The Seelie Queen stands in front of them on the bridge, alone, her childish appearance sending shivers down Alec's spine – her features are hardened by cold anger in a way that doesn't belong to a child and it looks wrong, her blue eyes icy and unforgiving.
Izzy looks uncomfortable too, while Jace also feels partly spiteful; Magnus looks like a statue, his back straight and his hands clasped in front of him.
The Seelie Queen lets her gaze wander upon Luke and Raphael and Simon, stops for a second on Clary and Jace, a shadow of cruel amusement mixed with fury, and then stops on Magnus; Alec tenses.
-Have you made your choice then?- she asks, but it sounds like she's mocking them.
-I have, m'Lady,- Magnus answers, tilting his head forward, muscles rigid.
The Queen's gaze slips on Alec for a second before returning to Magnus: -You've chosen your heart,- she comments, sounding vaguely disgusted.
Magnus hesitates only for a moment before answering: -I've chosen what's right.
The Queen looks amused: -Is it right to stand with children?- she asks, glancing at Clary and Jace and Izzy, -They are so – fragile.
Magnus visibly tenses, and everyone bristles but thankfully they hold their positions. A smirk curls the Queen's lips as her eyes return lazily to Alec.
-But I wonder, Magnus Bane,- she says, tone casual like she's musing about breakfast, -do you think it right to stand with a murderer?
Alec freezes, his breathing suddenly fast and feather light as he tries as hard as he can not to hide in his own head, he hears Clary's pained surprise coming from somewhere but he can't focus.
But he needs to, needs to focus, to come back, he blinks, furiously, breathing hard, it's not your fault, it wasn't your fault, and then there's oxygen in his lungs again as he gasps like he's been underwater, and he can immediately feel the way Magnus' magic is roaring around them, blue flames dancing around Magnus' fists, his eyes flickering golden as he visibly fights to hold it back as the Seelie Queen laughs, and Alec instinctively wraps his hand around Magnus' fist, knows the magic won't hurt him, gently pulls him closer as Magnus' eyes settle on him, irises almost completely golden.
Alec takes a deep breath, intertwines his fingers with Magnus' and slowly shakes his head – it's not worth it.
Magnus looks at him for a long moment, like he's considering saying it is, but then he closes his eyes and breathes deeply until he has enough control to glamour his eyes again.
The Queen looks disappointed; she takes a step back and says: -You have made your choice. And you will die with it.
Magnus stops as soon as they step out of the portal, their hands still tied together, makes it disappear over his shoulder, his movements uncharacteristically rigid.
Alec takes a step forward, in the hall of the Institute: -I'm fine,- he murmurs, tilting his head, hoping that Magnus will look up.
He does, jaw clenched, eyes hard: -I shouldn't have – lost control.
-I – -, Alec takes another step forward, lowers his voice, -I actually,- clears his throat, -found it kind of hot.
Magnus blinks: -Did you – did you just try to talk dirty to me to make me feel better?
Alec's ears are crimson: -I – did?
Magnus finally, finally chuckles, his shoulders relaxing as he shakes his head: -I love you,- he says, both like he's wondering why and like he already has his answer.
Alec presses a quick kiss on his lips, and Magnus' eyes turn golden for a moment: -Me too.