“Will you hand me that hammer?”
Lexa answered by handing Clarke the hammer beside her. The two had been working on Lexa’s mother’s house for a couple of months. Most of the time it was the natblidas and any volunteers (paid of course, Lexa always takes care of their people even if they do volunteer) that would work on the house. Every other day, Lexa and Clarke would work on it together, alongside everyone else.
The idea had come to Lexa a while ago to refurbish and use her old home for the natblidas in training. Instead of staying in the tower all the time, they could go out there and be free from duties when they had a chance. Aden was the most excited of them all. He had been working every single day since Lexa announced the project to them. He would come in early and make sure all of the tools are laid out and organized where everyone could find them easily; he would also stay after and make sure everything was locked away where any brave thieves wouldn’t steal them.
Though the crime rates had dropped an exceeding amount since Clarke and Lexa had announced their wedding. All clans had seemed to have been set at peace at the new way. Normally, Commanders were alone. As Titus had said many times, “Love is weakness. To be Commander is to be alone.” But Lexa would have no part in his primal ways. She was going to change the future for the better. So her Commanders to be would not fear love, but instead embrace it.
Clarke had made her realize that to be in love is not a sign of weakness, but a sign of pure strength. Without something to fight and live for, day in and day out, why even be Commander? For that, Lexa is forever grateful to Clarke.
“Heda, may I be dismissed? My mother isn't well and I need to be with her, if that is okay with you.” Madi, a young natblida, asked.
“Of course. Here,” Lexa reached into her bag and took out a silver watch. Madi had brought it to Lexa about two weeks ago to see if she could talk to black blacksmith to get it fixed. Her mother had found it while on a hunt one year and has kept it by her side ever since.
“I meant to give it to her yesterday, but I lost track of time.” And by that, she meant Clarke had seduced her into a long hot bath and some extra activities afterwards. Ever since Lexa proposed, Clarke’s libido had increased ten fold. She called it the “pre marital sexy time.” Lexa wasn't complaining though.
“Thank you, Heda. It will mean a lot to her,” Madi beamed and then ran off to comfort her mother.
“So, how do you like Madi?” Clarke asked, as she hit a nail into a support wall.
“Honestly? I feel a stronger connection to her than Aden. Aden is my most promising student, he does everything you ask him to do and then some. He performs better than I did at my age and will one day be my successor. But Madi. I see so much of myself in her when I look at her. Everything she does, I can see myself in her. She is only five and she worries more about her mother and her duties to her family first. I was the same exact way.”
“She is pretty great. I think she’s a little spit fire myself and if she really does resemble you like you say, I probably would have been your best friend growing up,” Clarke answered.
A group of scouts had rescued Madi and her mother from a group of Azgeda insurgents who were still loyal to their dead queens ideas of conquer or be conquered. When the insurgents noticed Madi’s blood, after a random bloody nose, they attempted to capture her. Lexa assumes to raise as a fierce warrior and one day challenge her to the throne. Even though Lexa had also gotten rid of that idea and replaced it with one similar to Arkadia’s election system.
Again, ever since Lexa and Clarke announced their engagement and wedding, Arkadia and the rest of the clans had actually become one. Abby had trained Monty, Harper, and Jasper in emergency medicine. A lot of people questioned Abby’s decision of teaching Jasper, but Abby thought it would be a good idea, to keep his mind busy and not on Maya. It had actually worked, he has an improved positive attitude. Everyone, especially Monty, was happy to see Jasper back on track.
Anyway, with these new found emergency responders, all of Polis was being taught how to respond to an injury, whether it be serious or minor. Polis healers were learning new techniques from Abby, such as CPR, cauterization, safe amputation, and much more. Abby was also learning all of the hidden secrets to the plants around the ecosystem. She had brushed up on her ecology before returning to the ground, yet she was struggling due to the morphing of the plants with the radiation. Some of the plants that would once save your life, could now kill you.
“What’s on your mind?” Lexa drew Clarke out of her reverie.
“I’m just thinking about how far all of us have come since our first meeting.” They really had come a very long way. The first time Clarke saw Lexa she was preparing to kill someone Clarke loved, one of her own. And now, now Clarke is taking Lexa as her wife. Oh how the irony has hit hard on this one.
“We really have. I never thought there would be so much peace among the clans. Of course we still have those assholes that believe in jus drein jus daun , but for the most part we have peace,” Lexa said, with a tinder smile on her face. She owed it all to Clarke. If Clarke hadn't shown her that love was not weakness, there would still be war and turmoil between the clans and Lexa could very well be dead.
“Now what are you thinking about?” Clarke joked.
“You. And how madly in love with you I am.” Lexa meant it. Every single time she said it, she meant it even more.
“I love you too,” Clarke smiled back.
“Hey love birds! Get back to work!” Raven called from across the room. While sitting in a chair. Which was pretty much how it always went with her.
“How about you take your own advice?” Clarke shot back.
“Because I am the engineer of this beautiful establishment. Therefore, I just sit here and look pretty while all of you do the dirty work.” Raven threw some popcorn in her mouth and smirked.
That was another huge thing that had changed. Corn was now a viable source of food. With some of the most skilled farmers from Polis and Monty’s knowledge of hybridization of plants, they had made their own corn seeds. And now they have popcorn.
“I think we can actually call it a day. We’ve been here all day and I could use some real food. Anyone else agree?” There was a collection of grunts as yes’ and they started packing up to leave. Aden, once again, offered to stay after, but Lexa was having none of it.
“No, Aden, that is a direct order from your Commander. You are to take at least three nights off per week. I’m not going to have my predecessor tired all of the time. You’re going to join Clarke and I and the others for dinner.” Lexa didn't even give him a chance to argue. She held her hand up before he could speak and he knew that meant there was no use.
“ Sha, Heda .” He dropped his head and started cleaning up his area and picking up the remainder of Raven’s mess.
Soon they were all together on the dining floor of Lexa’s tower. Hunters had hit a big score with two hogs and a deer earlier that morning, which was now their dinner. Lexa always had the cooks prepare a portion for the hunters and their families before Lexa and her guests. There was always plenty to go around, but she took care of her people. So much so, that whatever was leftover went to a new family every night. There was a system to keep the families honest though, so no one got more than deserved.
A family registers their name, income (not measured with money, but in ability to contribute), and family size at the beginning of each year. Family size and income were the leading factors that decided who got what and when. Lower income families got first choice and whatever was left over from them would go to the next family and so on. Every family got one turn before they were set at the back of the list, and then the process repeats itself.
Lexa came up with this with Aden one night while they were working at the house. He said he didn't think it was fair that they got to eat the best meat and have the best cooking when all of Polis contributes to the greater standing of the city. He created this plan to give all of the families a chance to eat like their leaders; it kept them in check and in good graces with Lexa and her counsel. This is why Aden will more than likely take over when Lexa is no longer able or dies, hopefully not the latter.