Note: This takes place during the battle at the end of City of Glass. This whole thing really annoyed me—I haven't had this much trouble writing in ages.
But... No, that doesn't mean its any good, lol. (: Constructive criticism, please.
(And, yes, the memories at the end are worded differently in the books. I felt copying it into fan fiction would be stupid, lol.)
And... to be honest, I was afraid to put this up. :D
I don't own the Mortal instruments.
Magnus never knew.
In just minutes—no, seconds, his very moment had changed. Life had gone from his fiery mixture of bliss to a firm pang of hurt. He didn't have to feel the stinging tears—the closing pressure deep in his chest. He knew pain when he felt it.
If dirt were an ocean; if blood were a wall, he'd understand. Just running—no, dragging—his feet through the dirt took the absolute power of will; the forceful tang of sour resolve. He didn't even know what would keep him standing if Alec were already gone. He felt even magic, his most reliable resource, couldn't help him then.
Just hours ago Magnus had spoken to him. Had a conversation with him. He even remembered the familiar feel of Alec's hips, the soft cool texture of his lips. Minutes ago, Magnus had actually touched him. Kissed him.
Looked into his gorgeous crystal blue eyes and told him he loved him.
Of course, at the time, Magnus had said it jokingly... but it was true. So true, so sure, it hurt. It burned and etched every bit of skin; every bit of hide that hasn't already been scorched or wounded by the awesome power of magic. That same demonic magic that everyone thought he knew, everyone thought he understood. They were wrong. No one understood magic to its fullest. So, yes, the very magic that he didn't understand, couldn't comprehend, could just take another life. Another life that wasn't supposed to be taken, to be messed with. Because that life was apart of his, apart of his fiery mixture of bliss.
Thoughts he didn't need pulsed through his mind. What if Alec died? Right here, right here in this mudding flood of rain? Right in this battle? He would be forgotten by the struggling clave around him. Just like the memories flashing and fading through Magnus's mind.
At that moment, one memory was the clearest. It had been in his apartment, right back in the (safer) streets of Brooklyn. Alec had just then switched places with the troublesome blonde brat; he had some... business to attend to. With the seelie court, apparently.
At the time, Magnus didn't really care. Yes, he could get in deep trouble with the clave. Yes, he risked life in the dark walls of prison. And, yes, Sure, that was bad... he just couldn't muster enough motivation to give a damn.
"Magnus?" Alec said warily. Both Alec and Magnus were both seated on the warlock's flashy pink couch. The younger teen had been flipping through the channels for some time, supposedly looking for something the least bit amusing.
"Hm?" Magnus replied, never loosing the subterranean gaze directed at the shadowhunter. He looked into his eyes, disguising his love as boredom.
"What's with the mundane law? Him," he pointed at the ugly mug shot gracing the screen. "Everyone knows he committed murder. It's obvious." He looked to Magnus. But, seeing the slight confusion, he elaborated. "Then, why? Why can he just..."
"Get a lawyer? Be represented? Receive help?" Magnus finished, gladly demonstrating his knowledge of mundane lucidity. "Well," he began. "What if, despite the obvious evidence, he were perfectly innocent?"
He looked up, catching the teen's eye. Shortly after, when Alec had nodded, he continued. "It's about the people, I guess. Y' know, 'liberty and justice for all'?"
"Sure," Alec gave a nod. He still sounded, well, unsure. "Then why is the clave's law so... different?" He questioned, only moments later.
"Nice question," Magnus had agreed wholeheartedly. Just like, Magnus had thought, Alec would never truly be with him. It was almost like they were both missing the jury to their court. Or, in other words, a chance. They were missing the chance, in which, at the time, he thought he would never get. Not with that damned blonde around.
But things had changed.
Just only a couple of days ago, Magnus thought Alec would never return his feelings. Magnus had thought Alec would never grow up; never face the facts. He was wrong.
Alec had returned his feelings. If anything, a thousand fold. He had grown.
And this had only made Magnus love him more.
As much as these thoughts weighed on his heart, they kept him going. One thing he had learned from over three hundred years of his life is to always go, never stop. To be fixed on a thought is to be distracted. This helped him on several occasions—one being the scene before him. Now.
Several more muddy steps later, he was before the still body of his loved one. He was sprawled out in jagged awkward angles; one pale hand just to the side of his face, another just beside his hip. Mud collected, as if he were already a corpse. His dark black shadowhunter gear looked faded and stained. As if he were already a stone.
Magnus knelt, leaning and bending like a long dying tree. The golden green leaves tearing away like the old worn fabric of his cat slit eyes. The fine golden mahogany weaving like the frailing sticks of his own arms. The cold, dirt, roots loosening—but not yet breaking. This tree was not done yet; this tree was not even close.
With that thought, another memory tickled at the sodden skin of his eyes. It had been from only hours before.
Back between the crowded walls of the accords hall, Magnus had been gathering information. In times like these, he used his eyes and ears to pull useful knowledge out of the mouths of others, then use it for his own benefit. This thought had been cast away quickly, though-- only because a certain shadowhunter had invaded his personal space.
Magnus ignored Alec at first; at the time, he wasn't sure whether the teen's earlier declaration had been valid or not. But, of course, he couldn't help but realize the fierce determination illuminating off Alec's staggering azure eyes. Surprised, Magnus looked away.
Just when Magnus had thought he wouldn't, the shadowhunter spoke. "Magnus," he said demandingly. "I know you can see me. Don't play blind."
"It's hard," he had said back. "You're kind of short, y' know?" Magnus had felt inclined to point this out. Alec, standing at eighteen years old, was probably of adult height—though this wasn't as tall as Magnus, it was close. No one was as tall as he was.
Alec scowled. "I am not short. You're just a damn pole."
Magnus laughed at this. "Am I?"
"Yes." Alec replied stubbornly. Magnus realized he had looked a bit antsy.
"Now," he said, changing the subject. "What is it you need, little shadowhunter? I have some business to attend to." Of course, this was all but a little white lie.
Alec spoke then. "I want to... I..." his gaze, usually directed at the floor, was now looking straight into Magnus's eyes. "Can I be your partner?"
He hadn't expected Alec to have the courage to ask, especially in the public doors of the Accords hall. Where his family lurked, unknowing of their own son's secrets. Where almost the whole clave was, residing apprehensively.
After he scanned the couple of thoughts and questions looming about in his own mind, it grew apparent these so called sudden "facts" didn't matter to him. Magnus's heart leapt in his chest, only managing to keep up with the warlock's happiness.
He fought against this, though. He was sure to regret it in the long run.
"What about your family?" He cocked his head to the side, awaiting the teen's reaction. This statement, despite Magnus's obvious motivations, didn't faze Alec.
He only shook his head in response. "I don't care," he said.
Magnus just stared at Alec, carefully examining the dark crescents under his eyes. "Yes, you do."
Before Magnus could react properly, Alec had snatched his arm. He bent down, resembling that of a broken bridge. His dark black bangs covered his eyes, masking any expression or feeling. For a split second, Magnus had thought he was going to kiss his hand. This was wrong, of course. Alec had just grabbed his stele.
The curved rune marking his hand looked like a new, crisp tattoo. Nice and fresh.
Magnus brought his arm up, examining it in amusement.
"Magnus," Alec whispered. Magnus could barely hear him above the loud, anxious crowd.
"Wha--" and he kissed him.
Despite Alec's earlier motivations pertaining to his sexuality, he had outed himself, anyway. Because of Magnus. He had done it to earn his love.
To Magnus, it had grown apparent. Love was what had grown clear and lucid. Almost like the powers of a simple spell, cast through both the ignorant and key battles. He could remember it now. Just how the multicolored sparks would bounce off his fingertips, perceiving effect of dominant flames.
Every time his pale lips formed the words of a spell, he felt powerful. It could feel so... gratifying. The pulse of fevering magic gracing everything he could touch, everything he could feel. He, himself, feeling it; in every step he took over the cold dirt ground, in every bodily twist. In every turn, the occasional hit.
This feeling made even the most treacherous of moments pleasing. But only during these times he had realized how selfish he could be.
This brought Magnus back to the boy in front on him. "Alec..." he whispered, grasping at the shadowhunter's cold wet cheeks in agony. His mind raced, extracting loose thoughts through crevices and crannies. Similar thoughts of anguish rolled like a tape, blocking his eyes. Not letting him think straight. See straight.
As he thought on, his fingers—then slowly, his whole body—started to shake in convulsions. Magnus didn't even know if that had just started, or the cold wet surroundings had gotten to him beforehand.
Wild blue sparks escaped his fingers.
He was loosing control.
Magnus took a deep breath, trying to seek back his sense of magic. He had to. He had to stay calm. But he had only allowed his mind one consideration: 'To be fixed on a thought is to be distracted.'
He had never found this to be so true.
Magnus then placed both his hands on Alec's still chest. He concentrated hard as his limbs started to transfer energy into the young shadowhunter. Magnus's whole body started to pulse fevering magic—resembling that of fireflies, lurking in the deep cold night.
Magic soon shot from his fingertips in quick, complete motions. Magnus knew what this was. Exactly what it was. This was the better, new forceful power. It was their love, their shared energy. Binding as one, great force.
The rest flashed by his eyes; memories rolling like a distant movie.
"I know you don't have to help us out—it's a favor—" Alec said hastily. Though this statement was supposed to ease Magnus, it had done the opposite. It tugged at his heart. It made him feel even fainter—more exhausted than ever. Old and almost dead. 'Didn't he see?'
Magnus had cut him off. "Stop it. I don't do favors, Alec," he said, too tired to be angry. "I do things for you because—well, why do you think I do them?"
The memories changed.
"Take it. Take my energy," Alec said hurriedly. His words were thick and jumbled. Was it exhaustion? Or Alec's apprehension? "You need it."
Again, another memory flashed.
"You never called me back," Alec had said. "I called you so many times and you never called me back." Each word expressed the lone shadowhunter's mounds of pain. This made Magnus feel even more guilty.
"You love me?" Alec said back. This time, his words expressed utter disbelief. But the warlock heard something else, too—a tad of realistic joy.
"Of course I do—you stupid, idiot, Nephilim!"
Those were their pastimes—their feelings—their antics. To Magnus, the most enjoyable pieces of life so far. He wished he could have more.
Though he was in thought, Magnus felt a heart beat under his hands. Color returned to Alec's pale face; his hands started to clench in lingering pain. Tears poured out his crystal blue eyes.
"Did you see that?" Magnus said. "Did you?"
Before Alec could have answered, Magnus sighed. The overwhelming clasp of regret slowly left his heart—now replaced with the plain ecstasy of relief. There was no more self-loathing, anger fueled heaves—just a vast sense of love. He felt great. Better than he had in centuries.
Without thinking, Magnus pulled Alec into an embrace. It was tight—as if he were afraid he'd loose his mind. "Jeez, Alec," he murmured, sounding a bit annoyed. "You gave me a friggin' heart attack."
Even if the rain stopped, he'd never let go.