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In the heat of the moment

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Chapter 3

 

“I’ve already assigned the Warlock case to Hillwater.” Alec felt his hands tighten behind his back as his mother continued to read a report without looking up. “Mom, Hillwater doesn't have enough experience with Warlocks or how to handle them.” That got his mom’s attention as she finally looked up from her paperwork and narrowed her eyes in questioningly. “Explain.”

The word was sharp and Alec swallowed his heart pounding anxiously. He needed this case. “Magnus Bane already has a deep distrust of Shadowhunters and from what I’ve heard Hillwater and his family don’t exactly have a good reputation with the Downworld. His ancestors were known for hunting Downworlders before the Accords were signed and even after that they didn't hide the fact they sold fangs, claws, body parts of Seelies and Warlock Marks for profit on the black markets.”

He watched as his mother mulled over his words. “What makes you think Bane would know about that?” he wanted to roll his eyes but resisted. “He’s estimated to be over 400 hundred years old and it's very likely he would’ve crossed paths with many Shadowhunter ancestors including those known for hunting.”

Alec fingers tapped nervously behind his back as he waited. “Why are you so keen to have this case?”

“Izzy’s already given me the autopsy reports and I’ve started a profile of the unsub also Hillwater is a racist asshole.” Maryse’s lips tightened a fraction as she glanced down at her work tablet. She swiped at the screen a few times. “You’re still on suspension. The Clave haven't cleared you for field work.”

That couldn’t be right, Alec thought as he grabbed Maryse’s tablet. On the screen was his profile and medical history. “The Clave clear me for active duty before I came back to New York.”

Maryse looked unconvinced as she pulled out her stele and started forming a fire message. “Until I hear otherwise I will officially assign the case over to Isabelle. You will work under her and you are not to leave the Institute until your status is cleared.”

**

Eyes closed Magnus concentrated his magic to seep into every pour of the dead Warlock on the table. His brow furrowed in confusion just as something chirped in the background breaking his concentration. He snapped his fingers as the wisps of magic disappeared. “Sorry about that.”

He glanced over his shoulder at Isabelle Lightwood just as she tucked away her phone. “Don’t worry about it my dear.” Taking a deep breath he sent stronger waves of magic into the body. Beside him Isabelle took samples looking at each with interest before placing them in tubs or envelopes. “Everything okay?”

Snapping his fingers sharply the darker shade of magic disappeared and he stepped back away from the body. His heart pinched at what remained of the Warlock. “If I didn't know this Warlock I would’ve thought it wasn’t one.” That got Isabelle’s attention as she straightened and he continued his thought process. “In your report you noted that the body had been drained of all bodily fluids and blood,” she nodded as Magnus let light blue sparks from the tips of his fingers. “This body has no magic even in death I should be to feel something but there is nothing.”

Something dawned on Isabelle’s face as she glanced at the dead Warlock. “Magnus is it possible that the Mark of a Warlock could actually hold magical properties? If it’s removed before death could the Mark somehow seal the magic away?”

He had never heard of a Mark being able to bind the magic but with that in mind it wouldn’t do any harm researching. “Anything can happen with extreme trauma so it’s possible.” He snapped his fingers to ensure the books he needed were ready upon his return to his loft. “I’ll make some enquiries with other Warlocks and the Council if they know anything about Marks having the ability to bind magic.”

Isabelle smiled at him in thanks as her phone chirped again. “You’ll be pleased to hear that the your case has been assigned to me. Alec is on his way down now, and thanks for the heads up about Hillwaters family history.”

The shared a smirk. “Not a problem my darling however I must say you’ve peaked my interest about your brother, what can I expect when I officially meet him?”

“Are we talking looks or personality?” She grinned at him knowingly. “He’s a bit salty and grumpy but I think you’ll like him.”

Salty and grumpy? “And…?” he raised his eyebrows expectantly and Isabelle bit her red painted bottom lip. “And what?” her voice shook from the effort of not laughing. “Don’t make me beg Isabelle. Am I going to be disappointed if he isn’t as gorgeous as you?”

“You’ll just have to see for yourself I don’t think you’ll be disappointed.” He knew he wasn't going to get anything more from her. “So is Alec short for something?” she tilted her head her dark eyes narrowed. “Yes and why are you so interested?” he shrugged innocently. “I’m just curious that’s all.”

She straightened pulling a white sheet over the body. “His full name is Alexander but everyone calls him Alec, I think he prefers it.”

His stomach flipped a little as he waited for Alec to finally make an appearance. He had never so anxious to meet someone and he found himself fidgeting and that caught Isabelle’s attention. “Are you nervous about meeting my brother?” he didn't know how to describe what he was feeling. He had had a feeling about Maryse that there was something familiar about her and the same with Isabelle. “No! What makes you think that?”

Isabelle had clearly inherited Maryse’s beauty. She had the same thick black hair and dark brown eyes. Her skin tone and bone structure matched her Mother. The difference between Isabelle and her Mother; Isabelle had made the effort to learn his name and from the first meeting they had automatically developed a connection which soon lead to a platonic friendship. “You’re fidgeting.”

A part of him wanted to tell Isabelle about the Shadowhunter he had met six months ago. “Maybe I’m just nervous that he might not be as welcoming as you my dear.” She snorted in a way that suggested she knew he was avoiding the question.

Magnus’ stomach dropped when he heard the ding from the elevator and took everything to stop him from losing his nerve and portalling out with some kind of excuse. He had a couple ready and loaded mostly involving his cats having a domestic.

**

As soon as Alec stepped out the elevator he felt a sudden pull like someone had attached an invisible hook to his navel. It had felt similar to when… it couldn't be possible! Izzy would’ve said something.