“Hey, Alec, you should go to bed now. You look exhausted.”
Alec looks up as Izzy touches his shoulder, and he shakes his head, forcing a tired imitation of a smile onto his face.
“No, it’s alright, I’ll wait until Jace gets healed.” He pushes her hand off his shoulder gently, continuing towards the infirmary.
His sister sighs, stepping in front of him. “Alec, you need the rest. After everything with the Downworld Council, tonight’s fight and…other fights you’ve had…” She trails off and Alec winces slightly at her implication.
“It doesn’t affect my health, Izzy, it’s fine.” He says as stoically as possible, to mask the bitter undertones. Simmering just below the surface is the aching hurt that’s been there ever since Magnus had walked away from him, mere days ago.
“It does, big bro. You may try to pretend, but,” She raises a hand to touch his cheek lightly, and he can’t help but lean slightly into the subtle affection, “I can see through it. Get some sleep. I’ll handle Jace and Clary.”
Alec opens his mouth to protest but at the firm glower behind her gaze, he finally nods. “Alright.”
Izzy smiles warmly at him, before nudging him in the direction of his room. “Go on.”
His feet start walking automatically, and he lets himself follow behind them, his gaze blurring slightly at the edges from the weariness in his body. Now that he thinks about it, albeit fuzzily, he hasn’t gotten any time to rest recently. The few hours that he’s gotten to lay down have been interrupted with wild and unruly thoughts.
Most of them Magnus.
His heart clenches at the simple thought of the man, with bright eyes rimmed with dark shadow, and a smile that used to make him so, so happy.
But now that smile just feels like a distant memory, and instead something that will probably only stay a distant memory. He remembers seeing Magnus with the Seelie Queen at that meeting, the warlock’s gaze unwavering but never quite meeting his eyes when they had faced each other. The way his ex-lover was so defiant in being against him, and didn’t spare him a second glance as he walked out.
Alec keeps walking, the environment around him dissolving from the warm tones of the institute to the cool breeze of outside, his footsteps never faltering.
He had always scoffed at people around him falling victim to their emotions, and at least he could keep Jace at a distance where he wouldn’t experience heartbreak, but perhaps someone could’ve warned him that it felt like a constant vice around his heart. Always trying to find an excuse to crush it with every reminder of the warlock.
He keeps walking, trying to clear his thoughts of the dark haired man and the chaos of everything else going on around him. Nowadays it felt like he could never have a second without a pressure on his shoulders. He feels his vision blurring further, tears unmistakably pricking at his eyes. Alec blinks rapidly, biting his lip harshly as he grips a handrail, ascending a flight of stairs.
Surely, after a good night’s sleep, it won’t hurt so bad anymore.
He swipes at his eyes, and feels his breath catch in his throat at the sight before him. A set of dark, wooden doors that he knows so well that he can feel the sensation of them being closed in his face. In his haze, his subconscious hadn’t resisted to walking all the way from the institute to his ex-boyfriend’s loft.
Suddenly, the idea of having his heartache mended seems a lot further away, as tears begin to fall a lot faster. Clenching his fists, he leans his back against the wall, trying to calm his heaving chest from rising and falling so damn rapidly.
“Come on, Alec, you’re the head of the fucking institute, you can’t afford to do this.” He mumbles to himself, feeling his nails dig into the calloused skin of his palms.
Letting out a shuddering breath, he makes to push off the wall, to try and get home and forget about everything that’s happened, he hears a soft sound from within the loft walls.
He pauses, against his better judgement, and listens. He can hear crackling, lilting music, no doubt playing from the warlock’s favourite phonograph. Alec lets himself smile a little, at hearing Magnus humming along to the tune cheerfully as he no doubt waltzes around the apartment.
The smile slides off his face soon enough when he realises that Magnus is nowhere near as emotionally broken as he is, about this.
And why would he be? Alec thinks bitterly, remembering his thousands of relationships in his centuries of life.
But the thought of meaning less to Magnus as Magnus did to him, makes him let out a choked sob, hands coming up to cup his mouth to try and stop the others, stifling soft cries laced with heavy tears.
He leans back against the wall and slides down it in an attempt to support his tears, his voice sounding ugly and wrecked as he cries against his jacket sleeve, the warm lights of the hallway blurring his vision into a golden haze.
Alec draws his knees up to his chest as he trembles in an attempt to try and regain stability and composure, not noticing the music stopping from within the loft, and the footsteps from behind the door.
“Come on Alec, you’re not this s-stupid.” He whispers brokenly in between soft cries, raking his hands rapidly through messy, dark locks, as if the motion will bring him back down to earth.
Burying his head in his knees to muffle his sobs, he doesn’t see or hear the door open, and the soft yet sharp intake of breath above him.
But he does hear the “Oh god, my sweet boy,” spoken in a low, trembling voice, and he raises his heavy head to see him.
Magnus looks beautiful, in an unbuttoned red silk shirt and tight black pants, with necklaces and rings sparkling in the dim glow of the hallway, crimson-tipped hair falling onto his forehead. But what takes Alec’s breath away is the way he looks at Alec.
His eyes aren’t concealed with a glamour, rather, his beautiful golden cat eyes lined with ever perfect dark eyeshadow, gaze down at the Shadowhunter. But rather than scorn, in contempt, in dismissal, he looks at him like he used to.
With protection, worry, adoration, with love.
It makes Alec crumple even more under the weight of it, letting out a soft sob against his will, and Magnus’s eyes widen in horror, before he falls to his knees in front of the boy.
Scrambling, the warlock pulls Alec forward as he cries, pulling him into his lap and wrapping his arms tightly around, locking him in his embrace.
“Sh, sh, Alexander, baby, please don’t cry, I’m here, I’m here.” He murmurs, stricken by the utter state of his ex-lover as he curls around him protectively, blinking away tears of his own. He had heard the Shadowhunter come up to his loft, and had every intent of ignoring him. But he hadn’t heard any expected knock, so he kept his music on and humming warily, heart strings being pulled more and more every second he waited.
And his heart had finally broken at the sound of Alec breaking down crying in his hallway.
In the midst of everything that was going on, he had forgotten that, however hard it must be for him, it would be tenfold for the Head of the Institute. He was years younger in experience, and he had to balance all the chaos going on at such an age, and Magnus had forgotten that easily. Yes, Alec had betrayed his trust, but not with malicious intent, and remembering everything that he was going through, it must’ve been difficult to deal with everything all at once.
Which brings them to here. A normally stoic and authoritative man is now sobbing in his lap and the warlock feels guilt rise to the surface, though he knows that he has to deal with his ex-lover’s well-being first.
“Hey, sweetheart, can you lift your head for me?” He asks gently, and Alec shakes his head firmly, hands slowly fisting into Magnus’s silk shirt in an attempt to bring himself back down from his erratic breaths.
Magnus sighs, clicking his tongue chidingly, but more affectionately than anything. “C’mon, let me see those beautiful eyes of yours darling.”
Alec whimpers at the pet name, but is unresisting as the warlock tilts his chin up, to meet his gaze. His bottom lip trembles as Magnus flits his gaze across his face, before resting his palm against the boy’s cheek, swiping away the tears that have brimmed over.
“Oh, Alexander, my beautiful. What’ve I done to you? How could I not see this sooner?” He whispers, shame edging his words, and Alec shakes his head, gulping for breath.
“N-Not your fault. Wasn’t your fault. I-I broke your trust.” Alec hiccups.
Magnus leans forward to gently kiss his temple. “Maybe so, but I shouldn’t have been so careless with you, my dear.” He moves his lips to press against his tear tracks, then his cheeks, then to his nose.
Alec giggles quietly, a noise that Magnus had never heard before from his Shadowhunter, but is determined to pull more from him.
“I shouldn’t have been so harsh on you, and believe me, Alexander, that if I hadn’t been so...cold, during the meeting, I wouldn’t have been able to resist you,” He murmurs, carding his hand through Alec’s hair slowly as the boy sniffles, “It took all my strength to walk away from you, both times, and I don’t think I can do it again.”
“It felt like you h-hated me, l-like you didn’t want to have anything to...to do with me.” Alec stutters, and Magnus’s heart breaks all over again in that moment and his shame feels almost sickening now.
“I could never hate you, Alexander. Never, in any lifetime. It was just an act, sweetheart. I wouldn’t dare be so cruel, in genuinity.” Magnus tells him.
“D-Don’t leave me, please.” Alec mumbles after a moment of silence, eyes fluttering shut as Magnus scritches lightly at the scalp, making the warlock smile fondly.
Alec lets out a sound akin to a purr, Magnus chuckling softly as he presses his lips on his forehead. “I wouldn’t dream of it, darling. Now…” He juts his chin towards his loft door, “I think we would be a lot more comfortable in my bed, hm?”
The Shadowhunter nods, sniffing one more time before burying his head in Magnus’s neck. “Mm.”
Magnus stands up, grunting at the added weight of the boy in his arms. “We’ll talk more in the morning, alright?”
He can feel Alec nod against his neck as he closes the loft door behind them. “Mm hm. Love you, Magnus.” Alec slurs drowsily, before his eyes finally flutter shut.
The warlock pauses his steps at the statement, unable to stop the warm smile that spreads across his face.
“I love you too, Alexander. Always.” He whispers, despite knowing it falls on deaf ears, and presses a kiss to Alex’s messy locks. He settles them in the silk sheets, pulling his boy close and drifting off into sleep, heart now at rest.
Alec groans softly, blinking his eyes rapidly in an attempt to adjust to the warm morning light. The feeling of soft silk against his skin is familiar, but he hasn’t felt it in a while. Sitting up a little, the memories of the night beforehand flood back to him, and his breath rushes out at the sight of just empty sheets beside him.
He’ll come back, Alec thinks, but can’t help the hurt and confusion that rises to the core. He pulls the warlock’s pillow to his front, burying his face in the material and inhaling the scent of sandalwood, cinnamon, spicy cologne and just Magnus. He shuts his eyes tightly and breathes out shakily, trying to push away all the bad thoughts that still remain.
“Alexander?” A soft voice interrupts his train of thought, and he looks up and his breath comes out in a relieved rush. Magnus sits down on the edge of the bed, hand reaching out to brush curls of hair off Alec’s forehead. “Were you afraid that I left?”
“No I…” He trails off, and at the warlock’s open and honest look, he nods. “Yeah.”
“Oh darling, I’m sorry, I should’ve stayed but I had a few clients in the morning and I didn’t want to wake you up before the afternoon.”
“It’s...the afternoon?” Alec sits up straighter, already tensing to go. “I-I have to get back to the institute.”
Magnus tuts him gently, before pressing him back into the pillows by the shoulders. “Don’t fret, my dear, I sent Izzy a message and we both agreed that you needed some well deserved rest so you have the day off.”
The warlock’s hand drifts down gently to his cheek, caressing it as Alec lets himself smile. “T-Thank you, Magnus.”
Magnus waves his hand dismissively, with a glimmer in his eye. “It was partly for my benefit too, so I could spend the day with you, hm?”
Alec sighs embarrassedly, rubbing a hand over his face. “I...Magnus, I’m sorry about last night, I didn’t mean to be so emotional and to spring it all on you like that, I didn’t mean to-“
He’s cut off by a perfectly manicured finger pressed to his lips, Magnus looking at him with a raised brow. “Uh uh, you don’t get to apologise, Alexander. There’s no need to. We both needed this, needed each other.”
“But I...betrayed you, and we’re from two different sides, Magnus. You said it yourself.” Alec looks down at his lap, biting his lip.
“That doesn’t mean we still can’t work out.” The warlock takes his hand gently, forcing Alec to look up into his open gaze, “I didn’t see that, beforehand, but now I do. I can’t live without you, Alexander, as last night proved, and I get why you didn’t tell me about the soul sword. I forgot about everything else you were dealing with and I didn’t see the bigger picture and I was inconsiderate, and unfair.”
Magnus lifts his hand to his lips, pressing soft kisses to the knuckles, Alec’s cheeks flushing at the affection. “So, forgive me?”
“There isn’t anything to forgive. You did what you had to do.”
“As did you.” Magnus tugs slightly on Alec’s hand to draw him closer, “As long as we put this all behind this.”
“Yeah.” Alec smiles breathlessly. “Yeah, I’d like that.”
“Mm, good.” Magnus purrs, reeling in his reclaimed lover, pulling the boy into his lap and pressing teasing kisses to the Shadowhunter’s deflect rune. Alec lets out a stuttered breath, tilting his neck to allow the warlock to familiarise himself again.
“Have you missed this, my darling?” Magnus smirks at the small noises his boyfriend makes, biting lightly and revelling in the quiet gasp Alec makes.
“Definitely.” Alec chuckles softly as the older man soothes the bite with a gentle press of the lips.
“You know what I’ve missed more?” Magnus pulls away to gently rest his jewelled hand on Alec’s cheek, tenderly sweeping a thumb over his cheekbone.
Alec’s breath hitches, and he gives the slightest of nods. His eyes flutter close as he feels Magnus’s warmth getting closer and closer, until they finally connect. He immediately relaxes into the comforting feeling of the warlock’s lips against his, pressing forward slowly as Magnus moves his hand to rake through Alec’s messy locks. He feels so safe, so loved, letting his lover deepen the kiss with a teasing, tender press of the tongue.
As they pull away, Magnus nips lightly at Alec’s bottom lip, making the younger boy grin and melt further into his boyfriend, letting the warlock pull them down onto the sheets.
“Now I believe that I owed you some morning cuddles, hm?” Magnus murmurs, his eyes glowing with an adoration that makes Alec’s heart ache.
“Mm. That’d be good.”
Magnus snaps his fingers, leaving him in his silk boxers and necklaces, before tangling their legs together. Alec wraps his arms around his warlock, the warlock then beginning to idly card his hand through the Shadowhunter’s soft hair.
“I love you, Magnus Bane. And I know we just got back together but...” Alec trails off softly, looking up slightly to meet his gaze.
The older man smiles, pressing a kiss to Alec’s forehead. “I love you too, Alexander. Whether we’re apart or together, never doubt that. I will forever be in love with you.”