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Lift Me, Catch Me

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Golden light trickled in through the huge windows, which stretched from the ceiling to the floor. One of them was actually a door, and Clarke actually hadn't known which it was until the start of break, despite how often she'd been to this house before that as well. The light was making for a comfortable feeling in the big open room that she found herself in, laying across one of those fancy couches without a back. She was writing, of course, whatever came to her mind, across the nice paper that her hosts had gotten her for Christmas.

Her living situation was pretty precarious at the moment, but she was comfortable right now at least. The light of the dipping sun made her feel warm, even though it was probably the coldest it would get in Polis, Florida. Not that that was very cold, of course, especially not for Clarke, who had grown up in the fast moving, relatively cold in the winter atmosphere of New York City.

Clarke's hair was loose, the soft, golden waves falling across her shoulders gently as she laid on her stomach, her elbows keeping her up. She did like the heat in Florida, because she could wear a lot more flowing clothing, like the top she wore now, suspended by two practically non existent straps, that barely fell past the gentle curves of her hips.

This room had quickly become her favorite in the house, though the whole structure was incredibly large and easy to love in full. It was possibly the largest beach house in the area, just outside Polis, aside from the few others that were of similar size down the long street. Clarke wasn't sure how the richest guy who went to her new school had possibly become interested in her, but she'd become interested in him before she even knew about this place. And well, she wasn't a gold digger by any means, but she did like the huge space. And Finn was incredibly kind for a guy with everything he could ever want at age eighteen.

Clarke was also eighteen so she could, realistically, get her own place, but considering that she didn't have a job, it was easier said than done. When her mom had told her the previous summer that they were moving to Florida, Clarke had immediately pictured Miami or Orlando, but when her mom mentioned the west coast of Florida, she at least thought that they might be going to Tampa. But no, they had to move to this tiny town that her uncle Marcus lived at.

It hadn't begun very badly, when Clarke and her mom had moved into a nice place near the high school, and Clarke had started making a few new friends. Moving just before her senior year had seemed like an awful idea, and leaving her friends behind did sort of suck. So far, she'd managed to talk to them in a Skype call at least once a week, though a few of them had been making excuses to miss out on them. Clarke was starting to get over that. She did, after all, have a few new friends here in Polis.

Unfortunately, her mom's job had gone through the roof about a month and a half in, and had to move back to New York City. Seeing as Clarke had already been forced to move so far, her mom decided that she could stay in Polis with her uncle – who was her father's half-brother. The thing was, since Clarke's father had died when she was barely seven years old, she hardly knew Marcus. She started to get to know him pretty quickly, though, and he ended up being a pretty nice guy. He didn't even hesitate to allow Clarke to stay fifteen minutes away at her boyfriend's gigantic beach house for Christmas break.

Clarke thought he just felt sorry for her.

“Hey, Clarke,” she heard her boyfriend say suddenly, surprising the blonde and knocking her immediately out of her daydreaming. “Miller's doing that New Year's party down the street, you coming?”

Clarke considered it for a moment. The truth was, aside from Finn and his friends, she wasn't extremely acquainted with everyone in town yet. Yeah, maybe she'd kept to herself a lot through the stress of her family's situation, but now she regretted it. “I'll stay here,” she said finally, giving him a soft smile even as he frowned.

“Really? I don't get a New Year's kiss then?”

“Sorry, Finn. It's just been a rough year, you know?”

“Exactly, so why wouldn't you want to celebrate the coming of a new one?”

Clarke let out a sigh, her blue eyes falling and then looking to look out at the water. She said nothing more, and Finn got the message.

“Well, I might not be back until the morning, because Miller doesn't usually let anyone leave unless they're completely sober... but since it's really just a walk away, I'll try to sneak off,” Finn told her softly, and she nodded.

“Sure. See you tomorrow.”

Finn turned, walking out of the living room. A minute later, she heard the front door open and close, and she let out a relaxed sigh. It was Friday, New Year's Eve, and tomorrow Clarke would be moving back in with Marcus. She was, on one hand, disappointed to be leaving Finn's place. His parents had been there for the first half of break and Christmas, and they seemed to love Clarke to pieces, but had gone off on a mini vacation for just the two of them for the second week, leaving Clarke and Finn in the house alone.

It had definitely been a nice week.

However, on the other hand, Clarke was glad to return to normalcy. She wasn't used to all of this big, fancy stuff with lots of space. She was used to a small apartment where there was only one place to take refuge when you wanted to be completely alone. Though she never thought she'd be complaining about open space, a huge beach house was far too big for two, or even four, people.

She continued writing. Clarke loved writing – it was an escape from the real world. More often than not, Clarke was working on the novel she'd been trying to write since the beginning of the previous summer, but she had once again come to a writer's block on it. Instead, she was now writing a short story about herself. She found it easiest to take inspiration from real people, and for the past week, the only inspiration she really could've had was from herself or Finn. And Finn, despite how good of a guy he was, never seemed to give Clarke any writing inspiration.

It was about an hour later that Clarke began to get bored, and she groaned, closing her notebook and rolling over, dropping her head onto it. Staring at the ceiling, she wondered if she should've gone with Finn to the New Year's party. He was right – it did represent the end of this horrible year, and hopefully the start of a better one.

Finally making a decision, she pushed herself up and off of the couch, making her way through the empty house to Finn's bedroom. Her suitcase was sitting against one of the walls, and she quickly dug through it to find one of her flannels to wear over the outfit she was already wearing. From her experience so far here in Polis, most people wore very casual beach clothes to parties, and since it wasn't too cold, Clarke wasn't concerned about changing out of her shorts. However, since it wasn't hot either, she thought the flannel would be nice anyway.

Once checking that she looked presentable enough, she grabbed her phone and slid it into her back pocket before leaving Finn's house. She could already hear the thump of the music at Miller's house, which was the next beach house over. It was not a far walk at all, but each one of these huge houses has a significant amount of beach and lot around them, so it was a walk. There was one more house on the other side of Finn's, and then another past Miller's, but Clarke didn't know who lived in them. She was pretty sure the other one by Finn's was owned by an old couple, but she had no clue who owned the fourth one.

The air smelled like salt water and sand, and Clarke felt herself smile a little. She did love living in a town pretty much right on the ocean, though staying at Finn's place would've been even better if it were hot enough to go out and swim in his private beach.

Clarke reached the beach house and wasn't surprised to find a few people passing around a joint in front of the house, who gave her wary looks as she approached the front door. She just looked away from them. She felt like most people from the high school knew who she was, but she only knew a handful of people.

She knew of a lot more people than she'd actually spoken to. Finn had a small group of friends, including Nathan Miller, John Murphy, a guy name Atom, and another guy Bryan. Clarke didn't really mind hanging out with all of them, because she'd somehow always found it pretty easy to be friends with guys, but she was slightly surprised at herself for not having any female friends here yet. Most of her good friends in New York had been girls, anyway.

Pushing her way into the house, Clarke was immediately met with a crowd of horny, drunk, and possibly also high teenagers. The music was loud, and the air was thick and hot. Biting down on the inside of her lip to keep from cringing, Clarke began pushing her way through the crowd. She just wanted to find Finn, or at least Miller.

She didn't, though, and instead found herself colliding into a group of people who she recognized. She had hardly spoken to any of them, though. She recalled their names as they all turned to look at her – Octavia, Raven, Harper, Anya and Lexa. She didn't know much about any of them. “Sorry,” she apologized hastily, and Octavia gave her a smile.

“Clarke, right? I didn't see you come in with Finn.”

Lexa snickered, and Anya nudged her, leaving Clarke to gaze at them in confusion. “Uh, yeah, he got here about an hour ago. Do you know where he is?”

“I'd try one of the bedrooms upstairs,” Lexa offered, but she immediately got glares from all the rest of the group. “What? I saw him go upstairs.”

“If you wanna wait here, I'll try to find him for you,” Octavia offered. “I know this place like the back of my hand.”

Clarke was completely confused now. “Ah, no that's okay, I can go. Thanks.” Octavia frowned, but nodded, and Clarke separated from the group of girls. She didn't know much about them, but she'd seen them countless times. They were a group that didn't seem to be friends with many guys, aside from a guy named Bellamy, who Clarke was pretty sure was Octavia's brother, and another guy named Lincoln. They were also friends with Miller, apparently, but at school, Clarke only ever saw them hanging out with each other. A closed circle type friend group, like the way they were standing when Clarke accidentally just collided with them.

She found the stairs and pushed past a few people to make her way up. Here, apparently, was where everyone with cigarettes were gathered, and the air was smoky and disgusting. Coughing, Clarke looked around curiously, trying to locate her boyfriend. She finally saw Bryan, who was stumbling around slightly, and she stopped him. “Hey, Clarke!” he slurred. “You seen Miller?”

“No,” Clarke answered apologetically, “have you seen Finn?”

“Yeah, he went down the hall I think, to the end. Maybe in that room. See ya.” Bryan stumbled toward the stairs, and Clarke's eyes widened, thinking that he might fall. He seemed to make it down okay, though, so Clarke continued her mission of finding her boyfriend. She reached the room at the end of the hall, and tried to see if she could hear anything by pressing her ear against the door. The rest of the sound from the party was filling the whole house, however, so she opted just to open the door.

Her jaw dropped the instant she laid eyes on her boyfriend, naked and atop an equally naked girl. The blankets were strewn away, leaving nothing about the situation for guessing, and Clarke felt tears suddenly spilling from her eyes. “Are you fucking kidding me?” she heard herself demand. The girl below Finn pushed him off in a second, and they both looked to Clarke with wide eyes of surprise.

“I thought she wasn't coming tonight!” the girl whined in annoyance, grabbing for a blanket and pulling it over her body quickly. Finn said nothing, his eyes stuck on his girlfriend – ex girlfriend now – with his mouth agape.

“Clarke,” he finally spoke, but Clarke was already backing away from the room and starting away. She had been laying in bed completely naked with him literally sixteen hours ago, and here he was getting messy in the sheets with someone else, because she had decided not to come to a fucking party. “Wait! Clarke!” He was stumbling after her with a sheet wrapped around himself she realized, as she made it to the stairs and turned her head.

“Leave me the fuck alone, Finn!” she shouted at him, drawing more than a few people's attention to the scene. She pushed her way down the stairs and looked for the nearest exit. The air was too thick, too hot, and she needed to get outside.

She couldn't believe her boyfriend. It had been an incredibly hard year for her, with moving before her senior year and just after her eighteenth birthday, only to have her mother move back up to New York and leaving her with an uncle she barely knew. Finn had been her grounding point these past few months, but she was sure that through it all, he'd been happy. Faithful as well, though now she wasn't sure.

She ran into a number of people as she sought out a door, and the one she finally reached was the back door, which opened out onto a patio. Past the patio was the sand and then the ocean, and to the right a ways, she could see Finn's similar backyard. To the left, the fourth beach house's backyard. She wasn't sure where to go, because her things were at Finn's place, but she didn't want to see him.

“Fuck,” she breathed out, her hands wiping across her face frantically. Someone bumped into her and she stumbled to the side, running into a table that was covered in a plastic table cloth and covered in supplies for shots.

Her tear filled eyes scanned over the alcohol, and she finally found some tequila that looked decent. Filling three shot glasses for herself, she took in a deep breath.

Clarke took down each shot one after the other, numbing her feelings and the end of her nose slightly. When she was done, she forced herself away from the table and sat down at the end of the patio, where less people were crowded. Fresh tears fell from her eyes, and she let her head fall into her hands helplessly. How was she even going to survive the rest of the year in this place?

Suddenly, someone was sitting next to her, and she half expected it to be Finn, with his clothes thrown back on. Looking up, however, she realized that it was Lexa. “What do you want?” Clarke snapped.

“I know we don't know each other,” Lexa said, “but I saw you run out of there, and I wanted to make sure you were okay.”

“I took three shots of tequila straight, so I'm going to be just fine now.”

Lexa said nothing, and Clarke realized something all of the sudden.

“Wait, you knew that Finn was up there with some other girl,” she exclaimed, her voice louder than she meant it to be. “You all did! And you didn't tell me!”

“Clarke,” Lexa said firmly, “I'm sorry to tell you, but you've been dating an asshole.”

“He's not – he hasn't... he hasn't been cheating on me this whole time!” Clarke denied, refusing to believe that he could've been doing something so awful.

“Maybe not,” Lexa agreed with a soft nod, “but he's cheated on girls in the past. He's a womanizer, babe, that's what he does.”

Clarke rolled her eyes, feeling a couple more tears leak from them against her will. “Well great. I'm fucked for the rest of the year. Or at least for the next day. All my shit is at his precious fucking mansion.”

Lexa glanced in the direction of Finn's beach house, and she frowned. “Do you want to –"

“Why are you even talking to me?” Clarke demanded, interrupting the brunette, who gave her a quizzical look. “You don't know me. I don't have any friends here, okay? This place has done nothing but fuck up my life, and I fucking want to leave.”

“Florida?”

“Yes.”

“You know, it's not that bad once you get used to the heat and stuff. Polis is kind of a small town, though, so I can see how you could be uncomfortable coming from a place like NYC.”

Clarke frowned. “How did you know that's where I'm from?”

“Most people here know pretty well who you are, Clarke,” Lexa stated firmly. “Like I said, it's a small town. Some people know your uncle from the hospital, and at least everyone in school knows who Finn is. It's hard to not know who you are.”

“What else does everyone know about me?” Clarke asked in quiet voice. Perhaps she shouldn't have found a grounding point so soon after moving, or maybe she should have at least ventured out away from that point more than once.

“Not much other than that,” Lexa told her softly. “You need a place to stay tonight?”

Clarke turned her gaze to the brunette, who was looking at her with pity. Clarke hated being pitied, and she steeled her expression as best as she could, wiping away her tears again. “No.”

“Oh yeah? You're going to go back to Finn's place tonight?”

Clarke was standing now, and Lexa was following her movements. “I don't fucking know,” Clarke snapped angrily. “Just leave me alone. You don't know me, nobody here does. I don't care what people heard about me or whatever, but the only person here who knows anything about me is Finn, and now that I know he's a fucking douche bag, I... I just...”

“Lexa?” a voice called, and both Clarke and Lexa turned to the back door, where the rest of Lexa's group of friends were pouring out of the house. “What happened?” The voice speaking was Octavia.

Lexa pursed her lips, and Clarke began to storm away. The blonde heard the girl say, “She found Finn with some girl. She's been staying with him over break, but she won't let me take her anywhere to sleep tonight.”

“For fuck's sake,” another voice said, and Clarke thought that it was maybe Raven or Harper. She didn't know them all very well. At this point, Clarke was preparing herself to sit down at the other end of the porch, but a hand was gently grabbing her wrist and pulling her back a bit. “Clarke?” It was Raven, she realized, upon turning around. “Look, you're coming with us tonight, okay?”

She didn't fight anymore, and let the group of girls lead her down onto the sand. She suddenly realized that they were making their way to the other beach house. Blonde eyebrows furrowed in confusion. “Who lives there?”

“I do,” Octavia answered. “Don't worry, no one else is home, so we won't get in trouble or anything.”

Clarke wasn't fighting anymore, so she wasn't worrying at all. She found herself led into the house through the back door when they reached it, and Octavia took charge of her. She got her to wash her face off, brush her teeth with a toothbrush that was apparently extra, and then brought her into one of the many bedrooms.

“Sleep,” the brunette told her quietly. “It's gonna be okay.”

The three shots Clarke had taken were getting to her head slightly, but she nodded and let herself collapse into the bed. When she heard the door close, signifying that Octavia had left the room, she let out a sob.

Her life was absolutely fucked up.


Light was flooding into the room when Clarke woke up the next morning, her blue eyes having to blink over and over before getting used to it. She realized that the room had windows on both the west and east side of the house, and she wondered where exactly it was situated. She'd been in every room in Finn's house, but this one she did not recognize.

It hit her suddenly, though, that she wasn't in Finn's house after all. She was in Octavia's. Because Finn had cheated on her the night before.

“Fuck,” she hissed, before uttering the word again when she felt an ache in her side. She glanced down at her body, her hand pushing up her shirt and flannel to see that she had a bruise on her hip from running into the shots table the night before. “Shit.”

The room was silent aside from her mutterings, at least for a few more minutes. When she began to hear seagulls from outside, Clarke let out a breath and pushed herself up, glancing around the room. Her shoes were by the door, though she didn't remember taking them off or putting them there, and there was a bathroom door hanging open a few feet from the bed. Placing her bare feet on the cold, wooden floor of the room, she entered the bathroom and quickly brushed her teeth again. Her eyes were still splotchy from tears and makeup, so she washed it off again and quickly tied her hair up into a small ponytail. When she looked less like some sort of living dead, she allowed herself to slide her sandals back on and leave the bedroom.

She was on the second floor it seemed, and when she located the stairs to bring her down, she realized that this beach house also had a third floor. She heard quiet voices coming from up there, but she wasn't sure if she should allow herself to follow them.

When she heard a loud noise from downstairs, Clarke opted to go down instead of up, and found herself soon entering a kitchen that looked a lot like Finn's. In front of the stove making eggs stood Lexa, and Clarke remembered their conversation from the previous night. It unnerved her to think that people knew a lot of things about her that she had not voluntarily divulged, but it was also somewhat nice that her entire back story didn't need to be explained once again. That being said, she wasn't sure if any of this group of friends knew about her mom's job situation or anything.

“Hi,” she spoke in a somewhat raspy voice, drawing Lexa's gaze.

“Morning,” Lexa replied tiredly. “You want an egg?”

“Please.” Clarke sat down at one of the bar stools in the kitchen, glancing around the kitchen. It opened up into a living area, both of which had huge windows facing the beach, similar to Finn's place. “So Octavia lives here?”

“Yeah. Her parents are loaded,” Lexa answered.

“Is her room on the third floor? I heard people up there.”

“Yep. There's just one studio room up there and a bathroom, and she won that as her room against her twin brother Bellamy. Their parents decided to give it to one of them when they started high school, and I think they had a swim contest or something to see who would win it,” Lexa explained, smirking a little.

“Have you known them since then?”

“Yeah, I met them when I moved here in the eighth grade,” Lexa answered. “I moved from Chicago.”

Clarke nodded slowly, not sure that she cared to ask anymore questions. She was honestly just distracting herself from her own situation. For the first day of the new year, things kind of sucked. “Sorry for ruining your New Year's Eve. You guys didn't stay at the party 'til midnight.”

“No, but we stole some of Bellamy's secret liquor and had our own party down here,” Lexa admitted. “You crashed, though. I don't blame you. Getting cheated on sucks.”

“Yeah well, I didn't know just how bad until last night.” She sighed. “If everyone knew how much of a douche Finn is, how come nobody thought to tell me?”

Lexa gave her a skeptical look. “Clarke, you sort of moved into this town and immediately met Finn, and proceeded to only hang out with him and his lackwits. Well... I mean, they're not all that bad. Miller is a good guy, and Bryan's okay. But Atom, Finn and Murphy are rather... well... you know. You had plenty of opportunities to talk to other people, but you didn't.”

“Yeah well, I have my reasons.”

“I'm sure you do, I'm just telling you why no one thought to warn you about Finn. You didn't ask.”

Clarke looked down at the counter, where her fingers were spelling out invisible words like “fuck” and “shit.” “I thought I was falling in love with him.”

“You probably were. Like I said yesterday, he's a womanizer. It's what he does – he makes girls fall in love with him, and he fucks them over. I'm sure he cares about you in some way, he just can't commit,” Lexa told her with a frown.

Clarke's eyes turned up again, but the brunette was not looking at her. “I guess.” The room went silent again at that point, though, and Lexa offered up no more words to keep the conversation going.

Sighing, the blonde looked down again. She definitely didn't know anything about this group of people, and was half considering just leaving now before she could get herself into anymore awkward situations, but then the rest of the group was entering the room. “Morning, Lex!” Harper chimed happily.

“I have no fucking clue how you can get up so early after drinking so much,” Anya groaned, her hand in her hair as she went into the kitchen, grabbing a fork from a drawer and stealing a bite of the scrambled eggs that Lexa was probably almost done with. “Mm, yum.”

“Yes well, you would all die if I couldn't,” Lexa claimed, turning off the burner and grabbing plates. “Everyone want some?”

“Yes!” everyone else exclaimed, aside from Clarke, who was feeling incredibly out of place now.

“I'm never sleeping in Octavia's room when Raven's in there ever again,” Harper said to Anya and Lexa, and for the first time, Clarke realized that the other two brunettes were seated in another bar stool now, practically on top of each other.

“We didn't do anything,” Octavia claimed from atop Raven's lap, and the other girl smirked.

“I mean, we did something...”

“Ew,” Anya interrupted, feigning a gag. “Please don't ever have sex when we're all sleeping in the same room as you, please.”

“We didn't!” Octavia exclaimed, though her face was now incredibly red as she glared at Raven, who was still smirking.

Lexa grinned at them. “Sorry, O, but you're not quiet.”

“I am too!”

“You're quiet in comparison to some people here,” Anya stated. Her gaze shifted to Lexa, who was dispersing eggs on small plates now as she scoffed.

“I am perfectly capable of being quiet when I want to be.”

“Okay, so when the fuck do you ever want to be? Because when I was one room over from you last summer, you did not hesitate to scream as loud as you fucking could when that one red head – what was her name again? – was fucking you.”

“Her name was Rachel,” Lexa said indignantly, “and for the record, it was her screaming. I am never that loud.”

Clarke's eyes were wide as she witnessed the conversation in front of her. She'd never had a group of friends who spoke so openly about sex before, though she was sure that she probably could've if she'd had a broader range of friends back in New York. This small town, she was learning, was a lot different than any other place she'd been before. She was also slightly surprised that it seemed that at least over half of the girls in this friend group were queer of some sort, and she found herself wondering if they all were. Not that she cared, of course, she was as open and accepting as they came. Especially since she herself was slightly questioning of her own sexuality.

Not that she'd voiced this questioning or anything, but she'd never known for sure. She hadn't ever been interested in a specific girl, anyway, and had only ever dated boys. Finn, as it seemed, was the most long term boyfriend she'd ever had as well. Ah, how good things come to an end so easily.

A plate of eggs was set neatly in front of Clarke, along with a fork, and the blonde gave a small, grateful smile to Lexa, who returned it brightly.

“So, what's on the agenda for today? Last Saturday before the last semester of high school,” Harper said to the group with a wide smile.

“Well,” Octavia said, “first thing's first. We have to go help Clarke get all her shit from asshole's place down the street.”

Clarke frowned at the mention of this task, but she knew that it was something she needed to do. “You guys don't need to help me with that.”

Raven scoffed. “Please, Clarke. We're not going to make you do it alone.”

“You just need to bring it to your mom's place?” Anya asked, getting a frown from the blonde.

“Um, no. My uncle's place. He's not expecting me back until a little later, but I have a key in case he's not in,” Clarke replied quietly.

“Cool, so once we're all less like zombies, we can go to Finn's place and get your stuff, and I'll drive us up to wherever it is that your uncle lives,” Octavia declared. Clarke gave her a grateful smile.

“Thanks.”

“So, you and your mom live with your mom's brother?” Harper's question was clearly only posed in order to be friendly, but Clarke's expression immediately fell.

“Um. No. My mom is back in NYC.”

“Oh,” Harper said with a frown. “Sorry, I didn't know.”

“That's fine. Her new job fell through, so she had to transfer back up to where we used to live. She let me stay here with my uncle, since I'm in the middle of my senior year and everything, but that's why I stayed with Finn for break. It just felt weird spending a holiday with my uncle, who I barely know. He's my dad's brother, and my dad died when I was a kid,” Clarke explained.

Lexa had concern written into her face, as did the rest of the group, but it was the former who spoke first. “That sounds rough.” Clarke just nodded, looking back down at her food and taking a bite. The rest of the group followed suit, unsure of what to say now.

Finally, Octavia slid off of Raven's lap and took the seat in between the brunette and Clarke. “Well, Clarke, you're always welcome to hang out here. Most of us hang out here a lot, but I'm pretty much always here anyway.”

Clarke gave her a smile, but Lexa snickering drew her attention. “Just don't come over here when it's 'just' Octavia here, because chances are that Raven is also here, and being alone with the two of them is never a fun time.”

“Hey,” Octavia snapped in annoyance, crossing her arms over her chest. “That's not true.”

Clarke laughed a little. “So you two are dating?” she asked Octavia and Raven, and the latter grinned.

“Yep, going on two years now,” she announced proudly. “Somehow she puts up with me.”

Octavia rolled her eyes. “I have no idea how.”

With that, the tension in the room was dispelled, and Clarke felt herself actually getting along with the entire group. It felt nice to be talking to people who knew her, didn't judge her, and also weren't a bunch of rowdy, annoying teenage boys.

A little into the afternoon, Octavia announced that they should go over to Finn's sooner rather than later, and so they all got changed – since the majority of them were wearing pajamas now. At that point, all there was to do was head over to Finn's, and they piled into Octavia's car so that they could head straight to Clarke's uncle's place afterward, and it was time for Clarke to face her newest reality.

 

Chapter Text

Clarke pressed the cold metal of Finn's house key into her palm as she approached the front door. She'd insisted that her apparent new friends not come with her, but Octavia and Raven wouldn't take no for an answer when they started up with her. So here she was, debating on whether to knock or let herself in. The key had been given to her on her first day in, by Finn's mom, who said that while she was staying with them, she should definitely not be confined there. As it was, Clarke hadn't used the key at all during her stay.

“You think he's home?”

Clarke shrugged, and made the quick decision that she would let herself in, stepping up to the door and sliding the key into the lock. Turning it without hesitation, for fear that she'd chicken out, Clarke bit down on her lip and let the door swing open. The house was silent, but Clarke wasn't surprised. It wasn't like there was much that went on in a huge house when there was only one person there, the morning after a party.

“Your place is better,” Raven told Octavia, who nodded.

“Well, I have to say, Clarke. The fact that he let you stay here definitely says something, because he never throws parties or really lets anyone in here,” Octavia admitted. “I mean, I guess we all figured that he liked you more than most people he dates, considering how long you two lasted. Half a year, right? He usually doesn't make it over a month and a half.”

“Well,” Clarke started, a bitter taste in her mouth, “four months.”

“I guess old habits die hard,” Raven reasoned, and then she pushed past Clarke into the house, apparently realizing that the blonde wasn't going to go in herself. “Well, the place is clean. I'll give him that.”

Feeling a sudden confidence rise up within her, Clarke strode into the house, past the stairs and to the living room. There was a bottle of vodka sitting on the coffee table, an empty glass next to it, but Finn was nowhere to be seen. She looked to the spot she'd been laying on the previous day, and saw both her notebook and her pen lying there untouched. Breathing out a sigh of relief, she grabbed it and held it tightly to her chest. “The rest of my stuff is up in his room.”

“Oh great,” Raven muttered, only to receive a glare from her girlfriend. “What? I'm not prepared to face a drunk Finn Collins.”

“Maybe he drank that last night.”

Clarke just shrugged, making her way toward the stairs. She also did not want to face Finn, but not because of him possibly being intoxicated. She didn't want to listen to him defend himself, or try at least, in any way. She wanted to avoid him for the rest of the year somehow, maybe by hiding in this new group of people she was becoming acquainted with, but she didn't want to talk to her ex.

Though, maybe she should in fact clarify to him that they were indeed over. For all she knew, he thought that they could get past this.

They couldn't.

Gathering up what courage she had, Clarke started up the steps and made her way quietly to Finn's room. She heard Octavia and Raven whispering behind her, and she was starting to wonder if Finn was out somewhere. Wouldn't he have heard them come in, and up the stairs?

Just as she was reaching for his door handle, it flew open, revealing the guy she did not want to see right now. He was wearing sweats and a t-shirt, his hair a bit messy, and looked like he either slept all day, or hadn't slept a wink since Thursday night. “Clarke.”

“I came to get my stuff.”

Finn looked at her sadly, and then behind her at Raven and Octavia. “You're hanging with their crowd now?”

“At least we're sensible enough to not cheat on people,” Octavia spat at him, and he narrowed his eyes.

“I was drunk, and it was a stupid mistake. I love you, Clarke.”

Clarke felt blood rush to her face, but she didn't feel fluttery or happy at having heard that admission. No, she felt enraged, because how was it fair for him to admit something like that after the shit he did? “It doesn't matter, Finn. I told you I didn't want to go out to a party because I've had a rough year, which you know, and then you proceeded to go out and party with someone who was more willing in the moment. And if that's something you want to do, fine, just don't do it when you're committed to me. Now can I please come in and get my things?”

Finn stepped backwards, allowing the blonde in, and Raven and Octavia pushed their way in as well. Clarke caught Raven giving the guy an evil eye, and she couldn't help but feel grateful for these girls in this moment. Clarke immediately went to her suitcase, packing what was already there into the small space as tightly as she could, before scouring the rest of his room for her things. Finn just watched her sadly, while Octavia and Raven stood like guard dogs, keeping a careful eye on him.

When she was sure she had everything, Clarke zipped up her suitcase and closed her messenger bag, picking both things up. “See you at school,” she muttered lamely to her ex-boyfriend.

“That's all I get?” Finn demanded.

“Yes, Finn, that's all you get.” Clarke spun on her heal to face the boy she'd almost fallen in love with. “Funnily enough, I'm completely done with this relationship. I can't be with someone who would cheat on me after I opened up to them so much. I thought I'd fall in love with you, Finn, and then you went and fucked it up. So yeah, that's all you get. Frankly, you don't deserve anything else.”

She left the room, her new friends on her tail, and on the way out of the house, Clarke left her key on the dining room table with a clank.

When they were out of the building, Clarke felt her confidence fade and she released a shaky breath. “You did it girlie,” Octavia told her with a warm smile. “It's gonna be okay, alright? We all have to go through shit like this at some point. It makes us stronger. And you've got us now. We're gonna keep you together.”

Clarke just nodded, unable to say anything else, and made her way to the back of Octavia's car. Clarke assumed that it was a family car, because it was a minivan, and there had been a smaller car in the driveway of the brunette's house. The trunk opened, and Clarke dumped her suitcase and bag into it, closing it before going back around to climb in the car. She got into the back, where Lexa was sitting, and Octavia and Raven got back into the front two seats.

Harper tentatively began speaking to the two of them, but no one forced Clarke to talk. It was a good thing, too, because tears were rolling down her cheeks, and she leaned her head against the window and squeezed her eyes shut. She could feel two soft, green eyes watching her, unknowing of how to help, but she pretended that Lexa wasn't paying attention to her at all.

She did feel slightly indebted to the other girl, though, considering that she was the reason that Clarke had somewhere close by to sleep the night before. She was sure that she could've called Marcus, but she didn't know what plans he'd had last night. Either way, Lexa was also the reason that Clarke suddenly even had this new group of people to hang out with.

“Hey, blondie?” Anya called softly a few minutes later, causing Clarke to open her eyes and glance toward the middle seats of the car. “Where's your uncle's place?”

Clarke quickly gave them the address, and then wiped her face, happy with the fact that there were no more tears leaking from her eyes. She looked to Lexa, who had immediately begun looking anywhere else when Clarke looked up. “Hey,” Clarke said quietly, drawing green eyes to look at her, “thanks for last night.”

Lexa gave her a charming smile. “Of course.” The air was quiet between them for a moment, even though a separate conversation was being had in the front of the car. “You don't deserve what he did to you, you know? And it's not your fault or anything. He's really just not... the best guy, I guess.”

“Thanks, yeah. I don't... I don't know, I guess I just really needed someone, and he was there and he always seemed... I don't know, perfect.” Clarke sighed. “I guess the universe just isn't really done letting me down.”

“Sometimes things have to get worse before they get better.”

“Getting into the deep stuff huh?” Clarke's lips turned up into a small smile, and Lexa looked pleased with herself. “Who do you think was the first person to ever say that?”

“I don't know. I read it in Something Like Fate,” Lexa admitted.

Clarke sat up a little straighter, sniffing. “I looked it up once and the oh-so-trustworthy internet said it was a quote from the book, but I feel like I heard it before I read the book when it came out.”

“You've read it?”

“Yeah. It was pretty good, but I don't know if I liked all the drama in it. Granted, before I moved here, I wasn't ever the kind of person to have any drama centered around her,” Clarke reasoned.

Lexa smiled. “I thought the premise might be interesting. Truthfully, I ended up totally shipping Lani and Erin and hating Jason. I was kind of over the drama by the end, too.” Clarke widened her eyes incredulously.

“You wanted Erin and Lani to be together?”

“Sure, why not? They were besties, and Erin's boyfriend cheated on her with Lani. AKA, Jason was a douche bag, so Lani and Erin should've just nixed him from the story and gotten together instead.”

Clarke quirked a challenging eyebrow up. “But Lani was just as much at fault as Jason was. Maybe Erin should've just let them be together and gone and found sapphic love elsewhere.”

“I like the way you think,” Lexa replied teasingly as a grin spread over her face.

Suddenly, a scoff from the middle of the car drew their attention. “Leave it to Lexa to bring out the inner book nerd from Clarke.” Green eyes rolled at the comment, but Clarke felt a blush come to her face. Clarke had always loved reading, and it was ultimately what made her want to start writing years earlier. However, few people knew either of those things about her, so it was pretty rare that she found herself gushing about books with anyone.

“We're at your uncle's place, Clarke,” Harper added, chuckling as Anya gave Lexa a pointed look that was answered with a fierce glare. Clarke glanced out the window, realizing that they had indeed pulled up in front of Marcus' town house.

Harper got out of the car in order to let Clarke out from the back, and Octavia popped the trunk. Grabbing her two bags out from the car, the blonde let out a deep breath. Somehow, she didn't feel the heart wrenching pain she'd been slammed with the night before, and instead she felt like she was already accepting what had happened as her new situation. Maybe it was just that she was used to adapting by now, or maybe she was just blocking out her emotions, but she had a feeling that it had to do with the people who were now offering to come with her into the house.

“I've got it,” Clarke insisted, smiling at all the girls. “Thanks again you guys. I'll see you Monday.”

“Yeah, you better come find us in the morning so we make sure you don't get swarmed by the drama loving bitches that follow Finn around like flies,” Raven insisted, grabbing Octavia's hand and pulling her back toward the front of the car.

“Sure, thank you.”

“See you, Clarke!” It came in a chorus of voices from all five of the girls, and Clarke gave all of them a smile, her gaze lingering on Lexa for an extra second before she turned and started up to Marcus' town house.

Since it was a town house, it wasn't necessarily the biggest place ever, but it was a slight upgrade from the apartment that Clarke was used to in New York. It was a two bedroom, two and a half bathroom place, and Clarke was honestly lucky that Marcus happened to not use the second room for more than an office. He had been more than willing to move his desk into his bedroom after hearing about Abby Griffin's work situation.

Clarke tried the door handle, expecting it to be locked, but it gave away and she let herself into the house. “Marcus?”

“I'm upstairs!” Marcus called from his bedroom. The downstairs of the house held the kitchen, decent sized living room, and a half bathroom, as well as the door out to the small backyard. Upstairs were the two bedrooms and two other bathrooms. Clarke tugged her suitcase carefully up the stairs, and by the time she pulled it into her bedroom, Marcus was coming over from his room. “I thought you wouldn't be back until this evening. Everything okay?”

Clarke frowned, wondering whether she should admit the unfortunate situation she was now finding herself in. Deciding that there was no harm in it, she forced herself to relax with a sigh. “Finn went to a party last night, and I went to join him about an hour later, and found him cheating on me.”

Marcus' mouth dropped open for a moment, before slamming shut again. A second later, he spoke. “Did you sleep at his place last night?” The idea was definitely incredulous, and Clarke was quick to shake her head.

“No,” she promised, “um, some of my friends live in one of the beach houses near Finn's, so I crashed there. They went with me to grab my things this morning and drove me here.”

“I'm so sorry, Clarke. Finn seemed like a nice guy when I met him, I can't believe he did that to you.”

Clarke felt a bit awkward accepting her uncle's pity, but she figured that at some point or another, she should try a little harder to connect with her father's half-brother. “Thanks, yeah I don't... I didn't expect it from him, but it's over now. It's probably for the best.”

Marcus nodded. “Well, I don't want to hog your space, and I'm sure you want to unpack what stuff you brought with you. You wanna order pizza tonight and watch something on TV? I don't know what kind of things you do in a situation like this – I've been out of the dating game for a while.”

“Pizza sounds great,” Clarke agreed thankfully, chuckling. “You might be lucky in that, though. Dating has been nothing but a mess for me.”

“You're still a teenager, Clarke, you have plenty of years of dating to do, if you want to. High school these days sucks on its own, I can't imagine having to struggle with relationships at the same time.”

Clarke smirked. “Somehow, my generation manages to succeed at doing so. I was doing fairly well so far this year, but I guess not everything is meant to work out.” Marcus smiled.

“Let me know if you need anything, okay?”

“Sure, thanks Marcus.” He nodded with another smile, and then disappeared from the room. Clarke shut her door and sat down on the floor in front of her suitcase, unzipping it with a sigh. She would unpack all of this and then take another shower – with her preferred products this time – and finally change into something that she hadn't been wearing for twenty-four hours.

Then she would write, and put off thinking anymore about her ex-boyfriend or new friends until Monday.


“Was there any food for you to take for lunch?” Marcus called from upstairs as Clarke hoisted her messenger bag up onto her shoulder.

“No, but it's okay. I have cash!” she called back up the stairs. “I have to leave now if I want to be on time.”

“Alright, let me know if you're going to be home late!”

“Of course!”

Clarke left the house, closing and locking the door behind her, and then started off walking down the street. Marcus' place was close to the center of town, since he worked in the hospital and wanted to be close to it, and the school was only a few blocks away. Clarke was used to walking places in New York City anyway, and she almost liked walking in Polis even more, because the air always smelled like salt and sand, and it was always warm. Even now, with a slight chill in the air, it couldn't be any less than fifty-five outside, and she had her favorite flannel draped over her tank top. It was a long one, so it fell far past the shorts she was wearing, and she liked it that way.

Pushing some hair out of her face, she let herself enjoy the sun peeking out from behind some buildings to the east. A warm breeze was coming in from the west, unsurprisingly. Despite the stress that going back to school was causing, for a multitude of reasons, the air was able to calm her considerably.

When she walked up to the school, she felt herself shrink back slightly, as dozens of sets of eyes looked over at her curiously. None of the owners of those eyes stopped her, or even seemed to say anything about her. It was more like everyone currently lounging around in front of the school was recalling a big secret they shouldn't know without saying anything – and that was exactly what they were doing.

Clarke avoided all of their gazes, keeping hers straight ahead and trying her hardest to keep it that way. Looking at their eyes would be a sign of weakness. Clarke Griffin was not weak.

Suddenly, though, a pair of green eyes came into her peripheral vision, and it was as though those eyes physically tore hers away from where they had been glued. It was Lexa. Breathing out a sigh of relief, Clarke started over to the brunette, who was giving her a smile despite the eyes still lingering on the blonde. “Morning,” Lexa greeted her brightly.

“You know, Anya was right on Saturday. You're way too much of a morning person.”

“What's not to love about mornings?”

“Waking up? Going to school? Not having time to eat breakfast?”

Lexa smirked. “Did you have to skip breakfast?”

“I'll be fine. I have money for lunch.”

Rolling her eyes, Lexa opened the front flap of her book bag and retrieved a bag of potato chips. “Might as well eat something,” the brunette reasoned, tossing them at Clarke, who embarrassingly almost missed the catch.

“This better not be your lunch.” Clarke opened the bag without hesitation and began to eat.

“No, I have money too,” Lexa insisted. “Come on, O and Raven should already be inside.”

Clarke silently followed Lexa up the steps to the front entrance of the school, munching on the chips, and immediately Octavia and Raven were running up to them. “Hey guys!” Octavia chimed excitedly. “We just got our second semester schedules. Raven and I still have English together, and lunch, and now we have economics together, too. Are you taking that this semester, Lexa?”

“No, I took it first,” Lexa replied, looking past the two other brunettes at the schedule table. “I should probably go get mine now.”

Shoving another handful of chips in her mouth, Clarke nodded in agreement and followed Lexa over to the table. They each picked up their schedules before returning to Raven and Octavia. “My schedule didn't change at all,” Clarke observed, “except that my economics class got switched to government, of course.”

“When do you have it?” Lexa wondered.

“Fifth period, with Smith.”

“Same.”

Octavia grinned. “Great! That means we all have lunch together, because that's when Rae and I have economics. Has anyone seen Harper or Anya yet? I want to make sure that they didn't get switched out of my math class. I will die in there without them. Oh hey, Clarke, I think you're in my math class too, aren't you? I remember seeing you in there.”

Blinking, the blonde thought back to before the break and realized that the brunette was right. Clarke wasn't particularly surprised at this news, because she did know who Octavia was before actually officially meeting her, and she had hardly paid attention to anyone in her classes before. “Yeah, I think so.”

“Cool! So if Anya did get switched out like she wanted to, you can be my study buddy.”

Clarke smiled a little, but the front door to the school swung open at the same time, and in strolled Finn Collins. He looked hardly fazed as his dull gaze fell on Clarke for a handful of seconds, before it shifted away. “What a fucking douche,” Raven growled.

“I don't care,” Clarke muttered, although she was unable to keep the bitterness out of her words. “Assholes will be assholes.”

Truth.”

“Still,” Raven interrupted, “I kind of think he deserves to be destroyed.”

Lexa smirked, nudging Clarke and drawing her light blue gaze. “Raven hates Finn, because a few years ago he and Octavia had a thing for like two nights.”

“Hey, we don't talk about that,” Raven huffed.

Octavia rolled her eyes. “Babe, you're ridiculous. I was fifteen, and stupid, and you and I were most definitely not together then.”

“You mean you were still unaware of how good you were at being super gay for me,” Raven asserted. “I, on the other hand, was head over heels in love with you and having to deal with you being blind as fuck and losing your virginity to an asshole who just cheated on sweet little Clarke here. I'm allowed to be pissed at him.”

The school bell was suddenly ringing out into the halls, and Clarke sighed. Seeing Finn reminded her of something else – assuming his classes hadn't changed much either, she would have probably about three classes with him still, and she was really not ready to face him that many times.

Seeing as there wasn't much she could do about that, however, she found herself giving her friends a quick goodbye and going off to her first period class anyway. She would persevere, she supposed, like she always somehow managed to.

 

Chapter Text

First period began the regular, grueling task of paying attention to the most boring classes of all time. Clarke wasn't sure if they felt more boring now that she would rather be anywhere else but this school, or if she just hadn't noticed how boring they were until this point for some other unknown reason.

Second period began the hell that Clarke was sure she was going to be experiencing for the rest of the year.

Finn came in just after her and took his normal desk in the back, and Clarke quickly picked a spot across the room in the middle of the classroom, despite the fact that her normal seat was right next to his. A few people seemed annoyed by her change of routine, and had to adjust their own seating arrangements, but since apparently everyone had heard about the incident on Friday, no one asked her to move back to her old seat.

Third period was another with Finn, but the teacher had given assigned seats, so Clarke didn't have to worry about sitting next to him. However, she sat just a few seats in front of him, and she kept getting the feeling that he was looking at her. She wouldn't turn around to check, though, because then he might think that she cared to look at him, and she didn't.

Fourth period was English, and English was by far Clarke's favorite class. She was beyond happy that Finn didn't have the class with her. Senior year English was literature, and Clarke couldn't ever get enough of it. Maybe it made her a nerd, but she didn't care. She loved to read, and to write of course, and she didn't care what that said about her.

The school had two lunches, and basically all of the English, History and half of the elective classes had the first lunch, and the rest of the classes had the second lunch. That's how Octavia had known that the four of them would have lunch together, and it was also how Clarke knew that Finn would have the same lunch as them. He was in government fifth period too, and he and Clarke used to eat together every day. Now, though, Clarke walked into the cafeteria seeking out her new friends., and hoped that Finn's government class was with a different teacher than hers and Lexa's.

When she couldn't find them immediately, she made her way to the lunch line and bought some of the cheap, probably not real food, and then began looking again. Finally, she spotted them in the back of the cafeteria. Releasing a relieved breath, she started over to them.

“Hey, Clarke!” Octavia greeted her happily. “How has your day been so far?”

“Um. Could've been better,” Clarke answered. “I have two classes in the morning with Finn.”

“That fucking sucks,” Raven commented. “I still think we should beat –“

“Raven,” Octavia tutted, causing the other girl to roll her eyes and stop talking.

Lexa joined them a few minutes later, with the news that Anya and Harper had first lunch with them and would be showing up soon. During most of the lunch period, Clarke stayed quiet and listened to the other three girls talk. She still felt somewhat disconnected from them, which she supposed made sense. She'd only known them for four days, barely.

She accidentally zoned out at some point, but immediately came back to attention when a phone was being placed in front of her. “Give me your number, Clarke.”

Blinking, and feeling like she was missing something, Clarke took Octavia's phone and quickly added in her number.

“Cool, I'll text you about this weekend,” Octavia chimed happily. Clarke just nodded, and then the bell rang to dismiss them to fifth period.

Clarke nearly forgot that Lexa was going to the same place as she was until she noticed Lexa walking next to her out of the cafeteria. “She was talking about a party she's going to have at her place,” Lexa offered, clearly amused that Clarke had zoned out.

“Oh. Right.”

“You okay?”

“Fine,” Clarke replied quickly, failing to notice the concerned frown that appeared across Lexa's face. They reached their government class quickly, and both found that their teacher had opted to give them a seating chart. The economics teacher hadn't bothered with seating charts, considering that they were all seniors after all, but Clarke became uneasy as soon as she looked at it. Of course this class would be the one that was more full of people with last names at the end of the alphabet, leaving her on the far side at the beginning, seated next to none other than Finn.

“Clarke,” he said in greeting as Clarke took her seat next to him. Lexa had gone off to the other room, but the blonde was hyper aware of green eyes trained on her and her ex-boyfriend. Purposefully ignoring him, Clarke took out a pencil for class, as well as her notebook, and began to follow the direction on the board. “Really? You won't talk to me at all?” Silence. “This is the one class we have to sit next to each other in, we might as well make the best of it.”

“There isn't a best of it, Finn,” Clarke countered coldly, flashing him a glare. “You are not forgiven. Leave me alone.”

“Come on, Clarke. Isn't it enough that everyone already knows what happened?”

Clarke released her pencil from her grasp, somewhat slamming against the desk as she finally gave him her full attention. “No, because apparently this is nothing new for you. I don't know why any girls would ever still want to date you after knowing that you have cheated on multiple other girls. Frankly, if someone had told me sooner, I may not have wasted half of a year confessing all of my feelings and my dark past to someone who would end up not caring enough to at least remain faithful. So no, it is not enough.”

“Clarke –“

The bell rang, signifying the start of class, and so class commenced.

At the end of the period, Clarke was up and out of her desk in seconds, prepared to sprint away if she had to, but when she reached the doorway, she heard him call after her, “Come on, Clarke, wait!”

Before she could even try to fend him off, she heard another voice bite, “She clearly doesn't want to talk to you, Finn.”

“Oh great, so now she has you as one of her guard dogs too?” Finn demanded, and Clarke found herself turning around once she reached the hallway, seeing Lexa and Finn facing each other in the hallway. She was slightly surprised, though not entirely, at seeing Lexa come to her defense. “Does she even know how much of a playgirl you are? I mean, you've clearly taken the time to enlighten her on my history.”

“Sure Finn, it's no secret that I've been with a lot of girls. Frankly, I'm probably better at picking up girls than you are. The difference is, I have never devalued someone enough to betray their trust and cheat on them. So once your track record is shinier than mine, come back and try to accuse me of being as much of an asshole as you,” Lexa snarled.

“Fuck you.”

“Finn,” Clarke snapped, drawing the attention of both the other people. “You need to back off, alright? You cheated on me, and I have the right to be mad about it, okay? So could you just leave me alone?” His eyes betrayed guilt for a moment, and Clarke took that as an answer. She nodded once, glanced at Lexa, and then turned and started off for math.

Her head was spinning. She knew nothing about her new friends – other than a few superficial things.

And while something inside told her that she was crazy for thinking that they might somehow end up hurting her like Finn had, the thought was still there.

When she got to math, she hadn't even noticed that she'd walked clean across the school. Sighing, she stepped into the room and took her usual seat in the back. Math was one of the classes that she got by in fairly well without having to listen much to the lectures, so she got out a pen and a notebook and prepared to sit back and daydream for the period. Or at least try to block out what had just happened.

However, there was a new factor in her math class – her new friends. Octavia was sitting next to her suddenly, Anya and Harper filling in the next two seats, and Clarke felt her eyes widening as Octavia greeted her. “Hey, Clarke!”

“Hey.”

“Everything okay?”

Clarke nodded, and the bell rang. Thank goodness. She needed to clear her head.

Sixth period went by quickly enough, and seventh period was possibly the most peaceful class of the day, because the work was easy and it was void of any people that might confuse her thoughts at the moment. When the final bell rung, she was up and out of the building as quickly as she could manage.  But she didn't head home. Instead, she started the somewhat lengthier walk toward the beach. The nearest beach wasn't much in comparison to the beach scattered with the four beach houses, but it was enough to calm Clarke down. It took her roughly half an hour to walk there.

She wasn't surprised to see that she wasn't the only one occupying it, but it wasn't full enough that she couldn't find a secluded place to park herself. She sat down in the sand, which, strangely enough, never bothered her, and retrieved her notebook from her bag. Grabbing her favorite ink pen as well, she flipped the book open to the next blank page, and began to write.

Words and feelings were strewn across the page, Clarke merely a vessel through which they traveled onto the paper from the mess of her mind. At some point, her pen stilled in her hand and she clicked the end of it, letting it drop into the crease of her notebook uselessly. Her hands fell into the sand at either side of her, and her golden hair blew in the slight breeze.

She was stressing herself out over nothing. Sure, her new friends weren't saints by any means. Who was? She was clearly just paranoid now that the one person she'd trusted here had gone behind her back to be with someone else. That didn't mean that her new friends would do the same thing, and just because Lexa, as she said, had been with a lot of girls, it didn't mean that she was anything like Finn. Plus, Clarke had had multiple conversations with Lexa by now, and so far, she seemed nothing like her ex-boyfriend.  In fact, as Clarke glanced over her writing, she realized that there was already a stark difference between Lexa and Finn. While Clarke probably should've been transferring her anger at Finn onto paper, she had instead flooded the page with her confusion about her new friends, and Lexa specifically. Finn had never been the source of anything she'd written before, and he still wasn't, but Lexa was, and Clarke had known her for four days, barely.

“Fancy seeing you here,” a voice said suddenly, causing Clarke to jump a little, her sandy hands coming off of the ground and abruptly closing her notebook as her blue eyes turned up to meet green ones. “Sorry, didn't mean to scare you.”

“No, you're fine,” Clarke insisted. “I was just... thinking.”

Lexa nodded. “Can I sit?” When Clarke didn't object, the brunette took a seat in the sand next to her. “I'm sorry about earlier. I shouldn't have gotten between you and Finn without knowing if you were okay with that. I guess I'm kind of defensive about your situation, because I have a very strong complex about treating people with respect and loyalty and shit like that. I kind of especially hate it when guys think they somehow have a right to be dicks to girls.”

“It's okay,” Clarke said finally, “I was just surprised.”

“Also, the whole thing about me hooking up with a lot of girls... it's true, but it's not like... some game or something that I play,” Lexa stated. “Not that I think it's okay to judge anyone for their sex lives when it's consensual, but just so you know. It just so happens that I've hooked up with a number of girls, especially this past summer. A lot of people drove down to Tampa, or up to Orlando, or over to Miami... Anya and I went to all three, and we kind of had... a little too much fun with our fake IDs.”

Clarke smirked. “This town is wild.”

“Oh yeah,” Lexa agreed with a snicker, before pausing for a moment. The warm air blew past them with a slight breeze, and Clarke was reminded again that it was technically winter, and that it would actually start to get chilly soon. “I don't know, I guess Finn was in Miami for some of the same nights that we were, and he saw me there. He was dating some girl at the time – someone who had just graduated, I think her name was Trinity – but I caught him making out with someone else. I called him out on it, and he got pissed as fuck of course, and made it his mission to get into my business about the girls that I slept with. But it's not like I was in a serious relationship when I slept with any of them, and I was safe and everything, so I don't get the big deal.”

Clarke shrugged. “Well, I've learned quite a few things about Finn in the past few days, and I guess the moral of all the stories is that he is a bit of a hypocrite if he's calling you out for something like that.” Silence settled for a moment again, and Clarke let her hands drop back into the sand in front of her, playing with bits of it in between her fingers.

“Did you have a boyfriend in New York?”

“I had a couple, on and off, throughout high school,” Clarke answered. “Nothing serious. My best friend there, Belle, she was always the one who cared a lot about relationships. I was pretty happy without them, because I was in a perfect little bubble, living in a cozy apartment with my mom. I spent all of my free time either out with my friends or curled up in bed writing wild stories based on all of the imaginative literature I couldn't ever tear my eyes away from. And then my mom told me about this awesome new job she was getting in a little town in Florida. Moving sucked, and summer sucked. It sucked even more when my mom had to go back to New York, and I ended up in this fucked up situation I'm in now. Even my friends from NYC are starting to be an indication of my life becoming a royal disappointment. I think I've heard just about every excuse not to talk to me by now.”

“Is that what you're doing in there?” Lexa asked, and it took Clarke a moment to realize that she meant writing imaginative literature in her notebook.

“No,” she admitted. “I have two notebooks going right now. One of them is a long story, chapter based, and I'm kind of stuck on it right now. This one is just rambles and shit. I haven't written really cool, imaginative stuff in a while. Funnily enough, Finn was never much of a writing muse.”

Lexa hummed softly. “I'm sorry about all that. Your move, and your friends being distant. I went through it all at the beginning of eighth grade, but it was easier then. I can't imagine moving before your last year of high school. Why didn't you transfer back to NYC and go with your mom?”

“There wouldn't have been enough time to move all my stuff again, and I would've missed a week or so of school because of it. Just... it would've been a big hassle. My mom is already stressed to the max, so I agreed to the easiest option when it was presented.”

“Well, I think you're very strong for getting through it all,” Lexa stated. A pause. “I hope in the midst of all that chaos you had time to read Go Set A Watchman.”

Clarke felt a smile split across her face as she looked to the brunette. “Did you read it?”

“I did. I liked To Kill A Mockingbird better.”

“Of course, I was really disappointed with the sequel, to be honest. I really liked Atticus in the first book, and I hated that he turned out to be a racist. I mean, the whole goddamn story line of TKAM declares Atticus as the good guy, who defends people of color,” Clarke growled.

Lexa chuckled. “I agree. I was also pretty pissed at Jack for slapping Scout across the face.”

“Altogether, I didn't like it. I mean, it was written well, and I would've kicked myself for not reading it if I didn't,” Clarke said. Lexa smiled a little, nodding. “Ugh. I've kept my inner book nerd to a minimum while I've lived here, and now here you are drawing it out of me.”

“Hey, what's wrong with being a book nerd?” Lexa asked with a wide grin. “If you haven't been able to tell, I am also one. I bet you couldn't be a book nerd with Finn.”

Clarke rolled her eyes. “I'm not sure if Finn has ever opened a book for his own pleasure.” She looked at Lexa thoughtfully. “You don't seem like a book nerd to me, though. You're too cool.”

“Me? Cool? Babe, you've got the wrong girl.”

“Are you kidding?” Clarke narrowed her eyes at the brunette.

“What? If either of us is the cool one, it's you, Miss Girl-Who-Dated-The-Most-Popular-Douche-Bag-At-School,” Lexa insisted.

Clarke shook her head, chuckling quietly, and shifted her gaze back in front of her, looking out over the ocean. The sun was dipping its way down the sky, beginning to cause a streak of orange near the surface of the water. “I guess we're both just not cool, and instead we're major book nerds.”

“Accurate.” Another moment of silence. “Are you going to want a ride home? I have my car with me.”

Clarke glanced down at her hands. “I can walk; I don't want to inconvenience you or anything.”

“Your uncle actually lives really close to where I live,” Lexa promised, “so you should let me drive you home. It's a long way to walk.”

Finally smiling, the blonde shifted her gaze to Lexa. “If you insist. Were you going to head back now?”

“Unless you want to stay longer.” Clarke shook her head, and the two of them stood up. Clarke quickly repacked her bag, hoisted it up onto her back, and then the two of them made their way back along the beach to the parking lot, where Lexa led Clarke to her car. It was small, a two door, with four seats, but it wasn't like Clarke could judge. It was more than what she had.

She settled into the passenger seat, and Lexa started the car and pulled out of the lot. “You know,” Clarke said, “I got my license in New York when I turned sixteen, and I haven't driven at all since then.”

“I guess that makes sense. You didn't really need to drive in NYC, right?”

“Yeah.”

“You're welcome to drive me around if you ever feel like refreshing your memory,” Lexa teased. The smile that tugged at Clarke's lips was unforced, and she felt calm and at ease, sitting here talking to Lexa.

“I might actually take you up on that someday. You'll just have to make sure that we're in a deserted area the first time around, so I don't accidentally crash the car or something.”

An abrupt laugh let loose from Lexa's lips, and green eyes glanced at her. “Yeah, maybe we don't do that then. This car may have been a very generous gift from my parents, but there is no way that they would consider paying for damages if someone else crashed it, and I don't think you want to do that either.”

“Hey! I'm not saying I will crash it! I'm just saying that it's probably a better idea if we start by letting me 'refresh my memory' in a place where no one else is driving.”

“I don't know, Clarke, I'm not sure if I know you well enough to entrust my life to you.”

Clarke raised her eyebrows. “I'm entrusting my life to you right now, aren't I?”

“That's different, I've been driving for over two years since getting my license!” Lexa exclaimed incredulously, giving Clarke an exasperated look. The blonde just smiled devilishly at her. “You better stop distracting me, or else entrusting your life to me is going to have been a bad idea.”

“I'm not that distracting.”

Lexa snorted out a laugh, her nose crinkling. “I beg to differ.” Clarke felt a blush spread across her cheeks, but she averted her gaze quickly, sure that Lexa didn't mean what first came to Clarke's mind.

It was ridiculous to think that Lexa would be interested in her in any way beyond friendship – it wasn't like the fact that she was gay and had been with lots of girls meant that she liked Clarke that way. It was even more ridiculous for Clarke to think that she might be interested in Lexa that way, because she was four days out of the most serious relationship she'd ever been in, and had never actually been into a girl.

Before she knew it, they were pulling up in front of Clarke's uncle's townhouse. “Here we are,” Lexa said softly. “Do you... want a ride tomorrow morning?”

“Oh no, I'm okay. I like walking in the morning. It's a nice way to wake up and start the day,” Clarke admitted, her face reddening again. “Thanks, though.”

“Sure.” Lexa nodded. “I'll see you tomorrow, then.”

“Yep. See you, Lexa.” Clarke opened the passenger side door, grabbing her bag and then closing the door. With one last wave to the brunette, she made her way up to the door of Marcus' house as she heard the noise of Lexa's car drive off.

Chapter Text

“How was staying at Finn's?”

The question hit Clarke hard, because of course out of all people, she'd forgotten to tell her mom about the previous weekend.

It was Friday now, finally the end of the first week back to school, and Clarke's mom had finally given her a time that she would be off of work. Clarke knew that her mom was working a lot in NYC, more so than when Clarke was there with her, since she now technically had less responsibility. Plus, Abby's income had gone down when her whole job situation went to shit, so she had to work more to keep her current living situation, and she was still paying for things for Clarke, sending Marcus money.

“Oh shit,” Clarke muttered, “I forgot to tell you.”

“Language, Clarke.”

“Sorry,” Clarke breathed out. “Finn cheated on me last weekend... well, on New Year's Eve. He went to a party and I decided to join him later and when I got there he was hooking up with some other girl.”

“Oh my god, but I thought he was a good one?”

Clarke sighed. “Yeah, same. Apparently, he's done this before, and no one thought to warn me. I guess it's my own fault for sticking to Finn and his friends instead of trying to make my own. There's a new group of girls I started hanging out with, though.”

“Oh yeah? Are they nice?”

“Yeah, pretty fun group. One of them is as much of a book nerd as I am,” Clarke admitted, chuckling. “They're helping me deal with the fact that Finn's an asshole.”

“Well I'm glad that you have some people to help you with that,” Abby said, and her calming voice worked even through the phone, drawing a smile from the blonde. “But hey, in other news, I've been funneling what extra money I've been making into your college fund, but I got an end of year bonus, and with it, you and I are going somewhere for spring break.”

“Really?” Clarke asked, eyes widening. “Where?”

“I thought maybe LA. You've been down in Florida, and I've been up in New York, so I thought we could try a different scenery. Unless you want to come up to New York, in which case I can manage here,” her mom said with a light laugh. “Would be cheaper, anyway.”

“LA sounds cool,” Clarke said, “but I don't wanna make you spend that. And you know I love New York.”

“The money isn't an issue, sweetie,” Abby promised. “Just let me know if LA is okay, alright? Sometime in the next month. I'm excited to be able to see you again. You weren't supposed to be out of the house until college.”

Clarke laughed sadly. “Yeah.”

“Are you at Marcus' place?”

“No, the beach,” Clarke answered, looking up out of her lap and out at the water in front of her. Her new friends had invited her over to Octavia's place to hang out and possibly sleep over, and Clarke had gotten permission from Marcus to do so. However, she was due to be there in an hour, and it had only occurred to her that she didn't have a ride when she got to the beach after school. The phone call from her mom had distracted her from the thought. “It's about a half hour walk away from the school and Marcus' place, which is nice. I'm supposed to go over to a friend's place soon, but I'm without a ride for now, so I'm gonna have to figure that out.”

“Oh, well I don't want to hold you up.”

“You're not,” Clarke promised. “I'm really glad I got to talk to you, actually. I've missed you a lot lately.”

“I miss you too, Clarke,” Abby replied tenderly. “Go find a ride and hang out with your friends, though. And think about spring break, yeah?”

“Of course. Love you, mom.”

“I love you too.” The line ended, and Clarke lowered the phone, taking in a deep breath of the salty air. Smiling a little, she stood up and threw her messenger bag back over her shoulder. Starting toward the parking lot slowly, she dialed a different number.

She only had it because earlier in the day, she'd been assigned a project in government with Lexa, and the brunette had taken the liberty of putting her number in her phone.

Clarke was leaning against the brick wall of the school building, waiting for someone she knew to show up as she had been doing every day since Monday. However, before she saw any familiar face, she suddenly felt her phone being pulled out of her back pocket. Her immediate reaction was to turn and grab for it, but she froze when she realized that it was Lexa, who was now typing away at the screen. Clarke rolled her eyes, scolding herself for not putting a password on her phone.

“You wanna explain what you're doing with my phone?”

“Saving you,” Lexa claimed, looking up from the screen only long enough to flash a smile at the blonde. “We're getting a partner project assigned in government today, and we get to pick partners. And now you have one, so if Finn tries to get you to partner with him, you already have an excuse.”

She finished up what she was doing on Clarke's phone, and then handed the device back to her. Taking it tentatively, Clarke looked at the screen to see that not only had Lexa entered her phone number into her contact book, but she'd also taken on the task of texting herself from Clarke's number. “Sure, Lexa. I'd love to partner with you.” Clarke rolled her eyes as she sarcastic comment escaped her lips, but the truth was that she was actually quite grateful to the brunette.

Lexa knew that too, which was why she just smiled toothily in response.

The call rang twice before Lexa answered. “Sup blondie!” The voice did not belong to Lexa, but Anya.

Raising an eyebrow, Clarke slowly said, “Uh, Anya?”

“Yep. Lexa is peeing. I think. She could be doing number two, but I don't think either of us would want to know,” Anya commented. “How can Lexa be of assistance?”

“I need a ride to Octavia's,” Clarke admitted shyly.

“Well, we're already here, but – “

A sudden mess of noises could be heard through the phone, and Clarke had to pull it away from her ear slightly, until a voice began to speak clearly again. This time it was Lexa. “Sorry, hey.”

Clarke laughed. “Hey. I was going to ask if you could give me a ride to Octavia's, but if you're already there, I can – “

“Are you home?”

“No, I'm at the beach.”

“I can be there in ten?”

“Thank you.”

“Of course!” The line ended, and Clarke slid her phone into her pocket. She leaned against one of the thick posts that lined the edge of the beach, connected by worn, dirtied white ropes. Looking over her shoulder at the water, she let out a small breath. One week. One week since the person she had begun to treasure so much had betrayed her. Cheating had always been a deal breaker for Clarke, she would never allow herself to stay with someone who had cheated on her, because she imagined the pain would be too immense. Now, having experienced it herself, she was even more in this mindset. She didn't want to be upset about this anymore – she wanted to get over Finn and move on. But it still hurt.

Clarke hugged her bag closer to her as a slight breeze blew past her. Something that Clarke had noticed in her time living in Polis was that most people spent Friday evenings away from the beach, unless there was a beach party. But most beach parties were at Miller's place, so even still, this beach was generally pretty empty on Fridays. Maybe that was why Clarke's first thought of where to go when school let out was this spot.

Before she knew it, Lexa's car was rolling into the empty beach parking lot, and Clarke pushed away from the post, shaking sand out of her sandals as she approached the passenger door. “Hey!” Lexa greeted with a smile as Clarke slid into the seat.

“Hey,” Clarke returned. “Thank you so much. I didn't even think about how I was going to get to Octavia's place.”

“Don't worry about it,” Lexa insisted. “I have a car, you don't, and I'm happy to drive you. It's not like this place is very big or full of traffic. Even on Friday nights. Perks of living in a small town.”

Clarke chuckled. “I guess.”

“You seem like a small town kind of girl,” Lexa commented, “and I can't picture you living in New York.” She pulled her car out of the parking lot and started off toward Octavia's place.

“Well, I did,” Clarke stated with a slight eye roll. “Why do I seem like a small town kind of girl?”

“You're like... quiet, and you like to write, and I don't know. You just do.”

Clarke felt a smile tug at either end of her lips. “Actually, I'm not very quiet. You've just only known me while I'm in the midst of getting over Finn cheating on me. I'm actually a pretty big party animal when it doesn't feel like my entire life is caving in on me.”

“I guess that would explain why Finn liked you,” Lexa commented, before quickly adding something else as though she thought the statement might upset Clarke. “Not that it's hard to see why anyone would you like you. You're quite likable.”

“Thanks?”

“It was a very obvious compliment; you don't have to thank me in a question.” Lexa flashed her a grin.

Blue eyes rolled, and then refocused on the outside world. The beach was still in sight, and Clarke could see the orange sun reaching down to begin to touch the edge of the water, creating a beautiful range of pastels across the whole horizon. It seemed like a matter of seconds later that they arrived at Octavia's beach house.

She parked her car behind the others there and they both clambered out of the vehicle, starting up to the front door. Lexa let herself in without question, and Clarke followed her somewhat timidly. “We're back,” Lexa called out.

A guy suddenly peeked out from around the corner, in the kitchen. “They all went upstairs.” Clarke immediately recognized him as Bellamy, Octavia's brother, and he seemed to recognize her as well. “Clarke, right? I didn't know you knew my sister.”

“It's a recent thing,” Clarke replied vaguely.

Bellamy raised an eyebrow. “You doing okay? I heard what happened to you and Finn.”

“Leave her alone about it, Bell,” Lexa interrupted, seeming suddenly disgruntled. “Come on, Clarke.” Clarke just glanced at Bellamy once more, though he was glaring at Lexa, and then followed the brunette up the staircase and up to the third floor.

“Yay! You're back!” Raven exclaimed happily as Lexa and Clarke entered Octavia's bedroom. A queen sized bed stood on fancy posts at one end of the room, where Raven and Octavia were currently sprawled, and the rest of the exposed floor was covered by a fluffy, blue rug. The dresser, desk, and full length mirror were clearly part of a furniture set with the bed. The walls were painted blue, matching the rug, and the room was neat and orderly, aside from the shelves on the walls, which were stuffed with all sorts of things. Altogether, though, Clarke was impressed with the room.

“You didn't miss much,” Anya commented, from where she was sitting at Octavia's desk. Harper was leaning against her legs, seated on the rug on the floor. “Bellamy got back, so we decided to come upstairs.”

“Yeah, we saw him,” Lexa said lamely. She took a seat on the rug as well, so that she could face the bed and also Anya and Harper. Clarke hesitantly took a seat next to her.

“You sound immensely disappointed about that.” Anya immediately received a glare from Lexa, and a couple of smirks appeared on the other's faces.

“What?” Clarke heard herself asking. She figured that if she didn't try to get in on all the need-to-know stuff in this group, she would always feel like an outsider looking in. And frankly, she didn't want to be.

Octavia rolled her eyes. “Bell saw you at school on like, Tuesday or something, and then he asked me if I knew anything about your breakup with Finn. I asked him why and he said if you were single now, he was totally going to go after you. I promptly told him that he better fucking not, but we're pretty sure he thinks you're smoking hot and wants to fuck you.”

Clarke flushed, both at the thought of someone wanting to fuck her, and also at what Anya's previous comment about Lexa being disappointed at she and Clarke running into Bellamy might imply. “Oh.”

“Don't worry, Bellamy's actually a big softie,” Harper reasoned, “so if he does go after you, it'll be all polite and shit.”

“And I mean, you can totally date him if you want to,” Octavia added quickly. “Like, I wouldn't care. I just figured that it would be way too soon for you to get into something with him. I mean, you don't even know him.”

“Yeah, definitely too soon,” Clarke agreed, unsure of what else she should say.

Raven nudged her girlfriend. “Let's play a game.”

“What game?”

“Something to get to know Clarke – and let her get to know us, of course.”

“What? Like Never Have I Ever?” Anya asked.

Lexa suddenly groaned. “Oh here we go.”

“I'll get the beer!” Raven squealed happily, crawling over Octavia to hop off the bed and run downstairs.

Octavia rolled her eyes, also getting off of the bed and joining the rest of them on the floor as Anya slid off of the desk chair to sit next to Harper. They formed a circle, leaving a spot open for Raven. “Sorry about this,” Octavia apologized halfheartedly to Clarke. “We like drinking games.”

“I don't mind,” Clarke insisted. She actually didn't, either. She had really nothing to hide, and she definitely didn't mind getting to know the people around her. Maybe she would actually find out if all of them were gay, or bi, or what. She was still highly unsure about Harper and Anya.

Raven returned with two six packs of beer, handing half of them out to the group before finally falling into her spot in the circle. “Who's gonna start?”

“Never have I ever fucked a girl on the beach.” Anya grinned.

Lexa let out a groan. “Seriously, Anya? You're going to do this shit again?” She took a sip of her beer, and Clarke smiled a little. It kind of astounded her that Lexa was so open and confident in herself when it came to her sexual experiences, it was maybe even somewhat attractive. As soon as Clarke thought it, she tore her gaze away from the brunette, and waited for Harper to take her turn.

“Never have I ever been out of the states.” Octavia and Raven both took a drink, before briefly explaining that they'd both gone to Cancun the previous summer with Octavia's family. Now it was Lexa's turn, and she immediately looked to Anya with a glare, as if ready to provide payback, and Clarke was honestly not surprised.

“Never have I ever gone down on a guy in this room.”

Octavia's jaw dropped as Anya's eyes narrowed into an infuriated glare. “Are you fucking kidding me, Woods? That's the secret you decide to expose?”

“Wait, hold on? When the fuck did this happen?” Octavia exclaimed. “That's disgusting! Oh my god!”

“It was like, up against the door,” Anya muttered, taking a quick swig of her drink. “I even wiped down the door afterward because I felt bad about it, alright?”

“That's gross.”

Lexa gave Anya a sweet smile. “Don't mess with me, An. I have as much on you as you do on me. And I'm not ashamed of any of it.”

It was Clarke's turn all of the sudden, and the blonde realized that she had nothing to say. “Oh. Um. Never have I ever been in a relationship for longer than four months?” Raven and Octavia both took down a drink, and so did Harper and Lexa. For some reason, that slightly surprised Clarke, and she tried not to give Lexa a confused look.

“Yeah, I know what you're thinking,” Anya said anyway, “how come I've never been in a long term relationship but this bitch has? Well, let's just say that poor little Lexa got cheated on in sophomore year, and she's been a changed person ever since.”

“Could you shut up?” Lexa hissed at Anya, who just gave the brunette a challenging stare.

“Jesus Christ,” Harper groaned. “This is why we should never play this game.”

“Anyway!” Raven exclaimed. “My turn! Never have I ever been so drunk that I blacked out.”

“Fuck you,” Octavia huffed as she took a drink, followed by Anya and Lexa both, who were still exchanging testy looks back and forth.

“I will if you want to,” Raven agreed, waggling her eyebrows.

Clarke smirked, and Anya scoffed. “Gross.”

“Never have I ever,” Octavia continued, “gone down on a guy.”

Harper, Anya and Clarke all raised their beers now, and Clarke finally got to take a drink. She took a long one as well, aware that she was apparently far more vanilla than her peers, and in desperate need of a drink. No explanations were needed for that question, so Anya went straight into her turn. “Never have I ever fallen in love with a girl.”

Suddenly, Lexa was standing, her beer being somewhat slammed on top of her nearest piece of furniture – the dresser – and then she was swiftly out of the room. Harper looked at Anya with an incredulous look. “Really?”

“What? She was pissing me off!”

“You guys were both pissing each other off! And it doesn't end until one of you decides to take a break. You couldn't let it be you?” Raven demanded. “I get it, you and Lexa are best friends and this is usually just how you communicate, but even you have to realize when you're about to take it too far.”

“Should one of us go after her?” Clarke asked suddenly, drawing everyone's attention.

“Why don't you, blondie?” Anya suggested suddenly, somewhat harshly. “She jumped at the chance to go pick you up anyway, might as well repay the favor.”

“Anya,” Harper hissed, and Clarke furrowed her eyebrows. Not wanting to be in the middle of whatever was going on anymore, Clarke stood and began to follow Lexa downstairs. She wasn't sure where the brunette had gone, but she assumed that she'd gone all the way downstairs.

She ran into Bellamy at the bottom of the staircase. “Did you see where Lexa went?” she asked.

“Yeah, outside. She looked pissed as fuck. What happened?”

“I'm not really sure.”

Bellamy hummed thoughtfully. “Yeah well, I guess you'll get that a lot being friends with my sister and all her friends. They don't really seem like your crowd.”

“You don't know me,” Clarke said carefully.

“I guess not, but you were friends with Finn and his crowd. It's like a one eighty to end up friends with my sister. Especially if you're straight.”

Clarke raised an eyebrow. “Like I said, you don't know me. Now if you'll excuse me, I'm going to go talk to Lexa.” She took a step around Bellamy, giving him a wide berth, and saw Lexa seated at the edge of the wood patio through the huge, glass windows. Biting on her lower lip, Clarke located the sliding door and pulled it open carefully. Lexa glanced over her shoulder instantly, but just sighed and looked back over the water when she saw that it was Clarke. The sun was dipping into the water by now, but it was still somewhat lit outside.

Clarke took a seat next to Lexa, just as the brunette had done for her a week before.

“You don't have to talk about it,” the blonde said quietly, “but if you want to...”

“No, I don't,” Lexa breathed out. “I'm over it, it was a long time ago. I just don't like to talk about it, because I was fucking stupid back then and I don't like thinking about it.”

“What do you mean you were stupid?”

“Trusting a person with something as important as my heart... it was stupid. I shouldn't have ever done it, and I haven't done it since then,” Lexa stated.

“No, that's stupid,” Clarke argued, drawing a baffled look from the other girl. “It's stupid to rule out all people on the account of one bitch who thought it would be a good idea to take advantage of your love. Just because Finn cheated on me doesn't mean that I'm going to cower away from the idea of ever being with someone again. That wouldn't be fair to me, and it's not fair to you to do that to yourself.”

Lexa shook her head. “You don't get it, Clarke. You didn't love Finn.”

“I thought I did,” Clarke insisted. “Does that really matter, though? I was prepared to give him my whole heart, I thought I would end up doing that. What you're saying is that basically that since one person stopped making you happy, you're just going to stop being happy altogether.”

“That's not the same thing,” Lexa argued, “I'm perfectly happy right now, without someone to love me.”

Clarke sighed. “You'd really never even consider dating someone again, for real?”

“I don't know.” Lexa clenched her jaw. “It's complicated. I don't think that I would never give anyone a chance. It would just be a really fucking generous chance that they better not fuck up.”

“Well, I think you deserve to be happy, Lexa. Just like I do, just like anyone does.”

“Do you think Finn deserves to be happy?” Lexa asked quietly.

Clarke gazed at the sinking sun and shrugged. “I guess. I don't mind if he suffers a little first, though. But you're not Finn, so why does that matter?”

“Doesn't.”

“Will you at least promise me one thing?” Lexa looked at Clarke curiously, her expression greatly smoothed out now. “Promise me that if you have a real, hopeful opportunity at being happy with someone, giving them your heart and everything, that you won't miss out on it just because of what happened to you in the past.”

Lexa's lips twitched, suddenly turning up into a small smile. “Fine, I promise. As long as you promise me the same thing.”

“Sure, of course,” Clarke agreed instantly. She wasn't the one who had given up on love, after all. “Now are you coming back inside before it gets any colder?”

“It's not that cold.”

“Yeah well, I guess living in Florida for half of a year as made me more sensitive to cold or something. Come on, let's go inside.” She stood up and extended a hand down to Lexa, who smiled softly as she took it, and then they both entered back into the house.

Chapter Text

“Come on, Lex,” Harper said quietly when Lexa and Clarke entered back into the Octavia's bedroom, “have a drink.”

Lexa just nodded as she took the beer from her friend and downed half of it. Anya was looking warily at the brunette. “Lexa, can I talk to you for a sec?” Taking another long sip of her beer, Lexa nodded toward the bathroom, and Anya scrambled up, following her in there. Clarke watched them disappear for a second, and then let out a small sigh.

“What did you say to get her to come back in so quickly?” Raven asked Clarke curiously, raising both of her eyebrows.

Clarke shrugged. “Not much.”

“Oh come on,” Octavia pried further, “Lexa is not an easy nut to crack, Clarke.”

“I don't know, we just talked,” Clarke lied. She felt like it wouldn't be fair to Lexa to divulge in full what they'd talked about. Plus, something felt different between the two of them now. Something inside Clarke was proud to have been the one to get to have that talk with the brunette, and she wanted to hold on to that. Why she cared, she wasn't quite sure.

“Leave her alone,” Harper defended. “Sorry you had to witness all that, Clarke. Somethings things just kinda heat up between the two of them. Two really strong personalities, I guess.”

“Yeah, the only reason that Octavia and I don't do the same thing is because Octavia's personality is weak as fuck,” Raven claimed, only to get instantly shoved by girlfriend. “Okay but seriously, you'll get used to Lexa and Anya. They've both just been through some shit, I guess.”

“Yeah, I wouldn't worry about it,” Harper agreed.

Clarke nodded. “Alright, yeah.”

The bathroom door suddenly opened, and Lexa and Anya both walked out and back into the room, and their hangout commenced, minus the never have I ever.

Clarke thought that at some point everyone would head home, but it became apparent pretty quickly that the group was intending on just staying at Octavia's for the night. Clarke shot a text to her uncle letting him know that she was staying over at a friend's house, and when he didn't respond, she opted not to worry about it. She was eighteen, after all.

“O, get me a blanket, I'm claiming this rug,” Anya muttered. At this point, it was pretty late and all of them were at least somewhat intoxicated. True to her word, Anya suddenly sprawled across the blue rug, causing everyone else to pull their feet back away from the center of it. Octavia pushed herself up, stumbling slightly as Raven let out a whine and grabbed at her hand.

“No don't leave,” Raven murmured.

“I'm tired as fuck,” Harper groaned. “Why does Anya get the rug?”

“You can always get in bed with Raven and Octavia,” Anya suggested with a devilish grin, and Harper rolled her eyes.

“Yeah, on second thought, I definitely don't wanna sleep in here. I'm grabbing a couch downstairs after I use the bathroom.” Harper grabbed onto the desk to pull herself to her feet, just as Octavia was opening her closet and pulled out a blanket, flinging it toward Anya. Raven was stumbling to her feet and then into Octavia's bed.

“Guess that leaves Clarke and Lexa to fight over the guest bedroom,” the brunette muttered into a pillow.

Lexa stood up and extended a hand to Clarke to held her up. “Clarke can have it.” Clarke took her hand gratefully, her body stiff from sitting on the floor for so long. They'd mostly been talking and joking and drinking for the past few hours. They both exited the bedroom and Clarke was led back down to the second floor, which she remembered from the previous weekend.

“I don't have to take the guest bed,” Clarke said once they were away from everyone else. “I really don't mind.”

“No, it's fine. I already sort of fucked this night up, anyway.”

“You didn't,” Clarke argued with an eye roll. “You can at least take one side of the bed. I don't take up a whole queen sized mattress.”

“You sure?”

“Of course.”

Lexa gave her a small smile as they entered into the guest bedroom. “Okay, well thanks. You take the bathroom first, though.”

Clarke slipped into the bedroom and washed up. She obviously didn't have a change of clothes, but she was wearing shorts and a tank as per usual, so at least she wouldn't be too uncomfortable sleeping in her clothes. When she reentered the bedroom, Lexa was quick to swap rooms with her, and the blonde stumbled to the bed sleepily.

By the time the bathroom door reopened, Clarke was comfy, taking up half of the bed and leaving an equal amount of room for the brunette. The lights turned off with a click, and then Clarke felt the other half of the bed dip down. She thought that Lexa might think she was asleep, so to show that she wasn't, she adjusted her position slightly and glanced over her shoulder at the brunette.

Lexa looked slightly surprised as they made eye contact, but the brunette smiled softly at her. “You have enough space?”

“Yup,” Clarke replied, pulling the blankets up to her chin and batting her eyelashes at Lexa, who laughed with a shake of her head.

“Go to sleep. It's been a long day, and you're drunk.”

“So are you.”

“Then I'll sleep too, is that fair?”

“Mmhmm.” Clarke settled back down into the pillows and felt the greedy pull of sleep dragging her out of consciousness.

A dull ache through her forehead was what woke Clarke the next morning, accompanied by the flood of light into the room from the huge windows on the wall. It did nothing to alleviate the pain, and she found herself slinking backwards, trying to tug the blanket up and over her eyes to block out the invasive light. However, she wasn't able to move backwards very much, because it seemed that she was being spooned.

Blue eyes shot open wide as she realized that Lexa's arms were wrapped around her waist, holding her firmly against the brunette's front. It wasn't at all an unpleasant position, though Clarke had a feeling that it was somewhat inappropriate. Her first thought was that she should tear away immediately, but again, it was rather comfortable. Allowing herself to relish in the feeling of being held again, Clarke exhaled softly and relaxed her body.

She had actually almost fallen back asleep when Lexa finally stirred. She could almost hear Lexa's thoughts spinning as she realized that her arms were wrapped around Clarke, and could sense her panic when she abruptly yanked her limbs away and rolled the other way. Standing up from the bed, Lexa escaped quickly into the bathroom.

At that point, Clarke allowed herself to turn over and gaze at the door that Lexa had just closed. She wasn't sure why being held by Lexa was such a pleasant feeling. While she could easily attribute it to having been single for the first time in a while, and missing that sort of contact, she had a feeling that it had to do somewhat with the brunette as well. There was no denying that Lexa was breathtakingly beautiful, and Clarke got along with her quite well. She felt like she could understand the brunette and her past, and Lexa could do the same for her.

Despite all of that, however, Clarke knew that it couldn't mean anything. She and Lexa were entirely different people, only even friends due to Clarke's ex-boyfriend being an absolute douche only a week ago. It was far too early to even think about being with anyone else beyond friendship.

Clarke shook her head, trying to clear her thoughts, but it only served to remind her of the headache pulsing through her brain. Groaning, her hands rose to her face and rubbed furiously at her eyes. Finally, she got up.

When Lexa came out of the bathroom, she looked unfazed about Clarke being awake, and didn't mention anything about their rather close embrace the following night. Clarke couldn't find any reason to admit that she'd been awake for it, so she let it go, and Lexa dismissed herself to go downstairs and make breakfast for everyone.

The morning after that was a blur. Lexa made waffles, which everyone devoured happily, including Bellamy. Bellamy was an interesting character, that was for sure. He only cared to talk to Clarke out of the whole group, and the blonde was not quite sure how to feel about it. After having her conflicting feelings about Lexa, thinking about any feelings with Bellamy was entirely too far-fetched. She did her best to hint that she wasn't interested in Octavia's brother, while her new friends snickered quietly at his obliviousness.

After breakfast, Lexa interrupted whatever conversation had been going on between the rest of them to announce that she was going to go home to work on homework. Without missing a beat, she then inquired, “Clarke, you want a ride home?”

Clarke accepted happily, checked that she had everything she'd come with, and left Octavia's house with a wave to her friends.

Lexa was quiet on their drive home, and it wasn't until they were nearing Marcus' place that Clarke finally broke the silence. “Hey, when do you want to start working on our government project? It's due at the end of the week, right?”

“Tomorrow?” Lexa suggested. “My parents will be gone all day, so I can either pick you up, or give you the address if you want to walk. It's not far from your uncle's place.”

“I can walk,” Clarke agreed with a nod. “What time?”

“Eleven?”

Clarke nodded in affirmation just as Lexa pulled up in front of her house. “Thanks for the ride, Lexa. I appreciate it.”

“Sure thing, Clarke. I'll see you tomorrow.”

It was Clarke's full intention to finish the rest of her weekend homework that night, before going over to Lexa's the next day, but she found herself unable to focus. Instead, she took out her laptop and opened up MS Word. Sometimes, it was far easier to create the text of her emotions on the computer. It was faster that way, after all, and Clarke's thoughts were moving too quickly for a pen or a pencil.

Marcus briefly asked her about what she'd done the night before, and she answered honestly, before finally getting his permission to stay over at Octavia's whenever as long as she shot him a text before midnight about it. She agreed without a second thought, and it was back to writing for her. She accidentally skipped dinner that night.

That was probably why she woke up so hungry on Sunday, but she luckily managed to find some food to shove down her throat before going over to Lexa's. The brunette had texted her the address, and it turned out that it was definitely not a far walk. Upon arrival, Clarke found herself knocking tentatively on the door, and just a few seconds later, it swung open.

“Hey,” Lexa greeted, smiling brightly and stepping back to allow Clarke into the house. It was an actual house rather than a townhouse, and Clarke immediately found herself exploring it with her eyes. It was bigger than her uncle's place, understandably, but definitely smaller than Octavia's. A nice size, though Clarke thought that it was too big for three people. “So, I was planning some stuff out for our project last night. I think I have a good starting point for us.”

“Cool.”

The next few hours were spent working on the project in Lexa's dining room. They got the majority of it finished, and once they judged that they'd done more than enough for now, they put away the work and went up to Lexa's bedroom. As they entered it, blue eyes immediately widened. The room was extremely cluttered, but in an organized sort of way that just seemed to make sense. Shelves lined the walls, filled with books and miscellaneous things. There were two desks in the room, one home to Lexa's laptop, and the other covered in records and an old record player. A few tapestries hung on the wall next to Lexa's bed, which was neatly made.

“Hipster much?” Clarke teased, and Lexa rolled her eyes.

“I don't see what's wrong with that. I mean, aren't we all a little bit hipster in this day and age?” Lexa reasoned.

Clarke shrugged. “I guess so. I like it, though, the room. It's nice and homey.”

“I guess your room probably isn't much like that, huh? Since you've only lived there half a year and it's not really like... yours.”

“Yeah, no. But even my bedroom in New York wasn't super personal or anything. Aside from the shelf with stacks of completely full notebooks, there wasn't anything particularly interesting in it. This is cool, though. And you have a record player.” Clarke nodded to the device, and as Lexa turned suddenly and started over to it, Clarke sat down on the edge of the brunette's bed. It dipped down slightly under her weight, and she settled comfortably there.

“I've got Back to Black, Abbey Road, Purple Rain, Journey's Greatest Hits, and Blurryface,” Lexa listed off. “I'm still collecting, I only started last year. There are some awesome record stores in Tampa and St. Petersburg.”

“Do you go to Tampa a lot?”

Lexa shrugged, grabbing one of the record cases and sliding the vinyl out of it carefully. As she positioned it on the record player, she spoke again, “Yeah, every couple of months I go down there for a weekend. My sister goes to school at The University of Tampa.”

“Oh, you have a sister?”

“Yes, Luna,” Lexa replied with a nod. “She's two years older than me, so she's halfway through her sophomore year in college.” Lexa started the record player, and the beginning of Abbey Road began to play. “She and I used to not really get along very well growing up, but we've gotten much more amicable recently.”

“Well, that's good.”

Lexa turned back to face Clarke, and visibly noticed that the blonde was now seated on her bed. “You don't have any siblings, do you?”

“No,” Clarke replied. “Just me. My parents wanted to have another kid when I was about ten years old – though I don't know why they wanted such a wide age gap between us – but my dad died when I was seven, so they never got to. And my mom hasn't really ever gotten with anyone since then. I think she still feels obligated to stay single, which I get, but I've told her countless times that I wouldn't be upset if she did get with someone else. It's been like eleven years, after all. Not that she would have another kid if that did happen.”

Lexa nodded slowly. “Luna was like my parent's ideal kid. I'm pretty sure I was an accident, though my mom's denied it countless times. Not that they don't care about me, of course, I'm pretty lucky with my parents. They're chill about my sexuality and stuff, so that's nice.”

Clarke glanced over at the record player again, trying to find something to say. “What records are you wanting to get still?”

“Lots. I honestly don't know. I kind of make split second decisions when I'm in the store,” Lexa admitted with a soft laugh. “I'm due to go down to Tampa soon, because my sister wasn't able to come up for Christmas. I'll probably just buy something random when I go. It's kind of annoying that there aren't any record stores here, but I guess it is a small town, so.”

“I've never been to Tampa, aside from when I flew in from New York last year,” Clarke admitted.

“You should come down with me sometime. Anya sometimes goes with me, like we did last summer. Usually we have to split a hotel room, though, because my sister lives on campus. We're probably going to stay down there for spring break. You're welcome to join.”

“Oh, I'm going to be going probably to New York for spring break,” Clarke admitted. “My mom and I are going to make plans and she's going to take off work.”

Lexa smiled. “Well that's nice, you should definitely do that. There are plenty other opportunities to go to Tampa. It's only an hour away, after all.”

“You should definitely take me sometime, though, I'd love to go.” Clarke didn't want Lexa to think that she wasn't interested in going to the city, but it didn't seem that Lexa had assumed that.

“It's a date!”


Lexa was a major distraction, Clarke soon realized.

It was ridiculous, of course, but true. Especially once Clarke found herself walking home, a slight skip in her step as her heart beat a slight bit faster than it should, after hearing Lexa say “it's a date.” Obviously, Lexa had not meant what the statement could mean, but Clarke still found that the words stuck with her in that way. She was absolutely fucked, that was for sure.

Unfortunately, Lexa could not distract her from everything.

Monday was another school day from hell. Despite her fairly good weekend, she found that just a single look from Finn could have her spiraling again. She avoided his gaze as often as she could, but he kept looking to her, as though he knew it would piss her off. It didn't help that she had two classes with him in the morning where she had no other people to distract her. Lunch was fine, because she was able to retreat to her friends and distract herself.

The walk to fifth period wasn't all bad either, and Lexa carried the brief conversation that flowed between them during it. However, as soon as Clarke took her seat, she remembered that fifth period meant sitting next to Finn.

He lowered himself into the seat next to her with the obvious intention of being a burden, because he was already facing her direction, eyebrows furrowed in question before he even spoke. When he was about to, the bell rang to begin class, and he was stopped.

That is, until at the end of class, when their teacher gave them a few minutes of free time under the condition that none of them switch seats. Finn was speaking before Clarke could even think of how to avoid him. “So, how is it being the token straight girl in that group of dykes you're hanging out with lately?”

“Anya and Harper date guys,” Clarke stated, keeping her gaze on the notebook in front of her. She didn't know that Anya and Harper were straight, so she didn't say that they were, but she also was not straight. That, however, was unknown to everyone.

“Doesn't matter, they're all still dykes.”

Clarke clenched her jaw, turning her cold glare on her ex-boyfriend. “What, you prove to me once that you're actually an asshole, and then you decide to escalate that image by a tenfold why? You want to keep fucking with me even more than you already have?”

“Just trying to look out for you, Clarke,” Finn claimed. “You won't even give me a second chance, but you're willing to go out and get converted?”

“You're an idiot, Finn. You know that there's no gay conversion,” Clarke snapped back. “And why the fuck would I give you a second chance? You cheated on me, because I wasn't in the mood to party and sleep with you on one, arbitrary night. So fuck you.”

“Would you, though? Because it seems to me that you're a lot more into the Sapphic shit lately.”

Soft hands squeezed into fists of iron. “If I'm at all into any 'Sapphic shit,' Finn, it's because I was fucking born that way.”

“What, so you're a dyke too?”

The bell rang, and Clarke jumped up, grabbing her backpack and notebook and rushing as fast as she could past her ex-boyfriend. He was on her tails as she pushed out of the classroom, aware that Lexa was still at her desk and flashed her a look of alarm during her flee. Unsure of where she was going, Clarke turned a random direction and pushed through a group of people leaving another classroom.

She found herself colliding with someone head on, and looked up to see that it was a shocked Octavia and Raven. They were about to question her, but Finn was suddenly there as well. “Oh of course these two show up right now,” Finn snapped. “I bet you two are proud to have converted another innocent girl to your agenda.”

“Excuse me?” Raven snapped, taking a step forward toward the guy. “What the fuck is wrong with you? It's not bad enough that you cheated on Clarke, so now you're what, trying to make life more difficult for her? She's allowed to be friends with whoever she wants. And trust me, if I was going to turn anyone gay, it would be you, so I could watch your reputation of ruining girls collapse around your feet in a pool of your own self-hatred.”

Clarke's jaw dropped, and Octavia's eyes were wide. Lexa was there now, apparently having heard the last of Raven's declaration, standing behind Finn with bugging green eyes. “I've made mistakes, Reyes, but I love Clarke. She has to realize that hanging out with you dykes isn't good for her. She needs to be with me. I can take care of her.”

Lexa stepped up now, pushing past Clarke's ex. “Oh yeah, because you did such a banged up job doing so the first time around?”

“This is not your problem!” Finn growled.

“Finn,” Clarke snapped, drawing everyone's attention at once. With all eyes on her, including those belonging to a multitude of people who had stopped to enjoy the drama, nerves began to vibrate through her stomach and chest and she shook slightly. Wetting her lips, she settled on just shaking her head back and forth, before spinning around and flinging herself down the hallway. Everyone made a path for her, and she found her way to the nearest exit. She would make up an excuse for being truant later, but for now, she just needed to get out.

Fifteen minutes later, her bag was laying a few feet away from her and her clothes had been flung off of her body as she sat in the grainy sand of the beach. She had begun to wear a bikini under her clothes, and she was grateful for that now. Her toes buried into damp sand in front of her, while her hands held her up from drier ground behind her. The waves would push water up to meet her toes, before receding back down to their home. The sun was directly above her, warming her bare shoulders and her extended legs. The walk here had calmed her considerably, but it was the feeling that came with this, right here, that truly soothed her.

It was probably the start of seventh period when the sound of a car parking in the lot behind her caught her attention. Since this particular beach was almost always filled with high school students, it was almost impossible to think that anyone else would show up here during school. Glancing over her shoulder, Clarke was surprised to see Lexa climbing out of her car.

Blue eyes redirected themselves back to the glistening water, until Lexa was taking a seat next to her. “You really can't catch a break, huh?” The soft question did not require an answer. Clarke felt tears suddenly well up in her eyes, and they burst from her tear ducts without her allowance.

“Shit,” the blonde hissed, raising sandy hands and using their cleaner backs to wipe at her face. Lexa nudged her lightly, and then snaked an arm around her.

“You're going to be okay.”

Clarke allowed herself to enjoy Lexa's embrace, sniffling and blinking away tears as she leaned against the brunette. “I know. I just... I wish Finn would just like... stop being such an asshole, I guess.”

“What... what happened exactly? Why was Raven saying something to him about turning him gay?”

“He thinks that...” Clarke's voice drifted off, and she cleared her throat and wet her lips. “He thinks that you guys turned me gay.”

“Oh.”

Clarke rolled his eyes. “The thing is, I know that he doesn't think that's how it works. He just wants to fuck with my head and, I don't know... yeah honestly, I don't know. I hate him, Lexa. Three weeks ago, I thought I could fall in love with him, and now I hate him.”

Lexa sighed softly. “I know it's like four days away, but there's a party on Saturday at Miller's place that might help get your mind off of it. I know you've been to his parties before. Liquor is ten out of ten.”

“I'm pretty sure that drinking is not what I should do to get over all this,” Clarke muttered. Her eyes were no longer shedding tears, but she didn't move out of Lexa's embrace. It was nice and supportive. It was nice to feel comforted.

“I have great tolerance when it comes to alcohol, so I'll keep an eye on you and make sure you don't do anything stupid while drunk. Promise.”

Clarke snickered. “Sure, why not? It's been a while since I've properly partied anyway.”

“Oh yeah?”

“Yes. Surprisingly, I do actually have a party side,” Clarke admitted, pulling away from Lexa carefully and finally looking directly at her with a shy smile. “And it's more than me just downing three shots right after witnessing my boyfriend cheat on me.”

Lexa smiled. “Can't wait to meet this party girl side of you.”

Clarke bit down on her lower lip as her smile grew slightly. “You'll love her.”

“You think so?”

“I know so.”

“Why's that?”

Clarke almost batted her eyelashes at the brunette, and just barely stopped herself from doing so. She also nearly choked on her own words trying to hold them back, but they spilled out from within her anyway. “She likes body shots.”

Lexa flushed suddenly, but she didn't react otherwise. “And what makes you think that I like body shots?”

“Don't you?”

“Well, babe, I guess your party girl side will have to find that out on Friday.”

Clarke blushed. Lexa had called her babe before, but all previous times had sounded entirely innocent. This time, however, its placement drew new feelings out from the blonde, and she found her blue gaze shift down to Lexa's lips. She tugged it away before she could over think anything, though, and she looked back out at the ocean. “You didn't have to skip seventh period to come rescue me.”

“Well, the last thing we all need is to have you pull some Edna Pontellier shit.”

“Did you really just make a The Awakening reference?”

Lexa shrugged. “Didn't you read it last year?”

“Yes, I did, and frankly, I didn't like it,” Clarke replied, turning her nose up a bit even as she met Lexa's gaze. "I mean, it was a great read, but like... I don't know." The brunette smirked.

“No, I get that. Edna drove me crazy. She was far too man-crazy for her own good. Plus, not only did she cheat on her husband, but she also sent her kids away on vacation just because it was a relief to her. And then she went and fucking drowned herself at the end. I just didn't know how to feel about any of it,” Lexa ranted.

Clarke grinned. “While I don't support the cheating, I think it's totally valid to have a woman in the 1800s embracing sexuality. And anyway, you don't need to worry about me drowning myself. With my luck lately, a shark would probably come and eat me before I could swim out far enough to actually drown.”

Lexa rolled her eyes. “Yeah, because that would definitely happen.”

“You never know.”

“I do know,” Lexa insisted with a pointed look in Clarke's direction. “If your luck was that bad, a jelly fish probably would've been somehow flung out of the ocean in the past hour and stung you while you were sitting here sunbathing.”

Clarke suddenly became aware that she was half naked, and she blushed, barely keeping herself from moving to cover her exposed skin. “Well, then I guess my luck is better than I thought.”

“It is. Another stroke of your luck, by the way, is that I'm offering you a ride home, no charge,” Lexa offered, making a move to stand up. Clarke tried not to sigh, and watched the brunette as she stood up fully and looked down the blonde. “You taking me up on it, or gonna make me drive home alone?”

Clarke bit down on her lower lip. “I have a better idea.”

“What's that?”

Chapter Text

“Okay, when I offered to let you relearn how to drive in my car, I thought you might at least remember how to use a car,” Lexa squealed, gripping the handle of her door as the car came to a screeching halt. Clarke gave her a guilty look. “The pedal on the left is the break, not the accelerator!”

“I know that,” Clarke insisted. They were on a road that was way out of the way for the two of them getting home, but neither of them had an immediate need to do so. “I stopped because... I just... it freaked me out to go fast.”

“Clarke, this road is literally empty. As long as you don't turn the wheel and go off of the road, you'll be fine.”

Swallowed thickly, Clarke pressed her foot on the gas again. When it slowly accelerated, the blonde released a relieved breath. “Okay, I think I sorta remember this feeling.”

“Are you sure you even got your license?”

“Yes,” Clarke insisted. “I mean, I got my permit and then six months later got my license... I didn't drive a whole lot during that six months – just enough to pass. Like, I remembered all the laws and at that time I didn't have an issue with stopping and going... ugh, driving is hard, okay?”

The blonde was seated upright, her hands glued to the steering wheel and her knuckles whitening as they continued to pick up speed. “Okay, city girl,” Lexa interrupted, reaching over and pressing her hands over Clarke's. “Relax your hands, or we are going to die. You're holding a steering wheel, not an AK-47.”

“Hey, a car is basically a giant weapon, Lexa,” Clarke muttered, but she loosened her grip as her heart rate picked up at the feeling of Lexa's hands on hers. Relaxing her foot on the gas pedal, the car began to push forward at a steady speed. “I think I've got it now.”

Lexa moved her hands quickly, as though forgetting they'd been there. “Okay, so turn right up at that street.” Clarke glanced at what she was talking about, and slowed down in order to make the turn. “Not that hard, right?” Clarke shook her head, and Lexa continued to give her directions, pointing out changes in the speed limit.

Suddenly, though, they were in town, and there were other cars around them. “Fuck, Lexa, there are cars everywhere!”

“You have your license, Clarke, get it together,” Lexa exclaimed, sounding amused. “You're going to be fine. Just drive straight and follow the laws that you have to still remember.” Clarke frowned, trying to relax as she listened to Lexa's directions. At this point, she should know the way back to her place, but she was too focused on driving to navigate, and Lexa seemed to understand.

Somehow, though, before Clarke knew it, they were parked in front of Clarke's uncle's house. “Wow, okay, we didn't die.”

Lexa chuckled, and the sound drew a smile onto Clarke's face. “No, we didn't die. I wasn't about to let that happen, you weirdo.” Clarke rolled her eyes, unbuckling her seat belt and grabbing her bag out from the backseat of the car. “You going to be okay?”

“Yeah, I will,” Clarke promised with a small smile. “Thanks again.”

“No problem, I'll see you tomorrow.”

Later that night, Clarke found herself sprawled across her bed, psychoanalyzing her conversation with Lexa from earlier. She still couldn't believe herself for asserting that Lexa would like her party girl side because of body shots. She kept imagining taking body shots off of Lexa, or what shook her even more, Lexa taking body shots off of her. Her eyes squeezing shut, Clarke let out a quiet moan at the thought.

She was absolutely fucked.


“Clarke!” Octavia squealed happily early Saturday afternoon. “Come on in!” The group had decided to get ready for the party at Octavia's house and walk over to Miller's later, so Clarke had come equipped with her makeup bag, wearing short shorts and a dark blue crop top. She knew it would possibly still be slightly chilly later at night, but she also knew that with the mass of bodies that were usually at parties, she would have no trouble keeping warm.

The front door closed noisily behind them as they walked further into the house, and as they reached the stairs, Bellamy popped his head out of the kitchen with a swift, “Hey, Clarke!”

“Hey, Bellamy,” she returned with surprise, not lingering to keep up conversation with him as she followed her friend up two flights of stairs and to her bedroom. Raven was sitting up in the middle of her girlfriend's bed, a mirror in one hand as her other dabbed foundation at her face. The bathroom door was swung open, and Anya and Harper were standing side by side in front of the wide bathroom mirror as they talked loudly about something or another. Lexa was not yet anywhere to be found, but Clarke knew that the brunette would be there in about an hour. The only reason that Clarke was already here without her was because Marcus had offered to give her a ride before heading to the hospital for a long shift.

She was kind of glad that Lexa would get here after her, because it gave her a bit of time to build up courage to battle the anxiety that had begun to grab hold of her stomach when she saw the girl. The fact was that Lexa was beautiful, undeniably sexy, a huge book nerd, and an absolute angel, and Clarke wished that she was brave enough to be outspoken about her sexuality so that she might have some sort of chance.

She wondered if maybe bravery to be outspoken wasn't what she was missing, but something else. Maybe she didn't want to say anything about it because she was afraid that she wasn't good enough for Lexa. Maybe she wouldn't live up to the girls that Lexa had already been with before. Swallowing thickly, Clarke realized that Octavia was speaking to her. “You can either go downstairs and use the bathroom down there, or push Harper and Anya aside. I mean, the party isn't for a few hours, so you could just chill and wait for them to move their asses. I've just been waiting. Raven decided that she would occupy my entire bed and my mirror and my makeup.”

“Hey,” Raven argued, “this foundation isn't yours.”

“Yeah, but the only reason you aren't using my foundation is because it isn't your shade. You already have my blush, eye shadow, mascara, and eyeliner lined up for your use.”

Raven glanced up from the mirror, blowing her girlfriend a quick kiss that caused Octavia to roll her eyes. Turning back to Clarke and leaning against the foot board of her bed, Octavia asked, “How did you and Lexa do on your project for government? Raven and I aced ours last semester, it was pretty easy.”

Clarke shrugged. “We haven't gotten our grades back yet, but we turned it in yesterday. It wasn't too hard.”

A scoff could be heard from the bathroom, and Anya turned her head to look out toward the others. “Are you really talking about school right now?”

“She started it,” Clarke asserted, chuckling when Octavia rolled her eyes again.

“You all are going to be the death of me, you know?”

Finally, about half an hour later, Anya and Harper proclaimed that they were done with their makeup, so Octavia and Clarke took the bathroom. Clarke's makeup routine seemed rather bland in comparison to her friends', but no one mentioned anything of it, so she assumed that they didn't really care. It was when she was tracing eyeliner around her eyes – which looked rather dull in this particular lighting – that someone else could be heard coming up the stairs, and suddenly Lexa's voice joined those of Anya, Harper and Raven in the bedroom.

“Hey guys,” Lexa greeted, “sorry I'm late.”

“Don't worry about it,” Harper insisted, at the same time as Anya said, “You're too late, leave, you're not longer welcome.”

Lexa laughed at the two of them, and Clarke's heart was by now racing. She did her best to focus on keeping her eyeliner as straight as she apparently wasn't, and was relieved with it came out perfectly. Taking a deep breath, she set the little liquid pen down and grabbed her mascara, the last part of her routine. Octavia seemed only to be halfway through her own routine, but Clarke finished up anyway and left an empty space next to the brunette for Lexa to do her makeup as well.

“Hey, Clarke,” Lexa chimed brightly when the blond emerged, and Clarke found herself ease up slightly. It was probably strange how Lexa could both cause her to shake with nervousness, and then magically calm her down as well.

“Hey,” Clarke replied fully, glad that her voice hadn't wavered.

When Octavia was done with her makeup and Lexa was halfway through her own, their getting ready session turned into helping Octavia and Raven pick outfits. Apparently, Clarke, Anya, Harper, and Lexa were much more relaxed about outfits, which probably made no sense, since they were the singles ones who had more to gain by dressing attractively.

The high maintenance two of the group finally picked their outfits, and they all barreled downstairs to pre-game. Octavia took the liberty of producing a bottle of tequila, and they took back the disgusting shots with excitement. When Clarke took her second, it dawned on her that being drunk would definitely not making controlling herself around Lexa any easier. For some reason, though, she couldn't bring herself to care enough.

It felt like barely a blink of an eye later that they were stumbling up to Miller's front door. His house was already pulsing with music, and quite a few people were parking cars and standing around talking before going in. Anya pushed opened the door and they flooded in. Miller was suddenly standing in front of them all, grinning. “Hey guys! Long time no see – we seriously need to hang out more.”

“Dude, that's your fault not ours,” Raven insisted. “You've been really MIA lately. Who you been hanging out with?”

“Not Finn, I'll tell you that much,” Miller promised, before looking to Clarke. “I heard about earlier this week. Sorry about that. If I'd have known how much of a douche Finn could actually be, I would've warned you a long time ago.”

Clarke gave him a smile. “It's fine. I'm over it, and him.”

“Well good to hear!” A smile grew across his face. “There's lots of alcohol available in the kitchen, feel free to mix any drinks as well. If you don't know where anything is, just ask Bryan, he's got it covered.”

Miller disappeared behind them as they called a thanks and headed toward the kitchen. Anya snickered and whispered to them, “You think he's been spending all his time with Bryan?”

“Miller is not gay,” Harper argued. “Wouldn't he have told us all if he was?”

Octavia hummed thoughtfully. “Maybe not. He's apparently been best friends with one of the biggest homophones for the past few years.”

“I don't think he is,” Raven agreed with Harper. “I also think he would've told us.”

Clarke swallowed thickly, wondering if her friends would think badly of her if they found out that she was bisexual and hadn't said anything about it yet. She supposed that that was a stupid thing to be worried about, since she was perfectly entitled to keeping whatever she wanted to herself, but she wondered anyway. Suddenly, Lexa leaned toward Clarke and explained, “This has been a thing we've been arguing over for a while. Truthfully, I try not to make it my business what other people's sexualities are.”

“I guess I could see it going either way,” Clarke replied, “but yeah, I don't usually guess about that stuff.”

In the kitchen, Raven took the liberty of making a drink for her and Octavia, and Lexa turned to face Clarke head on. “What do you want to drink, party girl?”

Clarke smirked. “Whatever you can make that will get me drunk, I guess.”

“Going hard tonight?” Lexa asked lightly, chuckling as she started grabbing a variety of alcohols.

“I could use the break from the real world, I think.”

“Now that, I can provide,” Lexa promised, and Clarke didn't miss the smirk on her lips or the twinkle in dark, green eyes. The blonde flushed red, but casually leaned against the counter as Lexa make two drinks that were most definitely very alcoholic. They were identical, and when they were complete, she passed one to Clarke. One sip told the blonde just how wasted she was going to be by the end of the night.

She remembered dancing with her friends in the mass of sweaty, teenage bodies, and not caring every time someone walked by and accidentally pushed her. She definitely didn't mind when Lexa would catch her as she stumbled, and their skin would come into contact for a few profound seconds.

What she remembered more than that, however, was about two hours into the party, when Miller popped in out of nowhere and invited them back to the kitchen for shots. Most people, at that point, were all out in the living room and the back or front yard, talking or dancing and drinking beer, so the kitchen was much less packed.

Anya didn't let them take any shots until she'd dug some limes and salt out of Miller's kitchen, and she demanded body shots. Octavia and Raven happily agreed, and Lexa turned to Clarke with a mischievous look. “Well, party girl, you ready to show me how much you like body shots?”

Clarke's confidence level was far too high in her drunken state, and she reached around the brunette, nearly brushing her arm as she grabbed one of the limes. “I am,” she insisted, grabbing the lime slice by its corners and holding it up to Lexa's face. “Mind holding this for me?”

Lexa slowly opened her mouth and grabbed the lime peel with her teeth, holding it in place. Her heart beating hard against her chest, as if it might bust out, Clarke placed her hand gently on Lexa's upper arm and leaned toward her neck, dragging her tongue across the curve of it. She heard Lexa's breath hitch, but she pulled away to grab a salt shaker before she could over analyze the sound. She poured the right amount of salt across the now damp skin on the brunette's neck, and finally grabbed one of the tequila shots.

Green eyes were watching her intently as Clarke held the shot glass up next to her lips. Before taking it, she murmured, “Bottoms up,” and then took back the shot. In one swift motion, she grabbed again onto Lexa's arm, leaned down and licked up the salt, and finally pulled back to shakily grab the lime out of Lexa's lips with her own. The slight brush of their lips was like a shock of electricity, and Clarke could barely swallow the lime juice with how intensely her heart was beating.

Lexa licked over her lips and then visibly swallowed.

Her confidence still at unreasonable levels, Clarke tossed the lime peel in the trash and then shifted her weight forward, narrowing the distance in between the two of them and giving the brunette a suggestive look. “You wanna take one off of me, or are you not a fan of body shots? You did tell me that I'd find out tonight, so...”

“You really wanna know?” Lexa murmured, and despite the noise of the room and the music, Clarke could still hear the quiet sound. She felt her head bob up and down in a nod, and then she was suddenly backed against the counter by the brunette, her breath freezing like ice in her throat. Lexa's tongue was suddenly pressed against her neck, and if the contact was prolonged further, she was sure that her blue eyes would have rolled up and into her head. However, just a second later, a lime was being held up in front of her face, and she took it willingly. Salt was poured across her neck. It was all somewhat of a blur, but every physical sensation seemed to be amplified. Her eyes were glued to Lexa's every moment as she lifted a shot glass to her lips and drank it back in a matter of seconds, slamming the glass down onto the counter behind Clarke before again dragging her tongue across Clarke's neck. It felt slower this time, more sensual, and were she not biting on a lime, Clarke knew that she would've had to bite her lip to keep from moaning. And lastly, soft lips brushed hers as Lexa's teeth stole away the lime, sucking out the juice while her gaze stayed level with Clarke's.

It could've taken hours, or a second, but Clarke was so captivated that it felt like forever. The two of them were broken from their trance when Anya was suddenly approaching them. “Alright you two, Harper and I are going to look for O and Rae and make sure they aren't off defiling Miller's house. You coming?”

Clarke hadn't even noticed that Octavia and Raven had disappeared. As Lexa tossed away the lime peel and looked to Anya, nodding, Clarke felt her heart sink slightly. Just like that, the moment of intense bliss was gone. Sighing, the blonde followed Lexa and their friends out of the kitchen. As she stumbled through the chaos, nearly running into Lexa more than once, her eyes searched the people for their missing friends. However, they caught instead onto a person that she most definitely did not want to see, and his eyes had just stuck onto her when she saw him. Swallowing thickly, she took a few faster steps forward and collided with Lexa. “Clarke?” Lexa asked, turning around after stumbling a moment, and noticed how panicked the blonde seemed. “What's wrong?”

“Finn's here,” Clarke replied.

Anya and Harper had disappeared into the crowd by now, but Lexa didn't seem to mind at all that they'd been separated from the group. “You wanna leave?” Clarke was nodding immediately, even though she really didn't. She wanted to stay and party with her friends, but she knew she couldn't have a fun time with Finn popping up everywhere. “Come on then.” Lexa's hand wrapped around hers, keeping them connected as they weaved through people and found the back door exit of the house. They started across the sand, both stumbling slightly due to the alcohol.

They got back to Octavia's house pretty quickly, and Clarke immediately noticed that tequila was still out from earlier. She thought about taking another shot – maybe it would help her forget about Finn completely – but she was very, very drunk by now, so she opted not to. Instead, she let Lexa drag her upstairs and to the guest bedroom. “There's no guarantee that the others will even come home – they might crash at Miller's – so I can take Octavia's bed if you want this one. Unless you don't feel like sleeping yet, then we can... watch a movie or something.”

Lexa seemed tense all of the sudden as they stood in the dimly lit room, which Clarke noted was because one of the lights in the ceiling fan lights was burned out. Clarke let out a light breath. “I don't really want to sleep yet,” she admitted, “I'm not really tired. Really drunk, but not really tired.”

“You're very intelligible for someone who is really drunk,” Lexa stated shakily.

Clarke nodded. “I guess seeing Finn got my adrenaline rush kicking in. Still very drunk, though. I can't feel my toes or most of my legs now that I think about it.”

Lexa chuckled, taking a step forward and looking down at Clarke's legs. “Most of your two legs?”

“I meant like, most of the parts of my likes, like the pieces, like... ugh, never mind,” Clarke slurred, huffing in slight annoyance. Lexa, still smiling, looked over Clarke's face carefully.

“You wanna watch a movie then? Ooh, we could watch um... fuck, what's that one called? The one with the girl and the other thing...”

Clarke laughed, snorting on accident and covering her mouth as she did. “That's descriptive,” she mumbled afterward, when Lexa grinned. “I don't think I wanna watch a movie either.”

The room was moving around her, Clarke was sure, both the wall behind her and in front of her raised up and raising one end of the floor. She felt like gravity was pulling her toward Lexa, and she stumbled a bit again, moving closer. Lexa giggled – a genuine, adorable giggle – and Clarke bit down on her lower lip, trying to keep her overconfident self from doing something stupid. “What do you want to do then, party girl? More body shots?”

That thought got Clarke's mind spinning again, and her teeth released her lip. She realized how close she was to Lexa now, their bodies were nearly touching and their gazes were glued together. Lexa's breathing had stopped – she was holding in her breath as though she were afraid breathing would break the moment.

Finally, Clarke's drunk courage took over her brain, and she closed the remaining distance, her lips pressing against Lexa's in desperation. Lexa seemed only slightly surprised, but she didn't hesitate to kiss back, her hands coming to rest on Clarke's shoulders, and then her hips, and then her lower back. Clarke thanked goodness that she'd chosen to wear a crop top, so that she could feel Lexa's long, soft fingers against her back. Clarke's hands were on either side of Lexa's face, tangling their fingers into dark curls and trying to less the distance between them even more.

When they broke apart for air for a moment, Lexa gasped out the word, “Fuck,” and Clarke forced their lips back together. They stumbled backwards, Clarke tripping over her feet only to land on the soft mattress of the guest bed. She was suddenly lying flat across the whole bed, Lexa straddling her.

Clarke's shirt was gone, her shorts too. Then her bra was flung elsewhere, and when she heard the mumbled question from Lexa, she gave the brunette permission to remove her underwear as well.

Then she was screaming in ecstasy, and the alcohol did nothing but heighten the euphoria that ripped through her body when Lexa made her come. She could remember a mess of touching and licking and sucking and kissing across the skin of her entire body, but it was all a blur of alcohol and passion.

She barely remembered pushing Lexa down into the pillows and stripping her down. She did remember the pleading from the brunette for Clarke to fuck her, something that made Clarke wet even though she'd just come already. She remembered the way Lexa tasted, the way Lexa quivered under her touch, the way she cried out Clarke's name when she came.

She didn't remember falling asleep, but at some point, they both did.

Chapter Text

Blinding light infiltrated Clarke's senses as she woke up, even though her eyes were not yet even open. Her hands jumped up to cover them, and she let out a sigh of relief. Her next thought came in a rush of realization, and her eyes shot open, staring at the darkness of her palm and the slight lines of light leaking through her fingers. She was naked, she could feel her body pressed against the soft sheets. The previous night was a blur, but what she did remember still didn't leave very much up to imagination. Her breathing quickening, Clarke forced her hand away from her face, turning to look at the other side of the bed and finding it empty.

Surprisingly, Lexa's absence calmed her down, and she squeezed her eyes shut again as she exhaled. She and Lexa had slept together. Honestly, she shouldn't have been surprised that her drunken self would initiate something like that, but she was a little bit surprised that Lexa had gone along with it. After all, didn't Lexa think that she was straight? Though, the brunette had said herself that she didn't like to assume people's sexualities, so maybe she hadn't thought about that at all when Clarke had kissed her.

Deciding that she needed to get up and find Lexa, Clarke let out a long breath and sat up abruptly, wincing when a head rush limited her senses for a moment. “Come on, Clarke,” she mumbled to herself. She forced her eyes open and got herself out of the bed, escaping into the guest bathroom to ready herself to leave the room.

Clarke took about ten minutes after getting ready to make sure that she wasn't going to vomit, and then she threw on her clothes from the previous night, grabbed her phone, and finally left the room. She heard noises downstairs, and recalled that Lexa was usually up early making food, so she started down the stairs. When she reached the landing, she became aware of two voices from the kitchen, and she leaned against the wall that divided the stairs from the kitchen to listen.

“No, I had fun,” Lexa was saying.

“Where'd you disappear to then?”

“Clarke saw Finn, so we left early.”

Anya hummed, clearly interested all of the sudden. “You came back here with Clarke, huh?”

“Yes. Is there a problem?”

“Did you sleep together?”

“No.”

“Don't lie to me, Lexa, I opened the guest bedroom door late last night to see if you guys were in there, and I was greeted by your naked ass,” Anya snapped. Clarke's face flushed dark red, and she felt like she should be escaping back upstairs. She wasn't meant to be listening to this. “So you finally slept with her?”

“Don't say it like that, it's not like I was trying to sleep with her.” Lexa sounded suddenly very defensive.

“Fine, okay, you weren't trying to sleep with her. You just shoved her up against a counter and took a body shot off of her and then came back here less than twenty minutes later to fuck her.”

Lexa let out a frustrated noise. “Anya, you don't know what you're talking about, okay? I wouldn't have done anything without Clarke doing something first, got it? I'm not a fucking predator.”

“Jeez, fine,” Anya mumbled. “I just thought she was straight.”

Lexa huffed. “I'm trying not to think about that.” Clarke swallowed thickly, feeling now as though she violated a very personal conversation, even though it was about her, and she took a slow step backwards toward the stairs.

“Well, I guess we don't know that for sure,” Anya suggested positively, and Clarke hard Lexa let out a deep sigh.

“I guess. You wanna go get everyone and tell them I made pancakes?”

Clarke's eyes widened, and she bolted back up the stairs as quietly as she could, reentering the guest bedroom and going to stand next to the bed. She had a matter of seconds before someone was knocking on the door. “Clarke, you awake?” Sure enough, it was Anya.

“Yep,” she called back, sounding slightly panicked.

She heard something like a chuckle from the other side of the door. “Cool. Lexa made pancakes.”

“Okay, I'll be down in a minute!” When she heard the footsteps heading upstairs, Clarke let out a relieved breath. She wanted to wait until other people were downstairs before going down herself – what was she supposed to say to Lexa otherwise? She knew that she needed to have the sexuality conversation with the brunette, or at least the discussion about Clarke having feelings for her. Even though she was sure that sleeping with Lexa had been a mistake, she felt like that was true more so because of the time of it taking place rather than the actual action itself. Clarke really liked Lexa, and Lexa... well, she hadn't told Anya that she thought sleeping with Clarke was the wrong thing.

When the herd of feet could be heard coming back downstairs, Clarke cleared her throat and pushed open the guest bedroom door, joining her friends. “Morning, Clarke,” Harper chimed happily. “Why did you leave early last night?”

“Saw Finn,” Clarke replied.

Raven scoffed. “Ugh, we should've pummeled him.” That got a snicker out of Anya.

“You mean me and Harper and Lexa? Because when she saw Finn, you two were off in a closet somewhere tearing each other's clothes off.”

“Hey, we were drunk, it was a party,” Octavia insisted. “I would've been concerned if we hadn't had sex. Everyone has sex at parties.”

Anya smirked, and Clarke knew that it was not because of Octavia and Raven, but because of Lexa and herself. Clarke did her best to not appear guilty, and they all headed downstairs and into the kitchen. Immediately, Lexa flashed them all a smile and said, “Morning.”

“How the fuck are you so awake?” Raven demanded. Before Lexa could answer, however, she was also demanding, “Gimme some pancakes!”

Lexa laughed, dumping a few pancakes onto a bunch of plates and distributing them. When she gave one to Clarke, the blonde became acutely aware of the fact that green eyes were avoiding hers, and she looked down shyly at her plate, unsure of how she should be handling this situation.

They all ate in a tense silence, as if the others in the room could sense the tension in between Lexa and Clarke. When they were all finishing up, Lexa glanced somewhat nervously around the room and then cleared her throat. “Ah, I think I have some homework I need to get done. I'm gonna head out.”

“Okay,” Octavia replied nonchalantly.

Clarke bit down on her tongue, and then forced her mouth open. “Could you possibly give me a ride home, Lexa?” Green eyes finally landed on her nervous blue ones and softened.

“Yeah. You ready to go now?”

“I just have to grab my makeup bag from Octavia's room,” Clarke murmured, standing up from the bar stool and hurrying upstairs to grab said bag. When she got back downstairs, Lexa had her keys in hand, ready to go.

“See you guys tomorrow,” Lexa called back to their friends, and the two of them received a chorus of goodbyes.

The two of them were silent as they left the house and headed for Lexa's car. When they slid into their respective seats, and Lexa started the car, Clarke knew that she should speak first, especially considering that she'd listened in on Lexa's conversation with Anya. However, it wasn't until five minutes into the drive that she finally gathered the courage to do so. When she finally opened her mouth, she hadn't been prepared, and the words that spilled out from between her lips actually startled her. “I'm bi.”

Lexa looked at her in surprise, before fixing her gaze back on the road and asking a soft, “Oh?”

“Yeah. I've kinda known for a long while, but I never really... told anyone.”

“You... didn't have to tell me that.”

Clarke tried not to roll her eyes. “Yeah well... I heard you talking to Anya earlier.” At first, she hadn't planned on telling Lexa that, but she figured that it was only fair for the brunette to know.

Lexa seemed alarmed all of the sudden. “Wait, what?”

“When she was asking you if we slept together.”

“You normally eavesdrop on people's conversations?” Lexa sounded shaken, and Clarke immediately felt awful.

“No, I didn't... ah, I just came downstairs and heard you guys talking. Honestly.” Lexa said nothing, and Clarke sighed, turning her head to look out the window. She thought back to the previous night, and how amazing it had felt. But now she was sure that she had ruined everything, so she sat still and fiddled with the edge of her makeup bag.

Her thoughts roamed during the entirety of the drive, causing her emotions to bounce back and forth between confused, stressed, disheartened, and even angry. When Lexa stopped the car in front of Clarke's house, the blonde didn't say anything, and it was safe to say that she was a little bitter by now. Yeah, she had been the one to start everything the night before, and yes, she had listened in to a personal conversation between Lexa and Anya. But she didn't see where she'd actually done anything wrong. At least, she wasn't the one avoiding Lexa and the topic altogether.

Clambering out of the car, she checked that she had her phone and her bag and was about to just leave when Lexa's voice suddenly said, “I'll see you tomorrow?” Clarke looked over her shoulder at the brunette and nodded, unable to smile.

“Thanks for the ride.” Her tone was flat, and she ended the short sentence by somewhat slamming the car door shut. When she trudged up to the front door and pushed into the house, Marcus poked his head out from the kitchen.

“Oh good, you're home,” he called. “I think your phone died, I texted you a few hours ago asking when you'd be back.”

Clarke looked down at her phone and clicked the lock button. Sure enough, the screen stayed black. “Oh yeah, I'm sorry. I'll make sure to charge it next time while I'm out. Was there anything you needed from me?”

Marcus smiled softly at her. “No, only to make sure that you're okay. Did you already have something to eat?” Clarke nodded, relaxing. “Okay well, I'm going to make something for dinner tonight, so make sure you don't miss it. It's one of your father's old recipes – did you know that he was actually a really good cook?”

Clarke lit up slightly. Even though she had only a few years’ worth of memories with her father, they were all quite nice, disconnected as they may be. They were all she really had to remember her father by, considering that her mom never really talked about him, so it was nice to have Marcus, who wasn't opposed to mentioning him. “I remember that. I'll definitely be down for dinner. Right now, I think I'm going to go finish up some homework.” Marcus nodded, and Clarke headed upstairs.

As soon as she got into her room, her eyes settled on her school work, sitting neatly on the desk in the corner of the room. It would take her a couple of hours to complete, and since her head still hurt, she decided to do it all later. For now, she grabbed her notebook and sprawled across her bed, opening to a clean page, dating it, and beginning to write.

She started by writing what events had passed last night and this morning, but she expressed it from her character self, not her own person. Her narrator was braver than she, better at sorting through feelings. Her narrator's story could go pages and pages past the current moment, and it did, and by the time Clarke's hand began to ache, tears were rolling down her cheeks.

Finally giving up, Clarke pushed the notebook away from her and let her head fall weakly into her pillow.


“Hey Clarke!” Octavia called, waving the blonde over as she approached the school. “I texted you like five times yesterday, what happened?”

“Oh,” Clarke said in surprise, grabbing her phone and unlocking it. Sure enough, she had many missed text messages from her friend. “My phone was dead yesterday and when I got home I went back to sleep, and then did homework. So I only plugged it in late last night.”

Octavia shrugged. “Did you have fun at the party on Saturday? Sorry about the whole Finn thing...”

“It's fine, I did have a lot of fun,” Clarke promised. “It was nice to just relax for a little while, and let loose, you know?”

Octavia nodded with a wide grin. “Awesome, just wanted to check. Have you seen Lexa yet, by the way? Or Raven?” Clarke shook her head, and the first bell rang, leaving the brunette to sigh in annoyance. “Well, I guess they're all still hungover or something. See you at lunch.”

The beginning of the day was fairly awful, what with Clarke having to see Finn in two classes before finally getting to English. Her teacher gave them a reading day for the book they were meant to have finished by the end of the week, and Clarke happily settled into her seat to read it. As someone who rather enjoyed reading, it didn't take her long to get tens of pages into it, and she barely even registered that the bell rang when it did.

She went to her normal lunch table, finding Octavia, Raven and Anya already seated. “Hey, Clarke!” Raven greeted. “Guess it's down to just us four. Harper's sick, and I think Lexa skipped today.”

Clarke frowned. “Really?”

“I'm surprised she didn't tell you,” Octavia admitted. “Don't guys like, talk to each other a lot lately?”

Anya smirked, and Clarke immediately narrowed her eyes at the girl, who seemed caught off guard by the fact that Clarke seemed to know that she knew about Saturday night. “She didn't tell me.”

Suddenly, Miller was approaching their table with a paper bag in his hand. “You guys mind if I join you?”

“Go right ahead,” Raven insisted, flashing a smile at their friend. “Ditching your normal table?”

“Yeah, Finn's just being kind of an asshole right now, and there's really no one over there on my side right now.”

Anya furrowed her eyebrows. “Bryan?”

“Oh, he's home today. He forgot about some homework he was supposed to do over the weekend, so he decided just to skip and finish it today. So yeah, would rather not be sitting over there right now. Where are Harper and Lexa?”

Clarke zoned out as her friends continued to speak, and it wasn't until she caught a familiar figure approaching the table did she sit up a bit straighter. Lexa had her backpack slung over her shoulder and no lunch in her hands. “Hey, guys.”

“Lexa!” Anya exclaimed. “Where were you all morning?”

“Accidentally slept in,” Lexa replied with a shrug. “It was a long weekend.”

Clarke looked back down at her food, frustrated that it was almost gone, which would leave her with no convenient way to escape the conversation around her. When she finally finished, she found herself excusing herself to the bathroom, grabbing up her trash and tossing it in the nearest trashcan on her way to said bathroom.

Staring herself in the mirror, Clarke let out a long sigh. She couldn't help but beat herself up, because she was sure that she had royally fucked herself over by sleeping with Lexa over the weekend. At the same time, she was pissed at Lexa for ignoring her, and for her getting mad about the blonde accidentally overhearing the conversation between Lexa and Anya.

When the bathroom door opened, Clarke expected it to be some random, but she was surprised to see Lexa entering the room. Green eyes were trained on her, and Clarke tried not to scoff at the fact that now Lexa wanted to talk to her. “You okay?”

“I'm fine,” Clarke answered shortly. “Why wouldn't I be?”

“Uh, because I got here and you right off to the bathroom?”

“So you thought it would be a good idea to follow me here?”

Lexa crossed her arms over her chest. “Look, Clarke, we need to talk.”

“Yes, I know,” Clarke snapped, “which was what I was trying to do yesterday when you decided that it would be best for you to just not say anything.” Lexa opened her mouth to say something, and then snapped her jaw back together, as if realizing that Clarke was right. Sighing, the blonde leaned against the edge of the sink she was standing next to. “Look, Lexa, I felt obligated to tell you that I overheard you talking to Anya. I wasn't trying to be an awful person or some shit like that. I'm sorry for listening.”

Lexa sighed. “It's fine, I just... I guess I just didn't think you heard any of that. And I'm sorry for ignoring you a little bit. I didn't really know what I was supposed to say to you.”

“Well... if you don't want to talk about Saturday night right now, you don't have to. I don't really know what to say either. Just... we don't have to stop talking completely...”

“You're right,” Lexa agreed, letting out a breath. “Okay so... we're good now?” Clarke nodded, and the bell rang just as she did. “Can I walk you to class?”

“Well, we're both going to the same place anyway.”


“What's up with you and Lexa?” The question caught Clarke completely off guard, and she looked up with concern at Octavia. It was Wednesday, and Octavia, Raven, Anya and Clarke were all in the former's bedroom working on math homework. Lexa had taken a day trip down to Tampa to help her sister out with something, and Harper was still sick, so it was just the four of them.

“What?” Clarke asked quickly, not missing Anya's snort of laughter.

“I don't know, you guys just seem really back and forth lately, like you were talking a lot last week and then you guys seemed a bit tense for a few days, and now you're back to regular talking. Did something happen?”

Anya snickered. “Something happened alright.”

Clarke swung her head around to glare at her. “Anya, do you mind?” Clarke turned her head back toward Octavia in time to see her and Raven exchange looks of concern, before looking back to the blonde.

“What happened?” Raven asked carefully.

“Nothing, it's not... um, we're not... talking about it,” Clarke murmured, looking back down at her homework and hoping that conversation would end there.

Anya scoffed. “You guys haven't even talked about it? What the fuck, Clarke?”

Clarke slammed her pencil down on her paper and turned to face Anya fully. “What do you mean 'What the fuck, Clarke?' Lexa doesn't want to talk about it, so we're not talking about it. It was either that, or she was going to keep ignoring me forever.”

“Lexa? Ignore you forever?” Anya demanded. “Yeah, no. That girl could never.”

“Well it was clearly her intention until I started ignoring her.”

“Can someone please tell us what's going on?” Octavia pleaded. “I'm so confused.”

“Nothing, it's fine,” Clarke huffed, but Anya spoke at the same time, “Clarke and Lexa slept together after the party on Saturday.”

Clarke's breath caught in her throat, and then she groaned, biting down on her tongue and pushing up off of the bed. “I have to go.” She grabbed her math binder and took off out of the room and downstairs. It was only when she reached the first floor that she realized that Raven had given her a ride over after school, so she had no way home. Frustrated, she entered the living room and collapsed onto one of the couches there, staring up at the ceiling.

She heard feet pounding down the stairs, and Raven demanding, “Anya, chill the fuck out. You're not Lexa's keeper.”

“I might as well be,” Anya growled, coming into the living room just as Clarke slammed her hands over her eyes, hoping she could somehow block out the world this way. “Come on, Clarke, they know now, so you might as well talk about it.”

Clarke sat up abruptly, glaring daggers. “What the fuck do you want me to say about it? Lexa and I had sex, she doesn't want to talk about it, so we aren't talking about it. That's all there is to say about it.”

“Why did you even have sex with her?” Anya asked.

Raven rolled her eyes. “Really, Anya? Why does anyone have sex with anyone?”

“I'm just asking! I can't remember the last time that Lexa voluntarily slept with a straight girl – that's the only reason I'm asking.”

Clarke crossed her arms tightly over her chest. “Well I can't help you there, because as it seems, I'm not straight. Now are you fucking happy? Because if so, I would really appreciate it if someone could please take me home.”


The doorbell ringing didn't make Clarke think twice, because Marcus was downstairs – he would get it. Clarke just continued to read. She was pages away from being done with Great Expectations , the book that she was reading for English Lit. After Raven drove her home earlier, she had abandoned math homework and picked up where she'd last left off in the book

Raven had been very nice in the car, not mentioning Lexa or Anya, and only insisting that she understood why Clarke hadn't said anything about her sexuality earlier. She eased Clarke's unspoken fear that her friends might be offended that she hadn't said anything about it by promising that everyone went at their own pace, and they would never expect her to tell them anything before she was ready to do so.

The knock on her door was what actually broke Clarke out of her entranced state. She tore her eyes from the book and grabbed her phone to check the time. It was nearing ten at night – who was coming over to see her at this time? “Come in,” she called, carefully closing her book and setting it aside. She sat up straight on her bed as the door opened to reveal Lexa, looking rather guilty.

“Hey,” she greeted softly. “Your uncle let me in.”

Clarke nodded. “How was seeing your sister?”

“Nice,” Lexa replied. “Um, Octavia told me about what happened earlier. I'm really sorry about Anya. She and I are really close and well... I guess she tries to be really protective over me. Which I know seems weird, since we also fight a lot... Anyway, I'm really sorry for her being such a bitch. She twisted the minute details she knew into some wild story she got herself believing. I promise I didn't tell her anything after that conversation she and I had Sunday morning.”

Clarke shrugged. “Okay.”

Sighing, the brunette took another step forward and closed the door behind her. “Seriously, Clarke, I'm sorry. For everything, like ignoring you, and not talking about what happened, everything. I'm an idiot, but I have a legitimate excuse, and when I tell you, you have every right to be pissed at me if you want to.”

Light colored eyebrows furrowed in confusion. “What?”

“Everyone – and by everyone I mean our little group or whatever – all kind of... well, they all kind of suspected that I might be, um, interested in you as ah, more than a friend. But I didn't tell any of them except for Anya that I actually do, and that's why she asked if I finally slept with you... It wasn't like I was trying to sleep with you, or trying to get with you, or anything. I just... I have a sort of rocky history with girls, because I was cheated on in sophomore year and I kind of swore myself away from relationships – which you know – and then well... you're like... a really good person, and you're breathtaking, and then when I told you about my being cheated on and whatnot, you made me promise to not give up on relationships forever, and I basically knew right then that I really, really liked you. And I feel like shit, because I wasn't supposed to act on it, and then we slept together on Saturday and it makes me feel fucking awful, because I can't remember more than the basics of what happened, because I was so fucked... so stupidly drunk.” Lexa stopped for a breath, swallowing thickly and taking in a very shaky breath. “So I thought maybe if we just didn't talk about it, it would kind of just go away, and then when you told me that you're bi and not straight, I had absolutely no idea what to do, because I had already forced myself to not think about it, and then it was all I could think about again, and I... I'm just sorry.”

Clarke pursed her lips for a moment, looking up at Lexa from where she was seated on her bed. She was trying to figure out why Lexa gave her the right to be pissed about what was just said. Had she missed something? Because all she could figure from the speech was that Lexa liked her, actually had feelings for her, and that was why she had been acting so weird about Saturday.

Slowly, Clarke slid off of her bed and stood up, standing in front of Lexa, who looked uncharacteristically nervous. Green eyes were hesitantly searching Clarke's, and the blonde let out a slow breath. She wondered if she should say something, and though she was pretty sure that would be the better way to go, she couldn't get any words from her lips. Instead, she closed the distance between them with a kiss.

Chapter Text

Soft, gentle, sweet. The kiss was immensely better than what Clarke could remember from Saturday, when it tasted like alcohol and was fueled mostly by sexual tension. This time was better, filled with more emotion than the want for sex, and even when Clarke took a step forward and their clothing pressed together, it stayed soft. Lexa was kissing her back eagerly, and her hand rose to push some of Clarke's blonde hair out of her face.

Clarke's nose bumped Lexa's, and then they both pulled apart simultaneously. Their breaths mixed for a moment as they both hovered there, as if afraid to move any further apart. Just when Clarke was about to gather up enough willpower to move backwards, however, Lexa pushed her lips forward and into Clarke's again, resealing them in a firmer kiss. Unable to resist, Clarke's hands fell to Lexa's hips, holding her close as their tongues began fighting for entrance into each other's mouths.

The next time they broke apart, it was for a breath of much needed air, and at that point, Clarke leaned back all the way, looking into Lexa's eyes.

“So I guess you're not pissed?” Lexa asked softly, though any hint of nervousness had left her voice by now, and the way she still leaned in toward Clarke told the blonde that she knew the answer to the question.

“Why would I be pissed?”

“I've been closed off and stuff...”

“Okay, sure, that was annoying. But you don't have any obligation to me, Lexa.”

The brunette looked at her thoughtfully, seemingly trying to figure out what to say in response. Finally, she spoke quietly, “I know.” When that was all she said, Clarke found herself slightly surprised. She was about to say something in return, but Lexa's hand came up again pushed some of Clarke's hair away, leaving her fingers tangled in the slightly messy blonde tendrils. “I should probably go before it gets too late. I didn't get any homework done in Tampa.”

Clarke smiled softly, nodding. “Okay.” Lexa leaned forward and pressed another soft kiss to the girl's waiting lips. It lasted no longer than a few seconds, and then Lexa was retreating completely, taking a step backwards and toward the door. “I'll see you tomorrow?”

“Of course,” Clarke answered, leaning into the side of her bed. She felt slightly dizzy leaving Lexa's embrace, wanting again to be against her. As Lexa opened the bedroom door and prepared to leave, Clarke opened her mouth, choked on her words for a moment and then managed to somehow force them out before Lexa could leave. “Lexa...” Green eyes turned to look at her curiously. “Just for the record, if it wasn't already obvious, I really, really like you, too.”

Lexa's face lighting up made Clarke's whole week, despite all of the drama that had gone down the past few days. “Good to know, then. I'll see you tomorrow, Clarke.” The door shut, and Clarke let out a breath of relief. Turning and seating herself on her bed again, she picked up Great Expectations and gazed at it for a moment. She had only a few more pages left until the end, and now that she felt suddenly more awake and alert, she found no reason to not finish it off early.


“What's with the book?” Octavia asked, surprising Clarke as she appeared next to her. It was before first period the following day, and Clarke had her normal notebooks, as well as Great Expectations, shoved into her backpack. In her hand presently, however, was The Great Gatsby. “Didn't you read that last year for school? Or did they do it differently up in New York?”

Clarke shrugged. “I read this years ago. I'm just rereading it. I finished Great Expectations already.”

Octavia raised an eyebrow. “Man, no wonder you and Lexa get along so well. When Lexa first moved here, she was actually way more quiet and like... way less open. Which was totally expected, since all of us were quieter back then and not really prone to speaking out and whatnot. Anyway, when we used to all hang out, she spent like half of the time we were all trying to talk just with her face buried in a bunch of books. She kind of got less that way when she started dating Haley, and I haven't actually seen her get really into talking about books since then.”

“Haley?” Clarke asked, her eyebrows knitting together slightly. “Was that the girl who cheated on her in sophomore year?”

The brunette nodded. “It was all pretty unfortunate how it happened, honestly. Haley was great, and Lexa loved her so much, and it wasn't like Haley didn't love Lexa. She just... made a stupid mistake that messed Lexa up, and messed her up.”

“What... what happened to Haley? Does she still go here?”

“No,” Octavia replied. “She was a junior that year, so she graduated and left for... San Francisco I think... last year.” Clarke nodded slowly, and Octavia raised her eyebrow at the blonde. “So Lexa went over to your place to talk to you last night, yeah? You two okay? Have you talked to Anya again yet?”

“Haven't talked to Anya, no,” Clarke replied halfheartedly. “But yeah, Lexa and I are okay...”

“Did you – “

“Hey guys,” a tentative voice spoke, and Clarke immediately turned her head to look at Anya. Her blue gaze dropped away the second they fell on the other girl. “Clarke, can I talk to you real fast?”

Clarke swallowed, looking back up and nodding. “Go ahead.”

Octavia coughed awkwardly. “Well, bell's ringing soon so... I'll just head toward first period.” When she was gone, Anya faced Clarke fully and let out a long sigh.

“I have to obviously apologize for yesterday. I was out of line, and I'm sorry. It's not that I don't like you or anything, because you're cool and you seem like a good person, just.... You kind of hung with a sketchy crowd for a while there, and you seemed straight to me for some reason, and I'm sorry for being an asshole and assuming. Even though I bring up Lexa's ex when I intend to piss her off, the last thing I want is for her to get hurt again.”

“I get it, Anya,” Clarke insisted, though she couldn’t quite tell whether Anya’s apology was entirely sincere. It felt like maybe she was doing it just for Lexa’s sake. Still, Clarke couldn’t not forgive her. “It's fine, I forgive you. People have done worst things to me than be a bit of an asshole in order to protect their best friend.”

Anya gave Clarke a sad smile. “I'm starting to think that Raven is right, and we should actually pummel Finn. Maybe then you can stop using that lame excuse of being cheated on.” Clarke laughed lightly, feeling like the teasing was something of a seal for the apology.

The bell rang out to send them to first period, and Clarke gave Anya a light “see you later,” before hurrying off to start her day.

If she was being honest, all she could think of throughout the morning was seeing Lexa at lunch. She'd been hoping that the brunette would’ve found her that morning, but Clarke supposed that she may have been tired from going to and coming back from Tampa the night before, and that she might have just woken up late. That said, after the previous night, Clarke could not contain her excitement to see her.

She was acutely aware of the fact that she and Lexa had done nothing more than admit their feelings for each other, but she felt like that made all the difference. Her biggest worry at the moment, however, was that she would be at a loss for words when her eyes fell on the beautiful brunette today.

Her one track mind got her through her first three class periods, despite Finn having to be in two of them, and English class only barely distracted her from her wild thoughts. Then, finally, it was lunch, and Clarke found her heart pounding before she even reached the cafeteria.

Octavia and Raven were already seated when Clarke took her seat. “Hey,” Raven greeted her. “Anya stayed back in her fourth period with Harper to catch her up on what she missed this week, so they won't be at lunch today.” Clarke nodded quickly, sure that if she tried to speak she might blab something about the nerves twisting up in her stomach.

“You okay?” Octavia queried in concern.

“Fine, why?” Clarke replied quickly, then clamping her teeth together again.

Miller was suddenly taking a seat at their table. “Hey, guys,” he murmured dejectedly. “How are you?”

“Apparently better than you,” Raven deadpanned. “What the hell is wrong? You look like you didn't sleep at all last night – and I don't mean that in the fun way.”

Miller sighed. “It's complicated.”

Clarke found herself turning to gaze over at Finn's table, quite a distance away. He spotted his usual friends sitting with him, Bryan included. Despite trying not to get involved in the “Are Bryan and Miller dating?” theorizing, Clarke couldn't help but suspect that the two friends were at least having some sort of strain when it came to being friends with Finn and each other.

“I don't know,” Miller was saying, “I guess Finn and Bryan talked at the party on Saturday and Bryan's just been... I don't know, a little weird since then. I don't know what Finn said to him.”

Clarke was about to assure Miller that Bryan was smart enough to realize that whatever Finn said didn't matter, but before even half of a word could escape her lips, her mouth slammed shut again due to the approaching presence of the girl she had been waiting to see all day. Swallowing thickly, she allowed a smile to come to her lips as green eyes made contact with hers.

“Hey guys,” Lexa greeted them, moving around the table a bit to come sit next to Clarke. It wasn't like the group had specific spots that they usually sat in, but usually they all just sat in the seat closest to where they were approaching from, and Clarke felt her heart flutter when Lexa made the effort to come sit by her. Though, she supposed it could've meant nothing. “What's up Miller?”

Miller sighed. “Nothing good, I'll tell you that.”

Lexa frowned. “Sorry to hear that...”

There was a tense silence between the group for a moment, and Clarke suddenly became aware of Octavia glancing between her and Lexa curiously. The blonde was about to actually come up with some random topic to bring up, hoping to avoid Octavia bringing up anything that Clarke and Lexa were not ready to discuss openly, but she narrowly missed her opportunity. “Speaking of things that are not good, or that are good, I guess... how did things go this morning, Clarke? When you talked to Anya?”

Green eyes focused on the side of Clarke's face, and the blonde opened her mouth slowly. “Ah, well. Anya and I talked, and she apologized for yesterday, and things are fine, I guess. She even jokingly insulted me, which I'm pretty sure is like, actually a good thing with Anya.”

“Oh yeah, that's Anya,” Raven agreed with a smirk.

“She didn't tell me that she was going to talk to you,” Lexa stated, drawing Clarke's gaze. “I'm glad she apologized, though. Apologizing for her always feels kind of half-assed, because who knows if she's even really sorry.”

Miller was looking at them all questioningly. “Wait, what happened with Anya and Clarke?”

The girls all froze, Lexa looking like she did not want to be the one to betray any information, and Octavia and Raven both looked like kids caught with their hands in the cookie jar. It seemed like Miller was going to give up – probably apologize for getting into their business – but then Clarke heard her own voice saying words she hadn't told it to let out. “She was mad at me because... uh, well...” She scolded herself for speaking without preparing.

Lexa coughed awkwardly. “Um. Clarke and I... Anya was mad that we... um.”

“Jesus Christ,” Raven muttered, rolling her eyes. “Clarke and Lexa slept together, and Anya thought that Clarke was straight and taking advantage of the fact that Lexa likes her.”

“Hey,” Lexa huffed out, but the comment only brought a smile to Clarke's face, which the blonde passed teasingly to the brunette. “Ugh, anyway. Moving on.”

“What, so you two didn't make out after you talked last night?” Octavia teased, grinning widely.

Lexa was quick to recover, scoffing indignantly. “Fuck off, O, you perv. We didn't.” Clarke's cheeks were pink, she knew, but no one commented on them, and lunch commenced as normal. It was nicer, though, after that point, when Clarke felt a billion times less nervous with her close proximity to the brunette.

It was when they were walking to government that Clarke got nervous again, alone with Lexa. However, the brunette was speaking before she could worry for more than a second about anything. “So we get our project grades back today, and since I am like, ninety percent sure that we got an A because we're awesome, I think we should celebrate after school by going to the beach. What do you say?”

“Going to the beach with you? Hm, I don't know...”

Lexa rolled her eyes, and Clarke felt her lips split into a smile. “I'll take that as a yes. So I know you have your whole 'I love walking because I'm from a city where who needs cars' thing going on, but I'm sorry to say that I will be driving you to the beach and then back to your house.”

“Oh will you?”

Lexa hummed. “Yes. I mean, you have bad luck, right? The last thing I need would be for you to get eaten by a land based shark before you made it to the beach.”

“Land based shark?”

“Yeah, there was like, a two episode miniseries from the late nineties about a shark monster thing called Creature.”

Clarke smirked. “I'm really sure why you know that, but I'm pretty sure a two episode miniseries means nothing.”

“Whatever, it could still happen.” They reached the classroom, and Lexa looked pointedly at the blonde. “So you better wait for me outside the school and not start prancing off on the half hour walk to the beach.”

“I don't prance,” Clarke retorted with the quirk of an eyebrow.

“Mm. I'm sure.”

Clarke rolled her eyes, nudging her elbow into Lexa's arm lightly before moving toward her seat. Lexa flashed her one more smile, and the blonde felt slightly giddy. The idea of hanging out along with Lexa, while always somewhat exciting, now held even more to look forward to.

Assuming, of course, that she could successfully make it through the rest of the day.

Sure enough, Clarke and Lexa got their grade back for their project – a bright red A written across the top of their paper – and after some snarky comments from Finn about them doing the project together, the bell finally rang to let out of fifth period.

Two periods later, the day was over, and Clarke was following the familiar path from her last class to the front of the school. Lexa was waiting for her when she got there, and she immediately began following the brunette toward the student parking lot. “So, over halfway through the week. Got any weekend plans?” Lexa asked cheerily.

“I don't know, most of my weekends since the new year have involved hanging out with all of you guys,” Clarke stated, lifting an eyebrow as she looked to the brunette, whose eyes remained trained ahead of them. “Are you guys doing anything?”

“Not that I know of. Raven is taking Octavia out on Friday night, and I think Harper is going to be heading to Orlando to meet up with her older brother, but that's not set in stone I don't think. No clue what Anya is doing – or what I'm doing. I think I'll stay in Friday night and maybe all of us can go see a movie on Saturday or something,” Lexa offered with a shrug, and Clarke nodded.

“That would be cool.”

“Any new movies you'd wanna see?” Lexa finally looked to the blonde, quirking up her eyebrow a bit as they reached her car. Clarke pursed her lips thoughtfully as mimicked Lexa's movements of getting into the car and slipped into the passenger seat.

“I don't really know, honestly. I haven't ever been the biggest movie watcher.”

Lexa lifted both of her eyebrows. “You don't like movies?”

“I enjoy them; I just don't always see the hype. I'm pretty picky, too. I guess I just like reading more, and every time they make one of my favorite books into a movie, shit hits the fan and I hold a grudge against Hollywood for like, a year,” Clarke explained. Lexa snickered, starting her car and slowly pulling out of her parking spot.

“I guess that's a valid excuse. I don't usually go out and see movies very much with the group – mostly because we all just kinda stay in and drink and play games usually. But we do have movie nights every now and then where we binge a few select movies – like some of our favorites. Octavia likes trash gay movies though – which I also somewhat like, but yeah, they're trash.”

Clarke's forehead creased and she tilted her head. “'Trash gay movies?' What does that even mean?”

“Well, the gay and lesbian genre of movies is kind of... lacking, I guess. So like a quarter of the movies are genuinely, really good, another quarter is way to sexual to be counted as a movie, and then the last half are not bad... just like... trash.”

“I still think I'm just not understanding what you mean by trash...”

Lexa laughed, shaking her head. “You'll just have to watch one sometime, then you'll get it. We'll probably have a movie night sometime soon anyway, we'll just let Octavia pick the movies.”

“Looking forward to it,” Clarke said with a light chuckle, though she was looking forward more to the hanging out portion of the night rather than the movies.

They were well on their way to the beach by now, and Clarke felt herself relax slightly into the seat. Silence settled between the two of them, and the blonde didn't mind. It was actually kind of nice to know that they didn't have to be talking during every second of being around each other. That said, when Lexa began to talk, Clarke definitely didn't mind glancing away from the window to look at the brunette. “I'm sorry about earlier, at lunch.”

“What?”

“Like, when Octavia started prying and we told Miller about us, ah, sleeping together. I didn't know if you wanted him to know that or not...”

Clarke wet her lips, nervous all of the sudden, and averted her gaze to the road in front of them. “I don't really care if Miller knows.”

“Really?” The question echoed through the blonde's head for a second – shouldn't she care? It wasn't like there was shame in it, but shouldn't she at least care who knew?

Would she care if Finn knew? If her friends from New York new? If her mom knew? What would they think? Knowing that she was bisexual, but having not really vocalized or confirmed it, had been easy for Clarke. She didn't have an issue with varying sexualities, but the world often did, and she wasn't quite sure if she was ready to face that.

At the same time, she hadn't been upset when Raven blurted to Miller that Clarke and Lexa had slept together. Sure, it was a bit awkward to talk about, but she wasn't ashamed or embarrassed. Probably more than anything, she was worried that other people were going to read into it more than she or Lexa had.

“Yeah,” Clarke said finally, her voice kind of quiet. She wanted to ask Lexa a question now; she wanted to ask what it meant, or how they wanted to proceed. They had established the night before that they both liked each other, which was good and reassuring, but neither of them had opted to say anything else about it to each other since then.

But Clarke couldn't bring herself to ask, so she stayed quiet, and Lexa drove into the beach parking lot.

Stepping out of the car, Lexa began to strip off her outer layer of clothing, and Clarke's mouth went dry. In order to avoid staring, she quickly started doing the same, tossing the clothes into the passenger seat, along with her phone. Then she grabbed a hair tie from her bag and tied her hair up into a loose bun. Now clad only in her bikini, her blue eyes jumped up to glance over the beach area and then to Lexa, who had closed the driver side door and was coming around the front of the car. Swallowing thickly, Clarke closed the passenger door as well and faced the brunette.

“So,” Lexa began, “are you the kind of girl who exclusively sunbathes at the beach, or do you get in the water too?”

Clarke's lips peaked up in a small smile, and she tilted her head. “I can do both.” She hadn't meant to say it in any suggestive sort of way, but for some reason, her mind went there as soon as she said the words, and she smirked a little. Lexa rolled her eyes, and Clarke was sure that her cheeks tinted pink for a moment.

“Well come on then, I want to swim.” Lexa grabbed Clarke's hand impatiently, and the blonde felt her heart skip three beats at the feeling.

She felt like she was reacting too majorly to the brunette right now, but then she remembered that the last time – and first time – that she'd held Lexa's hand and seen her with minimal clothing had been when she was intoxicated. And as nonsensical as it was, now that she wasn't, the reactions were somehow more intense, and Clarke wished that she could push Lexa down into the sand and press their lips and bodies together.

Biting hard on the inside of her lower lip to keep her desires at bay, she let Lexa drag her down toward the water. Their hands disconnected when they began to wade into it, and when they were waist deep, Lexa turned to face her again. “Not too cold for you with the breeze?”

“Nope.”

“I guess that makes sense. Someone so hot probably doesn't get cold very easily.”

Clarke's jaw dropped as she let out an incredulous laugh, her cheeks flushing red. To cover up her embarrassment, she splashed water in the brunette's directions. “Oh my god, you did not just say that.”

Lexa dodged the splash, grinning villainously. “I did, actually.”

“Sorry to disappoint, but pickup lines have never really worked on me.”

“No?” Clarke shook her head firmly, and Lexa waded about a foot closer to the blonde. “You mean Finn didn't throw a bunch of dumb pickup lines at you before you started dating? That seems like something he would do.”

Clarke rolled her eyes. “I don't remember.”

“See, that is where Finn and I differ. Girls remember it when I hit on them,” Lexa claimed confidently. Clarke was trying as hard as she possibly could to keep herself from reddening – though how exactly to stop that, she wasn't sure.

“But do they remember your dumb pickup lines?”

Lexa's lips formed a pout, and Clarke felt her heartrate pick up. “Aw, come on. My pickup line was actually good. You totally didn't see it coming, did you?”

“No...”

“See, that's how you know it's good. I didn't say something stupid like 'Are you from Tennessee?' or 'Did it hurt when you fell from heaven?' or 'Did you just sit in sugar?'”

Clarke raised an eyebrow. “I actually haven't heard that last one.”

Lexa smirked. “Well then did you? Because you have a sweet ass.”

“Oh my – I'm done with you,” Clarke teased, splashing the brunette and moving backwards through the water a bit. Her face was definitely red by now, but she didn't care. “I have lost all respect for you.”

“All of it?” Lexa asked, still grinning as she pressed through the water, coming closer to the blonde, who stood her ground.

“Yep, every little bit.”

When Lexa stopped just inches away from Clarke, she became intensely aware of how close their bare skin was to touching. She barely resisted closing that distance, keeping her eyes level with focused, green ones. “So my dumb pickup lines actually didn't impress you then?”

Clarke bit down on her lower lip without thinking, her eyes jumping down to look at Lexa's lips before rising back to her eyes. “You could stand to try a little harder.”

“You want me to try harder? As forward as I am?”

“You do have a couple of days to make up for.”

Lexa dragged her hands through the salty water, letting them land lightly against Clarke's hips. Green eyes carefully search through those the color of the sky, and then the brunette hummed softly. “I guess I'll ditch the pickup lines then.” Suddenly, their lips were pressed together, and Clarke immediately leaned into it, their bare midsections pressing together. Clarke's hands hung uselessly for a moment, before making their way to Lexa's hips as the brunette's tongue slid between her lips. She let Lexa control the kiss, enjoying the intoxicating feeling of being this close to the other girl. Her skin burned under Lexa's gentle fingers, and her senses were overwhelmed with her smell, her touch, her taste.

Their lips separated for half a second in order for them to get air, and then Clarke took charge, stepping forward and causing the brunette to stumble back slightly through the water. Clarke's tongue led the kiss, and Lexa hummed in contentment as she did. Short fingernails dug into soft skin. Clarke let herself become absorbed into the brunette – everything about her was beautiful, awe striking.

Clarke was sure that good kisses were like good books – the beginning was intriguing enough to make you want to know more, by the middle you're breathless and completely enveloped, but you never want it to end.... And then at the end, when you pull away, you're left struck by the magic, sad that it’s over, but hopeful that you'll get something as amazing again at some point.

When Clarke pulled her lips away from Lexa's slowly, she knew that kissing Lexa wasn't like getting a good kiss – it was like getting a fucking amazing kiss with some addictive additive that left her absolutely intoxicated by just... Lexa. It was mind-blowing, and even though it was not her first kiss with Lexa, it was the first one during which she realized this incredible truth.

“You sure are thinking pretty hard there,” Lexa was saying suddenly, breaking Clarke out of her reverie.

Clarke blushed a little, leaning a bit into the brunette. “Sorry, you're… kind of a distraction. I can't really think straight around you.”

“You're lucky that I'm mature enough to not make a comment about the irony in that statement.” Lexa leaned back forward for a split second, pressing a peck to Clarke's lips, before smiling and speaking again. “Come on, let's go sunbathe. I'm getting cold.”

As Lexa pulled away and began to head toward the shore, Clarke quirked up an eyebrow. “Wait, but I thought hot people didn't get cold very easily?”

“Oh shut up!” Lexa called back, and Clarke felt a wide grin cross her face. Whatever was going on between the two of them, she quite liked it.

Chapter Text

“So, you and Lexa, huh?” The question surprised Clarke, causing her eyes to widen as she faced the guy who had just spoken to her. It was Miller, and Clarke was a little more than surprised to see him around without any of his friends. Usually he was at least with Bryan. He looked uncharacteristically tired, and Clarke was immediately concerned, but then her thoughts refocused on the question she’d been asked.

It was Friday morning, and Clarke was actually quite frustrated that it wasn’t Saturday yet. Lexa had decided that she would just stay in for Friday night, but that basically meant that Clarke was also staying in, and she wanted very badly to hang out with Lexa. She knew that she could just ask the brunette if she wanted to hang out, just the two of them, but she was apparently not confident enough to get herself to do so. “What about me and Lexa?”

“You two are dating or something? I mean, I guess I just assumed after last weekend.”

Clarke shook her head. “I don’t… I don’t think we’re dating. I don’t know really.” Exhaling slowly, the blonde swallowed thickly. “I mean, we aren’t not dating, I guess. I’m honestly not quite sure what specifically is going on with that.”

Miller nodded. “Yeah, trust me, I get that.”

“You been okay? I haven’t talked to you much since I stopped hanging out with Finn, and well… you seem kind of distanced from him, Bryan, and… everyone lately.”

The guy took in a shaky breath. “Yeah, it’s complicated, but I’m fine.”

“Did something happen? Did you want to, ah, talk about it?”

He smiled softly. “Thanks, but I’d rather not.”

“Sure…”

“Hey there,” a voice greeted suddenly, and Clarke felt familiar, soft skin brush against her arm as she turned to immediately become absorbed in a sea of green, her breath catching audibly in her throat.

“Hey,” she choked out a second later.

Lexa didn’t comment on her obvious, taken aback reaction, but Miller flashed the blonde an amused look that the blonde returned with a glare. “Hey, Miller. How are you?”

“Pretty good, and yourself?”

“Same,” Lexa returned with a wide smile. The bell went off suddenly, and Miller quickly excused himself, giving them each a smile before disappearing. The brunette turned to Clarke before she could also leave, and tilted her head. “Have you seen O or Rae this morning?”

“No, why?”

“No reason, just wondering.”

They exchanged quick goodbyes, and as Clarke started off to her first period, she felt her heartrate beginning to slow again. How was she so immediately thrown off by Lexa? It was like when the brunette showed up, it took a good few minutes for Clarke to even think about anything else. Face red, Clarke entered her first period and slid into her desk. She had a feeling it was going to be a long day.

When she finally got to lunch later, Clarke was ready for the day to be over. She walked up to the table as Raven was leaning over to Octavia, whispering something in her ear that made the other brunette blush. “Raven!” Octavia exclaimed.

“Hey guys,” Clarke greeted, raising her eyebrows. “What’s up?”

“Nothing!” Octavia squeaked, causing Raven to smirk. “How are you?”

“Fine,” Clarke replied slowly. She could pretty easily assume what kind of thing that Raven had said, which made sense considering that the two of them had a date that night. “You?”

“We’re good,” Raven replied, grinning. “I think Octavia is a little bit excited for our date tonight.”

“Shut up,” Octavia grumbled, tugging her hand away when Raven tried to grab it.

Lexa was suddenly dropping her things next to the table, huffing in annoyance. “You guys are gross.”

“Why? Because we’re adorable and in love, and you’re single and lame?” Raven asked, smiling teasingly at Lexa. Clarke’s gaze was glued to the brunette as she sat down, but green eyes were looking at Raven still.

“Just because of the former, not the latter.”

Octavia rolled her eyes. “Anyway…”

Conversation quickly drifted away from anything having to do with Octavia and Raven, and school and other things. Clarke found herself absorbed in listening to her friends talk, but not actually absorbing anything that they were saying. Mostly, she was becoming entranced by Lexa’s voice, her gaze lingering for long moments on the girl before she would realize and glance away for a moment. She was sure that her friends noticed, especially Anya when she and Harper got to the table, but she couldn’t really bring herself to care.

On the walk to fifth period, Lexa looked to Clarke with concern. “You okay? You were really quiet at lunch.”

“Yeah, I’m okay,” Clarke insisted quickly. She was, wasn’t she? Just tired from the week, and everything that had happened, and tired of trying to figure out how to deal with her feelings toward Lexa. It was hard, because she wanted to be open with them to the brunette, and tell her that she wished she knew what was going on between the two of them. However, she didn’t want to mess up whatever equilibrium point they had reached, so she said nothing.

“Clarke?” Blinking, the blonde realized that she had zoned out, and Lexa’s eyebrows were furrowed. “You sure you’re okay?”

“Just tired,” Clarke promised, smiling softly. They reached fifth period, and split off toward opposite ends of the room.

Thankfully, Finn said nothing to her during that class.

By the time that Clarke had walked home, she was exhausted. All thoughts of her plans for that night, or lack thereof, were wiped from her mind, and she fell asleep on her bed within minutes, face buried in her pillow.

She only woke up three hours later to the sound of her phone ringing with a call from her mother. If it had been anyone else, she would have hung up, possibly chucked her phone against a wall, and gone back to sleep. Instead, her thumb lazily pressed the answer button and then put the call on speaker.

“Hey, mom,” she murmured tired.

“Hey, sweetie! How was your day?” Abby sounded like she’d had the day off, or maybe had worked a night shift and had just woken up and gotten ready an hour ago.

“Long,” Clarke replied lazily. “I was taking a nap.”

“You know you won’t be able to sleep later if you take a nap now, Clarke.”

“Yeah, well, I’m tired. And I don’t have any plans tonight, I could just stay up all night to balance out the nap.”

Abby was quiet for a moment, and Clarke knew that she was analyzing the blonde’s words and tone of voice. “Are you okay? You sound a little off.”

“Just tired,” Clarke promised, as she had to Lexa earlier. “It’s been a rough week.”

“Okay… I’ll let you get back to your nap then. Call me tomorrow or Sunday, okay?”

“Sure, love you, mom.”

“Love you too, sweetie.”

The call ended, and Clarke pushed her phone away, bundling up in her soft blankets and willing herself to fall back asleep. However, twenty minutes later, she was still awake, alternating between forcing her eyes closed and just giving up and staring into space. Finally accepting that she could not fall back asleep, she clambered out of her bed and stumbled over to her bathroom. She put her hair up in a ponytail, fixed her makeup a little, and stared at herself in the mirror, considering her options. She could stay in, wipe off her makeup completely and just watch movies. She could also call her friends in New York, who hadn’t really tried to speak to her in a while. In fact, she wasn’t sure that she had even texted any of them since before Christmas. She kind of wanted to know what they might think about her being bi, but thinking about that caused stress to build up in her chest, and she opted not to.

Her last option would be to make plans – to go out and do something. But with whom would she?

Immediately, she remembered that Lexa lived very close to Marcus’ place. Upon making the realization, she vetoed the idea of going over there. Just a few second later, though, the veto was apparently overruled, and she resolved herself to go over to Lexa’s house.

In retrospect, she probably should have at least texted Lexa to make sure that she was home before she walked the whole way to the house. At the very least, she should have noticed the absence of Lexa’s car in the spot which she could slightly recall the car being the first time she came over. Instead, she was apparently so out of it that she knocked on the front door, and when it swung open, an older woman who was clearly Lexa’s mother was standing there.

“Hi, can I help you?” the woman asked, tilting her head.

Clarke blinked. “Oh, I’m looking for Lexa.”

“And you are?”

“Clarke Griffin,” she replied quickly. “If she’s not here, I’ll go. I probably should’ve texted before I just came over.”

“Oh, it’s no problem,” the woman was saying quickly, shaking her head. “I just asked Lexa to drive down to the store for me, but she’ll be back soon. You’re welcome to come in. Clarke, you said your name was?”

“Yeah.”

“It’s nice to meet you, are you new? I don’t quite remember Lexa having a friend named Clarke.”

Clarke nodded. “Yeah, I moved here at the beginning of the year, but I didn’t really meet Lexa for real until around New Year’s.”

The woman smiled and nodded softly. “Well, any friend of Lexa’s is welcome here. I’m Stephanie Woods, her mother obviously. My husband is out right now, so it’s just you and me here for now. Have you been here before?” Clarke nodded again. “Okay good, then you can let yourself up to Lexa’s room if you’d like. She’ll be home pretty soon.”

“Thank you, Mrs. Woods.”

“No problem, dear.”

Clarke gave the woman a smile and then started toward the stairs that she remembered from the last time she’d been here. The house became quiet once Stephanie stopped talking, and the blonde swallowed thickly. She felt out of place when she gently swung Lexa’s door open, walking into the dark room uninvited. Hitting the light switch tentatively, she glanced around the bedroom. It looked pretty much identical to the way it did a week ago, and that was no surprise.

Though her first instinct was to seat herself on the bed and wait there, Clarke instead made her way to the desk, pulling out the chair and sitting down. Her messenger bag fell lightly onto the floor next to her, and she crossed her legs, trying to make herself smaller as though that would somehow lessen her presence in the room, and took her phone out of her pocket. She would have to find something to do to distract her while she waited for Lexa to return.

The sound of a door opening downstairs, followed by what must’ve been keys landing in a key bowl, caused Clarke to jump slightly. She heard Lexa call out to her mom, but the lack of a response told Clarke that Stephanie must be in a different part of the house. Subsequently, Lexa had no idea that Clarke was here, and the blonde was just about to get up and exit the room to intercept Lexa, when the brunette was already at the doorway.

Green eyes widened in shock for a moment, but Lexa recovered quickly. “Clarke. Hey?”

“Hey, sorry, your mom let me in,” Clarke apologized quickly. “I didn’t know if I should come in here without you here, but your mom said I could just come up here, and I… yeah.”

“It’s fine,” Lexa insisted. “Everything okay?”

“Yeah, I was just… bored,” Clarke said, before sighing in exasperation. “I don’t know, I’ve been kind of out of it all day, and you’re like… kind of the only person who can get me to focus really well lately.”

Lexa tilted her head, walking into her room and closing the door behind her. She sat down on the end of her bed, which had no footboard, and looked to the blonde. “You wanna talk about anything?”

“I… don’t know.”

“Is it about Finn? Did he do something?”

Clarke shook her head, her gaze dropping to her hands, which had released her phone and were now gently messing with her fingers. “No, he’s actually not done anything, like, bad lately. I don’t know, I’m not really upset about anything, I just have some stuff on my mind.”

“Well, you don’t have to talk about it if you don’t want to,” Lexa insisted, stretching her legs out in front of her. Clarke watched her as she grabbed a hair tie off of her wrist and tied her loose hair up into a ponytail. “We can watch a movie or something? Oh – wait, I forgot you don’t watch movies.”

“I do to watch movies,” Clarke insisted, quirking up an eyebrow.

“Okay, so you wanna watch one? I mean, you’ll have to be okay with sitting on my bed next to me and watching it on my laptop – I am, unfortunately, not as rich as our dear friend Octavia,” Lexa joked.

Clarke laughed. “Yeah, I can’t say I have a problem with that proposition.”

“Awesome, got any recommendations?”

“You’re the movie expert here.”

“I don’t know that I would go as far as to say that I’m an expert.”

Clarke rolled her eyes. “You seemed to know all your gay and lesbian movies fairly well.”

“Well that’s because there are like five good ones,” Lexa insisted with a scoff, standing and moving over to her desk to grab her laptop. Clarke held her breath at the sudden close proximity, and then Lexa was back on her bed, sitting down and leaning against the headboard. Lexa looked up at the blonde. “You coming, or are you planning on watching from over there?”

Clarke scrambled up from the seat, crossing the room and sitting down next to Lexa, who had opened Netflix.

“Okay, let’s see what I’ve watched that’s good.”

Clarke saw the list of movies and shows that Lexa had watched recently, and raised her eyebrows. “Uh, I have never heard of any of these. All Cheerleaders Die?”

Lexa snickered. “Yeah, that’s a fun one. Trash, if you will.”

“Okay… Geography Club?”

“More gay trash.”

“You seem to have only one type of movie that you like to watch,” Clarke said with amusement, still looking at the list. Some of them she actually did recognize, and they weren’t part of the LGBT category that Lexa seemed to frequent. “I actually know some of these. But some of the other ones have really weird names. Blue Is the Warmest Color?”

Lexa coughed awkwardly, scrolling down. “Yeah no, we’re not watching that.”

“What is it?”

“It’s… um… a French film about a lesbian,” Lexa replied vaguely, her face reddening slightly as she looked over the rest of her list. She was actively avoiding looking away from her screen, and Clarke looked at her face thoughtfully.

“Oh yeah? That’s all?”

“Mm.”

“Then why are you blushing?”

Lexa narrowed her eyes, finally meeting Clarke’s gaze. “I’m not.”

“Uh yeah, you are. What’s the movie about?”

“It’s just, like, not something you should watch with, like, anyone. A quarter of the movie is basically porn.”

Clarke swallowed thickly. “Oh.”

“It’s a really good film, though,” Lexa said quickly, fixing her gaze back on the screen. “As long as you don’t mind reading subtitles.” Clarke nodded slowly, still watching Lexa’s face. “Ugh, I don’t really want to watch any of these again.”

“We could find something that you haven’t seen on Netflix.”

“Good luck finding something good that I haven’t seen,” Lexa said, quirking up an eyebrow and turning the computer a bit to allow Clarke to use it. It was still seated on the brunette’s lap, though, so Clarke had to lean forward a bit in order to drop her hand on the touchpad. Her skin brushing Lexa’s caused her to swallow thickly, and she thought she felt Lexa tense.

After a minute or so of scrolling through movies that looked dumb, or that Lexa had already seen, Clarke gave up. “Okay, yeah, that’s not happening. No movie for us, I guess, unless you have DVDs.”

“I don’t,” Lexa replied apologetically. “Well, I guess my awesome plan failed.”

Clarke smiled. “Well, on the bright side, you at least got my out of my head for the first time all day.”

“I suppose that is something to be happy about,” Lexa agreed with a chuckle. “Oh, you wanna hear what I got while I was in Tampa on Wednesday?”

“Sure,” Clarke agreed, but Lexa was already hopping off the bed, her laptop nearly falling off of the bed. Clarke barely saved it, pulling it to the middle of the bed as Lexa went over to her record player. She was actually adorable, Clarke realized, and the blonde had to bite her lip to keep from smiling too widely at the brunette’s excitement.

“So, I was kind of stuck between a couple of different records, and I only wanted to buy one, so I ended up just going with this,” Lexa said. “I’ll probably never get any more ‘basic’ than owning this, but I don’t even care.” Clarke watched her back as she took a vinyl record out of a case and placed it on the turntable of the machine. A second later, the first song began to play, and Clarke found herself smiling.

“Taylor Swift, huh?”

“Hey, you can’t not like Taylor, okay?” Lexa insisted, flashing Clarke a teasing glare. “And 1989 is her best album by far.”

“I’m not judging,” Clarke insisted with a grin. “I like her music. I guess I’m just slightly surprised that this is the one you chose to buy. Wouldn’t you want to collect older ones first? This one isn’t going anywhere.”

Lexa shrugged. “I don’t care, I just wanted it.”

“Well, I guess that is a good reason to pick it. Does it have New Romantics on it?”

Lexa frowned, grabbing the album case and flipping it over. “Oh, no, it doesn’t. That’s on the deluxe album, I guess. This one has Clean on it, though, and I love that song.” She turned back to the record player and stopped it, taking off the record and placing the second one from the album case on it instead. She moved the arm through most of the record, and dropped it at the beginning of Clean.

“I have to admit, it’s pretty cool that you have a record player,” Clarke gave in with a chuckle.

“My parents think it’s kind of dumb,” Lexa said, coming back over to the bed and closing her laptop, moving it over to her desk before sitting down on the bed again. “I’m trying to convince them otherwise before my birthday, so that they’ll get me some records instead of clothes. My mother literally always buys me clothes for my birthday – which is fine, except I have too many clothes by now.”

“When is your birthday?” Clarke wondered.

“March 12th, I think it’s the Saturday at the end of spring break this year. I can’t wait to be eighteen. I’m so done with not being an adult.”

Clarke laughed lightly. “Finally I’ve got something on you. I turned eighteen in September.”

“What do you mean you finally have something on me?” Lexa furrowed her eyebrows in confusion, crossing her legs and propping her elbow up on her knee. Her chin was resting on her palm, and Clarke was pretty sure it was one of the more adorable things she’d ever seen.

“I don’t know, you’re just… kind of intimidating, I guess. You’ve done lots more things than I have.”

“If it makes you feel better, you have another thing on me. You’ve slept with guys – and I haven’t.”

Clarke let out a surprised laugh. “That doesn’t make me feel better actually. I’d rather not think about the last time I had sex with a guy, seeing as it was like, twelve hours before I found Finn cheating on me.”

“Gross. You know, maybe Raven’s right, and we should wreck him.”

“Raven is ridiculous, that’s what Raven is,” Clarke argued with a shake of her head. “As much as I would like to sometimes resort to violence, I don’t condone it.”

“Not even a little bit?”

“Nope.”

Lexa chuckled. “Alright, fine, no violence. I guess we can just pretend that he doesn’t exist then – that’s what we all kind of used to do. Mentioning Finn around Raven has always been sort of… um, not something you want to do.”

“Yeah, I’ve gathered. Octavia really slept with him?”

“Yes, it was a rough time for our friend group. Octavia was blind to Raven’s love for her, and felt like exploring sex and whatnot, and one morning just turns up like ‘Hey, I slept with Finn Collins last night.’ Needless to say, Raven freaked out. The rest of us were kind of just… trying to not end up as collateral damage. Funnily enough, though, Octavia and Raven were dating less than a month later. I guess the one positive about it all was that it got Raven to open up about her feelings,” Lexa said with a shrug. “I don’t know; he’s just always seemed kind of like… a dick when I’ve spoken to him.”

Clarke shrugged. “He was always really sweet to me. He let me talk about all of my problems, which was nice. He gave me a lot of attention in a time where I felt really alone, and he told me about himself and his childhood – which I’m pretty sure not many people have heard about it. I could’ve seen myself falling in love with him for sure. It’s just hard to see him as the same person now that I know what he was like before I met him, and what he’s like now, you know?”

“Yeah, I can see how that would be a game changer…”

“Anyway, I don’t want this to get depressing. Let’s talk about something else.”

Lexa hummed thoughtfully. “Well. Let’s see. You don’t watch movies, so we can’t talk about those. You might judge me for my music taste, so can’t talk about that…”

“Oh shut up, you’re such a dork,” Clarke said with a laugh, reaching out to lightly shove Lexa. The brunette grinned widely, and for a moment, the air between them was silent. Blue eyes scanned over Lexa’s beautiful face, and green eyes didn’t move from those blue pools. Clarke was just about to lean forward, shed all boundaries, and kiss Lexa, but her phone vibrated from where it was sitting next to her.

Quickly averting her gaze, she looked down at the phone. It was a text from Marcus, asking whether or not she was home. Sighing, she looked up to Lexa, who was avoiding eye contact now. “Sorry, it’s my uncle. Give me a second.” She quickly sent him a text that she was at a friend’s house, and he offered her the okay to sleep over if she wanted to. That almost made her smile, and she sent him a thank you before tossing the device aside. Looking back up, she realized that Lexa was watching her face now. “What?”

“Sorry,” Lexa apologized, pursing her lips but not looking away. “What did your uncle want?”

“I didn’t tell him I left, and I don’t think he was home when I got home, so he just wanted to check on where I was,” she replied with a shrug. “He’s pretty chill about me hanging out with people or whatever, I think he just doesn’t want anything to happen to me because he wasn’t checking up. Which makes sense. He’s responsible for me while I’m living here, after all.”

Lexa nodded. “Makes sense.” It was quiet for a moment. “You think he’d let you go to Tampa for a weekend?” Clarke raised an eyebrow.

“Probably. Why, we taking a trip?”

“Do you wanna go next weekend?” Lexa asked, brightening a little. “I’ll pay for the hotel, so it’ll be basically free for you.”

“Sure,” Clarke agreed. “It’ll be fun.”

“Oh yes,” Lexa assured her with a grin. “Lots of fun. You have a fake ID, right?”

Clarke quirked up an eyebrow. “Yes…”

“Great, then yes, it’ll be a blast.”

“You better not take me out to a club and then abandon me to go sleep with some random.”

Lexa laughed, and Clarke was glad that the brunette recognized the joke in her words rather than take offense. “I won’t. As it seems, I’m pretty emotionally unavailable to most people right now.”

“Yeah?” Clarke asked, sucking her lower lip into her mouth a little, and biting down on the edge of it.

“Mm.” Lexa gave her a soft smile. “So. No movie. What else can we do?”

While Clarke was thinking, humming softly, she realized that the music had stopped, and her gaze focused on the stilled record player. “Does it stop by itself?” Lexa turned to look behind her.

“Yeah, it’s fancy like that,” Lexa replied with a chuckle, looking back to Clarke. “It’s nice, means I can play music while I’m going to sleep, and I don’t have to worry about it ruining the record. Just have to make sure and dust it all off the next morning.”

Clarke nodded, her eyes maintaining steady contact with Lexa now. She wanted to so badly to lean in to kiss the brunette; it was as if she could feel something tugging her closer. Like the first time, the weekend before, except without alcohol playing as her excuse. She wanted to flatten Lexa across her bed and feel her underneath her. She wanted to remember more than just bits and pieces of it.

The desire began to burn so furiously inside of her that there was no physical way to resist anymore, and she practically pounced forward. Lexa must have felt the pull, too, though, because she seemed to meet Clarke halfway as well, and their lips were desperately moving against each other. Soon, tongues took the place of lips in the battle, and Clarke tried as best as she could to get their positions to reverse, with Lexa closest to the head of the bed, but the brunette bested her. She felt herself pressed into Lexa’s soft pillows, a thigh sliding in between hers and putting a bit of pressure against her burning desire.

“Fuck,” she heard herself gasp out as hands slid underneath her shirt, gently feeling the soft skin there. Lexa’s hands moved slowly, but her lips were fast, and her tongue took dominance of Clarke’s mouth. The blonde gave up the battle, allowing the perfect girl to top her. She could hardly say that she was disappointed.

Lexa’s lips tore away from Clarke’s, moving instead to the girl’s neck and beginning to suck on the skin there. Clarke’s mind flashed back to the previous weekend, to body shots and drunken sex, and it only served to turn her on more. Moaning, her body arching upwards against Lexa’s. Despite the encouragement, Lexa slowed down at that point, moving her lips and tongue across Clarke’s neck and then down to her collarbone, just above her shirt.

“Lexa,” Clarke murmured pleadingly.

“Mm?” Lexa hummed in response, vibrating the skin where her mouth was.

“I want you to touch me,” the blonde whimpered.

“Be patient,” Lexa commanded gently, and Clarke let out a small puff of protest.

Trying not to sound like she was whining, Clarke insisted, “I’ve been patient.” Lexa ignored the comment, her hands still teasing Clarke’s midsection before gripping the edge of her shirt and tugging on it in question. Clarke just about yanked the material off of herself, and she heard Lexa laugh out a low chuckle. Hot kisses were pressed around the edges of Clarke’s bra, on the tops of her breasts and just below them. “Lexa, please take off my bra,” Clarke groaned.

Lexa chuckled again, and her hands slid around to Clarke’s back, unclasping the undergarment and letting it fall away. Clarke thought she hard Lexa sigh contently when Clarke’s breasts were exposed, and for a moment, Clarke actually realized that her entire chest was on display, and her face flushed. She looked up at Lexa, who was sitting up now, her thigh no longer between Clarke’s. Instead, she was now straddling the blonde.

“What?” Clarke murmured in embarrassment.

Lexa smiled softly. “Nothing,” she promised, before leaning down again and pressing kisses across Clarke’s bare torso. Over her flat midriff, the slight dip between her diaphragm and her ribs, along the underside of her boobs. Finally, she got to where Clarke wanted her, and the blond let out a needy moan.

The buildup began again, the desire between Clarke’s legs intensifying as gentle fingers caressed her waist and her hips, and lips worshipped her breasts. Everything felt more real, more intense, now. The first time, with alcohol being their guide and their catalyst, had felt good and heightened by their intoxication, but somehow, this was still better.

Clarke knew that for sure when two thumbs slid under the top of her shorts, pulling them down slowly. It was Clarke’s wiggling that sped up the process, and the blonde was almost positive that she heard Lexa chuckle yet again at her eagerness. She couldn’t bring herself to care or be self-conscious at this point, however, so she just quickly pushed off her underwear before Lexa could return to her straddling position.

Lexa took it for what it was, and she slid her thigh back in between Clarke’s, pressing up intentionally on her center as her lips met Clarke’s again hotly. The moan that escaped Clarke’s throat wasn’t even noticed through the clash of their mouths.

“Fuck,” Clarke gasped desperately when Lexa’s lips finally released hers, swollen and pink. Lips were again trailing down her body, but faster this time, and with a very pointed destination. Clarke looked down just as Lexa’s face was settling in between her legs, but as soon as her lips made contact with Clarke’s lower ones, she could no longer pay attention with her eyes. They squeezed shut, and her hands flung to the sides of her body to grab onto the blankets as Lexa explored her sensitive area.

Slowly, but surely, Clarke felt herself being driven up and up, and finally, after an indeterminable amount of time, she cried out in finality and fell into the now wet sheets, spent. Her chest was rising and falling incredibly quickly, and her mind was fuzzy for a good thirty seconds after coming. She barely even noticed that Lexa had crawled back up the bed and was lying next to her, on her side, green eyes watching the blonde fondly.

When she could finally focus again, Clarke turned her head to look at Lexa. “Hi.”

Lexa laughed softly. “Hey.”

Clarke swallowed her doubts and her fears, and she let her gaze fall onto Lexa’s clothed body. However, before she could say anything about the quite unproportioned clothing ratio between them, something hit her. “Holy shit, we just had sex while your mom is in the house?”

Green eyes flickered with amusement. “No, she should have left by now. She works night shifts. She probably left around the time you and I were looking for a movie. That’s why I went to the store. She wanted me to pick up this instant soup stuff that she likes to eat during her break.” Clarke relaxed incredibly, and Lexa laughed at her quietly. “It’s nice to know that your first thought after having sex with me is my mother.”

Clarke rolled her eyes at the quip, pushing herself up on her side and looking down at Lexa, who stayed flat against the pillow. “You’re wearing a lot more clothes than me.”

“That’s because you’re not wearing any,” Lexa said quietly, still sounding slightly amused.

“Not fair,” Clarke claimed, and Lexa slowly sat up. Their gazes met again, and Lexa stood up from the bed, standing in front of the blonde and lowering her hands to the edge of her shirt. She slowly, and very teasingly, stripped her t-shirt from her body. Following that, her thumbs hooked through the belt loops of her shorts, and she dragged them down her long legs. Clarke’s eyes soaked up every movement, and then finally, Lexa unhooked the bra enclosing her breasts, tossing it away.

Her body was beautiful, and Clarke nearly scolded herself for not having committed it to memory earlier. She could only blame her drunkenness for that, but luckily, she had the image in front of her now. It was better than she could have imagined, especially when Lexa began the last step, and let her underwear slide down her legs and pool at her feet. “Better?” she asked quietly, and Clarke rose to her knees on the bed, so that she was of even height with Lexa. She brought their lips together as an answer, and her hands dropped to Lexa’s lower back, pulling her gently onto the bed.

Even though she was sure it would probably take longer for her to make Lexa come than it had taken for Lexa to get her to climax, Clarke wouldn’t let that diminish the feeling of adoration, desire, want, and need that rose up in her chest when Lexa allowed Clarke to gently top her, to feel her body. It felt sacred, for some reason, even though Lexa’s body had been seen by more people than had seen Clarke’s. Maybe it was because Clarke knew that this wasn’t just about sex for Lexa – and it was mostly definitely not just about sex for Clarke – and even though those exact words hadn’t been spoken, Clarke reveled in them as she slowly brought Lexa up to climax.


Clarke woke up to a smell she was not entirely used to waking up to, but she knew all too easily that it was the smell of sex. She could smell it on herself, and she could smell it on Lexa, whose arms she lay wrapped up in. It was only after a few seconds that that part registered in her brain, though, that Lexa was still here with her, holding her securely. Their bare skin was pressed against each other everywhere, and Clarke inhaled the scent of their intimacy before sighing happily.

Sure, the original purpose for having gone to Lexa’s house the previous day hadn’t really been fulfilled. She still wasn’t quite sure what was going on between the two of them, but there were some pretty telling clues by now. Lexa had admitted that she was emotionally unavailable to “most people,” which obviously excluded Clarke, since earlier in the week, she had openly admitted to liking Clarke. And they’d had sex again, this time filled with more than just the desperate drive for closeness. Lexa had even slowed it down, and Clarke was sure she’d done it in order to properly take it all in this time.

So whatever was happening, Clarke knew that she was okay. Lexa wasn’t about to go sleep with someone else, and she hadn’t yet woken and freaked out about being naked in bed with the blonde. Though, Clarke recognized, she may have just not yet woken up.

That thought was immediately crushed when Lexa’s soft voice murmured, “Clarke, are you awake?”

“Mm, yeah,” Clarke whispered back, snuggling backward a little. She heard Lexa’s soft laugh, and it warmed her.

“You have anywhere to be today?” Lexa whispered quietly.

“No,” Clarke replied. “I was going to just hang out with all of you, assuming that someone was going to make plans.”

Soft lips pressed to the back of Clarke’s neck, through her messy blonde hair, and she exhaled happily. “So you don’t have to leave soon?”

“Nope.”

“Perfect,” Lexa hummed.

It was Clarke’s turn to laugh, though hers came out in a giggle. “Comfy?”

“Very.”

“Happy to hear it,” Clarke whispered in amusement. It was silent for a moment, and then she took in a shaky breath and said, “By the way… what was bothering me yesterday when I came over… I think I just really needed to be close to you.”

“You can be as close to me as you want, whenever you want,” Lexa murmured into her hair playfully.

Clarke laughed lightly. “Well, good to know.”

“Seriously, though,” Lexa insisted. “You can even show up randomly in my room like last night whenever you feel like it, and I won’t kick you out.”

Smirking, Clarke shook her head. “You are too much.” A hand suddenly lowered and squeezed her ass, and Clarke squeaked. “Lexa!”

“Sorry, I was just agreeing with your assertion that I’m too much.” The brunette was obviously grinning – Clarke could hear it in her voice – and Clarke herself was definitely red-faced. “You feel like sleeping more, or you want me to make breakfast?”

“You don’t have to make breakfast. I usually skip it anyway.”

“Yeah, ha, no,” Lexa deadpanned. “Sorry, babe, but I’m a breakfast eater, and a breakfast maker. So if you’re going to be sleeping over in my bed, you’re eating breakfast.”

The two of them were disconnected all of the sudden, and Clarke rolled over with furrowed eyebrows, facing Lexa as she stood up from the bed. “Fine, but can’t we lay in bed a little while longer?”

“Nope, you ruined it by trying to get out of breakfast,” Lexa claimed, flashing the blonde an indignant look. “Come on, you can help me make something.”

“I don’t think you really want that…” Clarke slowly sat up, aware that her body was still tired from the night before, and she really did smell of sex.

“I do, actually.”

The blonde huffed. “Fine.”

Once fully clothed, they found themselves down in Lexa’s kitchen, where the brunette began to make waffles and Clarke sat patiently on one of the bar stools. The kitchen wasn’t incredibly large, but there was a small island with two barstools, and then a small breakfast nook that was nestled in between a couple of windows that peeked out into the small yard.

“So you don’t actually want to help, huh?” Lexa asked with amusement.

“I really don’t cook things,” Clarke insisted with a chuckle. “I’ll leave it to you.”

“Fair enough.”

A few seconds later, before either of them could think about what else to say, both of their phones vibrated simultaneously.

Clarke looked at hers first. “It’s Octavia.”

Group Message: Octavia, Raven, Anya, Harper, Lexa and Clarke

Octavia – GUYS! What are we doing tonight?!?

The blonde was about to voice the message out to Lexa, but then began to flood of messages in the group, and Lexa stopped what she was doing to grab her own phone and see what was up.

Anya – Um, how should we know? Apparently all of our lives revolve around what YOU two are doing. -.-

Harper – Anya’s bitter, because she tried to get laid last night and failed miserably.

Raven – Um, whom did she try to sleep with??

Lexa – Ooh, was it that girl who works at the grocery store? She and Anya have been making sex eyes literally every week for like, two months.

Anya – Ugh, no, I didn’t try to sleep with her. I don’t even know her?? It was just a random who was at the bar last night.

Octavia – Wait, you went out with your fake ID without us!!??

Harper – Lol, O, I think you were a little busy last night. And I was with her, so she wasn’t alone.

Raven – What did you do last night Lexa? And also wtf why isn’t Clarke answering?

Clarke – Too tired.

Octavia – She speaks!

Lexa – I stayed in last night.

Anya – What did Clarke do that she’s too tired at ten in the morning? ;)

Clarke – I stayed in too, it’s just been a really long week.

So yeah, Clarke wasn’t going to flat out tell her friends that she’d slept with Lexa, just like Lexa wasn’t either. Just because her friends knew that she was bi, and knew that she had slept with Lexa, it didn’t mean that they had to know every time the two of them had sex. Plus, if they knew that it was a thing, they might end up messing it up before it was an official thing.

Anya – Long week, sure…

Harper – Leave her alone, Anya, you were part of the reason her week was long. >_>

Lexa – What she said ^^^

Octavia – Guys, we got off the point!! What are we doing tonight??

Raven – I suggested drinking until we can’t see straight, but then I realized only three of us ever see straight anyway :^)

Anya – Movie night?

Harper – Ooh, yes!!

Lexa – Whoever picks the movies has to pick good ones because Clarke is a picky movie watcher.

Clarke – Slightly…

Octavia – GIRLTRASH!

Raven – Oh god, only if you want me and Harper singing those fucking songs for the rest of the night afterward…

Harper – BY TWO AM!

Raven – I HOPE I’M NAKED WITH HER!

Harper – PAINTED WITH HER!

Raven – SATED BY HER!

Clarke – Well this escalated quickly. O.O

Anya – Don’t let Octavia force you to watch that movie, Clarke, it sucks.

Lexa – It’s kinda good. Brings me back to the South of Nowhere days.

Octavia – Lol Lexa, we were like seven when South of Nowhere was on. There’s no way you were watching that show as a seven-year-old.

Lexa – You don’t know my life bitch.

Clarke – Yeah so, I TOTALLY know what you guys are talking about…

Raven – It’s a trash show that is amazing and gay.

Clarke – I think I’m still misunderstanding what you guys mean when you say a show is trash, but amazing, so I’ll just ah, yeah, sit here and pretend I understand. :o)

Octavia – Fine, I’ll pick something else, but you guys all better show up at 7!!!

Harper – Will do!

Anya – Sure, whatever.

Clarke – Okay.

Lexa – See you then!

“Jeez,” Clarke muttered under breath, locking her phone and looking over to Lexa, who had already resumed her task.

“Group messages are kind of a thing with Octavia. I think she was slow to add you, because she was still trying to judge whether or not you’d be okay with them,” Lexa admitted. “Some people get royally pissed when their phone gets spammed with like fifty messages in a period of five minutes.”

Clarke laughed with a shake of her head. “I think it’s kind of ridiculous, but I guess I get the appeal. I probably should have started something like that with my friends in New York so that they would have had no excuse to stop texting me.”

“It sucks when friends drift apart,” Lexa commented sympathetically. “Have you tried talking to them recently?”

“No, because so many other things have been going on. I probably should, though. Maybe sometime next week I will. Plus, I’ll probably be going up to New York for spring break, and it would be entirely too awkward if I saw them there and hadn’t talked to them in three months,” Clarke reasoned.

“Well, if they keep ignoring you after you text them, then they’re all undeserving,” Lexa declared, and Clarke felt a smile spread through her lips.

“If you say so.”


After the two of them ate, they took turns in the shower. Lexa let Clarke go first, and the blonde had to borrow Lexa’s body wash and her shampoo, which was actually really nice. Plus, smelling like Lexa wasn’t really a downside either. For some reason, it was mildly disappointing to no longer smell the lingering scent of sex on her body, but something told her that that wouldn’t really matter. It wasn’t like this was a onetime thing.

At least, Clarke was sure hoping that it wasn’t.

Once out of the shower, Clarke realized that she only had the clothes she’d worn the night before, and it would be awfully suspicious if Clarke showed up wearing the same thing she’d been wearing at school the day before. Frowning, Clarke wrapped the towel Lexa had given her around herself and then opened the bathroom door a little.

Lexa was laying on her stomach across her bed, doing homework as her record player played Blurryface. Green eyes immediately shifted to look at Clarke when the door opened, though, and they widened only slightly upon realizing that she was only wrapped in a towel. “Um, hey, do you have any clothes I could borrow?”

Lexa lifted an eyebrow. “You sure you want to show up at Octavia’s house in my clothes?”

“I don’t know, what looks worse? Wearing the same clothes that I wore at school yesterday, or wearing clothes that might obviously belong to you? Just give me something that isn’t easily identifiable. You own sweats, don’t you?”

“Salty much?” Lexa asked with a chuckle, pushing herself up off of her bed and moving over to her closet. She quickly dug around through her clothes, and finally procured very normal, unbranded sweatpants. She then grabbed a blue tank top, also relatively unidentifiable, and tossed both to the blonde. “There you go.”

“Thanks!” Clarke chimed, flashing Lexa a cheeky smile before slipping all the way back into the bathroom and changing.

Lexa’s sweatpants and tank were both strangely soft against her skin, and they also smelled greatly of Lexa. It was possible, Clarke realized, that the fact that she’d spent the night and day here would be entirely too obvious just by her smell. Though, she wasn’t sure that the rest of the group knew Lexa’s smell by heart.

Shaking her head, Clarke told herself that it really didn’t matter anyway, and she tied her damp hair up into a bun before finally leaving the bathroom.


“You guys are ten minutes late – Octavia is going to kill you.”

Lexa rolled her eyes, pushing into the house past Anya. Clarke smirked a little and followed suit, though she waited for Anya to step back and allow her in. Lexa was slightly grumpy, Clarke knew, because at six-fifty, they’d realized during a very heated and impromptu make out session that they needed to be at Octavia’s.

“What’s got you all grouchy?” Anya called out with a snicker. Lexa didn’t reply, opting to just start up the stairs to the second floor. Anya looked to Clarke questioningly, and the blonde just shrugged, hoping that she wasn’t blushing or anything like that. “Come on, I don’t know if you’ve seen it, but this place has a movie room on the second floor by Bellamy’s bedroom. He’s over at Lincoln’s place tonight, with some other guys, so we have the house to ourselves.”

“How come Octavia’s parents are never around?” Clarke wondered, following her friend.

Anya shrugged. “They work a lot, and are out of town a lot. It’s how they can afford this place. They used to stay home a lot when O and Bell were younger, but now that they can stay home and take care of things themselves, their parents choose to go on a lot more business trips. Gets them bonuses and stuff, you know? I don’t know, I’d love to live in a place like this, but I can’t imagine never seeing my dad. He’s like my rock, honestly.”

“I know what you mean,” Clarke insisted. “My mom and I are really close, and it’s been a really weird time trying to get used to not having her around a lot.”

“Can’t imagine it,” Anya muttered as they reached the second floor and entered into the movie room. A large screen covered most of one wall, and speakers were mounted in each corner of the room. The huge couch in the back and center of the room was almost more like a bed, and it was honestly, insanely massive.

“Hey, Clarke!” Octavia greeted excitedly, before looking around at the group. Harper and Lexa were already sprawled across separate parts of the couch, and Raven had taken the far corner of it. Room was left next to her for Octavia. Anya flopped down in between Harper and Lexa, leaving one last spot, in between the edge of the couch and Lexa. Clarke lowered herself into that part somewhat tentatively, and then realized that Octavia was talking. “– and we can vote on which one we want to watch.”

“I tried to get her to pick half gay movies and half not, because we don’t know if Clarke likes that kind of stuff,” Raven explained, looking pointedly at Octavia. “I’m pretty Octavia had just gotten more and more gay the longer that she’s around me.”

Lexa snickered. “Not surprising.”

“Shut up,” Octavia huffed out. “Alright, here’s what we got…”

Clarke voted on whatever movie Lexa voted on, because she honestly couldn’t care less what they watched. All she cared about was hanging out with her friends – and Lexa. When the movie was playing, and the lights were off, Clarke couldn’t help but curl against the brunette, who didn’t hesitate to wrap an arm around her. Though she hadn’t intended to, halfway through the movie, Clarke was drifting fast asleep.

She was woken by soft voices presumably an hour later or so. “Ooh, we should dump water on her,” Raven was whispering.

“Fuck yeah!” Anya agreed.

“Jesus, you guys are awful,” Lexa huffed out. “Let her sleep if she’s tired.”

“Aw, so protective of your girlfriend.”

“Shut up, Anya,” Lexa snapped. “Come on, let’s go eat, we’ll save her pizza.”

Clarke shifted slightly. “Shit, did we wake her up?” Raven asked. Blue eyes opened slowly, before blinking a few times and looking up at the three girls standing next to the couch.

“Hello to you too,” Clarke murmured, wiping her eyes. “Nice to know that you’d dump water on me to wake me up.”

Raven huffed. “I was kidding…”

“Sure you were,” Clarke said, sitting up. Anya looked suddenly somewhat uncomfortable, likely from realizing that Clarke heard her “girlfriend” comment. “You said something about pizza?”

“Yep, there’s some downstairs, Octavia and Harper just went down to get it from the pizza guy. Come on, sleepy head,” Lexa said, offering her hand for the blonde. Clarke took it without hesitation, letting the girl help her up, and then the four of them started downstairs. Halfway down the stairs, Lexa and Clarke’s hands disconnected, much to the blonde’s disappointment.

“Look who decided to wake up!” Octavia exclaimed teasingly as they entered the kitchen. “You looked super comfy, and you wouldn’t let go of Lexa when the movie ended.”

Clarke blushed. “I don’t control what I do when I’m asleep.”

Lexa laughed, nudging the blonde playfully and then walking past her toward the pizza. Clarke’s gaze stayed fixed on the brunette for a few moments before following suit. They all ended up seated in the living room with pizza on paper plates. The huge windows were displaying the dark beach outside, which was lit up only by the bright stars in the sky being reflected in the dark water.

Because it was already getting late, Clarke sent a text to Marcus to let him know that she would be staying a different friend’s house, and he didn’t respond, which told Clarke that he was likely still at work. She ended up crashing in Octavia’s guest bedroom, about an hour before any of her friends decided to also go to bed. When she was drifting off, she couldn’t help but hope that she would wake up with Lexa next to her.

Chapter Text

The week after that Saturday was like magic.

Finn didn’t bother Clarke at all throughout it, which was a plus on its own. It also made going to class a much less drudging task, and school became less of a pain in the ass. Lunch everyday was relaxed, because there was no more tension about the whole “Clarke and Lexa had sex!” stuff, which Clarke was more than happy about. Actually, none of their friends mentioned it at all for the rest of the week. The only weird part about lunch throughout the week was what Miller kept eating with them, and he still seemed fairly out of it. They tried more than once to gently pull him out of his shell, but he refused to talk about whatever the issue was. Eventually, they gave up and tried to simply cheer him up. That didn’t really work either.

After school was when Clarke’s day would almost always better by a tenfold. On Monday, she went straight home because she’d forgotten to call her mom the day before. She ended up talking to Abby for a straight three hours, which was almost like a breath of fresh air from the wildness of her new life – not that she didn’t love this new turn of events that had been occurring. She actually got permission from her mom to go to Tampa with Lexa the following weekend, though Clarke didn’t tell her who Lexa was to her. Though, Clarke wasn’t even sure that she knew that yet.

She didn’t want to come out to her mom over the phone, it just wasn’t the way she pictured it. So she would wait for spring break. Her mom wouldn’t care; Abby wasn’t the type to judge for something like that. Still, it felt like something she needed to say in person, so she would wait.

After Monday, every day after school was spent either at the beach, out somewhere with her friends, at Octavia’s house, or at Lexa’s house. Hanging out with her new group of friends was finally a routine part of her life, and it was actually a freeing feeling even though it could be considered as confining to have something like that be routine. It was just always different with them – they hung out at the beach sometimes, other times when out to the movies. Sometimes they stayed in and binged shows, or drank and played games. It was fun, easy. When they were just sitting around talking, they didn’t care if Clarke tuned them all out to write in her notebook, or if she curled up in a corner to read.

In fact, she’d actually been doing a lot of writing lately. Inspiration was coming to her like oxygen; she couldn’t control how much was being taken in, and it never stopped flowing. She switched between adding to the novel she’d been trying to write ever since she had a writer’s block at the end of the previous year and writing short stories, or random ramblings.

Then there were the times with just Lexa – and these times were not like being with her group of friends. Sure, Lexa and Clarke did a multitude of things when they were alone, from working on homework, to sitting quietly and reading or writing separately, to talking for hours, to having sex. The latter only happened once throughout the week, on Wednesday, when they’d spent the afternoon at the beach with their friends, and Clarke had been unable to resist Lexa in a bikini when they got back to the brunette’s house. All of that aside, though, the air was just different when it was the two of them. It was comforting, free of any tension or pressure – aside from the sexual attention that arose many times – and absolutely intoxicating. Being around Lexa was like a drug, and Clarke couldn’t get enough of it. She could drink in the girl’s beauty, relish in the feeling of their skin brushing, and marvel at her grace and smoothness for hours if she wanted to. Sometimes she did want to, but a few minutes in, Lexa would smirk at her and tease her for staring, and Clarke would blush and look away.

On Friday afternoon, Clarke was about to head home and get her stuff ready to leave for Tampa when she was bombarded by an excited Raven and Octavia. “Hey, Clarke! We’re going over to Miller’s later, you coming?”

“Oh, no,” Clarke said apologetically, and it occurred to her that neither her nor Lexa had mentioned to any of their friends that they were going to Tampa this weekend. She thought that Lexa might have said something about it to them, but it hadn’t even crossed her mind to mention it.

“What, why not?” Raven asked with concern. “Everything okay?”

“Yeah, I just won’t be in town. Lexa and I are going to Tampa.”

Octavia lifted an eyebrow. “You’re going to Tampa with Lexa?”

“Yes?”

Smirking, the girl crossed her arms. “Well, I wish you luck. You know what you guys are doing there?”

“Not really.”

“I’m sure you’re going to have a great time,” Raven said with a smirk. “Lexa always has lots of fun in Tampa.” Octavia nudged her girlfriend, flashing the girl a glare.

“What Raven means is that Lexa has historically been most promiscuous when she goes clubbing in Tampa,” Octavia said carefully. “So, you may just want to be prepared for that.”

Clarke shrugged – Lexa had already promised her that she wouldn’t abandon her in a club to go sleep with some random, just before admitting that she cared for Clarke too much to go sleep with a random anyway. Yeah, Clarke wasn’t very worried about that. Even if she didn’t know where exactly she stood with Lexa, she knew that wherever she did was a place involving enough feelings, it wasn’t just about sex.

“You do you, though,” Raven said with a shrug. “Does Anya know that the two of you are going?”

“I don’t know,” Clarke replied quickly. “I have to go and pack for the weekend, though. I’ll see you guys on Monday.”

“You better text us when you go to sleep tonight and tomorrow,” Octavia called as Clarke started back to walking home. “So we know you haven’t been murdered or something.”

“Will do! See you guys!”

An hour later found Clarke at home, pretty much completely packed up for the weekend. She had her messenger bag stuffed with her notebooks – for writing at night, of course. She had a small purse for carrying her wallet and phone charger. Lastly, she had tossed clothes into a small backpack, including some of her more risqué clothes for going out, as well as her toiletries of course.

She’d already texted Lexa letting her know that she was just about ready, and the brunette was due to pick her up in a matter of minutes. Tossing her phone into her purse for convenience, Clarke grabbed her two other bags and started downstairs. She had shoved some nice shoes into her backpack, and she was currently wearing combat boots. They weren’t her usual choice, at least not since she’d moved to Florida, but she kind of missed wearing them. She’d also changed into short shorts and a white tank, a red flannel tied around her waist.

“You about to leave?” Marcus asked suddenly as Clarke came down the last two steps of the stairs.

“Yeah, Lexa is going to pick me up in a minute,” Clarke replied, giving him a smile. “I’ll text you when we get to the hotel and everything. And I’ll be back Sunday in the afternoon.”

Marcus nodded. “Alright, cool. I hope you have a good time. Don’t do anything I wouldn’t do.” Clarke laughed lightly.

“I’m not sure that I know exactly what things you would and wouldn’t do – and I don’t think I really want to either.” There was a knock on the front door suddenly. “I’ll see you on Sunday. Bye, Marcus.”

He lifted his hand in a quick goodbye wave, and then he continued on his likely original path, headed toward his bedroom. Clarke, her messenger bag and purse over one shoulder and her backpack slung over the other, went to the door an opened it. Lexa immediately gave her a wide smile. “Hey. Ready to go?”

“Yep!”

Five minutes later, they were in the car, which was all loaded up with their weekend supplies, and were on the road to Tampa. Lexa definitely seemed to know what she was doing, because she didn’t take any second guesses on their way out of Polis and onto whatever main road was taking them to the city. The car was silent at first, but once they were officially exiting the town, Clarke couldn’t help but speak. “Did you tell anyone we’re going to Tampa?”

Lexa frowned a little. “I don’t know. I mean – I told my parents. I can’t really remember if I mentioned to anyone else, why?”

“Octavia and Raven were inviting me out tonight, to Miller’s I guess, and I realized that I guess neither of us mentioned to them that we were going. I told them and they got weird about it,” Clarke admitted, unsure of how much she should share about this. Lexa gave her a curious look, obviously interested to know what she meant, and Clarke realized that now that she’d started talking, it would do no good to stop. “They ended up basically just warning me that you get a bit more ‘promiscuous’ in Tampa.”

“Well, that’s only because there are always way more girls who would even be open to sleeping with another girl in the city,” Lexa claimed with a slight eyeroll. “Anyway, I already told you that you don’t have to worry about that.”

“No, I know,” Clarke insisted. “They were just weird about it. Either they think that you’re going to abandon me to go sleep with people, or they think that we’ll be hooking up all weekend.”

Lexa hummed thoughtfully. “I can’t say I’d be entirely opposed to the latter…”

“Perv,” Clarke murmured with a smirk, though her cheeks warmed significantly. “What are we doing tonight, anyway?”

“Well, this perv was going to take you out for a drink and be a gentle-woman, but now that I know how you feel, I guess I’ll just call that off…”

“Oh shut up,” Clarke huffed out with an eyeroll.

Lexa flashed her a grin. “Cool, so now that that’s settled. What book was it that you were lugging around all week?”

The Martian,” Clarke admitted somewhat shyly. “I wanted to read it before I see the movie, but everything’s kind of been busy, so I’ve only been able to get through bits and pieces of it at a time. I’m finally almost done, so hopefully I can see the movie soon.”

“I thought you didn’t like seeing the movie version of books because it ruined the story?”

“I don’t like it when it ruins the book, but I always watch the movies anyway. If anything, I want to be able to be the typical, stuck up, book nerd who gets mad when people praise the movie and forget about the book,” Clarke stated.

Lexa laughed brightly. “You’re not stuck up.”

“You know what I mean,” the blonde insisted. “Have you seen the movie?”

“Yep. It was really good. However – no, I have no read the book. Is it good?”

Clarke nodded. “Yeah, really good. I think that Matt Damon usually does pretty well in movies, so I’m hoping that the movie at least somewhat lives up to the book with him in it.”

“He did really well,” Lexa assured her.

The rest of the road trip was calm, the two of them talking about books and whatever else came to their mind. It was easy, as per usual, for Clarke to relax around Lexa. She almost forgot where they were going, and when they reached the city, Clarke had to remind herself that they would be leaving the car soon.

Sure enough, Lexa drove the two of them to a hotel in the city, parked the car, and then they clambered out and gathered up their things. It didn’t take long for Lexa to check them in, and they then made their way up to the second floor of the small hotel, easily finding their room. “Oh,” Lexa said thoughtfully as she was sliding the key into the little slot of the door, “I got a room with only one bed. I figured that would be okay, but I forgot to ask you…”

“Yeah, that’s fine,” Clarke answered easily. She’d slept in the same bed with Lexa more than enough times to be okay with that – a three times in a more than compromising position. She definitely had no problem with that.

Once in the room, their things set down, Lexa looked to the blonde. “So, you wanna go out earlier rather than later so that we can sleep at a decent time tonight? I’m kind of exhausted from school, so I figured we could go get some food and a drink, and then sleep.” Clarke just nodded.


“I still don’t get why you can’t admit how fucking on point my pickup lines are.”

Lexa took a long sip of her drink, and when Clarke didn’t say anything, she raised an eyebrow pointedly. The blonde shrugged. “They don’t work.”

“How would you know? You’ve only known me for like, a month.”

“Please, I think I speak for most people when I say that ninety percent of pickup lines are either offensive or just stupid.”

Lexa scooted slightly closer to the edge of her barstool. They’d already gone for dinner, and then had gone to nearby bar, flashing their fake IDs to the bartender before ordering drinks. “But when I say them, they’re pretty effective. For example, can you touch me? I want to tell my friends I was touched by an angel.”

Clarke shook her head, fighting a smile from appearing on her face.

“And you know, I’m no organ donor, but I’d be happy to give you my heart.”

“Oh god.”

“And then there’s one of my personal favorites – I was feeling a little bit off today, but you definitely turned me on.”

“You’re ridiculous, you know that?” Clarke asked, though she wasn’t able to hide her laughter as Lexa grinned at her. “I swear, you think you have so much game, but you’re honestly just a dork at heart.”

“A dork who has game,” Lexa corrected, winking at the blonde and causing her heart to skip a beat.

“You wish,” Clarke huffed out, hoping that her cheeks hadn’t visibly warmed. “You just use your pretty hair and those big green eyes to seduce women and then once you’ve captured them, you release all your dorkiness in full.”

“Yeah?”

“Yes.”

“And did that work on you?” Lexa asked, leaning forward.

Clarke scoffed, taking a quick drink from her glass. “Well, if it did, then it did only because you didn’t use any of those dumb pickup lines when you first met me.”

If it did?”

Lexa was definitely on the edge of her barstool now, her right forearm resting on the bar and her hand wrapped around her glass. Their knees were touching, and their faces were far closer than necessary, though Clarke definitely didn’t mind. “You know, conceit isn’t that attractive.”

“No?”

“Nope.”

“So what do you find attractive then, Clarke?”

“A number of things that don’t include being full of oneself.”

Lexa hummed. “I’m not full of myself, so looks like we’re on the same page.” Clarke couldn’t help it now – her tongue peeked out of her mouth to gently wet her lips. Her proximity to the brunette was definitely a major distraction, leaving her feeling intoxicated. “In fact, it’s pretty fucking amazing how humble I am.”

Clarke laughed softly, shaking her head. “You are absolutely one of the biggest dorks I have ever met.”

“Is that what you’re attracted to? Dorkiness?” Lexa leaned back slightly, taking a sip from her glass before setting it down entirely and dropping her hands to her lap. “Oh wait, I already know what you’re attracted to. Brunettes – and body shots.”

“Brunettes maybe, or maybe it’s just a coincidence that certain people are brunette. As for body shots – I’m pretty sure that’s not something you can be attracted to. I mean, they’re hot of course, but just because someone does body shots doesn’t make them more attractive.”

“So I was attractive to you before the body shots? That’s good to know.”

“You are honestly such a pain in the ass,” Clarke said lightly, taking down the rest of her drink. After setting her glass down, she looked directly at the brunette. “Seriously, you are easily one of the most beautiful people I have ever seen, and you’re confused as to how I could be attracted to you?”

“Mm, feeding my ego I see. What do you think that’s going to get you?”

Clarke rolled her eyes, but she opted to play along anyway. “I can imagine a multitude of things that it may get me, but I don’t like to be presumptuous.”

“Ooh, look who else has some game,” Lexa teased with a grin. When Clarke blushed and rolled her eyes, the brunette laughed and asked, “You want another drink?”

“I think I’m okay.”

“Cool, let’s head back then,” Lexa suggested, standing from the bar stool and having to back up to keep from getting too far into Clarke’s space. She extended a hand to the blonde, who gratefully took it.

Their hands didn’t disconnect when they walked out onto the sidewalk and started back toward their hotel. Clarke liked the feeling of Lexa’s fingers intertwined with her own. “Thanks for the drinks,” Clarke said suddenly, flashing Lexa a smile.

“Of course.” The city sounds around them gave Clarke a sort of warm feeling inside, the familiarity of it all giving her slight nostalgia.

“I miss the city,” Clarke murmured, her shoulder bumping with Lexa’s.

“I feel like you’re the kind of person who goes out to parks and things in the middle of cities and sits on a bench with your notebook while city life plays out around you,” Lexa supposed, causing the blonde to laugh.

“I definitely did that a number of times.”

“Well, Tampa is always here to remind you of the great, big city life.”

Clarke chuckled. “Yeah. It’s nice. Not the same, though.”

“Yeah, I know.” A few moments passed, and Clarke realized that they were almost at the hotel. They had purposefully picked a place close by to eat at, because or else they would have had to drive, and then the drinking would have been an issue. “Hey, Clarke?”

“Yeah?”

“You know that… I mean… I guess, if I’m ever too forward, you know that I’m joking right?” Clarke furrowed her eyebrows, looking into green eyes with slight confusion. Before she could ask her to elaborate, however, Lexa was already talking again. “I mean, when I say stuff about sex and stuff like that. I just… haven’t done this in a while, this way. And I say a lot of shit like that, but I actually really like you, and I don’t want you to think any differently.”

“I don’t,” Clarke promised, squeezing Lexa’s hand and pulling her to stop on the sidewalk. Green eyes were shrouded with confusion and doubt for a moment, but then they flickered closed when lips met softly. Lexa kissed the blonde back without hesitation, and Clarke felt herself melt slightly against the girl. She was almost lost in the contact, and it was Lexa who actually pulled away first.

“Good,” she murmured. “Come on, beautiful.”

Clarke felt her cheeks go red, but she didn’t even care – this first night in Tampa had easily exceeded all of her expectations.


Light burned against Clarke’s eyelids, and the blonde lifted her hands to cover them and block out the morning. She could feel Lexa’s presence beside her, though, which tempted her to peek out between her fingers. The brunette seemed to be fast asleep, which was weird, considering that Lexa was much more of a morning person than Clarke was.

She felt strangely awake right now, though, be it because she hadn’t been as tired as Lexa the night before or due to the wide open curtains that were meant to be blocking out the awful light from the east. Climbing out of the bed, Clarke made closing said curtains her first priority, and then she grabbed her toiletries bag and went to the bathroom to brush her teeth.

Clarke ended up falling back asleep as soon as her head hit the pillow again, and she didn’t awake for real until the sound of the bathroom door echoed through the room. Groaning, hands rubbed over sleepy, blue eyes, and the side of the bed suddenly dipped a little, indicating that Lexa was getting back in rather than having just gotten out. “Lexa?” Clarke murmured.

“Morning sleepy head,” Lexa replied softly. “Sorry I woke you. I was just in the bathroom.”

“It’s fine,” Clarke assured her, forcing her eyes open. They settled obediently on the beautiful brunette seated next to her. Long, brown locks were slightly messy from sleep, but her eyes were bright and awake, just like they seemed to be any morning. “Ugh, you’re so pretty so early.”

“One of my many talents,” Lexa teased lightly, before leaning down and pressing a soft kiss to Clarke’s lips, slightly surprising the blonde. When she sat back up, her eyebrows were furrowed. “Did you already brush your teeth?”

“Yeah, I woke up a little while ago,” Clarke replied. “Obviously I fell back asleep, though. The light woke me up, I pulled the curtain.”

“Mm,” Lexa hummed in response.

“So, what’s the plan today?”

“No plan,” Lexa replied. “I mean, I thought we could go out and have some fun tonight – if you want to, of course. Though, you’ve admitted to being a party girl, so I’d imagine that you’d have fun. We won’t go if you don’t want to.”

“What, like to a club?” Lexa nodded. “I don’t mind.”

“Cool,” the brunette said brightly. “It’s a date then.”

Clarke smiled. “And until then?”

“Well, we can do whatever our hearts desire, I suppose,” Lexa replied slowly, her words dragging very intentionally. Clarke lifted an eyebrow.

“Whatever it desires, huh?”

“What does yours desire?”

Clarke sucked her lower lip into her mouth. “You really need me to answer that question?” The answer must have been no, because Lexa’s lips were suddenly on Clarke’s, the blonde honestly taken completely off guard. The kiss was not soft nor gentle, but it was fast and very purposeful.

As always, every touch from the brunette was like electricity, and Clarke could feel it all in every moment. When Lexa’s legs, mostly bare seeing as she was wearing shorts, straddled Clarke’s waist, the blonde felt every brush of skin as though it happened in slow motion. The touch of hands on her midsection, dragging up under her shirt and teasing just below her breasts, were shocks of electricity. Clarke’s body was absolutely controlled by Lexa’s touch, and she wasn’t even afraid to admit it at this point.

Her breathing sped up as Lexa tore off her shirt, and her lips lowered to Clarke’s generously sized breasts. “Fuck,” the blonde moaned, arching slightly and pushing her boobs up more against Lexa’s mouth. “Fuck, Lexa…” Wet kisses trailed from there down, and Clarke bit down on her lip when all touch stopped for a moment, while Lexa sat up in order to easily remove Clarke’s shorts and underwear – all in one fluid moment. Before anything else happened, green eyes met blue and waited for permission, which Clarke gave with a swift nod a desperate, “Please.”

Sometime during the following events, Clarke’s phone began to go off, and she ignored it and forced Lexa to ignore it by squeezing her legs around the brunette, whose face was between Clarke’s legs. After the one call, nothing else rang out from the phone.

When she came, her entire body became sensitive. It wasn’t something that she was used to, honestly, fully reaching her climax. It had only happened one with Finn, and a couple of times with Finn. On the contrary, with Lexa, even if it wasn’t particularly fast, sex hadn’t ended until she’d come. It was actually incredibly relieving.

Clarke wanted to pin Lexa down next, but instead, she listened to the brunette, who insist that she check her phone first.

Naked and sensitive, Clarke carefully sat up and reached for her phone, which was plugged in and sitting on one of the nightstands. Turning it over in her hand to view the lock screen, her eyes widened when she read the name of the person who called her.

“Oh shit,” she murmured. “It was one of my friends from New York – Rei.”

“Really?” Lexa asked, and Clarke turned to face the brunette. “Also – you have a friend in New York named Rei? Like Rae, short for Raven?”

Clarke shook her head. “It’s short for Reina. Do you think I should call her back?”

“Sure, why not? Maybe she has a legitimate reason for not talking to you very much. Or maybe she realized what a loss she was at when she stop talking to you, and she wants to apologize. Wouldn’t surprise me,” Lexa stated.

Clarke rolled her eyes. “Okay.” As she unlocked her phone and began to call her friend back, Lexa swiftly tore off her shirt, and wiggled out of her lower clothing items. Clarke’s jaw dropped. “What are you doing?”

“Getting ready for when you’re off the phone,” Lexa replied cheekily, turning her body slightly so that Clarke had a full view of her chest, which her eyes lingered on for a good few seconds. “Call your friend, though. I promise I’ll still be here when you’re done.”

“You better be,” Clarke threatened playfully, leaning forward and pecking Lexa’s lips before finally calling back her friend.

She picked up on the second ring. “Clarke! Hey!”

“Hey Rei,” Clarke replied with a frown. “Sorry I didn’t pick up, ah, I was still asleep. Everything okay? None of you guys have really been calling me much lately.” She tried not to sound bitter about it.

“Yeah, about that,” Rei said slowly. “Well, actually, Jordan and Kit are here with me too right now, and we figured we should call you and talk.”

“What about? And where’s Belle? Not there?”

Jordan’s voice could be heard all of the sudden. “Actually, we wanted to talk to you about Belle.”

“Okay…?”

“So like, obviously when you moved, we tried to keep in touch with you fairly often.” It was Kit talking now. “And the reason we kind of stopped that was because of Belle – she had all this crazy drama going on. She kind of went crazy when you left, first of all, and stopped talking to us a lot.”

“Yeah,” Rei picked up, “but then she got with this guy who was pretty awful, and when they broke up in December, we ended up having to rush in and pick up Belle’s pieces. And let me tell you, Clarke, I have no idea how you were best friends with this girl. Seriously, I thought it was hard enough just hanging out with her in a group.”

Clarke frowned. “She wasn’t that bad. Maybe she got worse when I left or something, because she wasn’t ever much trouble when I was around.”

“I don’t know, Clarke,” Kit said, “but she went haywire. We tried to tell her to call you, but by that point, we’d all pretty much stopped having constant communication with you, and it was weird, and she didn’t want to talk to you because she felt abandoned or some shit.”

Jordan huffed. “Which is fucking stupid, because we all know it’s not your fault that you’re in Florida. Anyway. We stopped talking to Belle, because she was unappreciative as fuck, and you know, we wanted to just separate ourselves a bit from her. Then, a week ago, she drops off the face of the planet or something. Kit looked into it a few days ago, and turns out that her whole family moved to fucking LA.”

“LA? Why?”

“No clue,” Rei replied. “We honestly don’t really care. But we ran into your mom the other day when we went to visit my aunt in the hospital, and she mentioned that you’ll be back during your spring break, and we figured you ought to know that she’s gone before you get here.”

“Because you guys were best friends,” Kit clarified.

“Yeah well, we aren’t best friends anymore,” Clarke said with an eyeroll.

The other girls were all quiet for a moment, and Clarke felt Lexa’s eyes on her. “Clarke, we’re really sorry about not talking to you lately,” Kit apologized. “We honestly don’t know why we stopped calling you. It just felt weird, you being gone and everything. You get it, right? But we’re all best friends… we’ll always get along like we used to, even after months of not talking.”

“Yeah,” Jordan agreed quickly. “So how are things? How’s it going with that guy you were dating – Finn?”

Clarke sighed. “We broke up. Look guys, I get that you’re sorry, but you kind of like, really just left me in the dust. I don’t mind catching up with you guys, though, honestly. I just don’t think we can pick up exactly where we left off.”

Silence for a moment, then Rei said, “Yeah, yeah… we get it. I’m sorry about your boyfriend. I guess we kind of really left you with no one then.”

“Lucky for me, I made some new friends here,” Clarke assured them. “Speaking of – I kind of have some plans today, so… maybe we can catch up a little later?”

“Of course,” Jordan agreed. “We don’t wanna intrude on any plans you have. But we really would like to catch up with you, and try to make up for us kind of being shit friends. And maybe we can hangout when you visit in March.”

“Yeah, maybe,” Clarke agreed. “I’ll talk to you guys later, yeah?”

“Sure, bye Clarke,” Rei said, followed by Jordan and Kit echoing their goodbyes before the call ended. Clarke sighed, setting her phone back on the nightstand and turning onto her other side to face Lexa. Thankfully, her body was now covered by a blanket, so Clarke wasn’t immediately distracted by it.

“That sounded… interesting.”

“Apparently my best friend for most of my life totally changed after I left, and then her family spontaneously left for LA. Now, my other three really good friends from NYC – Rei, Kit and Jordan – are all apologizing for not talking to me, and wanting to catch up. Of course, the first question they ask me is how things are going with Finn.”

“Shit happens,” Lexa said with a sigh. “Honestly, I’d say if you still want to be friends with them, you can probably cut them a little bit of slack. In my opinion, it’s hardest to keep in touch with someone right after they leave, because it’s too out of the norm, especially when you’re used to not having to call and text much, because you just see them in person every day. But, if you don’t want to be friends with them anymore, don’t try. It’ll waste your time and theirs.”

Clarke hummed, thinking over Lexa’s words. A moment later, she tilted her head. “Is there anything you’re not good at?”

A confused laugh bubbled out of the brunette. “Of course. I’m shit at most art mediums. Can’t focus on any sort of school work or tedious tasks for longer than an hour.”

“So what? You’re still basically perfect.”

“Ha, sure, babe, whatever you say,” Lexa murmured softly, a smile on her face. “So what, you going to leave your friends behind or forgive them?”

“I’m going to forgive them. It’s not like they did something unforgivable. I don’t think things can go back to being the same, though. I have all new friends here, anyway, and I honestly think that I’ve changed too much since I got here.”

“Oh yeah?”

Clarke nodded. “I just feel like a different person.”

Lexa’s hand suddenly lifted out of the blankets and brushed away some of Clarke’s hair. “It’ll be fine. People change and grow. It’s not your fault or anything.” The blonde nodded, her eyes searching green ones carefully. “Anyway. You may as well not worry about it right now.”

“True,” Clarke agreed, turning onto her side and propping herself up with her elbow. The blanket fell from around her body for a bit, and Clarke didn’t miss Lexa’s gaze shifting down for half of a second. “There are a lot of other things we could be doing.”


Clarke huffed, tugging on her blue blouse and looking at herself in the mirror. She wasn’t quite sure what Lexa was wearing, but she didn’t necessarily think that should make sure so self-conscious about her own outfit. Sighing, she checked over her appearance another time before leaving the bathroom. “Alright, I’m ready to go,” Clarke announced, causing Lexa to look up from where she was laying across the bed.

Lexa had used the bathroom first, and her hair was now curled more intentionally than her normal, messier curls. She was wearing black skinny jeans and heeled boots, and her top was a maroon color. Clarke, in the meantime, was wearing black leggings and the blue blouse – which was fairly nice. It was actually one of the nicest things she owned. Her nice shoes were just blue flats – she wasn’t the biggest fan of wearing heels.

Lexa sat up on the bed, looking to the blonde.

“You look nice,” the brunette commented with a soft smile. “Blue looks good on you.”

“Thanks,” Clarke replied with a chuckle. “Just a forewarning, I’ve never been to any clubs or anything. So if I’m clueless, you’re not allowed to make fun of me or anything.”

“I would never!” Lexa exclaimed with a smile, standing and reaching for Clarke’s hand. “You have everything you need? Your fake ID?”

Clarke, not releasing the brunette’s hand, leaned down next to her things to grab her purse, and then she nodded. “Yep, all good.”

“Awesome!”

The two of them left the hotel room, then the hotel itself, and started down the short walk to the club. Their hands stayed connected, which made Clarke have a slight bounce in her step. Before she knew it, they were flashing fake IDs at a bouncer, who seemed to doubt to legitimacy of those little plastic rectangles, and then bursting into the club. Lexa tugged her gently through the place, until they were at the bar.

Clarke would have refused to let Lexa pay for her drinks that night, because Lexa had basically paid for everything so far that weekend, but it occurred to her that this weekend was, sort of, one whole date. And sure, chivalry was kind of dumb, but Clarke knew that if she offered to pay, Lexa would refuse. The look that the brunette sent her when they ordered their drinks told her that much.

They drank enough to classify them both as tipsy before abandoning their empty glasses and making their way to the dance floor. The music was loud and random sounding, and Clarke was sure that she wouldn’t be able to recognize any of the music. It was more of a pulse than anything else, but that made it easy to dance to, and that was saying something since Clarke really never danced.

It was nice with Lexa, though, their bodies close, Lexa’s hips guiding Clarke’s movements. Clarke found herself getting lost in the noise, the dancing, and Lexa in general. Before she knew it, she was sweaty from the heat of the room and the movement, and Lexa seemed to be as well. They escaped back to the bar, barely managing to find a place to squeeze into.

Lexa ordered them a couple more drinks, and they stood there in a somewhat exhausted state as they sipped alcohol. At some point, two seats near them became available, and they quickly took them. “How’s your first clubbing experience going?” Lexa asked curiously, nudging Clarke’s foot with her own.

“Not bad,” Clarke replied, smiling. “I’m pretty sure I’ve lost weight from it, that’s for sure.”

Lexa laughed brightly, her eyes shining from either joy or alcohol or both. “Yeah, speaking of, we should probably eat something before we go to sleep tonight. The last thing we need is to be puking into the early hours of the morning and not feeling like driving back home.”

“Well, we have time,” Clarke claimed. She took another sip of her drink, glancing back out at the dance floor distractedly. She felt Lexa’s eyes stay on her.

Suddenly, a figure was standing next to both of them, a guy in probably his early twenties, with slicked back hair and a cocky smile – the kind that might piss someone off for no reason other than the fact that it was all too smug. “Hey ladies,” he greeted vaguely, before shifting his gaze specifically to Lexa. Clarke frowned as his eyes ate up the brunette. “I was going to offer to buy you a drink, but seeing as you already have one, I thought maybe we could make it a dance instead?”

Lexa laughed. “Thanks, but no thanks.” She lifted her glass up to her lips again and took a sip, her expression displaying her disinterest. It didn’t stop the guy from staring, though, and Clarke felt her frown deepen.

“Aw come on, I’m sure you’ll feel up to it in a little while. How about I pay for your next drink? Then you could repay me with a dance.” Clarke could see the pretentious grin on his face, even though he was facing more toward Lexa, and it made her want to gag.

Before Lexa could respond, Clarke leaned forward to be sure she was heard when she said, “Yeah, fat chance. Would you mind getting lost?”

He turned to look at Clarke with surprise, before glancing in between the two girls and then disappearing, clearly realizing the situation he’d gotten himself into. Clarke let out a relieved breath when he left, and took another drink before realizing that Lexa was staring at her, a smirk on her face.

“What?” Clarke asked defensively, narrowing her eyes.

Lexa grinned, setting down her glass. “Nothing.”

“Lexa…”

“I guess I just wasn’t expecting you to be the jealous type.”

Clarke huffed and crossed her arms over her chest. “I’m not.”

“Sure, babe. Keep telling yourself that.”

“Okay fine, I am. But you don’t get to judge me over it,” Clarke muttered.

“Mm, I’m not judging,” Lexa promised. “It’s kind of hot actually.” Clarke blushed now, but she kept her gaze level with Lexa’s, not allowing it to become clear how flustered that statement made her. Lexa scooted a bit forward on the barstool. “Don’t suppose you feel like dancing some more?”

“I’m definitely not opposed…”

Clarke found herself giggling as Lexa pulled her back out onto the dance floor, and when they came to an abrupt stop in the midst of the crowd, Clarke fell against the brunette, causing her to stumble. “Clarke!” Lexa exclaimed, and the blonde just laughed, steadying them and then letting her hands fall to Lexa’s waist. “Man, I need to take you to clubs more often, I think.”

“I think free parties back in Polis would be just as effective in getting me drunk and in the mood to dance with you,” Clarke teased. “Not that it takes a lot to get me in the mood for that. I quite like the feeling of your hands on me.”

“Yeah?” Lexa asked, her hands snaking around to Clarke’s lower back. “How much?”

“A lot,” Clarke replied.

“Well that’s good, because I quite like touching you,” Lexa murmured, squeezing Clarke’s ass in her hands and causing the blonde to flush. Lexa just smiled innocently. “Sorry, couldn’t resist.”

They were quiet for a few minutes after that, getting lost in the music and each other, and then the music got a bit softer and Clarke found herself letting out a content sigh. “I’m really glad we came here together, Lexa. I like it, being alone with you.”

Lexa smiled. “Me too.”

They stayed at the club for about an hour longer, before deciding around the same time that it was probably good for them to head out soon. Their intention was to find food and then go back to the hotel, but Lexa’s gaze caught on a store across the street, and she began to excitedly drag Clarke to it. “Where are we going?” Clarke asked in confusion, trying to see what stores were in the area that Lexa was looking to. Then she saw one – a record store.

“Come on, I have to buy one,” Lexa insisted.

“You’re going to be broke after this weekend,” Clarke muttered.

Lexa shrugged. “Well, it’ll have been worth it.”

The blonde found herself in a tiny store full of records, which was probably about twenty minutes away from closing for the night. Lexa was excitedly looking through the stacks and shelves, trying to find something that caught her attention enough. Clarke began to look through the music as well, not recognizing most of the albums she found. About ten minutes into the experience, though, she found one that she did recognize, and it made a smile stretch over her face. Rumours.

“Ooh, what’d you find?” Lexa asked, appearing suddenly next to her. Their arms brushed lightly, and Clarke felt herself shiver slightly.

“Rumours, Fleetwood Mac,” Clarke answered, handing the album to the brunette.

“Oh, I actually know some of these. Not all of them, though.”

Clarke smiled. “I really like their album. My mom has it at home – not a record, but she has all the songs. She’s never explicitly said it, but I think she used to listen to them all with my dad, because it seems to be the only album she really ever cares to listen to.”

Lexa was diligently reading over the song titles listed on the back of the album, and then she nodded to herself. “I’ll get it.”

“You don’t even know all the songs, you should get something that you want.”

“I want it,” Lexa insisted, her grasp tightening on the album a little as if to prove her point. “I like the songs that I do know, so I’ll probably like the rest of them just as much. Plus, I couldn’t find anything else that I really wanted very much anyway.”

“You’re actually crazy,” Clarke claimed, but when Lexa grabbed her hand and pulled her toward the register, the blonde couldn’t help but grin.

They stopped at a random food place on the way back to their hotel to order cheap burritos that they carried back to the hotel room. Once there, they each got ready for bed, showering and changing into pajamas and whatnot, before laying across the soft blankets and eating their late dinner. They talked easily and happily, and after balling up their burrito wrappers and takeout bags into a ball of trash and tossing it off toward the garbage can in the room, they both fell asleep rather unceremoniously on top of the covers.


“What’s up?” Clarke asked into the phone. It was Sunday, almost noon, and she and Lexa were on the drive back from Tampa. They’d been just talking for the past twenty minutes or so, and then Clarke’s phone had begun ringing with a call from Octavia.

“Any chance you guys feel like coming over when you’re back? We kinda have something we need to talk to you about.”

Clarke furrowed her eyebrows. “Is everything okay?”

“Yeah, fine, it’s just… it’s about Miller. He’s over at my place right now too.”

“We can definitely head over there,” Clarke insisted. ‘We’re on our way back now. Still have like forty minutes left of a drive.”

“Cool. Well, we’ll still be here when you get back, so just head on over.”

“Will do. See you soon.” The line ended, and Lexa flashed Clarke a curious look.

“What was that?”

“Apparently, there’s something about Miller that everyone apparently needs to talk to us about? Octavia wants us to go to her place when we get back.”

Lexa nodded slowly. “Alright. You wanna stop at your house first, or just wanna go straight over there?”

“Let’s just go straight over there. No point in stopping.”

“Alright. I hope everything’s okay.”

Chapter Text

Clarke pushed open the front door of the house, Lexa standing just behind her, and was slightly surprised at how quiet it was inside. “I guess they’re all upstairs,” Clarke assumed aloud, glancing around the house.

“Probably,” Lexa agreed, and she closed the door once they’d stepped in. “Guess we better not keep them waiting.”

Upstairs, they found all their friends, Miller included, in Octavia’s room, talking about something that sounded fairly insignificant. As soon as Clarke and Lexa entered the room, though, Raven turned to them with a wide grin. “Ooh, hey guys! How was your guys’ weekend?” Her tone was incredibly suggestive, but Clarke suppressed the blush that tried to creep onto her face.

“It was fine,” Clarke said, resisting the urge to smile.

Anya lifted an eyebrow. “Just fine?”

“Yep,” Lexa agreed, playing along with the blonde. “And yours?”

“Average,” Anya answered plainly. “Until today, when we got to hear a lot of juicy information from Miller, here.”

“Which is why Lexa and I are even here, right?” Clarke asked, sitting down on the rug at the same time as Lexa.

“Yeah, well… yeah,” Octavia said, biting down on her lip. She and Raven were sitting on the footboard of her bed, their legs hanging down. Miller was sitting in the desk chair, and the rest of them were seated on the floor. “I mean, it kind of has to do with… ugh, I’ll just let Miller explain everything.”

Clarke furrowed her eyebrows, looking to Miller with concern. He seemed fairly calm, so she tried not to stress out over whatever he was about to say. He took in a deep breath, only somewhat shaky. “So to start off – I’m gay.” Clarke blinked, but she found herself not so surprised after the past few weeks. “I’ve known for a long time, and actually… at the beginning of last year, I started dating Bryan. We decided to keep it secret – because I figured that my dad and my older brother wouldn’t approve, and Bryan was concerned about our friend group not accepting us.”

“You didn’t tell anybody?” Lexa asked softly, and Clarke could hear the obvious concern in her voice.

Miller shook his head. “Yeah, not my brightest idea ever. We didn’t tell anyone, and it started to get a lot harder. But when Clarke moved in, it was kind of easy again, because Finn was always with her, so Bryan and I could more easily make excuses to go hang out just the two of us. It was all pretty fine and dandy, and then Finn pulled an asshole and cheated on Clarke.”

“Ah yes, fun times,” Clarke murmured. Lexa flashed her a sympathetic look, and then they both continued to look to Miller for the rest of the story.

“So, I guess I didn’t really expect Finn to get so hysterical about it – he’s done this before. At first, I thought the reason he cared so much was because he just genuinely loved Clarke, which was what he said anyway. But then, shit hit the fan, and he found me and Bryan in a slightly compromising position a few weeks ago. He said some pretty awful stuff to us about it, and while I knew that he wasn’t necessarily the most open person of all time, I guess I thought that he might be a little more chill than he was. My first reaction was to stop hanging out with him – I have plenty of other friends who wouldn’t care, after all. Bryan, however, was all too quick to decide that being friends with the ‘cool’ people was more important, and that’s why we haven’t really been hanging out lately. We haven’t officially broken up, but I have no idea what’s happening with that.”

“Oh my god,” Clarke said softly. “That’s fucking awful.”

Raven scoffed. “And to think that you guys still won’t let me tear Finn apart limb by limb.”

“Anyway, he’d already been in kind of a bad mood before that, and he’s seemed incredibly hateful since then. At first, I didn’t really get why he couldn’t just get over the fact that you and him weren’t together anymore – it’s his own fault, after all, and he’s hooked up with other girls since. But then I found out about you and Lexa sleeping together, and Raven told me about the whole thing with him thinking that everyone here turned you gay.”

“So the conclusion is that Finn is an asshole and a homophobe?”

Lexa scowled. “Yeah, I’m pretty sure I’ve heard him call me a dyke quite a number of times, actually.”

“I just think that that’s why he’s been so much more awful about your guys’ breakup than he’s been in the past with other girls. I think he feels like you turned  gay after he cheated on you, and then suddenly two of his best friends turned gay. I don’t know, it seemed relevant to mention to you guys.”

Harper hummed thoughtfully. “I guess the fact that, two weeks after he slept with Octavia, she started dating Raven might also factor into that. Maybe he’s going through a crisis because he thinks he’s turning people gay. Oh – maybe he’s gay.”

Anya snickered. “Wouldn’t that be a plot twist.”

Clarke nodded, and then let out a long sigh. “Great. I was legitimately dating the most awful person at this school.”

“You didn’t know,” Octavia insisted with a shake of her head. “He’s a player, and you were vulnerable. It’s not your fault. Nobody assumes that you’re anything like him.”

The group was quiet for a moment, and then Clarke looked to Miller with concern. “Is Bryan really not talking to you anymore?” He shrugged weakly.

“No, he’s not, but I don’t get it. We were fine before this happened. I don’t see why he’d want to stay friends with someone so horrible rather than staying with me.”

Anya huffed, sitting up a little. “Either he’ll come around, or he’s not fucking worth it,” she insisted. “You’re a great guy, Miller, and Bryan is an idiot for not seeing that you’re worth leaving the assholes he calls friends.”

“Anya’s right,” Lexa agreed, "and no matter what happens, we have your back.”

“Thanks, guys. I really appreciate it.”


Clarke’s pen moved rhythmically against her paper, forming her thoughts into words as though it were no more difficult than breathing. Music played behind her – Dreams from Lexa’s new Rumours album – but Clarke was absorbed into her writing. Behind the music was the sound of the shower running. Were Clarke not already worn out from the afternoon, she may have abandoned her notebook in favor of hot water and Lexa’s oh so soft skin, but as it seemed, she wasn’t sure she could move.

Sure, there were probably way more productive ways to spend a Tuesday afternoon, but the rest of their friends had been otherwise occupied. Clarke wasn’t going to say no to Lexa asking her if she wanted to hang out at her place.

Since Sunday, Clarke had been feeling extremely at ease with the brunette. Despite their still undefined relationship, it was easy, and she no longer felt herself tensing with nerves every time Lexa appeared. Butterflies, sure, and Clarke actually hoped that those wouldn’t go away, but no longer was she intimidated.

That being said, they still hadn’t mentioned the fact that they were still sleeping together – and more – to any of their friends. At least, Clarke hadn’t, and she was pretty sure that Lexa hadn’t either. It was apparently some unspoken agreement between them, though she wasn’t quite sure why.

Frowning, her pen stilled against the paper, and she wondered about it. Maybe Lexa wanted to make sure it was something real before talking openly about it, since the brunette had previously opted not to get emotionally involved with anyone. Maybe she thought that their friends would react badly if the relationship hadn’t yet been defined. Clarke could think of a couple other possibilities, but most of them involved Lexa not thinking Clarke was worth it, or other depressing thoughts such as that, so she avoided thinking about them.

Her phone blinking annoyingly on next to her tore Clarke from her thoughts. She expected it to be Octavia, even though she knew that she had a project to work on with Harper, but it wasn’t. Instead, it was a group chat with her friends from New York – sans Belle, of course.

Group Message: Jordan, Rei, Kit and Clarke

Jordan – Hey, Clarke! I figured that the best way for us to catch up without being incessantly annoying was just to start a group text – we promise not to be annoying and message in it a lot. We just thought maybe we could catch up this way. :)

Clarke looked at the message curiously. What was the harm, really? Jordan was right – they wouldn’t catch up by staring at each other’s inactive Facebook profiles.

Clarke – Hey, sure! Might as well start somewhere. I’m sure I’ve missed a lot.

Rei – Honestly, you didn’t miss much other than what we talked to you about on Saturday. We’re more curious about what we missed about you?

Clarke – Ha, I don’t think you guys want to take the time to hear about all of it.

Jordan – Try us!

Clarke – Well, as you know, I had a pretty shit year, but I was dating Finn, and he helped a lot. But he went to a NYE party that I wasn’t going to go to, and when I decided that I actually would, I turned up there and found him sleeping with some other girl.

Kit – Wait, for real???

Rei – But I thought he was a good one? :(

Clarke – So did I, but yes, he cheated on me. It kinda sucked, because it turns out that he’s actually a massive fuck boy, but because I only hung out with him and his friends, I never really got to know that. But I’ve since met a group of girls who are actually really nice.

Jordan – Yeah? What are their names? What are they like?

Clarke – There’s Octavia, Raven (she goes by Rae sometimes haha), Anya, Harper and Lexa. Octavia and Raven are dating, and they’re really nice. Anya is kind of hard to read sometimes, and she’s really protective over Lexa (they’re pretty much best friends), but she’s nice. Harper is really sweet and fun. And Lexa… well, she’s great, I’ve clicked with her most.

Rei – I can’t believe you replaced me D:

Clarke – LOL

Kit – Well they sound nice. :) They patched you up after Finn then?

Clarke – Ha, yeah. I’m definitely over him. He’s actually started to be an asshole to me and my friends. I guess he never really liked them very much, and he hates that I’m friends with them now.

Clarke – Plus

Clarke looked at her second message, and cursed under her breath. She hated the way she texted when she got into a topic – her instinct had just been to go on a rant about Finn’s issue with her being into girls at all, but she wasn’t sure that she wanted to bring that up to her old friends yet.

Then again, if she got it over with now, then wouldn’t she end up saving herself lots of time and effort if they turned out to not be okay with it?

Jordan – Plus?

Clarke – Well, it’s kind of complicated..

Clarke – Lexa, the girl I’ve clicked with really well..

Clarke – We’re sort of dating, I think. Well, we’re sleeping together, but like, there are feelings involved.

Clarke – And Finn kind of sort of found out, or something, and he thinks that she and my friends turned me gay, which is ridiculous first of all, but also I’m not gay, I’m bi.

Clarke – It’s just opened up a bunch of drama I really didn’t need.

The text group was silent for a moment, and Clarke found herself getting somewhat nervous. Finally, though, she got a response.

Kit – Wow, that is drama. You never used to have any drama around you unless it had to do with Belle, lol.

Jordan – Why didn’t we know you were bi? Did you just not know before?

Clarke – Idk, I never really thought much of it until this year.

Kit – You seem to have grown a lot this year. I’m really sorry that we couldn’t really be around for it…

Clarke – It’s fine, really. I think it’s because I was forced to stretch out of my comfort zone that I’ve even gotten the chance to find myself, you know?

Rei – Well, we’re always here for you, even though you probably called us your “old friends” or “friends from New York” now. :)

Clarke – Haha, thanks Rei.

The shower suddenly turned off, and Clarke turned to glance at the bathroom door. The Rumours album was still playing, she realized, and The Chain was the song echoing through the otherwise quiet room now. Her phone buzzed with a new message, but she ignored it and locked her phone, setting it over on Lexa’s nightstand along with her notebook, which she first closed.

She was still naked, Lexa’s blankets had been lying softly over her body while Lexa was showering. Now, the blonde knew that she was going to have to get up and shower as well before having to head home. She had resolved herself not to sleep over at Lexa’s on a weekday, because she was sure that the two of them would definitely wake up late and miss half of school if she did.

Pushing the blankets off of her, Clarke stood up off of the bed in all her naked glory just as Lexa swung open the bathroom door. She was clad in a crème colored towel, and her eyebrows shot up the second she saw Clarke standing there. “Can I use your shower?” Clarke asked, blushing at Lexa’s obvious expression of desire.

Swallowing thickly, the brunette looked up to Clarke’s eyes. “Of course. I’ll just be out here – you know, trying to think as innocently as possible.” As Clarke smiled widely, walking past Lexa into the bathroom, she pressed a quick kiss to Lexa’s cheek.

“Thanks!”


“Hey, Rae, could you possibly give me a ride to Octavia’s?” Clarke asked into her phone. It was Friday night, and she’d just gotten a text from Lexa with the news that the brunette wouldn’t be able to show up at Octavia’s place until a lot later that night, which left Clarke without a way to get there.

“Oh yeah, sure. Lucky for you, I actually went home before going over there, and I was about to head out anyway. You’re gonna be ready in a couple minutes?”

“Definitely,” Clarke confirmed. “Thank you so much!”

The line ended, and Clarke let out a relieved breath. She’d been relying on Lexa for transportation lately – aside from getting to and from school, of course. There were also a lot of places in walking distance, and Clarke had actually considered buying a bike. It would definitely help her get around easier. At the same time, though, it seemed kind of dumb to buy one for just the next few months.

Raven got to her house a few minutes later, and Clarke rushed out of it, locking the door behind her, and clambered into the brunette’s car. “Hey! Thank you again, Rae, Lexa can’t show up until later, so she couldn’t give me a ride.”

“Of course,” Raven returned, flashing her a wide smile. “So, how are you? I feel like we haven’t talked as much lately – since you hung out with Lexa in Tampa last weekend, I feel like you’ve mostly been hanging out with her.”

“Yeah, I guess I have,” Clarke agreed with a frown. “Well, I’m pretty good. Back in touch with my friends from New York, though things with them are a little weird. I decided to kind of get everything out in the open with them, so I told them what happened with Finn and that I’m bi. They’re pretty relaxed about it all, but it doesn’t feel the same as it used to with them. You know?”

Raven shrugged. “I guess that makes sense. You’ve been here for a while. I think thrusting yourself into a new situation is honestly one of the easiest ways to catalyze change. It makes perfect sense that you’d feel different talking to them now. Even in just the past month and a half, you’ve changed so much – in a good way, of course. Or maybe that’s just because I only got to know you when you were in a bad place because of Finn.”

“I don’t know, I’ve definitely changed, but I wasn’t always so closed in either. This school year kind of did that to me – another consequence of having not hung out with many different people through the whole beginning of the year.”

“Well, at least you finally found us,” Raven justified with a wide smile. “Honestly, we’re all really glad to be friends with you.”

Clarke smiled softly. “Thanks, me too.”

After a short beat of silence, Raven cleared her throat and asked, “So… anything new with you and Lexa?”

“What do you mean?”

“You guys slept together, turns out that you’re bi, and now you guys are always hanging out. I’m more likely to find out what’s up with Lexa by asking you than texting her,” Raven asserted. She lifted her eyebrows somewhat suggestively. “So come on, you guys dating, or having sex, or what?”

Clarke blushed. “I don’t know.”

“You don’t know if you’re having sex? I’m pretty sure you should know that Clarke, or else something is seriously wrong…”

“I mean… I just don’t really know what’s going on, specifically,” Clarke said slowly, still avoiding the basis of the question.

“Okay fine, don’t tell me. But if you guys actually start dating or something, I expect to be the first to know.”

The blonde laughed, and with a shake of her head said, “Sure, Raven.”

“Anything new with your mom in NYC? You get to see her soon?”

“I’m going up to see her for spring break,” Clarke confirmed, smiling to herself. “I’m pretty excited. She and I have always been really close, because of me losing my dad when I was really young. And we don’t really talk with any of our extended family much – I barely even knew my uncle Marcus until I moved in with him. So it’s been really weird to not see her all the time.”

“Man, I wish I knew what that was like,” Raven murmured, before her eyes widened a little and she glanced over to Clarke. “Sorry, I don’t want to unload all my family drama history on you, though. Everyone else had to suffer through it with me when it happened.”

“I don’t mind.”

“Well, if you’re sure. Basically, my parents only got married when they realized they were pregnant with me – which is kind of depressing since it means that I was obviously an accident. They figured it would be best to get married, but ever since I was a little kid, they were always fighting or not talking. Sometimes it was almost like they were taking shifts at home to take care of me. As soon as I was old enough to not always be at home, they would either be home fighting at full scale, or off in separate places getting drunk or high or both or something,” Raven explained, shaking her head. “Anyway, it was worst in my freshman year, but that was also the year that Octavia and I started dating, so things got better. And then finally, at the beginning of sophomore year, they got a divorce. I was really pretty happy about it. My dad ended up getting the short straw, I guess, because he got stuck with me. My mom, on the other hand, is living somewhere on the west coast – Seattle maybe? Who knows? My dad works most all the time, so I never really see him. The closest thing to contact I ever have with him is the monthly adding of money into my bank account from him. Really, I should get a job so that he doesn’t have to pay for things for me, but I don’t have time with school and everything. And whether or not I get to use the car every day is pretty variable. Oh shit, sorry, I’m rambling now.”

Clarke shook her head. “Don’t worry about it, really,” she insisted. “That sounds pretty intense, though, I’m sorry.”

“It’s fine. Just kind of boggles my mind when people have really good relationships with their parents. I mean, Octavia doesn’t see hers much anymore since they travel so much now that she and Bellamy can drive. Her parents are awesome, though. Lexa’s fairly amicable with her parents, but they’re not particularly close. Anya’s parents are… alright… I guess. Harper is probably closest to her parents out of the group of us – except for you, probably – but her parents are divorced, so she sees her dad a lot less than her mom.”

Nodding slowly, the blonde tried to think of what exactly to say next, but then she realized that they were already pulling up to Octavia’s place.

“Well,” Raven continued, “this has been a nice little bonding session, Clarke.”

Clarke chuckled a little. “Always nice to have deep conversations about weird family situations.”

“Definitely.” The brunette smiled, pulling into the driveway and then shutting off her car.

Once they were inside, they made their way up to Octavia’s bedroom. No one else had gotten there yet, so Clarke immediately found herself third wheeling her two friends. They spent a good five minutes making out upon seeing each other, so Clarke sat quietly in Octavia’s desk chair, trying to find something on her phone that could distract her from her friends.

A little while later, Harper and Anya showed up simultaneously, and thus began their hangout night. It started with everyone catching up on the latest drama, which apparently wasn’t extremely plentiful. Anya was apparently crushing mildly on a girl in one of her classes, and was currently attempting to determine whether or not the girl would possibly be interested in any other girls. Although, it seemed like Anya was always crushing on somebody new. That aside, the rest of the group pretty much collectively assumed that the girl was note gay, but Anya just turned her nose up and ignored them.

That seemed to be all there really was going on, since most of the Finn drama had stopped -at least the stuff that didn’t involve Miller – until Octavia turned her drama hungry gaze toward Clarke. “So, Clarke… you and Lexa? We haven’t heard much about that lately – but you spent the whole weekend with her in Tampa last week, and every time I went to look for either of you this week, you guys were together.”

“And?”

Anya scoffed. “Ugh, let’s just start at the bottom. How was Tampa with Lexa?”

“It was nice,” Clarke answered slowly. “We went out a couple times, and went to a record store on Saturday. We also stayed in a bit and just hung out.”

“Hung out, huh?” Harper questioned, wiggling her eyebrows.

“Is that what they’re calling it these days?” Anya added.

Clarke rolled her eyes. “It was also a little weird on Saturday, because my friends from New York called me, wanting to apologize for avoiding me and stuff.”

“C’mon, Clarke, you’re avoiding the question,” Octavia whined.

“She did that to me earlier when I asked her, too,” Raven tattled, getting a glare from the blonde.

“What? I don’t want to talk about it, isn’t that allowed?”

“But it’s interesting! And honestly, I totally ship you guys together.”

Clarke’s eyebrows knit together slightly. “Really?”

“Hell yeah, you’d be a hot couple,” Octavia insisted. “Plus, it’s obvious that you guys like each other. And I’m pretty sure I’ve caught you guys holding hands and leaving obviously lingering touches.”

“Me too,” Harper agreed. “Come on, Clarke, it’s not like we’d care.”

Clarke frowned. She wasn’t quite sure of the reason that Lexa had opted to not talk about this at all, but in case they were legitimate and important – which she assumed they were – she couldn’t divulge everything on behalf of the two of them. How to say this to her friends without basically answering their question anyway, she wasn’t quite sure.

Luckily, before she had the chance to say anything, the sound of the door opening downstairs and loud voices filling the house caught all of their attention. “What the fuck?” Octavia muttered, hopping up and opening her door. The rest of them scrambled up as well and began to follow the brunette when she started downstairs. “Bellamy, what the fuck?”

“Apparently, Miller’s place is out of commission for parties right now, so we’re the party house of the night,” Bellamy replied, and as Clarke finally reached the bottom of the stairs, she realized that quite a few people were flooding into the house. One of them was in the living room, hooking an iPod up to the speakers by the TV. “You wanna help get the alcohol out, or going to leave me in charge of it?”

“We’re not having a party,” Octavia huffed out. “I hate having parties here. People always end up fucking in every room.”

“So what?” Bellamy demanded. “That’s what parties are for. Loosen up. Aren’t you all party girls anyway? I mean, I’ve at least heard that Clarke is.”

Clarke scoffed. “Who told you that?”

“Your ex-boyfriend.”

“Oh god, please tell me that Finn isn’t going to be here,” Raven pleaded to Bellamy, who shrugged.

“It’s a party. Anyone who shows up, shows up,” he stated. “At least have some fun, guys.” Before any of them could argue any further, Bellamy was disappearing into the kitchen.

“Well, better make sure he doesn’t break anything,” Octavia muttered, pushing her way after him.

Raven frowned. “Great. I hate having parties here, because Octavia gets all responsible, and it totally crushes the partying spirit.”

“Why are you complaining?” Anya asked. “You’re getting laid tonight either way.”

“That’s… true. You’re right. No reason to complain.”

“Gross,” Harper teased, shaking her head. “Guess we may as well go teenager-proof the upstairs.”

“Are you kidding?” Anya demanded. “I’m getting a drink.”

Raven nodded. “Same!” The two of them disappeared, and Harper looked to Clarke.

“I’ll help you,” the blonde said lightly, and the other girl gave her a grateful smile. They started back up the stairs, and Clarke began to follow the other girl’s actions – putting any obviously breakable things into cupboards, and purposefully closing all of the doors – as though that would stop anyone from going into them.

Afterwards, Clarke found herself in the kitchen, distracting herself on her phone while people bustled in and out to grab drinks. “Hey there, sexy,” a voice slurred suddenly, causing Clarke to look with confusion at the guy who had just spoken. She didn’t recognize him, but whoever he was, he was definitely already very drunk. Probably, he’d spent the afternoon pregaming.

“I know you’re not talking to me,” she bit back, standing her ground.

“Aw, you don’t want something to drink?”

“No, actually. And I’m pretty sure that you don’t need anymore.”

The guy scowled at her disinterest and turned away, disappearing out of the kitchen. Clarke couldn’t get herself into the mood to party – she felt kind of like she was waiting for Lexa to show up, actually. At least then, she’d have an anchor. Right now, she wasn’t sure where any of her friends were.

“Clarke!” Anya exclaimed suddenly. “Shots!”

Despite not really being in the partying mood, Clarke gave in when she realized that all her friends had just come into the kitchen for shots. She took down two, enjoying the buzz they gave her, but she stuck to the kitchen when the rest of them went back out into the bustle of the party.

Probably about an hour into the party, another person approached her, only this time, it was Finn. Her initial instinct was to duck away, but she was leaning on the kitchen counter, and there wasn’t an easy out. Instead, she dullened her expression as he walked up. “Hey, Clarke. Enjoying the party?”

“Not particularly.”

“Why haven’t you left then?”

She shrugged. “No ride, first of all, and second of all, this was kind of where I was supposed to spend my night, it just so happened that Bellamy had other plans for this place.”

“You been spending lots of nights here?”

Clarke tried not to jump to being defensive. “Well, I am friends with Octavia, and we all hang out here a lot.” He nodded slowly. “What do you want, Finn?”

“Nothing. You were just over here alone, and I was concerned.”

“I don’t need you to be concerned about me.”

“Believe me, Clarke, I know that. But I care about you, and I can’t help that I need to make sure you’re okay,” Finn insisted.

“You didn’t care much about that a couple of weeks ago, did you?” Clarke bit out, before catching her tongue between her teeth to keep herself from starting a fight. “Ugh, I just… I’m not happy with you, Finn. You were awful to me, and now…”

“Now?”

Clarke swallowed thickly. “All the shit between you and Miller… it’s pretty awful, you know?”

“He told you about that?”

“Of course he did,” Clarke answered. “I honestly never thought that you could be so closed minded and judgmental. But I’m glad that you cheated on me and ended what we had before I could find out what an awful person I was wasting time with for so long.”

“Clarke, you don’t understand… it’s complicated, with Miller and Bryan.”

“How is it complicated?” Clarke demanded. “It’s not, Finn. You can’t accept people for who they are – you’ve proven this to me already by calling my friends dykes. I don’t know what your issue is with queer people, but you’d honestly do best to start erasing it. We live in the twenty-first century, now.”

“I don’t have a problem with people who are gay. I just…”

“Just what?” Clarke demanded. “Don’t want to be friends with them? Want to bully them into feeling bad about themselves? What would you do if I told you that I’m bisexual?”

“You’re not,” Finn said quickly. “Just because you’re friends with gay people doesn’t make you gay.”

Clarke nodded. “You’re right, it doesn’t. But I was bisexual before I met them, before I met you. It’s not that weird of a thing…” Finn gazed at her weirdly for a moment, before shaking his head firmly, a rather distressed look appearing over his face, and turning to stumble away.

After that conversation, Clarke needed two more shots.

That was when she got a text from Lexa.

Lexa – WTF is going on at O’s place??

Clarke – Oh ya, Bell apparently made this the party place… save me O.O I just had the weirdest run in with Finn.

Just a few minutes later, Lexa was walking into the kitchen, and blue eyes immediately fell on her form. It didn’t take long for Lexa to notice her and approach her. “Hey,” Lexa said, still seeming confused about their surroundings. “So what, Bellamy just decided to throw an impromptu party?”

“Apparently Miller is currently, and unsurprisingly, not hosting parties right now,” Clarke replied.

Lexa hummed in understanding. “I see you’ve been drinking.”

“How can you possibly see that? I’m perfectly coherent.”

“Yes, but your eyes are already kind of glassy,” Lexa insisted with a chuckle.

“Okay yeah, well, you should catch up then. Four shots.” Clarke pushed herself away from the counter, nodding to the island covered in alcohol. Lexa rolled her eyes, but relented and took down four shots in a row.

“Happy?”

Clarke grinned. “Yes.”

Now that Lexa was here, Clarke found herself in a bit more of a party mood. They ended up in Octavia’s living room, half dancing and half just standing and laughing awkwardly. Neither of them were drunk enough to actually feel like dancing among all of these teenagers. It was definitely a different vibe than a club.

By the time they returned to the kitchen for another drink or two, some people had procured a joint or two, as well as normal cigarettes, and the room was beginning to fill with disgusting smoke. “Ugh,” Clarke muttered, waving her hand in front of her face as she approached the alcohol. “Gross.”

“You get used to the smell after a while,” Lexa said, grabbing two red solo cups and beginning to mix things together for the two of them.

“Ugh, I hope so. I hate the smell.”

“Guess you don’t smoke then?”

“No, it’s definitely never been something that I’ve been inclined to try. I’d like to be able to breathe when I’m sixty.”

Lexa chuckled. “I tried it once – well, tried a cigarette once and a joint another time. I didn’t really see the hype, honestly. And I only did it because I was in the just-been-cheated-on mood.”

“Mm, I don’t think I’d ever want to try it.”

“I definitely don’t blame you.” She handed one of the cups to the blonde. “Come on, let’s go find our friends and make sure they haven’t died.”

As they walked back out into the living room, they heard someone exclaim, “Spin the bottle!”

“Oh god, are they serious?” Clarke muttered to Lexa, who shrugged. Suddenly, a huge area in the middle of the living room was empty, and a bunch of people began to settle on the floor in a circle. Anya and Harper were among them, as well as Bellamy and Finn, and quite a few other people. Clarke finally saw Octavia and Raven, both of them standing aside and looking at the forming circle with slight disgust.

“Lexa!” Anya exclaimed, apparently having noticed her and Clarke. “Come play!”

“Oh no, I’m good,” Lexa called back.

Harper frowned. “No, Lexa, Clarke, come play! Come on! It’s fun!” Clarke looked at Lexa with skepticism.

“I guess you can always drink if you don’t wanna kiss someone,” Lexa said with a shrug. “I’ll go if you go.”

Somehow, that ended them up seated in the circle next to Anya and Raven. Clarke was glad that her drink was brand new and very full, because she had a feeling she would be doing a lot of drinking to get out of kissing these random people.

The random guy who had suggested the game started, kissing some other random girl across the circle. Clarke find herself zoning out slightly, laughing when other people laughed and sipping her drink every now and then. She was sure that she was leaning into Lexa a bit obviously, but the shots from earlier were definitely kicking in by now, and she couldn’t quite help it.

The first person to land the bottle on her was Bellamy, and he looked way too excited until Clarke lifted her cup to her lips and downed a large gulp, getting her out of the kiss. “Really? You’re no fun, Clarke.”

“Sorry not sorry,” she said with a thin smile, before realizing that she had to spin the bottle now. Leaning forward, she narrowly avoided spilling her drink by mistake, and then spun the bottle. It landed somewhat anticlimactically on Anya, who smirked and turned to Clarke.

“You going to drink on me too, Clarke?”

Clarke scoffed. “I’m surprised you’re not drinking. Aren’t you scared that Lexa is going to murder you later or something?”

Lexa raised an eyebrow at the two of them, and Harper leaned over and mumbled something to her – probably an explanation of the group of them interrogating Clarke about their relationship earlier. Now that she’d been faced with a challenge, Clarke found herself leaning forward and pecking Anya on the lips. It was a ghost of a kiss, so she didn’t quite care.

Anya kissed some guy across the circle, whose turn resulted in the bottle facing Lexa. Lexa drank immediately, using the justification that she was too gay to kiss any guys, and then spun the bottle. Clarke’s breath caught in her throat when it ended up pointing directly to her, and her gaze slowly shifted over to Lexa’s.

The brunette didn’t even hesitate before closing the distance between them with a kiss. It took major self-control on Clarke’s part to keep from sliding her tongue in between Lexa’s lips, but the kiss still lasted a bit too long for spin the bottle. When they finally pulled apart, Clarke’s face was red from alcohol and the kiss, and she ended up drinking when she spun a random for her turn. Then, when she realized that Finn’s judging gaze was glued to her now, she excused herself from the circle and wandered off to the kitchen. She felt Lexa’s concerned gaze on her, but the brunette didn’t follow.

“Hey, Clarke!” Raven exclaimed when the blonde entered the kitchen. “Saw your oh-so platonic kiss with Lexa.”

“I’m too drunk to deal with your sarcasm,” Clarke murmured, grabbing a shot glass and filling it up with tequila. Scanning over the island, she easily located the salt shaker and some untouched limes. She sprinkled the salt over the curve between her thumb and forefinger, and then took the shot, licked up, and sucked the lime juice from the little slice.

“You do that so quickly that it makes me wonder how many of them you’ve done before,” Octavia stated, chuckling. “You okay?”

“Yeah, just bothered by Finn.”

“Oh shit, speak of the devil.”

Finn came into the kitchen, looking pointedly at Clarke. “So you are fucking Lexa?”

“Excuse me?”

“Don’t try to cover it up – you were close to starting a make out session with her a second ago,” Finn snapped. “You’re fucking her?”

“So fucking what if I am, Finn?” Clarke demanded. “It sure as hell doesn’t affect you. You need to get over yourself. You’re not the center of the fucking universe.”

“No, but I get the feeling that Lexa has quickly become the center of yours, and I think that’s bullshit. Whether you’re bi or not – you get all pissed at me for sleeping with lots of girls, but she does the same exact fucking thing! What makes her so much better than me, huh?”

“Maybe because unlike you, she doesn’t cheat on girls and take advantage of them,” Clarke snapped. Finn took a large step closer to the blonde, causing her to stumble back in slight surprise, but before he could say anything, a figure came between them.

Raven’s hands landed on Finn’s shoulders firmly, shoving him back. “Get the fuck out of this house, Finn.”

“You can’t tell me what to do, bitch!”

Octavia was standing next to Clarke now. “Get out, this is my house, and you’re currently unwelcome. So you’re trespassing. Get out.”

“Yeah, and I’m sure you’ll call the cops and get everyone here arrested just to get me out, right?”

Lexa walked into the kitchen just as Raven was growling, “Maybe not, but I’m definitely not opposed to knocking you out and dragging you across the fucking concrete over to your place.”

“You guys are all fucking crazy,” Finn spat, turning around and nearly running into Lexa. “She’s a good fuck, yeah? Once you’re done with her, I guess she’ll finally see that you and I aren’t so different after all.”

“Aren’t so different?” Lexa asked. “Please. You just described a person as a good fuck. Already, I see a major difference between us. And you know what, if you ever describe Clarke that way again, we’ll add another difference in that you’ll have an extremely disfigured face, and I’ll still be hot as hell.”

“Fuck you!”

“Ciao!” Lexa chimed, stepping aside and gesturing to the door. Finn stomped out of the kitchen, and Clarke let out a breath she hadn’t realized she’d been holding.

“Man, right when I thought he was actually chilling out.”

Octavia sighed. “You wanna leave or something?” Clarke shook her head, but said nothing. They all stood in an awkward silence for a moment, and then Lexa took a step forward.

“You and Rae can go back to the party,” she said to Octavia. Octavia and Raven exchanged looks, and then looked to Clarke with soft smiles, before disappearing from the kitchen. Due to the spin the bottle game, the kitchen was now empty other than Clarke and Lexa. “You feel like partying anymore?”

“Not particularly.”

“Come on, let’s go kick some people out of the guest bedroom and we can hide in there until everyone’s gone.”

Clarke smiled a small smile, reaching out to grab Lexa’s hand. “You’re way too good to me,” Clarke murmured as they started out of the kitchen.

“That’s the goal,” Lexa teased. “Come on, beautiful.”

Chapter Text

Clarke stared up at the ceiling, lost in pattern of paint over the drywall. Lexa had gone to get water from downstairs, but she’d been gone for a couple of minutes, and Clarke felt like the alcohol in her system was seconds from pulling her into sleep. She felt stupid. Why had she trusted that Finn must’ve somehow calmed down just because he had been slightly less of a nuisance to her lately? He was still being an asshole to her friends and Miller and, as it was now apparent, to her. How had she assumed that he could change?

“Fuck,” she hissed, dropping her gaze as her eyes squeezed shut, tears leaking from them instantly. Her hands grabbed for the edge of the blanket settled next to her feet, and she pulled it up over her lap. She couldn’t fall asleep just yet – she was still sitting upright, after all, and she wanted to wait for Lexa to come back up. That said, the blanket was comfortable, and it couldn’t possibly cause her to become more exhausted than she was already.

Finally, the door opened again, and Clarke slowly opened her eyes to meet Lexa’s gaze. The brunette had two water bottles and a bag of chips with her. “I thought you might want to eat something, too,” Lexa reasoned, coming over to the bed and sitting at the other end of it. “You wanna talk about Finn?”

“Fuck no,” Clarke muttered. “I’m so done with him. I want to pretend like he doesn’t exist for the rest of time – I don’t want to talk to him, talk about him, be around him… fuck him, I hate him.”

Lexa let out a light breath. “I think he’s just butthurt, because he knows that he lost the best thing he could have ever possibly had by being an idiot.”

In her drunken state, it actually took Clarke a moment to realize that Lexa was talking about her, and then she blushed a little. “Shut up,” she murmured quietly. Lexa smiled, handing one of the water bottles to the blonde, who took it gratefully. After downing a good quarter of its contents, she held the bottle in her lap and stared at it for a moment. Gathering courage, she looked up at the brunette. “Thank you, Lexa.”

“Of course,” Lexa replied nonchalantly.

“No, I mean for before,” Clarke corrected, “in the kitchen. I need to thank Raven and Octavia, too, but thank you.”

Lexa’s lips spread into a soft smile. “You don’t need to thank me. You deserve a lot better than that asshole – and you definitely deserve better than to be talked about like he was talking about you.”

Clarke smiled, pink color spreading through her cheeks a bit. “You know, I never made a New Year’s resolution – do you think it’s too late to make one?”

“Since the whole concept is just about changing something negative into something positive, I’m pretty sure it’s never too late,” Lexa reasoned, setting aside her water bottle and leaning a little forward as she tilted her head. “So what’s yours going to be?”

“I think I’d like to stop living in the past,” Clarke stated firmly. “I want to stop living like a zombie – like my life is over because I don’t live in the same place I’ve been all my life. I want to get over shit that happened in the past faster, and I want to move on from it and find better things to focus on.”

“Sounds like a good resolution to me.”

“What was yours?”

Lexa smiled. “Actually, I forgot to make one too – and that’s definitely your fault, Miss ‘I just got cheated on so let me just take a few shots and then start storming off along the beach without a plan.’”

“You must be drunk, Lexa, because that was so not on par with your usual quips,” Clarke said pointedly, turning her nose up a bit.

“Maybe a little. Anyway. I guess my resolution ended up being what you told me to do – to not count out all people just because of what Haley did to me.”

Clarke hummed thoughtfully. “So how’s that working for you?”

“Surprisingly well, actually.” Lexa was closer now, but Clarke wasn’t sure if that was the brunette’s doing or her own. Her water bottle had somehow fallen aside, and the bag of chips that Lexa had brought up must have fallen onto the floor, but neither of them noticed. They were too close in proximity now.

Clarke’s gaze lowered, focusing in on Lexa’s lips. They pressed together for a moment, and Clarke knew that the brunette was waiting for her to close the distance between them. The music from downstairs was still pulsing through the floor and the walls, intensifying the haze in Clarke’s mind that stemmed from the alcohol. Her heart pounded against her chest wildly when she finally brought her hand up to the back of Lexa’s neck, pulling their lips together desperately.


The feeling of gentle fingers threading through slightly tangled hair is what woke Clarke up the following morning. It took her a moment to realize where she was – the guest bedroom of Octavia’s house – but she knew without a doubt who she was with. When her eyes flickered open, she was met with a scene that was so perfect it caused her heart to palpitate a bit more than it normally did around Lexa. A beautiful, sleepy face hovered above her, curious green eyes absorbing the glow that must’ve been reflected off of her body thanks to the sun streaming in from the east windows. Clarke loved this room because of the windows.

Brown curls draped around Lexa’s face, some strands loosely clinging to her shoulder and others brushing Clarke’s bare skin. A soft smile radiated adoration down at Clarke, and yes, Lexa’s fingers were playing with her hair.

“Morning,” Clarke mumbled, unable to fight a smile from creeping onto her face. “When did we go to sleep?”

“Beats me,” Lexa admitted. “I’ve been up a little while, though. And it’s because of you that all our friends are going to die of starvation.”

“It’s not my fault that they require you to make food for them to stay alive.” Clarke let her eyes flicker closed again, and she rolled toward Lexa, their bodies colliding abruptly. Lexa chuckled as Clarke hummed contently and buried her face in between Lexa’s boobs. “Gonna go back to sleep…”

“No,” Lexa argued, still chuckling. “Come on Clarke, I have to get up and make sure that all the strays are out of the house.”

“Why?” Clarke whined. “It’s not your house – it wasn’t your party.”

“Because I’m a good friend.”

“But… you could’ve done that when you woke up, why did you have to wait to ruin my morning?” Clarke whined, peeking up at Lexa and hoping that this excuse would keep Lexa next to her.

The green eyed goddess just smiled at her, though. “I didn’t want you to wake up without me, that’s why,” she asserted. “Now let me get up, babe.”

“Fine,” Clarke huffed. She rolled away abruptly, grabbing at the blankets and pulling them up and over her head. The sound of Lexa laughing again was like music as the brunette’s weight disappeared from the bed.

“Feel free to join me downstairs whenever you’re ready,” Lexa chimed cheerily a few moments later – presumably after she’d gotten dressed. When the door closed lightly, Clarke dropped the blanket, which fell lightly over her bare body. She smelled like sex, though the smell didn’t catch her off guard. In fact, all it really did was concern her – because Lexa definitely smelled like it as well, and wouldn’t their friends notice?

Deciding to be the responsible one, Clarke clambered out of bed and into the bathroom.

Twenty minutes later, she was downstairs, showered and dressed and quite a bit more awake. She found the house in quite a bit of disorder, but she bypassed the mess in order to check that Lexa had in fact cleared out any stragglers. Finding no one lurking around, she happily made her way to the kitchen, where she was surprised to find that Harper was also awake.

“Good morning,” she said happily to Harper and Lexa.

Lexa quirked up an amused eyebrow. “Someone is far more awake and cheerful than twenty minutes ago.”

“It’ll only last if you give me food,” Clarke tossed back with a cheeky grin.

Lexa shook her head in mock disbelief. “Keep on using me, why don’t you?”

Harper laughed, drawing Clarke’s blue gaze. The blonde felt bad for a moment – she’d nearly forgotten that Harper was there. “Morning, Harper,” she said with a smile.

“Hey,” Harper replied. “I heard about what happened with Finn last night. Sorry about that.”

Clarke shrugged. “Thanks, it’s fine. I’m trying this new thing I like to call not giving a single fuck about Finn or what he says to me.”

“Well, that’s definitely a way to go about it,” Harper reasoned with a nod. “He left not long after you went upstairs. If you ask me, he was only here to get a rise out of you anyway.”

“Well, fuck him.”

“No thanks,” Harper joked back with a look of disgust on her face that made Clarke laugh. The room quieted at that, and Clarke found her gaze shifting back to Lexa, who was silently making eggs in a frying pan on the fancy stove. She was wearing different clothes than the previous day, which made Clarke wonder if the brunette just had extra clothes of her own at Octavia’s house. She honestly wouldn’t be surprised. Either way, Lexa was now wearing short shorts and a tight fitting, black tank top. The view was definitely rather enjoyable.

“What’s up bitches?” Octavia’s voice called out a few moments later, though the end of her question was cut off by the yawn that crawled out from her throat. “Shit, I’m tired.”

“Food?” Raven mumbled as the two of them stumbled into the room.

“I’m on it,” Lexa said, as though it weren’t already obvious.

“Where’s An?” Harper wondered aloud.

“She’s – “

“Here,” Anya called out suddenly, nearly tripping as she came around the corner into the kitchen. “Ah – and someone else is here, so.” Behind her walked in a guy that Clarke recognized vaguely as Lincoln. She’d seen him around, and she knew that her new friend group knew him. However, by the fact that he was currently shirtless, and Anya’s face was bright red, it was easy to deduce that they must have slept together.

“Well hello, Lincoln,” Lexa said with amusement, looking at Anya with a grin. “Will you be having eggs as well?”

“That would be awesome, thanks, Lexa,” Lincoln replied, seemingly unaware of Anya’s beat red face. Octavia smirked, making eye contact with Raven, Harper, and then Clarke, at which point she wiggled her eyebrows.

“So looks like at least three of us got some last night,” Octavia stated. “Clarke – do you make it four, or five?”

“Sorry, it’s still kind of early, but what I think you’re not so subtly asking me is whether or not I slept with anyone last night, and if I did, was it Lexa?”

Octavia grinned. “You’re awfully adept in the morning. Lexa must be rubbing off on you – in more ways than one, I mean.”

“You’re ridiculous, Octavia,” Clarke stated, refusing to answer the question.

Raven snickered. “By avoiding the question, Clarke, you make the answer pretty obvious.”

“Alright,” Lexa interrupted, saving the blonde, “eggs are ready. Who wants some?”

“Me!” another voice called from the entrance to the kitchen, causing them all to turn and look at Bellamy. He was stretching his arms over his head tiredly.

“You don’t get any,” Octavia declared, “because it’s your fucking fault that the whole house is trashed right now. Speaking of – you better be planning on cleaning this shit up, and soon. Mom and dad are going to be back tonight, and they’re staying through next Friday.”

“Wait, what?” Bellamy asked in surprise.

“Yeah, they texted about an hour ago,” Octavia confirmed. “So I’d suggest you start cleaning, you ass.”

Despite Octavia’s insistence that Bellamy do all of the work, when the group had finished eating, they all pitched in to clean the house. Then Harper and Clarke ran back through the whole place, returning the fragile things they’d stored the night before to their proper locations. Only an hour later, the whole house looked just as impressively clean and neat as it had twelve hours earlier.

“So, can we stay and hang out with Aurora and Louis, or do they want to have a family night?” Raven asked, once they had all sprawled across the living room lazily, Bellamy and Lincoln included.

“You’re crazy, Rae, you know that they basically consider you family.”

“What about the rest of us?” Harper asked excitedly. “I love your mom.”

“You can all stay,” Octavia insisted.

Bellamy rolled his eyes. “Sure, we’ll share our parents with all of you, no problem.”

Raven scoffed. “You’re such a spoiled brat, Bell, some of us have a lot less than you.”

“Whatever,” the guy muttered, standing up. “See you guys tonight.” He exited the living room, heading up to his room.

Octavia sighed. “Sorry about him. He’s just still butthurt because I’m the better twin.”


Clarke would have stayed to meet Octavia’s parents – considering that all of her friends and Lexa were staying – but she ended up opting to go home instead. That way, she could call her mom, have dinner in with Marcus, and possibly talk to her friends in New York for a little bit. Then, she would probably stay up late and write.

It was when the little hand of the clock was reaching the two that she finished writing for the night, and what she had written terrified her more than most things that she wrote. Just a handful of words, after a disorganized page or two of ramblings about the party. A few words, but enough to shake her insides and raise a plethora of insecurities.

She wrote: I think I’m falling in love with her.


Clarke pulled on the sleeves of her flannel, which was tied around her waist, as she started her walk home from school on Tuesday. The previous two days had been rather dull, with Lexa having been busy with homework – since she hadn’t gotten any done on Saturday – and Octavia and Raven enjoying family time with the Blake household. Clarke was actually hoping to meet her friend’s parents before they left on Friday, but she wasn’t sure how or when to do so.

It was actually pretty depressing that Monday had been so bland – because Monday was Valentine’s Day. Clarke had been hoping to do something with Lexa that day, though whatever relationship was between them was still undefined, but again, she was busy. Clarke didn’t mention it to the brunette, though, and spent her Valentine’s Day as she had previous years – writing in her bedroom about the perfect love she wanted in her life.

Her Tuesday was looking to be just as mundane, until two hands suddenly grabbed her waist while she walked, causing her to jump a little in surprise. Her instinct was to tug away, but she recognized the arms that were tightening around her midsection possessively. “Hey,” Lexa’s voice murmured quietly. “Did I scare you?”

Clarke laughed lightly. “A little. What’s up?”

“The sky?” Lexa posed questioningly, before chuckling and releasing the blonde, coming around to the front of her. “You wanna go to the beach?”

“You’re not busy cramming for another test or anything?”

“Nope – go to the beach with me? Please? I missed you yesterday.”

Clarke gave the brunette a mischievous look. “What will I get in return?”

“You’re so damn greedy,” Lexa teased, lifting her hands and gently pushing Clarke’s hair out of her face. “How about ice cream? We can stop by the place that’s near the beach. Come on, pretty please? With a cherry on top?”

“If it’s your cherry, maybe,” Clarke replied suggestively, causing Lexa’s jaw to drop in surprise.

“Okay, babe, you are going to have to stop taking smoothness tips from me, because you’re going to give me a heart attack if you say something else like that again,” Lexa insisted, her cheeks red.

Clarke smirked. “Can’t handle a taste of your own medicine?”

“I can handle anything, beautiful,” Lexa claimed cockily. “Come on, let’s go.”

“Fine, but I do want the ice cream.”

“Wouldn’t have it any other way.”

Fifteen minutes later found them both with ice cream cones in their hands, walking down from the little shop toward the beach.

“So,” Lexa said, breaking the silence, “just because I’m curious… where did you apply to college?”

“Probably fewer places than I should have,” Clarke replied with a chuckle. “University of Florida, because of in state tuition. I also applied to NYU, and a couple of State University of New York schools. Realistically, I’ll get into one of them and end up going wherever that is, but I probably should have applied to more places.”

Lexa shrugged. “I only applied to a few places, too. University of Tampa, University of Miami. All of us applied to University of Florida, though. That’s where we’re all pretty much hoping to go.” Lexa smiled somewhat slyly at the blonde. “Maybe you’ll end up there with us, too?”

Clarke laughed. To be honest, she hadn’t thought much about what she’d do after high school, especially not once she’d submitted her college applications. In fact, after New Year’s Eve, college had pretty much been set to the last thought on her mind. Now, though, she was extremely glad that she’d applied to University of Florida. Based on all of her grades and test scores, she was pretty likely to get in. If she did, and her friends did as well, she had a feeling that that was where she would be going. “I’d like that.”

“They’re starting to send out decisions,” Lexa explained, “which was really the reason I asked. Harper got hers yesterday, but we all have a pact to wait until we all have our letters to look. You wanna join that pact?”

“Sure, why not?” Clarke agreed. She licked her ice cream as they finally made it down onto the sand. They’d left their things and their shoes in Lexa’s car, so Clarke’s feet buried themselves happily into the course, yet strangely smooth, sand covering the beach. “I think the best part about Florida is the beach.”

“You have beaches up in New York,” Lexa teased, and the blonde snickered.

“Yeah, it’s not the same.”

“Yeah, duh, Florida and California are hard to beat in terms of beaches,” Lexa replied. She was nearly done with her ice cream, but Clarke still had a way to go on hers. “It’s hard to get tired of it, though I did live in Chicago for most of my childhood, so it’s not like I’ve been here my whole life. You wanna get in the water?”

“When I finish my ice cream, sure,” Clarke agreed. It only took a few minutes of them not talking for both of them to be done with their ice cream, at which point they tore off their outer clothing and tossed it in the emptiest part of the beach that they could find. Then they began wading into the water.

“So,” Lexa started, “Octavia wanted me to ask you if you wanted to come over to her place on Friday for dinner with her parents. They had the pleasure of hearing about you from all of us last weekend and they wanna meet you.”

“Oh yeah, of course,” Clarke agreed.

“Cool. They’re basically parents to all of us, at least when they’re around,” Lexa said with a light chuckle. “Especially for Raven.”

Clarke hummed thoughtfully. “Yeah, they sound like it.”

“Did you make official plans to see your mom in March?” Lexa wondered, and Clarke felt herself smiling at the mention of her mom.

“Yeah, we decided I’m just going to go up to New York for most of spring break. I’m not sure of the exact days I’ll be there, though,” Clarke commented. “But, I will be back for your birthday.”

Lexa lifted an eyebrow, though the smile that tugged at her lips was proof that that news pleased her. “Well, I guess that’s a reason to look forward to my birthday then.” They were now more than waist deep into the salty water, and Clarke sighed happily. The water was fairly warm, surprisingly. “What are you smiling about?”

“Why shouldn’t I be smiling?”

“Hm, you make a valid point. But I’m definitely not complaining. You have a beautiful smile,” Lexa said with a cheeky grin, winking at Clarke.

Clarke laughed at the compliment, cheeks tinting pink. “Well, thanks. Yours isn’t so bad either. You’re a total dork, though.”

Lexa waded through the water toward Clarke, who stood her ground, her toes wiggling in the mushy sand that covered the shallow ground. “Yeah?”

“Yes.”

“Well, I take pride in being a dork, so don’t hate,” Lexa insisted, stopping when she was just inches away from their torsos and chests touching. “Plus, I’m pretty sure that you called me cool a few weeks ago.”

“You’re a cool dork then, weirdo,” Clarke huffed out. Green eyes seemed to glisten with happiness as they stared into Clarke’s, and the blonde felt her face heat up. “Why are you looking at me like that?”

“Like what?” Lexa asked with a grin, closing the distance between them slowly, her arms snaking around Clarke’s waist and holding her tightly against her front. “Like this?” She continued to stare into Clarke’s eyes, and though it made the blonde slightly self-conscious, she could not force herself to look away. Those green eyes were like magnets, and they held Clarke’s gaze in a vice grip.

“Yes like that,” Clarke murmured, acutely aware of the extremely close proximity in between their lips. “Your eyes are so pretty.”

Lexa crinkled her nose a little as she grinned even wider. “Mm?”

“Don’t act like you don’t know – you’re cocky as fuck,” Clarke teased. Every cell in her body seemed to be vibrating all of the sudden, and she just needed to lean in and kiss Lexa, feel her everywhere, but she held herself back from doing so. She wanted Lexa to do it, because yes, Clarke was prideful and she wouldn’t let Lexa’s fancy seduction skills work on her. Though, she knew that they really already had.

“You like it, though,” Lexa said confidently, arching her eyebrow as though challenging Clarke to oppose the comment.

Clarke huffed. “No, it’s awful.”

“Then how come every time you complain about it, your pupils get bigger?” Lexa asked, wiggling her eyebrows again. Clarke flushed, having not realized this herself. “See, your beautiful blues give you away on a regular basis, babe.”

“Oh shut up,” Clarke mumbled, pulling her head back slightly in hopes that it would get the brunette to lean closer. Lexa held her ground, though.

“Just admit that it turns you on,” Lexa practically purred, her fingers splaying across Clarke’s lower back, scraping gently over the exposed skin under the water.

“No.”

Lexa leaned just a bit forward. “No?”

“Nope. It doesn’t.”

“You are entirely too stubborn,” Lexa accused lightly, her hands sliding down now, fingers poking under the back of Clarke’s bikini bottoms. The blonde’s heart rate picked up to an incredible speed, and she swallowed thickly, trying to avoid focusing on the teasing touch.

“Yes, that is one of my most defining qualities.”

Lexa bit down on her lower lip, her gaze flitting down for a split second to Clarke’s lips. “Ugh.”

“What? You want me to be like other girls you’ve been with and give you what you want without making you work for it?” Clarke asked, lifting her eyebrows, keeping her face in an expression of mock seriousness.

Lexa sucked her bottom lip into her mouth for a moment, and then let out a sigh that sounded surprisingly like she was giving in. “I guess the difference is that I will gladly work for it with you,” Lexa murmured, before closing the distance abruptly. As soon as their lips were connected, Clarke gladly leaned into it. Her lips moved against Lexa’s at intense speeds, desperate for the feeling. Lexa groaned, her hands sliding down under Clarke’s bikini bottoms and squeezing her ass suddenly. Clarke’s entire body jolted at the feeling, and her center pushed forward, wanting to be closer to Lexa’s.

The kiss ended far earlier than Clarke would have liked, but they both knew that nothing could happen while they were chest deep in the ocean water, in view of other people nearby. Clarke heard herself giggle when she saw Lexa’s face as they pulled apart, looking entirely happy but somewhat bashful about what she had said previous to the kiss. “So adorable.”

“Shut up.”

They found themselves on the sand a little while later, talking and looking out at the ocean as the waves lapped up onto the sand and then receded with urgency.

“I’ve always thought about getting some sort of piercing other than my boring earlobe piercings,” Lexa was saying, and Clarke was mildly distracted by the fact that Lexa’s hand was resting over hers, her thumb stroking the back of it softly. “But I don’t think I’m up for getting on my face. I feel like it would bother me a lot, that I wouldn’t get used to it.”

“What about other ear piercings?” Clarke asked, looking away from the water and reaching up to Lexa’s face, pushing her hair behind her ear and then gently pinching the top of it. “Like here?”

“I’ve thought about it. I guess I just haven’t been brave enough to go and get it done. I’d wanna go into Tampa. If anyone here does piercings, I don’t think I trust them enough.”

Clarke chuckled. “I’ll go with you,” she volunteered, “and I’ll supply the rest of your bravery.”

“You should get one too,” Lexa suggested with a devilish smile. “They’re hot – you’d look good with one.”

“I’m not sure I would.”

“You would. Come on – make it your birthday present to me in March!”

Clarke laughed incredulously. “You want me to get a piercing on my ear for your birthday?”

“Hell yeah. We can go together,” Lexa suggested with a grin. Clarke just stared at her for a moment, tilting her head a little.

“I’ll… think about it.”

“Good enough for me.” They both looked to the ocean again, and the air between them was suddenly silent. Not the kind of silent that made it easy to think, though, but the kind that was a barrier to something else, like one of them had something they wanted to say. Keeping her eyes on the water, Clarke turned her hand upside down next to her, and Lexa’s fingers instinctively intertwined with her own. The squeeze that Clarke gave the brunette’s fingers was meant to be encouragement – to get Lexa to say what she was thinking.

It worked, because the brunette was suddenly letting out a quiet sigh. “Can I tell you something?”

“Of course.”

“I’ve… never…” Her voice fell to a whisper. “I’ve never really felt this comfortable with anyone… like, ever… I mean – not as comfortable as I feel with you. I don’t know how you do it to me, but when I’m around you, it’s like nothing else matters.”

Clarke felt her heart swell.

“I just thought you should know that… and also – can I take you out to dinner? Now? Octavia already stole Friday night, and I’m pretty sure there’s going to be some other reason for Saturday to be unavailable, and we’re already together right now. Plus, yesterday was Valentine’s day, and usually on Valentine’s Day I kind of shut myself in, because everyone else always seems to have plans and things to do, and it didn’t even occur to me that we should totally do something.”

“Yes, Lexa, you definitely can take me out for dinner,” Clarke agreed happily, her eyes meeting Lexa’s for a moment before she pressed a surprise kiss to Lexa’s lips. “You wanna go right now?”

“Might as well – we have to brush all this sand off of us before we get back into my car anyway.” They quickly grabbed their things and made their way back up to the parking lot and Lexa’s car. It was a bit of a walk, since they’d gone off to an area where there were less people. When they reached it, though, Lexa made her way around to the trunk, popping it open and grabbing a towel out of it. She tossed it to Clarke. “You first.” Clarke quickly brushed all of the sand off of her legs and her hands, and then slid on her clothes, handing the towel off to Lexa. As Lexa began to gently wipe herself down as well, she cursed under her breath. “Shit, I think I left my shirt on the sand.”

“I’ll get it, you get clean,” Clarke suggested, flashing the brunette a smile. Lexa gave her a grateful smile, and the blonde turned around to head back down to the part of the beach they’d been at. She didn’t rush, because though she did want to go out with Lexa, she was in no rush to make the night end any shorter. Once there, she had to look around a bit before she found the shirt, and then she started back toward the car.

When she got there, she found the trunk closed and Lexa gone. Furrowing her eyebrows, Clarke glanced around the parking lot. The only people there were a family that had just clambered out of their car, the father of which was trying to keep a few young children from running off toward the water alone. Huffing, Clarke turned to look back out at the beach, and she looked around at the abundance of people in this area. Finally, though, she caught sight of long brunette hair, but Lexa was crouched on the ground by the sand, looking like she was writing something.

Confused, the blonde started toward Lexa slowly, curious. When she was almost to her, Lexa stood up and turned, her eyes widening as she realized that Clarke had found her. “What are you doing?” Clarke asked with a laugh, tossing the shirt to the brunette, who was red faced.

“Take a look yourself,” Lexa offered, stepping out from in between Clarke and whatever she’d been writing on the ground. While she slid on her shirt, Clarke looked at the sand, and immediately her heart was pounding. The words in the sand read “Will You Be My Girlfriend?”

Clarke was speechless for a moment.

“It was supposed to be more of a surprise – see the original idea was that I was going to get back and get my shirt, take a suspiciously long amount of time, and you’d walk back down and find me having written this,” Lexa rambled, and Clarke turned to face her, “but then you offered to go and get it and I couldn’t just say no, so I had to go really fast, and – "

Clarke slammed her lips into Lexa’s, effectively cutting off her sentence and causing the brunette to stumble backwards. She immediately recovered, though, and was kissing Clarke back intensely. The blonde didn’t care that other people were around them now, that some of them might be peers who would gossip because Finn’s ex-girlfriend was making out with one of the school’s resident lesbians. All she cared about was the fact that Lexa had just asked her to be her girlfriend.

When the kiss ended, Lexa’s eyes gazed hopefully into Clarke’s. “I feel like I should have hyped this up more – it’s probably really out of the blue. I just – I suck at timing things like this, and I’m not good at romantic gestures.”

“You are ridiculous,” Clarke said, shaking her head. “It doesn’t matter how you ask a question like this – especially when you know I’m going to say yes.”

Lexa grinned. “I didn’t know for sure…”

“Oh please, you choose now to suddenly be humble? You knew.”

“Maybe I had a really good idea that you would…”

“Cocky little shit,” Clarke murmured with another shake of her head. She then closed the distance between them again, bringing their lips together in a sweet kiss.

Lexa was the one who ended that kiss, and then she was tugging Clarke back up the beach. “Come on.” Clarke followed her easily. They were quiet for a moment as they headed up to the car, but Clarke could tell that Lexa wanted to say something else. Sure enough, the brunette stopped when they got to the car, and faced Clarke head on. Maybe she’d chosen to speak up here because less people were around. “Look, Clarke… I just… I want you to know that I like… I really care about you, and I feel really bad for not saying it sooner. You’ve been pretty much all I could think about basically since I met you. And all my friends knew it, and they still know it, they just don’t know that I’m actually lucky enough to have you. It’s been hard for me to not tell you, and to not ask you to be mine, but it’s also been hard allowing myself to feel this way, because I haven’t in a long time.

"But I promised you that I would be open to being with someone again at some point, and at the time I was pretty sure that some point would be like, ages into the future, but then this happened and… I couldn’t go back on my promise to you, and I wouldn’t want to, because it’s intoxicating to be around you. And I’m so sorry if my being scared and a coward made you feel like I wanted to hide what we have from everyone, but the only reason I didn’t say anything about it to our friends is because I didn’t want them to insert themselves into the way I feel about you. Like, I didn’t want to ask you to be my girlfriend before I was ready, because that’s not fair to me or to you. So I appreciate that you didn’t say anything to them, but I want you to know that if you had, I would’ve been fine, and I didn’t set out trying to make you hide anything.”

Lexa took in a deep breath whenever she finished talking, and Clarke couldn’t fight her grin. “You don’t have to apologize, Lexa. I wasn’t ever mad about it. I didn’t want to tell anyone until you wanted to tell anyone, because I know that it’s been a while since you’ve been in a relationship, and it’s not like your last one ended well either. I wouldn’t want to rush you.”

“Fuck, how are you so perfect?” Lexa breathed out, as if out of exasperation, pulling Clarke in for a hug. The blonde practically melted in the embrace.

“I’m not, weirdo.”

“Fuck that, you’re absolutely flawless,” Lexa stated firmly, causing Clarke to laugh lightly. The hug ended, and the brunette gave Clarke a dazzling smile. “So, dinner?”

Chapter Text

For the rest of the week, there was never a time that all of their friend group was in one place at the same time. It was the fault of some project that Anya had that forced her to spend lunch elsewhere, and the fact that not only were Octavia’s parents in town, but Lexa and Clarke were in the honeymoon face of their newly defined relationship. By the time Friday rolled around, it hadn’t even occurred to Clarke that neither she nor Lexa had mentioned their relationship to any of their friends. They seemed to have the mutual agreement that to avoid any complications, they should tell the group all at once, but again, none such opportunities had arisen.

On Friday, Clarke was prepared to keep her seemingly innate reactions to Lexa’s every action to a minimum, to avoid telling all of their friends about their relationship at the same time as telling Octavia’s parents, but when Raven was driving her from school to Octavia’s place at the end of the day, she realized that there may be a chance to mention it beforehand.

“Lexa couldn’t give you a ride?” Raven questioned.

“No, she had to stay after school to work on an English project with her partner or something,” Clarke replied, stretching her arms out in front of her. “Is it weird that I’m kind of nervous to meet Octavia’s parents?”

“I don’t know, but there’s no need to be. They’re honestly the best,” Raven promised. “But don’t worry about it right now, they’re actually out to Tampa right now and won’t be back until around six, so we have a few hours to kill at Octavia’s house.”

Clarke raised her eyebrows a little. Lexa would be at the house in about an hour, which would give them plenty of time to casually admit to their friends that yes, they were in fact dating. Now that it was official, there didn’t have to be any obvious dancing around the point like the previous week. Resolving to tell them before the Blake parents arrived home from Tampa, Clarke took in a deep breath and rolled her shoulders back. “Cool,” she said nonchalantly. “I think I’m just kind of bad with parents. Like, I met Lexa’s mom and I was just really awkward. Granted, I hadn’t expected to meet her, and that was a couple weeks ago.”

“I’m the opposite,” Raven said with a toothy grin, “parents love me. If your mom ever comes down here and visits, you’ll see. I’ll charm her right away. I’ve never met any parents who didn’t think I was the shit.”

Clarke laughed bubbly, feeling rather light now that she realized that her current biggest secret was soon going to be let off her chest. “I’ll make sure to set up that meeting if she does come down here.”

“So, how was your week? I feel like I didn’t see you very much except for lunch.”

“It was good,” Clarke said, though that was a major understatement. Her dinner with Lexa on Tuesday had been so blissful, and even though it’d been on the day after Valentine’s Day, she was still counting it as Valentine’s Day so that she could say she’d finally spent Valentine’s Day not alone. Wednesday and Thursday had consisted of Clarke shirking most of her responsibilities, something she knew she would be regretting on Sunday when all her homework became like an avalanche barreling down to her, in favor of spending hours locked up in Lexa’s bedroom. Whether they were talking, listening to music, having sex, or what, it was pure bliss. “I didn’t do much homework though, which is going to bite me in the ass on Sunday. How was yours? I didn’t hear much about your Valentine’s Day with Octavia.”

Raven grinned. “You don’t wanna hear about it – it would scar you for life.”

“Oh god.” Clarke shook her head. “Whatever, as long as whatever happened was consensual…”

Raven bust out laughing, and Clarke feared for a moment that she wouldn’t be able to maintain control of the car. Luckily, she was breathing normally again in a matter of seconds. “Oh yeah, it was, don’t you worry about that,” Raven promised, giggling again. “No but really, we drove down to Tampa on Monday right after school and we went out to dinner and then flashed our fake IDs at an uncaring bouncer at some bar, and voila, perfect night. I mean, when we got back to my place, that was nice too. My dad was off somewhere, so we spent the night in my room, since O’s parents were home. Octavia’s a bit… loud. We’re pretty sure that Bellamy soundproofed his room last year because of that, actually.”

Clarke snickered. “I don’t blame him,” she said. Suddenly, she found herself curious about something, and asked, “So… Bellamy… is he like, okay with Octavia’s sexuality, and her like, being with you? Because every time he’s talked to me, he seems pretty averse to it, but he also isn’t like, hateful…”

“Bellamy’s a weird guy,” Raven said. “He doesn’t have a problem with differing sexualities with people, he just has predetermined standards of what type of people should identify as what sexuality. So for example, he didn’t struggle much accepting that Lexa is gay, maybe because she’s kind of ballsy and bold, but when Octavia started dating me, he was really thrown off by it. Octavia’s fairly girly, so that’s probably why. As far as you being bi, he’d probably be completely blindsided, because you’ve been dating guys and you’re pretty and blonde and, well, not an obvious stereotype.”

Clarke nodded slowly. “Interesting.”

“Except maybe those flannels you have,” Raven teased, nodding to the flannel that was current tied around Clarke’s waist. A blue one this time, unlike the red one she’d been wearing earlier in the week. She had about four different flannels. “Get some beanies or snapbacks – you’ll be golden.”

Chuckling, the blonde shook her head. “Yeah no, I’m not much of a hat person.”

“Same. Plus, I think stereotypes are dumb. They don’t always even apply to the majority, which is why they frustrate me so much. They’re funny to joke about, but the majority of people don’t seem to fall under them, and people outside the community don’t always get that,” Raven muttered with a shake of her head. “It sucks even more when you don’t really know your sexuality identity, and you’re just into a single person. I can’t remember a time when I wasn’t in love with Octavia. For all I know, she’s the only person I’m capable of loving. I don’t want to find out that, though, I’d rather just stay with her forever.”

“Honestly, you two are basically goals.”

Raven winked at Clarke as they pulled onto the road that led to all of the beach houses. “Thanks, we try.” They got to Octavia’s place and Raven parked her car, allowing them to scramble out with their book bags in tow and hurry into the house. “Honey, I’m home!” Raven exclaimed playfully, and a muffled reply could be heard from the top floor of the house.

Clarke excused herself to make a snack, because she knew that only Raven and Octavia were here at the moment, and she wasn’t prepared to sit in a room with them and third wheel. Plus, she knew her way around Octavia’s kitchen fairly well by now, so she easily made herself a sandwich, which she ate contently while scrolling through her phone.

Only when Harper showed up did she voluntarily go upstairs, and sure enough, the two blondes walked in to Octavia straddling Raven, their clothes ruffled and their hair a mess. Raven muttered something about a cock block, and then disappeared into the bathroom, claiming that she needed to wash up. That made Octavia giggle, and Clarke just smiled, shaking her head.

Anya showed up not long after that, and finally, Lexa arrived. By that point, Raven had already come out of the bathroom, and the majority of the group was in a heated discussion about some news article that Harper had read. Clarke had honestly tuned in out, in favor of scratching out words in her notebook, which she’d produced from her messenger bag about five minutes into the conversation. Her friends had barely even noticed.

They didn’t notice when Lexa arrived either, and Clarke was in such deep focus that she didn’t even notice until she felt her girlfriend’s presence suddenly next to her, and someone was suddenly leaning against her. “What’re doing?”

Clarke umped slightly, but smiled as she turned to see Lexa next to her. “Nothing – writing. I got lost in whatever it is they’re talking about.”

“Lexa!” Anya exclaimed suddenly. “Can you please tell Harper that aliens are totally plausible!”

“I mean, sure, we don’t have any evidence to prove otherwise,” Lexa stated, and Harper huffed.

“But we don’t have any evidence proving yes either,” Harper insisted.

Raven rolled her eyes. “That’s not how science works. If you can’t know, you assume what best aligns with probability, and then you only prove it false once something explicitly shows the opposite. So, in order to prove that aliens do not exist at all, you would have to explore every inch of the whole universe. Yes, there’s no proof that they do exist, but we exist, and we are clearly not the center of the universe, and since our knowledge of our universe is so limited, it is much more realistic to infer that there are other living things out there.”

Harper just sighed. “I guess… I don’t fucking know. Why are we talking about this again? The article I read was about fish, how did we get to this topic?”

“Whatever, let’s just drop it,” Octavia said quickly, shaking her head. “Also – hey, Lexa! How was working on your English project?”

“Fine,” Lexa replied with a shrug. “Boring, though. Wish I could’ve been here earlier.”

“Yeah, you left me to third wheel with them,” Clarke accused with faux contempt, glaring playfully at Octavia and Raven. “I mean, I just hid downstairs, but still.”

Lexa laughed lightly. “Sorry, babe.” Clarke felt her cheeks warm, and she realized suddenly that the slip was the official end of any privacy regarding the status of their relationship, because Anya’s eyebrows shot up and Octavia’s eyes widened. Raven smirked, and Harper fought a smile.

“Babe, huh?” Anya was the one who commented on it.

“Yeah, and?” Lexa asked back playfully.

Raven lifted her eyebrows. “Hold on, you can’t leave us hanging, though…. Update? Please?”

“If you try to skirt around an answer this time – “

“No skirting,” Clarke insisted, “we’re dating.”

Lexa nodded in agreement.

“For like, the past three weeks, yeah?” Harper asked with curiosity.

Green eyes met blue ones for a moment, neither of them quite sure of how to answer that question. “Well…” Lexa tilted her head as she looked back at their friends. “I mean, we’ve been… um… more than friends since the whole thing with Anya accusing Clarke of being a straight girl experimenting and all that shit. But officially dating as of Tuesday.”

Raven’s mouth fell into an O shape. “So that’s why you two disappeared for two days afterwards. Everlasting celebratory sex.”

“We came to school!” Clarke exclaimed in defense, aware that her face must be turning beet red.

“Yeah but that doesn’t count,” Octavia insisted. “Anyway. I’m happy for you guys – it’s been so fucking painfully obvious that you two like each other.”

“It’s also been painfully obvious that they’ve been sleeping together!” Anya exclaimed. “Did really none of you hear them last weekend when they went upstairs after the Finn thing? Yeah, sorry, those noises were not the sound of vomiting up alcohol – those were unmistakable sex sounds.”

“Why were you listening?” Lexa bit out the question while raising an accusatory eyebrow.

“I wasn’t! You two are fucking loud!”

“Yeah, sorry, Lexa is a bit loud.”

Lexa looked at Clarke with her jaw dropped. “What! No! You are loud!”

“So are you!” Clarke insisted, narrowing her eyes pointedly.

“I’m not.”

“Yes.”

Raven was laughing now, “Oh shit, is this what me and Octavia sound like all the goddamn time?”

“Yes!” Anya, Harper, Lexa and Clarke exclaimed at one, surprising the other couple.

“Oh shit. We’re going to need to tone it down – it’s annoying as fuck.”

Clarke rolled her eyes, but it was Octavia who exclaimed, “No! The fact that there’s another couple to do it now supplies even more of a reason that we should keep being annoyingly adorable.”

“How come you didn’t tell us before?” Anya demanded, somewhat accusatorily.

“Oh relax,” Lexa scoffed with the shake of her head. “I’m pretty sure that you not knowing every little aspect of our lives isn’t going to kill you, An.”

“You don’t know that.”

There was a knock on the door that was undoubtedly Bellamy, and Octavia huffed, calling, “What?”

“Mom and dad are going to be here pretty soon,” he called, “so you wanna get downstairs and help set the table? They’re bringing home food from some place.”

“Yeah, we’ll come down,” Octavia called back. Once the unmistakable sound of feet trailing down the stairs had faded away, the brunette pushed herself off of her bed in annoyance. Raven groaned.

“Why can’t he just do it?”

“C’mon, Rae, it’s my parents, let’s go,” Octavia tutted, grabbing her girlfriend’s hand and pulling her up. “You too, guys, you want food, you help set the table.”

“I’m pretty sure you owe me food in general, but okay,” Lexa muttered. Clarke smirked, standing and reaching for her girlfriend’s hand. Lexa took hers happily and pulled herself up, and then the whole group of them headed downstairs.

It wasn’t long until the Blake parents arrived, and Clarke found herself surprisingly nervous to meet them. However, when they walked into the house, two large paper bags of takeout in their hands, Clarke was immediately calmed. She half expected them to seem cold and daunting, despite the good things she’d heard, simply because of the fact that they were always gone, and that they owned… well, the whole mansion. Clarke actually felt bad for jumping to conclusions when Octavia’s mother smiled at the group of them.

“Great, everyone’s here! The food is still warm!” she exclaimed joyously. “Oh, and you guys set the table. Such dolls. Please, everyone sit down, Louis and I will get the food out of the bags.”

The group agreed happily, fitting into spots around the table as though this were a daily occurrence. Clarke panicked mildly for a moment, until she realized that Lexa was looking at her expectantly, and there was an obvious open seat for her next to the brunette. Clarke hurried to sit down before anyone other than her girlfriend could notice her hesitation.

Aurora and Louis stepped around the corner into the kitchen for a moment, and then reappeared with the food from the bags in open, plastic containers. “Alright, we got all sorts of pasta from that nice Italian place across town – we didn’t want to assume that everyone liked any one thing. And yes, Raven, I got your favorite.”

Raven beamed. “You’re the best, Aurora.”

“Yes, I’m aware,” Aurora teased with a wink.

“Alright, that’s everything,” Louis said contently, seating himself at the same time that Aurora took her seat as well. His eyes, dark hazel, scanned over the teenagers, landing lastly and curiously on Clarke. “Oh god, we totally spaced. Clarke, right?”

“Yeah,” she replied somewhat shakily, smiling. “Nice to meet you.”

“We’ve heard a lot about you,” Aurora said brightly. “Mostly from Octavia, but I also heard some things from Bellamy…”

Anya snickered. “Well isn’t this a fun time to bring that up.”

“Shut up,” Lexa snapped at her best friend, rolling her eyes.

Bellamy ran his hand through his hair in annoyance. “Let’s not talk about that, mom.”

“Alright, touchy subject, okay,” Aurora commented, shaking her head. “I swear, I cannot keep up with you kids. Alright – go ahead and serve yourselves, guys, the food is gonna get cold.”

The table was quiet as everyone distributed food, and only once everyone’s plates were full did they all start eating, and speaking recommenced. “So, we’ve already gotten the pleasure to catch up with most of you this week. Clarke – you’re from New York, yes?”

“Yes,” Clarke confirmed with a nod, smiling.

“How’s that?” Louis wondered. “We’ve been a few times, but can’t imagine living in a place that cramped for so long.”

Clarke shrugged. “I liked it a lot. I like it here, too, though. Honestly, I think I could live wherever, as long as I’m not like, alone, I’m pretty much happy.”

“Especially when you get to hang out with us all of the time,” Raven claimed with a grin.

“I guess you’re not all too bad,” Clarke teased back.

Bellamy coughed awkwardly. “So. Where are you guys headed tomorrow?” Clarke raised her eyebrows slightly at the abrupt topic change, and returned to eating her food as Louis hummed thoughtfully.

“We have a conference to attend on Monday in Atlanta, but we’re thinking about spending the weekend somewhere a bit colder actually – savor the cold before we have to spend a month in Texas,” he said, nodding and taking another bite of his pasta. “Speaking of – Octavia and Bellamy, you two are welcome to come down to Texas for spring break if you want. We’ll be in Houston, so we could rent out a place in Galveston.”

“If we’re going to be on the beach and you’ll just be in conferences anyway, we may as well stay here,” Octavia said.

Bellamy frowned. “I’d like to go.”

“Well, I don’t want to,” Octavia stated firmly. Raven frowned guiltily suddenly, as though she supposed that Octavia’s stubbornness was due to her.

“You should go,” Raven pressed. “It’ll be fun.”

“Uh, no it won’t. Plus, that Saturday is Lexa’s birthday, and Clarke is already skipping out on us for that week to go up to New York,” Octavia reasoned. “We were going to just drive to Miami.”

Aurora nodded. “Well, do what you want, of course. You’re right, we wouldn’t be able to see you for more than a handful of hours, realistically. Just thought you might want to get out of the area. Miami will be nice, though. No need to decide yet, we can last minute book, it wouldn’t be a problem.”

Clarke tried not to scoff at the argument, because it wasn’t the Blake’s fault that they were used to this lifestyle. Honestly, Clarke was probably getting a bit too used to hanging out in such a big place with bottomless liquor bottles and a fridge that was practically the Room of Requirement. But she was still incredibly appreciative that she was even able to take part in any of this, and she made a mental note to do something to thank Octavia at some point.

“Are you excited to visit New York, Clarke?” Aurora asked suddenly, breaking Clarke from her reverie. She wasn’t quite sure what she’d missed, but she was grateful that she’d heard the question.

“Oh yeah. I’m mostly excited to see my mom, but it’s going to be cool to see my old friends, too,” Clarke said with a nod. “I’m not staying the whole week, though. I’ll be back for Lexa’s birthday.” She flashed a smile to the brunette, who wiggled her eyebrows playfully, causing Clarke to blush a little. When she glanced away from those entrancing green eyes, she saw Bellamy looking at her warily. She looked back to Aurora.

“Well that’s nice,” the woman commented, either oblivious or uncaring in regard to Clarke and Lexa being painfully obvious about their relationship. “Harper, Anya, what are your guys’ plans for the break?”

Clarke felt herself pulled off into a dream world again as she ate, and it was only when Lexa nudged her softly that she glanced up. “You okay?” Lexa asked her quietly.

“Yeah, fine,” Clarke insisted. She felt her gaze shift over to Bellamy, whose eyes were trained on her. “Just…”

As her words drifted off, Lexa glanced at Bellamy and scoffed. “You got a problem?” she asked him quietly, trying not to interrupt the other conversation going on at the table.

“No, do you?”

“I do if you’re going to keep staring.”

“Everything okay?” Louis asked suddenly.

“Fine,” Clarke answered quickly, shaking her head at Bellamy when he narrowed his eyes. Why he was being such asshole, she wasn’t sure. She owed him nothing, after all.

“You sure?” Aurora asked, now looking rather concerned.

Bellamy huffed. “Yeah. I’m just confused, I guess.”

“And what exactly is confusing you, Bellamy? You and I are not even friends,” Clarke stated, “and definitely not anything more than that. So I don’t see what could possibly be making you confused.”

“Just trying to guess about when you started this gay thing.”

Clarke nearly hissed out a curse word, before realizing that adults were present. As the rest of her friends let out exasperated breaths, Clarke ran her hand through her hair. “Have you been talking to Finn or something lately? Or did you decide that my business was just up for grabs all of the sudden?”

“Come on, you’re friends with my sister. You can’t have secrets anymore.”

“Um, what the fuck does that mean?” Octavia asked, narrowing her eyes at her twin brother.

“Octavia – language!” Louis said in exasperation, though he and Aurora seemed utterly lost in the drama.

“Okay, I guess I’m just bitter, because I thought you were really cool, Clarke, and yeah, I was obviously interested in you and you weren’t interested in me. And that’s fine, but I’m just… I don’t get it. You dumped Finn just over a month ago, and I figured that you not wanting to be in a relationship would make sense because of that, but now you’re in one with her?”

“I dumped Finn?” Clarke demanded. “Sorry, did you get hit over the head or something? He cheated on me.”

“So what, she’s a rebound?”

Lexa finally spoke, and Clarke was sure that she’d been holding back for the blonde’s sake. “Excuse my language, but Bellamy, if you’d kindly fuck off, that would be much appreciated.”

“Oi,” Aurora groaned, her head falling into her hand.

Harper pursed her lips. “Look, Bellamy, Clarke is right. Her business isn’t yours, okay? It’s not yours, not Finn’s, it’s hers. And whatever relationship she has with anyone is her right to keep to herself or not.”

“Yeah, what’s all the interest in Clarke anyway?” Raven demanded. “She’s a person. Just because she was possibly in the longest, most steady relationship with Finn that anyone had ever had doesn’t make her some specimen. And look, I get it. It was a big deal that Finn went back after her rather than just get over what he did, and it was some crazy big deal that Clarke, the mystical, hot, new girl from New York was single, and up for grabs when it came to friend groups. But she’s a person! She got hurt by an asshole who none of us tried to protect her from, because we didn’t know her and we didn’t know what was going to happen, and now everyone is treating her like a test subject!”

Clarke furrowed her eyebrows. The way Raven said it… it was almost like the curiosity about her relationships, her sexuality – everything – was unanimous among her classmates or something. Her mind took her back momentarily to the week after Finn cheated on her, when eyes were glued to her and whispers were her name, disguised under sheets as if trying to be ghosts of the truth. She recalled Lexa telling her that she wasn’t exactly unknown, being with Finn had given her an identity in Polis without her having to do anything for it. The thought that that was the reason that Finn kept bothering her, that Bellamy cared so much who she was with… it made her sick. It made her wonder if her friends that thought about any of that when she’d fallen into their group. Had they taken pride in getting her to befriend them after escaping such a different group of people?

No, of course not. This group of people weren’t like the rest of the awful people in the world – she was lucky to have them.

“Clarke,” Lexa was saying softly, “Clarke?”

She had zoned out, the blonde realized, blinking. Everyone’s eyes were on her. “I… I need some air.” She stumbled out of her chair, hurrying to the back sliding door and pushing it open. She heard a chair scoot out from under the table.

Lexa’s voice said softly, “I’ve got it.”

Clarke didn’t wait up for her girlfriend, though, instead she hurried out off of the porch and into the sand, tossing off her shoes and walking toward the water. When her feet were submerged ankle deep in the salty water, Lexa finally walked up next to her. “I kind of wonder where you ran off to when you were conflicted or sad in New York, if you didn’t have the beautiful sunset to watch off the west coast.”

“It’s kind of funny that Florida is on the east coast, but it has a west coast too,” Clarke said, though there was no humor in her voice. Before Lexa could say anything else, Clarke was talking again. “So I guess I knew that everyone was talking about me when Finn cheated on me. And even you told me that people knew who I was. Finn drew attention to me – I get that. But is that like, still a thing? Do people still talk about me? Because obviously Finn’s got his shit still fixated on me, and I don’t even know what to think about Bellamy.’

“You know what?” Lexa asked softly. “It doesn’t even matter. You’ll be out of here in a few months, leaving all those low life idiots to fend for themselves. Honestly, they don’t know how to survive without seeping drama from other people’s lives.”

A few silent moments clung to the air around them. Finally, the blonde mumbled tightly, “Sometimes I think that if I had just decided to go back to New York with my mom, everything would be calmer, easier. So much of this wouldn’t have happened.” Lexa said nothing, and Clarke didn’t expect her to. “But on the other hand, I like a lot of what’s happened.”

“What happens to you doesn’t define you, you know? It’s how you react that defines you. You’re a writer, you should know that. You can throw all the same shit at five characters, but each can still be completely different from the others by the way they react to it,” Lexa murmured.

“So far my reactions include running away and… well, yelling. What does that say about me?”

“It’s says that you’re a teenager, and you’re still learning about yourself and how to deal with things.”

“So then it doesn’t matter how I react, if you can chalk it up to me not knowing how to react.”

Lexa huffed. “Alright, yeah, you’re better at this shit than I am, I get it.” Clarke smiled softly, but then she remembered Raven’s words from inside and the expression wavered.

“I guess I’m just hung up on the fact that so many people seem to be obsessed with my life. I don’t get it. I’ve never gotten it, though. The whole drama shit. That was always Belle’s thing,” Clarke muttered with a shake of her head. She physically turned, looking away from the water and instead at Lexa, who was already facing her. “But look where that got her anyway.”

“I… don’t really know what you want me to say, babe.”

Clarke shook her head, stepping forward and pressing her lips onto Lexa’s as her hands buried into dark hair, fingers curling through the beautiful locks. Lexa kissed her back firmly and she pulled their waists closer together. The kiss was soft, telling, and lasted for many comforting seconds. When it ended, Clarke smiled softly at her girlfriend, not knowing what to say either.

“Whether it was the short stick or the long one, you happened to move into the most complicated small town ever,” Lexa told her lightly. “Like you said a few weeks ago – it’s a wild town, despite its size. We’ve got our fair share, if not a surplus, of assholes here. I know you’re strong enough to fend them off, but I’m always here to back you up, okay?”

“Shit,” Clarke mumbled, tears brimming at her eyes. To hide them, she wrapped her arms around Lexa’s neck and pulled her into a tight hug. “I fucking… I…” The two words that wanted to spill from her lips wouldn’t escape, couldn’t. She wasn’t sure if she wanted them to, if maybe she was consciously holding them back. All she ended up repeating was, “Shit.”

Lexa chuckled. “I’ve got you, beautiful.”

It was only a few minutes later that they ended up going back up to the house, and Bellamy was nowhere to be found. “He just kinda ran off,” Octavia offered halfheartedly. “I’m really sorry about that, Clarke. About… all of it.”

“And I didn’t meant to make you uncomfortable,” Raven rushed to insist. “Seriously. I mean, you were kind of the talk of the town for a while, but I didn’t mean to imply anything by it. You’ve honestly become one of our best friends, and we would never see you as anything that some random passerby might.”

“You know that we love you, Clarke,” Harper reinforced with a smile, and Clarke gave the other blonde a smile. She couldn’t help but notice Anya’s distinct silence, but before she could think too much about it, she remembered that Aurora and Louis were still there. They were stacking the dishes on the table quietly, just watching the scene.

When blue eyes met hazel ones, though, Aurora spoke. “Clarke, dear, I’m sorry about Bellamy. Honestly, we all thought that he’d get a lot better when it came to acceptance of sexuality when Octavia started dating Raven. Not that he’s completely opposed to people being gay, of course, but he, like so many other unfortunate souls, are behind the times. Honestly, though, we don’t want it to spoil the night. Louis and I have to head to bed early so we can make our flight tomorrow morning, but as my daughter is too well aware, our room is soundproof. So you girls are welcome to hang out down here, or go upstairs of course. Please stay, though, I feel bad for Bellamy’s behavior.”

Louis nodded in agreement. “I’ll be talking with him soon.”

“You really don’t need to,” Clarke said quickly.

“Nonsense,” Aurora interrupted.

It was a few silent moments later that Aurora and Louis decided to head into their bedroom. “Night, mom,” Octavia said, grabbing Aurora in a hug before moving over to Louis. “Goodnight, dad.”

“Goodnight, sweetie.”

Aurora smiled at the rest of the group. “It was lovely seeing you all – and it was great to meet you, Clarke.”

“Nice to meet you, too,” Clarke returned, and they all gave Aurora and Louis hugs before the two adults disappeared into their bedroom.

Silence settled in the air around them for a few moments as they began to clean up the last of the mess from dinner. It was Octavia who finally broke the silence. “So… my brother is an asshole. What else is new? None of us care that you’re bi, Clarke, or that you’re dating Lexa. Everyone who can’t accept it because you dated Finn, or because it seems out of the blue, or whatever, they’re all fucking idiots.”

“I know,” Clarke insisted. “And I’m fine. Let’s just watch a movie or something, yeah?”

Chapter Text

“It’s not really that big of a deal, is it?” Anya asked as the six of them lounged around Octavia’s living room the next morning. Bellamy had come back to the house late the previous night, and then gone off somewhere just a few minutes before the girls had congregated downstairs. Octavia’s parents had started off to the airport in Tampa about an hour prior. “I mean, come on, anyone who paid attention to you would know that you were dating Lexa, Clarke.”

“No, that part isn’t that big of a deal,” Clarke agreed, “the big deal is that for some reason, people still care, because it’s me. And that makes me feel so uncomfortable.”

“I totally get it,” Raven assured the blonde. “It’s fucking weird when people stare at you and you don’t get why they care so much. But they’ll get over it.”

Anya pursed her lips and raised her eyebrows, drawing Clarke’s gaze. “Something to say, Anya?”

“Even if they don’t get over it, you need to. You’re the one that’s making it go on so long by making a big deal over it. It doesn’t have to be a monumental occurrence that people are paying attention to you. I’m sure people paid plenty of attention to you in New York, too.”

“Actually –“

“Okay you guys,” Harper interrupted.

Lexa coughed awkwardly. “Do we have plans today?”

“I’m taking O out tonight,” Raven said, grinning at her girlfriend, who nodded excitedly.

“Well what about you guys?”

Harper shrugged. “I don’t know. I think my parents are gonna want me home soon, because it’s my mom’s birthday tomorrow and they’d get annoyed if I came home some random time tomorrow.”

“Well, I’m free,” Anya stated, stretching her arms up above her head.

Lexa looked to her girlfriend, who wasn’t quite sure of her own plans. “You wanna do something?”

“I have homework,” Clarke found herself saying. “Plus, I need to call my mom sometime soon before she freaks out at me.”

“Oh okay, well, I can take you home then?”

Clarke smiled gratefully at the brunette. She knew that Lexa could tell that her want to be alone was less about homework and more about the stress of the past twenty-four hours, and the fact that Lexa understood and didn’t judge was enough to make Clarke’s heart race. “Thanks.”


Blue eyes were trained out the little window in her bedroom, which was letting in golden light. It bounced around the window’s immediate surroundings, but because the light was off in the room, it was still fairly dark in the room. Clarke didn’t mind, however. After Lexa took her home Saturday morning, she had felt rather detached, and so had spent all of the rest of the day writing and reading. By the time she went to bed, she realized that she had six missed messages from her friends, and only one from Lexa, who seemed to understand why she was feeling the way she was.

It wasn’t her fault that she felt so confused about how to feel – and that was basically all there was to it. She didn’t know how she should feel about the way she’d been so focused on among her peers, so much so that her personal life was public knowledge. Now that Bellamy had confirmed her relationship with Lexa, she was dreading going to school on Monday. Not because she was at all ashamed, of course, but because she wasn’t ready for another round of stares. Why couldn’t the school find someone else to stare at for a while?

“So, has anything interesting been going on?” Her mom’s question broke her out of her trance, and she pulled her gaze from the window, dropping it to the floor. Her mom had been talking about work, but she must have realized that Clarke wasn’t listening. “You seem kind of distracted. Everything okay?”

“Yeah, fine,” Clarke answered weakly, wincing at her tone when she realized how obvious it was that she was lying. “Well, not perfectly fine, but I’ll be okay. There are just some guys at my school who are kind of focused on drawing attention to me. I guess when I moved here, everyone kind of knew who I was, and I was a big deal. That was kind of reinitiated when Finn cheated on me, and now it’s happening again because… well, Finn wants me back and this guy Bellamy wanted to go out with me, but I don’t want to date any of them… ugh, it’s just a lot of bullshit.”

“Language, Clarke,” Abby scolded halfheartedly. “I’m sorry about that, though. All I can say is that things like that don’t go away – people are going to outcast you intentionally when they see you as a threat. You’re a smart girl, Clarke, and you’re pretty and you were new this year. People probably looked at you straight away and wondered all the ways you could mess up their lives, and the only way they could find to combat that was to draw attention to any negatives they could. Frankly, my advice would be to ignore them, and I know it’s hard, but you have your new friends by your side still, right?”

Clarke smiled softly. “Yeah, they’re being really supportive. It’s just… still hard.”

“I know, sweetie. But you’re strong, and in a matter of months, you’ll be done with that place, yeah? You got this, I know you do.”

“Thanks, mom,” Clarke breathed out happily.

“I have to get back to work now, Clarke, but make sure you call me later this week, okay? And I’ll see you in two weeks! I’ll get the flight information to you tomorrow, so watch your email!”

“Will do,” Clarke promised. “Love you!”

“Love you, sweetie!”

The call ended, and Clarke let her phone drop into her lap, her eyes bouncing up to look at the window again. The light flooding in was slowly becoming thinner and dimmer as it got later in the day. She had spent her Sunday morning doing homework that she had neglected the previous two days, and once she’d finished it, she’d called her mom. She hadn’t talked to her friends from New York in a few days, but she didn’t really feel like texting them or calling. It was weird how people who were of the utmost importance to someone on day could so quickly become members of the sidelines.

However, other people were usually quick to take those places, and of course, that was the case for Clarke. She picked her phone up and scrolled through her contact list until she got to the end of the list, Lexa’s name staring up at her. Her mind raced for a moment, debating on whether or not she should call the brunette. Her girlfriend was easily the highlight of her every day, and not seeing her all day today left Clarke feeling even more on edge than she would’ve been otherwise. And now that she was slightly calmed down from her frenzy of emotions, she talking to Lexa could probably cause her day to end on a good note. Plus, she hadn’t had sex with her girlfriend in quite a few days, and she was starting to feel more than a bit horny, especially thinking of Lexa and all her beauty. Smiling softly, she clicked the call button and brought the phone to ear. As it rang, she stood from the chair and moved over to her bed, flopping across it on her stomach.

“Hey,” Lexa said as she picked up, sounding slightly surprised, “you okay?”

“Yep,” Clarke answered. “Well, calmed down at least. I talked to my mom sort of about all the shit happening – omitting certain details – and she made me feel a bit less… frantic about it all. Honestly, I think I just hate how out of control I feel about way other people think of me. What I need to do is realize that it doesn’t fucking matter.”

“Yeah, none of them even know you. I know you, though, and I know that you’re actually, like, perfect.”

Clarke snorted with laugher, covering her mouth quickly when Lexa let out a chuckle at the sound. “Ugh. Well thanks I guess.” She couldn’t fight her smile, and she knew that Lexa could hear it through her attempt at being indifferent about the comment. “Whatcha doing?”

“Not much,” Lexa replied lamely. “Well, I mean, I’m reading Invisible Man, because I figured I’d read as much of it as I could before we start talking about it in class. This shit is hard to digest, though.”

“I read it last year,” Clarke admitted, “even though I didn’t have to. It’s such a complicated novel.”

“Yeah, tell me about it.”

Clarke hummed thoughtfully. “Well, while reading about discrimination and violence and incest and all that is so much fun, I can think of some way more entertaining ways you could be spending your time right now.”

“Hm, yeah? Do enlighten me.”

“Mmhmm,” Clarke gave as an affirmative, before putting her phone on speaker and dropping it next to her. “First thing – knowing that I’m not wearing a shirt.” She peeled off her t-shirt and tossed it aside.

Lexa feigned a shocked gasp. “Miss Griffin! Are you trying to initiate foul play over the phone?”

“Depending on your next words, I could be completely topless,” Clarke murmured, dragging her words slightly for emphasis. Her fingers walked across her torso as she approached her bra, waiting to see what Lexa would say.

“Is your door locked?”

“It is,” Clarke confirmed, smirking and unclasping her bra. She let it fall away before pushing it off of her bed. “Good thing, too, because I think I’m feeling a bit too warm for pants.”

“And to think that I thought you were quiet and innocent,” Lexa murmured, before there was a sound of maybe her pushing all of her homework away from her. “Alright, babe, take off your pants.”

Clarke smiled widely, obeying her girlfriend.

“Naked yet?”

“Uh – no. I don’t typically go commando.”

“Mm, I know. Lay down.” Clarke obeyed. “How wet is your underwear?”

Clarke dragged her hand over her abs, and then down to the edge of her underwear. She fiddled with the hem of it before finally dragging her fingers across them. “Mm… well, I’m not as worked up as I would be if you were actually here... but it has been quite a few days since I was last taken care of.”

Lexa tutted at her playfully. “So formal, babe. How wet is your underwear?”

“Wet.”

“Good enough.” There was a pause on the other end of the line. “Okay – before we continue this, I would like to forewarn you with the fact that this is not something that I do often.”

“Well, same,” Clarke said, “but it’s easy, isn’t it? Just tell me what you would do to me if you were here, and I’ll do it.”

“This would be so much simpler if I just went over to your house.”

“My uncle is here.”

“Fuck.”

Clarke laughed. “I know. But I like, really need… this… and you in general… and I’m horny as fuck, Lexa.”

“Well, if I was there right now, the first thing I would do would be to take off those pesky panties.”

A few seconds later, Clarke squished her bare thighs together and said, “Done.”

“Then I guess I would tease you a bit…”Clarke hummed in response. “Ugh, I can’t do this Clarke, it’s weird.”

Clarke couldn’t help but chuckle, despite her disappointment. “Fine.” She let her hand flop to the side and she pulled her blankets up over her bare body. They would have to settle for good old conversation, and she honestly wasn’t disappointed by that.


Biting into her sandwich the next day at lunch, Clarke tried her best to keep her annoyance to herself. Monday had not been going her way, to say the least. She’d woken up to a text from her girlfriend informing her that the brunette had gotten food poisoning from whatever food her mom had brought home for dinner the previous night, and wasn’t able to come to school. On top of that, more eyes had been trained on Clarke throughout the day than the first day of the semester – the last time she was big news.

What wasn’t helping was the fact that Miller was at their table again, talking to her friends about his newest issue with Bryan. Apparently, they’d finally talked some stuff out, but it had all fallen through again when they’d almost been caught by Bryan’s dad. While Clarke wanted to be supportive of her friend, what she needed most was a distraction from her reality. Usually, that distraction could be provided by her amazing girlfriend, but not now.

“What’s with you, blondie?” Anya asked suddenly.

Clarke huffed. “Nothing.”

“Damn, I just asked, no need to be snappy.”

“Leave her be, An, she’s obviously having a rough day. Understandably so,” Raven tutted with a shake of her head.

“So that means she can’t even try to sympathize with someone else’s problems? We’ve spent ages focused on Clarke and her problems, can’t she spare a second?”

Clarke clenched her jaw. She knew that it was sort of Anya’s thing to call people out on their shit, and to be a bitch when it probably wasn’t necessary, but Anya was definitely not her closest friend in the group. Honestly, she was kind of surprised that Anya was Lexa’s best friend, because the other girl was incredibly exhausting to constantly get along with, and Clarke knew that her girlfriend got fed up with her many times as well. “Fuck off, Anya.”

“No, you know what? You need to dig yourself out of your shithole, Clarke.”

“I would love to, but people like you keep making it deeper,” Clarke snapped, dropping her sandwich, hands falling flat on the table on either side of her lunch. “If you haven’t noticed, the problem I’ve had with this place and the people here is that people keep making assumptions about me, making it their problem when I confirm or deny what they’ve been making up in their heads. And while you’re probably far less judgmental than the majority of them, you’ve still done the exact same thing to me for as long as you’ve known me. And you did the same thing to Miller, and you do the same thing to Lexa, and that’s why everyone thinks you’re such a bitch.”

The table went completely silent, and Clarke realized what she’d just said. Harper slowly opened her mouth, as if to say something to try and settle the waters between the two girls, but before she could, Anya was biting back. “Oh, I’m the problem? You claim to be all innocent and quiet and you’re always the victim of other people’s shit. But you know what? You are such an attention whore underneath it – why else would you make such a big deal of everything happening in your life? Do you think we really all care that much?”

“Okay,” Octavia interrupted, “none of this, you guys.”

“She fucking started it! If she can’t take it, she shouldn’t be dishing it out,” Anya growled.

I started it?”

The bell rang suddenly, indicating the end of the lunch, and Clarke, still somewhat stunned at her own lashing out, grabbed her things quickly and fled toward her fifth period.

Thankfully, Finn had enough sense to stay quiet throughout that class once he realized how pissed Clarke was.

By the time school was over, Clarke’s thoughts were absolutely swamped, and she set out to walk back to Marcus’ house while trying to sort through them. Was she at fault? Was Anya? Were they both? Swallowing thickly, she felt sudden relief as her phone vibrated, giving her a distraction. Unfortunately, it wasn’t the distraction she so desperately craved.

Group Message: Rei, Jordan, Kit, and Clarke

Rei – Hey, Clarke! We were wondering if there’s a chance we’ll be able to hang out with you while you’re here over your spring break? It’s March 5th to March 13th right? We’ll be off too!

Jordan – I thought maybe we could at least grab some pizza together while you’re here. I’m sure you miss the good NY style pizza anyway!

Clarke – Yeah, that would be cool.

Kit – You okay?

Clarke – I fought with one of my friends earlier and I’m kind of just, stuck. Finally almost home, though, I think I need a super long nap.

The text conversation continued like that through the rest of her walk home, and when she finally reached her bed, she did indeed take a nice, long nap.


Lexa – What happened today??

Clarke read the message three times, wondering if she should pretend to still be asleep, when in reality she’d woken up as soon as her phone beeped with the notification. She had a feeling that Anya had already talked to Lexa about what had happened, after all, Clarke had been asleep for a good three hours, which was plenty of time for Anya to call up her sick best friend and tattle.

Giving in, she began typing.

Clarke – I called your best friend a bitch.

Lexa – Yeah, I got that much out of Raven. Anya kind of sent me a really long rant, but she was super not easy to understand.

Lexa – Are you okay? What did Anya do?

Lexa – You know that she’s just that way sometimes, she probably didn’t even really mean to be a bitch.

Clarke – Alright, I get that’s she’s sassy or whatever, but there’s a difference between being that and being a straight up asshole. I already brushed her being rude to me aside when she fucking outed me to Rae, O and Harp. She probably only even apologized so that YOU wouldn’t be pissed at her. And frankly, I don’t care if she doesn’t care about what I’m going through, but all she’s really done is make it worse. How does it affect her if I zone out during lunch because I’m having a bad day? She’s done what everyone else in this shithole does – judge me and assume things about me, and I’m tired of being out on display.

Lexa – I’ll talk to her.

Clarke – I’m sure it won’t do any good.

Lexa – Clarke…

Clarke – I’m sorry, but she clearly doesn’t care about me, and I can’t handle her right now. I can’t handle anyone who is going to make me into an exhibit.

Her thumb came hard onto the lock button, and the slight amount of self-control she had was barely enough to keep her from chucking her phone clean across the room. Now she was mad at Lexa, too. The perfect world that had been developing around her was suddenly falling apart into shambles, at least, that’s what it seemed like. Everything had finally fallen into place, and now Bellamy had once again called the school’s attention to her, and Anya was messing up the stability and comfort she’d been finding within her friend group.

What was she supposed to do now?


How do you stay in a good place with a group of friends when you are currently in a fight with one of them?

Clarke wished she knew the answer.

She spent the rest of the week walking a very, very thin line, talking to Raven, Octavia and Harper freely when she was around them, but becoming silent and tense when Anya showed up. The two of them quickly developed an unspoken agreement to not talk to each other unless it was absolutely necessary. Neither of them seemed to care to bridge the gap turned canyon that was between them.

What made it all the worse, however, was the fact that things between Clarke and Lexa had been affected by the argument. Anya was Lexa’s best friend, this Clarke knew, and the brunette seemed to be unable to choose which “side,” if any, she was meant to be on. It meant that the conversation held between just the couple in any given moment felt abnormal and tense, and that any group conversations were way too out of whack for Clarke to even give her full attention to them.

That was what kept Clarke homebound for the majority of the week, texting Lexa or Raven occasionally. She knew that shit had hit the fan, and that if she really wanted to keep everything she’d scraped up for herself after all the stuff that had happened in the first semester, she would need to do something to fix it. However, she was certain that Anya was in the wrong on this one, and she wasn’t about to give up what little piece of herself she still had any control of. It felt like this town had shredded her outer walls, torn her to pieces, and hastily thrown them back together in a little pile of soot and dust.


“You haven’t been out much this week,” Marcus commented on Friday, when Clarke came into the kitchen after school. “No parties or anything tonight?”

“I thought maybe I’d stay in,” Clarke suggested.

Marcus smiled. “Doesn’t bother me, of course. I actually have all of tonight off. Feel like cooking?”

Clarke felt a smile coming to her own lips. They had been few and far between this week. “I kind of suck at cooking, but I wouldn’t be opposed to learning something new.”

“Mm, how about cooking something your dad used to make?”

“That would be awesome,” Clarke agreed with a smile.

“And maybe you can finally tell me what’s been going on with you.”

Clarke’s smile dropped, and she lowered her gaze. “It’s… complicated, Marcus. I guess I mostly just had a falling out with one of my friends, and it’s kind of messing up the other friendships in the friend group as well.”

“Let’s cook and talk about it, yeah?”


Clarke was angry at herself.

She should have seen this coming – thus far, people only really had a history of disappointing her, and she’d put all of her trust in a group of people without truly analyzing all of them. All she wanted was to belong somewhere, to people who could help keep her together and raise her up rather than push her down. She felt like she’d found that group of people, and while she still felt that way about most of them, what happened with Anya was still haunting her. She should have foreseen it and somehow avoided it. At the very least, she should have been prepared.

Instead, she was alone on Saturday night, aware that the rest of her friends were all at Octavia’s place. Lexa had texted her a number of times, as had Raven, but Anya was there, and Clarke didn’t want to be the reason that no one had a good night.

Mostly, though, she was angry at herself because the more she thought about it, the more she wondered if Anya was right.

Chapter Text

Clarke had always been a stubborn person. She hated giving in to anything, especially when she felt that she was in the right. That said, just because she thought she was in the right didn’t necessarily mean that she always was. Sometimes right and wrong is subjective – actually, it usually is. Maybe that’s why it was hard for people to pick sides on issues, or why it was hard to discern whether someone is right, completely wrong, or slightly wrong but with the right intentions.

And maybe none of that made sense, but Clarke had spent so long trying to figure out her own mind that the thoughts flowing through her head that Sunday morning that she spent in her room, trying to write and also just trying to think clearly for once, were starting to get pretty convoluted.

However, every time it felt like her mind was finally clearer, she realized something that made her feel like she was entirely to blame for the situation. She knew that wasn’t necessarily true, though, because Anya had definitely ignited a flame to contribute to this fire, but maybe Clarke had been the coals waiting to be burned.

Maybe the real question was who was holding the fire extinguisher, Clarke or Anya?

Maybe neither of them were, and it was just sitting across the room, long since forgotten, with a layer of dust covering the obvious, shiny red exterior.

Those kinds of metaphors filled a few pages of her notebook by the time she gave up on figuring herself out.

She tried to figure Lexa out, too, and she kept swaying between hurt, anger and understanding when it came to her girlfriend. Sure, it would make sense for Lexa to naturally side with Clarke. That said, maybe Lexa was having trouble understanding the issue entirely – she wasn’t inside Clarke’s head, after all. Or maybe she was trying not to side with anyone. Maybe she was being just as disconnected from Anya when she was around her, but Anya was just trying harder. After all, Lexa had been trying to reach out to Clarke, and the blonde had been shrinking away. Anya at least had been trying to meet Lexa halfway.

Maybe Lexa was standing by the fire extinguisher, trying to draw attention to it, and Clarke really just didn’t want to know that she could pick it up at any given moment.

Fuck these fire metaphors,” was the last thing she scribbled into her notebook before slamming it shut and going to find something to eat.


Lexa – Clarke, can we talk?

Lexa – I just wanna make sure you’re okay. We haven’t talked since Friday at school?

Lexa – And it’s like Sunday night now, and I’m worried about you.

Lexa – You know you can talk to me right? I’m not like the people you’re so sure inhabit this whole town – I’m not going to judge you or assume things about you. I have so much respect for you, Clarke, and I want you to talk to me.

Lexa – Please, babe, answer me.

Clarke watched the text messages flood her phone on that Sunday night, wondering why she was letting herself ignore them. Lexa was her rock, her grounding point in this fucked up world, and she was letting shit with Anya wedge between them.

But it wasn’t about Anya anymore – it was about Clarke. It was the fact that Clarke didn’t know whether she was in the right or the wrong, but that either way, she felt like shit. She was ashamed now of the way she’d let this screw up what was good in her life, and she felt too embarrassed to admit it.

Lexa – I know how you feel, you know? You’re the new kid everyone wanted for themselves, but you just didn’t know it, because Finn got to you first. People here don’t try to take things from Finn. He’s a spoiled brat, and he gets what he wants. And he did, for a while, but once you weren’t his anymore, all the mysticism of you came back all abruptly. That’s why Bellamy started liking you, why the group of us wanted to protect you from all the shit people say and do. But Clarke, I PROMISE you that it’s not why I started liking you. I don’t like you because you’re mysterious and new – I like you for the exact opposite reason, actually. I like you because you feel familiar, and I am so comfortable around you. I can’t stand not talking to you.

Lexa – Finn made a pass at me in the summer before 9th grade, but I didn’t tell anyone because I felt so stupid afterward. He talked to me like I was another conquest on his list, and he actually straight up said that sleeping with a lesbian would make him cooler. What a dick, right? When I think of shit like that, I feel so awful for letting you date him, but how was I supposed to stop you?

Lexa – I won’t let anyone hurt you again, Clarke. Not Finn, not Bellamy, not Anya… not me.

Clarke had tears brimming in her eyes.

Lexa – Fuck everyone else, okay? You and I can run away together to NY ;)

She laughed.

Clarke – I wish.

Lexa – Clarke…

Clarke – I’m not mad at you, Lexa.

Lexa – You’re mad at Anya, right?

Clarke – I’m not even mad at her anymore. I’m mad at myself. I think Anya was right – I’m the one making everything a big deal. Why can’t I just be indifferent about all this shit?

Lexa – That’s not entirely your fault, Clarke. We all want to be unaffected by what people say about us, but it’s not realistic to think that everyone can. You have a right to be upset by what happened. And Anya didn't really have any right to call you out about that - and trust me, I've tried so much to get her to realize that she's way too hard on you. This isn't all your fault, and she should apologize to you. Unfortunately, she's kind of a bitch, which I know that you know.

Clarke – I know, but maybe Anya was right, and maybe I should’ve been trying to deal with it instead of just wallowing in it.

Lexa – Well... maybe.

Clarke knew that her girlfriend was scared to say one way or the other for Clarke’s sake, but the blonde felt herself becoming strangely level headed after typing the words out. Wrong or not, Clarke didn’t like where she was stuck right now. She didn’t like fighting with one of her friends, and she didn’t like that it caused a divide between her and the rest of her friends, not to mention her girlfriend. If she wanted to move past this, she needed to get herself out of it. It was something she should have learned ages ago – that she couldn’t rely on anyone more than herself.

After all, how had relying on other people affected her?

She’d nearly lost her friends in New York, she’d been cheated on by someone she almost fell in love with, and now there was this dumb fight between her and Anya. She needed to be responsible for her happiness, or else she would never grab hold of it.

Lexa – Clarke?

Clarke – Are you at home right now?

Lexa – Yup, why?

Clarke – Do you think you could pick me up? I need to talk to Anya.

The response took a moment to come through.

Lexa – Yeah, I’ll be there in ten.

Clarke waiting by the door when her girlfriend knocked on it gingerly, so she opened it immediately. “Hey,” Lexa breathed out in relief, as though she expected Clarke to have disappeared in the past ten minutes. “Are you… okay?”

“I… yes, I am. I think that I… I get what I’ve been doing wrong all this time, and I’m ready to… I can’t even… explain it, but, I need to go talk to Anya. And then… c-could we go back to your place tonight, o-or are your parents home?”

Lexa looked reasonably concerned. “No, yeah we can go back to my place after. You sure you’re okay? What’s going on in your head?”

“I’ll tell you when we get back after I talk to Anya, okay?”

When they got to Anya’s place, Clarke asked Lexa to stay in the car, and the brunette nodded silently. She could tell that Lexa was worried about her, but her mind was on one track, and she couldn’t divide her attention away from what needed to be done.

Standing in front of Anya’s door filled Clarke with nervousness, but she pressed on the doorbell anyway and waited anxiously for someone to answer. By some stroke of luck, it was Anya herself who opened the door, and confusion immediately took over her expression upon seeing the blonde at her door. “Clarke? What are you doing here? How did you get here?”

“Lexa,” Clarke answered, glancing over her shoulder to Lexa’s car, where the brunette was eyeing them with concern. “I need to apologize to you, Anya.”

“Oh really?” Anya asked, the words coming slowly as though she were mulling them over as she asked them.

“Although I’m still somewhat mad at you, I guess I kind of… I understand why you called me an attention whore, or whatever. The thing is that I’m not trying to be, and it’s the last thing I want to be. But what you’re really right about is that I need to work to get out of my shithole,” Clarke breathed out. “Look, what happened last week has royally fucked up everything good that’s come from the past two months, and I don’t want to lose any of you guys. So can we get past this? I don’t care if we’re not all buddy-buddy, because I’m pretty sure you don’t like me very much, but I don’t want anything between us to get in the way of my relationship.”

Anya scanned over the blonde with interest. “You’re really something else, you know that?”

“Is that… bad?”

“I still don’t even know. But I get what you’re saying, and we can move past it.”

Clarke nodded, bothered that Anya hadn’t even tried to apologize. “Good.” They stood there awkwardly for a moment, until Clarke finally turned around and furrowed her eyebrows in confusion. Was that all?

“Hey blondie, wait.” Clarke stopped in her tracks, turning around to face the other girl. “Look, it’s no secret that I’ve never been your biggest fan. I thought you were going to fuck Lexa up, and frankly, there’s not that much secure evidence that proves that you still won’t. And yeah, I think you get too much attention for your own good, but I guess that really isn’t your fault, and so far you’ve been really good for Lexa. So I’m willing to give you the benefit of the doubt for now. And I’m sorry for last week, I guess I don't know what it's like for you or whatever.”

Clarke smiled. “I get that... and thanks for apologizing... just, maybe you can try not to jump to conclusions about me anymore. I think that's what keeps getting us into these positions.”

"You're probably right. And I'll try." Anya coughed awkwardly. "Also, just a a note... don't be mad at Lexa, alright? She spent a lot of time trying to convince me to apologize to you. She really likes you, and... she's my best friend, so I guess I'll do my best to stop fucking things up."

Nodding slowly, Clarke cleared her throat and then said, "Alright, well... thanks. I'll see you at school."

“Back at you.”

Clarke turned around again, walking back down to Lexa’s car. Although everything hadn't been resolved perfectly, the fact that she and Anya were both ready to accept their part in the shit that went down was enough to make her smile a little. She opened Lexa's passenger side door and slid in. “I take it that went well?” Lexa asked her as she sat back in the passenger seat.

“We came to an understanding,” Clarke answered.

“Back to my place then?”

“Yep!”

Clarke was in a considerably better mood now that she knew that her newfound friendships weren’t falling apart, and when Lexa let the two of them into her house, she became immediately more relaxed. They went up to Lexa’s room, and the brunette said, “My parents will be back around midnight, but they wouldn’t care if they found you here anyway. As long as we weren’t like, fucking when they got here.”

“Okay,” Clarke said with a light chuckle. “Can I use your shower?”

“Of course.” Clarke didn’t move, leading Lexa to raise an amused eyebrow. “Don’t tell me that you forgot how to get to it?”

Clarke bit down lightly on her lower lip, and then suddenly launched herself forward, wrapping her arms around her girlfriend and burying her face into soft, brown curls. “Fuck, Lexa, I’m so sorry.”

Lexa’s arms tightened around the blonde, though her momentary silence told Clarke that she was either confused or taken aback – or both. “Clarke, you don’t have anything to apologize for.”

“Of course I do. I’ve been like, excessively problematic lately, and I’m sorry that you had to be dragged into it,” Clarke murmured.

“It’s fine, babe, I forgive you.”

Clarke inhaled deeply. “Will you shower with me?”

“Oh I see – your apology was just laying the foundation in case I was mad and didn’t want to have sex with you in my shower,” Lexa murmured, clearly teasing.

“Yep, that’s all I want you for, the sex,” Clarke teased back. She pulled back away from her girlfriend. “So is that a no then? Because I can shower by myself if you really don’t feel like it…” Lexa’s fingers suddenly looped through the belt loops on Clarke’s shorts, gently yanking their fronts together.

“I didn’t say that,” Lexa said lowly. “If there’s one thing you should apologize for, I guess it would be the fact that we haven’t had sex in over a week.”

“Okay yeah, that’s my bad,” Clarke agreed with a frown. “So how about we make up for it right now? We have a whole, what, four hours or so until midnight?”

“Should be enough time to make you sore.”

“Just me, huh?”

“Yeah – as part of your apology, you’re bottom all night.”

Clarke smirked. “I’m pretty sure that you’re not allowed to tack on more conditions onto the apology that you didn’t even want from me.” Lexa was backing her toward the bathroom now.

“Well I’m making rules now, beautiful.”

“Works for me.”


“Octavia, I already told you, I haven’t packed anything and I leave tomorrow at noon,” Clarke insisted over the phone. She’d only just gotten home from school. She walked home, because Lexa was going over to Octavia’s to get ready for a party that was apparently being hosted by Bellamy. The partygoers of Polis were set on making the Blake mansion the new party center, since Miller had been off the grid of the popular kids for a few weeks by now.

“Yeah, so pack right now and get your ass over here! You’ll be able to wake up before noon just fine!”

“I have to be at the airport in Tampa by eleven, O! That means I have to leave here at ten, and my uncle is driving me, so I can’t stumble home from your place at five minutes till ten tomorrow,” Clarke huffed out. “Especially not hungover as fuck.”

“No one’s gonna make you drink, C! Come on, we aren’t going to see you at all over spring break! And don’t you wanna see your girlfriend one more time before you abandon her for a week before her birthday?”

Clarke clenched her jaw. “I already said goodbye to Lexa, and we’re going to be talking over the whole break, so it’s not like I’m just dropping off the face of the planet.”

“Come on, Clarke!” Raven’s voice infiltrated the phone. “Come party with us! We’ll have you home at nine AM sharp! I swear!”

The smart side of the blonde was telling her to decline, to pack and then write until she passed out like she had originally planned, but her friends were bad influences, and she found herself sighing in defeat. “Fine. But someone needs to come pick me up, and if it’s not Lexa, I’m not going.”

“Yo, Lex! Go pick your girlfriend up! She’s partying with us tonight!”

“You guys are awful influences,” Clarke heard her girlfriend shout, followed by, “tell her I’ll be there in fifteen.”

Octavia sounded giddy when she spoke again. “You heard your girl, Clarke, be ready in fifteen! See you soon!”

Clarke changed from her school clothes into a small, tight skirt and a crop top, clothes that were basically always appropriate in the Florida heat, especially now that spring was setting in. The brief time period of cool nights were gone, and with them, Clarke’s insecurities. In the past two weeks since making peace with Anya, things had gone fairly well in the blonde’s life. None of her friendships, nor her relationship, had any lasting scars from the week of tension. And while she and Anya still weren’t the best of friends, no one was surprised by it, and neither of the girls cared very much.

That aside, Clarke had kept up talking to her friends in New York, and found herself actually excited to hang out with them for at least few hours the following week. The more she thought about it, the more she actually kind of wished that Belle was still around in NYC, so that she could catch up with her former best friend. It felt surreal, the idea that she was going back to New York now, after so much had changed.

She was mostly just really excited to see her mom, though, and to tell her about all of her new friends, and Lexa. She wanted her mom to know that she was bi – pretty much everyone else did by now anyway. Marcus was still in the dark, which was entirely intentional by Clarke. She had basically decided that Lexa could never come over to her place, because according to all of their friends, Clarke was way too obvious about her relationship with Lexa to even try hiding it.

That was probably why people got over Clarke being bi and dating Lexa pretty quickly. Even Bellamy and Finn both seemed to be getting over it – moving onto new drama slowly but surely. Every now and then, Clarke would catch one of them giving her a weird look, but she forced herself not to care. That was still a challenge, but she was working on it, and thus far, things had been going better than expected.

At the sound of a knock on the front door, Clarke hurried out of her room and started downstairs.

“You going out, Clarke?” Marcus called from his room. He was headed out to work in a few minutes.

“Yeah, but I’ll be back in time to make my flight tomorrow!” she called back. “See you!”

“Alright, be safe!”

Clarke opened the front door and slipped out of the house, nearly running into Lexa. “In a rush or something?” Lexa teased.

“No, sorry,” Clarke said, laughing at herself with a shake of her head. “Thanks for coming and getting me. Octavia and Raven put up a good argument for why I should be spending the evening before I leave at the party.”

“I promise that if nothing else, I’ll do my best to make it worth it,” Lexa said with a teasing wink, grabbing onto Clarke’s hand and tugging her toward the car. The drive to Octavia’s went by fairly quickly, and before she knew it, Clarke was in the midst of the typical Friday night party. People were visibly drunk and high all around her, even though the party would have only started about an hour and a half ago. “So, you don’t wanna drink or anything? Since you have to be up early tomorrow?”

“I’ll take one or two drinks, I guess,” Clarke caved.

“Want me to make you something?” Lexa asked with a soft smile.

Clarke blushed a little. “Yeah sure, thanks.” Her girlfriend disappeared into the kitchen, and Clarke looked around for the rest of her friends. However, instead of finding them, she noticed Miller leaning against the far wall of the living room, alone and swirling a drink around in his hand. She was already heading over to talk to him when Bryan suddenly appeared next to him. Even from a few feet away, Clarke could feel the tension in the air rise considerably.

She didn’t mean to eavesdrop, but she seemed to be stuck in the middle of the crowd when the two of them started talking. “So… how have you been?” Bryan asked quietly.

“Do you even care?” Miller demanded. “I was pretty sure that all you cared about what your status and what other people think of you.”

“C’mon, Nathan, don’t be like that,” Bryan insisted. “You know why I want to be quiet about everything.”

“I did, but now I don’t. There’s not even anything to be quiet about,” Miller spat. “You made quite sure of that.”

“Nathan, I love you,” Bryan said, “and I wish I could be with you publicly, but I can’t.”

“Then I guess you don’t love me enough.” Miller pushed off of the wall, starting toward the kitchen with purpose, but Bryan caught him by the arm, effectively stopping his movement.

“Can’t we at least talk?”

“I’ve been trying to talk about this for weeks, and you’ve been doing jack shit. So no, I don’t think I have the time right now.”

Clarke scolded herself – once again, she found herself listening in on a personal conversation not meant for her. She was finally pressing through the crowd successfully, desperate to be out of earshot, until she suddenly heard Bryan shout out, “I love you, Nathan Miller.”

The crowd in the living room went dead silent all of the sudden, and the silence spread through the rest of the house fairly quickly, people rushing into the living room to see what had caused. For a few solid, long seconds, the only sound that penetrated the warm, smoky air around them was the pulsing music. Clarke heard someone whisper, “Did he just…?”

“That’s right,” Bryan proclaimed again. “And you think that I’m too scared to say it out loud… and maybe you were kind of right, but I care way more about keeping you than keeping some phony reputation, or friends who think that me loving you is disgusting. It’s the furthest thing from disgusting, and I’m not… I’m not going to be afraid to say it aloud anymore.”

Miller looked at a loss for words, and silence hung in the air once again. Lexa was suddenly sidling up next to Clarke, two drinks in her hand, and her eyebrows furrowed in concerned. “What happened?” Lexa whispered.

“Bryan just professed his love to Miller in front of… everyone,” Clarke whispered back, taking her drink.

“Bryan…” Miller was saying, looking completely conflicted. “I can’t trust that, not after everything.”

“You can,” Bryan promised. “I’ve made some fucked up mistakes and decisions the past few weeks, and I’m sorry. But I know that won’t make up for it, and I’m willing to do anything to prove to you that I won’t again.”

The expression on Miller’s face suddenly betrayed the fact that he was caving, and he took a step toward Bryan, grabbing his hand. “Come on, let’s talk about this somewhere else.” A second later, and they had disappeared from the room, which suddenly broke out into excited voices.

“Oh my god! Miller’s gay!”

“I can’t believe Bryan’s gay!”

“Do you think that’s why Finn stopped hanging out with Miller?”

“Finn is an asshole, so that would make sense.”

The chatter around them nearly gave Clarke an instantaneous headache, so she grabbed Lexa’s hand and pulled her toward the sliding door to the backyard. “Ugh, I guess that’s the start of a new wave of gossip,” her girlfriend mused once they were on the back patio.

“The gays are taking over gossip these days,” Clarke said jokingly.

“Hey, anything to remind the straights that they aren’t the center of the universe.”

Clarke laughed brightly, shaking her head. “So… what are we doing for your birthday next week?”

“Uh… I don’t actually know. I’m just excited that you’ll be back by then,” Lexa admitted. “I think I’m going to reserve the night for you, but we might spend the day with everyone, watching movies or something. No matter how much I insist to the group that I don’t want them, they always give me presents. So just letting you know, you don’t need to get me anything,” Lexa insisted.

“Ha, sorry, babe, but I’m getting you a present,” Clarke stated surely.

“No,” Lexa whined, “I don’t need or want anything, Clarke, don’t waste money on me.”

“Oh shut up, it won’t be a waste if it’s spent on you.”

Lexa huffed. “You’re just as bad as the rest of them.”

“I guess I am,” Clarke agreed with a cheeky smile.

Octavia and Raven were suddenly busting out of the living room through the patio door, practically vibrating with excitement. “Holy shit, is it true? Did Bryan just tell Miller that he loves him in front of everyone?”

“Yep,” Clarke confirmed, popping the p slightly as she leaned into her girlfriend. “Where were you two?”

“Uh, otherwise occupied,” Raven answered, a smirk sneaking onto her face. “We decided to come look for you guys when we realized that we aren’t going to get to see you for a week, and then we heard all the talk. Where is Miller now?”

Lexa shrugged. “He went to talk to Bryan privately. I don’t blame him. I mean, as meaningful as public declarations of love are, they do add quite a bit of pressure to an already tense situation.”

“So if Clarke publicly declared her love for you in front of a room full of drunk teenagers, you would get overwhelmed by the pressure?” Octavia wondered.

“Your question is entirely irrelevant to the topic, since Clarke and I haven’t been fighting, and so I refuse to answer it.”

Clarke found a smile stretching across her lips, and she sipped her drink happily. She didn’t immediately think about the fact that the conversation could have easily turned awkward because neither she nor Lexa had dropped the L word yet, but everything flowed easily into the next conversation. “Anyway,” Raven said with a shake of her head. “We wanted to make sure that we get to hang with you before you leave tomorrow – leave you with the best, most positive thoughts about us, that is, so that you don’t decide to stay in New York with your old friends.”

“Oh yeah, because I would obviously pick to move two months into my last semester of high school,” Clarke deadpanned, rolling her eyes. “If I was going to move back to New York, I would’ve done it after Finn cheated on me, not right now when I actually have good things going for me here.”

Lexa pressed an adorable, fluttery kiss to Clarke’s cheek, causing the blonde to blush. She quickly took a drink to keep from it being obvious, but her friends were laughing at them anyway. “Can’t even be mad at how disgustingly cute you two are, because I’m sure that Raven and I are ten times more adorable.”

“Fuck off, no you’re not,” Lexa argued.

Suddenly a hush went through the house, which was obvious even from outside, and the group turned their heads to see Bryan pushing through the crowd of people, alone, and then stumbling outside. The few people outside other than the four girls immediately pretended to not be staring, but Clarke was the first to take a step toward the guy. “Hey, Bryan, everything okay?”

He shrugged. “Your guess is as good as mine.” His voice was shaky.

“Where’s Miller?” Octavia asked, her voice almost like steel, and Clarke realized that her friends, who were never quite in the same friend group as Bryan, were still incredibly angry at him for hurting Miller. While Clarke felt anger toward him for that, she also felt bad for him, and now that she realized Octavia’s opinion, she felt mildly guilty for not being angrier at Miller’s ex.

“He went home,” Bryan answered weakly. “He wants time, which I get. I just…”

“He deserves time, and space,” Octavia stated flatly.

“I know that.”

Raven sighed. “Maybe you should go home too, Bryan.”

“Guys…” Lexa said softly, as though realizing Clarke’s sudden dilemma.

“No, I was planning on going. I just didn’t have the strength to get all the way to the front door while people were staring at me. I’m just gonna go around the house to my car. Have a good night, I hope I didn’t ruin the party,” Bryan said quietly. The four girls were silent as he stepped off the patio and started around the house, and only once he had completely turned the around the corner did any of them speak.

“So you’re not as excited about his public declaration of love as you were before?” Clarke asked carefully.

Octavia shrugged. “Miller’s hurt, and Miller is our friend. If he’s not happy with Bryan yet, neither am I.”

“Bryan may have acted because of Finn took advantage of his vulnerability, but he still hurt Miller,” Raven said softly. Clarke just bit the inside of her lip and nodded, because that was true. She just wasn’t sure exactly how to feel about all of it. She didn’t want to defend Bryan, but she didn’t want to entirely antagonize him either. Sighing, she shook her head.

“Anyway.”

The rest of the night seemed to pass fairly quickly, and Clarke almost forgot about her time constraints the following morning. She was lucky that Lexa remembered and cut her off after a couple more drinks, and then at some point they found themselves upstairs in the guest bedroom. By now, the continued thump of music from the stereo downstairs as well as the party excitement, alcohol and the smoke filling parts of the house had wiped the thought of Miller and Bryan from the blonde’s head. Still, she felt fairly tired and flopped unceremoniously onto the bed.

“You okay?” Lexa asked, giggling adorably. “You wanna sleep?”

“I’m afraid that if I sleep, I won’t wake up on time tomorrow.”

I’ll wake up, so don’t worry about it,” Lexa promised. “It’s partially my fault that you’re even here, so the least I could do is make sure that you don’t miss your flight tomorrow.”

“You mean you want me to leave?” Clarke asked teasingly, feigning hurt as she propped herself up on her elbows and looked over to the brunette.

Lexa smirked. “Duh, I’m getting so tired of you.” Clarke hummed, rolling her eyes at the sarcasm and pushing herself up into an actual sitting position. Lexa was coming toward her, and just as the brunette was about to lean down and kiss her, Clarke ducked out of the way and stood back up, stepping away from the brunette.

“If you’re oh so tired of me, what was that about?” Clarke teased.

Lexa swiftly turned to face the blonde, taking a slow step toward her. “You wanna know?”

“Mmhmm.”

Clarke stood her ground as Lexa slowly approached her, until the brunette’s hands were gripping her waist and she could feel her girlfriend’s breath mingling with hers. Their eyes met, holding each other’s gazes expectantly for many long seconds before Lexa took a step even closer, pushing Clarke backwards. Allowing Lexa to take control, Clarke quickly found herself pinned against the wall, but she hardly noticed. Her senses were entirely focused on her beautiful girlfriend against her, hands that were slowly shedding her clothes and caressing her body, and Clarke was lost in all of it.


Clarke felt Lexa’s hands tugging gently through her hair before she heard the soft voice accompanying the motion, and she hummed contently before she realized that her girlfriend was murmuring, “Clarke, you need to get up so you can eat before you leave.”

It took her a minute to remember what Lexa was talking about, and then she released a groan. “I don’t need to eat, I’ll eat on the plane. Lemme sleep more.”

“No, come on, get up.” Her soft hand left Clarke’s hair and fell on her shoulder, gently tracing down her arm and then jumping to her hip, ending its movement on her thigh. It had the intended effect, causing Clarke to force her eyes open. “I already made food, you just need to get dressed and come eat it.”

“Do I have to get dressed?”

Lexa snickered. “Unless you want all of our friends seeing the lovely view that is your body, I would say that yes, you do have to.”

“Right.” Clarke rolled over so that she was facing her girlfriend, who was in fact already dressed. It was clear that she’d been up for a while, because her eyes were void of sleepiness. “Ugh. I should just skip New York and stay in bed with you for nine days straight.”

“While I would love to agree with that,” Lexa started, sitting up and leaving Clarke with a pout forming on her face, “you need to get up and get to New York, see your mom and your friends. I’ll be just fine here without you.”

“You’ll miss me.”

“Of course, you idiot. Now get up.”

Clarke couldn’t fight a smile as she obeyed her girlfriend’s instructions. A few moments later, she was dressed and following Lexa downstairs.

“Look who’s finally awake!” Raven exclaimed as Clarke and Lexa entered the kitchen, and the blonde blushed upon realizing that she was, in fact, the last one up.

“Nice to see that you’re alive, blondie,” Anya said, smirking. “Would have hated to have to deal with heartbroken Lexa if you were dead.”

“Sorry my death would have been so inconvenient for you,” Clarke teased back, proud of the two of them for the progress they’d made since the fight before. Lexa was filling a plate with some pancakes for Clarke, who gratefully took it when she was done. Despite her insistence that she didn’t need food, she easily scarfed it down.

“I can’t believe that you’re going to be gone for a week,” Octavia muttered. “It would have been so much fun for all of us to hang out and like, get out of this tiny town together.”

“We could all just squeeze into some suitcases and Clarke could take us to New York with her,” Harper suggested with a laugh.

Raven grinned. “Ooh, that’d be fun! I’ve never been to New York.”

“Only if you’re willing to pay the fee to check those bags.” Clarke smiled sadly at her friends – yes, it would be weird to spend a week away from all of them, especially Lexa. But she knew that she needed to see her mom, and she would have plenty of time to spend with her friends when she got back.

“You need to get going soon, right?” Lexa asked, effectively ending the conversation. “You want me to drive you home?”

“That would be amazing, thanks.”

They got to Marcus’ place fifteen minutes later.

Clarke was slightly embarrassed at how sad she was to kiss Lexa one last time before being gone for a week, so she did her best to not show it as she leaned further into it, making it last as long as possible.

The ride to the airport felt significantly longer than any other ride she had experienced into Tampa, but she did her best to past the time by talking to her uncle. During the few bonding moments they had, Clarke had always been happy with the result, so she talked to him about growing up with her dad, and he filled in blanks that she had about him. It was nice being able to talk about him.

When they did get to the airport, Marcus sent her off with a hug and a request that she text him when the plane took off and landed.

Airports were not really a mystery to Clarke, so she found herself calmly making her way through what felt like checkpoints. Ticket? Check. Bag checked? Check. Terminal? Check. Security? Check. Gate? Check.

And finally, she found herself boarding her plane, a weird mixture of excitement, anxiety, sadness and joy all bundled up in her chest.

The flight was two and a half hours long, but it felt like ages. Not being able to be on her phone during the trip meant that she couldn’t talk to her friends in New York or in Polis, or her mom, or anyone. Instead, she filled the time by finally finishing The Martian, and getting some of the spring break homework she had done. Her math teacher had been the only teacher to give homework over the break, but it was short enough that she finished it fairly quickly, and by the time that the pilot told the passengers that they were about to be landing in New York, she was shoving her math notebook into her carryon.

The general level of excitement rose in the plane, as it always did at the end of any flight, but Clarke was sure that she could feel the buzz of it in the air. Or, perhaps, her skin was vibrating with enthusiasm. She was about to see her mom for the first time in months.

As soon as she was able, she pushed down the aisle of the plane with her carryon hugged to her chest. She tried not to accidentally shove anyone or be overeager, but she was sure that the air around her was at least buzzing annoying – or she was just going crazy. Probably the latter, honestly.

In her excitement, she nearly forgot to grab her bag at baggage claim, but once she had, she made her way to the gate exit. Her heart pounded almost as if in slow motion, and then she saw her mom, a grin spreading over her face and tears welling up in her eyes, with a big sign held over her head that read: CLARKE GRIFFIN.

“Mom!” Clarke exclaimed, all of her anxiety flushing out of her body in one exhale as she rushed up to her mother, dropping her bags and wrapping her arms around the older blonde tightly. “Oh my god, it’s been forever.”

Her mom held her so tightly that it might have been over-restricting in any other scenario. “Are you taller? I swear you’ve gotten taller!”

Clarke laughed incredulously. “You’re crazy, I’m eighteen, I’m not growing anymore.”

“Well, I sure hope I’m not shrinking!”

Realizing all of the sudden that the sign had fallen in a heap next to them, Clarke pulled away from her mom. “We should probably get out of the way…”

Ten minutes later found them bundled up in Abby’s car, Clarke’s luggage squeezed in the back, and on their way to her mom’s apartment. Clarke had forgotten that it would be a good twenty to thirty degrees colder in New York City at this time of year, and had stupidly left her favorite sweater in her checked bag, so she forced her mom to blast the heater on their way home. “Oh god, I hope living in Florida hasn’t totally ruined your ability to stand cold weather.”

“It has,” Clarke admitted with a chuckle. “The lows in Polis have been like, in the fifties, and I’ve been cold.”

“Well, that’s been the high here recently, so I hope you’re prepared.” Abby couldn’t wipe her smile from her face, and that made Clarke smile even wider. “How was your flight?”

“Not bad, I finished all the homework I needed to get done for the break, which is good. That means that I’m free all week – so what’s the plan?”

Abby took a deep breath. “Well, I was hoping to not have to plan too much, but when I realized that your friends wanted to claim you for some of your time here, I thought that it couldn’t hurt to have some sort of plan. Plus, I know that the past year of your life has gone completely not according to plan, and I think we could both stand to have some order in our lives right about now.”

“Oh yes,” Clarke agreed with a chuckle, suddenly remembering that she needed to text her uncle – and her friends.

To Marcus – Landed! Mom picked me up! Thanks for driving me to the airport, see you on Friday!

Group Message: Octavia, Raven, Anya, Harper, Lexa and Clarke

Clarke – Landed!! See you guys on Friday!!

Lexa – I miss you already :(

Octavia – Gross.

Raven – Don’t replace us with your old friends and leave us behind!

Harper – Octavia, you and Rae are just as gross as Clarke and Lexa.

Anya – Yeah, you’re all gross for being happy and together and bleh.

Lexa – Don’t hate.

Clarke watched the flood of messages come in, but then she looked up to her mom, who was side eyeing her suspiciously. “What’s with that smile? Who are you texting?”

“My friends,” Clarke replied. “I’ll tell you about them, but first – the plan?”

“Right, the plan!” Abby agreed with a nod. “I figured that when we get back to the apartment, we can drop off your stuff and go get food somewhere for lunch. Then, I want to take you to the mall or something and buy you a gift.”

“A gift?” Clarke asked. “For what? You already got me a Christmas gift, and my birthday isn’t until the summer.”

Abby smiled. “I guess an early graduation gift – although there will be one of those as well. I just thought that since I offered to take you to California, and you decided that New York was better, I would splurge a little on you instead. Come on, Clarke, I haven’t seen you in so long, and you’re so grown up and… I just wanna have some time to buy something for my little girl again, okay? Because the next time I’ll see you, you’ll be graduating high school and getting ready to go off to college, and then who knows how much time will pass between us seeing each other?”

“Geez, mom, it’s been like twenty minutes and you already wanna get this deep?” Clarke teased, wiping invisible tears from her cheeks as her eyes watered slightly. “Okay, so lunch and then the mall, then what?”

“I thought we could do a night in – order some Chinese food or something and watch movies. Then tomorrow we can really catch up and do something around the city that you want. I figured you can hang out with your friends on Monday and Wednesday, and on Tuesday I have something special planned that I want to surprise you with. Thursday – well, that’s your last day here, so you can pick whatever we do that day, sound good?”

Said all in one breath like that, her time in New York felt so miniscule. “Sounds good,” she said anyway.

They talked mostly about Abby’s work on the way back to the apartment, and on their way to the mall afterward. In between conversations, Clarke considered when the best time would be to tell her mom about Lexa. Though, since Abby had dubbed Sunday as the day to really catch up, she figured that would be best. Once decided, her focus was directed entirely on hanging out with her mom.

Clarke went to bed fairly late that night after watching some of her favorite movies with her mom, but she didn’t even try to sleep without calling her girlfriend. Lexa picked up on the second ring.

“Hey, babe,” Lexa breathed out, as though she’d been afraid that Clarke wouldn’t call. “How was your first day with your mom again?”

“Fuck, it was amazing. It just feels so… normal to hang out with her, and we went shopping and got food and hung out. It’s weird, because it was like the same old, but also not. She treats me way more like an adult than she used to, and everything is just so relaxed and… ugh, I miss it so much.”

“That’s so good, though, I’m glad that you get to spend time with your mom,” Lexa said, and the smile Clarke could hear in her voice confirmed her words. “Is it lots colder up there?”

“Oh yeah. I had to bundle up after we stopped at my mom’s apartment, because I left my nice sweater in my checked bag when I packed.” Clarke let out a breath, pulling the blankets of her old bed up around her. “My room is a bit different since my mom moved back in here, though, so that’s weird, but it surprisingly doesn’t bother me very much. But I don’t really care for my room in Polis either.”

“I think that’s weird – my room has been like my safe haven, even when I lived in Chicago.”

“I love your room,” Clarke clarified, “so I guess it’s just my rooms that I have no attachment to.”

Lexa chuckled. “So, what’d you shop for today? Buy anything cute?”

“Actually, I bought something for you,” Clarke said pointedly, “but it’s not your birthday gift. So you’re getting a souvenir gift and a birthday gift when I get back. Hope you’re prepared for that.”

“Ugh, Clarke! Stop buying me things!”

“Lexa, you literally spent enough money for both of us to spend a weekend staying in a hotel and partying in Tampa. I think it’s only fair that you let me buy you a gift.” Lexa was quiet for a second before mumbling something in defeat. “My mom also bought me a present for some reason. She wanted it to be something big and expensive, but I got her to minimize it a little.”

“What’d she buy you?”

“She bought me a super cute scarf – it’s blue – and a few really nice notebooks. I have plans for two of them already.”

Her eyes focused on the shopping bags sitting on the floor a few feet from the bed. In the dark, her gaze was slightly strained, but she knew what was in each of them. One of them held a vinyl record for Lexa – the “souvenir” gift. The other held four, beautiful, ornately decorated notebooks. Yes, she had plans for two of them. One was going to be a journal, something she had been meaning to start officially rather than constantly filling random pages with random thoughts. The other was going to cause slightly more stress on the blonde, because somehow, in the next six days, she was going to fill every single page of it. With notes, poems, short stories, doodles, streams of her never quieting consciousness… it was Lexa’s birthday present.

The good thing was that almost half of the pages could be filled with what Clarke had already written throughout her other notebooks, and since she had those with her, she was planning on doing a lot of cutting and taping. The plane ride back to Tampa was going to be her time to finish it all, but she was planning on being nearly done by the time she left for the airport.

The idea had come to her when her mom had pointed out the notebooks, and Clarke had wondered if she needed them for anything. Then she remembered that one of her notebooks was nearly full by now, because in the past three months, it had been filled with things about Lexa. And though they were mostly private thoughts and stories, Lexa was easily one of the most important people in Clarke’s life right now, and it just felt right to let her read them, to let her have them. If there was really anything she didn’t want Lexa to see, she would exclude it – it was as easy as that.

“Clarke?” Lexa asked. “You didn’t fall asleep on me, did you?”

“No, sorry, I was just thinking.”

“You’re probably tired… you should sleep.”

“No, no, I’m fine,” Clarke insisted, though her eyelids were drooping even as she said the words. “I promise. Tell me what you did today.”

“If you say so… well, after you left, I went back to Octavia’s and then Anya dragged me out to the mall – and oh my god there was this guy who wouldn’t stop hitting on her –“

If asked in the future, Clarke would deny that she fell asleep while Lexa was talking, but the truth was that Lexa’s voice was the softest, most comforting thing she’d ever heard, and it was the best thing to listen to while falling into a much needed rest.


Group Message: Jordan, Rei, Kit and Clarke

Rei – So Monday we get to hang, right???

Rei – What are we going to do? Pizza like old times? Wanna hit a park and chill like we used to?

Jordan – I’m down! But I’m down for anything – Clarke can pick.

Clarke – I’m good with whatever! Pizza is a must, though, I miss NY pizza.

Kit – Oh good, I haven’t had pizza in three days so I’m pretty sure I’m going through withdrawal. How was your first back, Clarke?

Clarke – Pretty good, hung out with my mom! We’re finally catching up for real today, too, and it just feels nice to be around familiar things again.

Rei – Have fun with your mom, we don’t wanna hold you up. See you tomorrow!

Clarke had already gotten dressed and mostly ready for the day when Rei texted her, so upon the conversation ending, she simply slid her phone into her pocket and left the bedroom. When she was greeted with the sight of her mom making breakfast, she nearly choked on air. “Uh, what are you doing?”

“Making eggs and bacon,” Abby replied surely.

“You sure you aren’t making blackened eggs and bacon? Because that’s all you’ve ever made when attempting to make breakfast,” Clarke said, trying very hard not to laugh. Her mom looked fairly flustered for it being so early in the morning, and the slight mess already around the kitchen confirmed that Abby was flailing. “Seriously, mom, neither of us can cook, and I really don’t care to have a real breakfast.”

“I just thought it would be nice,” Abby muttered in dejection.

Clarke chuckled, and she couldn’t help her thoughts from straying to Lexa and her insistence that Clarke, and all their friends, always eat a real breakfast. “Here, maybe if we work together, we can keep it all from going to waste.”

They managed to successfully make enough eggs for one person and a few unburnt strips of bacon, which they divided between the two of them. The rest of their breakfast ended up being cereal. Once they were seated at the small breakfast table and eating their meager breakfast, Abby once again murmured, “I just thought it would be good to have a nice breakfast, you know? I know that you and I never really ate breakfast together when we both lived here, and I’m sure you don’t eat much at Marcus’s place… I guess I was just thinking about to when your dad was around. He used to always make us both breakfast.”

Clarke nearly choked on her food when she heard her mom speak about her dad – it was something that happened so rarely that hearing it made Clarke think that she was dreaming for a few seconds. Trying for a smooth recovery, she swallowed thickly and said, “One of my friends is always insisting that we all eat actual breakfasts in the morning. If she’s around when I wake up in the morning, she won’t let me just eat a granola bar and be done with it.”

Abby laughed brightly at hearing that, and the younger blonde guessed that she was glad that the topic was steered away from her dead husband. “Which friend is that?”

“Lexa,” Clarke said quietly, taking another bite.

“She’s the one you went to Tampa with, right?”

Clarke bobbed her head up in a nod, but as she went to take another bite of her food, her stomach suddenly twisted up. She couldn’t take another bite, or think of anything else, all of the sudden. This was the golden opportunity to tell her mom about Lexa. “Um, actually, can I talk to you about that?”

“Tampa?”

“No, well yes, but… about… well, it’s about me,” Clarke decided, setting down her spoon. She didn’t want to start off making this about anyone else, because above all, it was about her. “Just something I need to tell you. It’s not… bad or anything, so don’t worry.”

“If I’m worrying, it’s only because you’re getting so serious.”

Clarke forced a smile and shook her head. “It’s fine, I promise. It’s just… well, I’m bisexual.”

Abby blinked, looking surprised for possibly half a second, before nodding. “Okay. How long have you known for?”

“A while… well, I’ve always kind of thought about it, but I finally, I guess, confirmed it this year, and started telling people. And before you ask, the only reason I haven’t told you sooner is just because it felt like something I needed to tell you in person,” Clarke explained. “Because… that’s not really it. After Finn cheated on me and I broke up with him, I made friends with that group of girls – Octavia, Raven, Anya, Harper and Lexa – which you know about. And I guess what really made me think about my sexuality was just how open about their they were, because none of them are really entirely straight as far as I know. But even that aside… um, Lexa, she’s my girlfriend. We’re dating.”

“Oh sweetie, that’s great,” Abby said in sudden excitement, and though Clarke supposed that she shouldn’t be surprised by the lack of concern in her mom’s voice, she couldn’t quite help it. “And it makes so much sense now. It seemed like I was always hearing about Lexa more than the rest of them. I hope you two weren’t… doing too many exciting things alone in Tampa… I mean, I know you’re an adult now, but still.”

Clarke was laughing all of the sudden, struck by the incredibly relaxed reaction she’d got from her mom about both her sexuality and the fact that she’s dating a girl. Abby looked at her with a confused tilt of her head, and the blonde quickly suppressed her laughter and settled with a smile instead. “Sorry, I guess I just wasn’t expecting you to be that calm about it.”

“Are you kidding, Clarke? Your happiness is, and always has been, my priority. And after the year you had last year, all I want for you this year is to be happy. And if Lexa is helping you be happy, how could I ever be opposed? So, tell me about her.”

Clarke’s lips tugged up into the easiest smile. “Really? I could go on for hours.”

“Then do, Clarke. I want to hear all about her. Oh, but first, I need to see a picture – of all your friends for that matter. I hate hearing stories and stuff without even knowing what these people look like.”

And with that, their day of truly catching up on each other’s lives had begun, and Clarke almost never wanted it to end.

Though, if it never ended, she would never get to go back to Florida.

She never thought she’d say this, but she was already anxious to get back to Florida – back to her friends, her girlfriend, and her home.

Chapter Text

“Sorry I didn’t call you last night, my mom and I were literally hanging out all day and by the time I got home I crashed in like five minutes,” Clarke apologized sincerely into her phone as she walked through the cold air down the street. She was headed to a pizza place near her mom’s apartment – the one she used to hang out at with her friends, who were supposed to be meeting her there in a few minutes.

“Don’t worry about it,” Lexa insisted, “I get to talk to you every day when you’re here, and your mom doesn’t get that, so I think I can deal.”

Clarke smiled. “Thanks. Oh, and I told her about you. Well – she already knew about you, but I told her that we’re dating. She was just as clam about it as I thought she’d be, and she wanted to hear all the details.”

“I hope you didn’t give her all the details.” A blush rose to the blonde’s cheeks, but she assumed that it just blended in with the pink tint that the cold applied to her skin. Chuckling, she shoved her free hand into her coat pocket.

“No, I didn’t give her all of them.”

“Good. So what are you doing today?”

Clarke’s gaze moved to the pizza place she was coming up on, and felt herself getting somewhat nervous about seeing her friends again. Though she didn’t look any different, she felt as though she’d changed so much since last seeing them, and physical or not, she was sure that they would notice. “I’m hanging out with my friends. We’re about to grab pizza and then we’re just hanging out. And tomorrow my mom apparently has some sort of surprise activity planned.”

“Sounds like a busy week,” Lexa commented. “Meanwhile, I’m in bed still, listening to music.”

“What music?”

Lexa hummed softly before replying, “Rumours, because I miss you and I think about you when I listen to it.”

“Aw, what a sap.” A teasing grin spread over Clarke’s face, and she wished that she could see her girlfriend blush.

“Yeah, yeah, whatever. Go hang out with your friends. I think Octavia is texting me anyway.”

“Alright, I’ll call you later. I lo –“ Clarke’s mouth snapped shut before she finished talking, and she quickly coughed as inconspicuously as possible before saying, “I miss you.”

Lexa was quiet for a second, and then there was a soft, “Miss you too. Don’t rush to call me, though, hang out with your friends.”

“Bye,” Clarke said softly, waiting for the reply before pulling the phone away from her face. Wide eyed, Clarke stopped outside of the pizza place to recollect herself. She had almost told Lexa that she loved her, and she hadn’t even realized that she did… if she did. Swallowing thickly, Clarke ran her fingers through her loose hair, trying to calm herself down. “Come on, Clarke, pull yourself together.”

She walked into the pizza place.

Immediately, a rush of nostalgia rushed over her at the familiar warmth and smell of the place, especially when her gaze fell on three girls standing near the counter talking excitedly amongst each other – her friends. Jordan was the first to notice her, and a grin spread over her face. “Clarke!” The other two turned to look at the blonde with excitement.

“Oh my god,” Rei exclaimed, and they rushed to her with open arms. Clarke heard herself laughing as she was enveloped in a group hug.

“Hey guys!” she greeted. “It’s been forever.”

“Seriously! We’ve missed you so much. How are you? I mean, I know we’ve been talking, but like, how are you really?”

Clarke released a chuckle with her next exhale. “Let’s get pizza and I’ll tell you.”

Once they were walking along the street eating their pizza – easily Clarke’s favorite pizza of all time – Kit repeated Jordan’s question, and Clarke began to catch them up on everything. She talked about telling her mom about her sexuality and Lexa, which forced her to explain what was going on with her and Lexa more fully than previously. Her friends were so supportive and excited for her, which made her even more excited talking about it. When they finished their pizza, she forced them to change subjects so that it didn’t turn into a whole day of her talking about Lexa. She found out that her friends had heard back from all of their colleges by now, and each of them already knew where they were going. None of them were even heading close to Florida.

“What about you? Heard back?”

“No, I’m supposed to get all my decisions this month, though,” Clarke answered.

“Where are you hoping to go? You wanna come back up here?” Kit wondered.

Clarke bit down on her lower lip and shoved her hands into her coat pockets. “No, I want to go to University of Florida, in Gainesville.”

“Where the hell is that?” Jordan asked in confusion, her eyebrows knitting together.

“It’s like, north of Orlando but still south of Jacksonville. All of my friends applied there, though, so if we all get in, that’s where I’m going. Otherwise, I probably will come back up here,” Clarke explained.

“Is it on the beach?”

Clarke chuckled. “No, it’s not.”

“Then what’s the point of going there? When I think of Florida, I think of Disney World and beaches. And you practically live on the beach right now, don’t you? But you’d be okay living in the middle of the state hours away from anything fun?” Kit raised her eyebrows as she finished the question.

“It’s a good school,” Clarke argued, “and Lexa and all of my friends in Polis want to go there. It’s the only school in Florida that I applied to.”

Rei shrugged. “That makes sense, and honestly, at least you’re not planning on going somewhere like Oklahoma.”

“Let’s stop talking about college,” Jordan said abruptly, “and go do something fun. You pick, Clarke.”


“You have a fake ID with you?” Kit asked later that night. It was getting kind of late, but Clarke’s mom had not given her a curfew, and they were walking distance from the apartment. After spending the day walking around the city and talking, Clarke’s friends had decided to go out for a drink, and Clarke wasn’t opposed.

“Yep,” Clarke confirmed.

“Used it at all in Florida?”

“Once.”

“Come on,” Jordan hurried them as they came up to the bar. It was an eighteen and up bar, so they had no issue going in, and when they ordered their drinks, they flashed their fake IDs nonchalantly and the bartender didn’t question them.

“So how does it feel to be back?” Rei asked curiously while they waited for their drinks.

“Kind of weird, because it’s nostalgic, but it also doesn’t really feel like home anymore… like it is home, I could fall back into a routine here so easily, but Polis is my home too, and… I don’t know, it’s weird,” Clarke admitted, gratefully taking her drink when the bartender set it down in front of her.

“Is Polis nice then?”

“It is, and it’s a lot warmer there, so beach is like, always an option. One of my friends literally lives on the beach, and we hang out there all the time, which is awesome. It’s a surprisingly wild time though, when it comes to the teenagers living there, because there is like a party on the beach every week. It wasn’t really what I was expecting when I moved to a small town in Florida.”

Kit smiled knowingly. “Well, we all know the real reason why you love Polis so much… Lexa. Have you told her that you love her yet?”

Clarke was caught off guard by the question. “Uh – no, but I mean, I don’t know if I do… like, I don’t want to tell her that until I’m sure.”

“Oh, I’m sure that you do,” Rei interjected. “It’s so obvious when you talk about her, honestly.” Blushing, the blonde shook her head with a chuckle.

“You’re crazy.”

“Just admit it, Clarke, you’re head over heels for your girlfriend.”

“Whatever.” Clarke tried to fight her reddened cheeks, but she knew she was failing. “I’m going to go to the bathroom real fast.”

It didn’t take Clarke long to use the restroom, but on her way back to the bar, she found herself running into a guy. “Oh my gosh, sorry,” she apologized quickly, stepping back and brushing her hands over her coat.

“No that’s my bad,” the guy replied, before his eyes widened. “Oh – Clarke!” Clarke looked at the guy’s face and her eyes widened as well – it was a guy she’d dated the previous year for about a month – Jack.

“Jack,” she said in surprise. “Wow, hey.”

“I haven’t seen you all year…?”

“Yeah, no, I moved last summer,” Clarke told him, surprised that he didn’t already know that. “I live in Florida now, I’m here for the break.”

“Oh wow, I had no idea. How is it down there? Warmer, right?”

“Much,” she replied. “How have you been?” Truthfully, she was pretty much done with this small talk, and hoped that he would answer briefly so she could excuse herself.

“Not too bad,” he replied, “been just trying to enjoy spring break, you know? Actually… since you’re in town for the week… any chance you want to get together sometime and do something fun?”

“Ah, actually I’m pretty much booked through the week,” Clarke said apologetically, “sorry.”

“You sure you can’t fit me in somewhere?” he asked, and his tone began obviously suggestive. His gaze trailed down her body, and Clarke crossed her arms over her chest.

“Jack, I’m dating someone, so it would be kind of inappropriate if I hung out with you this week,” she stated firmly.

Despite her hoping that that would keep him off her back, he didn’t look too fazed. “Yeah? What’s the guy like? Are Florida guys a lot better than here? What’s he have that I don’t have?”

Taking a deep breath, Clarke let her hands fall to her sides. “A vagina,” she said flatly, before stepping around him and starting off to her friends. Sure, the vagina wasn’t exactly what made Clarke prefer Lexa to Jack, but she didn’t really have time to list to him every little thing that made her girlfriend infinitely better than him. Not to mention that she was positive that using that short answer would keep him from prying any further, and she was confirmed to be correct in that assumption when he didn’t come after her.

“What took you so long?” Rei asked.

“We were about to go look for you.”

Clarke raised her eyebrows. “I just ran into Jack, from last year, and he wanted to hook up.”

“Is that the tall one with the weird eyebrows?” Jordan asked. “I don’t think I ever met him when you two were dating, but lately, he’s been creepy as fuck.”

“Next time we’re traveling to the bathroom in groups,” Kit decided with a chuckle. “Now, who’s up for some more drinks?”


“My mom has been out for the past hour going to the grocery store,” Clarke said into the phone, which was sitting next to her on speaker, “which makes absolutely no sense, because she can’t cook anything.”

“Maybe she’s buying premade food?”

“Maybe, but I’m just… confused. She told me that she has a surprise plan for tonight, but she won’t give me any hints. All I got was ‘dress nice,’ but then she went to the store which indicates that we aren’t going out anywhere,” Clarke complained.

Lexa laughed. “Just let her surprise you. Surprises can be fun.”

“I guess,” Clarke agreed, a smile spreading over her face. Despite her complaining, she wasn’t too upset about her mom being gone. She was a quarter of the way through the notebook for Lexa’s birthday, and right now she was cutting paper out of her old notebook and taping it page by page into the gift notebook. “So did you decide what exactly we’re all doing on your birthday?”

“Oh yeah, I was thinking – if you don’t mind – that we could go to Tampa? My sister offered to take me out to dinner, so I thought that we can all hang out at Octavia’s place for a while, then all drive down to Tampa, have dinner with my sister, and then our friends can all go hang out while you and I have an early night…”

“Works for me, as long as you don’t actually plan on taking an early night in a hotel room with me,” Clarke teased, and the bright laugh on the other end of the phone confirmed that Lexa was not planning on going to sleep early on her birthday. “Cool, so I’ll give you your souvenir present either Friday night or Saturday morning, and your birthday present that night in Tampa.”

“Ugh, okay.”

“Aw, look who gave up on complaining!” Clarke teased with a grin, turning the page of her notebook. She stared at the blank page, wondering what she should fill it with – an old snippet or something new.

“Let’s face it, Clarke, I can’t say no to you, so it’s pointless to complain.”

Then it hit Clarke, all at once and in the form of a freight train carrying every possible emotion. Upon impact, it exploded through every single one of Clarke’s thoughts, and she found herself momentarily without words.

She loved Lexa.

“Clarke?”

“Sorry, hey, could I call you back? My mom’s calling me,” she lied, biting down on her lip.

“Yeah, of course. Miss you!”

“You too,” Clarke said genuinely, before hanging up the phone and standing up from the desk. She paced back and forth in the small room, her breathing erratic.

She loved Lexa.

It shouldn’t be such a hard thing to accept, she thought, but maybe it wasn’t weird that it was, because after everything she’d been through the past year, the idea that she could be this happy with any one person was almost unthinkable. But she loved Lexa, every little thing about her. And every piece of her wanted to tell her girlfriend that, but she had to wait. She couldn’t do it over the phone, or through a text. She had to do it in person, on Saturday night. That would be best, she figured, and she swallowed thickly, trying to suppress the desire to tell Lexa this very instant.

Going back to her desk, she sat down and looked back at the blank page. She now had a plan for the next few pages. Grabbing the nearest writing utensil she had, she began to spill her emotions out in many, many sentences.

She only stopped when she heard the apartment door swing open, and her mom speaking to someone. Furrowing her eyebrows in confusion, Clarke set down her pen and left the room. “Mom?”

“Oh sweetie, perfect, I thought you may have gone out,” Abby exclaimed as Clarke walked into the kitchen. Blue eyes widened at the fact that there was an extra person in the apartment – a man. He was tall and nice looking, wearing a kind smile on his face. Abby was setting two large bags of takeout on the counter, which told Clarke that she had not gone to the grocery store. And since takeout did not take two hours, her mom had definitely gone out somewhere else as well.

“Nope, I was just waiting here,” Clarke confirmed. “Who’s this?”

“This is Mason,” Abby answered, though the name gave the younger girl no real information, “he’s um, well I met him at work, but he doesn’t work at the hospital. He’s a detective at the NYPD. Anyway, he and I have been… dating, and I thought that it was important that you meet him.”

Clarke tried not to let her jaw drop in surprise. “Oh wow, alright. Nice to meet you,” she said carefully to the man. The fact that he was a detective didn’t entirely bother her, though when she considered that she’d just gone out the night before with a fake ID, she felt a little self-conscious.

“You too,” he said with a wide smile. “I’ve heard a lot about you from your mom. I’ve been excited to meet you.”

Despite the whole situation being a huge surprise to Clarke, which she soon realized was what Abby meant when she said that she had surprise plans for that night, dinner went well. Clarke found herself getting along with her mom’s boyfriend, and he had no obvious flaws that she could call out. Her mom seemed very happy with him as well. Apparently, they had been seeing each other since December. Clarke learned a fair amount about Mason – he couldn’t cook any better than Abby, he had one kid from a previous relationship, but she was in college in Canada, he’d been working in law enforcement since his twenties, and had served in the military after high school. He seemed like an all-around good guy, and Abby obviously swooned at him multiple times. Clarke wondered if her mom knew how head over heels she was for him.

He left after dinner, shaking Clarke’s hand and saying how wonderful it was to finally meet her. She would have said likewise, but there had been no buildup to her meeting him.

As soon as he was gone, Clarke looked at her mom with wide eyes. “So you’re dating now?”

“No, I wasn’t,” Abby insisted, “but he’s just… I met him, and I was immediately swept off my feet. Isn’t he great? You do like him, right?”

“Yeah, he seems great for you,” Clarke promised. “I’m just… surprised, I guess. Especially after like… well, you brought up dad on Saturday and you never do that. So all of it is just kind of surprising.”

Abby nodded slowly. “It took me… a long time to get over your father’s death, Clarke, and I wouldn’t even say that I’m still over it. He was my soulmate, the love of my life, and I could not picture myself with anyone else. And then he was gone – but he left me with you, and I love you more than anyone. I didn’t think that I would ever need another person in my life, but since you left, I’ve realized how lonely life can be, and so I started thinking a lot more about Jake, and  realized... well… he wouldn’t want me to be alone for the rest of my days. And I know that you don’t either, so I’ve been trying to let myself move on, and when I met Mason… it was just so easy. I haven’t found one flaw about him since meeting him.”

“He makes you really happy,” Clarke said with a smile, “and I’m really glad that you’re starting to… make progress when it comes to dad’s death. I have too – Marcus and I talk about him a lot. I hear a lot of stories and stuff, which is kind of nice. I know that you have your reasons for not having talked about him very much as I was growing up, but it’s still nice to hear things, you know?”

Abby nodded slowly. “Maybe it wasn’t a good thing that I didn’t talk about him. He’s your father, and you deserve to know all about him. How about… how about we sit down and talk about him for a while, huh? I think it could be good for both of us.”

Tears brimmed in Clarke’s eyes, but they were tears of happiness. She never imagined her mom offering to talk to her about her dad, but she could not pass up this opportunity. “Yes, of course.”

“Great, let me make us some hot chocolate and we can curl up on the couch and chat.”


“Your mom is dating someone?” Rei questioned in surprise. “That seems really out of the norm for her – has she even tried dating since your dad died?”

“No, but I think it’s good for her, and the guy she’s dating is super nice,” Clarke explained, shrugging. She and Rei were sitting in a Starbucks, waiting for their other friends. Their plan for the day was to stroll around central park some and then to maybe see a movie or something, but Jordan and Kit lived further away from their typical meetup spot, and had yet to arrive.

“Still super surprising.”

Clarke nodded in agreement. “I’m glad, though. Because I don’t plan on coming up here for college, obviously, and I think that having me gone has been really hard on her.”

“I still think it’s super weird that you’re spending your senior year not living with your mom. I mean, I get it, but didn’t you think that it would be too out of the norm?”

“I don’t think I have a norm anymore,” Clarke admitted with a chuckle. “I don’t know, living with my uncle has been nice, because he lets me do my thing, but we’ve had lots of weird bonding moments over my dad too.”

Rei’s phone vibrated, and she looked down at it quickly. “Oh, they’re outside, let’s go.” Hopping up from the table, they quickly left the Starbucks to meet up with their friends. Quick greetings were exchanged, and then they started their walk toward central park.

Clarke was actively engaged in the conversation that was being had, which was somewhat random and more similar to the conversations she used to have with her friends all the time, but her attention was torn away immediately when her eyes caught on a flash of familiar golden hair and a face she had not planned on seeing while in New York. “Oh my god, is that Belle?” Her eyes widened when she realized that her former best friend was coming toward them.

“Holy shit, I had no idea she was even in town,” Jordan said in surprise.

They went silent as Belle approached. The girl stopped a few feet in front of them, took in a deep breath, and then quietly said, “Hey guys.”

“What… don’t you live in California now?”

Belle nodded. “Yeah, I do. It’s spring break, I thought I’d come back up here for a few days. I guess Clarke decided to do the same thing.” Her brown eyes met Clarke’s weakly, as though she was hyperaware of her need to apologize for some things. “Um, how are you guys?”

“We’re… fine. It’s been a while since we’ve talked to you, though, so this is kind of, unexpected…” Kit looked to her friends in concern.

“Yeah um, about that. My therapist says that everything I did after Clarke left was a cry for attention, because I was experiencing loss and I wasn’t used to that… I don’t know, I thought it was bullshit until I thought about it a lot,” Belle said with a shake of her head. “I’m sorry, okay? I was a bitch about a lot of things, and I’m sorry.” Clarke said nothing while her friends sort of accepted Belle’s apology, and she still offered no words to her former best friend until the blonde coughed awkwardly and asked, “Clarke can I… talk to you?”

“Yeah,” Clarke replied quietly, stepping away from her friends. She and Belle started down the sidewalk, not talking for a few moments as they distanced themselves from the group. Clarke wasn’t sure if Belle was seeking the distance, or just trying to gather her words.

Finally, though, Belle asked her softly, “How’s Florida?”

“It’s nice, I like it,” Clarke replied.

“You still with that Finn guy?”

“No, he cheated on me. I’m actually dating someone else now, a girl named Lexa.” Belle stopped walking at that, and Clarke looked at her with concern.

“Really? What’s she like?” Belle leaned against the wall of whatever storefront they’d just stopped by. Clarke stepped out of the middle of the sidewalk.

“She’s honestly near perfect,” Clarke replied. “After Finn cheated on me, I broke up with him and ended up having to make new friends, and Lexa was one of those friends. She’s probably the main reason that I don’t hate Florida anymore. How is California?”

“Not bad,” Belle replied. “Look, Clarke, I… I’m really sorry that I stopped talking to you shortly after you moved. Once you were dating that Finn guy, and you seemed to have a life there, I guess I was kind of hurt, and it was stupid. I thought that you had moved on completely from this place, so I saw no point in even trying to keep in touch with you. After I had a falling out with the rest of the girls, though, and then had to abruptly move for my parents’ work, I realized how hard it is to fit into a place you’ve never lived before. All I wanted to do was text them, or you, but I couldn’t after what I’d done. But I feel like shit now, because we were best friends, and I know that you’ve probably moved on from that… I didn’t even think you’d be here for break, but I’m glad you are, because I really needed to apologize to you. Even if you don’t forgive me, or if you do but nothing changes, as long as you know that I am so sorry… I’ll be okay.”

Clarke looked carefully at her best friend, and then released a sigh, giving in. “I get it, Belle, really. I’m not sure that things can go back to being the same, which is the same thing I told Rei, Kit and Jordan, but I can work on forgiving you. It hurt the most that you stopped talking to me, because you’ve been my best friend since we were kids and… well, I missed you a lot.”

“I hope your new friends in Florida are treating you well,” Belle said softly.

“They’re awesome,” Clarke promised. “Well, one of them kind of hated me for a while, but I’m dating her best friend so we kind of have to get along. She’s been a lot a better about not hating me lately.”

Belle laughed. “Well that’s good to know. Although, now that I know that Finn cheated on you, I almost want to fly down to Florida and beat him up.”

“Oh my god, you and my friends would get along so well,” Clarke said with a laugh. “My friend Raven has been trying to convince me to let her beat him up for so long.”

This felt so normal, talking to Belle in the middle of New York City. It felt normal, but Clarke knew beyond the surface that it was no longer her normal, that this was temporary, that despite the nostalgia and the glee at the fact that Belle had apologized, this place and these people were not her priority. “You should let her, because any guy who cheats on you deserves to at least be sucker-punched.”

“You’re ridiculous,” Clarke said lightly.

Belle smiled. “I’m being honest. Anyway. I’ll let you get back to the girls, I don’t want to hog your time. Thanks for talking to me, I’m glad that you don’t hate me.”

“Of course,” Clarke returned, unsure of what else to say. “I guess… maybe I’ll text you when I’m back home.”

“Please do, maybe we can try to repair what I absolutely destroyed.”

“It’s not just your fault,” Clarke argued, surprising herself. “I mean… it’s hard to get used to someone being gone, and I don’t blame you for that, at least not entirely.”

Smiling again, the other blonde nodded. “Thanks, Clarke. Enjoy your time back in New York.” And just like that, they were going their separate ways again, Belle heading toward the subway station and Clarke walking back to her friends.

“She’s gone?” Kit asked in surprise.

“Yeah.”

“What’d she say?”

Clarke pursed her lips. “She just apologized and explained herself. It’s weird… I honestly never expected to see her again.”

“What a time to come back up and visit, huh?” Rei joked. “All the crazy stuff is happening at once just for you, Clarke.”

“What other crazy stuff?” Jordan asked.

“Clarke’s mom is dating someone.”

“What? No shit!”

Clarke laughed, shaking her head as they continued on their path to the park. What a trip, indeed.

Chapter Text

“You have all your things with you?” Abby asked.

“Yes mom, you’ve asked me that like six times already,” Clarke promised the older woman as they stood outside the car, Clarke with her bags sitting on the ground next to her.

“And you’ve double checked that Marcus knows what time you’re landing?”

“Yes, mom, he’s going to pick me up and it’s going to be fine,” Clarke promised. “I’m going to miss my flight, though, if you keep asking me questions.”

Abby rolled her eyes, stepping forward and grabbing Clarke in a tight hug that the younger girl returned without hesitation. “I love you, sweetie, be safe, okay? And text me when you land. And remember that you can call me whenever, no matter what it’s about, okay?”

“Of course, mom. I love you, too.”

“And you better call me when you start getting those college letters, yeah?” Abby pulled out of the hug.

“I will!” Clarke answered with a chuckle. “I have to go, love you.”

“Be safe!”

A few minutes later, Clarke was back in the airport, lugging her bags toward the desk where she needed to pay to check her bag. As soon as she reached it, it was like the rest of the tasks she had to do went by in a flash. Check bag, security, find gate. She was half an hour early to her gate, and boarding hadn’t even begun, so she quickly stopped by a little bakery place in the airport and got a snack for the flight.

When they called for the first boarding group, she took out her phone to send texts to various people.

To Marcus – Boarding, see you at the airport!

To Mom – Boarding! Love you, I’ll text you when I land!

Group Message: Rei, Jordan, Kit and Clarke

Clarke – Boarding flight back to Tampa! It was great getting to see you guys again.

Group Message: Octavia, Raven, Anya, Harper, Lexa and Clarke

Clarke – Boarding flight back home… Can’t wait to see you guys again ahhhh!

Clarke reread the last message, and then decided to send one more.

To Lexa – I miss you so much, so glad I’m coming home. Xx

Then her boarding group was called, and she was caught up in the hustle of getting on the plane, shoving her carryon between her feet and the chair in front of her since she needed its contents during the flight, and turning off her phone before she could receive any glares from the flight attendants.

It went by quickly, the trip, because Clarke spent it finishing the last few pages of Lexa’s gift. Since the book was already in no particular order, she decided to end it with something she had written at two in the morning one night, when she realized that she was falling in love with the brunette. She taped it in just as the captain announced over the speakers that they would be landing in Tampa in a few minutes.

Before putting her things away, she quickly flipped to the front of the notebook and used her nicest pen to write a quick little message of explanation on the front cover. Then she readied herself to arrive in Tampa.

Once off the plane, her phone was immediately in hand. She texted a quick message to Marcus as she headed to baggage claim, but there was no response.

To Marcus – Marcus? You’re here right?

Furrowing her eyebrows, Clarke temporarily let her phone fall into her pocket in order to grab her bag off of the conveyer belt, and then she decided just to exit the gate in case Marcus was waiting and just not checking his phone for some reason. If she didn’t find him, she’d call him.

Confirming her fears, Marcus was nowhere to be seen when she stepped out of the gate, and she frowned profusely as she fumbled with her pockets for her phone. That is until she heard a short, “Hey blondie!”

Clarke looked up and immediately her eyes fell on a group of five people waiting for her. Octavia and Raven were waving like weirdos, and Anya had her arms crossed over her chest while Harper grinned. But it was Lexa, who’s eyes were wide in anticipation, that held Clarke’s gaze. She immediately abandon her efforts to grab her phone and tugged her luggage over to the group, finding herself enveloped her second group hug of the week. “Clarke!” Octavia exclaimed. “Oh my god, thank goodness you’re back, Lexa was going through extreme withdrawal.”

Clarke couldn’t respond, not even once they released her, because her gaze immediately met Lexa’s and they came together in an abrupt kiss. It wasn’t short or censored by any means, and it wasn’t until Anya began to fake gag that they finally broke apart. “Hey,” Clarke murmured to her girlfriend, who was smiling unbelievably wide. Finally facing the rest of her friends, Clarke added, “You guys didn’t have to all come pick me up.”

“Well, we figured that since we’re coming back up here tomorrow, we could just stay tonight and tomorrow night,” Raven explained.

“Don’t worry, we asked your uncle and he even asked your mom, and she offered to pay for you room, so don’t even try to argue,” Lexa insisted.

Clarke couldn’t help the smile that spread over her face. “Trust me, I’m not going to argue. Except… well, most of the clothes I brought to New York are for a lot colder weather…”

“Already taken care of.”

Clarke was practically giving Lexa heart eyes by now, and if it weren’t for their present company, she would have absolutely pounced on her girlfriend. Harper’s laugh was what broke the blonde out of her reverie. “Come on, let’s get to the hotel.”


“Sorry I’m being lame,” Clarke apologized later that night, when their friends were all going out for a drink. “I think I’m just kind of exhausted from the week… but we’re going out tomorrow night, so…”

“Honestly, it’s fine,” Lexa insisted. Clarke knew that her expression screamed doubt, and the brunette sighed, “Seriously, Clarke. I’m in a hotel room in Tampa with my girlfriend who I haven’t seen in six days and you think that I’m not ecstatic right now?”

“Alright, I can see how that would not be a lame thing…”

Lexa chuckled. “How about room service? I’ll pay for it, since your mom is paying for the room.”

“Works for me, just pick whatever.” Once the food was ordered, Clarke and Lexa sat on the queen sized bed in the room.

“So, anything fun happen in NYC that you didn’t already tell me about? I mean, not that you have to tell me everything, I just meant… because you already told me some stuff…”

“I know what you mean, Lexa,” Clarke said, amused. “I don’t know. I told you about hanging out with my friends, and about Belle making her appearance. I told you about my mom dating that guy Mason. Oh. I didn’t tell you that I ran into one of my ex-boyfriends in a bar and he tried to get me to hook up with him.”

Lexa scoffed. “I kind of hope that violence was involved afterwards, but knowing you, you were probably all sweet and ‘no thank you.’”

“What’s that supposed to mean?” Clarke asked, unable to keep from laughing. “What was I supposed to do, punch him in the face?”

“I might have.”

“You would not have. Anyway, I told him that I was dating someone, and he got really defensive of his pride and asked me what you have that he doesn’t have.”

Lexa looked at Clarke suspiciously. “You didn’t say something like boobs or vagina did you?”

A blush crept up to Clarke’s cheeks. “Uh, no, why would I do that? That’s dumb, duh.”

“I hate you.” But Lexa was laughing, and Clarke knew that the statement was far from the truth. “Ugh, but honestly, I missed you. Octavia was only slightly exaggerating when she said I was going through withdrawal.”

“I missed you too. Anytime that anyone asked me about you, I pretty much went on at least a half hour long tangent about you before I realized that if I kept going, I would just never stop.” Lexa smirked, and Clarke blushed, shaking her head at the brunette. “Never mind, I hate you, too.”

Lexa leaned forward, and the blonde shifted backwards despite her usual tendency to not let Lexa corner her so easily. Before she knew it, the brunette was straddling her, two hands resting on Clarke’s midsection. Clarke was still propped up on her elbows, but as soon as Lexa’s lips touched hers, she gave up trying to keep any advantage and let herself fall onto the hotel bed pillows, her hands finding better use tangling into Lexa’s beautiful hair. Although the kiss started out soft, a week of being apart was more than enough cause for it to intensify extremely quickly, and Clarke was panting in between kisses before she knew it. Then her shirt was being tugged on and her hands were sliding across Lexa’s bare skin. It felt like all of the sudden they were both without clothes, other than underwear that they both seemed to agree should stay on for a few more moments, but Clarke was already desperate for Lexa’s touch.

Finally, her underwear was slid off from her body and Lexa’s fingers came in contact with Clarke’s hot, wet center, causing the blonde to release a deep moan. “Fuck,” she groaned out, grinding down on her girlfriend’s touch even as Lexa strived to create friction as well. “Fuck, Lexa!”

Lexa dipped inside of her, and Clarke was being driven closer to climax at an unsurprisingly fast pace, considering that it had been a week since she’d had sex with her girlfriend. Then all of the sudden, there was a knock on the door followed by a polite, “Room service!”

“Shit,” Clarke hissed, and she immediately scowled when Lexa withdrew her fingers. In a matter of seconds, the brunette slid her fingers into her mouth, sucking them clean and leaving Clarke breathless, then hopped off of the bed, grabbed a blanket and wrapped it around herself. Clarke quickly buried herself in blankets as well, though she was still scowling when the door swung open at Lexa’s indication. A little trolley was rolled into the room with their food on top, and the server, looking slightly uncomfortable at the implications of the scenario around him, quickly assured them that he could help them if they needed anything. It took all of Clarke’s strength not to yell at him to get the fuck out of the room.

When he finally exited, Lexa looked to Clarke with a sly look on her face. “Wanna take a dinner break?”

Fuck that!” Clarke exclaimed incredulously. “Get the fuck back to this bed and make me come!”

“Your wish is my command,” Lexa obliged, dropping her blanket, crawling back onto the bed and finishing what she started.

When Clarke and Lexa were both thoroughly fulfilled, it was nearing two in the morning, and their food was still sitting out in the middle of the room. “Should we skip it?” Clarke asked. “Do you think it’s even good anymore?”

“Sure it’s good, I just got pasta. Plus, it’s been covered this whole time,” Lexa insisted, pulling herself out of the bed, the sheets on which were damp with sweat and other liquids, and going to the trolley. “Plus, you haven’t eaten at all since you got back, and after the last few hours, I’m pretty sure that you need to eat something.”

“Fine.” Really, Clarke didn’t mind that Lexa was going to make her eat before they went to bed, because it meant that she didn’t have to sleep and have Lexa’s beautiful face disappear from her view for a little longer. Thinking like that made Clarke think of the present she had for Lexa’s birthday. “Shit.”

“What?” Lexa asked with concern as she filled two bowls with the likely room temperature pasta.

“It’s your birthday now,” Clarke said, “and it has been for like, two hours, and I didn’t wish you a happy birthday.”

Lexa flashed the blonde a smile. “There’s still twenty-two hours for you to do so, plus you started off my birthday pretty perfectly anyway.”

“Happy birthday you dork,” Clarke murmured, before having a sudden idea and pushing the blankets off of herself.

“Where are you going?” Clarke got off of the bed and made her way over to her suitcase. Lexa’s birthday present was in her carryon bag, but the vinyl record she’d bought was in her suitcase, and she figured that now was as good a time as ever to give it to her.

“Just so you know, this isn’t technically your birthday present, this is just something I wanted to get you because I thought of you when I saw it,” Clarke stated, “and it seemed fitting since I was in New York.”

She pulled out the carefully packed record case with a beautiful, old cover. The records inside were used, but close examination had confirmed that they weren’t damaged. It was a collection of multiple Frank Sinatra albums that had been impressively cheap, so even if Lexa tried to argue about Clarke spending money on her, there was that. “What is it?” Lexa asked, and Clarke heard her sitting on the bed.

The blonde hugged the case to her chest as she stood up and turned around to face her girlfriend. Lexa was focusing closely on setting down Clarke’s bowl of pasta without making a mess, and when Clarke sat down on the bed, Lexa finally looked at the item in her hand. Green eyes lit up at the sight of a vinyl. “Here,” Clarke said, carefully handing it over.

Lexa took it without hesitation, lighting up even more as she realized that it came with multiple albums. “Oh my god, I love these songs.”

“Who doesn’t? Sinatra is a legend,” Clarke claimed, propping her chin up on the palm of her hand as she watched the brunette read over the song list eagerly.

“I wish I had my record player here right now so I could play it.” Exhaling sadly, the brunette carefully got off the bed and set the case on the desk. “On Sunday, before you go home, you have to come over so we can listen to it. Deal?”

“Whatever you want. It’s your birthday, after all.”

Lexa rolled her eyes, sitting back down on the bed and grabbing her pasta. “Eat, I paid good money for that.”

“It’s cold,” Clarke whined, though she hadn’t even tasted the pasta yet. Even so, she began to eat the food, which wasn’t half bad. By the time that she had successfully emptied her bowl, exhaustion was beginning to tug at her eyelids, and she collapsed into her bed without bothering to clean off her face or anything. In a matter of minutes, she was out.


Clarke moaned, confused as to why she was doing so for a few seconds before she realized that a warm tongue was pressed to the inside of her thigh. “Lexa?” Clarke murmured sleepily, her hands coming up to wipe at her eyes. Her girlfriend responded by nipping her thigh softly. “What time is it?”

“I woke up about ten minutes ago,” Lexa stated from between Clarke’s legs, not answering the question, “and I was getting ready, and then was going to wake you up, but you look so beautiful and sexy and I couldn’t help it.” Clarke forced her eyes open, and they fell instantly on her girlfriend. Lexa was settled between her thighs, her mouth dangerously close to the blonde’s center. “I’ll stop…”

“Oh no, please continue.” Despite how sleepy she was, her body did not want Lexa to stop.

“If you’re sure.” Lexa didn’t sound hesitant at all, and sure enough, her lips were meeting Clarke’s lower ones just a second later. Hissing out a breath at the feeling, Clarke flung her hands out next to her to grab onto the sheets. Apparently, the previous night had left her a bit sensitive. Lexa stopped immediately, looking up in concern. “You okay?”

“Fine, just… maybe a little gentler. We maybe had a little too much fun last night.”

“I don’t want to hurt you…”

“You won’t hurt me.”

Lexa narrowed her eyes, as if thinking deeply, before she finally obliged and, this time more carefully, came into contact with Clarke’s center. She was softer and slower, and Clarke sighed happily as her skin began to tingle everywhere. Her left hand dragged over her breasts gently as Lexa began to work her up from below the waist. It was a few minutes before her body was truly reacting, and her hips started to rock slightly, when suddenly there was a knock on the door.

“Clarke, Lexa, are you up? It’s almost noon, we’re supposed to go out!” It was Anya.

“Go away!” Clarke yelled, the sleep out of her tone.

“No! Get the fuck up!”

Lexa, rather than stop what she was doing, brought her hands to grip Clarke’s thighs and pulled her center closer, burying her tongue into the blonde. “Shit,” Clarke gasped, trying to thrust further down onto her girlfriend.

“Okay, there’s no way that Lexa is still asleep, what the fuck?” It was Raven now, knocking again on the door.

“We’ll be out soon, go away!” Clarke called again, though she was sure that her panting was obvious.

Oh,” was Raven’s reply, and Clarke would have been able to picture her smirk if her thoughts weren’t being repeatedly drawn away from anything other than the feeling of Lexa’s fingers now contributing to the task of driving Clarke up. She was pretty sure that Lexa was trying to speed up the process.

“What are they doing?” Octavia.

“Get away, they’ll be out soon,” Raven answered with amusement in her voice.

Anya huffed. “We agreed noon!”

“They’re a little busy…”

“Oh my god, gross.”

The conversation was all background noise to Clarke, because her panting and groaning was the only thing she could really hear as her body began to fall in tune with Lexa’s motions between her leg. “Fuck, Lexa,” she gasped. It was an unknown amount of time later that Clarke cried out one last time, her body shaking violently with easily one of the best orgasms she’d ever had. “Oh my god.”

Lexa pulled her face out from between Clarke’s legs, waiting a few moments before gently pulling out her fingers as well. Clarke barely saw as the brunette sucked them clean before crawling up to kiss the blonde softly on the lips. “Sorry. I just missed you so much while you were gone, and this morning I really didn’t want to do anything before doing that.”

Between her ragged breaths, Clarke shook her head and murmured, “Don’t apologize, weirdo.” Eyes closed, Clarke only felt it when Lexa’s hands fell gently onto the sides of her midsection and then moved up to settle over her breasts.

“You’re so beautiful,” Lexa whispered. She leaned down and pressed a bunch of soft kisses between Clarke’s breasts, and the blonde wanted nothing more than to stay like this forever. The previous night had been great, but it had felt more like a night of catching up, of rushed and desperate sex. This morning felt different – it felt like… like something Clarke couldn’t even comprehend. This was more than sex, and more than anything the two of them previously had together. “And so sexy. I love your body.”

Clarke giggled. “My body loves you by now, so looks like you’ve got a strong relationship going with it.”

“Mm good.” Lexa’s lips were still leaving feathery kisses between Clarke’s boobs, her nose bumping the soft skin and making Clarke smile, her eyes still closed. “You know what else I love?”

Clarke’s heartrate suddenly picked up – not because of Lexa’s lips on her chest or the after effects of her climax, but because her mind could only come up with one answer to Lexa’s questions. “What do you love?” she asked quietly.

“Your eyes.” Lexa’s lips were suddenly on Clarke’s cheek, very close to her right eye, and the blonde laughed lightly again. “And your hair.” She placed a kiss on Clarke’s temple.

“Those are both parts of my body, dork,” Clarke murmured, finally opening her eyes and finding them staring into dark green ones instantly.

“I also love that you thought to buy me a record in New York, and that you called me every day and if you didn’t, you apologized as though you have some obligation to take to me every single day, even though you know that I would be fine to wait a day. I love it, though, because talking to you is kind of like breathing, and I say that I could wait a day, but I don’t know how true that is,” Lexa whispered. Her proximity to Clarke was lessening, and their noses bumped together softly.

“You know what I love?” Clarke murmured. She wouldn’t let this go on without getting her piece in, because she had been planning on telling Lexa tonight that she loved her, and she was not going to let Lexa beat her to it.

“Sex?”

Clarke smirked. “I do love sex, but that wasn’t what I was going to say.”

“Sex with me?”

“Mm, I love that a lot.” Pale hands lifted to drag soft fingers through Lexa’s dark hair. “I love your body, and your eyes, and your hair. And I love it when you call me beautiful and babe, and I love how important you make me feel. I love how you stand up for me and the way you smile. I love the way your eyes light up when you talk about your record player and the way you get happy when I’m happy. I love the way you touch me and the way you always know what the best thing to say is. And I never thought I’d say this, but I even love your shitty pickup lines and how fucking cocky you are all the damn time. Because I love you.”

Lexa’s breath seemed to catch her in her throat, and then she abruptly closed the distance between them with a soft kiss. It lasted a few seconds – though it might as well have been an eternity – before Lexa pulled away, sitting up and looking down at Clarke with a look that the blonde had never seen before. It was perhaps the first time that she ever saw Lexa completely speechless, her expression conveying the emotion she was feeling and the struggle she was having to form words. “Fuck, Clarke, if… if I could express to you everything that you make me feel, we’d probably be here for hours. Just… ugh, if I compress it all down to a few words I guess they’d be that I love you too.” Lexa whispered, her lips turning up into a smile. “Also, you totally stole my thunder.”

“I had to, because part of my birthday present to you was telling you that, and you were about to steal away my present for you!” Clarke exclaimed, grinning as she sat up and caused Lexa to fall back slightly. “Although, your physical birthday present still remains for tonight, but I have a feeling that we won’t ever make it back here alive if we don’t get up and get ready to hang out with our friends. Anya will probably kill us.”

“Anya won’t try to kill you – she knows better than to go after things that I love.”

“Aw, you’re so sappy,” Clarke murmured in amusement, pressing another quick kiss to Lexa’s lips. “Come on, babe, we need to get up.”

Chapter Text

“New rule,” Anya said grouchily, “Clarke is never allowed to leave for a week if it’s going to cause Lexa to make us wait an extra hour and a half just to hang out. We should have left you two back at the hotel, you probably would’ve just kept up the sex marathon all fucking day anyway.”

“Who said anything about a sex marathon?” Clarke asked with a snicker.

“We only had one round this morning,” Lexa stated positively, “you just happened to arrive at the most inopportune moment.”

“So what took so fucking long after that?” Anya demanded. Clarke blushed, crossing her arms over her chest and refusing to answer the question. “What? Were you giving each other your fucking vows or something?”

“Shut up Anya,” Lexa snapped, somewhat playful since Anya was obviously not being entirely serious. The brunette rested her hand on Clarke’s arm and gingerly tugged on it until the blonde gave in and let their hands clasp and fingers intertwine.

“Alright you guys,” Octavia said, waving at the three of them in annoyance, “what’s first on the list for today?”

“We have dinner with Lexa’s sister tonight,” Raven began listing, “and other than that, I think we were going to go to a piercing place, right?”

“Oh really?” Clarke asked, looking to her girlfriend with a raised eyebrow.

“You told me you’d think about it – so have you? Do you want one?”

Octavia hummed thoughtfully as Clarke thought about the question. “If Clarke is getting one, so am I.”

“Um, well if O’s getting one, I am.” Raven crossed her arms firmly.

Anya rolled her eyes. “You guys are so behind. I have three cartilage piercings already.”

“I don’t think I want any ear piercings,” Harper admitted. “I got my belly button done when I turned eighteen, but I don’t think I can handle any more needles sticking through my skin.”

“Well, I’m getting one for sure,” Lexa stated, “so let’s find the nearest place we can get to.”

As they began the journey through Tampa to a tattoo and piercing place, Clarke considered whether she wanted a cartilage piercing or not. She knew that it would hurt initially, and probably for a few months afterward, but once it healed it shouldn’t be much more annoying than regular ear piercings, right? That said, she wasn’t sure that she was ready for something spontaneous like that, and she had a feeling that it would make sleeping difficult.

“I think I’m going to pass on piercings today,” Clarke said to her girlfriend, nudging the brunette, “but you should definitely get one.”

Lexa smiled a toothy grin at her. “Suit yourself. I’m going to look way hotter after I get it.” Clarke opened her mouth, and then snapped it shut again. “What?”

“I was going to say that it would be hard for you to get any hotter, but then I decided not to feed your ego anymore. It’s already bulging.”

“It’s my birthday,” Lexa justified. “Plus, did you not just tell me this morning that you love it when I’m cocky?”

“I have no recollection of this.”

“Shut up, you liar.”

“Earth to Clarke and Lexa!” Raven snapped her fingers in between the two of them, making them jump apart a bit. “We’re here.” The six of them spilled into the parlor, which was thankfully not very full of people. Lexa went up to the register, where a woman with about six piercings in each ear and a few tattoos up and down her arms was sitting. After a brief exchange, Lexa handed over her ID, proving that she was eighteen as of that day, and her credit card, and then the group was following her and one of the employees through the little shop to a room in the back.

“You guys are weird, you don’t all have to watch,” Lexa told them with narrowed eyes.

“I have to watch, because if Raven gets one of these later and has a worse reaction than you, I’ll be able to make fun of her,” Octavia insisted.

The piercer laughed at the group of them and then turned to Lexa, asking her where she wanted the piercing exactly. She pinched almost the very top of her ear, and Clarke leaned against the wall as she watched the guy draw a little dot on her ear and hand over a mirror. Lexa confirmed that she wanted the piercing there, and a few seconds and a needle later, there was a hole through the top of Lexa’s ear. The brunette didn’t even flinch.

“Damn, no one is going to beat Lexa at something like that,” Octavia stated.

“It didn’t really hurt,” Lexa admitted with a slight shrug.

“Alright, I’m going to put in the earring now,” the piercer told her, but it was still only about a minute later that a pretty little hoop was sitting in the top of Lexa’s right ear.

“It’s cute,” Clarke said to her girlfriend.

“Just cute?”

“Sorry, babe, guess it didn’t have the desired effect.”

Lexa narrowed her eyes. “Don’t tease me, it’s my birthday.”

Anya scoffed. “Ugh, you guys are disgusting.”

After thanking the piercer and obtaining a little card with step by step instructions on how to clean her ear, Lexa led the charge out of the tattoo parlor.

“Alright, we have hours until we’re meeting Luna, right?” Harper asked. “What else are we doing today?”

“How about we hit up Westshore Plaza?”

Clarke frowned. “What’s that?”

“It’s like a mall,” Lexa explained. “That works for me if it’s good with everyone else.”

“It’s your birthday.” Octavia grinned at her friend. “Let’s go, I wanna buy some clothes.”

“And I still have to buy you a present, Lexa, and you get to pick it,” Anya said as she sent a smile to her best friend.

“Seriously, Anya, you need to stop buying me birthday presents.”

“You always buy me birthday presents.”

“I… yeah, you’re right. Ugh.”

Clarke laughed at her girlfriend, grabbing her hand again.


Clarke was nervous to meet Lexa’s sister.

She hadn’t really thought much of it throughout the day, or the previous day for that matter, but when the six of them had successfully made their way through the city to the restaurant they were meeting Luna at, she began to get nervous. Perhaps she was worried that Lexa’s sister would be overprotective and would hate Clarke, or that she would just hate Clarke for some other reason, but whatever the problem was, she was nervous. Since she was holding Lexa’s hand, it was almost guaranteed that the brunette could feel Clarke’s hands getting clammy.

Really, she figured that she shouldn’t be particularly nervous, because it wasn’t like meeting the parents of her girlfriend, something she’d already done. In fact, she’d run into Lexa’s mom a couple of times since the initial time, and had even briefly met Lexa’s dad. While she hadn’t actually sat down and had a meal with them or anything like that, she knew that they knew that she was dating Lexa, and they were fairly relaxed about things. Lexa’s sister, though… she wasn’t sure why she was nervous.

Lexa didn’t comment on her hands getting slightly more sweaty than before, thankfully, but the brunette did give her a look of encouragement as they finally got to the restaurant.

“I haven’t seen Luna in a while, this should be fun,” Anya commented, and Clarke realized that the group had all been talking during the walk here, while she had been having a silent freak out moment.

When they walked into the restaurant, Lexa quickly spoke to the host, who gladly directed them toward Luna. Clarke began summing her up as soon as she saw her – her hair was dark and kind of wild, her dark brown eyes were trained down on the menu seriously. In Clarke’s opinion, the two sisters did not look much alike.

“Hey, Luna,” Lexa called as they approached the table. The older sister looked up from her menu, a smiling forming over her face that softened her expression and made her seem a bit more approachable.

“Happy birthday, Lexa,” Luna replied, standing to grab her sister in a hug, for which Lexa had to release Clarke’s hand. To avoid doing something awkward with her hands, she shoved them in the back pockets of her shorts. “Hey guys,” she said to the group once the hug had ended. “You must be Clarke, right?”

“Yeah, it’s nice to meet you,” Clarke replied, wiping her hand discretely on her shorts before extending it to Lexa’s sister. Luna shook it pleasantly, still smiling.

“Likewise.” All of them began to sit down at the table, and Luna said, “I haven’t ordered anything yet. And also – I wish I could pay for all of your dinners, but seeing as I’m still kind of a broke college student and one of you has a bottomless bank account, I’m just paying for Lexa’s and Clarke’s.”

“No problem,” Octavia insisted, “I’ve got the rest of you.”

Anya rolled her eyes. “No, I can pay for myself.” Harper nodded in agreement, and Raven snickered.

“I’ll gladly accept this charity, thanks babe.” Octavia rolled her eyes at her girlfriend.

The waiter appeared at that moment, introducing himself and taking their drink orders before disappearing again.

“So how’s University of Tampa, Luna?” Harper wondered.

“Good,” Luna replied, “it’s weird to be almost halfway done, though. It feels like it’s going by faster than high school did.”

“That’s because you’re old,” Lexa teased her sister, who flashed her a glare.

“Have any of you gotten in to any schools yet?”

“No idea,” Raven answered. “Octavia is making us all wait until we get our letters from the University of Florida before we open them. I’ve had to avoid my email to keep from seeing, too, because I got an email and a letter from them and haven’t been able to open them.”

“Oh,” Lexa said as if suddenly remembering something, “Clarke, when we were talking to your uncle about coming down here early and when I went to go get clothes from his place for you, he told me that you got your University of Florida letter. That makes all of us, right?”

“Wait really? So we can open them when we get home?” Octavia asked, brightening up immensely.

Anya grinned. “Ooh, this should be fun.”

Luna laughed at all of them, shaking her head. “Well, if one thing hasn’t changed over the years, it’s the fact that you are all so weird.”

“Aw, you love us, Luna,” Raven insisted.

“Not sure that we’ve reached that point yet, Raven. I pretty much hated you all through high school, because well… I really wanted nothing to do with Lexa.”

Lexa batted her eyelashes at her sister. “You mean, except for that one time we went to Tampa and you were so nice to me and you bought me a record player?”

“Shut up, that doesn’t count,” Luna snapped at her, “you were heartbroken, and I wasn’t about to let you keep sulking forever. Do you remember what I told you that night, though?”

“Uh, what, that the best thing to do to get over Haley was to sleep with someone else?”

Clarke couldn’t help but smirk a little bit at the comment, but before Luna could answer her sister, their waiter briefly interrupted them to place their drinks on the table. Although none of them had looked at their menu much, they quickly picked what they wanted and ordered. Once the waiter walked off, Luna looked pointedly at her sister again. “No, not that.”

“Hm, you’d think I’d remember what you said considering that it’s probably one of the like, six things you said to me in the span of you and I both being in high school.”

“Oh shut up, it wasn’t that bad. I told you that someday you’d find someone who made that girl seem like nothing in comparison, and you didn’t believe me.” Luna said the last part with a slightly haughty tone, and when Lexa scoffed, Clarke felt a slight blush coming to her cheeks.

“I guess you just told so many lies as a kid that I stopped believing things you said,” Lexa said in defense, although it was obvious that she was poking fun. She leaned back in her seat, reaching for Clarke’s hand below the table. The blonde took it happily.

“Oh shit,” Octavia said suddenly, “I just realized that we left all of Lexa’s presents at the hotel.”

Anya smiled smugly. “That’s why you should just procrastinate and let Lexa pick her own present, like I did.” Lexa had picked out some clothes, and Anya had happily purchased them. They were now sitting next to Lexa’s chair in a little shopping bag.

“Whatever, we can just give them to you when we get back to the hotel, Lexa,” Raven suggested.

“You better not take too long, because I have to give her my present, and none of you can be there when I do,” Clarke stated threateningly.

“Oh come on, you had all fucking morning to give her a present,” Anya groaned. “Remember? When you made us like an hour late to hanging out?”

“Hey, that’s just as much Lexa’s fault as it is mine, and I’m not apologizing for it.”

Anya huffed. “I hate both of you.”

“As if,” Lexa said with a smirk.

The rest of dinner continued in that sort of fashion, talking and joking with their friends and Lexa’s sister, who seemed sort of recluse in comparison. Clarke got the sense that Luna rarely ever hung out with Lexa’s friends, like maybe she’d seen them once or twice since moving out of Polis. Still, the girl did her best to be a part of all the conversations, and Lexa actively tried to include everyone, even when a conversation was about something unknown to someone at the table.

Overall, it went well, and Clarke realized that she had been nervous for no reason. When it closed to an end, Luna hugged Lexa goodbye and gave her goodbyes to the group as well, and then she started off one way while the rest of them started back to the hotel.

“We can do presents in Harper and Anya’s room,” Octavia suggested, “because I don’t think that any of us think it’s a good idea to do so in our room or Lexa and Clarke’s room.”

“Don’t be gross,” Lexa teased her friend back, but they all seemed to agree anyway that Anya’s and Harper’s room was the way to go.

Raven rushed over to their room to grab their presents, though, and then they met up to give Lexa her gifts.

Finally, though, nearly an hour after starting the gift giving, Clarke and Lexa made it back to their hotel room. The brunette set her presents down by her bags, and Clarke fell onto the bed, somewhat exhausted from the day. “We did too much walking today.”

“You walk everywhere all the time, how is it possible that you’re complaining about walking?”

“I guess I got used to you driving me everywhere all the time,” Clarke teased.

“Watch what you say, I might just stop giving you rides.”

“Like you would.”

“You don’t know what I’m capable of.”

Clarke grinned, sitting up despite her exhaustion. “Bring me my bag?”

“Lazy,” Lexa mumbled under her breath, but she went and grabbed the bag anyway, tossing to the blonde.

“Come sit down.”

Her girlfriend didn’t argue, and as Clarke rummage through her bag, looking for her present, Lexa sat patiently next to her. Despite her insistence that she didn’t want any presents from Clarke, she seemed rather excited to see what it was. When the blonde pulled out the notebook, she let her bag fall off of the bed and settle on the ground as she turned to face the brunette.

“Alright so…” Clarke took a deep breath. “This present was supposed to come with an I love you, but then this morning happened and well… I mean, I guess it can still come with an ‘I love you…’ because it’s not like I stopped loving you after this morning.”

Lexa laughed. “I love you, too.”

Clarke shook her head, trying not to laugh as well. “Okay so basically… this is kind of written in the front of the notebook, but I want to explain it anyway. You obviously know that I’m a book nerd and that I love to read, but you also know that I love writing. What you probably don’t know is that last year was my worst year of writing – I lost so much inspiration after everything happened with me and my mom moving, and Finn was never much of a muse. And then, so far this year, I’ve written so much, because you inspire me, Lexa.”

Green eyes were glowing with happiness, and Clarke felt her heart swell in her chest.

“So, basically, I’ve written a lot since meeting you. I mean, I wrote a lot for my stories, and I wrote a lot of random journal entries and stuff, but… I’ve also written a lot of stuff about you. And I don’t usually trust people with reading anything that I write, especially not if it’s about them, but you’re like the first person I’ve ever been able to feel like I have a future with, and I love you, and I wanted you to have my heart. And the best way that I express my feelings is through writing, so…”

She extended the notebook to her girlfriend. “Some of that I wrote while I was gone the past week, but a lot of it is cut and pasted from my other notebooks. It’s not in any order, either, it’s just… all there.”

“Clarke…” Lexa looked completely taken aback, but she slowly flipped open the book. She read the little explanation on the front, a smile coming to her lips, before turning through some of the other pages. Her breath caught in her throat more than once, and tears came to her eyes. “Oh my god,” she said, chuckling, “this is that day you ran out of school early – you were writing this when I came up to you on the beach and you closed that notebook so fast.”

Clarke blushed, laughing as she nodded. “Yeah.”

“I love this, Clarke,” Lexa murmured, closing it and setting it aside gently. “Seriously, thank you so much. I’m probably going to be spending all of my free time reading it next week.”

“I hope not all of your free time, because I’d like to be scheduled in next week too.”

“You’re such a dork, of course you’re scheduled in.” Clarke grabbed the notebook off of the bed and gently setting it on the floor before suddenly shifting closer to her girlfriend.

“Aw, look what a softie I’ve turned you into.”

“I’m not a softie.”

“You really are, though.”

Lexa growled, and in a matter of seconds, Clarke was pinned on the bed by her girlfriend. “Really?”

“You are not allowed to top me tonight,” Clarke stated rather than answering the question, and she gathered up her strength in order to force Lexa up and over – so that she was straddling her girlfriend now. “You got to do that all morning, and it’s your birthday.” Lexa pouted up at the blonde, as if that would convince Clarke to reverse their positions again. “Come on, Lexa, you know that won’t work on me.”

“I don’t know that, actually.”

“Well, you do now.”

“Ugh, I hate you.”

“You love me.”

“Fuck, you’re right.”

Clarke beamed. “It’s okay, though, because I love you, too. And I’m going to show you just how much.” Before Lexa could even acknowledge the statement, Clarke was stripping herself and then stripping the brunette, and their night began.

It was filled with moans and screams and whispered sweet nothings and gentle touches and rough touches and kisses and probably more than one hickey and countless curse words and a few perfect murmured declarations of love.


“Clarke, move,” the blonde heard her girlfriend whine, “I can’t get up.”

“Why would you wanna get up?” Clarke mumbled, purposely adjusting her position on top of her girlfriend and settling even more comfortably there. It had been about fifteen minutes since their birthday sex adventures had ended, and it was incredibly late. Clarke had nearly fallen asleep before she heard Lexa protesting.

“I need to pee and brush my teeth and wash my face before I got to sleep,” Lexa insisted.

“No, stay here with me.”

Lexa gently pushed Clarke off of her, and the blonde fell onto the bed with a slight “oomph.” “Babe,” Clarke whined, finally opening her eyes and watching her naked girlfriend walk toward the bathroom. “Ugh.” She pushed herself up and out of bed, following Lexa to the bathroom. “I hate you.”

“You don’t.”

“I do,” Clarke mumbled, lazily following Lexa’s motions and brushing her teeth. She wiped off her face as Lexa slipped around the little dividing wall between the sinks and the toilet and went to the bathroom. Clarke was basically half asleep, and as soon as she had finished washing her face, she trudged back to the bed and flopped down onto it.

Lexa returned a few minutes later, turning off the lights that had been left on and pulling the blanket up and over the two of them. “I love you, Clarke, thank you for helping me have the best birthday ever.” The brunette pressed her front to Clarke’s back, gently spooning her, and Clarke couldn’t help but exhale all of her tension and relax completely.

“You deserve it,” Clarke murmured, “so no need to thank me. But you’re welcome, and I love you too. Let’s go to sleep.” Lexa’s arms wrapped around Clarke’s midsection, holding her possessively.

“Of course.”


“Alright, car ride rules,” Octavia began loudly as she pulled out of the hotel parking garage. “Number one, since I’m driving and can’t make out with Raven, there’s to be no making out. Number two, since I’m driving and can’t cuddle with Raven, there’s to be no cuddling. And number three, since I’m driving and can’t be cute with Raven, there’s to be no cuteness.”

“These rules sound pretty discriminatory of me and Clarke,” Lexa stated from the back seat, where Clarke and Lexa were. Anya and Harper took the middle seats, and Raven was in the passenger seat.

“It’s not my fault that you and Clarke and dating but Harper and Anya aren’t.”

“Well that’s an idea – Anya and Harper, you guys should date,” Raven said teasingly, and the two girls rolled their eyes.

“Anya isn’t my type,” Harper stated flatly, and Anya scoffed.

“Oh really?”

“No, my type is way nicer than you. Sorry, but it’s true,” Harper said with a chuckle.

Clarke smiled at her friends’ playful banter, leaning into her girlfriend despite Octavia’s rules. “Clarke! I see you trying to break my rules back there!” Octavia squeaked.

“What, I can’t touch Lexa for the whole hour long drive? You should’ve just split us up seat wise if you actually wanted that to happen,” Clarke said.

“She makes a valid point,” Lexa agreed with a grin, wrapping an arm around Clarke.

Octavia huffed. “Fine, but there will be consequences for breaking my rules.” Lexa and Clarke pointedly ignored the statement, closing the distance between them with a kiss. They didn’t even try to keep it PG, and after a few seconds, Anya was slapping the seat in front of them.

“Gross, break it up, guys, I don’t wanna hear the sound of you guys sucking face for an hour,” she muttered.

Clarke pulled away from Lexa with a smirk, and the brunette said, “Sorry, we just needed to make it clear that we really don’t care to follow Octavia’s dumb rules.”

“I hate you both,” Octavia stated in annoyance.

“You love us.”

The rest of the car ride continued basically as such, all of them bantering playfully back and forth. It was easy, relaxing, and when they were approaching Polis, Clarke realized that she didn’t want any of this to end. These friendships she had meant more to her than any she’d ever had previously, and she had never felt so included in a group of people before. As shitty as her previous year had been, she wouldn’t dare go back to change anything that had happened. At least she’d ended up here.

Chapter Text

“Hey Marcus,” Clarke called in greeting as she entered the town house, though she wasn’t entirely sure that he was even home. A second later, however, he came out from the kitchen with a warm smile on his face.

“How was the trip – and Tampa?”

“It was awesome,” Clarke said with a happy sigh. “New York was great, seeing my mom was literally the best. We caught up on everything, and it was just… really refreshing to get to talk to her again, for real. It’s harder over the phone, in my opinion. Plus I got to see all my old friends. And Tampa was awesome, I got to meet Lexa’s sister which was cool, and we went shopping around the city.”

Marcus smiled, nodding along as Clarke talked, and when she finished, she realized that her mind wanted to let spill one other piece of info that Marcus didn’t already know.

“Also, Marcus, I have to tell you something,” she said slowly.

“Shoot.”

“Um, I’m bisexual. And I’m dating Lexa.”

Marcus’ smile was one of pure amusement, and Clarke was immediately confused. “You really think I’m so oblivious that I wouldn’t have been able to figure that out?”

“What – but we’re never over here, so how would you possibly know?”

“Clarke, I might be kind of old and very single, but I have dated in the past. And you don’t go over to one person’s house, or get rides from one single person, or go to Tampa with one other person, or come back early from New York for one person’s birthday, unless that person is really important to you. And you didn’t even hang out with Finn half as much as you hang out with Lexa – granted that’s probably because you also hang out with those other girls when you hang out with Lexa, but that’s beside the point. Plus, that one time she came over to talk to you when you were all mopey… yeah, I deduced as much,” Marcus explained as Clarke gaped at him.

“Seriously? You literally knew all this time?”

“I’ve had a hunch for a while, but if I’m being completely honest, your mom mentioned it over the phone when I called her about this weekend after Lexa came over to ask me if she and your friends could pick you up from the airport and stay in Tampa for the weekend,” he admitted with a chuckle, “so don’t feel too bad.”

“Well… I guess it doesn’t matter how long you’ve known,” Clarke said with a soft laugh. “As long as you’re… like… okay with it?”

“Of course I am, why wouldn’t I be? Plus, you’re an adult, and it’s not my place to try to enforce anything on you. Not that I would, because I have no problem with your sexuality in any way.” The assurance made Clarke smile, because even though she had supposed that was the case, it was still nice to hear it.

“Thanks, Marcus. I’m sorry I didn’t tell you earlier. I wanted to tell my mom first, and I wanted to tell her in person, you know?”

“I get it.” Her uncle smiled softly at her. “So, I made some lunch if you’re hungry. I know you probably have plans or something, but I figured you could use some time to just sit and eat.”

“No plans actually,” she admitted, “at least, not until tomorrow. Tomorrow after school, we’re meeting up at Octavia’s place to open our University of Florida letters.”

“Oh, speaking of that,” Marcus said, turning around and entering the kitchen with Clarke on his tail. He grabbed a stack of letters off of the counter and handed it to her. “Here’s your mail from the past week. I think there’s one from every college you applied to actually.”

Clarke grabbed the letters from him and confirmed that there were five – one from each school she’d applied to. New York University, University at Buffalo, University at Albany, University at Stony Brook, and, of course, University of Florida. Taking in a deep breath, she wondered if she should open the first four now, or wait to be with her friends for that as well. Shaking her head, she decided to at least put them off until after lunch with Marcus.

“So, tell me more about things in New York.”

-

Clarke stared at the letters in her hand, laying sprawled across her bed. She wasn’t sure that she wanted to go to any of the schools other than the University of Florida, all things considered, but if UF waitlisted or deferred her, she would need to have a backup plan, so it wasn’t like the letters from the New York schools were for nothing. She needed to open them, but she figured it had the potential to be more depressing if she opened them with her friends – like say if she didn’t get into UF. It would be better to know ahead of time, right?

Taking in a deep breath, she decided to open them in order of how selective the schools were. That meant Buffalo first. Tearing open the envelope, she took in a deep breath as she unfolded the letter, and exhaled in relief when she read the word “Congratulations!” So one down, three to go. Folding the letter back up after skimming its contents to confirm what it was saying, she looked to the next one – Albany. She opened it as quickly as possible and unfolded it as well, once again breathing a sigh of relief to see that she’d gotten in.

Next was Stony Brook, it was a bit more competitive than the first two, but definitely not as much as NYU. Swallowing thickly, she opened it, and immediately her heart fell. It wasn’t like Stony Brook was her dream or something, it just hurt to read the words “We regret to inform you…” Shaking her head, she tossed it aside. It wasn’t the end of the world with any of the New York colleges after all, she already had backup plans now if she didn’t get into the University of Florida.

Clarke opened her last letter, from NYU, in the not so great mindset that she probably wouldn’t get in, and she was right. However, she had been put on the waitlist, which wasn’t too bad, she supposed.

Gathering up her letters into a stack and discarding of the envelopes by pushing them off the bed, she set the acceptances in one pile on her nightstand, the rejections next to it, with the University of Florida envelope sitting alone next to them. Then she grabbed her phone, slid under the blankets on her bed, and went to text her girlfriend – who, she decided, would be the only one she would admit to that she’d opened her other letters until she found out about UF.

Message: Lexa and Clarke

Clarke – I opened my letters from NY schools, got into Buffalo and Albany, but not Stony Brook, and got waitlisted for NYU. My UF letter is patiently waiting to be opened.

Lexa – Congrats!! Acceptances are exciting – and tbh don’t let the other stuff bother you, because if they don’t want you, you shouldn’t want them either. :)

Clarke – Thanks, it just kinda sucked reading the rejections. But hey, hopefully I won’t have any more of those to read.

Lexa – Yes! Haha my UF letter is sitting on my desk right now, also waiting to be opened.

Clarke – I’m kinda nervous to open it :(

Lexa – It’s gonna be fine, babe, and even if not all of us get in, it’s not like any of us have nowhere else to go.

Clarke – But it’s the only place I applied to in Florida.

Lexa – Don’t stress about it, whatever happens will happen, and we’ll figure everything out from there, okay?

Clarke – Okay…

Lexa – You should get some sleep, and stop stressing! I love you :)

Clarke – Love you too xx

Clarke set her phone down and heaved a deep sigh. She was incredibly nervous. If she and Lexa didn’t both get into the University of Florida, she had no idea what they would do.


“Shouldn’t you be headed to school by now?” Marcus wondered, flashing Clarke a look of confusion.

“Yeah, I’m about to leave,” she replied, mildly disappointed at the fact that the nerves she had about the day were quite apparent in her tone of voice. “I’m just…” She shook her head, leaning against the wall by the door and nodding to the envelope in her hand. It would be opened at the same time as her friends’ letters later that day, but for all of the school day, it would be resting in her bag in between her school notebooks. “I’m kind of nervous about opening this later.”

“Don’t be nervous,” Marcus insisted. “Plus, if a school doesn’t want you, you shouldn’t want them.”

Smiling gratefully at her uncle, Clarke nodded, trying to be positive. “Thanks, Marcus. I should probably head out. I’ll see you tonight.”

“Have a good day, kiddo,” he said with a reassuring smile, and Clarke felt a strange pang of nostalgia all of the sudden – the only person who had ever called her “kiddo” had been her dad, over eleven years ago.

“You too,” she murmured quickly, before pushing off of the wall and starting through the door.

Although she wasn’t quite sure whether it was a good thing or not, the sudden thought of her father distracted her from the letter in her hands. He wondered what he would be like nowadays were he still around – he’d probably still call her kiddo and treat her like a kid a lot, but he probably would also have given her the space she needed to grow up. She knew that he would be find with her sexuality – there wasn’t a doubt in her mind about that.

She wondered if he’d be proud of her for getting into two schools so far, and she wondered how he would’ve felt about her applying and hoping for the University of Florida.

And again, her thoughts were brought to the letter. It burned the tips of her fingers, which wanted equally to tear it open to read it and yet throw it out into the street. Halfway to school, she had to stop and shove it in her bag. Once it was no longer in her direct grasp, she calmed significantly and finished her walk to school.

The day would have passed her by in a blink had her girlfriend not knocked her out the zombie mode that she had apparently been switched onto. “You okay?” Lexa asked her at lunch, causing the blonde to blink and then shrug.

“I don’t know, I just feel weird today,” she admitted. “I’m just… I’m really stressed about opening the UF letter.”

“Don’t worry, you’re gonna get in,” Anya stated flatly.

Raising an eyebrow, Clarke opened her mouth slowly, “Why do you say that?”

“Come on, Clarke, you’re smart, and you’re likeable. Plus, you’re a writer, right? I’m sure that your essays were killer,” Anya insisted. “To be honest, you’re probably the most likely of all of us to get in.”

Clarke felt a smile appear on her face without her having to even think about it – that was definitely the nicest thing that Anya had ever said to her, and it was so genuine that Clarke couldn’t even think of a response.

Luckily, Raven was speaking before it became weird that she hadn’t said anything. “Hey, excuse you, I literally have a 4.0 GPA, I’m definitely getting in,” she huffed out.

“You guys always forget that my girlfriend is a genius,” Octavia tutted, shaking her head.

Lexa rolled her eyes. “I think we’ll all get in.”

“I’m with Lexa – we need to be positive guys,” Harper agreed with a firm nod.

Anya hummed thoughtfully, though she said nothing in response, and Octavia chuckled. “Alright, we just going straight back to my place after school to open this shit, or what?”

“Works for me,” Lexa said with a nod.

Blue eyes traveled to meet green ones. “Can you give me a ride?”

“Of course, babe.”

“Great, so that’s two… Anya?”

“Yeah, I’ll be there.” Harper nodded in agreement after Anya’s answer.

Octavia grinned. “Great.”

“Actually guys,” Raven started, “feel free to show up like, an hour after school. I’d like to have pre-letter-opening sex with my girlfriend in case the results end up being depressing, because if we’re sad, we probably won’t have sex, and I’m kinda horny.”

“Alright, TMFI,” Anya huffed out.

“Where’d the F come from?”

“Too much fucking information, Rae.”

“Oh, gotcha. I’m pretty sure that no one says that, though.”

I say it.”

Clarke chuckled at her friends. Already, she was feeling calmer, though it was possible that it was more caused by the fact that Lexa’s hand had found hers under the table and her soft thumb was stroking the back of it. Clarke gave her girlfriend a grateful smile, and the brunette easily grinned back.

“I have an idea,” Lexa spoke up, interrupting the back and forth that had been continuing between Anya and Raven. “We all need to plan a summer trip together after we graduate, that way whether or not we all end up going to the University of Florida, we get a sort of last hoorah before we go off to college. If we do all go to UF… then it’s just a way to party and explore and have a great time before school.”

Anya snickered. “I was about to say that we’ll be partying just as hard in college anyway, and then I remembered that you’re in a committed relationship now, so I’ll probably be partying way harder than you.”

“I’m pretty sure,” Clarke said quickly, “that Lexa and I can party pretty hard together even in a committed relationship.”

Amused, Harper said, “Yeah, look at Raven and Octavia. Somehow, in the past two years they still manage to get each other to scream literally loud enough to wake up a whole house of people if they try hard enough.”

“That happened?”

“You don’t wanna know the details. It was a weird night.”

“Shut up, that was on Raven’s birthday,” Octavia growled, “so you can’t blame us. What was I supposed to do – not heed her birthday demands?”

Smirking, Anya tilted her head. “What were those demands exactly? I mean, I’m assuming there was some sort of toy involved, because I’d never heard Raven screaming that loud before.”

“I’m pretty sure you don’t hear my girlfriend screaming near as much as I do,” Octavia said thinly, “so you can’t argue that point, and therefore I will not be answering your initial question.”

Raven was holding in laugher at this point, basically confirming Anya’s suspicions, and Clarke once again found herself laughing at the group. All thoughts of the stress that had held her attention all morning were now long gone, thankfully, and what was left was the knowledge that no matter what, she had this amazing group of people by her side.


Clarke and Lexa got to Octavia’s house a bit too early it seemed, because when they let themselves in, they were greeted by the sounds of moans coming from the living room. Lexa scoffed as the two of them stopped by the doorway, not wanting to venture further into the house. “Really, you guys couldn’t even make it upstairs first?”

“It’s my house,” Octavia called back, sound very worked up and annoyed, “and no one else was home. Ugh. We’ll finish this later.”

After giving it a few more seconds, Clarke began to lead the two of them further into the house, and they peered slowly into the living room to be sure that their friends were decent before walking in. Octavia looked more than a little sexually frustrated, and Raven was smirking. “I think we need to go freshen up real quick, feel free to have a seat in the meantime.”

“Gross, I’m not sitting on this couch.”

Octavia rolled her eyes, cheeks flushed, and grabbed Raven’s hand. They both quickly ran upstairs, and Clarke had a feeling that their freshening up would take a few minutes longer than it should. Lexa quickly made her way to the kitchen and returned with some wet wipes, and Clarke let out an amused laugh. “Good thing the couch is leather I guess.”

“I hope they clean it even when they aren’t caught,” Lexa muttered under her breath as she wiped down the leather couch. It was dry by the time she returned the cleaning supplies to the kitchen, and the couple fell onto the cushions. Clarke opened up her book bag and retrieved the letter that had been sitting in it all day. It was still pristine – not at all bent or marked on even though it had been quite a few days since it had come in the mail. “You excited?”

Clarke looked to her girlfriend, who was giving her a look of pure enthusiasm. There was clearly no doubt in Lexa’s mind that things would be okay, and if the blonde didn’t know better, she would think that her girlfriend had actually checked everyone’s emails and confirmed that they’d all been accepted.

The front door of the house swung open, and Clarke turned her head to see if it was Anya or Harper, and it turned out to be Bellamy walking into the room instead. “Uh, what’s up?” he asked.

Lexa lifted her UF letter in explanation. “We’re just waiting for Octavia and Raven to finished freshening up.”

Cringing, Octavia’s twin muttered, “Gross.”

“Did you apply to UF?” Clarke wondered out of pure curiosity. She hadn’t really spoken to Bellamy since shit had gone down, but seeing as she was trying to be in charge of her own happiness and whatnot, she made the split second decision to not hate him forever. After all, he was Octavia’s brother, and it was entirely possible that the two of them would become close again sometime. In the event of that happening, Clarke would want to be able to at least get along with him, she supposed.

“Yeah, and I got in. Not sure I wanna go there, though. I think it would be good for me to get out of Florida. I’d like to go somewhere in the north. I’m thinking like Boston or something. I’m still waiting on letters.”

Octavia came bounding down the stairs all of the sudden, Raven on her heels. “Oh, hey there, lesser, male version of me,” Octavia said, “get lost, we’re doing something important.” Raven had two letters clutched in one hand, which she tossed on the table in the living room once they’d moved past Bellamy. The guy rolled his eyes and headed upstairs just as the front door opened again, the loud voices of Harper and Anya immediately filling the house.

“I’m just saying,” Harper said, “that if fish could fly, they would end up being birds.”

“Why?”

“Because scales don’t help animals fly, feathers do! They would have to evolve to have feathers – and would have to not have gills – to fly. They wouldn’t be fish anymore, they’d be fucking birds, Anya,” Harper hissed.

“What about those fish that like, glide over the water and like wiggle their fins back and forth to stay in the air?” Anya demanded. “Not to mention, they wouldn’t be birds, because they wouldn’t have beaks.”

“You – that makes no sense! Those fish don’t fly, they glide, and they can’t breathe outside of the water! And they would have to have different mouths than they do now, because they can’t eat like, algae out of the air!”

“They could swoop down to the water and eat the bacteria algae things in the water.”

“Then they would be pelicans!”

The conversation went into a lull as Anya huffed in annoyance, and the two girls walked into the living room, where the other four girls immediately busted out into laughter. “Oh shit, didn’t realize you guys were all waiting here,” Anya muttered.

“This is the kind of riveting conversations you two have when we’re not around?” Octavia asked with a chuckle.

“Harper always reads those dumb articles about science shit, and she started getting me into them, and I read one about flying fish and then she gets all fucking scientific on me about it,” Anya grumbled. “Whatever, you guys wouldn’t understand. Let’s just open these damn letters so I can confirm or deny that I have to be stuck with this bitch for the next four years.”

Harper grinned evilly, nudging Anya. “You know you’d miss me.”

“Aw, you guys are such a cute old married couple,” Lexa mocked teasingly, her smile widening when Anya flashed her a glare.

“Are we going to open these letters, or what? Because Lexa and Clarke interrupted my sex time, and I would like to return to it ASAP.”

“Rae, if I’m not complaining about being interrupted, you definitely shouldn’t be. I’m the one who didn’t get to finish.”

Anya groaned as Raven scoffed and snapped, “I didn’t even get a turn!”

“TMFI!” Clarke said, amused. “Let’s just open the letters and get it over with, okay?”

They all stood, Octavia and Raven grabbing each other’s letters instead of their own off of the table. “Ready everyone?” Hazel eyes glanced around their little circle, receiving nods from everyone, and then Octavia took in a deep breath. “Alright… open.”

The room went completely silent aside from the noise of envelope seals being broken and paper rubbing against paper. Empty envelopes fell lamely onto the floor and fingers unfolded neat letters at record speed.

“Raven’s in!” Octavia exclaimed without a second of hesitation.

“You too!” Raven shouted, and the two of them grabbed each other in excited hugs. Clarke still hadn’t unfolded her letter all of the way – her heart was pounding in her chest and her stomach was twisting up uncomfortably.

“I’m in!” Harper exclaimed, and Lexa followed up with a, “Me too!”

Anya let out a relieved breath. “Same.”

They were all looking at Clarke now, whose fingers were just a slight movement away from revealing her future to her. Aware that all attention was on her, she breathed in deeply and pushed the letter open.

Dear Miss Clarke Griffin,

Congratulations, you have been accepted…

“Holy shit, I got accepted!”

“Yes!” Octavia exclaimed, and Clarke looked up in shock. It wasn’t that she hadn’t thought she could do it really, the drama of it had just gotten to her head to the point that it felt so indeterminable that maybe she thought the letter would have held no answer at all. Instead, it confirmed a future with all of her best friends – with her girlfriend.

Speaking of, she found herself wrapped up in a tight hug with the brunette, and their lips came together a moment later. A celebratory kiss was fair, Clarke reasoned, but as soon as it broke, the rest of their friends were attacking them in a giant group hug. Laughter filled the air as they all hugged each other. “Fuck, guys, we’re going to college! Together!” Harper squealed.

“Fuck yeah we are!” Raven yelled.

“I think it’s a time for shots!” Anya said, and she was the first break out of the hug, hurrying over to the kitchen.

Octavia was the next to tug away, her eyes lighting up at the mention of shots. “Yes! Do we have limes? Oh – I think they’re in the middle drawer, Anya check the fridge!” She rushed toward the kitchen, and the rest of them laughed and followed.

They decided to start off with just beer and some food – because they knew that shots on an empty stomach were not really the best way to go. They talked excited for nearly an hour about their plans for college – all the fun things they would do together once out of this tiny little town. It was possibly the most excited Clarke had ever been for the future.

Then, when they finally started shots, they all took two consecutive celebratory ones before taking a momentary break.

Clarke looked to her girlfriend suggestively. “I have an idea.”

“Do you?”

“Body shots?”

“We haven’t done those in a while, have we?”

Clarke grinned. “I think I’d like to have a more risqué one this time around.”

“Oh really? And you think I’m going to let you violate my body like that?”

“If you don’t want to, we won’t, but I can’t think of any time you’ve complained about having my tongue on your body…”

“I suppose I’ll allow it.”

Their friends, seemingly oblivious to the conversation, were all well beyond tipsy by now, as were they. They weren’t quite sure how many beers they’d had during the time of them all talking, but now with two shots of tequila streaming through their veins, they were well on their way to having a very drunken night if they didn’t stop.

 “Fuck, we gotta get hammered,” Anya insisted.

Harper frowned. “It’s Monday…”

“Who fucking cares?” Raven exclaimed. “We’re all going to college together! This is worthy of getting hammered! Another shot for me, please!”

Clarke laughed, reaching for her third as well. She would probably usually not let herself drink this much on a Monday, but Raven was right, and any hangover would be worth it – at least that’s what she told herself. After she took the shot down, Lexa was suddenly kissing her with tongue for a good few seconds before pulling away and whispering, “Mm, tasty.”

“You liar, tequila is not tasty.”

“I was talking about you, dummy.”

Clarke giggled, pressing her lips to Lexa’s forcefully and taking control of the brunette’s mouth. Her girlfriend moaned as Clarke pushed her backwards, and they heard one of their friends whistle teasingly at them, but it wasn’t enough to stop them. They ran into the little breakfast table that was nestled in the corner of the kitchen, and Clarke decide that it was the right spot for her body shot plans.

She pulled her mouth off of Lexa’s. “Someone get me a shot and a lime and some salt.” It was Anya that brought the supplies over, laughing drunkenly as Clarke told Lexa to take off her shirt and the brunette looked doubtful. “Okay fine, don’t, just pull it up. And lay down.”

“On what, the table?”

“Yes, duh.”

Lexa obeyed, pulling her shirt up as she laid out on the table. Clarke tried not to moan at how sexy her girlfriend was, and to keep herself from doing so, she busied herself by preparing Lexa’s midsection for her shot. She gave the lime slice to her girlfriend to put in her mouth, which she did, and then she poured some salt just above Lexa’s bellybutton.

“Damn, Clarke, I forgot that you actually party hard when you’re in the mood,” Raven said with a laugh. “O, why don’t we ever do body shots?”

Clarke ignored her friends, pouring the shot onto Lexa’s bellybutton. The girl immediately shivered, and liquid spilled down toward her shorts. Clarke dipped down at that moment, though, drinking the shot and licking all of the drops of it up, before sliding her tongue over the salt and then climbing onto the table, on top of her girlfriend, and biting the lime out of Lexa’s mouth. The brunette was breathing heavily by the time the blonde sat up, straddling her girlfriend on the table. She was quickly becoming aware of the fact that her friends were laughing and applauding her.

“Okay, I’ve never seen Lexa that floored,” Anya admitted, and Clarke looked down at her girlfriend, who did look a little taken aback.

“You guys are so lame – you’ve really never seen body shots like that?”

“I’ve seen them, but I’d imagine that having someone take one off you is a bit of a different sensation – am I right, Lexa?” Harper asked, laughing as Lexa sent her a defensive glare.

Clarke smirked, leaning down and pressing her lips to her girlfriend’s, who happily kissed her back.

“Alright guys, I was tolerant of this when it involved drinking, but now you really need to get off my table before you two start fucking on it.”

Clarke climbed off of Lexa and the table, her girlfriend following suit, and then Raven said, “I think we all deserve a shot now – since there’s no way we aren’t all sexually aroused from watching Clarke do that.”

“That’s so disturbing,” Lexa muttered.

“Hey, it’s your girlfriend that decided to take a shot off you with a bunch of people around.”

“Déjà vu much? Isn’t this what happened on the night that you two hooked up that first time?”

Lexa hummed, a grin coming to her face. “Yes, except there was none of that abdomen action – but body shots were involved.”

“Because body shots are great,” Clarke insisted, pouring herself another shot and taking it back.

“Shit, Clarke, you’re three shots ahead of me.” Lexa frowned. “You’re going to have such a bad headache tomorrow.”

“Anya, turn on some music!” There was excitement in Octavia’s voice. “It’s official – we’re getting plastered!”

Anya grinned, hurrying into the living room to turn on the radio, and Harper rolled her eyes. “I hate you guys so much.”

Yeah, the hangover the next day would be pretty bad, but on the bright side, Raven finally got to take some body shots off of Octavia and Clarke ended the night a bit on the early side – naked with Lexa in Octavia’s guest bedroom – so really, no one found themselves complaining too much later.

Chapter Text

Clarke bounced excitedly on her heels, staring at the gate exit in the airport. Lexa laughed lightly, grabbing her hand and squeezing. “I feel like you’re going to bounce away or something.”

“Sorry, I’m excited,” Clarke said. She flashed a wide grin at her girlfriend.

“I can see that… is it bad that I’m a little nervous? What if she doesn’t like me?”

“Are you kidding? Who doesn’t like you, Lexa?”

Lexa narrowed her eyes slowly. “Is this a trick question? Because I’m pretty sure I could name quite a number of people who don’t like me… a few of them include the asshole who cheated on you, and an ignorant sibling of a certain one of our friends…”

“Whatever, you’re awesome, and my mom isn’t an asshole, nor is she ignorant,” Clarke promised. “She’s going to love you.”

The doors from the gate slid open fancily, and blue eyes immediately looked back at them expectantly. A flood of people began to stream through them, and finally, Clarke spotted her mother dragging her small bag behind her. Since she was only staying for the day, it was understandable that she didn’t need much as far as luggage goes.

Abby saw Clarke after only a second of searching, and her face lit up. “Clarke! Hey!”

“Hey, mom!” Clarke exclaimed, embracing her mom in a hug. “How was the flight?”

“Ah, it could’ve been better. There was a little kid crying for half of it, but I guess that’s how things happen sometime. It was definitely worth it to be here today, though,” Abby promised. “Mason wanted to come, but he was working on a very important case, and I figured that you haven’t known him long enough that you really need him here anyway.”

Clarke smiled. “Yeah, it’s no big deal.” She smiled a little wider. “Mom, this is Lexa. Lexa, this is my mom.”

“It’s nice to meet you, Ms. Griffin,” Lexa said politely, extending a hand to Abby, who smiled widely and shook her hand.

“And you too, I’ve heard lots about you from Clarke. She can’t seem to mention you without going into a ten minute tangent about how great you are,” Abby said, flashing Clarke a mischievous grin as Lexa grinned. The blonde blushed.

“Mom, really?”

Abby chuckled again. “Anyway, it was really sweet of you to offer to bring Clarke to come pick me up. I’m sure Marcus would have been able to just fine as well.”

“Of course, it’s my pleasure.”

“And please, Lexa, call me Abby. Ms. Griffin makes me feel so old.”


“Lexa seems like a really nice girl, Clarke,” Abby said, later that day. They were back at Marcus’ house. “She makes you smile a lot, and I really like her.”

“She was actually nervous that you wouldn’t like her, and I told her that she was being ridiculous.”

Abby smiled softly, and Marcus added from the kitchen, where he was making tea for the three of them, “She definitely seems very respectful, too. I like her better than that Finn guy, that’s for sure.”

“I’m excited to meet the rest of your friends, though,” Abby admitted. “You talk about them all so highly. I guess I’ll definitely see them all tonight at the ceremony, since they’re all graduating.”

“Yep,” Clarke confirmed. It still felt surreal – the fact that she was graduating tonight. “Speaking of, Raven is going to be stop by to pick me up in about half an hour, because we have to be at the auditorium early. There’s like, a food thing for all the seniors, and then the ceremony happens. Do you have to leave right after?”

“Yeah, I’ll have to head back to the airport about half an hour after,” Abby replied sadly, “but honestly, I’m just so glad that I’ll be able to see it. I had to wiggle my schedule around so much, but it’s definitely worth it. My only baby is about to graduate high school!”

Clarke felt tears well up in her eyes suddenly. “Shit, I’m going to cry tonight, aren’t I?”

“Language, sweetie.”

Marcus laughed. “C’mon, Abby, she’s an adult now, and she’s easily one of the most mature teenagers in this town. You can’t let her slip every now and then?”

“Yeah mom,” Clarke said, biting back a grin as Abby looked at Marcus in disbelief.

“She’s still my little girl, Marcus! Man, you and Jake are way too similar. He would’ve probably said the same thing by now. Apparently I have a tendency to over parent.”

Clarke smiled softly. “I think you have the right, at least right now, considering that you’ve kind of missed out on your last year of real parenting.”

“Don’t remind me, sweetie.”

Half an hour later, Clarke had changed into her graduation robe, her cap fitting snugly on her head. Her mom was near tears seeing Clarke in the getup, but the younger girl convinced her not to take any pictures until after the ceremony. Then Raven knocked on the front door, and Clarke quickly opened it.

“Hey, Rae,” Clarke greeted with a grin. Her friend was also wearing her graduation gown. “This is my mom. Mom, this is Raven.”

“Hey, Ms. Griffin! Nice to meet you!” Raven said brightly, and Clarke lifted an eyebrow at the girl’s cheeriness. Then she remembered something the brunette had said a few months back – that she would win over Clarke’s mom just like she did all other parents, or something along those lines.

“You too,” Abby said happily. “So what time does the actual ceremony start?”

“Seven,” Clarke and Raven answered simultaneously, before the latter continued, “but word of advice – get there at six-forty, or else it’s impossible to find a seat. Trust me, when Lexa’s sister graduated, we all went and watched the ceremony, but we got stuck at the very back of the auditorium. Couldn’t see anything.”

Abby cocked her head slightly. “Dually noted, thank you Raven.”

“No problem, Ms. Griffin!”

“Please, dear, call me Abby.”

Raven smiled a toothy smile. “Of course, Abby. Well, Clarke and I better head out, or else we’re going to miss the free food. Plus, we have to go get the rest of the gang still.”

“No one is driving themselves?” Abby wondered.

“We’re all planning on hanging out together tonight, so we figured taking one car was easier. Octavia offered to drive, but being the chivalrous girlfriend that I am…”

Clarke snorted as she laughed at the comment, but her mom just smiled. “That’s nice of you. Well, I’ll see you both tonight – and Clarke, you better let me take some pictures of you tonight.”

“Of course, mom. Love you, see you tonight!”

“Bye, Abby!”

The two teenagers left the house, and as soon as the door was closed, Clarke exclaimed, “Oh my god, Raven, you’re insane.”

“I told you that parents love me!”

“But you try so hard that it would be pathetic if they didn’t like you.”

“I’m only trying so hard because your mom is only in town for one day – there’s not enough time for it to be completely natural,” Raven insisted. “Come on, we have to go pick up your girlfriend.”

“Do I get shotgun?”

“Hah, no, Octavia does. Sorry, C.”

“You’re whipped.”

“I’m not.”

“Yes, you are.”

Raven huffed. “Okay, fine, I am. I’ve accepted it, let’s move on, get in the back.”


“Are you ready to graduate?” Lexa asked, bumping her elbow into Clarke’s softly. They were all up and scattered around the auditorium, talking and relaxing until the ceremony. The seniors had all been required to come early, and ate free food while the school principal walked them verbally through the plan for the ceremony. Now, it was six-forty, and parents and friends and relatives were flooding the giant auditorium. The soon-to-be-graduates were likely all about to sit down and bounce their knees in anticipation, but Clarke was glad to have another few moments with Lexa. Her girlfriend was unfortunate to have her last name so far at the end of the alphabet, because she would be waiting to get her diploma longer than the rest of their friends.

“As ready as I’ll get, I guess. I’m kind of just hyped that this year is finally over. I mean, the second half of it was awesome, but I’m so ready to move on to brighter and greater things. UF with you… and our friends, of course, is going to be fucking amazing.”

Lexa grinned, pulling the blonde in for a sweet kiss, before a faculty member came over the speakers and asked everyone to begin taking their seats. “See you when we’re graduated,” Lexa murmured, placing one more quick kiss on Clarke’s lips before turning and heading to her seat.

It started off slow, and Clarke found herself greatly anticipating the part where they all actually got to graduate. Then, finally, they began calling names. She applauded for all of them, but she cheered when it really counted. Only one of those occasions occurred before her own name was called – Octavia Blake, called directly after her brother’s name. Shortly after, it was her name being announced, “Clarke Griffin.”

The blonde heard many cheers go out as she walked across the stage, shook some hands and acquired her diploma. She moved her tassel to the other side of her cap, a grin spread across her face. It happened in a blur, and by the time she sat down and became aware again, many other names had been called. She eagerly awaited the rest of those that mattered to her.

Harper McIntyre. Nathan Miller. Raven Reyes. Anya Wood. Lexa Woods.

Clarke cheered possibly a bit too loud when her girlfriend’s name was called.

And then the closing speeches happened, the valedictorian said something that was probably meaningful, and then caps were in the air, cheers were being called out, and Clarke was definitely grinning ear to ear. She found her friends, was wrapped up into a group hug, and managed to get a kiss from her girlfriend before her mom and Marcus found them and began demanding pictures.

Abby also ended up meeting both of Lexa’s parents, along with Aurora and Louis. Raven’s dad didn’t show up, but she didn’t seem surprised or affected by it. In fact, Aurora and Louis practically treated her like their own daughter. Anya’s parents were there as well, though they were much less insistent on taking pictures, and Harper’s parents also both showed up. They were a bit awkward around each other, though, so it was clear that they were not used to being around each other.

Nonetheless, differences seemed to be set aside for this momentous occasion. Pictures were taken, tears were shed, laughter was shared, and the night was great. Unfortunately, Abby had to head out shortly after, and Marcus left to take her to the airport. Less than five minutes after giving her mother a goodbye, Clarke found herself being tugged back into Raven’s car, and they started a drive to Tampa. The night was only just getting started.


Clarke laid out across one of the beach chairs in Octavia’s backyard – the beach, of course – writing in her notebook. She was nearly done with the novel she’d started the year before, and although it would probably not end up dressed in fancy covers, she was proud to have gotten through a full work. The past few months had done a lot for her writing, and she was never out of things to draw upon for inspiration.

The sun was slowly sinking down into the ocean, and she glanced up at the golden orb, which probably reflected off of her in orange tints. The soft sound of waves coming toward the shore, disintegrating into little wavelets and trickling up onto the sand was almost pulling Clarke into sleep, but she knew that she couldn’t drift off. She was supposed to be heading over to Miller’s soon for the graduation party he was hosting.

Thankfully, it was at Miller’s and not Octavia’s place. Now that Miller wasn’t the center of a bunch of Finn drama, his beach house had again become the go-to party location. Miller was happy about that, but unfortunately for him, not everything was sunny side up. He and Bryan were not back together, but they hadn’t decided whether staying apart was what they really wanted. All of his friends had picked a side except for Clarke, who really didn’t want to get involve in anyone’s relationship. Frankly, she’d had enough drama to last quite a while, so she wouldn’t offer any sort of opinion unless asked directly.

Her friends had gone over to Miller’s house already a couple hours prior to help set up for the party, and Clarke would have gone as well, but she had, conveniently, fallen asleep. She blamed that on the fact that they had basically partied in Tampa all night. They slept for a handful of hours in a cheap motel room just outside of the city afterward, and Anya, who had surprisingly offered to be the designated river, drove them back. They got to Octavia’s place at noon, turned on a movie and made some food, and as soon as Clarke was no longer hungry, she had passed right out.

She woke up to her friends being gone – Lexa included, although a text on Clarke’s phone explained that she had basically been dragged out.

Clarke wasn’t upset, because she wanted to take some time to herself before partying again. That’s how she had ended up outside, and although she could hear the music coming from down the beach, she wasn’t feeling pressured to head over to Miller’s yet.

Finally, once she found herself zoning out more so than writing anything, she decided that she might as well head over. Pulling herself up, she hurried inside, tossed down her notebook and tucked her phone into her back pocket. A quick stop in the bathroom to check that her hair wasn’t too messy and her makeup from earlier wasn’t entirely messed up was the last thing she did before leaving Octavia’s house and starting the walk to Miller’s.

A strange déjà vu feeling took her over as she approached it, her gaze sticking momentarily on the people scattered across his front yard. This was always how it was, overflowing with people smoking and drinking. The last time she showed up to a party alone, however, was almost half a year ago, on New Year’s Eve, and she had arrived to find her boyfriend cheating on her.

It was actually really incredible to be able to walk in alone now, confident that her girlfriend would never even dream of hurting her like that. And as she pushed into the familiar house, it took no longer than thirty seconds for her to weave into the living room and find her girlfriend. Lexa was leaning against the wall, laughing as Anya scoffed at Octavia and Raven grinding against each other. Harper was standing next to Lexa, looking fairly intoxicated and laughing hysterically.

“Hope you guys aren’t haven’t too much fun without me,” Clarke joked as she approached the group of them.

Lexa immediately looked at her with excitement. “Of course not, babe,” the brunette promised, before pulling Clarke in for a deep kiss, which the blonde happily returned. She pulled away a few seconds later, though, and the pout that Lexa gave her told the blonde that her girlfriend had definitely had more than a few drinks.

“How much catching up do I need to do?”

“You might as well just take a few shots to get yourself started,” Anya told her. “Bryan is making everyone drinks, and he has a history of making really strong drinks, so whatever we’re drinking right now will definitely catch you up if you take some shots first.”

“Wait – Bryan is making drinks?”

Octavia hummed in confirmation. “He was here when we got here… not quite sure what’s up with that, but we only saw Miller for a few minutes, so we didn’t get to ask him about it really.”

“Didn’t you guys get here early?”

“Turns out we actually got here when the party was starting,” Lexa explained, “because you weren’t the only one to fall asleep – you were just the only one who didn’t wake up when Raven stood up, tripped, and proceeded to scream as though her leg got sawed off or something.”

Raven’s jaw dropped. “What the fuck, why so graphic, Lexa?”

Anya smirked. “I told you, this drink is weirdly strong. Lexa’s already drunk – and I can’t think of a time that Lexa was drunk faster than us.”

“I’m not drunk,” Lexa denied, although Clarke could tell that she was.

“Alright, I’m going to go start catching up, I’ll be right back.” Clarke weaved herself back through the crowd and into the kitchen, where she found a handful of her least favorite people with Bryan, who was seemingly in charge of all of the alcohol.

“Hey, Clarke, what can I get you?” Bryan asked, as Finn and Bellamy looked at the blonde dumbly.

“A couple shots, and whatever Lexa’s drinking. You got my girlfriend drunk before I even got here,” Clarke explained with a light laugh.

Bryan grinned. “Miller said I could man the drinks, so I figured it’d be fun to make sure that everyone gets hammered.”

“I’m blaming you if she does anything stupid, then.”

“Lexa, do something stupid? I’ve never seen that girl do anything truly unintentionally, so I’m sure you’ll be fine,” Bryan insisted with a smile, and he seemed oddly cheery.

Although Bellamy and Finn were still standing with him, which was probably weird enough, Clarke decided to ask the question she really wanted to, “So… what’s up with you and Miller?”

“I think we’re going to try to work things out,” he answered after a brief pause, and then he glanced at Finn. He slid Clarke three shots. “I think we’re all just trying to work things out.” Finn immediately averted his gaze, taking a long drink from his solo cup. “This year has kind of been hell, and we’re all about ready to move on from it, you know? Grow up a little.”

Clarke laughed, and to keep herself from saying something offensive to one of the other men in the vicinity, she took her shots. By the time she was done, cringing at the alcohol, Bryan had poured her whatever concoction he was giving out.

“Here you go, this will definitely catch you up.”

“Thanks, Bryan.” She took the drink, opting to not try it until she let her shots settle. “I’ll see you around.”

“You, too.”

Clarke turned and started back to her girlfriend, but she was suddenly intercepted by Finn, who apparently launched himself away from the other two guys as soon as she turned around. “Clarke, can I talk to you?”

“What about?”

“I guess I just wanted to apologize… you know, for everything. I’ve done a lot of thinking this past months. I’ve done a lot of stupid things in the past, and probably highest on the list is the shit that went down this year with you… and well, with your friends and Lexa.”

Clarke nodded slowly. “Yeah, uh, thanks, I guess?”

“I don’t care if you forgive me or not, because I think you’d be crazy to, honestly. And I know that you all hate me, which I also get. But just… we’re all going different directions now, and I may never see you again, and I just thought it would kill me later if I never got to really apologize to you. And I’m so glad that you’re happy now. You were so… sad for the first part of the year, and I don’t think I ever really helped with that. Lexa makes you actually happy – any idiot, including myself, would be able to see that.”

“Thanks, Finn. I’m glad you’re trying to turn a new leaf.”

“I lost so many friends this year that I got left with basically just Murphy, so I thought it was about time that I start acting my age,” Finn said with a lame laugh. “I hope you have a good summer.”

“Same to you,” Clarke agreed, nodding swiftly before heading back to her friends. She took a drink from her cup, surprised by how much alcohol she was immediately fronted with. Nonetheless, she took yet another drink and rejoined her friends.

“Guys! Someone is starting a truth or dare game!” Raven exclaimed. “Let’s go! Let’s go!”

Suddenly they were circled up with a bunch of other people, and truth or dare commenced. Most people picked truth, and secrets were revealed and laughed away. It only got really interesting when it got to Anya, and she picked dare, and the guy who was asking her said, “I dare you to kiss someone in this circle who is single, and who you’ve never kissed before.”

Anya immediately looked around the circle, and although Clarke didn’t know much about Anya’s sex life, she had a feeling that she’d kissed at least a few people in the game, judging by the annoyance on her face. Finally, she looked to the girl sitting next to her – Harper – and hesitated only a second before abruptly slamming her lips into the blonde’s.

Harper, who was quite drunk, was unmoving for a moment, and then she started kissing Anya back, and the rest of their friends gaped. Raven whispered, “Oh fuck, I totally called it. I bet they fuck tonight. I’d bet like twenty bucks.”

“I’ll take that bet,” Lexa said quickly, and then some guy across the circle whistled, and Anya finally pulled away from the kiss, glaring at Octavia when she yelled, “Get some!”

“I need another drink,” Anya puffed, standing and heading over to the kitchen.

Harper looked at her friends with wide eyes. “What the fuck just happened?”

“Maybe you should stop drinking,” Clarke suggested in amusement, gently taking Harper’s drink away from her.

The rest of the night passed in a much more tame manner, and as people began to file out, other people claimed the spare rooms throughout the house. Harper and Anya were not any of them, and the next morning, Raven would end up coughing twenty dollars up to Lexa. They all stopped drinking at the end of the truth or dare game, and Clarke and Lexa, like the rest of their friends, ended up crashing in Miller’s living room, but not before getting a glimpse of Miller and Bryan going upstairs together.

In the morning, Miller confirmed that the two of them were getting back together after having been on a break for the past few months – now that they were past the issue of sexuality, they were both confident that they would be able to move forward positively. Clarke was happy for them, and even the rest of her friends were able to talk to Bryan without sounding like a bomb might explode if they even tried to smile.

Things were turning up.


“We should probably leave your bed, huh?” Clarke mumbled, her voice muffled by Lexa’s boobs, in which her face was buried.

“Do you want to?”

“Um, no, but we’ve been here since like, last night at seven. We’re going to starve. You know, this is probably actually the longest you’ve gone without forcing me to interrupt a blissful moment by eating food.”

“I’m too tired to move,” Lexa admitted. “I think we’ve had more sex in the last forty-eight hours than like, the whole rest of our relationship.”

Clarke grinned, pulling away from her girlfriend enough to make eye contact. “Well, your parents are gone all week, so I think we both need to prepare for even more sex. I can definitely stand for a few more nights like last night.”

“Let’s just reverse positions next time, because I’m not about to let you exhaust my body this much again before I at least get revenge on you.”

Clarke pouted. “But I love topping you.”

“But you also love me being able to move, right?”

“I guess.”

“Keep that up and I’ll force you to get up and make me food,” Lexa teased, eliciting a laugh from the blonde. Silence then enveloped the moment again, and the brunette sighed happily. “I can’t believe we’re moving into our dorms next week.”

“Aren’t you glad we managed to get one to share?” Clarke asked with a grin.

“Yep – I get to make sure that you don’t starve yourself ever.”

“Oh yeah, that’s what you’re excited for?”

“Mm. I hope we end up with nice people in the dorms on our floor, because or else they’re all going to hate us for making so much noise all the time. If there’s one thing I’m going to make sure of in college, it’s that we won’t stop having sex. So I hope you’re ready for that.”

Clarke cuddled into Lexa happily. “Wouldn’t happen any other way.” Another comfortable moment of silence happened, and Clarke would’ve probably drifted asleep if it weren’t for Lexa talking again all of the sudden.

“You know, it’s summer time, and we won’t get to see the beach again until like, Thanksgiving… I mean, unless we take a whole trip to the beach on a weekend after the semester starts, but like, we should probably go get some sun anyway. We’re going to turn into fucking vampires if we stay inside any longer.”

“I thought you were too tired?”

“I am, but now that you’ve mentioned it, I think we should probably get out of my bed.”

“No, you already said we didn’t have to,” Clarke whined, her arms wrapping easily around her girlfriend tightly. “Stay.”

“We have all week to cuddle,” Lexa promised, “let’s go to the beach. I won’t even make you eat real food – I’ll buy you ice cream.”

Clarke hesitated, and then slowly released her hold. “You promise?”

“I promise.”

“Okay, fine, we’ll go to the beach and get ice cream.”

“Should we invite anyone else?”

“They’re probably all already at the beach, knowing them. Those active people that do things other than have sex.”

“I’m actually surprised that Raven and Octavia haven’t been taking advantage of the fact that Bellamy is in Miami. Normally, the whole house would become their sex kingdom, but they’ve been out a lot recently.”

“We should go make her house our sex kingdom then.”

“Is my house not enough? We already fucked in my kitchen, living room, bathroom, and on the stairs.”

“Yeah, but Octavia’s house has so many rooms.”

“No, we are not going to fuck in all of Octavia’s house’s rooms.”

“Fine.”

Lexa laughed, shaking her head as she sat up. “Come on, get up.” Clarke propped herself up on one arm, grabbing Lexa’s hand and pulling her back gently. The brunette was about to argue, but Clarke just pressed their lips together softly before she could get any words out.

“One thing before we go,” Clarke murmured softly. Lexa hummed in response, waiting for Clarke to elaborate. “We should fuck on the stairs again.”

“Oh my god, I hate you.”

“No you don’t.”

Lexa rolled her eyes and stood up fully, heading toward her closet. “C’mon, get your cute ass up and dressed.”

“Can I borrow some of your clothes?”

“Of course.”

“This is why I love you.”

“Is that the only reason why?”

Clarke smiled, sitting up and pushing the blankets off of her body before getting off the bed. “No, but if I start to list the reasons to you, we won’t ever get out of this house.”

“Shouldn’t you start listing them then, if you really wanna stay here so bad?”

“No, because I don’t want to feed your ego too much. Plus, I want my ice cream.” Lexa huffed. “C’mon, babe, you promised the ice cream.”

“You’re not wrong.”

“You love me.”

Green eyes met blue ones softly, and both of them knew that neither of them were mad. Staying in bed, leaving the house, it didn’t make a difference. They were together, and that was bliss. “Duh, of course I do. Now come get dressed.”