In a Mirror Darkly

Author's Note: This is not a happy fic. In 2x20 it seems as if Jace is going to try and hide whatever is going on with him (i.e. possibly the dark bond with Jonathan/Sebastian), so this is my rather twisted (and smutty) attempt to explain why Alec might not notice the change in their parabatai bond until it's too late. I apologize in advance.

***

Something was wrong with Jace. Alec could feel it, had felt it ever since the horrifying minutes during which part of his soul had suddenly gone dark. Yes, the rune had reappeared miraculously, and Jace had been there again, in his arms and in his heart, gloriously alive. Yet something was wrong, and Alec had no idea how to fix it.

When he asked Jace, all he got was a sincere smile and an assurance that everything was alright, which only soothed his worries for a little while. Then he began to wonder if the change in his parabatai could be explained by Jace finally allowing himself to be in love for the first time, only for Clary to seek him out with concern in her eyes. He gave her a vaguely reassuring answer that sounded weak even in his own ears and sought out Jace the next chance he got, cutting him off in a dark alley a few blocks from the Institute, on his way to Angel knew where.

"I need you to tell me what's going on, Jace," he half-begged, trying to get through to his parabatai, who was watching him with hooded eyes. "Talk to me, parabatai."

Jace's jaw twitched, and Alec suddenly had to tamp down on the urge to draw back. With a minute shrug Jace relaxed, smiling carelessly, and the moment passed. If it had been anyone but Jace Alec would have bet anything that he'd been about to be attacked, but as it was he told himself that he was being ridiculous. Then he backed up for an entirely different reason, because Jace was stalking up to him in a way that made him feel like prey. "Jace, what are you doing?"

His back hit the wall, but Jace didn't stop until he was right in his face, eyes sparkling dangerously in a way that made Alec's stomach twist uncomfortably. A part of him wanted to run, but the other, bigger part of him was frozen in place, goosebumps dancing over his skin as Jace asked in a low, intimate voice, "What if I don't want to talk?"

Alec stared down at him wide-eyed, his mind refusing to accept that this was really happening. For years he'd dreamed of Jace looking at him like this, full of desire, pupils blown with want, but now that it was happening it was all wrong. He was about to say so, but then Jace's lips were on his and he was lost.

Jace's mouth was hot and insistent, his hands already worming their way under Alec's sweater, leaving trails of fire wherever they touched, and Alec groaned, fingers twisting into the back of Jace's shirt. He couldn't think, his entire world consisted of Jace and the feeling of his body rocking against his, hard and demanding and driving away any idea he might have had of stopping.

They were in a dark, dank alley, but Alec didn't care, not when Jace's nimble fingers were unbuttoning his jeans and sliding inside without hesitation. His breath caught on what was almost a whine, and he bucked into Jace's touch, hands scrambling for purchase against Jace's shoulders. His parabatai's grin was full of filthy promises as he dropped gracefully to his knees, and then his mouth was hot and wet on Alec, swallowing him with a hunger that had Alec begging for "more, please, fuck, Jace, please!"

Jace actually chuckled around Alec's erection, sending spirals of lust through his every fibre, and complied easily, and if Alec hadn't been teetering on the brink of oblivion he would have wondered when Jace had learned how to suck cock. As it was he was gripping Jace's hair so hard it had to hurt in order to stop himself from thrusting mindlessly, a breathless litany of curses and pleas escaping him, although he usually wasn't very vocal. But then he wasn't usually being blown by his parabatai in an alley, and the thought that someone might stumble upon them and see Alec so completely at Jace's mercy was what made Alec fall apart with a hoarse shout.

Not that Jace needed the warning, since he simply swallowed and held on while Alec trembled and bucked, fingers digging into Alec's thighs and doubtlessly leaving marks. Finally, he released Alec, tucking him back into his pants and getting back to his feet smoothly. Still shaky but slowly regaining his faculties, Alec pulled him into a kiss, tasting himself on Jace's tongue as their mouths slid over each other almost lazily, savoring the moment.

Against his hip Alec could feel Jace's arousal, and without giving himself time to think he quickly unzipped and freed his erection, wrapped his hand around the hard flesh and began to stroke him off. Jace groaned into their kiss and broke away to latch onto Alec's neck, sucking and biting, the sensation straddling the perfect knife's edge between pleasure and pain. He slid his free hand down Jace's shoulders and into the back of his jeans, and when he breached him with the dry tip of a finger Jace rocked into his touch, a sound between laugh and moan escaping him. "Fuck, yes - next time, okay?"

The idea of next time hit Alec like a freight train, his still-foggy brain trying to remind him why there couldn't be a next time. But then Jace's hands slid into his hair, claiming him with another kiss, deep and possessive, and Alec forgot everything except the way Jace felt shaking in his arms and spilling himself over his fist while their tongues slid against each other with a hunger that had been a decade in the making. It left Alec stunned, breathless, while Jace pulled away and easily put his clothing back in order until the flush in his cheeks was the only sign of their activities.

"See, we're more than alright." Leaning in for a quick peck, Jace grinned up at him as if Alec's entire world hadn't just shifted. Before he could find his voice again, his parabatai had disappeared into the night, probably headed to wherever he'd been going before Alec had stopped him. Alec was left staring after him, his heartbeat slowly returning to normal, his head clearing as he tidied himself away with shaking fingers.

Clarity didn't bring peace, however, instead Alec's thoughts were in turmoil, unsettled realization twisting his insides into knots. He'd just had sex with Jace, with his parabatai, who he'd worked so hard to get over, who'd never shown any real sign of being interested in him this way. Except his hand was still sticky with proof of just how interested Jace had been, and Alec let his head thump painfully against the wall that was still holding him up. With the pain came bitter guilt, covering up the taste of Jace still lingering on Alec's lips, images of Magnus, of Clary rising to the forefront. Hunching over, Alec hurried back to the Institute, desperately wanting a shower, hoping against hope that it would wash away his bad conscience along with the grime of their encounter. Jace was wrong - nothing was alright.

However, when Jace appeared in his room the next night, eyes bright, Alec let him in, let him push him down onto the bed, hands and mouth hot and insistent. That night, and many nights that followed, Jace made his body sing, made him forget about the darkness he could feel hovering at the edges of their bond. And no matter how often he resolved to break it off, or to at least come clean to Magnus, who he caught watching him with worried eyes on more than one occasion, he couldn't bring himself to do it. Not when Jace looked at him with so much want and begged him to keep their secret, that they'd be separated if he didn't, "and you don't want that, do you, parabatai?"

Just the idea of losing Jace was enough to fill Alec's veins with icy panic, the memory of Lake Lyn too fresh and painful, and if he detected a false note in Jace's declarations he chalked it up to his own bad conscience, which he could feel like poison in his mind whenever he wasn't losing himself in his parabatai's body. So when Clary asked him again if he was sure that Jace was okay, he shrugged and assured her that nothing was wrong, that Jace was just a bit preoccupied while they hunted down her brother.

The irony of this explanation hit him like a blade to the heart when they finally faced Jonathan, and there, by his side, stood Jace, all deadly determination. Staring at his parabatai, Alec's soul cried out, and he clutched at his side, trying to remember how their bond had felt before, when it had been untainted and the one good thing in Alec's life. Seeing the gesture, Jace smirked and gave him a dirty wink, licking his lips in deliberate cruelty.

Alec's bow fell from numb fingers, and Jace charged.

***

Note: And once again @willowsmarika strikes and creates something utterly gorgeous - and for something I wrote, I can't believe it… I love this so much! The fic is Alec's POV, but I adore the way she included Jace's fucked up relationship with Sebastian, visualizing what I'd only alluded to… <3

Erchomai
Smear your lips in blood
dust your eyelids with stars
Facilis descensus averno

"Alec stared down at him wide-eyed, his mind refusing to accept that this was really happening. For years he'd dreamed of Jace looking at him like this, full of desire, pupils blown with want, but now that it was happening it was all wrong. He was about to say so, but then Jace's lips were on his and he was lost."

For shirasade's In a Mirror Darkly

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