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RTAU Chapter 4 Teaser

It should feel like fiction to Lexa, surely something to be read out of one of her books: a fantasy for the ages with class conflict and forbidden bonds and cloaked men with plots to thwart the heroes’ attempts to make change. The circumstances are unbelievable enough to be compelling- that one can truly care enough about another person to put themselves at risk is something she never before experienced firsthand- and yet the reality of it all is what keeps her moving forward, flipping the pages on this ill-advised novelization of a future monarch’s downfall.

At times it’s the only part of her life that feels real. All day she studies theory and long-past history and strategy for potential battles and decorum for meetings she won’t make until she’s ascended. It’s simulation, performance, practice for situations that don’t yet exist. She’s out of touch with reality on a fundamental level.

The visits are a reminder of what’s out there, beyond what she’s seen and what she can imagine. They talk of Clarke’s friends and Lexa’s confronted with the very real struggles for basic necessities her people endure while Lexa learns how to tackle boundary disputes and bow properly. They speak of her dealings with the Thieves’ Guild and Lexa realizes the desperation of the community Clarke was raised in, circumstances created by a culture they’re excluded from.

Clarke reminds her that she has to do better because there are people depending on it, and that itself grounds her efforts in something more substantial than logic involving words like “legacy” and “destiny”.

She doesn’t have to lie about what she’s thinking when she’s with Clarke, be it political revolution or tenderness (both of which remain unfit for a princess by all accounts). 

That shouldn’t be so fantastical.

The tower-climbing, though, can’t be interpreted in any way other than overdramatic.


Chapter 4 coming soonish