She's in a knee-length black satin dress, looking as beautiful as always. He, on the other hand, is in grey jeans and a white button-down with the sleeves rolled up, getting funny looks from everyone because it's supposedly a cool night. Of course, it makes no difference to him. There's an almost uncomfortable silence between them, their arms occasionally brushing against each other as they walk. Her gaze is fixed on what's in front of her, while his is continuously looking out of his peripheral vision at her. He digs his hands deeper into his pockets as they reach the Institute.
"So, I guess - " he starts, looking away slightly. He thinks he sees her smile slightly, before going to sit down on the sidewalk, gesturing for him to shut up with a quick wave of her hand.
"Sit down and talk to me, Simon," she says, gesturing to the space beside her. He does so without a word, feeling their hands brush as he sits. She doesn't move away, so in the end their hands are still next to each other, their sides brushing and their fingers starting to overlap slightly.
"Did, um, you have fun tonight?" he asks, looking at her, the moon reflected in her eyes as she turns to him. He's not sure whether she's smiling anymore.
"It was…different," she says. "As in I didn't actually have sex with you immediately afterwards. Which was, nice, in a way." He can't help but smile in embarrassment, looking down at his shoes.
"Well, I'm glad. In a way," he says. They're silent for awhile, looking at the stars, before she warily lays her head on his shoulder. He can tell that she's still tense, even when he gently rests his head on hers.
"Simon," she begins, licking her lips. "Are you still in love with Clary?"
"Not so much," he says after a slight pause. "But it's complicated. Still, I'm happy that she's happy." Isabelle snorts.
"You sound so human," she explains. He frowns, straightens himself up so that his shoulder moves slightly, and she's caught off balance. The smile returns to his face just as she looks at him.
"What can I say, I'm still a human in my unbeating heart." She smiles at him, as if she's about to laugh; wants to laugh, but then she looks down at the pavement. He almost sighs.
"How did you get over her?" she asks again.
"What's your fascination with my previous love life?" he says, a fake lightness in his voice. She still doesn't look up at him, though he sees her purse her lips together. "I-I don't know, really. I just knew that we'd never fit. Even when I first had a crush on her, some part of me knew that we wouldn't. She's too much of a hero." He laughs, grinning even though he feels a bitter nostalgia fill him.
"And what are you?" Isabelle asks, seemingly genuinely interested. He shrugs his shoulders.
"The boy next door?" he suggests. "Your friendly neighbourhood vampire? I don't know, nothing really." Isabelle looks at him sceptically, folding her arms over her chest. "Look," he says. "Jace and Clary match: heroes love heroines." She seems to ponder this for a moment, about to say something more before she stops herself.
"Come on," he says. "It's late and I don't want to get in trouble for having you home past curfew." He gets up and pulls her by the hand to her feet, hearing her mutter, "I don't have a curfew." as he does. He smiles to himself. Suddenly, he feels the air tense around them, and it's only then that he realises he still hasn't let go of her hand. He looks at her, can feel himself leaning in, only to press a kiss to her cheek. She looks at him in surprise.
"I'll see you around, Izzy," he says, smiling at her. She nods, rustles up a smile for him as well, and then walks through the Institute gates by herself, even though they both know that he can too.
His date with Maia is different from his date with Isabelle's. They play video games on his couch and eat Doritos from a huge bag beside them. They tie twice and he beats her once and she beats him once. He has fun, and at the end of it he kisses her on the lips for three seconds. Then she waves goodbye to him.
They're watching a movie on his tiny TV screen, her sitting on the edge of his bed and him lying stretched out so that his feet nearly reach the end. He sees that her eyes are slightly glazed, and that her face is emotionless. He nudges her gently with his foot, sees her blink, and smiles as she turns round to face him.
"Hey, we can put on something else if you want," he says. "You look sort of bored."
"I'm fine," she says, shaking her head. He frowns, wondering why she always seems different around him; quieter and more considerate, almost. It scares him ever so slightly.
"Isabelle, it's fine, really. I get how…wait, what were we watching?" He was watching before, honestly, but all his favourite movies are action, and they tend to be exactly the same, save for the actors. They just blur together. "Anyway, what I'm trying to say is, I can understand that some mundane movie would be boring compared to killing demons," he reasons. She looks at him oddly.
"Did it ever occur to you that, just maybe, you should date someone normal?" she asks. "Someone who doesn't kill things for a living? Or doesn't turn into a werewolf," she frowns at the word, and he wonders if she still hasn't gotten over her contempt for Downworlder's, or if it's just Maia. "whenever they want?"
"Yes," he answers. "At least, I thought that until it was revealed that my best friend of ten years was a Shadowhunter, and then, well, you know, I got turned into a vampire. Which, by the way, my mother still hasn't come to terms with," he adds. Isabelle looks slightly guilty, he realises, and immediately feels bad. "That wasn't your fault," he reminds her.
"I know," she replies calmly. "But still." She doesn't explain, but it doesn't really need explaining, he thinks.
"I guess, now," he starts. "All I want is for someone, or something, to believe in." He realises that his answer surprises both of them, that the words just tumbled out of his mouth before he could stop them, or think about them even. Slowly, she starts to nod her head in understanding (though he doesn't really think it's about him having lost his religion, it's something different, he's just not sure what).
"Ok," she says. "Ok."
He picks Maia.
No one really seems surprised.
It started out slow and it ends slowly. He sees Maia every day now, whether she comes over to watch movies or just talk, or even if it's just to see Luke (he basically lives with him now, what with his mother having a very slight mental breakdown with the whole vampire thing and not really being able to remember that her son's a vampire. He's just thankful that she's not seeing his father's ghost).
Clary's happy with his decision, kissing him on the cheek and whispering a thanks in his hear. And even Jace doesn't really seem to care, shrugging his shoulders when he hears and telling him,
"No offence, but you weren't really her type. Plus, you wouldn't have lasted more than a month. Sorry."
As for Isabelle, she just seems happy (and relieved) that he finally made a decision. She and Maia are still friends. It's all fine.
(Except he really is left longing for the days where there was nobody to choose from and his face didn't lie to him every single time he looked in the mirror.)
They play video games, watch movies, kiss, and have fun. Occasionally, they talk about Shadowhunters and Downworlders, and occasionally, they fight (and it always somehow manages to come back to vampires and werewolves). But apart from that, it's really, really good. They both have fun, he always feels comfortable rather awkward around her, even when they have their first kiss (except there's no electricity or an fireworks, it's just them).
His mother likes her, as does his sister (though he may have boycotted telling them that she's a werewolf, just maybe). She seems to get on well with everybody; it all feels right and almost - almost - perfect.
The movie credits are rolling, and he's just about to ask if she wants to watch another movie when he realises that she's fallen asleep on his shoulder (déjà vu, he thinks bitterly to himself). He kisses the top of her head, before gently lying her down so that her head is resting on a pillow.
He looks at her for a moment, then at the clock that reads nine-thirty pm, and without really thinking, climbs out the window. He doesn't really know where he's walking to, he never does. He just gets restless sometimes at night, even though he's tried to train his body over and over again to sleep at night. Sometimes the urge is just too strong.
He realises that he's walked to the Institute out of sheer habit, though he knows that Clary should have gone home for the night. Instead, he finds Isabelle walking up the path, looking just a little worse for wear with her make-up smudged and her hair at messy angles (and he still thinks she looks beautiful, even after all this time). She looks at him in surprise when she sees him, stopping a little way in front of him.
"Simon, what are you doing here?" she asks. He just shrugs his shoulders, digs his hands into his jean pockets. "I thought you were with Maia." He only nods his head in response.
"Ugh, just walking around," he says. "Couldn't go to sleep - vampiric instincts, I guess. Why were you out?"
"I had a date," she says simply. He feigns interest (and he's not jealous - at all. Probably), nodding his head at her to continue. "That's it," she adds.
"With who? Vampires, werewolves, faeries, what? Or have you finally gone onto Shadowhunters?" he jokes, though of course she doesn't laugh. There's barely even a smile, just a slight twitch of her lips.
"Faeries," she replies. "Vampires and werewolves weren't exactly my type." He hears her voice hitch and harden on the word vampires. "And Shadowhunters…" she trails off, shrugs her shoulders. "I don't know, just not yet, I guess." He nods slowly, suddenly very conscious of the time, even though he couldn't have been gone for more than twenty minutes. Somehow, it just feels wrong.
"Hey, I've got to go," he says, and he sees her eyes darken. "Mai - Maia is staying over, so…"
"It's fine, I understand," she says, waving him off. "Bye.
"It was nice talking to you," he says, but she's already started to walk through the Institute gates (and suddenly, he feels sixteen again, just letting her go). He doesn't hear a reply.
When he gets back to his house, he sees Maia has finally woken up - and instantly feels guilty. He smiles at her when he comes in through the window, sees her continue to blearily blink herself awake. He gently lowers himself down next to her on the couch.
"Hey," he says. "Sorry, I just went out. I didn't know that you'd wake up so soon." He brushes a hand across her forehead, sweeping some of the hair aside, and almost grimaces at how wrong it feels.
"It's fine," Maia says, yawning. "I only just woke up anyway. And besides, I get it; a vampire's gotta do what a vampire's gotta do," she adds, lightheartedly, though he can sense the discomfort in her voice. "You worry too much," she says with suddenly, catching him off guard. "Seriously, you do. Stop it."
"I do not," he says. "Look, I'll prove it." And with that he leans down to kiss. He doesn't really know what happens, how it happens. One moment their kissing, and the next his hand is sliding up her shirt and her fingernails are digging into his skin, and she's breathing heavily and he's far too silent (and all he can hear in his head is, just a distraction, just a distraction).
"Simon," Maia starts, and he's immediately wary just at the sound of her voice. He looks up at her from some book he was reading, and sees her nervously picking at the edge of her shirt. The fact that she's nervous scares the shit out of him.
"Yeah?" he answers, trying to keep the worry out of his voice. "Are you ok?"
"I'm fine," she answers hurriedly, though her voice isn't as strong as usual. "Look, I don't really know how to say this, but I think that we should end it. Us, I mean." He looks at her in surprise, and they only have to make eye contact once for her to start rushing into an explanation (though he didn't need one).
"The dating stuff, I mean," - and he's reminded of being sixteen again and taking pleasure in the simple action of enjoying the sun - "because I still really like you, and I really want to be friends. If that's ok," she pauses. "Are we ok?"
"Of course we are, why wouldn't we be?" he says. "And I promise that I won't turn you into a vampire, which I doubt I could anyway. But yeah, I'm happy being friends." He smiles at her, sees her body relax.
"Thanks, Simon," she says. "I'm really sorry, and thanks for taking this so well. I don't deserve," she adds. Smiling at him, she leans and kisses him on the cheek. "Thanks," she says again.
And then he watches her go.
They dated for a year; he's eighteen when they break it off. He almost thinks that it symbolises some big change; from teenager to adult, as if it shows that now that he's been a serious relationship (Clary didn't really count, he reasons, seeing as they only dated for about three weeks), he can now handle the world better; he can grow up more.
It's completely wrong.
Isabelle knocks on his door and then comes through his window ten seconds later anyway. He looks at her in surprise, especially when she comes to sit down by his side on his bed.
"Hey, I knocked," she says defensively. "And I'm here to help you through your break-up," she explains. He continues to look at her sceptically.
"Ok, first of all, I may just kill Clary for telling you," he says. "And secondly, what do you know about break-ups? Apart from doing them, I mean."
"Fine," she huffs. "But I'm good at keeping people company."
"I did actually tell Clary that I wanted to be alone," he says. "But, you're here now, so, what the hell," he adds quickly, seeing her face drop. She smiles at this. After that, there's silence between them, though he thinks that it's not so awkward now that he's used to them (is that a good thing?). It's just there.
"Why'd she do it?" Isabelle asks after a little while, almost absent-mindedly, as if she wanted to keep it in but it just slipt out. "Break-up with you, I mean."
"She didn't say," he says, and smiles when he hears Isabelle say under her breath, well that was slack. "But, I do know the reason why." She looks up at him, her eyes seemingly wider than usual, almost pleading with him to continue. He sighs, though it's not entirely unhappy.
"You look surprised. Seriously, Izzy, I can actually tell if a relationship isn't working, promise," he says, though he can hear the laughter in his own voice. It trails away, thinking. "It was working, but it was working too well, almost. We were too similar," he says finally. "I guess that's what happens when you get used to fighting demons, or the occasional insane Shadowhunter." She elbows him in the ribs, and he thinks that it almost could've hurt. He smirks at her.
"Vampire," he reminds her. She just looks at him annoyance, though her face starts to soften when his words sink in. She moves so that she's kneeling in front of him, looking him straight in the eye.
"I'm sorry," she says, truly meaning it, he realises. He just shakes his head.
"In a way, I'm glad it ended. It didn't feel right. I just feel bad that I didn't have the guts to end it," he says. She nods, looking like she does understand it, does know what he's going through.
He feels the silence return, though this time they're still looking at each other. Her hair keeps on falling, framing her voice and making her eyes look even darker than before. She unconsciously starts to lean forward, swinging her leg of his, and he grabs onto her hip. Before he knows it, their faces are only centimetres apart, and then their lips are brushing together.
They only kiss for a couple of seconds, though it still manages to leave her with a hint of fear in her eyes and a feeling of guilt in his stomach, though he finds himself stroking his thumb over her hip bone.
"That didn't mean anything," she states, though it sounds weak and more like a question. He just continues to look at her, before kissing her on the cheek, hoping that she knows what he means.
They become girlfriend and boyfriend, Simon&Isabelle, the vampire & the shadow hunter - whatever you want it to call it.
And then they fall, just like everything else.
It doesn't really start off well (and they never did work). They fight, don't really know what to do, and half the time they just end up on his bed either talking, kissing, or having sex. Which wasn't exactly what he thought would happen.
It's not like him and Maia, because they were never that to begin with; never that comfortable or that similar. Instead, he just mainly goes on hunts with them - which doesn't make any sense, he knows. They start to fall into an uncomfortable pattern.
They've only been dating three months when he can sense it, that almost nothing's right. They're lying in a park somewhere when he finally says something, sitting on the grass right in the sun. She's lying on her side, looking at children playing on the swings and people running past rather at him.
"Izzy," he says suddenly. She looks at him in slight surprise, only for her face to turn emotionless. He grins at her. "Let's go see the world."
This time, she does smile.
He doesn't know why her parents let her go with him, though it probably has something to do with Clary and, thus, Jace trying to persuade them that "the vampire" could be trusted. But they let her go, her whip wrapped around her arm and a backpack on her shoulder.
They travel everywhere: England, Australia, Scandinavia, and they always manage to find a piece of her (their) world; of Shadowhunter's and Downworlder's that he still has trouble fitting into. They both love it, even though he knows that she gets homesick almost every night, because she's always loved adventure, and he's always loved travelling (which is close enough).
But in the end, they've seen everything. Gone everywhere, and there's nothing really left to do. So she goes back - back to the Institute, and Alicante, and everything that she knows (and he wonders why he can't be enough).
But he doesn't.
He continues to travel anyway, going back to the places that he already has a thousand pictures of. Keeps on going back until he knows them as well as the back of his hand. Occasionally he goes back to New York too, just to see Luke or Clary, or his family.
It's his system, and it works.
After another year of travelling, he gets called to Alicante for one big meeting that everybody has to attend. Raphael merely hisses at him when he arrives, to which he just shrugs his shoulders nonchalantly. Raphael glares at him for the rest of the night, particularly when he waves to Clary and the Lightwoods.
"Ah, so this is the Daylighter," he hears a voice say. He turns around to look at the voice, only to have Raphael cough loudly and push him away.
"Camille," he says. "Welcome back, I hadn't been told of your return." Camille, seemingly, gives Raphael a cold smirk and then proceeds to ignore him completely, only looking at Simon.
"I've heard a lot about you, Daylighter," she says.
"My name's Simon," he replies. Raphael honestly looks like he's about to kill him, clenching his jaw hard just to stop him from speaking. Camille's smirk does not falter, and he can see amusement in her eyes.
"Hmm, such defiance for one so young," is all she says. "Now, let me see that Mark." He's about to say no, but there's something about her tone that makes him wary, so instead, he grits his teeth and brushes his fringe off his forehead. He thinks he sees her eyes lighten and widen in surprise.
"Fascinating," is all she says. Without another word, she turns her back on him and walks away, as if the conversation never happened, as if she couldn't care less about him. He rolls his eyes.
"Simon!" He only just hears his name before he has an armful of Clary, her red hair filling his vision. Out of the corner of his eye, he sees Jace and Alec and Luke and most likely Isabelle, giving them a quick wave.
"I missed you so much," Clary says, looking up at him with large eyes. "You should've called, you big idiot." She hits his arm lightly.
"I know, I'm sorry," he says, smiling sheepishly. "But hey, I'm here now."
"And gone tomorrow." It takes him awhile to realise who said it; Clary looks oblivious, and Jace isn't even looking at him anymore. It's when he sees Isabelle standing, with her arms folded and not talking to anybody, somehow looking out of place in her own world, that he knows that it was here. And that was the only one who could hear it.
"Yeah," he whispers, so softly that Clary doesn't even notice. "Yeah."
He doesn't go back with the Lightwoods, isn't even planning on going back to New York. But he only manages to get out of the city gates when Isabelle finds him, running to his side and walking beside him without a word. He frowns down at his feet when she's not looking.
"Where are you going?" she finally asks.
"I don't know," he answers. "Wherever I want. Anywhere."
"You should stay with us," Isabelle says, not missing a beat. "Clary misses you." (I miss you.)
"Ha, a vampire living with a family of Shadowhunters," he says. "That is a new one." She still doesn't laugh.
"Simon," she says, grabbing his wrist. "Seriously, just. Come. Back." He opens his mouth to reply, to say no, but he doesn't. But she seems to understand his silence anyway, sighing and looking away, her hand still clasped to his wrist.
"Look, I know what happened with us," she says. "But it would be better. We're both older, and we don't have to - " she trails off.
"I know," he says quietly. "But it's not that."
She doesn't say anything more. She just kisses him again, like it's the last one they'll share (and maybe it is) and walks away from him.
God, he hates this.
He doesn't leave straight away, like he should (but he's not good at doing that, is he?). Rather, he watches her walk away until she's a tiny black dot in the distance, even with his eyesight, and then until she disappears all together. He just stands there, looking into the distance.
"Daylighter," a familiar voice says behind him. "I think that you should know that vampires tend not to have the best luck in love." Camille comes to stand beside him, smiling her cold smile at him. He can't do anything except look away.
"I can tell," he says quietly, though he can hear the bitterness in his voice anyway.
"She's a pretty girl," she comments. "Shadowhunter, from what I saw of her."
"We don't match," he answers sharply (heroes loves heroines. heroines love heroes. Why does whatever is supposed to happen never happen?). There's a silence, and he can feel her gaze on him, looking him up and down.
"You know, Daylighter," Camille says. "You remind me of one of my lovers. A werewolf," she tells him. "It may not be much consolidation, but I can feel your pain."
"Ok," he says, glancing up at her only to look back down at his shoes, scuffing them against the ground.
"Of course, nothing is helped by our immortality," she adds, almost with a careful consideration. "That's why I thought Magnus - Bane, in case you didn't know - could work. But, I guess not. Too similar, almost." He can't help but smirk at that.
"Ah, I see," he replies, finally being able to look up and hold her gaze. "Though, you do seem a lot less…flamboyant than he is. If you don't mind me saying." At this, her lips twitch, and he thinks she may just laugh. But she doesn't.
"Indeed," she says. "I just want you to know, Simon," she draws his name out, almost spits out the syllables. "That it may just be worth your while to spend their time with them. Worry about yours another time." He raises his eyebrows at her, before shaking his head, indicating to his forehead. At this, she does laugh - a small, harsh sound coming from her bright red lips.
"And I wouldn't be so quick to blame yourself on that," she adds. He clenches his jaw, looking down again, and he doesn't need to look back up to know that she's gone.
He goes too.
"Simon, please. Pick up the phone. Look, I don't know what's happened between you two, but Isabelle's upset. I know that she misses you.
Look, I think that you two could really work it out this time. She's older now, more mature. She's stopped dating people just for the fun of it, which Jace blames you for. So, give it another shot. Please? Or at least come back.
I will hunt you down, and you know it."
It's been another year when she tries again. She's still not married, still called a disgrace to her family, though the traditions are quickly changing with each passing day. She's still young, her family reasons. Give her time.
But she does manage to find him, in an old hotel room in Chicago that smells of alcohol and cigarette smoke. Somehow, even though she knows it's impossible, he looks older. And then all she wants to do is be back with him when they were eighteen, lying on his bed and looking at the glow-in-the-dark stars that were still stuck on his ceiling. Her hand tightens on the doorknob.
She hugs him when he opens the door, even though he doesn't quite ever hug back. She looks into his eyes, brown to black, and kisses him. Over and over again, like she always does. His hands immediately go to her waist, almost out of habit, and she's pulling at his shirt, feeling her nails in his skin.
"Izzy," he says, almost sounding breathless. "You know we -" she cuts him off, pressing her lips to his again. He pulls her away, holding her arms by her side. "You know that we shouldn't."
"If we did what we were supposed to then it wouldn't be us," she argues. He doesn't speak again, just kisses her, holding her face in his hands and pushing her against the wall. After that it's just buttons popping, and skin on skin, and it feels too familiar for both of them.
His bed sheets are itchy against her back, sticking to her skin and coming off the bed each time she moves. Simon still hasn't looked at her, looking up at the ceiling (and she can't help but imagine little stars glowing in the night). She rolls over to face him, and holds his gaze.
"This," he says, beating her to it, "has to stop." She frowns.
"No, it doesn't. Not unless you come back with me," she says, feeling her hands clench around the bed sheets, wondering if she dug her nails in deep enough it would tear the cheap cotton. He stays silent for a long time, and she feels scared to move. Finally, he gives her a small, sad smile.
"You need to stop changing," he says softly. "In all senses of the word."
"What's that supposed to mean?" She feels a hand come along her side, resting on her waist. It's coldness feels welcome against her heated skin, even though she shivers at the initial contact. She puts her hand on top of his.
"You change when you're around me," Simon says. "It scares me."
I'm scared, she thinks. She hears him sigh, closing his eyes.
"We need to stop this," he repeats. "This going around and around in circles." She nods her head, even though he can't see and she doesn't quite know what he means. Without another word, and without opening his eyes, he leans in and kisses her, and her eyes close quickly.
She knows that he'll probably be gone next time she opens her eyes, that they will probably keep on going around in circles. But maybe, she thinks, they could end up together, with him and her and no more air between them. Just maybe.
But then she doesn't care about the future, about what will happen next.
She only cares about them, there and now.
let's just rewind back to the beginning.
Disclaimer: I do not own the Mortal Instruments.
A/N: This was sort of my speculation for City of Fallen Angels. Or a crappier and longer version of my other Simon/Isabelle oneshot. Also, Camille is an actual character, who will appear in CoFA, and appeared in Clockwork Angel if you read that. Review/PM me if you hated it, loved it, have questions, etc.