Disclaimer: This story quotes direct portions of City of Glass by Cassandra Clare. I do not claim to own said portions, the characters, or the plot. No profit is coming from this fanfic.

Author's Note: We don't really get much insight to this scene from either of their points-of-view, so I decided to write it. It starts on page 421 of Glass. So... SPOILERS, K?

Marked

"Alec, pay attention. Or at least tell us what you're looking for," Isabelle said, sounding cross.

Alec didn't stop his search of the room. It was so much harder to find Magnus when his hair wasn't streaked with pink or orange or green and copious amounts of glitter.

"Not what," he said. "Who. Magnus. I wanted to ask him if he'd be my partner in the battle. But I've no idea where he is. Have you seen him?" He turned to Simon, letting his eyes leave the hoard of people for the briefest of moments.

He didn't know if Magnus would even want to be his partner. Yes, he had made a promise to introduce him to his parents if they each survived the battle, but after suffering the loss of his brother, Alec had realized exactly how dire the situation could become. He didn't want to let Magnus out of his sight during the fight. If they were connected by the rune, there was a better chance that they'd both

make it through.

And then he could worry about telling his parents he was—well...

"He was up on the dais with Clary, but he's not now. He's probably in the crowd somewhere." Simon nodded his head back toward the group of people. Some were being Marked and looking almost pained as they created a bind with a Downworlder. Others didn't seem to be having such a reaction.

"Really?" Isabelle sounded surprised. Alec looked at her sideways. "You're going to ask him to be your partner?" He nodded, thinking that this had been made clear a moment before. "It's like a cotillion, this partners business," she added. "Except with killing."

"So, exactly like a cotillion," Simon said with a shrug.

Alec sighed and looked back out at the people. He turned away from Simon and Isabelle and heard Isabelle tell Simon that maybe they could be partners. He frowned and turned back to them half way.

"Isabelle, you don't need a partner, because you're not fighting. You're too young. And if you even think about it, I'll kill you." Someone in the crowd moved and he thought he saw—of all things—Magnus's familiar brown leather pants. "Wait—Is that Magnus?" He said, craning his neck out to get a better look.

Isabelle snorted back her laughter a moment later. "Alec, that's a werewolf. A girl werewolf. In fact, it's what's-her-name. May."

"Maia," Simon corrected her.

As though she could sense them looking at her, the girl turned and Alec frowned and felt his cheeks begin to color with the realization that he had mistaken a girl for Magnus. However, when she started to walk toward them, she seemed to open the crowd a bit and he finally spotted Magnus.

"There's Magnus," he said quickly before taking off in his direction.

As he pushed through the crowd, trying his best to keep his eyes on the warlock in case anyone else decided to approach him as their partner or in case Magnus walked away, he didn't even care that he was bumping shoulders and nearly tripping over feet.

Magnus was standing slightly apart from the crowd and Alec was surprised that he hadn't been able to see him from the other side of the room. As though he could feel Alec's eyes bearing into him, Magnus turned slightly and met his eyes. Alec swallowed hard as he made his way around the final people who stood between them.

He looked surprised to see Alec coming toward him and Alec immediately looked at Magnus's hands to make sure that he hadn't been Marked yet. Upon seeing the bare caramel skin on the back of his palms, he heaved an inner sigh of relief and got closer to him.

"You're a Downworlder," he stated bluntly. So he hadn't exactly come up with the right wording to stun Magnus into being his partner. His first step had been to find Magnus... He hadn't been able to see much farther than that.

Magnus shifted his weight and stared at him with minor amusement.

"Very observant, Alec," Magnus said. "Any others for me?"

"Well, I'm a Shadowhunter," Alec said, realizing only as he said it that Magnus was joking.

"'He's a human! You're a mermaid!'" Magnus said, his voice changing dramatically as he pointed at Alec. When Alec tilted his head to one side in confusion, Magnus sighed and dropped his hands to his sides. "Nevermind."

"Sorry," Alec apologized for not understanding what he could only assume was some kind of reference. "I was just thinking that since I'm going to have to fight, I'd like to have you as my partner," he said quickly. "We've shared strength before, though not quite like this, and I thought that maybe it would be best for us to do this because we're already, um, connected." He didn't breathe as Magnus looked at him.

Without a word, Magnus rolled up the sleeve to his frock coat and offered his hands.

Alec let out the small bit of air that he had been holding in and reached for his stele. He quickly traced the Mark on the back of his own hand and then took Magnus's hand in his own and began to draw the Mark. He took care not to press too hard and sometimes snuck a peak at his own hand to make sure he was drawing it properly.

When he was finished, he looked up at Magnus, who rolled down his sleeve.

"You don't think your parents will ask why you chose me?" Magnus asked.

"They chose their own partners. I'm sure we all have our reasons," Alec replied. He put his stele back into the belt of his pants and looked down at the back of his hand. As always, the rune didn't make him feel any different than he had a moment prior.

"Is yours that you don't think both of us will survive the battle?"

Alec looked at Magnus in surprise. "What do you mean?"

"I mean that this is going to be dangerous. It's probable that many of these partnerships will be broken the moment that midnight strikes."

Alec looked down at his hand again and clenched it into a fist. "We'll be fine," he said shakily.

"I don't know," Magnus said with a smirk. "Maybe you'll throw yourself to a demon to avoid telling your parents that you have a thing for warlocks."

Alec shook his head fiercely. "Don't even say that," he said seriously. "I'd... Well—I..." He sounded frustrated with his inability to find the words he was looking for. He gave up a moment later and closed the space between them, wrapping his arms tightly around Magnus and kissing him hard on the mouth.

He felt Magnus stiffen in his arms for a moment, clearly shocked by the action, but Alec didn't back away. He could hear people whispering none-too-quietly in throughout the room, shocked gasps coming at him from every direction, but he didn't back away.

He imagined the way his parents would look in that moment, seeing their son kissing a Downworlder, but pushed the thought away and focused on what could possibly be the last time he'd ever kiss Magnus. It was like Magnus realized the same thing, because a pair of hands touched his waist and lingered there for a moment and he felt Magnus's eyelashes against his skin, letting him know that Magnus had closed his eyes.

When they broke apart a moment later, Alec could feel heat rising in his cheeks and he stared at Magnus for a long moment.

"Still think I'm not going to tell my parents?" He asked, his hands on Magnus's shoulders.

"I don't think it's all that necessary anymore," answered Magnus, his tone breathless.