a/n: While I loved Lincoln and Octavia getting together, I was disappointed that we didn't see more about how that happened. This is a short multi-chapter bridging that gap.

The First Time

Octavia Blake had lived her entire life in a metal cage – quite literally. Since she was old enough to comprehend her surroundings, she became frustratingly accustomed to dull greys illuminated only by subdued fluorescents. Perhaps this was why she'd never missed an opportunity to explore the woods surrounding their makeshift encampment. Since calling Earth home, and despite the ever present danger, the exhilaration of being free of walls and enclosed spaces surpassed any fear she might have had of being caught.

Lincoln had later admitted that he'd been watching them, watching her, ever since the hundred had come back to earth. He had observed her routes and destinations, knew her routine before she had realized it to be so. So when she took her nightly sprint through the forest a week after she had helped him escape the drop ship, she was only slightly surprised to see the large white orchids that lay dispersed scantily across the meandering path. A few yards on, the orchids veered off the path and up a steep incline before leveling out on the mountainous terrain. Dense foliage covered the ground, but the white orbs, luminescent in the gleam of night, lit her way.

The first time she arrived at the entrance to his cave, Lincoln had been waiting outside. He'd stood in the shadows, but eventually stepped out into the glimmer of moonlight. He wore nothing but leather trousers, the moonlight kissing his uncovered skin. They'd stood watching each other for a long while, each assessing whether the magnetic pull between them was sheer madness and worth the danger it presented to both of them if they were caught. Eventually, his hand reached for hers and Octavia placed hers into his. Whatever the risk, she couldn't have turned from him then if her life depended on it.

"Are you alright? I was worried that something might've happened... I mean... when I didn't hear from you... not that you would be able to send me mail..." Octavia sighed. She sounded like a rambling idiot. Finally, she just said, "I'm glad you're ok."

His home was spacious, lit by a roaring fire and nothing else. Cosy, she guessed, would be the most appropriate term. Cosy, but rustic, although, not crudely so. She would come to learn that Lincoln had an artist's eye. His sketches were some of the most beautiful she had ever seen, despite their representation on the pages of uneven parchment or on the walls of the cave.

"Why did you bring me here?" she asked. They stared at each other across the cavernous space, each unable to look anywhere else. She had never experienced such an intense pull towards another human being. She loved her brother, felt comforted by his presence, even when they were fighting, but this need to be with the grounder, be around him, within his orbit, his unique gravity pulling her recklessly closer spelled an inevitable collision – one she wasn't sure she wanted to stop.

He hesitated a moment before replying. "I… my people do not look kindly on yours."

"That's a bit of an understatement, wouldn't you say?" she teased.

A small smile touched the corners of his lips, briefly showing signs of attractive lines around his mouth. Butterflies fluttered their wings against the inside of her belly as the intangible seduction of chemistry wound its magic around them. Laugh lines were normally indicative of someone who smiled or laughed often, the lines creasing the skin into the familiar. Octavia could not imagine his stern features relaxing into a smile. Suddenly a large part of her wanted badly to know what he would look like.

"To show you that not all my people need to be feared. You don't need to fear me."

"I know that already."

Without thought she stepped closer, so close in fact, that she only realized exactly what she was doing when her hand reached out to trace his strong jawline. He stood still as a statue, his dark eyes fixed on her face. She felt her body flush at the intensity of his heated gaze.

"…besides," she continued. "We haven't exactly been a picnic either. There's a lot of blame to go around… for both sides."

He nodded slightly, his eyes now following her roving hands. He did not look like any other man she had ever met. Granted, her experience with the opposite sex was limited to very few. He was tanned; his skin darkened no doubt from hours in the sun. She envied that, the fact that he had been born with the sun as his blazing protector. She had known nothing but artificial lighting and the isolating, cold, bleak loneliness of space.

His skin was marred with scars, but despite that, it was surprisingly smooth and hot to her touch. Her hands traced of their own accord, moving across his wide forehead before brushing across his shaven head. She noticed his gaze stutter, his eyes lose some of their focus as his lids shut momentarily, his throat contracting rhythmically as her hands continued their exploration.

His body was all toughened muscle, his shoulders and arms hard and defined. His body – what she could see of it – was also free of hair, his chest smooth, the muscles distinct. Her eyes travelled downwards, noting the sculptured abdominal muscles, his trousers sitting low on his narrowed hips. Dear God, but he was an amazing specimen. And hot as hell. Dark tattoos adorned his neck, chest, arms and back. While initially they had served as confirmation of his race's brutality, now, standing before him, his face clear from bruises, swollen skin and dried blood, those inked markings were beautiful with the firelight dancing off them.

"Why have you done this to your body?" She moved around him, tracing the dark arrows that ran down the length of his spine and disappeared into his pants. She swallowed reflexively a few times, her throat dry, her hands itching to follow the path.

"You find them repulsive?" His tone was hard, defiantly proud, and she moved back around to face him, so her eyes could meet his.

"No. No," she defended vehemently. "Its just, where I come from, I've never really seen anything like it." She gave him an encouraging smile, hoping to coax one in return. "They are beautiful."

"They're the markings of war. From the moment we begin training, each rite of passage is inked onto our skin. When we die, we commit our bodies, our souls and our stories to the grave."

She couldn't help but notice the pride with which he spoke. His numerous markings clearly meant that he would be formidable in combat. This she could believe, having seen him in action.

Her head tilted to the side as she observed him. He wasn't traditionally handsome, she supposed. Most of her kind would likely brand him barbaric. His strong jaw and high forehead was complimented by a large nose, slightly crooked. He had had it broken more than once she was sure.

Octavia leaned in, stepping onto her toes in order to gain some height. Next to him, it wasn't much. He was impossibly tall. She placed a soft kiss on the top of his nose. He'd stood still throughout her ministrations. Now though, she could see that this contact had startled him.

"It's a sign of affection," she clarified.

"Affection…" Arms that had up till then remained at his side, moved to her hips, holding her lightly, non-threateningly, but even the light touch ignited her blood. "…for a grounder. I don't think your kind would approve."

She realized she didn't want the light touch, she wanted something more. Octavia pushed even closer then, her courage boosting when she noticed his slight intake of breath. With arms anchored to the broad expanse of his shoulders, her neck craned to look up at him.

"Good thing it's just you and me then."

He made no reply, but his eyes fixed on her in a way that made her flush, sending her stomach muscles into a spasm of longing that even her limited experience recognized as hot desire. His dark orbs radiated heat as he scanned her face, searching for something. If it was consent, she was going to give it to him. In fact, she couldn't remember ever wanting to be this close to anyone in her life.

"Lincoln." The whisper was a question. Octavia licked her lips, trying desperately to get closer.

"Yes, Octavia." The way he said her name sent ripples of goosebumps dancing across her already sensitized skin. She saw his eyes flick to her forearms as they rested close to his shoulders. Even in the dimly lit cavern, she knew he could see the puckered skin.

"Kiss me."

His eyes never left hers as his lips moved in close, giving her every opportunity to change her mind. While she appreciated the sentiment, that was not going to happen. Octavia strained upwards, meeting him halfway, her mouth angled towards his, her tongue slipping past his lips to play with his. Shards of the sharpest, strongest lust hit her straight in the chest; it almost robbed her of breath.

She pushed into him, her hands at his neck, holding on as his fingers began its own exploration of her scorched skin. Everywhere he touched, she burned until she was sure the flames of the fire engulfed them both. Her jacket hit the floor, his hands roaming beneath the hemline of the tank top she wore. She couldn't breathe, but she didn't want to. Her heart raced at a mile a minute, the frantic, sensuous clash of their mouths testament to the passion between them.

But she was human, so was he. And air was a prerequisite for life. Their lips wretched apart, both of them heaving as if they had run a marathon they were both unprepared for.

"Octavia…" Her name again, whispered in a way that no one else had ever done. Sexy. So damned sexy. She bit her lip to contain the moan that would have escaped as their foreheads rested close. The space was quiet; all she could hear was the crackling fire and their combined, harsh breathing.

"I don't understand this either you know. I mean, we've just met – practically – and here I am, ready to-" Octavia stopped herself because realization dawned. She was ready. She had never had sex before. Sure, she'd kissed boys, especially since they'd crashed to earth - it had been easy to experiment. But none of them had inspired her to want to give of herself. She was ready to make him her first. Inside, she couldn't conjure any regret for an action she realized would likely be inevitable.

"It's getting late," he whispered. "Your brother might be worried." His words were reluctant and it soothed her ego. This wasn't rejection, it was protection. And they were both treading on very dangerous ground.

Her arms slipped from around his neck and she felt his hands drop reluctantly from her waistline. She could still feel the imprint though, as if he had branded her with his touch.

She turned to leave but he caught her hand and squeezed. The simple action brought tears to her eyes. What am I doing? She turned to look at him but blinked back the tears.

"Will you come tomorrow night? I'll leave flowers to guide you back."

I shouldn't. I should say goodbye and not look back. I – this between us – it could get him killed. The thought sent a ton of lead sinking into the pit of her stomach.

Her eyes met his and she knew that no would never pass her lips. Because this man, this grounder who she hardly knew, had stolen her heart.

Her breath caught when he pulled her in and crashed his lips to hers, the kiss frantic for a moment before it slowed and almost killed her with tenderness.

"I don't understand it either," he whispered. "I just know I have to be near you. I can't explain it."

"I know. I feel it too." Her hand touched his cheek and she placed a soft kiss there. "I have to go." It was ridiculous, but it felt like she left a part of herself with him. At the entrance she sent a small smile in his direction. It was small, but it was filled with promise.

"See you tomorrow," she said before running out into the night.

The air had never smelled as sweet, nor had she felt as alive. And yet, in the pit of her stomach, a dark fear took root, causing dread and anxiety to do battle with the realization that her life would never be the same. No matter what happened, things had irrevocably changed. It was ridiculous, utterly and completely illogical. But she couldn't deny the truth. She was in love with a grounder. She was in love with Lincoln.

And Bellamy would very likely kill him because of it.