Elliot Fray woke up to the sun shining and the birds chirping. He hated it. The last thing he wanted to do was crawl out of bed and face the world of people, but he did, poking his head out of his land of covers and peering out at the too bright world.
He yawned, flopping over on his back and arching his back in a huge cat-like stretch. Elliot hummed in a content fashion before he decided to sit up in bed. Toes wiggling as soon as they hit the floor, Elliot snagged his eye patch from his nightstand and slid it over his left eye with practiced ease. He changed, throwing on an awful yellow t-shirt two sizes too big the worn out logo of Sugar Crisp printed across the front. After hopping into a pair of jeans just a little too tight, he finally emerged from his room and into the hallway.
“’Morning Red.” Elliot called as he passed the familiar image of his twin sister curled up in her chair, drawing.
Elliot didn’t get an answer – also something he was used to – though he’d let her get away with it this time, since Jocelyn had given her such a hard time last night. The sharp and shrill sound of the red retro style telephone by the front door gave him little option for choices that morning. Crossing towards it, his stride eating the up the floor, he picked it up.
“Hey-lo, you’ve reached the Fray residence, how may I direct your call?” Elliot answered in falsetto.
“Yo, this is Clarissa Fray’s steamy bad-boy boyfriend who smokes weed and does pot, I totally need her to come over, this is a booty call-“
“Simon,” Elliot cut off the all too familiar voice of his sisters much annoying best friend. “You know, if you wanted a booty call I’m always available.”
“Elliot, that’s gross, you’re like – twelve.”
“Sixteen,” Elliot defended crossing his arms. “And you have the maturity of a six year old.”
“Ouch.” He could hear Simon wince. “That’s cold, I thought we were friends.”
“Just because I know you’ve been in love with my sister as long as you’ve known her, does not mean we’re friends.”
“Wow, you woke up on the wrong side of the bed today.”
“Right side actually,” Elliot leaned backwards, catching a glimpse of Clary still with her headphones on drawing away. “Did you want me to get her for you?”
“Yeah, just don’t tell her it’s me.”
“Alright,” Elliot brought the phone away from his face and bellowed “CLARY! PHONES FOR YOU!”
He had the satisfaction of watching her head jerk up, eyes wide as she tugged off her headphones.
“WHAT?!” She yelled back.
“I SAID, TELEPHONES-” Elliot didn’t get to finish as she was already up and out of the chair, running across the living room to grab the phone out of his hand. For someone so short he forgot she could move so fast.
“Who is it?” She asked as she tugged it away from him.
Elliot shrugged, shoving his hands in his pockets. “Dunno.”
Turning away he left Simon and Clary to their own devices, He wandered into the kitchen, opening the fridge he searched it for any edible contents. He was disappointed, coming up empty handed he then searched the cupboard as well. He managed to scavenge an apple by the time Clary was finished with Simon, and found her staring up at the picture of their ‘father’ on the fireplace mantle. A familiar spark of deep-set frustration came to life in Elliot once again, he hated how Jocelyn continued to keep up the ruse of their ‘father’s’ death with Clary, it wasn’t fair. Elliot could never truly understand Jocelyn’s reasoning behind shielding his sister from the world he’d had no choice but to enter, especially when he hated keeping secrets from his twin. He also knew Clary would be anything but happy when she found out.
Elliot frowned, “What did Simon want?” He asked between mouthfuls of apple.
Clary glanced back at him, both her eyebrows raised in a manner that made her look scarily like Mom. “So you did know who was on the phone?”
Elliot grinned, but said nothing, waiting for Clary to respond to his initial question. She sighed before caving. “Who’s asking?” She said.
Elliot rolled his eyes. “Don’t get touchy, I was just curious as to why I got to deal with Mom’s rantings last night.”
Clary winced, and glanced back at their ‘dad’s’ picture. She tugged at a lock of her curly red hair, the same as his own but only hers was much longer. “Was she that bad?”
“She was that bad,” Elliot confirmed, wiping away some juice that had trickled down his chin.
“Ellie,” Clary started, her voice was hesitant, the way it was before she asked him some hypothetical question that really wasn’t all that hypothetical. “Hypothetically what would you say if you could see someone no one else could?”
Elliot froze, apple raised to his mouth and jaw in mid-bite.
You mean what I deal with every day? He thought, recalling flashes of people with blue skin, people that weren’t people but were living among the everyday people. People that others could not see and refused to see. Elliot could not count the amount of people he had handed coffee to that had an extra eye on the forehead or teeth far too sharp to be human. He knew the drill too well, it had been engrained in his head since birth; pretend you don’t see it, pretend it doesn’t exist.
The sound of the key in the door sounded, saving Elliot from answering Clary’s question as she practically dove for the couch and grab a book. Elliot, for his part, did his best to look nonchalant while eating his apple. He slurped and sucked at the juices, leaning against the doorframe as he braced for whatever Jocelyn would have to say this time.
It was Luke who came in, a big box in his arms and Elliot suddenly had the urge to disappear before he was given some sort of manual labor job to do. Luke, who refused to let either of them call him Uncle Luke anymore since technically he wasn’t there uncle, was always going on about how skinny he was and how he needed to ‘fill out a little more’. Luke who pretended just like Jocelyn did, but Luke who was anything but human. A werewolf, that’s what he was, part of the downworlder community that Elliot had been taught about since he could walk.
“Hey Luke,” He said, raising the apple in greeting as Luke set the cardboard boxes on the floor and straightened up. Luke met his gaze from across the room, and there was something in it that made Elliot raise an eyebrow.
“Where’s Mom?” Clary asked, peering out from behind her book.
“Parking the truck,” Luke said, he set his hands on his back and groaned. “Remind me again why this building has no service elevator?”
“Because it’s old, and has character.” Elliot and Clary said in unison. Elliot grinned at Clary and she grinned back. Elliot made a gesture and mouthed the words ‘Epic mind reading.’ To her. She rolled her eyes.
Luke shook his head and wandered over to where Clary was on the couch, “What are you reading?” He asked as he plucked the book out of her hands.
Elliot swallowed his piece of apple before he could choke on it. “What are the boxes for?”
“Packing some stuff up,” Luke said vaguely, eyebrows climbing above his glasses as he read Clary’s book. “Is this for school?”
Clary shook her head, “No, it’s summer Luke.” She said, giving him that pointed look that had ‘Really?’ written all over it. “It’s Mom’s.”
“Mhm, figured.” Luke said, book set down he was already back over by the cardboard boxes.
Elliot pushed himself off the doorframe, disappearing back into the kitchen. Clary’s hypothetical question from earlier hovering in the back of his head. If Clary was seeing things that he saw everyday it meant that Magnus’ memory spell was wearing off faster than it normally did. Elliot knew that Jocelyn had been calling him repeatedly over the last few weeks, she was worried about Clary. Elliot just wished Jocelyn would stop calling Magnus and let Clary’s Inner Eye come back into focus.
With a sigh he dropped the apple core in the waste bin, letting it shut. When he rejoined his family in the living room Jocelyn was there, but her attention was solely focused on Clary and Luke. Elliot listened quietly, that is until his jaw tightened at hearing they would be going away on ‘vacation’ for the rest of the summer.
“We can’t leave for the rest of the summer!” Elliot exclaimed, joining his sister in the fight against Jocelyn. Her gaze swung in his direction, and something unnameable flashed behind her eyes. “I have work! I have a job to do!”
“What about my art classes? I paid for those!” Clary said.
Jocelyn’s jaw tightened, her tone carefully even and leaving no room for argument. “You’ll have to call your art group then, I’ll pay you back for them Clary, I’m sorry.”
Elliot’s eye narrowed. “What about my job?” He demanded.
“Quit.” Jocelyn said, her gaze never leaving Clary.
Elliot gritted his teeth together anger welling up inside him.
“Mom! That’s not fair to me or Elliot!” Clary protested. “That’s not fair!” She whirled to look at Luke. “Tell her! Tell her it’s not fair!”
Luke said nothing, he kept looking out the window, a muscle in his jaw jumping. “It’s your mother’s decision.”
“I don’t get it,” Clary said. “Why?”
Elliot raised a challenging eyebrow in Jocelyn’s direction, and was unable to keep the snarl out of his voice. “Yeah Mom, why?”
He had the satisfaction of seeing her flinch, because she knew as well as him the reason they were going on this ‘vacation’. It was because Clary’s Inner Eye was working, because Jocelyn was too cowardly to stop hiding the truth from her.
“Elliot.” Jocelyn said, a warning laced in her tone and her eyes cutting sharp through him. He knew what he was supposed to do. He was supposed to agree with Jocelyn so Clary would be easier to persuade and deal with.
Elliot threw his hands in the air, exasperated and angry. “I think we deserve a reason Mom.”
“I need peace and quiet to paint, money’s tight right now-”
“Then I can get a job like Elliot does,” Clary said. “I can find a place, somebody is always hiring. Mom, I’m old enough to take care of myself now-”
“No!” Jocelyn’s shouted, her face was red and her tone roared with finality. Elliot flinched back, eyes a little wide. “No, neither of you are staying here alone, something could happen.”
“Like what?” Clary challenged.
Elliot began to mentally check off the list in his head, thinking back to his mother’s warning about shadowhunters, to her warning about demons, about monsters, about everything. But the one Elliot thought Jocelyn was the most scared of was Clary finding out that Jocelyn had been lying to her all this time.
Elliot let out a sigh, “Clary she’s not going to change her mind.” He said quietly, drawing her attention away from Jocelyn to him. Clary was furious, Elliot could see it in the tightness around her lips and the anger in her eyes.
“It’s not fair!” She protested again, shoulders tense and rigid.
“I know,” Elliot said miserably, watching as Jocelyn turned away to speak in hushed tones to Luke. He came over and sat on the couch next to her. “But that doesn’t mean she’s going to change her mind.”
Clary sniffed, crossing her arms. “I hate it,” She said, voice rising in anger. “She won’t let me get a job during the summer, let alone stay home alone- you’ve stayed home alone plenty of times! Why won’t she let me? I’m older!”
“By six minutes.” Elliot quipped, a grimace on his face. Looking up he could see Luke by the door, shaking his head at something Jocelyn had said. Quieting down he could hear snippets of their conversation.
“-Talk to them, Jocelyn.” Luke said. “I mean it.” As he reached for the doorknob it flew open simultaneously, both of them startled.
“Jesus!” Luke exclaimed.
“No, it’s just me.” Simon said from the doorway. “Although I’ve been told the resemblance is startling.” Simon peered into to wave at Clary. “You ready?
Elliot let his head fall back against the couch and flung his arm over his eyes, listening as Luke left and thundered down the stairs.
“I’ll see you later,” He muttered to Clary.
“Yeah, good luck with Mom.” She whispered back before raising her voice. “Forget it, Simon. We’re leaving.”
Elliot felt the weight shift and the couch raise as Clary got off the couch. He stayed silent throughout her small spat with Jocelyn at the door, only moving his arm once he heard the door slam and he was sure Clary was gone. He peered over at Jocelyn’s figure, standing in front of the closed door, marks and scars crawling over her arms.
Jocelyn had told Elliot that she had been a shadowhunter once, just like their real father had been. She also warned him by telling him that the shadowhunters were a dangerous group of Nephilim, descendants of angels he’d been told, that were closer to the demons they killed than human in personality.
Elliot waited silently for Jocelyn to say something, she didn’t.
“You know, you might as well tell her.” He said.
“Elliot, you know I can’t do that.” She said, her back still facing him.
“No, actually, I don’t.” He said, sitting up. “I don’t know why you refuse to tell her when she so obviously is seeing them already!” Elliot took a deep breath, trying to get his temper back under control. “I know, why can’t she?”
“You’re different,” Jocelyn said, her hands had clenched into fists. “Bane couldn’t blind your Inner Eye like Clary’s. You know this.”
Elliot scowled, his hand coming to touch the eyepatch over his eye. “If you don’t tell her I’m going to.”
Someone knocked on the door, and Jocelyn jumped again. Elliot just narrowed his eye, watching the door as she moved to open it.
Standing in the doorway was a man Elliot knew from his childhood. Tanned skin and bright gold-green eyes glinted at them from the doorway. White teeth flashed in a too-white grin. It was difficult to imagine that Magnus was anything but a teenager, while he spoke in a manner that often suggested his age, he tended to be more ‘down with lingo’ as he had said once. Elliot also recalled a time when he’d asked Magnus about it, the warlock had simply said, “Darling, I wasn’t born yesterday.”
“You called?” Magnus said, his hair was done up in its usual spiky manner. Elliot had always wondered how he managed to keep it standing up like that, maybe he did use his warlock magic to do his hair.
“Bane,” Jocelyn said. “Clary’s not here-”
Magnus waved his hand in the air in a dismissive gesture. Elliot swore he saw glitter fall off in its wake.
“I know, I passed her on my way up.” He said cheerily, and raised a hand to wiggle his fingers at Elliot. “Hello Ellie, how’s the eye doing?”
“Wonderful,” Elliot said dryly as he raised himself to his feet. “How’s the Chairman?”
“Fabulous,” Magnus grinned, and those white teeth flashed again. “I’m actually throwing him a party, you should come by, there’s a pixie I’m dying to introduce you to.”
“No, Elliot won’t be going.” Jocelyn said, replying for him. Elliot scowled, then shrugged his shoulders in apology towards Magnus.
“Oh?” Magnus said, one slender brow arching up on his forehead. “You’re in trouble, darling?”
“I hope not,” Elliot groused out, glancing over at Jocelyn with a pleading expression.
“Thank you for coming by Bane, but Clary isn’t here today. We had a fight and she ran off. Can we call you when she gets back?” Jocelyn said.
“Right to business as usual.” Magnus said, gold-green eyes dancing from Elliot to Jocelyn. “I might be otherwise occupied, but I’ll expect a call from you then.” Magnus stepped back from the doorway and began to turn around when he paused, glancing over his shoulder at Elliot. “And Ellie, if you are in the neighborhood don’t be shy to drop by.” And he was gone, leaving Elliot smiling nervously at Jocelyn who was glaring at him.
He held his hands up in surrender. “Mom, I swear, I won’t go.”
Jocelyn shut the door. “I don’t want you seeing Bane without my permission ever again, do you understand me?”
Elliot rolled his eyes, “It was one time. I saw him at work, what was I supposed to do, pretend I didn’t recognise him?”
In truth, Elliot had been over to Magnus’ flat more times than he’d ever confess to Jocelyn. Elliot had the feeling that she simply tolerated Magnus, maybe appreciated him, but Elliot had grown up with Magnus. He considered Magnus a friend, maybe even closer to an uncle figure like Luke. While Luke had taught him how to protect himself from other-worldly beings, Magnus had been someone he could tell his secrets too. Magnus also knew about his eye, and normally checked it for him whenever it was time to blind Clary again.
“Yes,” Jocelyn said. “That’s what you should have done, Elliot. It’s dangerous-”
“Oh forget it,” Elliot said, an unintentional growl in his voice. He turned away, heading back to his room. He half expected Jocelyn to protest, or to say anything really, but she didn’t. She let him retreat to his room, and he slammed the door behind him. He collapsed on his unmade bed, wishing sourly to himself that he could’ve been in Clary’s position instead.
“Mom?” Elliot called, the sound of something crashing to the floor alerted him that something was amiss. “Mom?” He called again, stepping out into the hallway. “Mom-”
Jocelyn appeared, seemingly out of nowhere, her face pale, an expression of pure terror on her face. She grabbed him by his shoulders, hands tightening around him in a vice-like grip.
“Mom what-?” He asked, voice high and shocked.
“They’re here.” She said, her voice urgent. “They’ve found us.”
“Mom who’s found us?” Elliot asked, Jocelyn’s terror becoming his own.
“I’ve been trying to call Clary,” She said, and she turned away from him as the doorknob jiggled. “Oh god, they’re here.” She ran over to the door, and began to push the table the phone was on in front of the door, moving furniture to block whoever, whatever, was on the other side from coming in. “Elliot,” Jocelyn said, capturing his attention from the jiggling doorknob. His mouth was dry. “Call your sister and tell her she can’t come home, tell her to go anywhere, tell her they’ve found us-”
Elliot didn’t hesitate, almost immediately he whipped out his phone, pressing his sisters contact with shaking fingers and lifting the phone to his ear. He watched as Jocelyn continued to push furniture in front of the door, the door that was now pounding, like someone was throwing their entire weight against it.
Pick up, pick up, pick up- Elliot thought desperately. It wasn’t until the third set of rings did she answer.
“God- Clary,” He spoke, glancing up at the shaking door and Jocelyn who was heading towards him.
“Tell Mom I’m coming home,” Clary said.
“No!” Elliot practically roared, Jocelyn had grabbed him by his bicep and was hauling them out of the room. “You can’t come home alright? You can’t, Clary, go anywhere but here, but don’t come back. Go to Simon’s or Luke’s, anywhere.”
“Ellie? What’s wrong?”
“Clary, for Christ sake’s listen to me for once and don’t come home. Mom said they’ve found us-”
“I don’t know?!” Elliot yelled, voice rising in panic. Jocelyn had grabbed some small vial from underneath the kitchen counter and now turned to look at him.
“What? Mom- What do you mean?” He asked, his hand was shaking, the pounding at the door seemed too loud, filling his head and his heart.
“Ellie? Elliot?” Clary said.
“Hide!” Jocelyn snapped, grabbing the phone from his hand and shoving him away.
Elliot stumbled back a few steps, numb to the command for a moment before he heard the distinct sound of the door cracking open. He flinched and ran, memories rushing back of him and Clary playing hide-and-go-seek in the house as kids. Elliot skidded through the hall, rushing into Clary’s room and climbing into her closet. He shut it behind him, burying himself in the far back corner of the closet.
He shut his eyes, hands over his mouth to hide his breathing. He could feel a tear leaking out from the corner of his eye, Elliot was afraid. Huddled in the dark closet as thoughts and questions spiralled through his head. He didn’t know who was after them, he didn’t know who it was Jocelyn had been hiding them from. She’d warned him about shadowhunters enough that he could assume that was who she was talking about, but he didn’t know, he didn’t know.
Elliot lost track of how long he spent in the closet, in the dark, with only the small opening from the top to peer through. The noises had stopped, and the apartment had grown quiet, all but for a noise Elliot could only hear if he strained. Something like the slithering noise a snake made, along with the sliding of claws. Elliot’s eyes were wide open, staring through the single peep hole he had, waiting for something to happen.
Then he heard it, the sound of footsteps and a sharp gasp.
“Mom? Elliot?” It was Clary’s voice ringing through the apartment. “I’m home.”
Elliot wanted to slam his head against a wall, wondering how his sister could be so stupid while the feeling of relief rushed through him at the same time. Pushing the closet back open, Elliot struggled for a few seconds to climb back out. Once he was out he stumbled in Clary’s room, glancing to the door.
“Clary?” He called, peeking out from behind her door in the hallway.
“Elliot?!” When her voice reached him he let out a sigh of relief as he stepped out into the hallway.
“God, Clary-” He froze, in the middle of the hallway was grotesque looking thing. A monster, it was there, a scaled creature, the thing he had heard from his hiding place. It stared up at him from its multitude of dead black eyes, all which were in the center of its thick dome head. It was hideous, something that could have come straight out of a nightmare. In the back of his head his mind screamed, ‘DEMON’. This was what haunted the night, and it was what Jocelyn had warned him about. Its legs were like that of a spider, and it clicked across the floor towards him.
“Flesh, oh blood, oh flesh to eat.” It was with horror he realised that it was actually speaking, its huge jaws were open and dripping green drool on the hardwood floor.
A voice shrieked, and the creature whipped around to face Clary, who was standing on the other side of the hallway. She unintentionally drew its attention, and it pounced, blindingly quick.
“Clary!” Elliot yelled, watching with horror as his sister staggered back and tripped, rolling out of the way just in time. He turned away, running to the kitchen and grabbing the biggest steak knife he could find.
He raced back in to the hallway, finding Clary cornered against a wall. The thing was chanting horribly, “Bones, to snap, to crunch, to drink the veins, Valentine said nothing about the girl. Valentine will not know. To eat, to eat, not to savour…”
Its jaw’s opened wide, and at the same moment Clary shoved something into its jaws, Elliot sunk the knife in the back of its head. It screeched and screamed, and Elliot kicked it in the side, it flailed and fell off of Clary. He reached for her and she scrambled to her feet. Together they watched with horror as it made its way on its back, legs twitching and kicking violently, green foam pouring from its mouth before it lay still and silent.
Elliot’s chest was heaving, his hands clutching tight to Clary, and he turned to look at her, eyes wide. She stared back, matching green eyes equally as wide.
“What- What was that?” She croaked.
Elliot took a shuddering breath, debating telling the truth or feigning ignorance. “I-”
Clary shuddered, her expression changing to one of pain before she fell forward into him.
“Clary?!” He shrieked, and glanced up in terror to see that the demon was not dead but had managed to sting Clary in the back of its neck. The stinger was long and horrible, and a terrible noise pulled itself from Elliot’s throat as he staggered backwards. With the weight of his sister there was no way he was going to be avoid getting hit next.
The demon did neither, it was in fact actually pretty much dead. Elliot watched as the demon flopped, crawling towards them slowly. Elliot stared, clutching Clary’s body close as he watched the demon shrivel before vanishing completely.
“Well, that’s disappointing.” The voice quipped. “I was expecting to save a damsel, get a kiss…” Gold eyes stared at him, disapproving.
Elliot blinked, head whipping up and taking in the golden stranger, dressed head to toe in all black, a blade glinting with symbols in his hand and a crown of a golden halo fanning out around his head. Marks covered his arms, black and intricate, reminding him of the ones on Jocelyn’s arms…
“Shadowhunter.” He thought, mouth dry.
“Who the hell are you?” He demanded once he’d found his voice. “What do you want?”
The shadowhunter put his blade away, boots thudding across the floor as he drew closer. Elliot took a step back, swallowing as he clutched Clary’s unconscious body closer.
“Are you Clary’s brother?” The shadowhunter asked, gold eyes sharp and inspecting in a way that made Elliot think; this one’s dangerous.
“Twin,” He spluttered, the warnings Jocelyn had left him ringing in his ears.
“Elliot?” The stranger asked.
“Elliot.” He confirmed. “Wait, how do you know my name? How do you know Clary’s?”
“Met her at a bar, we hit it off spectacularly.” The shadowhunter smiled, though there was no kindness beneath it. He stepped closer, inspecting Clary’s wound. “Well that’s a shame, she’s going to need help with that.”
Elliot blinked, realising the situation and, “A hospital, I need to get her to a hospital.”
The shadowhunter tsked. “That’s a demon sting, she’s going to die from that if you take her there.”
Elliot was almost, almost, tempted to tell the shadowhunter that he knew and he should just bug off, but instead he swallowed and looked down at Clary, silent.
“I can heal her.” The shadowhunter volunteered.
Elliot looked up, skeptical. “You can? I thought you said she was going to die from it.”
“I said she was going to die if her take her to your Mundie hospital.” The stranger turned around and headed back down the hallway. “We should get out of here before the police show up.” He said mildly. “Can you carry her?”
Elliot huffed and lifted Clary up into his arms, with a little trouble, but he managed it. “I can carry her.” He grunted.
The blond lifted an eyebrow. “Sure you can, come on than, let’s get going.”
Elliot’s feet began to move, following after the shadowhunter. “What’s your name?” He asked.
The blond glanced back at him, considering before answering. “Jace.”
Jace went over to the window, opened it, and jumped right out, leaving Elliot gaping after him. He stared down at Jace’s blond head, and when he looked up at him Elliot shook his head.
“Oh no, I can’t do that.” Elliot said. “Not with Clary.”
Jace looked annoyed. “Pass her down to me then.”
Elliot did just that, with much awkward maneuvering he had his sister’s body out the window. “You better catch her, you hear me, you beautiful blond specimen?”
“Beautiful blond specimen?” He heard Jace say. “I know my beauty is very distracting, but would you just let go of her? You look ridiculous.”
Elliot growled under his breath, but let go of Clary, very, very slowly. As soon as he felt her body slip out of his hold he glanced out the window. Glad to see that Jace was staggering under her weight.
Elliot wasted no time after that, slipping out of the window and dropping to the ground. He landed on his butt in an undignified mess, and rubbed at his tailbone. He was going to have a bruise there tomorrow morning, he knew it.
Elliot all but collapsed next to Jace and Clary. He stared dumbly as he watched Jace began to rip cloth and hold it over Clary’s wound. Distantly he could hear the sound of sirens in the distance, and he had the feeling that they were headed here.
“We should get out of here,” He said, still staring at the blood soaking through the cloth.
“Good job at stating the obvious.” Jace drawled, glancing up at him momentarily. “I’m going to take you both to the Institute, she has Ravener poison in her veins.”
“Ravener poison?” Elliot repeated.
“That’s the type of demon you fought back there.” Jace said evenly.
Elliot hummed. “Demon, right.” He rubbed at his temples just as Clary let out a small groan.
Instantly he was on his knees next to her, “Clary, don’t move.” He said.
Clary groaned, and promptly moved. She gagged, and Elliot sighed.
“You moved,” He grumbled, combing his fingers through her red hair. He parted it, keeping it out of the way as Jace worked.
“What- The monster, it talked.” Clary said. She was shaking, her trembles running through her entire body. Elliot frowned.
“You’ve heard a demon talk before,” Jace said conversationally, and Elliot’s head shot towards him.
“What?” He demanded.
“At Pandemonium,” Clary whispered.
“It was an Eidolon demon, shape-changer.” Jace explained. “Raveners are just too stupid to care how they look.”
Jace finished the bandage, and Clary moved to sit up. Elliot helped her, keeping an arm behind her just in case she decided to pass out again on him. She looked over at him, green eyes wide, “Mom-” She said.
Elliot’s mouth tightened. “Someone was trying to break in, I don’t know, Mom seemed to think they were looking for her.” He hesitated, glancing at Jace. “She told me to hide.”
Jace stood up, “Can you walk?”
“I think so,” Clary said, pulling herself to her feet.
Elliot hovered, watching his sister as she swayed on her feet. He glanced over at the cops, swallowing as he saw a blond woman, who wasn’t much of a woman and far more of a demon.
“Do demon cops always come to clean up demon messes?” He asked, and Jace followed his line of sight.
“Most of the time, they like to keep things quiet.” Jace said.
Clary coughed, her whole body convulsing. Elliot rubbed his hand on her back, nervously glancing back at the demon police. When he heard Clary whimper he glanced over to see her hand had come away from her mouth red with blood. Elliot paled. He was about to make a plea for Jace to do something when the shadowhunter reached forward and grabbed her arm.
“What are you doing?” He demanded, watching as Jace dragged a sharp, small silver object against Clary’s skin. She tried to pull away, but he was already done. He let go and there was a symbol, black and ominous, just like the ones that ran over Jace’s body.
“It’ll hide you,” Jace said, gold eyes watching Clary. “Temporarily.” He added.
Clary swayed again, and this time Jace was the one to catch her. Elliot didn’t protest, instead he narrowed his eyes, watching Jace’s expression carefully.
Jace held his sister’s body with ease, he extended his hand and made a beckoning motion. “Come on, you too, we don’t have all day.”
Elliot hesitated, and glanced back over his shoulder at the house. He swallowed, hearing Jocelyn’s warnings about shadowhunters, about not trusting them.
Elliot extended his arm, baring his wrist. “What, are you going to carry both of us?”
Jace flipped the sliver thing out, and pressed it to Elliot’s skin. He winced as a sharp stinging sensation spread from his arm.
“Hopefully you won’t faint.” Jace said, as he finished. He tucked the object away, and patted his pocket. “Stele.” He said in way of explanation.
Elliot opened his mouth to retort, but he was too busy watching the black mark on his arm. He could feel the mark settling on his skin, strange and black against his pale skin. In his mind it was like something splintered, he felt a door fracture and an ugly presence materialise behind his eye. His covered eye gave a frightful spasm of pain, so sharp it pierced right through his skull. He gasped and doubled over, pressing the heel of his hand to his covered eye.
He felt like he was dying, something slithered around his mind, around the walls he had built. Something slithered and snuck, seeping through the cracks and its defences. It settled in his mind like a snake, coiled up, and waiting to strike. The dark presence coiled around him, tightening around his neck and caressing his cheek. It was cool and black, made of a smoky presence that felt suffocating.
Awake at last.
When the pain lessened, and the world slowly swam back into focus, he found Jace’s hand on his arm, dragging him down a street he couldn’t name. Elliot blinked, taking in the gold head in front of him and the way Jace was somehow managing to carry Clary with one hand.
“That’s pretty impressive,” Elliot said, and he felt a small glint of satisfaction in watching Jace startle slightly. “I didn’t think you could carry her with one arm, didn’t realise how much muscle you had there man. Do you go to the gym every day?”
Jace let go of his wrist, but didn’t stop walking. Elliot stumbled before keeping pace. Jace looked over his shoulder at him as he adjusted his hold on Clary to two arms.
“I fight demons every day,” Jace said dryly.
“Demons, right.” Elliot said, looking around at their surroundings. “What happened?”
“Well, after I drew the rune on you, you doubled over and then just went blank.” Jace responded.
“And I followed you?” Elliot asked.
“Well,” Jace said. “I had to drag you along. But we got away.”
Elliot didn’t respond, following after Jace in silence before they paused in front of large iron gates. Elliot looked up and let out a low whistle of appreciation. In front of them was sprawled a massive gothic-cathedral. Huge and impressive, it was daunting in its own way, sending a sensation of foreboding through Elliot’s body.
Jace looked back at him as he opened the gate.
“Nice digs,” Elliot said, gesturing up at the enormous building.
Jace waited for Elliot to enter before shutting the gate behind them. “It’s covered in glamour so the mundanes won’t see it.”
Elliot bit back an ‘I figured.’ It was hard to remember that he was playing an ignorant ‘mundane’ in this situation, especially since he was well versed in most of the Shadow World already. Admittedly, there probably was a large chunk of vital information he was missing, but he knew enough to get by. Elliot followed Jace up the steps to the Institute, slowly but with caution. He kept his eyes on the limp body of his sister, feeling nauseous churn in his gut. She had to be okay, Jace said she would. He knew it wasn’t wise taking a stranger’s word for it, let alone a shadowhunters, but he didn’t have much choice.
As Jace shouldered the doors open, Elliot snuck in behind him, his good eye casting about for potential threats.
“Jace?!” The voice from the hallway made Elliot look up, and immediately swallow.
There was another stranger in the hallway, this one tall, much taller than Jace, with skin as pale as Elliot’s, but a face free of the freckles that covered his own. He had hair as black as a ravens, but stood with his shoulders dropped inwards. But even with an ugly gray sweater eating up his figure, Elliot could see a black rune up the side of his neck. He followed it upwards, following the line of a sharp jaw and cheekbones that could cut diamond. Black hair, blue eyes.
Magnus’ type. Elliot thought, a smile tugging at the corner of his lips.
“Oh Alec, perfect.” Jace said. “I’ve got a mundie who’s been poisoned by a Ravener, where’s Hodge?”
Alec’s lips tightened, gaze sweeping from Jace to Elliot. “Who’s that?” Alec asked.
“Hi,” Elliot said, raising a hand. “My sister killed a demon, I’m just here for the ride.”
“That’s another mundane.” Jace said, and continued walking forward, heading down the hall. “He’s not important.”
Elliot swallowed, and followed behind him. Alec scowled and started walking beside Jace, glancing back at Elliot occasionally.
“What were you thinking?” Alec hissed, his head was bent low to talk to Jace. “You brought two mundanes into the Institute, Hodge won’t be happy… Is that the mundane from Pandemonium?”
Jace said something back, but he was much better at whispering than Alec was, and Elliot couldn’t quite pick up the words they said. Alec pushed the door open, holding it open for Jace, but then letting it go for Elliot. Elliot managed to dash forward and squeeze through the gap before the door closed, muttering “Jerk.” Under his breath as he entered the infirmary.
Alec had disappeared, presumably to go fetch this Hodge character, leaving Elliot to stand awkwardly while Jace lay his sister down on the bed. Elliot shifted on feet, glancing around at the other beds before turning back to see Jace stripping Clary from her clothing.
Elliot felt his face turn bright red. “What are you doing?” He squeaked, pushing Jace’s hands off of his sister.
Jace looked up at him, “Changing her out of her clothes.”
Elliot flushed, “Let me do that, she’s my sister. You go get her clothes or something.”
Jace said nothing, but turned away, leaving Elliot to take Clary’s clothes off. He did it as gently as he could, easing her out of her clothes while trying to keep her as covered as possible. He tugged the sheet around the bed closed slightly, and grabbed the hospital gown from Jace before he could try change his sister in that too. By the time he was done, Elliot peaked out from behind the curtain to find a tall man, Hodge he guessed, with black graying hair. He was talking to Jace and Alec, with another girl present. She held a remarkable resemblance to Alec, the same black hair and pale skin, similar bone structure too, which led Elliot to believe that they were siblings. But it wasn’t any of the people who caught his attention, mainly the huge raven perched on Hodge’s shoulder. The raven cocked its head, in the way that birds do, and looked at him, in a way that birds definitely didn’t do.
Hodge seemed to notice the bird’s change of interest, and glanced up, grey eye meeting his own green one. Elliot felt his stomach plummet as he realised he was alone in a mansion with nobody he knew besides Clary, who was unconscious and possibly dying.
It took a moment for Elliot to realise that all five of them were staring at him, if he included the bird. Awkwardly he stepped out from behind the curtain and dragged a hand through his tousled curls.
“Er- My sister isn’t dying anymore is she?” Elliot asked. “Because all blond-bimbo did there was slather some paste on her neck.”
“Blond-bimbo?” The girl echoed, a smirk on her face. “I like this mundane.”
Alec scowled, “Izzy,” He warned, and she shrugged.
Hodge simply smiled, “Your sister will be fine, I’m going to tend to her for now, Isabelle, Alec and Jace will show you to room you can stay in.”
Elliot forced a smile. “Okay, cool. Thanks.” And he scampered past Hodge, who was heading towards Clary, and paused in front of the three of them.
All three of them were shadowhunters, and he was probably roughly the same height as Izzy, if she didn’t have heels on.
He stared awkwardly at the three of them. “So, room?”
“That’s it?” Izzy asked. “You don’t have any questions?”
Elliot blinked. “Well I kind of already guessed that you are all demon hunters or something,”
“Shadowhunters.” Alec corrected, turning away to head out the door, Jace by his side.
Elliot followed, hands shoved into his jean pockets. “Right, if you wanted the curious twin you probably should’ve saved Clary.”
Jace glanced back at him, “Why didn’t you?”
Elliot scowled. “I think I did pretty well, for a guy who just had his Mother kidnapped and sister attacked by a demon.” He pursed his lips. “I stabbed it in the head with a kitchen knife.”
Alec snorted, “Normal weapons don’t work against demons.”
Elliot glanced up at him. “Well golly, if I had gone to shadowhunter private school maybe I would’ve known that.”
Alec looked scandalized, and his gaze shifted to Jace who was at the lead as if looking for support.
“You can sleep here,” Jace said, pushing open the door to a random room. Elliot squeezed past Alec to peek inside.
“Thanks.” He said, stepping into the room and looking around. It was rather plain, with nothing more than a bed and nightstand, there was a dresser in one corner too, with a mirror attached above it.
When he looked back only Isabelle was left, looking at him with dark eyes.
“Did you really stab a demon with a kitchen knife?” She asked.
Elliot smiled. “Yep.”
She nodded before disappearing, the heels of her shoes clicking against the floor as she went. Elliot swallowed, moving to shut the door to his room before wandering over to the bed. He kicked his shoes off and fell face first on it. Almost without thinking, he fell asleep, engulfed by exhaustion and the worries of the day plunging him to sleep.