Magnus swung open the door and stepped into Alec's apartment, blue wisps and sparks still clinging to him, remnants of his most recent Portal. Alec smiled and leapt up from the couch to greet his boyfriend of a year. "Hi," he said quietly, his black hair dipping to cover his forehead. Magnus swept the curtain of black hair away and kissed him lightly on the cheek.
"Hi," he answered cheerily. Alec stared up at the top of Magnus's head. His long, usually glittering dark hair was gone, replaced by a brutally short crew cut.
"You cut your hair," he accused. Magnus looked up, almost as though he had forgotten the recent change.
"Oh, yes," he replied absently. "It was beginning to get in the way."
"It's really short," continued Alec. "I thought you liked it long."
"It will grow back," said Magnus, dismissing it with a wave of his hand as he shut the door and continued into the apartment. Alec spun around, perplexed.
"It's even too short to attach extensions," Alec went on.
"It will grow back," repeated Magnus.
"No it won't!" said Alec, throwing his hands up. "It won't grow back, your hair doesn't grow."
"It will grow back," said Magnus again. His voice had grown quiet. Alec stared at him incredulously.
"But… you're a warlock!" he cried. "You don't age; your hair doesn't grow!"
"Alec, just let it go," pleaded Magnus.
"No," answered Alec firmly. "Are you trying to tell me something?"
"I'm trying to not tell you something," corrected the warlock.
"What?" Alec asked, flabbergasted. "You're hiding something from me? Why? What?" He ran his fingers through his hair, perching on the coffee table in front of Magnus.
"I'm… aging," said Magnus delicately. Alec stared at him.
"Yes." They were both silent for a moment.
"How? Or, um… why?" Alec queried uncomfortably.
"I'm a few weeks older than I was a few weeks ago," said Magnus. "Well, actually," he continued, smiling a bit, "I'm a few weeks older than I was six hundred years ago."
"Alright, what happened a few weeks ago?" Alec asked, shaking his head. Magnus sighed and began rolling up his left sleeve.
"Don't try to distract me by taking off your clothes," chastised Alec. Magnus laughed tiredly.
"I'm answering your question." He continued pulling up the sleeve until Alec saw a small, thinly-traced black design on his lower shoulder. He examined it carefully.
"Is that a rune?" whispered Alec. Magnus nodded. "You- that's…" Alec traced the spidery lines etched on Magnus's skin. "You got Clary to make you a new rune," said Alec tonelessly.
"Can you read it?" Magnus's voice sounded pained. Alec stared at the rune for a long time, letting its meaning sink into him.
"Non- immortality," he answered blankly. Magnus didn't move. "You're not immortal anymore," Alec continued in that same calm tone.
"No," said Magnus carefully. "I'm not." Alec stood up.
"Well, you… you're just going to have to get Clary to undo it," he commanded. Magnus stared at him, hurt and confused.
"Why would you want me to do that? I thought you'd be happy."
"Happy?" yelped Alec. "You're going to get old! You're going to… die. Why would you want that?" Magnus jumped up, too.
"I don't want to die, Alec. Nobody does! I was thinking of you. I want to live with you and be normal and get old." Alec took a shaky breath.
"Get Clary to change you back," he repeated icily. Magnus shook his head.
"Why are you so-"
"Because I'm not worth immortality!" shouted Alec. "I am not worth you giving up and dying!"
"You are to me," replied Magnus simply. "I love you. Do you not believe me when I say that?"
"No, I believe that you love me." Alec looked down. "But that's not enough. I know that I'm not worth that, and you… you're just…wrong," he finished anticlimactically.
"I think I'm right."
"Of course you do."
"Alec, you are worth that," said Magnus strongly. "You are." Alec shook his head.
"I want you to live forever."
"But you won't live forever," remarked Magnus.
"I don't care."
"You think it's fair for me to go on without you?" Alec glared at him.
"And what if you die first now? What am I supposed to do?" Alec asked quietly. Magnus shook his head tiredly.
"Listen, Alec, we're going to grow old together now, and be happy. Why are we sitting around talking about dying? I'm eighteen, you're nineteen, it's not like our kidneys are failing or anything. Why can't we just live in the moment and leave depressing thoughts about death and dying for… I don't know. Your morbid friend Simon." Magnus smiled, and Alec laughed weakly.
"You're right," he admitted. "I'm sorry."
"Apologies are for the sorrowful," disciplined Magnus. "Let's go to Taki's and have some waffles." Alec stared at him, dumbfounded.
"It's ten at night." Magnus grinned mischievously. Alec shook his head and grabbed his jacket. "Let's go."