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Girl, what's on your mind?

Chapter Text

Clarke was absently tapping on the desk with her pen, a hopeless attempt to kill her boredom. It was the first period of the day, the first day of college after the summer break, and honestly, she was ready for another summer break again.

She huffed and checked her watch; Four minutes down, eighty–six minutes left to go. Oh how she hated the Ancient Greek History class. Not that it was boring, the stories and theories themselves, but Clarke didn't find them particularly entertaining either. It didn't help that the professor, Mr. Titus Brown, had one of the most monotone ways to speak in history. Pun intended. Clarke thought and rolled her eyes. She checked her watch again. Six minutes down, eighty–four minutes left to… Just as she was about to doze off, there was a knock on the door and the lecture hall fell quiet. Mr. Brown put down his glasses, obviously not pleased of an interruption, and turned to the door, which opened a second later and a girl hesitantly entered the room, glancing at the professor, but when he remained silent, she quickly dropped her head and headed to one of the empty seats in the front rows. With a long sigh, Mr. Brown set his glasses back in place and continued his lecture.

To say Clarke was interested in the girl whom she had never seen before, was an overstatement. But then again, she was ten minutes into a class that she just couldn't bring herself to like, so the new girl gave her just the distraction she had been so desperately wishing for.

She slightly leaned to the side to get a better look of the new girl, and couldn't help but feel a bit envious of the girl's long brown wavy hair, tied up in a ponytail. All in all, from what Clarke could see from her seat in the back of the lecture hall, the new girl seemed to have a casual clothing style. Blue flannel, and from what she remembered when the girl entered, she was wearing dark grey skinny jeans and black converse high tops.

Clarke kept studying the girl throughout the lecture, trying to catch anything that seemed out of place or peaked her interest, but the brunette didn't really move, apart from quickly taking notes of whatever the professor said. An hour later, Clarke shook her head and drew her attention back to Mr. Brown who was enthusiastically, or as enthusiastically as he could get, explaining the political systems of Ancient Athens. Clarke sighed. This was going to be a long year.

 

 ***

 

Clarke flicked the stub of her cigarette away and checked her schedule. What the hell had she been thinking when she decided to take political science; Just another class that she was sure she would never need in her life.

When she entered the lecture hall, she was surprised to see the new girl sitting in the second row in the front. On second thought, she wasn't surprised, since the girl had been taking notes in their History class, which was a definite sign that she was interested in the subject, and political science wasn't too far away. Clarke shook her head and made her way to her usual seat in the back, where her friends were already waiting.

“God Clarke, you look like shit.”

“Thanks Raven. I'm glad you didn't lose your talent of flattering people over the summer break. Hey O.”

Octavia, the short brunette next to a grinning Raven nodded quickly and shot Clarke a wide smile. The group fell silent, absently scrolling through their phones, until Clarke spoke again.

“Did you see the new girl?”

“Hm?” Raven raised her head, lazily scanning the room.

“The new girl. There, the flannel ponytail in the front row.” Clarke said as she pointed to the brunette.

“Nah.”

Raven directed her attention back to her phone, leaving Clarke rolling her eyes. “Well thanks for that conversation, Rae.”

“Welcome.”

Several minutes later, Mr. Kane entered the hall and threw his bag on the ground. Clarke liked him. He seemed nice, he was one of the cool professors but not in the I have to play the cool kid so my students like me–way, he was just a laid–back guy, and Clarke immediately felt less miserable about the new year, looking forward to Mr. Kane's lectures that were usually filled with bad and not so bad jokes.

“Howdy y'all!” Kane winced. “Sorry, that was horrible. But welcome back to another year at Polis, I'm glad to see a lot of familiar faces, which means you passed last year's exams. Great, I'm proud.” Some students chuckled.

“I'm glad as well to see some new heads here,” he looked encouragingly at the new girl. Clarke noticed her slightly sliding down in her seat, and Kane seemed to sense her unease, “so if you're alright with it, I'd like to skip any humiliating introduction in front of everybody.”

Clarke couldn't see her face but she was sure the new girl shot Kane a thankful smile, because he nodded and smiled back, before he turned to his bag to get his notes out, mumbling something about why he threw it on the ground in the first place, when he had to pick it up again anyway, which made the audience chuckle again.

This class was far more interesting, but Clarke couldn't resist checking the new girl every once in a while, who, as expected, was busy taking notes. Clarke frowned, she hadn't even seen the girl's face when she had entered the room earlier, because the brunette had had her head down. I hope you're pretty, girl, because otherwise I might think you're a huge nerd. Clarke thought to herself, as she drew her gaze away from the girl and went back to scrolling through her Facebook feed.

 

***

 

“Hey babe”, Clarke said as she ruffled her boyfriend's dark mane and left a quick kiss on his cheek, earning a few eye rolls from the group at their lunch table.

Bellamy grinned. “Hey princess, can I get a hug, too?”

Clarke laughed. “Oh Bellamy, hey. Didn't see you there. And no, you're not getting a hug. I don't want to keep your hopes up.”

Octavia, who was currently snuggled into her boyfriend's side, laughed. “I don't think you have to worry about that anymore, blondie.”

Clarke raised her eyebrows and followed Octavia's nod towards a girl that was sitting on the other side of the canteen, and she was barely able to contain a laughter. “Oh Bell. Please tell me you didn't hook up with Echo.”

Bellamy blushed and the rest of their friends dropped their heads, trying to hide their grins.

Clarke shook her head and turned back to Octavia. “Oh man. That bad?” The brunette nodded.

“Hey Clarke,” Raven chimed in, “isn't that flannel ponytail?”

Clarke looked up to where Raven was pointing and tilted her head to the side. The new girl clutched her meal tray as she scanned the cafeteria with an unsure gaze. She looked beautiful, Clarke thought. High cheekbones, sharp jawline, small nose and plump soft lips.

“Clarke?”

Clarke cleared her throat and quickly looked at Raven, “Yeah that's her.”

She couldn't help but let her eyes wander back to the girl, still holding the tray, looking quite lost, and for a moment, Clarke contemplated waving her over to sit with them, but before she could raise her hand, the brunette turned around and left the canteen.

“Clarke!” The blonde felt a sharp elbow poking her ribs and looked at Octavia.

“What!”

“I asked you something.”

“Right, yes.”

“So what's your answer?”

“Yes.”

Octavia raised her eyebrows. “Really?”

“Jesus, O. Yes.” Clarke took a sip of her coke, narrowing her eyes at her chuckling friends and a winner–grin sporting Octavia. “What's the question anyway?”

“O wanted to know if you'll come to the party with us on Friday.” Lincoln helped her out.

“What party?”

Raven blinked in disbelief. “Clarke. The party.

Clarke grimaced. “Oh shit.” Raven nodded. “Did I just say yes?” Raven nodded again. “Oh shit.”

“Yep.”

 

Chapter Text

Second day of college year two. And Clarke was tired. She was tired of everything. She was tired of getting up early, she was tired of her biology professor whose name she had forgotten, she was tired of her friends that kept teasing her with the party she had agreed on going to, she was tired of her mom, she was tired of the birds chirping outside, annoying the hell out of her.

"What am I doing here." Clarke groaned and checked her watch.

"Miss Griffin? Do you have a question?" Clarke raised her head and looked at her professor expectantly looking back at her, just as half of the students in the lecture hall.

"No, sorry. Go ahead, Ma'am." She said in a slightly too friendly tone, before she shifted her focus back to her phone again.

Clarke (8:42am): Someone help me.

Raven (8:43am): what's wrong, crybaby? afraid of the partaayy?

Clarke (8:43am): Afraid of dying from boredom.

Raven (8:44am): loser. guess who's in my astronomy class tho

Clarke (8:46am): I despise guessing games.

Raven (8:47am): as you wish, princess

And she was tired of good–mood–Raven. And her guessing games. Clarke sighed, pressed the power button and put her phone away, ready to pay full attention to what her professor was trying to teach them, but eventually, curiosity got the better of her, and she opened the chat again.

Clarke (8:59am): Okay Rae, you won. Who's in your astronomy class?

Raven (9:00am): flannel ponytail!

Clarke (9:00am): Cool.

Clarke pretended to be indifferent about it. At least, she tried. She really did, but not hard enough, as she realized. Also, she would have been lying if she had said she  hadn't been somewhat disappointed to see that she didn't share the biology class with her.

And although the brunette was new and she didn't even know her name, Clarke couldn't deny that she actually wanted to know who the girl was. So Clarke decided to get the girl's name.

 

***

 

When she entered the lecture hall, Clarke was barely able to contain an amused snort. Of course flannel ponytail would sit in advanced mathematics. She was a nerd, Clarke had figured out that much already. It was one of the seminars she had to take because it was part of the science program, of which Clarke still didn't know why she had chosen it, but what she did know was that she hated maths. Just as she was about to start her journey towards the back of the hall, a previous thought crossed her mind. She wanted to get the girl's name, and that was her chance, so she quickly changed her direction and sat down next to the brunette. Clarke waited a moment for the girl to turn her head, but when she realized the brunette wouldn't bother look at her, she sighed and got her sketchbook out.

When the blonde decided she had worked up enough courage to talk to the girl, the professor started her lecture. "Students. You're sitting in Advanced Mathematics, so if you're in the wrong room, be it because you were unable to read your schedule, or know that you will fail because you just happen to be one of those that just don't understand mathematics, then I suggest you leave the room now."

Clarke raised her eyebrows. Well, that's one way to introduce yourself. After two students actually got up and left the room, the professor continued.

"I'm sure you've checked the agenda for this class, but for those of you who didn't consider it necessary, here's what you can expect. We'll be looking at the easier topics of advanced mathematics, being calculus and analysis, combinatorics, dynamical systems and differential equations."

"Well shit." Clarke muttered into her palm as she scribbled down the topics, trying to keep up with the professor. To her surprise, the brunette next to her turned her head. Slightly, so that she was barely able to look at Clarke's notes, far away from actually meeting her gaze, but it was a start, considering the new girl usually didn't move at all.

As the professor began to write a bunch of matrices on the board, Clarke shifted deeper in her seat. "Please no."

The new girl next to her stopped in her writing and turned her head, this time enough for Clarke to catch her glance and see her eyes. And boy, did she have eyes. Clarke was sure she had never seen deeper and greener eyes. But something was off, the blonde noticed but couldn't quite catch it, and before she could even begin to wonder, the girl had turned her head back and continued taking notes.

Twenty minutes into writing down whatever the professor was trying, or not trying, to tell her with all those matrices and symbols and equations, Clarke gave up. She rarely was one to back down from a challenge, but this was definitely one of those times.

Clarke decided to spend her newly won free time to check out the girl next to her, until her eyes fell to the brunette's notebook, and her jaw dropped when she realized that the new girl actually knew exactly what she was doing and what was going on on the board in front of them. Well shit. A nerd and a genius,Clarke thought to herself.

A few minutes before the end of the lecture, the professor's mic gave her a squeaking feedback and in a split second, Clarke's attention was on her again.

"So, that was a rather harmless introduction to advanced mathematics. I'll have you know, because I'm no monster, that I will prepare a test every two weeks, so now that you know, I expect nothing but excellent results. Thank you and see you then."

The lecture hall grew louder as the students packed their bags and made their ways to the exit, while Clarke remained still and quiet, still trying to understand what on earth she had done to deserve to be there.

"May I?"

Clarke jumped back to reality and looked up at the new girl, who was now standing, tightly clutching the notebook that was pressed to her chest.

"Sorry?" Clarke blinked a few times, realizing she had no idea what the girl had said.

The girl shifted her weight, clearly uncomfortable, and cleared her throat. "May I?" She repeated in a quiet but oh so soft voice while gesturing to the way next to the blonde that led to the exit. It took Clarke another moment to understand what the girl was asking for, until she realized that she was sitting and blocking the way.

"Oh, sorry!" She muttered as she quickly jumped up, throwing her sketchbook down in the process, mentally facepalming herself, and offering for the brunette to walk past her. The girl bent down to get Clarke's sketchbook and handed it back to her, before quickly leaving the room.

Clarke sighed. So much for getting the girl's name.

Chapter Text

If you had asked Clarke on the first day of this new year what her favorite part of college was, she would have said lunch breaks. Which wouldn't have surprised you, because Ancient Greek History, especially with Mr. Brown, bore the hell out of everyone.

But now, on day three, sitting in the cafeteria, Clarke realized that lunch breaks weren't her favorite anymore. Not that she had a new favorite, but the way she was spending her lunch breaks – not engaging in the light conversations her friends were having, not even listening to them at all, instead scanning the place for the mysterious new girl whose eyes Clarke couldn't get out of her head anymore –, was definitely not making the lunch breaks enjoyable.

The previous day, Clarke had spotted the brunette again, clutching her meal tray, heading out again, and today, the third day, the brunette obviously hadn't even bothered to find a place to sit in the overly crowded canteen in the first place.

She didn't seem to have made any friends yet, and Clarke, again, felt bad for not having approached her so far to at least offer her a place to sit at lunch.

“Earth to Clarke.” Raven's waving hand in front of her face pulled Clarke out of her daydream.

“Clarke to earth.” Clarke replied and Raven's face lit up immediately.

“There you are! We've missed you!” Clarke huffed. “What's your next course?”

“Uh.” Clarke furrowed her brows, taking a moment to think. “History.”

“History with flannel ponytail.” Raven corrected her with a shit–eating grin, and didn't fail to notice the tiny smile that appeared on the blonde's face. “You better hurry then.”

Clarke checked her watch, two minutes until the class started. “Shit. See ya later guys!” She muttered as she quickly grabbed her bag and made her way to the lecture hall.

When she entered, the room was already crowded with highly motivated students and to her dislike, her usual seat was already taken. She quickly scanned the rows until she spotted an empty seat – right behind the new girl. New day new chance, Griffin.

The blonde got her sketchbook out and scoured her bag for a pen, but no luck. She sighed and turned to the student sitting next to her, “Sorry, you got a pen?” The boy eyed her lazily and shook his head, and the girl on her other side didn't have one, either. She slumped down in her seat in defeat. No pen meant no drawing and no drawing meant paying attention, and paying attention meant either sleep or slow and painful death from boredom. She decided she was too young to die, so she chose sleep and closed her eyes.

Two minutes later, Mr. Brown disturbed her peaceful rest with his ever so monotone voice, and she opened her eyes to glare at him, but her gaze fell on a pencil and an eraser on her closed sketchbook and Clarke furrowed her brows, looking around. The boy to her right was asleep, and the girl on the other side was scrolling through Instagram. “Hey”, she nudged the girl, “is that yours?” Clarke asked, pointing at the items. The girl shrugged and nodded towards the girl in front of Clarke. It took the blonde a moment to realize that it was the new girl.

For a second, she considered thanking her, but she seemed deeply concentrated on the book in front of her, so Clarke decided to thank her later. Just as she was about to put her focus on her sketchbook, she noticed a small black something peaking out from behind the girl's ponytail. It seemed to be a tattoo, but most of it was hidden behind thick wavy hair, so today wouldn't be the day Clarke found out what it was, or what it meant.

Clarke was so focused on sketching that she almost missed the end of the lecture. Her pulse slightly quickened as her head shot up because she would finally get to talk to the girl, but the brunette was nowhere to be seen.

“Have you seen where she went?” Clarke asked the other girl, pointing at the now empty seat in front of her.

“She left about a minute ago. Pretty quickly actually.”

Clarke furrowed her brows. “Okay, thanks.”

She stuffed her sketchbook in her bag and took the pencil and the eraser, then hurried out the room and out of the building but the brunette was gone. Clarke shook her head. When will I get the chance to talk to you, girl?

The next two days were full of art; the only classes Clarke actually enjoyed, and the reason she chose to study in the first place. She wasn't surprised to not find the new girl there, but she was also disappointed, and maybe slightly annoyed, because that meant that she would have to wait until Monday until she could give her the items back, and she prayed to the Gods that she wouldn't lose or break them before Monday.

Friday came sooner than Clarke appreciated, and so did the party. It was the Welcoming Party for new students, as well as the Welcome Back party for the older ones, and it was hosted by none other than Clarke's ex–girlfriend Ontari.

Coming from a wealthy family, that girl had money, and therefore a big house, and boy could she throw a party, Clarke had to give her that. It didn't change the fact though that she was her ex, and Clarke still had no idea why she had gotten together with her in the first place.

But Clarke had agreed on going and her friends were excited, so there was no way out now. So there she was, in her short black dress that left nothing to imagination, with black high heels and her smokey eye make up, looking at herself in the full body mirror, blowing a strand out of her face. You've got this.

 

***

 

When they entered the house, the party was already in full swing, and Clarke immediately headed to the kitchen. She would need a good lot of booze to survive this night. Raven followed suit and opened a beer, shooting the lit across the kitchen, almost hitting a guy's head who glared at her. She shrugged and took a sip, then looked at Clarke.

“That bad?”

Clarke snorted and downed a Tequila shot before answering, “Yeah.”

“Well I won't apologize though because these parties are definitely worth it.” Clarke didn't reply and went to pour herself another shot, while Raven eyed her suspiciously. “You okay?”

Clarke stopped with the glass at her lips, “Yeah?”, and downed another shot. “Why?”

“You look even worse than usually at these parties.”

“Thanks.” was all Clarke answered, and Raven knew better than to bug the blonde further, so she decided to change the topic. “How's flannel ponytail?”

Clarke's pulse quickened and she felt like this infamous deer caught in the headlights. “Why are you asking me that?”

“Because you've been quite moody the entire week, and usually I'd say it's because this semester's gonna be a bitch… I've seen you moody about college, but this is something else,” she paused to take another sip, “and since I know everything's cool with Finn, ponytail is the only one left.”

Clarke raised an eyebrow. “I don't know her at all. I don't even know her name.”

Raven winked. “Maybe that's your problem, blondie.”

 

***

 

Clarke left the party earlier for even her liking, but the last Tequila shot had been too much. Or maybe the last five. She didn't know, and she didn't care. She strolled down the street and found it was quite the hard task to light her cigarette with a beer in the one hand, and her phone in the other. Screw me for hating handbags, she thought and was just about to give up, when the lighter spat out a flame and her desperately needed cigarette finally lit up. She took a deep drag and looked around. She was drunk, and she was tired, but she knew she wouldn't be able to sleep yet.

The night had actually been fun, until Ontari had decided to take a try at seducing Clarke for the umpteenth time since their breakup and hadn't it been for Raven, Clarke would probably be entangled in Ontari's sheets by now. The worst part was, she didn't even feel sorry for Finn. He was a nice guy, but that was it. A nice guy. He was her entertainment, and she knew she didn't and would never love him, and if she was being honest, she wasn't sure whether he really felt so differently.

She checked her phone, 3:12am. It was late, but she knew she would have to get her head clear before heading home, and so she let her feet carry her to the park next to the campus. She would finish her beer, maybe have another cigarette and then go home, she decided, and slumped down on the bench near the small lake, admiring how it reflected the stars and the almost full moon.

A few moments passed, until she took the last sip of her beer and got up to throw it in the trash bin, when she noticed a figure sitting on the other side of the lake. She squeezed her eyes and then, her lips curled up into a small smile when she realized who the figure was.

 

Chapter Text

“Hey you.” Clarke slurred softly as she approached the brunette who jumped and quickly opened her eyes to look at her, and Clarke swore she just saw some sort of… fear? in the other girl's eyes. No shit Sherlock, it's the middle of the night and you're creeping around.

“May I?” Clarke gestured to the spot next to the girl who shot her a small smile and nodded. “Thanks.” Clarke said and laid down, immediately wincing at how cold and wet the grass beneath her was. Only then she realized that the girl had no jacket with her, and the blonde wondered again what the girl was doing in the park, at half past three in the morning, all by herself and without a jacket.

“Aren't you cold?” She finally asked after another minute of watching the girl, who turned around and lowered her gaze to look at Clarke.

“Aren't you cold?” She fired back, eyeing her suspiciously, and Clarke laughed. Yes, she was cold with nothing on but her short black dress and the high heels. “It's fine.”

The brunette nodded in return and directed her eyes back to the blade of grass she was fumbling with.

Clarke furrowed her brows and watched her for another minute or two. The girl seemed calm and friendly, and Clarke thought her smile was beautiful, especially because she had the feeling it didn't happen very often. And shy, Clarke thought. She's so shy. Usually, Clarke had no problem initiating a conversation, but she had no idea how to start a conversation with her, so after a moment, she sat up, plucked a daisy and held it in front of the other girl who looked at her a little confused, surprise evident in her eyes, but took it. She opened her mouth to say something, but closed it again, and Clarke was fast to help her out.

“That's a thank you. For the pencil,” she said, “and the eraser!” She quickly added, which rewarded her with another small smile from the brunette that faded as quickly as it had appeared. “That was really nice of you. You could've said something though. Or, you know,” Clarke laughed, “you could've stayed after class so I could give them right back to you. Anyway, it was really sweet. I also hope that I don't lose or break them before Monday. And I hope that you don't run away again and actually give me the chance to return them.”

The brunette let out a small soft laugh and Clarke's heart skipped a beat. She was sure that this was the sweetest sound she had ever heard, and she was determined to hear it again. As often as possible.

“What?” She smiled.

The other girl tilted her head to the side. “You talk a lot. Please don't forget to breathe.”

“Oh yeah.” Clarke said, trying not to slur too much, but unsuccessfully. “I'm sorry, I'm kinda drunk. Been to a really loud and really… alcoholic party with really weird and really… with people.” Clarke squeezed her eyes shut. “Sorry, that was stupid. Anyway, literally everybody was there, yet I find you here all alone by the lake.”

The girl's small smile slightly faded, and she looked at the daisy in her hand. Clarke watched her curiously before she continued.

“How come?”

“I–… I don't like parties”, the brunette shrugged, “I also wasn't invited.”

Clarke smirked. “Everyone was invited, darling.”

The girl turned back to her. “How do you know you're invited when no one tells you?”

That caught Clarke off guard. She hadn't thought about the fact that the girl next to her seemed to not have many friends, or none to be exact, at least at college. Of course she couldn't know that she would've been invited, and suddenly, Clarke felt a hint of guilt, mixed with sadness rush through her veins.

“Next time, I'll invite you.” She smiled encouragingly.

“Thanks. I don't like parties though.”

“Why not?”

“Because I don't talk to people, and vice versa, so I just do my things at parties, and people distract me.” She shot Clarke a smile that was supposed to be a simple smile, but Clarke saw the sadness in the girl's eyes. “Also, I don't drink alcohol.”

“I don't, either.” Clarke grinned, and the other girl raised an eyebrow.

“Well. Mostly. I mean, sometimes. I sometimes mostly rarely don't drink alc–“ she stopped when her stomach made itself noticed, and the brunette looked at her questioningly, waiting for her to continue. “I– don't feel so good.” Clarke said and got up, swaying slightly, but the other girl was quick to get up as well and save the blonde from falling.

“Do you have to…”

Clarke shook her head. Then nodded. Then shook her head. “I don't even know how to get home,” she slurred, suddenly realizing that Raven usually took care of her, “a friend promised to walk me home but I kinda… lost her.”

“Where do you live? I'll walk you home.”

“That's sweet of you but it's pretty dangerous. Shady people, you know, and I don't want you to–“ Clarke stopped again, bending over, ready to let go of the party's remnants. She waited for a few moments and when nothing came, she slowly straightened her back again, sighing as she accepted her defeat. “Across the campus.”

 

***

 

Clarke woke up with a major hangover. She had no memories whatsoever. She groaned as she reached out and blindly fumbled for pain killers on her bedside table, but without avail. Instead, she found her phone and squinted at its brightness. 9:41am. And several texts and missed calls from Raven and Octavia.

Raven (3:21am): where are you?
Raven (3:33am): don't tell me you left already
Raven (3:51am): clarkypoo
Raven (4:02am): clarke answer your phone. worried.

Octavia (4:15am): clarke? r u ignoring raven? at least answer me!
Octavia (4:49am): clarrrrrke!

Raven (4:59am): do I have to call your mom?

Clarke sighed and sent a quick text to both, Raven and Octavia to let them know she was okay, fine, well and alive, safely tucked in in her own bed. It was a minute later when the fog that clouded her memories lifted a bit, but enough for her to remember how she had gotten home last night. The girl. And she still didn't know her name, as far as she reckoned. The girl had walked her home. Her home in one of the shadier neighborhoods in town. She really had let the girl walk her home.

That realization hit her hard and fast, and she sat up, immediately regretting her movement when a jolt of pain attacked her head, but she had no time to suffer because her stomach let her know that it definitely hadn't tolerated her heavy drinking, and she was barely fast enough to reach the toilet. Fuck my life.

When she was sure nothing was left to come out, she got up, brushed her teeth and took a refreshing shower to at least feel somewhat human again. As soon as she got out of the bathroom, she stopped dead in her tracks when her eyes fell on a certain brunette, curled up into a tiny ball in the armchair in the living room. Her heart melted at the sight, but at the same time, it hurt. The position she was in must have been anything but comfortable. However, Clarke couldn't bring herself to wake her up. She smiled and decided to hurry and get dressed, then make coffee. But Clarke couldn't draw her gaze away from the brunette in time to pay attention to where she was going and bumped into her guitar which, with a deafening noise, fell to the ground. She squeezed her eyes shut and started counting. Twenty one… twenty two… twenty–

“You look ridiculous.” A soft voice pulled her back to reality and she hesitantly opened one eye, then the other, to look at a now awake brunette sporting an amused smirk.

“Ridiculous, yeah. That would be me. What the hell are you doing h– did we– oh God.”

The brunette furrowed her brows, waiting for Clarke to continue.

“I mean… did we, did you, was this…” Clarke aimlessly gestured between the two of them, too embarrassed to actually speak out her thoughts, begging for the other girl to understand what she was trying to ask.

 

 

 

Chapter Text

The brunette tilted her head to the side.

“Get intimate?” Clarke offered, hoping she wouldn't have to get further into detail and embarrass herself completely, still awkwardly waving around to emphasize her point.

“No, we didn't.” The girl finally said, still wearing a small smirk.

“Phew.” Clarke dropped her arm and instantly relaxed, but furrowed her brows a moment later. “Wait. We didn't?”

“Nope.”

“Um.”

“Do you really think if we…” the brunette copied Clarke's motion of gesturing between them, “I would have slept in this armchair?”

Clarke narrowed her eyes and smirked. “You, my dear, are smart.” To Clarke's surprise, the brunette's smile faded a little and she quickly lowered her head. Whatever Clarke had said, it had made her uncomfortable and the blonde immediately felt sorry and scolded herself for making that beautiful smile disappear way too soon.

“Hey I'll get dressed and uh… make breakfast? Sound good?”

The girl's smile grew a bit wider again and Clarke mentally high fived herself before disappearing into her bedroom.

 

***

 

“Why did you stay?” Clarke asked as she handed the other girl a cup of coffee, which she happily accepted. The brunette frowned, which Clarke found incredibly adorable, and took a sip before answering. “Because you asked me to.”

“I did?”

The brunette nodded.

“Oh God. I didn't– I mean I'm sorry. Next time I ask that, don't listen to me. Just, you know, go home and live your life.”

“But you asked me.”

“Yeah I do that sometimes. I don't know why.” Clarke paused to look at the girl, and found herself drowning again in those deep green eyes. God, girl. I'll get lost in your eyes, sooner or later. And don't you dare rescue me. It took her a moment to gain control over her brain again and she quickly shook off any other thoughts. “I'm sorry, you really didn't have to stay.”

The girl opened her mouth to say something, but was stopped when someone knocked on Clarke's door. The blonde shot her an apologetic smile and went to the door and opened it, only to reveal a very tired and obviously still very drunk Finn, leaning at the doorframe, almost falling forward.

“Whoa easy there, I gotcha.” Clarke said when she caught a swaying Finn to help him step inside and sit down on a kitchen chair. “What are you doing here?” Clarke was already annoyed.

“Immissed you.”

“You could've called me.”

“I ‘ove you.”

“You're drunk.”

Finn tried to get up but was pushed back down by Clarke, so he leaned in instead until his head was buried between her breasts. She rolled her eyes.

“C'arke, where'd ya go, you sisappeared. Jus' like that.” He mumbled into her cleavage and snapped his fingers.

“I didn't feel like partying, so I went home.” She said. Finn let out a groan, and she placed a hand on his head, scratching it soothingly.

The brunette quietly cleared her throat. “I think I'll go now.” She stated softly and Clarke turned her head, almost embarrassed for momentarily forgetting that the girl was still there.

“No, please. It's Finn who should go.” Clarke insisted but the girl shook her head, and before Clarke could protest, she had shot her a small smile and closed the door behind her. “Wait I–“ the blonde called after her but knew she wouldn't hear her, “still don't know your name.”

 

***

 

Finn ended up sleeping at Clarke's apartment to get rid of his hangover, and Clarke was more than annoyed. He had disturbed her peaceful morning with the brunette, he had made her leave before Clarke could ask for her name, and now he was sleeping in the next room, snoring loud enough that not even headphones and an unhealthily high volume could push him out of Clarke's head, and after twenty minutes, she gave up.

Weekends were supposed to refresh her, to give her new strength to endure the horrors that came with several classes, and yet here she was; Tired, hungover and with dark circles under her eyes that perfectly mirrored how she felt inside, strolling aimlessly across the campus because her boyfriend decided to take away her Saturday–peace.

She sat down on a bench, absently sipping her coffee to go, looking at nothing in particular. Her mind wandered back to the brunette girl and Clarke smiled. The girl had walked her home and stayed there because Clarke had asked her to. Although she couldn't feel worse about it, Clarke also felt all warm and fuzzy. Who the hell would do that, nowadays anyway, Clarke thought to herself, and without realizing, her smile grew wider at the thought of seeing the girl again on Monday.

An hour later, she decided to head back home and finally throw Finn out. He had his own home, she wasn't his Mother Teresa.

“Finn?” She called as she entered her apartment, and was met with dead silence. She huffed and opened the bedroom door and rolled her eyes at the sight of her shirtless boyfriend laying on his stomach, drooling over the pillow.

“Finn.” She tried again, in a slightly louder and much more annoyed tone.

“Whmt”, he mumbled rather unintelligibly.

“Get up and leave, I got shit to do.” Clarke snarled back as she threw his shirt into his face.

“What?” He lazily raised his head to look at her, and Clarke struggled to contain a laughter about her boyfriend who looked incredibly dumb with his mouth open and his eyes half–closed. 

“I said get up and leave.” Clarke rolled her eyes again and left the room. It took Finn several minutes to get up and meet her in the kitchen. He tried to sneak his arms around her from behind, but she was quick to wiggle her way out of his hug.

“Finn, I'm serious. I have tons of homework and you're distracting me.”

On contrary to her expectation, he smirked and placed his hands on the counter on either side of Clarke, trapping her, and leaned closer. “And I have quite a few ways to distract you.”

Clarke remained unimpressed at his attempt. “Finn. Please.”

He growled and stepped back. “Is that because of the chick that was here this morning?”

“Excuse me?”

“Are you behaving like that because of her? Did she stay over night?”

Clarke crossed her arms. “Yeah, in fact she did.”

“Oh really. Bet she was stiff like a board in bed.” Clarke blinked twice with widened eyes. His mood had shifted from horny to furious in twelve seconds, and she slowly wiped away the saliva that he had spat at her.

“Don't ever talk about her like that.”

“Oh was she rough and dirty then? Highly doubt that.” He snorted and took another step back but before he could turn around, Clarke's hand hit his cheek, and it hit it hard. “Get out.”

“Clarke, I–“

“NOW!” She yelled and never before had she seen Finn move faster.

She closed her eyes and let out a long sigh after Finn slammed the door behind him as he left. Great.

 

Chapter Text

Monday came faster than Clarke had expected, and she found herself in Ancient Greek History again. She chose a seat in the second row in the front, somewhere near where the brunette had been sitting last week, and Clarke had the girl's pencil and eraser on the table in front of her, ready to give them back. She checked her watch for the fifth time, 8:14am. One minute left and the brunette was still nowhere to be seen. Clarke frowned. Although she didn't know the girl that well, or not at all, she knew this was unusual for her.

Clarke (8:15am): Flannel ponytail isn't here.

Raven (8:21am): are you serious right now?! it's monday morning. 8am. of course she isn't there.

Clarke (8:22am): It's weird though. She doesn't seem like someone who skips classes.

Raven (8:40am): clarke. go back to bed.

 

Clarke angrily turned off her phone and put it back in her pocket. She didn't understand how Raven could be so insensitive. The new girl hadn't shown up yet and something was wrong, Clarke was sure. Again, she scolded herself for not getting the girl's name, or better, her number. There was no way to reach her and make sure she was okay.

Political Science came and went, and there was still no sign of the brunette. Clarke grew impatient, she was barely able to sit still in her chair, and when the lecture ended, it only took her seconds to get out of the room.

She quickly scanned the halls and the cafeteria, then went outside but even Clarke wasn't stupid enough to believe she could find the girl on the huge campus. If she didn't want to be found, she wouldn't be.

That drew Clarke's thoughts into a different direction. Was the girl avoiding her? Clarke shook her head. Why would she. … But was she?

The blonde slouched her shoulders in defeat and made her way back inside to join the others for lunch, but she kept scanning the place for the other girl.

Clarke absentmindedly threw her bag in the corner when she entered her apartment and shut the door with a lazy kick. It had been a long day, even longer because she just couldn't stop thinking and worrying about the brunette girl. The girl with those beautiful eyes, the girl that rarely smiled, the girl whose name she still didn't know. She slumped down on the couch and covered her eyes with her arm in frustration. She stayed there for a while but knew she wouldn't be able to focus on anything else that day, so she got up, took a long shower and then went to bed.

 

***

 

To say Clarke was worried sick when she entered the Advanced Mathematics hall and the brunette wasn't there, was an understatement. She dragged her feet to her usual seat in the back and didn't even bother to take her sketchbook out.

To say Clarke was relieved when the brunette entered the room, was an understatement, too. Clarke shot into an upright position in her seat and was about to wave at the girl but held back when she realized that the girl didn't look at her, or at anybody, at all. With her head lowered and her gaze directed to the ground, she quickly made her way to a seat in the front. Clarke also noticed the girl's tensed shoulders and the oversized hoodie that the girl almost disappeared in.

Ninety minutes later, Clarke still had no idea what the professor had tried to teach her, and although she could blame it on her lack of interest in math, she knew that today it was because all she had been doing was paying close attention to the girl.

The professor ended the class, and the girl was fast on her way out, but Clarke was faster and finally, she caught her just when she left the building.

"Hey," Clarke said, reaching out to grab her arm. The girl immediately tensed up even more and turned around, pulling her arm away in the process. “Don't touch me,” she almost whispered.

“I'm sorry, I didn't– no touching, got it.” Clarke replied and raised her hands, signalizing she'd keep them to herself, but dropped them after a moment when she realized that the girl wouldn't look at her. Clarke's eyes softened and she ducked her head to catch the brunette's gaze, but the girl kept her eyes trained on her shoes as she fiddled with the hem of her hoodie.

“Hey, I'm sorry, okay?” Clarke tried again. “Did I hurt you?”

The brunette shook her head.

“Okay.” Clarke said, relieved. “Can I buy you a coffee?”

The brunette hesitated for a moment but shook her head again. Clarke bit her lower lip, trying really hard to come up with something that would make the other girl feel better, and then her face lit up.

“Hot chocolate?”

At that, the girl finally raised her head and Clarke swore she could see her lips curl into a smile. A millimeter wide smile, but it was a start.

 

***

 

Clarke got their drinks while the other girl chose a table. She turned around and immediately spotted her in the back corner of the café at a table near the window, and Clarke took a moment to look at her. She looked sad, and a little lost, staring out of the window and fiddling with one sleeve.

“Hot chocolate for you, and a pitch black coffee for me.” The blonde smiled while setting the cup down in front of the brunette, earning a small smile in return, and sat down on the opposite side. They enjoyed their hot drinks in silence for a moment, before Clarke spoke again.

“You never told me your name.”

The other girl's eyes quickly found hers. “Lexa.”

“Lexa,” Clarke repeated with a smile. She liked that name. She didn't know which name she had expected, but this definitely hadn't been it. But looking at the other girl, it was the only name that suited her, and Clarke's smile grew a bit wider. “I'm Clarke.”

“Clarke.” Lexa quietly repeated as well, and Clarke's heart melted just again when she heard how her name rolled off Lexa's tongue, and how she ended it with a soft click of the 'k'. Before Clarke could say anything else, Lexa's gaze dropped to the cup in front of her again, and Clarke decided to not bother her anymore for a moment. She was content just looking at Lexa, and she couldn't help but wonder what was going on in the girl's mind. When she met her, she had seemed quiet and shy, and when she first spoke to her, she had seemed shy and friendly, and when she woke up and found her in her apartment, she had been quite relaxed and definitely more open.

Then she hadn't shown up for classes, and now she looked like a lost puppy, confused and broken. And Clarke wanted nothing more than to see her smile again.

 

*** 

 

They didn't really speak after the revelation of their names but Lexa didn't seem to mind, and neither did Clarke. The blonde simply spent the following minutes just looking at Lexa, or out of the window, but mostly at Lexa. Oh what she would've given to know what she was thinking.

They decided to leave the café a while later because they both had some homework to do, and now they were standing outside in front of it, and Lexa played nervously with the hem of her hoodie again.

“So…” Clarke started and the brunette immediately raised her head, big eyes looking at her expectantly. “Thanks again for telling me your name. You have no idea how long I've been meaning to ask for it!” Clarke laughed, and Lexa slightly blushed but remained silent.

“Will you be there tomorrow?” Clarke asked but was met with a confused look. “History?” she quickly added, and the other girl nodded. “Okay cool. See ya then, I guess!” Clarke smiled and turned around to leave, but stopped and looked back. “Oh and Lexa? What's your most favorite thing in the world?”

Lexa readjusted the bag on her shoulder and smiled, “Flowers.”

 

 

 

Chapter Text

“I can't believe I'm drinking on a Wednesday.” Octavia groaned as she poured herself another shot.

“No one forces you to drink.” Lincoln noted friendly, causing Raven to laugh so hard she lost her balance, but Clarke was quick enough to steady her. They all knew even Octavia was forced to drink once the group got together, especially when Raven and Clarke were there.

Clarke grinned and opened another beer. “We're in college, O. Live a little.”

“And drink a little more.” Raven chimed in, earning another eye roll from Octavia.

“Have you seen this weird new mute girl?” Jasper asked after a while and was met with confused glances from everyone in the group except for Raven, whose eyes immediately jumped to Clarke before she spoke.

“Yeah, she's in my astronomy class,” she said. “Why you asking?”

Jasper shrugged and grinned. “Heard she escaped a mental hospital.”

“Oh please.” Raven replied annoyed, reaching for her whiskey coke. “If she escaped a mental hospital, I highly doubt she'd freely walk around as an official student of Polis.”

Jasper's grin slightly faded as he considered Raven's logic. “I guess you're right. Maybe she just was in one before she came here? Explains why no one's seen her before.”

“Might as well be because she just moved here and went to another college before.” Octavia noted. “Where did you get that from anyway?”

“Don't know. Heard it somewhere.” Jasper admitted, a blush creeping up his cheeks at the realization that he immediately believed literally everything he heard, as long as it was extraordinary.

“You're a jerk.” Octavia said and the group laughed, raising their drinks in agreement. Clarke stayed quiet though and after a moment, she got up and went to the kitchen. No one else seemed to notice that something was off, except Raven.

When she entered the kitchen, she saw Clarke leaning with her shoulder against the fridge near the window, looking outside. Raven sighed and slowly approached her.

“Clarke?”

“Hm?” The blonde replied but didn't turn around.

“You okay?” Raven tried again, and this time, Clarke finally looked at her.

“Sure.” The blonde said with a rather unconvincing smile.

“Sorry about Jasper. He's really a dick. He shouldn't have said what he said. I know you like her.”

Clarke frowned. “Is it that obvious?”

“What?”

“What?”

The two stayed silent for a long moment, both thinking about what Clarke had just asked.

“So you like her?”

Clarke looked at Raven and then turned back to the window. “I don't know. I mean she's nice, and she's friendly, really friendly, and so adorable. And shy. God Raven, she's so shy.”

“She's also beautiful.”

“That she is.” Clarke couldn't help but smile. “You know what's weird though? When I first met her she was like super quiet and then when she accompanied me home, the next morning she–“

Raven almost choked on her drink. “Whoa hold up there Griffin. She was here? The next morning? What?”

Clarke blushed. She hadn't told Raven anything about the incident at the park, or the break up with Finn, and suddenly she felt bad. But Finn was another topic she decided, and Raven would sooner or later realize why he wasn't around anymore anyway. Now, she wanted to focus on Lexa.

“Not like that. It's… the night we went to the party and I left early, I met her in the park and she walked me home because I didn't feel well, and I don't remember but she said I asked her to stay the night, and… well. So she did.” Clarke paused for a moment to take another sip of her beer, and Raven's confused but curious eyes didn't go unnoticed by her. “Anyway. The next morning, she was shy and… careful? No, not careful, just… I don't know. Well but she was also kinda open and relaxed, and the next time I met her, she was totally different. Like, completely different. I wasn't allowed to touch her and she would avoid my gaze most of the time, and–”

“Clarke.” Raven softly interrupted her.

“What?”

“Don't get me wrong, but you can be… how should I say… overwhelming from time to time. Maybe that's why she shut off a bit.”

“No, it wasn't like that. It's hard to explain.” Clarke admitted, and was glad when Raven nodded understandingly and didn't ask further questions.

“Do me a favor though, Griff, because I've seen her eyes and I think I know what you mean by shy. Don't hurt her. She looks like a person that's been hurt, and I don't want you to add to it.”

Clarke opened her mouth to protest, but closed it again when she realized that Raven was right. She indeed was a bit much sometimes, and although she always meant well, she knew that sometimes she accidentally hurt people.

“Speaking of which…” Clarke began.

“Oh no.” Raven groaned and rolled her eyes. “What now?”

Clarke's cheeks twitched into a smirk as she brought the bottle back to her lips to take a sip. “Finn and I broke up.”

“Oh Jesus Christ, finally.” Raven cheered and clinked her plastic cup with Clarke's bottle.

 

***

 

The next two days were Clarke's art days, which meant she didn't get to see Lexa in her classes and she couldn't help but miss the quiet girl. She enjoyed her company, even if they didn't talk much. And again, Clarke found herself wondering what occupied Lexa's mind, especially on the day they went to the small café together.

Clarke tried to focus on the drawing task, she really did, but her brain just wouldn't stop wandering back to a particular pair of green eyes that held so many emotions that Clarke couldn't even count them, and to the girl's sharp jawline and those soft lips, and Clarke caught herself wondering what it would feel like to kiss them. God, Griffin. Pull yourself together. Lexa's a friend. She's a friend. She quickly pushed any inappropriate thoughts about the girl aside and hoped she would at least get to see the girl during her lunch break. The mere thought of seeing Lexa made her all fuzzy and bubbly inside and again, she found herself smiling.

Much to her disappointment, the brunette didn't show up in the cafeteria but Clarke wasn't surprised. She hadn't seen her there at all, so what was she expecting? The girl magically choosing to spend her lunch break in an overly crowded canteen? Clarke knew better than to think Lexa would choose to sit with strangers. Nonetheless, she wondered where the girl usually went. Suddenly, a pang of guilt and sadness rushed through her veins at the thought of Lexa sitting all by herself, alone. The brunette deserved better than that, and Clarke decided she wouldn't let this happen again. If that was the case in the first place anyway. Only because the quiet girl usually wasn't seen with people, didn't mean she had no friends, so it didn't necessarily mean she spent her free time alone. Yet Clarke wasn't sure, and she was determined to find out.

 

Chapter Text

The weekend was packed with homework, mainly for her art class but she also had a huge stack of paper for advanced mathematics waiting for her, sitting on her desk, grinning mischievously every time she dared to look at it.

Two weeks into the new year, and she knew she would fail mathematics so miserably that she would put even the biggest math loser to shame. Easily.

She checked her watch, 12:29pm, and decided it was time for a break, so she quickly put on her Chucks, grabbed her jacket and left the apartment. The moment the door shut, she froze. The keys.

“Really, Griffin?” She groaned and shot Raven a message, asking if she could stop by to get the spare key she had given her, and made her way to the small café on the other side of the campus. With a huff she pushed the door open and immediately relaxed a little when the scent of fresh coffee embraced her.

With her black coffee in one hand, and a muffin in the other, she scanned the place for a free seat, but today wouldn't be her lucky day. She sighed and was almost out of the door, when she spotted a familiar brunette at a familiar table. Maybe she wasn't so unlucky after all.

“Hey,” Clarke smiled widely as she approached the girl whose head shot up, confusion and a hint of… anger? flashing her eyes, but when she realized it was Clarke, her features quickly softened.

“Hey,” she answered with a small smile herself, and Clarke again felt fuzzy at the sight.

“May I?” She asked, gesturing to the empty seat on the other side of the table, waiting for Lexa to agree, which the brunette did with a small nod.

Clarke sat down and took a long sip of her coffee, using the time to study the brunette who didn't look back, instead seemed to find Clarke's muffin far more interesting. Clarke smirked.

“You want it?”

“Pardon?”

“Do you want the muffin?” Clarke asked again.

“Oh no, thanks. I was just… thinking if I should get one or not but I–“, Lexa suddenly stopped her rambling which Clarke found utterly adorable, when Clarke pushed the muffin over to Lexa.

“You can have it, I'm not that hungry anyway.”

“But it's yours.”

“Lexa. Take it. It's fine. I want you to have it.” Clarke reassured her and mentally high fived herself when the cute smile reappeared on the brunette's face. Clarke might not have realized it yet, but she was already addicted to that smile which, no matter how small, always reached the girl's eyes. She took another moment to watch as Lexa happily munched on the muffin, until she decided it was time for small talk.

“So, what are you doing here?”

Lexa stopped chewing for a second and then gestured to the pile of books, the notebook and the calculator lying in front of her, and it took Clarke a few seconds to realize that the girl was actually doing homework. Math homework, to be exact.

“Are you really doing math homework in the middle of a Saturday? In a café? When the sun's shining so prettily like that?” Clarke gestured towards the window and Lexa followed her motion, looking outside for a moment, until she turned back with a light frown.

“I like math,” she admitted shyly and Clarke's face softened even more. God, shy Lexa was adorable. “Besides,” she continued, “I'm here every Saturday noon, so why not just bring my homework with me?”

That peaked Clarke's interest. “Every Saturday? Why's that?”

Lexa shrugged, “I like to have a routine.”

Clarke nodded and watched with a huge smile as Lexa finished the muffin. “You um…” Lexa's eyes met hers. “You got a little something there.” Clarke grinned and reached out to wipe off the small piece of chocolate at the corner of Lexa's mouth, but the brunette slightly backed away and Clarke quickly withdrew her hand.

“Right, sorry. I forgot. No touching.”

Lexa shot her a small apologetic smile and lowered her head while wiping off the chocolate. They fell silent and after a minute, Lexa went back to doing her homework and Clarke was, again, more than fascinated by how quickly Lexa wrote down matrices and… vectors?… and solved equation after equation. The blonde got dizzy after a while from the speed Lexa worked at, and shook her head.

Raven still hadn't answered and Clarke grew frustrated. She couldn't go back home as long as Raven didn't read her text, or was at home herself, she couldn't do anything at all. No art, no math, she also had a pile of clothes waiting for their laundry session, and not even that could Clarke do.

Twenty minutes later, Lexa closed her book and switched off her calculator and Clarke eyed her curiously as the girl packed everything in her bag and finally got up.

“You leavin'?”

Lexa nodded, fiddling with the hem of her shirt. “I have some work to do at home, so…”

“Where do you live by the way?” Clarke asked, trying to find a distraction from her misery, and maybe she could at least walk the girl home.

“In one of the dorms.”

“Didn't take you for one to share rooms.” Clarke grinned but her grin quickly faded when she noticed Lexa's frown. “Sorry, did I say something wrong?”

The brunette shook her head but kept her head down so that Clarke couldn't fully see her face.

“Do you… want company? On your way home, I mean?” That got the girl to lift her head.

“You don't have to do that, Clarke.” Oh God. Clarke thought when she heard her say her name like that. She loved it. She was addicted to the soft click of the 'k'. She was addicted to the soft voice.

“I want to, though. You walked me home once, and I'd like to return that favor.”

“You bought me a hot chocolate.”

“That was uh, for the pencil and the eraser.”

To Clarke's surprise, Lexa raised an amused eyebrow. “I thought the daisy was the Thank You for the pencil and the eraser.”

“Damn, you're right. The hot chocolate was actually a sorry for the…,” Clarke paused, debating whether she should actually mention the touching incident or not, but then decided she wouldn't find a way to rephrase it, “touching.”

Lexa quickly shook her head, eyes slightly widened. “No, Clarke, that wasn't– that wasn't your fault, you didn't know. You really couldn't know.”

“Either way, I wanted to say sorry, so I bought you the hot chocolate. And the walking home now is just because you did it, too. And because I want to.” Clarke added with a reassuring smile, patiently waiting for Lexa's decision. After a moment of biting her lower lip in concentration, the brunette nodded and Clarke beamed.

They started walking, Clarke carefully keeping a small distance between Lexa and herself, so she wouldn't accidentally brush her arm, just in case the brunette didn't like that, either.

It was a beautiful, warm summer day, a day on which Clarke would usually go to the park to lie on the grass, watching birds and the clouds above her, or go to the beach with her friends. But today, none of the above would really make her happy, not when she could spend time with the beautiful shy girl whose soft voice, green eyes and small smile had become her drug.

 

Chapter Text

Clarke walked Lexa to the building and up to her room. Although Lexa had assured her it wasn't necessary, Clarke didn't let her change her mind.

So here they were, in front of Lexa's room and Clarke was just about to say Goodbye, when she noticed Lexa hesitate before putting the key into the keyhole to unlock the door.

“You okay?” She asked in concern, trying to sound casually, just in case Lexa's hesitation had been the product of her imagination. The brunette quickly nodded but over the past few weeks, Clarke had become somewhat of an expert when it came to reading Lexa, and she definitely didn't miss the change in the girl's eyes.

“You sure?”

“Yeah I–” Lexa paused and bit her lower lip for a second before she continued, “I just don't like my roommate very much. Or, she doesn't like me, to be exact.”

Clarke frowned at that. How could anyone not like Lexa? But the emotion that the girl's eyes were reflecting right now said more.

“Is she mean to you?” Clarke asked carefully and was confirmed when Lexa quickly averted her gaze and started fiddling with the keys in her hand, almost looking like she was afraid her roommate would walk around the corner any moment and hear her. The brunette remained silent.

“Lexa?” Clarke tried again.

“She just doesn't like me a lot.”

Clarke decided to drop the topic for now. She had drilled the girl enough and Lexa was clearly uncomfortable with the roommate issue. But Clarke would bring it up later, because it seemed to bother the brunette a lot, and Clarke's new job was to make the girl smile. That reminded her of something, and she quickly got out her notebook and a pen and scribbled down her number.

“Here,” she said and handed Lexa the piece of paper, who looked at her in confusion as she took it, “it's my number. If anything's wrong, or you wanna talk or are in desperate need of a hot chocolate or something,” at that, the brunette's smile returned, “then text me. Or call me. Whatever you like.”

Lexa nodded and looked at the piece of paper in her hands for the first time, then up at Clarke. “Thank you, Clarke.”

“You're welcome, Lexa.”

They both stood there for another long moment, smiling like idiots, until Clarke cleared her throat. “I think I– I'll go and leave you to your,” she randomly gestured towards Lexa's room, “whatever work it is that you gotta do.”

And Lexa laughed. She actually laughed. It wasn't a loud laughter, but it was one, and Clarke felt like she would explode from happiness. Before she could let the moment overwhelm her and make her give in to the urge of hugging the brunette, she took a step back. “Bye Lexa.” She smiled.

“Bye, Clarke.”

 

***

 

Raven had finally answered, Clarke had picked up the spare key and now she was at home, finally, sitting on her couch. “I've missed you,” she sighed and smiled at the piece of furniture. If anyone could see her right now, they would probably think she finally lost her mind, but Clarke couldn't care less in that moment. She had made Lexa smile and she had made Lexa laugh. And it felt heavenly. A buzz from her phone drew her out of her daydream.

Unknown Number (2:49pm): Hey, this is Lexa. Just in case you want my number, too. Thank you for walking me home.

Clarke was sure her smile couldn't grow wider, but when she read Lexa's message, it did.

Clarke (2:50pm): Hey sunshine! My pleasure. Hope you made it home safely ;) x

Clarke winced. 'Sunshine?' Really, Clarke?

Lexa :) (2:52pm): I just had to step inside, Clarke.

Clarke laughed. She could literally see the brunette's confused frown in front of her.

Clarke (2:53pm): just kidding, don't mind me :) Hey I was thinking if maybe you could help me with math? I'm such a loser and could really use some help from an expert :)

Clarke bit her lower lip as she, more or less anxiously, awaited Lexa's reply. Although it was true, she was the biggest loser when it came to math, the main reason was that she wanted to spend more time with Lexa, and so far she didn't have the feeling they had reached the casual friendship level yet, and she also didn't want to overwhelm the girl, so she thought extra lessons as an excuse to see her more often wouldn't hurt.

Lexa :) (2:59pm): You're not a loser, Clarke. But I can help you, if you want.

Clarke (2:59pm): Yay! Thanks :) x

The blonde fell back onto the couch and grinned like a child on Christmas. Lexa had said Yes. Also, she had taken Clarke too seriously and literal and Clarke knew if Raven or Octavia missed one of her jokes or sarcasm, she would probably lose it and be annoyed as hell, but with Lexa, it was adorable. Jesus, Griff, you got it bad.

 

***

 

“Jesus Griff, you got it bad.” Raven laughed as she threw a sponge at her friend while they prepared Clarke's apartment for the party.

“What are you talking about?”

“Oh please. The heart eyes? Is it… flannel ponytail?” Raven wiggled her eyebrows suggestively and Clarke huffed.

“Her name is Lexa.”

Raven immediately picked up on the change in Clarke's mood and soft pedaled her silliness.

“That's a beautiful name.”

“Yeah.” Clarke smiled dreamily.

“Clarke! No no no! Clarke! I need you to be sarcastic and badass today, please don't be so smitten.” Raven wined as she dragged Clarke to the fridge and handed her a beer.

“I'm not smitten.”

“Dude. It's your second name today. Clarke Smitten Griffin.”

“Hmm… I like the sound of it.”

“Claaarrke! It's stupid. You're not allowed to like it. Badass up and down that beer.”

Clarke pouted and Raven sighed. “Okay. Badass up, down that beer and then you can tell me everything about Lexa while we're waiting for the idiots to show up.”

“Okay, I'm all ear. What is it about this girl?” Raven relented as they dropped onto Clarke's couch. Raven wasn't annoyed though. Clarke was her best friend, and had been since the first day of college, they had gone through the best and worst times together and although sappy Clarke in love could exhaust the shit out of her, she was still genuinely interested in Clarke's thoughts and feelings, and she would lie if she said she wasn't curious as well what it was about Lexa that had gotten Clarke crush so hard on her in such a short time.

It didn't even take Clarke a second to come up with an answer. “Her smile,” she said and waited for Raven to react, be it confirmation or disagreement, but her friend stayed silent, looking back at her expectantly.

“Her smile.” Clarke repeated and Raven nodded before she spoke. “Yeah Clarke, I heard you. Her smile. I believe it's beautiful because she's stunning, but I've never seen her smile so I wouldn't know. Where is she by the way? Shouldn't she be here when you're throwing a party?”

“She doesn't like parties so much.”

“Yeah, that's because she's never partied with us.” Raven grinned and Clarke nudged her side. “Jerk.”

 

Chapter Text

Clarke tried to get the brunette off her mind, but she couldn't deny that she truly missed her. Clarke was having fun at the party, of course, her closest friends were there with her, each of them already having consumed a good amount of alcohol, but Clarke couldn't help check but her phone every once in a while, and Raven noticed.

“Just text her.” She whispered into the blonde's ear but Clarke shook her head.

“It's Saturday night, she's probably busy with something, Rae. And I don't want to bother her.”

Raven sighed. “Clarkypoo, listen. You're thinking about her, right?” Clarke nodded. “And you're checking your phone every two minutes because you hope she wrote you, right?” Clarke nodded again. “And you like her, right?” Clarke paused, a huge blush creeping up her cheeks, but eventually, she nodded, and Raven nodded too when she got the answer she was looking for. “Then text her. I promise you she won't mind.”

“Hey bitches, honor the presence of your friends! Entertain the rest of us with what you're whispering about!” Octavia yelled across the room, then went back to pouring shots for the group. Clarke and Raven straightened their backs and shook their heads, earning an eye–roll from Octavia. Just as Clarke downed her Tequila and felt like she had swallowed enough liquid courage to send Lexa a message, Jasper got up, slightly swaying, and cleared his throat.

“Guyls and gays.” He began and the group burst out laughing. He shook his head and tried again. “Girls and guys! I proudly a–whoops!” He stumbled backwards into Lincoln, who calmly stretched out a hand to steady the drunken boy in front of him. “Where was I?”

“Proudly!” Octavia yelled back.

“Proudly! Right. I proudly announce that it's time for a fine round of Never Have I Ever!”

The group groaned but knew Jasper was right. No matter how much they all had grown to hate that game, it was a classic at their parties.

Octavia cleared her throat. “Neverevaeva–“, she started but the new laughters that erupted from the group shut her up. “Guys! Shhht! I'm tryin'!” The group stifled their giggles. “Never have I ever… I'm out of never have I evers.” She pouted.

Monty was quick to jump in. “Never have I ever hated a semester more than this one.” Everybody except Clarke drank. “Clarke, really? What the fuck. Okay Rae, your turn.”

Raven thought about her options for a while, then smirked. “Never have I ever wanted to text someone badly but didn't have the balls–“ the whole group raised their glasses to their mouths but stopped when Raven continued, “right now.” The group groaned and set their drinks back down.

“… Claaarke.”

“Whaaat.”

“You're supposed to driiiink.”

“Whyyyy.”

Raven rolled her eyes. “We both know whyyy.”

Their friends automatically leaned in closer to witness their bantering better, neither of them really knowing what it was about, why Raven was so persistent or why Clarke was so reluctant.

“Okay what's going on here?” Octavia broke the glare battle between Raven and Clarke.

“Clarke's got a–“ Raven started but was shut up when Clarke covered her mouth. When she was sure Raven wouldn't speak again, she withdrew her hand.

“crush on–“, and the hand was back.

“Flannel Ponytail.” Monty finished for Raven.

“Monty what the fuck? How does he–" Clarke narrowed her eyes and slowly, dangerously slow, turned to her best friend. “Raven?”

Raven grinned abashedly. “I might have mentioned that you talk about her a lot.” Clarke glared at her and then turned back to Monty who just shrugged.

“I didn't know it was a crush, I just put the pieces together right now.”

Unnecessary to mention that now the whole group wanted to know everything about who Flannel Ponytail was and why Clarke was crushing on her. It took Jasper a while to figure out that they were talking about the new girl who he thought had escaped a mental hospital and he blushed hard at the realization, but the group didn't notice or at least ignored it. Instead, they encouraged Clarke to “just text her!” and in the end, Clarke gave in but only if they continued the party and left her alone in the kitchen, which they happily, or not so happily, agreed on.

Clarke (9:18pm): Hey sunshine :) how's it going? What are you doing?

The reply came almost instantly.

Lexa :) (9:19pm): Hey Clarke, it's going okay. I just skyped with my sister and now I'm watching a documentary.

Clarke bit her lip to contain a laughter. That was so lexa.

Clarke (9:22pm): didn't know you had a sister, that's cool. What documentary are you watching?

Lexa :) (9:24pm): She's not really my sister, but she's more than she is not. It's complicated. I don't want to bore you with my evening. What are you doing?

Clarke (9:27pm): You could never bore me Lexi :) I'm having some friends over and they're super drunk so… I rather talk to you about your documentary.

Lexa :) (9:28pm): You should spend time with your friends, Clarke. I don't want to disturb you. (The documentary is about the Voynich manuscript.)

Clarke smiled. Lexa was such a nerd. The Voynich manuscript, she had heard about it but she honestly had no idea what it was, really, but she didn't mind. At least Lexa was talking to her although she was watching something, and that meant that the blonde didn't bother her as much as she had previously feared.

Clarke (9:33pm): Whatever that is, I'm sure it's interesting ;) hey just know that you're very welcome to join us here, in case voynich starts to bore the hell out of you :) x

Lexa :) (9:34pm): Thanks Clarke, but I'd rather stay here and let Voynich bore the hell out of me. 

Clarke smirked. To anyone else, Lexa's message sounded like she was trying to get rid of her at all costs, definitely not interested in seeing the blonde, but Clarke knew it probably was because Lexa wasn't too fond of parties, and maybe didn't like too many loud and drunk people at once, either. Also, that was simply the way Lexa spoke and texted. She sighed, nodding to no one in particular and sent a final message.

Clarke (9:38pm): That's a shame, but I get it :) Sleep well sunshine, and don't be a stranger! x

Lexa :) (9:38pm): Enjoy your evening! Good night, Clarke

 

***

 

Clarke groaned when she woke up, immediately feeling the party's aftermath. She would stop drinking one of these days, she was too old for that shit. She quickly checked her phone but to her disappointment, there were a few missed calls from her mother but no sign from Lexa. She had a feeling the brunette wasn't much of an excited texter but nevertheless she'd hoped to wake up to a message from the girl. I'm Clarke Smitten Griffin. Nice to meet you. She laughed at herself and got up.

She didn't quite remember when her friends had left but she knew it wasn't too long ago, and hadn't she had a bunch of homework waiting for her, she would still be fast asleep right now. But the homework were waiting, so she was awake. One of the best things about parties with her friends was that they all made sure to clean up a place before they left, no matter how drunk they were. Clarke smiled. They were friends to kill for, and to die for. Clarke snorted. Dramatic much, Griffin?

She shuffled to her coffee machine and pressed the button, inhaling deeply as the scent of fresh coffee filled the room a moment later.

With her coffee in one hand and her phone in the other, she went to her couch and sat down, took a sip and then unlocked her phone; She couldn't hold back any longer.

Clarke (9:02am): Good morning :)

 

Chapter Text

Monday couldn't come fast enough for Clarke. She had been in an incredibly good mood all Sunday after she and Lexa had exchanged some texts in the morning, and Clarke hadn't even minded doing her History homework, because that was the class she shared with Lexa, and it was on Monday, and that meant that Clarke would see Lexa on Monday and honestly, she couldn't wait.

When she entered the lecture hall, Lexa was already sitting in her usual spot and Clarke stopped walking for a moment to look at her. She looked tired, Clarke noticed, and thoughtful. Just before her staring could be considered creepy, she made her way to the brunette and cleared her throat.

Lexa looked up at her and her lips immediately curled up into a smile which quickly disappeared when she noticed that Clarke was holding something behind her back. The blonde smiled a little wider and revealed the flower she had hidden when she approached her. Lexa stared at the flower, then back at Clarke who encouragingly held the flower a bit closer to Lexa, patiently waiting for the girl to take it.

“For me?”

Clarke let out a small laugh. “Of course for you, silly.”

Lexa looked as if no one had ever given her something nice before, especially not a flower, and although it was just a simple gesture, Lexa looked at it as if it was the most precious thing she had ever seen.

“That's a tulip.” She finally stated.

“Yep.” Clarke confirmed proudly. “Do you know what it means?”

Lexa, looking back at the yellow flower in her hand, bit her lip for a second and then practically beamed at Clarke while she nodded, before she shyly answered, “Sunshine in your smile.”

“And that's what I think when I see your smile.” Clarke admitted with a slight blush, but she didn't want to overwhelm the girl with her feelings, she just wanted to do something nice for Lexa because the girl deserved the world and Clarke was more than happy to deliver.

Before they could say anything else, Mr. Brown cleared his throat while putting on his glasses. Clarke rolled her eyes, definitely annoyed that their moment was over before it had started and Lexa chuckled at her, and in an instant, Clarke's world was okay again.

Twenty minutes into the lecture and Clarke was close to dozing off, so she began to sketch random patterns and landscapes and then bit the inside of her cheek to not let out a laughter when she realized that it was Lexa's pencil she was holding. The brunette next to her didn't seem to notice though, she was way too busy taking notes of whatever Mr. Brown was reading about, so Clarke went back to drawing.

She was barely able to stop herself from drawing Lexa's eyes. Sitting right next to the brunette wasn't the best place to get lost in daydreaming about the girl, and Clarke was conscious enough to understand that. Instead, she scribbled a note and slid it over to Lexa.

Hey sunshine :)

Would you have lunch with me today? x

Clarke looked at Lexa, anxiously waiting for the reply. Either, Lexa would blush and smile and agree, or she would frown and deny. Both was highly likely. But Lexa neither blushed nor smiled nor frowned. She just wrote a reply – Clarke was again stunned by her neat and tidy handwriting – and slid it back to the blonde.

What about your friends?

Clarke smirked and waved it off, but Lexa looked a bit confused, so Clarke quickly scribbled another note.

I see them everyday, they won't mind if I don't have lunch with them today :)

Lexa read it and bit her lower lip, honestly considering the offer. Finally, she smiled and nodded, but not without a tiny blush that Clarke found incredibly adorable. Earth to Clarke. It's just a blush! … an adorable Lexa blush. Damnit.

 

***

 

“So where do you usually eat lunch?” Clarke asked, finally getting out the question that had been bugging her for several weeks, while grabbing a coke. They were standing at the service counter with their meal trays, Clarke had her meal ready and was waiting for Lexa to mix her salad. Clarke noticed the tensing shoulders of the girl and shot her a warm smile when their eyes met.

“At the bleachers near the soccer field.” The brunette answered and Clarke's stomach dropped at that. The bleachers were empty most of the time, except for actual matches. She felt the urge again to pull the girl into a hug and never let her go, willing to do everything and anything to protect her from the world that kept shutting her out.

“Okay,” she said and encouragingly led the way when Lexa was ready.

“Clarke, you really don't have to keep me company. It's not really entertaining there and I know I don't talk much. You can go to your friends if you want.” Lexa stated again but Clarke was already on her way and looked back and shook her head, reassuring Lexa it was okay and that this was what she wanted.

When they sat down, Clarke took a moment to look around. She had never really realized how beautiful it was there. The grass was the greenest green, and contrary to her memory, the bleachers were clean, not even an old cup or a donut wrap were anywhere to be seen.

“It's nice here.”

Lexa looked up from her tray, a hint of disbelief crossing her eyes. “It's quiet and… lonely.”

Clarke shrugged and smiled. “I don't mind.”

They started eating and Clarke glanced at the girl next to her, amused at how Lexa ate the salad but shoved the tomatoes to the side.

“Don't like them?” She said, pointing at the red fruits.

Lexa blushed and shook her head. “No, I sort um… I guess I like them best so I save them.”

Clarke nodded. Girl, you're killing me with your cuteness. Anyone else would have found Lexa's eating order odd but Clarke enjoyed it. Not that she would make fun of it, but she couldn't deny she found it amusing, in a good way. However, Lexa's previous slip hadn't gone unnoticed by her. 

They fell silent again. After several moments, Lexa slowly stopped eating and Clarke raised her head to see what the girl was looking at that had her pause eating the tomatoes. And then, she noticed the butterflies in her stomach. Lexa was looking at her flower and was so captured that she had actually forgotten she was eating.

“It's so beautiful.” Lexa almost whispered and before Clarke could stop herself, she blurted out a response.

“So are you.”

Clarke would have expected everything. A blush, a lowered head, fiddling with the hem of her shirt, but Lexa did none of the above. She just turned to Clarke and smiled her beautiful wide smile. … Okay, maybe she was blushing hard and maybe she also lowered her head a bit. That movement made a lose strand of hair fall in her face and Clarke's fingers itched to tuck it back behind those cute tiny ears. Fuck it, she decided, and reached out. And as if the day hadn't held enough surprises for the blonde already, Lexa didn't back away. With a soft brush over the girl's ear, Clarke tucked the stray hair away and drew her hand back, shot another warm smile at Lexa and went back to eating.

Lexa however was stunned and kept looking at Clarke.

“Penny for your thoughts?” Clarke said after a moment, shooting out another burning question.

Lexa averted her gaze in record time and poked one of the tomato pieces, pausing to consider her words. “You're nice.”

“You deserve it.”

For the rest of the day, Clarke felt lighter than she ever had. She had given Lexa a flower, which she had loved. She had touched Lexa – her fingertips still tingled from the touch–, and it had been okay. Lexa had said she liked her. Well, kinda. And she hadn't seemed uncomfortable, at all. Today was a good day.

 

Chapter Text

“I'm just saying you could spend a little more time with your friends and a little less time with flannel ponytail.” Octavia tried to explain.

“Her name is Lexa.”

“…and a little less time with Lexa.” Octavia corrected herself, absolutely aware of the glare that Raven shot her.

“Leave her alone, O. She likes her. Let her spend time with the girl she likes.”

Octavia rolled her eyes in a final attempt of expressing her opinion, but even Octavia had to admit that she had never seen the blonde that happy. And she was genuinely happy for Clarke, too. She simply missed her friend and unlike Raven, Octavia had a hard time accepting the change.

“When do we get to meet her though? You tell us so much about her everyday and yet she's never with you.” Octavia offered, trying to sooth the situation a little.

“She doesn't really like…” Clarke started but paused. She didn't know if Lexa didn't like to be around a whole bunch of people at the same time in general, especially speaking of Clarke's friends, but she had the feeling it would at least overwhelm Lexa. “She's just really shy.” She said instead.

“Okay I respect that. But try to get her spend some time with at least Raven and I”, Octavia tried again, “maybe that's a compromise?”

Clarke nodded. “I'll try.”

She really wanted Lexa to meet her friends, and she knew they would treat her nicely, not bug or poke at her like they did with each other. But before that happened, or before she asked her, she had to get to know the quiet girl a bit better. Clarke, again, realized how little she actually knew about her. She didn't know about her family, except for the sister that wasn't her sister, at least not really, but somehow she was anyway. She also didn't know about Lexa's favorite music or movies, and she didn't know why she was so quiet and shy and always had a hint of sadness in her eyes. She went through the list in her head of questions that she wanted to ask the brunette, but after a minute or two, she gave up trying to remember them all. She simply wanted to know everything about her.

Clarke (3:11pm): Hey sunshine :) Fancy a hot chocolate after classes? x

Lexa (3:13pm): I would love that, but I have training and I don't like to skip it.

Clarke (3:14pm): That's totally fine, don't worry! :) What kind of training?

Lexa (3:16pm): Aikido

Clarke almost dropped her phone. She had expected anything but not for Lexa to do martial arts. To say she was intrigued was an understatement. She considered her answer for a moment, but then decided to just go for it.

Clarke (3:20pm): Can I watch?

 

***

 

“Aikido is basically a mixture of ancient Japanese fighting styles, quite brutal ones actually. But nowadays it's more like an art. It's not even about winning, really.”

“What's the point then?” Clarke laughed.

Lexa smirked. “To convince your opponent that their attacks are stupid.”

“Deep shit. How do you do it?”

Lexa tilted her head to the side for a moment, thinking of an explanation. “Aikido techniques consist of entering and turning movements that redirect the momentum of an opponent's attack, and a throw or joint lock that terminates the technique.”

Clarke narrowed her eyes, even more confused than before. “Ah.”

With a soft giggle, Lexa grabbed her gym bag. “It's really difficult to explain. It makes sense when you watch it. You'll see.”

While Lexa changed into her training clothes, Clarke sat down in the gym. Except for mats covering the ground, there wasn't really much else. In the entrance hall, she had seen some pictures on the walls that showed tons of different martial arts.

The blonde was excited to see what made Lexa's eyes twinkle when she spoke about it, but as soon as the first people entered the room, she gulped. The martial art students looked, well, scary, to say the least. Muscles, mohawks and tattoos everywhere. She had never seen so many athletic bodies with so well defined muscles at once, and she couldn't help but think that Lexa would look a little out of place. Sooner than later, Clarke found out that her assumption couldn't have been more wrong. When Lexa finally entered the room, immediately shooting her a smile and a small wave when she saw the blonde, Clarke gulped again and she was embarrassed to admit that she also had to cross her legs.

The brunette was wearing black sweatpants and a tight white tank top that left nothing to imagination, and Clarke wasn't sure whether her mouth watered or went completely dry at the sight of toned arms (Oh God, that biceps. And triceps. Oh God.) and firm abs clearly visible under the tight top. Her hair was up in a high ponytail again, and when Lexa sat down on a mat in front of Clarke, she could finally see the tattoo on the back of her neck. It looked like a broken infinity sign. But there was another one right beneath it peaking out. It seemed to be a larger one, and Clarke gulped again when Lexa slightly shifted, causing her back muscles to play around the tattoo. She also had some kind of a tribal tattoo on her right arm. Tattoos, muscles and a beautiful woman – Clarke was a goner. But what else was new?

A dark–skinned woman entered the room and the students, sitting in a circle, fell silent, as she approached them. She bowed before them, and then began her greeting and finally, her eyes landed on Clarke, who awkwardly waved back. The instructor didn't bother about an introduction, and went over to separating the students into training pairs. Lexa ended up with Tristan, a fierce looking man, and Clarke wouldn't have been surprised if he was just there to break some bones.

Before she could jump up and rescue Lexa though, the training session had started and before Clarke could grasp what was happening, Tristan was on the ground, Lexa standing above him. Clarke blinked in shock. What the hell had just happened? They had moved so fast that she couldn't even see their motions. Her heart warmed when Lexa held out her hand, offering him to help him get back on his feet, which he gladly accepted. The blonde looked around but didn't see that gesture among the other pairs, and her heart felt like it would explode anytime now. Lexa actually helped her opponent get up.

The training went on, and although Tristan landed a few bad attacks on Lexa, they seemed to have an all gentle and very friendly connection. Clarke not once spotted anger in their eyes, only warmth and joy. It didn't go unnoticed by her either, how the hint of sadness that usually covered the brunette's eyes completely disappeared the minute the training started.

So that was one of the things that made Lexa happy, Clarke added to her mental list.

 

***

 

“Did you like it?” Lexa asked excitedly as she bounced towards Clarke after the training, her ponytail swinging with every step.

“Did I– like it?” Clarke blinked in disbelief. She was still captured by what she just had witnessed and saying she liked it was the understatement of the century, and before she realized how that must've sounded, she saw how Lexa's face fell.

“No! I mean I– let me just find the right words. I find that a bit hard right now. I– God, I just loved it. I don't think there's a better word to describe how amazing I thought it was!” Clarke chattered away, well aware of how Lexa's eyes lit up while her lips curled into the wide smile that Clarke loved so much.

“Really?”

“Absolutely!”

Lexa slightly blushed and started fiddling with the hem of her shirt again. Clarke still didn't understand how the extremely shy person in front of her, that blushed at literally every nice thing she said, was the same person that basically just kicked a giant's ass in such a badass way a minute ago.

“Glad you liked it. I um–“, Lexa started and pointed to the shower room, indicating she would like to freshen up and change.

Clarke shook her head to sort her thoughts, still having difficulties to come back to reality. It didn't exactly help either that Lexa just told her she'd be naked in a minute. She cleared her throat. “Of course, take your time. I'll wait here, okay?”

The brunette happily nodded and bounced off, leaving a flustered Clarke behind.

 

Chapter Text

Clarke liked Lexa. Clarke wanted to know everything about Lexa. Clarke didn't like to admit it, but she was crazy about Lexa, so Clarke wanted to spend every minute with Lexa. And Clarke had to do something about it.

It was Friday, she was sitting in her art history class, and she was bored to death, so she quietly sighed in relief when she saw the screen of her phone light up, and she couldn't help the big smile that her lips instantly formed when she saw who the text was from.

Lexa (4:19pm): Hey Clarke. I wanted to thank you for watching the training. It means a lot to me and I'm glad you liked it. I have a competition on Sunday and I was wondering whether you would like to see it?

Clarke's heart was pounding in her chest. 

Clarke (4:20pm): Hey sunshine :) I was just thinking about you. Hope you're doing well! And I'd love to see it!! x

Lexa (4:22pm): Really?

Clarke (4:22pm): Of course, silly :) Hey are you up for a muffin later? It's on me ;)

Lexa (4:23pm): I'd like that. But this time, they are on me!

Clarke (4:24pm): Fine by me :P 5:30 at the café?

Lexa (4:25pm): Okay

Clarke (4:26pm): Okay :)

Clarke (4:32pm): Looking forward to seeing you :)

Lexa (4:32pm): Me too

That was all it took to make Clarke beam like an idiot. Lexa was looking forward to seeing her, too. Could the day get any better?

 

***

 

It could, Clarke thought as she hurried to meet the brunette. Lexa was already waiting for Clarke in front of the café, and much to the blonde's dismay, the girl was sporting a deep frown.

“Hey Lex, frowning gives you wrinkles.” She joked but Lexa's face didn't soften.

“You're late.”

“I'm sorry, the professor wanted to talk to me about an assignment and then I met Rae and she just wouldn't let me go and–“, Clarke explained, but Lexa still looked unhappy and Clarke's heart broke at the sight of the girl, head lowered and her fingers nervously playing with the strap of her bag. She ducked her head, waiting for Lexa's eyes to meet her own. When they finally did, she spoke again. “I'm sorry, okay? Please don't be upset. It won't happen again, I promise.”

“Don't make a promise you cannot keep, Clarke.”

Now it was Clarke's turn to frown. She had been positive Lexa would be happy to see her, or at least not be too serious, but she had screwed up big time. She was fifteen minutes late, and she was sorry and she couldn't feel worse, but seeing the brunette so sad and upset literally broke her heart. The worst thing was that she didn't feel like there was anything she could say or do to make the girl feel better again anytime soon. However, it was an extreme reaction to only fifteen minutes. Sure, Clarke could have sent her a text but she hadn't expected Lexa to react like… that.

“Let's go inside and get some muffins, okay?”

The brunette hesitated for a moment but then nodded. “Thanks,” she almost whispered when Clarke opened the door for her, and then slipped inside. They chose their usual table, or rather Lexa's usual table, and Clarke went to get them their unhealthy dose of sugar.

“Here,” Clarke smiled as she placed the muffin and a cup of hot chocolate in front of the girl who raised her head and thanked her before quickly dropping her gaze back to her muffin. Clarke sighed.

“Lexa, look. I'm really sorry, okay? Would you like to tell me what's bothering you?”

The brunette shook her head, causing Clarke to furrow her brows. “Why not?”

“I don't want to annoy or upset you.”

Clarke's muscles relaxed immediately. “Lexa,” she said softly, “you won't annoy or upset me.”

The brunette began to fiddle with the paper wrap of the muffin, slowly peeling it off, apparently trying to phrase her thoughts. Clarke waited patiently, sipping her coffee. Some long moments later, the brunette spoke, her gaze still trained on the muffin in front of her.

“It's just that… I don't like when people are late, at least not when they don't tell me about it. It's–“, she paused when small tears started watering her eyes, and Clarke wanted nothing more than to reach out and gently wipe them away, but she stopped herself and waited for Lexa to continue, “it's stupid because it happens all the time, but I– I can't help it. It upsets me. I don't like it.”

“Hey, it's okay. It's not stupid.” Clarke wanted so desperately to take her hand, or hug her, but she knew that Lexa wasn't too fond of touches in general and would probably freak out if she hugged her right now because she was still upset, and Clarke didn't think this would change so soon. Had she fucked up for good? She refused to believe that. She gave Lexa a minute to calm down a bit and sort her thoughts, until she spoke again.

“Does it happen often?”

Lexa opened her mouth, then closed it again and shot her a confused glance. “What do you mean?”

“That you get upset about things like this?”

The brunette tilted her head to the side and bit her lower lip, something that Clarke would've found adorable in any other situation, but right now she didn't want to focus on that detail. She wanted to focus on Lexa. The girl finally shook her head.

“No, I usually don't meet with people, so they can't be late.”

Clarke's lips formed a small smile. “No, I meant in general. Do small things bug you a lot?”

“This wasn't a small thing.” Lexa frowned.

“No, that's not what I…” Clarke slowly released a breath and softened her voice a bit, “that's not what I meant.”

It took Lexa a moment to think about what Clarke had said and asked, and to come up with a proper answer. “I like when things happen as I think they will happen. Spontaneous changes that I cannot predict… irritate me.”

Clarke decided to leave it at that. “Then I'll do my best to not let that happen again, I promise. I promise I'll do my best. Okay?” She tried again and prayed to the Gods that Lexa would finally stop frowning and give her that smile that Clarke loved so much. The smile didn't happen but at least Lexa's forehead smoothed out a bit. That was a start.

They stayed for another while until Lexa had to go. Clarke walked her to her room and witnessed again how Lexa hesitated for a moment before unlocking the door, and she noticed the relief that washed over the brunette's face when she saw that her roommate wasn't there. Clarke would have to bring that up, soon.

 

***

 

“She basically just freaked out because I was late. And I– God I'm such an idiot, Rae. There was nothing I could do to calm her down.” Clarke huffed in frustration as she threw herself on the couch, looking at Raven who was sitting on the other side of her beloved piece of furniture with her laptop in her lap.

“What happened then? What did you guys talk about?”

“Just about… I asked her if that happens often, the freaking out and she didn't know what I meant at first but then said since she doesn't really meet people, they can't freak her out by being late and I–“ Clarke paused for a moment to see if Raven was paying attention at all, because she occasionally typed some things into her laptop.

“I'm listening, go on.”

“Okay. And then I said that's not what I meant and she said that she… that when something spontaneously changes, it's an irritation, like major irritation for her and now that I think about it, there are so many other things, like she always fiddles with something and sorts her food and eats it in a particular order, which is cute though, and when she's–“

“Asperger's”, Raven mumbled.

“… what?”

Raven raised her head and looked at Clarke.

“I just googled the symptoms. It sounds like she has Asperger's.”

 

Chapter Text

“Well shit.”

“Clarke, calm down.”

“I had no idea. I'm such an idiot! I should've known, I should've…” Clarke stopped her rambling when she felt tears shooting up into her eyes.

“Clarke, honey listen,” Raven scooted closer and wrapped an arm around the blonde's shoulders, “you had no idea because you couldn't know.”

“I still should have– still.” She let out a shaky breath. “What do I do now, Rae?”

“Nothing.”

“What do you mean ‘nothing’?”

“Clarke, look. Even if you know, it doesn't mean anything changes. She hasn't told you yet, and she probably has her reasons. So you wanna hear my opinion on what to do now?”

Clarke sniffled, wiped some tears away with her sleeve and nodded.

“You text her, you meet her – next time just be on time –“, Raven gently nudged her at that and shot her an encouraging smile, “you take that girl out for dinner, and you just continue like before I googled. Nothin' has changed and nothing will change, and when she's ready, I'm sure she will tell you. Got it?”

Clarke wiped away some more tears and snuggled into Raven's side. “I love you, Rae.”

“Love you too, blondie.”

 

***

 

It was Saturday morning and Clarke felt more miserable than she had in a long time. She wasn't sure if she had managed to doze off at all the previous night, she remembered checking the clock every twenty minutes, until she gave up at half past five. The scent of fresh coffee calmed her down, at least a bit, but she was still tired and much more than that, she was angry at herself. She wanted to reach out to Lexa after the incident the day before but she didn't want to bother the girl, either.

Although Lexa had assured her that it was okay, when they were standing in front of the brunette's door, Clarke still wasn't so sure. She grabbed her phone and checked the time, 5:42am, and threw it on the couch. A moment later, she released a long breath and went to pick it up again. She had to text Lexa and say something. Anything. She slumped down on the couch, unlocked her phone and opened the chat with Lexa. Her thumb hovered over the screen for several seconds, until she began typing. With a final sigh, she hit send.

Clarke (5:49am): Hey Lexi. I know you said it's fine, but I wanted to say I'm really really sorry about yesterday. I didn't know it would upset you so much, and if I could change what happened – believe me, I would! I don't like to see you sad. You're such an amazing person and if I could, I would give you all the good things this world has to offer, because you deserve them. Please tell me if there's a way to make it up to you again, because I know I won't be able to sleep, like ever again, knowing that you're angry at me.

As Clarke re–read her text, she winced at her words; She sounded like a sappy chicken. She had poured all her emotions out and basically told Lexa she lo– liked her. I'm such an idiot, she cursed herself. Now, she could only hope that what she had read about Asperger's applied to Lexa. Griff, what the fuck. You can't possibly wish for her to be like that. Oh what the fuck. That's who she is, stop pretending she's disabled or mental or something. She's not! She's Lexa!

When her phone buzzed a few minutes later, she dreaded looking at the screen, but she had to know what the brunette had to say.

Lexa (5:55am): Please don't be sad, Clarke. I'm not angry anymore.

Clarke sighed. This was too easy. Then again, if Lexa really was on the spectrum, this could be just what she meant. She knew some people with Asperger's didn't shy away from speaking the truth; In fact, they didn't not shy away, they simply didn't lie. And although most people considered this to be their weakness because it could get them in trouble, Clarke considered it to be their strength.

Clarke (5:57am): Thank you. Really! … can I still watch your competition tomorrow? plus: why are you up at such an unholy time? On a Saturday?! ;)

Lexa (6:01am): Yes, of course you can. I'd like that. And I'm up because I like to get up early. My morning workout is important to me and if I don't get up early enough, I don't have time for it.

Clarke smiled. Lexa was back. And with the revelation about why the girl was quiet and shy and… who she was, Clarke paid even more attention to every little detail and suddenly everything made sense. Routines. Lexa might have every minute of her life planned. That also meant that Lexa would be at the café at noon, because she had mentioned that once.

 

***

 

Clarke entered the small café and wasn't surprised to see Lexa sitting at her usual table. She carefully approached the brunette not to startle her, and quietly cleared her throat to make her presence known, but Lexa slightly jumped nonetheless.

“Hey,” the girl's lips curled up into a smile and Clarke felt her pulse speed up at the sight, but instead of answering, she kneeled down next to Lexa, whose expression changed from happy to confused in an instant. Clarke cleared her throat again. 

“Lexa,” she said in a serious tone, “will you be my best friend?”

Lexa knitted her eyebrows, a reaction that Clarke had expected. “I… I don't know what that means.”

Clarke smiled. So lexa. “That basically means nothing changes.”

“Why do you want me to be your best friend then?” Lexa asked, another attempt of understanding what Clarke was actually trying to say or ask.

The blonde shook her head but smiled. “Because I– Lexa don't be so difficult. Just say yes!”

“Yes.”

“Thank you.” Clarke laughed and finally got up. “Great. Now that that's settled, I was just gonna get a coffee, want anything?”

It didn't take Lexa long to come up with an answer. “A hot chocolate?”

“Is that a question?”

“No?” Lexa replied, again confused about Clarke's question.

Clarke laughed. “Is that a question?”

Lexa huffed and opened her mouth to say something else, probably to make clear that she wasn't asking questions, but Clarke waved her off with a grin, well aware of how Lexa sometimes tended to take things too seriously. “Don't worry, I'm kidding. Hot chocolate it is, then. I'll be right back, don't run away!” She said with a wink while grabbing her purse.

“I won't–“ Lexa started but was cut off by Clarke.

“I know,” the blonde said with a soft smile and left, but her smile slightly faded after ordering their drinks, because she knew what best friends meant. She had just willingly friendzoned herself.

 

***

 

Sunday came and with it, Lexa's Aikido competition, and Clarke did everything a best friend was supposed to do; She picked Lexa up from her dorm, she gave her a stuffed ladybug lucky charm, she cheered for her and she beamed when Lexa won. She wanted nothing more than to hug the shy girl who had, again, badassed her way through the competition and kicked some major ass, but she was aware of their boundaries, now more than ever, being “best friends” and nothing more.

“I won!” Lexa squeaked when she approached Clarke, who had been sitting on a bench near the competition center, patiently waiting for Lexa to get changed, and now quickly got up.

“I know, I saw it! Congrats, sunshine!” Clarke replied with a huge smile on her face. But before she knew what was happening, Lexa threw her arms around Clarke's neck and pulled her into a tight hug. Much to Clarke's dismay it only lasted a second before Lexa let go again, sporting a major blush.

“I didn't– I'm sorry, I–“, Lexa stumbled over her words and stopped when Clarke let out a laugh while taking Lexa's hand.

“Don't apologize. Don't ever apologize for hugging me.” She said reassuringly with a softer voice, her grin slightly fading because this was important. She wanted to make sure Lexa knew that it was okay, and if she ever needed physical contact, Clarke would be more than happy to deliver. She waited for a moment for Lexa to take in the new information, and when the brunette nodded, Clarke opened her arms.

“Wanna try again?” She asked softly and Lexa bit her lip, contemplating her options, until, to Clarke's relief, she nodded and let Clarke pull her into her arms again.

 

Chapter Text

After the competition, Clarke dropped Lexa off at her dorm and went back home, still feeling the warmth that had spread through her entire body when they shared an embrace that lasted longer than friendship hugs usually did, at least that's what Clarke had thought.

She was glad that Lexa had initiated the contact, and she was even happier that Lexa hadn't backed away from her offer, instead had accepted the second embrace as well.

Now Clarke was sitting on her couch, mindlessly zapping through the TV channels but nothing peaked her interest. Or maybe she was just too distracted by the thought of Lexa and her twinkling eyes when she won the competition. The blonde sighed and unlocked her phone, her thumb hovering over the screen until she typed in a message.

Clarke (9:03pm): Hey sunshine :) Just wanted to tell you how proud I am of you! You kicked some ass out there! ;) x

The reply came almost instantly.

Lexa (9:04pm): That's not what I did. It's a sport.

Clarke (9:05pm): I just meant that I really enjoyed it and you were fantastic :) how's your evening going?

She waited for a moment until she saw the three dots that indicated that Lexa was typing, but after a while, they disappeared. Clarke's smile faded a little. Had she said something wrong? The dots appeared again, and Clarke felt a hint of relief, until Lexa stopped typing once again. A few minutes passed until the blonde finally received a reply.

Lexa (9:13pm): That's a complicated question.

Clarke frowned. That's not what she had expected. She knew that Lexa always carefully considered her words, but she usually said what she wanted to say.

Clarke (9:15pm): Did something happen?

Lexa (9:16pm): I had a fight with my roommate.

The blonde sighed. She still hadn't brought up the roommate issue and she wasn't sure if now was the right time, but she couldn't let Lexa suffer alone, especially because she didn't know what had happened or how bad it had been, or still was.

Clarke (9:18pm): Do you want me to come over? x

Lexa (9:18pm): Can we meet somewhere else?

 

***

 

They agreed on meeting at Clarke's place and the blonde was barely able to finish storing her art supplies away and throwing her laundry into the bathtub in a miserable attempt to make her apartment somewhat presentable, before Lexa knocked on her door. It was so soft and quiet that Clarke almost missed it. Almost.

She hurried to the door and quickly opened it with a wide smile, which instantly disappeared when she saw Lexa. The brunette was fiddling with the hem of her oversized black hoodie and had her head lowered, her gaze directed to her shoes. Clarke's shoulders dropped and she ducked her head to see Lexa's face. When their eyes met, Clarke's heart broke. The girl's eyes were red and swollen, she obviously had been crying.

“Hey…” Clarke said softly and held out her hand, patiently waiting for Lexa to take it, which she did. Clarke gently led her inside and towards her couch. She quickly made her way to the kitchen to get the hot chocolate she had prepared for Lexa and went back. The brunette relaxed a bit when Clarke handed her the mug and she carefully took a small sip while Clarke sat down next to her.

“Do you want to talk about it?” The blonde asked quietly, not wanting to push the girl. Lexa bit her lower lip but then shook her head, stopped, and then hesitantly nodded, and then shook her head again. Clarke would have smiled at Lexa's adorableness, but it hurt to see Lexa like this. She waited for a moment and then took the girl's hand, her thumb gently stroking over soft skin.

“I…” Lexa began but paused and squeezed her eyes shut a few times, looked at Clarke and then quickly lowered her gaze to the blonde's thumb that was still caressing the back of her hand in comforting patterns.

“I know that I'm not like others. I mean, I'm… I'm different, in a bad way, and I know that people don't like me,” she started again and Clarke felt her chest clench at the words but she remained silent, not wanting to interrupt Lexa when she actually, finally, opened up a bit.

“I was five when the doctors– when I was diagnosed with an… a disorder, it's…” she cleared her throat, “I'm an Asperger. It's… that's why I'm so weird, that's why I get upset about the smallest things, and I need my routines and I… people always think I'm a freak and it's okay and I've learned to accept it because that's what I am.” Lexa explained quietly and Clarke listened to her but had a hard time fighting the tears that threatened to come up. The way Lexa spoke about herself made her angry, the thought of Lexa seeing herself as a freak broke her heart.

“I'm not good with social interactions, I often don't pick up on jokes and I know that. It's not easy for me to talk to people, and it's fine because most of them leave me alone but my roommate… she always bugs me and disturbs my routines and… she just doesn't leave me alone.”

“Does she know?” Clarke asked softly and Lexa shook her head.

“No… I don't want to– I can't tell her. I can't talk to her.”

Clarke nodded. She waited for Lexa to say something else but when the girl remained silent, Clarke took a deep breath and gently cupped the brunette's cheek, causing her to look at her.

“Lexa.” Clarke started and took a second to make sure she had Lexa's full attention. “You're a wonderful person. You're smart and you're beautiful and you're so, so kind. And you're not a freak.” Clarke said calmly. Lexa opened her mouth, ready to protest, but Clarke quickly continued, “you're not a freak. You're wonderful the way you are, and it hurts that you don't see it. I wish you could see yourself the way I see you.”

Clarke paused to gently wipe a warm tear away with her thumb, “You're okay just the way you are. Hell, you're great the way you are! I don't know why anyone would not appreciate you, let alone treat you any less than you deserve. God, Lexa…” the blonde stopped to suck in a shaky breath, still fighting her own tears. She knew if she spoke again, she wouldn't be able to hold them in, so instead she tucked a loose strand behind Lexa's ear.

A moment passed before Lexa spoke. “That's nice of you to say, Clarke, but it's not true. People are right when they say I'm weird, because that's what I–“

“Lexa.” Clarke interrupted her. “Screw them. Screw everyone who thinks poorly of you, they can go to hell.”

“But they are–“

“They are wrong.” Clarke interrupted her again, feeling anger boil up inside of her. She didn't know what to do, or how to make Lexa understand that she was perfect the way she was. She didn't know how to tell her… what she thought, so instead she opened her arms and motioned for Lexa to accept the hug, which the brunette gladly did. They remained silent for a long while, and Clarke calmed down when she felt Lexa more and more relax into the embrace.

Clarke didn't know how long they stayed like this, Lexa curled up into her side, and Clarke absentmindedly drawing random patterns on the brunette's arm, until Lexa shifted a little and spoke.

“Can I–“ she started but stopped. The blonde lowered her head to look at her and waited for a moment, then gently nudged her. “Hm?”

“No, it's stupid. Forget it.”

Clarke let out a soft huff. “Lexa… what did you want to ask?”

“I just… could I stay here tonight?”

 

Chapter Text

“Lexa?” Clarke asked softly. They had decided to go to bed shortly after Lexa had asked to stay for the night, which Clarke had happily agreed on. She was glad and thankful that Lexa had opened up to her, and that she had asked for Clarke's company. She had let Lexa go through her evening routine and she had smiled when Lexa had thanked her, over and over again, for giving her the freedom and patience she needed, unlike her roommate. Now they were lying in Clarke's bed, both on their backs, looking up at the ceiling.

“Yes?” Lexa asked back, and Clarke's heart skipped a beat. Hurt was still evident in the girl's voice, but at the same time, it was so, so soft.

Clarke rolled onto her side to look at Lexa. “Have you thought about moving?”

"Why moving?"

"I mean… moving out of your dorm."

The brunette's shoulders slightly tensed before she nodded, but she didn't say anything. Clarke waited for a bit and when Lexa remained silent, she spoke again.

“And what's your opinion about it?”

Lexa sighed and scratched her nose. “I don't think it makes much sense. People usually react and behave the same, so there's a high possibility of my next roommate being not any different… And I'm not too fond of changes. I'd rather just go with what I'm used to.”

Clarke considered Lexa's words for a moment, before a smile spread across her face. “I have a friend, Raven, she's really cool and she has a spare room. What if you move in with her?”

Now it was Lexa's turn to roll over, so that she was facing Clarke, too. “I don't know, Clarke… what if she finds out and thinks I'm a freak, too?”

Clarke's smile widened. “She won't think that, I promise. She's really chill. Maybe you could meet her? I know that she wants to meet you for sure!”

Lexa furrowed her brows. “How do you know that?”

Clarke shifted a little and cleared her throat. “Well, I might have, maybe, told her a bit about you. A huge bit. Kinda. And she said she wants to meet you.”

“Really?”

“Really.”

Lexa's forehead smoothed out a bit. “Perhaps it's worth a try.”

They didn't say anything after that, they just looked at each other for a long while. Well, Clarke looked at Lexa who had busied herself with fumbling with the seam of her blanket. Before she could stop herself, Clarke reached out and gently tucked a strand behind the girl's ear.

“You're so beautiful.” She whispered, causing Lexa to meet her eyes for a second before the brunette quickly dropped her gaze back to her hands.

“You're beautiful too, Clarke.”

 

***

 

Over the next few days, Clarke found herself drowning in school work and no matter what she tried, there was just no time to meet her favorite shy girl. And if she hadn't been stressed and frustrated enough already, her mother kept inviting her over for dinner. Thanksgiving was just around the corner as well, just another reason for Abby to insist on seeing her daughter.

It was Friday afternoon and Clarke struggled to keep her eyes open during her Art History class. She sent an apologetic smile to her professor when an exaggerated yawn escaped her, causing the majority of students in the lecture hall to pause writing to look at her. She slumped deeper in her chair and pulled out her phone.

Raven and Octavia had been bugging her for a week now, stating they had to meet Lexa; The girl that had their best friend smiling like an idiot, even during math homework.

Clarke (4:31pm): Hey Lex :) I was wondering if you'd like to come over later? Raven and Octavia will be there, no one else. Don't worry, just girls' night with lots of pizza and weird conversations. ;)

She knew Lexa had classes right now as well, animal hematological… something, so she was rather surprised to feel her phone buzz a minute later. With a quickened heart rate, she pulled out her phone.

Lexa :) (4:32pm): Are you sure they'll be okay with that? I don't want to intrude.

Clarke grinned.

Clarke (4:34pm): Those two idiots are *dying* (not literally!) to meet you! 8pm my place! I don't accept excuses! ;)

Lexa :) (4:34pm): 8pm your place it is then.

Clarke (4:35pm): Cool! Looking forward to seeing you again :)

Clarke (4:41pm): I've missed you

Lexa :) (4:42pm): I've missed you, too.

 

***

 

“Clarke!”

The blonde jumped from her couch at the loud banging on her door from Raven and Octavia.

Claaarrrke! Open the damn door! Raven needs to pee, she's dying!” Octavia yelled from outside while Clarke ran to her door, more worried about her neighbors calling the police than about the dying Raven in front of her apartment.

“Jesus guys, you almost gave me a heart attack!” She groaned and stepped aside so her friends could enter.

“Yeah and I almost died!” Raven exclaimed while running to the bathroom.

Clarke let out a long groan. “Doesn't she have her own toilet?”

Octavia shot her an apologetic smile and unpacked her backpack, revealing bottle after bottle of hard liquor.

“She decided a beer for the way was a good idea, and who am I to deny her that wish. She's a grown up person… at least I thought so, until I realized that this one beer was actually three.” The short girl laughed and finally dropped down on Clarke's couch, the blonde following suit, handing Octavia a beer before opening one for herself. They drank in silence until Raven appeared, visibly relieved.

“I love you.”

“You love my bathroom.”

“True, who am I kidding.” Raven grinned and took Clarke's beer for a sip, obviously not intending to give it back any time soon. “So…” she drawled, “we're finally gonna meet your girl, huh?” She wiggled her eyebrows.

“She's not my girl, Rae.” Clarke defended Lexa and herself, but Raven didn't believe her in the slightest and took another sip.

“Whatever helps you sleep, princess.”

Before Clarke could protest, there was a knock on the door. She quickly got up but paused to look at Raven, who looked back at her with her most innocent face. Clarke pointed two V–sign fingers at her narrowed eyes, then at Raven's in an I'm watching you! gesture, before turning around to open the door for Lexa. And she missed Raven's smug grin.

 

 

Chapter Text

“Hey!” Clarke greeted her favorite shy girl with a huge smile. “Glad you could make it!”

She took a moment to study Lexa. She was wearing dark grey skinny jeans, black converse high tops and a bordeaux colored hoodie. And she looked nervous, Clarke immediately noticed. Her eyes kept wandering between Clarke and her apartment behind her, and she shifted her weight once. The blonde held out her hand with a smile and beamed when Lexa accepted it.

“Raven and O are already inside,” Clarke explained and noticed the flash of panic in the brunette's eyes, “they won't bite.” She whispered with a grin and squeezed Lexa's soft hand reassuringly.

She led Lexa into the living room where Octavia and Raven already looked at them curiously. Them, or their still intertwined hands. Clarke noticed that the girls had switched from the couch to the two kitchen chairs she had carried to the living room earlier, so that she and Lexa could sit on the couch, and she quickly shot them both a thankful smile.

“Lexa, this is Raven,” Clarke started introducing them.

“Clarke has told us a lot about you, it's a pleasure to finally meet you!” Raven said with a friendly smile and waved at Lexa, well aware that she wasn't too fond of touches. Lexa waved back and Clarke sighed in relief when she noticed that the girl's tensed shoulders already relaxed a little.

“And this is Octavia,” she finished.

“Just O is fine!” Octavia said, copying Raven's earlier behavior of keeping a safe distance, and chose to wave as well. Lexa's lips curled up into a tiny smile and she nodded.

The two girls sat down on the couch and Clarke poured Lexa a coke since she didn't drink alcohol. She pulled out her phone and quickly typed in a message. A few seconds later, Raven's phone buzzed.

Clarke (8:06pm): Please behave Rae, please!! Lexa means a lot to me and whatever you do, please please please don't scare her away! I don't care if you embarrass me or whatever, just… don't tease or bug her!

Clarke (8:07pm): Please Raven

Raven (8:07pm): chill, blondie!

Clarke had no choice but to trust Raven. Her best friend could be a handful, she knew that. But she also knew that Raven was one of the good guys, who would never harm anyone, especially not on purpose.

They chatted for a while, and Clarke kept checking on Lexa, but the girl seemed to be okay so far. Maybe a bit overwhelmed, and Clarke knew this was because her friends were so welcoming and friendly with her, and again, she thanked the Gods to have people like them in her life. They really made the situation so much easier.

“So… Lexa,” Raven started, and Clarke felt Lexa slightly tense up at Raven's serious tone. “Clarke said you have a sister, 'but not really but kind of but not'?” She waited for a reaction and when Lexa nodded, she continued with a grin, “I was wondering how the hell that works.”

Lexa shifted a little and cleared her throat before she answered. “Well, her name is Anya and we grew up together.” She shook her head. “No, I mean I grew up with her. She's seven years older than me and when I moved in with them, she was a year away from graduating from High School.” Lexa stopped when she noticed the changing faces of the other girls, unsure what it meant. Raven noticed and was quick to explain.

“What did you mean when you said you moved in with them? Is she your stepsister?” Raven asked carefully, well aware of the look in Clarke's eyes that said she already had an idea. While Lexa was talking, Raven had kept glancing at Clarke and she had noticed the change in the blonde's appearance. She was her best friend and she knew every little detail about Clarke's body language, so she also knew what Clarke was thinking. How little she really knew about Lexa, how much her heart ached for the shy brunette. She was pulled out of her thoughts when Lexa took a sip of her coke and cleared her throat again.

“No, she's my… Her parents took me out of the foster system. My parents,” she sucked in a sharp breath and Clarke turned her hand, offering Lexa to take it in case it helped her, which the girl did, “put me in there when I was eight, because they… because of how I am. They said they couldn't deal with it anymore and thought it was the best solution, to have professionals take care of me or something. I don't really remember, it was a long time ago. So Indra and Gustus, they're Anya's parents, took me in when I was ten, and they were really nice to me. There were– are a lot of times where I have… where I am difficult, but I know that they accept me for who I am, and Anya has always been there for me.”

Lexa stopped and finally looked up from Clarke's thumb that was still softly brushing over her own palm. Raven and Octavia looked back at her with a smile. She hesitated for a moment, not sure whether she should continue. Clarke squeezed her hand encouragingly, and Raven nodded at her, so Lexa continued.

“Um… well Anya moved out when she was nineteen.” She started fiddling with the hem of her hoodie. “It was difficult for me without her, but we skyped everyday and I eventually got used to not having her around every minute of the day. So now… whenever something is going on, I call her and she always helps me. So she's like my sister, even if it's not biological.” She finished with a shy smile.

The group stayed quiet for a while, each of them a bit lost in their own thoughts. Clarke tried to appear calm, but inside of her, a storm of emotions was raging. There was so much to take in, so much to process. For a while now, she'd had the feeling that the girl had been through a lot, but not in a million years would she have expected that Lexa's parents had abandoned her, that they had put her in the system only because she was on the spectrum; Something she couldn't change, something she hadn't chosen, something that was simply a part of her, just like her eye color. Clarke had to gulp down the heavy lump in her throat at the image of a little Lexa, lost, in an unfamiliar place, with unfamiliar people, sitting there with those puppy eyes.

She took in a deep breath. “Thanks for telling us, Lexa. Thanks for trusting us.”

Lexa quickly shot her a small smile before she drew her gaze back to her hands. And then, something happened that Clarke had not expected, at all. Raven got up from her chair, walked over to the couch and, struggling a bit with the brace on her leg, she kneeled down in front of Lexa who eyed her nervously.

“I'm sorry you had to go through all of this. I've never told anyone about this before, not even Clarke,” she shot Clarke an apologetic smile and looked back at Lexa, “so… when I was twelve, my mom died and I ended up in the system as well. I know, I have no idea how it was for you and how you felt, but I know what it's like to be all alone in such a place, where no one really cares about you. I wasn't as lucky as you, no one came to get me out, but somehow, I made it, graduated from High School and immediately started working so I could finally move into my own place when I was eighteen.”

She paused for a moment, her eyes still trained on Lexa and Lexa only, but Clarke could see how hard her best friend was trying to fight back the tears.

“So, um… there's something I've talked about with Clarke,” Raven continued, putting on a smile when she saw a hint of panic flashing the girl's eyes, to emphasize that this wasn't anything Lexa had to worry about, “she said you're struggling a bit with your roommate?” Lexa tensed up and slowly nodded.

“Okay… well look. I know this might be overwhelming right now, the whole situation here. You've told us your story, which I know was hard enough already. Now I dropped my own story like a bomb, on top of the already heavy moment, but I want you to know that with us, you have nothing to worry about. If you ever need to talk, we're here. All of us,” Raven looked at Clarke and Octavia to make sure she was right about this, and was relieved when her friends quickly nodded, “and I think it would be good if you moved out of this dorm. I have a spare room and it's really boring to live alone,” she laughed to take some of the tension out of the room, “so if you want, you can move in with me. You don't have to, of course,” she added quickly, “but if you want, just know that you're welcome at my place, and you won't have to worry anymore about the things that bug you right now. What do you say?”

Raven ended her speech and one could hear a pin drop in the room. They all knew that this was indeed overwhelming for Lexa, so they gave her the time she needed.

Lexa shifted and Clarke noticed how her breathing picked up on speed, so she quickly took the girl's hand again to ground her a bit. They waited patiently for a long moment, until Lexa opened her mouth, closed it again, and then hesitantly began to speak.

“I… this…you…” Lexa paused and squeezed her eyes shut, trying to calm down and phrase her thoughts. She took a deep breath and opened her eyes. “I'd like that.” She finally said with a shy smile.

 

 

Chapter Text

“Can I ask you a question?” Clarke asked and watched as Lexa stopped chewing for a moment.

They were sitting under the bleachers next to the soccer field again, enjoying their lunch break together. The girls' night had gone well, even better after Lexa had admitted she'd like to move in with Raven. Clarke and her friends had emptied a few more beers, Lexa had sipped her coke and after the heavy conversation, their night had been filled with much lighter conversations about their favorite holiday destinations or whether Pizza Hawaii was a blessing or a curse. Throughout the night, Clarke had kept studying Lexa whenever she thought no one was watching, making sure she was okay, or just, well, to look at the girl that she had been crushing on for weeks now, but even five beers in, Raven had been much more attentive than Clarke had assumed.

“Okay.” Lexa agreed and slowly continued eating.

“Two, actually,” Clarke stated. For a while now, she had thought about asking Lexa about these things. However, she had never been too sure whether Lexa would be okay with it, but now she had the feeling the brunette trusted her enough. “What were you doing all alone in the park that one night?”

Lexa took a moment to finish chewing her salad. “My roommate and her friends pre–gamed in our room and they usually make fun of my eating habits, and that night they kept teasing me about eating only the green and red Skittles, so I stopped eating and um…” she stopped and started fiddling with her bracelet. Clarke waited patiently, knowing better than to push Lexa when she finally opened up about her roommate. A few long moments later, the brunette cleared her throat. “When I'm nervous, I start rocking back and forth, to… you know…” 

“Stimming.” Clarke mumbled and Lexa looked at her with big eyes. The blonde felt a blush creeping up her cheeks, and she nervously scratched her knee, “I might have done some… research.”

Lexa blinked, once, twice, opened her mouth and closed it again and Clarke instantly panicked, hoping she hadn't overwhelmed or offended the girl. “Sorry, I… was that wrong?”

Lexa quickly shook her head, surprise evident in her eyes. “No! No it is not– it wasn't wrong. I just… people never take the time or effort to um… do research. I don't blame them. Why should they, anyway.”

Clarke sighed and moved a little closer to the girl. “Hey… you're important to me, so I want to know and learn about it. You mean so much to me and I just want to…understand, I guess. Would you like to continue?” She asked carefully. Lexa's fiddling slightly intensified but eventually, she nodded.

“So I tried to keep it subtle but they noticed of course, and kept… saying mean things. They also thought it was funny to lock the door, I think, and then I panicked. Luckily Anya called in that moment and I somehow managed to answer the call and she immediately picked up on what was happening and somehow calmed me down, at least a bit, and she…” Lexa paused for a second to get her breathing back under control, and Clarke watched carefully, ready to jump in and save Lexa from having yet another panic attack, but the brunette seemed to have control over her body so far, and she continued, “I didn't hear what she said to my roommate and her friends, I was still in a state where I don't really notice my surroundings, and the next thing I know is that they were gone and the door was open, and Anya told me to leave the room and go somewhere quiet so that we could talk alone, and that's when I went to the park.” Her lips curled up into a tiny smile. “You found me about ten minutes after Anya and I hung up.”

Clarke nodded understandingly but stayed quiet, giving Lexa some time to process. She was (for more than one reason) glad that their Advanced Math class was cancelled, because she was sure that Lexa was in no state to focus on something like that right now.

They silently watched two birds fighting over a tomato slice in front of them, until Lexa spoke again. “You said you had two questions.”

“Yeah, actually,” Clarke said softly, “but it's similar to my first question.” She carefully watched the girl's body language to make sure she hadn't overstepped any boundaries yet, but Lexa seemed to remain calm. “That's okay.”

Clarke nodded. “Okay. Uh… so there was this Monday where you didn't show up the entire day, do you remember?” Clarke carefully approached the topic and was positively surprised when Lexa's cheeks twitched into a smile when she nodded. “Where have you been?”

With her eyes trained on the bracelet that she was still fumbling with, Lexa spoke, “I was with Anya.” Clarke had never felt such a strong relief rush through her entire body, she was sure. “On that Saturday when I was at your apartment, I later received a text from an unknown number with some really bad words.” Lexa frowned.

“Nothing else, just those swear words. I panicked and sent the screenshot to Anya and she came to pick me up. She um… she really knows me well. I needed a familiar surrounding with people I feel safe with. She wanted to send me back to classes but I convinced her to let me stay with her on Monday, too. That's why I didn't show up.”

Clarke had been listening to Lexa and couldn't help but smile as well when Lexa's smile reappeared at mentioning Anya. She was proud of her shy girl for opening up so much, but there was one thing that bothered her.

“Lex?”

“Yeah?”

“Can I see that message?”

Lexa shifted uncomfortably but pulled out her phone, opened the message and turned her phone so Clarke could read it. The blonde furrowed her brows and switched on her own phone, a dark idea clouding her mind, and she was praying to the Gods that she was wrong. She clicked on the contact and held her phone next to Lexa's to compare the numbers, and released a long sigh when her fear was confirmed. “That bastard.” She mumbled and Lexa eyed her phone anxiously. “That's Finn's number. Lexa I… I'm so sorry. He… this is…” Clarke helplessly gestured between their phones, not able to phrase her thoughts. She was furious. She wanted to break jaws, and she wanted to break them now.

She squeezed her eyes shut and took a moment to regain control over her body. Inhale… exhale… inhale… ex– her eyes shot open when she felt a warm hand on her thigh.

“It's okay, Clarke. Please calm down.” Lexa said softly.

“Are you calming me down right now?” Clarke almost laughed at the thought that Lexa, the girl who really had every reason to freak out or stumble from one panic attack into the next about this text message, was saving her from having a panic attack herself. Lexa smiled and shrugged, not removing her hand from Clarke's leg for several minutes.

“Clarke?”

“Hm?”

“Does Finn have a sister?”

Clarke furrowed her brows. “Yeah, why?”

Lexa cleared her throat and Clarke could feel her hand slightly squeezing her leg but was sure that Lexa herself had no idea that it was happening. “Is her name Charlotte?”

The blonde's pulse quickened, because yes. That was her name. “How do you know this?”

Lexa shook her head and withdrew her hand to fiddle with her bracelet again. “She's my roommate.”

 

 

 

Chapter Text

“Lexaaa,” Clarke whined, helplessly looking around. Her entire kitchen table was filled with books, calculators and notes. “What does p xo–”

“That's a zero.”

“P x zero. Why is differentiating p the same as differentiating f when p is just… and what is an abc doing there when it's– Lexaaa!”

Clarke's head was spinning. Lexa chuckled and reached out to point at several digits and letters on Clarke's sheet. “Don't bother with the abc right now, that's just an example. P(x0) is a point somewhere on the function f. Okay?”

Clarke weakly nodded, so Lexa continued. “Okay… This is just the Taylor series, Clarke, it's really no magic.”

“What the hell is the Taylor series now?” Clarke whined again.

The brunette shook her head with an amused smile. “It's a representation of a function as an infinite sum of terms that, um… are basically calculated from the values of the function's derivatives at a single point. Hint – P(x). Got it?”

Clarke blinked at the brunette. Lexa huffed in mild frustration and bit her lower lip, trying hard to come up with a simpler explanation. “So… a function can be approximated by using a finite number of terms. Which is funny because a function usually has an infinite number of terms,” Lexa explained and giggled again. Clarke shook her head, she was clearly missing the joke.

“That's why we use Taylor. This theorem gives quantitative estimates on the error introduced by the use of–“ Clarke dropped her head on the table. “Clarke?”

“I'm listening,” Clarke mumbled, “go on.”

“Look, it's really simple. The Taylor series of a function is just the limit of that function's polynomials as the degree increases,” Lexa raised her head and absentmindedly scanned the wall, “well, provided that the limit exists.” She finished happily. Clarke didn't move. “Clarke?”

Clarke, her forehead still on the table, slowly shook her head again for the umpteenth time that afternoon. She really had no idea what Lexa had been trying to teach her. She simply had no idea. She'd been trying to follow and understand, really. Okay maybe she had been a bit distracted by Lexa's tight tank top, but most of the time, she had been trying. She weakly raised her head to look at a very bubbly brunette. It was obvious that Lexa was completely in her element.

“You're a great teacher, Lex. Really! … but I think I'll quit maths.” If it had been about anything else than math, Clarke's heart would have broken when Lexa's face fell and she quickly dropped her eyes to the book in front of her with a light frown… but this was about math and Clarke was frustrated.

A moment of silence passed, until Lexa spoke again. “Why are you angry?”

“What?”

“You're frowning, which usually means that you're angry, and I don't…” Lexa flicked her fingers a few times, “I don't know why you're angry.”

The blonde's features softened immediately. “I'm not angry… I mean, not really. I'm just really frustrated that I just don't get this Taylor thing… or math in general.”

“Oh,” Lexa nodded, quickly processing the new information. “But Clarke, look, it's really simple. It makes sense and you just… I mean… it's really beautiful because it–“

“Hey, Lex.” Clarke said softly, laying her hand on top of Lexa's that had began to fiddle with a sheet of paper in front of her. She couldn't exactly tell whether Lexa was frustrated as well or just trying to defend something she really loved or was sad, but the brunette was clearly growing upset and a wave of swear words and insults against herself washed through Clarke's head. That was the last thing she had wanted when she asked Lexa for some extra lessons.

“Let's just go outside a bit,” she suggested. “You know, clear our heads, and maybe try again tomorrow?”

Lexa sighed and looked back at the blonde with those puppy eyes that Clarke just couldn't resist. She knew that if Lexa asked her to climb the Empire State Building like Spider Man, or surf on a shark right now, she'd more than happily agree. Fortunately for her, Lexa just nodded and her lips curled up into a smile again. Clarke mentally high fived herself. Well, she mentally high fived herself after completely melting at the sight of a happy Lexa.

 

***

 

They decided to sit on a bench in the park where they had talked to each other for the first time. It was a sunny afternoon, but November was around the corner and Clarke was glad that she had thought of bringing a blanket.

“Here,” she said and gently put it around the brunette's shoulders when she noticed the girl was slightly shaking. Lexa shot a thankful smile in her direction and snuggled into the warmth.

They sat in silence for a while, just content with the situation, enjoying each other's company, both lost in their own thoughts.

“Lex?”

“Hm?”

“Can I ask you a question?”

“Okay.”

Clarke took a moment to phrase her thoughts. “Have you ever been in a relationship? Or, you know,” she quickly added when she realized that Lexa wasn't really one to quickly trust a person or grow close to someone, given that this relationship would come with a package that not everybody could or wanted to carry, “been interested in someone? I mean, liked someone?”

Lexa slowly started to fiddle with one corner of the blanket she was wrapped in, and Clarke waited patiently.

“Yes um…” the brunette paused and took another moment to consider her answer, “well not in a relationship but there was… well I was…” she stopped and Clarke turned her hand to offer Lexa her palm, just in case. The girl automatically took it, and Clarke bit her lip to not let out the huge smile, well aware that Lexa probably hadn't even realized that she had taken the blonde's hand.

“Her name was Costia.”

Clarke knew that this really wasn't the time to explode from happiness over the female reference, but she couldn't help but feel a little fuzzy inside.

“She was… nice. At first, at least. It was the last year of High School, and I had just changed schools because people… because they weren't…” Lexa was helplessly trying to come up with words.

“I understand, you don't have to say it.” Clarke reassured her and Lexa nodded, bit her lower lip for a second and then continued.

“Costia was really nice to me. She talked to me a lot and she didn't mind that I was… different. I never told her though. Um… I think we were friends. I really liked her. I told Anya one day and she kept teasing me about my girlfriend and I said we're not girlfriends, but she said that what I was feeling wasn't what friends usually feel. It was really confusing for me.” She let out a puff of air. “One day she took me to a football match and when one team scored the final points, I… it was so loud.”

She let go of Clarke's hand to fumble with the blanket with both hands, and Clarke noticed how her breathing was picking up on speed. Lexa squeezed her eyes a few times before she continued.

“And I just freaked out, and Costia laughed at me and said I was a baby. She kept making fun of me and the next thing I remember… I was sitting on the ground, the match was over, and Anya was sitting next to me. Apparently someone had called her, and Costia was gone. I sent her a lot of texts, asking her what happened but she never answered, and at school, she always avoided or ignored me after that day.” Lexa finished sadly.

Clarke didn't know what to feel or think. She was angry at Costia, she was aching for Lexa, and she was thankful that the girl had Anya in her life. She was still looking at Lexa, and Lexa was still looking at her hands. The blonde reached out, slowly to not startle the other girl, and gently tucked a strand of brown waves behind a tiny ear.

“I'm sorry, Lex. I'm really sorry that some people were so mean to you. You…” she sighed, “God. You deserve so much better than that. You're such a wonderful person, and I really wish there was a way for you to see this. You mean so much to me.”

Lexa turned her head to look at Clarke, and Clarke just looked back for a long moment. She could see that Lexa's mind was racing, that she was desperately searching Clarke's face for any hints of what she was thinking. The blonde braced herself for the next question, because she knew exactly what was about to happen next.

“Why are you looking at me like that, Clarke?” Lexa asked with a small frown, clearly clueless of what was going on in Clarke's head. The blonde took a deep breath.

“I would really like to kiss you right now, Lexa.”

 

 

 

Chapter Text

“Um.”

Clarke struggled to contain a laughter. Lexa was too adorable in that moment, so clearly confused.

“Why?”

A grin appeared on the blonde's face. So lexa.

“I've never met a person before who asked why I wanted to kiss them.” Clarke laughed and quickly calmed down before Lexa could fall back into a spiral of uncertainty and confusion. She didn't want the moment to end.

“I'm sorry, I just… I'm sorry if that was too much or something.” She quickly added and was surprised when Lexa shook her head.

“What are you thinking?” She asked carefully and Lexa shifted a bit, quickly averting her gaze.

“I… I would really like to kiss you, too, Clarke.”

Clarke was sure she had never looked so dumbfounded in her life. Is this really happening? She thought to herself and did her best to quickly regain her composure. With a soft smile, she reached out and captured the girl's chin with her thumb and index finger, to turn Lexa's head towards her.

“Lexa…” she said softly. “Would you like to try?”

Lexa tried to lower her head but Clarke gently held her in place. The brunette slowly nodded, and Clarke nodded as well. She brushed some stray hair out of the girl's face before cupping her cheek, and carefully leaned closer to give Lexa the time to process what was happening. A few inches before the girl's face, she stopped.

“Are you nervous?”

Lexa slowly nodded again.

“That's okay. I'm nervous, too,” Clarke admitted. ”If this is too much, just tell me. It's okay.”

Lexa squeezed her eyes shut for a moment but opened them again with a shake of her head. Clarke waited, searching the girl's face for any signs of discomfort, but before she could grasp what was happening, Lexa's eyes quickly dropped to her lips and then closed as she leaned in and closed the gap.

Clarke's mind was racing. Her heart was pounding. She had always thought that people were crazy when they said that a kiss made people see stars, made them feel sparks fill their bodies. And now, she knew they were crazy. Clarke didn't see stars, and she didn't feel sparks. She saw and felt fireworks.

She was kissing Lexa. Lexa was kissing her back. Soft lips shyly pressing against hers, soft lips slowly starting to move, soft lips carefully capturing her bottom lip. And then, her brain stopped working.

Clarke didn't know if it was after a minute or after an eternity when they slowly pulled away, she just knew their kiss was ending way too soon. Their eyes remained closed for another minute, their foreheads touching, before she pulled away and opened her eyes.

“Are you okay?” She whispered, brushing a strand out of Lexa's face. The brunette slowly nodded and opened her eyes as well. She looked at the blonde with soft eyes, hesitating for a moment before she snuggled into Clarke's side.

Clarke gently laid her arm around the girl, pulled her a little closer and finally, she let a wide smile spread across her face. It had happened. They had kissed. A kiss that Lexa had started. Lexa trusted her. Lexa liked her back. Today was a good day.

  

***

  

They stayed in the park until the early evening, spending the time cuddling and kissing. Clarke still couldn't believe how lucky she was, falling in love with a girl who liked her back. That girl being none other than this cute shy girl that saved ladybugs from sidewalks, that cute shy girl who touched flowers like they were made of glass, afraid to hurt them, that cute shy girl who was Lexa.

She was ready to do anything for her, she was ready to give her the world, and she was ready to protect her from it. Little did she know that it would happen much sooner than she had thought.

As Lexa had told them the other day, she wanted to move out of her dorm room to get away from her roommate and move in with Raven, which required some preparation, mostly paperwork. So here they were, on their way to the office building to get the needed forms. Lexa absentmindedly took Clarke's hand, and the blonde's heart beat picked up on speed at the motion. For her, holding hands with someone was simply a gesture of affection and she had no problem initiating this kind of touch. But she knew that for Lexa, it was a huge step, and she couldn't help but smile at the thought that her shy girl was getting more and more comfortable with her, and with touching her.

They entered the building and made their way through the labyrinth of corridors, until they reached the door of the office. It was left ajar but only slightly so they couldn't see inside. The mumbling that came from inside the room indicated that someone was already there, so Clarke gently led Lexa to the waiting area and they sat down. Clarke took a moment to look around. Apart from the plastic chairs and a stunted plant, there wasn't really much else. Polis, you beautiful thing. She thought and shook her head. A few moments later, Lexa began to rock. Subtly, but Clarke noticed anyway.

“Hey,” she said softly and squeezed the girl's hand, “you okay?”

Lexa nodded but Clarke wasn't convinced.

“It's fine, you know? Raven really likes you and I'm sure Charlotte won't complain. It's a win–win situation for you.”

Lexa didn't relax, only nodded, but Clarke could see that the girl was at least trying to believe what she had told her. Gently running her thumb over Lexa's hand, she chose to stay quiet for a while, giving Lexa some time to sort her thoughts, but she glanced at the girl every now and then to make sure she was okay.

A few minutes later, the voices in the room grew louder, now clearly audible. She felt Lexa tense up.

I will not leave until you give me the room number!” A man exclaimed.

Sir, this goes strictly against our privacy policy and I–“

I don't give a «shit» about your privacy policies! I will–“

Clarke looked at Lexa who had her eyes squeezed shut, still rocking, her unoccupied hand nervously fumbling with the straps of her jacket.

“Lex, everything's okay.” Clarke said softly, trying to reassure the girl. “This is just some parent who probably fucked up a bit and now wants to see his child. There's nothing you have to worry about.”

Lexa didn't react and Clarke grew impatient. She was worried that she wouldn't be able to calm Lexa down. If only the people in the office would lower their voices. She sighed and took Lexa's hand in both her hands, in case that would help, not wanting to startle the girl even more with other touches that she wasn't prepared for. The man in the office was yelling now.

I have every right to see my fucking child whenever the hell I want!”

There was a loud noise and Clarke effortlessly guessed that the man had banged his fist on the table. She quickly got up.

“Lex, let's go.” She said firmly, trying not to be too loud. The brunette's eyes shot open but she didn't move. Clarke held out her other hand for Lexa. “Lexa, let's go. We can come back another time. Okay?”

Clarke prayed to the Gods that Lexa was still in control of her body. She sighed in relief when the girl nodded and took her hands. With both hands, she gently pulled her up and cupped her cheeks, and luckily, Lexa looked back at her. She was still there. “You're okay,” Clarke said again, “let's go.”

They turned around, ready to leave, when they heard the man's angry voice, much closer to them.

“Alexandria?!”

Everything happened too fast for Clarke to understand. Lexa dropped to the ground and the man was standing over her in a split second, but Clarke was faster and before anyone knew what was happening, she had pushed the man back with everything she had in her and quickly stepped between him and Lexa, who now had her knees tucked up and was rocking hard, tightly covering her ears with her hands. Clarke's blood ran cold. Lexa was panicking.

Somewhere in the distance she heard someone call for the security guards but she had no time to care about that now. Her priority was Lexa. She had to protect her, and she had to act fast, so she did the only thing she could think of. She pulled out Lexa's phone, facetimed Anya and slid the phone under Lexa's legs, so that at least Anya could see her. Then she turned around and faced the man.

“Who the hell do you think you are?!” Clarke was furious. She already knew who the man in front of her was, and it took her every bit of self–control she had left to not instantly jump him and claw out his eyes. His fierce green eyes.

 

 

Chapter Text

“Step away from my daughter or I'll forget myself!” The man growled and Clarke would have been lying if she had said she wasn't scared, but there was no way she would let it show.

“Like hell I will!” She snarled back and took a step towards the man.

“Listen girl, and listen closely because I will not repeat myself.” He took a step forward as well. “You will step aside and I will take my daughter home with me.”

“You pushed her away, you left her all by herself like a piece of garbage because you were too fucking weak to take care of your own daughter you pathetic coward,” Clarke hissed and pointed her index finger at him with narrowed eyes, “and now you come back, as if you had anything to say? Tell you what, Mister Woods, you lost every right to even say her name, you hear me? Stay away from Lexa because she deserves so much better and it disgusts me to even think that she's related to someone like you.” She spat out and paused for a second to take a breath, while the clearly dumbfounded man in front of her looked back at her in disbelief and shock about what was actually happening.

“If you ever…” she whispered dangerously slow and took another step forward, “come back… I will end you, so help me God.” She finished with a last step and was now only inches away from his face. “You disgust me.”

“Mr. Quint Woods?” Two security men approached them and gestured for Lexa's father to step back.

“Took you long enough.” Clarke huffed, still trying hard to come back to reality and get herself back under control. She heard a distressed whimper and shot around, and she was next to Lexa in no time.

The girl had not moved an inch, she noticed. She was still crouched on the floor, rocking heavily. Her eyes were still squeezed shut, her hands tightly covering her ears, and she let out loud noises of distress.

CLARKE!”

It took her a second to realize who had called her name, until she quickly reached out to get Lexa's phone.

“Anya! Thank God! Please help me, I– I don't– Lexa is– Quint– I don't know what to do!” She stumbled over her words, helplessly gesturing around with the hand that was now holding the phone, while the other was lying firmly on Lexa's back.

Clarke, I need you to listen to me.”

“O–okay”

I need you to move behind Lexa and pull her hands away from her ears. Then you put your arms around her and hold her hands in place at her chest.”

Clarke nodded but struggled to act and follow Anya's instructions.

Embrace her, hold her, as tightly as you can, okay?”

Clarke's head was spinning.

Clarke! I'm here, it's going to be okay, you hear me?” Anya explained with a firm but still gentle voice.

Suddenly, Clarke's head was clear, her brain was working again, and she quickly moved to sit behind Lexa and put her arms around her, but the girl immediately began to fight the embrace.

Don't let her go, Clarke! Hold her, you're doing a great job!”

It took every bit of Clarke's strength to keep Lexa and her hands in place. Without realizing what she was doing, she started whispering into the brunette's ear.

“It's Clarke. I'm here. You're okay.” Another distressed whimper escaped the girl. Clarke pressed her cheek against Lexa's. “You're okay, Lex. He's gone. You're okay. Shhh…”

To Clarke's relief, Lexa slowly stopped fighting the embrace and the sounds became quieter but the girl was still struggling to breathe.

Don't stop, Clarke,” she heard Anya, “you're doing great. Keep talking to her.”

The blonde began to caress Lexa's hands with her thumbs.

“I'm here, Lexa. You're okay. But I need you to breathe, okay? Breathe with me. In, one, two, three… out, one, two, three, four, five” She paused to feel Lexa's body. “Again. In, one, two…” Clarke kept instructing Lexa, and slowly felt the girl's breathing even out.

Eventually, the brunette stopped rocking, but Clarke held her for another long moment and kept whispering calming things into her ear. She took the time to look around. Apparently, the security guards had escorted Quint Woods out of their sight, and the secretary was still standing a few feet away from them, shock evident in her eyes. Clarke knew she should scold her for just standing around, for not doing anything to help Lexa while Clarke was busy handling her father, but she couldn't care less about the woman right now. Her priority was Lexa.

“Clarke?” It was only a whisper, barely audible, but the blonde heard it loud and clear.

“Yes,” she said softly and kissed her girl's cheek. “I'm here. You're okay, Lex,” she assured her. “You're okay.”

Clarke waited for another moment until she was sure it was safe to let go of Lexa. She quickly moved around and brushed a strand out of the girl's face. She felt a huge amount of stress and tension fade when Lexa looked back at her, green puppy eyes meeting hers. Clarke smiled and gently cupped Lexa's cheeks, wiping away some warm tears.

“Hey,” she said softly. “How are you feeling?”

Lexa sniffled. “Tired.”

The blonde nodded understandingly. “Would you like to go to my apartment?”

“Yes” the other girl said quietly.

Clarke helped her get up and then remembered that Anya was still on the phone, so she held it in front of them and waved at the woman, who quickly searched Lexa's face for any signs of stress and discomfort, but when she realized that Lexa had calmed down, at least for the most part, her features softened. “Hey munchkin!”

Clarke gave them a minute and stepped back, not letting go of Lexa's hand though.

“Miss?”

Clarke turned her head to the secretary. The woman shifted her weight uncomfortably. “We need your phone numbers. The police took Mr. Woods into custody and they'll need your statements.”

Clarke sighed. “Okay, just… can I come back tomorrow? I really don't have time for that right now, I need to make sure Lexa is okay.”

The woman opened her mouth, probably ready to insist, but hesitated and finally, she shot Clarke an understanding smile. Understanding smile my ass, lady! Clarke thought.

“Of course. I hope she will be–“

Clarke shut her up with a lazy wave of her hand, indicating that this conversation was over and turned around, ready to get Lexa out of the office building and into the safety of her apartment. She was so done with the world.

 

Chapter Text

“Lex?” Clarke stored away the glasses and opened a window to get the scent of their dinner out of her apartment, then turned around to her favorite shy girl. Lexa was sitting at the kitchen table, absentmindedly fiddling with a page of her notebook while she, as Clarke guessed, was trying to come up with a solution for this highly complicated math problem.

“Lexa?” She tried again and finally, the brunette looked at her. “Hey,” she smiled, “are you… can I talk to you for a second?” Lexa nodded and closed her book.

“We uh… we should talk about yesterday.” Clarke reluctantly approached the topic. This was the last thing Lexa wanted to talk or even think about, Clarke knew this, but the police were waiting for their statements.

“I don't want to talk about yesterday.” Lexa frowned and started fiddling with her bracelet.

“I know, Lex, I know. It's just… look, the police need your statement, the sooner the better, and I thought if we talked about it before–“

“I don't want to talk about it!” Lexa exclaimed loudly and slammed her fist onto her leg. Clarke was at her side in record time, kneeling down next to her. She had never seen her like this, and she low–key panicked that the whole situation would overwhelm Lexa, again, but Clarke was sure that with the police around, Lexa's reaction would be even more extreme. She sighed and softened her voice.

“Lexa, this is important. I know you don't want to talk about this, but I think it would be better if you talked to someone about it first before you talk to the police, and since I'll be there too, maybe you could… talk to me, so I know what to expect?”

Lexa slowly started rocking and shook her head. Clarke waited patiently, and gently laid her hand on the brunette's thigh. After a few minutes, Lexa hesitantly nodded.

“I um… I don't really…,” she flicked her fingers a few times, desperately searching for words, “I don't know what to say.”

Clarke nodded understandingly. “Would it be easier if I ask some questions?”

“I think so.”

“Okay…” the blonde paused, hundreds of questions flashing through her mind. How had Quint Woods found her? What did he want? Why had Lexa's reaction been so extreme? What had happened that her parents sent her away?  Clarke didn't know where to start.

“Have… have your parents visited you while you were in the children's home?” Lexa shook her head. “Have they ever tried to contact you after they sent you away?”

“No, never.”

Clarke frowned, thinking about the other things she wanted to ask. Letting out a soft breath, she continued. “You recognized his voice, didn't you? Even before we saw him. You knew it was him when we were sitting outside the office, right?”

She carefully watched as Lexa blinked a few times, and knew the answer before the girl even spoke.

“I may not be good at many things, but I would n– um. I don't forget voices.”

Clarke noticed the slip. She knew what Lexa had stopped herself from saying. She took a long moment, considering her next questions, and whether there was a way to leave this out, but there wasn't, really. Clarke turned her hand, offering Lexa her palm and the brunette took it without thinking.

“Lex… did they really send you away only because of the syndrome?” She asked softly.

“They… I wasn't… I don't know, they…” Lexa struggled to control her breathing and Clarke watched helplessly as the girl raised her hand and hit her forehead a few times, before she jumped back to reality and quickly stopped Lexa.

“Hey, hey… it's okay. You don't have to answer that if you don't know. Don't worry, it's okay,” Clarke assured her while keeping the brunette's hands in place in her lap. “Lex, look at me,” she said gently, but firmly enough and sighed in relief when the girl reacted and turned her head to look at her.

“I'm here, Lexa. It's aright, you're okay.”

Clarke followed Lexa to the couch where the girl snuggled into the blonde, and Clarke protectively put her arms around her girl. Everything was so much worse than she had expected, and Clarke knew that there was no way that Lexa would just march into the police station and give them a statement. She felt anger boil up inside her again. About Quint Woods who had had the audacity to knock down the door back into Lexa's life, and especially about how Lexa's father had looked at her when she was on the ground, panicking; Like she was a pathetic, overreacting little child.

It took Clarke a long while to calm down but eventually, she relaxed when Lexa's soft breathing tickled her neck. Kissing the top of Lexa's head and pulling her a little closer, she decided to call Anya and the police the next day, to ask what to do and to find a solution.

 

***

 

The next two days were unspectacular for the most part. Clarke was busy with school work, and, more often than not, she caught herself wishing she was like Lexa. Not like Lexa in general, because Jeez, falling in love with yourself like that would be utterly awkward, but she wished she could focus on her homework and not get distracted by that extremely interesting spot on the wall next to her laptop every two minutes.

It was Friday afternoon and she was sitting in her living room, debating whether it would be easier to hang herself or just jump out of her window. With an expressive yawn and an even more expressive eye–roll, she closed her laptop and pressed the home button on her phone. No new messages.

After she had tried to talk to Lexa, they had decided to drop the topic, at least for a while, at least until the statements for the police weren't avoidable any longer. Clarke and Anya had exchanged some messages, discussing what to do, and they figured a few days off for Lexa would be a good idea, and for the first time in her life, Clarke thought that Thanksgiving had a perfect timing this year. Lexa would spend the days with her family, and although Clarke dreaded visiting her mom, she mostly felt hopeful; She was sure that Lexa would calm down and be able to relax soon, and that was all that the blonde needed to know.

She unlocked her phone and opened the chat with Lexa, but paused. They both had been incredibly busy and hadn't really talked much since their discussion, and she didn't really know what to say. Taking a deep breath, she slowly began typing.

Clarke (4:09pm): Hey sunshine :) I just wanted to make sure you're okay. When is Anya picking you up today? Hope you're having a good time with your family, feel free to write me anytime! … I really miss you. Maybe we can skype later? xx

She released a breath she hadn't realized she'd been holding and closed her eyes, anxiously awaiting a reply. There were so many things she wanted to tell Lexa, so many things she needed to tell her, but she knew right now wasn't the time. First, they had to find a solution for the Quint Woods issue.

Lexa :) (4:16pm): I'd like that. Anya will be here in 14 minutes. I miss you, too. x

Clarke's cheeks immediately twitched into a wide smile. Lexa missed her, too.

 

 

Chapter Text

“Hey munchkin!” Anya greeted as she made her way to her sister and ruffled her hair. Lexa immediately backed away and quickly brushed some strands out of her face with a frown.

“Don't do that!”

“Nice to see you, too!” Anya grinned, grabbed Lexa's suitcase and threw it into her car's trunk while Lexa shook her head and plopped into the passenger seat. Her sister started the engine and pulled out of the parking lot.

After a few minutes, she turned her head to study Lexa who was staring out of the passenger window, fiddling with a rubber band in her hand. Anya cleared her throat to announce a conversation. “How are you?”

The girl didn't move her eyes away from the passing landscape outside when she answered. “I'm fine. There's this really cool documentary I watched the other day, it's about the revenge of the oceans, that's at least what it was called, and there was this one scientist who described that it's funny how humans know more about space than about the oceans,” Lexa rambled, her excitement growing with every word, “just think about that. He said that if we want to study aliens, we should just dive deeper and discover all the animals that live at the bottom of the sea. Which is funny because aliens don't live in the oceans of course.” She straightened her back and continued, “Did you know that only three percent of the oceans are discovered yet? That means that–“

“Hey, Lex, breathe!” Anya interrupted her with a grin. “I just wanted to know how you are. Are you okay?”

Lexa quickly glanced at her sister. “Yes, I am.”

Anya nodded. This hadn't really been what she meant by that question, but Lexa was distracted and obviously not thinking about the incident a few days ago, which was good. Anya decided to keep it that way, at least for the drive.

“So…” she drawled out and waited for Lexa to look at her again. “Clarke?”

“What about her?”

“Would you… like to tell me about her?” Anya grinned and wiggled her eyebrows.

“No thank you.” Lexa simply replied and turned her head back towards the window. The woman next to her shook her head with a small smirk and focused on driving again. She wasn't done with Lexa and the topic 'Clarke'. Oh, she was just starting.

 

***

 

They arrived at their parents' house an hour later. With a bear hug, Gustus greeted his girls, and even Indra allowed a huge smile to dominate her features. Anya had briefed them about what had happened with Quint Woods, and she had told them what the police had told her as well; The reason for his unexpected visit, and they had agreed that Lexa should know about it, too, and being the person Lexa trusted the most, it would be Anya to have that conversation with her.

The mood at the dinner table wasn't exactly cheerful. Especially Anya and Gustus exchanged a few worried glances every once in a while, and Indra was untypically quiet; Which Anya found impressive, since Indra usually didn't really say anything at all, anyway. However, Lexa didn't seem to notice the change, instead had taken on jabbering about squids and jellyfishes and Anya was glad that at least Gustus knew which questions to ask to keep Lexa in a good mood.

While their parents did the dishes, the girls stood in front of a shelf in the living room filled with books and board games, trying to pick one that they all could play.

“We should play Poker and you should team up with me.” Anya smirked.

“I don't like Poker. You need to read people, I can't even figure out what normal people think, how am I supposed to decipher a poker face?”

“But you could count the cards,” Anya suggested, “that way we'll end them!”

Lexa frowned. “That's against the rules, An.”

Rolling her eyes, the older woman accepted her defeat and let her eyes wander over the other games.

“Monopoly?”

Lexa shook her head. “Too many variables.”

Anya groaned. “Why don't you pick one then?”

“Yahtzee.”

“Of all these great games you'd pick that one, wouldn't you, math nerd?” Anya playfully complained, emphasizing her joke with a grin, not sure if Lexa had picked up on her sarcasm.

They discussed about ten other games, with Indra and Gustus joining them after a while, until they eventually agreed on playing Yahtzee since they knew Lexa did have a point when she said she couldn't follow strategy games too well.

“You can really play another game if you want,” Lexa tried for the umpteenth time as she sat down her mug, “I enjoy watching just as much.”

“Shut up and drink your hot chocolate, Lex.” Anya mumbled as she scribbled down their names on the sheet. Lexa quickly dropped her eyes to the dice on the table.

“Anya is kidding, munchkin.” Gustus said with a soft smile while putting the dice into the cup and shoving it across the table to his wife.

“One, two, three, five and six,” Anya counted aloud, “go for a straight.”

Indra nodded and put the dice with the one back into the cup.

“There's a higher probability of throwing a four if you use the six, too.” Lexa noted quietly and Indra paused.

“But what if I'm going for a Large Straight?”

Lexa shrugged. “There's still a higher probability if you–“

“Just take the six as well, darling.” Gustus interrupted his daughter with a warm smile, stopping a discussion before it could raise. Indra nodded and Anya mumbled something that sounded like smartass, while her mother threw the dice and scored a Large Straight.

They played on, Lexa suggesting better options from time to time, and she ended up winning.

“It's not fair to play against a math genius.” Anya rolled her eyes.

“You wanted to play Poker because I'm a math genius.” Lexa noted.

“Yeah because we would've won then.” Anya snarled back. With a frown, Lexa opened her mouth but was interrupted by Gustus who had started collecting the game's items to put them back into the box.

“There's always a next time, An. New day new chance.”

“There's a high probability of–“ Anya started, copying Lexa's slightly monotone way of speaking.

“Anya,” Indra said warningly, indicating that this discussion was over, and Anya knew better than to provoke her mother.

 

***

 

“Hey munchkin,” Anya approached her little sister as she stepped out on the porch and sat down next to Lexa on the swing. She had excused herself after the game, stating she wanted to be alone for a while, and her family had let her. But now or never, Anya had thought after half an hour.

“What's going on in that cute little genius head of yours?”

Lexa reached for her hoodie's strap and started fiddling with it. “I miss Clarke.”

Anya nodded knowingly, having somewhat expected this. “Wanna tell me about her?”

Lexa shook her head but Anya pushed, “Come on Lex, I wanna know about her. What's she like?”

“She…” the brunette slowly started but paused to phrase her thoughts, “she's… nice.”

The older woman snorted amusedly. “That's all you got?”

“You asked what she's like.” Lexa answered with a small frown, and Anya could literally see the wheels turning in her sister's head. After a moment, Lexa nodded, apparently having found an answer to a question she'd been asking herself, and spoke again.

“I… we… I kissed her.”

Anya almost choked on her breath but tried to not let it show, knowing better than to irritate the girl in such a moment.

“I like her, and she's not like Costia, not at all. I mean she's pretty too of course… she's beautiful and her eyes are so blue and the small beauty spot above her upper lip…” Lexa stopped to clear her throat and Anya was well aware of Lexa's huge blush, ”She… Clarke doesn't make fun of me and she accepts me. And her friends are nice, too. Raven and Octavia, they don't make fun of me either,” she paused, pursing her lips for a second, “at least I think they don't. And Clarke, she… she's just…” Lexa faded out, trying desperately to come up with words to describe the blonde, but gave up after a moment.

“She also helped you the other day when Quint showed up, right?” Anya asked cautiously, knowing she had to approach the topic, and figured it was a good way to do so with the help of Clarke. Lexa slowly nodded, clearly unsure where this was going.

“Lex, I… I spoke with the police and they told me why he was looking for you.” Anya explained, carefully watching her sister for any signs of irritation. When Lexa remained calm, she continued.

“Do you want me to tell you why he showed up?”

Lexa shrugged, her eyes trained on her fingers that were still fiddling with the strap of her hoodie. “Okay”

Anya slowly let out a breath. “Your mom passed away, Lex.”

Lexa's fingers paused for a second while she processed what Anya had just said, until they went back to their previous work. After a moment, she spoke, “…okay.”

The older woman furrowed her brows, clueless of what her sister was thinking or feeling right now.

“Would you… do you want to attend the funeral?”

It took Lexa another moment to answer. “No.”

Anya nodded. She had expected that, but she had wanted Lexa to know what was going on, and she had wanted her to hear it from people who knew her, not to find out through the police or even her biological father. This was new for them all, Lexa had never had to deal with death before, and Anya had no idea how to deal with Lexa right now.

“Is there anything I can do? Would you like to… I don't know. What are you thinking right now?”

Lexa stayed quiet for a long while, and Anya grew impatient. She was afraid Lexa would feel overwhelmed and spiral right into a panic attack. On the other hand, her sister still appeared to be calm and collected, which confused Anya. She had just heard that her mother had died. The woman that had sent her away when she was still a child, so Anya knew that Lexa wasn't exactly emotionally invested in this woman anymore, but nonetheless, she had been her mother.

Suddenly, Lexa got up from the swing.

“Lex?” Anya asked alarmed.

“I want to talk to Clarke.”

 

 

Chapter Text

Clarke paused in the middle of the brush stroke when she heard her laptop announcing an incoming Skype call behind her. She quickly put down the paintbrush, carelessly wiped her paint stained hands on her ripped skinny jeans and answered the call.

“Lexa, hey!”

Her smile quickly faded when the video loaded and she saw Lexa, disappearing in her oversized black hoodie, staring at her laptop's keyboard. Clarke waited for a moment for Lexa to answer, searching the brunette's face for hints of what she was thinking. “Lex, what's wrong?”

The girl cleared her throat before answering in a quiet voice, but Clarke heard her loud and clear. “My mother died.”

“Oh God… Lexa, I'm…” Clarke paused, feeling tears sting in her eyes, “I'm so sorry.”

Lexa quickly shook her head. “No, it's okay… or not?” It was more of a question. “Actually, I don't know. I'm confused, I don't know what I'm supposed to feel.”

“You're not supposed to feel something particular, there's no… manual guide for these situations, if you know what I mean.” Clarke tried to reassure her girl but she couldn't help but feel incredibly helpless. She saw Lexa squeeze her eyes shut a few times before the brunette spoke.

“Aren't I supposed to be sad? I mean it's… she… I…”

Clarke sighed softly. “You know, when my dad died,” she started and was well aware of the shock in Lexa's eyes. She hadn't told her a lot about her family, and she had always left out her father on purpose. “We were so close, he was my hero,” she smiled as she looked away from the camera and her eyes found the photo of her dad on her nightstand, “I was seventeen and I'd just had a bad fight with my mom, so I was impatiently awaiting his arrival from work so that we could go on one of these long walks I used to have with him…” Clarke faded out, fighting back her tears at the memory of this day, “but he wouldn't come home.”

She glanced at the screen where Lexa was looking back at her, right into the camera, and the softness in the girl's eyes made Clarke's heart pound even harder in her chest, and she was afraid it would explode any time soon. Both, from her own pain but also from the love she had for Lexa. After slowly releasing a shaky breath, she continued.

“We got a call from the hospital at 8:32pm, they said his car was hit by a truck and he was unconscious… my mom ignored the speed limit and it's a miracle we made it to the hospital alive ourselves. When we…” she paused again to wipe away some stray tears that had escaped her eyes, “when we arrived, the doctors told us that he had passed away only minutes before. There was no chance for us to say Goodbye. He knew that we were coming though, I know that he knew. Even if he wasn't awake, but I know that he died knowing that we were on our way.”

Clarke stopped again to check on Lexa who was now slightly rocking back and forth, so subtly that Clarke almost missed it. Almost. She took a moment to collect herself, knowing that Lexa was still waiting for an advice or a reassurance, and continued.

“I didn't cry. Not when I saw him in the hospital bed, his face covered with bruises and tubes attached to his whole body. I didn't cry when the doctor switched off the monitor that only showed a thin line, I didn't cry when we got home and my mom broke down next to me. I didn't cry the entire night while I held her. I didn't cry for weeks. Hang on,” Clarke said and quickly got up to close the door, just in case Abby was somewhere near her room.

She didn't want her mother to know about her feelings. After her father's death, she and her mom had developed a relationship that lacked of closeness and emotions, she hadn't talked to her mom about her thoughts or feelings ever since, and she wanted to keep it that way.

“Sorry 'bout that,” she apologized as she sat back down on her bed and pulled her computer onto her lap. “Well, what I'm trying to say is that you don't have to cry now, no one expects you to know exactly what to feel. Sometimes it just takes time, sometimes you just have to figure out what things like this mean to you, and you have to find your own way of dealing with them. If you don't feel sad, or if you don't know what to feel at all right now, that's totally okay. It's human.” Clarke finished her monologue with a small smile, not sure whether Lexa knew what the smile meant, but she was too weak to explain.

They stayed in silence for a long while, both lost in their own thoughts, until Clarke heard Lexa's soft voice again. “Thank you.”

She sounded calm, more or less, but at the same time so vulnerable, and Clarke wanted nothing more than to climb through her screen and pull her girl into her arms, and never let her go. She wished she could take some of Lexa's confusion and pain away, she wished she could be there, ready to give Lexa the support she needed, mentally and physically.

“Is there anything I can do?” She asked softly, feeling a pang in her chest when Lexa's eyes dropped to her fingers that were fiddling with something, as Clarke guessed, while shaking her head.

“You know that I'm here for you, right? Whatever it is, whatever you need, sunshine. If you want me to drive all the way just for a hug, I'll do that.” Clarke said and smiled reassuringly when Lexa's eyes shot up to look at Clarke's video on her own screen.

She opened her mouth but when nothing came out, she closed it. After a few seconds, she tried again, but unsuccessfully, while Clarke had a hard time stopping her lips from forming a huge smile about the other girl who almost looked like a fish, moving her mouth like this. For another long moment, they stayed silent; Lexa sorting her thoughts, and Clarke giving her the time she needed, until Lexa nodded.

Their silence was ungently interrupted when there was a knock on Clarke's door. The blonde jumped slightly and rolled her eyes when she heard her mother's voice outside.

Clarke?”

“What?”

Can I come in?”

“Why?” She mentally scolded herself for being such a grumpy bitch towards her mother, but she wasn't ready for her mother to see her like this, in such an emotional state.

I have to leave for work now, can I just come in for a second?” She heard Abby pleading outside.

Honey?”

“No,” Clarke shouted back, “I'll see you in the morning.”

There was a long silence and Clarke could only guess her mother's expression, how her face probably fell and her shoulders slouched in defeat, accepting her daughter's behavior. There was a soft thump against her door, hardly audible, and Clarke knew Abby had laid her hand on the wood, trying to be as close to her daughter as she could, before the clicking of her heels indicated that the older woman was leaving. A few seconds later, Clarke heard the soft shut of the front door, and she closed her eyes.

“Sorry 'bout that, again.” Clarke said, trying to form a proper smile, and was surprised about Lexa's reaction. The brunette furrowed her brows and slightly tilted her head to the side.

“You're not smiling.”

“Huh?” Clarke asked, dumbfounded.

“That's not your smile,” Lexa explained, “you're not smiling. It's not real.”

Clarke shook her head. “No, it's not. It's not your fault though. It's my mom, we don't get along anymore.”

Lexa nodded but didn't say anything, and Clarke was thankful. There was nothing that she wanted to hear, and there was nothing she wanted to say about this topic. Suddenly, Lexa's face lit up and Clarke couldn't help but let out a relieved laughter.

“What's got you all smiley, sunshine?”

Straightening her back, Lexa took a deep breath in preparation for her reply. “So there's this documentary I watched the other day…”

 

 

Chapter Text

The next two days went by in a blur for Clarke, hours passing by, time moving painfully slow. The conversation with Lexa had dragged the blonde into a dark state; She had mostly stayed in bed, only getting up for dinner or breakfast with her mother, which she had endured without talking much, most of the time she remained silent and let Abby do the talking.

Every once in a while, she assured her that college went well, that she loved it, that she was happy with it, while deep inside, a storm was raging, filling her body and mind with annoyance and disgust. She'd known for a while now that she hated college, mostly because of the classes she took, none of them something for Clarke to look forward to, or even get up for, except for her art classes.

If it hadn't been for Lexa, she would have quit college months ago. She knew it didn't make her happy, she knew it wasn't the right thing for her. She knew she should completely focus on her art, she wanted to be an artist, and nothing else, but she also knew she wasn't strong enough to make that step. Leaving college was a huge milestone she had yet to reach, and she took her time reaching it. But it would come, sooner or later.

For her mom though, she acted like a typical college student who would get annoyed about classes from time to time, but she kept her aversion buried inside. She knew that the already crumbling relationship she had with her mother would completely break apart if she quit college now.

Clarke was glad that Abby still worked more shifts. After her father died, her mom had started to drown her pain, numb herself through work, taking every shift she could get, and slowly but surely, the distance between them, mentally and geographically, had become unfixable.

Her mother's obsession with work came in handy in times like this one, because Clarke could stay in bed as long as she wanted, curled up into a fetus position, thick curtains keeping any daylight out.

Of course, she had texted and skyped with Lexa, she missed the girl dearly, and she wanted nothing more than to climb into her old Ford Fiesta and drive all the way and melt into her girl's arms. She wanted nothing more than to fall asleep next to Lexa, dozing off to her calm breathing and the scent that was just so lexa. She wanted nothing more than to wake up and softly brush some stray hair out of the girl's face.

But that would have to wait, because Lexa was with her family, and Clarke didn't want to intrude, and she also knew that she had to take a few days off and get herself back together, and she had to do it alone.

It was on the third day, on Sunday, when Clarke felt strong enough to get up, take a long refreshing shower and have a proper meal. She would see Lexa the next day, and she needed to pull herself out of this abyss before it would embrace her completely, no matter how hard that was.

With her new found energy, she packed her bag in the afternoon, quickly scribbled a note for her mom to let her know she'd be back for Christmas, before she plopped into the driver's seat of her car, started the engine and without looking back, drove back home.

 

***

 

Clarke awoke before her alarm clock and was quicker than usual getting ready for the day. She checked her watch, more than half an hour left before her first class started, so she pocketed her phone, slung her bag over one shoulder, grabbed her keys and hurried out.

Biting her lip, she shifted her weight nervously but after a moment, she released a breath she hadn't realized she'd been holding, and softly knocked on the wooden door in front of her. When it swung open, Clarke couldn't help the small smile that played around her lips as she stepped forward.

“Clarke?” Lexa asked, visibly confused about what Clarke was doing there so early in the morning.

They had agreed on meeting at the lecture hall five minutes before class started, so obviously, she was in no way prepared for Clarke randomly showing up at her room.

If it had been in any other situation, Clarke would probably have felt incredibly sorry for disturbing the girl's morning routine, but she just had to hug her girl, and this desire only intensified when Lexa opened the door, her long hair up in a messy bun, wearing one of her slightly oversized hoodies and dark grey ripped skinny jeans, toothbrush in her hand. Clarke's heart felt like it would explode from love anytime now. Love just from looking at the girl in front of her. She wasn't even sure when she had started using the L word, but it felt just right.

“Clarke?” Lexa pulled her out of her thoughts, worry evident in her eyes, and her voice.

Instead of answering, Clarke just nodded while taking another step towards the brunette, before pulling her into a tight hug.

She didn't know how long they'd been standing there, her arms wrapped around Lexa's waist while the other girl had gently laid her left arm around the back of Clarke's neck, her thumb caressing the exposed skin of Clarke's shoulder.

Lexa softly cleared her throat. “Clarke, I… I have to get ready now.”

Clarke just nodded but instead of letting her go, she buried her nose into the crook of Lexa's neck and closed her eyes, releasing a single tear.

“Clarke, I'll be late. And you'll be late, too…” Lexa paused and Clarke tried to gather the strength to release the girl and let her do the things she needed to do, but she just couldn't bring herself to give up the physical contact yet. Lexa waited for another minute until she spoke again.

“Clarke, please. I love you, but I really have to get ready. Please?”

Clarke froze. She was sure that Lexa was aware of her choice of words, but maybe not of the weight they carried. Before she could stop it, a heavy sob shook her body and in a split second, Lexa had untangled herself from Clarke's grip to look at the blonde. Clarke opened her eyes and sent Lexa a weak smile but let out a shaky laugh a second later when she realized that Lexa knew exactly when her smile was real and when it wasn't.

When Clarke looked at her again a few seconds later, Lexa was sporting a deep frown, but the blonde didn't ask. She knew she didn't have to because the other girl would explain herself, and she was right. It took Lexa another moment to sort her thoughts, before she leaned in and left a soft kiss on Clarke's lips that tasted of mint and lexa.

“What was that for?”

Lexa's eyes dropped to Clarke's necklace while her hands started fiddling with the stick of her toothbrush. “I don't want to see you sad,” she admitted, “I really don't like when you cry. I don't know what to do when that happens, I just know that I want to make you happy again but I… I just…”

“Hey,” Clarke interrupted Lexa's helpless rambling and softly captured the brunette's chin with her thumb and her index finger, “you make me happier than you realize, Lex.”

She let out another shaky laugh and wiped away some warm tears from her cheek with her right hand. “God, you have no idea how happy you make me. Don't worry, I'm okay again. I just…” her lips formed a small but genuine smile now and she saw how Lexa immediately relaxed a little, “I guess I just really needed this hug.”

Lexa took a moment to process this, and then nodded. “Okay.”

Clarke's smile widened. “Okay.” She leaned in and left a soft kiss on Lexa's cheek.

“Claaarke!” Lexa whined and quickly took a step backwards before Clarke could pull her into another hug. “I'm getting ready now!”

The blonde laughed and raised her hands to indicate that Lexa wouldn't have to worry about another distraction.

“I'll just wait here, okay? Take your time.”

Lexa nodded and turned around, ready to close the door into Clarke's face, which the blonde found incredibly adorable because she knew that Lexa probably hadn't thought about just asking Clarke inside. Before the door closed, she quickly spoke up.

“Oh and Lex?”

The brunette stopped and pulled the door open again, ready to protest and tell Clarke how she really had no time anymore right now because she had to get ready, but before she could even open her mouth, Clarke had already interrupted her.

“Good morning, sunshine.” She said with a smile and the smile Lexa gave her in return made her whole world okay again.

 

Chapter Text

In the middle of the most brutally boring Ancient Greek History class Clarke had ever had to endure, she wouldn't have hesitated jumping up from her seat and running around the lecture hall three times, celebrating the buzz of her phone in pure thankfulness, but the fingers of her right hand were intertwined with Lexa's under the table and she didn't want to startle the girl, so she figured smiling would be the better option.

After pulling out her phone and swiping her thumb across the screen to open the text, her smile instantly disappeared when she read it.

Raven (9:14am): party at ontari's tonight, pleeaasssee say we're going!!

With an eye–roll, she quickly typed in a reply.

Clarke (9:15am): Most definitely not, Raven!

It was the first day of college after the Thanksgiving holiday, and even only one hour in, Clarke felt like she hadn't gotten any sleep for the past twelve weeks. All she wanted to do was snuggle into Lexa's side and doze off to the scent of lavender, cinnamon and hot chocolate. Or pizza even; She wasn't picky, really.

Then again, she and her friends hadn't really been to any party together at all for a while now, and Clarke knew she was the one to blame since she couldn't stand being more than two feet away from her favorite shy girl.

Raven (9:17am): c'moonn clarkey! :( we miss you!

With a long sigh, she slid her phone over, stopping Lexa's writing. The girl glared at the disturbing object on her notebook with a deep frown before reading the text message. She quickly glanced at Clarke and shrugged before shoving the phone back to Clarke, leaving the blonde wondering what Lexa's answer actually was. She decided to go with an Okay, hoping she was right, before typing in a final answer, hitting Send with a scrunched up nose.

Clarke (9:21am): Okay, but I might bring Lexa

Raven (9:21am): even better! <3

With a smile, Clarke locked her phone and slid it back into her jeans' pocket before spending the rest of the lecture looking at Lexa, wondering what on earth she had done to have her in her life.

 

***

 

After almost fainting at her luck when Lexa actually agreed on going to the party with her during lunch break, Clarke had promised to pick her up at 7:30pm.

So here she was, in her black high heels and a silverish dress that hugged her curves in all the right places, knowing exactly what kind of an effect she had on people (especially the guys she had passed on her way to the dorm building), nervously tugging at her dress, running her slightly shaking hand through her hair. Come on, Griff, are you kidding me? You already have the girl! Just knock!

She shook her head again before taking in a deep breath, and with a self–reassuring nod, she knocked at the door in front of her.

She had expected everything, anything, but not for Lexa to be wearing black ripped skinny jeans, black worn out lace–up boots, a black tank top that showed just the right amount of cleavage for Clarke's mouth to water, or go completely dry, she wasn't sure. And as if the girl in front of her hadn't looked attractive enough already, she had added a red flannel with rolled up sleeves and dark smokey eye make up Clarke hadn't known she was addicted to, until now.

All in all, Lexa, probably unaware of it, was showing off the confidence that Clarke had lost on the way up to the brunette's room. Clarke's eyes took their time wandering down the brunette and back up, while a smirk found its way onto Clarke's face. Especially after she noticed Lexa nervously fiddling with one of her bracelets.

“Uh…” Clarke started but stopped, her brain had officially decided to stop working at the sight of her girl, who was now cocking her head in response.

“Clarke?”

“Huh?”

“Are you okay?” Lexa asked, at this point more worried than confused. She carefully took a step towards the blonde.

Clarke quickly shook her head, trying to come back to reality, before realizing that shaking her head when Lexa asked her whether she was okay, probably hadn't been her brightest moment.

“Yeah, I am,” she reassured the girl and took a step forward as well, before cupping Lexa's cheeks to pull her into a kiss.

This kiss was different from the ones they had shared before, more confident, more daring. Usually, their kisses were soft and gentle, sometimes careful even. Of course they had added their tongue before, so they knew how it felt, but nonetheless, Clarke couldn't stop the quiet moan that escaped her throat when their tongues finally met.

Before she could lose control over her mind and especially her body, she pulled away, smirking when Lexa chased after her lips before realizing that Clarke had taken a step back, and opened her eyes as well.

“We should go or we'll be late.” Clarke explained and Lexa nodded in agreement before automatically taking Clarke's hand and leading the way out of the building.

 

***

 

When they arrived at quarter past eight, the party was already louder than Clarke had expected. When she reached out to open the door, she felt Lexa's grip tighten slightly around her own hand, so she lowered her other arm a bit again.

“Hey,” she said softly, “I know it's loud, and I know there are a lot of people. But Raven will be there, and O will be there, too. And even Lincoln and Monty, you know them, as well.” She softly tucked some loose hair that had escaped Lexa's ponytail back behind a tiny ear. “Okay?”

Lexa took a moment to sort her thoughts but then sucked in a sharp breath and nodded.

The door swung open and a very tipsy Raven pulled them both into a hug, causing Clarke and Lexa to slightly bump into each other. Clarke could feel Lexa tense up but she still appeared calm, so the blonde decided not to mention it.

“Heeyyy my lovely lovebirdy lovebirds!” She slurred and let go of them, only to shove them inside the house.

The place was incredibly crowded, and Clarke only hoped that Lexa would be okay. The brunette had assured her, time and again, that it was fine and that Clarke shouldn't worry so much, but Clarke couldn't help it, she just wanted Lexa to be okay and have a good time.

They elbowed their way through the house, aiming for the backyard where Clarke knew her friends would be, and she was right. The group greeted them heartily and moved together so that the girls could sit on the benches as well. Lexa chose a seat next to Lincoln, leaving enough room for Clarke. The blonde however didn't sit down.

“Hey Lex,” Clarke said and Lexa's head shot up to meet the blonde's look, and Clarke could see a hint of panic flashing through the other girl's eyes, “I'll get us some drinks, you okay here?”

Lexa quickly glanced at Lincoln who smiled back reassuringly, and then nodded her head.

“Okay, I'll be right back.” Clarke promised, cupped her girl's cheeks and leaned down to peck soft lips, before she danced off.

The moment Clarke disappeared in the crowd in the house, Lexa reached down and started fiddling with a loose twine of her flannel.

“Hey Lexa?” Lincoln asked after a moment of watching the girl next to him.

“Yes?”

“I meant to wait until you have your drink so we could clink our glasses, but now that Clarke is away, is the perfect timing to congratulate you!”

Without looking at him, Lexa slightly furrowed her brows in confusion. “Why?”

Lincoln let out a warm, friendly laugh. “Because of Clarke. She's a great catch, and you make her happy, so…” he raised his own glass, “well done!”

When Lexa sent him a quick smile but dropped her eyes to her hands again, he lowered his glass and carefully studied the brunette for another moment.

“What are you thinking?” He said, gently bumping their shoulders.

Lexa quietly cleared her throat. “She makes me happy, too.”

 

***

 

Inside the house, Clarke grew frustrated. She knew there wouldn't be many non–alcoholic drinks, but she had hoped that she would at least find a few bottles of soda, but every bottle was already open, filling the kitchen with a strong scent of alcohol. After putting down the last bottle, Clarke grabbed her beer with a grunt and went to find Ontari. She found her at the beer pong table.

“Hey Ontari?” She greeted the black haired girl whose lips immediately formed the provoking smirk that Clarke had fallen in love with back then, and now more than disliked.

“Clarke, to what do I owe this pleasure?” She said while taking a bold step towards Clarke, who crossed her arms at the same time, indicating that Ontari wouldn't get anywhere with her tonight.

“I need some coke.” The blonde said, and Ontari knitted her eyebrows.

“You stopped a while ago, Clarke, what's the matter?” Ontari, slightly worried now, asked while taking another step toward the blonde, “Is this about Finn?”

Before Clarke could let out a laugh and explain the situation, she heard a voice behind her, and in a split second, she had her fingers balled into a fist, ready to lose her composure.

“What's about my brother?”

 

Chapter Text

“Charlotte,” Clarke greeted the girl in an overly friendly tone and turned around, “always a pleasure.”

“Can't say the same.” The other blonde girl replied coldly and took another sip of her drink.

Clarke had never liked her. Unlike Finn, Charlotte had always made clear that the Collins family was better than the rest, better than those poor souls that weren't lucky enough to be one of them. At every family dinner, every high society gathering the Collins hosted, even at simple garden parties, Clarke had never felt welcome, Charlotte had made sure of that. If not because of Finn's behavior, sooner or later Clarke would have broken up with him because of his family.

“You haven't answered my question yet.” Charlotte noted.

Clarke shook her head, trying desperately not to immediately lose it. “Because there's nothing to answer. It was a misunderstanding, I just asked Ontari for some soda.”

“Correct me if I'm wrong, Clarke,” even the way Charlotte said her name tested her patience, “but I thought I had heard Finn's name.”

“Well,” Ontari piped up as she stepped closer to the girls, “it was me who mentioned him, so if you don't mind, let Clarke go and solve this issue with me.”

Never before had Clarke been so thankful to have Ontari in her life, or at least in the same room. Their relationship had had its ups and downs, in the end more downs than ups, but Ontari had her heart in the right place, and Clarke thought highly of her for this.

There was nothing she wanted more in this moment than to claw Charlotte's eyes out for the things she had said and done to Lexa, she wanted to see her suffer, and she wanted to be the one causing the worst of pain to her. But at the same time, she didn't want to make a scene, especially not with Lexa around and especially because Charlotte didn't know she was there, too, so she kept her anger to herself, relieved as Charlotte backed away a bit, knowing better than to mess with Ontari.

“We're not done yet.” Charlotte threatened under her breath as she passed Clarke, and with a last glare, she left the room.

Clarke closed her eyes for a moment and slightly jumped when she felt a soft hand on her arm.

“Hey,” Ontari said, worry evident in her voice, “I'm so sorry about her. I know things between the two of you are fucked up but I hadn't expected you to bump into each other here. You're usually in the backyard with the guys.”

Clarke was slightly taken aback by Ontari's genuine concern. When she didn't manage to form a coherent answer, she shook her head.

“No, it's not okay, Clarke… if she bothers you again, you know where to find me,” Ontari reassured her and let go of her arm, “also, I'm sorry about Finn. I wasn't aware things with you two are actually over. I mean I heard some rumors but…” she laughed, “you can't exactly believe most of them, right?”

“I guess not.” Clarke sucked in a sharp breath before taking a large sip of her beer. She wanted to say something else, she wanted the moment to last a bit longer because it was rare to see Ontari like this, caring, with her walls down, but she didn't know what to say, at all.

“I won't hold you up any longer. There are some bottles of soda in my room, take whatever you need.” Ontari said and reached for her red cup on the beer pong table next to her, before softly brushing her thumb over Clarke's blushing cheek and leaving her to herself. Clarke slowly released a breath she hadn't realized she'd been holding, trying to understand what had just happened. What the hell was that? She thought to herself, not sure if she was referring to Charlotte or Ontari, and slowly made her way upstairs to finally get some soda.

 

***

 

“Jeez Griff, what took you so long?” Raven yelled at Clarke when the blonde approached her friends, misjudging the distance between them and Clarke winced, making a mental note to bring ear plugs next time.

“Met some old friends.” Clarke replied dryly and handed Lexa a cup of coke before sitting down next to her.

“Well, they're old friends for a reason,” Octavia noted from the other side of the fireplace, “how about you spend your time with your new friends now?”

Clarke nodded, emphasizing it with a smile that she hoped convinced her friends. Apparently, it did, because the small group started cheering while clinking their glasses and bottles.

She spent the following hour listening to her friends, occasionally laughing with them, or getting new rounds of drinks from time to time. Mostly though, she watched Lexa who seemed to be absolutely enjoying herself having found a match for discussing documentaries in Lincoln. Nerds. Clarke thought with a smile, bringing her beer to her lips but she never got to drink.

“Well well well, look who we've got here.”

Clarke raised her head and rolled her eyes. “What do you want, Charlotte?”

She stood up and walked over to the other girl in order to draw Charlotte's attention to her, and her only, and she hoped that Lexa wouldn't freak out, either.

“I wanna know who the fuck you think you are to break up with my brother just like that!” Charlotte snapped her fingers to emphasize her point, and Clarke bit down on her lower lip to not let out an amused laugh, remembering how Finn, buried between her breasts, had done exactly the same several months ago.

“I broke up with your brother because he acted like a child, and it's not my job to raise my own partner. It's also not my job to justify myself here.”

“Oh please,” Charlotte snorted in amusement, “you cheated on him, I'd say lucky him to have his freedom from you now.”

This time, Clarke laughed. “I did what?” She asked while opening another beer with her lighter, shooting the lit across the backyard. “Cheated on him?”

“Don't act so dumb, Clarke, I mean you were there. I bet she wasn't even worth–” she stopped talking when she noticed Lexa approaching them, and raised an eyebrow in disbelief when the brunette slid her hand in Clarke's, intertwining their fingers. Clarke could feel Lexa's distress in the way she was squeezing her hand but at the same time, she was lucky that her girl was there, at her side, supporting her, calming her down.

Charlotte took a moment to process what she was witnessing, before she started laughing. After several moments of gasping for breath, she shook her head, a huge grin still playing around her lips, while Clarke and Lexa looked rather unimpressed. Lincoln appeared next to Lexa and calmly crossed his arms.

“I thought you–” another snort, “I thought you said it's not your job to raise your partner, yet I find you here with…” she looked Lexa up and down, “her.

Clarke felt Lexa's grip tighten even more, and the blonde tilted her head to the side but the couple stayed silent.

“Oh please, Clarke, please don't tell me you're serious about this.” Charlotte's grin slowly disappeared when she realized that Clarke was indeed serious. “You… broke up with my brother because of her?”

Scratching her chin, Clarke shook her head and took another step toward the other girl. “No, actually… I broke up with him because he was a bastard. Lexa had nothing to do with this.”

“You ch–”

“I did not cheat on Finn for Christ's sake, especially not with Lexa!” Clarke exclaimed, throwing her head back. She was growing impatient. When she looked back at Charlotte, she could literally see the wheels turning in the girl's head.

“Everything okay here?” They heard Octavia who was now approaching them as well, coming to a halt next to Clarke, while Raven lurched her way between Lexa and Clarke, leaning on their shoulders from behind, careful to not separate their hands.

“Charlotte was just about to go.” Clarke informed them, and the group nodded, each of them trying to hold back their grin.

“Byeee Charlotte!” Octavia quipped in a sing–song while waving at the other blonde, who had a crimson red shade creeping up her cheeks now.

Clarke let out a long sigh, incredibly thankful that everything had gone so well, that no one had flipped out, while they watched Charlotte stumble her way back into the house.

“Oh and Charlotte?” Raven yelled, pulling Clarke out of her thoughtful state, and Clarke watched with wide eyes as her best friend made her way over to Charlotte who was waiting at the French door, one hand on the handle. Without even hesitating, Raven landed a hard punch directly in Charlotte's face who immediately went down.

This is for treating Lexa the way you did.” Raven growled and watched in satisfaction how Charlotte covered her nose, trying to stop the bleeding, whimpering something unintelligible about how it was probably broken.

With tears in her eyes, the blonde glared at Raven. “That little freak–“ she stopped when Raven slowly raised her hands to calmly crack her knuckles.

“At least I don't need my friends to protect me!” Charlotte sneered in Lexa's direction while she got up, struggling a bit.

“At least I have friends.” Lexa noted dryly and the whole group broke into laughters and cheering, waving at Charlotte until she disappeared in the crowd in the house.

After the excitement had eased off, the friends strolled back to the benches around the fireplace. When Lexa turned around as well, Clarke tugged at her hand to stop her and Lexa turned back.

“Clarke?”

The blonde gently cupped her girl's cheeks, taking a moment to search her face for any signs of distress or discomfort, but Lexa seemed to be okay so far.

“Clarke?” Lexa asked again, a small crease forming between her eyebrows.

Instead of answering, Clarke pulled her in for a passionate kiss. It wasn't hurried, it wasn't messy, but it was deep and full of emotions. Lexa wrapped her arms around Clarke's waist, and the blonde swore she had never known what home really felt like before this kiss.

She was glad that her friends, although they rarely let the opportunity slip to make fun of their own friends, knew when not to interrupt an honestly important moment like this one. Of course, especially Raven was sporting a shit–eating grin when she bumped her shoulder into Octavia and whispered a smug “I told you so!” into her friend's ear, but they all gave the two girls the time they needed.

A minute passed, maybe two, or maybe an eternity and a half, until Clarke slowly pulled away, resting her forehead against Lexa's, smiling when she felt the girl twiddle with a twine of her dress. She took a long breath and held it for a moment, before slowly releasing it.

“I love you, too.”

 

 

Chapter Text

The girls had left the party a while later because Lexa still needed her routine, and after the incident with Charlotte, or both of them, Clarke hadn't really been enjoying herself at all anymore. They decided to go to Clarke's apartment but midway, Lexa realized she hadn't brought any of the stuff she would need for her classes the next day.

So here they were, making their way up to Lexa's room in the dorm building.

“Lex, I really… could I just wait outside?” Suddenly, Clarke was nervous. “And I'd… rather you just…”

Lexa stopped at the top of the stairs and turned around to Clarke. “Clarke, I have no idea what you're trying to tell me.”

“I'm talking about Charlotte.” Clarke explained and scratched the back of her neck uncomfortably.

Lexa knitted her eyebrows in confusion. “What about her?”

“I just… I just don't want to bump into her again, and much less than that, I want you to bump into her.”

Lexa's frown slightly deepened as she scrunched her lips to the side. “Okay.” She nodded and continued her way to her room, Clarke following close.

“Wait, Lexa–” she stopped her again, “I meant I don't want us to bump into her today. Like… now.”

Clarke saw the exact moment Lexa understood Clarke's concern, a second before she shook her head. “But she doesn't even live here anymore. I mean, not really. She's still registered here but she spends all her time at her boyfriend's.”

She tilted her head to the side, her eyes absentmindedly wandering up and down Clarke's legs. “At least I think he's her boyfriend. I mean they kiss a lot, so that could be an indication. She never said he's her boyfriend though. But she usually doesn't say anything to me, at all. So maybe–”

“Hey, Lex” Clarke stopped the brunette's rambling with a smile. She didn't exactly know what to feel, she'd had no idea that Charlotte had basically moved out, Lexa had never said a thing. But then again; She knew Lexa, and Lexa just accepted some changes without really giving them much meaning, so Clarke couldn't even be upset about it. Not wanting to spend any more time in the dorm building – just in case –, Clarke asked Lexa to hurry a bit, which the girl did, before they finally went to Clarke's apartment.

 

***

 

Clarke let out an annoyed groan. “Could you help me out of this?” She finally asked, giving up the fight against her dress, wondering how the hell she had managed to zip it up in the first place. It didn't help either that she was a good amount of tipsy now.

Lexa, who was in the middle of unrolling the sleeves of her flannel raised her head. “Pardon?”

“Could you unzip my dress, please?” Clarke asked again, trying not to slur too much.

Lexa nodded and neatly folded her shirt before making her way across Clarke's bedroom to put the blonde out of her misery. Clarke pulled her hair to the side to give Lexa better access, trying to be subtle about the sharp inhale when Lexa's slender fingers softly brushed over her skin. Also, she was well aware of how the other girl's hands were slightly shaking, but she chose to keep quiet and just enjoy the moment.

Lexa carefully unzipped the dress but didn't let go of the zipper. Clarke waited for a moment but nothing happened.

“You okay there?” She asked softly but didn't turn around yet.

Instead of a verbal answer, she sensed Lexa moving closer before she felt soft lips on her right shoulder.

“Lex?” She asked again, her voice barely above a whisper. Suddenly, Lexa pulled away.

“I– sorry, I didn't– I wasn't– you just–” Lexa stumbled over her own words and Clarke's lips twitched into a soft smile about the flustered girl behind her.

“It's okay, Lex, I didn't mind… at all.” She reassured her.

“Can I–” the brunette cleared her throat, “can I try again?”

Clarke nodded and closed her eyes. A moment later, she felt another soft kiss on her shoulder, and her breathing picked up on speed when Lexa's incredibly intoxicating scent flooded her nostrils as the brunette stepped closer, slowly kissing her way up the back of Clarke's neck. Lexa's warm breath tickling her skin sent a shiver through her entire body, and Lexa instinctively laid her hands on the blonde's hips to pull her closer.

Clarke didn't know when it happened, she was too lost in the moment, in the feeling of Lexa's lips on her skin, overwhelmed by the intimacy of the whole situation, but at some point her dress had slid down, leaving her in her underwear. She only realized that her dress was gone when she felt Lexa's front pressing against her naked back, and against her will, her muscles slightly tensed.

Lexa immediately backed away again, and over her own pulse that was currently running a marathon, Clarke could hear the other girl's fast breathing.

“Do you… want me to turn around?” She asked softly.

She could hear Lexa nervously shifting her weight before the girl quietly spoke. “Give me a minute?”

Clarke nodded and waited patiently, or as patiently as she could. The sound of her own heartbeat in her ears was almost deafening. After what felt like an eternity, Lexa finally spoke again. “Okay.”

Pull yourself together, Griff! You're comfortable about your body, Lexa is not the first person to see you like this, what's your problem?! Clarke thought to herself and using up the last bit of courage, she turned around.

Lexa opened her mouth but no words came out, and Clarke had never felt so vulnerable before, standing there in her bedroom, with the girl she was deeply in love with, whose eyes slowly wandered up her legs, over the curves of her hips, shyly glancing at her cleavage, until they finally met her eyes, and even if it was only for a second, Clarke immediately noticed the sheer panic in Lexa's eyes.

“Hey,” she said softly as she stepped closer to Lexa and gently cupped the girl's chin to raise her head so that she could see her face again, “what are you scared of?”

Lexa started twiddling with one of her bracelets and sucked in a shaky breath. “I don't know.” She admitted and Clarke nodded but stayed silent, sensing that there was more that Lexa wanted to say. The brunette squeezed her eyes shut a few times, trying to stay calm and phrase her thoughts.

“I just–” she paused, the twiddling intensifying, “really want to touch you.”

Clarke's features immediately softened and she ducked her head to meet Lexa's eyes. “You can touch me, Lexa.”

The girl closed her eyes again and shook her head. “I mean I want to have sex with you.”

Clarke's eyes widened. “Oh!” was all she could say. She would have expected anything but not for Lexa to be so… direct, although she should've known better because Lexa usually said what she was thinking. This however was a whole new level, for both of them, and Clarke mentally kicked herself because she wanted nothing more than to make this experience with Lexa, and she would have waited forever and a day, until Lexa was ready. And now that she was, Clarke wasn't.

“I…” she started but paused to take a deep breath, “trust me, I really… I really want this too, but I'm kinda drunk,” she laughed nervously, “and I want to do this right, and I want to be completely sober.“ She shook her head, trying to sort her thoughts.

“I'll be honest, I hadn't expected for this to happen so soon, or not soon, I don't know,” she watched as a deep crease formed between Lexa's eyebrows, “I just– I just want this to be perfect for you and I…” she trailed off, a tear forming in her eye as she was desperately trying to form coherent sentences, “I just… God I'm such an idiot.” She chose to stop rambling and give Lexa the chance to say something, as well.

Now it was Clarke who was fumbling with her hands as she anxiously awaited the brunette's reply.

“Okay.” Lexa said finally and Clarke let out a small laugh, relieved and confused at the same time.

“Okay?” She asked doubtfully.

Lexa nodded. “That's okay. Actually, I lost track somewhere in the middle because you speak really fast when you're nervous,” she explained calmly and Clarke grinned, a blush coloring her cheeks, “but it's okay.”

Clarke couldn't help but smile at her girl, Lexa was too adorable for her heart to take, and whatever the girl did, her love for her was growing stronger with every second.

With a soft peck on Lexa's lips, Clarke stepped away. “Let's get some sleep, okay?”

 

***

 

After getting ready for bed – not without Clarke leaving a toothpasty kiss on Lexa's cheek which the brunette wiped away with a frown, making Clarke smile even more – they climbed into bed and automatically cuddled up under the blanket.

Feeling a comfortable exhaustion kick in, Clarke thought about the evening and all the intense events that it had brought with it, from Ontari standing up for her, to Raven breaking Charlotte's nose, to Lexa bluntly telling her that she wanted to sleep with her, she contentedly closed her eyes, and listening to Lexa's calm breathing, which had easily become one of her most favorite sounds in the world, Clarke slowly drifted off to sleep.

“I love you anyway.” Lexa suddenly broke the silence, and Clarke softly chuckled. Whatever Lexa's train of thoughts had been, Clarke was definitely too tired to try to understand it, so she didn't ask. With a smile still playing on her lips, Clarke dozily left a kiss on Lexa's shoulder, before she finally fell asleep.

 

Chapter Text

It was the first December weekend and Clarke dreaded Christmas and everything that somewhat had to do with it. With everything she had in her. She simply didn't like it, at all. The stress, the hustle, even the shopping.

Not that it would've been particularly difficult because her friends would get self made calendars with photos of them together, as usual, her mom would get a bottle of wine, as usual, and her maternal grandparents whom she hadn't seen since she was five, would get a card. As usual. 

The actual problem this year was that she had agreed on meeting Lexa's family, not because Lexa asked but apparently Anya was dying to meet her. She wasn't sure whether Lexa's parents even knew about her. Nevertheless, she'd have to get them presents as well, and she had no idea what to give them. 

Even more than Christmas shopping though, Clarke hated that everyone thought Christmas time began at the very first of December, no matter what, and that Christmas time meant family time, and Clarke really wasn't excited about that either, not in the slightest.

So when her mother called her on the first Friday of the month, she already knew what Abby wanted.

With a groan, she turned her phone around so that she no longer had to see her mother's picture on the screen. The only sign that her mother hadn't given up yet was the constant vibration against the couch table.

“Why don't you answer that call?” Lexa asked from the other side of the couch where her back was resting against the arm rest. Clarke sighed, her thumb softly caressing the skin of Lexa's ankle in her lap, relieved when the aggressive vibration finally stopped.

“It's my mom.” She explained and turned her head to Lexa, who was now looking back at her over her book.

“Okay, but that doesn't answer my question.” Lexa pushed.

The blonde let her head fall on the backrest behind her. “It kinda does. I mean I never answer calls from my mom.”

Lexa nodded and turned her attention back to her book, while Clarke closed her eyes, ready for a desperately needed nap.

“But what if it's important?”

“It's not.” Clarke mumbled, already half asleep.

She felt Lexa shift and immediately missed the contact when the other girl pulled her legs away to cross them underneath her. “How do you know that?”

Clarke opened her eyes and lazily turned her head back to Lexa. “Because it's my mom.”

Lexa's small frown indicated that Clarke's answer clearly hadn't satisfied her, and seeing her girl with a frown usually made Clarke smile or broke her heart, and this time it was the latter.

Before she could explain the situation to Lexa, her phone started vibrating again. She picked it up and wasn't particularly surprised to see it was her mother, again. Just as she was about to decline the call, she noticed Lexa tilt her head to the side from the corner of her eye, and swallowing her pride, she decided to answer.

“Hey mom.” She said with an emotionless voice and turned back to Lexa who was now smiling at her. With a grin, Clarke poked her tongue out and let out a small laugh when Lexa immediately dropped her head.

Listening with half an ear to her mom talking about some conference, Clarke reached out to gently flick the tip of Lexa's nose, causing the girl's head to shoot back up, and once again, Clarke puffed out a laughter when Lexa glared back at her.

“…or tomorrow?” She heard her mom ask on the other side of the call, and realized that she had absolutely no idea what her mother had been talking about for the last two minutes. She also wondered who in the world would blame her for paying attention to Lexa instead of Abby.

“Sorry mom, bad reception. What's the question?” Clarke asked, fighting the urge to lean over and kiss her girlfriend. She figured if she focused on the call now, it would be over much faster, and then she'd have all the time in the world to kiss Lexa.

What's the last thing you heard then?” Abby asked to know which topics she would have to repeat.

Clarke scratched the back of her neck. “Uh… I just didn't really hear the question.” She lied and hoped she hadn't missed any important things.

I asked if today would be good for you, or if tomorrow would be better?”

Clarke furrowed her brows. “For what?”

Christmas market,” Abby said as if it was the most obvious thing in the world, “Clarke, honey, are you okay?”

“Yeah, I–” Clarke cleared her throat and shook her head, trying to process what the hell was happening and what her mom was talking about, “tomorrow's perfect.”

Oh great!” Her mom exclaimed, clearly surprised, clearly excited. “I'll call you again so we can set time and place?”

Clarke squeezed her eyes shut and pinched the bridge of her nose. “Uh–huh.”

When Abby said Goodbye and ended the call, Clarke slowly lowered her hand and rested it on her thigh.

“Clarke?”

“Hm?”

“Are you okay? You're kind of pale.”

Instead of answering, Clarke let out a defeated moan while she let herself fall to the side, landing face down on the couch.

“Mm mwhm nts t'gg–”

“What?” Lexa interrupted her.

Clarke weakly raised her head so that she was no longer mumbling into the pillow.

“My mom wants to go to the Christmas market tomorrow. I think she's in town for a conference or something, and I agreed. I'm such an idiot.”

A moment passed before Lexa spoke again. “Why's that a problem though?”

“I hate spending time with my mom, especially alone.” Clarke whined and turned around so that she was lying on her back, shifting until her head was in Lexa's lap.

“Then don't go alone?” Lexa suggested, and in an instant, Clarke was wide awake again. She looked up at Lexa whose eyes were glued to the logo on Clarke's shirt, and tried to figure out if the brunette was aware of what she had just said.

“Would you come with us?” Clarke asked, a gleam of hope building up in her chest. 

“Well no,” Lexa shrugged and started playing with one of her bracelets, “I'd rather not.”

“Pleeease Lex, it'll be just one hour. At a max! And I promise my mom's not that bad!” Clarke whined again and sighed when Lexa shook her head.

“No I don't mean your mom,” Lexa clarified, “I mean the Christmas market.”

Clarke tilted her head to the side, or as much as possible in Lexa's lap, still looking up at the girl. “What about it?”

“It's too much,” Lexa explained, “too many bright lights with different colors, and too many different sounds, basically everywhere.” 

“Okay…?” Clarke started but paused to sort her thoughts. “What did you mean then when you told me to not go alone?” 

“I meant that if you went somewhere else, I'd go with you. I think your mom wants to spend time with you, and maybe it doesn't necessarily have to be at the market? Sorry, I guess that only made sense in my head. I don't know though. I mean I don't know her, so I don't know. It just seemed logical to me, from what I've heard in…” Lexa stopped her rambling and laughed, a small blush coloring her cheeks, while Clarke basically jumped into an upright position so that she was facing Lexa properly.

“You mean if we went to the park or something, you'd tag along?” Clarke was sure she had never felt so hopeful before, at least not in the past thirty seconds.

Still looking at the logo on Clarke's shirt, or maybe not the logo, Clarke wasn't so sure anymore, Lexa nodded.

Letting out a squeak of excitement, Clarke jumped forward and covered every spot of Lexa's face she could reach with kisses.

“Clarke”

“You're amazing!” She blonde cupped Lexa's cheeks so that she could hold her in place, well aware that it would only take Lexa another two seconds to try and duck away.

“Clarke.”

“Seriously, you're the best and I–”

“Clarke.”

“Love you so much and I–”

“Clarke!”

Finally, Clarke let go of Lexa and let out an amused laugh while she brushed some stray hair out of the brunette's face. Lexa huffed in mild frustration and swatted Clarke's hand away.

“Sorry.” Clarke grinned and moved back to her side of the couch, giving Lexa some peace. She watched with a smile as the other girl corrected her disheveled hair and clothes, before she leaned back against the arm rest, and immediately got lost in her book again.

Well shit. Clarke thought as she tried to get comfortable as well, but thinking about Abby was actually anything but comforting. Overall, the woman was a nice person, friendly, polite and if she wanted, she could be considerate as well, but there were a few things she had no idea about, starting with the fact that Clarke was in a relationship with Lexa.

Chapter Text

Fortunately, Abby had agreed on meeting Clarke at the glogg stand in the park, still clueless about the changes in her daughter's life, since Clarke preferred to just let her mother meet Lexa.

Abby had suggested 5:15pm and thanks to Lexa, they were now fifteen minutes early because the girl had wanted to be there at five because, well, it simply felt better, and who would Clarke have been to deny her favorite shy girl a wish?

However, she was currently rethinking her decision because it was incredibly freezing. Goddamnit. She mentally cursed herself, wondering why on earth she had agreed on even going out in the first place. Four minutes into waiting, Lexa suddenly shuffled closer and nuzzled her face into Clarke's scarf, and the blonde automatically wrapped her arms around the other girl.

“You smell nice.” She heard Lexa mumble against her neck, and let out a small laugh which quickly changed into shivering.

“Thanks,” Clarke said with chattering teeth, “I bet you smell nice too, but unfortunately, I can't oh for fuck's sake,” she cursed the cold, “unfortunately I can't smell anything at all, my nose is kinda numb,” she paused to let out another loud groan, trying to scare the cold away, “and so is my brain.”

She felt Lexa shake her head and smiled at the thought of Lexa debating whether she should tell Clarke that a brain didn't go numb from temperatures like the current one.

They stood like penguins for another two minutes until Lexa pulled away again.

“Clarke?” She mumbled into her red scarf, her eyes trained on the blonde's boots.

“Yeah?” Clarke asked softly and watched Lexa fumble with a strap of her jacket.

“Are you mad at me?”

Clarke's eyes softened as she tilted her head, mentally cursing Lexa because she rarely met her eyes, and this was one of the times where it would've been really helpful. Then again, Lexa found eyes incredibly confusing and distracting, so on second thought, it wasn't too bad that she was still looking at the blonde's boots.

“Lex,” Clarke said softly, “why would I be mad at you?”

The other girl took a moment to think and phrase her thoughts. “Well for around fourteen reasons.”

Clarke couldn't help but laugh, well aware that Lexa probably even had exactly fourteen situations in mind.

“Fourteen?” Clarke asked and Lexa nodded into her scarf. “I can't even think of one.” The blonde admitted and watched as Lexa's fingers began to work faster with her jacket's strap.

“Well, mainly because I was so direct the other day,” Lexa quickly glanced at Clarke's face and then back at her boots, “I don't… some people don't like it, and I'm not sure about you.” She shook her head. “I don't know if it was too much.”

Clarke's lips curled up into a smile when she realized what her girlfriend was referring to. “You mean after the party?”

Lexa nodded.

“Aw Lex,” Clarke cooed and reached out to gently tuck a lose strand behind a tiny ear, “don't worry about that.” Clarke assured her.

A moment later, her smile turned into a smirk. “Actually, that was a huge turn on.”

At that, Lexa's eyes darted up and Clarke shot her a suggestive wink, laughing when the brunette's face morphed into a rather baffled expression.

Before either of them could say anything else, Abby approached and excitedly greeted them, and got ready to hug Clarke but quickly changed her mind when she saw Clarke slightly back away. It wasn't that Clarke wasn't happy to see her mom, it was just that she couldn't touch her for some reason. She would never admit it, but deep inside, she even felt sorry. However, she couldn't change it.

Abby opted for a smile instead and turned to Lexa. “And you are…?” She said encouragingly, while Clarke quickly took Lexa's hand, sensing that her girl wasn't prepared for the sudden approach of Abby.

“Lexa.” The brunette mumbled into her scarf and Clarke wasn't sure whether her mom had heard her.

Abby nodded and her eyes fell on the intertwined hands between the girls, and nodded again, before directing her attention back to the girls' faces. Clarke wasn't completely sure of how to interpret Abby's smile, so she decided it was a good sign.

They didn't waste any more time with awkward introductions and started walking, Lexa staying close to Clarke, absentmindedly playing with the blonde's fingers, and Clarke could tell how incredibly nervous the girl was.

They stopped at the ice rink where Abby announced she couldn't feel her feet any longer, so she would go and get a coffee, and asked if the girls wanted anything as well. After Clarke opted for a coffee as well, they both turned to Lexa who had her head lowered, deeply focused on flicking her fingers, apparently unaware of the question.

“Lex?” Clarke nudged her softly and the girl's head shot up, a small hint of panic flashing through her eyes.

“Sorry, I wasn't– did you– um.” Lexa stumbled.

“All good," Clarke smiled, “mom asked if you want something to drink?” Clarke explained and waited for a moment, watching Lexa's eyes flicker between her and Abby, but the girl remained silent.

“Hot chocolate maybe?” Clarke helped and squeezed Lexa's hand reassuringly, well aware of the confused look on Abby's face. Lexa opened her mouth and then shut it again, opting for a nod instead.

“Okay uh… okay then.” Abby said, hesitating for a moment before she turned to leave to get the drinks.

“Hey, you okay?” Clarke asked softly and took a step toward Lexa, carefully searching the girl's face for any signs of distress.

Lexa quickly lowered her head but nodded and shifted her weight nervously.

“We can go if you want?” Clarke offered. “Just tell me if you wanna leave, and we'll leave.”

Lexa squeezed her eyes shut and shook her head. “No I–” she huffed in mild frustration, about herself as Clarke guessed, “it's stupid that a situation like this irritates me.”

“Hey, it's not stupid,” Clarke gently brushed some hair out of her girl's face, “to be honest, I'm pretty nervous, too. I don't know how to act around my mom either.” She admitted and watched as the small crease between Lexa's eyebrows slowly disappeared. Clarke quickly pecked the brunette's lips before Abby came back.

“Coffee for you,” she said and handed Clarke the hot mug, “and a hot chocolate for Lexa.” She announced and Clarke furrowed her brows in confusion about the weird tone in her mom's voice, wondering why the hell she was suddenly speaking like her tongue was paralyzed. Lexa seemed to be confused as well, tilting her head.

“Are you okay Mrs Griffin?” She asked and Clarke couldn't help but let out a laugh. She quickly pulled herself together. Even before she grasped what was actually happening, she saw that Lexa already knew.

“Yes, I– why are you asking?” Abby said, now the third member of team confusion as Clarke called it.

Lexa shrugged and scratched her ear with her free hand. “Because you suddenly sounded weird.” She explained, her voice almost steady now.

Abby shifted her weight uncomfortably and started gesturing around aimlessly in a weak attempt to express her point. “I just thought I– I mean that you–,” she cleared her throat to stop herself from letting her assumption slip, “I don't know what I thought.”

Clarke shook her head in embarrassment while Lexa calmly took a sip of her hot chocolate, before smiling at Abby. “I'm an Aspie, Mrs Griffin, not retarded.” She explained matter–of–factly, while Clarke bit the insides of her cheeks to not let out a laugh about the crimson red shade of Abby's cheeks, knowing full well that Lexa hadn't really been offended by Abby.

“I didn't– that's not what I–” Abby stuttered in utter embarrassment while Lexa quickly lowered her head, a soft smile still playing on her lips.

“It's okay Mrs Griffin, I'm not mad.” She said, her smile widening when Clarke leaned closer and left a quick kiss on her girl's cheek.

After apologizing for the umpteenth time, and the girls reassuring her that it was absolutely fine, for the umpteenth time, Abby finally calmed down. Clarke almost felt sorry for her mom. She couldn't even blame her because she knew how Lexa appeared to some people, most of them actually, but her mom had clearly overstepped a mark nonetheless.

She also had to admit that she was surprised when Lexa immediately knew what was up with Abby, even before Clarke even had an idea. And last but not least, she was incredibly impressed by how Lexa had handled the situation.

  

***

 

Since Lexa was now in the middle of moving to Raven's apartment and her room was filled with boxes, sleeping at Clarke's had become Lexa's routine in the past few days. Not that Clarke minded.

“Did you have a good time?” Clarke asked while she snuggled closer to Lexa under the blanket and wrapped an arm around her waist.

Lexa's lips formed an amused smirk as she started fiddling with Clarke's necklace. “Definitely… your mom is nice.”

Clarke snorted. “She thought you're intellectually disabled.”

Lexa's smile grew wider. “Yeah. It's okay though, she's nice anyway. I like her.”

Clarke's eyes softened and she leaned forward to leave a kiss on Lexa's lips. “That makes at least one of us.”

The brunette knitted her brows. “You know, Clarke… I don't really understand people, they're just confusing. I also constantly fail to read people correctly, so I might as well be miles away from the truth, but I don't think that you hate her.”

Clarke shifted a little to get a better sight of her girl's face while Lexa paused for a moment, deeply concentrated.

“Maybe you don't really know how to talk to Abby, or even what to think about her, and maybe you just misinterpret this uncertainty into something that it isn't. I mean it kind of makes sense in my head right now but maybe I'm really wrong about this anyway. I guess I'm just trying to help.” She finished her rambling with a shy smile.

Clarke remained silent for a long while, letting Lexa's words sink in. She knew that she didn't hate Abby. She also knew that her mom was trying, really hard. But she also knew that some things didn't change overnight. Maybe though, she thought, maybe Lexa was right.

“Thank you.” She said softly.

“What for?”

Clarke pulled Lexa closer and nuzzled her nose into the crook of her girl's neck. “For being you.”

 

Chapter Text

Clarke let out a weak moan as she turned around and pulled her blanket up and over her nose. She knew what more there was to Christmas time that she hated than just everything. It also came with colds. And Clarke had caught a big one.

It took her less than a second to figure out that with a clogged nose, pulling the blanket over her face hadn't been her brightest idea, so she quickly freed her airways again. Her eyes lazily wandered around the room while she asked herself what she had done to deserve this misery.

With the last bit of strength, she reached out for her phone and slowly typed in a message. She just managed to hit send before she closed her eyes, ready to die from extreme exhaustion.

Clarke (11:04am): Lexa I'm so so sorry but I won't be able to make it today :(

The reply came almost instantly.

Lexa :) (11:05am): You promised you'd be there

Clarke's heart broke, imagining how Lexa's face fell when she read the message.

Clarke (11:06am): I know sunshine, but I caught a nasty ass cold and I'm kinda dead :( I told Raven to go with you though!

Clarke (11:07am): I'm really sorry, I wish I could be there. I know how important this is, and I'm thinking of you and my fingers are almost breaking, I'm crossing them so hard!! <3

Lexa :) (11:09am): Please don't break you fingers. (In case this wasn't a joke, not sure.)

A smile spread across the blonde's face as she typed in her reply.

Clarke (11:10am): It was a joke ;) Hey I'm here so if you want to talk when everything's over, just call me or whatever you like! <3

Lexa :) (11:10am): Okay

Clarke switched off her phone and rolled onto her back which sent her into a coughing fit. “Oh fuck me.” She groaned after her lungs had calmed down, and closed her eyes again. Even if she had tried, she wouldn't have been able to express how incredibly bad she felt for leaving Lexa alone today, but she knew Raven would do her best supporting her girl.

 

***

 

“Lexa, hey!” Raven greeted the other brunette when she arrived a few minutes early, just in case.

She watched as Lexa jumped and turned around, extreme nervousness evident in her whole appearance, from the mild panic in her eyes to the fast fiddling with the hem of her hoodie. The girl sent a small smile to Raven and waved, before she quickly lowered her head again.

Thanks to the moving, they had been spending enough time together lately for Raven to know exactly what and, more importantly, what not to say or do. So against the urge of hugging Lexa, she decided to keep a safe distance and give her a few more minutes.

“You ready to go in?” She finally asked and watched carefully when Lexa's shoulders tensed and the girl shook her head.

“No.”

“Anything I can do that would help you?” Raven tried again, desperate to make it as easy for Lexa as possible. The girl flicked the fingers of her left hand a few times before she hesitantly spoke.

“It… it would help if Clarke was here.”

Raven nodded understandingly, knowing how much Lexa needed her girlfriend right now, but she had talked to Clarke earlier, so she also knew that the blonde had tried, she really had, but the moment she had tried to get up, the blonde had almost passed out, and that wouldn't have been helpful at all.

“C'mon, the sooner we go inside, the sooner we're out again and then I can drop you off at Clarke's, okay?” Raven suggested, encouragingly smiling at Lexa when the girl glanced at her. It took her another moment but eventually, Lexa slowly nodded and followed Raven into the building.

 

***

 

“Miss Woods, glad you could make it, I'm David Miller, please take a seat.” The officer said and waited for Lexa to sit down, before he followed suit and clicked a few things on his computer.

“Would you like me to explain the procedure?” He offered and looked at the girl.

“Yes please, if you don't mind?” Lexa asked shyly.

David Miller nodded and quickly clicked a few more buttons before he fully turned to the brunette. “I'll need an ID first, and we'll go through some basic information before we get to the issue.” He explained and took the ID that Lexa handed him with slightly shaking hands.

“Would you like a coffee or something else?” He asked in a friendly tone, well aware of the girl's nervousness, as he began to type the ID's number into his computer.

“I uh– no thank you.” Lexa stuttered and the officer watched as she started playing with her sleeve.

He nodded again. “Well then. I'll need your full name, your birthdate, birthplace and current place of residence.”

Lexa cleared her throat and shifted in her seat before answering the questions.

“Alright, thank you. We'll now get to the incident. Please answer as detailed as you can, and if you don't know something, please make that clear as well since a false statement can and will have legal consequences. Okay?” He explained and waited for another moment, and eventually, Lexa nodded her head.

“I'll need you to verbally agree.”

“I uh– yes, okay.” Lexa stuttered, her hands still playing with her sleeve.

“Let's begin with a short description about the incident, being location, time and those involved.”

“Okay.”

“Can you tell me something about these points?” He asked with a friendly smile.

Lexa nodded and shifted again. “It was in the office building of my university, around 6:30pm and um… Clarke was involved and my father was involved, and I was involved, too.” The girl said and quickly added, “And the secretary and my foster–sister. But only on the phone. I don't know if that counts.” She rambled nervously.

The officer nodded as he transferred the information into his computer. “What's your connection to Clarke Griffin?

“She's my girlfriend.” Lexa said quietly and her lips immediately curled up into a small smile.

More typing. “Alright. How about you just start your description of what happened? Please know that it is okay if you need time for several things, we're not in a hurry.”

Lexa began telling the officer what happened back then with Quint Woods, pausing every once in a while to steady her breathing and sort or phrase her thoughts, and David Miller waited patiently and gave her all the time she needed, reassuring her that it is okay that she couldn't remember most of what happened between Clarke and Quint, because he already had Clarke's statement. After her description of the events, Miller went over to more specific questions, explaining that she could give one word answers, or decline to answer a question.

“Are you worried about your safety?”

“I um–” Lexa cleared her throat, “I don't know. I mean I know he had a reason, so I… no?”

The officer furrowed his brows and paused for a moment but then nodded. “How did his behavior affect you?”

Lexa frowned. “I panicked. I already told you that.”

“So would you say in this moment, you were worried about your safety?” The officer pressed, the crease between his eyebrows deepening when Lexa shook her head.

“No. Clarke wouldn't have let anything bad happen.” She said matter–of–factly, her eyes still trained on her fumbling hands.

Miller nodded with a small smile and decided to drop this question for now; If necessary, Lexa's descriptions would be answer enough.

“Miss Woods,” he started and quickly scrolled through something in his computer, “you've entered the foster care system when you were eight, and with ten, you were adopted by Indra and Gustus Oak, is that correct?”

Lexa nodded. “Yes.”

“Are you aware that your birth parents signed a contract back then which legally forbids them to contact you once an adoption is finalized?”

With a deep frown, indicating her confusion, Lexa slowly shook her head, so Miller continued.

“This basically means that by contacting you, Mister Quint Woods has violated the law.”

“Okay…” Lexa said slowly.

“In consideration of the incident, would you like to press charges against Quint Woods?”

The girl was quiet for a long while, and the officer waited patiently, knowing full well that this was a very important and complicated question with heavy consequences.

It took her several minutes to sort her thoughts, but eventually, Lexa shifted once again and cleared her throat. “No.”

Miller waited for another moment, in case Lexa wanted to add something, but when the girl remained silent, he reluctantly nodded.

“Well, that would be all then.” He got up and walked over to the door, waiting for Lexa to realize she was free to go now and get up as well. “Please let us know if you change your address or telephone number as we may need to contact you again. Furthermore, don't hesitate to call me if you change your mind.”

Lexa nodded and for the first time in an hour, she raised her head to quickly smile at the officer, before she nervously shook his hand and left his office. She made her way to the waiting room where Raven shot up when she saw her, checking whether Lexa was uncomfortable or overwhelmed even, smiling when she figured she wasn't.

“How was it? You okay?” She asked as they left the building and walked over to Raven's car.

“I don't know,” Lexa shrugged and opened the passenger door, “good I guess.”

She quickly glanced at Raven who grinned back at her over the roof of the car. “Wanna see Clarke now?”

At the mention of her girlfriend's name, Lexa's frown immediately morphed into a wide smile. Raven laughed and shook her head as she climbed into her car. “You're such a mush.”

 

Chapter Text

“You got a key, mush head?” Raven asked after knocking on Clarke's door for the third time.

Lexa shook her head and slowly started playing with the hem of her hoodie, her eyes trained on the spot where Raven had knocked on the wood. “Why should I have a key?”

“Because she's your girlfriend and as much as I like the fact that officially, you're moving in with me, you're obviously living here.” Raven grinned and reached into her back pocket.

“Uh…” Lexa started when Raven pulled out a credit card and did quick work on opening Clarke's door. Lexa watched with wide eyes and finally shut her mouth when Raven turned around to her with a shrug.

“You're welcome. And tell Clarke she needs to fix this because nowadays, this trick really shouldn't work anymore.” She explained and with a quick wave, she turned to leave Lexa, whose eyes were glued to the knob of the now open door.

She reached out, her hand hovering over the knob for a few seconds, until she quickly pulled her hand back. A moment later, she took a deep breath and finally stepped inside.

“Clarke?” She whispered when she entered Clarke's bedroom, but the blonde didn't move. She was lying on her side, breathing heavily, her blanket pulled up to her chin, a thin layer of sweat covering her forehead.

Lexa shifted her weight and waited for another moment for Clarke to react, and when nothing happened, she hesitantly removed her shoes and sat down on the bed, crossing her legs beneath her.

Clarke woke up to a tickling feeling in her hand and immediately smiled when she opened her eyes to see Lexa, who was sitting in the middle of her bed, gently playing with her hand.

“Hey,” the blonde croaked out with a smile and the moment Lexa realized Clarke was awake, she instantly let go of her hand. “It's okay, don't–” a coughing fit cut her off for a moment, “don't stop. It's relaxing.”

The blonde sighed contentedly when Lexa took her hand again. “How did the chitchat go?” She asked and pulled at the girl's hand until she could kiss the back of it.

“What chitchat?”

“With the police.” Clarke mumbled against Lexa's knuckles.

“It wasn't really a chitchat but it went well.”

“Mh…” Clarke hummed dozily, “what's the outcome? Is he going to jail?”

“No.”

The blonde furrowed her brows and opened her eyes a bit, enough to see Lexa. “What do you mean 'no'?”

“I won't press charges against him.”

Clarke was awake in an instant. With the last bit of strength she had in her, she tried to sit up, but exhaustion kicked in halfway so she leaned on her elbows instead. “Why not?”

Lexa shrugged. “I don't want anything to do with him, and I think maybe he knows that, and maybe if I don't press charges, he'll just leave me alone?”

“Hm.” Clarke said and scrunched her lips to one side while she considered Lexa's answer. “Yeah, maybe. It's just…” she huffed and plopped back into her pillows, “it's just that I would've felt better if he was, I don't know… locked up or something. Or at least a restraining order or something.”

“Can we maybe not talk about this?” Lexa asked quietly, and Clarke's heart almost broke and melted at the same time.

“Of course, I'm sorry.” She said softly and shifted a bit so she could open her arms. “Come here?”

They stayed there for a long time, Lexa's back pressed into Clarke's front, the blonde's arms wrapped around her waist. The feeling of the brunette's soft fingers gently playing with her own slowly but surely sent Clarke to sleep, but she didn't want to sleep now. Not yet, anyway. Not with her favorite girl in her arms. Suddenly, she remembered something.

“Hey Lex?” She mumbled into the back of her neck, eyes still closed.

“Yeah?”

“I've got something for you,” Clarke smiled and pointed to her bedside table, “it's the poorly wrapped thing there.”

She opened her eyes when she felt Lexa untangle herself and watched as the girl sat back up and reached out for the thin package.

“That's poorly wrapped indeed.” Lexa noted and Clarke's smile widened, a blush creeping up her cheeks. The brunette peeled off the gift wrap and looked at the small canvas in her hands, taking a long moment just looking at the painting, before she let her right hand hover over it, careful not to touch it.

“You can touch it, you know.” Clarke grinned and watched as Lexa shook her head, opened her mouth and shut it again when nothing came out.

“I wasn't–” her own cough interrupted her, “I wasn't really able to get up and go buy you flowers, but I wanted to give you something, so the only thing I could do really was paint you flowers instead and it–”

“I can't focus when you talk so much.” Lexa interrupted her nervous rambling, and Clarke pulled her blanket up to cover her huge smile. The blonde watched as Lexa, finally, touched the painting, even if it wasn't more than a ghost touch really. Her slender fingers wandered over the small paint bumps, every swirl of the paint brush, and even the almost invisible pencil lines, until suddenly, a small tear rolled down her cheek.

Ignoring the dizziness, Clarke jumped into an upright position and cupped Lexa's cheek with one hand, before she gently wiped away the warm tear with her thumb.

“Please don't cry, Lex,” she cooed and leaned forward to leave a kiss on her girl's lips, “why are you crying?”

She waited patiently and watched as Lexa continued tracing the lines and every little detail with her fingers, until the girl shook her head and ducked away in one motion, causing Clarke to let go of her cheek.

“It's just… people don't give me… things. I mean nice things…” Lexa shook her head again, trying to come up with words, “Gifts.” she added quickly, visibly relieved that her brain was still working. “You shouldn't have… I mean it's so beautiful and you probably spent so much time on this and it's so beautiful,” Clarke smiled when Lexa repeated herself, “and so… precious. You can't just give me something like that.”

Clarke watched with a soft smile as Lexa was almost helplessly trying to express her thoughts, especially because she was talking nonsense.

“Lex” she softly interrupted her and took her girlfriend's hand before it could start fiddling with the edge of the small canvas. Not that Clarke would've minded but, judging by her reaction to a simple thing like this painting, she knew Lexa would scold herself forever and a day for damaging it.

She waited until she was sure Lexa was listening to her. “I wanted to give you something because you mean a lot to me, so of course I spend a lot of time on it, and it's perfectly fine because it's something that I love to do, and I want you to have it.” She explained and left another kiss on her girl's lips.

“But it's so beautiful.” Lexa tried again, and Clarke nodded.

“I had a beautiful inspiration.” She grinned and fell back into her pillows, letting out a small laugh when Lexa furrowed her brows. She could practically see the wheels turning in the brunette's head.

“What was your inspiration?” Lexa asked slowly, still mesmerized by the painting in her hands.

The blonde stayed silent for a long moment, her eyes wandering up from Lexa's slender fingers, over her neck with the softest skin, up to her face, carefully studying every little detail from the thin brown circle around her pupil to the tiny mole on her lip.

With a smile, she reached out and gently tucked a strand of brunette waves behind Lexa's ear. “Oh you clueless little thing.”

 

Chapter Text

“How come you barely have a sore throat while I'm dying here?” Clarke groaned while pouring hot water into her mug. “You're my girlfriend, you should at least have a real cold as well after all the kissing!”

“My immune system is actually intact. I do my sport and I eat healthy, Clarke. You should try that sometime.” Lexa noted dryly and scribbled down another bunch of equations.

Clarke rolled her eyes and shuffled back to the couch, carefully putting down her tea on the couch table before plopping down, not without letting out another moan, wallowing in self–pity. She knew Lexa was right, she sucked at leading a healthy lifestyle. Well, I'll start that healthy life shit tomorrow. She thought to herself, already finding peace in the fact that for her, tomorrow was a very loose concept.

“So what's your plan for the evening?” The blonde asked after a while of sipping her tea and watching Lexa doing… math stuff.

“Roommate party with Raven.” Lexa mumbled absently, not looking up from her book.

“And I'm not invited?” Clarke gasped playfully. When Lexa shook her head, the blonde narrowed her eyes. “Rude.”

At that, Lexa's head shot up and she looked at Clarke with her eyebrows raised in concern. “Are you mad?”

“Mad that my girlfriend and my best friend are getting along so well that they have parties together?” Clarke asked with a grin.

Lexa nodded and Clarke couldn't help but let out a soft laugh. She almost felt bad for teasing Lexa about this topic, and not for a second could she be mad at her girlfriend for bonding with Raven. If anything, she was relieved that they were developing a friendship because what more could she wish for?

“No, I'm not mad.” She said, widening her smile to reassure Lexa that she was just kidding. “But I will be if you two don't invite me to your housewarming party!” She finished with a grin and watched relieved when Lexa happily nodded.

 

***

 

“Well damn.” Raven cursed when she checked the fridge for drinks and realized she was way too Raven to have a roommate like Lexa, because her fridge was basically stocked with beer, and beer only. With a shrug, she opened one for herself and made her way to Lexa's room.

The door was open, and Lexa was in the middle of sorting her books in the shelf, so Raven leaned against the doorframe and decided to wait until her new roommate was done.

She let her eyes wander around the room and she would have been lying if she had said she wasn't fascinated by Lexa's tidiness. Her desk was basically empty apart from the laptop and a few candles, as well as the bedside table with only a phone charger and a framed photo of her and Clarke.

Raven smiled at the memory. She had taken it during a lunch break several weeks ago; The girls had been in their own little bubble, oblivious to the people around them. Lexa's eyes were glued to the grape–leaf anemone in her hand that Clarke had plucked for her, a huge smile spreading across her face when Clarke leaned over and kissed her cheek, her eyes closed, and Raven had been quick enough to capture this moment.

She took another sip of her beer before her eyes fell on the electric guitar on the other side of the room, and she raised her eyebrows.

“You play?”

Lexa slightly jumped and turned around, a confused look on her face, so Raven quickly pointed at the instrument.

“Is that a problem?” Lexa asked nervously and reached down to the hem of her shirt.

Raven shook her head and grinned. “No, not at all! Actually that's pretty cool! That was just… unexpected.” She nodded towards the guitar. “What do you play? Or listen to, in general?”

“Um… mostly Nine Inch Nails and Deftones.”

Raven almost choked on her beer at that answer. Never in a million years would she have expected Lexa to listen to those bands, let alone rock along on a guitar. “No shit?” She asked, still not sure whether the girl was joking or not.

Lexa shrugged, staring at the instrument. “Their music is… uncomplicated. Not too much going on there.”

“Honey, are we talking about the same bands?” Raven laughed and shook her head. “The industrial rock Nine Inch Nails? The metal Deftones?” Lexa knitted her eyebrows and nodded. “And you're telling there's not much going on there?”

“They don't have many background noises.” Lexa tried to explain. On that, Raven could agree.

They talked some more about music and Raven learned that Gustus had introduced Lexa to the guitar, finding a way to communicate with her through music when Lexa shut out everyone else.

 

***

 

“So…” Raven started and handed Lexa a soda can that had miraculously appeared behind a six–pack of beer before she plopped down on the couch next to the girl, “is there anything I have to know, consider or remember about living with you?”

Lexa took a moment to sort her thoughts, absently playing with the pull ring.

“It um–” Lexa cleared throat, “it would be helpful if we could schedule the housecleaning.”

“Okay,” Raven nodded, “in what way? Like, the tasks or the time or…?”

“Both. The main problem for me is vacuum cleaning,” she shifted nervously, “so um… maybe I could do all the cleaning but if you would… undertake this?”

Raven's face took on a baffled expression. “You want to do all the cleaning if I just hoover up the place? How come?”

“Well it's mostly the sound. I really hate it.” Lexa admitted and quickly glanced at Raven before she directed her gaze back to the can in her hands. “Also, I don't touch anything dusty because it feels funny on my skin.”

Raven grinned and took a swig of her beer. “Thanks for the offer mush head, but I won't let you do all the cleaning. Are you afraid of heights?”

Lexa knitted her brows. “No?”

“Now that's convenient, great! How about we do the cleaning together and while I hoover, you clean the windows?” She suggested. There was no way she would let Lexa do all the work, so she watched in relief when Lexa finally nodded her head in agreement.

She wanted to make sure that Lexa felt safe and comfortable, and so far, she had the feeling that Lexa was okay with everything.

“Anything else?”

“Stop calling me mush head.” Lexa said and shot a frown in Raven's direction.

Raven snorted, emptied her beer and put down the bottle on the couch table before she leaned back with a smug grin. “Sorry darling, but that's not gonna happen.”

 

Chapter Text

Heading out now, so no sex, girls! I don't wanna come back to a contaminated apartment!” They heard Raven shout from the other side of the door.

Clarke chuckled against Lexa's neck before calling back. “Don't worry, Rae! We won't do anything you wouldn't do!”

That's exactly what I'm afraid of!”

“Go do your thing, Reyes, just like us!” The blonde pressed impatient, almost pleadingly. This really wasn't the time or place to have this discussion with Raven, or any discussion at all.

Clarrrke!” Raven warned through the door. With her index finger on her lips, Clarke signaled Lexa to stay quiet. Holding their breaths, they waited for any sound from the other side of the door. Clarke sighed in relief when they heard the apartment door shut close, and looked at Lexa beneath her whose eyes were glued to the blonde's lips.

With a shake of her head, she leaned down and continued what they were doing before Raven interrupted them.

During the past couple of weeks, their make–out sessions had become more frequent and definitely more… explorative. Ever since Lexa's blunt confession, Clarke had let things get more passionate, but she usually made sure it wouldn't get out of hand. And usually, it worked. But then again, usually, they were fully clothed.

Right now, Clarke was having a hard time keeping herself under control with a very… vibrant Lexa in very… form–fitting boyshorts underneath her, whose hands were currently exploring Clarke's skin under her shirt, and very boldly so.

She waited until Lexa's hands moved to her hips and then quickly lowered herself, pressing her body into the brunette's in order to distract herself from the urge to press her thigh into something else. Lexa sucked in a sharp breath at the sudden contact, and Clarke couldn't help but change the angle to deepen their kiss.

When she heard the moan that escaped her girl the moment their tongues met, the blonde involuntarily bucked her hips into Lexa, causing her to moan again.

“Fuck!” Clarke breathed out and with the last bit of self–control, she pulled back. After a few deep breaths, she opened her eyes and looked at Lexa who looked back at her with wide eyes.

“You okay?” She asked concerned. Lexa nodded and opened her mouth but closed it again when nothing came out. Clarke waited patiently until Lexa shook her head and tried again.

“Why did you stop?” She finally asked, visibly confused.

Clarke propped herself up on her elbow and gently brushed some stray hair out of Lexa's face. “This was getting kinda… heated.” She explained and watched as Lexa knitted her eyebrows.

“Is that a bad thing?” The other girl asked and Clarke couldn't help but chuckle.

“I don't know… I mean shouldn't we… wait or something?”

“Wait for what?” Lexa asked back and started twiddling with the hem of Clarke's shirt.

“The… right timing?” Clarke's confidence started to crumble, she wasn't so sure anymore. She wanted to take things slow with Lexa because the girl had never been intimate with anyone before. But they've been a couple for four months now, and Lexa had already said she wanted it and that she was ready, and Clarke believed her. She took a deep breath and held it for a long moment while she considered her options. She was well aware that Lexa was incredibly nervous, maybe even anxious, because she had no idea what was going on in the blonde's head.

She finally puffed out the air and firmly looked into Lexa's eyes that were trained on her hands. “Lex look at me please.” She asked and waited until the girl's eyes met her own.

“I'm incredibly nervous,” she admitted with a soft smile, “and I can't promise that it's going to happen today, but I want to be sure that it would be okay if it happened, and especially that you would be okay with it.”

“I am. I mean it– it would. I mean I would!” Lexa stuttered and squeezed her eyes shut in mild frustration.

Clarke gave Lexa a moment to sort herself before she spoke again. “How are you feeling?”

“I um…” Lexa paused and quickly glanced down between their bodies, then back up to Clarke's neck, “aroused.”

Clarke snorted in amusement and leaned down to kiss the tip of her girlfriend's nose before she shifted and rasped into her ear, “Well, if that's not the perfect condition.”

Instead of a verbal answer, Lexa wrapped one leg around Clarke's waist and pulled her closer. The blonde bit down on her lower lip to muffle her moan when the sensation of the sudden movement went right into her core.

Before she could adjust to the new pace, Lexa was kissing her with everything she had, and Clarke wasn't sure how much longer she would be able to control herself. The answer came only a moment later when her right hand wandered down until her fingers met the bare skin of Lexa's hips, and before she knew what was happening, she broke the kiss.

“Can I take this off?” She mumbled against swollen lips as she tugged on the hem of the brunette's shirt.

When Lexa didn't answer, Clarke quickly pulled her head back to look at her. The girl beneath her was breathing heavily and had her eyes squeezed shut.

“Hey,” Clarke said alarmed, “it's okay, we don't have to do anything that you're not–“ she stopped when Lexa shook her head.

“No it's okay, it's just…” Lexa paused to phrase her thoughts and Clarke felt how the girl nervously tapped her fingertips on her lower back before she continued, “I'm… this is a bit overwhelming right now.” She admitted and let out a small laugh.

Clarke's lips formed a soft smile. “What exactly?”

“I'm just– scared that… you know, that the sensory overload will be too much. I mean I've read about it and apparently, there will be a lot going on. All the touching and the sounds and scents… and… everything.”

Lexa finished her rambling and finally opened her eyes to shyly glance at Clarke who was still smiling down at her.

“How about we just go slow and you tell me when something is too much?” She suggested. “Just tell me when you want me to stop and I'll stop, okay?”

Lexa sucked in her lips while she thought about Clarke's words. “Okay,” she nodded, “and yes you can.”

“Can what?” Clarke asked confused.

“Take this off.” Lexa quoted her with a smirk.

 

Chapter Text

“… and you must be Clarke!” Gustus greeted the blonde with a wide smile when he turned to her, while Indra and Anya took their time hugging Lexa, who tried to wiggle herself out of the embraces.

“That would be me, Sir.” Clarke nodded with a polite smile and accepted the offered handshake.

She was incredibly nervous. It was the 23rd of December and she and Lexa would be spending the next few days with Lexa's family, and Clarke was praying to the Gods that everything would be going well, that she wouldn't embarrass herself too much, and, most importantly, that Lexa's family would accept her, that they would trust her and have faith that she was a good girlfriend for Lexa, and that she would give her girl everything and anything that she deserved, and more.

“If you call me 'Sir' again, I will have to strangle you with my bare hands. You're important to Lexa, so you're important to us as well. Please, call me Gustus.” The huge man offered and Clarke thought he looked more like a giant teddy bear now that he was grinning like a Cheshire cat.

Way to go, Clarke!

So here she was, wanting nothing more than to hole up, preferably a few thousand miles away. Maybe Australia, she thought, yeah, Australia sounds good. 

But unfortunately, that wasn't really an option right now.

Before the greetings could get any more embarrassing, Anya pushed Clarke into the house and told her to flop down on the couch and relax for a moment, which Clarke was incredibly thankful for. A moment later, Lexa burst into the living room and Clarke immediately shot up when she noticed the panic in the girl's eyes.

“Hey, hey Lex,” she pecked her girl's lips, “you okay?”

Lexa stared back at her with wide eyes for a moment, before she quickly lowered her head, but Clarke could see how the girl squeezed them tightly a few times, her fingers fiddling with the hem of her shirt.

“I–” she cleared her throat and Clarke reached down and took Lexa's hands to ground her a bit. “I was talking to Gustus and suddenly, you were gone and I–” she took a deep breath and Clarke's eyes softened even more, “and I thought you were…”

“Hey…” Clarke said softly and kissed the girl's cheek before she pulled her into a hug. “I'm here, I'm not going anywhere. Why should I leave?”

Lexa shrugged and buried her nose into the crook of the blonde's neck, while Clarke started to gently rub the girl's back. “I'm right here, okay?” She said and slightly tightened her embrace to show Lexa that she was there with her, and nowhere else. It took her a moment but eventually, Lexa nodded and Clarke nodded as well before pulling back a bit so that she could see the brunette's face.

“I want to be here with you,” she reassured Lexa softly and tucked some stray hair behind her girl's ear, “I don't want to be anywhere else, and I'm not leaving, okay?”

Lexa stared at Clarke's necklace for a long moment while she processed what Clarke had promised her, and then nodded her head.

They were so lost in the moment, in their own little bubble, so oblivious to their surroundings, that they didn't notice Anya who slowly turned around and left the room with a smile after witnessing the scene. She was happy for Lexa. She really was, incredibly much. But as happy as she was for her little sister, she couldn't deny that she also felt a hint of sadness, a small lump in her throat at the realization that Lexa wasn't their little one anymore. That, eventually, Lexa had grown up. That Lexa had found a loving and caring significant other, and, although she didn't really believe in such a cheesy concept, Anya was sure that Clarke might as well be The One for Lexa.

 

***

 

“So, Clarke,” Gustus began and handed Indra the bowl of potatoes, “what's your major?”

Well shit. Clarke thought and took a sip of her water to win some time. “Art…stuff.” She said and hoped she hadn't completely screwed up yet. Art wasn't exactly the most promising profession. Contrary to what she had expected, Gustus' smile widened a bit as he nodded. “Lexa's told us a lot about your own art. Apparently, you're quite talented?”

Clarke wasn't sure if it was a question or a statement, so she decided to shrug and hoped that the blush on her cheeks was indication enough that it wasn't her favorite topic, and fortunately, Gustus seemed to sense her unease.

He nodded friendly to reassure Clarke that it was absolutely okay, before he turned his focus to the rest of the table. He looked around and smiled at Lexa when he realized that she hadn't started eating yet, which she accidentally did from time to time, forgetting that one didn't start eating until everyone had food on their plate, and Lexa beamed back at him.

And Clarke smiled as well. It was clear that they loved Lexa, and even if she hadn't had met Quint Woods, she still would know exactly that having a family like them was not to be taken for granted, and that Lexa was incredibly lucky to have them. And the other way around, of course.

Apart from occasionally praising the potatoes or the filets, they mostly ate in silence, until Indra took a sip of her wine and spoke.

“So how are things at home, at college? Any news? How is living with Raven?”

Lexa paused eating and nervously started fiddling with the napkin next to her plate with one hand. “I…” she cleared her throat, “too many questions at once.”

Indra nodded understandingly. “Right, I'm sorry. Any news?”

Lexa took a moment to think about the question and her answer, before she nodded. “Um, I slept with Clarke.”

After Anya almost choked on her water, one could hear a pin drop. Clarke had her eyes squeezed shut, and she wasn't planning on ever opening them again, while a crimson shade of red crept up her cheeks. Gustus was trying to hide his grin, eventually lowering his head, and Indra just stared at Lexa with wide eyes, blinking being her only movement for some incredibly long moments.

She was also the first to break the utterly uncomfortable silence. “I'll… go and get the dessert then.”

Another long moment passed until Clarke felt a finger on her thigh, she knew that Lexa was poking her leg to get her attention.

With her eyes still tightly squeezed closed, she just shook her head.

“Clarke?” Lexa asked again, her voice dripping with anxiety. Gustus and Anya made a silent agreement that this would be a good timing to clear the table.

Clarke heard the girl next to her huff in frustration when she couldn't get Clarke to notice her. The blonde sucked in a deep breath, a very weak attempt at regaining composure, and opened her eyes.

In an instant, Lexa's poking finger was back on her thigh. “Clarke?”

“Yeah?” Clarke pressed out and slowly released the breath she'd been holding.

“Was that…” Lexa cleared her throat, “was that wrong?”

Clarke let out a small helpless laugh and scratched her forehead. “Well it was… no, I mean it was just…” she grimaced and shook her head, “yes, that was wrong. You don't… they're your family and they really shouldn't… Jeez Lexa, don't tell them stuff like that!”

By the end of Clarke's rambling, Lexa had already ripped half of the napkin into tiny pieces.

“But… I mean I like that it happened, and I…,” when Lexa paused, Clarke turned her head, in time to see how some sort of realization hit the brunette, “didn't you… aren't you–” Lexa stopped and squeezed her eyes a few times and Clarke was quick enough to stop the girl from hitting her forehead with her palm.

“Hey no, Lexa–” she said and it took a lot of her strength to keep Lexa's hands in place in her lap, “Lexa, no. I am glad that it happened and it– can you please stop fighting for a moment?” She asked firmly because she needed her hands now. She waited for a moment, feeling how the girl slowly stopped fighting her grip until Lexa finally nodded, instantly reaching for her bracelet when Clarke carefully let go of her hands.

She gently brushed some stray her out of Lexa's face and rested her hands on the girl's cheeks, her thumbs softly wiping away some warm tears.

“Lexa,” she said much quieter and softer, “I'm glad that it happened. It was beautiful. You were beautiful.” She said and gave Lexa a moment to calm down herself, while images of their night together flashed through Clarke's mind, and the blonde's lips formed a soft smile.

She remembered how, after their talk, she had led Lexa into a sitting position and slowly pulled the shirt over her head. She remembered how she had gently pushed Lexa back onto the bed. She remembered how she had taken all the time in the world to kiss and caress Lexa's skin, every inch she could reach.

She remembered everything. The soft and quiet sounds Lexa had made, the silent instructions through her body language that she probably wasn't aware of, how she had pulled Clarke closer when something was beginning to overwhelm her, or how she had let go of her when she was feeling comfortable and safe again.

Clarke remembered the look on Lexa's face when the brunette had arched her back off the bed and become completely silent for a moment, and she remembered how, after a long moment, she had slowly opened her eyes and sleepily smiled up at Clarke, her cheeks flush, a few stray hair stuck to her skin, her eyes soft. And Clarke remembered how, in that moment, she had realized that she wouldn't be able to be in love with anyone ever again, because Lexa was The One for her.

“Everything about it was perfect, I don't regret it and I am not ashamed of it, I could never be.” She softly kissed her girl's lips and continued, “it's just a very intimate and private thing, and your family really, really doesn't need to know about it.” Clarke finished and laughed, still slightly embarrassed.

Lexa took a moment to think about Clarke's words, her eyes still focused on her hands that were still twiddling with her bracelet. After what felt like an eternity, she nodded. “Okay…” she said before she quickly added, “I'm sorry.”

Clarke's features softened immediately and, with her hands that were still resting on Lexa's cheeks, she pulled the girl closer and into a soft, reassuring kiss that lasted for a long, peaceful moment. She pulled away and rested her forehead against Lexa's and opened her eyes to look at their now intertwined hands in Lexa's lap. “I love you.” She whispered softly.

They separated just in time for the others to enter the living room again. Maybe it was a perfect timing because Anya had kept watch to make sure the girls sorted everything out before Lexa's family came back. But only maybe. Anya glanced to Lexa and then at Clarke, nodding back in relief after the blonde nodded at her, silently reassuring Anya that everything was okay.

Indra seemed to have calmed down as well, while Gustus was still trying to hide his small smirk. While the others sat down at the table again, Clarke took Lexa's other hand and intertwined their fingers, her thumb gently brushing over soft skin. She quickly leaned forward and nudged the tip of Lexa's nose with her own, before she left a soft kiss on her girl's lips. They quickly jumped apart with a grin when Gustus, still smiling, cleared his throat and grabbed the scoop. “Dessert?”

 

Chapter Text

No,” Lexa said, her eyes filled with warmth, her voice calm and soft, “this is Thank You.”

 

Your hearts might be pounding right now because of that notification, just like mine is from uploading this. I'm sorry this is not a chapter, I wish it was. To be honest, I was just as surprised and a bit shocked as you guys that chapter 35 was the last chapter.

I could have gone on forever about Lexa and Clarke, but I also knew that at some point, I would have to stop. And chapter 35 seemed to be a good time to do so.

I know there are some things that haven't been addressed yet, or not enough, but maybe there's no need to. Not in this story, anyway.

I've mentioned it a lot of times in the comments, but I want you all to know how much your support meant to me, how much your feedback meant to me, and how much your love meant to me. And how much they still mean to me. That's why I had to write this, you guys deserve so much more than just a two sentences endnote. (Honestly, I really just wanted to draw that green circle again on Instagram, one last time.)

It's been an incredible journey with you all, it was beautiful to see how you guys became a part of this story, and how much this story became a part of your daily life. Thank you for making me beam like an idiot whenever someone sent me an excited message or left an excited comment when I posted a new chapter.

It was beautiful to see how much you all grew to love Clarke and especially Lexa over the weeks. And I'll be honest with you. I love them, too, so much, with all my heart and when I posted the last chapter, I hadn't realized it was the last until I wrote the endnote, and was like Okay… wow… this… is it, I guess. And I'm not kidding; even hours later that day, my heart still clenched and hurt (physically, yes. I'm serious.) and I was a crying mess. I miss them so much, I miss my Lexa dearly.

I wish I could continue this story forever, but I can't. But, and I'm serious about this, we will meet again. I'm not ready to let them go yet. I'm not ready. And I'm tearing up here right now. I don't know how it will happen, I don't know when it will happen, but I will visit them again, one way or another. I have a few ideas in mind. You will meet Clarke and Lexa again.

I don't know how to thank you all for everything you've done for me here, for all these beautiful comments and all these beautiful messages, the kudos and the bookmarks and the subscriptions. It means the world to me and more, and, oddly enough, I've written 35 chapters for you guys, yet I can't seem to find any words to express how incredibly thankful I am.

Some people do things that change their lives, and Girl did that for me, this story will always be a part of me, my Lexa and Clarke will always be a part of me. And I've met so many interesting people, I've had so many great conversations… God, I'm such a lucky bastard. ;)

And, to quote Alycia, “I'm rambling so much.”

Long story short: Thank you. Lexa and Clarke will come back. We will meet again.