So… How do I start explaining this? I love Malec. I love it with all my heart; I pray to the Malec gods every night. However, I love Alec more than I love Magnus and, as a result, more than I love Malec. Basically Alec is the reason why I'm into Mortal Instruments. Long time ago I said to my dearest friend Nel that if Magnus ever broke Alec's heart, I would kill him. Of course, I said it as a joke, because I never thought my strong Malec ship would sink like the Titanic. Comes City of Lost Souls and… Yeah, I had a fit of rage and tears. Since it is impossible to kill an immortal fictional character (for now… Trust me Magnus Bane, I will find a way to make it possible. And once I do, I will find you. And I will kill you. How dare you hurt my baby?!), this is my way of dealing with all those feelings. Please enjoy~
Thanks to Nel for listening to this story idea, encouraging me to write it and proof reading once I finished. June is only a few months away sweetie~
Disclaimer: I do not own Mortal Instruments… If I did, City of Lost Souls would be different. And if by some magical reason I obtain the rights to it before 2014, then expect either Alec dying, or a very handsome shadowhunter appearing and falling in love with Alec and the two would go off into the sunset just so Magnus could see what he lost. In case you have not noticed, I'm pissed at him. No one hurts my baby Alec!
Alexander Lightwood was never much of a drinker. Sure, he had alcohol before; once or twice, maybe after Izzy's first hunt or when Jace killed his first demon… But that was it. He never really enjoyed the taste of it that much either. And there was the side-effects; the possibility of getting drunk and making a fool out of himself, not having full control of his actions, not to mention the possibility of spilling some mortifying secret (when he was still inside the closet the idea of admitting his crush on Jace while drunk scarred him enough to keep alcohol as far away from his tongue as much as possible). Not to mention it tasted really bad. He much preferred some coffee, black and simple, than the drink that his sister and adopted brother seemed to enjoy so much.
Until recently he had never seen the appeal of alcohol. But then it happened. It happened and broke his heart and changed his life. It happened so suddenly he did not see it coming, was not ready to cope with it. Now the alcohol made him forget it.
Izzy had been the one to suggest a night of drinking. She said that when your heart is broken you usually sit in bed, eat a bucket of ice-cream, and listen to Celine Dion's version of All by myself. Luckily they didn't have ice cream or any Celine Dion CDs at the Institute, so drinking until they passed out, Izzy decided, would be the second best option.
He really should thank his little sister for this. Who would know that drinking would help him through such a bad brea– through it? He certainly didn't; and Alec would do anything not to think about it or him.
Which did not explain why when he got drunk he looked at his contacts, and stared at his name, wishing, praying to the Angel, that he would call and take him back.
Yeah, like that would ever happen.
Having finished the last bottle of wine in the Institute, Alec stood up, put on his Shadowhunter gear, grabbed his bow, and left without saying a word.
This had become a routine for him for the past few months: He would drink himself silly right before going to hunt the strongest demon that had the misfortune of being in New York City.
Suicidal missions, is what the others called it; its danger was a guarantee ticket to the grave. Every Shadowhunter has had one or two in their life time. Of course, when that happened one would usually go with a team, prepared after weeks of training, head clear and focused on the task ahead. Alec was going half drunk, by himself, with no previous preparation. You could say that this made the hunt even more suicidal, but it's not like he cared.
And it was not like he was suicidal either. No, Alec was not trying to kill himself by going on these hunts. He just wanted to keep his mind as far away from it and him as possible. At first he thought simple hunts would do the job, keep his mind occupied… But he soon discovered that it didn't work that way. Simple hunts may keep him occupied, but they were still simple. Alec still had time to think of his eyes while he prepared his next arrow. He still heard his voice as he drew another rune. So when that didn't work, Alec had to find himself new, more challenging hunts.
This time it helped. The stronger the enemy, the less time Alec had to think during the fight. And the less time Alec had to think (about things besides which way to jump so he could avoid the blow), the less he would think about it and him. See how that worked? The suicidal missions were his only choice then, as simple as that. They were the most difficult hunts, the ones that would take his every effort to accomplish it. It was perfect! It helped him earn a reputation as well; Alexander Lightwood, the boy who, only a year ago, had never killed a single demon, had now killed over a dozen of the strongest to ever lay foot in New York. Jace and Izzy would have been proud if they were not so worried about their brother's life and mental health.
Their concern, well, mostly Izzy's, only gave Alec another reason to leave the Institute so often (even if he was drunk). Izzy kept trying to convince him to talk about it, share his feelings, and cry a little; all of those things mundane people did when they broke up. She even bought three different flavors of ice-cream, including a coffee one, and Celine Dion CDs. Well, Alec was no mundane. He was a Lightwood, a member of one of the most ancient Shadowhunting families in the world. He would deal with it in his own way.
His heavy boots made a slightly splash when he stepped on a puddle, but he did not care. The rain made his already horrible hair worse, while it cleaned the blood from his clothing. He had just finished a hunt, and was ready for the next one. The effects of the alcohol were wearing off, and he had pushed himself to the point of exhaustion, but he didn't care. The quicker he found a demon to hunt, a demon to kill, the better.
Walking on the streets reminded him of the times they spent together. The first time they saw each other, during that party. The first time Alec spent the night. The first time they were intimate together, in a small hotel in Romania while it rained…
No! He would not think about them! He would not think about him! The tight grip his emotions had on his throat only got worse, taking all Alec's willpower to run as fast as he could to the nearest demon instead of breaking down into tears right there.
He wouldn't think about him! No, he wouldn't… That's what he told himself as he found himself surrounded, the suffocating pain in his chest having nothing to do with panic or fear. He would forget all about him!
Forget him… Yes, that's what he would. Biting his lower lip and looking around himself, Alec brought his mind to the present and assessed the situation. There were six of them; two greater demons, and four lesser ones. He, the Shadowhunter, was injured, exhausted, and with no back up coming. There was little illumination, the rain made the floor slippery, and the wind would affect the trajectory of his arrows.
It was perfect.
The fight started. Alec silently wondered why did demons attack him one at a time instead of using the fact he was outnumbered to their advantage, but quickly abandoned the thought to survey the area around him. A quick step to the right and he avoided the claws of one of the lesser demons. Ducking his head he just managed to miss the one that attacked him from behind. Still, he had little time to stand up again before a third one sent him flying southeast, his back hitting a building.
Ah. So they learned from their first failed attacked that one at the time is not the best way to go. Good, that means that he isn't dealing with idiots. That certainly will keep him occupied for a few hours.
As fast as he could Alec drew a rune that would ease his pain, before rolling to the left, avoiding yet another attack. Just as quick as that he grabbed his bow and arrow, aimed slightly to the right of the head of the demon which stood in the middle of the trio that was charging towards him, released it, and then rolled once more to the left, avoiding the one that tried jumping on top of him.
Another glance around. The two greater demons had not moved, clearly thinking their inferiors could handle a young injured Shadowhunter. He looked back to the trio and saw that he missed by less than an inch, the wind being too weak to do the job Alec had expected it to. Still, it injured the demon; it wasn't a lethal shot, but it caused enough damage to give Alec some advantage.
He didn't hesitate to bring another arrow to his bow, but this time, instead of aiming to the lesser demons, he went straight to the most powerful of the greater duo that remained behind. It wouldn't be enough to kill, but it would let them know that Alec meant business.
The half second it took for Alec to wait and see if he hit his target was all that one of the other demons needed to attack him once again. Not prepared for it, Alec could not evade it; his body was sent flying 10 feet into the air before it fell again and hit concrete.
The blue eyed Shadowhunter could feel some of his bones breaking as he made contact with the floor. He tried to sit up as fast as he could without dizzying himself, but his vision was blurry and his head spinning. He could feel blood drenching his black hair, and as he tried to feel the ground around him for his bow, the cold rain fell sideways, hitting his right cheek with enormous force for simple molecules of hydrogen and oxygen, making it even harder to open his eyes.
He was trained for this, however. As if a switch had been flicked his ears became hypersensitive to sound. Unfortunately that did him little good as one of the most powerful demons this time charged towards him, claws bared out, slicing his left arm open with three different cuts.
They were getting more aggressive, leaving little time for Alec to draw some new runes. He would have to fight injured as he was, pushing through the pain. Before another one could attack, he had shot an arrow to its forehead, killing it instantly.
The others paused, looking at their fallen comrade before turning their attention back to the Shadowhunter, now back on his feet. His head was pounding; it felt like drums were beating and beating and beating again inside his mind, causing his skull to vibrate and his brain, that for some reason felt as it was loose there inside, to rock from side to side, hitting the calcium walls of his head with each painful beat. His eyes were squinting as he tried to make as much as possible through sideways rain and night darkness. His stomach felt like it was going to turn itself inside out and he had to fight the urge to not vomit.
Never once during the battle did he come to his mind.
Izzy sat in the kitchen of the Institute, face turned towards the clock, and fingers drumming in the counter in a steady rhythm. It was close to 3AM; Alec had been gone twenty-six hours doing the Angel knows what. She thought he would be back by the time she returned from her date with Simon, but it's been 4four hours since her arrival and still no sign of Alec.
Saying she was worried would be the understatement of the century. Her previously manicured nails were now chewed all the way to the base, her beautiful combed hair sticking left and right due to the numerous times her fingers made way through there. She would call him, but she knew right now he was probably facing a powerful demon, and his phone ringing was the last thing he needed in the middle of such a suicide battle. She would go after him, except she had no idea where he was, and there was always the chance that he would go back to the Institute after she left. Besides, New York was a huge city; it would take many hours to search through Manhattan and Brooklyn alone, let alone Queens, Staten Island, and Bronx. No, the best thing to do would be to sit there and wait.
She would pour herself some wine, but they were out. Yet another reason why she was worried for her older brother, she knew he wasn't going to this hunt with a clear head (or hunts, for it had been 26 hours and chances are Alec went from one hunt to another to another to another without stopping home to rest or heal his injuries; he was a good Shadowhunter, an amazing warrior, there was no chance he would be in one single battle for 26 hours straight; and Izzy was not willing to consider the other possibility). Part of her couldn't help but feel guilty no matter how many times Simon reassured her it wasn't her fault; that she couldn't have known he would start to abuse alcohol for self-destructive purposes. She really shouldn't have introduced her brother, sweet and innocent Alec, to the dangerous drink right after Magnus broke up with him. She should have gone out and bought the ice-cream and some cheap copy of the Titanic and whatever other movie she could think about and have a marathon. Maybe she should have tried dragging him to a gay club; there are plenty of those in New York after all. And maybe Alec would find a nice mundane boy and forget all about Magnus. Or she could have tried to find another gay Shadowhunter, there must be one in the San Francisco Institute, and Alec would be with someone who understood him and his life. Anything, even just sitting by his side and bad mouthing the High Warlock like immature pre-teens do after their first break-up, would have been better than getting Alec drunk.
"Is he still out?" asked Jace, entering the kitchen and sitting in front of her.
"Yes," She said, sighing before messing with her hair once again.
"Have you thought about calling him?"
"Yes. It would do no good. For all we know he is in the middle of a battle and…"
"True." The blond sighed as well. It had been months since Alec's break-up, and yet his parabatai was not doing any better. In fact, Jace would go as far as to say he is doing worse.
The sound of the clock had no compassion towards the two Shadowhunters; each second felt like a life time, distinctly marked by the sound of time moving. The silence between them made the waiting even more agonizing, each one trying not to think about the possibility that Alec may never return.
"I should be fighting with him." Jace said suddenly, surprising the girl.
"What?" her voice broke slightly; she wasn't as in control of her emotions as she would have liked. But then again, who would be in this situation?
"I should be there fighting with him," He repeated. "If I can't stop him from going on these suicidal missions than the least I could, as his parabatai, is fight by his side and protect him! Protect him from his own stupidity! The Angel knows he has done that enough times for the two of us!"
"Well, I wish I could be by his side fighting too Jace, but do you honestly think Alec would allow that?" she didn't wait for him to answer "He may be heartbroken, but he is still Alec! He would never allow us to go with him, and even if we did he would be in even more danger because he would be trying to protect us and not himself!"
"Who says we need his permission?" Jace asked, now losing his patience slightly "We could just take 'no' for an answer and then follow him! We shouldn't just sit here and wait for him to kill himself!"
"He is not killing himself!" Izzy yelled. Her brown eyes were now filled with tears and Jace wondered if for a moment she was trying to tell that to herself instead of him. "He is not killing himself. He wouldn't do that, not after Max!"
Jace looked down at that. No, Alec would never purposely take away his own life after he had seen the pain Max's loss caused to the family. He, the over protective big brother, would never put Izzy and Jace through so much agony again.
And he was a Shadowhunter; a Lightwood at that. Lightwoods don't give up.
"And again, it wouldn't matter if we followed him," Izzy said that with so much certainty that Jace was sure she had considered the option before; maybe even attempted it "He would make sure not to do anything dangerous with us around or would manage to lose us somehow. It wouldn't work, you know that."
"It still beats sitting here and waiting."
Izzy nodded, finally sitting down again.
"I just wished he would talk with us."
"About feelings?" Jace snorted "Izzy, he may be gay, but he's still a guy! He wouldn't go crying to his little sister! He is too proud for that!"
"And maybe that is the problem with you men!" she said, throwing her arms in the air "Talking about feelings is not a bad thing! It can help a person heal, especially after a bad break-up and…!"
"Yeah, yeah… Still not gonna happen Izzy." Jace shook his head before he, too, ran his fingers through his air. "Wished he would talk with me though."
"You?" Izzy raised an eyebrow "Jace, you are not exactly 'Mr. Sensitivity'."
"So?" the blond looked up "I'm still his parabatai! We are meant to be closer than brothers!"
"Doesn't matter." It was Izzy's time to shake her head "Besides, you have too many things to worry about already, Alec would never burden you with his problems."
"It wouldn't be a burden," He said quietly.
"I know that. You know that. Alec is the one who doesn't." Izzy sighed for what felt like the hundredth time that hour "It doesn't matter either way. He would never talk to either of us about his feelings or his problems. He didn't… Didn't even feel comfortable enough to tell us he was gay. What makes you think that he would suddenly feel like sharing his troubles and worries?"
Jace could only nod slightly, and again the two adopted siblings fell into silence.
The sound of the door opening five minutes later brought both Shadowhunters to their feet. There was no exchange of glances as they made their way to the entrance, only to be greeted by a sight that left them both speechless.
Alec looked as awful as he probably felt. His dark clothes were torn to pieces, his hair and skin wet, his Shadowhunting gear in the worse shape that Izzy and Jace had ever seen it. His eyes were red and sullen, dark circles standing out against his pale skin, while his mouth was slightly open, still trying to catch his breath. In his left arm there were three big cuts slicing it from one side of his shoulder to the opposite side of the elbow, in downward diagonal. It remained uselessly dangling by the side of his body, but even so he summoned whatever strength he could for that arm and transferred it to his hand, which held his bow. His right arm holding his torso, probably a sign he had a couple broken ribs. The limp was one of the worse they had ever seen, probably another indicator of a fractured leg. All over his body there were new wounds, some bruises that would clearly leave a mark, and minor cuts that would forever scar the young man's body.
What concerned Izzy the most, however, was the amount of blood. It wasn't as if it sickened her or anything of that nature; no, she was a Shadowhunter, she was more than capable of handling the sight of blood; that was fine. But the amount of blood made her wonder how her brother was still standing. Clearly he had used a rune to close all his open wounds, otherwise he wouldn't have been able to stand, but it was still shocking. Alec's entire outfit was stained with blood, his body and hair not much better. And as if to make her even more concern a thunder reminded her of the rain, and how the pouring water probably washed away most of the red liquid.
As if sensing her concern, Alec smiled, or at least did his best attempt at one.
"It's not all mine," He said.
"No shit Sherlock!" said Jace "If you had lost that much blood you wouldn't be conscious right now!"
"It's not that bad." The older boy defended weakly.
"Not that bad?" Jace snorted "Man, you are lucky Izzy's bloodsucking boyfriend is not around; the smell would have driven him insane!"
"Are they all closed?" Izzy asked, ignoring Jace and stepping closer to her brother. She touched him gently, being careful as she scanned each inch of skin.
"Yeah, I made sure to close all of them but…urgh…." Alec interrupted himself with grunt of pain.
"But what?" she asked, looking up into his blue eyes.
"I feel a bit dizzy…"
"I wonder why," Jace said, giving Alec's stained clothes a pointed look.
"I hit my head during the last battle." Alec said, choosing to ignore his parabatai "It left me a bit disoriented… I can't recall many of the runes needed to take care of the rest of the injuries and…"
"Say no more," Izzy said, finally understanding why his broken bones were not fixed yet. "Have you at least made the pain go away?"
When Alec didn't answer, Izzy could not stop her eyes from widening. Really, her brother may be a Shadowhunter, and a damn good one at that, but even Shadowhunters felt pain! And by the state Alec was in, it was a miracle he could push through all of it and bring himself back to the Institute.
"Okay, let's handle this." She quickly glanced towards the other boy, her arms supporting her brother "Jace, take him to infirmary and fix him up. Make sure he doesn't fall sleep until we determined he doesn't have a concussion. I'm going to make him something to eat, he must be starving after 26 hours hunting."
"You're gonna cook?" Jace asked, arching an eyebrow as he found the best way to support Alec.
"Yeah, why?" her hands made her way to her hips, and for a second it felt as everything was back to normal again.
"Izzy, if these injuries don't kill him, your cooking will do the job." He said with a smirk "And I would like to keep my parabatai, thank you very much."
"Men." She said while rolling her eyes. "Fine, I don't think I have time to make something anyway. I'll just heat up whatever we have in the fridge."
"Okay," Jace agreed, and as he was making his way up the stairs Izzy heard him saying "You dodged one hell of a bullet there buddy."
Another sigh escaped her lips, and once the boys were out of sight, she went back to the kitchen to find her brother something to eat. Her mind, however, was someplace else. She needed to talk some sense into Alec before he got himself killed. But no matter how much she tried he just would not listen! It was getting worse and worse as the months went by.
She had no choice… She would have to call the only person who Alec would listen to.
Magnus Bane had no idea why he remained in New York. Well, okay, that was a lie; he knew perfectly well why he remained in the big apple, he just didn't want to admit it. It was becoming harder and harder, however, to ignore the pain in his chest. Every time he woke up half expected to be greeted by a warm body snuggling against his, the toned muscled of his boyfrien–ex-boyfriend decorated with numerous marks and scars. He half expected to see the peaceful face of Alexander as he slept, and then once Magnus kissed forehead, relieved that it had all been a dream, the younger man would open his beautiful cerulean eyes and gaze up at him with the adoration and love that was so ever present in it.
Sadly the only blue eyes he ever saw nowadays were Chairman Meow's, and while he loved his cat, those did not hold a candle next to Alexander's. At first he only missed his presence, his laugh, his lips, the way he tried to stop his moans as they made love… But then things, small things that Magnus never noticed before, started to show the High Warlock how much the absence of his Shadowhunter hurt him. The coffee that was no longer too strong for his taste, the way the flat was always a bit too cold when he arrived because Alexander liked that way, the canary yellow covers now always in bed instead of the couch for Alexander would always bring it to the living room with him during those lazy mornings when Magnus brought it upon himself to teach the younger man some pop culture. Not to mention the smell, the smell that could only be described as Alexander Lightwood that graced the Brooklyn apartment was now gone. All those things, all those little things, were driving Magnus slowly insane.
He considered leaving. Going to Europe, most likely England, and not return to New York until two centuries had passed. But somehow the idea of just leaving the city made him feel ill; perhaps it was the knowledge that if he left, really left, then things between him and Alexander would be over for good.
He also tried moving on. Every night he would go to a different nightclub, flirt with different people, sometimes Downworlders, sometimes Mundanes. Still, his mind was never entirely in the game; he always caught himself looking towards the door, afraid that maybe Isabelle would bring Alexander to one of the clubs and the warlock would have to face as his beautiful ex-boyfriend got hit on by dozens of other aroused men.
He thought about bringing someone home with him, but quickly discarded the idea. He kissed numerous people while out, yet he took no pleasure in it. He went as far as going to a hotel with some random werewolf girl after a heated make-out sessions, only to find that he couldn't bring himself to go any farther. Things that before aroused were as plain as grass. Magnus Bane, Mr. One-night-stand, could not find in himself to be with anyone. They weren't attractive. He found himself wishing for blue eyes and black hair, pale cheeks burning red as chapped lips tried to convey confidence.
And besides all of that, it just didn't feel right. As he looked at that werewolf lying in the hotel's bed, he couldn't help but feel like he was cheating on his sweet Alexander. Which was ridiculous, considering he, Magnus Bane, had been the one who ended things between them months ago. It wasn't cheating; Magnus did not have to be faithful to Alexander any longer, especially after what he did. But logic wasn't winning the fight against his heart, and that night Magnus Bane walked out the door without a moment's hesitation.
This did not mean, however, that he would take Alexander back. It wasn't going to happen. Like he said back then, he loves him, and probably always will, but it didn't change anything. It didn't change that fact that Alexander went behind his back to Camille planning to make him mortal without ever asking him about it. It didn't change that Alexander broke his trust. It didn't change that Alexander broke his heart.
And it didn't change that with every waking second Magnus wished things could have been different.
So that's what love was like, huh?
A heavy impatient knock on his door snapped the warlock out of his thoughts. He looked at Chairman Meow, laying on the far left of the couch (Alexander and Magnus, when not laying on it, often took the far right and center), with a frown. He had no customers today, he knew that, and none of his "friends" would show up at his door at three in the afternoon. Besides, if it was someone for him, they would have rang him up so he could allow them inside the building. Maybe it was neighbor who lost their key or someone who had the wrong apartment. Still, he wasn't in the mood to answer the door.
But after three minutes of constant knocking, even Chairman Meow was losing his patience, leaving Magnus with no choice. He stood up and dragged his feet across the room, ready to yell at whoever was on the other side of the door, only to find Isabelle Lightwood, standing there in all her glory.
"I don't have time for pleasantries," She said before he could say anything, stepping into his apartment without waiting for an invitation. "I need to get right to business."
"What are you doing here, Isabelle?" he asked, closing the door as his eyes followed the female Shadowhunter. "You know Alexander and I have broken up and…"
"Oh. Trust me. I know."
"And that I told him I never wanted to see him or any of his friends again." He continued as if she had not spoken.
"I know," She repeated.
"Then why are you here?" he paused "If you came to ask me to take Alexander back then I'm sorry to tell you that…"
"That has nothing to do with why I'm here," She said "In fact, if you came to the Institute right now begging for Alec to take you back I would kick your ass all the way to Pluto and back again. My brother is too good for you."
"Then why are you here? And… How did you get inside the building without ringing in?"
"I'm Isabelle Lightwood," She said with a simple shrug "I have my ways."
"I don't think I want to know," Although that was said more to himself than to the other person in the room "What do you want?"
"I need you to talk to Alec."
"Isabelle, I just told you that…"
"No, you don't understand," She said "I don't want you to take him back, I want… No, I need you to talk to him for me."
"Talk about what?"
"That his life is too precious to be thrown away like leftover Chinese food!" as she said that she threw her arms into the air, and for the first time Magnus noticed how tired the young woman seemed.
"Throw his life a…? Is Alexander trying to kill himself?" for a moment Magnus felt himself panicking. The lump in his throat refused to go down as the image of a dead Alexander was introduced to his brain.
"Technically no," her answer did little to appease Magnus' fear "But he might as well be! Last night he came back after staying out hunting for more than a day! He lost so much blood even Jace and I felt sick at the sight of it! He is throwing himself into these suicide missions with no partner to back him up! And he barely stays at home to rest before going to another hunt! Not to mention that when he does come home it is only to get drunk before he goes out to hunt again and…!"
"Drunk?" Magnus asked, interrupting the Lightwood mid-rant. "Alexander doesn't drink."
"Yeah, well, people change in a few months." Maybe he was mistaken, but he thought he could see some guilt in her eyes "It doesn't matter anyway. Alec's behavior is downright self-destructive, and I need you to talk some sense into him!"
"Why don't you do it?" it was a half-hearted attempt to escape the situation. The truth was Magnus would take any excuse to see Alexander again. And now that he knew about his boyfri–ex-boyfriend's technically-not-suicidal behavior, it would take an army of demons to stop him from confronting the younger man.
"Don't you think I tried?" she asked, looking at him as if he had grown a second head "He's been acting like that for months Magnus… Months! I've tried talking some sense into him, Jace tried, everyone tried…!" she paused, taking a deep breath "I wouldn't be here if I hadn't ruled out any other possibility Magnus."
He remained silent.
"Please Magnus…!" It was an unusual sight, Isabelle Lightwood, proud Shadowhunter, begging anyone for anything "Just… Please… I can't lose another brother. I can't lose Alec, not like this."
It had been another long night of hunting, but very rewarding one. After he arrived in the Institute thoughts of him kept flooding his head once more. There was no alcohol in the house, so he knew he would need to go to another hunt as soon as possible.
In all honesty, Alec had thought escaping the Institute after he showed up in such terrible conditions two nights ago would make Izzy and Jace hover around him like the Moon does with the Earth, but to his surprise it had been quite easy. After Izzy left during the afternoon running from Jace had not been a difficult task at all. Not that Alec could really blame his parabatai, the boy had enough in his mind already; the last thing Alec wanted was to be another thing for Jace to worry about it. Besides, he was a grown Shadowhunter, he could take care of himself; there was nothing to worry about.
He was careful not to make much noise as he went inside the Institute; the last thing he wanted to do was wake up Izzy and listen to one of her lectures… That is, assuming she was home. It was around nine at night, and usually she would spend her nights out with Simon. Maybe tonight he would be able to just patch himself up, sleep, and then leave for another hunt without running into his concerned his sister.
That plan quickly went down the drain as he was greeted by the sight of the man whose name he had avoided thinking since… since it happened.
He barely noticed Izzy standing by the door, fighting the urge to run to her brother and take care of his injuries. Right now Izzy didn't exist; Alec's entire focus was on the yellow eyed warlock who broke his heart.
There he stood, tall, slender, with a grace Alec could only dream of possessing. His clothes were still colorful, though they had more black than usual, and his make-up glittered and sparkled under the artificial light of the Institute. His hair was spiked, as usual, and his eyes looked at him from head to toe. His painted blue lips were pressed together in concentration as he examined the boy before him. He was even more beautiful than Alec remembered… Alec could not help but wonder if his memory also failed him when trying to picture the man before him without all the make-up. In Alec's opinion, he was even more beautiful without those things covering his body.
Alec shifted his weight from one foot to another, unconsciously bringing shoulders up. He felt self-conscious now under his gaze. He was never pretty, or handsome, to begin with. He always cut his own hair so it would hide his face, his clothes old and baggy so they could hide his body, and since it happened he had only gotten worse. At that moment he was even more aware of the blood-stained clothes and torn boots. No doubt his hair was a mess as well, and his face probably looked horrible, considering he hadn't had a good night of sleep since what felt like forever. He must be asking himself what he ever saw in Alec in the first place.
It's not like Alec never wondered the same thing before.
"Alexander…" He said; and there was concern in his voice as well. His beautiful voice that Alec dreamed about every time he allowed himself the luxury that is sleep… His voice being the reason why Alec avoided sleep so much in fact. "Alexander, look at me."
And just like that Alec obeyed. He was closer than before, now at arm's length. His heart skipped a beat and his breath got caught his throat. He couldn't help his body's reaction when he was close by.
"M… M-Magnus…" There. He said it. Finally Alec said the name he had been avoiding for months. Finally he allowed himself think about the man before him, to use his name, and to think about their… their break-up. It made Alec want to run away as fast as he could to the farthest place he could think so he could cry until his eyes stung.
"You're hurt." He said that with such calm that Alec felt like he was being hypnotized by that beautiful voice. "Let me heal you so we can talk about the idiotic way which you have been dealing with our break-up."
And just like that the spell was broken. Alec stepped back, away from Magnus, frowning slightly.
"No," he said defiantly as something inside his chest started to grow.
"Alexander, you are injured. And from I can see you haven't slept in days. Let me heal you and…"
"I said 'no' Magnus!" The assertiveness in his voice shocked even himself; but the words just fell out of his lips before he realized it. As he stared at Magnus' surprised expression, Alec tried to identify what was the feeling growing inside his body. There was pain, a lot of pain… There was also sadness and despair and… And anger. So much anger directed to this one person who he gave his heart and soul to, only to be tossed aside by a single stupid mistake. So much anger towards the man who broke-up with him, told him he loved him, kissed him, only to say that it did not change a thing.
So much anger towards Magnus.
"You don't want me to heal you? Fine. Let's talk then." Alec could see that Magnus was trying hard not to lose his patience, but really, he didn't care. All he cared about at this moment was that the warlock had broken his heart, broken him, and now was here, months later, to talk about the idiotic way which he has been dealing with their break-up.
"If you want to talk to the air, by my guest." Alec said "But I'm leaving."
With that he turned around, making his way towards the door.
"Leaving?" Magnus asked. "To do what?"
"Hunt!" He answered "Not that is any of your business anyway!"
"You are not going to fight in the condition you are in." Magnus was close behind him now.
"What do you care what I do?" he said with half a snort.
Just as he finished saying those words Magnus grabbed his right arm, and Alec felt himself being spun around 180 degrees, facing a furious a Magnus.
"I care Alexander. I care a lot." His voice, while angry, held a soft note "I love you."
"You have a funny way of showing it," Alec said, attempting to free himself from the warlock's grip.
"Stop being such a child!" Magnus said, growing more and more frustrated by the second. "You brought this upon yourself, you know. If you hadn't betrayed my trust–"
"No!" Finally Alec was able to free himself. But now he didn't want to go towards the door. He was too angry now, too angry at Magnus, too angry at the speech he heard too many times before in his dreams to leave without giving the High Warlock of Brooklyn a piece of his mind. "No, I will not listen to that same speech again!"
"It's the truth and you know it!"
"The truth?!" he asked with a bitter laugh "That's the truth you see Magnus! Never once did you allow me to explain myself!"
"What was there to explain?!" Magnus asked, now just as furious as Alec. "You went behind my back to Camille to make me mortal…!"
"You say that as if being mortal is such a bad thing."
"You betrayed me!" Magnus continued, ignoring Alec's remark "There is nothing to explain!"
"Yes, there is!" Alec said "Did you ever think… Ever consider, for even just a second, that maybe I did not go to see Camille to make you mortal? That maybe that wasn't my plan at all?"
"Oh, then do enlighten me, Alexander. What could Camille possibly offer that would make you lie to me and visit her?"
"She told me about you!"
This, Alec could see, was not what Magnus was expecting. His eyes were wide in shock, and the Shadowhunter knew this was the perfect opportunity to finally let out what had been bothering him for years.
"Yeah, shocking isn't, it?" he smiled, though there was no happiness in his expression "That's all I wanted, Magnus. You never talk about yourself, never! When I asked questions you would say it was none of my business, or maybe that it was something for another time… And you know what? I was tired of being kept in the dark! I was tired of being so open about everything with you, but not having you do the same for me!
"So when Camille came to me, I thought it was my perfect chance! Not to make you mortal… I would never do such a thing without your permission… But to get to know my boyfriend!" there were tears in his eyes now, and Alec had to fight to keep them from falling "Each time we met she would end up talking about you. Little things, things about your past, things you did before… Nothing important, nothing that changed the way I felt about you, but they were still things I knew you were never going to share with me!
"Do you have any idea how that felt Magnus? Do you? I trusted you with all of my secrets, things that not even Jace, my parabatai, knew about me! And you couldn't even tell me about things you had done before you met me?"
"I didn't want to talk about it, Alexander. You should have respected that."
"But I was not just some random one-night stand Magnus! I was your boyfriend! I planned on spending the rest of my life by your side! Why couldn't you trust me with some of your secrets?" The tears were falling now. Alec could not help but feel like a stupid teenage girl, but he continued going. He didn't know when he would have the courage to say all of this again, and so he would continue until he had taken everything off his chest.
"I came out for you, Magnus," He said "I came out in front of the entire Clave for you! I never planned to let anyone know I was gay, but I changed that for you! I opened my heart to let you in! I trusted you with my every secret, with everything…! Was it too much to ask for you to give me the same?"
"You should have asked me those questions instead of going to Camille, Alexander."
"You don't understand, do you?" he asked "I did. And you never answered those questions."
Alec shook his head before walking out of the Institute, needing yet another hunt to calm him down.
Had he stayed, he would have heard Magnus say:
"Because none of it mattered after I met you,"
Three weeks passed and Alec's reckless behavior only got worse. He would be gone sometimes the entire week before showing up back in the Institute covered in his own blood, only to then fall asleep for 48 hours straight and leave as soon as he was awake.
But really, what other choice did he have? Seeing Magnus again just… It just broke him. He may have been able to put a brave face and confront the warlock (and he was very proud of himself for that), but as soon as he was far enough away he broke down into tears.
That night he found himself a nice abandoned building, curled up into a ball and started to cry. Even if he tried to stop himself he just couldn't, it was impossible. Months and months of bottled up emotions were finally let free; finally reached the surface. His screams of despair sounded heartbreaking even for him; almost like a wounded animal facing it's slow death, or maybe a little pup who lost its' mother. The sobs that came at every minute interrupted his breathing, making him gasp for air right after screaming… The salt of the tears stung his eyes, and both his stomach and throat hurt from so much crying.
He did not stop though. He continued to cry, continue to let out all of the agony that had been chaining his heart since Magnus broke up with him. It was pathetic scene, yet Alec felt like it did little justice to how he truly felt. How could the pain that felt like a thousand needles slowly puncturing his heart be manifested in physical form? How could tears possibly make up for the choking despair that took hold of his upper body? How could his screams, his loud, heart shattering screams, symbolize the feeling of being chained to darkest pit of one's mind as it replayed again and again the words that had destroyed him beyond repair? It was impossible.
And so he continued to cry; continued to scream and sob and rock back and forth as his fingers grasped his hair with all the strength he could summon. And when that wasn't enough, when he had no more tears to cry but gallons more of emotion to pour, he stood up and started punching and kicking anything that was in his sight.
The only time Alec cried that much was when Max died. That, of course, brought on even more tears and even more painful screams, for Magnus had been the one who told him it was okay to cry. Magnus had been the one to tell him it was okay to let go of control, okay to show emotions once in a while. He said even the strongest Shadowhunters felt pain, and there was nothing, absolutely nothing, wrong with letting those emotions out. It was healthy even, he had said. Nothing good ever comes from keeping so much pain inside.
So Alec cried and cried that day and Magnus held him. While tears fell down his cheeks and sobs escaped his lips Magnus' arms surrounded his shaking body, his own lips, bare for once, kissing his forehead and whispering sweet words of comfort. Alec cried himself to sleep that night, and when he woke up, he saw Magnus there, pure devotion and love shining through his eyes, his arms still tightly embracing Alec's body.
He had felt ashamed for a moment, but Magnus kissed those worries away. Never should he be afraid of showing Magnus how he really felt, even if those feelings were ones of sadness. It wouldn't change how much Magnus loved him.
Alec only wished Magnus knew the same went for him. It wasn't fair that Magnus always had to be the responsible one, the mature one. Alec wished Magnus could trust him enough to cry on his shoulder, to tell him when he was feeling sad for no reason at all… He wanted Magnus to trust him with his emotions, with his feelings, as much as Alec trusted him.
It was silly really; naïve, even, for Alec to expect something like that. What a fool he had been.
When he woke up the next morning he laughed bitterly at the realization that Magnus was not with him. His mind half expected that after such an exhausting night the warlock would have followed him and, once he had fallen asleep, brought him back to the apartment.
Reality hit him like a punch in the stomach, knocking out all of his air. Things between him and Magnus were really over, weren't they?
The urge to cry was gone, but the pain had not gone away. It was still there, Alec could feel it… But at the same time it wasn't the same as before. He almost felt… numb. No, numb was not the word for it. He felt exhausted.
Yes, that was it. Alec was exhausted, that was clear just by looking at his face. Not just physically though; he was mentally and emotionally exhausted as well. He felt too tired to feel anything, if that made any sense. The pain was there, it would always be there, he realized, but his mind was just too damn tired to pay any attention to it.
There but not there. He could feel it, but not really. It's like the things you see on the corner of your eye; something you know exists but refuse to acknowledge. His mind wanted to look though; it wanted to turn its head and stare and focus right at the pain of his broken heart, yet his exhaustion pulled him in the opposite direction. Like a tug-war, if that made any sense. So drinking and hunting did the rest of the work; served as an extra help to the side of exhaustion, keeping his mind's head away from the pain.
It didn't stop other thoughts from coming through though. All the insecurities, the things Magnus had kissed away when they were together, returned. He was a Shadowhunter, a Lightwood! How dare he behave so pathetically after one simple break up? It was shameful! That break down he had… That had been a disgrace to Nephilims everywhere! He was supposed to be stronger than this! He was trained to handle things better than this! Maybe Alec just wasn't a good enough Shadowhunter. Would that be much of a shocker? He was already a disappointment as a son, as a brother, as a fighter… why not also as a Shadowhunter? He couldn't even handle a little bit of emotional pain… Pathetic. Disgraceful. Disappointing.
Alec really should be ashamed of himself.
Then there were the thoughts that made him doubt the best short years of his life… Because did he really believe that the Magnus Bane, High Warlock of Brooklyn, would fall for little old Alexander Lightwood? Really? Magnus was beautiful, he was talented, he was kind, he was wise, he was confident… He was everything that Alec wasn't. Why would someone like that, someone whose flaws made him even more perfect, love a boy whose first crush was his adopted brother? And did Alec really think things were going to last? Did he really have any hope for that?
No. It would have never lasted. Alec was just too blind by love to see it.
It had been 4 days since he last stopped at the Institute. The dark circles under his eyes were nothing compared with the state his body was in. But the young man didn't care. Seeing Magnus again had brought on all those feelings, all those thoughts that he been trying to avoid by drowning himself in alcohol and work. Now that the man had been introduced to his thoughts, there was little Alec could do to keep them away. He would continue going though; continue trying to forget that which he loved so dearly.
His eyes were almost closing when he spotted some demons. It was the perfect. He needed something to wake himself up.
Taking a deep breath, Alec aimed an arrow, ready to strike the beasts without warning.
For the seventh time that day Magnus Bane had to fight the urge to leave his apartment and search for Alexander. Instead he chose to pace around, rearrange the furniture, organize his makeup, do anything that would keep his mind from the man he loved.
It was little use, of course. With every passing second Magnus' will power decreased, his overwhelming need to make sure Alexander was alright almost winning.
It has been three weeks since they had seen each other, and if Magnus were to be honest, those had been the slowest agonizing weeks of his long life. Every moment without Alexander made his heart sick with concern. The clear image of the condition he last saw his ex-boyfriend flooded his mind, and he couldn't help but worry. After their confrontation, what had Alec done? Had he gone on another suicidal mission? Was he taking care of his injuries? Was he taking Jace or Isabelle with him? Was he… Was he hurt?
All those burning questions craved to be answered, yet every time Magnus made his way to the door he remembered the heartbreaking sadness on Alexander's eyes. Those eyes that Magnus always loved so much, that were always so full of life and love, that night just seemed full of pain. Alexander was hurting, and it was all Magnus' fault.
That single thought stopped the warlock in his tracks. When he realized what he felt for Alexander he promised himself never to let the boy get hurt, under any circumstances. And now, how ironic fate had been, Magnus was the cause of most of his pain. No matter how worried the warlock was, he could not bring himself to face Alexander knowing it would hurt him so much.
It gave him a lot of time to think though. Since their fight Magnus had cancelled all his appointments and did nothing but sit in his apartment and think. He knew the breakup would be hard on Alexander, but he never imagined that it would cause him this much pain. Part of him always expected Alexander to leave him, to find a nice men that would age just like he did, and that they would live happily ever after, Magnus only being an afterthought in the Shadowhunter's mind. Part of him sometimes wondered if Alexander truly did love him, or if he was still trying to get over his feelings for Jace.
The truth was, there was only a small part of Magnus that believed Alexander loved him. And even that part didn't believe the love that the Shadowhunter felt could possibly compare with the love Magnus felt for him. It was difficult to understand why, though. Maybe it was because Magnus didn't feel like he deserved the love of a person as beautiful, kind, innocent, and amazing as Alexander Lightwood. Maybe after living so many years and being left alone so many times, Magnus was afraid of letting himself be truly loved by another.
It all went back to that fight, didn't it? Alexander had spoken so much without even realizing. Magnus had never noticed that he closed his boyfriend off. He never noticed he tried to evade any questions about his past, avoid showing any kind of emotions. It was really hard for Magnus to let go of the flamboyant mask he was so used to wearing. It felt like it was stitched to his face, placed there for so long that the warlock had forgotten how to take it off. Magnus had built a wall, a thick brick wall, around his heart, and set there, in the corner, mask still in place.
Yet Alexander had made his through that wall. Not by tearing down, but rather by slowly easing his way through the cracks between each brick. Alexander was like water, making his way through every obstacle with ease. Nothing could stop water, and nothing could stop Alexander from getting into his heart.
And once he was there, although it pained Magnus to admit it, he was scared. No one had ever penetrated so far through his barrier; no one had ever been so close to Magnus, the real Magnus, before. Yet there he was, a Nephilim, standing right in front of him in that awkward stance he has, with that adorable blush gracing his cheeks. It was then that Magnus realized he loved the Shadowhunter. No, more than loved… Love didn't seem like a strong enough word to describe what he felt towards the man that eased his way in through his heart. What Magnus felt for Alexander Lightwood… It was too strong, too deep, to be expressed in a simple single word. It was like Alexander was the sun, and Magnus now was a planet, orbiting around him, life completely dependent on that one single person.
But his job wasn't done yet. Magnus still wore the mask; it was still painfully stitched to his face. It had been there for so long that Magnus forgot what truly laid behind it. He was scared of not only looking at himself, but also letting this man who now was his sole reason to live see that which he had hid for so long. He was terrified; what if Alexander didn't like what he found? What if Alexander left him? Magnus would never be able to handle that.
So when the boy carefully started to undo the first stitch, Magnus pushed him back. It didn't stop Alexander though. He continued to patiently try to remove the mask, but Magnus refused to allow it.
And now… Now here they were. Both unhappy, both suffering… Both still madly in love with each other, still in the same place. Only now Alexander was not trying to remove his mask. Rather, the Shadowhunter stood facing the brick walls, not leaving, but too hurt by Magnus' actions to finish his work. It really was all up to Magnus now, if he took the mask off and allowed Alexander to look or let him slip away through the cracks between the bricks, just like he did in his was in.
Magnus had to decide if he would try to fix things with Alexander or not… Or rather, he would have to overcome the fear of Alexander not taking him back once he made his way to the Institute…
Because, to be completely honest, his mind was already made up.
Izzy ran as fast as her legs could push her off the floor, not caring who got in her way. The image of Jace carrying an unconscious Alec through the doors of the Institute had been eternally engraved into her brain. She needed to get to Magnus. She needed to get to Magnus fast.
As she raced through the streets, she cursed her long hair for getting in the way every now and again. Usually she would have tied it in a pony-tail, but there was no time to waste; Alec was dying, and the only one who could fix him was the sparkly warlock that broke his heart.
Jace had lost his patience. He was tired of waiting for Alec to come back home, only to have him run as soon as he could without getting noticed. Izzy's plan, the one that involved talking some sense into their older brother, was clearly not working. The blond had blamed on Izzy's double-x chromosome, saying girls just didn't understand how guys worked. He said he would fetch Alec and bring him back, by force, if necessary, and then he would chain him to a wall until he deemed his parabatai sane enough to be free.
Izzy pointed out how idiotic his plan was, asking if the IQ finally dropped enough to match the color of his hair, but did nothing to stop him from leaving. The truth was, Izzy was worried about her brother; it had been four days since she last seen him, and she would do anything to have him home.
What she didn't expect was for Jace to return carrying Alec's almost dead body. There was blood, lots of it… Even more than that time, all those weeks ago. She could see by the way his leg was bent that it was broken, and he was so transparent that she could see the veins beneath his skin. What worried her most though was the sweat, sticking his hair to his forehead, and tremors and, most importantly, the uneven breathing.
Jace confirmed her suspicions quickly: Alec had been poisoned. Demon blood was being pumped through his heart at that very moment. Apparently when Jace arrived there the older boy had already lost conscious, if due to an attack or exhaustion they did not know, and the sadistic bastards were having fun introducing demon blood to the Nephilim's body. Jace had been so sick by the sight before him that he killed all of them with one blow before gathering Alec into his arms and bringing him back to the Institute.
It was now up to Izzy to find Magnus and make sure he saved her brother's life. It wasn't fair! It just wasn't fair! The Angel wouldn't be that cruel to them, would it? They had already lost Max, they couldn't bare to lose Alec as well! It wasn't fair! Izzy… Izzy had no idea what she would do if Alec didn't make it.
She took little notice of the tears that washed away her mascara, staining her cheeks. Somewhere along the way she had started crying, and frankly, she couldn't care less. All she cared about in this moment was Alec's safety; Alec's life.
Which was why it felt like a blessing from the Angel she had doubted just a few seconds when she bumped into none other than Magnus Bane, slowly making his way to the Institute.
"Isabelle?" he asked, clearly shocked. Izzy never cried. Yet here she was, sobbing like a little girl, not caring if her hair or face was a mess.
Her response was a sob. She could not believe her luck!
"Why are you…" and then realization hit the warlock "Alexander! Is he… Is he okay? Is he…?"
"No," Izzy answered, shaking her head "He needs you Magnus! There… There is demon blood! He was poisoned with demon blood! Please Magnus, he's dying and he needs you! He…"
Before Izzy could say anything else, she found herself in the Institute's entrance, Magnus running inside without waiting for her.
Shadowhunters were built strong, raised to fight and face unspeakable danger; they were the furthest thing from delicate or helpless. And although Alexander may not look the part, he certainly could handle himself in a fight. Magnus could not count the number of times the boy came to his apartment after a fight, bloodied and bruised, with a smile on his face as if the injury was nothing more than a scratch he didn't recall getting. Magnus had healed Alexander before, both minor and life-threatening injuries; he should be used to seeing his ex in less than pristine conditions, especially after the reunion they had three weeks ago, yet the sight before him made his stomach turn in pure panic.
Jace had clearly done his best patching his adoptive brother up, the injuries treated to the best of his ability and no longer endangering Alexander. But the state the boy was in was still grotesque. It looked as if the demons had taken quite a liking to skinning the boy's arms. Magnus could see the bloody raw flesh that still needed some air to heal before it could be wrapped in band aids. The mental image of strands of cotton, or whatever fabric they would use, sticking itself to the raw flesh, mixing itself with Alexander's arms, made the warlock cringe. Each one of his fingers were broken, and so were his legs, now suspended in the air. His collarbone had been shattered, more than a few ribs were cracked, and his forehead was warped in what Magnus suspected was once white cloth, but that now was tainted red by the Nephilim's blood. Skin had been opened in numerous places throughout the body, some of the wounds being the size of a penny, others running in a long diagonal, cutting from Alexander's shoulder to just above his opposite knee. His skin, the little that Magnus could see, was deathly white, and if it weren't for Alexander's loud attempts to get air into his lungs, Magnus would have suspected him to be dead.
Magnus was too scared for his former lover's life to snap himself out shock.
"Stop standing there, Magnus! Do something!" Jace said, reminding the warlock that he indeed had work to do "I did whatever I could in regard to his wounds, but no rune will heal him; the demon blood won't allow it!"
"Right; demon blood." Magnus had walked towards the broken boy, carefully lifting one of his arms, no longer protected by skin, and examining slowly "Do you have any idea how much of it is in his system?"
"No. But does it even matter?" the blond seemed to be losing his patience "A single spec of demon blood is incredibly poisonous! We… He doesn't have much longer, the thing is probably already all over his body!"
"Yes, it would seem so." Magnus looked over the unconscious boy while he felt his heart beat so fast he thought it would break through his ribcage and jump out of his chest. Never had he been so close to losing the one thing that mattered most in his life, and the thought scarred him so much he could barely think.
"What are you going to do?" Jace asked, his voice strangely even; whet ever it was due to immense self-control or pure hatred towards him, Magnus did not know. And frankly, neither did he care.
"I don't know," He answered honestly. "Improvise I guess."
"You guess?!" Yes, it was hatred. There was no doubt the blond Shadowhunter hated him as he let out a bitter laugh "You'll improvise? Listen Magnus, Alec is dying, and if we could ask anyone else to help him, we would, but right now you are the only one who can save him and the best you can do is improvise?"
"I didn't bring my books with me, and I do not have time to go back to my apartment and get them," He said, pinching the bridge of his nose as he mentally browsed through the pages of every single magic book he read throughout his life "And even if I did, I'm not sure if there is something there that could help us with this. I'll need to come up with something, or else Alexander doesn't stand a chance."
"What's going on?" Isabelle asked as she finally made her way into the room. Her eyes were wide, her hair a mess, and her hands were shaking with panic "Why haven't you started healing him yet?"
"I'm thinking!" Magnus yelled, stunning the two Shadowhunters, before lowering his voice "I'm thinking…."
"Well, think faster!" Isabelle said, now by Jace's side, holding on to her brother's bloody hand.
Magnus did as told. He scanned his brain trying to figure out how he could extract the demon blood from his ex's body. It's probably in his veins, running through every single inch Magnus had explored with his mouth during their moments of intimacy, poisoning every cell of the beautiful man whose life hanged on a balance.
Extract demon blood… The only solution would be to dry Alexander out of every last drop of blood in his system, but that was impossible, Alexander would die before Magnus could even cast the spell to sustain his body without the vital liquid; he had, after all, lost too much of it already. He needed to have blood on his system while at the same time have the toxic one out of his body. How could Magnus possibly take away only the demon blood, and let his beloved keep his sacred Angel blood?
Maybe if he… Yes…! Yes, that was it! That could work!
Magnus snapped his eyes open quickly, licking his lips as the idea formed in his mind. In less than a second he was in a chair, levitating a syringe that lay across the room to his left hand, while his right searched, with as much care as possible, for a vein.
When he finally found it, he did not hesitate to puncture Alexander's arm, the sight of a long thin needle entering raw flesh barely registering on his mind. With a long sigh he closed his eyes, let his left hand hover just above the end of the medical instrument, while the other held the needle in place. He concentrated, letting his magic find its way inside Alexander's body.
Had he opened his eyes he would see Jace and Isabelle's expression going back and forth between worry and curiosity. No doubt the Shadowhunters wanted to understand, to know, what exactly Magnus was doing. To be quite honest, Magnus wished that himself; he was not even sure if this would work, if he would be able to save Alexander by doing this.
After a few long minutes of silence, some blood made its way from the needle to the small plastic container in the syringe. The scene resembled one in which a doctor would draw out blood from the patient, the only difference being that the amount of blood that came out was very little, and it poured itself into the container very slowly.
Magnus opened his eyes and panting slightly, a clear sign that whatever type of magic, whatever spell he was using, was draining his energy. Yet the warlock's eyes sparkled; a relieved smile gracing his features.
"It worked…" he whispered, in slight amazement.
"What worked?" Isabelle asked, giving a quick look towards Jace before looking back at Magnus.
"It was a long shot… I was not sure it would work, but it did." He smiled, before looking up at the two Shadowhunter "Alexander has given me his strength more than a couple of times. My magic can identify what is Alexander and what is foreign. With the syringe I was able to push my magic inside of his body and distinguish Demon blood from Angel blood, and afterwards I was able to pull the Demon blood out." He took a deep breath, smile still in place "There is still a lot more inside of him, but now I know there is a way for me to get that poison out of Alexander's body."
"How long will the process take?" Jace asked, eyeing the small amount of blood that came out after 10 long minutes.
"A few hours," He answered "My magic is making its way inside of Alexander's body, who is a Nephilim. I'm a Downworlder; his body instantly rejects my magic and tries to push me out. I have to fight my way through before I can separate the demon blood from Alexander's blood."
"Will you be needing anything?" Isabelle asked, noticing how tired the warlock already was "Can we do anything?"
"Make sure I don't pass out," The warlock answered "This will take a lot of energy and a lot of magic; I need the two of you to make sure I do not black out while the procedure is still ongoing."
He didn't even wait for the two to nod in agreement before he closed his eyes again, concentrating, willing his magic inside of Alexander's veins.
"I'm done." Magnus said, after seven long hours of intense work. His hair stuck to his forehead, now covered in sweat, his cat eyes were surrounded by dark circles, and his skin looked pale. Yet the warlock looked happy, relieved, that he could save the life of the only person he ever truly loved "I checked his body three times already, there is no demon blood inside of him. You should be able to heal him with the runes now."
Izzy gave a slight nod before looking at her adoptive brother, her eyes instructing him to continue do the rest of the job while she helped the exhausted warlock into a room.
She stood up, grabbing his arms gently, and guided him outside of the infirmary, all the while remaining silent. Now that Alec was no longer in danger, her thoughts allowed themselves to wonder to the man beside her, the man who she thought – no, who she knew – would do anything for her brother.
Had anyone asked her what she thought of Magnus a few hours before Jace brought Alec home in that state, she would have said she hated him. She despised him; he was a scum of the earth. Izzy would have said that the only reason why she hadn't yet made her way towards the bastard's apartment and slowly and painfully castrated him was because she knew it would upset Alec. The only reason why he was still alive, why she had stopped herself and Jace from killing the goddamn idiot, was because she knew Alec still loved him and his death would cause her brother to experience even more suffering.
How could anyone break up with Alec? How could anyone break his sweet and pure heart so much to the point where he barely cared about his own life? How could anyone be so cruel that they kissed her brother before reminding him that they were really over? What kind of sadistic person would do that?
She had thought Magnus had been that person. She often blamed herself for pushing Alec into perusing a relationship with the warlock, certain that it would help him get over his crush on Jace. When she realized Alec was madly in love with the other man, she silently prayed to the Angel that Magnus cared for Alec as more than a one night stand, as more than a simple fling that he would get over it in a few weeks. She had been pleased to see that the warlock seemed to care for her brother just as much as he did for him. It made her feel so happy that Alec finally had a chance to love and be loved the way he deserved.
And then, when the break up happened, Izzy couldn't help but blame herself. How could she be so stupid to believe that Magnus, superficial, flamboyant, manwhore, Magnus Bane, loved Alec? Of course the bastard was just using her sweet brother; playing with him until he grew too bored. Magnus had no heart with which he could love Alec. And Izzy had been too blind to notice, too stupid to realize something was wrong. She should have stopped their relationship before they got too close, before things got too serious. Instead she did just the opposite; she encouraged Alec, pushed them together, convinced her brother that things would work out just fine.
And what good came out of that? Alec was in so much pain, suffering so much, all because of that idiotic warlock who played with his heart. She could kick herself all the way to Idris and back for her stupidity, for failing as a sister.
Yet, now as she guides said warlock to a room, she cannot help but wonder if she, again, had been wrong about Magnus. As she examined his features, his exhausted eyes, as she heard his uneven breath, she couldn't deny that what she had seen today was a demonstration of pure devotion and love. No matter how much she wanted to hate Magnus for what he did, she could never truly despise someone who cared for her brother that much. She could never antagonize the man who had gone so far to keep Alec alive.
She could never forgive him for all the pain he caused her dear older brother… But maybe… Maybe she could learn to accept him into her home and her brother's life once again.
"You still love him," She said quietly, looking straight ahead.
"What…?" Magnus asked, looking at her, his eyes half closed.
"Alec," She answered, still not looking at him "You still love him, don't you?"
"Yes." There was no hesitation, no doubt in his voice "With all my heart, I love him. I don't think I'll ever be able to love another."
"Then why did you let him go?" this time she turned to face him, her dark eyes looking deep into his yellow ones.
"I was afraid," He answered after a sigh "I was stupid."
"I know," Magnus shook his head "I was incredibly stupid. I ruined the best thing that ever happened to me."
"Well…" Izzy took a deep breath before continuing "Don't let it happen again."
This made the warlock stop and look at the young woman with wide eyes.
"You heard me," She said, placing her hands on her hips "You have a second chance to get things right with my brother. Don't. Mess it. Up. Again."
"Will… Will he even take me back…?" Magnus asked, a worried expression covering his face.
Izzy smiled slightly.
"Of course he will. He loves you way too much." She continued to walk, stopped, then turned around to face him again "But if you break his heart one more time Bane, I will not hesitate to make sure you never experience the joys of the flesh ever again."
It wasn't the sight of the white ceiling and florescent lights that shocked Alec as he opened his eyes. It was the simple fact that he had opened his eyes. Quite honestly, after the fight he had with those demons, after having his arms skinned, fingers broken and demon blood pumped into his body, Alec believed he was a goner for sure. His last thought as he slowly drifted into unconscious was that he would never open his eyes again.
Yet here he was, in the infirmary of the Institute, his broken and shattered bones healed, his wounds closed, his arms wrapped up, his body almost completely fixed, almost as good as it was before. How was that even possible? How could he still be alive after all that happened?
Clearly a few days had passed, for even with runes there was no way he could heal that fast. He sat up, wanting to look around and search for a calendar, when an even more shocking image met his eyes.
Magnus Bane sat on a chair by his bed, his dark hair covering his eyes just a little due to the lack of gel, his face glitter and make-up free, and his clothes, although still colorful, for there was little in Magnus' closet that did not stand out, were very simple; a bright pink and orange t-shirt and some Irish green pants. He looked tired, exhausted, in fact, but also beautiful. The bareness of his skin, the relief in his face, the small smile that graced his lips as he realized Alec was awake… It took all of Alec's will not to reach out for him.
"You're finally awake," He said "You've been unconscious for almost a week darling."
"Am I dead?" he asked, still astound by the sight before him.
"No, of course not." Magnus frowned slightly "You almost were though. Should consider yourself lucky that I am such a genius and was able to drain every single last drop of demon blood out of your body. Took a lot of work too, if I had been doing this for a client I would be rich enough to buy a penthouse overlooking Central Park."
"I'm not dead." Alec stated, ignoring most of what the warlock had said.
"No, Alexander, you're not."
"Then…" he paused, a bit hesitant on how to continue "Then how come you are here?"
Sadness flashed through Magnus' eyes, and Alec almost apologized for being so rude. Even after their break up, Magnus' sadness was the last thing Alec wanted.
"You were in a horrible fight Alexander."
"I remember that," He said, nodding.
"Jace found you just in time and brought you back to the Institute. The runes could not heal, however, due to the demon blood that had been injected into your system. You were poisoned by it… You would have died in a matter of hours."
"But Isabelle came to me, asking for help." Although he smiled, it held no true happiness "We worked for seven long hours, separating your blood from the demon's, cleaning your body until the runes could heal you completely, and until your life was no longer at danger." He paused before looking deeply into Alec's eyes "I've never seen you so broken before Alexander. Never had I been so scared, so afraid then when I walked into this room and saw you on this bed, life slipping away by the second."
"Why…" he said, after a moment "Why were you scared?"
"Why do you think?" his voice held no harshness, no mockery.
Alec simply shook his head, causing the warlock to sigh. He pulled his chair closer to the bed, and gently grabbed the Shadowhunter's hand.
Alec looked down at their connected hands, their fingers intertwined, Magnus' thumb on top of the back of his hand, moving from one side to another, caressing him with gentleness and… And what seemed like love. He closed his eyes and tightened the grip around his ex's hand, thinking back of all the moments they shared together, of all the time he wasted due to his foolish fears and insecurities. He thought about how much he loved the man by his side, how much it hurt to be apart from him, and willed himself to, just for a second, pretend they were still together.
"Alexander." His voice called, but the Shadowhunter kept his eyes closed, shaking his head. No, he wanted to have Magnus just a bit longer, to pretend just a bit more. He needed this contact, needed to feel the heat of the warlock's skin against his just one more time.
"Alexander," He repeated "Alexander, look at me."
And although he shook his head once again, not even realizing he was crying, Magnus gently placed his other hand on his cheek, turning Alec's face to his. Finally, the boy could not ignore his ex's gentle demand, and opened his blue eyes only to find yellow ones staring right back at him.
The intensity on Magnus' eyes surprised Alec. They were serious, as serious as they had been when they had broken up; but instead of pain and betrayal, inside of them resided regret, devotion, and love.
Love… There was so much love in those eyes, so much love that Alec could just drown himself in it. Those were the eyes that Alec stared into as they made love, the eyes that had softened his hearted and given him strength to face his fears. Those were the eyes that comforted him after Max's death, the eyes that made him feel, for the first time in his life, beautiful and worthy of love.
Those eyes… Those eyes full of love were the eyes Alec continued to dream about, continued to picture, every single day since their break up.
"I was scared, Alexander, because I love you." Never had Magnus' voice sounded so sincere as in that moment. Alec could only stare at him, mouth slightly open as he continued his confession "I lost you once, due to my stupidity… I lost you because of my stupid pride and my stupid fears… My fears of letting you get close to be, of letting myself be loved by someone as beautiful as you. And in that moment, when I saw you here, barely hanging on to life, I realized that if I lost there, if didn't do anything in my power to save you, I could never have you back. I could never beg for forgiveness, beg for you to take me back."
"You…" even while crying, Alec mentally thanked the Angel that Jace wasn't there to see him at this moment, for certainly his parabatai would mock him until he died "You love me? You want me back? After all I did?"
"Only if you want me back."
Alec nodded, smiling.
"Yeah… I do. Of course I do!" He said, grinning like a fool "I love you Magnus."
Next thing he knew his dry lips were covered by Magnus' smooth ones. He closed his eyes shut, encircled the other man's neck with his arms, and pulled himself closer to him. As he tilted his head slightly to deepen the kiss he could feel Magnus' arms making their way around his torso, supporting him as they dove deeper into their desire.
They were so close, yet not close enough. He felt intoxicated with the smell that could only be defined as Magnus Bane, yet he wanted more. Their lips fitted perfectly together, like two pieces of a broken glass, that no matter how much you tried to force it, it would never fit with another. As Magnus' tongue made its way into his mouth, massaging his own tongue when it finally found its long lost companion, Alec couldn't help but wonder how he was able to stay so long without this, without having Magnus with him.
They broke apart for a second, just enough to breath once before Alec (or was it Magnus? Maybe both) united their lips again, desperate for contact, burning with passion, too scared of letting that moment end. As their kiss continued, Alec could feel their bodies getting closer and closer to each other, until their chests were touching, until he could feel Magnus' heart beating just as fast as his.
Magnus' lips left his, but it still kept contact with his person; it touched his chin, his cheekbones, his eyes, his nose, his ear… Magnus kissed Alec's face all over, savoring the sweet taste of the Shadowhunter, as the other murmured his name again and again, too afraid to open his eyes and find himself in a dream.
He only opened them, although with great reluctance, when he felt Magnus' forehead touch his, his heavy breathing caressing his skin, his breath probably doing the same to Magnus.
The warlock's yellow eyes sparkled with so much happiness and love that Alec himself couldn't stop a smile. They stayed like this, staring into each other's eyes, drowning themselves in their love, before Magnus finally spoke up.
"I'm never letting you go again, Alexander Lightwood."
Alec thought it impossible, but the smile on his face grew even larger.
"And I you, Magnus Bane."
Okay… hum… I promise everyone that when this idea came into my mind, it was never meant to be this long or this sappy. I swear to you it was not meant to be so lovey-doey and gag inducing. I have no idea what happened! As I wrote the part of "drowning with love" and all that other crap I couldn't stop thinking "What the hell is wrong with you woman? Since when do you write romantic bullcrap like that?!", but I couldn't stop, and this is what it came. I'm not sure what to think of it. XD
Would you believe that originally Alec was supposed to die in this story? XD Yep, I was planning to kill him and have Magnus forever suffer with loneliness because angst! But then that bit about Magnus being afraid of letting Alec see behind his mask (which also wasn't planned… When I finished that part I couldn't believe my fingers had betrayed me! This was supposed to be pure Alec angst! Not Alec and Magnus angst!) I decided the story was already too depressing, and therefore needed a happy ending.
A huge thanks to my dear Nel, who encouraged me to write this and proofread it before I posted. Thank you sweetie!