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It Wasn't Supposed to be Real Fire!

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“In my defense!” Alec shouted, ducking under the wave of blue flames that didn’t actually burn anything.  "I didn’t see the harm in it initially!“  

"Didn’t see the harm?!” Magnus shouted back to him.  "Just because the loft and you aren’t on fire doesn’t mean it isn’t actual fire!“  

"You can see how there might have been some mild confusion considering!”

Alec slammed the door shut and took a second to breathe, looking up at the flames surrounding the entire loft, flames that Madzie and Max had spent hours playing with.  How the hell he was he supposed to know that it was real fire and that the hallway outside the front door was nearly impassable due to heat as a result?  

He turned and rushed back towards the kitchen where both of the kids were tossing flames back and forth to each other instead of eating lunch and forced himself to take a deep breath, even as some of the flames wrapped around him, giving him a hug.  The last thing the kids needed to see was him panicking, but they definitely needed to put the fire out.  Now.  

“Madzie, Max?” Alec called, drawing both of their attention.  They smiled at him.  

“It’s time to put the fire out,” he said, looking up at the flames crawling across the ceiling.  "It got a little bit out of control, and it’s hurting the outside of the building.“  

Madzie’s eyes grew wide and she looked up in horror.  "It’s hurting things?”  

“It hurt?” Max said, his big eyes filling with tears as the ball of fire in his hands was immediately extinguished.  

“No one is hurt,” Alec said, reaching out to the both of them, putting one hand on Max’s head and another on Madzie’s.  "But Magnus can’t get home.  The hallway is too hot, and it’s not safe for him to portal into the loft.  He tried.“  

Their big eyes turned to him and with a wave of both of their arms, the fire was gone, leaving the room in a rush of wind.  Alec sagged in relief and wrapped them both up in a hug.  A second later, Magnus was stepping into the kitchen, his clothes still smoking faintly.  

"Magnus!” Madzie shouted, squirming out of Alec’s arms, making a beeline for him, tears already streaking down her cheeks.  "I’m so sorry, I didn’t mean to make it hurt, was just trying to, to do an ‘llusion, and it wasn’t supposed to hurt anyone!“  

Max buried his face in Alec’s shoulder and started to cry, clenching his hands in Alec’s shirt.  "We’re sorry, Daddy.”  

“I know you are,” Alec said, his voice soft.  "It’s okay.  No one was hurt, everything is okay, and Papa is here now, which means everything is going to be okay.“ 

Magnus took a deep breath and nodded, wrapping his arms around Madzie before he picked her up.  "It wasn’t quite an illusion.  It was real fire, you just spelled it so it wouldn’t hurt the things you wanted to keep safe.  You did a very, very good job with that.  I’ll start teaching you how to make illusions soon.”  

Madzie nodded, her eyes scrunched shut, biting down on her lip.  "Are you mad at me?“  

Magnus shook his head and tracked Alec as he walked across the kitchen, murmuring softly to Max.  "No, not at all sweetpea.  I was scared.  I thought someone had attacked you and I was afraid, because I couldn’t get to you.”  

She looked up at him with wide eyes.  "You were?  But you’re not scared of anything!“  

Magnus wanted to laugh at the idea that he wasn’t scared of anything, when three of the most important people in his life had been in danger and he had nearly been beside himself with terror.  "I get very scared when people I love are in danger, and that includes the three of you.  Alec does too.”  

Madzie considered this and nodded again, resting her head against his neck.  "I’m sorry we scared you.“  

"It’s okay sweetpea.  I promise it’s all right,” Magnus said, resting his hip against the counter.  "Why don’t you tell me what else you got up to today with Alec and I’ll see what we can do about playing with some illusions later, hm?“  

Madzie lit up and Magnus lost himself in listening to the stories they’d made and the games that Alec had played with them earlier.  When Alec made his way back over to them, Max was asleep against his chest, his fingers still tangled in the worn shirt he was wearing.  

"Alec,” Madzie said, interrupting herself.  "I’m sorry.  I didn’t mean to scare Magnus, and everyone.“  

"Hey,” Alec said, leaning over to press a kiss to the top of her head.  "No one was hurt, and the flames are gone now.  Everything is okay.  Sometimes learning means getting a little bit scared, but we’re all okay, and that is what matters.  Now, how about finishing lunch, and we’ll see if we can convince Magnus to play Sharks and Minnows while I put Max down for a nap.  Sound good?“  

Madzie gave a firm nod, looking back towards where she had half a sandwich waiting.  "Okay!”