Alec doesn’t speak to Hodge, he doesn’t even look his mentor directly in the eye while he redresses his wound in the holding cell. And Hodge doesn’t talk either. It seems that there’s nothing left to talk about.
It’s not until Alec gathers his things to leave that Hodge finally asks, “When will they come for me?”
Alec pauses at the door while the guards in the corridor outside watch them impassively. Slowly, he turns and finally, he looks at Hodge. “In the morning,” he replies. “They’ll take you to Alicante where you’ll stand trial for high treason. And because you committed your crimes while already in exile…”
Hodge grimaces. “Right. The Inquisitor will demand the death penalty.”
Alec just stares at him. He doesn’t have to confirm Hodge’s guess. They both know it’s the truth.
Hodge, still sitting in the bunk, looks at his former charge challengingly. “What? Will you not rant? Curse me? Blame me?”
Alec pauses for a moment longer, then he shakes his head. “No. It wouldn’t do either of us any good. But I want to know something.”
Hodge gives him a silent look, his face unreadable.
“Why?” Alec whispers. “Just… why?”
Laughing harshly, Hodge leans forward. “Why? Why? For twenty years have I lived in exile, branded and hurting, unable to go home, unable to leave, while Maryse and Robert enjoyed their pampered privileged lives - just because they turned on their friends when they got scared. They were pardoned, even got to run their own precious Institute, but not because they actually changed their way of thinking and repented, oh no, but simply because they were cowardly opportunists.” He shakes his head in disgust. “And I had to live under their roof and be reminded of that for twenty whole years. I had enough.”
Alec stares at him with a closed off expression. “So we - me, Jace, Izzy… Max - we meant nothing to you? We were just means to an end for you? A long con or what?” he asks in a flat voice.
Hodge looks away.
Shaking his head, Alec continues bitterly, “The funny thing is, Hodge, that yesterday, I would’ve agreed with you. It was unfair that you were punished and my parents were not even though their crimes were no less terrible, the only difference was that theirs were perpetrated against Downworlders, so in the eyes of the Clave, theirs were forgivable.”
Alec pauses for a moment to compose himself. “These last few weeks taught me that the Clave is not infallible and that it’s okay to think for yourself and not follow the Law blindly, that we need to change our ways. I finally opened my eyes and yesterday, yesterday I would have agreed with you.”
He waits for Hodge to look at him, then he says coldly, “But today, Lydia’s in the infirmary, recovering from your attack - you fractured her skull, did you know that? Today, Valentine has both the Mortal Cup and Jace, my parabatai, in his hands. And we’re going to war that we will most likely lose. All thanks to you.”
And this time, Hodge flinches. He looks away once more and brings the stump of his hand protectively to his chest.
Alec takes a step back, across the threshold and into the narrow hall. “So yes, yesterday, I would’ve felt sorry for you. But today? Today, I hope you get what you deserve. Goodbye, Hodge.”
And with that he nods to the guards who slam the cell door shut. It’s a terribly final sound.