The radio in the lab flickers to life, despite the fact that none of Alec's team was anywhere near it. Nevertheless, he tunes it out. Science to do. (He doesn't hear Isabelle snickering at what the host is saying.)
Until sometime later, he hears his name.
"That new scientist – we now know is named Alec – called a town meeting. He has a square jaw, and teeth like a military cemetery. His hair is perfect, and we all hate, and despair, and love that perfect hair in equal measure."
He's looking at the radio now, eyes narrowed. This has to be some sort of prank. There's no way this guy is serious.
"He grinned, and everything about him was perfect, and I fell in love instantly."
Jace drops a test tube, and falls over to the ground, cackling.
"Hey." Isabelle says. "This place has super high levels of radiation. We're splitting up to check it out. You have the radio station."
Alec looks at her. "You have an ulterior motive, don't you?"
"I don't know what you're talking about."
"You want me to talk to the radio host because he said I was cute."
"Well, technically, he said-"
"Iz, whatever. I don't need a boyfriend. Number one rule of scientists- Scientists are always self-reliant."
"Alec, just talk to him. You deserve it."
"I came here to do science, not to find a lover."
He ends up going anyways.
"Magnus Bane, Voice of Night Vale. It's a... pleasure."
"A-Alec. I'm Alec."
"Are you looking for something?"
"Yes, I'm looking for some material..."
"Boyfriend material, I hope?"
Alec forces a laugh, says goodbye, and leaves.
It's only after he's driven away that he realizes that the radioactivity levels should have fried both he and Magnus alive.
Alec gets used to his every move being reported on the radio. He won't ever get used to the way Magnus says his name.
It's been about six months since he and his team came to Night Vale. It's been 3 since he and Magnus became friends.
It's been two hours since he realized he likes Magnus as more.
"Jace. You don't get it. I like him!"
"Dude, he likes you, too. Ask him out, no big deal."
"It's a HUGE deal!"
"I think you're overreacting, Alec." Clary, who was born in Night Vale but had grew up in New York like the rest of the team, pipes in. He hates her. He tells her as much.
"I'm Isabelle's girlfriend, so no, you don't."
He doesn't want to admit she's right so he says "Just because you make my baby sister happy doesn't mean I'm obligated to like you."
Alec's smiling but he doesn't notice. The Secret Police do, of course, but that isn't the point.
A year after Alec's arrival in Night Vale, he almost dies.
He can hear Magnus sobbing over the radio before the weather plays and he passes out.
He calls Magnus, after he wakes up, and they meet in the Arby's parking lot.
"After everything that happened, I just... wanted to see you." He tells the radio host.
Alec rests a hand on Magnus' knee, and Magnus rests his head on Alec's shoulder.
They understand the lights.
It's a start.
Alec shuts the door behind him quickly and runs a hand over his face. He's so stupid! His first date with Magnus and he had gone and done experiments on the trees in Mission Grove Park! Well. He had kissed Magnus, at least. There's that. A grin starts to bloom on his face at the memory of the other man's lips on his own. It had been short and sweet, soft, but it still managed to get Alec's heart beating fast. He spends the rest of his night trying to figure out how to turn the people of Night Vale back into people with a smile on his face.
He can see beakers and Erlenmeyer flasks filled with bubbling liquids. He can see numbers, so many numbers, and it is perfect. This is how you become... perfect.
There are hands on him, suddenly, and he's being pulled, carried out of the condo. The flasks and the numbers disappear, replaced by Magnus, tears in his eyes. They collapse to the ground and Magnus throws his arms around Alec's neck.
"Oh, apple pie, why did you do that?"
Alec presses a shaky kiss to Magnus' temple. "I- I just thought it was time... for us to make- to make a home. Together."
Magnus pulls away, yells "Yes!!", and claps a hand over his mouth. He lowers his hand.
"I mean, yes. Yeah, that, that would- that would, well, that would be neat!" Magnus says, giggling softly.
"I love you." Alec blurts out.
"I love you, too." The radio host responds, like it's the easiest thing in the world. "But let's not get a condo"
"No, not a condo."
Alec sneezes again, glaring at the cat sitting on their couch. He wishes Chairman Meow had stayed floating in the men's bathroom of the radio station, but he had gotten hurt and Mags had pulled those eyes and Alec was weak.
"Ok, we're ready, dear." Magnus proclaims as he walks out of their bedroom, Zoe wheeling behind him.
"Did you make the bed?"
"Yeah, it was on my to-do list."
"Honey... is it crossed off? Checked?"
Magnus looks at his list and frowns. "No...? I don't- I don't understand what you're getting at."
The scientist sighs. "Never mind. This picnic isn't going to eat itself."
"It might. You never know." Zoe says. "Picnics are notorious for eating themselves, Uncle Alec. Ask Uncle Magnus."
"Zoe!" Magnus exclaims, mock-offended. "I thought we agreed not to talk about that!"
Zoe laughs and pushes her wheelchair out the door.
The doors close behind him.
"But I do know two things."
"And what is that?"
"I love you."
"I love you, too. What's the other thing?"
"You just said it."
Magnus sees him, in the after party limo.
"Alexander..." he whispers. The crowd parts for their Voice as he makes his way towards his scientist. "Alexander!"
"Hi, babe." Alec laughs when Magnus throws himself into his arms. "Sorry I missed the opera. I had to let the people in the desert otherworld know that I was returning home, and staying there."
Magnus pulls away slightly. "Staying here?"
"This is your home. You belong here." Alec smiles softly. "This is also my home. I belong here."
"Alexander, anywhere we're together is home."
"I wouldn't want to be anywhere else than here." Alec murmurs, and kisses him.