Title: Jace Morgenstern's Unlucky Streak
Sequel to: Jace Wayland's Unstealthy Stalking
Characters: Chloe/Jace, Lois, Clark, Magnus/Alec, Jocelyn, Luke, Isabelle, others...
Disclaimer: Don't own
Summary: Chloe is settling into life as the last Wayland. Lois is training. Jace is highly annoyed with Lois and Jocelyn, who tend to interrupt him and Chloe when he least wants them to. But with Valentine still loose, the Inquisitor breathing down their necks, and an unexpected arrival, they all have more important things to worry about.
To say the Inquisitor wasn't happy was an understatement.
She'd not only lost the holy relic within an hour of sending her to Idris, but she'd had to (temporarily) set free someone who she was sure was working along with Valentine Morgenstern. If he, and the others, were not back within the hour she would deem them all traitors, as well as the friends they'd left behind. The Clave wasn't too sure about the Lightwoods anyway, not after what had happened with Starkweather. He'd lived in the same Institute as them for years. If he'd been working for Valentine Morgenstern all this time it was reasonable enough to assume that they had as well - and had only managed to hide it better.
Lois Laneara would've been easily corrupted by the influences around her. She'd been taken by Valentine so obviously there was some importance in her, and she could very well have joined his cause while with him in Idris. She had also been seen in Jonathan Morgsentern's presence many times, and to Imogen Jace was as guilty as his father. She'd seen the same arrogance in his golden orbs as she had in his father, and she knew without a doubt that there was darkness in that boy. It was far too convenient that his father had killed the Silent Brothers and yet spared him - all while taking the one thing that could prove Jonathan's corruption. She knew that the Clave would see things her way as well.
Jocelyn? Well, Imogen could think up reasons why to distrust the redhead. One of them was the fact that her son was now alive, the son she'd thought dead, and she was with him. She'd defended him to Imogen. It meant that, despite her outwards appearance she cared about what happened to the boy. And once she'd loved Morgenstern, had been right there with him in the first rebellion.
The hardest to pin down was the Downworlder, Lucian Grayback.
As a Downworlder there was no possible reason as to why the werewolf would join Valentine's force. If he won, Valentine would eradicate every Downworlder out there. There was no plausible explanation for Lucian being a part of the rebels.
There was a knock on the door and she looked up. "Come in."
Maryse Lightwood appeared in the door. "They have returned with the girl."
Imogen was somewhat shocked. She'd had the edict to call for their capture and arrest already penned and ready to send. "I see." She stood from her desk. "Where are they now?"
"In the medical wing." Maryse clasped her hands behind her back. "The girl swears she is fine but we wanted to look over her ourselves after the report of blood."
"Of course." Imogen pushed passed Maryse into the hallway and made her way towards the medical wing. She could feel the Lightwood behind her and kept her Seraph Blade at the ready in case this was an ambush and the woman sought to attack her from behind. But they made it to the medical wing to find the girl being tended to by... "Magnus Bane? Whatever are you doing here?"
The High Warlock merely eyed her before he returned to examining the girl. "Never trust the Fae not to do something dastardly under the guise of benevolence." He pushed the girl's head back and stared into her eyes. "You look fine." His hand clasped over hers, which had a ring on it. "I'll need to look a little further into that for you, but for now I can pronounce a clear bill of health."
"Thank you," she whispered to him.
"We have our own healers, why was the Downworlder called?" Imogen turned to Maryse.
"Because I trust him." That was from Chloe, the blonde's glare on Imogen as she pushed off of the bed she'd been sitting on. "That's more than I can say about anyone from the Clave."
This girl's impertinence was outstanding. She didn't seem to realize that if she didn't hold such an important spiritual significance to the Clave, and Shadowhunters as a whole, (and if she hadn't been cleared by the Sword) she would be in the same boat as the rest of these waywards. She should be grateful to the Clave for all that they were able, and most definitely willing, to do for her. But she wasn't grateful. No. In fact, Imogen could see great resentment and dislike in those green eyes.
Valentine, and his accomplices, had done a good job indoctrinating her against the Clave.
"You will be sent back to Idris, immediately." She needed to get the girl away from these people and their influence on her.
"She's not going anywhere." That was Jonathan Morgenstern, once more his rebellious nature forefront.
"You have no say in this," she hissed, was unable to even look at him.
"Jonathan's right." Jocelyn Morgenstern was showing her colors more and more as Imogen observed her. "She was already taken once in Idris. She's not safe there."
"She's not safe here either." Imogen let her gaze rest in condemnation on the golden-haired devil in their midst. "Guards, take him back to his cell."
"Take us both." Chloe moved forwards and grabbed Jonathan Morgenstern's hand. "I'm going with him."
"You are not." If the Clave found out that she'd placed their precious relic in a cell under the City of Bones – especially after it had already been broken into and the Silent Brothers massacred – they'd have her head. "I will do no such thing! It isn't safe there!"
"If it isn't safe for me, then it isn't safe for Jace." The girl was steadfast, ferocious like a lioness.
"He is a different case, he needs to be watched, detained." Imogen narrowed her eyes on the girl. "There is no other place than the dungeons of the Silent City to keep him."
"That's not particularly true," Magnus Bane flicked an imaginary speck of dust from his shirt. "It wouldn't be the first time that the Clave has used my services to detain one of their own pending trial."
A muscle jumped in Imogen's cheek. She didn't like Magnus Bane. He'd never known his place. He never would, either. "There's no need for that. Jonathan Morgenstern will be detained in the dungeons."
"We both will," the girl insisted. "Where he goes, I go."
Jonathan's expression went tender, something the blonde girl failed to notice as she glared rebelliously at Imogen.
"Inquisitor, please." Maryse Lightwood moved forwards. "Jace has proven that he won't flee. He could've easily taken off after recuperating Chloe – he could've taken her to his father if that was what he was really intent on doing – but he didn't. He brought her back here. As promised." She cleared her throat. "I know that he has not been cleared of his charges, but surely his actions merit some sort of reward."
"We don't reward the guilty," Imogen snapped.
"He's innocent until proven otherwise." Jocelyn raised her chin. "And Magnus is good for his word."
"Especially if I'm getting paid for it," Magnus put in with total seriousness. "I can assure the Clave that Chloe is protected, and Morgenstern unable to leave."
Chloe looked conflicted. She visibly didn't like the idea of Valentine's spawn detained in any manner. But this was obviously a much better alternative to being incarcerated in the dungeons.
A muscle jumped in Imogen's cheek. She felt like she was being ganged upon by everyone and she'd let the Clave know this posthaste. But they had a point (no matter how much she hated to admit it) when they said that the girl had already been taken from right under the Clave's nose in Idris. Also, the Downworlder had been used in the past to detain suspects. He also had no reason to help Valentine Morgenstern, had had run-ins with the Circle and had helped bring them down. No one trusted Downworlders much, but they had seen Magnus' results, no matter how unorthodox his methods.
If he was being paid, Magnus Bane could be trusted to do his job.
It took all of her self-control to keep calm as she spoke. "Magnus Bane, you are charged with the detention of Jonathan Morgenstern, pending trial, and the protection of Chloe Wayland, until further notice." She moved towards the Warlock. "Should you allow Jonathan Morgenstern to leave your hold, or should anything happen to Chloe Wayland, you will be branded a traitor and viewed as in violation of the Alliance. Is that clear?"
Magnus merely smiled at her. "Let's go talk figures."
Keep calm. She had to keep calm! "Of course."
So, Chloe was back safe and sound, and was being kept (alongside Johnathan Morgenstern) at the Warlock's place with Lois. This was intriguing. It meant that the Inquisitor's hands had been tied, otherwise Lucy doubted that she would've allowed Chloe to stay here. Her contacts said that Chloe had escaped Idris, and that there were rumors of someone working with Valentine in the capitol, and that there'd been blood involved.
Chloe looked fine, but Lucy knew the wonders of the Iratze. Something big was going on, and not only was Jonathan Morgenstern obviously a prime suspect, but Chloe was a prize in this game.
Lucy didn't like this.
"Dios, this place stinks."
She raised an eyebrow and turned towards the deceptively young looking man behind her. "Raphael, good of you to finally join me."
The vampire joined her at the corner and eyed the house. "Any reason why you're stalking Magnus Bane's place?"
She rolled her eyes. "It's called reconnaissance." She cleared her throat. "It doesn't matter why I'm here." She licked her lips. "Do you have any news for me?"
Raphael folded his arms over his chest. "We're mobilizing our clans, making sure they stay together and don't call any attention to themselves." He narrowed his eyes. "Do you really think that one of us will be taken next?"
"One Warlock, one Werewolf cub, and one Fae child." She nodded. "There will be an attempt on a Vampire - most probably a newborn. It's your job to make sure it's very hard for Valentine to get any – and that if he does – your people are there to stop him." She raised an eyebrow. "But you can't kill him. He has to be brought to me alive."
"You ask a lot, chica. I make no promises that that pendejo will be alive when we give him to you." Raphael turned, shoved his hands into his pockets, and left.
Leaning in the darkness, Lucy sighed and turned her gaze back to the house. She was going to have to go visit her sister and get more information on exactly what was going on.
"How can you live in this mess?" Jace stared at Magnus and Lois in horror as he took in the state that the apartment was in. He'd only come here once, the night of the party, and he'd figured it was messy because, well, it was a Downworlder party – and yet it looked worse right now than it had then. Every instinct within him screamed that he pick up the discarded clothes all over the house and burn them. Washing them wouldn't be able to remove the stench of weeks-old dirty laundry. Not to him at least.
"It's not that messy." Lois plopped herself down on the sofa next to Clark and Isabelle. "I think it's homey."
"Here here." Magnus appeared in the doorway, changed out of his clothes and wearing a sequined house-robe. Jace desperately hoped the Warlock was wearing something else under it. "Now, you two can have the upstairs room at the far end of the corner. You can clean that up as much as you want."
"How much cleaning does it need?" Jace narrowed his eyes.
"We're sharing a room?" Chloe's voice was soft, her eyes wide, face scarlet.
In his cleaning-fueled mind Jace had someone managed to miss that part. He straightened and did his best not to grin. This whole house-arrest thing was looking better and better by the minute!
Alec shifted uncomfortably as he cleared his throat. "Uh, I don't know if the Inquisitor will approve of that, I mean, I think she meant for you to keep them in two separate rooms."
Magnus gave the boy an easy smile. "She wants me to keep an eye on the both of them; it's much easier for me to do if they're close to each other. And anyway, she never specified in our rules and conditions that they had to be kept in separate rooms."
Alec opened his mouth.
Magnus didn't allow him to speak. "And anyway, we have more pressing matters to think of right now."
"Like what Valentine is after," Clark agreed, although he looked a little uncomfortable at the thought of Jace and Chloe sharing a room.
"Exactly." Magnus grinned at Clark. "So, you're cute and smart."
Clark went scarlet, eyes wide as he began to stutter. "I-I-I w-wouldn't say c-cute!"
A muscle jumped in Alec's cheek. "I'm sure there was a point, there, Magnus."
Isabelle stared between them all with evil glee, as did Lois.
Chloe smiled softly at the Warlock and Shadowhunter.
Jace wondered if they all truly thought he didn't sense the undercurrent to the whole Alec and Magnus thing. Magnus had flirted a storm with Alec the whole night of the party, and while Jace's mind had been on Chloe at that time, he definitely hadn't missed how his Parabatai had blushed and stuttered and generally acted tongue-tied. Of course, there was the fact that at the time Magnus had only been wearing a tuxedo shirt and brief shorts, and that would leave anyone completely off-kilter, but he'd sensed something about those two and still sensed it now.
Plus, Alec went out now. Alone. Alec never used to go out. Especially not alone. Jace could only guess where Alec was going, and he was merely waiting for his Parabatai to tell him himself. He wouldn't force Alec to do so. Alec needed to come out and tell him himself, to trust Jace not to care about the damned Clave and their damned rules or old-fashioned views. He wanted Alex to trust Jace to accept him as he was, for who he was, no matter who Alec got freaky with… Even if it was with a weirdo like Magnus Bane.
"So what is the pressing issue?" Chloe finally spoke as she slipped her arms around Jace's body and leaned into him, her cheek rested against his heart.
Jace closed his eyes against the feeling of rightness, of belonging with her arms around him and his cradled around her. There was no way that he'd let the Clave take her away. He'd kidnap her and take her to his father if he really felt the Inquisitor was an issue. He'd find a way to handle his father somehow. He would.
"I know what Valentine is up to." Magnus' words caused everyone to turn to look at him in shock. "I'd had my suspicions before, but with the death of the Fae child I know for certain." He took in a deep breath, his usual devil-may-care smile long gone, face now grim. "He is planning on performing the Ritual of Infernal Conversion."
Clark frowned, his previous embarrassment long gone. "What exactly does that mean?"
"It means…" Magnus turned to him. "That Valentine is trying to make the Sword demonically-aligned."
"Why would he do that?" Lois' eyes narrowed.
"Because he can summon and control demons to use for his own ends if he does so," the Warlock explained as he leaned against the wall and folded his arms over his chest. "The only way he can perform this ritual is if he has the blood of Downworlder children from each of the four species."
"If that's so, all he needs is vampire blood." Isabelle narrowed her eyes. "That of a newborn."
Magnus nodded. "I've sent word to my contact in the Metropolis vampire underworld. The best they can do is try to be vigilant, but I know Valentine Morgenstern, and he will get what he is after."
Chloe tightened her grip on Jace.
He rubbed her back, silent. He understood that what his father was doing was wrong, that it even could be seen as cruel, but Jace could understand where his father was coming from and why he was so desperate. Still, to kill children to do this, it left him cold. He didn't know how he was supposed to react to this, what he was supposed to think. Then again, Valentine had experimented on his own child in hopes to better him, had created the perfect mate for his son – had made sure that a new, evolved species of Shadowhunter would be born through them. Valentine's methods might be immoral, but deep down inside, Jace could understand them.
And that was why, while he knew that Alec and Isabelle were waiting for him to say something condemning his father, he stayed silent.
She was nervous and knew that it showed. She'd gotten texts from Jocelyn (whom the Inquisitor wasn't allowing to see her) and Luke (who wanted to come and see her, but the Inquisitor also wanted far from her at the moment). She let them both know she was fine, and hoped that things would be fixed so she could see them both soon. Given the fact that her mother was being controlled by a monster, and the man who'd raised her still wasn't talking to her, Jocelyn and Luke were her de facto parents, and she hadn't realized just how used to that she'd gotten during the last couple of months.
This was the Inquisitor's fault. She'd told the Lightwoods to stay away from Magnus' (something Alec did not seem all that happy about), and Clark was going to be interrogated, as a Mundane who shouldn't know about the Shadow World and yet did. Lois was also up for questioning. Both would head out tomorrow (after school) and Chloe didn't trust the methods the Inquisitor might use considering the Sword was gone.
"Hey." Jace closed the door behind him, his hair wet from his bath. He'd changed into shorts and a sleeveless shirt which did nothing to hide his amazing, tattooed arms.
"Hey." In comparison, in her overly large t-shirt and shorts, Chloe felt highly unattractive as she squirmed on the bed.
Jace cleared his throat as he ventured into the room and then threw himself on the bed. "Jocelyn must be walking a worn path at the apartment at the thought of you and I staying under the same roof without her supervision."
Chloe smiled because she could imagine the redhead doing that. "She also knows that Magnus is no sort of chaperone."
"Unless he's being paid to guard your virtue," Jace snarked.
Chloe laughed while she blushed and laid down next to him, gaze up on the ceiling. "I think she's probably kicking herself now for not having thought of that."
Jace reached out and placed his hand on hers, entwining their fingers silently.
Chloe closed her eyes and enjoyed the warmth of his hand.
"I don't like that you can't take this ring off," his voice was soft as his thumb traced the fairy token. "I don't know what the Queen is up to, but I don't trust her. I don't trust anyone. Not with you."
Opening her eyes, Chloe turned to look at him. "There's nothing we can do about it for now. Magnus needs to research it, make sure that it doesn't hurt me to take it off magically." She took in a deep breath and lowered her gaze to it. "I saw Valentine."
Jace froze. "When?"
"Before you entered the room in the Fae Realm. That was the vision I had - the reason why I had a nosebleed." She licked her lips. "It was as if I was someone else, who was trapped in a cage, and Valentine was there. It was horrible."
"Why are you having visions again?" Jace sat up immediately.
She lifted the hand. "I think it's tied to the ring, I think it's the reason she gave it to me in the first place. She said that this wasn't the first time Valentine had taken a Fae. Maybe she's trying to use my visions to track him down."
"At the expense of your health." Jace's face was stormy. "Damned Downworlder-!"
"Jace." She reached up and cupped his face. "I'm fine for now. Magnus will figure out how to get this ring off without hurting me." She hesitated before continuing. "But I do want to use it to track down Valentine. If he's hurting children I can't just stay here doing nothing – not if I can help save them." She bit down on her bottom lip. "When you saw him in the dungeons, did he say anything to you about where he could be? We need to help everyone bring him in, Jace."
He stared at her in silence before he lowered his gaze. "He just said that it was my fault you were taken, and that he was leaving me in the dungeons or everyone would think that I helped him. In his own way, he tried to protect me."
Staring into his face, Chloe appreciated just how hard this had to be for Jace. He still wouldn't speak to his mother, and his father was a raving psychopath who loved Jace in his own deranged way. She had a feeling that Jace wouldn't have left Idris if it hadn't been for that odd jealousy Jace had admitted to Lois about feeling towards his father. She wondered, many times, if he didn't regret their quick departure, if maybe he didn't resent her somewhat for it.
Thoughts like that worried and kept her up at night.
"It's been a rough day," Jace said and threw himself down, arms out towards her. "Let's get some rest."
Staring down at him, Chloe smiled softly and pressed a kiss to his lips before she snuggled into his embrace, her cheek pressed against his heart. With his arms wrapped around her, and his cheek rested against the top of her head, their legs entwined, Chloe felt at one with Jace, and at peace. The sound of his steady heartbeat swiftly lulled her into sleep, and as her eyes blinked closed, she realized that none of the crazy things around them mattered. What mattered was that the people she loved were alive and safe, and that she was in Jace's arms.
As long as she was there, nothing bad could ever happen to her.