Alec had become really good at kissing, amazing at kissing. Once he had found his confidence, he had started to get a little rougher, a little more possessive with him, letting his wants and desires fully come out to play.
Like now, he pushed Magnus through the door, guiding him towards his room with a possessive hand at the small of his back, dipping his tongue into the heat of his mouth.
“Ugh, you guys, can you keep the PDA to a minimum please? Some of us don’t necessarily need to see our brother making out with his boyfriend.”
Magnus pulled back reluctantly, contemplating the odds of Alec letting him just ignore Jace and go back to what was a truly phenomenal kiss. He couldn’t actually see Jace, his back to the rest of the room, but he could image that little furrowed pucker in between his brows like he usually got when he was feeling disapproving.
The tone Alec was using, instead of being soft with embarrassment, like Magnus was expecting, was instead heavy with exasperation and judgment. When he looked up, his lovely Shadowhunter looked less than amused at whatever he was witnessing.
With herculean effort, Magnus pulled away from Alec far enough to turn within the circle of his arms to find Jace sprawled on the couch and buried beneath Simon and Clary who were each passed out across his chest.
“I’m not sure Shadowhunters who openly cuddle and nap with their significant others in a common area have a stone to throw when it comes to PDA, do you Jace?”
Magnus looked a little sly as he tracked the hands absently tracing the length of Simon’s back and the curve of Clary’s neck.
“This, this isn’t nearly the…this isn’t the same. This is…is—“
Simon shifted at the sudden rumble of noise beneath his ear and curled tighter against Jace’s side with an irritated grunt. Clary whined and shushed Jace with a half-hearted slap against his chest to silence him.
“Okay, okay, sorry. I’ll be quiet.”
The tender way Jace spoke to them, the soft tone of his voice actually startled Magnus a bit and pulled a smile to his lips.
“I underestimated you, Jace Wayland. You do have a heart.”
The middle finger Jace flashed him had Magnus laughing boisterously all the way down the hall as Alec dragged him to his room to finish what they started.
Jace looked up from his place sprawled across Clary’s bed when he cought sight of a hair brush narrowly flying over the book held suspended over his face.
When he finally tilted his head to the side to see, Clary’s sheepish grin met him from where she was sitting at her vanity.
Her cheeks flushed red hot under his full attention as she tried to look anywhere but directly at him.
“I’m trying to braid my hair like Izzy’s from last night but it’s not…working.”
Clary looked even more flushed, if that were possible, her hair and normally pale skin matching in shade almost perfectly. Her eyes were trained on the ceiling, so she didn’t notice that Jace had moved from the bed until he was right in front of her, the discarded brush miraculously still intact and in his hand.
Without a word, he gestured for her to turn back around in her seat. Clary watched wide eyed in the mirror as Jace expertly twisted her hair into intricate braids and swirls, a little smirk tugging at the edges of his mouth.
He chuckled at the growing looking of disbelief on his girlfriend’s face as he snatched up a few bobby pins and tucked them gracefully into her hair.
“This is what happens when you grow up with a demanding sister with long hair.”
Licking the pads of his fingers, he gently smoothed the curling little wisps or hair at her nape, too short to be caught up in the complex knots.
“Did you do that for Izzy, too?” Clary laughed a little incredulously and Jace just rolled his eyes.
“Izzy would have had a fit if I got my spit anywhere near her.”
He leaned down to kiss the bare curve of her shoulder as a finishing touch before stepping away to let her admire his handiwork.
“So, what do you think? Does your boyfriend do good work?”
Clary’s eyes were bright and giddy when she turned back around, throwing her arms around Jace’s middle in a grateful hug.
Her cheek was a hot press against his stomach and he felt the curl of love and adoration throughout his chest that he always did when she or Simon were around.
He gently curled his hand around the back of her skull, careful not to damage the work he had just done and held her close.
When Jace walked into the kitchen it was to find a stricken looking Simon, desperately trying to hide the bag of O negative behind his back, completely missing the stark smear of red across his bottom lip.
“J-Jace, um hey. I thought you were sleeping. Everything alright?”
Simon was barefoot, shifting nervously in one of Jace’s shirts that was too big in the shoulders, and long enough to hang down past the waist band of his boxer briefs. It was a good look on Simon, swimming a little in Jace’s clothes, looking a little vulnerable in the expanse of the drafty kitchen.
“You look good.”
The response was clearly not what Simon was expecting and his hands slipped down to his sides, the blood bag dangling in his loose grip in shock.
“I like you in my clothes. You look good like that.”
If anything, Simon started to look concerned for Jace’s health now.
“Do you realize…You just walked in on me drinking blood, Jace. Blood.”
Jace just smiled at him, soft as he moved to cradle Simon’s cool cheek in the palm of his hand.
“Yeah, and you’re a messy eater, too.”
His thumb gently tapped the corner of Simon’s mouth, prompting his boyfriend to quickly swipe his tongue out to catch the spilled blood along his lips.
The look in Jace’s eyes was playful for a moment before turning serious.
“Don’t hide from us, Simon. It’s not like we don’t know you drink blood. You’re a vampire, what else would you do?”
It was painful to see Simon so serious, but the gentle curl of Jace’s lips seemed to be doing the job of coaxing a smile out of him.
Simon eventually sighed and broke away from Jace to finish the blood and throw away the empty bag.
“Come on, let’s get back before Clary realizes we’re gone.”
Accepting the press of lips against his cheek first, Simon let Jace take him by the hand and pull him down the hall back to bed and back to Clary.
Clary and Simon held hands as they peaked around the corner to watch Jace aggressively attacking the punching bag, sweat running heavy down his back, face screwed up in furious agitation.
“What should we do?” Simon whispered, pulling Clary a little closer to his side helplessly.
“I don’t know.”
They felt stuck, watching their boyfriend self-implode after a largely disastrous mission. While there had been no actual casualties, there had been a series of almost deaths that Jace couldn’t seemed to get out of his head.
The key word Simon wanted to focus in on was almost but they both knew Jace wouldn’t see it that way. Mistakes had been made, and Jace was taking it out all on himself.
“We can’t just stand here.” Clary snapped in determination.
She gripped Simon’s hand fiercely before pulling him into the training room to confront Jace head on.
Snarling, Jace whirled around to face them, his face crumpling when he saw who had called his name.
“You guys should leave. I’m not worth your time.”
Jace’s voice cracked and broke both of their hearts as they simultaneously moved closer.
“Come on now, baby.”
The overheated expanse of Jace’s back felt like fire against the cool of Simon’s chest where he had draped himself around his neck. Clary pressed both hands against his chest, effectively trapping Jace in between them.
Clary willed him to believe him, her eyes locked with his, pleading for him to understand.
“It wasn’t your fault.”
Simon clutched him tighter, lips pressed against the shell of Jace’s ear.
The feel of two pairs of lips against his bare skin stopped any further arguments from spilling from Jace’s lips.
After a minute, he wordlessly let them each take a hand and pull him down the hall and into their bed.
“Just rest a minute, okay?”
He nodded, ignoring the way the sheets stuck to his clammy skin and just let his lovers take care of him.