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Before the Fall

Chapter Text

 

 

“You’ve gotta be fuckin’ joking.” The bouncer at the start of the line scoffed, with his arms crossed heavily across his massive chest, “Kid, if you think you’re getting in this club with that ID you gotta ‘nother thing comin’.” He stared down the short red haired teenager in front of him. 

 

Clary Fray glared back at him angrily, stubbornly refusing to back down. Her face lit by the massive sign above her head, her scowl growing. Her best friend, Simon Lewis stood to her left side - tugging on her arm to try and tear her away from the confrontation.  

 

Once she realised that trying to stand her ground against the tall man in front of her wouldn’t work out the way she had hoped, she huffed and span around to storm off. Simon followed behind her, motioning for the girl who had been standing beside them to give him a second and ran to catch up with her.

 

“It’s okay Fray,” He began, “It’s only a few months until you turn 18! Then we can go in all the clubs we want.” 

 

She sighed heavily and came to a stop, “I know you’re right Si, but it would’ve been nice to get in.” She turned to him, “You know, you're 18. You could just head in.”

 

Simon shrugged,  “Well yeah but, it’d be more fun with you.” He flushed slightly at the end of his sentence. 

 

“I’m sorry for dragging you out tonight. You should stay, I’m sure Maureen would appreciate the company,” They both look back in the direction of the club. The girl from earlier is stood to the side of the line, she waves when she sees them looking. “I’m gonna grab a cab back home.”

 

Simon frowned, “If you’re sure - I can wait until you get into a cab if you want? Or I could give you a ride?” 

 

“Nah, I could use the time to cool off a little bit, don’t want Mom asking why I’m so fired up.”

 

He laughed a little, waving to her as he hurried towards the front of the club.  

 

Watching him go, Clary looked around for a cab. After a few minutes of no luck, she shrugged and decided that she would just walk home instead, it wasn't too far. She travelled along the street steadily, the lights above her shining like stars in the darkness. The night air sharp in her lungs as she stopped to take in a deep breath. She vaguely noticed she had come to a stop by a darkened alleyway, out of the corner of her eye she could see the slumped form of a man.

 

Turning so she could see the alleyway properly, she tilted her head and squinted. Her breath quickened, hands tightened into fists by her sides, she took an anxious step forward. The man was covered in blood, and obviously unconscious. She looked to her right and left hurriedly, she took another deep breath. She couldn’t in good conscience carry on walking without at least checking on him.  

 

She nodded to herself confidently, she decided she would just get close enough to see if the man was okay and then be on her way. She took a small step into the alleyway - keeping her wits about her as she moved. It wasn’t the nastiest alley she had ever seen, but it wasn’t particularly nice. Getting closer to the man she saw he was about her age, maybe a few years older. 

 

He was attractive, from what she could see of his face. His hair was pitch black and matted with a thick black substance. He wore all black combat gear, his shirt nearly non-existent due to the damage he had sustained to his abdomen. A holster strapped to one thigh. As she noted earlier, he was covered in blood - it also had puddled underneath him. A sword similarly stained with red rested at his side in a limp grasp.

 

She gasped in shock, her hand reaching out for his wound, wanting to put pressure on the dangerous looking gash. Before she could touch him, she found her wrist wrapped in a strong hand. She jerked back in an automatic gesture of shock, looking up from his injury - she could see his eyes were open. His grip on her wrist didn’t falter. 

 

He spoke quietly, voice rough; “How can you see me?” 

 

She gaped at him. 

 

He grunted in pain and looked down at his injury. Seeing the sliced flesh he huffed angrily. Reaching into his pocket he pulled out a pen-like object, without releasing her wrist he brought it up to one of his many complicated tattoos. It flared to life, his wounded skin knitting back together easily. 

 

She was still crouched there with one wrist limp in his hand, her mouth open wide.

 

“So? How can you see me?” 

 

She gathered herself and snapped, “More importantly, what the fuck ?” 

 

He rolled his eyes at her, “That’s a pretty open question, ‘what the fuck’ to what?”

 

She stuttered for a second, her free hand flailing next to her wildly - gesturing to him, “T-this? The wound! What?” 

 

He sighed, obviously thinking this was a waste of his time. He released her hand and rose to his feet, she followed him quickly. 

 

“You shouldn’t be able to see me.” 

 

“So you keep saying! You shouldn’t be alive !”

 

He let out a startled laugh. 

 

“I’m fine.” With that he began to walk to the end of the alley, she rushed to keep up. Her thoughts from before having been confirmed, he was tall. Taller than anyone she’d met. Taller than Luke. 

 

“I’m Clary!” She called out to him. 

 

He scoffed at her, throwing a look over his shoulder he responded, “Alec.” 

 

And then he was gone.

 

 

 

 

Chapter Text

 

 

It wasn’t that the events from last week were all Clary could think about but, honestly; it was all Clary could think about. She had wandered back to her house in a daze, stumbling past her mom and ignoring the concerned questions called after her. She lay in bed for hours, unable to sleep - thinking about the blood and the tall man that had been covered in it. 

 

The week that had followed had been dull, and she’d taken the lull as an excuse to tirelessly recount the events of that night to her best friend. 

 

“I’m telling you Simon, he was injured and on the floor one second--” 

 

Simon interrupts, rolling his eyes, “Mhmm, and then he miraculously recovered and sauntered off.” 

 

Clary huffs, “I’m telling you, it really happened!” 

 

They were sitting together in Saltwater Cafe; hot mugs cupped in their hands. Simon’s glasses were slightly fogged from the warmth of the cafe. 

 

“Look Fray, you’ve had a tough couple of weeks. You saw a homeless guy, and your mind helped with the rest.” 

 

Clary let the now empty mug she was holding drop to the table with a soft thump, she sighed and turned away from Simon to stare out of the large window of the cafe, absently tapping a fingernail against the ceramic cup. Simon rose from the table to grab them more drinks, patting her on the head condescendingly as he passed. 

 

She blinked when she noticed a flash of black that she immediately recognised. She stood abruptly, and ran out of the cafe eager to follow the retreating figure. 

 

“Alec!” She called. 

 

She watched as he whipped around to look at her, his face creased with confusion. She took in combat gear, the multiple weapons and the deep scowl on his face - some part of her thought she should be scared at how intimidating a figure Alec cut. 

 

“You can still see me.” It wasn’t a question, the confusion had faded from his face and an anxious curiosity had set in. 

 

She nodded furiously, “Why do you keep asking that?” 

 

“Clary? Are you okay?” 

 

A panting Simon stood behind her, hands on his knees as he tried to regain his breath -his eyes wide with concern. 


“I turned around and you were running out of the cafe, did something happen?” He rose from his bent position and placed his hands on his hips, his eyebrows rose; “Were you talking to someone?” 

 

Clary gestured vaguely at Alec, “Simon this is the guy I was telling you about.” 

 

Simon tilted his head to look over her shoulder, “Clary,” He laughed nervously. “-Clary who are you talking about?” 

 

Clary refrained from stomping her foot petulantly, “Obviously him .” Pointing at Alec directly now, whose lips were twitching as if he was attempting to contain his smile. 

 

“He can’t see me.” 

 

“Clary I can’t see anyone. Are you sure you’re okay?” 

 

She spluttered, put out. “I-I’m fine!” She glared at Alec, who shrugged in response. 

 

Simon nodded haltingly, “Coming back to the cafe?” He asked. 

 

“Actually,” She said, “I’m gonna head home.” 

 

Simon smiled at her concern still filling his eyes, “Okay. Do you want me to walk you back?” 

 

“No, I think I just need some alone time.”

 

 “Let me know if you get back safe?”

 

She nodded and they parted ways. 

 

She span, glaring; “What the fuck ?”

 

The man in front of her didn’t look apologetic at the fact that he’d made her look crazy in front of her best friend. 

 

“Why couldn’t he see you?” 

 

“He doesn’t have the sight obviously. More to the point; why can you see me? Are you a werewolf? Newly turned?”

 

“Because you’re right there !” She paused, “What do you mean by ‘werewolf’.” 

 

“So you’re not a downworlder?”

 

“A what-worlder ?” 

 

“Oh. We should probably talk about this.” 

 

“No, really ?”

 





As they turned and walked back to the cafe she’d vacated by chasing him, she was vaguely happy to notice Simon was no longer there. She loved him, he was like a brother to her but she didn’t want him seeing her apparently talking to thin air.

 

They find a little two-person table in the corner, further away from the window than her previous seat. Clary looks at him, he looks so stiff in such cosy space. Like he’d never really been in a cafe before. 

 

“Want something to drink?” She asks cautiously. 

 

He looks conflicted for a second before nodding, when no further information is offered she shrugs and decides to get him something random.

 

Returning to the table she places the pumpkin spice latte down in front of him. She grins at him, he seems like the type of guy who would object to it on principle. He doesn’t. He takes a sip and actually smiles at her a little. 

 

“It’s nice, thank you.” 

 

They sit there in silence for a little while, enjoying their drinks. She coughs awkwardly. 

 

“So, why can't Simon see you? Can people see you right now? Do people think I’m talking to no one right now? Do they think your drink is just floating?!”

 

He chuckles at her questions; “I cancelled the glamour when we were walking.”

 

“The what ?” She shook her head, “Wait. I need a minute.” 

 

He seemed amused by her confusion. 

 

“I should start from the beginning I suppose?” At her nod he continued, “My name is Alec Lightwood, I’m a Shadowhunter and all the stories you’ve been told are true.” 

 

“Cool line. What does that mean?” 

 

“Werewolves, Seelies, Vampires and Warlocks,” He paused, dramatically; “All of them are real. I’ve got to admit I’m shocked you don’t know this - how else would you have been able to see me?” 

 

Clary looked at him, clearly in shock. She stuttered slightly as she tried to form words. 

 

“You’re sure your not a werewolf?” 

 

She huffed, “I think I would know if I were a werewolf !” 

 

“Have you seen anything strange recently?” He asked. 

 

“Other than you almost dying in an alleyway?” 

 

He scoffs; “I wasn’t almost dying. I just had a minor injury.” 

 

“Yeah, a minor injury that had your guts spilling out.” 

 

He sighs. “I’m serious. It’s almost unheard of for someone without ties to the shadow-world to be able to see us. We should probably figure out what’s different about you.” 

 

“I’m just me, there’s nothing special about me!”

 

“Well, obviously that’s not true,” He paused as a waiter approached their table to clear away their now empty cups, he smiled and thanked the man, who blushed furiously as he smiled back. 

 

Clary’s eyes lit up as she watched the waiter retreating, “He liked you!” 

 

Alec flushed and coughed awkwardly, “ Anyway . Clary, we should probably look into this, right?” 

 

She groaned; “Urgh, you’re the responsible type huh?” 

 

“Comes with being a big brother.” 

 

“You have siblings? Tell me about them!” 

 

“We’re getting off track,” He glanced at his watch, “Shit. I have to go. Look, take my number. Message me if anything strange happens.” He got to his feet, and turned to leave

 

“Wait!” She called, “Can we meet up at some point? I’d just really appreciate a more in-depth explanation!” 

 

He nodded cautiously, “Sure.” 

 

Chapter Text

 

“It’s not that I don’t love my siblings but sometimes they just make me,” Alec paused, “So angry?”

 

Clary nods, “I get that, you’re trying to do things by the book - and when they go against the rules, it makes you feel like they’re going against you personally.” 

 

He looked at Clary, lips pursed - trying to find a way that he could deny the explanation she just gave. Then he sighed and nodded tightly. 

 

“You’re right, sometimes it just feels like they don’t care about me? Like I know - logically that they do, but when they go out of their way to- to dismiss me, to act like I’m not any fun because I don’t want to break out and go clubbing surrounded by people I don’t know.. It’s just so.. Shit .”

 

They had been meeting up regularly for months, always at the same coffee shop - never the same day or time but every week they made sure to find time to sit and talk. At first it had just been about Clary’s unnatural talent of seeing the Shadow World, then they slowly worked their way into talking about everything in their lives. Their friendship flourishing throughout these meetings. 

 

“Anyway,” Alec said, placing his mug down as he hurried to change the subject; “Have you tried asking your mom anymore questions about the whole sight business.” 

 

Clary grunted in frustration, taking a long drink before replying “I’ve been trying to ask, believe me. Every time I even so much as mention anything of the sort she just starts to talk over me. She did tell me that I have an appointment with a doctor later on today - Dr. Bane. Apparently we’ve been going to him for years? Honestly, I don’t remember the guy--” 

 

Bane ? Where about is this appointment?” 

 

“I think she said somewhere near Sixth Avenue and Christopher Street.”

 

“I’ll meet you there.” 

 

“What? Why? Alec it’s apparently a routine appointment. No need to get all over-protective.” 

 

“A routine appointment. That you apparently have every year. With a person you don’t remember. That just so happens to be scheduled after you’ve been trying to ask your mom about the Shadow World? With a person whose name just so happens to be the same as The High Warlock of Brooklyn? Clary. You can’t believe that this is all coincidental!” 

 

Clary stared at him incredulously, “Alec, I think you’re a bit paranoid.”  

 

He stared back, unflinching; “Clary, I think you’re not paranoid enough.” 

 

Rolling her eyes she gave in, “Fine. When we get to the place I’ll send you a picture so you can tell where we are.” 

 

Alec nodded, “Good. I mean, come on Fray - even if it’s nothing, it’s better to have backup just in case.” 

 

“You are such a big brother.” 




Making their way towards the West Village, Clary and Jocelyn walked in an uncomfortable silence. There had been multiple stilted attempts to begin a conversation, but her mom had only answered with one worded sentences, speeding up slightly with every attempt.  

 

At this point she’s basically running, Clary thought. She looked up as they approached a large apartment building. She paused, sneaking her phone out, she took a quick photo and sent it to Alec. She slid her phone back into her pocket as her mom turned round, looking at her desperately. 

 

“Clary, let’s go!” She gestured to the foreboding looking doors behind her.

 

“Mom, can I not have a minute to catch my breath?” 

 

 “Clary, I-I just think it’s important that we get this over with,” Jocelyn said, “I think we’ll both feel a lot better afterwards.” 

 

Her phone buzzed in her pocket, signalling that Alec was nearby. She felt a bit better knowing she wasn’t entering the unknown alone. She sighed, resigned. Reluctantly making her way through the doors that her mom was holding open. 

 

After trekking their way up to the top floor of the apartment building, they came to a stop outside a grand looking set of double doors. Joceyln raised a fist to knock against the wooden door, before her hand could make contact the door flew open to reveal the strikingly attractive figure of a tall asian man. 

 

“Magnus,” Jocelyn breathed, “She- She’s remembering I think.” 

 

“So soon?” The man- Magnus turned to look Clary in the eyes, “Biscuit, so lovely to see you again.” 

 

“I wish I could say the same, but I don’t recall ever meeting you.” 

 

Magnus laughed delighted at the snark, “Ah, I’m afraid that’s all on me.” He froze, his face clouding suddenly. 


“It seems you have a shadow.” 

 

“What?” Joceyln gasped. 

 

“Someone’s following you. They’ve just entered the parameter of my wards.”

 

Clary froze, knowing who he was talking about. She wracked her brain frantically, her eyes darting about - knowing that she wouldn’t be able to spot Alec, but trying anyway. 

 

Magnus’ handsome face was marred with a scowl, “Let me just take care of that,” He raised his hand and went to click his fingers, only stopping when Clary lurched forwards with a cry. 

 

“Biscuit?” 

 

“Clary?”

 

She glared at them from where she stood, holding Magnus’ wrist; “No. Don’t hurt him.” 

 

“You know who’s following you?” 

 

She nods tightly, “He’s my friend, he was worried about me.” 

 

Magnus’ lowered his arm, her hand dropping from his wrist, his face had softened substantially; “Why don’t you ask your friend to come out?”

 

Backing up slightly she nodded, her hand sliding into her pocket to tug out her phone. She sent a message to Alec telling him to come up. Hoping she doesn’t sound too panicked and that he wouldn’t assume the worst. 

 

“Clary what’s going on? Who is this friend?” Jocelyn asked. 

 

“Maybe we should head inside before the questions begin.” Magnus gestured them both into his loft, following and closing the door behind them. 

 

 “Clary!” Jocelyn shouted, “Who is this friend? Why did he follow you here? Is it Simon?” 

 

“It’s not Simon.” She answered tersely. 

 

“Clary, can you answer me properly?” 

 

“Oh because you were so upfront with me earlier?” 

 

“Clarissa Fray!” 

 

Magnus coughed awkwardly, gaining their attention, “Anyway, Biscuit! I should reintroduce myself, I’m Magnus Bane,” He paused turning towards the balcony doors, “And who , are you ?”

 

Standing in the doorway to the balcony was Alec Lightwood, intimidating as always, his face locked in his usual glare. Clary could tell his hands were itching to hold a weapon of some sort.


This is my friend. Alec Lightwood.”

 

Chapter Text

To say that Alec Lightwood hadn’t been expecting this turn of events when he decided to follow behind Clary would be an understatement. Being the strategist he is, he’d become accustomed to planning for almost every situation he’d ever come across. This was ever so slightly different. 

 

Having to follow behind Clary and her mother wasn’t a hardship - nothing too different to what he did on his patrols. Maintain a safe distance while keeping an eye on the target - easy. Not so easy; is his ‘target’ entering a heavily warded building - wards that he knew would notify the caster of his presence as soon as he neared them.

 

Thinking of the companionship he and Clary had shared recently, he quickly decided the risk was worth it - he would rather keep Clary safe. Before he could prepare a plan for entering the building his phone buzzed in his pocket. He slid it out, Clary’s message blinking on the screen obnoxiously. He stood from his position and glanced up at the penthouse balcony. He quickly calculated the height, and the strength of the jump he would need to reach the balcony.

 

Time to make an impression , he thought. 

 

He grabbed his stele and brought it to the rune on his left bicep, the rune flaring to life easily. 

 

As he landed gracefully on the balcony, he stepped up to the open doors - staring at the three occupants stood inside. His gaze was drawn to the single male in the room for a second, he drew in a sharp breath - the man was handsome, probably the most beautiful man he’d ever seen. His eyes widened in shock as the man’s gaze locked with his, a soft flush adorning his cheeks as the man began to speak.

 

“Who are you ?”

 

Alec stuttered softly, but was ultimately saved from answering by Clary’s harsh reply. He stepped into the room, his focus now solely on his friend, the handsome man pushed to the back of his thoughts, his concern for Clary prominent. He approached Clary, his eyes darting over her body looking for any injuries, “You okay?” He whispered as he got closer, tilting his head so he had eyes on the other two people in the room. She nodded, her lips pressed tightly together and her hands clenched into fists. 

 

“Clary, this stranger-- ” Clary’s mother began to say. 

 

Clary’s glare silenced her, “As I said before, 'this stranger' is my friend, who was concerned about me. He wanted to make sure I was okay." 

 

Magnus tutted where he was standing, he gestured and his hand glowed with red energy, summoning a drink to his hand. Alec stared at him, distracted momentarily by the flash of gold in the warlocks eyes. 

 

"I think it's time to come clean Jocelyn dear." 

 

Taking a deep breath Jocelyn gathered herself, she looked at Clary soft eyes. 

 

“Clary, I-I want you to know that I did this for you. The decisions I made, the hard choices - all for you.” 

 

Clary barely held back an eye roll, nodding for her mother to continue. Alec stepped back from where he was previously in front of her, now standing to her side, glaring at Jocelyn from where he stood.

 

“I suppose it started when I fell in love with a man, his name was Valentine Morganstern.” 

 

Clary felt Alec’s hand as it landed on her shoulder, she turned to look at him - his eyes were hard, his mouth stretched into a foul frown. 

 

“Alec?” She asked quietly. 

 

He shook his head tightly, his gaze remaining on her mother. 

 

“I was sixteen, we attended the Academy together with Lucian,” 

 

“Luke!?” Clary exclaimed.

 

Jocelyn nodded, “Valentine was the most charming person I have ever met. Myself, Luke and others flocked to him. His presence was overwhelming. Clary, you have to believe me, I had no idea what I was getting myself - and my children, into. He wasn’t a bad man at the beginning, when he was younger. He had strong opinions, ones I didn’t agree with, and I don’t agree with them now.”

 

“We got married, fresh out of the Academy - we were in love, I-I didn’t notice any of the red flags,” She took a steadying breath. “We had a child, we were happy for awhile - but, it got harder to ignore his work. The screams I could hear from the basement of the house, how distant he was. It wasn’t until Luke was Turned that I saw his true self.” 

 

Her hands shake, she wraps her arms around herself.

 

“Luke was Valentine’s ‘Parabatai’.”

 

Clary glanced at Alec, Jocelyn smiled slightly. “I see you’ve been informed of those.” 

 

At Clary’s nod she continued, “When Luke was Turned into a werewolf, he came to us. His friends, his parabatai. For comfort, for understanding. H-he didn’t get that. Valentine took Luke away - into the forest nearby and when he returned.” She paused. 

 

“He returned and informed me that Luke had killed himself. I was devastated, I became depressed and unable to sleep. It wasn’t until I got a call, when I was told Luke was still alive and the leader of a pack Brocelind Forest that I really started to hate Valentine.” 

 

“After that, I struggled to deal with the fact that the Valentine I had fallen in love with - wasn’t the man he said he was. Weeks later, one night when I couldn’t sleep, I heard screams again. That time I couldn’t ignore it, having grown up in the house we were living in at the time. I was easily able to gain access to the basement. The things I saw down there - that was what finally made me realise I had to leave.” 

 

“However, I couldn't. there were more important things to do - I worked together with Luke to warn Downworlders about The Circle - and their plans to destroy the Downworld and any Shadowhunters who disagreed. I stayed with Valentine. I discovered many things, his multiple experiments. On me, on my unborn child and on other members of the Circles unborn children.”  

 

At this she looked directly at Alec, their eyes met briefly. She looked away first, his harsh glare making her unable to maintain eye contact. 

 

“Time passed and I was so scared he would discover my betrayal, I managed to secure some precautions for myself with the help of Ragnor. The day of The Uprising came, the day that Valentine had planned for months, this was the day that our plans for revolution came to fruition. I couldn’t kill him myself. I hadn’t the strength, I asked Lucian to do it for me, but Valentine was smarter - he used me for leverage and took me from the battlefield before abandoning me. I knew where he was head so I followed him back to what was our home.” 

 

She began to shake uncontrollably, tears falling down her cheeks. 

 

“What I found was a burnt out husk. In the ruins I found the bodies of my parents, and Valentine-” 

 

She pauses, “I knew I was pregnant so I had to get you away from there. I knew that the only way to keep you safe was to keep you oblivious to the Shadow World. Make sure that you didn’t remember, I did everything I had to - so I could keep you safe .”

 

At the end of her story she lets herself flop back onto the seat behind her, curling in on herself slightly. 

 

Alec stares at his friends mother, questions filling his mind. 

 

“So you’re Jocelyn Fairchild, wife of Valentine Morgenstern.” The woman in question flinches slightly before nodding at the name. 

 

He looks at her intently for a moment, before turning to the shell shocked Clary, “Clary you’re an only child correct?” 

 

At her hesitant nod, and Jocelyn’s fearful look, Alec continues - “I thought so, however - I distinctly remember playing with a small boy in your house when I was a child, Ms Fairchild. Not to mention the many slip ups you made while telling your story.” 

 

Clary gasps, “The use of ‘children’ instead of ‘child’, talk of a child years before I would have been born,” She looks at her mother, confusion and concern shining in her eyes, “D-Do I have a sibling?” 

 

Jocelyn shakes her head, pain obvious in her very being “No. H-He perished in the fire along with your father.” 

 

Clary’s eyes shudder close, her breaths beginning to become strained and harsh, Alec quickly guides her to a sofa nearby. He pushes her down softly, whispering comforting words to her as he kneels next to her. 

 

Jocelyn stumbles to her feet - reaching for Clary desperately, “Clary you have to understand-” 

 

Magnus steps smoothly in front of her, blocking her path to her daughter, “Perhaps you should sit back down Jocelyn dear.” 

 

Sat on the sofa Clary takes Alec’s hand from her shoulder, holding it in a loose grip for comfort. She looks up at Jocelyn, “Understand what? I don’t understand anything anymore. I-I think I’d like to be alone - I don’t think I can trust you anymore, and I definitely can’t look at you right now.” 

 

“Clary, please!” 

 

“Biscuit, if you want to stay here for a little while, it’s the least I could do.” 

 

Hearing Magnus’ offer Clary glanced towards him, before looking towards Alec for guidance. He smiled at her encouragingly, his hand squeezing hers. Ignoring her mother’s protests she nodded,

 

“I’d like that Magnus.”

 

Chapter Text

 

Waking up on a couch in Magnus Bane’s spacious loft wasn’t where Alec had expected to end up after the confrontation the night before. He could feel his feet hanging over the edge of the chair that was too small for him, his neck stiff from the uncomfortable angle it had been forced into for the night. Reluctantly, he pushed himself up using the arm of the chair he was occupying, squinting against the light flooding in from the doors he had entered through previously. He used his hand to shield his eyes as he settled back onto the couch.

 

A mug was thrust in front of him, he groggily grunted and took the offered coffee. Magnus chuckled lightly, 

 

“Not a morning person, huh?” 

 

Alec muttered incoherently, sighing as he took a drink. He lowered the cup and looked towards Magnus who was hovering awkwardly in front of him. 

 

“The absolute opposite of a morning person,” He smiled slightly at Magnus, “Wanna sit down?” he gestured to the space next to him. Magnus chuckled and sat next to him. Alec flushed at the proximity. 

 

“So I have a few questions,” Magnus began, turning to face Alec; “How did you and Biscuit meet? I’m assuming you would have thought her a mundane, and it’s unlike Shadowhunters to associate with those different to them.”

 

He asked the question casually, clearly not intending to insult Alec - merely stating a known fact.

 

Alec laughed softly, “We met under - unusual circumstances. I was injured during my patrol, she found me - and then bugged me until I got coffee with her on a regular basis. That being said,” he shrugged, “I enjoy her company. She’s surprisingly likeable, I suppose.”

 

Magnus huffed, amused. 

 

“What about you Mr. Bane? I’m surprised you were helping Jocelyn Morgenstern- knowing her to be Valetine’s wife.” 

 

“Please - Call me Magnus. As for helping Jocelyn, I’d like to joke about it being about the money, but I have an unfortunate soft spot for both children and those seeking redemption. When Jocelyn landed on my doorstep, both of those soft spots were easily hit. I didn’t approve of Jocelyn’s methods in handling Biscuit but - mother knows best. Until her daughter finds out and hates her for it.”  

 

Alec let out a snort of laughter, before his tone took on a more serious note, “I’m sure Clary won’t be angry forever - for her sake I hope they can reconcile eventually.”

 

“Optimistic for a Shadowhunter! Protective too, hm? Clary said you were worried about her and that’s why you came with her. Let me guess, you’re an elder brother?” 

 

Alec nodded, his eyebrows furrowing slightly at the thought of his siblings, “Yea--” 

 

“Coffee?” 

 

Alec and Magnus both turned to look at the stumbling form of Clary, as she made her way into the main area of the loft. Her hair bundled on top of her head in a messy bun, day old make-up flaking on her face. She made grabby hands for the mug that Alec was still holding.

 

 He let her take it from him, watching as she took a long sip only to encounter a completely empty cup. She whined helplessly at the lack of coffee. 

 

Magnus laughed, “Another morning person!” 

 

Alec stood smiling, allowing Clary to slump into his place on the couch, 

 

“I have to get back to The Institute.” He looked at his watch, “It’s just past eight so luckily I shouldn’t be too late for any meetings I have.” 

 

Alec placed a hand on the top of Clary’s head, jostling her slightly, “You’re gonna be okay, right Fray?” At the nod he received he turned to Magnus, “Thanks for letting me sleep here, and for letting Clary stay here for awhile.” 

 

Magnus waved him off, “Please don’t worry about it Alexander. I’m happy to do it. Would you like me to portal you close to the Institute.” 

 

Alec shook his head, “I could use the walk honestly, and I wouldn’t want to ask anything else of you.” 

 

They smiled at each other for a second, before Alec turned and shouted a goodbye at Clary. Receiving an equally vocal farewell in return. He smiled at Magnus again before he began his walk back home.




The New York Institute. 

 

Magnificent in its grandeur. Unseen by the New Yorkers and many tourists that pass it daily. 

 

Alec stood, just outside of the large double doors that led to his home. He sighed harshly, already anticipating the unnecessary interrogation he would no doubt be forced to endure. 

 

He’d barely made it a few steps into the Institute before his siblings descended on him like a pack of vultures,


“Alec? Are you only just coming home?”

 

“Where were you? You've been gone all night!” 

 

He hummed non committedly, pushing past them easily. Not wanting to give them an answer when he knew it would have to be a lie. He continued his trek inside. He wasn’t in the mood for the questions they were asking, nor the demanding harshness of their tone of voice. 

 

“Are you really ignoring us right now? Alec we’re just concerned about you!” 

 

“It’s not right for you to let us worry about you and then just brush us off!” 

 

He came to a stop abruptly, Jace knocking into his back as he was forced to a halt - Izzy stumbling to avoid the same collision. Alec span round, his shoulders stiff as he curled his hands into fists, his face contorting into a scowl.. He glared at them, anger obvious in his stance. 

 

“So, when I ask about what you’ve been up to after you’ve been partying and drinking all night - I’m, what was it? ‘A buzzkill and an asshole’, but you demand to know my whereabouts after one night of being out and you’re ‘concerned’. When I stay up, concerned - fretting about whether or not either of you are hurt I’m ‘overreacting’ but I want to have one piece of privacy and it’s ‘ not right ’ of me. Sure. Whatever.” He scoffed. 

 

“Alec, this isn’t one night! You’ve been going out constantly ; not telling us where you’re going, we just - we want to make sure you’re okay! It’s not like you at all! ” Izzy said.

 

His nails were starting to bite into his flesh, his scowl deepened - turning his head to look Izzy in the eyes. 

 

“Since when do you care ? I’ve been going for walks to clear my head, I’ve been leaving the Institute because I’ve been feeling the pressure from our parents because you two keep going out, partying - because you two keep doing whatever it is you like. Excuse the fuck out of me for needing some time on my own.” 

 

With that he span round, and headed for his room - leaving his siblings to stare after him in shock.  

 

Chapter Text

 

“And that’s the reason I’m banned from Peru!” 

 

Slumped on Magnus’ expensive sofa Clary was bent in half where she sat, clutching at her stomach as tears filled her eyes. Taking gasping breaths she looks to Magnus who was similarly wiping tears of mirth from his face. Clary felt happy for the first time in weeks.

 

“That was the best story I’ve heard in my entire life,” She threw her head back on the couch, “So, how old are you exactly? Some of the things you mentioned in that story, clearly that didn't happen in this decade.” 

 

Magnus tuts at her, “Didn’t you know it’s impolite to ask a Warlock their age Biscuit,” he winks; “Besides, I have to keep some of my secrets - it’s a part of my mystique .”  


Clary snorted inelegantly, an indulgent smile spreading across her face. 

 

She was beginning to see who Magnus Bane really was, he had spent the previous two weeks attempting to cheer her up. Even after many failed attempts he still tried, and she appreciated that more than she could put into words. He was kind, generous and one of the funniest people she had ever had the pleasure of meeting. He helped her come to grips with the new reality she was facing- but never pushed her to contact her mother. 

 

She hadn’t heard from her mom the entire time she’d been here; she couldn’t help but think that it wasn’t a bad thing. The betrayal was still fresh on her mind; while she could understand her mother’s reasoning it was hard to forgive. She needed time. That’s not to say her mom hadn’t been on Clary’s mind, it was almost all she could think of; her mom, alone in their apartment, upset about Clary’s absence. 

 

“Has Alexander called you today?” 

 

She was startled out of her thoughts by Magnus’ voice. She frowned at the question, her eyebrows furrowing. Clary shook her head. 

 

“Not today. Yesterday he mentioned that his parents were visiting so he didn’t know how often he’d be able to get away. Apparently his parents can be really overbearing.” 

 

At Magnus’ understanding nod she continued. 

 

“I’m kind of worried about him. I think he takes on too much. I appreciate him coming to see me, and checking in on me - but all I can think about is how tired he looks? I don’t know what goes on at that Institute of his but it looks like it stresses him out beyond belief. Yet here I am, needlessly bothering him with my inconvenient problems.” 

 

“Such is the way of a Head of an Institute my dear, he has plenty of responsibility on his head,   but that doesn’t mean you should feel guilty about going to him about your problems--” 

 

“But--” 

 

“Clary, believe me, I understand what you’re feeling. However, if Alexander thought you were ‘needlessly bothering him’ doesn’t he seem like the type of person to say something?” 

 

She nodded, stiffly. 

 

“Besides that I don’t think Alexander would consider your problems inconvenient in the slightest. His friend, revealed as the unknown daughter of Valentine Morgenstern? He’s obviously going to try to do anything to support you. Finding out your father isn’t who you thought and your mother has lied to you for years is not an inconvenience. Alexander considers you a close friend, of course he wants to be there for you in your time of need.” 

 

She nodded again. 


“What about you?” 

 

Magnus quirked an eyebrow and smiled at her, “What do you mean Biscuit?” 

 

Clary drew the corner of her bottom lip into her mouth, gnawing at the chapped skin of her lip. 

 

“From what I can understand; Valentine was the Shadow Worlds version of Hitler right? A special brand of evil. Killed Downworlders just because they differ from his ideal of ‘correct’. A man who, I’m willing to bet, killed many of those close to you? Probably even tried to kill you.” 

 

Magnus’ smile had faded at this point. 

 

“Yet here you are; offering your home, your kindness. To his daughter .” She choked on the last word, her heart in her throat. She squeezed her eyes shut, breath stuttering from her mouth as she exhaled.

 

Clary’s eyes snapped open as she felt a warm hand encase her shaking one. She stared into the gentle eyes of Magnus Bane as he smiled at her. 

 

“Clary. I think I’m one of the only people in this world who can say with complete honesty: I understand how you feel. You may be his blood, his daughter, but you’re not him. You didn’t commit those atrocities, you are not to blame for anything he did. I’m not saying it wasn’t hard at the beginning when Jocelyn first came to see me, it was. However, I’m a grown Warlock and I can easily differentiate between the evil of Valentine and who you are as a person. The child will not be punished for the parents sin, after all.”

 

She opened her mouth, her next point poised on the tip of her tongue.

 

Her phone began to ring loudly. 

 

Magnus and Clary both jolted with shock, their eyes finding the buzzing phone on the table. The screen displaying Simon’s name. Clary gasped, eyes wide. 

 

“Simon! Oh no I completely forgot!” She hurried to answer the call, pressing it to her ear. 

 

“Clary Fray where the hell are you?” 

 

“Sim--”

 

“You’ve been missing all week, I’ve checked in with your mom and she’s just sitting around your apartment depressed!” 

 

“Don’t-” 

 

“And now , I’ve tracked your phone to West Village but I can’t find you .”

 

Clary turned to Magnus, bringing the phone down from her ear and covering the mouthpiece with her palm. 

 

“Your wards, would they block a GPS?” At Magnus’ nod she sighed and spoke into the phone, ignoring her best friends frantic ranting, “We’ll come down for you Si.”

 


  

Simon Lewis was confused. 

 

He was confused a lot recently. His best friend had been distant ever since that night at Pandemonium. He had regretted letting her go home on her own the second he had watched her walk off, but that regret had strengthened after hearing her outlandish story about finding a dying man that had healed himself. When she had ran out of Saltwater Cafe he had followed her as quickly as he could, finding her speaking to the air in front of her. 

 

He’d been dismissed time and time again, his concerns being ignored and brushed off. His calls had been ignored and sent to voicemail multiple times. He was beyond concern at this point.

 

Earlier in the day he had decided he’d had enough, Simon had stormed his way over to the Fray’s household, finding Jocelyn; eye bags heavy and dark in a way that spoke of a particular brand of sleep deprivation. Red rimmed eyes filled to the brim with tears. He had barely been able to stutter out Clary’s name before a sob escaped Jocelyn’s mouth. 

 

He had shook with fear at what could have happened to Clary, desperation turning him towards the find my phone app he had installed when Clary had lost hers a few months ago. He’d followed it to the West Village. Nerves on edge as he walked past a sketchy looking alley way. 

 

He glanced down at his phone, coming to a stop in front of a high rise building. Apparently he was right next to the blinking dot that was Clary’s phone. He sighed heavily, and pressed down on the contact icon for Clary’s number. Hoping he would finally get through to her. 

 

When the call had been answered, he’d been ecstatic with relief. Ignoring Clary’s attempts at speech as he plowed ahead, his fears controlling his voice as word after word spilled out. He heard her saying something on the other end of the phone, before she interrupted him swiftly.

 

“We’ll come down to you Si.” She promptly hung up on him. 

 

He looked at the phone in his hand blank now the phone call had disconnected. 

 

We ?”  

 

To reiterate; Simon Lewis was confused

 


 

Stood in the lavish apartment of a man he’d never met, staring at his best friend in her PJ's with her hair bundled in a messy bun Simon felt nothing but relief and an intense lack of certainty. 

 

Clary was fumbling with her phone in front of him, muttering about how she needed to call someone in for back up. The extremely handsome Asian man stood next to her had a hand on her shoulder and was whispering to her while staring at Simon coolly. Simon barely managed to hold back a sharp gasp at how attractive the man was. 

 

Her gaze snapped up, her eyes met Simon’s. She turned her head and nodded softly at the man. He stepped forward and offered a hand to Simon, 


“Magnus Bane. Solomon Lewis, correct?” 

 

Simon’s hand rose to meet Magnus’ shaking it in a slightly frantic way, “Simon, actually.” 

 

The other man just nodded absently, “Why don’t we sit Sherman? Biscuit just needs to make a quick phone call.” He led Simon to the sofa he and Clary had previously been occupying. 

 

“Would you like a drink?” At Simon’s nod Magnus made his way towards the drink cart that stood next to the sofa. “Anything in particular?” 

 

Simon shook his head, glancing over towards Clary as she spoke hurriedly into her phone. 

 

“Who’s she calling?” 

 

Magnus chuckled lightly, “You’ll see.” 

 

The chatter from the doorway stopped and Clary stumbled over to where Simon was sat, collapsing onto the floor by the glass table with extra flare. 

 

“Clary, what’s going on? Why aren’t you at come? Why are you here? How come your mom is so upset? Are you okay?” More questions poured from Simon’s mouth as he worried the glass he had been handed. 

 

Clary let out a panicked giggled as she looked at her friend having a meltdown. 

 

“Simon, I’m fine. I-I’m not the best person who can explain it though. I can explain my personal circumstances but before that,” She paused, “You’re going to need a whole lot of background information that I’m still shaky on myself.” 

 

“Will Alexander be along soon then?” Magnus asked from where he was still stood next to the drink cart. 

 

“He said he’d be as quick as he could. He sounded really tired and stressed.” 

 

“Clary, we talked about this.” 

 

“I know. I know.” 

 

Simon coughed awkwardly as he listened to their exchange. Two pairs of eyes snapped to look at him. 

 

“Simon I’m sorry, I-I’ve been going through something these past few weeks. I just haven’t been able to focus properly.” 

 

“Clary, I’m not angry! I’m just worried, I’ve missed you.” 

 

“I promise you Si, as soon as Alec gets here I’ll give you the explanation you deserve.” 

 

The room descended into a tense silence. The sun sank in the distance and the room became dark for a small moment. Simon watched as Magnus snapped his fingers and a number of lights and lamps flickered to life around the loft. 

 

Simon gaped at the simple but obvious display of magic, Magnus smiled sheepishly. 

After what felt like hours, but was truthfully barely one, a knock echoed through the apartment. 

 

Clary jumped to her feet eagerly, only to be stopped by Magnus. Patting her shoulders Magnus gestured her to the couch.

“Stay here with your friend Biscuit. I’ll greet Alexander.” 

 

Clary chuckled lightly, “Have fun.” 

 

He waved her off and hurried to the entrance that Simon had come through an hour earlier. 

 

“Clary what’s going on?” 

 

She smiled at him, her eyes darting away from his guiltily. “It’s okay Simon.” 

 

A tired chuckle reverberated around the room as two sets of footsteps made their way into the living room. 

 

“Magnus, honestly I doubt his name is Saruman.”


Simon turned his head toward the voices, and this time couldn’t contain the soft, “wow” that escaped him. 

 

Clary had obviously heard heard him, considering the snort that she let out. He whipped his head round to face her, eyes wide with shock. He jerked his head towards the doorway and back again. 

 

“Who?” he whispered. 

 

Clary smirked, “Simon Lewis, let me introduce you to Alec Lightwood.”

 

Chapter Text

 

It wasn’t so much that Alec hated meeting new people, it was more that it was a massive inconvenience. It was the awkward conversations, the stilted questions that led nowhere, he strongly disliked it. 

 

He particularly disliked meeting new people who stared at him like Clary’s friend was. Simon was immediately recognisable thanks to how much Clary had spoken about her friend in the months they’d known each other. Alec honestly couldn’t count how many time Lewis had been brought up casually in conversation. It was to be expected; after all, they were childhood friends - it’s not unusual that Simon was in the majority of her stories. It was similar to how both Isabelle and Jace featured heavily in his. 

 

He knew how much Clary loved Simon. Realistically, Alec understood that he should put in some effort and make an attempt at being nice to the boy. However; the intense wide-eyed stare he was being levelled with was too much. He couldn’t stop himself from scowling in response. 

 

Hearing a soft "wow" leave the boys lips caused the scowl to deepen, and Magnus' chuckle at the slip up only made him feel worse. Do I really look that tired? he thought. He took a steadying breath and turned to Clary; 

 

"What the Hell Fray?" 

 

At Clary’s guilty look and unsteady smile, he could already tell what the night would turn into. He wasn’t looking forward to explaining the Shadow World and it’s inner workings to another mundane, and this one was so clearly unlike Clary. The Sight nonexistent in the boy. Magnus had pulled him aside for a second once he had entered, and reminded him to lift the base glamour he almost always kept activated. Jokingly mentioning that reappearing in front of the boy could traumatise him. Alec had huffed, rolling his eyes and hadn’t been able to stop the tightness in his stomach that came from the light laugh his sarcastic actions had gotten from Magnus. 

 

"Simon… Simon found me. and now he needs an explanation and I can’t do it properly Alec! I’m so new to this. I don’t know what to do. Please? he deserves to know the secrets I've kept from him." 

 

Alec sighed heavily, while usually he would be opposed to informing a mundane of the Shadow World - he can see that it  would be a bit hypocritical considering how easily he had divulged the information to Clary. He glanced out at Magnus out the corner of his eye, considering his easy posture. Magnus seemed pretty confident in allowing simon into the folds of the Shadow World. 

 

Alec took a moment, staring at Simon intensely- waiting to see if he would look away. Alec wasn’t a fool, he knew how intimidating he seemed to the untrained eye. When Simon refused to look away Alec snorted, nodding reluctantly he moved forward to perch on the coffee table in front of the sofa the two friends were currently occupying. 

 

He easily accepted the drink Magnus offered him, amber liquid sloshing in a short curved glass. He frowned at the slip of orange peel that had been placed by the ice in the drink. He cautiously took a quick sip and winced slightly at the flavour but smiled at Magnus regardless. 

 

Returning his gaze to Simon, he began to explain. 

 

"All the stories are true" 

 

As Alec explained, he couldn’t help but think it went smoother with Magnus behind him, chipping in when and where needed. The two bantered back and forth, joking about the stifling nature of Shadowhunters, and how ‘magical’ the Warlock’s were. Sly smiles exchanged whenever Simon, or even Clary, looked particularly confused. 

 

After what felt like hours, but was little more than half of one - the words came to a halt and silence fell over them all.

 

Simon sat gaping, staring at the unbelievably attractive men in front of him. 

 

Magnus had a wide smile on his face while Alec's remained in what Simon could only guess was his signature grimace. T alk about an impressive resting bitch face , Simon thought.

 

He turned his stare in Clary’s direction, who’s eyes had barely moved from him throughout the story. Clearly cautious, waiting for his reaction. 

 

"Simon?" She asked quietly. 

 

He sighed, 

 

"So, I guess you weren't lying about finding some guy bleeding out huh?" 

 

She huffed put out at the idea that he thought she was lying at all but had the start of a soft smile spreading across her face.  

 

"That would be that same ‘some guy’." She replied jabbing her thumb in Alec’s direction. 

 

Neither Alec, nor Magnus were paying them much attention at this point though, their eyes only for each other as they talked in hushed voices by the drinks cart. Magnus gesturing dramatically at the array of drinks and syrups. Alec had a small smile on his face, shaking his head every now and then. Before He finally nodded at something that Magnus had said. 

 

Magnus’ face could only be described as triumphant as he began to aggressively mix a drink with undeniable flair. 

 

“So, what? You see him bleeding out, and then the next thing I know you’ve disappeared and Vampires and Werewolves are real? Ho-How did any of this happen Clary? How did the two of you become so close? And why was he bleeding out?”

 

“Are you gonna breathe anytime soon Si?” Clary joked. “We met up a few times for coffee, and one thing led to another and, he’s a good friend Simon. Once you get to know him you’ll see what I mean.” 

 

Simon scoffed quietly, muttering under his breath. 

 

“I don’t know about that, seems like a bit of a bitch to me.” 

 

Clary’s face creased with annoyance, and Magnus’ long, overenthusiastic description of the drink he had been making came to a stop as they all turned to look at Simon. Alec seemingly the only one unconcerned by the insult. He was even nodding in what looked like solid agreement. 

 

“Don’t call him that.” Clary scolded, “He’s done a lot for me these past few weeks. I don’t appreciate you calling him that.” 

 

Alec sighed heavily, eyes rolling again as he returned to his place on the coffee table. A completely different drink in his hand, this one he was clearly enjoying. 

 

“I was on patrol that night.” 

 

At three confused looks he shook his head. He took an easy sip of his drink, carefully maneuvering around the slice of pineapple perched on the side of his glass. The ice clinking loudly in the pink concoction as the others waited for him to continue.  

 

“You asked why I was bleeding, in that alleyway right?” Simon nodded carefully, “Well I was on patrol. That’s one thing Shadowhunters are responsible for; patrolling for demons or rifts where demons could potentially come through. That night, Jace and Izzy-” 

 

Simon let out a confused sound, and Alec sighed again. 

 

“My siblings. Jace and Izzy had decided that they didn’t feel up to patrolling, so I went out on my own. Yes - it’s as dumb as it sounds. I went alone because if anyone found out about them skipping out there would be hell to pay”

Clary scowled, “Where did they go instead?” 

 

Alec hummed at her in question, 

 

“Where’d they go Alec? They weren’t still at the Institute because otherwise they would have been easily caught out. So?” 

 

“I-I don’t know what you want me to say Clary, they went clubbing.” 

 

“So you ended up injured in a fucking alleyway - and they were partying .”

 

Alec shook his head, “You’re making it into a bigger thing then it is Clary. If it had been a usual night I wouldn’t have had a problem, but - I stumbled upon a couple of Raum demons.” 

 

Magnus’ horrified gasp echoed through the loft, 

 

“Alexander. Raum demons? No wonder you were injured.” 

 

“What are Raum demons?” Clary asked. 

 

Magnus’ eyes were dark with tension as he answered her question.

 

“They’re one of the more clever demon classes. About the size of an average human but with tentacles for arms and they have this horrifyingly pallid, scaly skin. Their eyes bulge, pitch black and pupil-less. They’re terrifying and mostly used to retrieve things - or people , for whomever summoned them.” 

 

All eyes turned to the exhausted form of Alec. His eyes had begun to slide shut and his drink was dipping from his hand as his wrist began to go limp. His eyes snapped open forcefully when he realised Magnus’ had stopped talking. His eyes lazily focused on the three of them once more as he hummed softly in askance. 

 

“Alexander, if they were after you-” Magnus paused, “If someone sent them after you. You could be in real danger.”