Jace picked up the laundry basket full of clothes, sighing as he balanced it on his hip. He hadn’t been out of the house since that…incident at Taki’s. Clary was going stir crazy and driving everyone up a wall. Not to mention, she had absolutely no domestic abilities whatsoever. She was-to put it mildly-a mess. Or at least she didn’t mind living in a mess. Which, coincidentally, drove Jace up a wall.
He’d never had an actual relationship before. But as of two weeks, three days, eleven hours and thirty seven minutes ago-that’s what they’d decided was going on. And he’d been floating on a cloud ever since-except for her mess. That was driving him batty.
The huge ringing gong of a doorbell sounded and he sighed yet again. Alec and Izzy were out doing-something. And his parents and Max were in Alicante for some Clave business with Jocelyn. Hodge was shut up in his suite of rooms like always and there was no hope of him moving in the next century. And Clary was sleeping.
He lugged the basket down the hall and dropped it outside the elevator, stepping in and leaning against the back wall as he descended. He stalked across the cathedral, checking the video monitor quickly before rolling his eyes and yanking the door open.
“Hey Luke. What’s up?”
The werewolf stepped inside quickly, slapping palms with the younger man as they both began walking back through the church.
“How is everything? You two doing alright?”
Jace raised a sardonic eyebrow. “You’re her dad. And you really want to hear about how our relationship is going?”
Luke ran a hand through his hair restlessly as they stepped inside the elevator. “She’s not my daughter. She’s just-”
“Luke. Really. She’s your daughter. She always refers to you as her dad. And you’re the most important person in her life.”
“Thanks.” Luke smiled weakly. “It’s just hard. I’ve raised her for the last twenty years and it just feels…it feels like I’m losing her.”
Jace’s expression fell into a frown as the elevator jerked to a stop.
“No! Not from you. It just-it feels like something bad is right on the horizon. And this feeling gets stronger every single day.”
Jace nodded slowly, bending to pick up the laundry basket. He balanced it on his hip once again as he nodded for Luke to follow him.
“I know what you mean. Ever since Valentine popped up…”
“So. Where’s she at? I wanted to talk to her about her birthday next week.”
Jace’s body jerked around so hard the laundry slipped out of his hand, the basket landing heavily on his foot.
“Shit!” He hopped in place for a moment, muttering under his breath as Luke chuckled lowly. “She’s sleeping. She’s been dragging me to the training room every day and she won’t let me out until she’s exhausted.”
“Oh, well it’s no big deal. I’ll just-talk to her later then. Yeah…I actually-uh, need to-get back…to the shop…yeah.”
Jace’s brow furrowed. “Nah man, it’s fine. Come on. Besides now I need your help. A certain fiery redhead neglected to tell me about this birthday of hers and now I need to figure something out.”
Luke grinned, his face lighting up and making him look decades younger.
“That sounds just like her.”
Jace nodded, shuffling the basket to hold with one hand as he gripped the doorknob of Clary’s room, pushing it open without fanfare.
He stepped inside, dropping the basket just inside the door and grabbing an empty trash bag he’d placed there earlier. Shaking his head he padded softly to the bed, pulling the sheet higher up around Clary’s waist before placing a soft kiss to her forehead. Then he straightened, shaking out the trash bag loudly as he rolled his eyes at the chaos around him.
“So, what did you have in mind? Do you usually have parties for her?” Jace paused, scooping up an armload of empty water bottles on the side of her bed. “Well, no probably not, huh? I mean, being in hiding and everything.”
He scooped another armful, bending to check under the bed and rolling his eyes as he reached an arm as far back as he could to get the stray plastic.
“I think maybe a small party would be nice, since she’s never had one, right?”
Jace glanced back to Luke, his eyebrows coming down heavily as he caught sight of the werewolf standing frozen in the doorway. His hands were braced on the doorframe, his fingers going white from the tight grip he had on the wood. The odd look of fascinated horror on his face confused Jace who glanced at himself, then at Clary, then back to himself. They were both fully clothed, nothing was out of place-well, more than the normal mess-and Clary was asleep, so there was no chance of her overhearing them.
“You-she…you-uh-” He gulped, his eyes wide and unblinking as he took in the sight of his daughter’s boyfriend kneeling next to the bed.
Jace stood, coming to stand beside him as he rested a hand on Luke’s shoulder.
“Seriously, are you okay?”
“She’s not waking up.”
Jace blinked. “Yeah, no. She’s a heavy sleeper. She never wakes up.”
Luke’s mouth fell open, a sharp exhale escaping as his eyebrows rose. “That’s not-no, she’s really really not a heavy sleeper.”
Now Jace crossed his arms over his chest, his lips pursed as he glanced back toward the bed. “I’m confused. What?”
Luke sighed, his hand dragging through his messy dark hair again. “Just-watch.”
He stepped carefully into the room, treading as lightly as possible for a nearly 200 lbs werewolf. On his third step, his foot nudged a comic book strewn across a pile of colored pencils and Clary bolted upright in bed, her head whipping around, a dagger clenched in her fist.
Jace gasped, darting to her side.
“Jace?” Her eyes blinked as she shook her head slightly. She glanced around sleepily. “Luke?”
“It’s fine, Clare-Bear. Go back to sleep.” Clary nodded blearily, sinking back into the mattress as Jace pressed a gentle kiss to her lips. She smiled slightly as her hand came up to stroke his mane of golden hair as he tugged the dagger out of her other hand gently.
Luke backed up slowly, retreating to the hallway as Jace sat on the bed, stroking her hair back from her forehead for a few minutes until he was positive she was completely out.
Then he crept quietly to the door, pulling it shut behind him as he faced her father.
“But, why?” Jace motioned down to the kitchen, his socks slipping slightly on the hardwood floors.
Luke’s boot clomped heavily as he followed, his hands in his pockets.
“I trained her to always be aware. She can tell you the story about the whys. But she’s always seemed to sleep with one eye open. I could barely move at night without waking her up.”
“But, why? Why can I be around her? Why can I make as much noise as humanly possible and she stays asleep?”
Luke grinned toothily, his eyes sparkling handsomely. “Isn’t it obvious?”
“I’m really sick of people saying that. Would I have asked if I understood?”
Luke hands landed heavily on his shoulders, stopping him on his way to the fridge. “She trusts you. It’s as simple as that. She feels safe around you.”
Jace blinked in surprise, his mouth twisting into a small smile as he contemplated Luke’s words. He pulled away gently, rubbing a hand over his mouth as he yanked the fridge open.
“So.” He said, pulling a bottle of water out, tossing one over his shoulder to Luke as well. “What are we doing for her birthday?”
x . x . x . x . x
“Jace, that really wasn’t necessary.” Clary giggled as she rubbed her stomach. The to go box was clutched tightly in her hand as her other twined with her boyfriend’s.
“Of course it was. It’s not everyday your girlfriend turns 21.” He smiled brightly down at her, smirking at her incredibly wild hair. The wind certainly wasn’t helping with that.
“And you were just clamoring to get me out of the Institute.” He shrugged unapologetically, his eyes glancing furtively around. “Hey. Chill. This was great. We’re perfectly safe. Alec and Izzy are the best, right?”
Her eyebrows wiggled as Jace blanched. He smiled sheepishly once he’d recovered, ducking his head to hide in her hair. His arms came around her waist and he lifted her slightly in a hug.
“Don’t be. It gave you peace of mind, right?” He nodded. “Then I don’t mind.”
They continued their trek through the cool autumn wind as they wound their way back home, sticking resolutely to the main roadways and avoiding all alleys. They didn’t want to present Valentine with any chances to get to them.
They laughed as they walked, their arms winding around each other’s waist, Jace’s fingers tickling lightly at her side. Clary shrieked, darting away, glancing happily over her shoulder as Jace ran after her.
They played all the way home, stumbling into the sanctuary wrapped up in each other. Getting impatient, Jace scooped up her tiny body, her legs coming up to wrap around his waist as he tripped down the aisle. Her fingers wound into his blond hair, twisting the strands gently as her mouth descended on his neck, nibbling and tonguing at the sensitive skin there. He moaned low in his throat, his hands gripping her hips tightly as he leaned toward the elevator call, pressing blindly with his elbow.
The duo stumbled back into the elevator, the door sliding shut behind them as Jace pressed her against the back wall. His hips ground against hers, his mouth crushing hers in a bruising kiss, his tongue darting out to lick at the seam of her lips. The to go box dropped noisily on the floor as it slipped out of her hand, probably spilling pasta everywhere, but neither cared enough to look.
She sighed, opening gladly as their tongues tangled, her nails raking down his back.
“God Clary!” Jace yanked back, panting to catch his breath, his head thrown back in bliss as Clary’s lips traveled down his jaw, nibbling lightly at the stubble just showing.
“Jace-god! Ah, right there!” Her head bounced against the back of the metal car, her eyes squeezing shut as Jace’s hips twisted against hers in a delicious way.
The elevator ground to a stop as Jace captured her lips again with his own, spinning them as the door creaked open-
His hands went slack and Clary’s legs slipped down his body as their lips tore apart, her eyes wide as she caught sight of the assembled group in the hallway-apparently waiting for them.
Her face flushed scarlet as she ducked behind Jace. “Did you do this?!?”
Jace glanced over his shoulder, a smirk settled solidly on his gorgeous face. “Well, I may have forgotten it when you attacked me downstairs. Sorry.”
Luke groaned, his hands clapping over his ears as Alec, Isabelle and Magnus laughed hysterically. Jocelyn glared at Jace who glared right back, not willing to let her ruin Clary’s night. Robert and Maryse seemed entirely unsurprised and didn’t seem to care, though Max’s eyes were covered gently by Maryse’s hand. Robert smirked at his adopted son, stepping forward to pull Clary from behind him.
“Happy birthday girlie!”
Clary grinned, her arms wrapping loosely around his neck as he lifted her off her feet.
Maryse stepped forward, folding her into a hug as Robert set her down. “Come on, we’ve got the party set up in the library.”
Max darted forward to grab Clary’s hand, tugging her with all his weight. She stumbled after him, laughing as she glanced over her shoulder to Jace, who’s smile threatened to crack his face. Robert slapped him on the shoulder as they began following, leading the rest of the group down the hall.
x . x . x . x . x
Clary’s arms wound their way around Jace’s waist from behind, her fingers linking across his stomach as her head rested against his back. He continued his conversation with Alec and Luke as he pulled her around, wrapping his arms around her waist as she rested against his chest. He pressed a soft kiss to the top of her head and she sighed happily.
She pulled back, glancing down at Max’s bright face as Luke ruffled his hair.
“Here. Izzy said you needed a drink.” He held up a glass, heavily decorated with glitter pen spelling ‘Birthday Girl’ and Clary giggled.
“Of course she did. Thanks dude.” She bent slightly to pressed a kiss to his head and he beamed, dashing off as his glasses slid even further down his nose.
Clary held the glass out, smirking as she took in every glitter coated inch.
Alec snorted. “Maybe Magnus helped her.”
Luke and Jace chuckled as Clary raised the glass to her lips, sipping the cool liquid inside. Her eyebrows came down as the taste washed over her tongue.
“Damn, that’s good!” She slurped noisily as she drained the glass, much to Jace’s amusement.
Luke reached forward, tugging her into a hug, whispering quietly into her ear as the two younger men moved a few feet away.
A moment later, Clary returned to Jace’s arms, snuggling back into his chest with a contented purr.
“Come, lover. It’s time for us to…abed.”
Alec snorted at Magnus’ dramatic and badly accented entrance. “I don’t think that’s how it goes. Shakespeare’s rolling in his grave.”
Clary snorted. “Oh Billy Boy’s probably safe. Didn’t you say something about meeting him once?”
Magnus waggled his eyebrows as he gripped Alec’s hand tightly as he towed him toward the door. “Yup I did. And now we’re going to reenact Romeo and Julius.”
Jace groaned, dropping his forehead to Clary’s shoulder as she giggled again. “Didn’t need to know, Magnus!”
Isabelle chuckled as she clicked after her brother, waving shortly over her shoulder. Clary glanced behind her, her neck craning to see her boyfriend’s face.
“Bed?” He waggled his eyebrows at her words and she snorted.
“I think that’s the best idea you’ve had in ages, darling!”
With a quick glance around the library and seeing nobody paying them any attention, except for Jocelyn who’d been glaring at them the entire night, he dragged her quickly out of the library and down the hall to his room.
He pushed her against the door, his lips descending on hers once again. They ground against each other as his hand scrabbled for the door knob, pushing the door inward as he supported her ass with his other hand.
They tumbled into the darkness, Jace directing them to where he knew the bed was. He landed on top of her, cushioning her head with his hand as his lips once again found hers.
They tossed and turned on the bed, the covers tangling around their legs as her hands frantically pulled at his shirt. He smirked against her lips as he tore the thing off, scattering buttons to all corners of the room. Her hands traveled his smooth chest, her fingers tracing intricate patterns on his skin between the dark runes.
His fingers inched her dress up her thighs and she lifted her ass, helping him along. The soft cotton slid easily against her skin as he gently worked it up her body, his eyes glowing as they took in more of her supple skin.
The black lace covering her made him groan as his hands skimmed down her sides, his lips attacking her collarbone. She gasped in a shaky breath, her hands running through his hair as his tongue laved at her, moving lower and lower with every pass.
But then her hands were tugging, not caressing. She was panting, but in a heavy way that immediately broke through the haze of lust clouding his vision.
And as his tawny eyes raised to her wide emerald ones, his heart froze in his chest, terror gripping him as he saw the blue tinge creeping across her skin.