"She was in love with me! Is that what you want to hear?" Clarke closed her eyes with a sigh, pinching the bridge of her nose, and tried to reign in her wild emotions. She had to force herself to calm down knowing that Raven had finally fallen asleep with Sinclair watching over her in the next room over. She turns back to Octavia while ignoring the reactions of everyone else to finish the fight the younger girl had started with her.
Monty and Jasper's mouths are open in surprise. Miller and his boyfriend are staring at her in shock. Harper's eyes are wide and Bellamy's jaw shuts with a snap. Octavia looks taken aback and opens and closes her mouth a few times before Clarke shakes her head.
"Somewhere between me killing Finn and making a deal with Cage Wallace, Lexa fell in love with me. And when she captured me and dragged me to Polis to play her politics three months later, I realized I could exploit her feelings for me to keep her and her armies away from Arkadia. Me staying in Polis was never about choosing her over you guys." Clarke impressed upon the younger Blake. "All I've ever done was tried to keep our people alive, but in doing so I kept hurting everyone else."
"Clarke-" Octavia tries again but the blonde in questions cuts her off.
"I don't know what you want me to say, Octavia! I made so many choices that ended in too much death trying to get our people out of that damn mountain. And because I couldn't face my own guilt and grief I left. I was a coward and all my responsibility landed on your brother's shoulders because I was selfish. I don't regret what I've done to keep you guys alive, but I will never stop being sorry for the pain that I've caused." She struggled to keep her tears in check as she stared into Octavia's hard green eyes.
There was silence for a long few moments before Octavia voiced the one thing on everyone's minds. "You had feelings for Lexa, though, didn't you?"
Clarke fought the urge to look away, swallowing hard before nodding her head slightly. "Yes."
"How could you possibly have feelings for her?" Octavia's disgust was plain on her face and in her voice. "She left us to die! She convinced you to let that missile drop on TonDC, she burned her own people! How on Earth could you actually-"
"Because we're exactly the same!" Clarke interrupted her. Octavia frowned in confusion at that.
"Don't you get it? We might have been at war against the Grounders first and then Mount Weather, but I became just like every person I hated. My mother, Kane, Jaha - I made the same decisions as they did - even Finn! The worst part was I made the same choice Lexa did. She chose her people over ours and I chose our people over those in Mount Weather. I'm just like her." Clarke couldn't help it as a few tears fell down her face. "We became monsters for our own people. So, it was easy to fall for Lexa - even when I was trying to manipulate her - because we understood each other."
Everyone in the room stared at her, stunned at her revelation.
"You are nothing like her." Bellamy's voice came across angry as he strode towards her, stopping less than a foot from Clarke's space.
She looked up at him, taken aback. "Bellamy-"
"Lexa demanded for things, you asked. She was cold and calculating, but you considered every option fairly. Lexa was willing to do anything to get her people back. But at least you had the decency to feel guilty for breaking your morals. Lexa was born to kill and dictate, but you've always been a better leader and a healer for your people."
"But only with you." Clarke stopped his train of thought. "You were right from the start, Bellamy. We've always worked better together, but I stopped listening to you because I knew Lexa thought you were my weakness."
The tension in the air was palpable as everyone else seemed to recognize the weight in her words and Bellamy rocked back on his heels, blinking at her admission.
"That's why you sent me to Mount Weather."
The blonde nods again as another tear escapes down her face. "Yes."
"That's why you left, too, isn't it?" Bellamy asked staring down at her.
"It's not an excuse, but it's what I thought I deserved at the time." Clarke admitted quietly, though everyone could still clearly hear her.
"Jesus, Clarke." Bellamy reached out and Clarke resisted for a moment before allowing herself to melt into his arms. "Don't ever do that again."
Everyone was silent while Clarke cried silently into Bellamy's jacket. Finally she began to pull back slowly, wiping at her eyes discreetly.
"So, we're all working together. Just like old times, huh?" Jasper elbowed Monty in the ribs lightly and the Asian boy looked surprised but happily at his old friend.
Bryan turned to Miller hugging him tightly and murmuring quietly into his ear and Miller closed his eyes with a sigh with a small smile. Harper linked an arm through Jasper's and rested her head on his shoulder while Octavia stepped away from her brother and Clarke towards the other girl and the boys.
"Don't turn into me." Clarke mutters just quiet enough for Bellamy to hear her.
"Don't blame yourself for everything that's happened at Arkadia, Bellamy. No matter what you think or feel about yourself, you've always done what you thought is right for our people. We've all made mistakes, Bellamy. Don't let yours haunt you like I did."
Bellamy's head was tilted down to meet her cloudy blue gaze and she gave him just the tiniest of smiles. "I missed you." He murmured to her and she let out a small content breath.
"Me too. Every day." She answered back. He grabbed her hand in his and squeezed tightly as they turned to face the room of teenagers together.