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The Thousand-Yard Stare

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Bellamy stared at his hands, wondering how they could look almost clean when he had so much blood on them.

Kane had said he'd done good. Bellamy didn't think good was the word he'd use, but he'd done what he had to. Clarke had been his commander, she'd given the order, Bellamy had backed her up.

But Clarke hadn't been able to face it. She was gone.

Someone clapped him on the shoulder as they walked past him. "Thanks, Bellamy." Bellamy lifted his head, but the boy was already gone. Blankly, Bellamy surveyed the camp.

Showers. A shower would be good. He could wash the blood off there. He trudged back to his tent, stowed his gun, and grabbed some clothes.

A shower would be good.


Monty still couldn't quite take how different the new camp was from the drop ship. He wandered around, watching other kids reuniting with their parents and friends.

He'd never felt so alone in his life. They didn't know where Farm Station had come down. His family wasn't here. Jasper wasn't speaking to him. Wick had taken Raven to medical. Miller's dad was hanging on to him so tightly Monty's chest got tight when he looked at him.

Monty's hands were shaking. Jasper might never forgive him, but they hadn't had any choice. Even if Jasper had been able to kill Cage Wallace, the experiments would have gone on. And the Mount Weather guards would have killed Jasper. There was no way Monty could have let that happen. Monty's eyes prickled. He jerked his gaze up to the sky, trying to keep the tears from falling.

After a few seconds, he took a deep breath and sighed. Bellamy. Where was Bellamy? He would understand.

But no matter where Monty looked, he couldn't find Bellamy. His eyes kept stinging, and everywhere around him, people were either celebrating or rushing around to take care of people. Monty just wanted to be alone--but he couldn't go back to the tent he shared with Jasper.

The showers. They were private, and you could cry in the showers, and no one had to know.


Bellamy shivered under the water as it hit the top of his head and slid down, plastering his hair to his cheeks. Why was he so cold? The water was hot, but he couldn't get warm.

He lifted his hands in front of his face. Still not bloody. Still felt bloody. He scrubbed them together and noticed they were shaking.

His stomach was swirling unpleasantly. He shivered and turned the water up again. When he closed his eyes, he saw Clarke's face when she said goodbye...and then Maya's face covered in radiation burns... He thought of Lovejoy and his son, and remembered the kids playing soccer... Bellamy's heart started pounding.

Maya had helped him. The children had been innocent.

He doubled over and vomited.


There were three shower stalls. Someone was in the first one, so Monty had taken the furthest one, leaving a stall between them. Then he'd just stood under the water and let the tears come.

What if Jasper never spoke to him again? How could he live without Jasper next to him? They'd been best friends forever.

Then maybe you shouldn't have helped kill his girlfriend, whispered a nasty voice in his mind. He scowled. "Maybe Jasper's girlfriend shouldn't have been living off the blood of Grounders," he muttered back at that voice.

His thoughts were interrupted by the sound of someone throwing up very loudly. Monty frowned. The guy retched again, coughed, and retched again. Then he heard a thud that sounded a lot like someone hitting the ground. That couldn't be good.

Monty turned off the water, wrapped his towel around his waist, and went to stand outside the first stall.

"Hey, you okay?"

A faint groan and then more retching was his only reply.

With a sigh, Monty ducked behind the privacy curtain and found Bellamy on his hands and knees, soaking wet. While he couldn't deny he'd had fantasies involving Bellamy in a similar situation, this was definitely not the mood he'd been imagining.

"Bellamy," he asked, kneeling.

"C-can't get warm." Bellamy's teeth were chattering, even though the air in the shower was hot and humid. "Hands--"

Monty caught Bellamy's hands in his own, inspecting them. There was dirt under the fingernails, and they were trembling, but that was all. "Do they hurt?"

"Blood," Bellamy mumbled.

"They're fine," Monty said. He rubbed Bellamy's hands. "See? They're fine. Are you sick?"

Bellamy shuddered and leaned against him. "We had to do it, Monty," he whispered.

Okay. Bellamy recognized him. That was a good start. "We did," Monty agreed. He took one hand from Bellamy's to splash water at the vomit. "Can you stand up? If I help?"

Bellamy grunted and stood with him. "Sorry."

Monty shook his head. "Let's get you warmed up," he said. He stuck his hand into the water to test the temperature and then jerked back, hissing. It was already plenty warm. Thank God for Kyle Wick and solar collectors. He soaped up a washrag. "Talk to me, Bellamy."

Bellamy shivered under the water as Monty scrubbed at his shoulders. "Had to save them. We had to. But--But I liked Maya."

Monty ran the washcloth down Bellamy's back. "I know. She helped us. But she knew what they were doing. She wasn't innocent. Not really."

"None of us are innocent," Bellamy said hoarsely. He leaned into Monty's touch as Monty moved the washcloth to his arms and chest.

"No," Monty agreed. He scrubbed cursorily at Bellamy's legs and decided if Bellamy wanted anything else clean, he could do it himself. "How are you feeling? Getting warm?"

Bellamy's teeth were still chattering, but he wasn't shivering anymore. "A little bit."

"Shampoo?" It wasn't really shampoo; it was something Lincoln made from the juice of yucca plants, but it worked well enough. Bellamy just nodded, his lips pressed tight together, so Monty washed his hair for him, too.

It was depressing, in a way. Under the right circumstances, this could be the start of a really fun night. But Bellamy was in no condition to think about sex, and Monty wasn't in the mood to think about sex--and Monty figured it was even odds that once Bellamy was recovered from this episode, he'd want to just forget about it. Which would involve ignoring Monty.

But no matter what happened after, Monty couldn't see Bellamy suffering and not help.


Bellamy could tell his shivering was finally subsiding, but he felt like Monty's touch was the only thing keeping him in his body. What was wrong with him? He knew he'd done what he had to. Kane had said he'd done good. Everyone had thanked him for rescuing them from Mount Weather...or rescuing their son or daughter, boyfriend or girlfriend.

Why wouldn't his hands do what he told them? Why did his stomach keep jumping like this?

"If I turn the temperature up anymore, it's going to scald us," Monty murmured.

Bellamy turned his head slowly to look at Monty. He must have been in the other shower, Bellamy realized, because Monty's hair was plastered against his head and he had a half-soaked towel slung around his hips. "S-sorry," he managed. After a couple more seconds, he realized he was staring at Monty's bare chest, and that realization sent a flash of heat through him that had nothing to do with the water temperature and everything to do with embarrassment.

He jerked his gaze up to Monty's face, which registered warmth and concern and no judgment.

"'m finally warm," Bellamy said.

Monty nodded. "Then let's get you dry and to bed."

Bellamy submitted meekly to Monty's towelling him off and helping him get dressed. Monty guided him over to lean on a dry wall.

"Give me a minute to get dressed," Monty said, "and I'll help you back to your tent."

Bellamy rubbed his face with his hands and then flinched. But when he jerked them down to look, they were clean. He sighed. "I can walk okay now."

Monty tugged a t-shirt over his head and said, "I'd feel better if you let me help."

Bellamy closed his eyes and nodded. The help he wanted was a strong drink and a good hard fuck, but that probably wasn't on Monty's agenda, and even if it was, Bellamy probably wouldn't even be any good tonight. The next best thing would be sleep, and lots of it, since he'd only been snatching a few minutes of sleep here and there while dodging through Mount Weather's back halls and air ducts.

How long had he been inside Mount Weather? He'd lost track of time in there.

Hands closed on his shoulders. "Hey," Monty said, peering up into his face. "Are you really okay?"

Monty. Whom Bellamy had helped save. Monty, who wanted to help him in return. Monty, who was looking at Bellamy, not like a soldier, nor like a hero, but just as a man. Bellamy licked his lips. He'd lost track of time in Mount Weather, but he hadn't lost track of his people. He met Monty's eyes, thought of those who were lost, and finally remembered those who were saved. He actually managed to lift one corner of his mouth. "Okay enough for now," he muttered.

Monty studied his face for several moments, and Bellamy struggled against the urge to dip his head enough to kiss him. He'd always found Monty appealing, and after what they'd been through together... But Bellamy took a deep breath and resisted. There were people who could do casual sex, and there were people who couldn't. Somehow, Monty didn't seem like the type. And for that matter, if Bellamy did ever start something with Monty, he wasn't sure if he would want it to be casual, either.

He'd been staring at Monty for too long, the moment stretching out. Just as Bellamy was going to say something awkward, Monty's hand cupped his cheek. "Okay, let's get you back to your tent," he said, and wrapped an arm around Bellamy's waist.


Monty didn't think he'd imagined the glimmering of attraction in Bellamy's eyes. His relief warred with disappointment that Bellamy hadn't closed the gap between them. Not now. This wasn't the right time. Maybe never would be.

He guided Bellamy to his tent and got him tucked under the blankets. "Need anything else?" he asked softly.

"You," Bellamy mumbled. Monty stared at him, a funny jolt going through him. "Stay with me?" Bellamy continued, curling his fingers around Monty's wrist. "Please? Just...just stay."

Monty licked his lips. "I'm not going to sleep with you," he whispered. "Not like this."

Bellamy shook his head. "Not like this," he said. "But stay."

Monty stayed.