Little Neverland Renaissance inspired by the prompt from @runningwithscalpels. Not as fluffy as the rest, but whatever–
Killian found it awkward sitting around the campfire with the prince and princess. Snow White had very clearly not forgiven her husband for hiding his fatal condition, and to avoid talking to David, she kept trying to talk to him.
Meanwhile, Killian was distracted. Swan was also still angry at her father for his secret, and at both himself and Neal for what happened at Dark Hollow. She’d stormed off after they’d made camp for the night, saying something about needing fresh air, and to his dismay, Neal had followed.
Not that Neal was that much competition, if Killian was being honest. It wasn’t Neal whom Swan had kissed. It wasn’t Neal who’d promised to win her heart while she stared in hopeful wonder. And it wasn’t Neal whose name she called out in terror when they were both being torn asunder by shadows.
All the same, though, he was not happy at the thought of them alone together.
Fortunately, not five minutes later, Neal returned, looking quite disgruntled before announcing he was going to sleep.
But Swan did not return. Eventually, Snow White declared that she was going to bed as well. David looked around camp. “Emma’s not back yet.”
“I’ll go find her,” Killian volunteered.
“No, it’s fine, I’ll go.”
“No, I insist.” Killian threw a meaningful look towards Snow, who had her back towards him. David caught the glance and his shoulders sagged. But he nodded; better to let someone else retrieve Emma while he tried to mend things with his wife.
Swan wasn’t far from camp; he only had to walk for a minute or so to find her sitting on the ground, back against a massive fallen tree. “What do you want?” she asked sullenly.
“We’re retiring for the night.” She shot him an amused glance, as it has been night since they’d arrived days ago. “You know what I mean. Your parents sent me to make sure you were all right.”
“You sound fine.”
“Well, I am.” She shivered. Of course she was shivering; her arms were bare and the material of her shirt was incredibly thin.
He pulled off his coat and held it out to her. She stared at it for a moment before sighing and reaching up for it. As she wrapped herself in it, he wondered, briefly, how much it would smell like her when she returned it.
“You can sit with me, I guess,” she said when he didn’t move.
“How could I refuse such an offer?” The ground was cold and hard, and he wished that he still had his coat to sit on. But better to have her be warm than to have his arse be cushioned.
They sat together for some time, staring at the jungle in front of them. He couldn’t help but feel a little triumphant; by this point in time, she’d clearly already sent Neal back to camp, and judging from his mood and expression upon his return, whatever she’d said to him had left him unhappy.
“What if we fail?” Her voice was so small and sad. It hurt to hear.
“We won’t. You won’t.”
“I have before.”
“I don’t know if I believe that.” She snorted derisively. “I mean it, Swan. You recall how we met, don’t you? You saw through me. You got the compass. You defeated Cora and got back to Storybrooke. You stopped me from killing the bloody Crocodile. You saw through Greg and Tamara. You found a way to save Regina and your town. I find it hard to believe you won’t succeed here as well.”
“You know, a lot of what you just listed involves you being a villain.”
“I know. But my point still stands. When have you ever failed?”
She sighed. “I lied to Henry.”
He frowned. “When?”
“About Neal. This was a while ago, when I first came to Storybrooke. He just …” She took a deep, shuddering breath. “He just was so interested, and I didn’t want him to know. So I told him his dad was this firefighter who died heroically.”
He wasn’t sure what a firefighter was, but he understood the sentiment. “I knew Neal when he was young,” he said. “I always assumed he would make a fine young man. To be honest, I’m struggling to comprehend that he could have hurt you so much.”
“He said he loved me,” she said quietly. “That we were going to have a life together, a home. And then he left me behind, and I ended up in prison.”
He wanted to ask why–why had Neal left her? Why had that resulted in prison time for Emma? But if she wanted to explain, she would have. What mattered was that Neal had left. And she hadn’t deserved that.
But more than that: “You did not fail when you lied to Henry.”
“You didn’t see how upset he was.”
“I didn’t say he wasn’t upset. You were trying to protect him; you had no reason to think that you would ever see Neal again, or,” he said wryly, “that he would end up being the son of Rumplestiltskin.” She chuckled, and he smiled, pleased he was able to elicit that reaction from her. “What I’m trying to say is that Henry obviously forgives you, and someday he’ll understand why you lied. Given the many ways in which parents can and do fail their children, this hardly registers.”
“Well, thanks.” She shivered again.
“You’re still cold?”
His heart sped up a bit. “May I?”
“May you what?”
May I wrap my arms around you and pretend that the gesture is romantic instead of platonic? wasn’t something he was sure would be well-received were he to voice it aloud, and so he settled on action.
Swan stiffened as his arm settled around her, but she didn’t speak. His heart continued to hammer in his chest; it was impossible to think that she could not hear it. He wished now that he hadn’t given her his coat, so that his hand could touch her bare arm instead of cool leather, or even that the coat could be gone entirely so that he could feel the heat of her as their sides pressed together.
Gradually, though, she relaxed, and while he waited for verbal protestation or a snide remark, neither came. Instead: “So we’re gonna win?”
[I don’t usually post my own fanfics but here we are! Based on my immortal au post. This is set just after the end of season one- none of season two has happened. (This is mostly because I’m hoping to do a drabble for this au’s version of Cult Camp.) Read the archive tags, considering the title and the au this story is in I don’t think they spoil anything. I was going to post it here as well but my theme doesn’t work well for this sort of thing]
This is my tattoo that I got about a month ago. The symbol itself is adapted from the hobo code, which expresses to travelers that whatever camp the symbol is outside of is a safe place. Circa Survive adopted this as a way of communicating with their fans that their music is a safe place, no matter who you are or where you come from. Over the last 9 years, music and live music in particular has been such a crucial and integral part of my life. It has been an escape through all the crazy shit I’ve been through in my life. No matter what is going on with my family, if I am at a concert screaming along to my favorite song by an amazing band surrounded by people who are just as passionate about music as I am, everything else disappears. Music has been such a defining part of my youth and I literally think I would be dead without it. This tattoo is not only for Circa Survive, my favorite band that I’ve grown with since I was 12 years old, but for music in general for being there when nothing else was. ♡
So toward the end of season 3, Bellamy finally tells Clarke that he has been angry with her for a long time because she left. Which is understandable, however, Bellamy, the one person Clarke thought would completely understand this, doesn’t. In fact, he spends most of season 3 making bad decisions that he would’ve otherwise avoided or even stopped. You can say that it is because Clarke wasn’t there with him to make the Head decisions with his Heart, and part of that is true, but when you look closer, most of it can be based on misunderstanding.
Looking back to the season 2 finale, when Clarke tells Bellamy that she can’t go back in the camp, Bellamy doesn’t seem to understand why. They both pulled the lever at Mt. Weather, they both took the lives of all those people. But Bellamy was in Mt. Weather and wasn’t there at the camp or when plans were being made to attack Mt. Weather. Sure he was filled in on the details of the mission, but he didn’t experience the tense atmosphere leading right up to the invasion. Granted he had his own tense atmosphere to deal with. However, because he wasn’t there, Bellamy didn’t understand how foolish and shameful Lexa made Clarke feel. Lexa ripped the rug out from under Clarke and left her feeling foolish for not having a back up plan in case their first one didn’t work out for some reason (which it obviously didn’t) and depending too much on Lexa. Then after Clarke and Bellamy made the decision to pull that lever, she couldn’t make herself walk back into that camp where there were so many adults that had been criticizing her since they landed and treating her as nothing but a child. She knew they were going to tell her that she should’ve waited to come back with a better plan like they said, but she knew it would’ve been too late for her friends, which was the point of all that she was trying to do: save her friends. Everyone who didn’t have a child in Mt. Weather mostly must’ve saw them as a nuisance. So she made herself walk away from all the people she cared about and ultimately hurt them in some way.
For the next three months, Clarke was alone. She was barely surviving in the wilderness by herself. Looking at how Murphy was spending three months alone, we know what type of psychological damage that can do to a person. I know that Clarke was still able to have contact with people unlike Murphy, but she had to make herself be detached from most human contact, especially once she found out that there was a bounty out for her, which could’ve happened right after she left. Bellamy knew none of this. Then, in the cave he finds her and I can almost guarantee that if he had been able to save her right then, the season would’ve taken a completely different direction. How it was though, Lexa got to Clarke first. It’s hard to see how any relationship could develop between the two after how Lexa betrayed Clarke, but Clarke was finally getting that human contact that everyone needs again. I’m not saying that Clarke didn’t have real feelings for Lexa, I’m saying that their relationship was a circumstantial one. And I believe that Lexa used this to her advantage and manipulated Clarke in some ways (But I won’t get into that). When you add that Lexa was the only person in Polis who showed Clarke kindness and wasn’t always trying to kill her, it’s easy to understand that Clarke was feeling lonely and looking for some connection. This is good because in some cases she was able to use her connection with Lexa (like to stop an attack on Arkadia). However, when Bellamy shows up to stop the attack that was really at Mt. Weather and save Clarke, she tells him that she is staying at Polis and we all know that Bellamy wasn’t happy about it and could even see the confusion in Clarke’s face when he leaves. She doesn’t understand why Bellamy is upset because she is doing this for their people and he should understand that better than anyone right?
Well what Clarke didn’t understand was that she had left Bellamy alone in a camp where he no longer knew his place. He’d earned the right to be a guard, but the last time he was in a camp for and extended period of time was when he was leading the 100 with Clarke. It is easy to understand that it would’ve been difficult for him to find a place without part of his support system (Clarke) that he depended so much on being there. But he was finally on the guard which is something normal for him because that’s what he wanted to be on the Ark. I also think that this is where his relationship with Gina comes in at (a relationship I’m not sure Clarke was ever fully made aware of). I’m not saying that Bellamy was in a relationship because he missed Clarke. It’s obvious that Gina was good for him and did give him back some of that support that he’d lost with Clarke (I mean he talked to her about his mom for goodness sake, I’ve never heard him and Clark talk about their lives on the Ark with each other), but anytime we saw Gina and Bellamy on screen together or even when Raven told Bellamy that Gina was to good for him, he always looked a little uncertain. I think that’s because Gina was the type of woman Bellamy always expected to end up with when he was on the Ark, but now things were different and he wasn’t sure why or maybe didn’t even fully realize it until he was told that Gina had been killed. Then, right after that, Clarke tells him that she’s not coming back with him (keep in mind that the last time he saw her she was bound and gagged.) and suddenly he lost two important people at once (Clarke for the second time) and from what he knew, sure she said it was “for their people”, but she’d spent three months with the grounders (not knowing what her situation with them was) and he must’ve felt that Clarke was picking them over her own people and he couldn’t understand why. When really what it was was her relationship with Lexa as the only person to not judge her that was keeping her there. Clarke wasn’t ready to go back to that camp and be judged. That was the whole reason she left and Bellamy didn’t understand that. He still didn’t when he left and when he returned to Arkadia he was angry and vulnerable and Pike knew that Bellamy had some pull with the people at the camp and used Bellamy’s vulnerability to turn on their alliance with the grounders. Bellamy thought they were the reason Clarke wasn’t coming home so he took his anger out on them and didn’t look back, even when everyone else was telling him not to do those things because the grounders were helping them. The only time we see him become emotional about any of this is when Clarke shows up to Arkadia (the first time she’s come back and it was just so she could talk to Bellamy. He’s the reason she finally (briefly) returned) to talk to him. We all know how that went…
The next time we see them together is after ALI has taken over Arkadia. Bellamy turned in Pike, but that was all for his sister. I think when Bellamy finally begins to forgive Clarke and realizes his mistakes is when she yells at Jasper not to destroy the AI because she believed it was Lexa. I think then Bellamy finally understood that the reasons for Clarke not coming home weren’t what he thought they were and so he began to forgive her then (because he knows what its like to do what you can to be with the ones you love, i.e shooting someone so your baby sister doesn’t have to go to earth alone), but didn’t completely forgive her until the beach scene when they were looking for Luna and finally had a chance to talk to each other in a way that they never had time for. Every since Mt. Weather, that was the longest that they were able to talk to each other without being influenced by other people (i.e like when Bellamy asked Clarke to come home right after Mt. Weather was destroyed and Lexa was the one who told him Clarke was staying). That’s when we see their relationship coming back together. Then, at the beginning of season four when they are all in the cell and Clarke tells her mother that she loved Lexa, we see Bellamy’s face and I believe that to show us that he was realizing how out of touch with each other they’d been and how wrong he’d been about Clarke’s reasons for staying in Polis. It’s how easy they forgive each other and take responsibility for their actions that show what an unconditional relationship they have with one another.
I believe all of this helped Bellamy realize how deeply he felt for Clarke. Not having her there in Arkadia left him empty in a way he couldn’t understand and then he finally gets her back. Meanwhile, Clarke understands why Bellamy did the things he did when he tells her how angry he was with her for leaving him alone. I believe she realizes what a special relationship they have then, but isn’t completely aware of how deep their connection is because she is still mourning Lexa. I don’t believe that Bellamy out-right said his feelings to Clarke because he knew she was still mourning Lexa and knew that it wouldn’t be fair. But when the end of the world is upon you, there’s some things you have to say, but they never gave each other the chance to.