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As The Dust Settles

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“I don’t think I can live without you.”

“You know what isn’t an understatement?”

What do you say we get out of here?”

Alec replayed the previous night’s events in his head. He’d woken up early that morning, beside a sleeping Magnus, something he feared wouldn’t happen again.

For at least an hour, he’d been staring in awe at the beautiful man beside him.

Alec’s thoughts had wandered, over the hour, to the night before. Making up, going home with Magnus, their attempt at talking before things got heated and they gave up on any seriousness.

Magnus promised they’d speak in the morning. Alec dreaded it but he also knew it was necessary in order to put things behind them.

“I can feel your eyes drilling a hole into my forehead,” Magnus mumbled, sounding very much awake.

Alec smiled, brushing a strand of hair from said forehead.

“Maybe I just like looking at you,” Alec whispered in return.

“Obsessively, for an hour? Alexander that borders on creepy. You’re lucky I kind of have a thing for you so I don’t mind,” was Magnus’ reply, murmured into his pillow.

Of course he’d been awake. He’d probably woken up before Alec and had been doing the same thing. Alec chuckled. “So you’ve been up this whole time.” Magnus reaching out and pulling him close confirmed Alec’s suspicions.

“Well then, you must be getting hungry. Breakfast?” Alec asked, hoping to postpone the “talk”.

Alec could feel Magnus’ lips curl into a smile against his chest. The warlock tilted his head up to meet Alec’s gaze.

“Mmm. Are we feeling like Paris or Barcelona this morning?”

“How about your kitchen?” Alec rolled his eyes at his boyfriend’s extravagance, “I’ll make us pancakes.”

While a fancy breakfast sounded great, Alec wanted to do something special for Magnus. He wanted to show the older man that he was appreciated, loved. After everything, Alec just wanted a small bit of domesticity back to reassure him that this was real. That he had his love back.

“Uh oh. Should I trust the cooking of someone so closely related to Isabelle Lightwood?” Magnus teased, grinning, and pulling Alec out of his thoughts.

“Shut up, you love my pancakes,” Alec mocked offence.

They both laughed at that, pressing their foreheads together, breathing each other in. Magnus pressed his lips to Alec’s nose quickly, before getting out of bed and searching something to cover himself.

Their clothes from the night before were scattered across the floor. Magnus waved his hand and they were neatly folded on the end of the bed. He settled for his go-to blue robe and sweat pants.

“I believe pancakes were offered?” He turned to Alec who still lay in bed looking slightly disappointed at the lack of company.

“See? You love them,” Alec laughed, all other feelings fading away.

“Not the only thing I love,” the warlock singsonged on his way out of the room. Alec stared after him fondly before he too got up and headed to the kitchen.

****

Half an hour later the two men sat across the kitchen island from each other, eating the pancakes that Magnus all but begged Alec to add chocolate chips to.

The island was thin enough to lean over and easily access each other’s lips every few minutes.

“So...” Magnus looked up from his plate hesitantly after they finished eating.

Alec sighed dramatically only partly kidding, making Magnus breathe a nervous laugh.

They both dreaded this conversation but knew it had to happen so they could move past this.

“The sooner we get it over with, darling...” Magnus reached for Alec’s hand in reassurance.

Alec simply nodded, both of them knowing Magnus was better with words and had more experience with this kind of thing. He would be the one to lead this conversation.

Magnus considered the best way to go about it. They’d both apologized. That wasn’t what it was about. This was about making a plan of sorts so that it wouldn’t happen again. It was about learning from this experience.

“Is there anything you want to get out? Other than apologizing for the umpteenth time, is there something that you want to say to me, or about what happened? I know my reaction wasn’t completely justified so if you want to talk about it...”

This took Alec by surprise. Magnus wanted to hear his opinion, cared about his feelings about the fight. But wait, did he say he wasn’t justified? Magnus had every right to react the way he did. He must know that.

“Magnus the way you reacted was perfectly understandable. I think the only thing I really need to know is if we’re going to be okay. I don’t want to start over again. I don’t want to lose what we had before,” Alec could feel himself getting emotional again. This was his fault, he refused to let Magnus blame himself for even a second.

Magnus shook his head slightly, a familiar look of awe crossing his features. “Alexander, I completely cut you off to protect myself. That’s not justifi-“

“Mags, I understand. I messed up. You had people to protect. Hundreds of lives against one person’s feelings? You did what was right. What you have been responsible for, for far longer than you’ve been with me. Don’t make yourself believe this was your fault. Doing that would be worse than anything you said to me,” Alec pleaded.

Magnus tried to speak but couldn’t manage to get any words out. He just stared at Alec, their gazes burning into each other’s. Alec’s was desperate, Magnus’ full of pure adoration.

That right there, the shadowhunter’s sincerity and selflessness, was why Magnus was so upset with himself.

He would choose Alec over his entire world any day. Up until last night, Magnus couldn’t admit that to himself though.

He didn’t want to pressure Alec. Magnus had fallen so fast and hard that it scared even him, but it took Alec longer to accept everything.

Magnus always had one rule, as long as he could remember; his people first. But when he had to consider Alec over them, almost chose him, it became too much.

He’d never allowed someone to affect him so much before. But all it took for the warlock to accept what he was about to Alec was eight simple words; “I don’t think I can live without you.”

With that, Magnus knew. Alec felt the same way.

Alec’s words, along with the time without him, made Magnus realize something monumental...

Magnus released the shadowhunter’s hand then. He moved both his hands to Alec’s face, holding it on either side, firmly enough to get his point across.

With everything he had, Magnus revealed what he’d discovered.

“I love you more than I have ever loved anything, Alexander Lightwood.”

Alec let out a breath and relaxed. His shoulders dropped as if released of an immense weight. He covered Magnus’ hands on his face with his own, leaned into the touch, and closed his eyes.

“Well that’s a relief, considering I feel the same way,” he finally managed.

Magnus laughed at that. Always the eloquent speaker, his Alexander.

“We’re going to be just fine, my love,” Magnus promised, leaning over the island to press a kiss to Alec’s forehead.

“Did you- did you have anything to ask?” Alec said after a moment.

“We need to avoid this happening again. If I promise to not blame myself, can you promise to be completely honest with me, always?” Magnus asked.

Both knew it wouldn’t be easy. But their willingness to make it work would prevail, they were sure.

Alec nodded. “No more separating our professional and personal lives. I won’t try to hide our relationship. Warlock favouritism be damned. I am your favourite and I don’t care who knows.”

That one, Alec knew, had been his call.

At the time it has made sense; making an impression would be difficult if it looked like Magnus was the one behind it.

However it was not like the entire shadow world didn’t know about their relationship. He knew it hurt Magnus when he’d asked him to act differently in public. Magnus has always been an open book when it came to feelings. No more pretences, Alec decided.

Magnus smiled wider than he had in a while. “That you are,” he agreed, “thank you, Alexander,” Magnus said sincerely.

After another moment of silence Alec spoke. “So we’re okay? No more blame, no more secrecy. Total honestly and trust.”

Magnus walked around the island, embracing Alec, holding him tight, burying his head in the taller man’s shoulder when his arms came around the warlock.

“You won’t lose me. I can’t promise we won’t fight. I can’t promise it will always be easy. I can’t promise we won’t have to make tough decisions ever again. But I vow that you won’t lose me again. I won’t walk away from you again. You’re going to be my first choice. I’ll be here as long as you’ll have me,” Magnus said into his shoulder. Alec’s grip only tightened.

“So always,” Alec whispered, just loud enough for Magnus to hear.

Both had tears falling down their faces at this point, but neither knew if it was from the sadness of recent events, or the happiness of having each other back.

They stood like that -no distance between them, wrapped in each other’s arms, warmth, love- for god knows how long.

They were okay. They’d get past this. They’d have each other.

Always.