Shadowhunters || Jimonael || The Day Love Died || Jimonael || Shadowhunters
Title: The Day Love Died – Writer's Month 2020
Fandom: Shadowhunters: The Mortal Instruments
Disclaimer: All rights to the Shadowhunters show reserved to Ed Decter, the books the show is based off and its characters belong to Cassandra Clare. This fanfiction on the other hand is entirely mine. No money is made with this, though reviews are more than welcomed.
Tags: polyamory (m/m/m), soulmate AU – death dates, character deaths (canon), hurt/comfort
Main Pairing: Raphael/Simon/Jace
Shadowhunters Characters: Jonathan Christopher 'Jace' Herondale, Raphael Santiago, Simon Lewis, Alexander 'Alec' Lightwood, Clarissa 'Clary' Fray, Luke Garroway, Rebecca Lewis, Elaine Lewis
Writer's Month Prompt: soulmate AU
Summary: Everyone bore the death dates of their soulmate on their wrist. One of Simon's had been long dead even before he was born and he never understood that, until he met Raphael Santiago, the vampire.
The Day Love Died
Writer's Month 2020
Growing up, Raphael Santiago considered himself lucky.
Every person bore the dates of their soulmates' death on their wrist. Raphael was one of the few who had dates on both his wrists – two soulmates. Blessed by God. Truly chosen.
And not just that, no, his soulmates were blessed with a long life too! Both dates on Raphael's wrists claimed 2016 as the year his soulmates would die. Raphael assumed his soulmates ought to be around his age, naturally. It also seemed so surreal however, to live past the change of the millennium. It seemed so far away still. Raphael was looking forward to their life together.
And then life threw him a curve-ball. Raphael died. Raphael was turned into a vampire.
Suddenly, everything changed, the parameters for Raphael's entire life – and his soulmates – changed. Because what did their death dates mean now? Over the following decades, Raphael had a multitude of theories on that. What if his soulmates were human and that was the dates they were going to die for good...? And Raphael would be left alone for eternity? Or would that be the days they turn into vampires, to be with him for all eternity? And if that was the case then... when was he going to meet his soulmates...? There was no time-limit anymore, it may take not just decades but actual centuries until he may meet his soulmates.
The first person to sooth this pain was Magnus Bane, who came into his life and was like a father to him. With him, Raphael could talk about the pain, about the immortality ahead of him, the curse of it. The fear of what that immortality may mean for their soulmates.
And then Camille brought a bumbling, rambling, awkward mundie into his life in 2016.
Simon Lewis talked a lot. Many silly, unnecessary things. Some funny. Raphael just thought about him as another mundie that Camille had dragged into his life. Until September first. The day on one of his wrists. It happened, Simon died. Simon died and the mark on Raphael's wrist tingled, showing him that his soulmate had died. Simon Lewis was... his soulmate.
Raphael stood aside with Jace Wayland and Clary Fray, watching a grave and holding his breath. Was that it? Was his soulmate going to turn, to be with Raphael forever? Or would he... not make it?
"Thank... Thank you for your help, Raphael", whispered Clary after a moment.
"Of course", whispered Raphael, not looking at her but at the grave. "He is... my soulmate."
"How-", started Clary, before she swallowed hard. "...Oh."
Raphael was absentmindedly rubbing the mark on his wrist. It was still tingling. He startled a little when Clary reached out and took his hand. Turning, he looked at the redhead in confusion.
"If... you're Simon's soulmate, you're family now", declared Clary seriously. "And Si, he is... he is going to make it. He's not going to stay dead. I know it."
"He seems too stubborn to stay dead", commented Jace with a scoff.
Scolding, Raphael wanted to glare at Jace, however... his face didn't match his words. There was genuine concern in Jace's eyes, his arms crossed tightly over his chest as he stood tensely. It made Raphael frown confused, however he refrained from commenting. Instead, he returned his attention to the grave, praying his soulmate would be returned to him so he could properly meet him.
Becoming a vampire was hard. Having a surprise soulmate to help him settle in though, it helped. It helped a lot. Raphael Santiago was his soulmate. That explained so much. And it also changed the game. These soulmarks, for the average person, they were like a confirmation at the end of the road, when the soulmate died one would learn that yes, this was their soulmate, they had the fortune of meeting their soulmate. But for Simon... For Simon, it was actually a 'look! Here is your soulmate! Enjoy!'. How amazing. And Raphael was a huge help, explaining everything about Simon's changes, about his new powers and cravings and life. He was very patiently teaching Simon how to control his strength and how to control his hunger.
"I always thought it was about... rebirth", mused Simon softly.
He was laying curled against Raphael, the older vampire gently running his fingers through Simon's hair. Simon's eyes were on his wrist, the wrist with Raphael's death date. Gently did he trace the date with his fingers. His head was resting on Raphael's chest.
"Rebirth?", echoed Raphael softly, a curious note to his voice.
"I mean, my soulmate dies in 1953? That is like four decades before I'm born! And then I have another date for 2016? So I figured... maybe my soulmate died in 1953 and gets reborn? That those are dates of the past life", replied Simon defensively.
"I... suppose that makes sense, all things considered", chuckled Raphael fondly.
"But... that means...", drawled Simon and switched to his other wrist.
"We have another soulmate", confirmed Raphael. "And we have only a month to find them before... before they also die. I hope, amor, that they will also... be turned."
"You hope? You... You mean they could...", asked Simon, voice wavering a little.
"Die for good. Yes", replied Raphael honestly. "I hope it is not, I have waited decades for you. And I am so lucky to have found you and that I... get to keep you."
"I wonder if we'll get lucky twice", hummed Simon, furrowing his brows.
Jace wasn't stupid, he had always known what the date 07.15.1953 meant. It meant his soulmate was a vampire. He knew that, because his father had beaten that into him since before Jace could even grasp what a soulmate was. Growing up, he thought a soulmate was a curse. His father had spelled that out often enough. Those with soulmates were cursed, because they bound themselves to these dates on their wrists. And Jace? He was being punished for – for something. He didn't know what for, but something alright. Vampires were vile, soulless leeches, that was what Michael Wayland had always told him. Each syllable punctuated by a punch.
Jace thought, after he came to the New York Institute, that if he just never got involved with vampires, he would never meet his soulmate, right? It was as easy as that. He would remain oblivious to who his soulmate was and things would pass just like that.
And then Clary entered his life and dragged the annoying mundie with her. And then the annoying mundie had to die and be turned into a vampire and Jace felt it – he could feel the tingling of his wrist, of his second date. 09.01.2016 – that had been the day. Jace hadn't even realized it at first, he had always been so occupied with the other date. He had always kind of hoped the 2016 date would be a nice respectable Shadowhunter girl who'd fight at his side and die in the line of duty, the way Jace planned on going out too. Instead, he stood there, realizing that he had two vampire soulmates.
He just stood aside, too overwhelmed and stunned, even more so by the realization that Raphael Santiago was apparently his other soulmate – because Raphael just... said it. Just like that. Like it wasn't a scary, life-altering thing. And Clary, she just took his hand, being all supportive.
When Simon returned, a vampire, Clary and Raphael were right there for him. In the aftermath too, Jace got to watch it from the sidelines. Simon started tagging along to missions and he kept talking about his soulmate, about how he and Raphael were taking it slow, getting to know each other, how kind and understanding Raphael was. It was pure torture.
What was even worse was the fact that he was... growing fond of Simon, with every shared mission, every silly joke and goofy smile. And now that Simon and Raphael were soulmates, Raphael got involved in all of this too. He helped them out, was cooperative, was spending time with them. He was intelligent, charming, well-read. Against better judgment, Jace started talking to him, bonding with him. The two got along surprisingly well, though they mostly talked about books. It was nice to talk to someone who didn't think that Jace reading books was some kind of euphemism. Someone who acknowledged Jace's intellect instead of belittling it and only focusing on his physical prowess.
Jace was falling in love with his soulmates, even though he really shouldn't, for all their sake.
"So—o much has happened", muttered Simon as he blinked dazed.
"Tell me all about it", prompted Rebecca with a serious look on her face. "No, seriously. Tell me everything. I can't believe you waited this long to tell me that you're a freaking vampire!"
Simon ducked his head, trying to hide in Raphael's arms. Raphael simply smiled, his arms around his soulmate tightening a little to sooth him. They weren't alone, Luke and Clary were with them too. Simon couldn't keep living like this, lying and trying to hide that he was a vampire. He had been so afraid of their reactions so he wanted to just... keep lying. Raphael, he had told him how it was, one night as they had been out on a walk with Rosa. Simon needed to cherish his family for as long as he had them, he could push them away, but he would regret it. So Simon had made a plan on how to best tell his family. Luke and Clary were like family, Luke also knew how to use his words better than Simon, so they had arranged for them all to meet at the Lewis household.
Elaine was shocked, rattled really, after learning that her son was a vampire, that her best friend had been a demon hunter who was now dead, that Luke was a werewolf and Clary was also a demon-hunter. That Simon had found his soulmate, who was also a vampire.
"I died", started Simon tentatively. "I died with vampire-blood in my system and it brought me back. I was... I was so afraid, mom. I thought I was a... a monster."
"But he isn't, Elaine", interrupted Luke in a low, soothing voice, reaching out for his friend. "Being like... Simon and me, it's... like a sickness. He was infected with this and it can't be cured, but it can be managed. He has never hurt anyone, Elaine. He feeds on blood from the hospital."
Elaine simply nodded, clearly overwhelmed with everything. On a fundamental level, she understood. She understood that she had lost her son, that he had died. That only a miracle had brought him back, regardless of how terrifying said miracle may be... because vampires.
"And Jocelyn...", started Elaine, picking up the pieces at random.
"She... Do you remember when we moved here and told you that she was hiding from her ex?", asked Luke softly. "He found her. She... She died."
Absentmindedly did Luke trace the date on his own wrist, a mournful look on his face. Elaine grasped his hand to squeeze it in support. She had spent so much time with them, was so close to them and to hear Luke only learning that she indeed was his soulmate after her death...
"We found my brother though", offered Clary, getting a surprised sound from Rebecca. "Yeah, I have a brother. Jonathan. Well, he goes by Jace. He's been helping us with this, with... navigating this new, supernatural world. He's great. I... I think you'd like him."
"So, Clary's bio-father was kind of after the Holy Grail-", continued Simon to move it along.
"Mortal Cup", corrected Luke with a slightly bemused look.
"Literally the same thing", muttered Simon dismissively. "So, Clary and Jace, they're part of these demon-hunters who are trying to protect the Holy Mortal Cup-Grail. Jace got abducted by their dad, we got him back but Valentine – their dad – he managed to steal some super valuable sword."
"I don't think that part is too important for your mother", whispered Raphael softly.
"Right, so, anyway, we managed to get Jace back, he kind of moved in with Raph's dad, who's a really powerful wizard – though they call themselves warlocks, actually", continued Simon. "And... yeah. That's... nearly everyone. There's Jace's adopted siblings Alec and Izzy too, but that's everyone. We are all working together to try and stop Clary and Jace's father."
"That... That is a lot to take in", whispered Elaine, rubbing her head.
"Yeah. Yeah, I... I know, mom. But... I can't keep lying to you. I'm... immortal now. I'll have to spend eternity without you at one point and... I don't want to waste the time I have with you by lying. I love you, I'm still your son. It's... kind of just... a change in diet."
"It's a bit more than that", tagged Raphael on. "However, he is still the son you knew."
Jace tasted so good. The way he moaned as the glamour fell, how he threw his head back to allow Simon better access to that delicious, beautiful neck. Nothing Simon had ever tasted could compare to Jace though. He didn't even have words to describe the taste, it was so delicious. Jace was practically pudding in his hands, so compliant, so beautiful so... short of passing out.
No, Simon needed to stop drinking. It was just hard. Impossibly so. He wanted to hold Jace forever, wanted to have that taste on his tongue forever, wanted to hear Jace make those sounds forever. The tiny little whimpers, the lustful moans. Oh, this experience was really not good considering Simon's giant-ass crush on Jace. Gorgeous, snarky blonde who could kick demon butt, that had been his type ever since he realized he was bisexual when watching Buffy the Vampire Slayer and having a crush on both, Buffy and Spike. Well, technically on all three, Buffy, Spike and Angel. But he considered himself to be dating the tortured brunette vampire already (though Raphael had been less dryly sarcastic to hide the pain ever since him and Simon had gotten together).
"I'm sorry. I drank too much. I could have killed you."
Simon scolded as he fed Jace his blood – yes, Jace had insisted 'he was fine', but the guy would say that even with his legs and arms literally torn off like some Monty Python sketch. Well, the Institute was under attack by terrorists and Jace had just nearly bled out. Glaring at Simon, Jace wiped his mouth and pushed Simon off, declaring it enough. He really needed to stop being so gloomy and doomy all the time and think he could handle everything on his own. Stupid pretty blonde.
"I would have let you", replied Jace after a moment, not looking at Simon.
And that was so not the thing that anyone would want to hear in reply to that. But Simon was far too torn by all of this to focus on Jace's suicidal tendencies (he was definitely going to have a talk with Clary about this though because damn, this was disturbing).
A few minutes later, as he realized he stood in the sun and didn't burn down, he definitely had other things on his mind. He was amazed as he could feel the heat of the sun on his skin again for the first time. Oh. Oh, he totally had to go and show Raph!
"Can we go one week without new information?", requested Elaine softly.
She was staring at Simon in surprise as her son stood in front of her door in broad daylight. She was barely getting used to him being a vampire. What was happening this time? Honestly, she was genuinely grateful to have Luke, he had been helping her so much getting used to this, understanding it all. She was still a bit tense – she tried not to be, but it was all so much.
"So I'm a Daylighter now. Haven't really figured out how that happened, but apparently I can now walk in the... well... daylight. Hence the name", stated Simon, waving around a little. "And, uh, Raph suggested that... maybe... once things settle down just a little bit... I... could return to college? Now that I can walk in the sunlight again?"
"I really do like that boyfriend of yours", noted Elaine with a faint smile.
"Yeah. Totally won the soulmate lottery", declared Simon proudly.
"That...", started Elaine, a small frown on her brows. "You always thought, and it was as good a guess as any, that you thought the passed date was... but this? Raphael? That means you actually do have two soulmates then, doesn't it? Are they... also a vampire? Or will be?"
"I have... no idea", admitted Simon after a moment, blinking slowly.
His heart felt heavy as his eyes fell down onto his wrist. October 15th. Today, as of this morning, it was October 3rd. Both him and Raphael had been acutely aware of the countdown ever since Simon had been turned. One month to find their soulmate and try save their life, or one month until their soulmate was going to become a vampire. Hopefully. Simon couldn't imagine losing them forever without even actually meeting them... or at least, without being aware of who they were.
"Raph and I, we... hope they'll become a vampire", whispered Simon softly. "I can't imagine..."
He looked up at his mother and no, he couldn't imagine losing his soulmate forever. It was different, Elaine and Levi Lewis had gotten to spend their lives together, even if not for that long ,they had been married, had two children they loved. And then the date had come, the one Elaine had always dreaded. So it was different, because Elaine had known exactly what she was losing.
"You have a very... strong soulmate who is going to help you through this", whispered Elaine. "You will find your second soulmate together, I know it."
Simon smiled faintly at that and refrained from telling her the other theory him and Raphael had. Yes, they may have a second soulmate. Or October 15th may be the day Simon and Raphael die for good. The day of their actual death and there were always only Simon and Raphael. No need to worry her over potentially nothing, who knew after all.
"Jace. You're getting tenser with every day."
Jace rolled his eyes and dodged Alec. The two were sparring. Something Jace really needed these days, because as his ever-observant parabatai had just pointed out, he had been getting tenser and tenser with every day. But then, how was one supposed to react to their pre-determined death?
Most people got to be oblivious to that. Yes, many thought they found their soulmates and hoped to be each other's soulmates. But between hoping and knowing for a fact – and seeing the date on your soulmate's wrist – there was a difference. Jace knew he was going to die today. October 15th, the date on Simon and Raphael's wrists. He knew they were his soulmates, which meant that must be his date. He was going to die today. In a way, he had tried to defy fate when throwing himself in harm's way, trying to destroy the Soul Sword – trying to prove that maybe, it was all a mistake. He wasn't really their soulmate, he'd die thirteen days before their fated date and they would get to meet their real, proper soulmate at one point in time. Instead, he hadn't died because he had extra angelic blood and instead of destroying it, he had... activated it. Instead of then dying to save Simon's life, the stupidly concerned vampire had to go and stop and save Jace at the last minute.
"I'm fine, Alec", growled Jace annoyed.
Because what else was he supposed to say? That he was hurting, that seeing Raphael and Simon together hurt? Because they were clearly happy with each other. Every single gentle caress between them made Jace ache with need. Not even in a sexual way, no. He wanted to be held by them, cradled close the way Simon had done when feeding off of Jace only days ago. He wanted to be looked at the way they looked at each other. So gentle and loving. Being loved like that, the thought alone made Jace's throat tighten up and his heart heavy. Because he knew that wasn't for him. He knew love only destroyed and he knew Simon and Raphael were perfectly happy with each other. They didn't need him – or want him. They were better off without him.
"Yes, that absolutely convinced me", agreed Alec dryly. "Talk to me. You still pining?"
Alec knew. Because lying to Alec was impossibly hard. Well, he didn't know everything – but he did know that Simon and Raphael were Jace's soulmates. Jace had told him, confused and lonely and feeling even more broken than ever before. He had told Alec about having found his soulmates, about both of them being vampires. About who they were. Alec just didn't know about the death date; he had never gotten close enough to Simon or Raphael to read it and Jace couldn't bring himself to tell his parabatai. It was enough that he was going to break Alec's heart by dying today.
Things were getting intense. Isabelle's friend Sebastian turned out to be the real Jonathan Morgenstern – which was a shame, Raphael knew that Isabelle had truly liked the guy, maybe more than just as a friend. The two of them, Raphael and Isabelle, had become rather close friends ever since she had come to him, pleading for him to feed off her. But he had better control than that and instead, had told Jace about his sister's troubles so Jace and Alec could get her the help she needed. She understood, she was grateful to him for it. And she had already been close friends with Simon, so it was easy for Raphael to grow closer to her too.
Raphael loved his soulmate. Yes, when he had first met Simon, he had thought him to be just another annoying mundie toy of Camille's – but since then, he had allowed himself to actually get to know Simon. Even the rambling, Raphael had started to find endearing. Simon was kind, understanding, eager to learn the things he was unfamiliar with so he could understand. Not just his new life as a vampire, but also Raphael. He told Simon about his asexuality, wondering about his reaction. Some people, they took it well and didn't care, others put so much focus on sexual activity. Simon didn't care. Well, at first he didn't quite understand, then he fell down a rabbit-hole on the internet trying to teach himself as much about asexuality as he could and then he declared that he didn't care. He had a very well-functioning right hand and he loved Raphael for who he was, not going to get sex from Raphael wasn't going to ruin anything.
They found their own rhythm together and grew even closer. Raphael was... happy. Truly, genuinely happy. He had one of his soulmates and they loved each other. Yes, he'd like for them to also know and embrace their other soulmate, but... they had eternity left. If today was the day their soulmate was turned into a vampire, they would still have eternity to find and meet them.
Right now, their focus had to be on tracking Valentine, who had escaped. The couple was here to help the Lightwoods, Clary and Jace. Though the latter two were currently gone. Despite not actually being blood-siblings after all, those two shared a bullish stubbornness and an incredible level of recklessness. Which was what had Simon so on edge right now, because Clary was his best friend and Jace was – well, they hadn't quite talked about it yet, but Raphael was aware that Simon held certain feelings for the pretty blonde. Something they should talk about once the dust settled on this war, once they had taken care of the Morgensterns for good.
That was the plan – until Alec suddenly went down, groaning in pain and clutching his side. Neither Raphael nor Simon could truly focus on that though, leaving it up to Isabelle to rush to her brother's side, because their soulmate had just died. Raphael by now already knew the sensation, having felt it when Simon had died, yet it was no less overwhelming the second time around. Especially since this was the first time Simon was experiencing it. Confused and overwhelmed did Simon reach out for Raphael, grasping his hand to cling onto him. The two were bracing themselves and as horrifying as the realization was that this was the moment their soulmate had died, they couldn't help but redirect their attention toward Alec, who was down on the ground and in pain.
"Alec, what's wrong? What happened?", asked Isabelle concerned, holding her brother.
"It's Jace", gasped Alec out, the hand on his side slowly lifting his shirt.
And as the sensation on their own wrists started to fizzle out, Raphael and Simon got to watch how Alec's parabatai-rune slowly faded away until it was completely gone. This was no coincident. Simon turned to look at Raphael with large, stunned eyes and Raphael was left just as dazed. Jace Herondale was their soulmate. And Jace had just... died.
"He's our soulmate", blurted Simon out, too wrapped up in his excitement.
"Wait, what?", asked Isabelle, confused and torn between Alec and the vampires.
"He... just... died", whispered Raphael, voice soft. "That is what Simon, me and... Alec... all felt."
"The... bond... is broken", agreed Alec, anguish on his face. "And I... I know you two are, but... I didn't know... I didn't know the date would be this soon... if I'd known, I would have tried... I..."
"You can't defy fate", pointed Raphael out solemnly.
All of a sudden, he was pinned by an angry Alec. "He's your soulmate and you're just accepting this?! You're just accepting that he died?!"
"I... I mean... it doesn't have to be for good", offered Simon, trying to get Alec off his soulmate.
"What?", asked Alec, his attention now fully on Simon.
"I mean that... even if... if Jace... died now... he still has my blood in his system? From the whole... Soul Sword disaster, right? It's not even been two weeks", pointed Simon out.
"Okay. Okay, Simon's right. We can still bring him back. But we should hurry", agreed Isabelle.
"Well, what are we waiting for?!", exclaimed Alec impatiently and agitated.
When Jace woke up, it was in total darkness and something felt inherently off. He couldn't breath, worse yet – he couldn't feel Alec. He didn't know where he was and why was it so dark? He fought his way out, until he could breath again – even though it still felt off.
"Jace! Jace, you-"
Feeling oddly on edge and wild, Jace whipped around to face the source of the voice. Alec. And... others. Faces were hard, everything still looked so blurry. His skin ached. His everything hurt.
"Jace. Look at me, Jace", prompted a voice, very firm but like velvet.
Jace found himself drawn to it. Tilting his head confused, he looked at the source. Raphael. He felt so raw, so vulnerable, he couldn't help but give in to his instincts. He made a low, desperate sound and leaned into Raphael's touch as Raphael cupped his cheek.
"Sh, corazón, I got you", assured Raphael gently, slowly pulling Jace closer. "It's hard, I know. You're on edge. You don't understand what is happening, but... be assured, we got you."
"Yeah. Yeah, we do", agreed another voice – Simon. "And what's important right now is that you relax and try not to freak out. Don't run off, stay with us, yeah?"
Furrowing his brows, Jace turned his head to look at Simon, just to have the vampire do as Raphael had done before. Cup Jace's cheek. The touch was gentle, soothing. Jace leaned heavily into it.
"Sh, it's alright", whispered Raphael. "You should rest a little more, mi precioso."
"That's a great idea. Rest some, Jace. I promise, we'll watch over you", promised Simon.
Jace didn't want to rest, he felt way too wired. But they were so soothing and their arms felt so safe and comforting and he was so very, very tired. Against his will, he fell asleep, leaning into the safety of his soulmates, too exhausted to question what was happening at the moment. Only when he woke up the next time did he feel a bit more himself and ready to question things.
Like the fact that he was laying in a bed, sandwiched between Raphael and Simon. The room didn't look familiar, but the interior design did. He guessed he was in the vampires' bedroom. In their bed, with them. Okay. What had happened and why was he in bed with his soulmates? Wait. Did they know? Did he blurt anything out? What was going on...?
"Hey, no freaking out, Jace, remember", whispered Simon gently.
They sat up and Jace reached a hand up to hold his head, but he paused when he saw his arm. His bare arm. His runes were gone. Wide-eyed did he start to pull off his shirt, checking his torso. No. No. Even his parabatai-rune was gone. What was going on? What had happened?!
"Cariño, please stay calm", requested Raphael as he also sat up, grasping one of Jace's hands.
"What is going on? Why am I here? In your bed? Where are my runes? What-"
"You... died", started Simon tentatively. "You... went with Clary, do you remember that?"
He... did. Yes. He had gone to Lake Lyn with Clary and then... Valentine... No.
"My... father... killed me", whispered Jace, voice breaking off. "But how am I here...?"
"You died, but... you still had my blood in your system", continued Simon, shifting a little. "We portaled to the lake, as soon as we realized what was going on with you. We arrived just in time. There was an angel – like a literal actual angel – Valentine had summoned him just before Clary had killed? Uh, Valentine, not the angel. Though Clary was just about to make a wish upon the angel. Which is apparently a big no-no in your society so... good we stopped her? I guess? Wouldn't really want to see my best friend go to shadow-jail for trying to bring you back. But... we did that... differently. That was a long way of saying... you're a vampire now, Jace."
Deep down, he may have suspected that. At the latest when he saw that his runes were gone. But he didn't want to believe it. He was... a vampire. His runes, the bond with Alec, gone forever. He was dead. His father had killed him. And... Clary had killed Valentine? Clary had been willing to make a wish to the angel to bring him back? This was... there was so much going on. Groaning softly, he just slipped back down to lay on the bed, burying his face in his hands.
"You should drink. It's important to feed after having just turned, to keep your hunger at bay. Until you can fully control it, you shouldn't risk going hungry", noted Raphael. "I'll get you something."
Jace hummed and just watched Raphael go. A vampire. Slowly, he let his hand slip from his face to check his pulse. Yep. Dead. Growling, he rolled over and buried his face in the pillow.
"I know how you feel. I mean, I wasn't killed by my abusive father – my father wasn't abusive either – but... the dying part. The turning without having a say in it part. The hunger and confusion."
Tilting his head, Jace turned to look at Simon doubtfully. Right. Simon had gone through this just a month and a half ago. He turned his wrist to look at the exact date Simon had died, without even thinking about it. He startled when fingers gently traced the date. When he looked up at Simon, the vampire – the other vampire – was staring down at the date with something pained in his eyes.
"You've known since I died, haven't you?", whispered Simon. "We don't need to talk about that now. You need to get better first. This has time. But... at one point, you will have to explain yourself, Jace. Because we are pretty mad about this. That's not gonna stop us from being there for you right now, because you need us, but... you will have to explain this."
Jace furrowed his brows and decided to hide from the world by pulling the blanket over himself. He was definitely not ready for any of this. Any. Curling up, he pulled the blanket around himself even tighter. He could hear Simon huff – though it didn't sound annoyed, it sounded... fond.
Having Jace with them was nice. Even if it was not entirely voluntary on Jace's part. He was a vampire now, staying at the Institute – even with his parabatai in charge – was not safe. Hotel Dumort was the best place for Jace to hide this out, to deal with his feelings in peace and to learn about what it meant to be a vampire. Raphael and Simon did their best to teach him. And Jace proved to be a better student than Simon; then again, he had the flexibility and training of a Shadowhunter so it was more a matter of learning to channel his new strength. The hardest part with Jace really were the emotions. Yes, dying had hit Simon hard too, but there were things Jace had lost through this that they would never be able to understand. What it meant and felt like to be a Shadowhunter and, most importantly, the parabatai-bond. To ease the pain, Alec came visiting at least once a day, having a hard time leaving Jace on his own. Though it seemed to help Alec to know that Jace was at least with his soulmates. And Alec wasn't the only one to come visit – Clary, Isabelle, Max, Magnus, even Luke had come to see him multiple times in the past weeks.
Jace was doing better. Moderately so. As much as one could expect, after the ordeal. But if there was one thing they had, it was time. Time for Jace to heal, to adjust to his new reality.
Still, even with all the time in the world, Raphael was growing more eager to hear what Jace had to say for himself. The blonde didn't seem to resent them, after all. They had gotten along before this mess and they were getting along now. Many days, Raphael found himself playing chess with Jace, or engaging in a conversation about whatever book Jace had plucked out of the shelf and read that day. Being confined to the hotel all day had the blonde bored and at least Raphael's library provided some distraction there. Another distraction Jace enjoyed was sparring – with Simon. After all, Simon insisted on tagging along to missions and Jace had long-since been saying that the vampire needed proper training for that. Jace's puppy-dog eyes were quite effective on Simon.
So, clearly the blonde didn't seem to mind them. Then... why had he kept this from them? He must have known as long as Raphael that they were soulmates. There had to be some kind of explanation, a reason for why Jace would hide this from them. However, Raphael didn't want to pressure him. Jace was going through a lot right now and if he felt cornered by his soulmates, he may try to run off to who knew where and get himself involved in something dangerous. It was what he exceeded in, after all. Attracting danger. So the best course of action, Raphael had decided, would be to drop the subject for now, keep their soulmate safe in their hotel and wait for Jace to open up on his own.
Simon looked up a little confused. He was laying on the bed, cuddled up to Raphael. It was already late night – or earliest morning, or something in between. They were ready to sleep, the night had kept them busy. Jace had been out all night, a trial run to go on a mission with Clary and Isabelle. He wanted to keep helping, even as a vampire. After weeks of training his control, they had thought it was time to give it a shot. Simon couldn't really tell if it had been a success though, because Jace was looking like a kicked puppy. And even after weeks, it was still strange to see Jace so rune-less.
"You don't have to apologize, mi cariño, but you do owe us an explanation. Does this mean you're ready to tell us?", asked Raphael curiously, his eyes on Jace.
"I'm sorry that you're stuck with me", clarified Jace, his arms crossed over his chest as he shifted in the doorway. "You two are perfect with each other and happy together. And now that you know I'm your soulmate, you're stuck with me, stuck taking care of me. It's all you've been doing for weeks."
Oh. Well, Simon would have preferred Raph's interpretation of those words there. Apologizing for lying was okay, but apologizing for being their soulmate? Was that it? The reason he hadn't told them the truth? Because he thought he was a burden to them? Without thinking about it, Simon walked over and pulled Jace into a tight bear-hug. Then, he proceeded to lift the blonde up and carry him over to the bed. When he sat down, he tucked the blonde between himself and Raphael.
"Don't be stupid, Jace", grunted Simon offended. "We're not stuck with you. You're our soulmate. We want to take care of you, help you. Besides, you... you were there for me when I got turned."
"That was different", grunted Jace defensively, trying to avoid looking at them. "You were mundie, you had no idea about the Shadow World at all. And it's not like you crashed at my place, much less for weeks, totally depending on me... I'm a... burden..."
"The parabatai-bond is a soul-bond. Dying broke your soul, Jace", whispered Simon seriously, cupping Jace's face. "No one expects you to bounce back from that quickly. We're going to help you and be there for you, as long as you need the support, Jace."
Jace shrank in on himself, as he always did when the parabatai-bond was mentioned. Gently did Raphael wrap an arm around the blonde, pulling him closer. He brushed a soft kiss against Jace's temple. One thing they had noticed very quickly was how touch-starved Jace was. He soaked every contact and caress up like a sun-dried sponge and both Simon and Raphael found themselves eager to provide Jace with all the cuddles and comfort that he may need. Eagerly did Jace nuzzle up into Raphael. With a broad grin on his lips did Simon lay down behind Jace, wrapping his arms around Jace's waist, snuggling up to the blonde. Jace sighed and closed his eyes, relaxing a little.
"We love you, Jace", whispered Simon determined. "I... I loved you way before I knew you were my soulmate. And I'd love you even if you weren't our soulmate."
"You're...", started Jace, too surprised to know what to say.
"We do", confirmed Raphael, running gentle fingers through Jace's hair. "I think I understand what's going on in your head and I think I know who's to blame for this. And... it's okay, Jace. It's not your fault, none of this is. Simon and I, we will wait for you, as long as you need, to say it back. There is no rush. We have eternity. And Simon and I will never... tire of you, or get annoyed by you. That's... what soulmates are for. We will support you. All we're asking is... that you don't push us away because you think we should feel a certain way. You think we should be annoyed that we have to take care of you. But we don't. If you feel that way, please, talk to us, can you do that?"
"I... can... try", offered Jace after a moment.
"That's enough", smiled Simon, kissing the nape of Jace's neck.
"I love you", whispered Jace, with his eyes tightly closed, avoiding them.
"Hey, no. You don't have to say it, like Raph said, we can wait for you, we-", rushed Simon out.
"No. I... I mean it. I love you. I've been falling in love with you two for months now."
"That's... wonderful", hummed Raphael pleased, smiling to himself.
"So... that means... that you'll stay here? With us? Even though you get to go on missions again?"
"No missions for now", sighed Jace frustrated. "Too much of a temper test still. Alec thinks I should take a couple more weeks adjusting to this whole... vampire-stuff."
It was so frustrating, but at the same time, he understood. He needed time. But right here, between his soulmates, he felt like time was... not a problem. He would be fine, at some point.
~*~ The End ~*~