The day was tiring to say the least.
Alec woke up in his and Magnus' bed, soothing warmth seeping under his skin as he rolled over and, almost on his mind's own accord, reached for Magnus and pulled him closer to his body. “Morning” he rasped, eyes still too heavy to open as he lay there, motionless.
It was days like these that Alec mentally imprecated the institute and whomever founded it. Days where he lay with Magnus, safe, listening to his rhythmic breath as he stirred out of sleep. Where Magnus would run his hand up his chest to curl his fingers over his shoulder, smiling at nothing in particular except how at home he felt, at peace.
“Good morning” Magnus' voice was just as warm and soothing as the rays of sunlight casting in through the curtains, illuminating over their bare skin and giving them both a pleasant sense of ease. Alec smiled, nuzzling the top of Magnus' sleep-disheveled mohawk as he gave a small hum. “Shouldn't you be at the institute?”
Alec mumbled incoherently. Even he had no idea what he was saying.
“Is that a yes?” Magnus pulled back to look up at him.
With a small laugh, Alec rolled away from Magnus and lay on his back, eyes on the designs engraved into the ceiling. “Yeah.”
“Get up, young man” albeit authorititive, Magnus' words held no heat and to be frank, he seemed to like this new facet of his boyfriend. The one who would rather spend his mornings in bed, pillow talking instead of being at that godawful institute.
But Alec was the head of the institute, his people needed him just as much as the Downworld needed Magnus.
“Just a moment” Alec exhaled, then he turned his head and looked at Magnus. And Magnus certainly didn't lose his breath by the raw emotion evident in those hazels. And the warmth of his cheeks was definitely the impact of the sun. He was the high warlock of Brooklyn, he was a four hundred and something year old warlock and he was not blushing, nor was he stricken speechless under Alec's admiring perusal.
“Your people need you” Magnus finally found his voice to intone, melodic and playful. It made Alec huff a laugh and shake his head fondly.
“Come here” the shadowhunter was already pulling Magnus back to him, arms girthing him. And moment their lips touched, Alec couldn't reign in the giggle that escaped between them, followed by more and more laughs until they were just laughing against each other for absolutely no reason. Magnus was cupping Alec's neck, thumb stroking his jaw. It was a gesture Alec had grown used to over the course of their relationship. “Are you sleeping here tonight?” The words were low, barely a few decibels above a whisper, as if Magnus was confiding a secret of some sort.
Alec tilted his head, pressing a kiss to Magnus' thumb. “Yeah” he whispered back, “if you don't mind.”
Magnus' brows lifted, surprised and somewhat quizzical. “Of course I mind” he scoffed, “why would I want my boyfriend in bed with me, keeping me warm? Why would I want to wake up to an angelic—”
Alec surged up, smooching his boyfriend silent. It made them both dissolve into chortles, foreheads pressed together until Alec's phone rang.
“I believe this is your cue to leave” Magnus pulled away, “get up, chop chop. I don't want the burden of holding you back from a possible emergency to weigh on my conscience.”
Alec slid out of bed to pull his trousers up, glancing at Magnus from over his shoulder. “No clients today?”
“Too many clients” Magnus countered, voice muffled as he stretched his limbs.
Alec slid a shirt on, smiling at his boyfriend's sprawled out figure as the warlock mumbled petulantly into his bicep. At times, Alec really couldn't believe that he was one of the very few, if not the only person, allowed to see the High Warlock of Brooklyn like this, with messy hair, a bare face and making puerile complaints.
And today was one of the times Alec found it so hard to leave bed, let alone the loft. Only a second passed before he was back in bed, laying on his stomach above the covers — whereas Magnus was still below them — and used his elbows for leverage. He pressed a kiss to Magnus' shoulder, cutting off whatever he was rattling away about. Another kiss and Magnus lifted his head to look at his hunter. “Are you even listening to me?”
“Mmhm” Alec responded inattentively, and again, kissed the extent of skin his lips could reach. Magnus hummed, the air around them stirring with something much more intimate than a simple morning talk. “Alexander” Magnus whispered, breathless and laden with desire. “You're already late.”
“They're just early” Alec grinned against Magnus' neck, “and haven't had the pleasure of being with someone half as beautiful as you.”
And there it was, the heat on Magnus' cheeks again.
Magnus swiftly rolled them over so he was hovering over his lover, sheets entangled between them, and Alec's smile turned so, extremely saucy as he stared up at his boyfriend.
With a dreamy sigh, Magnus bracketed Alec's head with his forearms. “As much as I'd love to stay in bed with you all morning,” he began, “you have an institute to rule and I have clients.”
Alec rolled his eyes with a fond smile. “Yeah, yeah” he mumbled, which made Magnus arch a brow.
“Sassing me, are you?”
Alec leant up, pressed a fleet kiss to Magnus' mouth, then sat up to finish getting ready.
“Alec, I can do this!” Izzy ran to match her brother's pace, “I'm one of your best warriors, you said it yourself!”
“You are!” Alec exclaimed, “you are, Iz” he stopped to turn and look at her. “But I can't let you do this. I'm going with Jace and Clary. I need you here, to take charge—”
Izzy ran her fingers through her hair in frustration, interrupting him without words. “Iz” Alec stepped closer, “you're strong, but you're my sister, and if you—”
“Let me do this” Izzy gritted out, “you're the head of the institute, you should be here, let me go.”
Alec closed his eyes, jaw clenching as he breathed out from his nose. “No” he rasped, those two letters hurting him more than he could admit, “I'm going. If you leave this institute, you're betraying my trust, you're betraying me.”
And he walked away.
The classical music resonating through the loft was a pure indication that Magnus was home. Alec hung his bow in a hurry and toed his shoes off.
“You've been shadowhunting.”
The concern imbedded in the words made chills race down Alec's spine and he turned around to look at Magnus, who had just walked in from the balcony with a glass of martini in his hand.
Alec greeted him with a kiss. “Yeah, I have” he said once he pulled back.
Magnus nodded. “I was worried about you” he banished the drink in favour of cupping Alec's neck. “Why didn't you call?”
Alec leant into the touch, delivering a small smile to Magnus. “Sorry” he apologised quietly, “there was no signal where we were.”
“Izzy called. She was...” Magnus lowered his hand, lips pursing to find the right word.
“Mad?” Alec offered, then laughed when Magnus inclined his head in a you can do better fashion.
“Furious, I know” Alec gave up, “I couldn't let her do this. She just overcame her addiction and I— thought that sending her to a clan for an investigation would— I explained to her after the mission— it's just—”
Magnus shook his head, pressing a ringed finger to Alec's lips. “Don't explain” he soothed, “I understand. Now, go and shower, darling. I'll be waiting for you.”
Alec pressed a kiss to the finger against his mouth. “All right, then we'll talk about your day.”
After a thorough shower, Alec emerged from the bathroom to find Magnus already waiting for him. He was on the edge of the bed, holding his phone, fully engrossed until Alec stepped in.
“So, tell me how your day was?” Alec didn't want to push in case Magnus' day had been as tiring as his own.
“Ah, it was boring” Magnus drawled out the last word, “except for a few clients. I portalled two newlywed werewolves to Venice, they were very eager on payment despite my insistence that it wasn't necessary, they caved in. I brew a potion for a mundane in need and—” Magnus smiled at what he was about to say, lifting a hand to stroke his fingers along the wing cuff on the shell of his ear, “a shadowhunter called” he said it casually, but his smile widened when he saw Alec's expression shift.
The shadowhunter froze for a second, then adjusted the towel around his waist and turned to look at Magnus. “What?” He asked, “who?”
“A Lovelace” Magnus replied, “he asked for..a protection spell—”
“Did he disrespect you?” Alec asked hurriedly, “did he say anything about.. Well, us or about—”
“Relax” Magnus stood up, “he was very..respectful and very eloquent. Never fear. Besides, I can handle myself.”
Alec let out a relieved sigh and nodded, “good, and I know” he said, “but if he, or anyone else, ever, and I mean ever, says anything that makes you feel—” Alec didn't have a chance to finish off, Magnus grasping his face with both hands and leaning forward to press a kiss to his lips. Deep and silencing.
Alec's eyes grew wide, then he smiled and held Magnus' waist, eyes shutting as he melted into the kiss. Kissing Magnus was like nothing else, Alec always found himself losing track of time, of his surroundings. It was as if the world blurred out and all that's left is him and Magnus. Right there, pendent in time.
Magnus' lips turned him to a sap, and he's starting to come to terms with it.
Alec's back hit the coolness of their silken maroon sheets, Magnus' hand reaching to undo the towel from around his waist. “I love you, Alexander” the warlock affirmed, “but sometimes you can be such a chatterbox.”
“Hey!” Alec exclaimed in faux offence, “I don't want anyone disparaging you or..” He sighed when Magnus' fingers curled around him, eyes shutting tightly.
“Enough talk” Magnus bumped his nose against Alec's. Alec nodded, teeth denting his lower lip.
Warmth coiled in his stomach as Magnus began working him slowly, lips pressed to the rune he may or may have not grown fond of. “Stop teasing” Alec panted, “just kiss me, kiss me.”
Magnus was teasing him, and relishing the keening shadowhunter beneath him. His lips a hair's breadth away from Alec's as his pace quickened. “You want me to kiss you?” He murmured, his breath hot against Alec's damp lips. Alec's moan was swallowed by Magnus' lips, wet and filthy and absolutely obscene.
Alec kissed back with rekindled strength, back arching off the bed and hands gripping both sides of Magnus' face.
“Oh, darling” Magnus exhaled once Alec let him go, emphasising on the endearment with a slow slide of his palm over the head of Alec's member.
Alec cried out, burying his face in Magnus' neck, pleasured tears prickling at his eyes, “I'm..Magnus, I'm–”
“It's okay” Magnus reassured, and with one more stroke, Magnus impelled Alec over the edge, a strained cry pressed against his neck.
Magnus ran his fingers through Alec's hair as the other came down from his high. “You okay?” He whispered. Alec nodded.
“That was..embarrassing” Alec didn't seem embarrassed though, he knew that Magnus gloried in his carnal skills. “Do you want me to..”
“It's okay” Magnus shook his head, “your pleasure is mine.”
“You mean” Alec's eyes widened and he pulled back to look down between them. His cheeks were flushed, but they darkened when he saw that Magnus himself had finished off. “Oh.”
Magnus rolled over, waving a hand to clean them both up and dress them in their nightclothes.
It took them a few minutes to realise they were sleeping on each other's side of the bed, and when Magnus rolled onto his side and slid a hand beneath the pillow that was meant for Alec's head, he felt a solid object. “What's this?”
Alec's expression morphed into one of confusion before his eyes widened and his lips parted. Magnus had already slid the item from under the cushion. It was a book, a diary to be precise.
“A diary?” The timbre Magnus had used didn't show any judgement, and to Alec's surprise, he felt absolutely at ease when Magnus asked.
“I—” with wild gesticulations of Alec's hand, he tried to explain. Up until Magnus smiled and looked at him with those adoring eyes, with that adoring look. “Yeah. A diary. I haven't written in it lately.”
Magnus looked between the book and Alec, silently asking for permission. So Alec scooted closer with a nod and rested his head on Magnus' chest.
The trust Alec had in Magnus engendered so much elation in the warlock's heart that it skipped a beat, something that prompted a playful “whoop” from Alec.
“Are you sure I can open this?”
Alec lifted his head to rest his chin on Magnus' chest. “The night you first saw me, when we were going to make the exchange,” he began, watching as Magnus looked between both his eyes like he was the eighth wonder of the world, “at the time I was very..”
“Closed off” Magnus finished for him.
“Closed off” Alec echoed with a nod, “and I used to bottle things up as Izzy so appositely put it. That night I blurted everything I was feeling right out, and..it felt good. Iz told me to let things out every once in a while, that it would do me some good, so I..bought a diary. It helped, a lot, although I only wrote in it a couple of times, a couple of sentences.. It helped.”
Magnus stroked Alec's hair away from his forehead tenderly. “I'm glad it did, Alexander.”
“So yes, Magnus” Alec pillowed his head on Magnus' chest once again, “I'm sure.”
Magnus looked at the top of Alec's head for a moment longer before diverting his attention to the book in hand and flipping the first page open.
The moment they read the entry, Alec tilted his head and laughed against Magnus' chest, the atmosphere lighthearted and so comfortable. “Oh, dear” Magnus chuckled.
he didn't look at Jace. He looked at me.»
“Poor boy actually believed I was talking to him” Magnus tutted his tongue, hauling a laugh from the man nestled against him. “And of course I looked at you instead of him” he scoffed, “I'm not blind, I know art when I see it.”
Alec huffed. “Stop” he wasn't serious, he was preening himself on getting all these compliments and flirtatious remarks from his boyfriend.
Jace found out.»
Magnus smiled at the simple sentence, and he felt Alec shake with a silent laugh. “What's so funny, shadowhunter?”
“I can't believe I thought I loved him” Alec replied, “I knew I loved him, because I did, and I still do, just not— y'know.. Not the way I love you.”
“Hm” Magnus hummed, “do you know what I think?” He didn't let Alec answer and went on, “I think—” dammit, Magnus “I believe your parents' persistent efforts to motivate you towards becoming the best version of yourself backfired and made you feel as if you live in Jace's shadow. And everyone holding him in high regard didn't make things any better.”
Alec didn't say anything for a long minute, the flex of his jaw poking lightly at Magnus' chest. “Yeah” he finally said, guttural and charged with so much emotion that Magnus felt like he had struck something deep in the hunter. “Yeah.”
Magnus pressed a kiss to the top of Alec's head and he flipped the page.
he looked beautiful today. I wish I could've told him.»
This one. This one made Magnus' sight blur, jaw clenched tightly as he looked away to regain composure. “Don't I always look beautiful?” He tried, voice cracking mid-question.
“By the Angel, yes” Alec responded breathlessly, “but that shirt looked extra beautiful on you. Remember? The one you wore when you told me I..” He looked up to smirk, “unlocked something in you?”
Magnus squinted an eye threateningly, then flipped the page.
he said he'd do me pro bono.»
Magnus choked, a laugh spurring out of him as he squeezed Alec closer to himself. “Minx” he muttered.
Alec shrugged. “You did.”
“I did. And I did. Pro bono.”
“Fine, fine” Magnus turned the page once again, laugh dying down when his eyes caught the words.
“Of course I do” the words weren't meant for Alec's ears, and Alec knew that, so he didn't say anything as Magnus stroked the words. He loitered on that page a little longer, fingertips tracing each letter slowly to the point where he could rewrite them with Alec's longhand from memory.
He tentatively turned the next page.
I told him I proposed to lydia, he was hurt. so was I.»
Magnus swallowed the lump in his throat. “You were?”
“Yeah” Alec whispered, “maybe it was because I thought I'd never be happy, maybe it was because of the reaction I got from you. I expected you to be mad, I wanted you to be mad, so I wouldn't feel as guilty. Or I wanted you not to care, though I knew that was..impossible. But when–” Alec's throat closed in around his words, “but when you looked at me like that, I knew I fucked up.”
Magnus shook his head. “You didn't fuck up” he said, “you did what you thought was the right thing to do at the time. Need I remind you that you'd do everything in your power to make something right? Or shall we wait for the wedding page to pop up?”
Alec laughed, flipping the page with disdainful force.
Alec didn't say anything, only pressed a smiley kiss to Magnus' chest.
I want to be happy.»
Magnus smiled. “Are you?”
“Yes. I'm with you.” Alec replied instantly, as if the words were already at the tip of his tongue just waiting for any single catalyst to prod them out.
Magnus pressed another kiss to Alec's head as Alec turned the last page.
today I did something for myself. I kissed him.»
“You have no idea how proud I was of you” Magnus said airily, not realising the effect it had on Alec as the hunter closed his eyes to fight back tears. “Oh, Alexander. I love you so much.”
Alec smiled, the pain in his throat subsiding as Magnus thumb flipped through the pages till a slip of paper leafed out.
Alec grabbed it and scrunched it up in his hand. “Let's skip this one” he said nervously.
Magnus nodded. “Of course. Just know I'd never judge you.”
The words were like a spell and the next second Alec was handing the paper to Magnus, who laughed lightly and took it.
"Let's see..” His eyes skimmed the paper quickly, Alec doubted he caught the words. But then again he's been alive for centuries, he's fluent in thirty six living languages.
Alec's thoughts were cut off when he was gathered in Magnus' arms, kisses peppering his face and arms squeezing tightly around him. “My Shakespearean hunter” Magnus gushed.
Alec puffed a sigh, trying to act annoyed, but he failed when a smile snuck to his lips and made Magnus' own grin stretch further. “Don't call me that. I was thirteen.”
A few minutes later, Magnus and Alec were asleep in each other's embraces, lights turned off and the diary cast aside.
Magnus had banished the slip of paper to his album, just above the photos they had taken in Japan.
A reminder of what Alec had been before he met Magnus.
«my quota of pain was staying in that grey breadth between tranquility and disquietude. between the immersion of words and the potency of silence. between the vanquish of my soul and the stoicism of my façade, and between the tyranny of my secret and the safety of its secrecy, as if sheltered by a roof made of thorns.»