Facilis Descensus Averno
AN: Couldn't find any Gabriel/Will so I decided to write some. Will start off with Gabriel/OMC and the obligatory Jem/Tessa/Will love triangle but will hopefully develop.
Kicks off where Clockwork Prince ends more or less except instead of Cecily turning up it's the Lightwoods.
Benedict Lightwood stood pale and trembling in the doorway. Gabriel lay limp in his arms; his chest was a mess of shredded skin and blood and every inch of his neck, arms and hands were covered in bloody runes. For a few horrible moments no one did anything. Even Will had been shocked into silence.
Then Benedict spoke in a clear strong voice. "Will somebody please help my son?"
Gideon Lightwood stood up at once and rushed across the room to his father and brother, "Father!"
Charlotte too, stood and began barking orders, "Jem, Will, help Gabriel to the healing room. Those marks look like demon runes," she paused just long enough for Gabriel to nod. "Henry, see if you can get in contact with anyone who could help us with those. Tessa, with me." as soon as she'd finished speaking the room erupted with activity.
Gideon had taken his brother's unmoving form from his father and he was led out of the room swiftly by Jem and Will. Henry, surprisingly, had reacted quickly and barrelled out of the room after Jem and Will. Tessa stood unsure of what to do and Sophie hovered worriedly. Charlotte strode over to Benedict, "What happened?" she demanded, her eyes hard.
Benedict looked at her tiredly, "Apparently the Magister doesn't take kindly to betrayal."
Charlotte turned to Sophie, "Sophie could you please go and make sure there are rooms ready for Mr Lightwood and his sons."
Sophie bowed, grateful for something to do, and hurried out of the room. Charlotte turned back to Benedict, "Now tell me exactly what happened." She indicated that he should take a seat at the table.
Benedict dropped into the chair with a look of relief and closed his eyes briefly. He looked awful, Tessa noticed. Though they had seen him only hours previously his clothes now looked rumpled and worn, his face looked gaunt and tight with worry. He was trembling slightly, though Tessa thought that was probably from carrying Gabriel to the Institute from wherever they had been.
When his grey eyes opened he said, "We were attacked. They were waiting for us at the house; demons and some of those clockwork creatures. They didn't want me, they only wanted him. We tried to fight them off, but there were too many." He ran a hand through his silver hair, and somehow even in his exhausted state the gestured appeared elegant.
"They made me watch while they attacked him," Benedict continued and Tessa swore she could hear a tremor in his voice. "When they left I tried an iratze and every other healing rune I could think of, but those demonic runes...I think they must prevent healing. I didn't know where else to go."
Charlotte's expression softened, "Is there anything you need, Benedict?"
Benedict shook his head, "Just save my son." And Tessa was struck by a sudden thought; Benedict was dying. Without Mortmain's supposed cure for demon pox he'd be gone soon.
"Let's get to the healing room," Charlotte said.
They left the room quickly; Tessa walked beside Charlotte, Benedict trailed behind them slightly. Tessa's head was a hurricane. She was still trying to process what had happened earlier at the Clave and her engagement to Jem and Will's confession and now there was this. Gabriel might not have been Tessa's favourite person in the world but she was worried about him.
As they walked Charlotte leant closer to her and discretely whispered, "I kept you with me just in case this was some kind of trick.
And Tessa nodded mutely as her mind went into overdrive, was this all a trick? Would Benedict go so far as to allow his own son to be harmed to please Mortmain? Sophie had told her that he was hard on his sons, but she'd never thought he'd go this far for his own gain. She glanced at him, he was slightly pale but apart from that he appeared to have regained some of his composure.
When they entered the healing room Gabriel was lying, still unconscious, on a bed with Gideon bent over him. Jem stood on the other side, pale eyes wide with concern and hands bloody. Will was closer to the door and he turned to them as soon as they came in.
"None of the healing runes work, we gave him a painkilling rune but that's all we could do," he said sounding frustrated. "He's bleeding a lot and I'm pretty sure there's poison somewhere in there." Will went on to describe Gabriel's injuries further to Charlotte but Tessa didn't want to hear the rest, instead she crossed the room to stand beside Jem.
Gabriel usually tousled brown hair was stuck to his sweaty forehead and curling the way Will's did when slightly damp...His skin was so pale it was almost translucent. His chest was heavily bandaged but crimson blood had already soaked through them. His neck and hands had been cleaned of most of the blood and all that remained were the strange runes cut into his skin the cuts weren't shallow. Now that the ruins of his shirt had been removed Tessa could see runes above and below the bandages.
As though reading her mind Jem said softly, "The runes were all over his chest as well. Well, what remained of his chest anyway."
Tessa shivered involuntarily as she imagined how it must have felt to have those runes carved one by one into ones skin. Jem must have noticed for he caught her hand in his and gave it a reassuring squeeze.
Gideon was leaning over his brother, one hand brushing back his brother's hair. "Be okay," he whispering. "Please, be okay."
Gabriel stirred and his green eyes fluttered open, hazy and unfocused. Gideon leant forward and grasped his brother's hand. "Gabe? Gabriel," he said, his normally flat voice quivering with worry. "Gabriel look at me."
Gabriel blinked once more before his eyes focused on his brother's face. "Gid-Gideon?" he croaked.
Gideon looked slightly relieved and smiled weakly.
Beside her Tessa felt Jem relax slightly and he called, "He's awake."
Will surprised everyone by rushing over and almost knocking Jem out of the way. "Don't you dare die, Lightwood. This better not be revenge for what I did to your sister," He snapped, "Otherwise I'll have no one to torment!"
Gideon shot Will a look that could cut through steal but Gabriel coughed and laughed slightly. He looked about to reply but Benedict arrived, shoving Will, Jem and Tessa out of the way and saying, "Don't talk Gabriel. You need to rest."
Gabriel's dull eyes fixed on his father briefly before he turned away, with great effort and mumbled to his brother, "Should've gone with you..."
Benedict took a few startled steps back from the bed, looking as though he'd just been smacked. Will opened his mouth, no doubt to make a sarcastic comment, but before he could Jem stamped hard on his foot. Will turned to Jem angrily but again he was interrupted, this time by a coughing fit from Gabriel.
Gideon looked up at Charlotte who was standing at the foot of the bed, having a muttered conversation with Henry whom no one had seen entering the room. "What do we do?" he asked, desperately.
Charlotte turned to him, looking just worried. "Henry contacted the Silent Brothers about the runes, they're searching the archives but that could take ages, days. I-I'm sorry, Gideon. I don't who else we can contact."
Gideon's expression was heartbreaking and Tessa found herself saying, "What about a warlock?" at the same time as Will cried, "Magnus! He could help!"
Charlotte looked from them to Gabriel who at that moment whimpered in pain. She turned to Will, "Are you sure he'd help us?"
Will nodded, "I know he would. I could go to him; I could get him right now."
"Okay," Charlotte agreed. "Take Jem with you just in case; after this attack we have got to be on guard. And hurry. Go now."
Will nodded and grabbed Jem by the arm, "We'll be back as soon as we can be."
Charlotte watched them go and then moved over to the bed, glancing over Gabriel's damaged body, examining the runes in particular. She sighed and gave Gideon a pitying look before standing, "I'm going to go to the library and see if I can find anything about these runes."
She glanced once at Benedict who was by now leaning, pale faced, against the far wall and then said to Tessa, "You stay here, keep an eye on things. If he gets worse come and get me."
Tessa nodded and Charlotte left. She pulled a chair up beside the bed and sat opposite Gideon. "I don't understand," she said, not quite realising she was speaking aloud. "The runes, what are they."
Gideon answered without looking up at her, "They're demonic. But there are hundreds of demon dialects so we have to find the right one."
Gabriel by now was drifting, mumbling to himself and shifting around. Heat radiated off him as though he were a furnace. "We should do something to bring his fever down," she said standing as Gideon nodded in approval.
Tessa began to walk across the room, intending to head to the nearest tap but Sophie materialised at the door, peering through nervously. "Oh, Miss Gray," she said. "I wanted to let Mr Lightwood know that his room is ready."
"Thank you Sophie," Tessa smiled. "Could you go and fetch us some cold water and a cloth please?"
Sophie glanced once at Gideon before nodding and hastening down the corridor. Tessa crossed to her seat and sat down, not quite knowing what to do or say. When Sophie returned with the water Tessa pressed the cold cloth to Gabriel's fevered forehead and his eyes fluttered open once more.
"Gideon," he mumbled looking directly at his brother. "Where's Christopher?" he asked, before his eyes slid shut and his hand went limp in Gideon's grasp.