Disclaimer: Don't own Smallville/The Mortal Instruments
Sequel to: Jace Wayland's Unstealthy Stalking
My version of City of Ashes
"What do you mean she was taken from Idris and somehow ended up injured in the Fairy Realm?" Jace's eyes widened in horror and he didn't even try to leave the cell, which was now unlocked.
"Exactly what I just said." Lois anchored her hands on her hips. "Now the Queen wants us to come and get her."
"Isn't anyone else wondering why she's so invested in Chloe that she'd risk the wrath of the Clave?" Alec wanted to know.
"Screw the Clave," Lois huffed.
"When she met Chloe she gave her her token. I've never heard of her giving out tokens before." Isabelle frowned. "She also insisted that Chloe keep it and give the ring back on her next visit."
"So obviously it was planned for her to go back." Jace finally emerged from the cell. "What are we waiting for?"
"Clark is going to text me when he's outside." Lois responded.
"Clark?" Jace's eyes narrowed. "Why is the mundie coming?"
"He's one of the conditions," Alec explained.
"How do they know about him?" Jace wanted to know.
Alec shrugged as he handed Jace his stele and Seraph Blade back. "Maybe she mentioned him?"
"That's not important right now." Lois pulled out her phone when it beeped. "He's outside."
Isabelle turned to her in surprise. "That was quick."
"I know," Lois mumbled softly before she texted Clark and looked up as she pocketed her phone once more. "Let's go."
Jace followed after them and didn't even have the peace of mind to sneer at the Inquisitor and the others as he left. His mind was full of his girlfriend, his injured girlfriend, who was currently in the Fairy Realm, which wasn't a safe place for anyone to be. Also, this Fae interest in her worried him. Fae interest was always something to be wary of, but she'd told him of her conversation with the Queen, of how the whole court had wanted Moira to live with Chloe there when the blonde had been a baby. The fairies knew more about what had happened to Chloe, what had been done to Chloe, than they wanted to admit. So the fact that she was there, alone and defenseless, made his skin crawl.
He barely acknowledged Clark's presence when they met the mundane at the gates and hurried off into the night, following Isabelle's lead to one of the many secret entrances to the Fairy Realm. He'd been cooped up far too long, for a warrior it was agony, and after knowing that Chloe had been taken to Idris things had grown progressively worse for him in captivity.
"Do you think this has anything to do with what happened tonight?" Alec finally turned to Isabelle.
"Maybe. I don't know," his sister admitted softly.
"What happened tonight?" Clark asked before Jace or Lois could.
Isabelle turned towards the mundane. "A Fae child was killed."
Jace's eyes narrowed as he made the connection quicker than the other two. "Was it similar to the other Downworlder murders?"
"What am I missing?" Clark asked Lois.
Lois, who knew about the other murders, figured out what they weren't saying. "A Warlock, as well as a kid werewolf were killed not too long ago, their bodies drained of blood."
"Vampires?" Clark made a face.
"Or someone who really wants the Clave to believe vampires are behind it." Isabelle looked behind at him. "The Fae believe this is Valentine Morgenstern's doing."
"Isn't it always?" Clark mumbled.
Jace bit back defense of his father and paused when he realized that Isabelle had taken them to a lake. "Why are we here? I thought you said there was a door. There's no door here."
Isabelle rolled her eyes. "Just follow me. We only have until the moon moves."
Clark followed behind her, his expression comical as he mouthed to Lois: Huh?
Lucy waited in the shadows and watched as Isabelle Lightwood showed the others how to pass through the "door" into the Fairy Realm. She was quickly followed by Jonathan Morgenstern and then Clark and the others.
Only once they'd all disappeared through the door did Lucy emerge from the shadows and watch the water.
Exactly what was going on?
Her phone rang and she pulled it out of her pocket to eye the Caller ID, sighing when she saw who it was. The girl took in a deep breath and answered the call. "Yeah?" The voice murmured in her ear and a muscle jumped in her cheek. "Listen, if you don't have-." Her eyes widened. "What? HOW?" The voice continued to mumble. "Blood? Was she hurt?" She paced. "That's unacceptable, you were supposed to snatch her not lose her!" The brunette let out a deep breath before she tried once more, this time with more patience. "No, don't worry." Her gaze went to the lake. "I have a feeling I know exactly where she is."
Chloe groaned as she stretched in bed, and then everything came rushing back to her and her eyes opened as she sat up quickly and looked around her. Fairy lights lit up the room yet kept it dim enough for her to sleep. The room itself was beautiful despite being underground, or maybe that was actually part of the appeal. Chloe would've thought that she'd feel suffocated given the whole buried alive thing, but she found that for some reason she was okay underground in the Realm of the Fae. Maybe it was the magic all around her working to keep her from feeling claustrophobic and near a panic attack, she wasn't sure.
When light caught the stone in the middle of the flower of her ring and twinkled, her gaze lowered to her finger and she raised her hand to better catch the light. The fairy lights caused a halo to shine around the ring itself, making it look enchanting... or enchanted. Unease filled her as Chloe once more tried her hardest to remove it from her finger, and yet the ring wouldn't budge. She could see the vines tighten around her finger, not painfully, but securely, making it impossible for her to even twirl it around her finger like she usually did whenever nervous or upset. It was as if the ring sensed that she wanted to remove it, and was doing all in its power to not allow her to do so.
Seeing a bowl of water in the corner of the room, Chloe stuck her hand in it, trying to use the water as lubricant, but upon submerging her hand inside the bowl she realized that it wasn't water. The blonde had no idea what it was, but it lit up a bright purple and stung like crazy.
A cry escaped her lips as she tried to wipe the liquid off onto her pants, but it stuck to her and began to truly burn.
Valentine Morgenstern walked tranquilly through the dark room and seemed not to even notice the cries of agony or the whimpers which pleaded for him to show mercy. He ignored the Downworlders trapped in cages made specifically to trap their kind, and gazed into her cage. She felt indignant and furious, but she also felt afriad, very afraid. Her gaze went to the table where magically protected jars of blood stood as a mockery, as a reminder to all what their fates were.
Hadn't they seen what he'd done to the other Downworlders who'd once filled the other, empty cages? They knew they wouldn't make it out of there alive.
"Filthy things." Valentine moved closer to her cage and stared inside. "And yet you were given strengths and abilities we, the Children of the Angel, could never dream to possess." He bent to his knees to stare into her cage. "How is that fair? Or right?"
She wanted to both attack him and press as far against the opposing bars as she could to get away from him.
"Wretched, cursed things," Valentine sneered. "All that you are good for is your blood." He stood. "And I will drain you all of every last drop."
She watched him go, hugged herself tightly, and never felt as terrified as she did right then.
Gasping desperately for breath, Chloe's eyes widened as disorientation filled her. Where was she? Hadn't she been in a cage? She sat up and whimpered at the pain in her head, bringing her hand to her throbbing forehead. At the taste of mettalic in her mouth she brought her other hand to her nostrils and pulled it away to find blood at her fingertips. She'd bled from the nose again, like when she'd seen the Mortal Cup visions.
This had been so similar to that and yet so different as well.
Just what had happened to her and why had she seen it?
It was only when she realized that her ring was glowing that Chloe remember what had happened before she'd blacked out. There'd been the bowl of - whatever - and it'd burnt her. Badly. But her hand wasn't burning anymore, it didn't even have any residue liquid on it, and there were no burns on her hand either. Had it all been in her mind?
No. It'd been too painful.
Then what was that and what happened?
The door opened and she looked up in shock to see a familiar head of golden hair. "Jace?"
He merely stayed in the doorway for a moment, shadows from the fairy lights playing on his closed-off face, before suddenly he was there, kneeling on the floor, and gathering her so tightly in his arms it hurt.
"Is it really you?" She gripped at him in shock and hope.
He pulled away and cupped her face in his hands. "Where are you hurt?"
"What?" She blinked up at him. "I'm not-."
"They said there was blood, that you were injured." His face was still utterly hardened. "Who hurt you?"
"No one." She freed herself from his grip to instead brush his golden locks from his face, his golden eyes lion-like in the dim light. "I got hurt, that's all." She smiled up at him. "I was so worried about you."
"You worried about me?" Jace's voice was dark and hard as he leaned his face into her caress. "Chloe, when father told me that they'd taken you-!"
"Valentine?" Chloe's vision was still too fresh, too real, and she pulled away immediately in confusion. "When did you see and talk to him? And how would he know-?"
"I don't know how he knew, he must have people working for him in Idris." Jace began to pat her down, apparently not believing that she wasn't gravely injured. "He broke into the City of Bones and killed every single Silent Brother before stealing the Sword."
Chloe's eyes widened. "He stole the Soul Sword? Why?"
"It's a Mortal Instrument, I'm assuming he took it for whatever reason he wants the Cup." Jace tilted her head backwards carefully and then glared as he reached out and brushed his thumb over her top lip. "You had a nose bleed. You haven't had one since the Mortal Cup was removed." His eyes narrowed on her fiercely. "What aren't you telling me?"
"Jace, your intensity is a little scary." She let out a soft laugh as she pushed his hands away.
Jace's expression clouded as he looked away. "I thought they'd taken you, Chloe. I thought I'd never see you again." He closed his eyes tightly. "I'm just so relieved you're here, that I can-that you're-." He hung his head low. "Oh by the Angel I'm lame!"
A smile tilted her lips as she reached out to cup his face and tilted his gaze to meet hers. "I was scared I'd never see you too."
Jace stared at her much like a lost child would, and then he surged forwards and his mouth found hers.
Chloe clutched at him tightly and kissed him back as she drew him closer and closer. Relief speared through her to have him with her once more, and she didn't want to ever let him go, was scared they'd be separated again, and could feel that he felt exactly the same.
Someone cleared their throat.
Chloe's eyes widened and she pulled away from an unhappy Jace to blink in surprise. "Clark?"
"Hey." He stood awkwardly in the doorway with a smirking Isabelle.
Alec peered over Isabelle's shoulder.
In front of them, arms folded over her chest, was an annoyed Lois Lane. "How many times do those damned Shadowhunters think they can kidnap you?"
Chloe grinned up at her cousin. "I know, right?"
"You seem to forget that we were the "damned Shadowhunters" who "kidnapped" her the first time," Jace drawled.
"Nope. Didn't forget that at all," Lois snipped before she went to hug her cousin. "Stop getting kidnapped. It's an order."
"Yes ma'am." Chloe shared a smile with the others over Lois' shoulder before the brunette helped her to her feet. "What are you all doing here?"
"Didn't you send the Downworlder?" Alec looked confused.
"Huh?" Chloe looked between them.
"Then what about the conditions?" Clark wanted to know.
"What conditions?" Chloe's confusion grew.
"Meliorn came to tell me that you were here." Isabelle stepped forwards. "He said that you were worried and that you wouldn't go with anyone who wasn't us."
"Oh." Chloe brought her hand to her head, which hurt slightly. "I, uh, I can see why they would think that." Her eyes turned to Clark. "But why are you here?"
Jace stood with the grace of a feline. "You didn't ask for him by name?"
"No." Chloe shook her head resolutely and then sighed. "I think they've been watching me again, now that the block is gone." She frowned. "It would make sense... their watching me is part of the reason why mother put the block on me in the first place... to blind them to me."
"You never told us this," Alec frowned.
"So you think that they've seen you with me, and so they knew I was one of the people you trusted." Clark got what she didn't say.
"Yes." Chloe nodded.
Jace stood. "It doesn't matter, we need to get out of here."
"But..." Chloe frowned and grabbed at her hand. "I need to see the Queen before I go."
"It's common courtesy," Isabelle agreed before she frowned. "But we're going straight to the others afterwards. I promised the Inquisitor that I'd bring you both to her. I gave my word."
"If you would," a voice declared from behind them to prove that Meliorn had been there all along. "The Queen is expecting you."
Chloe reached out and grabbed Jace's hand before she slipped out through the throng to follow behind Meliorn. Isabelle tried to engage him in conversation but he ignored her attemps and the girl finally fell silent. Clark placed his hand on her shoulder and she gave him a sad/embarrassed smile.
When they were allowed to see the Queen, the throne room was exotically gorgeous as always, fairy lights bright enough to cast bewitching lights and shadows on them as they entered.
"Welcome to my realm," the Queen declared in a magnanimous way as she beckoned them towards the throne. "Such a beautiful group." Her gaze rested on Clark. "So very handsome indeed."
Clark gulped and flushed.
Isabelle raised an eyebrow.
The Queen's gaze went to Chloe and Jace, to their joined hands, and then back to their faces with a twisted smile. "Children of Morgenstern, your father killed one of my own. How should I retaliate to such a crime?"
Jace's eyes narrowed as he moved protectively in front of Chloe. "If you want to take vengeance on him do so through me, but leave her out of it."
"Jace, no!" Chloe tried to move forwards but he wouldn't let it, his eyes golden and fierce on the Fae Queen.
The Queen's eyes were on Jace and they were darkly amused. "Is that what you truly believe, young Morgenstern? You cannot be that naive, can you? Then again, nothing is as you think it to be. If I truly wanted to hurt Morgenstern at the price of someone's life, it would be hers, it would sting him greater than you can ever imagine."
Jace's body shook, his muscles tense. "I won't let you hurt her."
"It is adorable that you believe you could stop me from doing anything I wanted, especially in my own realm." The expression on the Queen's face was twisted, almost pitying, and yet the hint of malicious glee in her orbs was undeniable. "Rest easy, son of Morgenstern, had I wanted her dead she wouldn't have reached her first year of life."
The fierceness in Jace's expression faltered for a split second before it returned, hardened.
That malicious glee sparked behind her orbs. "But that is not what you are here to discuss. Is it? No. We were discussing crime and punishment."
Chloe stepped out from behind Jace and moved towards the Queen before he could stop her. She lowered to her knees and bowed before the Queen. "We have no fault in what Valentine Morgenstern has done, or the crimes he has committed against your people, both past and present."
The Queen's gaze zeroed in on her. "Am I expected to just let these deeds go unpunished? Is that what you expect of me?" She sneered. "I am not known for my compassion."
Chloe shifted her gaze to her ring, finding it slack enough to twirl and not melded to her skin like before. Yet a swift tug proved that it wouldn't move passed her knuckle. She took in a deep breath. "You gave me this token for a reason."
"Is that so?" The Queen eyed her emotionlessly.
Chloe closed her eyes. "You know more than you will ever reveal. You knew about me long before my own creator did, and that shows incredible foresight."
"You're getting better at flattery," the Queen sounded amused. "It pleases me. But stroking my ego alone will not placate my righteous anger at what has been done to my people."
Jace moved to Chloe's side and although he kept his head bowed, he held his hand for Chloe to stand, which she did. "We do not know my father's plans."
"But we will stop him." Alec stepped forwards. "Our allegiance is to the Clave."
"Is it now?" The Queen stared at Jace. "Can you look into my eyes and say that you hate your father and would kill him without a second's thought?"
Jace stared into her eyes and shook his head. "No."
"Jace!" Isabelle hissed, horrified. "You can't mean that! He's a monster!"
"Shut up Izzy." Jace snapped.
Isabelle took a step back.
"Don't talk to her like that!" Alec glared.
"Guys, calm down!" Clark raised his voice. "We're turning on each other and I think that's what she wants."
"You're very handsome," the Queen smirked at him.
He blushed darker and looked away.
Jace was silent, his face closed off, yet his eyes were molten gold.
Lois cleared her throat. "We should go back topside. We only have until the moon moves-whatever that means."
Nodding, Chloe squeezed Jace's hand as she kept her head bowed. "I know why you gave me this ring as a token."
The Queen smiled a pitious smile. "I doubt that." She motioned with her hand. "You may leave, untouched."
A little unnerved, Chloe inhaled. "Thank you for allowing me to stay while I rested."
There was a dark chuckle before the Queen rested her hand on the top of Chloe's head. "The Fae Court is always opened to you."
"Thank you." Chloe bowed her head a little further before allowing Jace (who bowed to the Queen as well) to lead her towards the others.
Lois gave Chloe an encouraging smile.
Clark eyed the Queen nervously.
Isabelle sent Jace a worried look.
Alec's expression was conflicted.
Meliorn cleared his throat. "Follow me and I will lead you out."
The procession out of the Faery realm was quiet and tense. Chloe kept twirling the ring on her finger. The Faerie Queen had to know that she'd had visions of the Mortal Cup while it was within her, and that was why she'd given Chloe this token. Somehow it allowed her to see what Valentine was doing - or had done. The Queen had mentioned that this wasn't the first time one of their own had been taken by him.
Chloe was meant to use the ring to see more into Valentine's past dealings - or maybe his present - she wasn't sure. All she knew was that the Queen was right. No one would've been able to stop her from killing them in her realm, or doing god knew what else to them. But she'd let them go, untouched, and there was only one reason for that: they were useful to her.