There was a knock on the door. It was past midnight. Jace was half-expecting a joyful Isabelle to burst into his bedroom with cake and champagne. Although that was a very Izzy thing, it wasn't Isabelle. Of course.
The first thing he saw was a fall of red hair, then he was able to smell her perfume, and even without seeing, Jace knew perfectly who it was.
He had a moment to take her in: Clary was barefoot and tiptoed to the bed, as if someone might hear her sneaking into his room. She was wearing her pajama tank and the shorts she usually slept in.
She lunged onto his bed and smiled an unusual catlike smirk at him.
"Happy birthday," she breathed into his ear. "Turning 18, aren't you? Finally of age. I'm dating an adult man. What would my mother say?"
She laughed quietly. Man, she was beautiful.
"No cake?" he asked her.
"Izzy had suggested that we bake something, but I've never been into cooking and I wouldn't trust her ability when it comes to food..."
"Smart girlfriend. And I couldn't be higher on Jocelyn's Boys-Clary-Should-Avoid list anyway." he said winking. Then she kissed him again, as if to prove him wrong about her mother. He kissed her back, his tongue sliding into her mouth and exploring it, his hands drawing circles on her bare thigh.
"Clary," he said, his voice hoarse. "Do you–?"
"Unfortunately," she replied "as much as I would like to y'know, I'm not in the physical condition for us to, uhm, make love. We can try next week though..."
He looked at her. She seemed genuinely sorry.
"I'm sorry," she continued "I really hoped this wouldn't happen, but I guess I can't control my period..."
She wouldn't meet his eyes.
"Clary. Look at me."
Reluctantly, she did.
"We don't have to try anything. Not next week, nor next month. When you're ready." He kissed her temple. "No pressure."
"How can you say that when you're kissing me like that? Anyway, I appreciate the good intention, but I'm really on my period." She kissed him on the nose.
"How did you sneak out anyway?"
"I Portaled. Don't worry, no one noticed. Do you think I would've taken the subway in my jammies? Mom and Luke left for the farm this evening. They need some alone time, without their teenage daughter in the way, so they'll spend a few days there... But don't get too excited, seems like Mom called Maryse to make sure I won't be spending any time here except for my training hours."
"She really hates me, doesn't she?" asked Jace, this time thoughtfully.
"I guess she doesn't really hate you as a person, it's just that everything about you reminds her of Valentine and –"
"And I've put your life in danger countless times already."
For a moment, she said noting, then: "She's always been overprotective, you know. Just ask Simon," she smiled at some memory.
"I wish I could do something to change her mind, to show her that I'm a Lightwood, a Herondale even, but not like Valentine."
"She'll change her mind eventually. She'll have to. Besides. Luke likes you."
"I guess that's good."
"That's very good."
Jace has been trained to wake up early every day, even if drunk, sick, or on his birthday. So when he woke up at eight o clock, he was very surprised not to find Clary beside him. Have I been dreaming? he asked himself. But no, the memory was too vivid, the emotions too real.
He paused for one moment before entering the bathroom, remembering what had passed between them the precious night – he smiled at the memory – and wondering if he should call her – to see if she's alright, but then decided against it. It's his birthday.
Izzy motioned at Alec to keep quiet, because 'Jace is gonna wake up any minute', if he hasn't already.
She opened the door, and scanned the room: Jace was not there, but she could hear him taking a shower in the bathroom. Alec understood, too. They silently decided to wait for Jace.
Isabelle looked around again. There's something out of place, like the disheveled sheets and the pillows on the floor, because Jace's room is always clean and tidy, but somehow, this morning it isn't. Jace always makes his bed before going out of the room, but this morning he hasn't.
Isabelle put the cake she was holding on the bedside table and looked around for an explanation. What had Clary said on the phone? Her mother would be away for a few days.
Izzy looked for proof of what she suspected. She felt very much like Sherlock Holmes, the protagonist of that tv series Simon had made her watch. She touched the sheets and the pillows, and Alec shot her a questioning look.
"What are you doing?"
"Looking for what?"
Alec's face went blank.
"Izzy? Why would you look for Clary's blood on Jace's bed?"
"By the Angel, Alec! I know you're gay, but don't you know anything about sex?"
Realization dawned on her brother's face.
"Ah. So you're saying Clary has been here tonight."
"She must've been. Look at what state the room is. Jace's room is never untidy."
"I see your point, but it's really none of our business, Isabelle. You can ask Jace if you want to, but stop searching his private space."
"Besides, Clary's not even here"
"Well, she could be taking a shower with Jace, for all we know."
"Stop acting the part of the innocent. I know you and Magnus do much worse."
"Not as much as me of course," she said with a grin.
"I'm going to kill Simon," Alec grunted.
"And what makes you think I have sex with Simon?"
Alec was about to reply when the bathroom door opened and Jace came in.
"You're alone, I see." Izzy noted, disappointed. "Well, happy birthday anyway," she continued nonchalantly.
"Happy birthday, brother." Alec said touching Jace's shoulder in an affectionate gesture.
"We brought cake!"
Isabelle's phone buzzed in her pocket. "It's Clary," she said and answered. "Hello?"
"Izzy? Is Jace up?" Clary asked.
"Yes, he's with me right now… do you want to talk to him?"
Jace was handed the phone. "Clary?"
"Happy birthday. Again. I'm sorry about last night, but I couldn't afford to get caught in your bed in the morning… Maryse would've told my mom and I'd be grounded for eternity. What do you want to do today?"
Clary probably didn't realize that Alec and Isabelle could still hear what she was saying, and Izzy was smiling at her brother with 'I told you'written all over her face.
"Just come over," Jace replied "we were just about to have breakfast, I'll wait for you."
"I made a cake!" Izzy shouted for Clary to hear.
"Okay then… do you want me to bring Chinese? Or something from Taki's?"
"Hey!" Isabelle said.
"Sorry, Iz. But no one's gonna eat your cake, honestly," Alec told her apologetically.
They all grinned.
Author's note: hi everyone! Hope you liked my story.
I apologize for any possible grammar mistakes, as I'm not a native English speaker.
Would you be so kind to leave a review? :)