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Maybe Just the Touch of a Hand

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Bellamy walked into Octavia’s tent. Her head popped up and she immediately furrowed her brow.

“Why are you wincing?” she asked.

“Hello to you too, O.”

He watched her roll her eyes.

“Hey big brother,” she said. “Why are you wincing?”

He moved his hand slowly away from where it was clutching his side, hoping she wouldn’t notice. (She did, of course. He saw her eyes follow his hand from his
side into his pocket).

“I’m not wincing,” he said. “Where’s Clarke?”

He’d already looked in medical, only to find it empty, except for Abby stitching up a small boy in the back. He’d left quickly before she had a chance to get a good look at him. But she wasn’t with Raven or Wick or Monty or Jasper. Miller hadn’t seen her since they’d gotten back from hunting.

“Not sure,” Octavia mumbled, going back to what she was writing. “Thought she was in medical.”

“Gee, thanks for your help.”

He felt a little dizzy. The room was spinning. Slowly, but it was spinning. And Octavia was expanding, her head was stretching and that was definitely not normal.

“Bell?”

Her voice seemed distant and he had to squeeze his eyes shut because if the room kept spinning then he was definitely going to lose his balance and fall over.

His hand slipped off the table where it was resting and he stumbled in shock, his head clipping the side of the table.

“Bell!”

He heard her shout, and then everything went black.

***

He woke up on a cot in medical, Octavia leaning over him.

“Hey, idiot.”

His head was throbbing. He brought his hand up to it and felt a bandage wrapped around it.

“Hey, O. What happened?”

She smiled softy down at him, moving to sit in the chair beside his cot.

“You passed out, Bell. Collapsed in my tent and hit your head on the table.”

What? That couldn’t be right. He wasn’t that hurt, it was just a little scrape on his side. He was just waiting for Clarke to take a look at it. He peeled his shirt up and looked at the gauze wrapped around his side.

“So, where’s Clarke?” he asked.

Octavia cocked her head to the side. “Clarke still isn’t here, Bell. Abby wrapped you up. She’s coming back here in a few minutes to changes the bandages.”

Bellamy stood up, pulling his shirt back down over the gauze.

“She doesn’t have to bother, I’m fine. And where the hell is Clarke?” he shot over his shoulder as he stormed out of medical.

***

He kept to his tent after that. He’d told Octavia to let her know when Clarke decided to show up again, and had been pacing in his tent ever since.

Raven popped her head through the flap of the tent.

“Hey doofus, Abby wants to see you.”

“I’m busy,” he snapped.

Raven stepped fully into the tent and sat down at the small table he used as a desk.

“You look like shit,” she commented, sweeping her eyes over him.

He knew she was right, he could feel the layer of sweat over his skin. He felt unsteady, and a bit woozy, and he was sure he was incredibly pale, but he couldn’t stop moving.

“Is Clarke back yet?”

“Will you calm down? God, she probably just went to gather herbs or something.”

He stopped pacing. “Get out.”

“You got it, chief.” She hopped up and pulled the flap of the tent back.

“Let me know when Clarke gets back!” he shouted out after her.

***

The next time he woke up, he was in his own bed and his shirt was off. He couldn’t remember passing out that time either.

“Well hello, sleeping beauty.”

He knew that voice. He looked off to his right, and there she was, arms leaning on her knees, eyes crinkled with worry despite her teasing tone.

“Clarke?”

“Okay, now I know that you’re a hunter, not a medic, but I thought even you knew not to strain yourself after a serious injury. Fluids and rest, Bellamy. Fluid and
rest.”

He sat up, slowly, leaning back on his elbows. “It wasn’t that bad,” he mumbled.

“Do you have any idea what you looked like when I got here?” She stood up and got a rag from the table to wipe the sweat off his brow. “You were passed out on
the ground, Bell. You were pale and sweaty and didn’t even wake up when I moved you.”

“Look I’m fine now,” he said. “Can we just forget it?”

“No!” she snapped. “No we cannot just forget it. You’re our leader, Bellamy. You have responsibilities. But you can’t do shit for us if you don’t take care of yourself. Why didn’t you go to medical?”

Bellamy collapsed back down onto his mattress, his arms thrown over his face.

“I did go to medical.”

He heard Clarke scoff at him and move away.

“I did,” he insisted. “Look, can you just—I don’t know, look at it now?” His bandage was itching him and his side was starting to ache now that he had fully woken up. He heard Clarke sigh, but sit back down next to Bellamy on the mattress.

“Scale of one to ten,” she started to say.

“Clarke it’s really not—”

“One. To. Ten.”

He pulled his hand back from his forehead, and peeked up at her. She didn’t look nearly as mad as she sounded.

“Six. It’s hurts like a six, okay?”

Her fingers were slowly removing his bandage. He felt the pads of her fingers brush against his chest and he tried hard to ignore the way his breathing increased pace, or how flushed his skin was at her touch.

“I’m sorry,” she said softly.

He looked over at her in question. “What?”

“I know my mother hasn’t been…well she hasn’t been great to you. And trust me, I’ve tried to talk to her about it. But you can’t just ignore your health when she’s the one in medical, just because she’s a bit prickly. She might not like you, but she wouldn’t turn you away.”

He sighed, dropping his head on to his chest. Of course that’s why Clarke would think he waited for her. Of course she wouldn’t understand.

Of course she was actually going to make him say it out loud.

“I don’t trust her like I trust you,” he said simply. “I feel better when it’s you—when you’re the one taking care of me. It doesn’t feel right when it’s not you.”

It wasn’t all of it, not even close, but it wasn’t the time to reveal everything. And from the way Clarke had moved her hands from the bandage at his side to one on the expanse of his chest and the other cradling his cheek as she leaned her face down to his to tell him,

“It doesn’t feel right for me either,”

He knew it was enough for now.