"There you are." Came Alec's voice. "Any update on the mole?"

"Yeah." Replied Sebastian. "Whoever it was is a clever one. Left absolutely no trace. But I've been auditing personnel files. I've found a few Shadowhunters who have a personal stake in wanting Valentine dead. Family members killed, relatives lost to the Circle. All with enough access and clearance to pull it off."

"Send me the list when you're done." He said.

My eyes then fell on a familiar Asian shadowhunter and I grinned. "By the angel."

"Aline." Alec called.

"In the flesh." She said.

"It's been years." Izzy exclaimed, excited. "What are you doing here?"

"I would've given you guys a heads up, but I didn't want to spook my dear cousin." She replied, turning to Sebastian with a knowing look. "Who disappears for half a year only to show up here. Come here, you gorgeous Englishman." She held out her arms for a hug.

Sebastian stepped into her embrace, and I smiled at the sight. I was close with my cousins as well, even though the lot of us were busy.

"It's good to see you, Aline." He said.

A personnel went up to Alec, making him excuse himself from the conversation.

"We were all so worried about you." Aline said. "We thought you were dead."

Sebastian fidgeted awkwardly. "Yeah, I'm really sorry."

My phone suddenly beeped.

Magnus: come to the loft?

I put my phone in my pocket and turned to the group. "Well," I said, "Aline, it was nice to see you again. I have to get to Magnus's. I'll see you in a bit."

I got to Magnus's in no time.

"We're transporting Valentine to Idris." I told him.

The warlock poured himself another drink. "Even more reason to celebrate. We can toast to Valentine's highly anticipated departure."

I plopped onto the couch. Magnus offered me a drink. "Not today, Bane. I have a mission." I sighed. "I know something's wrong. And I'm not leaving til' you tell me." I shrugged.

I'm sure Magnus knew I could be stubborn when I wanted to. He sat on the opposite couch from me, "when I was tortured in Valentine's body, that agony rune made me relive my worst memory." He began. "And now I can't get it out of my head. Every time I close my eyes..." he trailed off.

"Whenever you're ready." I told him.

"Remember I told you how I found my mother dead by her own hand?" He asked and I nodded. "My stepfather found me shortly after. He screamed at me. He called me an abomination. "He was right." He added. "He blamed me for her suicide. He said that she hated herself for giving birth to a monster. So I lashed out. With all the magic I had. I burned him, Amelia. Right where he stood. I murdered my stepfather."

I furrowed my eyebrows. "You were just a boy. You weren't in control of your powers."

Guilt and sorrow shone in my warlock friend's eyes. "Yes, actually, I was." He took a deep breath. "I didn't want you to see me any different."

𝐁𝐎𝐓𝐇 𝐎𝐅 𝐔𝐒 ↠ ALEC LIGHTWOOD Where stories live. Discover now