A/N: This is the companion to Flicker, so I strongly suggest you read Flicker first, and then Fire. Basically, I wasn't done being a dork over this adorable pairing [dances in circles]. So whenever you take the LCK out of Flicker and switch the E and the R, what do you get? Fire, my friends. It's genius, I know it. I rock at words.
Rating: T - I still stand firm on saying smut makes you into a pervert, much like myself. However, I never said a word about fluff. If you're faint at heart and can't stand the sight of manly man action, get out of my face. This is slash and only the big kids can handle it.
Disclaimer: Cassandra Clare is not my name, though it's not her name either. But shhh! I never said that.
That was all Alec had to wait until he could see Magnus again. It had been three weeks, a simply ridiculous amount of time for them to be separated. Apparently, finding a warlock the Clave approved of was no simple task; it ended up taking a week longer than the estimated time.
Magnus was not happy.
All of their fire-messages, especially as of late, contained profanities directed at Alec's government. He had rounded up nearly a dozen warlocks, High warlocks no less, and the Clave dismissed all of them, leaving Magnus to the task of yanking in more, even less qualified warlocks until the decision was made on someone they had already rejected. His name was Kailas, High warlock of Paris. From Magnus' description, he was chubby, pink-skinned, bug-eyed, and a serious trickster.
The Clave was so idiotic sometimes.
Regardless of the bad choice, Magnus was to be dismissed and sent via portal back to Brooklyn. And Alec found himself pacing manically back and forth, on a strict path in his room. Jace had stopped by to ask him if he wanted take-out and Clary had peeked in looking concerned, but other than that, no one had bothered him or told him to chill out, so he became a mindless robot, slowly carving a trench in his carpet. It wasn't that he was worried about Magnus coming back; it was quite the opposite. He absolutely couldn't wait to see him, touch him…
He shook his head. He had been fantasizing for three weeks about Magnus. It was pointless now. No, it was stupid to do it now. In a short hour, he wouldn't have to fantasize anymore. He glanced at the clock by his bed. 12:01.
"Oh, c'mon!" he shouted, kicking the nightstand so the clock rocked forward and landed with a thump on the carpet.
This was simply not going to work. Alec had to preoccupy himself somehow. He was going to literally count the seconds in the next hour if he didn't do something. With a frustrated sigh, he plopped down on the bed and took out his stele. After scribbling on a piece of paper, he sent a fire-message that said, When are you going to be here?
Fire engulfed it, licking Alec's hand but leaving the tan skin unscathed. A small part of him - the hopeful part - thought maybe the Clave would let him draw the portal sooner, but he knew they really wouldn't. He was coming in at one in the morning as to not draw attention to himself and it would happen in the garden on the side of the Institute, safely hidden by its glamour. But he sent the note anyway. He couldn't help but be impatient.
Fire erupted in front of his face. He would've normally jumped, but after the past three weeks of communicating so frequently using this method, he snatched the message before the fire completely faded.
You need to chill out, Alexander.
He growled under his breath. This was not helping at all. He grabbed some more paper and hastily wrote, I'll chill out when you're here.
It disappeared with a flash of orange and he laid back on the bed, groaning. Three weeks without Magnus had taken its toll. When they had first arrived, he had been okay. He managed. But then he had to watch Jace and Clary with their now unashamed PDA, and then Isabelle flirting ostentatiously with Simon. The past week, he had been lonely as ever, snapping at everyone and everything, breaking delicate items because it seemed like it was their fault - at the time - that Magnus was gone. Now the warlock wanted him to chill; was he not as impatient as Alec was?
Another flash. He sat up and caught the paper as it was falling.
And I will be. In fifty minutes. I think you can handle it.
Fifty minutes? Only nine minutes had passed? Another growl, another sheet of paper, another flash, and he sent the words, You're awful.
So, he had to find something to do for fifty minutes. It was as easy as trying to make a child with ADD watch a documentary on the geography of the Sahara desert. He searched his room for anything, anything to keep him busy, but nothing caught his eye.
Then he remember what was in the shoebox under his bed.
He had saved all the letters from Magnus and shoved them in that box, sort of as a reminder that the loneliness would end soon. He had found himself reading back over them most nights; this night was no exception. Alec slid to the floor, reached under and pulled out the box, feeling his heart speed up for some reason. With a quick glance at the door, he pulled out the first one he had received from Magnus after he returned to the Institute.
You may be pleased to know that a one-minute kiss burns twenty-six calories. I just thought you would love to know that loving me is also a weight-loss tool. I honestly miss you already and the thought of dealing with your impossible government is just making this worse. When I get out of this treacherous city, remind me to never come back. Before you left, your parents talked to me, asking if I was serious about you, pulling the whole if-you-break-his-heart-you'll-pay number. At least they aren't locking you in your bedroom and taping Playboy magazines to the walls. And by the way, thanks for the goodbye present. I'm getting the weirdest looks from all your Shadowhunter pals.
Alec found himself laughing aloud at this one. He had remembered adding in his returning fire-message that his parents had already mentioned something about Playboy magazines in a last, desperate attempt to convert him to heterosexuality. Magnus had found this very funny. But then his mind strayed off to his "goodbye present", the last time he'd seen Magnus.
They had all gathered at the statue in front of the Accords Hall; Clary, Jace, Isabelle, his parents, Luke, Jocelyn, Maia, Simon, Magnus, and himself, all ready to portal back. Some people from the Clave were "chatting" in a serious manner to all the adults and Alec had used this opportunity to leave one last thing with Magnus. With a quick glance at everyone else, satisfied to see them completely occupied, he snatched Magnus' hands and pulled him behind one of the pillars outside the Accords Hall.
"What are you doing?" Magnus had asked curiously, as Alec shoved him against the white marble of the pillar.
"Leaving you a present," Alec grinned, kissing him lightly, then moving his lips to his throat. The warlock gasped a bit, hands tightening at the boy's hips. Alec bit gently at the soft skin there, sucking the irritated area, only to soothe it with again with a kiss. When he finished, he pulled away to admire his handiwork, pleased when he saw a bright red mark forming.
"I'm going to have fun explaining that one," Magnus smirked, rubbing his hand over the mark Alec had given him. "Your parents are going to see it."
"And I'm going to laugh at their faces," he smiled. Then a moment passed and the smile started to slide off his face. "I still don't see why I can't stay. I'm eighteen. Even if my parents said no, I could still stay."
Magnus sighed, running his fingers distractedly through Alec's dark hair. "I told you before; you need to go with them. I'm going to be all angry and preoccupied with the Clave and you have delicate matters, such as your little brother, to attend to." When Alec's head started to sink, Magnus lifted it with a finger. "Besides, you know what they say: distance only makes the heart fonder…or something sappy like that."
Alec was about to say something about how that line was corny and very untrue, but then he noticed something that he should've noticed earlier - Magnus had his hair down. And now that they were in the sunlight, he realized how shiny and soft looking it really was, the way it hung across his face, framing it so perfectly.
"You left your hair down," he said with a smile.
"I just got lazy," Magnus shrugged.
"Now really, I thought you would be nicer to me, since we're about to be separated for an obnoxious amount of time," he said, mocking sadness and shaking his head.
"You left it down because I said I liked it better," Alec chuckled, petting his black, shiny bangs. "Who would've known it was this pretty underneath all that gel and glitter?"
"Oh, go back to Brooklyn, already!" Magnus snapped, fighting a smile. He started to push the boy away, but then pulled him closer, into a tight, almost desperate hug, his emotions suddenly raw and unmasked in front of Alec. "Even though it's killing me."
"Nothing can kill you. You're invincible," Alec whispered, burying his face in the warlock's jacket.
"Alec!" someone yelled from the group by the statue. He knew he had to go.
"Alec?" someone said curiously from behind him. And he suddenly dropped out of his daydreaming. He quickly shoved the letter back in the box and under his bed, turning around, ready to put up with Jace or even Isabelle. And when he saw who it was, he suddenly wanted to kick himself for not recognizing the voice.
It had just been way too long.
Magnus stood there, wearing a long black trench coat, his hair down, looking more exhausted than he had ever seen him look. He had to stare for a minute. Even though the warlock was looking at him expectantly, he had to take in a sight that his eyes had been without for nearly a month. Then he pulled himself up off the ground, suddenly feeling a little lightheaded, but euphoric, nonetheless.
"Took you long enough," Alec said, trying to sound angry, but instead sounding grateful. In a flash of movements, he vaulted forward and gripped Magnus' jacket, pulling him as close as possible.
"I'm sorry. My flight was delayed due to all the snow," he grinned, kissing him fiercely, despite how tired he was. Alec laughed against his lips, mumbling something about how much of a nuisance that snow in July could be. Even in his exhaustion, Magnus managed to be enthusiastic in his kissing methods, his hands traveling over curves of skin as Alec did the same, both of them reuniting through desperate contact. Finally, Magnus sighed, pulling his lips away and bringing Alec closer, breathing in his heady scent.
"I've missed you so much," Alec whispered, burying his face in Magnus' neck, feeling a bit like a child. Warm fingers traced patterns on his neck, sending sparks and chills down his spine.
This was the type of reunion Alec had wanted and for once, he wasn't disappointed.
He finally pulled away, getting a good look at the warlock. He really was exhausted; his eyes were glassy, circled by dark shadows, his hair had lost a little of its shine and his lips looked a little chapped, like he'd been biting them non-stop.
"Are you okay?" Alec asked, running his fingers along the deep rings under his eyes.
"Apparently the Clave is under the impression that warlocks do not require sleep to function properly," Magnus moaned softly, closing his eyes. "I'm ready to drop - and that's a lot coming from a high-energy machine like me."
"I highly doubt you want to stay here," Alec said, shaking his head, annoyed that Clave could be so inconsiderate. "I'll walk you to your place."
"Such a gentleman," Magnus managed to tease. Alec looped his fingers into Magnus' and led the way through the empty and silent halls of the Institute.
"Sorry I wasn't down there to meet you. I got distracted," he said quietly, as they boarded the elevator and descended.
"I thought that was slightly odd," Magnus said tiredly, but with interest. "You seemed so impatient earlier. May I ask what distracted you?"
"Oh, nothing." He blushed a little, looking away to try and hide it.
"I would think you would be nice to me, seeing as we've been apart so long," Alec said defensively, turning Magnus' guilt trip from three weeks ago against him.
"Alec," Magnus started. "I'm very tired and very irritable at the moment by your government. Just tell me. Please?"
Alec sighed. Well, when he put it that way… "It was just one of your letters I saved. I was reading it."
"And that kept you occupied for almost an hour?"
"Not really," he admitted. "I just started thinking about other stuff and lost track of time…"
"I think you were daydreaming." Magnus' tired eyes glinted perceptively.
"Was not!" Alec said, attempting to sound dignified. They exited the Institute, walking through the glamour and starting down the street towards Magnus' apartment.
"Denial," Magnus said simply, a ghost of a smile playing on his lips as he stared straight ahead. Alec growled under his breath. With a quiet laugh, Magnus squeezed the Shadowhunter's hand, leading him down a side street that was seemed to be a shortcut, avoiding a busy main road.
"So have you done anything constructive since you've been back?" Magnus asked, sounding exasperated, like all Alec had done was mope around - which was all Alec had done.
"Slay any demons?"
"Write a novel while you were at?"
"Nah. But that was next on my list if we hit week four," Alec chuckled.
"And if we hit week five?" Magnus asked curiously as they neared his apartment.
"I would've started banging my head on the walls."
Magnus laughed, but the sound was tired and short-lived. He leaned his back against the door, shutting his eyes. "Sorry I'm not too amusing tonight," he apologized, rubbing the back of his neck.
"Somehow, you're managing to be more amusing than ever," Alec shrugged.
"Well, as long as you're not disappointed…"
"You tend to be the only person in my life that never does," he admitted, looking up at Magnus' windows.
"You must have been an emotional teabag while I was gone." Magnus ran his fingers down the boy's cheek, trailing them down to his collarbone. "Could I ask something presumptuous?"
"Don't you always?" But he nodded anyway.
"Stay with me tonight?" His eyes were almost pleading, something Alec had yet to see come from Magnus. He had to constantly remind himself that the warlock was completely different around him.
"Are you sure?" Alec asked warily. "You look really tired."
"Alexander," he said, taking hold of the boy's chin and kissing him gently. "I've been without you for twenty-one days. Get in my apartment. Now." With a flash of blue sparks, the door opened - why he didn't just use the knob, Alec will never know - and Magnus dragged him in.
Walking backwards with more grace than Alec thought possible, Magnus dragged him into the lobby, up the stairs, and to his door, which he unlocked with a flip of his long fingers. As Alec was dragged in, his eyes were met with darkness, so dark it was almost painful as he strained his eyes to see any trace of light. Magnus' hand was still firmly wrapped around his, pulling him through the darkness, navigating perfectly in the pitch blackness. "Magnus, why don't you-?"
"What's the point in that? It wouldn't be as fun," he chuckled, already knowing what Alec was asking. There was a sound of a door opening and a small change of temperature. Then a smell, so familiar, so comforting, something Alec had been lonely without. He knew they had to be in Magnus' room; it smelled so strongly of him.
Then he felt something soft and warm rub against his leg and start to vibrate. He jumped, kicking away what touched him - there was a loud hiss. Stupid Chairman Meow. "Leave my cat be," Magnus said, voice indignant.
"Well, if you'd turn on the lights-"
"No, I don't want the lights on," Magnus cut him off again.
"Look, you know I don't care if the place is a mess," Alec started, waving his hands in the air even though Magnus probably could see them…or could he?
Magnus grabbed his hands, his face suddenly very close to Alec's - he could sense it - and said, "That's not it. I just don't want to turn on the lights. I want to crash and just be with you. We don't need lights for that."
Alec stopped the next stream of words in his throat, once again hearing the almost pleading tone of the warlock. It was strange, but if he wanted to be in the dark, Alec could put up with it. He sighed, then nodded, sure that Magnus saw the nod.
"Take those horrid boots off," he said idly, the sound of his footsteps crossing the room, then the soft creak of his bed. Chairman Meow meowed somewhere near the bed, his purr an obnoxious jackhammer sound, even from eight feet away. With another sigh, he slipped out of the boots. Though it was nearly impossible to navigate, Alec could understand why being in the dark was comforting to Magnus - it was one less sense to worry about. He let his eyes fall shut, finding no difference, and walked to the bed, somehow able to sense when he was getting near it.
His knee thumped the side of the mattress softly and he heard Chairman Meow grunt and jump off the bed. And he heard the whisper-quiet, steady rhythm of Magnus' breathing - it was amazing how other senses could enhance when one was taken away. "You're awful pushy, you know?" Alec whispered, sinking a knee onto the bed.
"I'm just incredibly persuasive," Magnus chuckled, pulling Alec closer by his belt buckle - this made him gulp rather audibly.
"Why didn't you use any of that persuasion to get here sooner?" he complained softly, allowing himself to be pulled closer.
Magnus didn't answer him, though. He successfully managed to pull the boy on top of him, trapping his mouth with a kiss, but Alec pulled away, truly puzzled. "Why did you stay there and help? It still seems so unlike you."
"I was feeling oddly charitable," he murmured, trying to claim those lips again.
"What brought that on?" Alec demanded, putting two fingers on the warlock's mouth to delay the kiss.
"Isn't it obvious?" Magnus laughed, removing the fingers and moving in to attack once more.
"Should it be?"
"You." It was such a quiet whisper, Alec thought he might have misunderstood.
"I didn't stutter," Magnus said, rolling Alec over. He seemed to be waiting for a reply from Alec, but the Shadowhunter really didn't know what to say. He was flattered - maybe more than flattered - but a bit too flabbergasted to form coherent sentences; he tried anyway. He sat up, sitting on his knees, trying to squint in the darkness.
"How did…I made you…what did I…?" He sat there for a moment, struggling to transfer his thoughts to words
"Come again?" Magnus said, sounding thoroughly amused. "I didn't expect it to shock you this much. I thought it was apparent."
Alec finally grasped words. "Are you insinuating that I've made you into a better person? Just going to blame it on me?"
Even though it was pitch black and he couldn't see a thing, he knew Magnus was grinning. "You're to blame for everything."
Alec couldn't help but grin in return, now certain that Magnus could see very clearly in the dark, giving him an advantage…or maybe not. Alec took this opportunity to pounce on the warlock, who let out a sound that was close to a yelp, and pin him firmly to the bed. He had all these ideas in his head of what he could do next, but then a voice in his head reminded him that Magnus was tired.
He groaned, and collapsed on top of the warlock he had pinned to the bed, burrowing his face in Magnus' chest. Arms automatically went around him, holding him incredibly close. "Interesting thought process," he commented in his ear, his voice soft and almost groggy.
"I just remembered you're tired," Alec murmured.
"We'll play tomorrow," Magnus promised, making the boy blush.
"Shut up and go to sleep." He smiled into the fabric of Magnus' shirt, trying very hard to not think about what "play" meant by Magnus' standards. And they were both almost asleep until Alec suddenly thought of something - what would everyone think when he wasn't there in the morning? He had to get Jace to give them some excuse so his parents wouldn't worry and think he was kidnapped or something.
"Magnus!" he suddenly said, rolling off the warlock.
"Ugh, what?" the Warlock asked irritably, most likely sitting up from the sound of the bed's squeak.
"I need paper," Alec said, sounding apologetic.
Magnus groaned, but seemed to understand the necessity. Alec heard him get up, cross the room, then come back, thrusting pen and paper in Alec's waiting hands. He went for the stele in his belt, but he didn't have his belt on anymore - how did that happen? - and started to speak when something thin and hard was slipped into his hand. His stele. "Okay, really, can you see in the dark?"
"Have you seen my eyes recently?" he mumbled, lying his head in Alec's lap.
"Can you write this for me then?" Alec asked.
"Then can I go to sleep?" Magnus complained.
"What a whiner." He shook his head, holding the pen and paper out in the darkness until Magnus took it reluctantly. "Write, Cover for me and I'll pay for take-out for the rest of the week."
"You really think that kind of bribe will work on him?" he asked in a sleepy voice.
"Always does," Alec smirked, feeling the paper go back in his hands. He tapped it with his stele and it went up in flames, just enough time to see that Magnus had written exactly what Alec asked him to - he had almost expected a prank from the Warlock nearly asleep in his lap, but he was probably too out-of-it to do anything mischievous at this point.
A few seconds past and then a burst of flames. He caught the note before the light went away and handed it to Magnus, who lifted his head, read it, and burst into tired, but amused laughter.
"What's it say?"
"It says, You're such a whore," he replied. Alec chuckled and fell back on the bed, Magnus crawling up from his lap to his side, wrapping long arms around him and pulling him close. "Does that mean he'll cover for you?"
"Guess we'll find out tomorrow morning," he replied with a shrug, burrowing closer.
"Afternoon," Magnus corrected, and promptly fell asleep.
Okay, so this one took longer than the first one. After all the nice reviews I got from Flicker, I decided - the night after writing Flicker, no less - to write a companion. And it's been a week and a half since I started it.
When(IF) I become a novelist, deadlines are going to bite me in the ass.
So, anyway, got some things/people to thank. First, to my laptop, for being patient with my attention-span, to my TV for distracting me way too much, but providing inspiration at the same time, to painkillers for keeping my mouth in dull pain instead of sharp pain - fillings suck, to TMI trilogy for staring at me in a happy little stack on my bookcase - CoB-man is pretty to look at, and to Toby, once again, for cheering on the sidelines through text messaging.
I'm going to eat some Raisin Brain Crunch cereal with chopsticks. When I come back I'd better have like a zillion reviews.
…and I probably will because eating cereal with chopsticks is probably going to take like five years.