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The Sound of Magic

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The sound of Alec’s drumming heart was drowned by the extravagant beat of the music. Flashing lights blinded him as blue eyes frantically searched for Isabelle. His sister stood, a silhouette of black and white in a sea of moving dark shadows, like a splash of blood on a crime scene. But the organized chaos of Pandemonium had yet to be disturbed as their adoptive brother sat unmoving at the bar, nursing a glass of dark gold alcohol. 

A row of bottles bathed in purple light lined up the shelves. Jace stood out against the dim glow of the bar. Alec blinked, his sister's scarlet dress attracted way too much attention. Mundanes looked her over -eyes going up and down- and Downworlders whispered about the dark rose petals hugging her chest and falling down her legs, a train of thorns trailing behind her. Some nervous lanky boy stepped on it and yelped as it pierced through his shoe. His redhead friend laid the blame on broken glass littering the floor but when she turned around and saw Jace at the bar, she froze.

She let go of her friend's hand, leaving him to deal with his bleeding foot by himself. Alec resisted the urge to facepalm when his brother caught a glimpse of the girl watching him and smirked. Jace straightened, beckoning her over with a lazy wave of his hand. The purple glow of the bar threw shadows on his gold hair, giving him an aura of mystery that was not so far from the truth. Alec knew the drill. He would introduce himself and charm her without mentioning -even once- anything about school or work because he did not have any. Faeries did not live the way mundanes did. 

When Alec's gaze flickered back to his sister he realized that this was only the beginning of his worries. She had noticed the boy and led him to the bathroom, apologizing profusely for not warning him about the broken glass he had supposedly stepped on. She, too, would avoid any mention of her life when asked.

Alec let his head hang in defeat. He usually did not partake in this kind of outing for this exact reason. He despised having to deal with unknowing mundanes who thought it was alright to hit on random strangers. He despised it because he could not lie and was no good at this game of twisting the facts to avoid saying the truth. 

He sighed and turned to the bar, intent on getting himself a drink and distracting Jace from the redhead. She did not look like a Shadowhunter but she could have been wearing a glamour. Shadowhunters were bad news that Alec did not like to get involved with. Maybe she just had the Sight. She had however -and against all odds- captivated Jace who now only had eyes for her and was not about to let her get out of his sight. 

Alec choked down his beer and turned to his sister. She was dancing with the mundane and he leaned against the bar with a roll of his eyes. Here’s to another boring night out, he thought. The faerie tried to occupy himself by watching the other patrons when a man tried to approach him.

“Hey there.”
“Hey yourself.” Alec shot back without sparing him a glance.
“I’m Meliorn.” 
“Alec.” He replied.

They stood next to each other for a while, not talking because the faerie had not tried to initiate the conversation after that. The stranger did not give up straight away in spite of Alec’s lack of answer. He waited for his order and finally settled down next to the faerie, starting a casual conversation about the beginning of a nice evening. 

The night was still young but Alec already felt like leaving. He turned to Meliorn to bide him goodbye, only now noticing the sharp angles of his cheekbones and chin. He had long dark hair falling on either side of his face, hiding a dark marking on one cheek. But runes stood out on his forearms and that made Alec move away faster than he had intended.

Speaking of Shadowhunters… You could not trust them as they only approached you when they needed something from you. That was the reason for Alec’s quick retreat, especially since he was not interested in the first place. He could not afford to talk with them, as they tried to abuse his good nature and he was not able to trick them like his siblings would. Meliorn reached out to catch his arm, confirming Alec’s doubts.

“Wait! I’m looking for one of you!”

Alec ignored him and made his way through the crowd to stand in a dark corner of the club, leaving his half empty glass on the edge of a railing. He brooded for a while and  by the time he decided to look for his siblings again, Jace and the redhead where nowhere to be found. 

Izzy had changed dance partners and Alec shook his head, recognizing the man he had been avoiding. The Shadowhunter was obviously attracted to their looks, as Alec and his sister shared dark hair and fair skin. Maybe he was indeed looking for information, he did mention someone in particular. Alec was briefly worried for his sister but she could take care of herself and seemed to be enjoying the attention. He still moved closer to try and hear what they were whispering to each other, a tad overprotective.

“I’m looking for a faerie, she disappeared and her family is worried.” Meliorn finally yelled in Izzy’s ear.
“How come her family turned to Shadowhunters out of all people?”

Alec had to strain his ears to catch Meliorn’s answer and the tell-tale sound of broken glass distracted him. There was no mistaking, it was the half-empty beer he had left behind to listen in on Isabelle and the Shadowhunter’s conversation. Someone had been bound to fall down the stairs and knock it down, drenching an unfortunate bystander in alcohol and hopefully ruining on the the patrons’ outfit.

Izzy and Meliorn had disappeared further into the crowd and he wondered where their adoptive brother had gone. Was he with the redhead girl? Alec could not see her nervous friend anywhere and assumed they had left. Jace had probably found another innocent girl to take off with. He liked to seduce them and corrupt them, something Alec did not partake in either. Jace and Izzy rarely saw their flings more than once, especially when they were mundanes. 

Downworlders were easier to deal with as long as they were not looking for anything serious. From what Alec had gathered so far, most of the time they were not. Shadowhunters though, tended to look for long time relationships if they were not after information. Alec noticed the man from before, slipping away from the crowd. He cast a glance at Meliorn as he left through a backdoor, wondering in which category he fell into. 

The Shadowhunter had been awfully flirty for his kind, with him and his sister too. That was almost unheard of as the Clave frowned upon same gender relationships and especially with Downworlders. 

Maybe he would see him again -the man was persistent if anything- but the faerie did not trust him just yet. Alec would find out what the Shadowhunter was after soon enough and see his siblings in the morning to deal with whatever this all meant.