaned as her back hit the rock-like surface and Lexa couldn’t help but chuckle into their kiss, earning herself a light pinch on the hip. She yelped and they both broke out into a fit of giggles. It subsided as soon as they found each other’s eyes and they fell silent.

Lexa looked down at the gorgeous woman beneath her with golden hair fanned out on the pillow and kiss swollen lips and Lexa couldn’t help but think how stupid of an idea this was.

She was moving and possibly never coming back. Clarke was engaged to be married. There was not a single scenario where this night would end well. But she was buzzed on cheap wine and drunk on Clarke, and most importantly, Clarke loved her, and they loved each other, and honestly, that was all Lexa needed.

“Are you sure Clarke?” She asked when she remembered how to breathe again, her thumb ran along Clarke’s jawline, leaving goose-bumps in its wake. 

“I can only promise you this one night, Lexa. But what little I have, I’m giving you my all.”

 “Clarke, I lov-” Lexa started, but was soon cut off by Clarke’s lips pressing against hers, effectively drowning the unsaid declaration in her throat.

Clarke pulled back quickly, as a hint of panic flashed in her eyes, “Lexa please don’t. I know what you want to say, and by God, I would give up anything to hear it, but please don’t. If I hear you say those words…it will kill me.”

So Lexa didn’t say anything. She nodded as she leaned in, expressing the unsaid words through passionate kisses, and gentle touches. Clothes were soon shed as they took their time exploring each other’s bodies for the first and last time ever. Lexa marveled at the feel of Clarke’s soft skin against hers, Clarke’s hot breath on her neck as she pressed lingering kisses on her pulse point, Clarke’s fingers ran across her skin, exploring every nook and cranny of her body.

Lexa came undone with Clarke’s name on her tongue, and a Clarke-shaped hole forever branded on her heart.

//

They laid awake, facing each other in their post-coital bliss and Lexa wanted nothing more than this moment to last forever. How foolish she was to think that just one time with Clarke was enough. Her heart dropped as she glanced at the clock, the sun was coming up soon, and she knew all too well what that meant. The unasked question from earlier was gnawing at the back of her head, but voicing it would efficiently ruin the moment. But, she had to ask.

“Why Clarke? If you don’t love him, why?” Lexa whispered, her hand moved to interlace their fingers together.

“I can’t answer that Lexa.” Clarke’s eyes instantly dropped to their clasped hands, trying her best to avoid Lexa’s gaze. “Please understand that I have my reasons. Just know that I love you, and I’ll always love you.”

“Leave him…be with me Clarke. I will make you happy. We will be happy. Together” Lexa pleaded, she gathered both of Clarke’s hands and held them in hers, resting them on the left side of her chest, where her heart was beating erratically.

 “Lexa, do you believe in alternate universes?” Clarke asked, barely a whisper.

“What?” Lexa narrowed her eyes, confused by the question.

Clarke nodded and Lexa could see she was trying to blink away the tears welled up in her eyes. “Yeah, alternate universes. You know…a parallel universe with a different version of us in a different situation. So somewhere out there, there are versions of Clarke and Lexa, happy together. They could be college roommates or childhood friends that end up falling in love with each other, and live happily ever after. Unfortunately, that’s not our reality. I want that so much for us, but it just can’t be. I’m sorry.”

Silence overtook them once more as Lexa closed her eyes and let each and every word sent ice shards through her heart. Her breath became ragged, and her hand shook, willing herself not to cry. To finally know that they would never have a future together, to hear those words leaving Clarke’s lips, it was the worst pain the she ever had to endured in her life. She knew whatever reason that Clarke had, it was important, and there was no way she could change the blonde’s mind. So she had to face it, she had to be brave, for herself, and for Clarke.

“Don’t be sorry, Clarke. I understand”

“Sleep Lexa, the sun is coming up soon.” Clarke reached out to pull Lexa close, burying her head in Lexa’s shoulder.

“You’ll be gone when I wake up, won’t you?” She asked, but a response never came as she could feel Clarke’s even breaths against her neck.

She sighed, pulling Clarke impossibly closer as she dropped a kiss on golden hair. To her surprise, slumber slowly claimed her body and mind, and the last thing that managed to tumble out of her lips remained unheard.

“I love you Clarke”

//

Lexa stirred awake hours later and the space next to her was just as she predicted, cold and empty. She couldn’t fight the overwhelming disappointment that was slowly suffocating her. She was in pain, like someone had ripped her heart out of her chest, threw it on the floor and stomped on it. The blood in her veins felt like acid as they ran through her body, burning her organs to crisps.

How would she ever get over this pain?

She looked up and the lonely box on the kitchen island was gone. The only evidence of Clarke ever being in her life was gone. And so was Clarke.

She threw herself back on the air mattress, struggled to find her breath and that was when she saw a flash of white on the pillow where Clarke’s head laid the night before. She frowned, grabbing the piece of paper and immediately recognized the cursive of Clarke’s hand writing,

‘It’s you. It’s always been you. Despite everything, it’s still you’

 

Chapter Text

It took Lexa 2 months to finally got used to it all, the new life, the new job, the feeling of utter loneliness in a city full of life and the dull, throbbing pain that always resided in the pit of her stomach.

She sighed, turning away from the pile of paperwork, to look out of the glass wall behind her desk. Her eyes trailed the skyscrapers that made up the New York skyline as the Sun slowly slipped further behind the Hudson. 

A gentle knock at the door drew her attention away from the breathtaking view. She quickly voiced her permission for the intruder to come in and the office door creaked open, just enough for a head to poke in. 

“Lexa, the whole office is going to the bar today to celebrate Ryder’s birthday, would you like to join us?” Her assistant Tris asked tentatively, (as if she already knew Lexa’s answer.

“I think I’ll pass. Tell Ryder I’m sorry and wish him a happy birthday for me, will you?” Lexa smiled politely at the young girl.

“Okay, good night Lexa. I’ll see you Monday.”

With that, Tris retreated quickly, quietly closing the door on her way out. 

She could hear the muffled laughter and chatter outside where everyone was gathering their stuff to leave for the day. With a ding of the elevator, all the noises were gone, and she was alone once again.

She reached down, pulled out her secret bottle of Johnnie Walker from the bottom drawer and filled up her empty coffee mug with the amber liquid. She leaned back in her chair, took a swig from the mug, and frowned as the burn of the alcohol traveled down her throat.

“The wedding is in 2 weeks, Lexa.”

She vividly remembered Octavia’s voice through the phone. She didn’t say anything when Octavia broke the news to her. She didn’t know what to say. It was inevitable. The love of her life was going to marry a man that she didn’t even love, and there was nothing she could do to stop it. There was a long pause before Octavia continued,

“Are you coming back?”

“No”

And, that was it. The conversation was exactly 13 days ago. Tomorrow is going to be Clarke’s wedding day. Her Clarke.

Lexa took another swig out of her mug and closed her eyes. She immediately saw flashes of blue and gold, as if they were branded onto the insides of her eyelids. She could still feel it all. Clarke’s fingertips gliding on her skin. Clarke’s soft lips gently pressing against hers. Clarke’s warmth enveloping her as they fell asleep entangled. Clarke’s gentle whisper when she thought Lexa had fallen asleep

“I love you, Lexa Woods.”

She gritted her teeth as the pain in her chest slowly spread throughout her body. She felt like her lungs were going to collapse as her breath shortened and her hands shook. 

Somehow, she missed the ding of the elevator, signaling that someone had arrived on her floor. She, however, did not miss the way her office door was flung open, crashing against the wall with a loud bang. She jumped up at the sudden intrusion, grabbing the letter opener on the desk to defend herself.

 “Put that thing down. Grab your coat and let’s go.”

When she recognized the familiar lean and tall figure standing at her doorway, she relaxed, tossing the letter opener on to her desk.

 “What the hell are you doing here Anya?”

Her cousin sauntered into her office, grabbed her coat off the rack and literally dragged her by the hand out of her office. They made it to the elevator when she managed to break the iron grip Anya had on her wrist.

 “Where are we even going? I have work to do.” She stated, throwing a death glare Anya’s way, to which Anya only chuckled. 

 “Right, work. You think I don’t know you by now. If you can tell me that “coffee mug” you were holding wasn’t filled with booze, then I will leave you alone.” Anya fired back with folded arms and eyes boring into Lexa’s full of challenge.

When Lexa didn’t seem like she’d give up anytime soon, Anya gave in with a sigh.

“Look, I know what tomorrow is okay? I just don’t want you to be alone tonight.”

Lexa relented at the admission. Her heart clenched at the mention of tomorrow but she didn’t let it show. With that, she snatched her coat from Anya’s hand, trying her best to avoid her cousin’s eyes. 

 “Fine.” She said begrudgingly while putting her coat on.

The elevator opened and Anya practically shoved her inside.

 “Where are we going?” Lexa asked.

“Getting you shitfaced of course.” Anya answered, her eyes glued to the elevator doors as they closed.

Lexa didn’t protest. She needed something to take her mind off of Clarke, and a lot of booze seemed like the best choice. 

“Thank you” Lexa said, still putting up her annoyed façade.

Anya replied with a small hum and the ride stayed mostly silent after that. 

Not even a week after moving into her new apartment in New York, came a knock on the door on a lazy Saturday afternoon. She opened the door, thinking it was the Chinese takeout she had ordered earlier, but instead, she found Anya on the other side of the door. Her cousin brushed past her with her usual stoic expression, and a suitcase in tow. 

 “I got a job here. I’m moving in, where’ s my room?”

That was all that Anya said, and from that day on, there was not a single day that Lexa wasn’t grateful for her cousin’s sudden, but much needed, intrusion. Anya cooked for her so she didn’t have to eat shitty Chinese food and 3-day old pizzas. Anya literally picked her up off the floor from being black out drunk and forced her head under a running water faucet to sober her up.

“Clarke wouldn’t want this for you, you know?” Anya said one night after sobering her up and throwing her into bed. 

At the mention of Clarke, her head perked up. 

“You don’t know anything.” She said stoically, jaws clenched and hands gripping the pillows. 

 “I know you love her. I know it hurts that you two can’t be together. But you’re throwing your life away. I know you need a distraction but working from morning till the sun goes down and then going home and drinking until you pass out is not living.” Anya was hitting her where it hurt most, and the blonde knew full well what she was doing.  

 “Shut up Anya, before I kick your ass.” She sat up on her bed and approached Anya, who stood her ground. 

 “I’d love to see you try kid.” Anya said with a smirk and that was all it took.

Lexa threw a punch that landed square on Anya’s jaw and the blonde was quick to fight back. Fists, feet, elbows, and knees were sent flying. The blonde jabbed her right in the nose and received an elbow to her lips. The fight went on for a while and Lexa started to feel her body giving in, but she wasn’t going to admit defeat that easily. She saw an opportunity and immediately went for it. She charged forward, tackling Anya to the floor. They both landed with a thud and Anya groaning in pain. That was when the blonde tapped her shoulder, signaling for her to stop. Lexa rolled off, lying next to her cousin on the floor, both bruised up and breathing like they just ran a marathon

 “Did that help?” Anya asked with great difficulty because of her busted lips.

 “Why didn’t we do that sooner?” Lexa panted and they both chuckled, immediately regretting it as they winced in pain.

She promised herself that, that was the last time ever that Anya had to pick her up off the floor. Clarke wouldn’t want her to live like this.

She got lost in thought, and didn’t realize that they had arrived at their destination. They stopped in front of MacLaren’s, an Irish bar that they frequently visited, right downstairs from their apartment. The bar was quite packed, given that it was a Friday night, but they still managed to get seats at their favorite booth in the corner. 

 “Hey guys!”

In the hazy light, Lexa recognized it was one of the waitresses at the bar, Audrey, who was shooting her a beaming smile. 

 “Hey Audrey. Busy night?” Lexa smiled back politely.

“Yeah, luckily I’m about to get off in bit though. Wendy just got here for her shift so I’d be able to cut myself some slack.”

After exchanging pleasantries and small talk, the waitress scurried away with their order, her hand lingered just a bit longer on Lexa’s shoulder to be considered friendly. The small gesture didn’t escape Anya’s keen eyes. 

 “So tell me why haven’t you banged her yet?” Anya said nonchalantly as she tossed pieces of cashews in her mouth.

 “Annnnnddd here we go again.” Lexa rolled her eyes and let out an exasperated sigh.

 “Why not? I know I’m being repetitive but even Stevie Wonder can see those puppy eyes she gives you, plus, she’s hot. If she were in to me and not a waddling burlap sack like you, you’d need some serious noise cancelling headphones, my friend.” Anya winked and started laughing at her own joke. What a nerd

 “Ha ha ha, very funny.” Lexa laughed sarcastically. “You know why, Anya. I can’t do that.”

 “Yeah yeah, because you’re in love with your best friend, who loves you too but you can’t be together and you don’t know why blah blah. You know what? Instead of drowning in alcohol, drowning in that,” She gestured towards the red-haired waitress. “would be a much more pleasant experience” Anya wiggled her eyebrows suggestively.

Admittedly, Audrey was a very attractive woman. Lexa couldn’t deny that Audrey’s hazel eyes often left her fascinated, her laugh had Lexa laughing along with her, and maybe Lexa stared at the way her ponytail swayed along with her body when she walked away just once or twice. But that was it. 

Her hazel eyes didn’t leave Lexa mesmerized and enticed, like certain blue ones did. Her laugh didn’t cause a thousand butterflies to erupt in her stomach, like the familiar raspy laugh that often haunted her dreams. And then it started again. The little memories of Clarke, one by one, started flowing in her mind. The way Clarke’ s lips curved up when she was plotting something devious, or how she cried when her favorite TV show character died, or...

Her train of thought got disrupted by a precisely thrown piece of cashew that landed right in the middle of her eyes. 

 “You’re doing it again.” Anya casually said. “Spacing out like you’re in la la land. I know what you’re thinking about and you need to stop.”

“God you’re so fucking annoying. I thought we’re here to get wasted.” Lexa rolled her eyes, getting a little agitated that her cousin knew her so well. Anya was ready to retort when Audrey came to Lexa’s rescue with a tray full of Red Dragon, a special blend by Carl the Bartender. 

“Here you go, 10 shots of Red Dragon. Looks like you guys have some serious unwinding to do.”

 “Hey Audrey, you said you’re getting off in a bit right? Why don’t you join us?” Anya smiled mischievously at Audrey, wincing a little bit at the kick to the shin Lexa gave her under the table. 

 “Are you sure? I don’t want to intrude.” Audrey’s face lit up at the offer but she still seemed hesitant to accept it.

 “Of course not! Lexa would love to hang out with you, right Lex?” Anya looked at her smugly and Audrey had this hopeful gleam in her eyes that Lexa found hard to say no to. 

 “Yes, Audrey, I would love for you to join us.” Lexa said, offering Audrey a tight lip smile.

The young waitress lit up like a Christmas tree, and promised she’d be joining them after her shift and bounced away with a newfound spring in her step.

 “That wasn’t so hard was it?” Anya smirked, raising a shot of Red Dragon, her eyes glinting challengingly. 

Lexa just rolled her eyes, clinked her shot with Anya’s and both of them downed the alcohol effortlessly.

//

Lexa cracked her eyes open, only to be greeted by a familiar plain white ceiling and a foot poking at her cheek. The next thing she realized was that her head hurt, like really fucking hurt. She swatted the foot away and slowly sat up, trying her best to contain the overwhelming urge to hurl. She noticed that the foot belonged to none other than her cousin dearest, Anya, who was snoring loudly from her spot on the floor. She looked up and found Audrey curled up on the loveseat and the events from last night came rushing into her mind. 

The three of them drank. A lot. She remembered downing shot after shot after shot along with Anya and Audrey while they played some absurd drinking game that her cousin came up with. She remembered drinking until Carl the bartender cut them off so they moved the party upstairs to their apartment and… Oh shit!

She stood up, a little too fast for her liking but she suppressed the nausea and frantically searched for her phone.

Anya spilled beer on her fucking phone! 

She found it lying on the kitchen countertop and immediately took off the phone case. Relief washed over when the familiar piece of paper fell out, perfectly intact. 

‘It’s you. It’s always been you. Despite everything, it’s still you.’

She stood there, in front of a lifeless piece of paper, hungover as heck, head buried in her hands, trying her best to stop the pain from overtaking her. Two months weren’t enough for her to get over Clarke. Hell, all the time in the world still wouldn’t be enough for her to get over Clarke.  

Oh how she desperately wanted to just jump into her car and drive to Clarke, convince her to abandon her big fancy wedding so that they could run away together. But, she couldn’t. Clarke told Lexa what she wanted and she’s going to respect that, no matter how much it destroyed her.

The love of her life was going to get married in a few hours, and all she could do was stand there, in front of a lifeless piece of paper, reading and rereading the cursive on it over and over again, wondering if it ever would stop hurting.

Chapter Text

“Today marks the day that the prominent technology company, Arkadia Inc., names its new CEO, Mr. Wells Jaha. Today is also Mr. and Mrs. Jaha’s one-year wedding anni…”

Lexa huffs in frustration as she turns off the TV, effectively shutting down the image of Clarke smiling brightly beside her husband on the 8 o’clock news. Apparently, being appointed CEO for a giant company makes you the hottest talk of the town. Lexa doesn’t want to sound like she’s bitter, but let’s face it, she is. All day she’s been listening to the girls in the office gush in the office gush about how handsome, charming and brilliant Wells Jaha is, and how his wife is just meh.

Meh?!?! Her. Clarke. Is. Not. Just. Meh!

It took all of her self-control to not lose it and scream at them to shut up and how not meh Clarke is. Instead, she opted for a more civilized way of handling this nonsense and put in her earbuds to listen to her favorite podcast. And guess what, they were fucking talking about Wells Jaha too!

She immediately turns it off, turning on the heaviest of heavy metal she could find to drown all the noise outside her office. She left work in a hurry, desperate to be alone, choosing a route with the fewest newsstands so she wouldn’t have to look at Wells’ stupidly handsome face littering the magazines and newspapers.

Now she finds herself swirling a glass of wine in the total darkness of her apartment, enforcing a complete media blackout. If she hears another word about Wells Jaha, she’s going to punch someone. Lexa doesn’t know what’s worse, the constant reminders of Clarke’s wedding anniversary or being alone in the dark with her own thoughts.

She misses Clarke with every fiber of her being. She didn’t just lose the love of her life, she lost her best friend, too. She misses their late night conversations, just talking about anything and everything. She misses curling up on the couch together on a cold day with hot cocoa and binge watching Netflix. She misses hugging Clarke after a particularly rough day. Gosh, she misses it all. Of course there is Anya who has always been there for her, but Anya is…well, Anya. Stoic, and seemingly emotionless Anya. Lexa knows she can always depend on her cousin, but mushy and sappy matters aren’t exactly Anya’s forte

Lexa and Clarke haven’t talked, at all. She doesn’t try to call or text Clarke, just like they agreed. Of course there were times when she was so close to hitting that call button just to say hi, just to hear the blonde’s voice again, but she always ended up tossing her phone away.

She knows she would break.

Despite the lack of contact, Clarke is still there. Clarke is always with her, in the back of her mind, no matter what she’s doing. Whether it’s burying herself under mountains of paperwork and she’ll find herself thinking, what is Clarke doing, or, it’s making dinner and she finds herself wondering, has Clarke eaten yet? And the nights she’s crying herself to sleep she finds herself hoping and praying to God that Clarke’s happy.

She really tries to move on from Clarke. She swears.

She goes to bars, picks up girls, sleeps with them, promises to call and never does. Anya has said on multiple occasions that she might be dead inside, and Lexa thinks she can actually agree with her cousin for once. She doesn’t do that a lot though, only on days that she misses Clarke more than usual. She knows that doesn’t make it okay, but what can she do? She has tried everything. She got into pottery as a hobby for a short while, hell, she signed up for classes, from dancing to improv, she’s done it all. Unfortunately none of it seemed to work.

It’s foolish, really, to be hung up on someone that was never hers to begin with. But she doesn’t know how to move on, and she’s not sure if she even wants to. They say time heals all wounds but as far as she’s concerned that’s just plain bullshit. Maybe hers is the type of wound that would never heal, it’s just going to be there, gaping, demanding attention at all times, and she just has to live with it.

She downed the wine in one swig right in time when she hears the jingle of keys, and, not a second later, the door swings open

“Fucking hell, Lexa. What are you? Some evil genius plotting to take over the world?” Anya grumbles at the darkness of the apartment as she flips on the light, causing Lexa to groan and immediately shields her eyes from the sudden flood of light.

“Broody burlap sack.” Realizing that she’s not going to get a response, Anya mumbles when she walks past Lexa, heading to the kitchen.

Lexa let her body fall back on the couch with a thud. She feels a familiar sting in her eyes and tried to blink it away. She put her arms over her eyes, hoping to push it down, knowing fully well that’s definitely not how tears work.

“Have you eaten?” Anya’s voice comes from somewhere above her head, and then the valve in her breaks.

“I miss her An. I miss her so much.” It’s all she can say before her voice cracks into a sob. An ugly one at that.

There are some movements and she feels Anya silently sit down on the floor, in front of the couch.

“I know kid…I know.” Anya sighs, and they stay like that for the rest of the night, dinner long forgotten.

//

She hears her phone vibrating as she cracks her eyes open, only to be met with darkness. There is a little bit of light coming from the windows and she wonders what time it is. She grumbles as she blindly shuts off the source of vibration, not bothering to check who’s calling, maybe it’s just another booty call.

Her phone started to vibrate again and she grabs it in annoyance and almost yells at the person on the other line for interrupting her sleep. The word in her throat dies, though, when she realizes that the other person is crying. She frowns as she checks the caller ID and worry washes over her when it reads Octavia Blake.

“Octavia? What’s wrong? Why are you crying?” She asks with a sense of urgency but Octavia doesn’t answer, all she gets are sobs and incomprehensible stammers.

“Lexa, what’s going on?” Anya sat up from her spot on the loveseat, rubbing sleep from her eyes but Lexa’s heart is pounding in her ears and she can only focus on the sobs coming from Octavia.

“Lexa” Raven’s voice comes through on the other line, much calmer than Octavia but judging by the pause, Raven has been crying too “You have to come here, it’s Clarke, she’s…”

//

She doesn’t remember what happened really. All she knows is she stood up a little too fast when Raven was still having trouble getting out complete sentences over the phone, tripping over her own feet as she ran to grab her car keys. She remembers Anya shaking her shoulder and telling her to snap out of it, snatching the keys from her hands while she broke down.

“She was in an accident, Lex.” Raven paused as she sobbed “They were on their way back from the gala celebrating Wells’ being made CEO and a drunk driver t-boned them.”

Lexa can’t breathe as she replays what Raven had said in her head, over and over again.

No, it can’t be. Not Clarke. Please. Not her.

She buries her head in the tear-soaked sleeves of her sweater while Anya tells her to breathe.

“They had to rush her into surgery and we don’t know anything yet. Please Lex, we need you here. She needs you.” 

Why the hell did she decide to move? 6-hours is too far of a drive. Too fucking far when you feel like your lungs are going to collapse and your heart is on the brink of exploding and shattering into pieces.

“I haven’t told her that I love her An.” She mumbles, the memories of the last time she saw Clarke plays vividly in Lexa’s mind. Her smile, her laugh, her lips on Lexa’s, and…

“I love you, Lexa.”

Her nails dig into her palms so hard that it might draw blood as her eyes clench shut.

Please. Not her.

//

The car comes to a stop in front of the hospital just as the sun peaks out from the horizon. Lexa immediately gets out with a muttered thank you to Anya and she bolts. She doesn’t know where she’s going but her legs are working all on their own volition. She just knows she needs to run to get to Clarke.

“Lexa!” She whips her head around and realizes that Octavia is sitting by herself on one of the waiting chairs in the main hall. She looks tired, with blood shot eyes still brimming with tears. They immediately run to each other and Octavia throws her arms around Lexa’s neck, holding her tight.

“She just got out of surgery. The doctors said everything went well, but they still need to monitor her condition. It’s all up to her now.” Octavia says when she pulls away and for the first time in 6 hours, Lexa feels like she could breathe again.

Clarke is going to be okay. She has to be.

 “What are you doing out here by yourself?” Lexa asks tentatively.

“Rae wants me to go home and rest. We want to take turns to be here with her. We don’t want to leave her alone, Lexa. But--but I can’t leave, not when she’s like that. I--” The rest of the sentence turns into choked sobs as she leans into Lexa’s shoulder and silently cries.

“Come on, O. Stop crying, she’ll be fine. She’s fighting her hardest so we have to be strong for her, okay?” Lexa tries to soothe Octavia, not even realizing that tears are flowing down her own cheeks too.

They stand there for a while, and Lexa is starting to feel a damp spot on the shoulders of her sweatshirt where Octavia buries her head in. With a last few sniffs, Octavia wipes away her tears and offers Lexa a reassuring smile.

“You’re right, we have to stop being silly. She’s going to be alright.” Octavia takes her hand and laces their fingers together. “Are you ready?” Octavia simply asks and Lexa fully knows what she means.

Are you ready to see the girl you love, bruised and battered, fighting for her life?

Are you ready to wish you would give anything to trade places with her, to take her pain and make it yours, just so she can be whole again?

Lexa nods and they starting heading down the hall, they make a turn, and another then another, and she can barely register where her feet are taking her when the only thing she can focus on is the drumming of her heart.

They finally reach a room somewhere in the depths of the hospital and the sign outside reads Clarke Griffin. Her grip on Octavia’s hand tightens and the younger girl notices. She squeezes back, offering Lexa the support she desperately needs and they push the door open together.

“I’ll be right outside, okay?” Octavia says, and she nods appreciating the gesture.

She hesitantly walks in and her knees are already going to give in.

Clarke looks so small in the huge hospital bed with wires and tubes attached to her body. The rhythmic beeping of the cardiac monitor is echoing off the white walls in the silent room. She rushes to Clarke’s side and her heart breaks into pieces. Lexa thought she was ready and she couldn’t be more wrong.

Clarke’s beautiful face is covered with minor scratches, and there’s a big, purple bruise that’s formed on her jaw. She notices a large bandage, spotted with blood wrapped around her forehead. Her hand shakes as she reaches out to trace Clarke’s cheek with the gentlest of touches, afraid that the blonde will break.

“I’m here, Clarke. I’m here. Open your eyes, please” She holds Clarke’s hand in hers and brings it to her lips as her legs finally give in.

She kneels by Clarke’s bedside and sobs. She rests her head on Clarke’s hand as tear spots start to form on the pristine sheets.  

She loves her. She loves her so much that seeing her hurt is ripping Lexa apart. She loves her so much but she never got to tell her that.

Lexa barely registers the door opening behind her. She turns around, and suddenly everything she sees turns red. She quickly gets to her feet and lunges at him. Lexa doesn’t know what she’s doing until her fist collides with Wells Jaha’s jaw and he stumbles back a few steps.

Her blood is pumping with rage and she doesn’t know how to stop herself.

“You were supposed to take care of her!” She screams as she lands another punch right in the middle of his stupidly handsome face. She hears a crack, but she keeps going.

She’s angry, no she’s furious with him, at him, because he’s the reason Clarke’s here, and in this condition.

“You did this to her!” She screams again

Another punch, in his stomach this time. She grabs his collar and backs him into the wall. She looks at him as he grits his teeth and something inside her clicks.

She’s angry, but it’s not at him. She’s angry with herself. She could have stopped all of this.
If only she fought harder for Clarke. If only she had gone to Clarke’s wedding and begged her not to marry him, then she wouldn’t be like this.

It’s her fault

The sudden realization stuns Lexa. She lets go off his collar as he falls to the floor, and she does the same. She barely feels the pain of her bruised hand as she rubs her eyes, much harder this time, not just to stop the tears but to also distract her from the raging guilt bubbling in her stomach.

It’s her fault

“What the fuck happened?” Raven comes rushing into the room, Octavia hot on her heels. They must have heard the screaming, and punching from down the hall.

Raven darts her eyes from Lexa then to Wells and sighs,

“Come on, I’ll take one, you take one.” She says to her girlfriend and comes to hoist Lexa up by her arm while Octavia does the same for Wells.

She finally gets a good look at Wells as she struggles to stand up, even with Raven’s help. She did a number on him. Blood gushes from his nose and tear streaks running down his cheeks. Her guilt doubles when she sees his arm resting on a sling, clearly broken.

Octavia leads him out of the room and closes the door behind them, leaving Lexa to be scrutinized under Raven’s judging gaze.

“How’s that hand?” Raven asks, eyeing Lexa’s hand as angry red marks begin to form.

She tries to make a fist to test it and instantly regrets it.

“Hurts like a bitch” She sighs. At least the pain is a little bit of a distraction.

She throws herself on the chair by Clarke’s bedside and Raven stands on the other side, eyes focus on the rise and fall of Clarke’s chest.

Clarke looks peaceful. If there weren’t any cuts and gashes on her face, she looks as if she’s sleeping and her eyes would flutter open any moment now.

Oh, Lexa would give anything to see her eyes again. Her beautiful cerulean eyes that always looked at Lexa with so many emotions and so much love.

“Did they say anything about her condition?” She asks.

“I don’t know. The doctor should be on their way here to check on her in a little bit though. Want to go get that checked?” Raven nudges her head toward Lexa’s hand, that she’s currently resting in her lap.

She shakes her head no, not wanting to leave Clarke’s side.

“Okay.” Raven says, hand running through her hair as she lets out a tired sigh. “Since you’re here, I’m going to take O home to freshen up. She won’t leave if I don’t drag her home myself. You’ll be okay?”

She stands up and wordlessly reaches out to Raven, who meets her halfway and they pull each other in a hug.

“Thank you for calling me.” She murmurs and she feels Raven nod her head against her shoulder.

“We’ll be right back.” Raven says when they separate and moves to leave the room.

“Do you think it’s my fault Rae? That I could have stopped it from happening if I would have just grown some balls and fought for her?” Lexa asks just before Raven open the door, her eyes not leaving Clarke.

“It’s not your fault Lexa. It’s not anyone’s fault. It’s an accident. Don’t beat yourself up for it.” Raven says and with one last look, she exits the room silently, leaving Lexa with Clarke once again.

“If anything happens to you, I don’t know what I would do Clarke. You have to wake up okay? There are so many things I haven’t told you yet. Don’t leave me, Clarke, not like this.” She pleads, even though she’s sure that Clarke can’t hear her.

She sits down reaching out to hold Clarke’s hand with her good one. She isn’t sure how much time has passed, but exhaustion slowly takes over her and the last thing she knows before drifting away is the warmth from Clarke’s hand spreading all over her body.

Lexa doesn’t think she can let go of Clarke’s hand ever again. 

//

 Someone shuts the door quietly but that is enough to pull Lexa out of her light sleep. She looks up, groggily, and realizes that Wells Jaha stands guarded against the wall, a large bandage rests on his nose. She winces as guilt simmers in her gut.

“Sorry I broke your nose.” She says with all the sincerity she can muster. She still can’t believe she punched Wells Jaha in the face. Wait until she tells the girls in her office that.

“You’re not going to hit me anymore right? Can I come sit down?” Wells asks, but is already striding towards the chair next to hers. He sits down and they fall under a tense silence.

“I love her too, you know.” Wells breaks the silence and it startles Lexa a little bit. “She’s been my best friend since we were 7 and now she’s my…my wife. And--” He pauses, trying to find the right words “I did this to her…” He sniffs. “If we would have left a little bit earlier, this wouldn’t have happened. She told me she was tired, but I insisted we stay longer so that I could talk to a-- a douchey potential investor. I did this.” He sobs uncontrollably and Lexa clenches her jaws, trying to suppress the anger that’s threatening to spill over again.

He speaks again, trying his best swallow the lump in his throat.

“Our marriage-- is a sham.”

Lexa’s head immediately snaps up at the admission. She certainly didn’t expect this. She turns to look at Wells who is desperately avoiding her eyes.

“She had known you for like a year and you made her much happier than I-- than anyone ever could. You deserve to know the truth, Lexa.” He swallows hard, and the hesitation is evident in his eyes. He lets out a sigh and finally says “Our marriage is a business deal.”

The size of Lexa’s eyes must be comical by now. A business deal?

“I don’t know if you know but Clarke’s mom, Doctor Abigail Griffin, is the founder and owner of this hospital. 3 years ago, the hospital’s biggest investor pulled out, leaving its staff and of course, Clarke’s mom in a state of panic. They all knew the hospital wasn’t going to last long without its biggest investor and that’s when I came up with an idea.” Wells pauses, glancing at Lexa, who is looking at him with a puzzled look on her face.

“You see, in order for me to be able to step up as CEO of my father’s company, I have to meet a-- let’s say a condition, that the stakeholders put out. I have to show them that I have fully matured, in other words, I have to settle down and get married…” He trails off and she finally understands why.

Clarke couldn’t be with her because she had to save her mother’s hospital.

“So she married you so that you can become CEO, in return, you save her mother’s hospital by becoming its investor” She whispers and the long, exasperated sigh coming from Wells is all the confirmation she needs.

“She grew up in these halls, Lexa. The staff here is her family. She couldn’t watch her mother’s life work crumble without at least trying something. So she came to me and offered me the deal. We dated for one year, to make it believable, then we get married, and on our 1st wedding anniversary, I would be made CEO. Nobody knows about it except me and her, not even Abby and Jake, her father. She knows they wouldn’t let her sacrifice her happiness for anything. Everything was going according to plan, until-- until she met you.” Their eyes finally meet and she sees something that he’s not putting into words. Jealousy.

“You’re in love with her.” She states and Wells lets out a humorless, dry chuckle.

“Who wouldn’t be? But she doesn’t feel the same, no matter what I do. To her, I’m just her best friend. So of course, I jump at her suggestion and agree to it without even thinking. I thought that time would change her mind, you know? But for the past year, she put on a brave face for everyone, then at night when we get home we go our separate ways, I go to my room, and she goes to hers. It’s like I’ve been living with the shell of Clarke Griffin.”

This is too much information for Lexa to process. She swallows hard, hoping the lump in her throat will vanish. It doesn’t.

“In the ambulance--” Wells continues, pausing when he sees that she visibly tenses up. “She made me promise that I will give you this.” He fishes out a leather bound journal from his suit jacket. She immediately recognizes it as she had seen Clarke holding it so many times before, but never questioned what it was.

“All the answers you need are in here.” She accepts the journal and holds onto it tightly.

He stands up, offering her a sad smile, gently squeezes her shoulder and leaves the room as quietly as when he came in.

Lexa’s eyes can’t leave the journal. It looks worn and the leather cover is bursting at the seams but she holds onto to it like it’s her most prized possession. Her heart beats erratically and her hand shakes as she opens it. The first thing she notices is the familiar cursive of Clarke’s writing and tears well up in her eyes when she reads the first words,

“Dear Lexa,

…”