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"Good morning, Alexander"

Alec perks up at the mention of his full name, a small smile managing to seep through during this ungodly hour of the morning.

As usual, his eyes catch the source of the voice. Magnus Bane.

Magnus showed up two months ago, desperate to be caffeinated, and while Alec was supposed to be closing up, he couldn't help but feel a little sympathy for the poor man, so he sat him down and got him the drinks he wanted.

"Good morning, Mr. Bane. The usual?" Alec asks over his shoulder, his smile broadening when he sees that Magnus has indeed brought little Max with him.

Magnus sits up on a stool, giving one of his signature grins. "Yes, please!" He exaggeratedly exclaims, "I swear, one of these Fridays are going to be the death of me, my dear"

Alec chuckles lightly, his back to the older man as he grabs a cup and begins with Magnus' usual.

Max starts to gurgle, ripping another smile from Alec, who finds himself way too weak around the baby.

"Not the hair, darling" Magnus murmurs, "not the hair"

Alec steals a glance over his shoulder, his heart jumping in his chest when he sees Magnus' eyes shut, his ringed hand slowly disentangling his son's fingers from his hair.

"Here, let me help" making his way towards the two, he places the drink on the till and reaches up, using his forefinger and thumb to coax Max's fingers out of Magnus' hair.

Magnus laughs, and for a second, Alec stills, just to admire the lighthearted chortle with a smile that made his eyes crinkle at the sides. He was smitten. Don't blame him.

"Thank you, darling" Magnus says, reaching for the cup and bringing it to his lips. His eyes don't leave Alec's, and Alec automatically finds himself looking away, cheeks burning.

Stop it.

Magnus' phone rings, a funky beat that suited Magnus so well, and Alec looks away, needing distraction. "Ah, I've got to take this" pulling his phone out, Magnus looks back at Alec, "can you hold Max for me, darling?"

Alec, with a stuttered yes, reaches over the bar and cradles Max in his arms.

Max burbles, looking up at Alec with those wide blues before he reaches up and takes ahold of his hair, happy to find messier locks to tug at than his father's.

Magnus spares Alec one last smile before bringing the phone to his ear and clearing his throat to put on his formal tone.

"Hello. Mr. Bane speaking" he begins, "yes, no, I said I'll make it. No, don't worry. I'll find something" he sighs, rolling his eyes, "I'll be there" he catches Alec's gaze, then yaps his mouth in a dorky imitation of the person he's talking to.

Alec chuckles, shaking his head affectionately before resting a light kiss to Max's forehead. Magnus has to lick at his lips to subside his smile.

After Magnus' done bickering with whoever was on the phone, he slides his mobile back into his pocket and brings his drink to his lips before lowering the cup with an exasperated sigh.

"Rough day?" Alec questions, not meaning to sound probing, but merely wanting to start a conversation.

Magnus sighs. "You don't know the half of it" he mutters, "there's a défilé de mode tonight and I'm dead if I don't attend" the way he's sitting shows no indication of him wanting his son back, so Alec adjusts the baby in his arms, and Max rests his chin on the barista's shoulder.

"Where's the problem?" Alec questions, "it'll be fun, you're a.. uh, a very fashionable man, I'm sure you.. like fashion"

Alec doesn't miss the small smile that passes Magnus' lips as he looks away with a fond shake of his head, "oh trust me, Alexander, fashion week is something I'd never want to miss"

Alec blinks, eyes fixated on the older man. "So what is it?" He eventually asks when Magnus shows no sign of spilling the beans.

"Max and Rafael"

Alec nearly chokes. "There's another one?!"

Magnus convulses with a wave of laughter, "you speak like they're animals!"

Alec's cheeks gain colour as he begins to apologise. "I'm so sorry, I didn't mean to– I just.. you look 20!"

Another chortle manages to escape Magnus' glossed lips. "Don't worry about it, my dear" he eventually says, an easy, lopsided smile replacing his laugh. "I'm actually on the edge of 30"

Alec gapes. Magnus really didn't strike Alec as a man over 23. 25 tops. God, he was gorgeous.

"Oh" Alec breathes out, voice laden with genuine regret, "I'm sorry"

Magnus smirks. "Don't worry" he says, "you're quite good for my ego"

Alec laughs involuntarily, tilting his head and resting a kiss on Max's head.

Magnus' brows rise.

"So, uh.. Rafael?" Alec questions, "how old is he?"

"Sixteen" Magnus answers, waving a hand, "troublesome, that one is" he continues, but Alec still hears the doting tone bleeding through the airiness of Magnus' gesture.

Alec smiles. "Cute" he comments, "Rafael, not you" he inwardly slaps himself. What is he doing?

Magnus blinks at Alec, surprised. "You're quite an honest one, I see"

Alec swallows. "Anyways, um, so what about Max and Rafael?" He switches the subject, trying to soothe the heat blossoming across his cheekbones again.

"Well, I can't leave them alone, can I?" Magnus shrugs, "usually my friends, Catarina and Ragnor, are the ones to babysit them while I'm at work, but the two of them have decided to go on vacation to Italia to find suitors and left me to deal with the children"

Alec feels warmth spread through him. He liked this. The casual conversation. The comfort that allowed Magnus to actually talk to him about his friends. Was it trust?

"I'm sure Rafael is responsible enough to take care of himself and Max" Alec smiles assuringly. Magnus chokes on a laugh, sputtering coffee as he begins to cough. Alec's eyes widen and he grabs the tissue box and holds it out for the older man.

When Magnus recovers from his coughing fit, he narrows his eyes at Alec. "Rafael? Responsible? He's a teenager, Alexander. Were you ever responsible as a teen?"

Alec's lips part for a few seconds. "I guess not" he mutters, then bites at his lip in thorough pensiveness. "What about your wife? Or husband, I don't judge. Of course I don't. I just don't want to assume your sexuality and—"

"Alexander, both my children are adopted" Magnus cuts in, "Max was put on my porch when he was only a week old"

Alec's heart stutters in his chest. "Oh" he whispers.

"And Rafael was nine when I took him in, his parents died in a car accident, and Catarina, my friend, was the one to attend to his wounds. She called me and told me about him. Once we met, I couldn't exactly let go of him" smiling at the memory, Magnus twists one of his rings around his finger, staring into space. "Those two are my life. Rafael has been there for me ever since he came into my life. Once, I was crying because of allergies, and the little imp ran up to me with a box of tissues and told me to tell him who hurt me so he can, and I recite, pluck their eyes out"

A small snore comes from Max, making Alec laugh and hold the child closer, eyes still set on Magnus thoughtfully.

Giving up with a sigh, he speaks up.

"Uh.. If– If you want I can.. um, take care of them for you?"

Magnus' eyes soften. "I wasn't telling you all this so you can take pity on me, Alexander" shaking his head lightly, Magnus blinks in that way that makes Alec all fuzzy inside.

He. Was. Smitten.

"No!" Alec calls out, making the child in his arms groan, "no" lowering his voice, Alec shakes his head lightly, "I love kids, and I'd be more than honoured to do this.. For you"

Magnus rests his chin on his palm, elbow on the bar as he looks at Alec, long and thoughtful. "How old are you, Alec?"

Alec takes his lower lip between his teeth, "twenty five"

"Don't you have university?"

Alec looks around the empty café before resting his eyes back on Magnus. "I do" he says honestly, "I do but I prefer to study during my break times or at home" he shrugs the shoulder Max isn't asleep on.

"What do you study?" Magnus taps his fingernails against the wood of the bar. Alec lifts a hand and scratches at his stubble.

"Criminology" he pauses, waiting for Magnus' freaked-out reaction and his give me my kid.

Magnus smirks. "That's.."

"Creepy?" Alec questions, "eerie? disturbing? menacing?" Alec tries to sound careless, but his voice quavers and Magnus definitely catches it.

"I was going to say sexy" Magnus protests, watching that delicious shade of red crawl its way back to Alec's face.

Alec bows his head, licking at his lips. "Thank you"

Magnus revels in the deeper blush that colours his cheeks, sighing dreamily.

"So, um" Alec's gulps, "do you.. uh, do you want me to watch over the kids or have you changed your mind?"

Magnus slips his hand into his pocket and pulls a card out. "Here's my number, dear" he says, "call me before seven so I can give you the address"

Alec nods. "Right, ok" he doesn't mean to run his fingers over Magnus'. Or did he?

• • •

"Are you seriously missing the game because you're babysitting your crush's kids?" Jace rolls his eyes, smacking both his knees in disbelief.

Alec's pacing, teeth dug into his lip. "Do I call?" He looks at Izzy, "or do I send a text? Maybe I should just apologise and say something came up? But what if.. what do I do? Can you stop standing there like bricks?!"

Izzy laughs softly. "No, no, it's just so amusing seeing you like this" she says.

Simon nods in agreement, "I've never seen Alec actually showing human emotion" he murmurs into Maia's ear, making her smirk.

"It's kinda cute if he didn't radiate so much anxiety" she replies in a whisper

"Just call him, big bro" Izzy says, putting the spatula down and turning to face him, "ask him for the address, say you'll see him soon and hang up."

"Or" Jace cuts in, "send him a text that says something like hey, it's Alec, how about you give me your address so I can miss the game I've been dying to see and babysit your two brats?"

Alec sends a pointed glare in Jace's direction. "They're not brats!" He snaps.

"He's definitely crushing on the guy!" Jace waves his arms in Alec's direction with excessive motions.

Izzy rolls her eyes, and Alec gasps, affronted. "I don't have a crush on him! He's my friend!" He yells out.

"You never miss a game for a friend!" Jace retaliates, "does he even find you the slightest bit interesting?"

Alec scowls. "He said that me studying criminology is sexy" he mumbles.

Izzy claps her hands, "he told you to call him before seven, call him right now"

Alec glances at the clock, "I still have time" he pettily informs.

Izzy slams his phone into his hand "call him"

Giving up with a sigh, Alec taps in the number from the card that he may or may have not memorised, then presses the call icon and brings the phone to his ear.

It's only a matter of two rings before Magnus' voice booms. "Hello, Mr. Bane speaking"

Alec gnaws at his lip for only a second, then clears his throat. "Hey" he says, "hey, Mr. Bane" cringing, he trails his hand down his features, face turning hot.

Jace snorts. "That Mr. Bane is going to come in handy when they're fucking" he whispers to Izzy, who presses her finger to her lips, hushing him.

"Oh, hello, darling" Magnus' formality leaves instantly, "just call me Magnus. You know how I am with the Mr. Bane" although Alec can't see Magnus, he knows that the older man rolled his eyes at the formal soubriquet.

"Right, sorry, uh, you told me to call you before seven, and uhm, I'm.. calling you before seven" Alec leans his lower back against the island, bowing his head with one arm crossed over his chest.

"It's 6:58" Magnus muses, then laughs softly, "God, you really are quite precious, aren't you?"

Alec gives a nervous laugh. "Sorry, I kinda lost your card"

"He lost your card but still hasn't lost his V one sadly!" Jace calls out from behind the phone.

Alec's eyes widen, and he abruptly presses the phone to his chest to muffle his voice. "Jace, shut the fuck up!"

He brings the phone back to his ear. "Yeah, sorry about that" he apologises quietly, cutting Magnus' chortle off, "do you still want me to take care of the kids?"

Magnus lets out a dreamy sigh. "Of course" he exhales, "I'll text you my address in a second, can you be here before seven thirty?"

Alec nods, then remembers that this is a strictly vocal call. "Yes!" He all but shouts, and receives another laugh in return.

"I'll see you then, darling" and with that, Magnus hangs up, and Alec looks at his siblings with near-teary eyes, "I hate you" he mumbles.

"We love you too" Izzy leans up and kisses Alec's cheek.

"I don't even know what kids like" Alec says.

"I can help with that!" Maia asserts, "how old are they?"

"Six months and sixteen" Alec replies, making his way to the living room where his jacket and bag were.

"Just cuddle the little one" Maia says, "and as for the sixteen year old, talk about naked girls and he'll love you"

Alec's face scrunches up. "I don't think Magnus would appreciate that" he says, "but you think?"

"When I was sixteen I used to love reading poetry" Simon knits his brows.

"Because you're abnormal" Jace comments, making Simon scoff.

"At least I didn't hide jellybeans under my pillow" he mumbles, and Jace's eyes turn on Izzy. "YOU TOLD HIM?!"

Izzy chuckles.

Alec looks at the time. 7:10.

"I've got to get going, thanks Maia" he leans down, presses a quick kiss to her cheek, then turns around and flees.

• • •

Alec stares at the house in awe after knocking its door.

"Rafael! Get the door!"

A small smile tugs at Alec's lips, and he stands straight, hands clasped behind his back.

When the door opens, the boy leans against the frame, looking Alec over with an unamused expression, and once he gets to Alec's face, he sighs. "This is what my dad's so infatuated with?" He arches a brow.

Alec's beyond startled.

"You must be Rafael" he says, "you're just as handsome as Magnus described you" although we haven't even talked about you. In fact, I just found out you existed this morning, but I really need you to like me.

"I'd say the same, but I'm actually really disappointed in his taste" Rafael turns around and starts walking away.

Alec lets out a sigh. Kids.

"Ah, Alexander" Magnus appears at the doorway a few seconds later, and oh god, Alec's tongue is incapable of moving. He's so gorgeous. He's so beautiful and handsome and f u c k.

"H-Hey" Alec smiles, "I just got the privilege of meeting your eldest son" he continues, looking over Magnus' shoulder.

Magnus chuckles. "I'm sorry if he said anything that hurt your feelings" he opens the door wider, welcoming Alec inside.

Alec steps in. "It's no problem, I know what they're like"

Magnus nods slowly, trying his hardest not to check Alec out but failing miserably as he gives an approving frown.

Alec turns around just as Magnus shuts the door.

"Come on, let me show you around" Magnus inclines his head to the side and begins walking. "This is the living room"

Alec looks around, giving an impressed frown. "Gorgeous"

"Yes?"

Alec stills. "No.. I mean the.. the room is gorgeous, not you"

Magnus shifts his weight to the opposite leg.

"I mean, you're gorgeous too" Alec points out, "but so is the room"

Magnus chuckles. "Thank you, Alec"

Alec grins proudly, "where's Maxie?"

Magnus looks up at the ceiling, "in his cot, upstairs, come on lemme show you" he leaves the room and shuts the doors "it's a house law, always close the windows and doors when the AC is on so the cold air doesn't leave the room, Raf invented it"

Alec replies soundlessly, smiling, then follows Magnus up the stairs, holding the strap of his bag tighter.

"What do you have in there?" Magnus looks over his shoulder at the younger man.

Alec looks down shyly.

"I'm kinda hoping I'll have some time to study" he says, and Magnus stops sharply, then turns on his heel, making Alec bump into him.

Alec's caught off guard, he grasps the railing to stop himself from stumbling back and breaking his neck.

"Alexander" Magnus exhales, "Alec, if you have studying to do, you should've stayed home, I have absolutely no problem"

Alec lets everything sink in, then shakes his head. "No, I–I wanted to do this. I love Max, and I want to get to know Rafael."

Magnus tilts his head to the side, then lifts his hand and cups Alec's neck. "Thank you, dear" he extols, "Rafael is.. he's not very accepting, and I grounded him, took his phone, so good luck with trying to earn some respect from him"

Alec grins. "I'm a likeable person!"

Magnus nods. "I know that" he thrums, and just as he's about to speak again, his phone rings and his eyes widen, "what time is it?"

"Ten to eight"

"Oh, fuck, fuck, fuck" Magnus curses, "I'm late. Do I look good?" he takes a step down and closes his eyes.

"What? Yeah, yeah, you look great" Alec smiles, "you've just got some.." lifting his hand, he cups Magnus' cheek and uses his thumb to stroke a spot of kohl from his cheekbone.

Magnus peels his eyes open, then smiles back, reaching up and tucking a strand of hair behind his ear coyly. "You can order takeout, money's on the table, all the menus are hung on the fridge"

Alec nods.

Magnus rushes down the stairs, then looks back at Alec. "And Alec?"

"Hm?" Alec turns around.

"A Chace sent me a text saying you missed the game for this, thank you" he says, voice soft, "I appreciate it. Even though ditching a date for this is definitely unacc—"

Alec's lips part. "I'm single" he inputs, "Jace is my brother"

He inwardly curses himself for leaving Magnus' card on the island.

Magnus smiles again, this time lopsided and really fucking hot. "That's good to know" he looks Alec over once, then turns around and leaves.

Alec stands for a few minutes, takes a deep breath, then ascends the stairs.

He stares down the hallway, eyes shut for a few seconds. "God hates me" he whispers, the loud screaming music thingy blaring from one of the rooms.

Alec makes his way towards the room radiating that awful music, then he knocks, suspecting Rafael could even hear the light tapping over his lousy music taste.

He opens the door, and peeks in.

Rafael looks up, eyes narrowing before he lifts a small remote and forcefully presses hid thumb on one of the buttons, eyes not leaving Alec.

The music turns off.

"Hey" Alec smiles, "your dad's gone, and uh.. Max is asleep I think"

Rafael blinks.

"Wanna hang out?"

Rafael looks Alec over demeaningly. "If you want me to praise you around dad so you can get into his pants, consider it done, get out"

Alec laughs. "Raf, Magnus and I are just friends"

Rafael rolls his eyes. "Sure" he mutters, "just get out, I'm studying"

Alec bites on his lip for a few moments, then he leans against the doorframe, "um.. do you want my phone?"

Rafael's brows furrow.

"To see..uh, naked chicks?"

Rafael glances away, biting the insides of his cheeks to hold back from laughing, then he looks back at Alec, shrugging. "Sure" he holds his hand out. Alec walks over to him and pulls his phone out, placing it in his hand.

Then he turns to leave.

Just as he catches sight of the poster hung on the door, a small smile tugs at his lips and he turns back around. "You like Sherlock?"

Rafael looks up from Alec's phone, then arches a single brow. "Who doesn't?"

Alec smirks. "Fantastic" he murmurs to himself, "I actually decided to study criminology because of him and I have a couple of books about deduction and whatnot"

Rafael tries to act unfazed. "And how's that working out for you?"

"Well, forensics is kinda hard, but other than that, everything's cool" Alec answers, "I was hoping to become an FBI agent, however.." Heaving out a sigh, he rolls his eyes "my parents still want me to give it up and go for a lawyer, or a dentist or something along those silly lines"

Rafael laughs. "I think criminology is cool" he shrugs, "I don't like parents who force their kids into studying something they don't want to study"

Alec nods once, stepping forward. "Uh, is your father like that?"

Rafael gasps. "Oh, lord, no!" He exclaims, "dad's more of a… my dad always says I can become a bin man if I'm good at collecting rubbish.." Trailing off, he looks around his room, "which, as you can deduce, Mr. Holmes, I'm not a very clean person"

Alec smirks. "I've noticed"

Rafael sits up, turning the phone off. "What else can you tell me about myself?"

Alec looks around, pensive, then settles his eyes on Rafael.

"Well?"

Clearing his throat, Alec bites down on his lip.

"I can tell you that you're ambidextrous" he smirks "since you're flipping my phone around with your right hand but your pen is on the left side of your desk, the tip tilted upwards and to the right"

Rafael snickers. "Old school. Give me something new" he teases, emphasising on the last word with a wink.

Alec hums, letting his eyes scan over the room, then he smiles.

"Y'know.." He looks at the teenager "Magnus wouldn't appreciate coming home and finding you at a party"

Rafael stills. "What?"

"You're going to a party" Alec ambles around the room.

"What— wh— how'd you know that?" Rafael blinks, sitting up instantly.

"Let's see" Alec hums, "your window's open, your father told me that when the air conditioner's on, the windows should be shut, you were planning on going through there. But, you're not dressed, and all your wardrobes are open, so I'm guessing you were choosing your outfit.." Trailing off, he cocks his head to the side, "but there's a closed closet" he murmurs, "so, I'm going to hazard a guess and say…" walking towards the wardrobe, he places his hand on the knob and looks at Rafael, "you have someone in here" he flings the door open and the girl inside yelps.

Alec chuckles.

"God, you teens" he shakes his head lightly.

Rafael's mouth hangs open.

"And come on, Raf" Alec rolls his eyes, "studying on a Friday night? I don't think so"

Rafael stands up, "please let me go, please please please please"

Alec licks at his lips, looking between him and the girl, then he sighs. "Raf, you know I can't, your dad—"

"I'll be home before 10! I promise!" Rafael cuts in, and the girl nods in agreement.

Alec's jaw flexes. He knows exactly what it's like to be denied a cool ass party on a Friday night. But Rafael wasn't his son, and right now, Magnus has put both his children under Alec's responsibility, trusting him with them.

"Sorry" Alec says, walking to the window and shutting it.

Rafael groans. "Dad would've said yes!"

"You're grounded" Alec states, turning to face the little rebel, "how about you invite your friends over and I order takeout?"

Rafael says nothing, glaring at the older man.

"Don't try stare battling me, young man. I'll win in a second" Alec blinks blandly, making eye contact for only a second before he looks back at the girl. "Sorry, darling, I think you'll have to go, unless you want to stay here with Rafael?"

• • •

"Alec?"

Alec looks away from the TV, eyes catching Rafael, who had just entered the living room. "Yes?"

"Do you think.." Rafael looks away briefly, "does dad talk about me?"

Alec sits up slowly as to not disturb Max. "He talked about you today"

Rafael nods. "What did he say?"

"He said he loves you, that you and Max are his life, and he mentioned the time you promised to pluck the eyes of his enemies out" smirking, Alec waves the teenager closer, "come on, let's talk"

Rafael sits down on the couch next to Alec's. "I sometimes think I disappoint him"

Alec blinks. "Magnus could never be disappointed in you" he says softly, "hey, Raf, come on, he loves you"

Rafael swallows. "I know he loves me, but he does these things where he grounds me and yells at me or sends me to my room when I don't do as he tells"

Alec smiles. "Look at me"

Rafael does as told.

"Magnus loves you" Alec says, forceful, as if he's drilling the sentence into Rafael's head, "and parents have to do things like that to make their children the best versions they can be of themselves"

"What're your parents like?"

"Ok" Alec sits up with a smirk, "so, I'm going to tell you a story"

Rafael gets comfortable, smiling.

"When I was.. Fourteen I think" Alec squints an eye thoughtfully "yeah, fourteen, I found out I was gay"

Rafael snorts.

"So, I was like, super hormonal and whew, my boyfriend was…" trailing off, a smile comes to his face, "he was like.."

"Hot?"

"Very" Alec nods with a proud smile, "he was sixteen I think. Anyways, so, I really really really wanted to.. Y'know, take the next step" laughing to himself, Alec lifts the remote and turns the TV volume down, "I was inexperienced, and imagine what my parents felt when they walked in on me deep throating a pickle for the sole purpose of knowing how much I can take into my mouth"

Rafael stares. "You didn't!"

"I did!" Alec laughs out, "I did! It was terrible! I choked as soon as I saw them! It was terrible" throwing his head back, Alec closes his eyes tightly, "god, it was terrible" he breathes out.

"And did you take the next step?" Rafael asks after recovering from his laughter.

Alec shakes his head. "Nope" he says, "my parents found out I was gay and weren't very happy, so I had to hide it"

Rafael sighs. "And now? Do you have a boyfriend?"

Alec looks down at Max with a smirk, stroking the child's cheek with the back of his fingers. "No"

"But you wanna have my dad?"

Alec looks back at Rafael. "He's.. been really nice to me, and he's.. gorgeous, like really really hot, like—"

"I don't wanna hear about your sexual fantasies with my father thank you very much"

Alec laughs. "I'd like to give relationships a chance. For him" he eventually says.

"He's always talking about you" Rafael informs, "to his friends, I mean. And believe it or not, he gets nervous, and he blushes"

Alec smiles. "That's cute" he pictures a blush on those beautiful cheekbones, and his smile unconsciously spreads further across his face.

"Anyways" Rafael sighs, "I'm willing to let go of the fact you didn't let me go to the party if you take care of my dad for me" he shrugs, "goodnight" he lifts the covers over him and turns away from Alec.

Alec closes his eyes and rests his head back. "Goodnight"

• • •

"I'm home!"

No answer comes.

"Alexander? Raf?" Magnus takes his jacket off, then steps into the living room.

A smile crosses his features when he catches sight of the trio, huddled up and asleep. The sight itself makes the older man yawn.

While walking towards Rafael, Magnus takes the remote from Alec's hand and turns the TV off, then throws the remote to the ground and leans down to press a kiss to Rafael's temple. "Hola, guapo" he murmurs.

Smiling, he turns to Alec and Max.

Max is wide awake, big blues staring straight at Magnus, sucking the milk out of his bottle eagerly.

Magnus reaches for it, testing its temperature. It was still warm, so it hasn't been long since Alec fell asleep.

"Hello, little one" Magnus leans down and kisses Max's cheek, "have you been a good boy? Did you annoy my darling Alexander?"

Alec snores. And Magnus finds himself smirking at the newfound fact he'll be teasing Alec about for the rest of their lives.

"And you," Magnus cups Alec's jaw, "what have I ever done to deserve you?" He runs his thumb along Alec's jawline with a smile.

Another snore escapes Alec, and Magnus titters lowly, standing straight.

He takes a step back, but ends up standing on the remote and stumbling, knocking the pizza to the ground with a small thud.

Alec's eyes fly open.

"It's just me" Magnus whispers, and Alec sits up, rubbing at his eyes with his fists.

"Magnus?" He rasps out, "what time is it?"

"It's a little past midnight, darling" Magnus stands, "go to sleep"

Alec reaches a hand to the switch of the lamp set on the coffee table and turns it on.

"How was it?" He asks, lifting Max up, "I hope you had fun"

Magnus smiles. "I did" he replies, "let's go to the kitchen, I'm starving and Rafael's asleep"

Alec cradles Max and stands up, following Magnus out the room.

"So, what did you guys do?" Magnus asks, opening the fridge.

Alec shrugs. "Max was watching TV with me the whole time"

"And Raf?" Magnus turns to peek at Alec, "did he burn your wallet? Step on your phone? Let the cat sleep on your face?"

Alec chuckles. "No, we talked a little. I told him how I came out, we laughed, then he fell asleep"

Magnus stares. "He laughed?!"

Alec smirks proudly, holding the bottle as Max sucks on the teat vigorously, eyes about to fall out of their sockets.

"Down, little boy" Alec laughs softly, then looks back at Magnus, "he teared up"

Magnus gasps. "You, my darling, are a phenomenon" he praises.

Alec nods in agreement. "Thank you" he thrums, swaying from leg to leg.

Magnus watches him for a few moments. "It must've been a funny story"

Alec tells him the story, and Magnus can't stop himself from doubling over and cackling like an idiot.

"Shut up, it's not funny" Alec mumbles.

Magnus shakes his head, trying to get air into his lungs. "oh, Alexander, you're so precious"

Alec smiles to himself, placing the bottle on the worktop as he rocks Max in his arms.

"Here, hold Maxie, let me fix you something to eat" Alec stealthily makes his way to Magnus and puts the kid in his arms.

Magnus smiles. "Thank you, Alec" he says, "for everything"

Alec waves him off. "Don't mention it."

• • •

"Thank you for today" Magnus says, standing in front of Alec.

"You're very welcome" Alec answers, "you know, if Catarina and Ragnor fly somewhere else for suitors, I'm still here, and I love your kids" he jokes slyly.

Magnus steps closer. "I actually want to ask you for a favour"

Alec nods, "of course, anything"

"Dinner, tomorrow, with me?"

Alec swallows. "W-With you?"

Magnus smiles. "Do you like seafood?"

"I love seafood" Alec replies, breathlessly, hand lifting on its own accord and cupping Magnus' jaw. "But why now?"

"I don't date people my kids don't like" Magnus replies in a whisper, eyes fixated on Alec's lips.

As if on cue, Chairman Meow and Church both scramble towards Alec and circle his feet.

"Or my cats for that matter" Magnus laughs, placing a hand on Alec's waist.

"Are you sure you have to leave?" He whispers, "it's very late"

Alec leans down, and with a shy smile, he presses the lightest of kisses to Magnus' cheek. "I'll be ok" he murmurs, "goodnight, Magnus"

Magnus bows his head. "I'll have a very good night if you promise me something"

Alec arches brow, "what is it?"

"Tomorrow you kiss me on my lips" Magnus replies, bopping Alec's nose.

Alec's jaw flexes, and he gives a single nod. "I promise"

"Good" Magnus answers, "text me when you're home, I don't want to worry and force myself to text your brother"

Alec laughs. "I'll text you" he assures, "have a good night"

"I will, you too, darling" Magnus smiles, "and Alexander, I'm sorry you missed the game"

Alec glances in the direction of the living room. "Priorities, Magnus" he turns back to Magnus, "priorities"

Chapter Text

"What do you think? Casual?" Alec steps out, biting at his lip as he adjusts the grey button up shirt, attempting to lengthen it for God knows what reason.

"Cute" Izzy comments.

"Perfect. Here's your jacket" she hands him said jacket and smiles.

"Look at you" she says as he tugs the jacket on hastily, "he's going to love you. Don't worry about it"

"Agreed" Izzy inputs, "you look awesome, big bro"

Alec gives a lopsided smile, bowing his head to check the time on the phone he has in hand. "Thank you, Maia" he looks back at her, "I don't know what my brother did to deserve you."

Maia laughs, shaking her head before she smacks his arm playfully. "Go on then" she shoos him off. "Have fun!"

Alec walks past the couch, presses a fleeting kiss to Izzy's head, then rushes out and into the car.

The ride to Magnus' house was… terrible. Alec could feel the anxious perfectionist in him gnawing at his insides the closer he got to the date.

When he gets there, he contemplates how many times he should knock.

If he knocks once, it may seem like he's uninterested. If he knocks thrice, it may seem like he's desperate and eager.

So he knocks at the door twice, then steps back and clasps his hands behind his back in his usual military stance. Chin held high, chest out, stomach in, stern, assertive.

"Rafael! The door!"

A small smile tugs at Alec's lips when he hears Magnus' jovial voice.

"You get it!" Rafael calls back, but Alec can hear his bare-footed steps as he approaches the door.

The door flings open, and unlike the day before, Rafael smiles, leaning against the frame. "Why, hello" he smirks, "here to pick my father up for your rendezvous?" He says teasingly, crossing his arms over his chest. "Stop that, you look like you're about to go on a mission to free Palestine"

Alec slumps, hands swinging to his sides.

"Now you look dreadful" Rafael affirms, "just stand normally, man. Dad's not gonna eat ya.." He freezes, "on second thought…"

"Don't you dare" Alec cuts in, aiming a sharp glare at the shorter boy.

Rafael chuckles. "Restaurant?"

"He told you?"

"Mmhm, he wouldn't stop talking about it" Rafael's smirk widens slightly, "he even forced me to help him out with dyeing some blue—"

"Rafael!" Magnus pushes Rafael away, and Alec doesn't fail to see the glare he sends his way as Rafael takes steps back, hands held up in defence.

Alec laughs softly, shaking his head.

"Hello, darling" Magnus turns to Alec, then his brows rise and he looks him over approvingly. "Hm, don't you clean up well" he murmurs.

Alec bows his head, running his fingers through the front of his hair as he shifts his weight to the opposite leg. "Thank you" he says quietly before lifting his gaze to Magnus "you look really, uh" he smiles, eyes softening as he fixated them on Magnus' face, "you look beautiful"

Magnus grins.

Alec whips the rose up abruptly, making Magnus jump in surprise.

"I got you this" Alec explains, "it reminded me of you"

Magnus laughs airily and takes the rose, bringing it up to smell it but keeping his eyes on Alec. "Thank you, darling" he murmurs.

Rafael fakes a gagging sound while passing by with a plate of tea sandwiches.

"Raf, no eating in the room, don't want it dirtier than it already is!" Alec calls out, tone changing completely from the soft, coy timbre he was using with Magnus.

Magnus smirks.

"Yes, dad" Rafael drawls, rolling his eyes on his way up to his room.

Alec's lips part, his cheeks turning red as he looks back at Magnus. "Sorry" he mumbles.

Magnus steps out, shutting the door behind him as he rolls the rose between his fingers. "Oh, don't worry, my dear. That was positively parental of you"

Alec bites at his smile. "Come on, let's go"

He opens the car door for Magnus, and Magnus slips in, a small smile on his lips as he watches Alec circle the front of the car and slip into the drivers seat.

"Ok" Alec looks at magnus, then blinks and leans over to take ahold of his seatbelt, "let me put this on for you" he mutters, strapping it across Magnus' chest, their faces inches apart as Alec clicks it in.

He smiles at Magnus for a few seconds, then sits back with a content grin.

• • •

Magnus can't say he doesn't like the way Alec treated him like royalty, opening doors for him and slipping chairs out to have him seated. It was adorable to say the least, and the blush that painted his cheeks whenever he had Magnus call him names like darling and my dear was definitely worth Magnus cancelling a meeting.

"So, tell me about you" Magnus puts the menu down after the waiter leaves, leaning forward.

Alec starts fiddling with the corner of a handkerchief, then looks up at the older man. "What do you wanna know?"

"Anything" Magnus answers immediately, stays silent for a moment or two, then makes amends "everything" he nods.

Alec straightens his back. "Alright, I have three siblings" he starts, "you were unfortunate enough to get a text from one of them last night" he laughs, making Magnus smirk. "There's also Izzy, she loves anything and everything to do with fashion and she's super outgoing…" keeping his lips parted for a few seconds, Alec looks down, "I think if you met her before you met me, you would've gone for her"

Magnus laughs this time, shaking his head. "Oh, trust me, my interest is in the subtle, shy ones who can handle kids" he assures, making Alec smile again. "And the third?"

"Max!" Alec exclaims, "Max is fourteen now, he's obsessed with comics and would sell his soul to watch the new Spider-Man movie"

Magnus hums. "I'm sure that can be arranged. I'm dying to watch it as well" resting his chin on the palm of his hand, Magnus does that thing where he just keeps looking into Alec's eyes, and although Alec used to find it exposing, now he just loved the butterflies swarming in his stomach.

"Yeah, no" Alec clears his throat, "he lives in Syracuse with my parents. Haven't seen him since I moved out"

Magnus pauses. "So you're not on good terms with your parents?"

Alec shrugs. "Nah" he says nonchalantly, "when they found out I swing the other way, they just couldn't wait for me to leave, they were even willing to pay for uni but I declined. I have my dignity" Alec says it carelessly, as if none of it mattered to him, but the look on his face told the absolute opposite "they do invite me over for Christmas though" he adds with a casual wave of his hand.

Magnus tilts a brow. "For Christmas? That's it?"

"Yeah, I mean, it's not like they disowned me or anything, they just prefer not to.. mingle" Alec sits up, takes a breath, then smiles again, "and you? I'm sure Rafael and Max have the best grandparents"

Magnus licks at his lips, looking away briefly as he tastes the flavour of his gloss. The gloss that Alec will hopefully be tasting by the end of the night.

"My mother passed away a little bit after I was born" he informs, "dad's usually hanging around the world with women beneath his arms, can't recall our last conversation, but if I remember correctly, it was in twenty ten" he continues, lifting his index finger matter of factly.

Alec bites at his lip, then hesitantly reaches for Magnus' hand and holds it in his own larger ones, "well" he says, "he's missing out on a lot"

Magnus turns his hand in Alec's, smirking at their intertwinement, then blinks up at the younger man.

The moment's ruined when Alec slides his hands off Magnus' once the food arrives, but a small accomplished smile still lingers on his lips.

• • •

"Today was nice" Alec states, walking by Magnus' side, "except for the part where my car got towed because of you"

"Because of me?" Magnus sniggers, "excuse you, but you were the one parking!"

"You were the one who told me where to park!" Alec exclaims back before dissolving into a laugh, "ok how about it's both our faults?"

Magnus nods, "fine, ok, I take responsibility for one half of your car getting towed"

"Good" Alec smirks, looking up at the sky before parting his lips and breathing out.

Magnus watches the way the condensation left his lips and turned to thin air. It was somewhat pleasing.

Then Alec pulls his hand out of his pocket and takes ahold on Magnus'. It was a swift and expected movement, but Magnus still feels the electricity running through his body at the simple touch.

Interlacing their fingers, Magnus smiles. "Alexander"

"Hm?"

"Do you think things happen for a reason?" Magnus has no idea why he asked, but Alec's view of things surely managed to intrigue him in the span of their date, "do you believe that if we do things differently, things would also be different?"

Alec hums, swinging their hands. "Be more specific?"

Magnus bites at his lip. "Does everything that happens in our life have a purpose?" He rephrases his question, but the question still remains quite hazy. "Will there be some future consequences of our doings?"

Alec makes a thoughtful humming sound. "Not necessarily" he answers, "there are a lot of things that don't affect our lives, but still manage to… influence our judgement, help us grow and understand the world. You don't just learn from mistakes, Magnus" he turns to look at the older man, "why?"

Magnus looks down at his shoes with a small smile. "I tend to reconsider decisions I've made throughout my life, and I always get to this… theory, that for example, if I hadn't had work, I wouldn't have had a terrible day there, leading to us not meeting, and we wouldn't have went on this first date, and your car wouldn't have gotten towed, therefor we wouldn't be having this conversation right now an—"

Alec laughs out loud, cutting Magnus off.

Magnus pouts, yanking at Alec's hand in an attempt to tug it out of his grasp. Alec only squeezes a little tighter, assuring him that he wasn't laughing at him, just at how adorable he can be.

"I think that if you didn't have that job, you would've came over to the café with some friends, or alone, met me under different circumstances, and my car would've eventually gotten towed, I promise" he lifts their hands to his lips and kisses the back of Magnus', who blushes and looks away.

"We're home"

Alec takes a deep breath as they finally reach the gates of Magnus' home.

"Ok" he turns to Magnus, hand still held in his.

Magnus steps closer, giving a small nod. "Ok"

Alec gulps, his heart starting to throw a tantrum in his chest, commanding he makes the next move.

"Uh" Alec takes a small step, "I owe you a kiss"

Magnus smiles easily, lifting his other hand to hang it loosely against Alec's chest. "And I owe you a game"

Alec's cheeks turn red. "So you wanna do this again?"

Magnus smoothes his hand up Alec's chest before cupping the side of his neck, "if you're willing to" he answers, leaning up till his lips are a centimetre away from Alec's.

Alec's hand rests on Magnus' waist, and he smiles. "I think I should be the one kissing you" he says.

"Isn't it the same if our mouths are going to end up—"

"Oh for fuck's sake! Suck faces!"

Magnus and Alec, without letting go of each other, turn to glare at Rafael and his friend, whose bodies were half hanging out the window.

"Language! And go to bed, it's 10!" Alec orders.

Rafael smirks. "Yes, dad"

This time, Alec chuckles and turns back to Magnus.

He lets go of his hand and waist, lifting both hands to frame his face, then leans down and presses their mouths together.

Magnus hums in content, slipping his eyes shut as he wraps an arm around Alec, his other hand still cupping his neck and bringing him closer.

He smirks when he feels Alec's tongue swipe over his lower lip and revels in the small moan that passes his lips.

When they pull back, Alec lets out a heavy exhale, "your gloss" he murmurs breathlessly.

"I figured you'd be more of a cherry flavour type of man" Magnus chuckles. "Goodnight, Alexander"

He only takes a step away before Alec pulls him back to him and hugs him.

Unexpected. Very unexpected. But Magnus finds himself sinking into the warmth of the younger man's body, eyes shut.

"Have a good night, Magnus" Alec whispers, "kiss Maxi and Raf for me" he plants a kiss of Magnus' head before pulling away.

Magnus smiles, leans up, and presses a quick peck to Alec's mouth. "Will do" he nods, "text me when you're home, don't want to worry."

Alec nods.

"Go on" Magnus waves him off with the back of his hand jokingly.

"You go on" Alec replies, "I need to make sure you make it in safely"

Magnus arches a brow. "I'm literally at my door"

"But not inside" Alec sings, making the older man roll his eyes fondly and push the door open.

"Here, open, and here, I took a step inside, you can go" Magnus takes a punctuated step in, then turns to Alec with a hand on his hip.

"Sassy" Alec comments, "now, take another step back, close the door, and lock it"

Magnus bites at his lip, leaning his head against the door. And he just looks at Alec, a lazy smile on his shining lips.

"You're tempting me to kiss you again" Alec warns, "go on, get inside"

Magnus tucks a strand of hair behind his ear sheepishly, and Alec's heart doesn't pound faster, neither does his will-power stand at the verge of crumbling. What's this man doing to him?. "Goodnight, darling"

"Goodnight, Magnus" Alec answers.

Magnus shuts the door and locks it, then rests his back against its wood and slides down like a lovestruck puppy. "God"

Outside, Alec pumps the air in victory, proud of himself and his kissing skills.

Chapter Text

Alec's phone rings.

Pulling it out of his pocket, he puts the drink down in front of a woman and sends a smile in her direction.

She stares in shock at the cup, marvelling at her name. "You spelt it correctly!" She exclaims, then pulls an extra few dollars out and smacks them onto the till, "here's your reward!" She says proudly before turning around and leaving the café with pride-laden eyes.

Alec chuckles and looks at his phone.

Unknown

Shrugging a shoulder, he accepts the call and brings the phone to his ear. "Hello?"

"H-Hey"

Alec's brows furrow. "I'm sorry. Who is this?"

The answer eventually comes as an "it's Rafael"

"Oh!" Alec grins, "hey, buddy, how are you?" He wants to ask how Rafael got his number and what Magnus has it saved under, but he decides now isn't a good time.

Speaking of time, it was a little past nine.

"Raf, shouldn't you be in bed? Don't you have your finals coming up?" Alec arches a brow as if Rafael could see him.

Rafael sniffles, and that seems to alarm the older man. "What's wrong?"

"Uhm, I… I crashed dad's car" Rafael answers, then bursts into cries.

Alec lets out a startled gasp, scurrying to take his apron off. "Rafael, sweetie, are you ok? Are you hurt? Where are you? Tell me you're fine!"

"I'm fine!" Rafael yells, "I'm okay!" He continues, "but I stole dad's car and I trashed it and I don't know what to do!"

Alec smiles at the fact he was the first Rafael decided to call.

"Ok, tell me where you are, I'll come over and we'll see what we can do" Alec then mouths a "take care of stuff" at Clary and walks past her.

• • •

Once he's there, he slips out of the car and Rafael instantly runs for him. "Please don't tell him, I literally have no idea what happened, I just lost control of the steering wheel and—"

Alec bows his head, "open your mouth and blow out"

Rafael blinks. "What? Why? Alec I'm telling you I—" cutting himself off, he gives up and blows on Alec's face.

"Good. I thought you were drunk driving" Alec murmurs, "my brother can probably fix this, he works in a mechanics store, hold on, lemme give him a quick call"

Rafael jumps Alec, hugging him tightly. "Thank you thank you thank you"

Alec laughs, wrapping one arm around the young boy while he dials Jace's number with his opposite hand.

Rafael then pulls back. "I can't believe I just hugged you" he mutters.

"Consider it payment" Alec smirks, "yeah, hey, man. Can you come up here, Rafael's in trouble"

• • •

"It'll be done by Thursday night" Jace stared into the engine.

"Thursday night?!" Rafael shouts.

"Hey! Your dad's the reason I couldn't watch the game with m'bro here" Jace answers, holding his hands up in defence.

"Listen, if this isn't done by tomorrow, the next game you'll be watching will involve my head getting kicked around not a fucking ball!" Rafael snaps.

"Language!" Alec narrows his eyes at the youngster, making Rafael slump and look down.

"Sorry"

Jace smirks. "Ok, I'll see what I can do, nephew" his emphasis on the nickname makes Alec's cheeks turn red, and Jace smacks his back with a laugh. "Just keep your father distracted from his car that isn't in the driveway"

Rafael looks at Alec with pleading eyes, and Alec steps back. "I can't do anything"

"Take him out!" Rafael stomps his foot, "or fuck him—"

"Language!"

"Penetrate him all day!"

Alec gasps. "I can't believe you just ordered me to take the next level with your father" he says in disbelief, "no, I'm not risking a slow, well-built relationship to prevent you from getting yelled at" the finality in his tone is heavy, making Rafael sigh and roll his eyes.

Jace climbs onto his motorbike, the knowing smirk not leaving his face as he puts his helmet on.

"Come on, let's get you home" Alec jerks his head to the side with a smile.

• • •

"Rafael! I'm going to do the grocery shopping!"

"Dad, no!" Rafael yells out, rushing down the stairs and to the door, shielding it from his father. "It's uh, it's too cold outside"

Magnus smiles, "that's why, my darling, there's something called a coat" he adjusts his jacket, blinking slowly at Rafael.

"Dad, listen, I'll do the grocery shopping and—"

"Rafael" Magnus cuts in, raising a single brow "what have you done?"

Rafael parts his lips for a few moments. "Nothing! I just— it's raining outside and I don't want you to slip and break your neck" he laughs nervously, rubbing at his nape anxiously.

Magnus rolls his eyes. "I'll take the car" he moves to brush past his son, but Rafael holds his arms out.

"But what if the car slips?!"

"It won't, get out of my way, darling" Magnus steps past Rafael and opens the door.

Rafael's eyes squeeze shut, lips pressed together as he awaits the bombarding of his father.

"Alexander!"

Rafael breathes out a sigh.

"Where do you think you're going?" Alec arches a brow, "it's minus seven degrees, you're not leaving the house, are you?" He continues with a smile.

Magnus chuckles lightly. "I was actually going to do some shopping, there are a few things missing from the fridge" he says.

Alec steps in, shutting the door behind him, "well, I got pizza, you can do your grocery shopping tomorrow, when it's not dangerous" he leans down and presses a light peck to Magnus' lips. "Deal?"

Magnus rolls his eyes with an exaggerated sigh. "Fine" he drawls, tugging his gloves off.

Rafael gives Alec a grateful smile, making Alec chuckle and hold the Pizza Hut bag up, "here, Raf, set the table up" he says, a hint of mischief in his tone.

Rafael instantly takes the bag and goes to the dining room.

"Why does he obey you but not me?" Magnus steps closer to Alec, lower lip jutting out adorably.

"Because," Alec leans down, cupping Magnus' face, "I'm charming" he plants a kiss on Magnus' lower lip.

Magnus smiles, "that, you are" he takes his jacket off and hangs it.

"Where's Maxi?" Alec looks around.

"In the living—" Alec was already making his way to the living room, and Magnus finds himself smiling fondly after him.

"Hello, little monster" Alec lifts Max up slowly and cradles him.

Max instantly reaches for his hair, and Alec bows his head to give him better access. "That's the only combing my hair will ever get" he smirks.

Magnus laughs, giving Alec an encouraging pat on the bicep before turning the TV on and reclining on the couch.

Alec spends the afternoon lounging about, feeding Max and watching Magnus.

"Alexander, stop fidgeting, I'm getting dizzy"

Alec stops pacing and looks at Magnus with a smile. "Hey" he says.

"How great of you to finally acknowledge my existence" Magnus mutters, crossing his arms over his chest.

Alec laughs and puts Max in the car seat.

"Are you jealous, Magnus?"

Magnus huffs a laugh. "Jealous? Of my own son? Don't be ludicrous" Magnus then turns his back to Alec, spreading his legs across the couch.

Alec rolls his eyes. "You are" he drawls, leaning down and scooping Magnus up in his arms.

"What the— Alexander! Put me down this instant!" Magnus flails his arms and legs before Alec throws him back down on the couch, hovering over him with a small smirk.

Magnus loops his arms around Alec's neck, "wanna go out?" He says softly.

Alec struggles to turn down the offer.

"Let's just stay home a little, hm?" He strokes Magnus' hair away from his forehead.

Rafael walks in and flops into the armchair, flipping a book open.

Magnus sits up, clearing his throat. "Whatcha reading, Raf?" He asks, running his fingers through his hair to ease the messiness of it.

"I'm revising" Rafael mutters, making his dad arch a brow.

"You? Revising? Darling, are you ok?" Magnus' countenance holds sheer concern.

"Yeah, uh, I have a test"

"Oh really now?" Magnus smirks, "do you actually have a test or are you just trying to distract me from the fact my car isn't in the driveway and Alexander's brother is fixing it?"

Rafael's eyes widen.

"Oh, don't tell me you thought I didn't know" Magnus laughs out in mockery, "Chase texted me a few hours ago, saying that I should feel guilty that he's fixing my car and I forced our dearest Alexander to miss that godforsaken game"

Alec puckers his lips, cheeks and ears gaining heat and colour.

"So, Rafael, you're grounded for a week" Magnus says simply, "to your room"

Rafael opens his mouth to protest.

"Every word adds a week, my dear. Next time you want to use my car, you ask me" Magnus says simply, drumming his fingernails against the armrest.

Rafael mutters something and stands up, walking away and storming up the stairs.

"As for you, Alexander" Magnus turns to Alec, "what do you suggest we do with you?"

Alec bites down on his lip. "He begged me not to tell you" he tries, "and his eyes were so wide and begging and—"

Magnus blinks, unimpressed.

"And it was so sad, I couldn't rat him out. But I really did want to spend time with you. Him wrecking your car was actually just an excuse for me to spend the entire day with you. Don't get me wrong, I also care about him, he's like my—"

Magnus pulls Alec to him and presses their mouths together. "Alexander" he murmurs against his lips, then tilts his head and reattaches their mouths. "Shut up."

Chapter Text

"Good morning, Alexander"

It was the first time Magnus comes over after they began dating, usually Alec was the one to drive to Magnus' and leave a coffee for him before he even woke up. Stupid, lame, maybe spoiling but they were going through their sappy phase of the relationship and they were supposed to do, well, sappy things. That includes making sure his boyfriend gets his drink on time. However, today, Magnus texted Alec, told him he was the one coming over.

"Good morning, babe" Alec leans over the bar to peck Magnus' lips briefly. "How's your day going so far?"

"Beautiful" Magnus murmurs, then blinks twice and looks at Alec, "sorry, what was the question? I was a little distracted"

Alec chuckles, a blush blossoming high on his cheeks. "I said" he sighs, starting with Magnus' regular, "how's your day going so far?"

"Well" Magnus grunts, "there's a parents meeting today, so I feel like I'm going to start my day spectacularly crappy" he continues with an optimistic smile.

Alec laughs and puts the drink on the bar in front of him, "hey, I'm sure Raf is good in school" he says, and when he catches the look Magnus pointed at him, he chuckles, "ok, maybe, but that doesn't mean he's not smart, he is, very very smart, he just tends to be… indifferent."

Magnus sighs, pinching the bridge of his nose. "It's so hard, Alexander" he whispers, "trying to level between my work life, my love life, my kids, everything"

Alec flexes his jaw with a small smile, then he circles the bar and steps in front of the stool Magnus was seated on. "Hey, look at me" he cups Magnus' chin between his thumb and index finger, "Rafael loves you, Max loves you, don't worry about that. And I'm not leaving either, I'm here for you no matter what, you're stuck with me for another twenty, thirty, forty, maybe even fifty, scratch that, sixty years—"

Magnus cuts in with a laugh, and Alec finds himself smiling at how easy and lighthearted it was.

He leans forward and presses a kiss to Magnus' forehead. "The parents' meeting will go great, don't fret over it, yes, beautiful?"

Magnus smiles, running his hands up Alec's chest before girthing his neck and pressing half a dozen of kisses to his lips. "What would my life be without you, Alexander?"

Alec hums. "Well, boring" he teasingly replies, then brushes his thumb along Magnus' cheekbone.

"You're so perfect"

"Alec! Bro!"

Alec steps back and looks towards the door, then rolls his eyes.

"Who's this?" Jace stops in front of Magnus, both of them looking at him and making him feel like an ornate shelf.

Magnus blinks blandly.

"Magnus, this is Jace, my brother. Jace, this is Magnus, my boyfriend" Alec introduces, eyes remaining on the latter.

"Ah! Chase!"

"Oh! The game-wrecke— what did you just call me?" Jace cocks a brow, "did you just call me… chase?" He says the name as if it's blasphemy.

"It's been four months since that stupid game!"

"Isn't that your name?" Magnus blinks, a small smirk threatening to waver his lips.

"It's Jace!"

"Chase. Yes, that's what I said" Magnus begins his series of teasing.

"Alec, tell him!"

Alec looks up from a coffee, "hm?"

"He keeps calling me chase!" Jace stomps his foot, and Alec chuckles to himself.

"Isn't that your name, chase?" He looks at Magnus, proud of himself.

Jace gasps, stumbling back with his hand on his chest.

"We're brover!" He exclaims, and then grumpily takes a sip of his coffee and leaves.

"Well, that went well" Alec smirks, making Magnus snicker and stand up.

"Are you coming home today, honey?" He queries, and Alec freezes for a second, taking in how domestic that sounds, then he looks at Magnus with a lopsided grin.

"Definitely" he leans over the bar once again, and their lips meet halfway for a quick peck.

"Good luck at work, and the parents meeting" Alec murmurs, eyes fixated on Magnus' lips that were only a centimetre away from his own.

"Thank you, Alexander. And you haven't had time to study these days" he lifts a ringed finger to poke Alec's chest playfully, "bring your books with you, you can study with Rafael after I yell at him for all the complaints I'm going to be bombarded with once I step a foot into his classroom."

Alec presses another light kiss to Magnus' lips, "don't yell at him" he says, "I'll tutor him if he's failing"

Magnus tilts his head, pressing their mouths together. Alec laughs against his mouth, and Magnus pulls back. "You're just so perfect, angel" he sighs, then pulls his wallet out.

"Oh, don't you dare!" Alec gasps, "I'm your boyfriend! Don't ever put that thing on view around me!"

Magnus laughs, shaking his head lightly. "I'll see you tonight, gorgeous"

Alec nods once, smirking as he starts to dust the bar.

• • •

"When did you learn how to do that?" Magnus questions, leaning his hip against the mantelpiece with a proud smile.

Alec smirks, tossing the pizza dough again. "Not telling you" he teases, giving Magnus a side look.

Magnus shrugs. "Fine by me" he begins to drum his nails against his bicep, watching Alec work his magic, up until Alec gave in.

"Fine!" He drawls in a sigh, "I went to Italy a few years back and met someone who taught me"

"Met someone?" Magnus smiles. "Tell me about him"

"Her" Alec answers, "she's a friend, a cook"

Magnus lifts a hand and slowly tucks a strand of hair behind Alec's ear. "How can such a handsome man be new to all this? It's just beyond me"

Alec hums, turning to look at Magnus with a pensive squint of his right eye. "I don't know, how can someone so gorgeous be a single father?"

"I'm not single!" Magnus gasps, making Alec laugh and lean over for a kiss.

"I know" he says softly, "I know, and I'm the luckiest man alive"

Magnus looks at Alec for a few seconds, then opens his mouth to speak.

"Dad!"

Alec glances over his shoulder with a small smile.

"Hey, Alec!" Rafael grins.

"Hey, buddy" Alec answers before looking back at the dough in hand.

"Dad, can I use your car?" Rafael clasps his hands at his front, swaying from side to side pleadingly, "please, please, please"

"After all the crap I got from your teachers today?" Magnus quirks a brow.

"Magnus" Alec points a playful glare in his boyfriend's direction.

"Where are you going?" Magnus leans back, crossing his arms.

"Mall. With friends—"

"What friends?" Magnus narrows his eyes, challenging his son to lie to him.

"Emma"

"And?"

"Julian"

"And?"

"Kit"

"Aaaaand?"

"Ti—"

"Oh, no no no" Magnus lifts his ringed forefinger, "not Tiberius"

Rafael stomps his foot. "It's not fair! You always have to choose my friends for me!" He yells out.

Magnus sighs. "Raf, darl—"

"No!" Rafael cuts in, "I don't care" he turns around to leave.

"How long will you be?" Magnus mutters hastily, making Rafael squeal and turn around again.

"Only an hour or two! I promise I'll be home for dinner!"

Magnus takes a deep thoughtful breath, then grabs his keys and throws them to the teenager.

Rafael swiftly catches them, pumping the air in victory and making them jingle in the process. Then he gives his father a quick kiss on the cheek.

"Go on, you imp" Magnus shoos him off with the back of his hand.

"I was wondering if I could have money—"

"I gave you $200 last night, Raf" Magnus cries out, lips agape in shock. "When did you even have the chance to spend them?"

Rafael pouts.

Magnus blinks, unimpressed.

"Alec, tell him!"

Alec turns around and pulls his wallet out. "Here's my cred—"

"Alexander!"

"What?" Alec wails, "he's a teen! I'm sure you did worse things when you were his age, spoil him a little! He has a lot of time to be a mature, responsible man in the future"

Magnus scowls. And Alec steps closer, wraps his arms around Magnus' waist and pulls him to his body. "You're the father" he whispers into his ear, "if you don't want me to give him anything it's fine"

Magnus tilts his head and plants a kiss on Alec's jaw. "It's okay" he says, "I rather enjoy watching him warm up to you"

Alec holds out his credit card. "Here's my credit card" he says, eyes not leaving Magnus.

Rafael takes it, then holds it up and stares at it, eyes gleaming.

His phone rings and he begins to run out, yelling his farewell.

"Yo! Use the card wisely" Alec yells out.

"Ok, dad!"

Alec stills.

Magnus stills.

And even Rafael, who had his hand on the doorknob stills, gnawing at his lip as he felt his blood pumping in his ears.

"I mean Alec" he calls out, voice shaky, "bye"

Alec smiles to himself, bowing his head as magnus watched him in amusement.

"You're shy"

Alec looks up at Magnus, "I'm not shy" he says, "I'm awkward"

Magnus' brows furrow, "awkward? Why would you be awkward?" He stands in front of Alec and lifts his hand to cup his cheek.

"It's just— you're his dad and I don't want you to think I'm trying to make him like me more than he likes you. I mean, it's just that, I just—"

"Alexander" Magnus cuts in, "Alexander, you've been a parental figure to Rafael and Max for nearly four months"

Alec nods slowly.

"There's nothing to be awkward about, Rafael was bound to call you dad one day" he leans up and presses a kiss to Alec's forehead.

Alec smiles, giving a small understanding nod. "So, you're not uncomfortable?"

Magnus rolls his eyes. "No, Alexander, I'm not uncomfortable, not one bit"

Alec grins happily.

"Let's finish the pizza, I'm starving"

• • •

Alec lets out a soft moan once Magnus tugs at his lower lip with his teeth.

"Darling" Magnus murmurs, "shirt off"

Alec laughs against Magnus' lips, pulling back to rest his forehead against his. "There's a kid in the room" he says.

"He's asleep" Magnus answers, attention on the buttons of Alec's shirt as he slowly unbuttons them.

Alec chuckles and leans down, pressing his lips back to Magnus'.

"Not anymore" he whispers once Max makes soft gurgling sounds from his car seat.

Magnus boops Alec's nose and sits up, leaning down and lifting Max up with a soft smile.

"Hello, baby" he says in a small voice, "oh, look at those cheeks" he squeezes one of Max's cheeks, "what has Alexander been feeding you?"

He sits back and leans his head against Alec's shoulder. "Alexander?"

"Hm?" Alec answers, the back of his fingers running down the side of Max's chubby cheek.

"I love you" the way Magnus says it was casual, as if they've been married for years. As if it wasn't the first time they say it.

"I love you too" Alec whispers, tilting his head and pressing a kiss to Magnus' head.

Chapter Text

"Come on, baby, come on" Alec leans forward, "da-da, or dad, your call"

Earlier that week, Magnus told Alec that Max still hasn't spoken his first word. Max was nearly eleven months old, which wasn't at all normal for a kid his age.

"Max, baby" Alec sighs, leaning forward, "look" he puts his tongue behind his teeth, "you just let the word out. Dad. Dad. Dada"

Max giggles and lifts his hand to play with Alec's hair.

Alec pouts, "you're adorable, I swear" he mumbles.

Rafael walks in and throws himself on the couch. "How's it goin'?"

"Terrible" Alec answers, "your turn, I'm gonna make something to eat, you try to get your brother to say something, and I swear if it's the F word I'm grounding you"

Rafael smirks. "you're the softie in the family"

"Oh, so I'm family now?" Alec arches a brow with a small smile.

"You've always been family, shut up" Raphael mutters.

Alec ruffles his dark hair with a laugh and walks away.

• • •

"On went the mouse through the deep dark wood. A snake saw the mouse and the mouse looked good." Alec rhymed.

Max was on Alec's lap, Magnus laying on his chest, both of them listening to Alec talk.

"Where are you going to little brown mouse?" Alec hisses, attempting an Irish accent, "come for a feast in my log-pile house"

Magnus chuckles, closing his eyes.

"That's wonderfully good of you, Snake, but no… I’m having a feast with a gruffalo" Alec runs his fingers through Magnus' hair, who's beginning to doze off.

"A gruffalo? What’s a gruffalo?" Alec exclaims. "A gruffalo! Why didn’t you know?"

"He has terrible tusks, and terrible claws, and terrible teeth in his terrible jaws" Alec exaggeratedly speaks, making Magnus laugh and lean up to nuzzle his neck.

"God, I love you" he whispers, prompting Alec to slowly close the book and rest a small kiss on his forehead.

"I love you too" he answers, smiling dotingly, "so much. Now go to sleep, you have work tomorrow."

"Hm" Magnus smiles, resting his hand on Alec's chest.

"Hey, Magnus?"

"Yeah?"

"Why did the chicken cross the road?" Alec whispers, lips pressed lightly to Magnus' head.

"I dunno"

"To get to the most perfect person's door" Alec replied, "knock knock"

Magnus rolls his eyes "who's there?"

"The chicken" Alec answers, making Magnus laugh.

"You cheesy dork"

Just as Magnus begins to doze off, a small sound comes from Max, and they both snap their eyes open.

"D–"

Magnus' eyes widen, "is—"

"Yes" Alec lifts Max up, eyes widening. "Come on, baby, come on, you can say it."

Max sputters, his wide blue eyes on Alec as he giggles in that too adorable fashion.

"Da"

"Oh god, Magnus! Magnus, he's—"

"Da"

Magnus lets out a delighted cry.

"Dada" Max gurgles.

Magnus hugs Alec first, tears pooling at the corners of his eyes, then he takes Max into his arms, and he cries.

Alec hugs him to his chest, cooing a small "aw" as he shut his eyes. "Baby, don't cry" he murmurs, "don't cry"

"Dada" Max pulls at Magnus' strands and Magnus only cries more, Alec laughing softly and holding him closer.

He just couldn't believe how perfect his life was.

• • •

"Nervous?"

"Fucking terrified" Alec answers, straightening his jacket.

"Alec" Maia stops in front of him and buttons his jacket up. "It'll be fine. He loves you. So much. You've been together for one and a half years, I think it's about time you put a ring on him"

Alec smirks. "I've put a ring on him a few—"

"I did not need to know that" Maia glares, making Alec laugh. "My point is, if he says no, he's stupid"

Alec scowls. "Magnus is the smartest, most intelligent man I've ever known" he mumbles in offence, making her roll her eyes.

"I know he is, I've met him, he's amazing and that's why I'm telling you he will definitely say yes" Maia hands him his keys, then jerks her head in the direction of the door "go on"

Alec inhales, exhales, then shuts his eyes.

"If he says yes, do you think… do you think my parents will.. come to the wedding?" He asks, nervous.

"Depends. Do they know?"

"That I'm about as straight as your hair?" Alec retorts, "yes, that's why we barely talk"

Maia pulls him into a quick hug. "I'll tie them up and drag them to the wedding if that's what it takes"

Alec laughs and hugs back.

And just as he pulls back, Izzy walks in and make her way towards him. "Here ya go" she hands him the square shaped box. "Open it"

When Alec does, his sight immediately goes blurry, a wide smile brightening his features. "Gorgeous"

"I know" Izzy pulls him down into a quick hug, "please tell us how it goes"

Alec gives a nod then leaves.

• • •

"How do I look?" Magnus asks, straightening his jacket.

Rafael leans against the doorframe, arms crossed. "You look good" he answers, "honestly, dad, who cares about your clothes if they're going to end up scattered on the floor by the end of the night?"

Magnus gasps, placing his hand over his chest.

"Oh, don't be so foul!" He gasps, "Alexander will definitely fold my clothes when he takes them off"

"I didn't need to know that, dad" Rafael sighs, "he's horrible"

"Is he now?" Magnus smirks, turning to the mirror, "remember that one time one and half years ago when you called him dad?"

Rafael's lips part, and his cheeks begin to gain a pink tint as he struggled to speak.

"I was making fun!"

Magnus nods, "mmhm, sure you were"

The door knocks and Rafael instantly excuses himself, wanting to get away from the embarrassment.

Once he gets to the door, he flings it open with an easy smile, then looks Alec over, arching a brow.

"You look like you're about to go and meet Obama. What the hell are you wearing?" He asks.

Alec bites down on his lip, patting his chest just as Max comes into view, then trips and face plants.

Alec laughs softly and kneels down, "come here, baby" he holds his arms out.

Max scampers towards him, practically throwing himself in Alec's arms. "Papa" he buries his face in Alec's chest, "miss you"

Alec chuckles, lifting him up as he stands and looks at Rafael.

"Too much?" He asks, referring to the teen's earlier comment.

Rafael shrugs. "Not too much for someone about to propose" then he smirks, arching a brow, "gelled hair" he observes, "you keep patting your chest, scratching your stubble, licking at your lips. You're nervous"

"I've taught you well" Alec thrums, hating himself for a second.

"You're proposing to him, aren't you?"

"Hush! Shut up!" Alec snaps, eyes widening momentarily in menace.

Rafael chuckles, crossing his arms over his chest.

"Show me the ring" he says.

Alec looks away, "no" he mumbles as Max plays with his neat hair.

"Oh, come on" Rafael laughs, "you know I'm bound to see it when he says yes"

Alec pulls the box out. "I'm not sure he'll say yes" he answers, holding it out for Rafael.

Rafe opens it, eyes widening as his lips part. "How much was this?!"

The ring was… Magnus-like. Over the span of two years since Alec first began dating Magnus, he realised that Magnus never wore small rings. Always large and catchy. And colourful.

Alec made sure he got something that fit well with the rest of Magnus' rings.

It had a large white diamond set in the middle, surrounded by small red rubies.

"You think he'd like it?" Alec nervously questions, adjusting Max in his arms.

"I think he'd marry you just to wear it" Rafael looks up, "dude, this is fucking gorgeous"

Alec smiles shyly just as he hears Magnus' footsteps.

Rafael instantly closes the box and puts it back in Alec's pocket.

Magnus runs down the stairs hastily. "Sorry for keeping you waiting I just—" he stops once he catches sight of Alec.

And he just looks at him, a small smile evident on his lips, his kohl-rimmed eyes softening at the very sight of his family.

"Alexander" he finally manages to say, and Alec's smile widens slightly.

"You look beautiful" he states, eyes settling on his.

Rafael realises that they're enthralled in their own little world, so he takes Max and leaves for the living room.

Magnus still stood, playing with one of the rings on his fingers, and Alec feels panic rise in him when he realises there was a ring on each finger. Where will he fit the new one? That's if he says yes. Alec swallows at the mere thought of Magnus turning him down.

"Are you ok?" Alec asks softly, stepping closer.

Magnus blinks himself out of his thoughts. "I'm great, my dear" he answers, "come here" he walks towards his boyfriend and pulls him into a short-lived kiss. "I love you, you know that?"

Alec nods, tilting his head up to rest his lips against Magnus' forehead. "I know" he answers, "and I love you too. No matter what"

• • •

By the end of the night, Alec realises that he couldn't do it.

He had forgotten his lines, forgotten how he was going to do anything. Magnus was talking and talking, Alec didn't hear a word.

When Magnus noticed that, he reached for Alec's hand and told him they can leave.

Alec reluctantly accepted.

And now there they stood, next to Magnus' home.

Magnus looks slightly concerned by Alec's behaviour, and just as he begins to question, Alec pulls him in and kisses him. It's haste, messy, nervous, but Magnus still smiles into it, holding Alec's waist and closing his eyes as he kisses back with every ounce of love he holds for him.

Then Alec pulls away, breathlessly resting his forehead against Magnus', and Magnus smiles, closing his eyes as well.

"Marry me"

It really wasn't a request. Alec hated himself. He had a long paragraph in his mind. A rant about how much he loved him, about how much he wants to spend his entire life with him, with Rafael and Max, as a family, how he wants to wake up every fucking day to Magnus' naked face, and to share soft kisses between house chores, to run baths for him, to care for him, to hold him and cuddle him and just love him till he can't anymore.

But all that left his lips was a demand. Marry me.

"I'm- I'm sorry, I'm sorry I didn't mean, I mean, I-I love you. So much. And I love the kids, and I want to.. To sleep in your bed… with you of course, I…" Alec stops, and he can feel his lip tremble.

He fucked up.

He takes a deep breath as he feels Magnus' fingers curl against him.

"I love you" Alec finally breathes out, "and I want to keep loving you"

He stops, briefly shutting his eyes. "And I want to be there for you, I want you to lean on me when you're least strong. I…" he trails off, pulling Magnus against him in a huge hug, "I just love you. Ring or not. With my second name or not."

Magnus hugs back tightly, burying his face in Alec's neck as he clenches his eyes shut to hold back from crying. "I love you too" he pants out, holding tighter. "Yes, yes, I'll marry you, I'll marry you" he pulls away, and Alec holds his face with both hands, brushing his tears away.

"Oh for fuck's sake, just suck faces already!"

Alec laughs, not even caring to look at Rafael, who was peaking out the window, as he pulls Magnus to him and brings their mouths together.

"Alexander" Magnus rasps after pulling back, "why do I have to take your second name?"

"Lightwood sounds better than Bane" Alec laughs out, hurrying to pull the ring out.

"Lightwood-Bane?"

"Lightwood-Bane" Alec nods in confirmation, taking one of Magnus' rings off.

~end~