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the path to heaven lies through miles of clouded hell

Chapter Text

 

Magnus was having the time of his life.

The lights of Pandemonium flashed all around him. The beat of the music was buzzing down to his bones. His boyfriend’s arms were wound around his waist as he danced.

Alec was grinning, although Magnus could barely see his expressions properly with the colorful lights flashing across his face constantly.

The music was almost ear-shatteringly loud, and they could feel the buzz of the speakers in their feet. Alec whirled him around, and Magnus laughed.

Everything was just fine, and then Alec pulled away. He pulled something out of his pocket, revealed to be his phone as the screen illuminated his face.

“Hey, Magnus!” Alec yelled over the music. “I have to go. I’ll be right back!”                                                                                             

“What?” Magnus called.

Magnus! I’ll be right back!” he yelled again, leaving a quick kiss on Magnus’s cheek before pulling away and turning to leave.

“What’s wrong?” Magnus said, voice still raised far too loudly in an attempt to be heard.

“Izzy needs a ride!” Alec shouted. “I’ll be back!”

Magnus nodded, having caught enough of his words to understand. “I’ll go to the bar and get us drinks!” he yelled. “Meet me there when you’re done!”

“Might be a while!”

“That’s fine!”

Alec gave him one last smile, leaning in to kiss him again, then turned and pushed his way through the crowd, disappearing into the writhing mass of bodies.

Little did Magnus know that would be the last smile, the last kiss, he’d receive from Alec in quite some time.

 

Magnus made his way over to the bar, feeling great.

He was dressed to the nines and feeling confident, and he’d had a great night so far. He felt lively and light.

He swung into one of the barstools, smiling cheerfully at the bartender. Usually around this time it was Maia, a friend of his, but apparently she’d gotten the day off, because today there was a younger man with very light blonde hair and a strange tattoo that looked rather like a cross on his neck.

“What’ll it be, sir?” he asked with a soft accent.

Magnus looked down at the menu, examining the options for a moment.

“I feel like a margarita,” Magnus said decidedly. “Lime, on the rocks, please.”

“Of course, sir,” the bartender said.

A woman slid into the seat next to Magnus, catching his attention.

She was beautiful, that was for sure, but what caught his attention so easily was her hand on his elbow.

He pulled back, slightly uneasy but put on a smile. “Hello,” he said.

“Hello,” she said, in a voice that would normally have been very seductive and leading him to think of what they could do together between the sheets, but now only really had Magnus thinking of Alec and what they did together. “Could I buy you a drink?”

He smiled apologetically. “I’ve just ordered one, I’m afraid. And, well, I’ve got a boyfriend.”

She raised her eyebrows. “If it’s because you’re gay, that’s no problem. My… boyfriend and I wanted someone to join us in bed tonight.”

So preoccupied was he by her strange persistence he didn’t notice the strange pause before boyfriend, only looking the way she nodded, seeing a man with messy dark hair and icy blue eyes sitting at a nearby table, watching them intently.

“I have a boyfriend,” Magnus repeated firmly. “And not that it’s any of your business, but I’m not gay, either, I’m bi. Please leave me alone.”

The bartender slid his drink onto the table and turned away.

Magnus did not notice the look he shared with the woman.

“Bi, then,” said a voice behind him, and he jumped and saw that the blue-eyed man had gotten over to where he was sitting rather fast. The hairs on the back of his neck stood up. “Heard people like you were always eager for threesomes.” He turned to the woman, a smile that made Magnus uncomfortable curling his lips. “Camille, darling, I like this one. He’s perfect.”

Magnus scowled. “You heard wrong,” he said firmly. “Go away.”

The woman—Camille, apparently—laughed. “Alright, pumpkin,” she said. “Jonathan, dear, I think you’re right. This one is perfect.”

She looked Magnus up and down, smile curling her blood red lips. Then she took the man—Jonathan—by the arm and led him away.

Magnus sighed, thoroughly glad they were gone. He took a sip of his margarita and sighed. What was taking Alec so long, anyway?

He checked his phone again. Nothing.

“Waiting for someone?” the bartender asked.

“My boyfriend,” Magnus said, drinking more of his margarita. “It really hasn’t been that long, but I’m getting antsy. And that couple gave me the heebie jeebies.”

The bartender snorted, but said nothing more.

Magnus’s phone buzzed. He checked it again.

A text from Alec.

Sorry, I’m gonna be a little late. Izzy’s throwing up a lot, I gotta take care of her until Clary gets here. Have fun without me, I’ll be there as soon as possible!

Magnus groaned and shoved the phone back in his pocket. “Damn it,” he muttered.

He put his head in his hands. He was already developing a headache. Perhaps he’d drank too much too fast. He had already had some earlier…

He rubbed his eyes, feeling the headache getting stronger.

“When will your boyfriend be back, anyway?” the bartender asked. He sounded kind of far away.

Magnus, too annoyed and head too achy to really question this, just mumbled, “A while… Damn it.”

He opened his eyes again, only to find his vision was spotty.

He tried to stumble off the stool, only to nearly fall—and be caught.

He shakily managed to lift his head, seeing the bartender’s soft face above him.

“Let’s get you somewhere more private, huh? Where the guests won’t hurt you and you can… sleep off your little hangover.”

Magnus was too weak to do much more than let the bartender half-carry him to the back rooms behind the bar.

 

His mind was swimming and his vision flickering as he was guided to the back room. 

But the second the door closed behind them, the bartender’s demeanor changed. He snatched Magnus's phone from his pocket and tossed it across the room, then he dragged Magnus the rest of the way and threw him onto the old couch in the center of the room.

And two more figures came into Magnus’s line of sight. He blinked away the fuzzy spots the best he could, and finally their faces became clear.

The couple from earlier.

He heard the door open and close, then the click of a lock.

“You chose a good one, Camille,” the newcomer said in a deep voice.

“Stop using my name out loud, Dominic,” the woman said snidely.

“He already heard your name,” her supposed boyfriend said dryly.

“But he didn’t know that, did he?”

“Stop your bickering,” the bartender said sharply. “Your pick may be handsome but he has a time limit. The boyfriend is arriving soon.”

Magnus’s vision was beginning to clear up slightly, although his limbs were only feeling heavier.

He could see the sick grin on Jonathan’s face.

“Then let’s make sure he’s here one time to pick up the pieces.”

 

[WARNING FOR RAPE.] [WARNING FOR RAPE.] [WARNING FOR RAPE.] [WARNING FOR RAPE.] [WARNING FOR RAPE.]

Later, Magnus would only remember these things in a blur, in a stop-motion film of events.

His clothes being forcibly ripped off.

Hands on his body, trying to bat them away but being unable to move.

The woman undressing and getting on top of him.

The men undoing their pants.

Trying to scream, to make any sort of noise at all, but only managing a faint desperate groaning around his numb tongue.

The woman rolling a condom onto him, stroking him and forcing his penis to harden.

Tears slipping from his eyes, trying to cry or beg them to stop.

The men forcing themselves into his mouth, taking turns with his badly-prepared hole.

Trying to scream in pain, for help, and being unable to.

Their jeers and mockery fading into the rest of the numbness of the drugs.

Forcing him, unwilling and sobbing and trapped but aware, to finish.

The world fading to black as he finally passed out was a mercy.

[SCENE OVER.]  [SCENE OVER.] [SCENE OVER.] [SCENE OVER.] [SCENE OVER.] [SCENE OVER.] [SCENE OVER.] 

 

He didn’t know how long the horrific violation lasted.

All he knew was that when he woke up—sore, shaking, evidence of what they’d done to him all over his body—he woke to two different faces.

The hurt face of his boyfriend, and the furious face of his boyfriend’s sister.

 

Chapter Text

 

 

Magnus woke up bruised and sore. His limbs felt heavy and his head was stuffed with cotton.

He blinked hazily, shivering when he felt the bruises all over his body and the seed the monsters had left him. There was a jacket thrown over him, barely protecting his more private parts.

All his memories came rushing back at once, and he felt sick. He wanted to throw up.

He blinked heavily, and his vision began to clear, and two faces swam into view:

First, Isabelle. She looked pissed and disgusted.

And then Alexander. He looked heartbroken and angry.

“Wh… what…” Magnus managed to get out, his voice a raspy croak, before Alec interrupted him.

“How could you?” he whispered, but his voice echoed through the room like a church bell.

There was a moment of unbreakable, heavy silence. Magnus's heart was in his throat.

Then Alexander turned and walked away, door swinging shut behind him.

Magnus was crushed. The heartache felt physical, a heavy and sharp pain in his ribcage.

Isabelle turned on him. “You son-of-a-bitch.” she hissed.

“Isabelle, I…” he said weakly, but she cut him off.

“I trusted you,” she said. “I trusted you with my brother’s heart. I heard what everyone said, and everyone told me you were a cheating whore, but I didn’t fucking believe them. I thought you liked Alec, I thought you were my friend.”

“Isabelle,” he said helplessly. He didn’t know what else to say. Whether he’d wanted to or not, he had slept with someone else. Did that mean…?

“Did you ever even care about him at all?” she continued ruthlessly. “Or were you using him?”

“I love him,” Magnus said, but his voice was still weak and raspy.

“Yeah, sure you do,” she said, voice dripping with sarcasm. “Let me guess, it was just a mistake? You couldn’t help it? You just let them have you? How many men was it, again?”

Magnus’s lungs contracted. Couldn’t help it. How many?

So she did know.

“Three,” he croaked. “And a woman. I’m sorry, I… I didn’t…”

“Didn’t what? Didn’t mean it? You just tripped and fell on their dicks?”

Magnus shuddered, bile rising in his throat. “No, I…”

“You disgust me,” she said. “Don’t contact us again. Any of us. Alec doesn’t want to see you again.”

“I...Izzy,” he breathed, shocked.

“Don’t call me that, Bane,” she snapped. “We’re not friends. I don’t befriend pieces of shit like you.”

Magnus, to his horror, felt tears pricking at his eyes. “I’m sorry,” he said. He sounded pathetic and he knew it.

“Save it,” she said. “Burn in hell.”

And then she was gone.

Magnus curled in on himself, hands shaking heavily. His breath was coming in shuddering gasps now, shoulders trembling. He could feel—feel what the rapists had done to him. Could feel every drop and every bruise.

He could feel the weight of the jacket—Alec’s jacket. Alec had left his jacket. Even knowing what—what had happened. Even though he was disgusted and angry and never wanted to see Magnus again (Magnus’s heart gave another sharp pang at that) he still left his jacket.

Tears burned at his eyes. He stood up on shaky legs, gasping as he felt soreness flare through him. He hobbled his way to where his clothes had been thrown, the shirt ripped and the fly of the pants torn. He put them on anyway, shivering in disgust, and wrapped Alec’s jacket snugly around him, breathing in his scent.

The door opened, and Magnus whirled around, wrapping the jacket tighter around him.

It was Jace.

“You’re really an asshole, you know that, Bane?” he spat.

“Please go away,” was all the energy Magnus had left to say.

“And a whore, too,” Jace continued, pushing his way in and shoving Magnus back.

Magnus’s brain went to overdrive, remembering the hands on him and the way they’d pushed him—

But Jace kept going.

“I told Alec not to trust your lying ass,” he said, finger roughly prodding Magnus’s chest. “And I was right. His back is turned for five minutes and you’re off taking it up the ass from three guys. You didn’t even try to fight them.”

Magnus went still and pale, hands trembling even harder. “You… you saw?”

Were you there? Did you...watch?

Jace rolled his eyes. “I work security here, I saw it on the cameras, you stupid bitch. You didn’t even have the brains to go to a room with no surveillance. How do you think Alec and Izzy found out?”

Magnus felt like he couldn’t go paler, all the color bleaching out of him. Someone had seen. And Jace knew, he knew what had happened, but—

And they all knew. God. They all knew.

“I didn’t want it,” Magnus protested, wrapping his bo—his ex-boyfriend’s jacket tighter around him. “I didn’t… I couldn’t move…”

“You could have fought back,” Jace said, rolling his eyes. “You could have done anything. But you clearly wanted it. Not to mention you didn’t watch your drink, you wore that,” he gestured to Magnus’s tight and now torn clothing with disgust, “and you were asking for it.”

Magnus shook his head in denial, but he was still pale and shaky and everything hurt.

“Besides,” Jace sneered. “I saw. You enjoyed it.”

Magnus’s throat closed up. He had no response. He didn’t want it, he didn’t. He loved Alec. He hadn’t wanted it. He hadn’t enjoyed it.

But no matter what he’d wanted, his body had reacted. No matter how much he’d begged it not to.

And he could have fought back harder, he should have screamed for help, should have realized the bartender was suspicious, should never have gotten a drink in the first place.

If he’d done anything, if he hadn’t been stupid and weak, he wouldn’t have hurt Alec. He wouldn’t be here right now.

But instead, here he was, speechlessly staring down Jace with wide eyes.

“That’s what I thought,” Jace said, giving him an ugly, bitter smile.

He shoved Magnus back again. Magnus stumbled back, collapsing onto the couch.

“Leave Alec alone.” Jace said, voice hard.

And then he left.

 

Magnus didn’t know how long he sat there, trembling, wrapped in the warm jacket, tears leaking fast from his eyes.

It felt like hours when he finally stood again, wincing at the pain, cheeks soaked with tears.

He managed to get home—albeit barely—and he immediately ripped off his clothing and throwing it violently in the trash. The jacket, however, he carefully lay on his bed.

He climbed into the shower right afterwards, and set to scrubbing his skin raw. He cleaned vigorously, rubbing and scrubbing until his skin looked red and raw, uncaring how his bruises twinged. The water was far too hot but he didn’t care—he relished the burn. He deserved it.

He still felt unclean and violated. No matter how hard he scrubbed, the feeling of those men’s hands on him never went away. The feeling of the woman’s hands on him. The feeling of the bruises they’d left with their hands and mouths. All of it stuck to his skin and lingered all over his body.

Before he realized it, he was crying again, hot tears on his face almost indistinguishable from the warm shower water.

The shower lasted several hours, and even when the water had turned cold, he kept going. Even when he was shivering from it, he kept going. Even when his skin was pruned and wrinkled and the icy water almost felt normal, he kept going.

 

Afterwards, he collapsed into bed. He curled up under the covers, pulling the blankets over his head. He held the jacket close to his face, nuzzling into it.

He lay there, in the center of the mattress, shuddering.

But all he could focus on was the creeping sensation of the memories, and the complete lack of Alexander’s warm heat. His scent clung to the jacket. Magnus felt pathetic, but he just wanted Alec. He missed him.

He knew he didn’t—didn’t deserve Alec. But god, he wished that Alec’s arms were around him. That Alec was here to make him feel safe, to protect him, to kiss him gently and wash away the feeling of violation and hold him close.

He didn’t know if that would help, if the touch would truly be comforting. But god did it sound comforting. And the lack of it, the lack of him, physically hurt.

Eventually Magnus fell into an uneasy sleep filled with vague nightmares.

He tossed and turned all night, and eventually woke up screaming.

 

Magnus didn’t know why he did it.

But he woke up, screaming and slapping away invisible hands. And he couldn’t help it.

Maybe he was half out of his mind. Maybe it was because of the lack of sleep.

But he found himself stumbling to Alec’s apartment. They lived on the same floor, so it wasn’t hard.

He knocked on the door.

He didn’t realize he was still wearing the jacket until the door opened.

Alec’s expression, for one shining moment, was neutral.

But then his beautiful face twisted with anger and hatred as his eyes landed on Magnus, then shuttered into complete blank emotionlessness.

“What do you want?” he said.

His voice was blank and cold. There was the barest hint of sharpness to the word you, like he’d wanted to spit it out like poison.

Magnus shivered, and it wasn’t because of the cold. “I just…” he admitted. “I wanted to see you. I miss you.”

Alec’s hazel eyes flashed with anger. “Huh.” he said. “Not to give me my jacket back?”

Magnus stilled, suddenly wishing he’d left it at home. He didn’t want to part with it. It was all he had left of Alec.

Maybe Alec saw something on his face, but he relented. He didn’t soften, and he certainly didn’t open the door. “What do you want?” he said again. “To see me? There. You’ve done it.”

“Alexan—Alec.” Magnus said softly. “I—I’m so sorry. I love you. I didn’t—I didn’t want this.”

“Didn’t want to be found out? Didn't want me to realize you were sleeping around behind my back? Didn't want me to see that you were--that you really are a heartless slut?” Alec said coldly. “Yeah, I figured. Look, Magnus. We’re over. Don’t come over here again. Keep the jacket if you want.”

“Al—”

But the door slammed in his face.

Magnus blinked back more tears. They spilled over anyway.

Over. He and Alec were over. Definitely over.

Some tiny part of him had hoped Alec could—could forgive him. Even if Magnus had to earn it. But—there it was, laid out plain and simple.

Alec didn’t want him.

He’d lost the love of his life.

Magnus swallowed a lump in his throat, and went back to his apartment.

He took another shower.

 

 

 

 

 

Chapter Text

 

Alec had no reason to think today would be one of the worst days of his life.

He came back to the club, expecting to find his beautiful, wonderful boyfriend dancing or sitting with friends and sipping one of his brightly colored drinks.

Instead, he couldn’t find him anywhere.

And then Jace had approached. Said he needed to see this. Told him to go to the back rooms.

Why would Magnus be in the back rooms?

And then he’d walked in, Izzy trailing in after him. She decided to tag along, post pone her meeting with her friends.

And then, there he was.

Magnus, his supposedly faithful and sweet boyfriend, lying on the couch, face peaceful and lax, covered in hickeys, clothes discarded, and thoroughly ravished.

Completely naked.

And he had definitely had sex.

And not, of course, with Alec.

Alec’s breath stuttered in his chest. His brain froze.

Magnus, being unfaithful? The very idea was ridiculous, but—this was undeniable.

…He looked so vulnerable. Exposed.

Heart wrenching in his chest, Alec wrestled off his jacket. He draped it over Magnus the best he could, stepping back and crossing his arms defensively over his chest.

Only moments later, Magnus stirred, and then blinked those warm brown eyes open.

Izzy pushed by Alec. Anger poured off her in almost tangible waves.

Magnus saw them, and his face paled with horror.

Alec stared.

“Wh…what…?” Magnus began, but Alec couldn’t hear excuses, or weak stammerings of expecting him later.

“How could you?” Alec whispered.

Magnus gaped, apparently no excuses on his lying tongue.

Alec turned on his heel and left.

He stormed out, vision blurred with tears.

He found Jace in the crowd.

“How did you know?” he asked, furiously blinking back tears. He refused to cry over this. “How did you know Magnus…… what happened?”

Jace sighed, giving him a small and sympathetic smile. “I monitor the security cameras,” he said. “Alec… he went in there with a whole posse. They had…” he winced. “A lot of fun with him. And they were clearly pretty happy with it. Magnus seemed to, uh… enjoy it, too.”

Alec winced, heart cracking further.

“He… he really did cheat on me, then?” he whispered.

He trusted Jace. Jace wouldn’t lie to him. Jace was like a brother to him.

“He did,” Jace said softly. “I’m sorry, Alec.”

Alec breathed in deeply. Magnus had…

“I have to go,” he said.

Jace grabbed his shoulder. “Alec,” he said. “Stop. Look, just… stay awhile. Let me but you a drink.”

“I want to be alone right now,” Alec said, wrenching away and walking towards the door. He pushed through the crowd, losing Jace as soon as he could.

Isabelle appeared and grabbed his arm. 

"I'm so sorry," she said. She looked sad, sympathetic. "I really thought that he..."

She trailed off.

"Yeah, me too." Alec said bitterly. He shook her hand off.

"I told him off for you," she said, as if that helped. "He should leave you alone."

"Okay," said Alec numbly. "I--I'm gonna go home, okay?"

"Alec--"

"Don't wait up."

He ran away again, pushing towards the door as fast as he could. He shivered when he burst outside into the cold, remembering that he’d left his jacket with Magnus.

The vivid image of Magnus, having just cheated on him, flashed through his mind. He mentally beat away, but it kept coming.

He’d seen Magnus naked and covered in hickeys before. He’d kissed him all over and left marks everywhere and made him make the most beautiful noises, he’d fucked him and made him scream with pleasure before.

But that was no longer his honor alone.

Magnus had betrayed him, let someone else see him like that, let someone else touch him. Magnus had chosen someone else.

Alec went home.

 

Alec spent the whole day pacing. Asking himself why, why, why over and over again.

Why did Magnus cheat on him? Why now? Why would he do this?

…had he been doing it this whole time? Could Alec ever forgive him?

He longed to. He missed Magnus already. He wanted to hear his gorgeous laugh, wanted to hug him and kiss his forehead and watch a silly TV show with him. He wanted to wrap an arm around him and pull him close, wanted to take him to dinner and afterwards bring him home and make love to him. He wanted to just… pretend this had never happened. Pretend he’d never seen anything.

God. Alec was becoming his mother.

This is exactly what had happened with his mother and father. Maryse had stayed with him over and over, no matter how many times he cheated on her, until one day, he left her. One day, he left her for a new mistress, and never looked back.

Alec refused to go through that. It had hurt her so badly.

But god, he missed Magnus so much. It had been hours, but he felt like Magnus had been gone years.

Knowing he’d probably never see that smile again… never see those brown eyes twinkling with humor again… it hurt.

But he knew. He knew he couldn’t do this.

Magnus had cheated on him.

A hesitant knock interrupted his thoughts. He half expected Isabelle or Jace, or perhaps some door-to-door salesman. Although glancing at the clock, it was later than he thought. A lot later.

Instead, the breath was knocked out of him when he swung the door open and standing there was Magnus.

He looked… small. He wasn’t a small man, so it was a weird look on him.

…He was wearing Alec’s jacket.

Alec stared at him.

“What do you want?” he said. He was proud of the way his voice didn’t shake.

Magnus shivered a little. “I just wanted to see you,” he said. “I miss you.”

Alec felt a hot flash of anger. “Huh,” he said, exhaling sharply. “Not to give me my jacket back?”

Magnus flinched slightly, going unnaturally still. His eyes were suddenly huge, and his fingers unconsciously clenched at the edges of the jacket like he didn’t want to let it go.

……Perhaps he missed Alec as much as he missed Magnus.

Alec decided to let it go.

“What do you want?” he repeated. “To see me? There. You’ve done it.”

“Alexan—” he began, then corrected himself. “Alec.”

Alec’s heart throbbed a little. Magnus rarely called him Alec.

“I—I’m so sorry. I love you. I didn’t—I didn’t want this.”

Didn’t want this? Didn’t want this?

Suddenly, Alec wasn’t sad. He wasn’t nostalgic or missing him.

He was pissed.

The words just poured from his mouth, and he had barely any control over it.

“Didn’t want to be found out? Didn't want me to realize you were sleeping around behind my back? Didn't want me to see that you were--that you really are a heartless slut?”

His voice broke a little bit on that last part. A tiny part of him couldn’t believe he was saying this, saying this to Magnus of all people, but his vision was just red, red, red.

Magnus stuttered wordlessly, his eyes looking suspiciously wet.

“Yeah, I figured,” Alec bit out. “Look, Magnus. We’re over. Don’t come over here again. Keep the jacket if you want.”

He heard Magnus begin to say his name, but he slammed the door.

He slumped back against the door, listening for footsteps. They didn’t come for a while.

Alec thought he might have heard a few muffled sobs.

Eventually he put his head between his knees, feeling exhausted.

Magnus was gone.

He loved Magnus.

But Magnus was also—god, Alec was so angry.

How long?

Had Magnus ever loved him at all?

Was he spreading his legs for anyone who passed?

He almost felt bad for thinking that. But he was so angry he just didn’t want to care. He just wanted to yell, to break something.

Alec couldn't think about anything else.

Magnus, naked, covered in bruises. Magnus, moaning for someone else.

Magnus, fucking cheating on him.

He grabbed a mug—a dark green one Magnus had liked—and flung it at the wall with an enraged shout.