a choiceless hope – Chapter Five – COMPLETE – alexanderlightweight

Content Rating:
  • NC-17
Warning(s):
  • Dark Themes
  • Discussion-Child Abuse
  • Explicit Sex
  • Self-Harm
  • Violence-Canon-Level
Genre(s):
  • Action Adventure
  • Established Relationship
  • Romance
Relationship(s):
Magnus Bane/Alec Lightwood

Word Count:
9478/30345/25000

Author's Note:
This is a sequel to my story the sensibility of cider which has Magnus and Alec having a different first meeting, before the start of the show.

*While not explicitly discuss, this is canon-verse and warlocks are conceived via demonic rape, a war is going on and there is racism and prejudice among shadowhunters towards downworlders and the Clave are homophobic. Now that we've come to an end the story will be edited and added to and posted to my AO3 under the same author name!

Summary:
Alec may be the HOTI but that doesn't mean that returning parents don't cause dissent in the ranks or complications for his relationships.

“As I still have to discuss payment with your lovely leader, why don’t we just add on a trip.  It’ll be better than walking back to the Institute for Ms. Fray.”

Magnus’ offer was reasonable, especially to a still fretting Jace and while Izzy gave them both a suspicious look, no one protested as Alec agreed and stepped back, away from the portal that Magnus formed.  

Alec waited only long enough for the portal to blink out of existence and then he turned, completely intending on grabbing Magnus by his lapels and bringing him in for a kiss.  Instead he found Magnus already there, glamour dropped and golden eyes wide and hungry as Magnus grabbed his shirt and pulled him close for a demanding kiss.

When they finally parted, Alec had to settle his brow against Magnus’, finding his breath a battle as his fingers tightened from where they’d gone around Magnus’ waist.  

“You can’t look at me like that for over an hour and then have my face be the payment for the demon without repercussion, Alexander.”  

Alec paused, a soft grin on his face as he nuzzled Magnus’ cheek, “I love you.  You knew that already.”

“I did my love, I do know that.”  There was something in Magnus’ voice, some kind of terrible vulnerability though as he held Alec close, “and now you do as well.”  

There was a whisper of cool magic against Alec’s jaw, chasing on the ghost of Magnus’ breath and suddenly his mind cleared from a fog he hadn’t known existed.  

Wide-eyed he pushed back, still holding onto his boyfriend but giving them enough distance so that he could look at him clearly as his memory returned. 

It hadn’t occurred to him until this moment, but while he’d seen everyone’s sacrifice, he hadn’t seen Magnus’.  Now he did and it was to remember watching his own face form, his head pillowed on Magnus’ arm as he slept in his boyfriend’s bed.

“I am very good at memory magic,” Magnus said and there was a dangerous glint to his eyes as he raised a hand and let his thumb press down on Alec’s lower lip.  “To part with it was painful enough, but I couldn’t bare to share such a memory with anyone else.”  

Alec had to kiss him again, unable to help himself from pressing forward and tasting Magnus’ laughter.  Fingers pressed solidly against his nape, Magnus rings pressing cool against his overheated skin and he groaned into the kiss, a wistful moment as he pushed aside the thought of his duties.  

It seemed that lately, all he got was a taste of what he craved and a touch of what he needed.  It was pure misery, to be this close to Magnus and know that while they could be reckless and playful, quick and fast wasn’t what he wanted or needed.  Parting was a small torture and he had to stop himself from rocking forward, opening his eyes to catch the end flutter of Magnus’ lashes and the hint of a smile on his face.  

The high of his emotions waned once he was back at the Institute.  Magic had healed his bruised lips and skill had hidden the marks placed expertly along his runes and the papers in his hand were enough of an alibi and Alec felt wild with joy.  

For a time.

Then the reality of his circumstances crashed down on him as Mirai motioned to him and furtively pulled him aside. 

“I received a message from our contacts in the Clave.”  She said quietly, “your parents have plans to return, citing family business.  I’m not sure when, just that it’s soon.”

Alec held back a groan and wondered just what had gone wrong now.

“Is this about Jace’s actions?”  He asked quietly, “I thought they’d agreed to let me handle it in-house before informing anyone?”

“They haven’t yet made a decision about that yet, so no.  I’m not sure why she’d coming, but I can’t imagine it’s anything particularly good.  From what I understand, political tensions are still high in Idris and your success is being kept under wraps, with how complicated the situation has become.  There’s too much at stake for Circle sympathizers to realize they’re being rooted out.”

Alec nodded, understanding what wasn’t being said and accepting it for what it was.  While he was in fact doing a stellar job, he couldn’t be commended because acknowledging how he was doing would be to announce the issues he was solving.  While the news of the Circle’s activity and the discovery of Valentine’s daughter would eventually come out, for now the Clave was going to stall it. They’d done the same with Hodge’s situation and he knew it was because slowly, across the globe they were going back and revisiting people in similar situations, to keep them in check.  

Alec raised a brow as his mother deftly inserted herself in a place of control in a move that, if he hadn’t planned for this, would have thrown him and all his work away as she ignored him in order to praise Jace.  

Alec bit his lip and clenched his fingers and kept calm.  For a woman who prided herself on control, the reality of it was that Maryse had little.  Alec was the team leader, the first soldier in the line of duty and though he’d always submitted it through his parents, he was the one who took care of the Institute.  Assigning Izzy was one thing but Jace was neither a diplomat nor a negotiator and Alec hoped that this would go better than he was expecting.  

Alec got the text from Magnus, a simple request to meet for drinks and he risked a chance to grin dopily at the screen before he typed a quick reply.  He assigned a few shadowhunters -those who needed both the practice of teaching and of their drills- to train Fray and left them with strict instructions before leaving.  

It felt like the walk to Magnus’ had barely begun when his phone began to buzz angrily.  He was tempted to ignore it and wait the few minutes it would take him to arrive at Magnus’ when a fire message whipped out in front of him. An agitated snarl tore from his lips as he caught it and the flame of it was quenched by his fist as he read.  

Fray had taken off, barely moments after he’d left.  Ditched her would-be instructors and then created enough of a mess that she was able to slip out and away, making yet another mess for Alec to clean. 

The wards parted before Alec like sludge, the magic of them clinging to him as he passed through Magnus’ door.  It was invasive and hot, a too warm hand of power tracing his spine and stealing his energy, burrowing under his skin and the feel of it only made him more concerned for Magnus. 

The text had been vague, perfunct and completely void of it’s normal endearments.  It had filled Alec’s veins with a heavy dread and he’d activated his battle runes before grabbing his weapons, intent on facing any foe of Magnus’ as though it were his own. 

Instead he found Fray.  The same Fray who’d supposed to have returned to the Institute by now, after her earlier kidnapping and their altercation with the New York Pack.  

She was in Magnus’ apothecary, eyes red and cheeks wet as she struggled with a potion and Alec left her there, more worried than ever.  Magnus would never leave anyone alone in his apothecary without a very good reason, especially someone with as little experience in potion making as Fray.  The expense and danger of his ingredients alone weren’t worth the risk, not to mention his organizational system was too mixed together for Magnus to allow it for any small reason.  Alec didn’t bother asking her anything, brushing past her without a word and ignoring her question as he looked for his boyfriend.  

He found Magnus by the couch, leaning over a prone figure that Alec didn’t care to identify, not when Magnus was wavering before his eyes.  Alec’s arms wrapped around Magnus’ body before he could even take his next breath, barely managing to hold Magnus up as his knees buckled.  

Without Magnus even needing to ask, Alec offered his hand and his strength, both freely and his boyfriend locked eyes with him for one, vast moment before he did.

Magnus felt the aching void of his magic, hungry as it snapped it’s jaws and he refocused on Alec’s energy.  

For all that they were part angel, nephilim magic was tainted by angelic science and grace.  They were less the offspring of angels and more a creation. Compared to the natural and wild rush of demonic energy, Alec’s magical presence was potent and visceral with stark clinical edges that left the taste of frost on his tongue.

It was like standing on the top of a mountain and inhaling the crisp air of a blizzards fury and letting the world white out around you, as you lose yourself in the potential of it. 

His hands were large and warm and around them, the other occupants of the room were occupied with Luke as Alec held him, arms braced around him.

There was a hitched breath, the hiccup of Alec’s gasp as it was wrenched from his chest and then Magnus felt whole.   

All of Alexander filled the hollowness of his core, magic sinking deep into him as he shared his energy and gave to Magnus what he couldn’t take for himself.  

The weight of Alec’s energy settled about him like a cloak and Magnus buckled forward with renewed power as his magic thrived on Alec’s sacrifice.  It took a long, almost painful moment and suddenly Clary was there, pressing the potion to Luke’s lips and Magnus let his magic wane as the danger passed.

Lips pressed against his hair and Magnus let himself drift for a moment, retreating into the safety of Alec’s arms and strength and the feeling of being held.  

“Alexander, darling I have magic for that.”  Magnus reminded, fondly amused as he watched Alec tend to their couch.  Well, his couch but he hoped one day soon that it would be considered their couch.

“I think you’ve overexerted yourself enough for one day,” Alec said and he rose fluidly, letting the rag drop into a bowl and crossing to place his hand on Magnus’ arm.  “How are you feeling? I’ve never seen you that low on magic,” there was a pause, “you worried me.”

“My day was busier than I expected and I wasn’t planning on dealing with quite the amount of drama that came to my door tonight.”  Magnus admitted, “Luke remembered where my place was from my dealing with the packs, but I don’t exactly advertise my place as an emergency room, or as a hotel.  This was an unprompted emergency and I don’t appreciate our evening being ruined.”  

Alec huffed and leaned in to press another kiss to Magnus’ head.  

“I’m sorry that you keep getting dragged into this, you already have so much to worry about.

Magnus tilted his head up, silently asked for another kiss that Alec was more than happy to give.  It was a soft press of lips that opened up a yawning hunger that Alec had forgotten existed. The first bite of a delicious meal that made you realize how famished you truly were.  

It was over all too quickly, with Magnus pulling away and patting Alec on the chest with a pleased little smile.  

“You’re sweet my love, but I was always going to be involved.  Better it be this way, then to drag outside forces into this. Imagine the mess we’d have on our hands if you and I weren’t together.”

Alec shuddered at the very thought, shaking his head to stubbornly dislodge the idea and then reaching out to snag Magnus’ fingers with his own, “that would be a nightmare.”  

“Yes, it would.  But that’s all it is, a nightmare.  Here in this life, we have each other and anything else is just a bad dream.”

Much to Alec’s chagrin, both Jace and Fray’s mundane friend were acting like territorial puppies and he’d watched them carefully, wondering if he was going to have to pull them apart.  He didn’t, but it didn’t make him feel any better. Jace should know better than to poke at the mundane, sudden ability of the Sight or not.  

It wasn’t until he’d exchanged a glance with Magnus that he’d wrangled his parabatai, sending him back to the Institute for supplies.  The mundane had been sent home and for once, he hadn’t argued. Fray had refused to leave and since Luke was going to be using Magnus’ spare room, there hadn’t been a reason to kick her out. 

That didn’t mean that Alec was happy about it.

Magnus found himself exhausted, leaning back on his mountain of pillows and sending longing glances to the bathroom.  Alec had insisted that Magnus rest while he cleaned up and Magnus was regretting agreeing to that. He wanted to be in there, pressed close to Alec and enjoying the warm water of the shower with him.  Instead he huffed again and tried to focus on his phone and the messages he was scripting. The door opened what felt like an eternity later and Alec walked out, sweats low on his hip and hair dripping as he tried to dry it.  

Magnus sat up, beckoning with his hand and smiling as Alec threw himself next to him, handing him the towel and pillowing his wet hair on Magnus’ thigh for better access.  It was a soft delight, to gently dry Alec’s locks and watch the beading water be absorbed as volume slowly returned to Alec’s soft, fluffy hair.  

“Are you feeling better?”  Alec asked, words muffled by his thigh and Magnus smoothed his hair out, pondering just how he was feeling.  

“My magic will be back before morning.”  He settled on, because that was the easiest part to focus on.  

“I was worried,” Alec reached up and placed his left hand over Magnus’ heart, “you looked almost desperate, Magnus.”  

It was with a grimace that Alec nuzzled against Magnus’ embrace, squeezing him a little tighter for the words he was about to share.  

“My mother is insisting that arranging a marriage for me is the only way to restore our family name.”

“Oh-”  Magnus sighed.  He sounded weary but unsurprised, “well I suppose we should have realized there would be some consequences for your parents, what with you starting an investigation.”

“What do you mean?”

“What do you mean, what do I-”  Magnus trailed off and Alec watched as his face contorted with concern and worse, fear.  “Alec, please tell me that you already knew about their involvement?” 

Alec had a sinking feeling that he knew exactly where Magnus was going with this but had to shake his head and watch as devastation broke across Magnus’ face.

“Alec, if I had realized you didn’t know, I would never have advised you as I did without first informing you.”  Magnus made a motion, as if to reach out and for the first time, Alec got to feel what it was like to have all the comfort he wanted be withheld.  Without even thinking it through, his own hand reached out and he held tightly onto Magnus’ own. A thumb ran soothingly across his skin as Magnus took a deep breath, “your parents involvement in the Circle was well known.  I never thought that you might not know. I assumed you just didn’t want to talk about it and well, I wanted to think about us, not your parents.  They were part of something that stole so much from me, I didn’t want them to taint this too.” 

“That’s not.  It’s not your fault that I didn’t know Magnus.  And it was never your duty to inform me.”  Alec tried to settle his thoughts, “but please.  I need to understand this better. They were in the Circle?”

“Yes, your mother was in fact one of his generals she was… uniquely talented at codebreaking.”

Alec felt his face blanch and it was only the tight grip on his hand that kept him steady.  

“So this, my imminent need to marry in order to restore my family honor, is because while they’ve been gone I’ve been pressing to make sure that if the Circle does come back, it doesn’t have any strong ties in Idris.  

“Your efforts to ensure peace and safety are good ones.  But all things have consequences and I suppose that there are those that even your parents cannot outrun.”

Magnus watched with concern as Alec’s face went through a series of emotions before the creases of brow smoothed over, leaving a slate blank.  Even Alec’s eyes had dimmed, an impenetrable coffin to the torrent of emotions that had risen inside him and Magnus ached to see it. Immediately he used his grip on Alec’s hand to pull him forward, back into his arms so he could hold Alec near and press his lips to the dark lines of Alec’s rune.  

Words were a helpless gesture and so Magnus instead used his hands and magic to ground Alec, looping his arm tight around Alec’s waist and giving a soft hum until Alec finally bent his head and tucked it into the crook of Magnus’ neck.  

“I’m so sorry that it’s come to this, my love.  That you were ever put in such a position with so few choices and such limited information.  You did the best you could with what you had, you did the right thing.” Magnus wasn’t sure how much his reassurances were worth at the moment, but he meant every word of it.  

Alec shuddered against him, fingers pressed so hard against the fabric of his shirt that Magnus knew the soft silk would be ruined but he didn’t care, letting that feeling of desperation flow through him so he could just hold onto Alec harder.  The chasm above loomed wide and Magnus would not let this be what tore them apart.

“Are you worried for your siblings?”  He asked gently, “did your parents give them an ultimatum as well?”  He was unpleasantly surprised by the wet laugh that tore from Alec, it turned into a sniffling cough as he shook his head.  

“No.  Izzy will be an official diplomat to the Seelies, because she already has ties to them and Jace remains without fault.  Izzy even made it sound like they gave me a choice about authorizing their unsanctioned outings. When actually, I denied them and they did things anyway.”  Alec said, his voice despondent and words muffled by Magnus’ neck.

“Wait, so you are expected to marry and your sister just gets to carry on.  That’s hardly fair.”  

“Well, yes and no, she carries on but she carried the weight of diplomacy now, which is an added title.  It means that there will be more scrutiny on her relationships with the Seelies as well. That’s still a punishment.”

“So your sister gets a slap on the wrist and you deal with both your nose being broken and the consequences, lovely.”  

“It won’t actually come to that and I’m still the Head of the Institute.  This is a matter unrelated to my position as a leader. If anything, the Clave can’t remove me because it will look like they are siding with Circle sympathizers, which is something they can’t afford what with the resurgence and renewal of activity.  They can’t afford another uprising. No, the issue is the internal politics of my family.” Alec pulled away from Magnus and gave a tight smile, “but it’s also not something she can force.”

Alec left the bed to pace, fingers digging into the flesh of his hand as he worried the muscle there.  It was a slight tick, barely noticeable and could be explained away as a cramp he was rubbing out, except perhaps for that fact that Magnus knew better than that.  Knew Alec better than that.

Magnus watched Alec who turned, looking at him with the kind of desperate and adoring devotion that he’d only ever dreamed of.

Magnus wasn’t quite sure what he was doing, just that it felt right to do something.  He pushed back the covers and followed Alec and without even thinking of it, his magic swirled into his hand and when he stepped forward and took Alec’s hand in his own, pulling it towards him.  

“Alexander,” Magnus said haltingly and with his free hand slowly twisted a ribbon of magic weaving about his palm.  “They can’t arrange a marriage for you if you’re already married.”

“Magnus?”

“There is nothing in this world, or any world that could make parting from you bearable.”  Magnus breathed out a soft breath and the magic shattered into gold and blue mist, clearing to show a pair of rings cradled in his hand.  “Will you, Alexander Gideon Lightwood, marry me?”

“Does this mean you’ll be marrying me too?”  Alec blurted out, eyes wide and astonished and Magnus’ laughter was a happy break in the atmosphere, his humor wet with unshed joy. 

“Yes, yes Alexander.  That’s exactly what it means.”  

Alec woke to sunlight insistently stabbing past his closed eyelids and he grumbled, aware that it was his own fault.  He’d been so exhausted from both the emotional turmoil and then a rather indulgent bout of engagement sex, that he’d fallen asleep on Magnus’ side of the bed.  Which meant that while he still got his cuddles, the sunlight that was normally blocked by Magnus’ body was now tormenting him.  

He huffed out a grumble, hand smacking over his eyes to block out the light and winced when a solidity he didn’t expect, came into contract with his brow.  It took a moment for him to realize and remember and he extended his hand, forgetting his disdain of the morning as he admired the gleam of metal on his finger.  

He turned it this way and that, watching how it caught the sunlight and it wasn’t until Magnus chuckled that he realized he was being watched.  He turned, caught by the way golden eyes were looking at him so adoringly and felt his heart beat faster at the sight of his fiancé. 

“As much as I hate to disturb the perfect picture of my future husband admiring his engagement ring, it is morning and my wards alerted me that not only has your parabatai returned and is waiting impatiently at my door, but Ms. Fray and Lucian are both up and about as well.”

Alec groaned and let himself fall back against the pillows, pouting as Magnus got up, taking with him, Alec’s cuddles, fiance and his view away as Magnus walked to the bathroom.  

Alec did not appreciate Clary and Jace’s plan.  Or the fact that they’d failed to appropriately pull it off or that Luke, who was only just the newly healed Alpha of the New York Pack was now being interrogated by mundanes.

In fact, as he found himself trudging through the sewers with Luke, after the other had thankfully been released, he found himself on the edge of snapping crankily.  On top of all of that, he and Luke had then come across Clary alone, despite the fact that he’d purposefully stayed behind so that she and the Cup would be safe. If he’d gone with his first instinct, he would have confiscated the Cup but he’d thought that Jace and Clary would at least manage to stay together.  

Now he was back at his Institute, watching Jace throw out commands as though they were training daggers and once again, disregarding the consequences.  

Alec shook his head in disgust as the two reunited, throwing away commonsense and caution and making out in the middle of his Operations room.  Considering that they’d been the reason that he hadn’t been able to stay in Magnus’ bed that morning, he was not pleased and he knew that he was gruffer than he could have been, when finally confiscating but the Cup and Clary’s necklace.   

He locked it into the safe with his stele, wondering just how much longer he was going to be able to keep everything hidden.

Alec frowned as he traced his fingers over the thick pack he’d taken from Magnus’ office.  It was a pack of cards and it had caught his interest and Magnus hadn’t objected, had even smiled indulgently amused by Alec’s interest.  At the time, Alec hadn’t mentioned why he’d been drawn to the pack, why something in the back of his mind had honed in on it, he hoped that Magnus would understand.  

There in the pack lay a card, nearly completely alike to the one that they’d retrieved that morning.  Tarot cards had been on his mind and now they were in his hand and it had been pure instinct, to bump into Fray and exchange the cards.  

Now, held under lock and key was Fray’s necklace and a tarot card that held magic but nothing more.  There had been no witnesses to bear evidence to Fray using the Cup and Alec licked his lips as he held the card up to the light.  He was tempted to see if it looked nearly as nice lit up by flames, but years of revering it as a historical and divine artifact stayed his hand.  

Instead he slipped it back into the deck that he’d borrowed from Magnus and placed that into his pocket.  

Alec stood, posture relaxing but he stayed in front of Max, signaling Darkwater to come and take his little brother away and never dropping eye contact from the woman before him.

“Clave envoy?”  He asked, testing the waters and risking a quick look at Mirai who was frowning but not outrightly hostile, “this way then.”

He didn’t request her to follow him but commanded it and was pleased when she responded well, settling into step with him.  “The Clave has made a decision then?”

“Your leadership is not under scrutiny,” was the quick promise, “however due to your parents involvement, there were concerns that there might be a conflict of interest.  I’m here to lay those concerns to rest.”  

If Alec hadn’t known about his parents involvement in the circle, this would have been a moment that could have ruined him and everything he worked for.  As painful as it had been, he was grateful that Magnus had been the one to introduce the truth to him and be there to comfort him in the fallout.  

“That’s completely understandably,” he said and gave a short nod when she looked at him in surprise, “my mother is unaware of my promotion, if there is anything of concern with my parents loyalties, this is the kind of move that will shake them up enough for them to make a mistake.”  

“You won’t defend them?”

“My parents sins are not mine to bear.”  Alec shrugged as if it placed no weight on his shoulders “in the meantime, I have an entire Institute to defend and a city to protect.  The last thing I want is my own family divided because of my parents past.” –

“Alright then, this certainly makes my job easier.  I will of course not make any major decisions without going through you, though I do have some leeway as my position of envoy is not just a cover.”  

“Understandable,” Alec allowed and motioned to his office, a place that had been overrun of late.  “As my mother commandeered my office on her return, I think it’s only fitting that you do the same.”  

Lydia gave a surprised laugh, as if shocked by his gesture and Alec hoped that he’d been given if not someone on his side, then at least a tentative ally. 

Alec had grown far too used to long nights and days with enough hours to get everything done.  Since his siblings return, time had seemed to speed up and now with Fray in his life, time seemed to be in a race and he was constantly losing.  

Lydia’s arrival had brought even more discontent to his family and instead of rallying behind Alec and the position it put him in, his siblings were also incredibly suspicious of her and their duplicity irked Alec.  

Jace had been officially, temporarily demoted -which only meant that he couldn’t lead teams or go out on solo hunts- and Alec had used that to put him on a training team with Clary.  Unfortunately, training Clary seemed to give Jace the idea that taking her on unapproved missions could count as ‘training trips’ and Alec had been forced to add Darkwater and another Shadowhunter to his lessons.

He had also given Jace a limited amount of ichor duty, which he knew Jace loathed.  Jace considered it not only beneath him but a waste of his skills, prowess and abilities.  Alec was hoping that the reminder that all of Jace’s skills were worthless -if he didn’t use sense- would work, but so far it had been a slow and messy journey.  Between that mess and this new issue of random and weirdly impervious forsaken that were roaming around, attacking Downworlders, he did not have enough time.  

As it was, Alec had meant to be training, taking his frustrations with everything out on a bag as sweat dripped down his body and it was only a soft, pleased hum and the clicking of very familiar boots that made him realize he wasn’t alone.  He paused, chest heaving as he caught the swaying bag and turned, breath catching in a way that had nothing to do with his exercise.

“Magnus.”

“Oh, don’t mind me.  I’m quite enjoying the view.  I think i should take up touring the Institute more often.”  Magnus smirked, eyes deliberately roving up and down Alec’s bare torso and Alec had to clench his teeth to hold back a groan.  He wanted and he knew that Magnus also wanted and he was so close now that Alec was tempted to forget every reason why it was a bad idea to just grab Magnus, kiss him and then drop to his knees and worship that smug, insufferable look away from his gorgeous face.

His intent must have been clear because Magnus sucked in a startled breath and then chuckled, low and deep and pleased and reached out to tap on his chest warningly.  “None of that just yet, my love. There will be plenty of time for it.” His eyes promised Alec so much as his mouth softened into a smile, “meanwhile, I believe this report is supposed to go to the Head of the Institute.”  He offered the folders and Alec sighed, getting a grip on himself as he took them with a small murmur of thanks.  

Alec shrugged into his sweatshirt, ignoring Magnus complaint as he zipped it up and then tucking the files away.  He wasn’t quite sure how he managed to pull himself together enough to escort Magnus out of the Institute and he paused, lingering on the front steps as he watched Magnus.

“Is something wrong?”  Magnus asked him, concern in his voice and he seemed to forgo his earlier worries, stepping close to Alec.

Alec had to shake his head, negating Magnus’ concern as he hesitated, shuffling slightly from what he was about to do.  The commitment he was about to make and one he couldn’t even properly articulate, for both their sakes.  

“You know I trust you.”  It was a statement, it wasn’t a question but he also couldn’t help the wavering of his will, testing the waters as Magnus’ eyes grew dark with concern.  His fiancé furtively looked around, fingers flicking out to make sure there were no errant eavesdroppers.  

“Yes, of course Alexander.  What is this about?”

“I need you to trust me in return.  I want to give something to you and I need you not to ask me about it, or have me confirm anything.  Okay?”  

Magnus chuckled, the worry washing away as a look of delight warming his eyes, “you had me worried, sweetheart.  Well, I’m not much into surprises, but I will always make an exception for you.”

Alec willed away the stutter of his heart and shook his head, “this is a different kind of surprise Magnus.”  He couldn’t say anything more, not if he wanted this to work. “I need you to put this somewhere safe, somewhere only you can ever access it.”

He pulled the deck of cards out of his sweatshirt pocket, holding them carefully and before his fiancé could ask him anything, Alec opened the deck, shaking out the top card ever so gently.  The painted Cup gleaming in the sunlight and when Magnus’ shocked eyes met his, Alec gave a wordless shake of his head. In his mind he silently begged Magnus to not ask questions that he couldn’t afford to answer. 

“I’m returning your cards,” he said instead, “thank you for indulging me.”

“Alexander, I would do anything for you.”  Magnus reminded him and power sparked between them as Magnus took the cards.  “Thank you for returning these.” There was a weight to his words and his fingers brushed Alec’s deliberately, closing the deck and keeping the cards safe.

Alec nodded and watched with relief as Magnus began to spin magic, calling up a portal and he sighed, his part in this was done.  For now.  

In the future, if this was ever brought before the Clave, well.  Magnus could be placed on the Soul Sword and no lie that could harm him would ever leave his lips. 

Alec turned away, deciding it was better not to watch as Magnus left and he heard the portal blink out of existence and heaved a sigh of relief, returning to his Institute and the duties he could not afford to neglect.  

“So, what new calamity has Clarissa brought into our lives?  I assume this new tragedy came in her wake, as most things do these days.”  

Alec turned, surprised by his fiancés presence and his eyes grew wide to see Magnus in the doorway of his Institute bedroom.  He’d known peripherally that Magnus had been summoned to look over the wards and had planned on seeing him, but taking care of a scared, but determined not to show it Max and then tending to his own wound had delayed him.

Magnus’ eyes were soft but he was frowning, a hint of magic sparking off of his skin and Alec licked his lips, wishing he could taste it.  As if reading his thoughts, Magnus eyes traveled to his lips and the frown turned into a smirk as his glamour dropped, revealing golden eyes that were dark with concern and desire.  

“I think that requires a little warlock tlc,” Magnus said and stepped into the room with solid, deliberate steps.  The door swung shut behind him and Alec swallowed as it locked, the soft sound a loud echo and Alec felt like a wounded animal being cornered.  He licked his lips again, wondering just what words he was searching for but fell back into silence as magic unraveled his bandage and Magnus’ face creased in distress.  His fiancé let out a small, upset hiss of disapproval and then his eyes narrowed in concentration and warm magic flared to life, wrapping around Alec’s arm.

Alec stifled a groan, trying not to shift and give himself away.  Healing magic knitted his skin back together, easing the sting of poison with heat and then it spread.

Alec could feel it licking at him from the inside out, teasing him as if it were Magnus’ kisses chasing the slope of his spine and it was only the hand on his jaw that kept him upright. 

“Almost done, my love.”  Magnus soothed, as though he didn’t know exactly how his magic was making Alec feel.  As though each breath wasn’t an exercise in control and he wasn’t shaking apart and unraveling at the seams.  

Alec gritted his teeth, trying to concentrate on the pain but it was too fleeting, dancing away from his senses and a whine slipped unbidden past his lips.  Magnus chuckled but offered him no relief other than moving his hand, offering him benediction in the form of a caress and Alec pressed into the touch greedily.  He kissed Magnus’ thumb with intent, tasting the salt of his own skin there and feeling relief when Magnus finally let him suck it into his mouth.

For a moment he just reveled in it, the weight of Magnus in his mouth, the flavor of him and he closed his eyes, teeth sliding gently over Magnus’ skin. 

It was a comfort that he didn’t know he’d been missing.

Magic sparked against his tongue and Alec shuddered at the taste of it, swallowing greedily around Magnus’ fingers as though they were his cock.

Alec shuddered as magic wrapped around his cock, stroking him quickly as he swallowed around Magnus fingers.  There were two in his mouth now and he was grateful for them, grateful for the way they pressed down on his tongue and how everytime he scraped over them with his teeth, he was rewarded with a spark of magic.  It only encouraged him further and he rocked into both Magnus’ touch and Magnus’ magic, wondering what it would take for Magnus to forget where they were and just fuck him.  

It was not to be.  

Magnus tutted above him, pulling away his fingers and hushing him when he whined in protest.  Instead Alec found his chin being lifted up, spitslick fingers gripping his chin and then he was being kissed.  Lips pressed insistently against his, Magnus’ tongue demanding an entry that Alec was happy to give, sucking lightly on it before he got lost again.  

Pleasure took him apart as he came and Magnus put him back together again.  

It ended with the haze of his mind slowly breaking and a soft kiss to his cheek while Magnus murmured, “your wards are now impeccable, Mr. Lightwood.”  

Alec moaned, wonder filling him as he was reminded that he wouldn’t be just Mr. Lightwood for much longer, that he had a much larger promise waiting for him.

“You’re very magical, Mr. Bane.”  His voice was hoarse, a rasp that ached and he got to watch as Magnus shivered promisingly, a hint of what was to come.

It took time for Alec to catch his breath and Magnus stroked his hair as his breathing slowed and his sweat cooled, magically freshening him up and pressing soft kisses to his face.  

Alec nuzzled him when he did but Magnus couldn’t help his fingers continually traveling to the wound he’d healed.  He hated that Alec had been hurt and that if something had happened to him, Magnus could never have come to his side or his aid.  If it hadn’t been for the wards being sieged, he never would have been called to the Institute.  

“I can’t have that happen,” he said softly and when Alec gave an inquiring hum he trailed gentle fingers along his jaw.  “I can’t risk you being hurt and not being able to help you, Alexander.” Alec blinked at him, brow furrowed and tension returning to his face.  “What if we were to,” and Magnus hesitated, “What if we were to marry? Tonight, even. I’ll need to ask a favor from a friend but we could do it.  Marry legally, binding even in the eyes of the Clave.”

“The Silent Brother you know?”  Alec asked and Magnus nodded, hoping he didn’t seem overeager.

“I want that.  I want to marry you, tonight.”  

Magnus didn’t realize how desperate he’d been to hear Alec’s agreement until the words left his mouth.  

“I can give Lydia and Mirai temporary control of the Institute, it’d be understandable to take a few personal days considering that Lydia is here to look into my parents and Hodge.  Too much of my interference will make her unable to do her job and the Cup is safe.” Alec let out a soft, delighted grin, “let’s do it.”

“Tonight then, you can decide if you want your siblings to know or not.  Simply text me about a portal and we’ll get ready at the loft, alright?” Magnus asked, determined to go and get everything ready that he needed to.  

“I love you,” Alec told him and Magnus ached with the knowledge of just how true that was.

To his slight disappointment, Alec hadn’t been able to find Jace or Izzy.  He hadn’t gone looking for Fray but he had a feeling that wherever she was, his siblings were there too.  It had been a deliberate but painful choice on his part, to decide that marrying Magnus was more important than sharing the joy of the moment.  Someday, he would have a different celebration of this union, one to share with the world, but this one would be theirs and private.  

Alec paused in his thoughts, frowning as he reached for his stele, trying to find it.  It had been specifically placed in his pocket, as he’d known that he might need it while he was out, but now it was gone.  For a moment he wondered if it had fallen out when Magnus had healed him, before he remembered that shortly before Magnus’ arrival, Max had been in his rooms.

“I am going to put him on ichor duty for the rest of his life.”  He muttered to himself, hoping that Max wasn’t getting into too much trouble back at the Institute. 

“What’s wrong?”  Magnus asked from the doorway and Alec lost his breath to see him there, resplendent in a suit with gold and blue accents and he lost himself for a moment, thoughts fixating on his fiancé before he remembered he’d been asked a question.

“My stele is missing.”  Alec huffed and worked on finishing the buttons of his shirt, “and Max had his taken away.  He came to visit me in my room, shortly before you arrived. I thought he was checking on me but now I think he had more ulterior motives.”  

Magnus frowned, something dark tinting his eyes before he brushed it away and then he hesitated, “what if it was possible that someone else wanted your stele, is there a reason they would need it?”  Even as he spoke he snapped his fingers, summoning Alec’s stele with an ease that belied the fact that he’d attuned himself to the magic of it.  

“No.”  Alec shook his head firmly even as he took the stele from Magnus, “stop.”  

Magnus did, an expression both achingly pained but tender stretching across his face, “dar-“

“This is our night, Magnus.  This is for us.” Alec’s voice almost broke but he cleared his throat, “I want this.  With you. Whatever happens, we know that the cup is safe.  They would have succeeded in their plan the moment they used Max, I would never have suspected that they’d bring him into this.  I can’t, you told me right?“ He looked at Magnus hopefully, “that I can’t blame myself if they don’t listen. This is what you meant?  I can have this, can’t I?”  

“You can have anything you want, my love.”

“Then I want this, the night that you promised me.  Our future together, uninterrupted, just for one night.  The cup is safe and my Institute is warded more protectively then it’s been in centuries.  Let me have you, us. Let this be my priority, even if it’s just for a night.”

“After tonight, everything changes Alexander.”  

–    

Alec fidgeted, a part of him wanting to reach for his bow. 

What he was doing wasn’t technically illegal, but it sure felt like it.  Having a Silent Brother not only witness his actions but help him carry them out felt blasphemous, but he couldn’t regret a single action that had led him to this moment.

Well, he actually regretted quite a few but those weren’t his burden to bear and lay solely on other peoples actions, his own he was fine with. 

Now he stood here, baring his body and soul to the love of his life and it felt like the safest, most true thing he’d ever done

Across from him, looking utterly resplendent and without a glamour to hide any of him from the world, Magnus was staring at him with all the devotion of a thousand lifetimes.  

“In war and in peace,” Magnus said, his voice caressing each word, “I will stay by your side.”

“In defeat or in victory, my place is with you.”  Alec promised in return and he handed over his stele without hesitation.  

“To my heart I bind you, to my name I give.”

“My home is yours, my name I offer freely.”

Alec took a breath as he found the words he’d not yet discussed with Magnus, but they felt right and now, with a witness he knew he had to declare.  In Magnus palm, the stele turned a dark, lurid red and Alec watched without fear as it was poised above his wrist. Magnus paused, no doubt waiting for his nod but instead Alec gave a soft smile and whispered, “neither angels nor demons can part me from you.  In life or in death, in heaven or in hell. I will always belong to you.”  

Magnus gave a small noise, something deep and victorious and he pressed the stele against Alec’s skin and Alec’s breath stuttered.  It burned but oh how he welcomed it. 

Angelic runes activated like the burn of dry ice, so cold that they were hot.  Magnus’ power felt like hellfire against his skin and he bit his own lip to stifle the cry that wanted to break free.  He locked eyes with Magnus, staring into delighted golden orbs and grounding himself on the adoration he saw there. This pain was the smallest price to pay, to bear this mark from Magnus and he let himself sink into the pain, a haze fogging over his senses as he breath shook with each deep, deliberate inhale.  

Alec had never felt this before but he loved it, this opening up of himself to Magnus and feeling the weight of the promise that they’d made, together.  

Alec fought a laugh as Magnus’ teeth trailed too gently over his ribs, his hands going to Magnus’ hair in an attempt to stop him.  He was not going to let being ticklish ruin the moment.

“Magnus,” he complained before his laughter disappeared into a gasp as his belly was nipped, the right side of too hard.  Alec repeated Magnus’ name, begging as bruises were sucked along the inside of his thigh. Magnus’ goatee brushed against the raw skin in a way that left Alec bucking up, needing more.

Cool metal pressed casually against his cock and Alec groaned again, a sound deep and low in his throat.

“Unfair,” he managed and clenched his teeth in surprise as a thumb expertly pressed against his slit, smearing precome down the side of his cock as Magnus let him rock into his hand. 

“What was that about me being unfair?”  Magnus teased, a smirk on his face as he propped his chin on Alec’s hip and watched him.  His glamour was down, pupils wide and rings of gold barely visible in the dim light.

Alec whined, missing the grounding sensation of Magnus’ hair beneath his fingers and instead twisted gold sheets beneath his grasp, fighting for control.  Magnus was merciless in his sweet assault, a contemplative hum filling the air as he worked Alec over with just a hand around his cock.

Alec submitted to that feeling, letting the weight of Magnus’ presence take him down as he sunk into pleasure. Magnus was intent on torturing him, or at least on bringing Alec to a place where he could lose himself in sensations rather than thoughts, and Alec had never wanted anything more.

Lips found his, teeth digging into his bottom lip until the sting resonated through his entire body and he chased that feeling and the taste of Magnus’ mouth when he pulled away.  His hands were trapped, magic keeping him pinned down and Alec couldn’t help the huff that escaped his throat, or the impatient wriggle he gave, determined to redirect and command Magnus’ attention.  

“Hush now, let me take care of you darling,” Magnus said.

It was a command that Alec was all too happy to follow.  

Magnus would have happily painted a picture of the image Alec made, if he’d had the patience.  A divine creation, laid out for his delight and desire.  

His magic wrapped around Alec’s wrists, holding him down in a familiar game as his shadowhunter’s chest heaved and trembled with breathlessness.  Every whimper, every shudder was a gift from the normally stoic man and Magnus treasured them.

Alec’s stomach jumped under his touch, muscles clenching as Magnus dug his nails over the skin and admired the lines he left there.  

Magnus chuckled softly.

“Magnus,” Alec gasped out.

Magnus bent down and pressed a kiss to Alec’s cock, licking at the salt there and enjoying the way Alec’s thighs trembled under his hands. Magnus kissed the head of his cock slowly, taking his time to enjoy the flavor and the whimper it earned him before taking Alec fully into his mouth.  He hummed for a moment, enjoying the pulse of Alec’s cock in his mouth and the way he could tell Alec was close. When Alec came, it was with a shuddering gasp and fingers gripped so tightly onto Magnus’ arms that he left shallow indents and bruises.

Magnus took his own cock into his hand almost absently, biting at his own lip as he staved off his orgasm and took a breath to center himself.  

“You know,” He said contemplatively, voice steady as though he weren’t so close to coming that he could almost taste his own desperation.  Alec blinked open his eyes, damp lashes clinging together for a moment as shuddery breaths ran through his body, “I did make you a promise and now here you are.  All gorgeously laid out before me, my husband.  Mr. Lightwood-Bane.”

Alec gave an aborted whimper, something between a groan and a desperate plea as he hooked an ankle around Magnus’ calf and tugged.  It wouldn’t have moved him, not with how little leverage Alec had but Magnus let himself fall forward, catching himself above Alec and letting his necklaces drag over Alec’s skin.

Magic jumped eagerly to do his bidding, spreading slick warm over his fingers and Magnus appreciated how fine-tuned it was to his will.  Alec hissed at the first touch, thighs trembling but fighting back the instinctive urge to close his legs and Magnus hummed appreciatively, “So good for me, my love.”

Alec arched into his touch and the praise, opening up to it and mindlessly begging with his body for more of Magnus’ touch, for more of everything and Magnus found it impossible to deny him.  

In that moment, looking at the man who was now his husband, bound to him by word and vow and magic, Magnus knew there was not one war he wouldn’t be willing to wage and win if it kept Alexander his and happy, forever.  

That last thought was a fleeting one.  One he pushed aside as this was a happy moment and not one to be tainted by ‘what ifs’ and sorrow.  Instead he added a second finger, crooking them so that his name on Alec’s lips turned into a broken cry of exaltation and Alec’s fingers scrabbled desperately at his arms, looking to ground himself. 

He rolled his wrist, catching Alec’s cry first with his mouth and then deciding he enjoyed the song, bent to press his teeth against a nipple, adding his own joy in a deep chuckle when Alec’s hands immediately pressed to his hair, threading through the locks with a grip nearly too tight.  

“So impatient,”  Magnus teased, loving every moment of it and when Alec tugged reprimanding on his hair, he scraped his teeth along Alec’s collarbone in retaliation.

Alec squirmed, clenching around him when Magnus tried to take his fingers away.“Want you, Magnus.”  

“You have me.  Every part of me.” 

Is a devoted promise and Magnus meant every word as he lined his cock up, pushing into Alec in a smooth thrust made all the sweeter for how Alec immediately tightened around him.  Magnus settled there, letting Alec get used to the feel, a smirk curving his lips as Alec began to squirm, impatient for him to move and enticing him with his reactions.  

“Do you need something, my love?”  Magnus asked, pitching his voice conversationally to hide his breathless glee.  Alec looked up at him, confusion in his eyes before it darkened to outrage as he realized Magnus’ game.  He wavered, bottom lip sucked in between his teeth as he made his decision and then he smiled, stretching out under Magnus and clenching tighter around him as he trailed a hand up and down his own chest. 

“No, I’ll make do.”  The words were very clearly a taunt but Magnus let them stand for a moment, too caught up in watching.  Alec gave a sigh, very obviously intending it to sound relaxed but Magnus caught the hint of frustration as he scrapped nails down his own skin, faint red lines intersecting with the runes on his torso.  

Magnus chuckled, shaking his head and trailing his hand up Alec’s chest, tugging lightly on his chest hair and enjoying the squirming it won him, “You’ll make do?  On our wedding night? There’s nothing you want to ask for?”  

Alec tangled his fingers with Magnus’ and brought then joined hands to his mouth, kissing the band of Magnus’ wedding ring, “It’s our wedding night.  I shouldn’t have to ask.”

“You’re right, my husband should never need to ask.” 

Magnus tangled a hand in Alec’s hair, pulling back to angle him for a deep, distracting kiss.  Thrusting his tongue in just as he pulled out and slammed back in, hard. Alec’s groan was mingled with the taste of his sudden desperation as he kissed greedily back, welcoming Magnus’ movement and taking his kisses as though they were as rewarding as being filled.

Magnus fucked him slowly, delighting in how desperate Alec was beneath him and how eager he thrust his hips up, trying to match Magnus’ movements.  He put his hand on Alec’s sides, tempted to hold him down with magic but using only his strength and Alec whined, trembling under his hold.  

It would be easy to lose himself in the pleasure he took from Alexander but Magnus wanted to remember every victorious, intimate moment of this.  Alec was his husband now, the first and only one Magnus had ever claimed and committed himself to in such a way. The way Alec reached out for him, held onto him and worshiped Magnus with his lips and words and touch and how he himself was reverently adored in return.  When Magnus came it was with his lips pressed to Alec’s, catching the hitch of his breath as desire flooded his body and Alec shuddered apart beneath him.  

Alec drifted as Magnus watched him, his face smooth in rest in a way that it often wasn’t while awake.  

Alec gave a grumble of discontent when Magnus moved, hand silently reaching out for him and Magnus caught it, pressing soft kisses to his knuckles and lips pausing over the band around Alec’s finger.  

Their wedding ring.  

Magnus’ nuzzled the cool metal, tongue flicking out to taste the magic he’d stored in the band and satisfied when his own familiar power sparked back at him.  Alec moved towards him, nuzzling against his side and he let his hand drop to pull him closer, bringing the sheets and blankets with him and cocooning Alec next to him.  

There was still so much to be done and their world was on the edge of war.  Alec had favor with the Clave but that was sure to dry up very soon, especially if all of Alec’s actions over the last few months were discovered.  None of it was illegal, but Alec wore his bias proudly and he was biased, for Magnus.  

The world waited for no one and they’d taken what small moments they could and now they had this.  Magnus knew there would be trials ahead but this was a choice they’d taken and one well worth it. Alec had been the hope in his world and Magnus had been helpless to not let him in, despite all the walls he’d built.  

About alexanderlightweight

10+ years on and off in fandom. Due to reasons it's been a while so I'm enjoying immersing myself back into fandom and writing! I write primarily in Shadowhunters though I occasionally step out.

3 Comments

  1. I’ve really been getting into Shadowhunters lately and this story ticked all the boxes. Lovely concept, well written. Thank you for sharing!

  2. What a lovely ending. Thank you for writing this.

  3. Great story and awesome ending. Thanks for sharing!

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