Sighing as she climbed the stairs to the greenhouse, Clary turned over and over in her mind the thoughts and dreams that lay there.
So difficult to be near Jace and pretend that they were a "family". She knew he struggled with it, too.
So why had he summoned her here, where they would be alone and everyone else was asleep? Why had he send Church to find her, instead of asking her himself? Because it would be too suspicious, she thought to herself. They could barely be in a room together, no matter how full of people, without the sizzling undercurrent. She knew Jace could feel it, and she feared the others could as well. They were fighting it, hard, but it didn't seem that anyone would be the winner in this battle.
Being alone was even harder. She rocked back and forth between despair for agreeing to be just his sister, and the forbidden fantasies that flowed through her head of what might-have-been.
As she reached the top of the stairs, the nervous energy was almost too much, overpowering her resolve to remain true to her word. I'm just his sister, she reminded herself. He's my brother, nothing more.
Stars twinkled through the greenhouse ceiling, lighting the flora and fauna like a fairyland. It was still a haven of beauty, even though Hodge had been gone for quite some time. Peace washed over her like a calming cool breeze. It was always this way in the greenhouse. The combined scents of earth and the various exotic plants were a heady perfume. She stopped briefly by the koi pond, gazing at fish gliding effortlessly through the pristine water. Clary closed her eyes and listened to the soothing waterfall, trying to remember when life was simple. She found herself longing to be one of the fish, needing only to swim in the cool, clear water.
Jace is waiting, her mind nudged her. Anticipation, nervousness, and dread all welled up within her as she moved forward through the maze of trees, shrubs, and plants. It's all been in my imagination. He's been nothing but brotherly towards me. I'M the one struggling with this. He probably just wants to talk about what to get my…I mean our mother for her birthday. It IS his first one with her, after all and we are never alone to discuss it. Reassuring herself that this was clearly the case, relief and disappointment both snaked through her.
In a small break in the trees, there he stood, looking more like a beautiful angel than anyone had a right to. My angel, came the unbidden thought to her mind. His warm, butterscotch eyes were half-lidded, concealing from her the secret thoughts hidden behind them.
"Clary," he breathed, all his usual brashness dropping away, "you came!"
She swallowed, trembling, nearly undone by the relief, and something else in his voice. "Did you think I could stay away?" she whispered, trying to control her erratic heartbeat. Must be calm! She reprimanded herself, but all the tranquility from the pool melted away from her as images of their last meeting here, on her birthday, took flight in her mind…before…
"Clary," Jace said her name again, like a caress. "I can't do this anymore. I've got to leave."
Panic welled within her. His absence would be so much more unbearable than his nearness. "NO!" she cried, and then more calmly, "Why, did something happen? If it did, we can work it out; we're a family now," she continued in a desperate rush.
"Ungh!" groaned Jace. "That's the problem! I can't BE your brother. I don't WANT to be!"
Clary's heart shriveled inside her as she whispered, "Did I do something wrong?"
Jace lifted her chin and tilted her head to look into her beautiful emerald eyes. "No, I'm sorry. I'm not explaining this very well." He sighed heavily. "I can't keep pretending to be your brother when I'm always wanting more. But this is what you said you wanted when we were at Taki's a month ago, and I'm trying to respect that. I just think I could respect it better if…er…I were somewhere else."
"But where would you go?" Tears stung her eyes and her nose burned as she tried to battle the despair. Must do what is right. Must do what is right. She chanted a litany in her head.
"I don't really know. Maybe back home to Idris."
Something broke within her at that thought. Home, he'd said. HE was her home. His smell of soap combined with the scent of the burned runes of his Marks was a place of safety and comfort to her like nothing else. She had to do something to make him stay. Desperation and alarm rose within her in great waves. Without thinking, she leaned in and touched his lips with her own.
All of the pain and misery crashed over her. All of the longing glances, missed opportunities, the sheer aloneness she had felt since he became her brother flooded through the kiss. Jace met it with intensity and need, moaning her name as he sought entry into her mouth, deepening the kiss. Clary's arms went around his neck, her small hands fisting in his golden hair, tugging him closer to her, as if he could never be close enough. There was none of the shame and humiliation of the kiss in the Seelie Court, only beauty at being together.
"Clary, " he moaned her name again, kissing her passionately as their tongues danced together in ageless rhythm. One hand wound tightly around her back, fingers splayed as he gripped her tightly to him; the other hand twisted in her fiery ringlets.
Neither could think, nor did they want to. They only wanted to feel what had been cruelly denied them – the heat, each other's embrace, the scent and taste of each other. Their longing reached a fever pitch.
Gasping for air, Clary broke the kiss as Jace's hands moved up the sides of her tank top, brushing the sides of her breasts. "Jace," she moaned his name raggedly. They needed to talk, needed to sort things out. But she couldn't let him leave without showing him how she felt. Maybe it would give him the reason he needed to stay. Whatever it takes, she thought to herself.
Gently easing them to the grass-carpeted floor of the greenhouse, Jace whispered her name as he worshipped her body. Her curls of fire red were splayed about her head as she quivered at his touch. She ran her hands up his arms and across his chest, lightly raking her nails down to his waist. He growled softly and the sound of it sent shivers of heat to her core. She wanted this. If it were all she could ever have, she'd take it. It thrilled her that he so obviously wanted her too. She could feel it in the tremor of his hands as he caressed her, in the hardness of his length against her thigh.
She began unbuttoning his shirt, but he impatiently pushed her hands away and, yanking hard, buttons flew everywhere all at once. Her eyes took in the sight of his chest. It was beautiful, chiseled, his skin satiny smooth. She let her eyes hungrily rove over his Marks, the black runes on his skin adding to the perfection that he was. She crossed her arms and grasped the bottom of her tank top, sitting slightly as she pulled it over her head. Looking down shyly and blushing, she heard his swift intake of breath. "Clary. So beautiful. I had only dreamed you were this lovely," murmured Jace.
She met his eyes and twined her fingers through his fingers, tugging him across her. "Jace, love me. Please?" she begged.
"Always," he whispered softly in her ear. She slid down to her, their intertwined fingers resting above her head. Their chests touched, bare skin to bare skin, for the first time. Clary gasped, her heart pounding faster.
"So velvety," Jace murmured against her mouth. He released her lips, gently sucking on the lower one. His lips grazed her jaw line up to her ear, where his hot breath whispered, "I've wanted this since the moment that I first saw you. Tell me now if this isn't what you want."
Clary squeezed his hands tighter. She had no verbal response. How did you tell someone that everything in your world had suddenly clicked and the part of you that you didn't know was missing finally felt whole? She pressed her hips up against him, hoping he understood that she didn't want to stop. She couldn't.
He released her hands and she made sounds of protest at the loss as he moved up away from her. "Jace…" she pleaded.
"It's okay, love. I just want to look at you." His eyes drank her in greedily: her half-lidded eyes fill with need for him, her beautiful satiny skin, so pale and creamy. Her adorable freckles that she despised. Her slender neck, flushed with heat. Her perfectly small, round, rose tipped breasts, nipples pebbled. He smiled to himself, knowing HE had caused that reaction in her. "So utterly lovely. You are a true angel. I can't imagine they could be more perfect than you," he sighed. "Can I touch you?" he asked, hesitatingly.
Seeing the desire and need in his eyes that she was sure mirrored her own, she nodded her head breathlessly. Jace's warm hand cupped her left breast and Clary thought she would explode and die right then. He bent his head toward her and took the peak into his mouth, sucking gently. Clary felt warmth rush to her core and lights flashed behind her eyelids at the sensation. He repeated his actions on the other breast.
Clary heard a guttural moan and a voice pleading, "Please, oh please." She realized it was her own. She grasped his shoulders and raked her hands up his arms and down his chest to his navel, fingers coming to rest at the waistband of his pajama bottoms. Throwing her leg around his hip, she ground against him.
"Please what, baby?" he murmured as he bent down to lavish her breasts with his tongue before capturing her lips again.
"Please stay with me forever," she breathed into his mouth.
"I'll see what I can do," he smiled as he ghosted his hands down her stomach. Lowering her leg from his hip, she lifted her hips and he slid her baggy sweat pants down and off. He spread her thighs with his knee and settled between them, the heat of her center pulsing through her adorable green and white flowered panties, right onto his hard length that was pushing against his pajama bottoms.
They both moaned at the rightness of it, the perfection. Her hands splayed across his shoulders, raking her nails gently down his back. He purred. "Mmmm! What you do to me Clary Fray!" he whispered hotly into her ear, nipping and nuzzling her neck.
He claimed her mouth again and he kissed her fiercely. Clary's need met and matched his own. She felt like she was climbing, but didn't know where to; she only knew it was leaving her more breathless. It was all she could do to keep drawing in each ragged breath.
She felt his hands at the waistband of her panties and she shivered. Lifting himself away from her but continuing to claim her mouth, he slid his fingers under the waistband and tugged them off. Their tongues danced as their mouths moved. She felt his fingers slide downward into her heat and she knew then that she must have died because this had to be heaven.
"Jace…" she moaned his name.
"Patience, sweetheart. Your first time will hurt and I want to make sure you're ready."
"Mmmm," she moaned. "Need….you…Jace!" He rested his forehead against hers, breathing heavily, "I do too, more than you know."
He continued stroking her heat as she moaned and writhed beneath him, her hips involuntarily rising to meet his hand. Clary moaned his name over and over again. "Jace…I can't….I don't know what to do….I need…!" as lights exploded behind her eyes. His mouth covered hers to muffle her cries, triumph soaring in his chest with the knowledge that he had brought her release.
Panting and her heart pounding, a rosy flush spread over her chest and up her neck. Jace watched her, his desire and need growing more than he thought possible. "Baby," he moaned, panting, "are you ready?" The endearments from Jace that rolled of his tongue, something she feared she would never hear, caused great waves of love to flood up and wash over her.
"Please…I need to be closer to you. Please help me! I love you so much!" She looked so beautiful when she begged. Stripping off his pajama bottoms, he again positioned himself between her thighs, this time his swollen length touching her center.
"I'm going to try to be easy…I don't want to hurt you," he groaned.
"It's okay…I just need you….now…" she breathed. He edged forward, pushing carefully into her, ever so slowly. She was so tight and yet so ready…he didn't know if he could hold on or not.
"So gorgeous," he panted. "I love you so much!"
"I never want to be without you!" she cried.
He withdrew and then slid all the way home, feeling the tear and hearing her gasp at the sharp pain. He stopped moving, letting her adjust, stroking her forehead. "I'm so sorry…so sorry," he whispered.
"I'm fine," she panted. "Just give me a second." He rested his forehead against hers, looking deeply into her eyes for signs of the pain to dissipate.
She lifted her legs and wrapped them around his waist, as if signaling him everything was okay. They began to move slowly together and as they found their rhythm, they flew higher and higher. Jace could feel himself at the edge, but he wanted Clary there too. He kissed her fiercely, intensely. "Clary, come with me," he begged, panting.
She moaned his name and they soared off the edge together, flying through fireworks that exploded around them. It was everything they both always needed…home. It was perfect and they were complete and whole in each other. A brand new feeling of a familiar place as they soared together. They floated back to earth as that feeling of belonging swept over them; the feeling they only had with each other.
Tears flowed from the corners of Clary's eyes. Jace's heart clenched as his arms wrapped tighter around her. Was this regret? Yet the smile she gave him was full of love.
"Jace, I'm so happy right now. I never want this to end," she whispered.
Relief washed over him as he said, in hushed tones, "Me too. I can't even describe it. All I know is that I can't let you go now."
"What are we going to do?" Anxiety colored Clary's voice.
"We'll leave. We'll run away where no one knows us and we can be together forever!"
"What about our mom?"
"Maybe someday, she'll understand," Jace sighed hopefully.
Clary was torn between her love for her mother and her love for him. "Maybe if we told everyone we've decided to stop fighting this…?"
"Can you bear the looks of disgust every day for the rest of your life?" Jace snarled.
"No," sighed Clary sadly.
Jace moved away from her and the immediate sense of loss was almost unbearable for them both. They couldn't go back to the way it was before. She had to be with him, and he with her, one with each other, always.
"You're right," she said softly. "We have to go. Are you sure you can give up being a Shadowhunter? It's in your blood."
"You are in my blood, and that's all I need or want," he said simply. "Go get your things together and meet me downstairs."
They dressed, looking into each other's eyes, and knew that they were seeing the future. Whatever it held for them, they would make it…together.