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"Magnus? Are you home?" shouted Clary as she entered their shared flat, dropping her keys in the bowl by the door. "I've got some amazing news to tell you! I'm so excited!"

"In here, Biscuit," Magnus called from his bedroom. He could hear the excitement in her voice and wondered if she had finally heard about the art scholarship, not that he would bring it up if she didn't - she had been stressing out about it and he didn't want to make her feel worse if it wasn't why she was excited.

Suddenly she was in his room and throwing her arms around him, "Oh Magnus, you'll never guess what happened and no before you ask it is not the scholarship. If it was the scholarship i'd have wine or beer or vodka with me for sure. It's not better but it's almost as good or maybe it is better..."

"Okay, okay, Clary - just tell me already, you're far too excited about this so share!" He said flopping back on his bed and pulling Clary beside him her red curls surrounding her like a halo.

"Okay, so you know Jace..." Clary began. Internally Magnus groaned. Not Jace, anything but Jace. He was such a big lump. He had a habit of ignoring Magnus whenever he found himself in his company mostly because their first ever conversation together had included him insulting Magnus' makeup and clothes as well as making fun of his choice of master's course. So all in all, Jace was definitely not his favourite person.

"Sorry, Biscuit, I think I zoned out after you mentioned the J word. You know how I feel about him. What were you saying?" Magnus sighed.

"I know Magnus, but I can't help who I crush on - it's chemical! You know I find him a little abrupt too but he's so sexy and he loves his sister and is always standing up for people and I just can't help it. Those biceps Magnus! You can't tell me you haven't looked at least once! Grrrr..." As Clary growled right in his ear he couldn't help giggling and wrapping his arm around her. Her noises had also brought his baby into the room, and he felt a cold wet nose nudge his hand as Chairman Meow settled next to him.

"Okay, so Jace is hot and sexy and stands up for women, but I still don't know what we are talking about. What life changing event is happening?" Magnus pulled on one of Clary's copper curls and tugged it around his finger - he was so jealous of her hair sometimes.

"Right - so he invited me to his cabin this weekend!" She was thrumming with excitement and he could see the wide grin on her face. "He finally really noticed me. isn't it amazing?"

"Of course, I'm so pleased for you my dear, I'll help you pack. Oooo you can take the cute new jammies we bought last week. Wait a minute, are you going to be sharing a room?" Magnus asked staring at his friend. He knew Clary was really into Jace, but he also knew that she gave her heart easily and that she had had it bruised a time or two. Looking over at his friend he hoped that he wouldn't need to buy ice cream, tissues and wine for Sunday evening.

"Ah," she said, looking away from him, which should have been Magnus' first clue, "Well that's the thing, you're going to be sharing my room because you're invited too!"

"What!!" He said, staring at his best friend in what he hoped was absolute shock and disagreement, "No way! I am not going to spend one of my precious weekends watching you and Jace doing your mating dance. I have plans anyway, I'm going to hit the club with Ragnor and see if we can persuade Catarina to drink a shot of our choice although I know she won't because duh she's sensible student nurse Cat!" Magnus kept babbling away trying to persuade Clary that he was not a good candidate to go with her, "Why don't you invite someone else - one of your little art minions - hey invite Simon! He's a great solution!"

"He's already going, with Izzy," Clary said sadly, looking at Magnus. "Oh come on Magnus, I can't bear to go alone. I need my other half, my bestie, my man, my parabati! Please!! Look I'll owe you big time, I'll do the dishes for a month and your washing too. I'll buy all the groceries and I'll help you cook!" she begged.

"No way are you cooking! Last time you had Izzy round and you 'cooked'," He started, making little quotation marks with his fingers, "We almost lost the apartment! I thought we'd never get the burnt smell out of the couch!"

"Yes, but you did score a date with that firefighter and she was hot Magnus!" Clary pointed out grabbing his hand and holding it tight, "Come on, you don't have to do anything you don't want to - you can stay in the room the whole weekend if you want and I'll deliver you food which I didn't cook! I will bring the DVD player and steal you a TV and you can just sit and gorge on ShadowPortals the whole time! Come on! Please my bestie McBesterson! I'll love you forever! You can't make me go alone, who will I gossip about Jace with? I can't talk to Izzy about her brother's sexy ass."

Clary's pout was killing him. He could tell how desperate she actually was. He turned on his side and looked over at her, "Do you promise you'll stay with me and if I need time, you'll make it happen? Because you know if I have an attack I don't want to be the entertainment darling. And, you will be doing the dishes the whole month and the shopping, but you are not touching my dry clean only jackets or the stove!"

"Oh Magnus, I love you! Thank you so much! I will do all of that and more. Thank you, Thank you, Thank you!" He watched as Chairman Meow streaked off the bed to avoid being squashed and then Magnus had an armful of his best friend and a face full of ginger curls tickling his nose.

"Okay, now I need to know a lot more about this trip darling, so let me finish the end of my essay and I'll cook us something quick and you can fill me in," Magnus said, pushing her gently away and moving to his dresser where the cursor was still flashing on his almost complete paper.

Clary bounced away for a shower and the Chairman slinked back in to sit on his bed, his head resting on his paws and a bemused expression on his face.

"Yes, I know Chairman, I know I'm a sucker for punishment but she's my best friend I have to support her."

Magnus stared at himself in his mirror and ran a hand through the purple streaks in his hair, he would be alright. Clary was his best friend and she wouldn't lead him wrong. She knew him so well and they had been through so much together, but Jace? Jace was going to be a challenge. And if Simon and Izzy were going too then that probably meant Simon's other best friend Maia which meant Jordan as well. And there was a guy who gave him the creeps. Magnus decided that he would worry about one thing at a time and not let it overwhelm him. If he thought about it too much it might trigger a panic attack and he had far too much work to do.

----
Later that evening, over glasses of red wine and bowls of pasta, Clary told him more about the trip.

"So, the couples are Jordan and Maia and Simon and Izzy, then there's Raj, Lydia, Underhill, Jessica and us. Of course Jace! There are twelve of us altogether," she tailed off, and Magnus discretely counted on his fingers.

"Biscuit you're missing someone?" He prompted.

"Oh yes, and Jace asked his big brother Alec to come too. I don't think you've ever met Alec? I've only met him once. He already graduated last year but he's our age I guess. He's really nice but quite grown up. I guess it's a Lightwood sibling trip plus a bunch of their friends really. But it'll be great Magnus - I know it's a few more new people than you usually like but it's going to be lots of fun I promise."

"Okay, you don't have to push anymore. I said I'll come and I will. So, tell me a bit more about the others - I think I've met everyone except Jessica and Lydia?" He asked as they curled up together on the couch.

"Well...Jessica Hawkblue is a sophomore but she's friends with..." Magnus let Clary's gentle voice wash over him and resigned himself to it - he was going on a minibreak and he was damn well going to pretend to enjoy it for his best friend. He dread to think where he'd be without her and he could do this one tiny little thing for her...it would all be okay.

Chapter Text

Magnus Bane, master of disguise, swept one last hand through the bright pink tips of his hair and sighed at his expression in the mirror. The dreaded day had arrived - The Chairman was already at Catarina's with a disgustingly large bag of toys and food and treats, and Ragnor was lounging on his bed sipping from Magnus' favourite whiskey tumbler, the one that said 'Hi I'm Bi!'.

"Ragnor, remind me again why I agreed to this?" Magnus asked, tugging on one of his friend's socked feet as he passed him to the closet. "Why am I such an idiot? Why can't I do what I want and why can't I say no to Clary?" He opened the closet door and pulled out his burgundy pea coat, folding it gently in his arms as he continued to whine, "We were going to the club and there was going to be drinking and I was going to dance and we were going to make Catarina have a drink. Instead I'm packed for a trip I don't want to go on, Catarina is Cat sitting and you're planning to stay sprawled on my 1000 thread count sheets for the entire weekend - don't give me that look, I can tell!"

Ragnor merely waved the whiskey glass at him and then continued taking small sips, he was very used to Magnus' rants and knew it was best to let him get it all out before he intervened.

"Have you finished?" he asked, as Magnus ran out of steam and dropped onto the corner of his bed.

"I guess," his voice wavered, before he spoke again, "I'm just worried, what if I have an attack and I can't control it?"

"My old friend, you are strong. You can achieve anything you put your mind to and if it happens you will have Clary there with you to help. I know you are concerned, but if it happens it can be dealt with. As for the rest - I have no idea why you agreed to this disaster, but then I allow no-one to force my hand in anything so I cannot really compare. You have made your bed Magnus, and now I must lie in it!" His throaty laugh echoed off the walls but he let one hand drop to Magnus's head, where he stroked lightly. "You are the strongest of us all, Magnus. You will be fine. Now it's time for you to leave - your bed and I have an appointment with Project Runway and I am just dying to find out what monstrosities they are going to call clothes this week! You, go, get off on your little adventure."

"Thanks Rag," Magnus replied as he climbed up and looked down at his friend. "Just remember, there is a strict no eating in the bed rule my little cabbage! Otherwise, I will cancel my Netflix and leave you high and dry with no Heidi!"

"Oh the torture," Ragnor drawled as he curled up further into Magnus' sheets.

"Hey Ragnor," Magnus said, staring at him intently, "I love you, my friend,"

"And I love you too," Ragnor replied with a small smile, "But you seriously need to leave now before I forget why!"

----

Magnus had agreed to meet Clary outside Jace's building, so he rolled his way over there with his (admittedly rather large) carry on. As he walked over, he pondered Ragnor's words. He was strong and he could do this. But 5 days of this? 5 days of Jace and Jordan and everyone else. That was going to be hard work. It turned out Clary's definition of weekend was leave on Wednesday night and come back late on Sunday as their school was closed for a long weekend. Five days.

Stalking along the pavement, Magnus sucked in a deep breath and resigned himself to his fate. Oh well, time to be fabulous he thought as he caught sight of Clary's red curls up ahead.

"Biscuit!" He called, striding towards his friend and watching as she peeled herself away from Jace.

"Magnus, I'm so glad you're here," she replied as they embraced. "I like Jace, I mean I really like him, but I was starting to lose my cool because he kept talking about the karaoke machine he's bringing and asking me what songs I'm gonna sing and I tried to politely tell him that that wasn't gonna be an option but he just didn't stop. Argh! What do I do Mags?"

"Hey, hey," Magnus had not seen her this flustered for a while, so he stroked his hand over her hair and pulled her against his chest, "It'll be fine Clary, we'll just ply him with drinks and you can talk and talk and talk about art and literature and travel and he will forget all about it. And if not, then I'll take one for the team and do any songs you want!"

"Oh thanks so much Magnus, if he finds out about my irrational fear of karaoke, he might not want to date me - he seems to be really into it," she shuddered.

"Your fear is not irrational, Clary, we already talked about this. Seeing that man singing shot to the heart as he got shot in the heart would put anyone off it for life my love. Now come on, you said there would be space if I brought my simply enormous carry on, so where is this space? Huh?" Linking arms with her, he allowed himself to be pulled in the direction of the cars and Jace.

"Magnus!" Jace greeted him, looking anywhere but into his eyes, "You came, I'm so pleased. It's great that Clary convinced you. I thought at one point that she wouldn't come herself if she didn't get to bring you, and we couldn't miss out on her company this weekend."

The thinly veiled reminder that he was not really on any of Jace's potential guest lists reminded him why he had been so reluctant to come.

"Ah Chase, of course, I was happy to help my little Biscuit out, but she had to pay me in a lot of chores to ensure she had my company for the weekend. After all she knows exactly how I feel about some of the people taking this trip," he implied as he finally caught the blonde boys eyes.

"Mags!" Clary hissed, "You know his name is Jace!"

"Ah, sorry slip of the tongues, happens sometimes, especially when I'm feeling slightly unwanted?!" Magnus ground out.

"No, no, I didn't mean you weren't welcome Magnus, of course you're welcome, you do know you're welcome? Clary, please, tell him I want him to come?" Jace's face had dropped and his easy grin fell off his face as he tried to catch Magnus' eye.

"Ah, then that's okay, isn't it?" Magnus asked as he looked up at him. "We're going to have a jolly old weekend, all together,"

"Yes," Jace said in a small voice and ran a hand through his floppy hair nervously.

"Magnus!" A musical voice called, pulling his attention from where his best friend had put her hand onto Jace's back and was whispering to him. Maybe he had gone a little too far, he worried as he turned to greet Isabelle Lightwood.

"My dear Isabelle, a pleasure to see you," he replied, bending to drop a kiss on her cheek, "And Sherwin! How wonderful!"

"It's still Simon, Magnus," Simon replied as he grinned over at him, his hand resting lightly around Isabelle's waist.

"Of course, Sampson, of course it is!" Magnus grinned back and took the outstretched hand.

"What did you do to my brother, Magnus?" Isabelle asked as she glanced over at Clary and Jace who were huddled together.

"Do?" he asked innocently, "Do? I didn't do anything, we were merely talking. Now tell me about this cabin we are going to? Clary told be absolutely nothing!" He said and dragged her and Simon away from Clary. He didn't feel too guilty because it was giving Clary lots of alone time with Jace.

-----

A little while later, Magnus had separated from Isabelle and Simon and was leaning against a black SUV, watching as more of the group arrived and dropped their bags by the curb.
He could see Clary by Jace's side, welcoming everyone perkily and being the perfect hostess.

Musing on how wonderful his friend really was, he didn't notice that someone had moved to stand next to him, until their shadow fell over his face. Blinking, he turned and stared up and up and up into a pair of bright hazel eyes. They were set in one of the most handsome faces Magnus had ever seen and he had to take a second peek from under his eyelashes.

"Umm, you're leaning on my car," the man said, his deep voice rumbling as he looked down at Magnus.

Magnus heard his words and knew he should move, but staring upwards into his hypnotic gaze, he couldn't move a muscle.

They both stood, staring into each others eyes as if transfixed. Seconds passed and Magnus could not look away as recognition dawned in the strangers eyes. Then suddenly, the man coughed and turned breaking the spell.

Breathing deeply, Magnus stood to his full height and stepped away from the car. "Sorry," he said, voice a little shaky.

"No problem," the man began, turning back towards Magnus, but before he had fully turned, Isabelle bounced over and into his arms.

"Alec! You're here!" she exclaimed, hugging him tightly, "I thought you'd never make it!"

"Sure Izzy, I just assumed you and Jace would be fashionably late as always so I should be even later!" He laughed.

His voice was more musical than rumbling now, but it was no less attractive to Magnus.

As if she had just spotted him, Isabelle turned and brought her arm up around Magnus' shoulders, "I don't think you've met Magnus have you Alec?" she asked gesturing towards him. "He's Clary's best friend and studying a masters in.." she trailed off.

Realizing it was his cue to speak, Magnus avoided Alec's gaze as he lightly replied, "Ah let's not talk school, I wouldn't want a repeat of the Chace incident! I'm not sure my fragile ego could cope with another Lightwood laughing at my degree subject,"

Although he was smiling, he felt an edge of distrust leak into his voice, even as Alec protested that he would never laugh at anyone's choices at school.

"Best to leave it for now my dear Alexander," Magnus stated, ending the conversation, "But you must tell me all about the real world this weekend, Clary said you graduated already?"

"Alexander?" Alec asked, face scrunched slightly but a hint of a smirk on his lips.

"That is your name right?" Magnus replied. "I believe in using everyone's proper names, isn't that right my dear Isabelle?"

"Unless your Simon or Jace!" She laughed, indicating her boyfriend who was stood with Maia and Jordan and laughing at something. "Hey, I'm going to go finalize seating with Jace, be right back."

As she walked away, Magnus put his hand to his head and slumped back against the car again.

"Umm Magnus," Alec said tentatively, "Do you remember me?"

A smile quirked Magnus' lips as he tilted his head to look upwards at Alec, "Remember you?" he asked, drawing out the torture. "How could I forget you? I may not have known your name dear, but those eyes and those lips? How could I ever forget those?"

Alec stared at him, surprise in his eyes. "I thought," he began, "I thought it was just me. I didn't think you would remember. I thought I was just one of a thousand. You're so beautiful, so perfect, that I wouldn't be surprised. I thought I would be a faded memory by now, I didn't expect to ever see you again,"

"You've thought a lot about it then, Alexander?" Magnus asked curling his tongue around his name. "Thought about me and that night?"

"Yes!" Alec hissed out between his teeth, "But, it was just once. One time. It's not who I am. It's not who I can be. I'm not...I'm not out. They don't know and I really can't cope with this today. I'm sorry Magnus, sorry to ask, but please can you keep this between us? I'm not asking you to lie about who you are. Just don't tell them who I am please. Not now."

The desperation in his voice surprised Magnus and he looked up at Alec with eyes full of worry. "What happened to you? You were the most confident man I ever met. That night you were incredible. Where has that all gone?"

"I can't talk about this right now," Alec said, indicating the group headed their way, led by Jace and Clary, "Can we drop it until later? Maybe we can talk again but not now." He was fumbling over his words now and Magnus felt nothing but sympathy. He raised a hand to touch Alec's wrist, but he flinched away so he ran his hand through his own streaked hair instead and took an unsteady breath.

"Of course," he whispered, just before Clary grabbed his arm tightly in hers and turned her beaming face towards him. Then looked up at Alec, "Hi! I'm Clary!" she exclaimed.

-----

After a quick discussion amongst the drivers about the route, the group were ready to leave.

Squeezing his arm tightly, Clary drew him slightly away from the others. "Umm Magnus," she began, "Please don't hate me...but I want to ride with Jace and he has a spot in his car. I know I said I wouldn't leave you, but I feel like I'm making progress and I'm worried if Jessica or Lydia or hell even Raj or Underhill take that spot, then all my good work will be for nothing! Would you mind terribly?"

"Biscuit," he sighed in exasperation. "You said.." but then he looked at her eager face and he couldn't do it. "Fine, will I go with Isabelle then?"

"Umm.." she started again, "Well, they're full because she's taking Simon and Maia and Jordan. So you can ride with Alec. I asked Jace and he said he's a totally safe driver, in fact he called him a boringly safe driver, so I know you'll be okay. And he's nice! And he's older like you are and he's friendly...well maybe not really friendly cos Jace said he doesn't talk too much but he's nice and I wouldn't ask except.." she trailed off to take a breath and Magnus decided to jump in before she could start again.

"It's okay Biscuit, I understand. I'll ride with Alec. You can have your precious few hours of Jace time and I'll suffer the stoic, silent, giant who drives like an undertaker. At least tell me you've got one of our roadtrip mixes so I can introduce him to some good music?"

"I love you Magnus! You're the best! Thank you! Here," she said, circling his neck with her arms and pulling him in for a tight hug before pressing a glittery CD case into his hands, "You can have the best one! Love you."

They separated and Magnus made his way back over to Alec's car where two unknown girls were bickering about who was going to sit in the front seat in front of an exasperated Alec.

Taking his cue from the expression on Alec's face, Magnus interrupted, "I'm so sorry ladies, but I'll have to interject. I'm afraid I suffer from a slight case of motion sickness so I'm going to have to call shotgun. I'm sure you two can cozy up in the back though, it looks like Alexander has brought pillows and blankets," he questioned, winking at Alec and taking pleasure in his slightly shocked expression.

"Those are for when I go star gazing," he replied, eyes never leaving Magnus'. "What?" he continued, "It's a thing!"

"I'm quite certain it is darling," Magnus drawled, enjoying the light blush that tickles Alec's cheeks, "Now, shouldn't we be setting off, be a dear and drop this in the trunk,"

As he indicated his small suitcase, Magnus pulled open the car door and leaped into the passenger seat, his hearth thundering in his chest as he recalled the smile on Alec's lips.

Oh god! Why had he agreed to this? Clary was going to be doing the dishes for a lot longer than a month if this continued.

Chapter Text

Settling into his seat, Magnus turned around to the two girls in the back. They were both already on their cellphones, taking selfies and generally ignoring him, so he decided not to bother. He shot a quick text off to Clary to tell her how dull he was finding his car ride already and she sent a short reply reminding him that they hadn't even left Jace's apartment building yet!

Laughing, he looked in the wing mirror just as Alec shut the trunk. He was surprised to see a smile on his face for a split second before he carefully schooled his features back into a neutral frown. 'Well,' thought Magnus, 'that was interesting.'

When Alec was finally in the driver's seat and they were ready to roll, Magnus turned to him and asked innocently, "So, Alexander, is it true you drive like a funeral director?"

"What?" Alec exclaimed, "Who said that? Bloody cheek! Bet it was Jace right? He's such a little..." he tailed off, a blush spreading across his cheeks as he looked at Magnus' incredulous expression.

"Okay, Okay!" Magnus laughed, "I gather that's not quite true then?"

"No way, he's just jealous because I'm the one who got to drive our father's Lambo last year and Dad said he was too dangerous to have a go. He's always trying to rile me up because of that. I drive just fine thank you,"

Although it was clear from their earlier conversation that Alec was very nervous about any physical contact, Magnus couldn't help pressing his hand to his forearm and squeezing lightly as he looked at the little pout Alec was making with his lips, "Oh your face Alexander, that was priceless!"

"Right," Alec frowned and then started the car, "Let's go."

They had been driving for about 15 minutes when Jessica leaned across the console from the back seat, twisting to gaze at Alec. "So, Alec," she asked, licking her lips, "What do you do now that you've left school? I bet it's something sensitive and sexy right? You're such a kind and gentle guy, Izzy's always telling us how amazing her big brother is, almost as though she was trying to pimp you out or something..."

Hearing Jessica's words, Magnus spluttered out the water he had just taken a sip of, drips trickling down his chin and on to his shirt. "Oh my god!" He said, lightly pushing Jessica back into her seat, "What a thing to say to someone. Where are your manners Jessica?"

Next to him Alec's face was flushed and he looked incredibly uncomfortable, his fingers turning white as they tightened around the steering wheel. Seeing his pained expression, Magnus decided to take pity on him and turned fully in his seat to face the girls.

"Hey girls, so Clary was telling me that you two are the most popular girls in your year and that you'd be able to tell me all about the parties that are going to happen this term. I do love to party, so maybe you can tell me about which ones are going to be the best?"

The girls immediately smiled at him and began talking over each other trying to impress Magnus with everything they knew. As they spoke, he turned to glance at Alec and saw that his blush had calmed down, but that his expression was still fixed in a glare. Continuing to feign interest in the girl's ramblings, he leaned into the space between the front seats to look back at them and at the same time placed his hand on Alec's armrest.

He didn't even turn when he felt another hand tentatively cover his own and squeeze for a brief second, but he felt the touch all the way to the tips of his toes as sparks danced up his arm.

After a while the girl's stopped talking and Magnus thanked them for their party ideas before turning back in his seat.

"How about some music?" He asked, slipping the glittery CD case from his bag.

"Sure," Alec grumbled, "I think there a few CD's in the glove box if you want to check."

"Oh, no, that's okay, Clary and I made our own Roadtrip Mixes - I'm sure you're going to love the tracks! Maybe I will give you a music education!" Magnus winked cheekily and then slipped the CD into the player. Soon the sounds of The Red Hot Chilli Peppers filled the car as they sang about Giving it Away. Again, Magnus took a look at Alec and saw the ghost of a grin playing across his lips. Well, however he could make the man smile was okay with him, after all, every tiny grin sent a shiver down Magnus' spine. God Alexander Lightwood was gorgeous.

----

Thirty minutes had passed and they had listened to almost a dozen tracks about partying, love, adventures and longing and Magnus had enjoyed every minute. The girls had settled down quickly and were now leaning towards the middle of the car, one of Alec's pillows tucked beneath their heads and their eyes closed. Although Alec was still concentrating on driving, Magnus had spotted him mouthing along to the odd lyric and was pleased with how he seemed to be relaxing into the journey.

Deciding that he had been silent for long enough, he turned down the volume just as Ed Sheeran's 'Perfect' began to play. Listening to the chorus, he felt there could not be a better song as the background music for any conversation with Alec. Even though he really didn't know the guy, he did know that he could be confident and sexy and brave and that he was an incredibly good and kind brother as well as generous in his own opinions of others. Also, he was very easy on the eyes but did not seem the slightest bit vain about his looks. Indeed, Magnus was pretty certain that Alec thought he was quite ordinary when Magnus knew for a fact that he would be the most attractive man in most rooms.

Turning back to Alec, he let his eyes wander over the other man's profile, lost in his thoughts. He was so distracted that he jumped when Alec suddenly spoke, not taking his eyes off the road in front of him. "You think very loudly Magnus, are you okay?" he asked, in the gentle voice he had used with his sister earlier.

"I guess," Magnus replied, "I was just remembering that I really did not want to come on this trip and that Clary now owes me hours of chores. I guess that's a nice thought right?"

'You didn't want to come?" Alec said, his voice still pitched low so they would not disturb the sleeping girls. "Any particular reason?"

"Ah, lots of little things. It's not like I'm an undergraduate anymore. I have one year to complete my masters before my scholarships run out and then I'll be shipping off to who knows where to do who knows what! It's not like I've got a life plan and I'm almost ready to leave school. It's pretty scary. Also, my best friend is totally into your brother who I personally think is a bit of a douche, no offense intended, and I had to leave my cat at home with my other best friend, and my third best friend is probably eating all sorts of disgusting takeout in my bed! You know, just generally things like that," he finished with a huff. His breathing had quickened and he took some deep breaths to keep himself calm before looking over at Alec again. "Sorry," he said softly, "You probably didn't need to hear all of that,"

"It's okay," Alec replied, relaxing his grip on the steering wheel and darting his eyes to Magnus quickly. "It's not like I didn't go through most of that last year myself - not the cat thing, or the friend in the bed which you need to explain in more detail by the way - but the rest, the not knowing, the fear and pressure building up. I get that definitely. Not to mention the other thing. You know. I mean it wasn't like I was prepared for that, it kinda hit me out of the blue and it was a lot to process. I still am." Again Alec's eyes danced over his face briefly, resting for a pause on his lips before he looked back at the road, "But Magnus, that's the thing about growing up - seriously I'm not just saying this, no-one really knows any of the answers. The place I'm temping at right now, well most of the others there have been stuck in that job for years and are going nowhere and really don't know what to do. I'm lucky it's just short term while I wait on my applications for the VSO - at least I know it's got an end date. Anyway, you are vibrant and fun and expressive and whatever you choose to do next I have no doubt it will work out for you."

Magnus gazed at Alec in awe. That was the most he had ever heard him say. He had not expected him to share anything with him, and certainly not all of that with the aim of comforting him. Again he thought about what an amazing person he clearly was and regretted that he had not known him beyond the brief and unexpected meeting the previous Summer.

Overcome with emotion and unable to reply, he looked down at his hands before muttering a small, "Thank you," hoping that Alec understood.

His quiet "You're welcome," showed that he did, so Magnus reached over and turned the music a little higher as Nick Drake began to sing about Northern Skies.

------

"Clary just text to say that Jace is pulling over at the Fraser Services and to ask if we want to stop too. What do you think?" Magnus asked Alec, looking behind him to see that Jessica was beginning to wake up.

"Sounds good, tell Jace I'll be in the usual spot please," Alec replied, "Man, I'm ready for a stretch and a coffee."

Waking up Lydia proved quite difficult until Jessica had the idea to drop a little water on her face. Her grumpy wake-up face made Magnus glad that he had not had to sit in the back with her and he offered a quick grimace before turning back in his seat. He fiddled with the CD player until his mix ejected and slipped it back into its jeweled case, telling Alec that it was time to swap with Clary so they would have something different for the next part of the journey. Alec quirked his lip and said he had quite enjoyed it so far so it was fine with him.

As they pulled into the services, Alec quickly parked near the entrance and flipped off the ignition. Not more than 30 seconds later, Jace's grinning face was staring in Magnus' window and he was being pulled out of the car into Clary's waiting arms.

"Hey," she said, "Everything okay?" They had been texting during the journey so she knew he was okay, but she clearly wanted to get her eyes on him to make sure.

"I'm fine," he replied, squeezing her gently, "I just need some coffee. You were wrong about his driving by the way - no problems and definitely not like an old man. He even told me that Jace says that because he's jealous he didn't get to drive his dad's fancy car because he's the unsafe one; so really I've been worrying about you Biscuit!"

"I'm fine," she grinned, "Better than fine! It's been amazing Magnus, we've talked and laughed and I feel like I know him even more,"

She was suddenly interrupted by a high pitched squeal as Isabelle roared into the car park and squeezed her giant SUV next to Alec's. Leaping from the front seat she shouted for her brothers and then marched towards the entrance of the station. As Simon hopped out after her, Clary ran over to see what the problem was, but it was pretty clear straight away.

Maia and Jordan exited the car next in the middle of a screaming argument. Although Magnus could not hear exactly what they were arguing about, it was clearly bad enough as they were both red in the face and Maia was even waving her fist at him.

Clary ran over to Maia and gently pulled on her shoulder, before turning to shout for Magnus and leading her away. Magnus quickly hurried after them as he watched Simon and Raj grab Jordan and pull him over to an outside picnic bench.

Catching up with the girls, he heard Maia complaining to Clary, in an exasperated voice, that Jordan was being a dick and not listening again. Although Magnus had met her a few times, he did not feel like this intimate conversation was really where he should be, so he caught Clary's eye and indicated that he was going to head over to the coffee bar where he could see Isabelle gesturing to her brothers.

As he arrived, Alec shot him a look which he deciphered as "HELP!" so Magnus put his hand on Izzy's shoulder and steered her away from the queue.

"What's happening?" he asked, looking at Isabelle's unhappy face.

"Ah, it's so crap." she began, hooking her arm into Magnus' and leading him towards a table. "Maia and Jordan are always fighting but they usually keep it between themselves. Today they dragged me and Simon into it and it's so bloody unfair." She plonked her head in her hands before lifting her head to gaze at Magnus. "They're fighting about what's going to happen when they graduate. Where they're going, what they're going to do etcetera, etcetera. It's only bloody October Magnus and I know everyone's stressed out - the last year always feels like this, I remember how Alec felt last year, but they've got ages to decide. It feels like Jordan's trying to pressure Maia into applying for graduate schools out in Cali but she really doesn't want to and I don't want to be in the middle of it all. This is supposed to be relaxing. A nice calm weekend where we can all chill out before midterms. Simon and I really need this quality time and I can't bear for Jordan to ruin it. But I can't watch my friend get hurt either." Here she stopped and took a breath, looking up at him as if begging him for the answers. But he really didn't know what to say. This was something that felt beyond anything he could fix or even start to help with.

"Simon and Raj are with Jordan and Clary took Maia for a walk, so don't worry about them right now. There are always solutions to these arguments, but they usually have to come from the couple themselves, so it's best not to interfere at the moment. You can't fix it for them. Just take some time to calm down, talk with your brothers and have a coffee and chill. I can't say it will all be alright, but Isabelle it's definitely not your burden to bear alone." He took her hand in his and held it gently, rubbing his thumb across the back of her smooth hand, "Also while you're calming down maybe you can tell me what brand of hand cream you use? Your hands are so soft!"

Izzy giggled and squeezed his hand back, "It's just Nivea Magnus," she laughed, "And thank you - I needed to hear all of that, you're so good at saying exactly what people need to hear. Thank you."

As she finished speaking, Jace and Alec approached the table, each carrying two coffee cups in their hands. "Umm, Magnus," Alec said, taking the seat next to him, "I wasn't sure what you liked exactly, so I got you a caramel machiatto...or you can have my black coffee if you prefer?" he asked, pushing the cup into Magnus' hand.

"That's perfect, Alexander," Magnus replied giving him a smile of gratitude, "Let me know what I owe you,"

"No way," said Izzy, smiling at him, "You just put up with Alec's driving for a whole hour, he owes you!"

"Hey!" Alec grunted, glaring at his sister, "Do I need to remind you who gets to drive dad's sports cars?"

"Only because you're the least likely to drive above 50 and use up the gas," Jace replied grinning at his brother, "You must have been clenching on the gas pedal a lot to get here before me and Iz today, Alec!" he teased.

"Okay, okay, sibling rivalry needs to be put on hold for a minute, as fun as it is," Magnus announced. "What are we going to do about Maia and Jordan?"

"Well, they cannot be both in the car with me!" Izzy said, putting her foot down.

"And they cannot both be in the same car either," Jace replied. "It's probably best for Maia to be with you Alec, you know her the best and she likes you, gosh knows why," Jace continued before his brother poked him in the side causing him to yelp loudly, "Oi! What was that for?"

"You know why Maia likes me," Alec said, staring at his brother, "It's because I treat her with respect,"

"Yeah you were so gentle when you let her down last year after she asked you out, she was always waxing on about how lovely and kind you are," Jace moaned, "I never did get why you wouldn't go out with her - maybe we wouldn't be having all this Jordan drama now if you had!"

"Hey," Izzy interrupted, "That's enough Jace. You know people can't just turn on feelings like a tap. It's not like Alec wanted to hurt her."

"Right," Magnus interrupted again, gazing at Alec's face. He clearly wanted to be anywhere but part of this conversation so Magnus decided to rescue him. "So, Maia rides with Alec. And Jordan?"

"With me and Simon I guess, but I want another man in the car too - maybe Raj?" Izzy said looking at Jace.

"Yes, good idea," Jace said, "So, Magnus you come with me and Maia can take your spot. We don't need to swap any luggage cos we're all going to the same place."

"Wait, Magnus should stay with me...in my car," Alec said, "He's really calm and I think it would help Maia right now to be around him." Alec finished, his eyes not meeting anyone's at the table and his cheeks a light pink.

"Yeah, but she doesn't really know Magnus and she does know Jess and Lyds. I think Jace's idea is the best," Izzy concluded. "Let's go see if they've calmed down."

She and Jace dropped their empty cups into the bin and then headed for the door while Alec continued to avoid Magnus' eyes. After a few seconds, Magnus tilted Alec's head up with the barest brush of his thumb to Alec's chin and gave him a gentle smile. "I'd much rather stick with you, Alexander, but we cannot always have what we want."

Then he gracefully stood up and left Alec at the table before making his way back out into the weak October sunshine.

For the next two hours he dozed fitfully in the backseat of Jace's Landrover, his head occasionally coming into contact with Underhill's shoulder and waking him up, making him wish that he had thought to grab one of Alec's pillows. But he was fully asleep when they finally reached their destination and had to be woken up by Clary's gentle shaking.

Staring out of the window, he was amazed by what he saw - The Lightwood Family Cabin was more like a mansion. What on earth was he doing here?

Chapter Text

Magnus' group were the first to arrive at the Lightwood Cabin, so he and Underhill grabbed the bags from the boot and brought them in while Clary and Jace went to meet with the housekeeper who had prepared the cabin for their arrival.

"Bad news guys," Jace said as they struggled into the hallway with their heavy load, "I'm afraid there's been some water damage to two of the bedrooms so we're going to have less space than I thought. We really need Izzy here, she's good at sorting out puzzles like these. 12 people, 4 bedrooms and the attic room. And the room with the worst damage was one of the twins, so there's gonna have to be some bed sharing going on - you think people are going to be okay with it?"

As Jace actually looked worried, Magnus decided to hold back on any bed-sharing jokes he could have made, and instead asked how many beds they were dealing with.

"There are two double beds down here, one in the attic and then the housekeeper said she can put an extra bed in the two rooms with a king, so what do you think?" He asked.

"Well," Clary began, as they all went through to the living room to sit down and Underhill, who had been to the cabin before went to the kitchen to find them some drinks, "I'm guessing that Maia does not want to share with Jordan right now, so we have a few choices. Can you and Alec share a bed?"

"Oh man, I always get the human lawn mower!" Jace moaned, face palming. "He snores. I had to share a room with him when I was little too and I really can't stand it," he continued, "I bet you don't snore, Clary?" As he spoke, he winked at her and she blushed bright red, ducking her face to hide her flushed cheeks.

"Clary's mine!" Magnus joked, "She promised me, so keep your grubby hands to yourself Jace!"

"Well, how about this," Clary suggested looking back up as she managed to control her blush, "You and Alec in a double, Iz and Si too, Me and Magnus can share the attic double, then boys in one triple and girls in the other. If Maia and Jordan make up then maybe we can do some switching, but I did promise Magnus he could stay with me, Jace."

"Sounds okay, I guess. We can run it past Iz when she arrives," At that moment Underhill returned with frosty glasses of soda and a car screeched to a halt outside the house.

"I think she might be here," laughed Magnus, "I'll go see,"

To his surprise there were two more cars in the driveway and he watched as a glowering Alec exited his, running his hand exasperatedly through his hair before marching to the trunk of the car. A sleepy pair of girls jumped out of the back and Maia sneaked out glancing around her before linking up with Jessica and Lydia and heading for the house.

Seeing Isabelle and Simon headed for their own trunk, he decided to go and help Alec since everyone in his car had vanished.

"Hey," he said gently as he reached the trunk where Alec was pulling out bags, "Are you okay?"

"I've certainly been better," Alec replied shortly, passing Magnus his suitcase and continuing to pull out bags and other items quite roughly.

Making a split second decision, Magnus grabbed Alec's arms to stop him and spun him around to face him. "Hey," he said again, "It's okay. Maybe just take a breath,"

"I don't need a breath Magnus," Alec hissed, spinning back towards the car.

Magnus reached for him again and pulled his back against his chest, wrapping his arms around his stomach, "Yes, you do," he said firmly and felt the fight leave Alec's body instantly as he flopped slightly in his arms. "It's okay, she's your friend, you're allowed to be mad."

"I'm not mad, I'm livid with him," Alec ground out. "He's such a jerk but I know she'll probably get back with him so I can't say that. I feel so guilty, maybe if I'd said yes when she asked for a date she would never have met him?"

"Hey, no, it doesn't work like that Alexander, don't think that. She's your friend yes but she's also a grown woman and she has to make her own decisions. Look, you need to go in and have a rest after that drive. You don't have to go near Jordan at all, I'm sure he's slunk off somewhere with his friends." Magnus could feel Alec shaking slightly so he tightened his arms for a second before releasing him.

"You're right, of course. I'm gonna take these in. Think you can bring the rest?" Alec asked as he stepped away from Magnus.

"Of course," Magnus replied and then watched as Alec started to head for the house, his quiet 'Thank you' thrown over his shoulder.

-----

Inside the living room, Clary was outlining the sleeping plan to those present. Neither Jordan nor Raj were amongst them and Izzy had magicked up some bottles of wine and was pouring out ice cold glasses. She offered one up to Magnus as he entered and he gratefully took it before sinking onto the sofa next to Simon. Alec had his own glass and was leaning on the door jam looking into middle distance. The furious expression had been replaced by a small frown and his hair was flopping into his eyes. Watching him, Magnus itched to run his fingers through it and push it back from his forehead so he clenched his fingers around his wine glass to stop the urge.

"So, everyone okay. I guess follow Izzy and Jace to your room if you don't know the way already," she said.

"Yes," said Izzy, " And then lets meet back here to play some games, have a proper drink and get this weekend started in style!"

Everyone jumped up and left the room to make their way upstairs and Magnus hastily downed his glass of wine so he could follow. As he passed Alec in the doorway, he felt his hand clutch his elbow. He turned and looked up into his hazel eyes, a question in his own.

"Just thought i'd warn you," Alec said in a low voice, "Izzy's games can be quite...crazy. Just in case you didn't know already?"

"Ah, yes," Magnus said copying Alec's quiet voice. "I have had the pleasure before so don't worry too much, I'm sure it'll be fine. Are you coming down?"

"I might," he said, "Maybe if I can find a nice bottle of scotch in the kitchen to get me through it,"

"Sounds good," Magnus whispered before moving out into the hallway, Alec's fingers leaving warm, tingling patches on his skin.

Climbing the two flights of stairs to the attic, he was impressed by the beautiful design of the house. All around him were impressive artworks and pottery; fine rugs and even stained glass designs in several windows. The attic steps wound upwards and he was half way up when he stepped on one that creaked loudly. 'Oops must avoid that one at night,' he thought before reaching the doorway and opening it to see Clary perched on the end of the bed.

"Hey, are you okay?" He asked as he rested his suitcase near a dresser and went to sit beside her.

"Yeah, it's just a shame that they had to argue so badly on the way here. Kind of ruins the vibe. I love Maia and all, but she's very fiery and I know that Jordan has been pressuring her to choose a school, but arguing about it doesn't seem to be helping them at all. I think they should sit and write a pros and cons list together but she's too mad to even think about it right now. I know, I know...it's not my place to get involved Mags, but I just hate to hear them fighting so much."

Magnus slipped his arm around Clary's shoulders and pulled her tight against him. "I know my friend. You're one of the best people in the world so of course you care. But try forget for a little while and tell me about what was happening in the car while I dozed on Underhill's, admittedly quite comfortable shoulder! I know you and Jace were talking! But about what?"

As Clary chattered away about the car ride and what she and Jace had discussed, they both unpacked a little and spread their belongings throughout the room. Clary made a big point of hooking up the mini DVD player to the TV that was already present, before stacking the three seasons of ShadowPortals beside it.

"There you go, love, ready for if you need some you time. Now shall we head down and see what we're eating and what Izzy's got up her sleeve for later on?"

"Yes, darling, if we must!" Magnus sighed before linking their arms and pulling her down the stairs.

----

There was a delicious smell curling up the staircase as they headed down. Passing a room with an open door, Magnus could see Alec lounging back on a double bed, arms behind his head and socked feet almost reaching the end.

"Hey," said Clary, poking her head inside, "That bed does not look long enough for you Alec? Are you going to be okay in there?"

"Yes, it is rather short," said Jace, head poking out from the ensuite, "Almost feels more like it was built for someone your size, Clary!" he winked.

She giggled and gently hit his arm before dragging Magnus into the room with her. "Maybe you should swap with me and Mags?" she asked winking at him.

"Or you and Alec could swap beds instead?" Jace asked, sliding his arm around her waist and pulling her against his side, "It would be terrible for me, of course to have to share with such a beautiful woman, but I'm sure I could cope?"

Alec made a choked humphing noise in the background, his cheeks colouring slightly and then groaned, "Jace! Stop terrorising her, I've already told you I don't snore anymore!"

"Ah, but who have you shared your bed with who can confirm that Alec? Eh?" Jace replied with a smirk. Turning back to Clary and Magnus he explained, "Alec here is too good for any of the delightful ladies who proposition him and there have certainly been quite a few, so you can understand why I'm reluctant for him to share with me."

"Oi, enough about who shares my bed Jace! I think it's time to go down - I can smell dinner and it doesn't smell like Izzy cooked it so it's gonna be safe to eat!"

"Agreed," Magnus said, his eyes straying over Alec's face and noting the signs of exhaustion in his eyes. While Jace had been speaking, he had glanced about the room and could tell that everything that had been unpacked belonged to Jace and not Alec. "Then we can sneak out and you can unpack while everyone else plays games and I watch ShadowPortals upstairs!" he added, winking at Alec.

"Oh, no, no, no," Jace began, laughing, "There's no way Iz is letting you two sneak away. Already I'm guessing that either Maia or Jordan and at least one of their close friends won't be taking part so you'll be needed for whatever she's got planned. Alec will have to unpack later and you can watch your Shadow thingy at another time. Now come on that food does smell good." And with that he pulled Clary out of the room and down the corridor leaving Alec and Magnus alone.

Alone at last, Magnus thought as he watched Alec lounging on the bed making no signs to get up.

"Oh come on Alexander," he said, "You must be starving after that car ride, let's go eat. Remember your siblings are not in charge of your every minute this weekend - maybe we can sneak out after an appropriate amount of time."

"Have you met Izzy?" Alec muttered as he jumped up from the bed and gently pushed Magnus from the room, a warm hand on his shoulder.

------

After sharing dinner at the huge dining table, while Raj and Jordan ate in their room, the group were pulled into the living room as Izzy took charge.

"Right," she said, clapping her hands with a sparkle in her eyes. "I didn't tell you before you came, but I have put all your names into this cup and anytime I want I'm going to pull someone's name out and then choose a challenge from the other cup to complete. If you do it, you get my eternal appreciation, if you don't you get a shot of my choice! How does that sound?"

Everyone groaned around her, but Izzy could not be deterred. "Now our first game is going to be 'Cards Against Humanity'! So everyone grab some cards and let's play!"

Magnus quickly grabbed Clary's hand and pulled her next to him on the sofa, "I am far too old to be playing the mortifying game!" he moaned in her ear, "We are working in a pair and you are taking the lead on this - okay?"

"Sure Magnus," she giggled, "But you know everyone's just as embarrassed and you get to hear them say the funniest things!"

It took five rounds of the game for Magnus to look up at the others. Clary had kept her word and had not even forced him to look at the selection of cards in her hand, instead playing for them both while Magnus messed around on his phone. Some of the sentences he was hearing were incredibly mortifying but what was worse for Magnus was that the old him, the one before he had lost Raphael, would have loved it. They would have been a great pair - Raphael announcing everything in his deadpan voice and making words like penis and cum sound boring or pretentious.

That was the reason that he finally looked up as he heard Alec's voice - not the same as Raph's, but using a similar tone announcing that 'Betty Crocker lost her enormous knockers while searching in her handbag.' His delivery was so dry, that Magnus had to see his face. And he was not disappointed. Alec looked thoroughly bored and even managed a small yawn as he finished and it was watching him that made Magnus feel better straight away. He stared over at Alec and watched as he noticed him looking, his eyes widening slightly as Magnus mouthed 'enormous knockers' at him.

After that Magnus still let Clary take the lead, but did make the effort to look at the cards in her hand and whisper the odd suggestion winning them a hand.

-----

"Magnus Bane!" Izzy announced, partway through the eighth round, "You are challenged!" she added, pulling a slip of paper from a cup by her side. Reaching into a second cup, she pulled out his challenge, read it, then giggled. "Your challenge, should you chose to accept it, and if not you'll be accepting something hideously disgusting from the bar remember, is to spend the next three rounds of the game sitting in someone's lap!"

Everyone giggled around the circle and Magnus stared at Clary, willing her to offer. "Magnus there's no way, you'll crush me!" she frowned.

"Can I just lean on someone, Isabelle?" he asked, turning pleading eyes on her.

"Independent adjudicator says..." Izzy began.

"No!" Simon finished. "Sorry man, that's the answer I got told to use for every question about challenges! Oops!" he smiled as he realised he had let the cat out of the bag. Izzy punched him lightly on the arm and he laughed.

"Right then, I guess it's going to have to be the shot then," Magnus grimaced, thinking of the revolting things Isabelle might give him.

"No!" Clary objected, "Look, you can sit on someone's knee - maybe not one of the girl's cos you might be a bit too big, but Simon or Alec or Jace?"

"Ah..I wouldn't want to impose," Magnus began, noticing Jace's slightly terrified expression and ducking his head.

"Here," came a low voice, and he looked up to see Alec indicating his knee. "It's not like you can really sit on Jace or Simon's knees, you're much taller than them."

Looking at him and listening to the cat calls of his friends, Magnus made a decision. He quickly stood and walked over to where Alec was sitting.

"Aren't you worried I'm going to look at your cards and cheat?" he asked as he bent down to settle his butt on Alec's admittedly large lap.

"Nah, you don't seem to be all that interested in the game," Alec said as he rocked his knees slightly to settle Magnus more comfortably.

"Yes!" shouted Clary staring over at them, "Go Magnus! No disgusting shots for you!"

"Boo!" Replied Izzy, "I was really looking forward to trying out the Malibu-Whiskey-Vodka-Peach Schapps shot I prepared!"

Magnus shuddered in Alec's lap at the thought and felt a shiver up his back as Alec chuckled deep in his belly.

"Yeah," he whispered, "And remember Izzy made it! It is bound to be totally gross and probably make you sick!"

-----

For the next three rounds, Magnus tried desperately to think platonic, un-sexy thoughts while sitting in the lap of one of the sexiest men he had ever met. Feeling Alec's breath on his cheek and the brushes of his arms as he played his cards was torture and as soon as the third round had passed he leapt up and went back to attach himself to Clary's side.

"Thanks Alec," he called across the circle just as Izzy reached into the cup again.

"Aha!" She said, "Jace!"

Jace stared at his sister, and then laughed, "Okay, what you got for me?"

"You need to..." she said, pulling out a slip, "Oh bugger. Why? Fine. You have to play without an item of clothing, why on earth did you have to get this one?" she moaned.

Smiling, Jace turned to face Clary, "Well," he asked, "What should I lose? A sock, my pants...my shirt?" he winked at her suggestively and she blushed again.

Jumping to his feet, Jace made a great show of removing his shirt, leaving him bare-chested as both Izzy and Alec groaned.

"Iz! Why'd you have to put that one in?" Alec protested.

"Luck of the draw dear brother, lucky I got it and not you eh?!" Jace grinned and threw his shirt onto Alec's lap. Balling it up, Alec threw it straight at Jace's head where it got a little stuck on his ear as he pulled it off. "Oi!" he moaned.

Magnus laughed as Clary buried her head in his shoulder and whispered, "Oh god! Those abs Magnus! I cannot cope!"

"Right, new game!" Izzy announced.

"Not Karaoke, not karaoke," Clary continued against Magnus' side.

"Let's play Truth or Dare!" she giggled and Maia, Jess and Lydia giggled along with her. "Before we start, rules are the same - answer or take a shot! Okay?"

Simon moved around the circle filling everyone's glasses but when he got to Underhill, he stopped him and said he was gonna go back to the room and check on Raj. He didn't mention Jordan at all, but Magnus still saw Maia's eyes flick over to him.

The circle got a little closer together and with Underhill gone, Magnus found himself sitting next to Jessica, with Alec next to her, then Izzy, Simon, Maia, Lydia, Jace and Clary.

"Okay, so we each right one truth and one dare and add them to the cups. Then we go around and pull one out until they're all gone. If you don't want to do it you can put it back in and take a shot. Here take some paper and a pen." She indicated the pile in the middle and Magnus scooped them up for him and Clary to share.

It took him quite a while to decide what would make a good truth and a good dare and in the end he wrote
'Truth - What is your favourite memory?'
'Dare - Dance to Beyonce's Single Ladies in the middle of the circle.'
He had chosen tame ones compared to ones he thought might be written around the circle because he knew exactly what these crowds could get like.

Taking a minute to check on Alec, he saw that he was frowning hard at his paper. Then suddenly he scratched something on it and folded them roughly into squares.

Quickly they added the truths and dares to the cups and the game began.

Izzy stepped up first 'because it was my ideas my dears'.

Laughing she announced dare and grabbed one from the cup. "Well, I know who wrote this," she announced and then began to jump around the circle in an imitation of a chicken, squawking and flapping imaginary wings. She even went so far as to pretend to peck at the ground and scratch it with her foot. She quickly had everyone in hysterics and then turned to Jace and said, "Great idea bro!"

"Hey!" said Jace, "How'd you know it was me?"

"You always pick the super immature ones, Jacey!" she replied.

"Not true," Jace huffed a fake frown on his lips.

"Me next," announced Simon, clapping his hands in glee. He giggled when he saw his dare, and Magnus had to admit his Single Ladies dance looked well rehearsed!

"Okay," said Maia, "How on earth am I going to follow that disaster?!" she asked as she reached for a truth.

"Hey," said Simon, nudging her shoulder, "I thought I was quite good - I was all ready to apply to be one of her back up dancers after we graduate!"

"As if," Maia replied, "Right then, let's see - What is my biggest dream?" her face dropped slightly and all traces of humour left. "Umm, I'm not sure I'm going to be able to answer this one right now guys. I think I'll take the shot." As she spoke, she leaned over Izzy and grabbed a random bottle of alcohol, tipping out a shot and grimacing as she threw it back. "Whoa! Paint stripper much! What was that?" she asked.\
\
"You just downed a shot of Patron! Gross!" Lydia replied, grabbing the bottle to put it back with the others. "You okay?"

"Yeah - not too bad without the salt and lemon. I think I could get used to that!" Maia said giggling a little.

Lydia laughed at her truth and then announced that the first person she had ever kissed was a girl called Terri and that it had been her sexual awakening helping her to understand that she was bisexual. Everyone clapped and cheered and she bowed a little, a huge grin on her face. Maia tucked an arm around her friend and pulled her in for a hug.

Jace did not laugh when he read his truth. In fact, he fully frowned before folding it back into a neat square and mixing it back into the cup. "Nope," he announced, "It's shot time for me, bring it on Iz"

Izzy giggled as she passed over a clear shot and watched Jace knock it back, "Eww!" he gagged as he finished, "That was rank! What was it?"

"A mixologist never reveals their secrets Jace!" Izzy replied laughing.

"You're so stupid, Jace," Alec called out, grinning, "You should have learnt never to accept anything Izzy makes! Thought you learnt it when you got food poisoning the last time she cooked?"

Magnus watched happily as the siblings bantered back and forth. It was lovely to see Alec relaxed and to watch how relaxed he was around them. The brief amount of time they had spent together last year had been rushed and while Alec had been confident and forthright, he had not been truly relaxed despite Magnus' efforts.

Clary's turn was next and she reached for a dare with a wink to Magnus. Her giggles surprised him and when she jumped up and ran out of the room, he watched her with a little worry. She quickly came back with several pans and a pair of chopsticks. Looking around the circle he immediately worked out that this was Alec's dare - he watched Clary curiously with laughter in his eyes as she butchered her way through a rendition of something.

"What on Earth was that Biscuit?" Magnus asked as she finally finished and the hoots and hollers slowed down. But it was Alec that shouted the answer across the circle to him,

"You didn't recognise the best drum solo ever written Magnus?" He asked, "And you call yourself a music fan! I think I'm going to be the one to educate you on the best artists Magnus, not the other way around!"

His reference to Magnus' comments on the car ride made Magnus smile and he took the ribbing with good nature. But Clary's drum solo had a different effect on Maia and she announced she was going to head up to bed as she was tired, Jessica nodding along and saying she would go with her. Of course, Izzy protested that Jessica had not had her go yet, but she just shrugged and went off the support her friend.

It was Magnus' turn and he nervously looked between the two pots. Most of his friends had chosen a dare, and he knew that it was likely to be the safer of the two options especially as he had already missed out on Jace's hideous one. Looking at Clary, she gave him a supportive smile and he reached for the truth cup.

Opening the paper, he saw a blue scrawl that he vaguely recognised - it wasn't Clary's beautiful calligraphic handwriting and he would have recognised Izzy's sloping letters too, maybe it was Simon's?

'Truth - What is your biggest fear?'

Looking around the group, he decided he could answer this truth but maybe he would scale it back from his biggest fear to a more rational one.

"My biggest fear," he began, hearing Clary's soft gasp and feeling her fingers grip his knee, "is acid wash jeans!"

Luckily, Clary started to giggle, as did Izzy, Lydia and Simon. Even Jace gave a guphaw so he felt safe to look up. Meeting Alec's eyes he saw the storm in them. Alec knew his biggest fear, he had heard him say it aloud before so he couldn't be mad that Magnus did not want to share it here with this group of people. He watched as Alec's mouth relaxed into a soft grin and then saw him shape the words to call out, 'What on earth are those Magnus?"

After explaining exactly what they were to a bemused Alec, it was his turn. Magnus watched as he stuck his hand straight into the dare pot without any hesitation, drawing out a little slip of paper and unwrapping it. Whatever he read there surprised him and he looked around the circle, his tongue slipping out to wet his lower lip.

"My dare," he said in a low, gravelly voice, "Is to kiss the person I most want to,"

Magnus watched as Alec lifted his head and shyly looked around him, his eyes flickering to Magnus and more specifically to Magnus' lips.

'Oh god,' he thought, 'What if he chooses me? What if I'm the person he most wants to kiss?'

Already Magnus could imagine it. Alec's enormous frame leaning over him, his lips pursed as though to apologise or maybe offer a shy smile. His firm fingers reaching to tilt Magnus' chin upwards, his breath ghosting over his lips as their eyes connected briefly before Alec's lips would settle gently over his. Very little pressure - just Alec's plump bottom lip melting between his own. A little touch of tongue to ask for entrance and then they would surge together, arms tightening their holds and tongues dancing in their mouths. It would be perfect.

But of course, he wasn't going to choose Magnus, not in front of everyone, not in front of his family. Despite the light touches they had shared, they had not seen each other in months, it wasn't like he was interested in Magnus anyway.

Instead, he watched as Alec's eyes flickered away from his and settled on Isabelle.

"Pucker up Iz, you're my wonderful little sister, of course it's you," Alec joked as he leaned over and pressed a dry kiss to Isabelle's cheek.

Watching, Magnus felt disappointment sink into his belly. It was never going to happen, the man was so far in the closet he might as well be in Narnia. Never mind.

'It's bedtime,' he thought.

Chapter Text

Izzy protested a lot when he announced he was headed to bed, but she must have caught a glimpse of something in his eyes, so she eventually announced that she was setting up Just Dance and that she was going to beat them all. Magnus just groaned a little at the thought of them all bopping about after drinking so much and squeezed Clary tight, wishing her lots of luck.

"She won't need luck," Jace grinned over at them, "She's gonna be on my team and I'm the best!"

Suddenly, Alec leaped up and went over to Izzy. He whispered to her and her expression soured slightly.

"Not you too," She moaned, "Why won't anyone enjoy the Izzy Games of Great Fun and Disgusting Drinks?"

"Hey, we're staying," Simon said, indicating himself and Clary, Jace and Lydia.

"Actually, I'm heading up too," Lydia replied, giving Izzy a grin, "You four will enjoy yourself I'm sure and I really should check on Maia and Jess."

"I guess it's just us then...how about you and me stick Jace and Simon?" Izzy asked pulling Clary towards her and away from Jace.

"No!" he pouted, "I was gonna be on Clary's team!"

Magnus decided to leave then, before he could get swept up in the Izzy and Jace sibling drama. He, Lydia and Alec made their way upstairs and parted in the corridor all going in separate directions. As Magnus climbed to his room, he was still swept up in thoughts of Alec's dare and how it would have felt to feel Alec's lips on his once more.

Settling in, he removed his make up and dressed in his bed clothes - Clary had picked him up a shirt that said "Bi Bi Baby" in glittery letters and he paired it with some loose, black shorts. Relaxing back on the bed, he quickly clicked into his favourite ShadowPortals episode, the one with the epic love declaration between the main couple - a bi portaler and a gay shadowhero. As it started, he began to feel himself calm down.

----

Halfway through the episode, there was suddenly a knock on the door. He was surprised as he didn't have the TV on very loudly and he had not heard the squeak of the attic step.
Thinking it must be Clary, although she never knocked, he threw the door open and ... froze in shock.

Alec was leaning against the wall outside his room, wearing a t-shirt and shorts, a bottle dangling from his fingers. His messy, black hair was falling in his eyes and Magnus could see a hint of dark chest hair in the V of his tee. He looked delicious.

"Umm, hey," he began, eyes skirting upwards until they met Magnus'. There was no flinch at the glittery shirt or it's slogan, just inquisitive eyes looking into his. "I tried to go to sleep, but that didn't work. Thought you might like a glass of the scotch I mentioned?"

Alec's lips lifted into a slight grin and he raised the bottle in his hand. "It's the best one here. One of my father's I imagine as it was covered in dust and left at the back of the cupboard. They're all still bopping away downstairs if you were worried about someone coming up?"

"No, not at all. An innocent glass of scotch with one of the owner's of the house. Nothing wrong with that," Magnus fumbled out, his eyes tracing the hair that was flopped over Alec's forehead. Man, he thought, how could hair look that sexy? Then he stepped aside and made way for Alec to enter.

As he did, his arm brushed against Magnus' chest and it felt deliberate. Like Alec was trying to rile him up, make him feel things. And Magnus didn't mind at all. Not one bit. This man was walking sex. Sexy and fierce and it was clear he didn't have a clue.

Following him inside, Magnus went back to his spot on the bed, patting the space next to him. But Alec didn't move to sit down. Instead he stood, staring at Magnus. He looked like he was in some kind of trance, his expression fixed on the bed. When he spoke, his voice was rough, low, full of fear and lust.

"The last time..." he began, eyes flickering over to Magnus'.

"Yes?" Magnus whispered, his own voice low in his throat.

"The last time we were on a bed together.." Alec continued, voice even rougher, "It was ..."

Magnus ached to hear him say the words. To hear what Alec had really thought about that night. It was months ago, yet he could remember every second: every breath, every kiss, every heated moan.

But suddenly, the door slammed open and Clary bounced into the room, fluttering straight over to Magnus and climbing up onto the bed calling out, "Oh Magnus, I'm so happy, so very, very happy," Alec's face immediately shut down, his expression shifting into neutral, and he made straight for the doorway, walking through the door Clary had left open and vanishing.

Magnus' breath hissed through his teeth and he felt his own smile drop.

"Why so sad, Mags?" Clary asked, struggling to sit back up from where she had snuggled into his side.

Pulling himself together, he gave her a weak grin, "Not sad, just emotional, you know how I feel about this episode," he replied indicating where the TV was paused. "Now, tell me why YOU are so happy?"

"Oh Mags, it was perfect. Jace was perfect. He just was so loving and caring and kind and caring and lovely and...oh I think I said that twice!" she babbled away and Magnus let her, his thoughts fixed on the words Alec had been about to say. He had never really known how Alec felt about that night. He hadn't learnt his last name, or thought to get his number before they had left the club to stumble to Alec's dorm. And he couldn't go back to the dorm to find him because he was graduating so he was moving out. It had all been a bit of a disaster in the end, despite being one of the most memorable nights of his life.

Thinking back to meeting Alec again today, standing by his car, he allowed himself a rueful smile. The attraction was still there and he was pretty certain it was on both sides after the events of the day, but maybe Alec had just wanted a sneaky hook up while his family were busy elsewhere. Maybe it was just going to be another one off, and Magnus didn't think he wanted to go through that again.

Although Alec had been the perfect gentleman, he still felt shivers run down his spine, and not pleasant ones this time as he thought about what had happened after they had parted. The huge blow-out argument with Ragnor about leaving with someone none of his friends knew. How sadly Catarina had looked at him and her disappointed words. His own reaction too. The full blown panic attack hitting him as he knelt on the loft's floor and Clary wrapping him in her arms to calm him. He had not been very sensible that night and the repercussions had hit him hard, but at the same time, he would not give it up. Alec had been the best thing that had happened for over a year and he had needed a win. The most sexy man he had ever kissed has been an excellent prize. It was a shame the ending had not gone to plan and has worried his friends so much.

"And, he said I had the most perfect hair, that it flipped over my shoulder just right and that it looked like a firey waterfall. So I told him I liked his floppy surfer boy look, but then he got a little bit mad and said he was a snowboarder not a surfer. But then he cheered up and we had some of Izzy's shots because Simon was like the most epic of epic awesome dancer's ever and he won so we had to do shots. But not Izzy, she didn't. But we did. And then Magnus," And here she drew a breath, an expectant smile on her face as she looked up at him.

"And then what biscuit?" he asked, playing his part well, a questionning smile on his lips.

"And then...he kissed my cheek and said it was one of his favourite night's ever! EVER Magnus!" The beaming smile on his best friend helped him to produce a more genuine one and her hugged her tight against him again. "OH Mags, I'm so happy! Did I tell you that already?"

"Yes my love, you did! Now how about we take off your make up and get snuggled up so you can sleep off some of those alcohol fumes I can taste coming out of your pores? You are going to need more than a tylenol in the morning dear."

-----

It was 6am when Magnus stirred. He had fallen asleep long after Clary, watching as his friend grinned all the way up to closing her eyes and huffing out soft little drunken snores. The pure happiness on her face softened his opinions of Jace Wayland. If he could make his little biscuit this happy then Magnus could put up with some of his pretentious bull and how he seemed to go out of his way to avoid being alone with him.

Thinking about Jace, inevitably led to thoughts of his brother and he decided those were bad thoughts to have while in bed with his best friend. He didn't want to wake her up, so he quietly snuck out and made his way carefully down the stairs, avoiding the squeaky step. Thinking back to last night he realised that Alec must have known exactly which step to avoid too so he could sneak up on Magnus and that sent a little thrill through him.

When he reached the kitchen, he saw that there was already a pot of drip coffee ready for the guests as well as a few breakfast items spread on the counter. How the other half live, he thought to himself, mixing a tall cup of coffee with cream and sugar. Then he scooped up an apple and wandered towards the living room where last night's games had taken place. He was almost there when he noticed another door to the left of the kitchen and decided to be nosy.

He couldn't help himself, after all he had grown up poor and had never been in a house quite like this one. He gently pushed the door open and was startled to find a pair of warm, hazel eyes staring back at him in shock.

Alec was still in his sleep clothes too and there was a mug of black coffee in his hand. He was seated at a games table, chess pieces laid out across it. The white queen had clearly won as there were many black pieces lining the sides. Tall bookcases surrounded the table and it was clearly some kind of library.

"Umm, hi," Magnus said, eyes meeting Alec's again, "I, uh, I couldn't sleep so I thought I'd come get some coffee." Here he raised his cup as if to prove that was the only reason he was downstairs and that he was not stalking Alec. "I didn't expect you to be up so early?" he asked.

"I don't sleep late. I never have," Alec said, voice a little gruff from disuse. "At home I would have gone for a run, but I didn't think to pack any sneakers so I decided to play myself at chess instead," he continued indicating the game board with his free hand, "Sadly, I defeated myself so I am now at a loss of what to do."

Then he lifted the cup to his mouth and took a sip.

Magnus was mesmerized as he watched Alec's adams apple throb in his throat. He had kissed him there, he remember, soft suckles and soft fingers tracing it. He had tasted of sweet sweat and cologne - delicious.

Pulling himself from his thoughts, Magnus hummed, "Well, I'm pretty good, how about we play with each other?"

His words, as intended, made Alec flush apple red, and he covered his eyes slightly as he coughed out a laugh, "Yes, we can play Magnus," he said, his tongue dancing over Magnus' name.

To distract himself from his memories of their previous meeting, Magnus flopped down opposite Alec and began to lay out his side of the board. When Alec offered, he tapped his left knuckle and was gifted with a white pawn. Smiling, he began to plan his strategy, only glancing at Alec once to see him just as deep in thought.

When it came to the game, it was clear they were evenly matched. Every move he made, Alec had a counter-move and it wasn't Magnus' fault that he kept getting distracted. Alec's thinking face was so hot! The way he curled his front tooth around his bottom lip, or snaked out his tongue to wet it. It was almost like he was doing it on purpose to better his chances of winning.

So Magnus decided to see if he could make that tactic work too and he was quickly rewarded when Alec spent a whole 15 seconds watching as Magnus rested his index finger between his lips as he thought about what to do next.

But in the end, Alec was victorious. Reaching an endgame with only two bishops still in play. Sighing, Magnus admitted defeat and stretched out his hand for Alec to shake, "Alexander, I do believe I have met my match at chess... I wonder what else we could challenge each other to?"

Feeling Alec's palm caress his, he felt a shiver run down his spine. Alec's eyes twinkled as they looked at each other, "Well, Magnus, I do play a mean game of Monopoly if you're interested?" He teased.

"Monopoly?" Asked Izzy, crashing into the room, her eyes swathed in sunglasses. "Did you really say the M word boys?" she asked, looking back and forth between them. "That is not a good idea, not at all. Imagine the carnage. The poor dog crushed beneath Jace's shoe, the hotels smashed in little heaps along the side of the board as Hurricane Alec wreaks it's destruction! No! No! No! I will not have it! I cannot bear to see it! I must simply put my foot down!"

"Lose the glasses Iz!" Alec complained as he stared at her, his hand at his side, no longer touching Magnus'. "Magnus won't be able to tell that you are making fun!"

"I'm not!" she huffed, but then she lowered her sunglasses and Magnus could see that her eyes were twinkling. "Anyway, come on, I want to make breakfast for everyone and Magnus said I had to be supervised in the kitchen after I had that one tiny accident."

"Tiny accident?" Magnus laughed mirthlessly, "Try almost burning down mine and Clary's apartment." He turned to Alec, "Your sister may have failed to mention that the firefighters had to come out!"

"Oh Izzy!" Alec said, disappointment colouring his voice, "You never said it was that bad!"

"It wasn't!" Izzy shrieked, but she was clearly enjoying herself, "Anyway, Magnus you can not complain! It got you that date with the hot fire lady! You weren't complaining then!"

Magnus snuck a glance at Alec and saw that he had looked away to the chess board and begun to move the pieces carefully back to their positions. "Lucky Magnus," he said wistfully, "Every boys dream is to date a hot firefighter,"

Of course Magnus noticed Alec's choice of firefighter and not woman as Izzy had said. Looking at Izzy, who was watching Alec with a soft expression, he wondered if she knew or, if not, why Alec was so scared to tell her. She seemed like a supportive sister and she definitely looked up to Alec. But then, who was he to judge. Everyone had their own Coming Out story after all. His own might have been pretty easy, but he knew that many people's were not all that rosy. So he resolved to keep his thoughts to himself, at least for now.

While Magnus had been musing, Alec had finished setting up the board and had walked over to Izzy. "Do you think we should wake him from his daydream Alec?" Izzy giggled, "Or leave him here and see if he notices we've gone?"

"Oi," Magnus said, "I can hear you!"

----

Together they cooked a simple breakfast; Magnus made different flavoured pancakes and got creative with their shapes, while Alec grilled bacon and fried eggs. Izzy was given the very VERY important task of setting the table and laying out the juices and plates of food; and when she was not in the kitchen, he and Alec danced around each other, cooking in perfect harmony. It was quite pleasant to hang out with this more relaxed Alec and to see more of his relationship with Izzy.

Just as Magnus flipped the last pancake, he heard a multitude of voices as everyone descended into the dining room en mass. He even heard Jordan's distinctive drawl and figured that maybe Maia was the one hanging out in her room now, but then she entered the kitchen and went straight over to Alec who was setting perfectly grilled bacon strips on a plate.

"Alec, please can I say something?" Maia asked, looking up at him.

"Sure Maia," he replied, his attention now on transferring the eggs to a separate plate. Sensing that Maia wanted Alec's full attention, Magnus slipped over and carefully slid the spatula out of his hand.

"I'll finish this, you guys go talk. I'll save you both a plate." Gesturing for them to go into the utility room next door.

They did and he plated the last egg, before carrying the three plates out to the table. Whoops and Hollers greeted him and he set the plates down. Before everything could be swept away, he quickly made up 3 plates and carried two into the kitchen to keep warm. But as he entered, Maia and Alec were coming back inside laughing and swooped down on him to grab the plates. "Thanks Magnus," they chorused and then all three joined the happy, laughing table.

After they had eaten enough, the group decided to split up. Maia, Jordan, Izzy, Simon, Lydia and Underhill decided to take the cars and go into the local town for a wander and to get some more supplies, while the rest wanted to stay at the house and offered to clean up breakfast.

Jace confessed that when he had agreed to the plan, he had not bargained on the maids having already left for the day, so he grumbled a little about the amount of washing up. But soon, he and Clary were engaged in a bubble battle, blowing clouds of washing bubbles at each other. Jessica quickly decided to join in and made Alec her target, racing after him to try and blow the bubbles on his cheeks. Magnus watched in amusement from his place by the fridge, where he was putting away the juices and leftovers, as Alec twisted away from her, a disgruntled expression on his face. He was clearly not enjoying it.

So Magnus decided to rescue him, grabbing him by the arm and saying that they needed to finish the table, and leaving Jessica frowning slightly before she turned to Raj and blew a bubble straight at him. His yelp of surprise followed them into the dining room.

"Thanks," said Alec, immediately, his arms rubbing over the damp patches on his shirt, "She was pretty determined,"

"I know. It's a shame you don't fancy her back, she is very much into you," Magnus agreed, smiling a little at Alec's surprise. "What? You didn't know?" he asked incredulously.

"It's not like a lot of people flirt with me Magnus. I can't be expected to know what it's like," Alec grumbled as he stared back.

"Oh my darling, I have a feeling you have missed out on a lot of people flirting with you if you didn't know that's what she was doing," he smiled. "Me, for example?!"

"Oh, no. I knew when you were flirting, Magnus." Alec smiled at the memory, "That was pretty intense as I recall,"

"Well, my dear Alexander, I'm glad to hear that considering what we did after.." he trailed off, not wanting to say more when the other's were only in the next room.

"More than flirting," Alec whispered, acknowledging their night together as he stared at Magnus.

Magnus didn't know who moved first, but suddenly they were only inches apart, staring hungrily at each other. Magnus let his gaze wander Alec's face and felt Alec do the same. He was seconds away from asking Alec if he might kiss him, when Clary came barreling into the room.

"Any more washing up?" she shouted breaking them out of their trance.

Alec quickly moved to the table and stacked a few more plates while Clary watched in surprise, "I'm sorry," she said, "Did I interrupt something?"

"Yes biscuit," Magnus said, sidling up to her and linking their arms, watching as Alec's back tensed, "Alexander here was telling me that there's an inoor swimming pool and I was suggesting that I am a much faster swimmer and that he has no chance of beating me. And let me tell you biscuit," he continued as he watched Alec's muscles relax, "There is no way in hell that is happening, so once we've digested our breakfast, Mr. Lightwood and I are going to have a little race!"

"Yes!" exclaimed Clary, grinning up at him, "I love competitive Magnus! I can't wait to see this...Hey Alec," she continued reaching for his arm and spinning him around, "Did you know that Magnus once ate 4 whole kiwi-lime pies just to win another one? Oh man, he is so, so competitive! You are in so much trouble Alec,"

"Oh really," Alec smiled, eyes boring into Magnus', "A shame for Magnus that I'm so competitive too," And then he winked, his eyes shining.

'What on Earth have I gotten myself into?' Magnus thought, watching as Alec strode away.

Chapter Text

By the time everyone had digested their breakfast and gathered by the indoor pool, the whole group was back at the house and they were all interested in getting involved in the competition that Magnus had accidentally concocted.

He had already apologised to Alec quietly as they had made their way upstairs to change, but he had just been gifted with a wicked smirk. Taking that as a challenge, Magnus had dug out his most streamlined swimsuit, which also meant his tightest, with the hope of either being faster in the water or distracting Alexander with his revealing choice. He rather hoped it was the latter as he didn't really mind about winning, but having Alec's eyes all over him was a huge turn on.

He and Clary were the last to arrive at the pool and found the rest of the group splashing in the water while Jace, Alec and Izzy seemed to be embroiled in a deep discussion at the end nearest to the hot-tub.

When Clary had mentioned this trip, one of her persuasion points had been the Jacuzzi and Magnus was itching to go and enjoy it. In fact, he was feeling pretty desperate to head for it and was about to drag Clary that way, when Jace called out to them across the pool, his voice echoing and catching everyone's attention.

"Magnus! You're needed over here!" he called out, "You too Clary!"

As they made their way towards the Lightwoods, Magnus immediately noticed Alec's gaze trailing down his bare chest to his tiny, gold shorts. He let himself take a good look at Alec too, and was enjoying his delicious view, when Isabelle coughed and caught his eye. Glancing over at her, he saw the tiny smile on her lips so he mouthed 'What?' at her and then grinned. She reached out and pinched his bicep lightly, which caught Alec's attention, but not Jace's who was staring at Clary with a glazed expression.

He was not alone, as Clary was staring straight back at him and her cheeks were already flushing.

Deciding to rescue his friend, he gently pulled her to his side and pressed his mouth to her ear, "Are you planning on gobbling him up in front of us, Biscuit?" he whispered.

She pulled away pouting and flicked him gently on his chest with her finger. "Magnus," she groaned! "Stop it!"

"Yes," Jace jumped in, his own eyes avoiding looking at Magnus' bare chest, but instead focusing slightly to the left of his ear, "Please stop, so we can get started with the competition!"

"The Competition?" Alec questioned in a deep grumble, that sent sparks through Magnus chest, "When did it earn it own determiner?"

"We literally just discussed this Alec!" Jace moaned, staring at his brother, "Come on! I just explained exactly how this was going to work,"

"You can't blame him, Jace, I think we were all a little distracted when Magnus and Clary arrived, right Alec?!" Izzy replied, a teasing smile crossing her lips as she stared at her older brother. Alec's cheeks flushed too and he averted his gaze with a soft 'Izzy!' muttered under his breath.

Meanwhile, Jace looked over at his older brother with a fierce frown, "Hey," he said, "Clary is not an object to be stared at Alec! Have some respect for her!"

Isabelle looked surprised for a second, before bursting into laughter, she was choking so hard she couldn't even get her words out, although Magnus was certain he heard the words 'wrong end of the stick...'

Alec seemed just as surprised and stared back at Jace for a second, before he turned on his heel and marched away towards where Maia and Lydia were sitting on loungers talking to Jessica who was splashing Raj in the pool. Magnus watched the muscles in his back flex above the curve of his ass and added the view to the 'Alec image library' swirling in his head.

Turning back to Jace, he could see that Clary had pressed her hand to his arm and was whispering to him and he seemed to be much calmer. Izzy, however, was still giggling lightly, and when she caught Magnus' eye she gave him a broad smile, before giving him a deliberate once over, "Don't you own any tighter shorts Magnus? You'll give someone a heart attack!"

"I'll have you know," Magnus began in a calm voice, "That these are the perfect swimwear for racing, Miss Lightwood and I am never one to turn up for a challenge under-prepared!"

"Prepared to do what Magnus?" Izzy whispered to him, coming closer, "To make my big brother finally see the light of day? To have your wicked way with him?"

Magnus was surprised by Isabelle's reaction and it must have shown on his face because she drew his slightly away from Clary and Jace and continued to speak in a very low tone.

"You think I didn't know? That I don't know? I see how he looks at you." she said, gazing at him with wide eyes, "Alec is very private, Magnus and he may never tell me anything about his personal life, but I'm not unobservant and he's my big brother, I've known him my whole life. Whatever makes him happy, makes me happy. So, if it's you, then why wouldn't I support that? I love him. I want him to enjoy his life."

Magnus quietly listened to Isabelle's words and while he knew that Alec would probably be slightly mortified to hear them at the moment, he hoped that one day he was ready to hear them. Isabelle had a good head on her shoulders and clearly loved Alec very much and Magnus was quite jealous to hear her affection for him, not having a sibling of his own. She had not betrayed any confidence either or told him anything he didn't already know, but he didn't want to pursue this conversation right now without Alec's permission.

Smiling at her, he swept her into a short hug and said, "Your brothers are very lucky to have you Isabelle." Then, raising his voice, "So, how about this competition? Is Jace going to explain?"

----

After Jace had separated them into two teams of 6, with Magnus and Alec as the team leaders, he explained all the different relays, races and games he had in mind and everyone seemed pretty excited. Waiting with Clary, Jace, Lydia, Raj and Maia, he actually felt a thrill of excitement. He was still watching Alec across the pool where he had gathered with his team and was admiring the view.

Alec's shorts were now dripping wet, after Isabelle had insisted that her team needed to be wet at the start so they would glide through the water better, and his hair was slicked back into short spikes. Watching drops of water slide down his chest, Magnus itched to go to him and slide his fingers through the trail of chest hair that led down his sternum and then further down the line of black hair that dipped eventually into his shorts.

Coughing and looking away, lest his thoughts produce an obvious reaction in his swimwear, Magnus tuned back into Jace's pep talk.

"Now, the first one is easy, a simple relay passing the ball from one end of the pool to the other." Here he turned to Magnus, "You're the tallest, then Raj and Maia, so you guys can go to the deep end. But be careful you don't get distracted by any tactics Izzy is preparing over there! I know what she's like! She'll do anything to win!"

They all nodded then Jace insisted on a silly team handshake thing before they made their way to the pool.

Jumping in, he found himself in line with Alec and grinned over at him, staring his fill at his broad chest and shoulders. He could feel Alec's gaze on his own chest and arms and it made him feel warm and tingly.

Before he could say anything, Jace blew an obnoxiously loud whistle and the race began. They were passing the balls between each other and then Alec and Magnus as the end of the line had to swim to a bucket on the edge of the pool and drop them in.

His team quickly got into a good rhythm, but as Jace had expected, Izzy, who was half way down her line, soon began to make trouble, splashing wildly with her arms and causing Raj and Jace to be engulfed in waves of water. At the same time, Jessica who was next to Clary, began sneaking balls from their teams bucket and passing them down the line.

Soon Jace had had enough and the game descended into a splashing water fight as he and Izzy wrestled over the balls.

Alec and Magnus tread water at the far end of the pool and watched the siblings in amusement. At one point, Alec's hand has stretched almost as far as Magnus as he paddled with his arms, and without thinking, Magnus had grabbed Alec's hand in his own, slipping his fingers between his below the water. Alec had lightly squeezed his hand and then pulled him a little closer so they could talk, never letting go below water.

"So...it's already gone wrong.. poor Jace, he seemed so excited about this competition!" Magnus said, his eyes locked with Alec's.

"Ah, it's always the same," Alec replied, gaze never wavering from Magnus', "I..um...I, like your shorts, by the way," he hesitantly mumbled, eyes suddenly darting to the side.

"Thank you Alexander, I like yours too," Magnus replied locking his eyes back with Alec's as he managed to glance back at him, "I think I'd like them better on my bedroom floor though!"

Alec's face went bright red and his legs kicked out as he became very flustered. At one point, his foot connected with Magnus' shin and it sent a trail of sparks up his leg.

"I...umm..I know you're flirting again, but I really don't know what to say to that!" Alec finally said as he got his body under control. Magnus squeezed his hand rightly and grinned at him.

"You don't need to say anything..." he replied, then a thought crossed his mind and he became serious suddenly, "Unless, unless you want me to stop of course? I know my innuendos can be a bit much. Just tell me if you want me to stop flirting. I won't mind!"

"No, no...definitely no." Alec said quickly, giving Magnus a shy smile. "I like it. I'm obviously shy about it, but I like it. Well, when it's just us at least..."

Their conversation was interrupted as Jace yelled "Uncle, Izzy! Stop it!"

It was clear the first game was over and Isabelle was victorious, so Magnus and Alec reluctantly let go of each other's hands and swam up to the shallow end to join their teams.

Jace announced they would do a swimming race and paired everyone up with a member of the opposite team. Of course he paired Alec and Magnus and they gave each other sideways smiles before jumping out to watch the rest of the pairs compete.

When Izzy, Lydia, Clary, Maia and Jace had all won their races, it was their turn.

"You want to start with a dive?" Magnus asked Alec as they headed for the pool. He agreed so they went to the deep end and on Jace's whistle made shallow dives in. They were clearly well matched as they used strong strokes to make quick work of the 25m distance.

Slapping his hand on to the slide, Magnus finally looked up to see Alec grinning across at him.

"Whoa!" Simon yelled excitedly, "You're far too evenly matched that was a dead heat!"

"Swim team!" They both called out at the same time, continuing to grin at each other.

----

After 3 more games, Magnus had had enough. "I have a game, Jace!" He called out as Jace was about to explain the next one to the whole gang.

"Oh? What's your idea Magnus?" He asked, glancing over. Magnus watched as Jace looked first at his face, but then allowed his gaze to trail over Magnus' chest. It was the first time Jace had looked at him in days and Magnus stored it away in his head to puzzle over later.

"How many people fit in the hot tub?!" Magnus replied, with a smirk.

"That's not technically a game..." Jace began, but was quickly drowned out by everyone else as they agreed it was the perfect plan.

Piling over to the hot tub at the deep end of the pool, Magnus strategically placed himself between Clary and Alec, hoping that this would be his eventual location in said hot tub.

When they started climbing in though, he was disappointed to see that Jessica was already on one side of Alec and that Simon was about to cozy up to him on the other. Suddenly Izzy called out, "Simon, come help me, my straps twisted," And Simon, the ever dutiful boyfriend took his foot out of the tub, allowing Magnus the chance to seat himself beside Alec.

"Hey," he said as climbed in, his feet brushing Alec's thighs.

"Hey," Alec breathed out as the whole of Magnus' side pressed against his own.

Clary and Jace were next in then Underhill, Maia and Jordan before Izzy, Simon, Raj and Lydia clambered inside causing the water level to rise up past Magnus' collarbones.

"It's built for 10," Isabelle announced, "So we'll just have to get very cozy," she finished shooting a wink Magnus' way as she started the bubbles.

The churning water spread across the tub and Magnus felt a jet press into the sore muscles of his back soothing them. Next to him, Clary giggled as Jace spread his arm along the side of the tub and around his shoulders. He glanced at Alec and saw that he had his eyes closed with a blissful expression curling his lips. Deciding to take a chance, he lightly stroked his fingertips over Alec's knee and was rewarded as his eyes flickered open and his head tilted towards him. When he felt fingers pressing on his own knee, he smiled and closed his own eyes happily.

They stayed in the hot tub together for 20 minutes. Over the sound of the jets there were a few conversations, but mostly everyone let the hot water do its work, relaxing their muscles and their minds.

After the first 20 minutes were up, Lydia pulled Jessica and Maia out with her as they wanted to go shower the chlorine out of their hair before lunch. The mention of lunch stirred Jordan, Raj and Underhill and they quickly followed.

Although there was now much more space in the tub, no-one really moved. Simon and Izzy were curled into each other whispering over the water while Clary and Jace looked to be involved in quite an intense conversation.

Neither Magnus or Alec had made a move away from each other nor were they talking. Under the water their hands were entwined, rested on Alec's thigh and their feet had also started to caress each other.

Magnus was in heaven. He hope Alec felt the same too.

He was pretty certain he did as his head, which had been upright, was making itself known against Magnus shoulder and he wasn't trying to hide it at all.

Suddenly, Izzy and Simon jumped to their feet, which did cause Alec to lift his head as a cascade of water slid up to his chin.

"Hey, Iz!" he called out, "Careful, you're gonna drown someone!"

"Only if your face is practically in the water," she called out, humour in her voice. "Anyway, Simon and I are gonna go start making lunch."

"Not without a chaperone you're not!" Jace replied, grumbling, "I swear you've infected Simon since you got together, I'm sure he used to at least be able to make an edible sandwich, but that's all gone down hill recently."

"Well, you come help brother dearest!" Izzy replied with a wicked smirk at Magnus.

"We'll come help!" Clary replied, placating Jace with a squeeze of his shoulder. "Come on Jace, let me be a good guest and you be a good brother for once!"

"For once?!" Jace said in a hurt voice, "Clary! You saw how she treated me during the games! I am a great brother!"

"For me then?" Clary asked, giving him a shy smile.

At once his demeanour changed and he smiled back at her, "Of course, Clary, anything for you. What about you Alec? You gonna help?" He asked, staring over at his brother whose head was now tipped back against the edge of the tub, eyes closed with a huge smirk on his lips. What Jace couldn't see was Magnus hand kneading Alec's thigh under the bubbles.

"Nah, I need 5 more minutes," he replied, eyes opening to slits as he looked up.

"Yes you do Big brother! You and Magnus are the oldest here after all! You gotta rest up those muscles!" Izzy giggled! Her eyes watching Magnus shrewdly and telling him that she knew exactly what was putting the smile on Alec's face.

"Oi!" Magnus feigned annoyance, "Don't speak to your elders like that young Isabelle! Age comes to us all. But you are right of course. 5 more minutes of these jets and without all of you lot causing mini tidal waves would be delightful. Biscuit knows exactly how I like my sandwiches don't you lovely?"

As the four of them exited the tub and grabbed towels before heading inside, Magnus made the motion to move away from where he was still pressed against Alec's side, but Alec made a disappointed sound and suddenly one of Alec's long arms was wrapped over Magnus' shoulders and his head was resting in the crook of a very muscly neck.

"Don't move away, please," he said softly, his arm tightening. "I like having you close like this." Seeming to realise what he had said, Alec quickly followed up with a slightly panicked, "Well that's if you want to be here?" and his arm began to lift away.

"I do," Magnus replied lifting his own arm out of the water to pull Alec's tighter around himself before resting his head back on Alec's shoulder and his hand back on his thigh. "This is exactly where I want to be Alexander, for as long as we can get away with,"

He felt Alec move and then a soft kiss was dropped on the side of his head. And that was enough for Magnus.

As much as he wanted to ravish this man, to plunder his mouth with his tongue and do all kinds of wickedly dirty things with him, a kiss on the head, and arm around his shoulder, for now that was enough.

They settled against each other and just enjoyed their time together as the water bubbled away.

Chapter Text

His time in the hot tub with Alec had been perfect. They had relaxed completely and even though nothing physical had really happened beyond Alec's arm around his shoulder and Magnus' hand on Alec's thigh, it had been quite sexually charged with intense eye contact and some light flirting (from Magnus mostly)

When Isabelle had called out across the pool room that lunch was ready and waiting, they had reluctantly helped each other out, admiring one another's wrinkled fingers. Alec had even gone so far as to suggest that Magnus was going to be one hell of a sexy old man which had made him laugh happily.

They had tangled their fingers together on the walk to the pool room door, but had agreed silently to let go before they entered the kitchen. Magnus fully respected that Alec was not out and had no intention of deliberately outing him to his family or friends. He had seen that happen to other people in his life and knew how traumatic it could be. But he did have it in his head that at some point he would talk to Alec about why he was still unable to share his sexuality with his family. It was clear that Izzy knew or at least suspected that he was gay and she was perfectly fine with it as far as Magnus could tell. Perhaps with a supportive sibling on his side, Alec would be able to open up.

Munching on sandwiches in the lounge while Simon and Jace started a heated game of Checkers, Magnus watched the people around him closely. Jessica was continuing to try out her flirting on Alec although it was still completely one sided as he made no attempts to flirt back at all, and in fact almost gave her the cold shoulder. Isabelle had snuggled up to Maia and they were both watching Alec with smiles on their lips. At one point he looked over at them, quizzical expression on his face, and they both dissolved into laughter and buried their heads into each others shoulders.

It was while they were still eating that it happened.

Magnus had not been paying attention to Jordan, Raj and Underhill as they were at the other end of the lounge from him and weren't particularly interesting to be honest.

So the sudden events came as a complete surprise and therefore Magnus had no warning or chance to avoid his reaction.

Three sudden bangs sounded in the living room.

Magnus' body jerked violently and he knocked his plate to the floor. Then he tensed up, one arm wrapping over his head and the other around his body as he tried to make himself as small as possible in the side of the sofa. His breathing became erratic and he began to pant, unable to take in a breath properly. His mind went into overdrive and all he could see was Raphael lying on the floor with blood seeping into his shirt, his face slack and white.

He was so deeply in the memory that he didn't even feel the arms that had come to wrap around him as Clary tried to comfort him. He didn't really hear her speaking either, just the odd mumble crept into his conscious. The only thing that got through Magnus' chaotic mind was Alec's voice calling for everyone to leave the room. He heard them go, but he continued to shake in Clary's arms and then he heard her say, 'No, I think you might be able to help actually. You can probably calm him better. Please?' And then she was gone and another pair of arms were loosely holding him and a familiar scent was surrounding him and a familiar voice was whispering to him.

"Alexander?" he ground out as he continued to gulp in air.

"I'm here Magnus, I'm here." was the reply.

Magnus had had enough attacks over the past two years that he knew exactly what would happen. He knew that to calm down he had to get control of his breathing. Usually he would need to be alone and completely free to move around or have one of his friends close by. But being in Alec's arms had already calmed him massively and so he allowed himself to sink more deeply into them as Alec continued to whisper to him. He still didn't hear much of what he was saying but he could feel the intent behind it was to help him stay calm and even in his panic he felt less afraid.

After several minutes, he finally took his first two deep breaths together as one of Alec's hands carded through his hair as the arm around his head finally loosened and he dropped it down into his lap. The fingers of his other hand obeyed him at last and he was able to release his tight grip across his torso, so that his hands were twisted together.

As he took even more deep breaths, he felt two small hands wrap around his and heard Clary breathing in and out deeply, matching his breathing. He felt Alec's arms loosen and begin to release their hold on him. Pulling his fingers from Clary's, he gripped Alec's arms and pulled them tightly back around him.

He felt Alec shift on the couch and then his grip tightened once more, before Magnus reached back out for Clary, who wrapped her arms around his back too and allowed him to rest his head in the crook of her neck.

"Mags?" she whispered, "Are you okay now?"

"Yeah," he replied, "Much better now, thanks,"

They stayed that way in a tangled trio for the next few minutes before Clary released her hold and asked if he wanted some water. When he said he did, she turned to Alec and thanked him. "Thank you, Alec. I've never seen him recover that quickly before, I'll just go get..." and she indicated over her shoulder before leaving the room.

"I'm sorry, Alexander," Magnus began and heard a murmur of protest begin from the taller man. "No, no," he continued, "Thank you. I mean it. I am a mess when this happens and you were amazing. I'm sorry I didn't give you a choice about helping me, but Clary was right, I never manage to come down so quickly normally. I'm so grateful."

"Magnus, you don't apologise for things like this." Alec stated, matter of fact. "I'm just glad I could help. You want me to let go now?"

"Maybe one more minute?" Magnus requested, lifting his eyes to meet the bright hazel ones. And then he snuggled even deeper into Alec's arms and was pleased to feel them tighten around him once more.

----

After the horrible end to his lunchtime, Magnus did not feel like socialising so he made his excuses and went up to his and Clary's room to watch ShadowPortals. At one point he decided to call Cat and spent twenty minutes just chatting with her and Chairman Meow after he told her about what had happened. He had found out that Jordan had brought a cap gun with him and had decided to show Raj how it worked. But he hadn't known that it had been adapted to produce realistic noises which is why the bangs had been so forceful in the living room. They had both apologised profusely and assured him that they would not be using it again.

Despite his embarrassment at having an attack in front of so many, he was impressed that eleven other people had managed to make very little of it and that no-one had tried to question him about what had caused his attack and why he had them. He was truly grateful for it and wondered if perhaps Alec had spoken with them before they had piled back into the lounge to check on him.

Three episodes of SP had already played an he was reaching the end of season 2, when the knock sounded at the door.

To his surprise, it was Jace who put his head around the door and asked if he could come in.

Magnus agreed and offered him a seat on the bed, but Jace declined and instead stood slightly stiffly near to the TV.

"What are you watching?" He asked, looking at it intently.

"Oh it's a silly fixation of mine - ShadowPortals. I love it because it's the first time I have felt that my sexuality had been truly reflected on screen." Turning to look more closely at Jace, he saw a slight blush colouring his cheeks, "Being bisexual, I am often portrayed on screen as a bed-hopping lothario which I find quite insulting."

His words clearly had an effect on Jace, if the shiver that passed through his body was any indication.

"Magnus," he began quietly, which immediately clued Magnus in that this was serious as Jace was rarely quiet, "Magnus, I am sorry for...for before."

"Oh, no need to worry your pretty little head. I'm quite alright and the boys already apologised." Magnus said, giving him a wink.

Instead of looking relieved, Jace actually looked in pain and the slight blush became a shiver of red across his cheeks.

"No," he protested, "Not that. Not that I'm not sorry about that. It's about when I ... when I looked at you inappropriately at the pool." Jace choked out, unable to look up and meet Magnus' eyes.

Oh, Magnus thought. So he was right. He remembered the way Jace had gazed at his naked chest with obvious interest. Well this was getting confusing now.

"I didn't mind Jace. I was half naked. It's okay to look at beautiful bodies you know!" he laughed, not making fun, but wanting to keep things light hearted if possible.

"It's just that," Jace rushed "I have had these thoughts before and you're bi...bisexual...so I wondered if you knew."

"If I knew what?" Magnus asked, puzzled.

"If you knew if I was too?" Jace asked, looking small despite his muscular body.

"Oh Jace," Magnus hissed out, "That's not something I can tell you. I mean you could be. Of course you could. But even if you are, it wouldn't matter would it? You are you. You are yourself and nothing can change that and your sexuality, whatever it is, is not the one thing that defines who you are. So, yes you might be wondering and that's okay. Of course it is. But if you don't know yet that's okay. It's not a bad thing not to know. You'll figure it out when it's the right time." He stopped suddenly thinking he had said far too much.

But Jace was gazing at him, his eyes flickering over Magnus' face. "And if I think you're attractive? Is that okay?" he asked.

"You can think whatever you like Jace. But you don't have to act on it. My understanding from this weekend so far is that you might be interested in someone else? Would that be right?" he asked.

"Yes. I like Clary. I like her so much. Not just because she's beautiful but for every part of her. But I'm worried. What if I like two people? What if I like you too?" he asked, his eyes almost pleading with Magnus to give him an answer.

"Well, if it helps your decision I will tell you that I am currently off the market. I like someone else. So, don't rest any hopes on me. I mean, sure you can look if you like, if it helps you to work things out, but I'm not available and even if I was I wouldn't do that to my friend." Jace nodded at him as he finished speaking.

"I haven't really looked at other men before. But when we first met, you were out and proud and I could look because you were like...almost...inviting people to look? Or you weren't embarrassed or ashamed if men looked? I don't think I'm saying this very well, but I liked what I saw. But then I met Clary and I liked what I saw there too. I just found it all very confusing which is why I was pretty rude to you, wasn't I? I know that now. Anyway I will not put you in a worse position than before. I think it's best for me to go." As Jace finished speaking they heard the distinct sound of the squeaky step on the stairs outside, and they both froze for a second. But no one barreled into the room or knocked.

"Don't worry," Magnus said, catching Jace's worried expression. "I'm sure there was no-one there, and if there was, they would have just heard two voices, not our conversation with the door closed. Anyway think about what you just told me. You do realise of course that what I mentioned before about feeling like people misrepresent bisexuals applies here? You can have a relationship with a woman...or a man. One at a time. Bisexuality is not a reason or excuse to mess around your partners. You just fall for people based on who you like and not necessarily their gender and that is okay. Have I said it's okay enough yet?" and he laughed as he finished speaking, watching in surprise as even Jace cracked a grin.

"Okay. I get the message," he smiled. "I like Clary anyway. I really really do and I don't plan to dick her about. I just thought...well you might be able to give me some advice. And you have. I appreciate it and I'll leave you to it now. Thank you Magnus."

Then he pushed off the wall and opened the door before bounding away, landing loudly on the squeaky step.

----

After his heart-to-heart with Jace, he felt even more weary and found himself drifting off to sleep. Clary woke him several hours later to announce that it was dinner time and that she and Alec had cooked so it was safe to eat and would he like to come downstairs now.

He did and he was glad of the loudly chatting group to distract him from the crazy day he had had. Sitting across from Alec, he was pleased when he felt his foot being caressed by one of his socked feet, and stared entranced at the little smirk on Alec's face before Isabelle coughed loudly from the head of the table and announced they were going to be playing more games later on.

When the room was cleared and they were all settled back in the lounge, Izzy made them all a shot which they took together before she placed a clear bottle on the floor in the middle of the circle.

"It's time for spin the bottle!" she announced in a deep voice and Magnus froze as he gazed across the circle at Alec.

Chapter Text

As Isabelle announced the game, Magnus' eyes immediately flitted to Alec's who was siting across from him next to Isabelle. He had a small smile on his lips and didn't look too concerned, so Magnus allowed himself to turn to Clary instead. Looking over at her, he saw that her eyes were on Jace two seats away from her. She was gazing at him hungrily.

Nudging her arm, Magnus leaned to her ear and whispered, "So, how you gonna get that bottle to point at loverboy?"

"Oi, Magnus! Don't say that! He's not mine....yet!" Clary replied with a smirk.

"Right, you just have to kiss whoever it faces..." Isabelle said, smiling around the circle, "We're all grown up, so you can decide what kind of kiss you choose! Chaste...or not so chaste!" she continued, winking at Simon. "Let's start!"

They all watched as Izzy gave the bottle a good spin and it whizzed around before wobbling to a stop facing Lydia. Everyone whooped and hollered as Izzy crawled across the circle to kneel in front of her.

"Well, Lyds. What shall we do?" she asked, giving her friend a smile, before they both leaned in and Izzy pressed a kiss to her lips. When they parted after a few seconds, they hugged and then Izzy went back to her place, Simon smiling widely at her, before picking up the bottle himself.

He span it and eventually it stopped on Jace. He traded glances with Izzy and then made his way over to him and dropped a kiss on his forehead, grinning.

Underhill took the bottle next and ended up kissing Maia on the hand, followed by Raj who kissed Underhill's cheek. Jordan was a surprise as he marched straight over to Lydia and kissed her lips gently and thanked her for looking after Maia, who beamed at him.

Maia was next. She span the bottle and they all watched as it came to a halt in front of Alec. She gave him a rueful smile, glanced over a Jordan and then made her way over to him. Settling on her knees in front of him, she looked into his eyes. From his position, Magnus could not see what was happening, but he did see as Alec nodded his head slightly and then watched as Maia put her hands on either side of his face and bent to kiss him. Alec's own hands stayed at his sides, but Magnus still felt a little jealousy flicker in his heart as he watched.

When Maia pulled away, she sat for a moment obviously looking at Alec, before crawling back to her place by Jordan with a small smile on her lips.

Magnus couldn't help his eyes darting over to Alec's, but he couldn't decode his expression at all. Puzzled, he watched as Clary picked up the bottle next. She closed her eyes tightly as if making a wish, before spinning the bottle in the middle of the circle.

It span for a long time before it came to rest between Alec and Jace. Alec immediately threw his hands up and edged himself closer to Izzy and away from the bottle and Jace looked up and gave Clary a lazy smile.

She looked over at Magnus, and he put his hand on her arm and gave it a squeeze, "Go get him tiger!" he whispered.

Watching Jace and Clary felt pretty awkward, so while everyone else cheered and smiled as Clary gave him a decidedly 'not just a friend' kiss on the mouth, Magnus watched Alec instead.

He too was not looking at the kissing couple, but instead his eyes locked onto Magnus'. Hazel met golden brown and they merely stared at each other until Clary and Jace parted.

Izzy's "Hot damn Clary!" broke their gaze and they both watched as Jace released her and Clary made her way back to Magnus' side, a big smile on her face.

"Was it everything you dreamed biscuit?" he breathed out as he reached for the bottle himself.

"And more," she whispered back, the smile shining on her face.

Magnus' turn. Damn. He wanted so badly for the bottle to choose Alec, but at the same time, it would be a really bad idea. Even kissing him on the cheek in front of everyone might give them both away. So, as it span, he begged it 'Not Alec now!'

Luck was on his side and he watched as it stopped on Clary, so he bent over and softly kissed her cheek.

Jessica spun the bottle fiercely, her hawk-like gaze watching as it moved. As he was next to her, Magnus was perhaps the only one who heard her whisper, "Alec please!" He really hoped she didn't get her wish as he was pretty certain she wasn't intending to give him a kiss on the cheek or anything remotely chaste. So he smiled when the bottle landed on Raj instead.

Jessica's face showed some obvious disappointment, but when she reached Raj, she appeared to decide that she would take whatever she could get because she plonked herself in his lap and proceeded to make out with him forcefully. Raj clearly did not mind as his arms wrapped around her back and pulled her in.

There did not seem to be an end in sight until Izzy coughed loudly and Jessica seemed to realise what she was doing. As she climbed off Raj's knees, she blushed and offered him a smile which he returned, dazed.

Jace's turn. Magnus watched in surprise as Jace looked over at him as he picked up the bottle. He twirled it lazily and Magnus was pretty horrified when it actually came to rest on him.

It was just a game, but he had been talking with Jace not more than a few hours ago about how he felt about Magnus and he didn't know what he planned to do now. His eyes flickered over to Alec again and he was surprised to see a grim expression on his face as he looked first at the bottle and then at his brother who had begun to move towards Magnus.

Still looking at Alec, he was surprised further to see him close his eyes and then rest his head in his hand, as Jace finished moving.

Looking up at Jace, Magnus saw determination in his eyes. "Magnus," he said, eyes glancing over to Clary, "I'll just give you a little kiss? Is that okay?" he asked. Clary giggled next to him, her face lit up with a teasing smile.

"GIve him a proper kiss, Jace! Magnus won't mind will you?" She asked, linking her arm through his gently.

"Biscuit," Magnus warned in a low voice.

"Oh come on Magnus! It's just a game." Clary laughed again.

"Come on be quick, it's Alec's turn next!" Izzy shouted over, "Just kiss him already so we can keep playing!" she laughed.

Nodding his acceptance, Magnus tilted his head up to Jace and pursed his lips.

And then Jace's crashed on to his.

It was a bruising kiss that only lasted a few seconds, but Magnus felt nothing. No pleasure, no pain. Nothing. Just skin on skin. It was the most sexless kiss ever, and, looking up at Jace as he pulled back, he could see that he thought so too.

"Ah, thanks Magnus!" he smiled, pulling away, "At least I know I don't like boys now," he joked, his eyes sliding over to Clary's and his hand lifting to cup her cheek before moving back to his place beside Alec.

Clary wrapped her arms around Magnus and pulled him close. "Sorry love, you win some, you lose some! I guess Jace is all mine! I hope!"

"As if there was any doubt about that darling!" Magnus replied, "And you know I would never in a million years be interested in him right? Far too cocky for me! He's definitely your type Biscuit," Magnus replied. Then using the cover of Clary's arms around him, he looked up again to see Alec staring at him intensely.

'What on earth is going on in his head?' Magnus thought. It was about time to catch him for a heart to heart it seemed.

The anticipation of whom Alec was going to kiss was quickly over as the bottle pointed at Simon. Izzy laughed and giggled and pushed her boyfriend to go over to Alec.

"Hey, he's supposed to come to me Iz!" Simon protested before moving as Izzy gave him a grin. He plonked himself in front of Alec, staring up at him "So how you wanna do this grumpy cat?" he asked, grinning.

"Do not call me that ever again, Simon." Alec growled.

"Oh, sure Alec," Simon replied. "So you gonna kiss me now? Cos then I'll have kissed all the Lightwood's today!"

"No," Alec said, frowning. "I'm not gonna kiss you. You're my sister's boyfriend that's just weird."

"I give you my permission Alec!" Izzy called over smugly. "You can kiss Simon! He's really good at it! You never know, you might enjoy it!" She continued with a smirk.

Quick as a flash, Alec dropped a kiss on Simon's forehead and then pushed him away. "There, Iz. I kissed him. Happy?"

"No!" She replied. "I told you, he's a great kisser...you should have gone for the lips!"

"Enough!" Alec said, and then jumped to his feet and stormed over to the make-shift bar. Magnus could see that he was pouring a shot of tequila, so he jumped up too and marched over.

"You shouldn't drink that without the lemon, Alexander," he said, pressing his arm along Alec's as he reached for a lemon slice. "Here, and some salt..." he fumbled around until he found the salt on the counter.

Luckily, they weren't the centre of attention as Izzy was already spinning the bottle again and causing commotion as it had landed on Lydia for the second time.

"Well well," Magnus heard her say, "We've gotta top our first kiss, Lyds," Then there were loud cheers, including Simon shouting "Get her Izzy!" which covered up his and Alec's interactions.

Magnus was still holding on to the lemon slice when Alec licked a strip of salt from his own hand and knocked back the shot. But it was a surprise when Alec bent down and suckled softly on the lemon as well as one of Magnus' fingers. His gentle tongue twirled across the digit, chasing the lemon juice and Magnus felt his face heat up and his trousers were suddenly tighter.

Then, still suckling on the lemon, Alec lifted his eyes from below the charcoal lashes and looked up at him. As he looked, he deliberately stuck out his tongue and licked down Magnus' thumb.

Magnus' lips quirked upwards and his heart beat quickened. His hand shook slightly and he couldn't take his eyes off Alec.

Suddenly it was over and Alec had straightened up and was reaching for a second shot.

"Let me," Magnus said, brushing his fingers against Alec's as he took the bottle from his hand and poured out two shots.

Alec's body was covering Magnus from the group's view, but he could see them over his shoulder and spotted Clary's quizzical look. Holding up the bottle, he saw her smile and then she turned her attention back to where Raj and Jessica had embarked on another snogging session, her hand laced with Jace's where he had moved into Magnus' spot.

Turning back to Alec, he held out one of the shots, smiling as his hand engulfed it. Watching curiously, Alec took Magnus' other hand and raised it to his lips, pressed a soft kiss to the juncture between finger and thumb and then darted his tongue out to lick a stripe. Magnus' heart almost stopped at the feel of his tongue for the second time. This sexy man was going to be the death of him. The Alec released Magnus' hand and held up the salt pot to pour some where he had licked.

"Ready?" he gruffly asked, indicating the salt.

"No, wait," Magnus replied putting his clear shot on the table and then lifting Alec's hand to his own mouth. He trailed gentle kisses over the back of it before swirling his tongue across his knuckles and reaching for the salt, pouring a little. He felt a little shiver run through Alec as he did.

Alec's shy grin was a beautiful thing to see. "It feels like we're recreating that night, Magnus," he whispered, eyes locking onto his.

"It's not quite the same Alexander, but it definitely feels the same. A shame I can't drag you away somewhere for a sweaty, vertical dance..." His innuendo provoked an immediate response, Alec's eyes widened and his breathing quickened and he took a tiny step forward, careful to continue blocking Magnus from view. They were in their own little bubble for the moment and Magnus planned to enjoy it.

"Lemon?" he asked and smiled as Alec pressed one between Magnus' fingers and took one himself.

"Shall we?" Alec asked with a smirk, then his tongue was laving over Magnus' skin sucking up all the salt, before he tossed back the shot and returned to Magnus' hand to once again gorge himself on both the lemon and to lick at his fingers.

"Oh god, the things you do to me Alexander," Magnus breathed out, and he was rewarded with a small nip of Alec's teeth on the sensitive webbing between his fingers before Alec lifted up once more.

"You mean, the things you do to me Magnus Bane?" Alec asked, before lifting his own salty hand to Magnus' lips.

Keeping eye contact, Magnus went to work on the back of Magnus' hand, trying hard to recreate the way Alec had made him feel, sucking and licking at the skin. He was rewarded with Alec's heavy breathing and heated gaze. Drinking his shot quickly, he returned for the lemon and managed to take two of Alec's fingers between his lips at once, twisting his tongue to lick them clean of the juices.

Alec's other hand was suddenly pressed into the small of Magnus' back and his whole body was leaning into him.

Letting go of Alec's fingers, he straightened up and was thinking about sneaking his own hand onto Alec's waist when they were suddenly interrupted by an extremely drunk Raj.

"Wha' ya doin' 'ere boys?" he slurred out, hand clapping on Alec's shoulder, "No' drinkin' Izzy's gross shots are ya? Cos that's what's got me like this. I don' recommend it."

His eyes were whirling around in his head, and Magnus could see that he was completely out of it. 'Well,' thought Magnus, 'Nothing like an extreme drunk to put an end to his fun with Alec.'

Alec had discretely dropped his arm from Magnus' and Magnus had taken a step away. Now, he sent Alec a rueful smile and then pushed gently past him to put his arm around Raj.

"Izzy," he called, "What have you done to him? He's totally pissed!"

"Oh, he'll be alright. We're gonna do the karaoke now. You up for it?" she asked, grinning. "Just put Raj over there he'll be alright,"

"Yeah, he gets this drunk all the time," Jordan called out, "He'll be fine in a bit. Don't worry".

Together, Magnus and Alec walked Raj over to an armchair and then went to join the rest of the group. They parted with a smile and Magnus ended up sitting by Clary and Izzy.

"How was the tequila Magnus?" Clary asked innocently.

"Looked tasty to me," Izzy grinned wickedly as she glanced between him and her brother.

"Oh stop it!" Magnus whispered, "You're not helping!" he laughed.

"I'm trying.." Izzy replied with a pout, looking sad, so Magnus put his arm around her and pulled her in.

"I know, love. But don't worry. He'll get where he needs to be on his own."

"Or with your help?" She asked, giving him a genuine smile.

"If he wants," Magnus smiled back. "Don't push it though."

"I just want him to be happy, now, Magnus!" she whined.

"He will be." Magnus replied, "Now, Biscuit doesn't sing so what are we singing Isabelle?" He asked.

Looking over at where Jace and Alec were fighting over the Karaoke booklet, he felt the wide smile spread over his lips. 'All in good time,' he whispered.

Chapter Text

"Okay," Simon began, taking the role of MC, "First up we have Jordan and Maia singing the classic Duran Duran hit, Hungry Like the Wolf! Rock on guys!"

As the pair began a truly awful, off key, rock style performance, Magnus continued to feign interest in the songs Izzy was suggesting while sneaking glances at Alec and Jace. He could tell they were having a heated conversation about what they should sing and it was pretty amusing to watch as Jace kept banging his fist lightly on Alec's arm as he disagreed.

Clary was also watching the pair, her eyes locked on Jace, and Magnus could tell she was completely besotted now that they had finally kissed.

"You okay, Biscuit?" he asked, gazing down at where she was twirling a strand of her red curls around her finger.

"Yeah," she sighed wistfully, watching Jace toss his head back as he laughed at his brother, Magnus' own eyes tracing Alec's neck as his head was thrown backwards too.

He was concentrating so hard on Alec, he almost missed the end of Maia and Jordan's song and the call for him and Izzy to come up. But because he was still watching Alec, he did not miss the way his head snapped in his direction or the small grin he shot at Magnus.

Smiling too, Magnus allowed Izzy to pull him to the front of the room where they grabbed the mics. "What did you choose?" Magnus asked her, glancing at the screen behind him.

"Something very appropriate!" she laughed and whipped her hair over her shoulder to face their audience.

The first chords of Ariana Grande's song, Into You started and Magnus ripped his gaze from where it had rested on Alec to glare at Isabelle, "Really Izzy? This?" he asked.

"It seemed...suitable!" she smiled as she began to sing the first verse.

Never one to shy out of a challenge, Magnus enthusiastically joined in, their voices blending together much more smoothly than Maia and Jordan, both of them hitting the runs with flair. In fact, Izzy even turned to give him a big smile as they launched into the chorus, and called out 'We sound great together' during an instrumental part.

The whole way through the song, Alec never took his eyes off Magnus. Even when Izzy was singing, his eyes stayed on Magnus, trailing up and down his body as he joined Izzy in a few choice dance moves or just watching his face. He had a secret grin on his face which never faded and as they finished he whooped and cheered along with everyone, arms raised above his head to clap, revealing a small slice of his stomach which drew in Magnus' eyes and made him shiver with want. Alexander Lightwood was going to be the death of him he decided as he passed his microphone to Lydia and went to slump down next to Clary again.

Jace crawled over to join them and settled next to Clary, taking her hand into his and lacing their fingers again. She gave a pleased smile and looked up at Magnus her eyes shining. He gently squeezed her shoulder and moved away to sit on the sofa behind them as Lydia and Jessica continued to sing a Spice Girls song. He was soon joined by a still very drunk Raj, who plopped down beside him and flopped his head onto Magnus' shoulder. It was a little awkward as he didn't know Raj that well so he was very grateful when Underhill came over and said he was going to take Raj up to bed. Raj clung on to Magnus' arm and protested that he wanted to stay but Underhill had obviously put him to bed many times before and managed to peel him away, wrapping his arm around him.

As Raj left, protesting still, another warm body settled into his space and Magnus looked up at Alec who was smiling down at him.

"I liked your song," he said shyly. "You and Izzy really rocked it."

"Izzy's choice...she said she was making a point," he replied, watching for a reaction.

"Oh?" Alec replied, shifting slightly closer to him, allowing their arms to press against each other. "I know what my sister's like. I know she's been watching. I know she knows. It's okay,"

"It is?" Magnus asked in a small voice, keeping his eyes on Alec's face.

"Yes," he said quietly staring at Magnus. "Hey, do you want to..."

Magnus was desperate to hear the end of the sentence, but was interrupted as Simon shouted for Jace and Alec to come up and sing.

Frowning, Alec looked down at Magnus, as Jace reached out and hauled him up.

"Come on big bro - time to show them how it's done!" he yelled and dragged him away.

Alec reached out for Magnus' hand and gave it a quick squeeze as he was pulled to the front of the room. Once they got there, Jace threw him a mic and they launched into a very funny version of The Boys are Back in Town by Thin Lizzy. One that they had obviously done before based on how well they knew their parts. It was hilarious to see Alec really let go and enjoy himself with his brother.

Clary screamed and clapped when they finished and pulled Magnus up with her to give them a standing ovation.

Alec ducked his head, obviously only able to let go like that during the song, while Jace took multiple bows until Simon chased him away and asked Izzy to come sing with him.

Magnus watched hopefully as Alec began to make his way back to the sofa, but was intercepted by Jessica before he could make it. She was telling him how much she had loved his performance and asking if he would sing with her, but Magnus could hear him politely decline, his hands clenched behind his back, trying to end the conversation.

Every time he tried to step away, Jessica would put her hand out to stop him and Magnus had begun to grit his teeth as he watched her stroking his bicep through his soft black shirt. Tapping Clary on the shoulder, he directed her gaze away from where Simon was wailing as Kiki Dee while Izzy took on Elton John, and asked her to go and rescue Alec.

"Sure," she said, giving him a look, "But why don't you? Are you even sure he wants rescuing? Maybe he likes her?"

"Look at how he's standing Clary, I'm pretty certain he's uncomfortable, and I can't go, she might latch on to me next!" he laughed falsely, his eyes still fixed on Alec's uncomfortable stance.

Clary gracefully climbed to her feet and went over to the pair. Although they had been speaking loudly before, he did not hear what Clary said, but a second later Alec was gratefully slumping beside him on the sofa, pressed even closer than he had been before.

"You okay?" asked Magnus, looking over at him with worry in his eyes.

"I am now, thanks to Clary...and you," he replied, giving Magnus a small smile. "Thanks for sending her to rescue me, she really doesn't take no for an answer,"

"I could tell you were uncomfortable, but I didn't think I could help really. I was getting a bit pissed off with her," Magnus whispered back, carefully positioning his foot beside Alec's and rubbing it against his gently. Alec responded by linking their pinky fingers where they lay between them on the sofa and squeezing lightly. "You sang brilliantly by the way!"

"Oh.." Alec replied, ducking his head and blushing, "It was nothing..."

"What did you want to ask me before?" Magnus suddenly said, looking over at him and spotting the tell-tale blush on Alec's cheeks. He was such a beautiful blusher and it was becoming very distracting.

"Oh, I was gonna say did you want to..." Alec began.

"MAGNUS BANE!" Came Jace's voice over the microphone, "Leave my sulky brother and get up here! Clary said you were singing for her tonight and I need you now!"

"Damn," Magnus whispered causing Alec to release his finger. "Hold that thought, I mean, that answer okay? I have to go, I did promise Clary,"

Despite having to abandon Alec just as he was maybe making progress with him, he enjoyed singing You're the one that I want with Jace. Even if he did have to squeak his way through Sandy's high notes. Most of his pleasure came from Clary's pleased smile and Alec's surprised one as he twirled Jace around and joined in with all his crazy dance moves. It was actually pretty fun and there was no tension between he and Jace after the earlier game of Spin the Bottle which he was glad about.

As they finished, Izzy jumped up and grabbed Jace's mic but made Magnus stay with her on the makeshift stage. "Just one more Magnus, you're doing so well."

Together they roared through Katy Perry's classic hit and had a lot of fun making up a lion dance to go with the chorus. While they sang, he watched Clary and Jace getting closer and closer, their body language screaming desire and he was pleased to see Clary finally take the plunge and latch an arm around Jace's neck pulling him in for a deep smooch. He smiled for his friend and was happy that the weekend was going to finally help her get what she wanted.

Now would it help him to get what he wanted too?

Possibly not, he thought, watching Maia slink over to Alec and snuggle next to him. They began to talk, but Alec was clearly distracted by watching Izzy and Magnus singing.

From the front of the stage, he could see that Maia was staring intently at Alec, not the stare of a good friend though. It looked almost predatory and Magnus had a funny feeling that even though she had come on this weekend with Jordan, she was hoping to go home with Alec. He wondered if Alec could tell that or if he was oblivious because she was his friend?

As soon as their song finished, Izzy announced the end of Karaoke for the evening and suggested they all get some rest as she had planned a hike for them the next day on a walking trail behind the house.

Clary and Jace had pulled apart but they both had very satisfied smiles on their faces. Meanwhile Jessica and Lydia had already slunk off to bed and Jordan was headed over to the couch to grab Maia.

Magnus watched as Maia leaned over and dropped a kiss on the corner of Alec's mouth, and as Alec's eyebrows lifted in surprise, before Jordan pulled her up and out of the door. Izzy quickly grabbed Magnus' hand and dragged him over to the couch pulling him down next to her and then turning to Alec.

"You sang great tonight big bro. Did you enjoy yourself? Did you enjoy mine and Magnus' performances too? I picked the songs especially."

"Sure Izzy," Alec drawled, eyes locking on Magnus' over her head, "They were great and I had lots of fun. You are the best hostess ever!"

"Exactly what I needed to hear!" she replied, smiling up at him. "Now it's bed time, or these legs will be too tired to hike the trail tomorrow. You'll have to lead the way bro and we all know you got us lost last time!"

"I didn't get us lost," Alec protested rolling his eyes, "I went a different and perfectly fine route!"

"Yes - one that took an extra hour! You wouldn't believe the blisters I got Magnus!" She said, frowning over at him.

"Right - so you're going to lead Iz! Now go to bed, Simon looks half dead!" he laughed.

"You too big bro... well if there's any room in your bed tonight, those two look pretty cozy right now!" She smiled pointing at Clary and Jace.

"Oh, no," Magnus protested, "Clary and I have an agreement - watertight - she's staying with me."

"Hmmm...you might need to re-do the seals on that contract Magnus! Good luck prying them apart! Looks like there might be some bed hopping happening later..."

Then with a wink, she grabbed Simon's hand and they disappeared out of the room leaving Alec and Magnus uncomfortably avoiding the make-out session happening on the armchair.

"Want to take a walk?" Magnus asked, turning to Alec with a hopeful look. But as he spoke, Jace and Clary stopped kissing and Jace grabbed Alec's arm muttering 'I need to talk to you,' then dragged him out of the lounge.

"Magnus! I'm so so happy!" Clary said, sliding herself on the sofa against him. "Can you believe he likes me? Actually likes me?" she asked, a blissful look crossing her face.

"I can, my darling. You are wonderful and it's about time he noticed that. Now hadn't we better head up for bed?" he asked, looking at her beaming smile.

"You go up, I'm gonna try sneak a bedtime kiss before I come, okay?" she asked her friend, holding his hand tightly.

"Of course, just don't stand on the squeaky step if you're going to be late!" he said, smiling at her before jumping up and heading off to their room. Whatever Alec had been trying to ask him earlier was still on his mind, but he was pretty exhausted so it would have to wait for the next day.

------

After taking off his make up and de-gelling his hair, Magnus snuggled down in the double bed, pulling the covers up tightly.

He was about to reach over to turn off the lamp, when his phone lit up with a message.

Twisting to grab it, he saw that it was from Clary.

'Jace asked if I wanted to stay with him tonight. I really really do Magnus. You can have that big bed all to yourself for once. Enjoy! Sorry for abandoning you. Love you. See you in the morning. Oh god... I'm so happy!'

Frowning at his phone, he quickly tapped out a reply:

'But where's Alec staying? Surely not with you two?'

He waited a full three minutes but there was no reply. Clary had clearly switched off her phone for the night.

Worried that his best friend had kicked his...well...what could he call Alec? His new friend? Had kicked Alec, out of bed, with no where to go, Magnus jumped up and pulled on his robe. He was going to find out what was going on. Poor Alec!

Chapter Text

Making his way carefully downstairs, with his robe pulled tightly around him, Magnus wasn't certain where he was heading. Maybe Alec had simply bunked in the boys' shared room and he was worrying for nothing. He was friends with Underhill and Raj after all, no matter what his feelings were for Jordan.

But as he wandered down the corridor, he could see straight into their room as the door was wide open. Not to mention, he could hear Raj's drunken snores as he peeked through the door. Jordan and Underhill were in the large king bed, as far apart as possible, in fact Jordan's left leg was almost hanging off the bed and the only thing keeping him in it seemed to be the bed clothes pulled tightly between them. Raj was on his back which explained the snoring, and that made Magnus' natural instincts kick in.

Raj had been so drunk earlier that it wasn't safe to let him sleep like that, so he took the time to tiptoe across and gently rock him onto his side and into a semblance of the recovery position - just in case. He had dealt with many drunken friends in his time at university and he would never leave any of them on their back in case they were sick.

After finishing up with Raj, Magnus continued to weigh up Alec's options. It was very unlikely he had headed to the girls' room or to Izzy and Simon, which only left the couches downstairs. Magnus could not imagine Alec being remotely comfortable on either of those with his height and long limbs.

He was proved correct when he entered the lounge and found Alec sprawled on his back, one long leg resting on the floor and the other almost bent over the arm of the sofa they had been sitting on together earlier. His arms were curled across his torso and his face was smushed up against the back of the couch, his head resting on a bright blue cushion. It was the cutest sight Magnus had ever seen and he paused for a moment to lever his phone out of his pocket.

Luckily, streams of moonlight were splashing through the half closed curtain, and the picture he took came out beautifully.

But the sound of his phone clicking caused Alec to stir. His head raised up slowly and his hand went to the back of it, running through his messy hair.

He blinked, as if unsure of what he could see and then he gracefully swung his body up and spun until he was seated on the couch, looking up at Magnus.

"Magnus?" he asked, his eyes continuing to blink madly as he adjusted to the strips of light. "What're you doing here?"

His voice was gruff, like he'd been asleep for hours, and not the forty minutes since Magnus had gone up to bed.

"You silly man," Magnus began, "Why didn't you come upstairs when they kicked you out of your own bed?" he asked, dropping to sit next to Alec on the sofa.

As he sat down, Alec immediately gravitated towards him and scooped up Magnus' hand in his larger one. "Didn't want to wake you up," he replied, stroking his fingers across Magnus' knuckles, causing a thrill to run through his stomach.

"Oh, Alexander, I wouldn't have minded if you did. Will you come with me now?" He squeezed Alec's hand gently as he spoke and turned on his puppy dog eyes.

"When you're looking at me like that, how can I say no?" Alec asked, smiling now and then using his strength to tug Magnus upwards.

Magnus wobbled at the sudden movement and was suddenly wrapped tightly in Alec's arms, one of his hands spread on his lower back and the other one across his shoulders. Breathing deeply at the contented feeling that was swooping in his stomach, he allowed his own arms to stretch across Alec's broad shoulders, pulling him tighter against him.

"This feels good, Alexander," he breathed out, not wanting to spoil the moment.

"So good," Alec breathed back.

They stood together for a moment longer and then Magnus reluctantly withdrew his arms and caught Alec's hand instead, pulling him towards the door. "Come on, I want to take you to bed," he said simply, not looking back for Alec's reaction, but feeling him squeeze his hand and his breathing quicken.

Together, they climbed the stairs, both missing the squeaky step and entered the attic room. As he shut the door, he turned to find Alec pressed against the wall beside him, his arms open and waiting.

Magnus smiled, then slipped back into Alec's comforting embrace, taking a deep breath as he settled against his chest. Hands tightened across his back, but as they hugged, they began to wander, sweeping up and down, curling gently over Magnus' shoulders, around his waist and hips and, for a memorable moment, over the curve of his arse.

Magnus hummed happily and let his own hands wander across Alec's back and shoulders, fingers teasing lightly over the muscles he could feel.

"I want..." Alec suddenly began, his voice still low and slightly hoarse.

"Yes?" Magnus whispered, pulling back from his embrace a little to see his face.

"I want...to kiss you Magnus. Can I kiss you?" Alec asked, his head ducking as his cheeks flushed at his own words.

"Always," Magnus breathed out as his hand tipped up Alec's chin.

Looking into his eyes, he could see the shine of happiness. And then, Alec's mouth descended on his and all thoughts but one left his head. Joy. Pure, utter joy, burned through Magnus as their mouths crashed together.

At first, it was closed mouths, lips slipping against each other, pressing softly ,and then more fiercely. Alec's hand cradling Magnus' face, while his own pulled Alec tightly in by his shoulders. But then it turned heated.

Magnus felt Alec's tongue lave over his lips, pressing for entrance, gently probing the seam of his mouth. Parting his lips slightly, Alec's tongue pressed into the warm, wet heat of Magnus' mouth and their tongues tangled together. Delicious shivers spread through Magnus' stomach and he moved his hands to grip Alec's face tightly, pouring all his passion and desire into their kiss. They kissed for what felt like hours, neither of them pulling back, fighting for dominance. Magnus sucked on Alec's tongue making him moan and Alec retaliated by licking the roof of his mouth and teeth before pulling one of his lips between his and biting down gently. Feeling that bite made Magnus' knees go weak and he clung on to the taller man, deepening their kisses further, his heart pounding desperately.

"Can't....Can't breathe Mag...nus.." Alec huffed out as they finally parted to take a breath, his hands pressed to Magnus' hard pecs as he carefully pushed him away. He looked wrecked, his lips red and swollen, his face flushed and his t-shirt creased where Magnus had grabbed it.

Magnus looked equally disheveled; his lips were bitten red and his hair which had been falling gently across his forehead was now pushed back when Alec had pressed kisses across his whole face.

They both panted a little, before Magnus looked up at the smile stretched across Alec's beautiful face.

"God, you're gorgeous," he said, "How on earth are you kissing me?"

"You're literally the most beautiful man I've ever met Magnus!" Alec replied, no sign of deceit on his face, "I'm the lucky one here."

"Let's agree we're both lucky?" Magnus asked, before gently pulling Alec away from the wall and towards the bed.

"Definitely," Alec replied and allowed himself to be pulled down on his side with Magnus facing him.

Immediately, Alec moved across to press another kiss to Magnus' lips, sliding an arm across his body to pull him against him.

"Wait, Alexander," Magnus said, pulling back slightly from him. "We need to talk first...just a little?"

Alec's smile drooped a little, but then he seemed to see from Magnus' expression that he wasn't being rejected and it began to climb back on to his lips.

"What do you want to talk about?" he asked, arm still around Magnus' hip, fingers grazing the sliver of skin that was exposed where his shirt had risen.

"Well, first of all, I just need you to know that I like you, Alexander. I really like you. Not just as a friend. Not just as a one night thing." Alec's beaming smile made Magnus smile too, but then it slid off his face as he continued, "And I know you're not out and you haven't shared this part of you with your family and friends yet, so what I want to make clear is that..." and here Magnus took a deep breath, "I'm not going to push you to do anything you don't want to, but I also don't want to get involved if there is no chance that in the future, if things work out, if there's no chance that we could be together and out to our friends and family."

Alec took a breath and looked like he wanted to interrupt, but Magnus held up a finger and continued, "I already came out of the closet once and I really don't want to go back in... but for you I would wait. I could be patient until you were ready. I just can't spend my life with someone who won't proclaim to the world that I am theirs." Then, in a small voice, "And now I've told you how I feel and I haven't even found out how you feel. If this is just another one night thing to you then I need to know now. I deserve to know. Have I made a fool of myself?"

Alec took a breath, his hand still resting on Magnus' hip, then trailed his fingers up across Magnus' chest until they reached his chin. Holding on gently, he tilted Magnus' face to his and then bent to press a light kiss to his already swollen lips. "You're not a fool Magnus. You're perfect." He gently kissed him one more time, then directed his gaze to Magnus' eyes.

"If I haven't made it clear, Magnus. I like you. I like you so much, that when I first saw you, I had to meet you. From that night, you probably thought I was a confident man. I'm not. Really, I'm not." He quirked his lips, but then the smile dropped again. "With my family and people I know really well, I can be something of the guy you met that night. But when it comes to real life...other people I just..." and here he stopped and gave Magnus a rueful grin, "I can't be like you. You're amazing. I don't think I've answered your question. I just want you to know that I like you and I haven't stopped thinking about that night. It was the best night of my entire life, Magnus. Meeting you, you flirting with me, how you made me dance, I never dance, and your face when you looked at me. Like I was special. I just..." he stopped again and put his hand to his head, unable to meet Magnus' eyes.

"Alexander," Magnus whispered, reaching out to pull Alec's hand away from his face and to turn his eyes to his, "You like me! That's the best start we could possibly have. Remember I said no pressure now." He smiled at Alec and was answered with a small grin back. "Maybe now you just tell me if you have a plan for the future.. do you want to be out? Do you want a boyfriend, a partner? Do you want everyone to know? You said it's okay that Izzy worked it out...what about Jace? Or your parents? Your friends? That would be enough for me. You don't have to shout it to the rooftops and it doesn't have to be right now...I just need to know that it could happen. That I wouldn't be a secret forever if we...chose to pursue this attraction."

"I want to say yes." Alec replied, gaze on Magnus'. "I should just say yes, right?"

"Only if you mean it. Only if it's what you truly want Alexander. I have no intention of outing you without your permission." Magnus pressed on, reaching up a hand to stroke it lightly down Alec's face. "Don't say yes just because it's what I'm desperate to hear. If you do that you'll break my heart before we even start. You have to be truthful."

"The truth is...I want to be with you. And I'm okay that Izzy knows. And if we were really together, if this was real. If you were...if you were mine, then I would want to tell everyone. I would want to shout it from the rooftops. I would want to tell everyone that you're taken, that you are mine."

"Are you...are you saying yes Alexander?" Magnus asked, voice hopeful.

"I'm saying...yes!" He replied. Alec went to speak again, but his words were swallowed by Magnus who wrapped himself around him like a limpet and sucked his breath away as they kissed.

After several minutes, they broke apart, and Alec gave Magnus the most beautiful of all his smiles, before gently untangling them and slipping onto the carpet on one knee.

Magnus stared at him, confused, "Alec? Alexander...what are you doing?" he asked, still breathing heavily.

"Magnus Bane," Alec began in a deep voice, "Will you do me the honour of being my boyfriend?"

Magnus dissolved in a fit of giggles and reached out hauling Alec back on to the bed (with some difficulty, he was a pretty big guy), "You're crazy Alexander!" he laughed, tugging him to his chest and sliding an arm around him.

"I thought I'd better do it properly," Alec protested, laughing along. "Just in case you didn't completely understand my ramblings. You know?!"

"I got it...I got what you wanted to say," Magnus huffed out between giggles. "Thank you! That was...very sweet!"

"Seriously, Magnus. I want to be with you. Do you want to be with me too?"

"Of course! Of course I do!" he replied, leaning up for a kiss and then pulling Alec tightly against his chest again.

"I'm so happy, Magnus," Alec smiled. "So happy!"

"But, you want to keep in secret for now?" Magnus asked, a smile still on his face.

"Well...yes, maybe for a little while, just til we've had a bit longer just us?"

"Okay. You know, secret relationships can be very sexy for a while Alexander...lots of meeting in dark rooms and holding hands secretly...it can be very very sexy!" Magnus raised his eyebrows, giving Alec a big grin. "But just for now, right?"

"Yes, just for a little while, then we can tell Izzy she's right first. She'll be very pleased to be right! We'll never get her to shut up about it you know!?"

"I know...but it'll be worth it? Right?"

"Yes!" Alec replied and then went back to kissing Magnus, soft lips catching his reeling him back in...

Chapter Text

As their kisses turned even more heated, Alec rolled on top of Magnus, pressing him into the mattress with his long, lean frame.

To Magnus, it felt like Alec was trying to make up for the 4 months since the last time they had done this together and he wondered if Alec had been with anyone else in between or if this was his first kiss since then. Sucking on Alec's tongue, nibbling at his lips and leaning to press soft, yet heated kisses, across his jaw, Magnus tried his best to make this perfect for Alec. And for him too.

Sliding his hands down Alec's back, he let his fingers slip beneath his shirt and stroked the muscles that were bunching together as Alec flexed. Alec's own hands were bracketing Magnus' body and keeping his full weight from crushing Magnus, but he really wanted to feel him. So he reached to pull Alec's arms to rest on his chest and head instead, forcing Alec's weight to settle more deeply on him, their legs becoming entwined as he rested more weight on his knees instead.

This movement drove Alec's thigh against Magnus' groin, rubbing on his cock through his loose shorts. He couldn't help the deep groan it caused, which prompted Alec to purposefully press down against him again causing a delicious friction. At the same time, he slid Magnus' shirt up and began rubbing gently over his sensitive nipples and twisting his fingers around them sending shivers of arousal through Magnus.

"Alec," Magnus said, pulling Alec's attention from where he was gazing at Magnus' naked chest in wonder.

"Mmmm," he hummed, bending to lick a stripe over Magnus' sensitive nipples, drawing more groans from him.

"What do you want to do?" Magnus moaned out, using his fingers to lift Alec's eyes to his.

"Want to make you cum Magnus. I want to hear your groans. I still remember what you sound like." Alec smiled, pressing his lips back to Magnus' nipple and sucking gently.

"Oh god, Alec, you're amazing" he said as Alec also rubbed his thigh more forcefully against Magnus' crotch. "I want that too. Want you to cum too..."

"Just hands and mouths...is that okay?" Alec asked, sounding a little nervous. "I'm not ready for anything else yet," he explained.

"Of course, Alec. Whatever you want is what I want too," Magnus replied, smiling up at him. "There's a lot we can do with hands and mouths after all," he continued with a wicked grin.

Alec moaned as Magnus suddenly gripped his arse, pulling him tighter against him and began to knead his cheeks. "God that feels good..."

"Do you want to take these off?" Magnus asked, squeezing him again and pulling at his jeans.

"Yes...can you...can you take yours off too?" Alec asked.

Carefully, Magnus rolled Alec off him and then with a wink settled himself between Alec's legs and made quick work of the buttons of his jeans, making sure his hands brushed over Alec's crotch, tracing the outline of his impressive bulge.

As he stripped the jeans down Alec's legs, he stopped to kiss the skin that was revealed, laving his tongue over his thighs and knees, before pressing small kisses to his ankles. The first time they had been together had been a heated rush of hands in pants and intense kissing and he had regretted not pausing to take his time to make Alec feel desired everywhere. So, now he could make up for it, Magnus planned to reduce Alec to a hot, sweaty mess in every way he could.

He was rewarded for his efforts by Alec moaning and bucking up into the hand he was using to massage the bulge in his boxers. "Magnus, feels so good..." he groaned.

Finally pulling the jeans from Alec's legs, Magnus quickly pulled off his shorts, his cock bouncing free. He watched as Alec's eyes lit up further and felt his hand stretch out to stroke the tip, smearing the pre-come that was already leaking out. "Come here, please," Alec ground out, his hands moving to Magnus' hips, pulling him roughly upwards so he was seated on his chest. His eyes were staring hungrily at Magnus' cock.

"Can I taste you Magnus?" He asked, eyes darting up to Magnus' and a light blush painting his cheeks. "I didn't get to before and you look delicious."

"Yes. I'm clean - I get tested. Besides there's been no one since you..." Magnus admitted, reaching out to stroke Alec's cheeks, unashamed by his confession.

"Not for me either...I think you ruined me that night for anyone else..." Alec said, seeming unaware of the impact of his words on Magnus. His cock twitched as Alec spoke, and Magnus had to wrap his hand around the base to stop himself from spoiling Alec's plan.

"Come here, please," Alec said, and suddenly his enormous hands were cradling Magnus' arse, pulling him forward until the tip of his cock rested against Alec's lips.

Magnus sucked in a deep breath as Alec's tongue snaked out of his mouth and licked the tip of him. "Mmmm," he hummed, his tongue caressing Magnus again "Tasty," he smiled, then suddenly opened his mouth and engulfed him.

A hiss of pleasure rushed from Magnus, and his hands clutched at Alec's shoulders tightly. God, he was not going to last.

Sucking on him deeply, one hand caressing what he could not fit in his mouth and the other stroking lightly up and down his bum, Alec proceeded to take Magnus apart. His tongue muscles curled around the tip of Magnus' cock, then traced the vein down the side before he once again pulled him into his mouth, tongue and lips pulling groans from Magnus. When one finger began to stroke lightly at his hole, he completely lost it, tugging on Alec's hair to warn him. But Alec did not let go, instead lifting his eyes to Magnus', begging him to let him swallow his release.

Magnus' whole body bucked upwards as he came and Alec moved his hands to hold his hips tightly; swallowing everything he was given. As Magnus became more sensitive, he called for Alec to release him and then slid backwards down his body until he could press his lips on Alec's, licking at his own cum at the corner of his mouth. He felt wrecked.

As they separated from their deep kisses, Alec gave him a huge grin, "You taste delicious Magnus, worth waiting for!"

"My turn?" Magnus asked, hand stretching behind to stroke Alec's fully engorged cock over his boxers.

"Yes please!" Alec replied, gently guiding Magnus backwards down his body until he rested between his legs again, his half-mast cock flopping against Alec's knee.

Magnus made quick work of Alec's boxers, roughly pulling them down and throwing them on the floor behind him.

"Yum yum," he smiled, looking down at Alec's perfect cock. "You look very tasty, Alexander," he giggled.

"Oh my god, this is a little embarrassing," Alec replied, red faced.

"You can't be embarrassed my darling, you've just had my cock down your throat! And an excellent experience it was for me!" Magnus replied, laughing again.

"I know...but this is...you know...my first time Magnus!" Alec said, hiding his head in his arm.

Magnus reached out to pull Alec's arms from his face, "First time...giving? Or receiving?" he asked, feeling a little surprised.

"Magnus," Alec wailed, continuing to flush deeply, "I already told you I haven't been with anyone since you and I got handsy together...and you... well you were the first guy I was ever with...so..."

"Oh!" Magnus exclaimed, eyes darting across Alec's face. "Wow. I suppose we never had that conversation before..." he continued, surprised. "Well then, Wow! I could not have guessed that from the excellent blow job you just gave me. You really are amazing aren't you my love?!"

"Really?" Alec asked, staring back at Magnus, the word love prompting him to blush even more fiercely, "It was good?"

"Amazing...couldn't you tell from the way I enthusiastically came down your throat, or from when I told you it was an excellent experience? Or from my groans? My god Alec, I have so much to teach you...If you want to learn?"

"I do, I do," Alec replied enthusiastically a small smile turning up his lips, "I want to do everything with you. I just...I need showing..."

"I'm not sure you do if that's how your first blow job started! The finger was an extra special touch..." Magnus smirked back.

"Well, I may have watched a lot of gay porn after we had our encounter...I kind of felt like I should have given you more than a basic hand job back then." Alec admitted.

"Oh god no, we were both very drunk Alec. A hand job was the best choice for that night. We hadn't really talked much and it was all about the instant attraction. If we'd done more I'm not sure we would have left feeling quite as good... besides..it was perfect that night...you were perfect, except for the part where I failed to get your number or last name..." Magnus smiled.

Throughout the whole conversation, Alec's cock had not deflated and now, hearing Magnus say he was perfect it perked up and twitched against Magnus' hand.

"Now...let's see if I can return your perfect blow job with one of my own?" Magnus asked, smiling down at the beautiful man below him. "Now...tell me, how do you feel about fingers on your ass?" he asked, watching as Alec's cheeks heated up further.

"Yes please," he breathed out and then began to moan immediately as Magnus wasted no time in going down on him.

Sucking on Alec's cock and gently cupping his balls, Magnus tried to make this as perfect as possible for the virgin laid out for him. Alec tasted delicious so it was no hardship for him as he swirled his tongue over the head of his penis and down the side, slurping the salty pre-come. Reaching the base, he moved back to the top and then, using his lack of gag reflex, engulfed Alec and took him as deep as he could until his head almost hit the back of his throat. Alec's hips lifted off the bed, pushing his cock deeper down Magnus' throat and he felt full. Deliciously full. He moved his hands to Alec's hips as he groaned, moaned and even squeaked out his pleasure, pressing him back to the bed and then curled his finger back behind Alec's sac to gently stroke his perineum causing more whimpers to slip from Alec's lips.

"God, Magnus," he said as he stared down at him, "It feels so good,"

Allowing Alec's throbbing cock to slip out of his mouth, he gave a him a devilish wink and then moved lower down, suckling one ball into his mouth while his hands gripped Alec's knees and lifted so he had access to his beautiful arse.

As soon as Magnus' fingers brushed Alec's holes, the moaning started again, more fierce and deep. Alec whimpered out Magnus' name and 'God' repeatedly as Magnus continued to suckle on his balls and circle his hole with his fingers.

Releasing him from his mouth, he lifted his head and asked, "How do you feel about rimming?"

"Oh my god Magnus!" Alec exclaimed, "Are you trying to kill me?"

Taking that as permission, Magnus went back to work, fingers again circling Alec's hole before he rested his cheek against his thigh, then slid out his tongue and gave him an experimental lick.

This time, Alec's moan was so deep, Magnus could feel the vibrations in his cheek. "So you like that then?" he cheekily asked. But his only answer was Alec's hand gripping his head and pushing him back towards his arse.

Magnus loved rimming, and he went to work enthusiastically, one hand stroking Alec's neglected cock while his mouth slurped at Alec.

"Magnus," Alec screamed, "I'm going to..."

Quickly, Magnus dropped his fingers down to continue what his tongue had started and wrapped his mouth around Alec's cock, sucking up and down, ready for his release.

Alec's fingers were clenching the sheets and his toes curled tightly as he came; while Magnus sucked up every drop happily.

As Alec finished, Magnus removed his finger and let his head flop on Alec's hard abs which were contracting with his pleasure. "Are you okay?" he asked.

"Just need a minute..or an hour..or something..." Alec replied, his eyes tightly closed. He lifted one hand from the sheets and draped it over Magnus' head, fingers carding through his hair, "You're amazing..." he whispered, "Thank you."

"My pleasure, Alexander," Magnus replied. "I wonder if you woke anyone up with those screams..." he mused.

"I don't care if I did," Alec replied. "I don't care who heard. That was just...incredible."

Carefully, Magnus untangled himself from Alec's hand and crawled to lie next to him, dropping his arm across Alec's stomach and cuddling up.

"Since, we both swallowed," he began, "There's no mess!"

"Perfect," Alec breathed out, eyes finally opening to look down at him. "Kiss me?" he asked hopefully.

"Of course," Magnus replied and stretched upwards, their mouths making contact in a soft, but perfect, kiss.

Chapter Text

Waking up to Alec pressed against his back, one long arm thrown over his stomach made Magnus feel content. He could imagine years ahead, waking up with Alec draped over him and it made his breath hitch in his throat. Last night had been incredibly intimate and Alec had been so honest that he had burrowed further into Magnus' heart.

As he gently turned in Alec's grip, he heard him begin to snuffle. Turning to face him, Magnus saw his eyes flicker open - once, twice, three times, before they shot fully open and he gazed down at Magnus in wonder.

"Not a dream?" he breathed out.

Laughing lightly, Magnus hooked his arm around Alec's neck, reaching up to brush a kiss over his lips, "Not a dream Alexander," he replied.

"Wow!" Alec laughed back, eyes burning with joy. "Finally!" Then he dropped another kiss to Magnus' mouth and pulled him tightly against his chest, a deep moan vibrating from him and into Magnus.

Pressed against Alec, Magnus smiled more brightly, "What do you mean?" he asked, his voice slightly muffled.

"Waking up to you actually in my bed," Alec said, no waver to his voice, "It was a dream I had for a while after the night we spent together. I just thought I was having a very vivid version of it when I woke up! But you're here, actually here and we did things right? Last night?"

"I would hope you remember Alexander," Magnus said, trying for a scolding tone but failing as he was too happy, "We did many things, lovely things, sexy things!"

"Yes, we did," Alec replied simply, before pulling Magnus upwards slightly to press more kisses to his lips and cheeks and forehead.

-----

After spending quite a long time waking each other up with morning kisses, they decided they should go downstairs and see what had happened after Jace had kicked him out of bed last night.

They had agreed that they were not going to be intimate with each other around the others for now, but that they would admit that Alec had stayed with Magnus if anyone asked them directly. Before heading downstairs, they shared one last passionate kiss, and Alec reaffirmed to Magnus that he would not be hiding their relationship forever. Magnus beamed at him and couldn't resist one more kiss before they left.

-----

Entering the kitchen, they were greeted enthusiastically by Simon, who bounced over and asked if they wanted waffles, because he was making waffles and his were the best.

"They really are," yawned Isabelle as she entered the kitchen and went straight to the coffee pot. After fixing everyone's coffee, she turned to Alec and handed him a cup.

"You okay big brother? Get any sleep? I heard some very interesting noises coming from your room last night!" she winked as she spoke and Alec flushed red and almost spit out his first sip of coffee.

"Oh my god Izzy!" he spluttered, causing Magnus to burst into peals of laughter.

"What's so funny?" Simon asked as he flipped another perfect waffle on to a plate.

"Wrong brother Izzy!" Alec replied, still blushing, "Jace kicked me out last night...if you get my meaning!"

"Oooo Jace and Clary? That finally happened?" Izzy asked with a grin.

"Took them long enough my dear Isabelle," Magnus replied, "I hope you are up for a little teasing of them today, especially since they kicked your darling big brother out of his bed!"

Izzy looked over at Alec and was about to speak when Jace burst in through the door, a beaming grin splitting his face in two. He was followed by an equally smiley Clary and their hands were joined tightly.

"Morning everyone!" Jace smiled, before sniffing deeply, "Are those your super special, secret recipe waffles Simon?" he asked.

"Sure...but I'm only giving them to good boys and girls today...and you two...I'm not sure we could class you as good?" Simon grinned back.

"Yeah, Jace...someone was very noisy last night, keeping me awake!" Izzy chuckled, watching as Jace's face heated up and Clary went bright red. "Oh, so it was you two?" she continued, giving Alec a wink.

Mortified, Clary buried herself in Jace's chest and he rested his hands around her protectively. "Hey!" he said, "No teasing my girlfriend!"

"Girlfriend?" Izzy asked, eyes shining with excitement, "Yes!" her fist pumped the air, "Took you long enough!"

Clary pulled away from Jace's chest and turned to Magnus, "Are you happy for me, Magnus?" she asked, looking at him quite seriously.

"Well..." Magnus said, drawing out his reply, finger on his lips as he pretended to seriously think about his answer, "He's got a full head of hair and all his teeth, and his dress sense is at least halfway decent...so he's definitely better than the last one Biscuit!"

"Magnus!" Clary yelled, leaping towards him, her tiny fists punching at his chest until he grabbed them and pulled her in for a hug.

"Ah, you know I'm teasing lovely Clary, of course I'm happy for you...at least now I won't have to hear your non-stop commentary about Chase's beautiful eyes and his huge biceps and his perfectly floppy hair..." he stopped speaking as Clary wrapped a hand over his mouth telling him off for embarrassing her.

At the same time, Alec began to speak too, "And at least I won't have to listen to Jace wax lyrical about how beautiful red hair is or how gorgeous pale skin is..." he trailed off as Jace punched him in the shoulder.

"Not cool dude, not cool at all, and it's Jace, Magnus! You're just jealous 'cos I met someone, Alec" he said, reaching out to pull Clary back into his arms where she snuggled in close. "When you finally meet a nice girl I am going to rib you so bad!" he continued, missing the quick glance between Magnus and Alec.

"I don't think that's ever going to be a problem," Izzy quipped as she stared at her big brother.

"Izzy!" Jace exclaimed in shock, "That's just plain mean! At least my thing was funny. You owe him an apology."

"I'm sorry Alec!" Izzy drawled out, her eyes dancing with mirth.

"Sure, Iz, I forgive you, but I'm not gonna forget what you both just said!" Alec replied and then reached for a plate of Simon's famous waffles, passing them to Magnus with a wink.

-----

Surprisingly, no-one else joined them for breakfast, and it wasn't until Izzy rang Lydia that they found out that the other six had decided to go for an early morning wander into town.

"They heard about your hiking plans Izzy!" Clary laughed, "And they have found a way to escape it! Damn Jace, why didn't we go to town early this morning?"

"Well, because you wanted me to try that thing with my foot..." Jace replied quite honestly before turning to stare in horror at the silent table. Clary was frowning fiercely at him while Magnus and Alec were going bright red from trying to hold in their laughter.

Simon's confused, "What foot thing?" set them off and they exploded into peals of laughter, quickly joined by Izzy who had also been holding her breath.

"Oh my god, Jace!" Clary exclaimed sternly, "Please can you learn to use a filter before speaking!" Her face was crimson but it was clear she was trying to hold back a laugh.

"Seriously," Simon said, looking around at them all."What foot thing?"

Magnus was clutching Alec's shoulder, his face quirking between a smile and a frown as he gasped for breath; Alec was not much better, head on the table, one hand clutching his hair as he shook. Izzy was still laughing quietly, hand clutched across her mouth. As Simon spoke, they all erupted into further laughter, both Clary and Jace joining them this time while Simon just watched, confused.

----

After they all recovered, and no-one asked about the foot thing (because they were all a little scared), they went to their respective rooms to get ready for their hike. "It's just a gentle walk really," Izzy had called gaily as they all left the kitchen.

"It is NOT a gentle walk, or a gentle anything," Alec hissed at Magnus and Clary as he followed them down the corridor, "Do NOT let her fool you. When she says we can do the long walk easily, absolutely insist on the short version. That one time I led, I was aiming for the short version but she insisted we turned at a certain point and then it was all uphill from there!"

Clary gazed at Alec in surprise, but Magnus merely reached out and squeezed Alec's shoulder, "We shall insist on the short walk, no worries Alexander! Now I must go and decide what to wear, one must look stylish when being marched through the countryside...you never know what kind of sexy farmhands you might meet!" and with a wink, he grabbed Clary's hand and dragged her upstairs.

"Whoa!" Clary said as they climbed the steps, both careful to avoid the squeaky one, "I think Alec had too much coffee and sugar this morning, I've never heard him talk so much!"

"Yes, must be the caffeine!" Magnus laughed, "Or he just really hates hiking!"

Once they reached their room, he turned to her, ready to interrogate her about her night with Jace, but stopped at the odd look on her face.

"Are you okay Biscuit? Or is your late night causing you problems?" Magnus asked, confused.

"It smells...different in here Magnus..." she started, before trailing off and giving him a pointed look, "It smells like Alec!" she concluded.

"Yes, well it would," said Magnus, turning away from her to hide the happy grin that crept onto his face at hearing Alec's name. Gosh he was smitten! "After you guys kicked him out, I went downstairs to make some tea to help me sleep and found him gracelessly draped on a too-short sofa, limbs all over. He did not look comfortable, so I gave him your side of the bed. I assume that was okay?"

"Oh god, Magnus!" Clary gasped, "I assumed Jace had sent him somewhere with a bed, to a pull out couch or something. I didn't realise or I would never have agreed. I'm so sorry. I must go apologise to him!"

Clary looked incredibly distraught, so Magnus reached for her and wrapped her in his arms, "It's okay. He said it was fine, it was mainly me that got in a tizzy about him needing space for those long, long legs. Plus I felt like I owed him for the car ride and having to sit on his knee..." Magnus covered, releasing Clary and pressing a kiss to her cheek, "Now, help me choose an outfit and you can tell me all about your night with blonde surfer boy!"

"If you're sure he's not mad at me? Or Jace?" Clary asked in a small voice, "I would hate to make Jace's brother angry on the first day I'm officially his girlfriend!" The last part was said with a small squeal of happiness and she threw her arms around Magnus once more.

"It's all okay lovely," Magnus laughed, spinning her around, "Now tell me more and help me get ready!"

-----

'Hike' definitely turned into 'Quick March' with Isabelle Lightwood leading the way. She was fearless in her directions and set a quick pace, which Magnus had no intention of trying to maintain or keep up with. So he feigned an old knee injury and then asked if Alec would be so kind as to stick with him so he wouldn't get lost before waving the others in front of them. As Isabelle turned to hurry away, she gave him a knowing smirk and asked if they were certain they would be alright on their own. Alec had given her a stern faced reply that they would and they would call her if they needed anything. She had tossed her shining hair over her shoulder, then grabbed Simon's hand and led a terrified looking Clary and an energetic looking Jace on their way.

"Finally. Alone," Magnus breathed out as they all disappeared around the bend in the track, before reaching out to draw Alec to his chest, settling against him in a tight hug. As he felt Alec's arms encase him, he relaxed against him for a few moments. "This okay?" he asked.

"Definitely," Alec replied. "I love Izzy, but man she is competitive when she starts walking. Anyway, hugging you will always be better than chasing my sister up a hill."

"Now," said Magnus, drawing away from Alec's chest and tipping his head to look up at him, "Alexander, about this hike...can we absolutely, definitely, without fail, take the shortest route..." Alec began nodding immediately, "And..." Magnus continued, a sly smile crossing his lips, "Can we stop and make out lots on the way as a reward for every K i manage?"

"That sounds like a perfect plan," Alec laughed, dipping down to kiss Magnus. It quickly turned heated when Magnus slipped his tongue into Alec's mouth and they kissed in earnest. When they parted a while later, Magnus reached up to Alec's hair and tried to rearrange it artfully as he had tugged it into a sort of point in the middle of his head.

"Oops," he giggled, "You look kind of like a Yield sign with all your hair up in the middle,"

"Ah, I wouldn't worry," Alec replied, putting his own hand up to try and pull a few strands down, "I always look like I have bedhead, everyone's used to it. Now let's go do a K so we can get back to the kissing?!"

"Happily! As long as you pull me up the hard parts?" Magnus said, smile blooming over his face.

Several K's and makeout sessions later, they reached a fork in the path. "Ah, so left is the long one and right is the short one," Alec smiled. "I rather imagine Izzy has taken them left and I rather think that you want to go right? Is that true?" Alec asked Magnus, gesturing with the hand that wasn't laced with his.

"Yes please! I definitely want to take the short one, maybe we'll beat them home and we can have some private hot tub time?"

"That sounds like a great plan," Alec replied, leaning in for a short kiss, and then practically dragging Magnus to the right.

Half way down the next trail, they were suddenly surprised to hear a loud shout, "Clary!" screamed Jace's voice. It did not sound like it was far from them, so they exchanged worried looks and then sprinted down the trail towards the noise.

They found Jace, Izzy and Simon kneeling on the ground beside Clary whose face was tear stained. She was awkwardly holding her ankle, while Jace attempted to touch it.

"Biscuit!" Magnus exclaimed as he ran to her. "What happened?"

As they explained how Clary had tripped and landed badly, Magnus gently rotated her ankle and felt it carefully to check if there was any swelling and for any other signs of injury. He could tell it wasn't broken, but could see from the bruising and slight swell that it might be sprained.

"I need to wrap this for you darling," he announced, and then gently lifted Clary to her feet.

"Here," Alec said, reaching out for her and gently slipping her into a piggyback hold, careful not to rock her ankle.

Magnus gave him a grateful smile and then turned to Jace to reassure him that she was fine and they just needed to go back for some ice and a bandage.

-----

After a quick march back, led by Alec with Clary clinging on to his back, they arrived at the cabin. Isabelle was pretty upset and blaming herself for making them walk, so Simon scooped her up and took her off to 'distract her'. Meanwhile, Jace stayed with Clary and applied ice to her ankle while Magnus went upstairs for supplies.

Arriving back in the kitchen, he saw Alec's eyes immediately snap over to him which made his heart soar, so he gave him a small smile before heading to Clary where he began to tightly bind her ankle. She moaned a little but Jace gripped her hand and kept her busy. Magnus was efficient and had the job done in seconds. He bent to lightly kiss Clary's cheek and then stood up to go and rest at the counter beside Alec.

"You're very good at that Magnus," Alec whispered, allowing his hand to rest on the small of Magnus' back. Leaning into him, Magnus hummed in response.

"Hey, shall we have a swim? Might be good to cool down after that quick hike and help out any sore muscles you have - I know Clary's not heavy but that cannot have been easy going down hill?"

"Sure, I'll meet you by the pool?" Alec agreed.

"Jace, Clary needs to lie down, foot slightly elevated on a cushion. I've had her as a patient before and I suggest the television as a distraction otherwise she'll moan!" Ignoring Clary's protests, he continued, "Keep icing it and let me know if her toes or her leg above the bandage changes colour. It shouldn't, but you never know, okay?"

"Of course," Jace said seriously, giving Magnus a tight lipped grin. "I'll look after her,"

Magnus gave Clary one last kiss and then went to get changed, mind already ahead at the hot tub with Alec.

Chapter Text

Sinking into the bubbles, Magnus allowed himself to relax. Clary's accident had been a huge surprise and he had had to think quickly about how to help her so he was feeling pretty emotionally exhausted. Spending time alone with Alec was the perfect remedy.

"Hey," said a quiet voice, a hand gently stroking his hair, as Alec leaned over the hot tub, "Can I come in?"

"Please do," Magnus said looking up at Alec's beautiful face, then reaching a wet hand up to stroke back a lock of Alec's hair that had fallen across his eyes, "I want a cuddle..."

Alec stepped into the tub and immediately settled beside Magnus, entangling their legs and slipping a heavy arm around his shoulder. Magnus carefully settled his head at the juncture of Alec's neck and pressed a soft kiss there. He let out a hum of satisfaction, and was pleased when Alec's other hand reached to hold his and settled them together on his thigh.

"Perfect," he breathed out. And they sat together, listening to the bubbles for several long minutes.

"You were amazing," Alec suddenly said, "With Clary, I mean. Well, actually you've been amazing this entire trip so far, Magnus,"

"Not amazing," he replied, "Just me,"

"Yes," Alec said, letting go of his hand and reaching to slide his chin upwards so they were looking into each other's eyes, "You are amazing, Magnus!" He stared at him, his deep brown eyes boring into Magnus' almost begging him to listen. "The way you looked after her and knew what to do immediately, and with me last night, you were so generous, so loving, so supportive of my...my lack of experience...Magnus you are incredible. I am so lucky to have met you. So lucky that you see me. You genuinely have no idea do you? How wonderful you are?"

Magnus stared up at him, tears pricking the corners of his eyes, emotion overwhelming him. He couldn't speak. Alec really thought he was special. Suddenly, he couldn't control himself and he surged upwards to wrap both arms around Alec's neck, crashing their mouths together.

Alec seemed surprised at first, but quickly caught on and kissed him back, tongue tangling with Magnus' as the kiss became heated. One hand tugged at his hair, pulling Magnus closer and the other held Magnus tightly to his body. Their chests rubbed together enticingly, prompting Alec to drop his hands to Magnus' hips where he pulled him to straddle his lap.

Magnus' hard length rubbed against Alec's and then he began to grind down, the pair of them panting hotly against each other's mouths. Alec's hands were gripping Magnus' arse and his were running over Alec's pecs, fingers pinching his sensitive nipples.

"Oh god," Alec groaned out, "God, that feels amazing!" His hips were bucking quickly upwards and Magnus was beginning to lose control. They pushed and pulled against each other, before Magnus suddenly seemed to come to his senses, and using his advantage of being on top, pushed away from Alec and stood up.

"Oh Alec," he moaned, "We can't finish this here...how would we explain why we had to drain the water? We couldn't let anyone get in here after we had our fun..." he trailed off, avoiding looking at Alec's flushed skin and listening to him gasping for breath.

"Come back, I'll tell them I got a nose bleed or something," Alec groaned back, arms stretching out for him. "Please...it felt so good!"

"It will feel good again...in our bed," Magnus replied, trying to control his breath. "As much as that felt incredible, what if someone came in? We couldn't explain this away!"

"i don't think I'd care, if you were here doing that to me!" Alec replied, also trying to slow down his breathing as he gazed heatedly at Magnus.

"No...bedroom. But not yet. I need a little time to calm down," Magnus smiled, indicating his crotch with a wink.

"Okay, well, come back here, we can cuddle again and you can tell me how you got those impressive first aid skills?" Alec asked, long arm reaching across the tub to link their hands and then tugging Magnus towards him.

Magnus allowed himself to be pulled back against Alec's chest, where he was pulled into a hug, soft kisses pressed to his face. "I don't want to stop, but I understand and I respect your wishes, Magnus" Alec whispered.

"Thank you, I just don't want this ruined by someone else getting involved right now. I think we need some time to get to know each other and make sure we both feel the same, Alec. You're new to all of this...to relationships, right?" Alec nodded, "And I haven't had been in a successful one for quite a while. So, if we are both interested in moving this...this connection...this attraction forward and telling everyone, then we need to have some time to get to know each other...beyond the bedroom. Okay?"

"Yes, sure. I get that," Alec said, smiling down at him. "Besides, I do want to know absolutely everything about you Magnus! I said I think you're amazing and I'm not lying, but I bet I haven't even cracked the surface of your amazingness, right? I mean, I asked you to be my boyfriend and I don't even know what you're studying yet and I know that's going to impress me!"

"I don't know...you know Jace just laughed at me when I told him?" Magnus asked.

"Do I look like Jace?" Alec deadpanned, arm stroking Magnus' bicep. "Come on, I want to know what my incredibly handsome, sexy, smart, boyfriend loves learning. Because I know you chose your Masters because you love it."

"Well, okay. It's not at all embarrassing, I'm really proud of what I do, but it's easy for people to comment on sexuality when you tell them, you know because society is so far behind the times." Magnus said, looking up at Alec, whose face was completely open and free of any judgement.

"Okay," he took a deep breath, "So I studied to be an RN for my undergrad. A male nurse can be pretty rare in a hospital even in the modern age, and I found it pretty tough to get in on cases that I needed to learn about. Like there was a rotation in the Breast Screening Department that came up and I really wanted it. But there are so many prejudices against male nurses being part of that whole process and when I applied they turned me down."

Alec frowned, pulling Magnus closer as though he could take away the pain of the rejection even though it had happened a long time ago and Magnus' heart swelled at his protectiveness.

"But one night, I was working the ER, and this woman came in. She was obviously in distress but she wouldn't talk to anyone about what was going on, and while they were waiting to send her for some scans, I was assigned her bed. So I was making rounds when she just latched on to me. She started telling me about her evil ex and how she was terrified he would find out where she was and that if he came to the hospital he was going to cut it out of her. I really didn't know what was happening but she just seemed to need someone to stay and listen." He took a deep breath and leaned further into Alec's hold, pressing a soft kiss to his collarbone.

"So, you need to know that she was a big woman but she carried it well. And despite her distress, she was very much in control of herself. She told me more about her life and it was all so tragic Alec. I was really busy that night but I needed to make time for her. She was important to me. Anyway, the thing is, she was so sad because it turned out she was pregnant. Seven months and she had been having extreme cramping and was terrified she was loosing her baby. But she didn't want anyone to know because of her ex. If she told her family or friends it might get back to him. So she was doing it alone."

As Magnus continued to speak, Alec pressed kisses to his head, trying to comfort him.

"Alec, she was already in slow labour even if she was hiding it from us, I told you she was pretty big so it was hard to know she was even pregnant, and then it suddenly all went to hell. I called for the doctor but it was the fastest labour I've ever seen. In fact, because male nurses couldn't get on the rotation for Maternity, it was the first labour I'd ever seen in person. So I delivered this tiny baby. It was so small and blue and not breathing," Here he took a deep, gulping breath and Alec again kissed his head and tightened his arms. "The doctor came and other nurses and we fought to save him. He was so beautiful, translucent skin - you could see all of his veins. And then he cried. He cried, and the woman, she cried and then I cried too! It was amazing. I got to hold him and I put him on her chest and she just melted. Her face when she saw him. It was beautiful," A tear slipped down his cheek and he put up a hand to wipe it away. Then he pulled away from Alec and smiled up at him. He had a beaming smile on his face and he looked so proud that it made Alec's heart skip a beat.

"So, you became a midwife?" Alec asked, grinning.

"I did!" Magnus exclaimed, surprised that Alec had guessed. "It was hard. No one wanted me in the department at first and I had to fight to get patients. But I won them around with my charms and obviously my excellent knowledge of each of their cases! And through word of mouth, people started to ask for me. So they couldn't turn me away!" Magnus had a proud smile on his face and Alec's heart clenched again and he couldn't resist kissing him deeply.

As they broke apart, Alec smiled and said, "I am so impressed by you. You found something you truly loved and truly wanted to do and you made it happen, Magnus. How could you possibly not think you're amazing?"

"Well, you didn't laugh, unlike Jace, which is good!" Magnus replied, heart beating quicker at Alec's admiration. "Umm...before, didn't you mention something about waiting to hear from the VSO? You haven't told me what you do yet, also something incredible and selfless I can imagine!"

Alec ducked his head for second, before looking back at Magnus, "Yes, well you could say that. I'm going to volunteer overseas. I studied engineering and I've applied to go to Africa, help with the infrastructure of small towns, you know plan and build bridges and support them with clean water supplies things like that. I'm really excited, but I have to wait for all the paperwork to come through which is taking forever. They think it's going to be May before I can go, too much red tape."

"Wow! That's brilliant Alec! Of course someone like you would want to help. I can tell from the way you are with your siblings that you have a heart overflowing with love to share. I knew my boyfriend was amazing though!"

Hearing Magnus call him his boyfriend did strange things to Alec's stomach and he surged forward again to press hot kisses on his lips and cheeks. "Magnus!" he moaned, "I love hearing you say that, that I'm your boyfriend!"

They kissed for several minutes more, but Magnus didn't allow Alec to pull him back into his lap, instead they pressed as close as possible and ran their hands over each other's chests and thighs.

Pulling away again, Alec gave Magnus a quizzical look, "As we are sharing so much today, I have a question for you." He settled Magnus against him with his back pressed to his chest, too embarrassed to look at him. "Umm, the other night, I came to your room and Jace was already there... you were talking and I overheard your conversation. I wasn't meaning to eavesdrop, I promise, I just wanted to see you."

"Oh," Magnus said, frowning slightly, "So you know about Jace then?" This was serious so he chose to say his real name.

"Yes, but I've always known about Jace. Before even Jace knew, I think. I was just going to say thank you. You gave him some good advice and you listened where I couldn't because he doesn't know about me, I never told him. I think if he knew, he might have spoken with me before about it. But I'm glad he could talk to you. He's really important to me and I appreciate you supporting him. But...him kissing you? In spin the bottle? I could have killed him! I was so jealous!" Alec admitted.

Magnus turned in his arms and leaned forward and allowed their lips to touch, Alec deepening it immediately. Their arms wrapped tightly around each other and their kisses turned heated once more. Alec, admitting he had been jealous, broke Magnus' resolve and he was soon back on Alec's lap grinding against him. Their rough pants echoing around the pool room.

"Shh!" Magnus whispered loudly, "Too loud, there's going to be an audience if we don't quiet down!"

"Make me be quiet!" Alec grinned, the smirk on his lips dropping as Magnus stole his breath, his tongue twisting as they fought for dominance.

Magnus dropped a hand between them to pull Alec from his trunks and felt an answering hand grip his length and then it was all action. Hands pumping, lips pressed together, tongues tangling and hands gripping hair and twisting nipples and clinging onto shoulders as they brought each other to the edge.

Alec fell first with a breathy moan of Magnus' name and Magnus followed him quickly.

They panted against each other and then strong arms were pulling Magnus against Alec's hairy chest and he was pressing kisses there.

"Whoa," Alec whispered. "Well...I've never done that!" he laughed.

"Would you believe me if I said I haven't either?" Magnus asked, smile splitting his face.

There was nothing to clean up, so when they had recovered they climbed out and Alec started to drain the tub, Magnus giggling at the situation they had found themselves in.

"Hope no one wanted to use it today," Alec laughed, "I'll get Brigid to give it a thorough scrub later on...so what's the story?"

"Yeah," came a voice from the doorway. Izzy was just coming in, tossing her long, dark hair over her shoulder, Simon behind her, "What is the story? Why are you draining the tub?"

"Nosebleed!" Magnus said, laughter in his voice, "I had the worst nose bleed and I couldn't get out in time. Think I'm a bit dehydrated from the hike. Alec and I were thinking of driving into town to go for coffee or milkshakes or something,"

"Oh," Simon said, "Well as we can't use the hot tub, that sounds like lots of fun. Can Iz and I come too?"

"Sure," Alec replied, "We'll just go get changed..be down in..." he looked over at Magnus, "Uhh, 15 minutes?"

"Thirty" Magnus replied, smiling, "I have to do my hair!"

"You certainly do," Izzy said with a smirk, staring at Magnus "Let's hope you don't have another nosebleed while you're doing it!"

Magnus gave her a cheeky smile and thanked her for caring and then he and Alec left as Izzy giggled and Simon asked her what was wrong.

Pulling Alec's hand into his as they reached the empty corridor, he looked up and smiled, "You okay?"

"So, so good," he replied dropping his head to kiss Magnus. "Just to be clear, I'm coming to help you do your hair right?"

"Oh yes, yes you are gorgeous!" Magnus laughed, "I'm thinking it might take more than half an hour..." Pressing one more kiss to Alec's lips, he dragged him upstairs.

Chapter Text

An hour later, Magnus and Alec finally made it back downstairs. Izzy and Simon were playing a game of rummy in the lounge, and Izzy huffed as they arrived. "You've taken forever! We could have been to town and back already by now!"

"Sorry Isabelle, my fault," Magnus laughed, "My hair was not easy to sort out...Alexander has clearly never used molding clay before and I was stupid to let him try!"

"So, really it was my fault," Alec said, smiling at his sister.

"No harm done," Simon said, "But I am really craving a milkshake now, so let's hit the road,"

"My car or yours Iz?" Alec asked.

"You're driving because my milkshake is going to have a lot of bourbon in it!" she giggled.

-----

They finally made it in to town, and Alec parked by the ice cream shop, the four of them making a beeline for a spare booth in the back. Magnus allowed his leg to rest against Alec's under the table and was pleased when his soft hand came to rest lightly on his knee. When the waitress arrived, Izzy made a big deal out of ordering her bourbon laced vanilla concoction, while Simon opted for a cookies and cream. Magnus was surprised when Alec ordered a jumbo sized chocolate sundae and he quickly asked if he was going to share it.

"Oh," giggled Isabelle, staring between them, "You've never seen Alec eat ice cream before have you? This will be fun, he usually even licks the bowl clean after!"

"Oi! Stop teasing me! I don't lick the bowl..." But after a stern glance from Izzy, he turned to Magnus and continued, "I MAY have once used my finger to scoop out what was left of the chocolate sauce, but I have never licked at the bowl!" He had a cute, puppy dog expression on his face, but Magnus couldn't resist teasing him too.

"So, you're going to dip your fingers in chocolate sauce and lick them right here in front of me, Alexander? Do you want me to have to to perform CPR on myself?"

Even Alec laughed at Magnus' outraged expression before he winked at him, "Well, I guess I could be the one performing the mouth to mouth part if you needed it?!"

Magnus chuckled as Alec's neck took on it's tell tale red glow, while Izzy stared at her brother in shock, "Alexander Lightwood! Are you flirting with Magnus?" she exclaimed.

"That was definitely flirting, Alec" Simon echoed, grinning widely at the pair. Magnus felt Alec's fingers dig into his knee as his expression became more guarded.

"I don't suppose it was really, I can't imagine why Alec would practise his flirting skills on little old me," he deflected and then proceeded to tell Simon and Izzy a hilarious story about a good friend of his (Catarina) who had been horrendously flirted with by a patient who was high on morphine after a serious accident. And how the patient's husband had been mortified and tried to buy Catarina dinner and flowers and chocolates to apologise for his wife's behaviour. His well timed punchlines gave Alec time to recover from his momentary slip. But Magnus did wonder exactly what Alec was thinking about.

The arrival of the ice cream distracted them all and they happily slurped away at their shakes and scoops. Alec's was enormous, and Magnus immediately realised that Isabelle had not been kidding as he proceeded to devour it with almost military precision. Magnus himself had a small scoop of lemon sorbet and was enjoying it happily until he was suddenly distracted by Alec holding a spoonful of chocolate towards him.

"You have got to try this Magnus! It's the most sinful, decadent thing I've ever tasted..."

"Are you sure it's the most sinful thing you've ever licked, Alexander?" Magnus purred, as he got close enough to Alec to wrap his mouth around the spoon.

Alec's sharp intake of breath made Magnus' stomach twist, and as the delicious dessert traveled to his belly, he felt his heart expand with love.

"You're right of course, it's yummy!" Magnus exclaimed as he pulled his mouth from the spoon with a smacking sound. Alec's eyes were trained on his lips and suddenly his finger was reaching out to lightly stroke a drip of chocolate from underneath them. Absentmindedly, he raised his finger to his own lips and sucked on the ice cream.

Now it was Magnus' turn to breath deeply, eyes never leaving Alec's. His heart thumped painfully against his chest as he stared at the warm, hazel orbs. He felt his stomach twist again, writhing below his ribs, as he acknowledged the unforgettable feeling of warmth; as he felt the sparks that were dancing there, the sparks of the start of true love.

------

After an appropriate amount of teasing from Izzy and Simon about his 'Mothering' of Magnus by wiping his mouth, they finished their desserts and decided to walk off the ice cream on a wander around town. Magnus and Izzy were quickly drawn to one of the clothing boutiques and asked Simon and Alec if they wanted to stay while they tried things on, but the two men were intent on going to a book shop that was Alec's favourite. So they parted ways, and Alec looked a little pained when Izzy and Simon kissed goodbye, while he and Magnus merely said it.

"You're melting my brother, aren't you Magnus?" Izzy asked as they stepped into the store. "I've never seen him act like this before. Are you going to tell me what's going on? Do I need to give you the big sister talk?"

"No, Isabelle. You don't need to do anything right now. I am not the person you need to be talking to. I will only say that I respect your brother and find him very...special and more than a little bit distracting. But, that's it! Now let's shop?"

"Okay! But this isn't over you know!"

-----

Spending an hour trying on clothes with Izzy had been brilliant and Magnus had even bought a few things, including a small present for Alec that he had slipped off to buy while Izzy had been in the changing room. He was excited to share it with him later that night when they were finally alone. Smiling happily, he and Isabelle decided to wander off to the bookshop to see how Simon and Alec were getting on.

Pushing into the store, they immediately spotted Simon enthusiastically engaging the staff with a discussion about comics, several on the counter in front of him wrapped carefully in plastic.

Smiling at Magnus, Izzy said she had better check in with him as the last time he had bought comics, he had almost spent his whole student loan payment without thinking about it.

Magnus let her go and then peered into the small shop, trying to see where Alec had gone.

A few minutes of wandering later, he found him tucked on a small sofa in a corner, one hand in his hair, worrying the strands, the other propped on the arm rest holding a well thumbed copy of War and Peace.

"Wow! Enjoying the drama of the Bolkonski's and Rostov's, Alexander?" Magnus inquired, moving to flop next to him on the squashy sofa. His breath hitched, as Alec automatically draped the hand that had been tugging on his hair around Magnus' back and pulled him closer, stroking his hand up his back gently.

"Hi," Alec breathed out, pressing a kiss to Magnus' hair. "I was just distracting myself by reading a few of my favourite scenes...also reading a few of Tolstoy's choice quotes.. Have you read it?" Magnus nodded, "Well, remember this part? 'Nothing is so necessary for a young man as the company of intelligent women.' I can never forget reading that line. As a fifteen year old, I often wondered if I really needed an intelligent woman in my life and if my sister would do!"

"I know what you mean. But my favourite quote will always be..." And here, Magnus leaned forward so he could see Alec's face. "We are asleep until we fall in Love!"

Alec grinned at him, his eyes darting down to Magnus' lips as he blushed a little. Then he suddenly swooped down and his lips were on Magnus'.

They kissed for a long minute, hands gently caressing each other's faces before they drew away, still gazing into each other's eyes.

A sudden gasp from their left made them both jump slightly. Looking over to see Isabelle with her hand pressed to her mouth, Alec buried his head in Magnus' shoulder for a moment before glancing back up and giving her a small smile.

"Hey, Iz," he said, "You think we could talk?"

"Of course," she said a little shakily, allowing her feet to wander over to the sofa and perching on the arm beside Alec.

"I should leave you to it," Magnus said, starting to stand up.

"No," Alec said, reaching for his hand, "Please don't. I'd like you to stay?"

Magnus smiled at him and then dropped back on the couch and settled close. Alec reached to lace their fingers together before turning to his sister.

"Okay. You can start," he said, looking up at his sister, who was still looking shocked.

"I...I'm not really sure what to say. I was really just joking with you before, I didn't realise you two were actually...together," she said, giving her brother a smile and then turning to Magnus. "So, I do need to give you the sister talk then?"

"No Izzy!" Alec said, nudging her with his elbow and then squeezing Magnus' hand even more tightly. "Leave him alone. Don't chase Magnus away now..."

"As if I would ever chase away anyone who was willing to put up with your grumpy ass, Alec! Especially not Magnus, I like Magnus. I like you Magnus!" she laughed, tears curling at the edges of her lashes, "So, tell me what happened! How did this happen? Who kissed who?"

"I'm not telling you anything Izzy, other than we both wanted this and we're very happy so far, right Magnus?"

"Undoubtedly, darling Alexander," Magnus replied, leaning to press a kiss to his cheek, "Very happy!"

"Oh my god! I'm really happy for you both! It's so exciting!" Izzy continued to smile, before jumping up to wrap her arms around them both, pulling them in tight. "Hey, are you telling people? Are you gonna tell Jace and Clary? Can we tell Simon?"

"Ummm," Magnus began, "We kind of wanted to get to know each other a little better first, Izzy. It's all been very rushed. And we haven't had a lot of time just us, you know?"

"Of course I do, I just want everyone to know, because it's made me so happy, it will make Jace so happy too, to know you're happy Alec! But you don't have to say anything yet. But can I be there when you do? I want to see him face when he realises how happy his big brother is."

Magnus and Alec smiled at each other over Izzy's head as she continued to babble away, before they gently pushed her to standing and stood themselves.

"Let's go get Simon, Iz, before he spends all your allowance too!" Alec laughed and grabbed her hand to pull her to the front of the store, giving Magnus a cheeky wink over his shoulder and mouthing 'Later'.

Chapter Text

After persuading Simon that one comic of a reasonable price was enough, the quartet decided to pick up takeout for everyone for dinner and made their way to the local Chinese restaurant. It was pretty busy, so while they waited, Alec read to them from War and Peace (which he had decided he had to buy as his own copy was at home).

Izzy declared it romantic, Simon found it boring because there were no superpowers involved, and Magnus? Well, Magnus was lost, listening to Alec's rich voice pronouncing all the tricky vocabulary and using tons of expression to bring the characters to life.

He was so enamored with listening to Alec, that Izzy had to nudge him three times when the food was ready. Alec, shot him a small, secret grin and Magnus returned it with his own. It was so comfortable, being with Alec.

When they made it back to the cabin, they found everyone in the living room, playing a card game and drinking. The announcement that they had brought takeout was met with whoops and hollers, and it was quickly devoured by the group of 12. Magnus purposefully separated himself from Alec - Izzy catching on was emotional enough for one day, besides he needed to see how Clary was.

"I'm fine, Magnus," she protested as he checked her ankle carefully, "You were amazing and looked after me so quickly that it never had a chance to become too swollen. And Jace has been brilliant too, so it's been propped up most of the day. Don't worry! Now tell me about your day?"

They snuggled on the couch together and caught up, ignoring the group who were growing steadily drunker around them. While Magnus was sipping on a cocktail, it was his first one, and he could see that Alec was still nursing his first beer from where he was sitting with Jace.

Jace too, did not appear drunk. He was chatting happily with Alec, but his gaze kept wandering over to Clary and Magnus. She was not drinking at all on Magnus' advice as he had given her some pretty strong painkillers to ensure her ankle would heal quickly.

"So, Jace?" Magnus asked, tucking himself closer to her and watching as her cheeks flamed. They both turned to look at Jace and Alec who had their heads together and looked to be in a deep conversation.

"I really, really like him Mags. Last night was incredible, and I'm sorry it caused problems for you and Alec, but I can't take it back now and I don't want to. I think he's gonna be a keeper..."

"I'm happy for you Biscuit, he's a really nice guy apparently. Alec said a few things that changed my opinion and I know that if Alec thinks highly of him, I can trust him with you!"

"Yeah...what's going on with you and Alec, Mags?" She asked, giving him a grin.

"Well, I let him share our bed since he looked ridiculous on the sofa, and we hung out a bit today. He's a nice guy, Clary."

"Yeah, but is he into you like you're into him?" she asked with a wink.

Magnus felt his heart rate pick up and his cheeks heated a little, ducking his head to avoid Clary's intense gaze. "I like him. Okay? He may like me, but..."

"But he's not out?" she asked.

"I can neither confirm or deny. It's not my story to tell, love. As close as we are and as much as I love you." Magnus said, dropping his head to her shoulder and feeling her hand in his.

"Well, whatever the story is Magnus, he'd be very very lucky to have you in his life, just like me and everyone else!"

"You're too sweet Clary!"

"Hmmm, so tonight I plan to stay with Jace again...does that help you out at all?!" she said with a mischievous giggle.

"I couldn't comment either way Biscuit," Magnus laughed.

Suddenly, Cat's ringtone blared out and he jumped up to go and answer it in private.

----

In the kitchen, he chatted with Cat for a while about how she was (tired from a long shift) and how Chairman was doing (great but stealing her socks!) and whether Ragnor had left his bed yet (he had not). She asked about the weekend and he talked a little about how everything was going. He told her about the panic attack but glossed over how it had been taken care of.

Because he didn't dare mention Alec. Catarina had been there the night he had met him, last summer and although she didn't know his name, she had told him he had a certain way of talking about the mysterious man that gave away how much he had liked him. Talking about Alec would definitely make him sound that way. So he hmmed and hahed through the conversation, giving her nothing about the intense love affair he had suddenly found himself part of.

"You sound really happy, Magnus," she said as they prepared to hang up, "For a man who was dreading this weekend, you sound like you are actually embracing it and having fun. I'm so pleased! It's good for you to relax around new people and branch out a little from Ragnor and I,"

"Thanks Cat, I know...I was dreading it. But seeing Clary so happy with Jace and having more time with Isabelle and the rest is good for me, you're right. I love you my friend, only 2 more nights til I'm home and then we can finally take you out for that drink?"

"Now way, Mags...midterms, remember!" she exclaimed.

"Okay, okay. Love you," And he hung up.

"Should I be jealous?" asked a voice from behind him. Magnus' mouth automatically quirked into a smile as he turned around.

"It's only Cat, Alexander, no need!" he replied, stretching out a finger to trace the neck of Alec's t-shirt. He shivered as Magnus dipped the finger lower beneath the soft cotton before taking a step towards him and sliding his own hand onto Magnus' hip, curling his long fingers tightly around it.

'Am I staying with you tonight?" he asked, voice gravelly.

"Well," Magnus flirted, giving him a wink, "Biscuit's planning on staying with Jace, so depends if you want the lumpy, too short sofa, or, whether you want to be wrapped tightly in my arms?"

"I think your arms might be the lesser of the two evils..." Alec deadpanned, before moving his other hand to rest on Magnus' waist, pulling him towards him to settle in the crook of his neck. Magnus' arms automatically latched on to his muscular back and he allowed his hands to trace the toned muscles he found there.

The hug was simple, but perfect. Neither one of them made to take it any further, they just held each other for long minutes, breathing each other in deeply.

When the door banged open, and Lydia pushed in, they sprang apart, Alec picking up a beer from the side and Magnus turning to greet her. She was clearly quite drunk and made no comment, showing no signs that she had seen them hugging.

"Wine!" she declared, stumbling slightly on her way to the enormous fridge, "Izzy is demanding wine!"

Magnus moved to the fridge to help her find a bottle, and Alec slipped out of the kitchen, winking at Magnus, to check on his sister.

Uncorking the bottle of white wine, he offered it to Lydia, who smiled up at him and then slurred, "Do you like me Magnus?"

"Sure, Lydia. You're lovely. But maybe you shouldn't drink anymore, it seems like you've had enough,"

"Yes," she replied absentmindedly and then stretched up to kiss him firmly on the mouth.

She missed, because Magnus turned his head when he realised what she was about to do, her lips landing on his cheek sloppily.

"Ah, Lydia," he said gently, holding her away from his body, "I don't have feelings for you like that, and I don't think you really have them for me either. I think it's the booze talking?"

"Sure Magnus...just thought I'd see what all the fuss was about. Everyone knows you're a hottie and the best kisser on campus. When you and Alec made out at that club last year, it was so hot! I was so turned on watching the pair of you. Are you going to make out again? Here? Tonight?"

"What?!" Magnus exclaimed, pushing her back again so he could look at her face more closely. "You never said anything like that before?" he carefully avoided saying that it was true and instead tried to find out more, gently. "Lydia?"

But she suddenly fell against him and began to snore lightly on his chest, burrowing into him.

"Lyds! Where's the wine?" Isabelle asked, slamming into the kitchen, obviously drunk, Alec following behind her "Oh!" she gasped as she saw Magnus holding Lydia upright. "Why you hugging Lydia? I thought you'd want to hug Alec?"

Magnus laughed as he looked at her sad expression. "Don't worry, she's pretty much just passed out on me, Izzy. I only want to hug your brother, truly!"

"Good," she replied, sounding like a small child. "Cos you two are perfect," she continued, pointing between them. "Don't hurt my brother!"

"I won't, Iz," he said quietly, sharing a glance with Alec that spoke volumes, "I like him too, but we might have a problem...Lydia just implied that she knows we're together, Alec,"

He watched as Alec processed the information, mouth first curling down as though he was going to frown, but then shooting back up as he looked at Alec and shrugged. Unsure how to interpret his look, Magnus gave him a small smile.

Suddenly the door banged again and Jace burst in. "What's happening in here?" he asked, eyes darting between the group. His eyes rested on Lydia where she was tucked into Magnus' chest and he gave Magnus a look that was equal parts confused and betrayed.

Magnus stared back at him, unable to work out why Jace would look at him like that.

"Hey, Alec," Jace said, turning to his brother and moving his body as though to block Alec's view of Magnus and Lydia, "I need you to help me get Clary to bed. You were so good with her before and I'm scared of dropping her or hurting her. Plus I need to talk to you, now!"

"Okay," Alec said, frowning a little at Jace. Then he looked around him slightly to shoot Magnus another grin. "Good luck with Ms. Drunk!" he said as he left with Jace, whose arm had wrapped around his shoulders.

"Well, that was awkward..." Magnus breathed out looking at Isabelle.

"Yeah...not sure what's wrong with him," she said, "You want me to help you take her to bed?"

"Do you think you can?" he asked, giving her a look.

"I'm not that drunk, Magnus!" she drawled, "Come on!"

------

After struggling to get Lydia upstairs, they parted ways with a hug, Isabelle assuring him that Lydia was usually very sensible and wouldn't say anything about them.

Isabelle went back downstairs and promised Magnus she would let Alec know where he was if she saw him, while he went up to prepare for bed, trusting that Alec would find his way to him when he was ready.

He had settled into a new episode of ShadowPortals when he heard the squeaky step. Surprised, when Alec came in.

"I thought I'd warn you I was coming," he smiled, eyes tracing Magnus' soft hair and naked face. "Didn't want you to think it was Lydia or someone!"

"Oh god! If she manages to get up here after all that alcohol, I'd be amazed," he laughed. "Now, come here and tell me what I did to piss Jace off!"

Alec settled his long body next to Magnus, who immediately gravitated towards him allowing an arm to drop over his shoulders and pressing a soft kiss to his cheek.

"Ah, well, that's a story..." Alec chuckled, smiling at him. "I guess we haven't really been that secretive, well I haven't! He can totally tell that I'm into you! And he said he knows you're into me too. That we've been giving each other looks." Here he paused to stare deeply into Magnus' eyes, watching as Magnus stared back unashamedly, "He said he thought you were mind-cheating on me, snuggling Lydia like that! I had to explain how drunk she was a few times and he still thought you might be playing me. So, I told him."

He finished his sentence casually. No worry in his voice, no disappointment or fear that he had had to tell Jace.

"And you're okay?" Magnus asked, giving him a worried glance.

"I am. I didn't know how he'd react, but I never wanted to keep it a secret from him forever. He's my brother, I love him and he should be part of my life. I know I was worried and wanted to explore this with you privately, but I..." and here he paused, pulling slightly away from Magnus to stare into his eyes, "I see this as something serious. Something thing that could easily be long term. I want to be out with my family and friends. I want to be proud to call you my boyfriend."

Magnus surged up to press their lips together, kissing him deeply, tasting his mouth. They kissed for several minutes, before pulling away and resting against each other, Magnus tucked into Alec's side.

"Alexander," he whispered, not wanting to break the moment, "You never cease to amaze me,"

Alec pressed a kiss to his head and pulled Magnus tighter against him, "In good ways I hope?" he asked.

"The best," Magnus confessed as their breath evened out and they drifted into sleep.

Chapter Text

Awakening in Magnus' arms, his head pillowed on his shoulder and lips pressed against his neck, Alec felt utterly content. He nuzzled deeper into Magnus' warmth and pressed a soft kiss to his pulse point.

Seconds later, he felt Magnus stir in his arms as he stretched slightly. "Alex....ander..." he mumbled out, tightening his hold.

"Magnus, I'm so comfortable," he whispered, trailing his lips over his neck more firmly.

"What a lovely way to wake up," Magnus said, before suddenly rolling them until he was hovering over him, body covering his length. "But this is a better way!" he said as he bent his head and kissed him deeply.

"Urgh!" he exclaimed, "Morning breath! I cannot taste good!"

"I don't care," Alec replied, kissing him again. "I don't want to waste a minute of my time with you!"

Intense kissing followed, Magnus' tongue trailing down Alec's neck and over the soft hair on his chest; Alec's mouth sucking bruises into Magnus' collarbone where they could be hidden by his shirt. They were so involved in their make-out session, that they missed the knock on the door at first. It was only when it was pounded upon again, and a voice called out, "Magnus are you up?" that they even realised someone was there.

Dragging himself away from Alec, Magnus reached for a t-shirt and slipped it on, gesturing to Alec to do the same. When they were finally presentable, and resting at opposite sides of the bed on their own pillows, legs no longer entangled, Magnus called out 'Come in'.

Jace bounded into the room, a huge grin on his face, "Good morning, Lovebirds! Thought I'd find you both here!"

"Hey," Alec said, frowning, "I did not tell you things so that you could tease us!"

"Oh come on big bro, since when have I had the chance to tease you? You have never told me about any relationship you've had ever so I assumed you were celibate before this! So, I think I'm allowed to tease you a little...you've certainly done your fair share in your time,"

Alec's face flushed a furious red and he chanced a glance over at Magnus who was frowning at Jace, "Don't pout at me Jace! I am not talking about this with you right now! Go away....we haven't even got up yet!"

"I wonder why that is?" said a new voice, as Izzy also came in, immediately settling on the bottom of the bed as Alec quickly pulled his long legs upwards and bent to rest his elbows on his knees.

"What the hell?" He asked, "Why is everyone in our room suddenly?! Can't you get the hell out so we have the chance to wake up properly? Give Magnus some privacy!"

Suddenly Magnus' hand was linked with his and squeezing gently. He knew what message he was being given, but he still couldn't calm down properly.

"Oh come on Alec, you can't blame us for being excited when you suddenly have a boyfriend, and a nice one too! We gotta give Magnus the talk properly! So why don't you get dressed while we do that?" Jace asked, giving a nod towards the bathroom.

Magnus had been watching the siblings bicker in silence, a soft, happy smile beginning to play on his face, "How about....not?" he asked, smiling first at Jace and then at Izzy, "Alexander and I were just interrupted while we were enjoying a relaxing wake up... I think I'd rather endure your little presentation later, right now I want to suck face with your brother!" he laughed and leaned over to press a soft kiss on Alec's cheek.

Alec blushed bright red, while his siblings watched in surprise. "Whoa!" Izzy said, gazing at them with the beginning of happy tears on her lashes, "You're adorable together... Yeah, you're right, Magnus, Jace and I are gonna go. We'll definitely catch you later though, when you've finished whatever it was you started before Alec got so grouchy!" She winked at him jauntily before pulling Jace with her and closing the door.

"Oh my god!" Alec moaned, "They are so embarrassing..."

"Yes, well they're gone now, Alexander, and I can think of other ways I'd like to try to make you moan..."

-------

A very, very happy hour later, found Magnus and Alec eating breakfast alone in the kitchen. Everyone else was already in the pool or still sleeping off the previous night's alcohol. There was no sign of Lydia, but as Alec had not seemed worried, so Magnus had decided not to worry either. Both Jace and Izzy now knew, so the only person he needed to tell himself was Clary, and Alec had already agreed that he could do that today. After all they only had one more night left at the cabin and she was his best friend. She deserved to find out from him.

Finishing his toast, he suddenly found himself pressed against the counter as Alec swiped his thumb under his lower lip and then lifted it for him to suckle at. Sweet strawberry jam and toast crumbs tickled his taste buds, before Alec swooped in to kiss him.

They failed to hear the door open, but the sound of the glass shattering on the floor dragged them away from each other's lips and they both turned, red-faced, to see Clary grinning at them!

"Yes!" she said, fist pounding upwards, "I knew it! You got him Magnus," she laughed, smiling at her friend with shining eyes.

"Errr, thanks, I guess," Alec said, giving her a small smile as she suddenly wrapped him in a hug, barely coming up to his shoulders as she squeezed him.

Then she launched herself at Magnus and crushed him close to her, whispering how happy she was for them.

Alec smiled as he watched them, seeing Magnus drop a kiss to Clary's hair, before winking over at him.

"Do I need to give you the talk?" Clary asked him, trying to frown while her eyes shone with happiness.

"There's a queue to give us both the talk," Alec admitted with a small grin, "Why don't you and Izzy and Jace just team up and give us both it at the same time, I'm sure you're going to tell us the same things anyway?"

"Actually, not a bad idea Alexander," Magnus said, reaching over to take his hand.

As he did, the kitchen door crashed open and a very, very hungover Lydia wandered in. "Any breakfast? Oh look at you two, all loved up, I'm happy for you, are there waffles?"

Laughing quietly at Alec's bemused expression, Magnus went over to help her.

------

It continued all day.

Underhill caught them kissing in the corridor, Magnus tucked against the wall while Alec loomed over him.

"Nice one, Magnus!" he said as he passed by.

----

Jessica found them by the pool, Alec sitting between Magnus' legs on a sun lounger reading him more of War and Peace, hands tangled together while Magnus kissed his neck gently. She wasn't as pleased as Underhill, huffing out a "But Alec...I thought we were..." before fleeing.

----

Raj caught them in the library fighting over the white chess pieces, arms locked around each other as they tussled, before Magnus kissed Alec using his unfair advantage to snatch the white piece away. "Oh, well that explains a lot," had been Raj's somewhat confusing comment before he'd left them to it, their game sexually charged.

----

Simon's reaction to finding them in the back garden, kissing against a tree was to launch himself between them enthusiastically, arms wrapping around them both, wailing "You're so perfect for each other, I'm so happy!"

So, by the time Jordan and Maia found them, Magnus and Alec were ready for anything.

Except it turned out that they weren't. But then nor were Jordan and Maia either it seemed.

------

"God, everyone knows already Magnus! This is crazy! We only managed to keep it secret for like a day, we'd be shitty spies!" Alec giggled as he felt Magnus push him forward firmly, swinging him backwards and forward in the hammock.

"I know, sweetie, I always thought I'd be a great spy, but apparently not. Never mind though, I'd rather be a crap spy with you, than a great one without you!" he laughed, pushing him again.

"Get in here," Alec said suddenly, voice dropping an octave, "I want to snuggle,"

"How can I possibly resist that request?" Magnus asked, leaning over to drop a kiss on Alec's soft mouth.

Then arms were tugging him close and tucking him into the hammock, body stretched over Alec's; chest to chest, groin to groin, legs entangled, warm arms encircling his shoulders.

They kissed for long minutes before they heard the raised voices.

----

"No, I don't care what you say, Jordan, I am not happy, I will not be happy with you the way you're acting right now,"

"What, so I'm not allowed to voice my concerns when my girlfriend spends more time mooning over someone else than she does giving a crap about me or my feelings?"

"What the hell?" Came Maia's voice, getting louder and more agitated.

"Don't imagine I missed the way you kissed him, Maia!" Jordan exclaimed, angrily.

----

"Alec," Magnus whispered, "We should not be hearing this. Think we can get up and back inside without them seeing us?"

"I know, this is their fight, it's not fair for us to listen, I think if I push you up then you could pull me out and it would be alright, let's do it now,"

-----

"It just never fucking ends with you Jordan! You're so freaking jealous and I cannot cope anymore. It is truly over this time. I mean it!"

"Why?" Jordan asked, voice deepening, "You think you have a chance with Alec if you ditch me? He's not into you Maia, even a blind person would know that."

"Leave Alec the fuck out of it!" Maia growled angrily, before she was suddenly so close they could see her.

Magnus frozen as Alec pushed him upwards from his chest with his strong arms.

At exactly the wrong moment, Maia crossed the path of the security light and it blazed brightly illuminating the couple in the hammock.

Magnus knew the exact moment that she saw them: as she let out a strangled scream, gave him a hate filled glare and then turned and marched into the house, slamming the door.

"Maia!" Jordan yelled, coming around the side of the house. It took him a few seconds to spot them, but when he did, he laughed nastily, a guttural sound. "For fuck's sake, my girlfriend's in love with a gay guy! Damn, I sure can pick them!"

Then he too turned and marched inside.

"Well, I guess everyone knows now," Magnus said, looking down at Alec. "Don't feel bad Alexander," he said as he caught the sorrowful expression that crossed Alec's face before he tried to blank it out, "I know you don't want to hurt her, but it's better she knows now than pins her hopes on you, right?"

"I know," he said sadly, and then pulled Magnus back into his arms, clutching him tightly and running his hands over his back. "Just, I feel so bad for her. I never thought she and Jordan would last, but I didn't want to be the reason for it..."

"I know my darling," Magnus said, "Leaning to drop kisses into his hair and over his face, trying to offer some small comfort, "But, I told you before, you cannot be responsible for someone else's happiness if you do not feel the same, try to relax and give her time to calm down. You can try talk with her later, okay?"

Alec gave him a small smile and then snuggled Magnus even closer, their bodies melting into each other as the security light clicked off and they were plunged back into darkness.

Chapter Text

They awoke to the sounds of voices in the backyard.

Magnus was snuggled into Alec's side, one arm thrown over his chest and Alec's arm holding him gently against him. The hammock was still until Alec shifted slightly, sending it rocking.

"We fell asleep," Magnus whispered, eyes adjusting to the darkness, pressing a kiss to Alec's stubbled jaw.

"I know, one minute you were telling me all about the Chairman and the next you were making these little purring noises - it was adorable!" Alec sighed, hand moving upwards to stroke the short hairs on the side of Magnus' head. "I guess I couldn't keep my eyes open after hearing that!"

Magnus giggled, winking at Alec, "Well, now you know all my secrets, darling." Then he leaned up and kissed him softly on the mouth, Alec deepening the kiss, pulling him flush against his body.

"Magnus? Alec? Are you guys out here?" Izzy called.

"I don't think they're here Iz," Jace replied.

"Then where could they have sneaked away to? They weren't in their room," Clary asked, voice getting closer.

In the hammock, Alec smiled against Magnus' lips, pulling back to press his finger against them, "Shhh." He leaned back in for another kiss.

But then the security light illuminated the garden and they were caught...again. Blinking at the bright light, they looked up to see their friends in the garden.

"Oh! So cute!" exclaimed Izzy, bouncing towards them, tugging Simon along with her, Jace supporting Clary behind them.

They all stopped in front of the hammock and stared down at the two men.

"Are you here for a reason?" Alec asked, glaring up at them, "Cos you're interrupting our snuggle time!"

"Oh my god! Stop being so cute!" Izzy said, reaching out to tap her brother's head, "We need to borrow Magnus, and Clary and Simon need you Alec!"

"No, no, no," said Magnus, glaring up at them all. "We do not need you guys to warn us about hurting each other, we've covered that ourselves, okay? Now, go away! Alexander is right, you are interrupting our cuddles and that is not okay!"

"Come on man," Jace began, "Izzy has never had the chance to do this before, she needs this!"

"Nope!" Alec said, popping the P. "I know exactly what you're trying to do Izzy, it's not happening. Leave him alone!"

After a brief stare-off, Izzy relented, "Fine big brother, we won't take him away from you, but Magnus?" she asked, tipping her head towards him, serious expression on her face, "You know what I want to say,"

"I do," Magnus replied, then gave her a grin, before leaning down and pressing another kiss to Alec's cheek who smiled softly back, "I don't plan to hurt him, Izzy. I'm not promising anything because you know as well as I do how relationships are fluid things. They change over time and no-one can say for certain what will happen. So I can't promise that, but I can promise," and here he turned to stare at Alec, eyes tracing his features and focusing on his hazel eyes, holding his gaze, "That right now, this is real and being with Alexander is very much where I'm overjoyed to be."

The kiss was warm and comforting, intensely so considering the short amount of time they had been together. But perfect. Even with the audience who cooed as it happened.

"Same for me Clary," Alec added, eyes flicking to her, "I don't intend to hurt Magnus - he's becoming my world,"

"Okay," she said, smiling warmly, "I trust you,"

"Now," Alec said, shifting in the hammock so he was sitting upright, Magnus pulled against his chest, strong arms wrapped around him, "Do we need to talk about Jace?"

"No!" Jace exclaimed, staring at his brother fiercely, "Leave her alone!"

"Hey, hey!" Alec said, holding out a hand, "So now you know how it feels?"

"I get you, man," Jace said, leaning over to fist bump Alec. "Shall we leave you to it?"

"Yes please. Shoo!" Magnus replied, leaning upwards to kiss Alec, head twisting to meet his lips.

----

"I'm going to have to talk to Maia," Alec said sadly, some time later, "I can't let her think I don't care. I do. She's been a good friend for a long time and I don't want her to be hurt,"

"Not sure you can avoid hurting her Alexander, she was pretty upset. But you can speak to her when she's had time to calm down. Maybe we need to do it together? Make sure she knows we're together and there is no chance...not to be cruel but it seems like she needs to understand that."

"I don't know, come on, we should go in and eat something, we've been out here for hours..."

"Enjoyable hours?" Magnus asked, raising an eyebrow.

"Very!" Alec replied with another kiss.

----

Now everyone knew, they were more open around the others, Alec kissing Magnus' knuckles gently when he passed him his plate; Magnus resting his hand between Alec's shoulder blades as he reached for a drink; linking their fingers as they entered the living room.

Maia and Jordan were conspicuously absent. The others speculating that they were using the time to be alone in one of their rooms.

Alec shifted uncomfortably in his seat, lacing his hand with Magnus'. Only they knew the truth. While Jessica has been incredibly disappointed about their relationship, she was outwardly very chilled, merely ignoring the fact that they were so close and not directing any of her comments towards them. But Maia was clearly another story and his guilt overwhelmed him.

He stood, pulling Magnus with him, and brought him over to Clary on the couch, "Why don't you two hang for a bit, I gotta talk with Izzy," he said, bending to drop a kiss on Magnus' cheek.

Magnus pulled him in by his hand, leaning up to whisper in his ear, "I know you feel bad about Maia, please talk with me about it soon?"

"Of course, Magnus, but I need to speak with Izzy about it first, she knows Maia," Then he kissed him once more and dragged his sister out of the room.

----

"So, she saw you and she freaked out?" Izzy asked, pulling Alec into her side as they wandered out to his car.

"Yeah, she was not impressed!" he replied, dropping a kiss on his sister's forehead before moving around the car, hopping in and starting the engine, waiting while Izzy put her seatbelt on. He quickly dropped a text to Magnus to let him know where they were going then drove them carefully down the drive.

"Well, it's not like you led her on, you were pretty firm about refusing to go out with her last May. Maybe she didn't know about your sexuality but she should have accepted that you said no. I know Maia is uncertain about Jordan right now, but she has no right to put that on you and Magnus,"

"Thanks Iz, I just can't help feeling guilty because I could have spared her feelings last year and just told her I was into men and she never had a chance, a shame she wasn't around the night I met Magus, she could have just seen for herself," he mused, pulling into the grocery store parking lot.

"What do you mean, Alec? She's been here all weekend, she clearly saw when you and Magnus met each other..."

"Oh...yeah...about that..." Alec mumbled, unable to look at his sister, "Actually, we met a while ago. I just never told you,"

"Alec!" she exclaimed, reaching over to hit him lightly on his upper arm, "What does that mean? Met? Like met as in passed each other in the hallway at Uni or met like a fun night out?"

"Ummm, the second one..." Alec admitted, blushing, "He may have been...ummm...my first..."

"Your first?!" she shrieked, "Like first sex with a man? Oh my god, that's huge! How did I not know this,"

"No, no, not quite that...well yes that, but not all of that, Iz... first kiss, first you know..well we were drunk so luckily we didn't go too far, well not luckily, you know, just like, oh god I need to shut up!" He blushed again, unable to look at his sister.

"Oh Alec, you mean Magnus was the first person you were ever with...and it only happened last May? I didn't realise...well I mean, I didn't even know for certain you were into men, so I guess it makes sense you would keep that to yourself too. I take it from the fact you're together now, that he was very respectful of you? Tell me he treated you well?"

"Well, he didn't know I hadn't been with anyone," he said, looking up at her, "He does now, but he was amazing that night, he didn't push me...he took what I wanted to give and we were so in tune with each other...it was like magic, Magnus is magical Izzy!"

"He certainly is, Alec, he broke down your walls. He made you see that you can be who you are and be proud of it. You hid so much of yourself from the world for so long, and they deserve to see you for who you are - the best big brother, and an all round amazing person. I Love you, Alec,"

"Love you too Izzy, thanks for supporting me, I mean I knew you would but I truly appreciate it," He leaned over the gear stick to hug her against him, sighing into her hair.

"Wait a minute," Izzy said, pulling away and glaring at him, "Have you been hiding your relationship since May? Oh my God! Have you been together for like 6 months already?"

"No, Iz, it wasn't like that, come on let's get the supplies and I'll tell you the story."

Chapter Text

June (4 months earlier)

The music was pulsing in the club, bright lights flashing across the room switching from pink to blue to yellow and back.

At the bar, Alec was leaning in to place his order, when he felt a hand in the small of his back.

“Hey,” A voice shouted above the noise around them, “Can you order me a martini while you’re there? I’ve been having difficulty getting in to the bar. I’ll buy your drink too?”

He was surprised by the request, but dutifully added a martini to his order and then swirled around to look at the man who had spoken.

His jaw dropped. His mouth watered.

Standing in front of him was the man he had spotted earlier that evening. The most beautiful man he had ever seen. He had stared at him in shock for a while, but had looked away as soon as the man’s eyes had met his, fearful of his friends noticing.

But the man was delicious and he was alone now. So Alec drank him in.

His hair was spiked upwards with soft green streaks blended through the ends; his eyes were lined in rich, dark brown kohl; there was glitter sprinkled liberally across his eyes and cheeks, with pieces glinting from other places too where it had sprinkled down his face; and his clothes hugged his body. The see-thru shirt left nothing to the imagination and Alec almost drooled at the hint of a tight six pack through the filmy, soft purple fabric. His trousers hugged his thick thighs, and his feet were tucked into solid black boots (much like the type Alec favoured) but were dripping with silver chains.

But it was the jewellery that truly caught his eye.

Rings of all shapes and sizes adorned every finger, necklaces were heaped around his neck in all manner of twists and shades, and on his left ear he sported an intricate ear cuff, which he was now twiddling with as he gazed back at Alec, watching for his reaction.

“I can’t imagine you not being able to get served!” Alec exclaimed, his voice deep with lust.

Magnus laughed and then watched as the sinfully tall man in front of him seemed to realise what he had said. His head ducked down but not before Magnus saw the light flush that crept onto his cheeks.

“You’d be surprised,” he smiled, drawing the man’s attention back to his face, “I know I’m a lot….but people sometimes see right through me! You however, you could never be ignored my dear!”

Alec stared at him, surprised to see the interest in his eyes. He had missed the moments Magnus had spent sizing up his plain black button down (which was tight enough for Magnus to recognise the abs beneath it) and soft, worn jeans (which made his gorgeous long legs look even longer). He had also stared at his face from across the room for a long time before he had asked for the man’s help, but he didn’t need to know that.

One thing he had noticed from his earlier perusal, was that the man was definitely into guys (he had checked out quite a few butts and biceps), but was very nervous about it...so most likely not out yet. Magnus really, really liked what he saw though, so he had decided to try something make the man more comfortable.

“I’m...not going to tell you my name...” he said, holding out a bejewelled hand for Alec to take.

“I..don’t know what to say to that...” Alec stuttered back, finding it hard to catch his breath as their hands met and he felt sparks shoot up his arm.

Magnus too, seemed surprised for a moment, before he drew his hand back to hand a twenty to the bartender who was indicating that their drinks were ready.

He plucked them from the bar, shoulder brushing Alec’s chest and causing even more sparks.

“Here…” he smiled, “Now, are you here with friends? Can I steal you away for while?”

“Umm,” Alec said, sipping on his plain glass of wine, “I was, but I think they’ve all paired off or gone on to the Hunters. I just wanted another glass of this, it’s my favourite and it’s been a tough day.”

“Exams?” Magnus inquired, gazing up at him, eyes twinkling as he placed his free hand on Alec’s wrist.

“No...the other I’m afraid. Graduation,” he laughed self deprecating, “Comes to us all eventually I guess.”

Magnus smiled, “Ah, a graduate...how thrilling! So, has it been an incredible experience at our little, old university? Did you enjoy every second of it and want to cry because you’re so sad it’s over?”

“Not quite..in fact, I’m going to miss some things, but not miss many, many others. It’s hard to leave such a big part of your life behind though.”

“I get it, and I’m quite glad I don’t have to do it quite yet,” Magnus replied, indicating a small table that had opened up nearby.

-----

They talked together for a while, Magnus ordering yet more drinks and refusing to let Alec pay. And he was getting drunk, he could feel it from the tips of his toes which were restless, up to the tightness of his shoulders which was a usual symptom of his drunkenness.

But he couldn’t say he needed to go, couldn’t refuse another drink. Didn’t want to. His entire life he had never felt so comfortable with someone and he didn’t feel like letting it end.

So Alec sat and listened to his drunken stories, told a few of his own, paid attention to the way his mouth quirked upwards when he was amused, the sadness in his eyes when he talked about how his friendships had changed and the sadness he had felt at the loss of a good friend.

By mutual agreement, they had not discussed any specific friends by name or talked about their majors or their courses at all. In fact, he knew next to nothing about the man even almost an hour, many funny stories, and 3 more glasses of wine, later. And he quite liked that. It felt more anonymous. And Alec needed this to be anonymous.

He could feel the build up of excitement in his stomach. It had started the second he had locked eyes with him, built further when they touched and he felt hungry now.

It was the first time he had ever felt like this. This want. This need. This desire. Sure he’d found other men attractive in passing, but he had never wanted to lean over and lick their necks.

He paused, mouth against Magnus’ pulse point, realising what he had just done. He couldn’t move. Mortified. He had just thought about licking the man’s neck. And now, he was licking it!

He could taste the salt on his skin where his lips were still pressed, felt the other man take a shuddery breath.

And then, he was being pulled away. He felt fear - he must hate him now.

Magnus did not hate him though. In fact, he was thoroughly turned on by the other man’s boldness. Their lips met in a crashing kiss.

Alec’s heart was thumping so hard, he felt like it would burst out of his chest. His hands were sweaty and his skin felt like it was too big for him, like his bones and muscles were swimming around inside it.

He pulled away, staring at the man in shock.

Magnus immediately noticed, that while he had definitely enjoyed the kiss, the other man was feeling nervous and unnerved by it, so he drew away.

“We need tequila!” the man suddenly announced, and summoned a waitress with a wave of his hand, ordering shots of Patron.

They stared at each other in silence while they waited for them to be delivered. It was intense. Intense but perfect.

When they came, with lemon and salt on the side, Alec insisted on paying before Magnus had a chance, then he offered out his hand for the other man to pour the salt.

It was a surprise when a soft tongue lapped at his hand before the crystals were dropped on. Alec sucked in a breath, raising his eyes to catch the beautiful golden-brown ones looking down.

He licked the salt, slammed back the shot he was handed and then slipped his mouth around the fingers that held out the lemon, taking his time to suck them gently. The other man gasped.

When it was Alec’s turn to offer a shot, he licked a stripe across the other’s hand and allowed him to suckle on his fingers after, feeling it through his chest and down to his toes.

His heart skipped a beat, eyes unable to move away from the beautiful man in front of him.

Magnus couldn’t breathe properly. His whole body was on fire.

Taking a chance, he stood and held out his hand, “Dance with me?”
He asked.

At first, it looked like a definite no. But then he was surprised to feel the slightly calloused fingers in his own and they were headed to the floor.

Despite the thumping music, Magnus elected to draw the man into his arms and pulled him flush against him. They swayed together, bodies moving in harmony.

“We’re definitely not dancing to the beat,” Alec whispered, breath tickling Magnus’ ear.

“Feel good though,” Magnus replied, hands daring to move lower, below Alec’s waist to brush against his ass.

Alec jerked slightly at the feeling of someone else’s hands touching him so intimately, but then he relaxed into it, allowing his own arms to roam across the expanse of muscled back open to him.

They moved together for a while, hands roaming, Alec even daring to drop his hands to stroke the curves of his hips and then in a braver move, to gently cup the other man’s ass cheeks; before he recognised the feeling in his stomach as arousal overcame him. His cock, which was now intimately acquainted with the other man’s groin, was thickening in his jeans.

A second after he realised, Magnus pressed them together tightly and he felt, rather than heard, the other man’s breath hitch as he felt the hardness too.

Alec felt the embarrassed redness staining his cheeks and tucked his head down to rest on the man’s shoulder.

Magnus’ grin stretched his face and he reached a hand upwards to tip Alec’s head so their eyes met. “Pretty boy,” he laughed, “Wanna get out of here?”

-----

They were both drunk so they stumbled together as the cold air hit their lungs, cooling their heated cheeks and their arousal slightly.

Magnus tightened his hand in the larger one he had grasped to pull him out of the club.

“So,” he said, gazing up at the giant of a man with a grin, “Not to be presumptuous, but...your place or mine?”

“I’m...umm..my room’s that way, I’m alone now, James left already,” Alec said hesitating as he looked into his eyes.

“Excellent,” Magnus replied, “Because I’ve got a very nosy roommate!”

Magnus pulled Alec in the direction he had indicated, he knew the campus really well and had a good idea of where they were headed.

Alec stumbled along, not used to being so drunk, not used to having an excited...partner? His stomach was clenched tightly as he thought about the choice he was about to make. He was drunk, sure, but he knew that he wanted this. This man, this beautiful, sexy, sinful man.

Suddenly, the dark haired man took the lead, pulling Magnus with him as they neared Shadow dorm. He nervously giggled as he flashed his key card over the lock, and then they were inside a long, beige corridor.

Tugged by his hand, they entered a neatly organised dorm, packing boxes piled against the walls, bed still made.

“So, how do you want to do this?” Alec asked, nervously.

“Well...let’s start with me getting reacquainted with your talented tongue,” Magnus laughed, pushing his partner against the door and leaning in. “You taste delicious,” he breathed out, and then Magnus’ lips descended and Alec was slammed back into the door with intent, groaning as they kissed deeply.

Kissing this man was like nothing else Alec had felt. This might be his first ever time of making out, but it seemed pretty simple, if incredibly arousing. Tongues sliding together, wet and hot; teeth nibbling on lips; lips sucking hard and bruising his. It felt electric.

More so, when the man’s talented lips kissed their way to his neck, suckling there for long moments, while Alec’s fingers tugged at strands of his hair then stroked his neck softly.

He was a quick learner, and when the man pulled away, lips stained red, he pressed his own kisses to the slender neck offered to him, smoothing his lips against the soft skin, gently tugging on his earlobe and grazing his teeth over the tendons before leaning down to suck on his adam’s apple.

The man was a vocal participant, moaning and groaning at Alec’s ministrations, his hands raking through Alec’s hair and leaving tingles of pleasure on his scalp as he scratched with his nails.

It was heaven. It was torture. Alec wanted more.

Suddenly, he acted without really thinking, gripping the man’s shoulders and spinning him round so his back was to the door. Magnus moaned deeply, the sound reverberating through Alec and spurring him into further action.

He stared at the man and then tentatively pressed the heel of his hand to the bulge in the other man’s pants.

“Can I?” he asked, nervously.

“You….can do anything, sexy man,” Magnus purred out, bringing his own hands up to begin unbuttoning Alec’s shirt, caressing the naked flesh as it appeared.

Alec watched his progress, unable to move. He couldn’t believe this was really happening.

An intense pleasure rushed through him as his chest was exposed and the man bent to nip at his throat, then trailed kisses downwards, over his sensitive nipples and across his abs, tracing the muscles with his tongue. He groaned deeply, vibrations running through his chest.

The whole time the man was kissing him, he kept his hand on the man’s crotch, tracing the thick muscle there, feeling it twitch as he rubbed.

Eventually, he felt brave enough to pop a button the man’s trousers, slowly pulling them apart. His own gasps mixed with the mans and filled the air around them, and then he felt tentative hands pulling at his own zipper, “Is this okay?” came a shaky voice.

He looked up into the warm, brown eyes gazing down at him and smiled before surging upwards for a deep kiss. “Yes!” he moaned.

Then it was a flurry of movement, both of them tugging down their trousers and underwear, before Magnus took them both in hand and began to pump slowly. He paused to hold his palm up to Alec, who stared at him, a question in his eyes.

“Get it nice and wet, sexy!” Magnus purred, and Alec did, laving at his soft palm with his tongue, painting it in stripes of saliva.

When the hand gripped them both again, it was blissful. Their cocks slid together, the man tugging in all the right places. Alec leaned a hand against the door, his body weight heavy against it, gasping into the man’s neck.

His other hand was stroking against the hard abs he had spotted earlier, the purple shirt rucked up to expose them.

Tingles shot through his legs as Magnus’ hand twisted on the head of his cock and he pulled away slightly.

“Too much,” he gasped, staring into the brown eyes which now looked golden with delight. “I wanna…”

“Please do,” Magnus gasped out, reaching for one of the enormous hands and pulling it to his face, eyes locked on Alec’s as he licked it.

When Alec wrapped his hand around the other man’s cock, he nearly came on the spot. It was a heavy weight in his hand, solid and real. The first cock he had touch aside from his own. It felt incredible, smooth and silky. He gave a few experimental pumps, tugging at the end, the same way he liked it. It drew gasps out of the man, so he kept going, adding a twist.

Together they stroked, Alec nearly coming several times, before they both gasped out their release against each other’s necks, hearts pounding.

“That was….” Alec huffed, unable to form a sentence, “That was….amazing…” he gasped.

“Incredible...so dirty,” Magnus added, smiling, eyes twinkling.

“So you wanna…”

“So...can I…”

They both began at once, but then there was a trill of a cell phone and Magnus looked away, reaching for his discarded pants. It gave Alec a brief moment, to pull his pants back up, feeling embarrassed now they were done. But Magnus was unashamed in his nakedness, speaking into his phone as he moved away from Alec.

When he dropped the call, he turned to face Alec, regret clouding his face, “I’m so sorry...that was...a friend...they’re worried. Remember I told you about or friend...the one who…” he stopped to take a breath, seeing the sympathy on the other man’s face. “They worry. I think I need to go...I’m really sorry…”

“It’s okay,” Alec said, eyes tracing Magnus’ beautiful face. “I understand...and I’m...well I’m leaving tomorrow...so…”

“I wish…” Magnus began.

“Don’t say it,” Alec replied, holding his finger to Magnus’ lips.

The man leaned in and pressed a soft, perfect kiss against it.

“Well, I won’t say anything more then...other than… this was...perfect… you… you are a Perfect X,” Magnus smiled.

“What? What does that mean?” Alec asked, perplexed but still smiling.

“Oh, you stayed away from all that then, the college rating system? Just means you’re amazing...best of the best!” Magnus laughed, “I’m grateful for our time together. Thank you for spending your last night here with me…”

Then he tugged up his trousers and turned. Alec opened his arms, and with a surprised smile, Magnus stepped into them, allowing himself to be embraced tightly. It felt perfect.

“Goodbye, you’re my first, my only, Perfect X too,” he whispered, pressing a final kiss to the man’s lips.

“I’ll never forget this,” Magnus whispered, “Goodbye,”

------

“So, yeah,” Alec said, cheeks flushed as he looked over at Isabelle, “That’s kind of how we met.”

His sister stared at him. Her jaw had dropped and the hand that had been reaching to grab a bag of chips was frozen mid-air.

“Alec?” she asked, eyes darting between his as she turned to face him, “That is the hottest story I’ve ever heard! Oh my god! You two are like...a literal gay porno!!! So hot!” Her cheeks were bright red and she moved her hand back to fan her face. “God! I can’t believe it! That’s just so….beautiful! You’re so lucky Clary made him come this weekend. Though I think, since we all know him, you were destined to meet again. Wow!”

“I do know Izzy. I do know how amazing he is. I do know how lucky I am. But...I’m going to be leaving again soon, and he’s still got to finish his masters and we are...I don’t know. I mean, I asked him to be my boyfriend, I want him to be mine….maybe forever, Izzy. But can we be in a relationship and survive all of that?”

“Yes!” she insisted, gazing up at him, fire in her eyes, “Yes, you can. He called you a perfect X Alec! That’s like...love level! Does he love you, do you love him?”

“I...ummm...I can’t answer that right now,” he replied, then reached for the chips, dropping more than they needed in the basket and turning away for the register, breathing heavily.

Chapter Text

When they returned to the house, they went straight to the kitchen to put the shopping away. Magnus must have heard the car because Alec quickly found himself pressed against the fridge, being thoroughly kissed.

Isabelle laughed as she watched them, “Well, well boys you were only apart for an hour...imagine what it’ll be like when it’s a whole night!”

Although her words were in jest, Alec couldn’t help pulling away to look at Magnus with some concern.

“We’ll cross that bridge when we get to it, Alexander,” Magnus said in reply to his unanswered question. Then pulled Alec closer to him.

Alec nuzzled under Magnus’ chin, enjoying the light scratch of his stubble.

“I’ll leave you boys to it!” Izzy said smiling as she went off to find Simon.

They stayed in each other’s arms for a long time, neither of them wanting to be the first to let go.

When they eventually did, by mutual decision, it was only to return to the lounge where the rest of the group were still sprawled across the couches.

They settled together in a chair, Magnus pressed all along Alec’s side, their hands linked together in his lap.

“This has been such an insane weekend…” Alec whispered, looking around him at the group. “I genuinely never thought I’d ever see you again, and you have no idea how horrible that felt, and then there you were...so handsome, so sexy and in my car! It was like a miracle!”

“Oh Alexander, I can’t even form the words to say how pleased I was to see you again. That’s the only thing I could ever regret about that night… not trying to find a way to contact you.” He leaned up and pressed a kiss on Magnus’ lips, listening as the group around them called out their appreciation.

Jace was particularly loud, “Get him, Alec!” So Alec shot him a two fingered salute, laughing.

They drew back and looked around them. Apart from Maia and Jordan’s obvious absence, everyone was there.

“I’m going to have to find her and speak with her Magnus. She’s been my friend for a long time and she must be hurting. I can’t leave her like this. Can’t let our friendship end without trying to fix it.”

“I can come with you?” Magnus asked him, stroking his fingers over Alec’s furrowed brow.

“I’m not sure if that would help. She’s obviously upset by our relationship so it might make it worse.”

“I just don’t want you to have to do it alone.” Magnus admitted, squeezing his hand tighter.

“I know, but sometimes we have to face things head on and we can only do it on our own. It’s just life. Part of growing up.”

“I don’t want to grow up!” Magnus laughed.

“Sure you do, think of all the amazing things we’re going to do together! All the babies you’re going to deliver and all the bridges I’m going to build! We are going to be amazing adults, Magnus!” Alec smiled.

They kissed again, before Alec rose to his feet and went over to his sister. Magnus watched as they whispered together before Alec shot him a smile and exited the room.

His seat was soon taken by Clary who snuggled up against him and began distracting him with gossiping about Jace.

-----

Alec found Maia in the room she was sharing with the girls, but there was no sign of Jordan. He knocked lightly on the door jam and watched as her eyes shot to his, widened and then looked away.

“Maia?” He asked in a calm voice. “Can we speak?”

She stared at him for a long moment and then beckoned him in with a hand.

“You saw me and Magnus?” he asked her, watching as her face paled.

“I did,” she replied.

“And you weren’t very pleased?” Alec probed further trying to get her to look at him.

She met his eyes then and they were fiercely flashing. “No, I wasn’t.”

Her blunt answers hurt Alec. They had been friends for a long time and it felt like she was punching him with every word.

“So is that it? For our friendship?” Alec asked her, feeling a sharp pain in his throat.

“I just…” Maia began, looking up at him finally, her deep, brown eyes looking sorrowful, “I just need time. You were like a fantasy for me, for so long, Alec. I can’t just adapt in minutes. I need time.”

“I guess I understand.” Alec said sadly. “I’ll go now.”

As he turned to walk away, Maia suddenly ran out of the room after him, reached out for him and spun him to face her. She gripped his shoulders tightly and looked into his eyes.

“Alec,” she said, voice breaking as tears started to roll down her face, “Why couldn’t it be me? Why can’t you choose me?”

“Oh Maia, I don’t get to choose who I am. I am just me. And that means I’m gay. And I fell for Magnus. He’s the person for me, he fits with me and I fit with him.”

“But couldn’t you try?” Maia sobbed, hands pulling him closer to her.

He took an unsteady step, trying to keep her at arms length without hurting her feelings further.

“No, Maia. Because I’m with Magnus and I love him. He’s it for me. He’s my whole world. There is no-one else. We’re a perfect match.”

“And I love Alexander,” Magnus announced, striding down the hall towards them both and slipping an arm around Alec’s waist to pull him away from Maia.

His eyes swept over Alec checking he was okay. Alec gave him a nod and then felt the moment Maia gave up and dropped his arms, stepping back into the room. As she did, Magnus tugged him into his side.

“Maia?” he said, watching her turn around to face him, “I know you are hurting. And I have certainly been hurt before so I do know how it feels, so I have sympathy for you. But…” his eyes flashed as he stared at her, “Don’t ever think about touching Alec again without his permission!”

Then he pulled Alec with him and dragged him up into their attic room, Maia's fresh sobs following them.

As they got inside, Alec pulled him against his chest, their bodies flush together.

“That was...something else, Magnus!” he exclaimed, pulling back to look into his warm, brown eyes. "Should we go back, she sounded so sad?"

“Did you mean it?” Magnus asked him, eyes locking onto his like lazers.

“Mean it?" he asked, then caught Magnus' meaning. He stared at him, face slackening from his worry. "Did you?” Alec shot back, smile brewing on his face.

“I love you, Alexander,” Magnus said, smile soft in his eyes.

“I love you too,” Alec replied, unable to stop the wide grin from spreading over his face.

They met in the sweetest kiss, eyes closed and arms wrapping tightly around one another.

“How long have you known?” Magnus asked, pulling away from him, but keeping him close.

“I’m not certain,” Alec admitted as he gazed down at him. “I feel like it was always on the verge of love, even right from the very first time you touched me. But I’m not practised in these things. The Isabelle asked me tonight if I loved you...she ummm...she, um she said that when you called me a Perfect X...that was like love declaration level?”

He looked straight at Magnus, watching two blooms of red form high on his cheekbones. “I mean, she was probably just joking right…” Alec continued, trying to hide his nervousness.

“Alexander,” Magnus said then, voice deep and quite serious, eyes darting between Alec’s. “She wasn’t wrong.”

Alec took a deep breath, finding it hard to breath as Magnus continued to stare at him intensely. “So…” he said, trailing out the word.

“So…” Magnus said, moving his arms upwards to link them over Alec’s shoulders, maintaining eye contact the whole time, “I fell for you instantly, Alexander. The way you held yourself in that club. You were uncomfortable with your friends and I guessed...well, I knew, that you weren’t pleased with female attention. I saw your eyes trailing around the place. I felt it, you know, the moment our eyes met. For that brief second, you knocked the breath right out of me. It’s rare I feel that way about anyone, Alec. I just...I knew then I had to meet you. There was no maybe about it.”

He took a shuddering breath as he watched Alec whose own cheeks were pink now and who couldn’t keep the smile from his lips.

Alec bent down and pressed a kiss to Magnus’ lips. Pulling back, he locked onto his eyes and whispered, “Tell me more.”

Magnus gave him an intimate smile. “You ordered my drink. No questions asked. I knew then that you were kind. Then when you saw me, you didn’t look at me like most interested parties do - like I’m a piece of meat for the taking. You stared at me like I was the only thing in the room. You looked at me like I was worthwhile. Like I wasn’t going to be a quick fuck and you’re gone.”

He paused again. “Of course, in hindsight, that’s what I was to you and I regretted it so much at the time. More so after, when you told me it was your first time. I can’t believe I did that to you. I felt bad about that, Alec.”

Alec motioned for him to stop, that it wasn’t his fault, but Magnus rushed on.

“Your first time with anyone should be special and I was worried I’d ruined that for you.”

“Not at all,” Alec interrupted at last, finally finding a way into Magnus’ monologue. “I was blessed with you. You made everything easy. Had you wanted more than what we did, I think I would have felt comfortable to tell you I had never been with someone. But you didn’t and it was perfect. What we had that night felt perfect. It was truly a great first time, and with a man whom I now find myself totally and utterly in love with!”

Magnus lost his breath again as he saw the sincerity in Alec’s hazel eyes. He was truly blessed to have this man. When their lips met, it was for a long minute, soft but with urgency.

Alec pushed him over to the bed and they settled on it, Magnus straddling Alec’s lap.

They kissed again and again, trading breaths, tongues sweeping, teeth nibbling. It felt like heaven.

“So,” Alec said, drawing back. “You liked me right from the start, the sex cemented your opinion and now...now you love me?” he asked him, face sporting a cheeky smirk.

“That’s about right, Alexander,” Magnus confirmed with another press of his warm mouth to Alec’s. “And you...well you love me. Now. Here and now! I am so lucky!”

They laughed together then, Alec rolling them over so that he was on top and pressed in the V of Magnus’ legs. "No I'm the lucky one," he said. He allowed his hands to trail over Magnus’ neck, tracing the veins there and his adam's apple, before leaning forward to follow the path of his hands with his mouth.

But before they could get any further, there was a loud knock on the door and Clary called out, “Magnus, Alec? Maia’s leaving. She’s pretty upset and she refuses to stay. I thought you’d want to know.”

Magnus huffed out a breath, allowing Alec to roll off him. They stared at each other for a few seconds, communicating without the need for words.

“We’re coming, Clary,” Magnus called out as they reached out to each other for a final kiss. Then they leaped to their feet and headed for the door.

Chapter Text

When they made it down to the living room, everyone was in disarray. Lydia and Jessica were pleading with Maia for her to stay; Jordan was watching her glumly from beside Raj, who was trying to cheer him up.

Isabelle was stood in the doorway, hands on her hips and looking like she was about to start yelling. Alec reached for her and looped an arm about her waist, pulling her into his side. She seemed to melt against him for a moment, before she pulled herself back up to her full height and continued watching the goings on in the room.

“What’s happening?” Magnus asked her as he leaned against the door jam, opposite them.

“She’s refusing to stay the night. Jordan’s really pissed off with her because she won’t listen. Jessica’s been trying to calm her down for a while but it just isn’t working.”

“It’s my fault,” Alec said, slumping against the wall.

“No..” Both Izzy and Magnus said at the same moment, Magnus immediately moving to stand beside him and taking his hand, Izzy resting against his side again.

“It isn’t your fault, Alexander,” Magnus said, trying to pull him out of the room. But Alec wouldn’t budge.

“I feel responsible. I should do something about it.”

“That’s the last thing you should do, Alec. I don’t think you getting involved is a good idea. Leave it to the girls and Jordan.” Izzy said, before walking over to Simon, who was sat near to Jordan and was trying to reason with him.

“Please can someone drive me home? I need to go home now,” Maia was saying.

“Magnus…” Alec began, looking over at his boyfriend.

“No!” Magnus said immediately, “You’re not offering to drive her home.”

“But I feel so bad, like it’s all my fault. If I took her, maybe I could talk to her and we could try and salvage our friendship.”

“I know you are a noble man, Alexander and you just want to make things right, but I really don’t think it will make things any better. Not yet, it’s too soon.”

“I know that, rationally, Magnus. But I also feel terrible about the whole thing and I want to appease some of my guilt. I can’t even imagine how she feels which makes it even worse. I’ve got you by my side,” he continued, reaching out to pull Magnus closer, “And she’s pushing everyone away. I just don’t want to feel responsible for that.”

“Okay. But it’s still a strong no to you driving her home. She was close enough in the corridor. I don’t think having her next to you in a car for 3 hours is the best choice.”

They left the living room where Clary was also helping to calm down Maia and headed into the kitchen. Inside they found Jace, head in the fridge.

“Alright Jace?” Alec asked, stepping up to him and putting a hand on his shoulder. “You hiding in here?”

“Too right I am, too many criers in the living room. What did you do to Maia, man?”

“Hey!” Magnus cut in, “Don’t blame your brother, he was just being honest. She had to hear it some time and I’m sorry she’s bruised, but she’ll have to get over it.”

“Okay, okay!” Jace said holding up his hands. “I wasn’t intending on attacking Alec! I didn’t ask that correctly, sorry. But I’m really glad he has you to protect him though, you little firecracker!” He replied, slapping Magnus on the back as he walked over to one of the cupboards and pulled out an energy bar. “Anyway, what’s happening now? Have they convinced her to stay yet?”

“No - she was talking about calling a car service,” Simon replied as he sloped in. “Can’t believe this is happening. It was supposed to be a relaxed few days before exams..and then her and Jordan were fighting and now this...I hate all this stress!” He slumped against the sink, head down.

“I’m…” Alec began, but was cut off by Magnus before he could say anything else.

“Don’t say sorry, Alec!” Magnus groaned, “I already told you, and I must insist - it’s not your fault!”

“I know..I know!” Alec said again, reaching out for Magnus and pulling him against his broad chest. He circled his arms around him and pressed a kiss to the top of his head. “Thank you Magnus, I really, really love you.”

“Oh great!” Said Maia from the doorway, “Now we’re back on love declarations. Just what I need to hear right now.” She was staring at them, a hurt expression on her face, her body stance open and ready for a fight.

“Maia?” Magnus asked, turning around in Alec’s arms, so he was loosely enclosed in them, Alec’s arms protectively folded across Magnus’ belly. “Do you realise that all you have done since we came on this trip is complain and cause difficulty for the people who are here?” He spoke very calmly and chose his words with care. “And do you know that there are other people’s feelings involved in everything that has happened this weekend? Also, have you thought...for even a second... how you are making Alec feel?”

Maia stared at Magnus in surprise, her face an open book - hurt, indignation, surprise and embarrassment flickering across it.

“Also Maia,” said Jace suddenly, “Right now, my brother deserves the chance to be as happy as he possibly can. He and Magnus are so lucky to have found each other again and they shouldn’t be having to justify their relationship to you! They aren’t intending to rub it in your face, but in my opinion you are acting like a spoiled brat and you don’t deserve the sympathy that Alec is clearly demonstrating towards you. Perhaps you need to look a little more closely at your own behaviour instead of accusing my brother of hurting you on purpose.”

Maia stood there completely speechless. She stared at Jace, her mouth hanging open. Eventually, she let her eyes roam around the room, taking in Simon, Alec and Magnus’ expressions. She seemed to come to some kind of realisation before the tears started.

She cried in silence, thick tear tracks beginning to streak down her face. The room was still. No-one moved, then Simon reached out for Maia and pulled her against his chest, wrapping her in his arms.

This gesture broke something inside her as though she now had the right to be sad, and she began to cry noisy tears, wet sobs exploding from her throat.

Magnus turned in Alec’s arms and watched as a single tear fell from his eye. He pulled him close, cradling his head in his strong hand. “It’s okay my love,” he whispered.

Maia’s sobbing soon quieted and she pulled back from Simon, turning away from them all for a minute to wipe her eyes and regain her composure.

Alec pulled out of Magnus’ embrace and loosely linked their hands instead. He cleared his throat.

“Maia?” he began, voice cautious.

The girl whirled around to face him, her eyes full of sadness.

“I wanted to say…” Alec began, but Maia interrupted, speaking over him in a rush to get her words out.

“I’m sorry, Alec. So very sorry. I really didn’t mean for it to get out of hand. I was just so surprised and shocked and hurt but that wasn’t your fault and I am so so sorry.”

Alec gripped Magnus’ hand tighter as he listened to her speak. He could see the sincerity on her face and in her voice.

Before he could speak, she continued, “Jace, thank you for making me see the error of my ways. I’m really grateful. I didn’t think before I spoke, it’s clear and I’m sorry for offending you. Magnus, I’m so so sorry for being so rude. That’s not who I am. I just…”

She trailed off and Magnus took his chance before his boyfriend could start apologising again, “Maia, we get it, we really do. As I told you before, I’ve been there, it’s not nice to feel rejected, but how you deal with it...well that’s important and I’d like you to think about how you could have dealt with it and consider your actions from all angles so you can avoid making someone who is innocent feel like Alec did today. He didn’t lead you on. He turned you down quite firmly last year, so it’s time to accept that and move on. Please! Otherwise the rest of this school year might end up being very tense for all involved and I’m certain we’d rather avoid that?”

Magnus was so calm, that Alec’s heart, which had felt like it was going to beat out of his chest, slowed and he began to feel like everything was going to be okay. He stared over at his friend and watched as she nodded.

“I’m sorry, Magnus, of course you’re right. I never wanted to hurt anyone - I just need to learn to control my temper. Thank you Alec, Magnus for staying calm when you had every right not to.”

They both nodded at her, Alec even manage a tiny smile.

“So, no more talk of leaving?” Alec asked her, trying to start mending the rift in their relationship.

“No, I’ll stay,” Maia said, hanging her head. “But you’ll excuse me from any games or celebrations or fun tonight, right?”

“Only if it’s what you truly want to do?” Alec asked, “I am happy for you to join us, really, it’s not a problem. You’re still the person I most want to beat on Wii Tennis, and you’re still my archery buddy… well if you want to be?” he replied, hesitantly.

“Yes please,” she said in a small voice, looking up to see that Alec had a slightly broader smile on her face now and was obviously trying to put her at ease.

“Okay then, that’s settled...now who’s going to speak to Izzy?”

Chapter Text

The group spent a very pleasant last evening together, playing games in the front room.

Simon was the champion of Wii boxing, even though Raj had almost destroyed a vase in his quest to win his match.

Alec had thrashed them all at Tennis, closely followed by Maia who had been welcomed back into the group with open arms, well all except Izzys that were permanently crossed over her chest for much of the evening. Alec, Simon, Magnus and even Jace had all tried to loosen her up, but it wasn’t until Maia had grabbed her hand and pulled her from the room for a private chat, that she had relaxed.

After that, she had been ruthless, causing chaos in Monopoly when she had bought every property by fluttering her eyelashes at the other players and faking her dice rolls when they were distracted!

It was Magnus who proved himself to be the best at Jenga, pulling out the bricks with dexterous fingers and causing chaos by leaving only the most terrible moves for the others.

When they were all sated: full of pizza and wine and beer and having played enough, Jace asked if everyone had enjoyed themselves.

The answers ranged from ‘It was brilliant!’ (Underhill) to ‘The best trip I’ve ever been on.” (Clary).

Alec saved his own enthusiastic thoughts to share with Magnus later.

By Midnight, they were all wiped out (and the drivers needed a rest before they traveled the next day), so they sloped off to bed a few at a time, until only Clary and Magnus were left in the living room.

They were huddled close on the sofa, calmly enjoying each other’s presence. The room was still and neither one of them felt the need to speak.

Eventually, Magnus broke the silence, whispering his thanks against Clary’s hair. “...I would never have imagined how good it could be!”

“I’m so glad you came, Magnus. I dread to think what would have happened if you hadn’t. Alec would still be in the closet to his whole family, and you wouldn’t be all loved up with the man of your dreams.” She sighed softly, smoothing her hand down his arm. “Anyway, now that I know when it happened, I remember you the day after that night. You were different. I guess I know why, now. It was so soon after...after Raphael, and I could see the sparkle coming back to you. Back into your eyes and you hair and your clothes...not to mention all over your face from the glitter! So, I’m grateful to Alec too for igniting something in you that none of us could help you get back.”

Magnus couldn’t help the tears that slipped down his cheeks, his breathing becoming little puffs of air as he tried to control them. Clary’s worried expression had him gasping out, “Happy tears!” through them as she wound her arms tightly around him and snuggled further into his shoulder.

They held each other close, the same way they sat when they subjected themselves to horror films in their apartment, and stayed like that for several long moments, before Magnus was pulling back and teasing her about Jace.

“Hey! You knew I liked him forever,” Clary replied as Magnus joked with her. “Anyway, I’m so happy you came with me, or that wouldn’t have happened either!”

“No way, I think you two were totally destined!” Magnus laughed, turning to face the door as a second voice agreed.

“We certainly were destined, Clary!” Jace said softly from where he was leaning against the doorway, Alec a hulking presence beside him. “Now, are you destined to share our last night with me?” he asked.

Clary giggled as Jace stalked over to her, then scooped her into his arms and carried her giggling from the room. “Night Magnus, love you!” she called out as she was whisked away.

“Love you too, Biscuit!” He smiled as Alec came over to him and offered his hand.

When he was lifted up into a pair of strong arms, he didn’t protest (thought he wanted to ask if he was too heavy) and found himself kissing Alec’s neck softly as they made their way up to their room.

“I love you, Alexander,” Magnus whispered as Alec deposited him gently on their bed, arms still wrapped around him.

Alec draped himself over him as he replied, “I love you too, Magnus, light of my life! I hope you know I think that about us too…”

“Think what?”

“That we were destined to be together. From the best night of my life, to the best 4 days of my life! Magnus, you make everything sparkle! Everything’s better when you’re here by my side. I cannot imagine life without you in it. I’m so pleased we found each other again.”

“I feel the same, of course, darling Alexander. Clary wasn’t wrong, she told me that after we met back in May I regained my sparkled after what happened to my friend. It’s true. You were the catalyst I needed to see that there was a light at the end of the tunnel and that I could go on without him beside me. That I should live for him and for his memory. So, I have a lot to thank you for!”

As he finished speaking, Magnus reached out to gently brush away the tears that were tracking down his boyfriend’s face.

“You don’t know what you do to me Magnus Bane,” Alec said, giving him a watery grin. “You mean so much to me. I can’t imagine being without you ever again. Please tell me you have a huge bed in your apartment and that I can come and stay there with you?!”

“I have a huge bed in my apartment and I am desperate to have you stay over!” Magnus replied, with a cheeky grin.

They sealed his proclamation with a deep and loving kiss.

Then they curled up together and fell into sleep. Both with happy smiles on their faces.

Chapter Text

It had been almost a month since Magnus and Alec had reconnected at the Lightwood family cabin and they had quickly settled into the rhythm of their relationship.

Although Alec was working every day, Magnus’ off-campus apartment was actually closer to his job than his own, so they spent almost every night wrapped around each other. Their relationship had developed quickly, and Isabelle was constantly teasing them for being ‘mushy’ or, like ‘two little old men’.

Clary was happy to have Alec share with them as she was spending a lot of time with Jace and the two were considering sharing a flat together in the new year.

Just as November tipped into December, Alec began to become noticeably anxious, hiding away for long periods of time and starting sentences that he never finished and it was beginning to worry Magnus.

“Alexander?” he asked, on the fifth of December, “Is there something you want to tell me? Have I done something wrong or is there something you want to ask but you’re afraid to?”

“No, no…” Alec replied, distracted by a text message that had just pinged up on his phone.

“Alec, look at me please!” Magnus said, using his stern midwife ‘push now’ voice.

“Sorry,” Alec mumbled, flicking his eyes away from hs phone and then placing it on the table when he saw Magnus’ expression. “Sorry, my love, I just..well...I’m trying to organise something and I don’t want to tell you about it yet in case it all goes wrong.” Alec admitted, standing up and dropping on the couch next to Magnus, enveloping him in his arms.

“So I haven’t done anything wrong then?” Magnus asked in a small voice, pushing out his lower lip and accepting the kiss Alec dropped onto it.

“No such thing, my darling!” Alec replied. “I promise! And I promise to tell you more if everything works out! Until then, you’ll have to consider it a Christmas surprise!”

“No! I hate surprises!”

“But you’re always,” here Alec waggled his hands around, “Magicking up surprises for me! Like my favourite cocktails last week and this beautiful chain!” He indicated his neck where a golden link chain sat against his collarbone, a tiny arrow dangling against the hollow of his throat.

“Yes, because you look completely stunning wearing that, sweetie!” Magnus grinned, bending over to drop a kiss where the necklace met his skin. He lingered for a second, just breathing Alec in before he pulled back to press a second kiss to his mouth.

After that things got a little frisky, up until the point that Jace yelled out, “My eyes! That’s my brother you know! Put some shirts on!” As he and Clary arrived home.

“You’ve seen me shirtless before Jace,” Alec retaliated, pulling on his button down as Magnus silently laughed, shoulders shaking.

“Yes, but never when you’re grinding against Magnus!” Jace continued, clutching his girlfriend tightly, who was also silently giggling at the antics of the brothers.

“I’m not grinding against him now, we’re both fully dressed, you can look,” Magnus said, voice full of fun as Alec scooped him into his arms bridal style and pressed a deep kiss to his lips.

“Oh no fair!” Jace complained again.

“Hey, I’m always walking in on you two and you don’t see me yelling about it!” Alec protested as he placed Magnus back down on the couch, absentmindedly pressing a kiss against his hair.

Magnus almost purred at the affection and held out a hand for Clary to join him.

Together they watched as the brother’s carried on bickering, each new claim getting more and more outlandish.

“I can hear you groaning through the walls!” Alec yelled, glancing between Jace and Clary with glee in his eyes.

“I saw you in the middle of the night in the kitchen looking for whipped cream!” Jace screamed back, voice full of horror!

“I caught you wearing her robe!” Alec rebutted, circling around Jace as he spoke.

“You were wearing his make-up!”

“You were wearing her make-up!”

“You made her snoring my ringtone!” Alec laughed, catching the twinkle of delight in his brothers expression.

“You made his naked butt my screensaver and changed my password so I couldn’t get rid of it!” Jace grinned back, then grimaced as he remembered the moment in vivid detail!

“Hey!” Magnus and Clary yelled as one! “You did WHAT?”

The two brothers froze in the middle of the living room, then turned to their respective partners, spouting excuses and begging for forgiveness!

That night, Magnus and Clary curled up in his bed to watch ShadowPortals, while Jace slept alone, duvetless, in Clary’s room and Alec squeezed his tall frame onto their tiny couch covered in the duvet he had won in their thumb war!

The next day, Alec showed Magnus the picture he had used, he justified his choice by saying that his butt happened to look exceptionally cute that day and he was actually dressed in nude coloured underwear, and he had changed it after Jace had found it the first time.

Meanwhile Jace grovelled to Clary, sharing the recording which he described as ‘the cutest sound I’ve ever heard, that I just wanted to share with my brother!’ (“I can hear it through the walls, Jace!”)

The two best friends deliberated for a while and then gave Alec bathroom duty for the month and Jace kitchen duty for the same amount of time. The brothers agreed that they had both gotten off lightly and also bought an extreme amount of wine and chocolates for their significant others to enjoy with their movie nights.

So December moved on and Magnus almost forgot about Alec’s secret surprise... almost, but not completely since his boyfriend continued to have sneaky conversations in whispers when he thought Magnus couldn't hear him.

But Magnus trusted Alec and knew he was not intending to hurt him and felt a frisson of excitement when he considered what his boyfriend might be planning...

Chapter Text

Not having a traditional family, Magnus’ Christmas followed a different pattern every year. He and Ragnor would sometimes go on a trip (including a very famous trip to Peru they had taken that had been the most insane experience of Magnus’ life!); Catarina might decide to make a huge dinner for the whole group and then spend three days feeding them until they had to roll out of the door; or when Raphael had been around, they might spend their Christmas day in a bar daring each other to take worse and worse shots. But since he had known Clary, he had always been invited to family dinner with her and Jocelyn and Luke.

It was the sixteenth of December when Jocelyn called him up to find out if he would be joining them for lunch. He was lounging on the couch, head in Alec’s lap as he carded his fingers through his hair. It was a Wednesday and Alec was having a rare weekday off. They had planned to go out Christmas shopping, but then...Alec had made him breakfast in bed and things had progressed quickly to pancakes and syrup off Alec’s stomach and chest and legs... So...their shopping plans had been abandoned quite quickly.

They had needed a long shower afterwards and Magnus could swear that there was still a trace of squashed raspberry between his toes. But Alec had insisted he was clean so it was clearly a case of phantom fruit!

Anyway, when Jocelyn rang it alerted Magnus to the fact that he and Alec had not yet discussed their seasonal plans beyond going to buy gifts, so he excused himself to Jocelyn and said he would call her back.

“What’s up?” Alec asked as Magnus finished his call with a small frown.

“Oh, nothing, just talking to Jocelyn about Christmas. I usually go there and she was asking about this year but I wanted to ask you about your plans first…” Magnus admitted, looking up at his handsome boyfriend and quirking his lips into a smile.

Alec gently raised Magnus to a sitting position, and threw an arm about his shoulders pulling him in close, “Ah, she beat me to it then?”

“Beat you to what?” Magnus asked, twisting to look at Alec’s warm expression.

“Well...I was going to ask if you’d like to spend Christmas with me, actually.” Alec replied, a small, nervous smile flickering over his face.

“Seriously?”

“Yes.”

Magnus launched himself at Alec, arms and legs wrapping around him like an octopus. He ended up straddling Alec’s lap, torso’s pressed together, mouths finding each other.

They exchanged deep kisses for several long minutes, Magnus pulling back every so often to show Alec his beaming grin.

“I take it you’re happy that I want to spend Christmas with you?” Alec finally asked as they pulled back.

“The happiest I’ve ever been!” Magnus admitted, and reeled him back in for another kiss.

-----

When they finally came up for air, Alec explained that he would be expected to spend a little of his Christmas break with his parents and that he and Jace and Isabelle were all planning to bring their partners this year, so if Magnus was willing, he would finally meet the in-laws.

Magnus readily agreed, knowing that having Biscuit by his side it would be much easier.

“Then,” Alec whispered, mouth close to Magnus’ ears, breath sending shivers through his chest, “Then, I thought we might go away alone...I might have arranged a perfect, little cottage in Vermont, just the right size for us. Open fire in the living room, pizza oven in the kitchen, hot tub in the bathroom and a king sized bed in the bedroom...what do you think?”

Again, Magnus launched himself at Alec showing his appreciation with actions not words. Although their relationship was progressing steadily, there was still the spectre of Alec’s departure date looming over the pair and making good memories together was at the top of Magnus’ relationship bucket list.

While Magnus was hard at work, completing his final assignments and medical rotations, Alec was still preparing for his volunteering trip abroad. Magnus whole-heartedly supported his decision yet they both knew (or were beginning to realise) that when it was time for him to go, it was going to be hard to let go of each other.

Magnus had been secretly looking into VSO and was aware that once he had a year’s experience in a hospital, he would be eligible to apply, although he wouldn’t be guaranteed a placement local to Alec’s. However, he was definitely considering his options as his graduation date (and Alec’s inevitable leaving date) crept closer. A trip away, just the two of them, was exactly what they needed.

“Your parents…” Magnus began, wondering how exactly to broach the subject.

“My parents are aware now. That I am a gay man and that I have a boyfriend. I went to see them two weeks ago, remember when I was being a bit sneaky? I didn’t want to burden you with it all, just in case they were horrible. I thought it would be better to have them know and then bring you to meet them so they can see how wonderful you are and how lucky I am to have you in my life and by my side...and in my bed!” Alec finished, cheeks flushing lightly.

Magnus leaned over and pressed a kiss to Alec’s cheek, holding out his arms to bring his boyfriend closer. “Hey, I’m glad you were able to tell them on your terms. No-one outed you accidentally or...on purpose.”

“Yeah and my mom, she was actually amazing! I was pretty worried about her at first, but she gave me a hug and told me she loved me no matter what. Dad was a little more reserved, but he wants to meet you and I think that’s a positive start. It’s actually their house...the one in Vermont. Well, no, actually it’s really mine and Jace’s and Izzy’s, because our Grandmother gifted it to us when she passed away, but mom and dad look after it for us. They were really thrilled that I wanted to take you there. So that’s good! I just...I wanted to tell them and I thought it was better to tell them without you being dragged into anything should there be any disagreements. I didn’t tell you yet because I was kind of getting used to it myself first. You don’t mind that I kept it a secret for now?”

“Not at all, my darling,” Magnus said, pressing more kisses to Alec’s cheeks and forehead and mouth. “I’m just so glad you’re feeling good about it and that things went well. No problems on my behalf. Before we got together I feel like maybe you weren’t ready to tell them so I’m really proud of you for getting to this point, to feeling so safe and content with yourself.”

“That’s all you baby,” Alec breathed out, turning so he could look Magnus straight in the eye as he spoke. “You’re the one who gave me the courage to do it. So, yeah, I have numerous reasons to thank you. Numerous reasons to be grateful for you in my life. I just, I haven’t ever had anything like this, like our connection, it’s the most important thing in my world right now. I love you, Magnus.”

“I love you too, Alexander,” Magnus agreed, reaching out for him and bringing him in close so he could express his love with kisses and cuddles.

-----

Christmas Eve had arrived in a flash and Magnus was fussing at his appearance trying to calm his nerves.

Bag - packed.
Presents - wrapped.
Make-up - on point.
Hair - coiffed.
Outfit - Stunning and suitable to meet the parents!
Boyfriend - still running around the flat looking for his tie and left shoe and car keys.

‘Oops! Better sort that out,’ thought Magnus as he watched Alec whirl past him for the third time from his place by the mirror in their bedroom.

“Darling? Can I help you?” he ventured, hoping not to rouse the beast. He had discovered in late November that a stressed Alec equalled a snappy but overly apologetic Alec.

“No, no. Just the blasted shoe. I mean, they’re a pair, shouldn’t they be somewhere together? I just don’t get it! Also my car keys appear to have walked out of the key bowl all by themselves and I’m sure I hung my tie on the bathroom door last night. It’s an unmitigable disaster is what it is!”

As Alec went to stomp out of their bedroom door once more, Magnus twisted around from his place by the mirror, and got a good grip on his boyfriend’s bicep, squeezing lightly.

“Hey!” he said, rising to stand next to him and forcing Alec into eye contact, “It is not a disaster yet okay! We are not late leaving, Clary and Jace aren’t even here. Your shoe will be under the bed where you kicked it last night when we were leaving the shower and you got a little um..handsy! Your tie is on the bedpost because you insisted on tying me up to have your wicked way,” Magns winked as his boyfriend flushed bright red at the reminder, “And your car keys...well I have no clue but they cannot be far away!”

Alec stared down at Magnus, unblinking. Then he swooped in and kissed him deeply whispering a quick thank you against his mouth.

Leaving his boyfriend to rescue his shoe from it’s adventure under the bed, Magnus retreated into the living room to finish packing up the presents. As he did, he froze.

Sitting on the couch were Isabelle and Simon. They were both wearing identical surprised expressions and neither one looked all that with it.

“Um hi?” Magnus asked, staring at the pair. “We weren’t expecting you!”

“Clearly not,” Isabelle replied, clearing her throat as she continued to stare at him. “Umm, did I just hear…” she tailed off, glancing at Simon who took over.

“Did we just hear you tell Alec that his tie was on the bedpost because he wanted to tie you up?” Simon asked, voice hushed and not his usual noisy self.

“The same tie he’ll be wearing to dinner with my parents?” continued Isabelle, face a picture.

“Well, you didn’t not hear that I guess!” Magnus said cheerfully, moving over to stack brightly coloured parcels into woven bags. “What you do with the information however…” Magnus tailed off, winking at Isabelle.

“Oh, don’t worry, I’m sure I can use it for something later on!” Isabelle laughed, flicking her hair over her shoulder as she knelt down to help him pack.

“Magnus, my tie has a bit of your c..” Alec stopped talking immediately as he spotted his sister and her boyfriend in his living room. His face was beet red now and he dropped down next to Magnus burrowing his face into his shoulder.

His muffled, “How much did they hear?” was greeted with laughter from Simon, while Isabelle merely shook her head and said, “The same tie, Alec?”

It was a little while later, after Simon located the car keys in the fridge (“I must have been distracted when I got in!” “Yes, but by what, brother dearest?”) that they prepared to leave. Clary and Jace had decided to drop in on her mother and Luke on the way and would bring Isabelle and Simon back to the city when Alec and Magnus continued on to Vermont after Christmas.

In the car, Magnus chose some suitably Christmassy music and they all, even Alec, sang along as they sped towards Massachusetts where the elder Lightwood’s lived.