Shadowhunters || Jalec || The Lives of the Lightwoods and Lewises || Jalec || Shadowhunters
Title: The Lives of the Lightwoods and Lewises – Reversed Roles
Fandom: Shadowhunters: The Mortal Instruments
Disclaimer: All rights to the Shadowhunters show reserved to Ed Decter, the books the show is based off and its characters belong to Cassandra Clare. This fanfiction on the other hand is entirely mine. No money is made with this, though reviews are more than welcomed.
Warnings: m/m, fluff, happy childhood for Jace, role swap, m/f
Main Pairing: Jace/Alec
Side Pairing: Luke/Elaine
Shadowhunters Characters: Jonathan Christopher 'Jace' Herondale, Alexander 'Alec' Lightwood, Simon Lewis, Elaine Lewis, Luke Garroway, Rebecca Lewis, Maureen Brown, Isabelle 'Izzy' Lightwood, Clarissa 'Clary' Fray
Summary: What if Jocelyn died during the fire and Luke thinks the baby died with her, but Valentine saved Clary and raised her, while Luke managed to save Jace, thinking him to be Jonathan? Jace gets to grow up happy and healthy in the mundane world, while Clary is later raised by the Lightwoods and becomes parabatai with Isabelle.
The Lives of the Lightwoods and Lewises
Jace was ten when he first asked about his real parents. He immediately regretted it when his dad looked sad at it and he took it back right away. But his dad shook his head and grabbed him under the arms to lift him up so Jace could sit on his dad's lap.
"What... makes you ask that? And now?"
Jace shrugged and rested his hand on his dad's. "We... don't look alike. But I never thought about it. At school, someone told me that you weren't my real dad anyway, couldn't even be. And that mommy isn't my real mom either since you only met and married her a few years ago."
"...That is... right", admitted his dad. "Neither me nor your mom may be your biological parents, but... who sat with you at dinner every night, who reads you your bedtime stories, who kisses your bruises better and drives you to baseball practice and got you a piano when you started being interested in classical music and who spent all Saturday baking with you?"
"You and mom", answered Jace softly, wiggling his nose. "But I mean-"
"I know what you mean, but I need you to know what I mean too. Elaine and me are your parents, even if we're not your blood, and we love you as much as parents could love their child, Jace Lewis", stated his dad seriously. "But... you are right that we're not your blood and you do deserve to know about your biological parents. I was... friends with your parents, very close friends. But they died during a fire. I tried to... to go after them and save them, but all I could save was you. I took you in to raise you the way your mother, Jocelyn, would have wanted."
"Luke? Jace? Are you-", asked Elaine as she poked her head in. "Oh, you look... serious?"
"Jace, Jace, Jace, Jace, Jace!", exclaimed Simon as he came running past his mother. "I got mom to buy the new video-game for us! Co—ome! Play with me, please, please, please!"
"Ye—es!", gasped Jace and jumped off his dad's lap.
"Jace!", called Luke after him. "Does that mean we're... done?"
Jace paused and blinked as he turned to look at him. "Uhu. You're the best dad in the world. I'm glad you chose me as your son, that's a hundred times better anyway."
"It... is?", asked Luke a little surprised.
"Yeah. I told Mike that too. His parents had no other choice than him, but you and mom, you chose me, out of all the kids with no parents, you picked me", replied Jace and tilted his head. "And when I get to pick something myself, I always like that more than when someone else makes the choice for me, because it was my choice and I want it. I was your choice, because you wanted me."
Luke smiled softly, rubbing that one tear out of his eye that stubbornly wanted to be shed. Jace tilted his head onto the other side, running back to hug Luke one last time and looking up at him.
"Are we done, dad? I really need to kick Si's butt in the game!", asked Jace.
"Yeah, kiddo. Go play video-games with your brother. But you know you only get one hour of playing video-games a day!", warned Luke as Jace and Simon ran out of the room.
He leaned back and took a deep breath. His wife looked at him concerned before she sat down next to him. Resting a hand on her knee, Luke leaned over to kiss Elaine gently on the cheek.
"What was all that about?", wanted Elaine to know.
"He... asked about his real parents", sighed Luke. "It had me worried for a moment, but I guess you and I are doing a good enough job that he was just... generally curious."
"Ah", nodded Elaine. "He didn't mean to hurt your feelings, Luke. He simply doesn't know the right words. For a child his age... I suppose it makes sense he'd think of biological parents as real parents, if that is what he hears. We should have a more in-depth conversation with him about adoption."
"We should", agreed Luke. "But not today. I..."
"I know, love", sighed Elaine softly and leaned against him. "I know."
And she did, though not everything but what was important here. She knew that Valentine and Jocelyn Morgenstern had been Luke's best friends, that he had been there when they had died eight years ago. What she didn't know was that the two were Shadowhunters, that Valentine had gone insane and tried to take over the Shadow World so he could rid the world of Downworlders, such as Luke who was a werewolf. What Elaine also didn't know was that Jocelyn had been highly pregnant when she had died. But... Luke never saw the point in telling her that. There laid only pain, because losing Jocelyn had already been hard enough, to think of the what if with the baby...? It hurt.
"You are the best thing that ever happened to me", stated Luke honestly as he pulled Elaine closer. "You, Jace, Becky and Simon. Right before Jocelyn and Valentine died, I thought I had nothing, I thought I had already lost my best friend when we fought. And then I lost him, I lost them both for good and was all alone with a toddler... I love Jace, I loved him even then already, but I had no idea what I was doing. Me, a single father? I was so lost. If I hadn't moved in next door, hadn't met you, I don't know where Jace and I would be now, Elaine."
"Oh, you would have done just fine", chided Elaine gently. "You are a wonderful father, the children love you and you love them and that's the most important thing about parenting. Me, on the other hand... if you hadn't moved in... I was... I know I was drinking too much. I was so lost without Levi. I don't know how far I would have slipped away had you not intervened and made me go to meetings, telling me that I'd lose my children on top of my husband if I didn't get my act together... You saved me, you saved my family, Luke. You were the friend I needed, far before you were the husband I love now. So I think... we saved each other, mh?"
She smiled up at him just as they leaned in to kiss softly. "Urgh. Gross. When you're done being gross, get the dweebs off the TV! My show is about to start but they're playing games!"
Elaine and Luke parted with a blush and laughed a little as they looked at their oldest. Rebecca stood there with her hands against her hips, looking all like the annoyed pre-teen she was.
Everything about the Lightwoods was strange. There was a lot Seraphina needed to get used to. Like her name. Clary. Clary, not Seraphina. When she had been picked up by Robert and Maryse Lightwood and was introduced to their children Alexander and Isabelle, Isabelle had wrinkled her nose at the name Seraphina. Determined to make them like her, Seraphina had offered her middle-name as an alternative – Clarissa. Supposedly, according to her father, that was the name her mother had wanted for her. Not that Seraphina – no, Clary – actually knew her mother; she had died in child-birth and her father had raised her all on his own. Until... Seraphine closed her eyes tightly and took a slow, deep and shaky breath. Her father was dead. The only family she had ever known, the man who had shaped her to be a weapon of war, to defend and fight for the Clave, had died in front of her eyes, left her all alone to now live with his parabatai's family.
Sera... Clary. Clary had never known other children. She occasionally saw other adults visiting her father, but mostly, the two had kept to themselves, living in the woods. Now there were Alexander and Isabelle, as well as other children running around the Institute. It was all incredibly overwhelming and on top of it all, she had to deal with the images of her father bleeding to death on the floor, the picture invading her mind repeatedly. She gulped, trying to swallow the feelings that bubbled up at this thought. Her hands were shaking. No weakness. Her father raised her better.
"Hey", whispered Isabelle gently as she approached. "You wanna spar?"
Clary shook her head before turning toward Isabelle. Isabelle was exactly her age, while Alexander was two years older than her. Apparently, their shared age had Isabelle quite determined to befriend her. Clary was still uncertain about that; she never had a friend before, after all. The concept seemed odd. Love destroyed, Clary knew that, her father had taught her that.
Well... No. Seraphina knew that. But just maybe Clary had a chance to learn for herself...?
"How about you give us your lunch-money, nerd?"
Simon gulped and looked up at the two tall, buff jocks. He was just on his way to his locker. Simon was the perfect example of a nerd, he knew that, and him reading comic books didn't help.
"How about you guys go and spend your own lunch-money?"
"Jace, man. Come on. It's just a little fun with the nerd", grinned one of the jocks.
"Yeah well, this nerd is my brother", grunted Jace with a glare, wrapping one arm around Simon's shoulders. "So if you have a problem with him, you'll have one with me."
"Message received", huffed the other jock. "Come on, let's get lunch."
The two bullies left and Simon heaved a relieved sigh before Jace ruffled his hair. "I really can't leave you alone for two secs, Si. We've only been at the school for a week, come on."
"I kno—ow", groaned Simon, wiggling out of Jace's grasp. "We've only been to middle school for a week and you already have all the jocks at your beck and call. Why are you like this?"
Jace smirked mischievously and tugged on his Letterman jacket. "What can I say? I'm above average at all things I do. Stronger, faster, better than anyone."
"And so humble too", snorted Simon and rolled his eyes.
They walked over to Simon's locker where Simon got a stack of papers out. Jace peeked curiously. During that first week, Jace had made the baseball team, knocking it out of the park quite literally. He always belonged to the popular crowd, from kindergarten to elementary school and Simon already knew it'd be the same in middle school too. But that was okay, because Jace was awesome and never forgot about his brother. It was nice being the brother of the coolest boy at school.
"A band, huh?", asked Jace with a frown.
"I figured. With the guitar-lessons I've been taking and the piano-lessons you've been taking – which totally work on a keyboard which is way cooler anyway", offered Simon with a shrug.
"Oh. Oh so not you are starting a band, we are starting a band? Nice of you to let me know."
Jace huffed and elbowed Simon, who just grinned sheepishly. "In my defense, you barely let me get a word in during dinner this past week! You were nerding out so much about the sports."
"It's not... It's not nerding out when it's about sport", grunted Jace disturbed.
"It sure is. It's the exact same thing!", exclaimed Simon. "Anyway. Help me put them up."
"I really don't get a say in this whole band-thing, huh?", grunted Jace.
"No—ope. That went out the window the moment mom and dad said 'I do'. That was when you officially signed over all your rights to me", chimed Simon mischievously.
"I'm pretty sure that's not how that works", huffed Jace.
"It sure is", countered Simon seriously.
"You've been going way harder recently", grunted Alec, dodging Clary.
Clary smiled at that and straightened herself. In the past five years of living with the Lightwoods, she had done her best to adjust to their way of life. She had known the rules of the Clave, been taught them by her father. Actually getting to put them to use though, going on missions and defending the city of New York, it was quite exciting. She still trained as hard as her father had trained her, but now she got to spar with various people with various fighting styles and she had come to the conclusion that it was more effective than only being trained by one person. Alec even had taught her how to use a bow. It wasn't her weapon of choice, but it made her feel closer to her brother so she occasionally used it. Her favorites were knives. Or, generally things that could stab.
"The parabatai-ceremony has me excited", admitted Clary after a moment.
Alec smiled at her at that before handing her a bottle of water. "Before you came to the Institute, Izzy never wanted to have a parabatai, you know? She never thought it was something she needed. But you... you're the sister she always wanted. You're going to be fine."
Clary nodded slowly at that while drinking. "I... suppose so. I don't know, it's still... a lot?"
Nodding in understanding, Alec wrapped an arm around her as they headed toward the dining hall. "I know what'll help you. Comfort food. Let's see you use the doe-eyes to get a chocolate cake."
"You're just trying to use me to get one for yourself", huffed Clary amused.
Over the past years, she had grown so very close to both Alec and Izzy. And also Max, who had barely been a toddler when she had moved in. The thing about Maxie was that to him, she had always been a member of the family, he didn't remember a time where Clary hadn't been a Lightwood. Isabelle and Clary had made a special connection and they had decided to become parabatai two years ago. They went through the training together and now their parabatai ceremony was coming up. It wasn't that Clary was getting cold feet, she was just nervous. She was glad to have Alec though; he was an amazing big brother. He had been wary at first, but with the time, he had developed the same brotherly protectiveness over Clary as he had over Isabelle.
Clary Lightwood was what Seraphina Wayland had never gotten to be. Happy and loved.
Jace's favorite show was Buffy the Vampire Slayer. He told everyone it was because he loved Spike and wanted to be just like him. Which was partially true, he did love Spike – the blonde badass with the tough exterior and the soft heart. But actually it was more because of Buffy herself. Jace was, in a way, a Chosen One too. A slayer of demons and monsters, or so his dad had told him.
Five years ago, when Jace, Simon and Becky had been at the park together, Jace had seen something he wasn't supposed to and when he told his dad, worried because his siblings hadn't been able to see them, Luke had told Jace the truth. The truth about their heritage. That Jace came from a line of demon hunters known as Shadowhunters, that Luke used to be one too until he got turned into a werewolf. Becky and Simon couldn't see them though, because they were mundanes – normal humans, not Chosen Ones like Jace and it was Jace's responsibility to protect them from that world, for now by not telling them the truth. So Jace was keeping a huge secret from them.
Jace was like Buffy. A badass chosen demon hunter, who had to protect his siblings.
He started to take self-defense classes and Luke taught him how to fight with swords and, once Jace was old enough, he also started to teach him how to use a gun. Elaine was not the biggest fan of that at first, but when Jace explained that he wanted to become a cop just like Luke and wanted the head-start, she reluctantly caved. After all, he was heading toward high school graduation.
"Okay but if we're a golden trio, who is who?", asked Simon thoughtfully.
"...What?", asked Maureen confused and looked up.
"I mean, the three of us. We're it. We're totally a golden trio. We've been together since middle school and we're totally gonna stick together even after graduation, right?", explained Simon. "Like, sure, Eric, Kirk and Matt are gonna leave for college, but... we're staying in New York, right?"
"Sure", agreed Maureen thoughtfully.
Jace grinned a little. Maureen Brown had been the first one to join their band in middle-school. Others had joined too and then, when they went to high school, only the three of them had remained. Eric Hillchurch, Matt Charlton and Kirk Duplesse had joined their band in high school, but judging by everything, it was going to come down to Jace, Maureen and Simon once again.
"I'm Buffy", stated Jace simply with a shrug. "You are so very clearly Xander and Maureen is obviously the Willow. The wicked awesome best friend, right?"
"Wait and what is Xander then?", grunted Simon confused.
"The heart", replied Jace. "Xander is the heart, Willow is the brains and Buffy is the strength."
"Mh, I'd sign that", nodded Maureen thoughtfully. "What are you guys going to do after graduation anyway? You got your parents to lay off on the accounting?"
"Mom's very determined about that one", sighed Simon with a pout. "If I want to study music, I'll have to major in accounting, 'just to be safe'..."
"I mean, becoming a musician is not exactly safe when it comes to finances and such", offered Jace, getting slapped on the arm by Maureen. "What? I'm just saying that mom's worried and doesn't want her precious baby boy living on the streets, playing for pennies."
Simon narrowed his eyes at his brother and stuck his tongue out, making Jace laugh.
Jace, Simon and Maureen went to Pandemonium to celebrate their graduation when Jace's world changed forever. He ran into a short redhead whom no one but him could see. Which meant that she was glamoured – and so were her two companions, a girl with a terribly fake white wig and a tall, dark and handsome guy. Jace had a hunch that this wasn't going to end well.
Three days later proved him right, when he woke up in an infirmary bed in a place he didn't know, with the short redhead sitting next to him. She narrowed her eyes at him and lowered her book.
"Wait here, I'm getting my siblings", stated the redhead and left.
Jace just grunted. His head was buzzing and everything after the night at the club was honestly a little... fussy. It was best to just lay there and wait for them to come and explain things.
"He must be a Shadowhunter. Otherwise the runes wouldn't have worked", said redhead.
"I still think it was too risky to even try the runes on the... mundie", muttered the tall one.
Jace blinked as he watched the trio enter. The girl with the wig looked way better without the wig, long dark curls framing her. The way the tall handsome guy was looming behind the two girls reminded Jace a lot of Becky. Older sibling with annoying but precious younger siblings.
"What... happened?", asked Jace slowly.
"Hello", greeted the tall one. "I'm Alec. Those are my sisters, Isabelle and Clary. Who are you?"
"Jace. Jace Lewis", replied Jace after a moment. "I remember seeing you at the club. Now, tell me what happened. My head's killing me and I don't... remember."
"Clary got suspicious since you did see us and... mundies shouldn't", grunted Alec.
"So we decided to follow you home", continued Isabelle. "And just in time, at that. Your house was being attacked by demons. You were unconscious by the end of it."
"Uncon...", started Jace, his eyes widening in realization as he sat up hastily. "They have my dad!"
"...What?", asked Alec confused while resting a hand on Jace's shoulder to hold him down. "No. You're not going anywhere until you explain yourself."
"My father. The demons attacked and... and... mom was at work. Dad was trying to protect me and my brother... Where is my brother? They took my dad, but... Si...", muttered Jace.
"This makes little sense why would demons kidnap your father?", asked Isabelle confused.
"Not demons. Circle members", whispered Jace softly.
"Cir... How do you...", asked Alec, voice thin. "Tell us the whole story."
"My father, my biological father, was a bad man. My adopted father has raised me in the mundie world because there are still many followers of my birth father who may like... seek me out as some weird figure-head symbol as 'my father's heir' or some bullshit", replied Jace.
"Your father is...", started Alec, taking a step back.
"Valentine Morgenstern, yes", sighed Jace. "That's why my dad, my actual dad, Lucian Graymark, raised me in the mundie world. So the two of us would be safe. They must have found us."
"Okay", nodded Alec and took a deep breath. "Get up. We're going back to your place."
"You're going to help me find my dad?", asked Jace hopefully.
He stared up at Alec with the most pleading puppy-dog eyes possible, the ones his mom and dad and not even Becky could resist. Alec's resolve clearly weakened while Isabelle and Clary exchanged a pointed look behind Alec's back. Sighing, Alec nodded slowly.
"The Circle was taken out nearly twenty years ago, but extremists like Valentine will always have people admiring them. So if there are still active Circle members around, it's our duty to bring them to justice", stated Alec seriously. "Do you know how to fight, or will we have to protect you?"
Despite everything, Jace had to smile just a little bit. Those warm, brown eyes, the way he glared with his eyebrows drawn in determination, so handsome and so tall.
"I wouldn't mind you protecting me, handsome", grinned Jace. "But yes, I know how to fight. Of course. Dad always suspected that... someone may come for me. He trained me for this."
"Good", nodded Alec with a very prominent blush on his cheeks. "Let's get you some Seraph blades. Girls, get your weapons ready, we're going on a mission."
"Oh my god, Jace, you're alive!", exclaimed Simon hysterically. "Dad told me to hide and I did and I didn't make a sound, I was so terrified and when I got out hours later, dad was gone and you were gone and when mom and Becky got home – oh, they're so worried about you!"
He wrapped his arms around Jace and pulled him into the tightest hug possible. "It's okay, Si. Calm down. I'm safe. You're safe. I'll save dad."
"Wait, you'll save dad? Nah, man, we're going to call the police and... and..."
Simon faltered as he looked over Jace's shoulder at the three dressed-in-black teens with the weird tattoos. Jace realized how odd this must look to him, but it was honestly better that Jace talking to thin air; there was no reason for the three Shadowhunters to be glamoured.
"What's going on? Like, really going on?", wanted Simon to know.
"Nothing. Nothing you can help with", replied Jace honestly, grasping Simon by the shoulders. "I promise I'll get dad back. You... You have to stay with mom and Becks."
"Like hell I do", huffed Simon with a glare. "I'm not letting you do this alone, whatever it is. I just saw something attack our home! Look at this, there used to be a wall between our kitchen and our living room! Your piano is trashed. Weird men with odd gang tattoos abducted our dad and now you bring three strangers into our home who have the same weird gang tattoos! Oh my god. Jace, are you in a gang? Is that what this is about? I-"
"I am not in a gang, dork", interrupted Jace with a sigh. "Please, just trust me, Si."
"I do trust you. But I also love you and don't want to lose you", countered Simon with sad, fearful eyes. "Please, Jace. Don't go alone. He's not just your dad, he's mine too. Let me help."
As Simon stared up at him, Jace found himself unable to say no to his brother. They had barely been apart ever in their lives. Same classes, same band, whenever Jace had training with the baseball team Simon would sit at the sidelines and cheer for him, when one got into trouble, the other did. They were inseparable and Jace knew if the roles were reversed and Simon would go to save their dad, Jace wouldn't want to be left behind, even if he had no powers or knowledge.
"Okay, fine. But you have to stick close to me and listen to me", warned Jace. "I'm Buffy. You're Xander. I love you but you're definitely not equipped for what's about to come."
"You're Buffy, got it", nodded Simon solemnly.
"No", growled Alec behind them. "We're not taking the mundie with us. You, you're a Shadowhunter and you have useful information, but he will just get in the way."
"Yes, we are taking the mundie with us", growled Jace back and turned to face Alec, trying to straighten himself as much as possible to make up for the ridiculous height-difference. "He's my brother and I'm not leaving him behind. He will come with us."
Alec's glare deepened as he also stood up straight, easily looming over Jace. Simon watched them awkwardly, drawing his brows together as he watched the tall, dark-haired scary guy in the leather jacket loom over Jace, who stood there and held his ground.
"Oh my god, you found an Angel", whispered Simon stunned.
"We Nephilim are technically half-angels but...", drawled Clary confused, looking at Isabelle.
"I don't know what the mundie is talking about either. But Alec is not who I'd call an angel."
"No, not the winged harp playing kind of angel, the dressed-in-leather, gloom-and-doom, tall, dark and handsome Angel who argues with Buffy all the time but actually they're totally OTP and endgame", explained Simon, making wild motions with his hands.
"...Were those words?", asked Clary confused. "Blondie, what is your brother talking about?"
Jace nearly swallowed his own tongue. "I-... have no idea. He must have hit his head during everything, he's confused. Totally out of it. Come on, let's go, we have to find dad."
Alec was hovering. He tried not to, but it was hard. So much had happened in the past few weeks ever since Clary and Isabelle had insisted that they bring home the not-mundie. Alec still was unsure if that had been the worst decision in his life, because Jace Lewis – Jace Lewis was...
Alec made a small, miserable sound as he left the training room. Jace was currently sparring with Isabelle. Watching was not good for Alec. Jace was so gorgeous and snarky, when he talked back at Alec, Alec didn't know how to feel. He was also funny though and compassionate. Over the past weeks, Alec might have fallen a tiny bit for the pretty blonde with the heterochromic eyes.
"Got overwhelmed by a shirtless Jace again?", asked Clary teasingly as she fell in step with him.
His sisters were the only ones who knew Alec was gay and Clary had been the most vocal about helping Alec, talking to him about it, trying to make him embrace it. Isabelle had more of a leaving Alec alone approach, which Alec had much preferred. And ever since Jace and the mundie had joined them, Clary had started teasing Alec about Jace. It seemed Clary and Simon had decided to team up on their brothers, apparently convinced that Jace and Alec would make a good couple.
"He's gorgeous, yes", growled Alec out lowly. "I'm not blind. That's all."
"Come on", sighed Clary and rolled her eyes. "You like him. Like-like. He's pretty, he constantly flirts with you, you always blush when he does, you stare at him like your brain fails all the time-"
"Enough now, sis", warned Alec annoyed.
For a moment, Clary stumbled before she sighed. "...I'm sorry. I don't want to push you. I'm just... teasing you about a crush? It feels normal. In a world where everything else... isn't."
Alec paused and turned around to face his sister. With a sigh did he open his arms and pulled her into a tight hug, running his fingers through her red curls. Not long ago, Clary's reality had been that her mother died in child-birth and her father was killed by Circle members when she was a kid and that she was Seraphina Clarissa Wayland. Then Jace came stumbling into their lives, followed by Luke Lewis – Lucian Graymark, the former parabatai of Valentine Morgenstern – and the realization that Valentine Morgenstern was in fact still alive. Valentine Morgenstern had pretended to be Michael Wayland and had left Clary's mother to die in the fire. The fire where Valentine had assumed Clary's brother to also die – but Luke had saved the toddler, had raised the child. Her brother. Jace Lewis. Jonathan Christopher Morgenstern. Suddenly her dead father was alive and a terrorist and she had a brother – a brother who got the wholesome, happy childhood with a fully functional family. A family that was now really pushing to get to know Clary. Luke felt guilty, he probably projected his guilt over Jocelyn's death onto Clary, he offered her to come over whenever she wanted so he could tell her about her mother... and her father. She wasn't ready.
"Okay so perhaps I do have a small crush on Jace", admitted Alec, willing to distract Clary.
"You should ask him out, you know?", suggested Clary with a small smile. "He seems to like you too and it's not... He's not part of the Institute. You've always been so scared, so paranoid, that if you'd seek a... boyfriend out, he may end up telling the Clave about you. But Jace? He was raised in the mundie world. They're... more accepting of... gays. Two guys could get married, you know."
"When did you become an expert in the mundie world?", snorted Alec and rolled his eyes.
"Iz and I've been hanging out a lot with Si", shrugged Clary. "And he totally caught on with his brother having a crush on you, you know? He's pan, by the way."
"He... what? He plays the pan flute? What are you saying?", asked Alec confused.
"Mundies have more words for this kind of stuff", shrugged Clary. "Didn't entirely understand it either when Simon explained it, but like... basically it's that he likes people, not gender?"
"Oh. Okay", nodded Alec. "So... he... actually likes me, mh? I can't..."
"I know, I know", sighed Clary softly, grabbing Alec's hand. "It's very sudden and soon. But maybe... when all of this is taken care of? When we caught Valentine."
"Maybe", sighed Alec to pacify her. "Until then, how about you go and talk to Luke?"
"What's the point?", asked Clary and rolled her eyes. "Just because he adopted my brother doesn't mean he owes me anything. I have you guys, you're my family. I'm a Lightwood, Alec."
"You are and you always will be", assured Alec, voice gentle. "But he can tell you about your mother. And... wanting to know about her... Wanting to know where you came from doesn't negate the present. Your past is a part of you and you have a right to know. Everybody is telling you about Valentine and forcing the narrative that you're his daughter, but you're also her daughter."
"You're not gonna drop that, are you?", sighed Clary annoyed.
"About as likely as you dropping the Jace-topic", offered Alec with a shrug.
"...Would... Would you come with me, tomorrow?", asked Clary softly. "I don't want to go alone."
"Of course, sis", smiled Alec, wrapping an arm around her. "I'm always here for you."
"You are the best big brother in the world", grinned Clary.
Jace sighed contently as he stepped out of the shower. He needed a lot of relaxing time lately. With everything going on. He had known about Valentine for a few years now, but to know that Valentine was still alive? And that he had a sister? Luke admitted he had known Jocelyn was pregnant but he thought it'd only unnecessarily hurt Jace to learn that he had a sister who had died before even being born. Jace was... trying to connect with Clary, but it was a bit hard. Which was a shame, because it seemed as though Simon had a really easy time connecting with Clary.
"Ja—ace. We're having visitors", chimed Becky as she knocked on his door.
"Great. Not in the mood for visitors, Becks", sighed Jace.
Becky frowned and entered the room. Jace was just in the middle of getting into his shirt while Rebecca sat down on his bed. She stared at him with an odd look. Once he was fully dressed, Jace felt obligated to sit down next to his sister, just to be hugged by her.
"You know you can talk to me, right? I know I always say you and Simon are the most annoying humans on this entire planet, which you are, but like you're also by little brothers and I love you", offered Becky while squeezing him. "I know it's a lot to take in. I know it has shaken you, Jace. But you're still you, whatever happened, alright?"
Jace just nodded slowly against her shoulder, clinging onto his big sister. Of course did they need some mundie cover story for Elaine, Rebecca and all the neighbors who had seen the ruckus. Jace's father was a wanted criminal who had led a dangerous cult and Luke had been a part of that cult and gotten away. It was basically the truth, after all. Now, the man had returned and had tracked Jace down, trying to reclaim his biological children – including Jace's sister, who had ended up in a different adopted family than Jace. It all checked out and Rebecca and Elaine gladly believed it. They were just glad that Jace and Luke were alright.
"Our guests are your sister and your... boyfriend", offered Rebecca. "Come downstairs?"
"My... Alec is not my boyfriend!", huffed Jace and rolled his eyes.
"Really? Because the amount of times you've talked about him suggests otherwise", smirked Becky as she got off the bed. "Alec taught me how to use a bow, because he's such a good archer! Alec laughed at something Clary said and I didn't know he could smile, he's been so grumpy ever since I met him! And he is so ta—all!"
Becky gasped and batted her eyelashes at Jace while mockingly imitating him. Narrowing his eyes, he threw a pillow at her before walking out of the room. So maybe he had a slight fixation on Alec, but in his defense, Alec was tall and handsome and adorable. Well, he'd probably argue he wasn't adorable, but the grumpy glares he had for anyone compared to how soft he was with his sisters? Alec was totally adorable and Jace had a soft spot for soft guys like that.
"It's so good to have you, Clary. I just want you to know that you're always welcomed here, okay? If you need anything or want anything or just need a place to be", assured Elaine. "I may not have known your mother, but... Jace is my son and Luke my husband and if you want to be a part of their lives, I need you to know that I will help make that spot for you, Clary."
"...Thank you", grunted Clary, sounding wary.
Jace paused midway down the stairs and watched. Clary was a bit like a hurt animal. Cornered. Though Jace honestly couldn't imagine what it must have been like being raised by Valentine. His eyes found Elaine and Luke, standing next to each other in front of Clary. He owed them so much and he didn't want to picture a life where they weren't his parents, where Becks and Si weren't his siblings. He had a sports-scholarship, he was the best pitcher New York had in his age-range. He had the band with Si and Maureen. He'd never want to give all of his life for the kind of life the Shadowhunters had; single-minded focus on fighting, even as kids.
"Lurking in the shadows, huh?", asked Jace teasingly as he approached Alec.
He hung back, leaning against the wall with his arms crossed as he watched his sister. Alec turned to look at him, eyebrows raised. His cheeks took a slight pink tint at that, making Jace grin. Out of the corner of his eyes, Jace saw Simon lead Isabelle into the kitchen, offering her something to drink. Rebecca, curious, trailed after them into the kitchen too, having only heard about the Lightwood trio so far. Everyone seemed set on giving Luke and Clary the privacy to talk in peace; Elaine excused herself too saying she had a meeting to get to. Jace motioned toward the stairs and returned to his room, aware that Alec was following him. The two had bonded a lot in the past weeks – they fought together incredibly well. Which also made sense since Clary and Isabelle were parabatai and had spent years fighting as a duo and, in their new little constellation, that left Alec with Jace. They were really in-tune with each other and where Jace brought in a playful fighting style from never having to take these things seriously, Alec was always careful and eagle-eyed.
"Did everything go well this morning?", asked Jace concerned.
Alec actually looked crestfallen at that and sighed. "Hodge... betrayed us. He tried to steal the cup. But yeah, between Lydia, me, Isabelle and Clary, he stood no chance. Lydia took him and the Mortal Cup back to Idris to the Inquisitor. So, it... was a success but..."
"I'm sorry", offered Jace gently, hugging Alec on impulse. "I know Hodge is like an uncle to you, like dad's partner Alaric is to us. That must have been really hard."
Alec froze up in his arms and Jace immediately let go of him with a sheepish look. "Sorry. Not a hugger, huh. We're huggers in the Lewis family, you know. There's always hugging. When we're happy or upset or confused or any reason at all, really."
"Right", nodded Alec and cleared his throat, decidedly not look at Jace.
"You're not... out, right?", asked Jace very carefully. "Sorry if that's too personal, but... Just tell me. Because I've been flirting with you for weeks now and if you're not out and this makes you uncomfortable then just tell me and I'll stop, because the last thing I'd want is to make you uncomfortable, Alec. You're an amazing guy."
The way Alec stared at him kind of hurt, because he looked so surprised. That was another thing that horrified Jace. He had heard from Izzy that their society was really not accepting of any form of homosexuality. They barely knew the words gay, lesbian and bisexual, but tolerating them? And knowing about more beyond that? It was horrible to imagine. When Jace had first thought a guy was cute, it had confused him but he had known from an early age that he could go to his parents about anything and they had always accepted and supported him. To not have that kind of support...?
"I... like... you", whispered Alec softly, his voice just a little shaky. "But I'm not... out. I just can't be, I'm the Lightwood heir, I have... something to live up to."
"And what exactly?", asked Jace confused. "Sorry, I just... aren't your parents literally terrorists? They are former Circle members and lied about it to you and your siblings. I really can't imagine that your family name is worth much right now. Dad said your mom was Valentine's second in command. I just... don't think that you being gay is what's going to ruin the family reputation."
Jace startled a little as Alec started laughing all of a sudden. And oh. Oh he was really beautiful when he was laughing like that. It made Jace want to kiss him. Biting his lips, he leaned in some.
"You... You're right", laughed Alec. "I'm sorry. I know this isn't funny, but..."
"It kind of is?", offered Jace with a grin. "And you've been bottling up a lot lately."
Alec nodded, slowly catching his breath. "You're right. I am... not going to be what ruins the family reputation. But I'm also not... not ready to... come out."
"That's okay", assured Jace softly. "We can take this slow, you know? And there is a whole mundie world your Institute doesn't interact with where I could take you on dates in...?"
He leaned in some more and so did Alec, staring transfixed at Jace's lips, until they met in a very soft kiss. Maybe the Shadow World wasn't all bad because it had some really good things to offer.
~*~ The End ~*~
Author's note: If the beginning seems familiar, that's because I teased it on tumblr (come visit me at takaraphoenix). Now, this one was a lot of fun to write! There's honestly nothing better than canon divergent. I love the idea of Jace getting to have a happy, normal childhood for a change...? And the thought of Alec-Clary as siblings was too funny to pass on.