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Thankful for You

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As Magnus stepped into the Lightwood home, incredible scents assaulted his nose: turkey, ham, Maryse’s homemade macaroni and cheese, and of course, the apple and pumpkin pie.

He shrugged off his winter coat and hung it next to Alec’s in the closet. “Rafe, come here. Give me your coat,” he heard Alec shout down the hallway at their son. Magnus grinned as Rafael threw his blue, balled up jacket, from the hallway where the playroom was. Alec gave him a disappointed look as he went to pick it up. “He’s getting to the age where he finds loopholes around what we say,” Alec sighed unimpressed.

          “Oh, darling.” Magnus waved a dismissive hand towards his husband. “That’s just how children are. Max will be the same way one day.”

          Alec pouted as he hung up their children’s winter coats and Magnus hugged him from behind, fingers latching around his body. “Can they just never grow up?”

Alec turned around in his arms after shutting the closet door and wrapped his arms around Magnus. Looking up at him, Magnus raised an eyebrow. “Then we’d never get our sex life back.”

Defeated, Alec hung his head with a small smile and kissed his husband’s forehead. Magnus closed his eyes and leaned into it.

          “I knew I heard the front door!” Startled, Magnus jumped back, hands behind Alec breaking their hold. Isabelle stood no more than five feet in front of them with her hands on her hips. “We’re all waiting for you, you know,” she mentioned.

          “You know how it is, Izzy,” Alec started, pulling back from Magnus. “We were waiting for this one here to be ready.” He pointed to Magnus, pretending that he wouldn’t be able to see.

          With a gasp, Magnus pulled back. “Excuse you, Alexander. You were still getting the kids dressed.”

          Alec nodded. “Yeah, and I got myself and the kids ready before you, a single person, were done.”

          Magnus frowned and crossed his arms childishly over his chest and topped off his look with a puppy pout. “I’m sorry that I try to look good for you.”

His husband’s face softened as he tossed an arm around Magnus’ waist again, pulling him closer. “Babe, you could be covered in head to toe with the most disgusting things and I’d still be completely and hopelessly in love with you.”

          Magnus’ heart clenched before they heard a choking sound. They’d forgotten Izzy was there.

When Magnus looked over, she had a finger pointed to her open mouth like she was ready to purge her stomach. “We get it: you’re in love and all that gross stuff,” she said. “Try waiting until you get to the bedroom for that, huh? Mom’s been waiting for you both.”

          Magnus felt Alec’s hand tap his ass gently with a nudge of his head towards the kitchen. “Come on,” he spoke quietly before grabbing Magnus’ hand.

He was pulled down the small hallway towards the main living space, where medium-level conversations were being held.

          “Hey!” Jace called from his spot on the couch before getting up. “They’re here! It’s about time, man!” He pulled Jace into a hug, then Magnus. Then everyone came over, hugging them.

          Magnus’ family when he was younger was never like this. He, his mother and stepfather would never celebrate. His stepfather always said he had nothing to be thankful for before collapsing on the couch just as the Thanksgiving football game started, and Magnus’ mother never argued because she was from Indonesia and this was an American holiday. But now, looking around at his chosen family, Magnus was overjoyed that this was his life now.

Arms wrapped around him, and he subconsciously hugged back. When the woman pulled away, he noticed it was his mother-in-law. “Magnus, honey! I need to speak with you and Alec later in private,” she said with a pointed look.

He nodded and thought of what she could mean. When something pinged in his mind, he moved to ask her, but she was already in the kitchen trying to push Isabelle out and away from the cooling pie.

          Looking over his shoulder towards the living space, Magnus saw the New York Giants and Kansas City Chiefs were about to start their football game and Jace and Simon were standing in front of the TV, jumping and ready for kick off. Robert looked quite similarly, but from his spot on the comfy couch.

          “You know,” Magnus heard softly from his side, “I never did understand importance of football on Thanksgiving.” He looked over to Clary who sat upon the dining table chair before glancing back at the TV. Honestly, he didn’t understand it either, but then again, he was raised differently. “If Jace turns Danny into a football star, I’ll be forced to learn the sport and I really don’t want to.”

          Magnus chuckled at her un-wanting facial expression and thought of her 4-year-old son, Daniel. He was an energetic toddler who looked like a carbon copy of his father. Magnus shrugged. “Sorry, biscuit, you might want to start paying attention to the TV soon,” he replied with a small smile.

          She frowned again, but a small smile played at her lips. “Maybe I can put a paintbrush in his face and he’ll find that more interesting than a football.”

          Nodding, Magnus looked at his husband who was smiling at his father, talking lightly as Jace shouted at the refs when the Giants received a yellow flag and a 5 yard penalty already.

“Alec! I didn’t know you were here!” Max— Alec’s brother, not son— came rushing down the hallway. He might’ve been 15, but he was so family oriented (like all of the Lightwood’s) and ran to Alec, falling onto his lap.

          “Maybe if you’d get out of your room every once in awhile like a normal teenager, you would’ve known,” Alec laughed back.

          Magnus smiled and zoned Clary out, focusing solely on his husband and brother-in-law. “Actually I was with Danny, Rafe and little-me, but I didn’t make the connection that you were also here. I wonder why,” he pondered with a questioning look. Magnus grinned at his brother-in-law's name for his and Alec’s son, Max. Amongst family who knew both Max’s liked to joke and nickname them Big Max and Little Max.

          “Magnus!” He jumped in his seat and turned towards Izzy who was holding a heavy-looking glass tray with tinfoil folded over it. “I know they’re adorable and all together, but please can you move those pots around for this?”

          He jumped again, but this time to arrange the pots of green beans, mashed potatoes and his mother-in-law’s homemade stuffing. When she finally put the tray down, Izzy turned towards him. “Caught up in your head?” she asked.

He nodded with a glance back towards Alec and Max. They were chatting lowly while Jace and Simon stood in front of the 52” TV screen. Their big heads nearly blocked the whole thing. It was a good thing Magnus didn’t care for football— or any sport, really.

          “Heard back from the agency yet?”

Tensing, Magnus looked back at her and shook his head. “Not yet. I’m hoping that’s what your mother wants to talk to us about tonight.”

Isabelle nodded and took the seat next to him. “You’ll get it, don’t worry. Of course you will,” she smiled as she fixed the fork in front of her.

          “Boys of all ages,” Maryse called out with a grin, walking into the dining room area with another tray, “report to the dining room. Food is now served!”

Magnus leaned over to clear more space for the mac and cheese tray as they heard little feet pattering against the floor.

          “Uncle Maggie, Uncle Alec!” Magnus felt the heaviness as his four-year-old nephew jumped onto his lap and threw his arms around his neck.

          “Hey, kiddo.” Magnus jumped in his seat as Alec’s voice sounded from right next to him. He looked up as Alec reached out to rub Danny’s already messy hair. “Boys, go wash up. Rafe help Max and Danny, please.”

Raphael nodded unenthusiastically and Danny climbed down from Magnus’ lap.

          Once everyone was finally sat at around the dinner table and said Grace— pretty much the only time of the year they did so— they dug in. Magnus and Alec both served their children first with the smoked turkey that Maryse slaved over all day and then added macaroni and cheese. It wasn’t the healthiest— especially with the five chesses Maryse added— but at least the kids ate it; they were picky little eaters. Max didn’t want green beans, but Magnus dropped a spoon full onto his plate anyway.

          “Goodness, ma,” Simon started with a groan. “I know I say this everytime Izzy and I come by, but your cooking is phenomenal . It’s like heaven erupted in tastey goodness right into my mouth.” He added another spoon full of turkey and macaroni into his mouth and Isabelle shook her head with a smile when he groaned again.

Maryse chuckled and sipped on her wine. “I hope so,” she replied once she swallowed. “I’ve been cooking for most of my life. My husband and kids never tell me anymore how the food tastes, so thank you, Simon.”

All at once, Alec, Izzy, Big Max, and Robert all started commenting on how good the food was. Rafe snickered as he munched on the turkey that was half hanging off his fork.

          “Mom, did you get cranberry sauce?”

Magnus’ eyes widened at Izzy as Alec passed her a bowl with the reddish-purple sauce. “I don’t understand how you can eat that with your turkey. It ruins all the flavoring.”

          “It does not! It enhances the flavors, Mags. Give it a try,” she said, pushing the bowl in his direction.

          “Never!”

          “Max giggled from next to Magnus. “Silly, papa,” he said.

Izzy nodded. “See, even your son knows. You want some, Maxie?”

Little Max stopped laughing and shook his head. “Noooo way.” When everyone laughed, he hid his face into Magnus’ side.

          “Shi—Shoot!” Jace corrected himself at the last second and threw his hands up as he stared at the TV. “I can’t believe we’re going into halftime down by 14 points. Two fu—flippin’ touchdowns,” he groaned.

Clary gently touched his arm with hers over their son. “I have no doubt your boys will catch up, babe.”

          Groaning, Jace’s head fell back against the chair with a thud. “I hope so. But with the way they’re playing, it doesn’t look that way.”

There was a nudge on Magnus’ foot, and he brushed it off to someone accidentally bumping him. But then it happened again a bit harder than before and he snapped his head up, looking around at Clary who sat next to him. Rafe and Max couldn’t reach the floor yet while sitting down, so he looked past them at his husband. Alec was slumped into seat, much shorter than he would be if he sat correctly.

          Magnus raised an eyebrow at him and Alec smiled sheepishly. He mouthed, “What?” and Alec shrugged, going back to his foot, but not without rubbing his foot against Magnus’ again.

Was he trying to play footsie at the dinner table? He smiled to himself as he picked up his fork again, scooping the stuffing onto it. Magnus gently rubbed his foot back as they ate. His husband was too cute sometimes. One would think that the magic between them would die down after 5 years of being married— 7 years of being together— but neither would allow that to happen. They were too much in love for that.

          By the time they filled their stomach’s and there was leftover food, they all (minus the small kids) brought their plates into the kitchen and helped Maryse bring the pots and pans into the kitchen, storing them away in the fridge. Jace and Simon scurried away towards the living room where the TV was. Apparently third quarter started and they were missing it.

          Magnus was about to help Clary set out the pies and desserts, but a hand on his shoulder stopped him. Maryse was pulling him and Alec aside. “I think now is a good time to talk, don’t you think?”

          When he looked over, Magnus instantly knew his husband was tense. “Is something wrong, mom?”

She didn’t reply, but instead pulled them into the front room that wasn’t being used. She pushed them in front of the loveseat and she herself stood in front of a single seater. Sitting, the men followed.

          Magnus was nervous. If this is what he thought about earlier, he had a right to be.

          “I heard back from the adoption agency,” Maryse said cooly. He heard Alec suck in a breath next to him and Magnus held his own in, not daring to breathe. Maryse was their lawyer incase needed while applying to parent a third child.

Magnus searched her face for any indication of each way, but she was stone-faced; the perfect indication that maybe something had gone wrong with their application this time. Maybe the agency didn’t deem them appropriate this time?

          Then, she grinned. “Congratulations! You can parent for a third time!”

Tears formed in Magnus’ eyes and his breath left his body. “Mom!” Alec sounded as he felt; relieved and out of breath. “You nearly gave me a heartattack.”

          Turning towards his husband, Magnus searched his face wanting Alec to connect their eyes. When he finally did, their gaze held for a split second before they dove for each other, arms wrapping around the others waist or neck. “Alexander,” he sighed against the crook of his neck. “We—”

          “I know.” Magnus heard the smile in his voice and a grin broke out on his face, shock quickly turning into realization. They’re going to have another child together. A baby boy or girl.

Pulling away from each other’s embrace (but not pulling their hands off each other) they both looked at Maryse who had her hands clasped happily in front of her chest, smile wide and tears brimming the rims of her eyes. “I’m gonna be a Grandma again!”

Alec chuckled happily and asked, “When can we meet with them again?”

          “Monday morning at the earliest.”

Tapping Alec on the leg, Magnus said, “We need to tell the boys. And Izzy and Jace and— your dad! Does he know?”

Shrugging, Alec wrapped his arms around his husband again. “We can do it all now. During dessert. How does that sound?”

          Magnus nodded against his body. “Sounds perfect.”

Maryse ducked her head inside the playroom she and Robert made for their grandchildren on their way back to the main space. Magnus wanted it to stay a secret until their family surrounded them, but he was sure his giant smile gave him away. He could feel Isabelle’s eyes on him, but he didn’t dare look her way because if she didn’t already know, she would know then.

          “Papa,” Rafe asked, pulling on his pant leg, “pie time?”

Magnus grinned and leaned down to pick up his son. He swung him around his hips until the 5-year-old was seated on his side. “It is. Apple or Pumpkin?”

          His son pondered the question for a few seconds with his hand and little fingers on his face pretending to stroke his mustache like he’d seen on TV. “Both? And ice cream with chocolate and whipped cream and a cherry!”

Magnus scoffed and tickled him. “Oh, you little bugger!” Rafael thrashed around in his arms, squealing.

          Then he felt a hand on the small of his back. When he calmed, his husband was standing behind him with Max hanging onto his leg like a baby bear. Maryse had gathered them around the table and Magnus’ heart started thumping.

          Alec and Magnus stood uncharacteristically looking at the table as their family sat down. Rafe was wiggling in his arms to be let down. Once his little feet hit the floor, he dashed towards Izzy.

After clearing his throat, Alec grabbed Magnus’ hand. “We have something to tell you guys,” he said to their family. He looked at Magnus and held his hand tighter in a squeeze. Everyone quieted down, and as he spoke again, his eyes stayed connected with Magnus’. “We, uh— You go ahead,” he said quieter.

          Magnus kissed his cheek and faced everyone. “We’re going to have another baby!”

Excited congratulations broke out across the room and everyone jumped up to hug them. For the second time that night, Magnus found himself exactly where he wanted to be— surrounded by his chosen family.

          “What?” The little voice beneath them sounded more like “rut” and Alec quickly crouched down to Little Max who had finally disconnected from Alec’s leg.

Grinning, Alec wrapped an arm around his son’s body. “You’re going to have a little brother or sister,” he said.

          Max’s eyes went wide as he understood. Rafael was quick to jump in though, sliding down from the chair Izzy helped him onto. “Girl! I want a girl!”

Max shook his head and crossed his arms at his brother who came closer. “No. Only boy.”

          “But I want a girl,” Rafe groaned, swaying his body before falling back onto Magnus’ legs.

Izzy and Maryse laughed at how cute they were. “I don’t know, Maxie. I think I have to agree with Rafe. This family needs a girl to take shopping and dress up.”

He grunted in return and stomped away in a cute 3-year-old fashion to his grandpa who scooped him up in his arms.

          “As long as our child is loved, that’s all that matters.” Alec smiled as slid his arm around his husband’s waist, pressing a kiss to his cheek and then another to his lips as Magnus turned his head to return the smile.

          Magnus couldn’t have said it better himself. He had never experienced true love until he became a part of the Lightwood family. His heart swelled with joy at the thought of the next chapter ahead.

 

Fin.