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Catharsis

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For Clarke, drawing is about feeling.

After her first sleepover with Octavia and Raven the certainty that she had found her best friends for life was such that when they drifted into sleep she sneaked out of her bed and took a sit on front of her pink and white study desk, turning on her lamp and reaching for some crayons, which promptly started to scrabble on a piece of paper.

When Wells and she got mugged and the cold blade wielded by one of the burglars met the soft skin of his neck, the uncountable dark, rough drafts that ended pilled on any available surface of her room and of his hospital room were what kept her strong – and helped her to start to breath normally again, after not so sporadic and really vivid nightmares.

Dealing with her father’s death became a doable thing only after she yielded to her mother’s craves and decided to start to draw again, after almost a year of bad grades and even worse habits.

Pressing a large piece of charcoal on a sketchbook was her way to deal with the mess that meeting Finn Collins brought into her life – and into her friendship with Raven as well. And when her best friend finally started to talk to her again and the things started to go back to normal, she promptly searched for her colored pencils.

She stared at uncountable pictures of Polis University before starting to draw it, hoping it would help her not to fear so much this new phase of her life.

Because drawing is her way to deal with her emotions and feelings, whether good or bad.

Drawing is her way to cope with life.

For Lexa, writing is about feeling.

The first thing she really loved in her life was a yellow journal with pink flowers, given to her by her mother a few weeks before the car crash that caused the death of both of her parents. It remained into her backpack, all its pages full of scrawled words – she remembers retracting them when she noticed its last empty page was close, and all the tears she shredded when she reached it - until the day one of the boys of the orphanage she lived in grabbed it from her hands, ripping it in pieces and causing her a punishment – she never regretted giving him a black eye, though.

When her uncle Gustus found her, 5 years after the death of her parents, thin and sad, the severe woman who ran the orphanage gave her time to pack her backpack before ushering her to the front door, where the tall man waited for her with a hesitant smile on his lips. Two days later she went on a shopping trip with Gustus and Nikko, his husband, and Anya, their daughter, because she didn’t had clothes to wear – her twelve year-old self decided that clothes were easier to replace than memories and her backpack ended full of rotten journals.

Creative Writing classes were her favorite in High School, and her counselor was soon to notice that writing stories and making her characters go through certain things she went through during her life herself was a good way to exorcize some demons – even better than just writing her thoughts and feelings down.

She wrote her first sonnet the day she saw Costia for the first time. And she spent the first months of their relationship leaving her adorable – even if too cheesy – handwritten notes.

A letter was her last form of contact with her ex-girlfriend. She sent it despite some words being illegible due to the shakiness of her hand. The weight that lifted from her chest when she finished the letter was worth the shame of losing composure.

She always sends cards to Anya on her birthdays, telling her she loves her with all her strength. Because she can’t bring herself to say such things, but writing them feels more than enough.

When the fear of leaving her uncle’s place and starting a new chapter of her life became too much – even knowing Anya would be a huge part of it - she wrote on uncountable pages of her leather journal, hopping it would help to placate her thumping heart.

Because writing is her way to deal with her emotions and feelings, whether good or bad.

Writing is her way to cope with life.

The door slams open when Octavia storms into the room, plopping on her bed and making the mattress shift under then. Clarke sighs, removing her earphones and rolling into her back before propelling herself on her elbows and glaring at her friend.

She wonders if Raven, who picked the shorter match and had to find a roommate, wasn’t the real winner between them.

“O, your bed is right there.” She sighs at the grin on her friend’s face, sitting up carefully. “Why do you insist on bringing your stink ass to mine?”

The grin on Octavia’s lips grows bigger and she winks before bringing her feet to the bed, but before her shoes can touch the sheets Clarke groans and slaps them away, to Octavia’s amusement.

“Because it annoys you.” She winks before removing her sneakers and sitting up, leaning forward and intending to kiss Clarke’s cheek. But the draw catches her attention and she points at it. “Hey, this is beautiful.” She glances quickly at her friend before focusing on the charcoal drawing, her eyes slightly widened. “Who are these ladies?” Clarke can anticipate all the things she will hear when she finally gives in and answer the question so she pushes Octavia out of the bed, trying to buy herself some extra time – and hide her red cheeks as well. The brunette glares at her before kneeling next to the bed, eyeing the drawing funnily. “Heeeeey! They are those lady lovers, right? From that TV show you are obsessed with?”

Were.” She points a finger at her friend, a serious expression on her face. “I was obsessed with that shitty thing, O. Now I’m just finding ways to cope with all the stuff it left me feeling.”

Octavia’s eyebrows arch before she reaches for the edge of the bed, pressing her hand against it and standing up.

“I thought you were already doing that. I mean, the amount of time you’ve been expending ragging against the machine on Tumblr or reading fanfiction on that other website is unbelievable.”

She ignores Octavia’s pointed look, grabbing her sketchbook and bringing it closer to her eyes, shrugging.

“It wasn’t enough.” She blushes, her eyes still glued to the piece of art on her hands. “And I’ve been feeling really inspired lately.”

A smirk appears on Octavia’s lips and she leans forward to poke Clarke’s stomach.

“Is the shitty TV show inspiring you, Clarkey?”

She shakes her head slowly, biting the corner of her bottom lip absentmindedly before shrugging.

“Something I read inspired me to draw. So I did it.”

Octavia’s smirk gets bigger and her eyes are sparkling when she turns to her bed, already tucking her hand into her back pocket.

“I can’t even imagine how wide Raven’s eyes will go when she hears you’ve been drawing fan art inspired by fanfics.” A groan leaves Clarke’s lips and Octavia giggles, typing fast on her phone. “Is this drawing based on your fave one, C.?”

Clarke groans one more time before leaving the bed and placing the draft over her desk, carefully avoiding the coffee stains.

“I don’t have a favorite one.”

“Bullshit.” Octavia throws the phone on her bed before turning to face Clarke. “You’ve been babbling about the masterpiece created by the amazing mysterious writer for almost two months now. It must to be your fave.”

Clarke shrugs again, a shy smile on her lips.

“The story is good, okay? This person knows how to write and how to convey emotion.” She lets her index finger trace the dark contours of the drawing very lightly, her eyes back on it. “They make me feel things, O.”

Octavia nods, taking a seat on her bed.

“And when you feel things you draw.” Clarke nods too, still staring at the piece of paper in front of her, and Octavia smiles widely. “And despite your lameness, the drawing is amazing. You should send it to your muse. Or to its Viktor Frankenstein.”

Clarke’s eyes lock with her in a split second, and she shakes her head franticly when she notices Octavia is serious about it.

“No way.”

Octavia snorts, shaking her head too, the playful look still on her eyes.

“You got such a crush on this mysterious writer.”

“I don-“

“I know you since we were seven, Clarke. I know how you act when you have a crush.”

Clarke sighs, walking back to her bed and taking a seat on the middle of it, her legs crossed Indian style.

“But, hm, can you blame me? They are so talented and smart. I mean, their answers are always the best and their post about diversity, media representation and erasure was –“

“The best thing you have ever read about the matter, I know.” Octavia reaches for her phone when it vibrates, unlocking it without even glancing at the screen. “And that’s the reason you should send it to them. Think about a gift to someone who has been doing you feel so many things without even knowing you exist.” She peeks at the phone on her hands, a smile growing on her lips. “Oh, and –“ she raises her head, looking at Clarke again “- prepare yourself. Raven is really amused by the fan art based on fanfiction thing.”

Clarke groans again, facepalming herself.

“You will be the death of me, Blake.”

“Would you mind ungluing your eyes from your laptop for a sec, Lex? I kind of need your help here.” She stares at her cousin, who is staring attentively at the screen, a chewed pen taping rhythmically on her bottom lip and her right hand hovering over the keyboard. She sighs tiredly when she doesn’t receive any kind of reply. “For fuck’s sake, Alexandra. Are you even listening to me?”

Lexa’s eyes meet her a second later and she snorts loudly when she notices she wasn’t being heard. At all.

“Sorry Anya. Were you talking to me?”

She rolls her eyes hard, lifting the two hangers.

“I asked you which one I should wear tonight. But it was like a life time ago, right before I started to yell at you because you didn’t even listen to what I was saying in the first place.”

“Oh.” She closes the lid of her laptop hurriedly, smiling guilty at her cousin. “I’m sorry. I was rereading the ending of the story to check if it works well and I really didn’t hear you.”

Anya snorts before shaking the dresses on her hands and Lexa points at the black one without any kind of hesitation. Anya throws it on her bed before placing the red one over the back of a chair.

“Fine, I’ll wear this one then. You don’t deserve to help me to pick my outfit tonight.” She turns to her bed, leaning to take a look under it. “Not when you refused to go to the party with me in the first place.”

“I have to work, Anya.” She shrugs when she raises her head to glare at her. “Okay, I could ask Lincoln to cover it for me, but parties aren’t my thing. You know that.”

“Well –“ black high heels are on her hand when she stands up “- you should discover what your thing is, then. Other than being attached to the hip to this laptop and work until you’re too exhausted to function.” She turns, dropping the shoes on her bed and grabbing a towel. “Because your current things will not bring you new friends, Lexa. And you really could use some.”

She is out of the room after a few seconds and Lexa sighs before opening her laptop again.

“Hey.”

Lexa raises her head, smiling at Anya, who is entering the room and looking somewhat embarrassed.

“You’re looking good, An. Even in flip flops.”

A small smile forms on Anya’s lips and she closes the door behind her.

“I’m always looking good, Lex. Also –“ she places her dirty clothes on her bed, reaching for her high heels. “- I want to apologize. I was rude and mean a few minutes ago and –“

“No pro-“

“No, Lexa. It was a problem. I was rude and you didn’t deserve it. I know things weren’t easy in your first year here but I also know how hard you worked to get better and I’m really proud of you and of where you are right now.” She finishes shoeing the high heels, walking towards Lexa bed and taking a seat on its edge. “I just worry about you. I think you could use more friends. I think being more social would do you some good.”

“I have friends, Anya.”

“I don’t count, Lex.”

Lexa smiles at that, shaking her head.

“Your modesty amuses me.” Anya grins widely at that, slapping Lexa’s arm lightly and mumbling asshole. “I have friends other than you. I mean, I have Linc. And, hm, Wells?”

Anya rolls her eyes, standing up.

“He is your classmate and you share some notes. You can hardly call him a friend.”

Lexa shrugs, reaching for her nightstand and sipping her water.

“Well, it’s more than I do with the rest of the humankind, so I think I can.”

Anya grabs her clothes, throwing it into the laundry basket before reaching for her purse.

“Touché, Miss Smarty Pants.”

Lexa giggles lowly, glancing at her laptop one more time.

“Well, I think I’m done here.” She closes the lid, putting the laptop on her bed. “Let me change quickly so I can I’ll walk you to this party.”

“You don’t need to, Lexa. I can take care of myself.”

Lexa shrugs, already throwing a sweatshirt over her tank top.

“It’s on my way to the Coffee Shop.” She reaches for her phone, tucking it on her pocket before searching for her sneakers. “And you should do something about the wet towel lying on your bed if you want a dry surface to sleep on when you bring your drunk ass back home.”

Her shift is, as usual, an easy one. The few med students, nurses and doctors that are occupying some of the tables of Trikru are too tired to demand more than a few cups of pure and strong coffee from her, and her eyes are focused on the scrawled napkin in front of her.  

She mentally curses herself for not noticing the journal on her backpack was full, standing up to grab more napkins. But she stops in the middle of her action, her phone catching her attention.

It’s not that Tumblr’s notifications are a new thing to her. Since people discovered her story and fell in love with it the notifications became an usual thing. But this time she was being mentioned, and that isn’t common – not like likes, reblogs or anonymous asks, anyway.

She unlocks the screen quickly, pressing a few times on it before glancing at the lobby to check if any customer needs her help. Her eyes widen as soon as they land on her phone again.

This drawing is breathtaking.

She recognizes it as a scene from the latest chapter of her fic, and she is sure her eyes are widened, because it’s like the artist had found a way to read her mind and know exactly what she thought – what she felt – when she wrote it.

And despite it being a black and white draft – a charcoal one, she thinks. She isn’t really familiarized with art and its terminologies – she can see all the colors behind it.

A few minutes pass before she manages to force her eyes from the drawing to the words under it.

Sooooooo…

I did a thing.

I discovered this fic a couple of months ago, when I was completely in love with the show which must not be named. And I fell in love in the first words. @writtenbywoods’s writing is wonderful and inspires me.

So I drew. And decided to share this with you.

I know I usually don’t post drawings inspired by anything other than life and its occurrences here. But this time I felt the need.

P.S.: thank you, mysterious writer, for making me feel things. And also for helping me to cope with the shit storm that surrounded us a few weeks ago. You’re a champ :)

A small smile is on her lips when she finishes reading it. She clicks on the icon of drawninthesky’s tumblr, waiting impatiently for the app to open the page – and its images -, and when it finally happens she notices it is an art blog.

A good one.

But before she has the chance to dive on its contents the door is opening and a huge group of people is walking towards the cashier and chatting animatedly.

Her trip into beauty will need to wait until Lincoln’s arrival.