“Then teach me!” Clary snaps, slamming her weapon down on the table.
Alec, who’s been about to put his fighting stick away, turns to her. “What?”
Clary throws up her hands. “You keep telling me that being a Shadowhunter means more than just killing demons, that one must follow the rules, that ‘the Law is hard but it is the Law.’ Fine, great. Then teach me the rules,teach me the Law. I’m prepared to learn!” She sets her hands on her hips angrily and stares up at him with a clear challenge in her eyes.
“Wouldn’t it be better if you asked your mother?” he suggests.
Clary snorts. “I have as much desire to talk to my mom right now as you have to talk to yours. I love her dearly but there are things that we simply don’t see eye to eye about. And one of them is this.” She waves her hand around, indicating the Institute and the Shadow World in general.
That makes Alec’s lips twitch, but he replies, “Then how about Izzy–”
Clary interrupts him, “From what I know, Izzy dedicated herself to science, germs and bugs and other stuff, that I don’t need to know about right now or, hopefully, ever.” She shudders. “But you, you apparently studied diplomacy. So, teach me, oh wise one!”
Alec sighs and turning around, he sets his fighting stick in the rack. “I just don’t think it would work, with the two of us, considering we still seem to disagree on everything…”
“Actually, I think that right now, you’re the one with whom I have the most in common,” Clary says, thoughtfully.
Alec raises his eyebrows dubiously. “Really?”
She nods. “Really. I mean, I don’t think that anyone out there,” she waves a hand at the rest of the Institute, “wants Jace back as much as we do, you and I.”
Alec stares at her for a moment, emotions waring on his face, then he looks away.
“And we’re both social pariahs, too!” Clary adds with somewhat forced cheer.
He turns to her quizzically.
“Well, I’m Valentine Morgenstern’s daughter, a black sheep, if ever there was one. And from what Izzy told me, you’re the first Shadowhunter ever to come out as anything but perfectly straight,” she explains. And when his expression turns pained, she asks, “How does it feel to be a trailblazer?”
Alec widens his eyes a little when he honestly admits, “Terrifying.”
Clary reaches out and with a small smile she squeezes his forearm comfortingly. Then she clears her throat and continues, “Anyways, all those things sound like a good foundation for a friendship, so…” She trails off hopefully, leaving her words hanging in the air between them.
After a moment, Alec smiles at her hesitantly. “I could do with a friend,” he allows.
Clary grins in relief, and in an attempt to lighten up the mood, she blurts out, “And about that Law thing, it’s not like I need to know every paragraph in the Codex, just enough not to cause trouble!”
Alec snorts. “You? Never,” he responds, his voice dripping with sarcasm.
“Hey!” she slaps him on the arm, then she amends, “Well, it’s a talent, really.”
Chuckling, Alec clears away her stick and his Seraph Blade, too. But when he turns back for Clary’s, she has the blade out and glowing, and she’s staring at it with a grim expression. “Clary?” he asks uncertainly.
She looks up. “I’ll kill him, you know?” she replies, deadly serious. “Valentine. I’ll kill him if it’s the last thing I do in my life. And not just because of what he did to Jace - but for Jace. I can live with Valentine’s blood on my hands, but I don’t think that Jace could…”
Alec stares at her searchingly for a few seconds, then he nods slowly. “And I’ll help you,” he promises.
Clary smiles at him, her expression a little dangerous. “See? We’re already bonding. Nothing brings people closer than a premeditated murder.”