Chapter 2

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The next morning came a little easier. Clarke woke in her own bed, with no hangover, and found that she felt almost rested. She crawled out of her sheets, wincing as the cold air hit her bare legs, and shuffled toward the kitchen. First things first, she needed coffee. As she rounded the corner into the kitchen Clarke realized she could actually smell it already. Frowning she walked over to find a full pot.

"Wh-" She shook her head, had she already made some and fallen back asleep? Just as she was reaching for a mug someone spoke behind her.

"Good morning."

Screaming, Clarke spun around, holding the mug in front of her like a weapon. Her spiking pulse calmed a little when she saw Bellamy standing there, the events of the past day slowly coming back.

"Oh." She said weakly, setting the mug down. "Good morning." She turned, trying to pretend she hadn't just had a small heart attack, but she could tell by the way he was smiling at her that he wasn't going to let it go.

"We should probably stop meeting like this." He was smirking, and it really shouldn't have been attractive, but it was. Clarke forced a smile.

"I guess I forgot you were here." The grin dropped off his face and she immediately felt bad. She hadn't meant to sound like she didn't want him here. "But hey, I could get used to this whole waking up to a full pot of coffee thing." She amended, pouring herself a cup. She saw him relax, and sighed internally. "What are you doing today?" He looked at her, in that intense way that seemed to pool heat low in her belly, and she momentarily found herself lost. Apparently that was going to happen often around Bellamy.

"I've got a few errands to run, then a meeting at one." He shrugged. Clarke found herself curious about his life. The more he held back, the more she wanted to know.

"What exactly do you do?" She poured him a mug to match her own and slid it over to him, hoping to coax out a little information. It worked.

"I'm a writer." It wasn't what she had expected. He seemed to catch onto that, cocking his head as he studied her reaction.

"What kind of writer?" Clarke asked, sipping at the hot coffee. Between her first hit of caffeine, and her early morning scare, she was wide awake.

"Nothing you'd have read." He told her, finishing his coffee. He dropped his mug in the sink, turning toward the guest room. Clarke frowned, clearly his wall was back up and she wouldn't get anything else out of him. She silently gave thanks that this was a temporary arrangement, because really who wanted such a surly stranger in their home all the time? Still, she watched him go, admiring the way his jeans fit him. Okay he was surly. But he was also very, very hot. She turned to the sink, placing her mug next to his, and wondered when the last time she'd woken up with a guy in her place was. She couldn't remember. It wasn't that she was a prude, but she had intimacy issues, she knew that, and she was more of a sneak out in the middle of the night type of girl these days. She'd been in a long term relationship for years, and when it ended she'd found herself with no desire to rush back into anything serious.

She showered, not bothering to get dressed in the bathroom, and surveyed her closet clad only in a towel. Bellamy was a guest here, and a relatively unobtrusive one from what she could tell, so she wasn't going to start changing her habits to make him more comfortable. She had made a habit of not getting dressed until the very last minute to avoid getting food or makeup on her clothes. Still, she wasn't an exhibitionist despite the way they'd met, so she threw on a nice pair of slacks and a blouse before venturing back out into the living room.

Clarke had furnished her apartment with a mixture of high-end contemporary pieces (courtesy of her mother) and antiques that were more true to her own taste. The result was an eclectic collection of mixed woods and colors, and that suited her just fine. She'd never thought much about how it looked to an outsider, but as she watched Bellamy wander around inspecting the place she felt a little self-conscious. He looked up as she approached, the sound of her heels on the hardwood a detriment to her stealth. He was hovering beside one of her paintings, a breathtaking rendering of the harbor at night.

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