Bellamy needed a moment alone. Desperately.
They had only been back on earth for a few weeks and he was already overwhelmed. He was being kept busy upgrading the camp, building more sturdy cabins for winter, not to mention negotiating land boundaries with the prisoners and keeping the grounder tribes from killing each other. Sky Kru had been safe with Octavia as commander but it didn’t mean they weren’t on edge. Shockingly, six years underground living in each other’s pockets hadn’t been the bonding experience they’d hoped. Imagine that.
In addition, Bellamy had re-joined Kane, Abby and Clarke as one of the leaders after they were recovered from the bunker. He had no official authority of course, but Kane thought he was respected too much by Sky Kru survivors to be left out of leadership decisions. He hadn’t argued because he genuinely wanted the best for the Arkadians. Although, it would have been easier to live as a normal civilian. Less stress. Less responsibility. Less need to take himself away like he needed to do now.
He wandered into the forest and once he was far enough away; leant back against a tree and slid down to the ground. He brought his knees up and rested his head on them, taking some deep breaths. He tried to enjoy the quiet for the first time in days. For once he didn’t need to concern himself with politics or listening to the concerns and complaints of Arkadians.
He didn’t have to worry about Octavia’s safety, not that he didn’t worry a little, but he knew she could handle herself. Hell, she had enough power to be able to fight for them both. She didn’t need her big brother to stand up for her anymore. He was so proud of the person she had become. Her strength gave him strength. Now he could focus on just being there for her. If someone tried to bother her however, that would be a different matter. She would be okay though, he was sure of that.
For once he could just enjoy the quiet of the forest and let his mind drift away.
One concern that wouldn’t leave his mind though, was Clarke. He spent six years mourning her death only to realise that she was alive and waiting for him to return. It was surreal and with all the rush of the past couple of weeks, he hadn’t even had time to come to terms with the fact that the girl who risked his life for them, the one who held his heart and didn’t know it for six years; was alive.
Their reunion certainly hadn’t been the stuff of fairytales. **
Raven, Monty, Harper, Murphy, Emori and himself had returned after a crash landing only to find a frightened little girl distraught about how the prisoners had taken her mother, Clarke. They had to negotiate her release; mapping out initial land rights and the right to Clarke’s insider knowledge of the land when they needed it. When they agreed they released Clarke from her handcuffs and pushed her into Bellamy’s arms.
She gave their leader a scathing glare as they left the Prisoner Camp and as soon as they were out of the gate, she had thrown her herself into his arms. He stumbled at the impact and hesitated for just a moment at the shock of seeing her alive but returned the embrace enthusiastically. He held her in the air swaying her gently as she cried quietly into his neck.
“You’re here,” Clarke whispered, “you finally came back.” Raven snorted at the comment and Clarke shot her a teasing smile over his shoulder.
“You’re alive,” he responded with the same sense of wonder.
“The night blood. Told you we were proving it,” she teased with a laugh. He shook his head at her joke. How could she be so blasé about the fact that they had left her to die. She responded to his unspoken thought.
“I wanted you to leave. Don’t beat yourself up,” she said softly as she held his face in her hands, forcing him to look her in the eyes. He nodded but they both knew his guilt wouldn’t just go away.
“Don’t we get a hug, Princess,” Murphy called from behind them. Clarke laughed and went to pull away. She seemed hesitant to leave his arms and he certainly didn’t want to let her go but they had time. **
That night he confessed his love for her as they sat by the fire. The rest of the Space Kru and Madi had fallen asleep so Clarke and Bellamy sat down together and passed a bottle of moonshine between them. Even in space and with radiation effected hands Monty found time to make moonshine.
That too had been a quiet affair. He didn’t want to go another day without her knowing how he felt. Six years was long enough. A soft confession from him and a soft smile from her as she replied simply, “I love you too, always have.”
They didn’t need big sweeping moments. It just wasn’t them. **
After that they focused on rescuing those in the bunker and the craziness began. Through it all Bellamy was hesitant to let Clarke out of his sight. He couldn’t lose her. Like Octavia, he knew she could protect herself, but it also didn’t stop him worrying about her. If it’s possible, more than Octavia. Unlike Octavia,
Clarke had a bad habit of putting herself in life- threatening situations like it was her hobby. It was even worse now with her undying need to protect Madi. He knew she loved her daughter, but he just wished she would think things through first.
Still, he tried to give her space and didn’t bother her too much. Instead of supervising, he just tried to spend time with her and Madi. Madi warmed up to him in a few weeks. She teased that he wasn’t what he expected from the stories and made fun of his beard. He liked the beard.
Clarke did too. She never said it, but she didn’t need to. The way she ran her hand over the shaggy facial hair seventeen times a day said enough. Even though, she did tease him about how ‘he went to space and returned as the role of Marcus Kane.’
Bellamy teased Madi for being small in return. He also reassured her that he wouldn’t take Clarke away from her. They were quick friends after that. They were quickly becoming their own little family unit. He wouldn’t have it any other way.
Bellamy was startled out of his musings but the sound of footsteps behind him. His gaze fell to Clarke as she approached him with a small smile.
“Hey yourself,” he greeted, reaching his hand out to her in invitation and dropped his knees to rest on the ground. She grabbed it as she lowered herself to the ground sitting sideways on his lap and kissed him quickly.
“You okay?” she questioned softly moving her hands to rest on either side of his face. Once again, forcing him to look at her so she could decipher his expression.
“Just stressed,” he replied. She studied his eyes for a moment before nodding, seeming to determine that he was telling the truth. She moved her hands to take the one he had resting on her lap, holding his hand with both of hers, and leaned her head on his chest. He kissed her temple softly.
“You want to be left alone?” she asked quietly. Although, it didn’t seem like she wanted to move anytime soon. He didn’t really want her to move either, so it didn’t matter. He wound other arm around her and squeezed her hands with the one that rested in her lap.
“Not by you,” he whispered. She didn’t respond after that and they just sat quietly together. Maybe she needed a moment alone too.
There wasn’t a moment that he wanted to spend apart from her again.