Three sharp raps on the door, an unlit apartment building hallway in Greenpoint. Jace glanced down at Clary where she stood with her fist poised to knock again if Magnus didn't answer the door. Ever since Magnus and Alec had broken up, there'd been an empty seat at Team Good meetings, an absence of glitter, and Jace and Clary had been elected to fill it.
The door opened, letting in a wedge of light, and two sleepy cat's eyes peered at them over the chain. "What do you want?" he said, his voice sounding rumpled and tired. He blinked, focusing on the two of them in the dim hall. "Are you selling cookies? I'll take a box of Thin Mints-"
"Magnus, we need you back on… on Team Good," said Clary, grimacing a bit even though the label was her idea in the first place.
"No." And he slammed the door in their faces. Clary looked at Jace, at the door, back at Jace, and then knocked again. Again, Magnus opened the door. "Leave me alone."
"Sebastian is going to burn down the world," she reminded him, as if anyone had forgotten the pyromaniac psychopath currently racing around the world killing angels.
"Then call the Avengers," Magnus groaned, shutting the door again. Clary huffed in frustration. She'd known convincing Magnus to come back on the team with them would be difficult, but she'd assumed they'd at least make it in the door. She knocked again, but this time he didn't answer.
"Candy gram," she called.
"It's the plumber," tried Jace, "I'm here to fix the sink!" Clary snickered, but frowned as the door continued to remain stubbornly closed.
"Magnus Bane," she called through the door, "open this door right now or I'll use an Opening rune and then you'll have to put it back on its hinges!" A moment of silence, then-
"Oh, alright, you don't have to break the door down," Magnus's voice came from behind the door. They could hear the chain sliding back, and then the door opened to admit them. "But you can't stay for long. Do you want anything to eat?"
"What do you have?" said Clary, looking around slightly incredulously. She'd known Magnus's decorating style to be bold, eccentric, but never boring. The walls of the foyer and kitchen were bare, and the kitchen appliances were all plain. No bizarre statues, no brilliant colors. It would be easy to mistake this for a mundane apartment, and not one belonging to the High Warlock of Brooklyn.
"Ketchup, I think," said Magnus. "And a mango."
"Dibs!" Jace headed for the refrigerator while Magnus walked off into the living room. Confused, Clary turned to Jace as he opened the fridge, which was, indeed, completely empty except for a half-empty bottle of ketchup and a mango, which Jace was currently pulling out.
"Can't he just summon food?" said Clary while Jace shut the fridge door.
"Well, sometimes depression can weaken a warlock's powers," he said, sinking his teeth into the mango without bothering to slice it up as they followed Magnus into the living room. "And cleanliness, apparently." Dirty clothes were strewn across the chairs and couch, and crumpled tissues and newspapers cluttered the floor. Somewhere in the mess, "Someone Like You" issued from a CD player.
"Okay," said Clary under her breath to her boyfriend, "I know a messy room gives you hives, but pull yourself together." Jace rolled his eyes and swept a baggy sweatshirt (something Clary couldn't at all imagine Magnus wearing) off of an armchair and sat down. Magnus was already sinking into the couch, absently petting Chairman Meow, who was sprawled across his lap. Clary sat down in the chair beside Jace, folded her hands, and looked at Magnus.
"So," he said. "I let you in. What do you want?"
"We need you back on the team, Magnus," she said. "You're a part of this, you know? You can't just quit now."
"I can do what I want," he said, "I'm older than you." He sounded, however, more like an eighteen-year-old at the moment than an eight hundred-year-old warlock.
"I just don't see why you're isolating yourself," said Jace, mango juice dripping down his chin. "I've seen Alec, and he's a wreck, so I have some idea of what you're going through."
"He's a wreck?" said Magnus, almost perking up. "Was he crying?" Clary chewed her lip uncomfortably as Jace shook his head. "Well," said Magnus, some decorum, though not much, returning to him. "Do you think maybe he was waiting until you left to cry?"
"Sure," said Jace, not sure why Magnus was trying to "win" the break-up. He didn't see the point, really.
"I don't know why you guys care about me rejoining the team," he said. "I wasn't dating all of you."
"Then why did you break up with all of us?" countered Clary. Magnus stared at her evenly.
"I can't be around Alec right now," he said. "Maybe not ever. You wouldn't understand."
"Oh, please," said Clary. "You're sitting in the dark listening to Adele. We're teenagers. If there's one thing we understand, it's angst."
"Yeah, and what's your problem anyway?" said Jace, gesturing at Magnus with the mango. "You're an immortal in love with a mortal person? That's kid stuff. That's Twilight. I spent a month thinking I was in love with my sister."
"Yeah, and I was in a bona-fide love triangle," Clary said.
"So buck up," said Jace.
Magnus glared at him through unclean dark hair, for once devoid of glitter. "If the next two words out of your mouth are 'little camper,'" he said carefully, "I'm going to shove that mango down your throat."
"That's fair," said Jace, nodding. "Seriously, though, Magnus, you belong on Team Good. I know it might be hard to see Alec again, but we need your help."
"Yeah," said Clary. "Team Good without you is like… the Avengers, without Iron Man. Or the Breakfast Club without Anthony Michael Hall."
"Or One Direction without Harry Styles," put in Jace, earning incredulous glares from both Clary and Magnus. "I mean… Iron Man without… what she said," he said, taking another bite of mango.
"Please help us," said Clary, watching Magnus carefully. He must have memories of her, she thought, of her coming to his apartment, of watching her grow up. How long had it taken to refresh the spell to glamour the world to her? Had they talked? It was strange, knowing that you'd spent time with someone, knowing that they remembered it and you didn't. It reminded her of talking to Jace in Paris, when he'd been himself, and knowing that he would lose it, and she would be the only one to remember what had happened. "Please."
"Well, because you said please," said Magnus, standing up- slowly, like an old man. He looked down at himself- ratty sweatpants and an over-sized T-shirt. "But I can't go looking like this." He walked away, to his bedroom, to change.
Smirking, Clary looked over at Jace. "Pay up." Rolling his eyes, he pulled out a wrinkled ten-dollar-bill from his pocket and handed it to her, just as he swallowed the last bite of mango.