Tuesday, 11 December 2012

City of Glass - Epilogue

The smoke rose in a lazy spiral, tracing delicate lines of black across the clear air. Jace, alone on the hill overlooking the
cemetery, sat with his elbows on his knees and watched the smoke drift heavenward. The irony wasn’t lost on him: These were his
father’s remains, after all.
He could see the bier from where he was sitting, obscured by smoke and flame, and the small group standing around it. He
recognized Jocelyn’s bright hair from here, and Luke standing beside her, his hand on her back. Jocelyn had her head turned aside,
away from the burning pyre.
Jace could have been one of that group, had he wanted to be. He’d spent the last couple of days in the infirmary, and they’d only
let him out this morning, partly so that he could attend Valentine’s funeral. But he’d gotten halfway to the pyre, a stacked pile of
stripped wood, white as bones, and realized he could go no farther. He’d turned and walked up the hill instead, away from the
mourners’ procession. Luke had called after him, but Jace hadn’t turned.
He’d sat and watched them gather around the bier, watched Patrick Penhallow in his parchment white gear set the flame to the
wood. It was the second time that week he’d watched a body burn, but Max’s had been heartbreakingly small, and Valentine was
a big man—even flat on his back with his arms crossed over his chest, a seraph blade gripped in his fist. His eyes were bound with
white silk, as was the custom. They had done well by him, Jace thought, despite everything.
They hadn’t buried Sebastian. A group of Shadowhunters had gone back to the valley, but they hadn’t found his body—washed
away by the river, they’d told Jace, though he had his doubts.
He had looked for Clary in the crowd around the bier, but she wasn’t there. It had been almost two days now since he’d seen her
last, at the lake, and he missed her with an almost physical sense of something lacking. It wasn’t her fault they hadn’t seen each
other. She’d been worried he wasn’t strong enough to Portal back to Alicante from the lake that night, and she’d turned out to be
right. By the time the first Shadowhunters had reached them, he’d been drifting into a dizzy unconsciousness. He’d woken up the
next day in the city hospital with Magnus Bane staring down at him with an odd expression—it could have been deep concern or
merely curiosity, it was hard to tell with Magnus. Magnus told him that though the Angel had healed Jace physically, it seemed that
his spirit and mind had been exhausted to the point that only rest could heal them. In any event, he felt better now. Just in time for
the funeral.
A wind had come up and was blowing the smoke away from him. In the distance he could see the glimmering towers of Alicante,
their former glory restored. He wasn’t totally sure what he hoped to accomplish by sitting here and watching his father’s body burn,
or what he would say if he were down there among the mourners, speaking their last words to Valentine. You were never really
my father, he might say, or You were the only father I ever knew. Both statements were equally true, no matter how
When he’d first opened his eyes at the lake—knowing, somehow, that he’d been dead, and now wasn’t—all Jace could think
about was Clary, lying a little distance away from him on the bloody sand, her eyes closed. He’d scrambled to her in a near panic,
thinking she might be hurt, or even dead—and when she’d opened her eyes, all he’d been able to think about then was that she
wasn’t. Not until there were others there, helping him to his feet, exclaiming over the scene in amazement, did he see Valentine’s
body lying crumpled near the lake’s edge and feel the force of it like a punch in the stomach. He’d known Valentine was dead—
would have killed him himself—but still, somehow, the sight was painful. Clary had looked at Jace with sad eyes, and he’d known
that even though she’d hated Valentine and had never had any reason not to, she still felt Jace’s loss.
He half-closed his eyes and a flood of images washed across the backs of his eyelids: Valentine picking him up off the grass in a
sweeping hug, Valentine holding him steady in the prow of a boat on a lake, showing him how to balance. And other, darker
memories: Valentine’s hand cracking across the side of his face, a dead falcon, the angel shackled in the Waylands’ cellar.
He looked up. Luke was standing over him, a black silhouette outlined by the sun. He was wearing jeans and a flannel shirt as
usual—no concessionary funeral white for him. “It’s over,” Luke said. “The ceremony. It was brief.”
“I’m sure it was.” Jace dug his fingers into the ground beside him, welcoming the painful scrape of dirt against his fingertips. “Did
anyone say anything?”
“Just the usual words.” Luke eased himself down onto the ground beside Jace, wincing a little. Jace hadn’t asked him what the
battle had been like; he hadn’t really wanted to know. He knew it had been over much quicker than anyone had expected—after
Valentine’s death, the demons he had summoned had fled into the night like so much mist burned off by the sun. But that didn’t
mean there hadn’t been deaths. Valentine’s hadn’t been the only body burned in Alicante these past days.
“And Clary wasn’t—I mean, she didn’t—”
“Come to the funeral? No. She didn’t want to.” Jace could feel Luke looking at him sideways. “You haven’t seen her? Not since—

“No, not since the lake,” Jace said. “This was the first time they let me leave the hospital, and I had to come here.”
“You didn’t have to,” Luke said. “You could have stayed away.”
“I wanted to,” Jace admitted. “Whatever that says about me.”
“Funerals are for the living, Jace, not for the dead. Valentine was more your father than Clary’s, even if you didn’t share blood.
You’re the one who has to say good-bye. You’re the one who will miss him.”
“I didn’t think I was allowed to miss him.”
“You never knew Stephen Herondale,” said Luke. “And you came to Robert Lightwood when you were only barely still a child.
Valentine was the father of your childhood. You should miss him.”
“I keep thinking about Hodge,” Jace said. “Up at the Gard, I kept asking him why he’d never told me what I was—I still thought I
was part demon then—and he kept saying it was because he didn’t know. I just thought he was lying. But now I think he meant it.
He was one of the only people who ever even knew there was a Herondale baby that had lived. When I showed up at the Institute,
he had no idea which of Valentine’s sons I was. The real one or the adopted one. And I could have been either. The demon or the
angel. And the thing is, I don’t think he ever knew, not until he saw Jonathan at the Gard and realized. So he just tried to do his
best by me all those years anyway, until Valentine showed up again. That took a sort of faith—don’t you think?”
“Yes,” Luke said. “I think so.”
“Hodge said he thought maybe upbringing might make a difference, regardless of blood. I just keep thinking—if I’d stayed with
Valentine, if he hadn’t sent me to the Lightwoods, would I have been just like Jonathan? Is that how I’d be now?”
“Does it matter?” said Luke. “You are who you are now for a reason. And if you ask me, I think Valentine sent you to the
Lightwoods because he knew it was the best chance for you. Maybe he had other reasons too. But you can’t get away from the
fact that he sent you to people he knew would love you and raise you with love. It might have been one of the few things he ever
really did for someone else.” He clapped Jace on the shoulder, a gesture so paternal that it almost made Jace smile. “I wouldn’t
forget about that, if I were you.”
Clary, standing and looking out Isabelle’s window, watched smoke stain the sky over Alicante like a smudged hand against a
window. They were burning Valentine today, she knew; burning her father, in the necropolis just outside the gates.
“You know about the celebration tonight, don’t you?” Clary turned to see Isabelle, behind her, holding up two dresses against
herself, one blue and one steel gray. “What do you think I should wear?”
For Isabelle, Clary thought, clothes would always be therapy. “The blue one.”
Isabelle laid the dresses down on the bed. “What are you going to wear? You are going, aren’t you?”
Clary thought of the silver dress at the bottom of Amatis’s chest, the lovely gossamer of it. But Amatis would probably never let her
wear it.
“I don’t know,” she said. “Probably jeans and my green coat.”
“Boring,” Isabelle said. She glanced over at Aline, who was sitting in a chair by the bed, reading. “Don’t you think it’s boring?”
“I think you should let Clary wear what she wants.” Aline didn’t look up from her book. “Besides, it’s not like she’s dressing up for
“She’s dressing up for Jace,” Isabelle said, as if this were obvious. “As well she should.”
Aline looked up, blinking in confusion, then smiled. “Oh, right. I keep forgetting. It must be weird, right, knowing he’s not your
“No,” Clary said firmly. “Thinking he was my brother was weird. This feels—right.” She looked back toward the window. “Not
that I’ve really seen him since I found out. Not since we’ve been back in Alicante.”
“That’s strange,” said Aline.
“It’s not strange,” Isabelle said, shooting Aline a meaningful look, which Aline didn’t seem to notice. “He’s been in the hospital. He
only got out today.”
“And he didn’t come to see you right away?” Aline asked Clary.
“He couldn’t,” Clary said. “He had Valentine’s funeral to go to. He couldn’t miss that.”
“Maybe,” said Aline cheerfully. “Or maybe he’s not that interested in you anymore. I mean, now that it’s not forbidden. Some
people only want what they can’t have.”
“Not Jace,” Isabelle said quickly. “Jace isn’t like that.”
Aline stood up, dropping her book onto the bed. “I should go get dressed. See you guys tonight?” And with that, she wandered
out of the room, humming to herself.
Isabelle, watching her go, shook her head. “Do you think she doesn’t like you?” she said. “I mean, is she jealous? She did seem
interested in Jace.”
“Ha!” Clary was briefly amused. “No, she’s not interested in Jace. I think she’s just one of those people who say whatever they’re
thinking whenever they think it. And who knows, maybe she’s right.”
Isabelle pulled the pin from her hair, letting it fall down around her shoulders. She came across the room and joined Clary at the
window. The sky was clear now past the demon towers; the smoke was gone. “Do you think she’s right?”
“I don’t know. I’ll have to ask Jace. I guess I’ll see him tonight at the party. Or the victory celebration or whatever it’s called.” She
looked up at Isabelle. “Do you know what it’ll be like?”
“There’ll be a parade,” Isabelle said, “and fireworks, probably. Music, dancing, games, that sort of thing. Like a big street fair in
New York.” She glanced out the window, her expression wistful. “Max would have loved it.”
Clary reached out and stroked Isabelle’s hair, the way she’d stroke the hair of her own sister if she had one. “I know he would.”
Jace had to knock twice at the door of the old canal house before he heard quick footsteps hurrying to answer; his heart jumped,
and then settled as the door opened and Amatis Herondale stood on the threshold, looking at him in surprise. She looked as if
she’d been getting ready for the celebration: She wore a long dove gray dress and pale metallic earrings that picked out the silvery
streaks in her graying hair. “Yes?”
“Clary,” he began, and stopped, unsure what exactly to say. Where had his eloquence gone? He’d always had that, even when he
hadn’t had anything else, but now he felt as if he’d been ripped open and all the clever, facile words had poured out of him, leaving
him empty. “I was wondering if Clary was here. I was hoping to talk to her.”
Amatis shook her head. The blankness had gone from her expression, and she was looking at him intently enough to make him
nervous. “She’s not. I think she’s with the Lightwoods.”
“Oh.” He was surprised at how disappointed he felt. “Sorry to have bothered you.”
“It’s no bother. I’m glad you’re here, actually,” she said briskly. “There was something I wanted to talk to you about. Come into
the hall; I’ll be right back.”
Jace stepped inside as she disappeared down the hallway. He wondered what on earth she could have to talk to him about. Maybe
Clary had decided she wanted nothing more to do with him and had chosen Amatis to deliver the message.
Amatis was back in a moment. She wasn’t holding anything that looked like a note—to Jace’s relief—but rather she was clutching
a small metal box in her hands. It was a delicate object, chased with a design of birds. “Jace,” Amatis said. “Luke told me that
you’re Stephen’s—that Stephen Herondale was your father. He told me everything that happened.”
Jace nodded, which was all he felt called on to do. The news was leaking out slowly, which was how he liked it; hopefully he’d be
back in New York before everyone in Idris knew and was constantly staring at him.
“You know I was married to Stephen before your mother was,” Amatis went on, her voice tight, as if the words hurt to say. Jace
stared at her—was this about his mother? Did she resent him for bringing up bad memories of a woman who’d died before he was
ever born? “Of all the people alive today, I probably knew your father best.”
“Yes,” Jace said, wishing he were elsewhere. “I’m sure that’s true.”
“I know you probably have feelings about him that are very mixed,” she said, surprising him mainly because it was true. “You never
knew him, and he wasn’t the man who raised you, but you look like him—except for your eyes, those are your mother’s. And
maybe I’m being crazy, bothering you with this. Maybe you don’t really want to know about Stephen at all. But he was your
father, and if he’d known you—” She thrust the box at him then, nearly making him jump back. “These are some things of his that I
saved over the years. Letters he wrote, photographs, a family tree. His witchlight stone. Maybe you don’t have questions now, but
someday perhaps you will, and when you do—when you do, you’ll have this.” She stood still, giving him the box as if she were
offering him a precious treasure. Jace reached out and took it from her without a word; it was heavy, and the metal was cold
against his skin.
“Thank you,” he said. It was the best he could do. He hesitated, and then said, “There is one thing. Something I’ve been
“If Stephen was my father, then the Inquisitor—Imogen—was my grandmother.”
“She was…” Amatis paused. “A very difficult woman. But yes, she was your grandmother.”
“She saved my life,” said Jace. “I mean, for a long time she acted like she hated my guts. But then she saw this.” He drew the collar
of his shirt aside, showing Amatis the white star-shaped scar on his shoulder. “And she saved my life. But what could my scar
possibly mean to her?”
Amatis’s eyes had gone wide. “You don’t remember getting that scar, do you?”
Jace shook his head. “Valentine told me it was an injury from when I was too young to remember, but now—I don’t think I believe
“It’s not a scar. It’s a birthmark. There’s an old family legend about it, that one of the first Herondales to become a Shadowhunter
was visited by an angel in a dream. The angel touched him on the shoulder, and when he woke up, he had a mark like that. And all
his descendants have it as well.” She shrugged. “I don’t know if the story is true, but all the Herondales have the mark. Your father
had one too, here.” She touched her right upper arm. “They say it means you’ve had contact with an angel. That you’re blessed, in
some way. Imogen must have seen the Mark and guessed who you really were.”
Jace stared at Amatis, but he wasn’t seeing her: He was seeing that night on the ship; the wet, black deck and the Inquisitor dying
at his feet. “She said something to me,” he said. “While she was dying. She said, ‘Your father would be proud of you.’ I thought
she was being cruel. I thought she meant Valentine….”
Amatis shook her head. “She meant Stephen,” she said softly. “And she was right. He would have been.”
Clary pushed open Amatis’s front door and stepped inside, thinking how quickly the house had become familiar to her. She no
longer had to strain to remember the way to the front door, or the way the knob stuck slightly as she pushed it open. The glint of
sunlight off the canal was familiar, as was the view of Alicante through the window. She could almost imagine living here, almost
imagine what it would be like if Idris were home. She wondered what she’d start missing first. Chinese takeout? Movies? Midtown
She was about to head for the stairs when she heard her mother’s voice from the living room—sharp, and slightly agitated. But
what could Jocelyn have to be upset about? Everything was fine now, wasn’t it? Without thinking, Clary dropped back against the
wall near the living room door and listened.
“What do you mean, you’re staying?” Jocelyn was saying. “You mean you’re not coming back to New York at all?”
“I’ve been asked to remain in Alicante and represent the werewolves on the Council,” Luke said. “I told them I’d let them know
“Couldn’t someone else do that? One of the pack leaders here in Idris?”
“I’m the only pack leader who was once a Shadowhunter. That’s why they want me.” He sighed. “I started all this, Jocelyn. I
should stay here and see it out.”
There was a short silence. “If that’s how you feel, then of course you should stay,” Jocelyn said at last, but her voice didn’t sound
“I’ll have to sell the bookstore. Get my affairs in order.” Luke sounded gruff. “It’s not like I’ll be moving right away.”
“I can take care of that. After everything you’ve done…” Jocelyn didn’t seem to have the energy to maintain her bright tone. Her
voice trailed off into silence, a silence that stretched out so long that Clary thought about clearing her throat and walking into the
living room to let them know she was there.
A moment later she was glad she hadn’t. “Look,” Luke said, “I’ve wanted to tell you this for a long time, but I didn’t. I knew it
would never matter, even if I did say it, because of what I am. You never wanted that to be part of Clary’s life. But she knows
now, so I guess it doesn’t make a difference. And I might as well tell you. I love you, Jocelyn. I have for twenty years.” He paused.
Clary strained to hear her mother’s response, but Jocelyn was silent. At last Luke spoke again, his voice heavy. “I have to get back
to the Council and tell them I’ll stay. We don’t ever have to talk about this again. I just feel better having said it after all this time.”
Clary pressed herself back against the wall as Luke, his head down, stalked out of the living room. He brushed by her without
seeming to see her at all and yanked the front door open. He stood there for a moment, staring blindly out at the sunshine bouncing
off the water of the canal. Then he was gone, the door slamming shut behind him.
Clary stood where she was, her back against the wall. She felt terribly sad for Luke, and terribly sad for her mother, too. It looked
like Jocelyn really didn’t love Luke, and maybe never could. It was just like it had been for her and Simon, except she didn’t see
any way that Luke and her mother could fix things. Not if he was going to stay here in Idris. Tears stung her eyes. She was about to
turn and go into the living room when she heard the sound of the kitchen door opening and another voice. This one sounded tired,
and a little resigned. Amatis.
“Sorry I overheard that, but I’m glad he’s staying,” Luke’s sister said. “Not just because he’ll be near me but because it gives him a
chance to get over you.”
Jocelyn sounded defensive. “Amatis—”
“It’s been a long time, Jocelyn,” Amatis said. “If you don’t love him, you ought to let him go.”
Jocelyn was silent. Clary wished she could see her mother’s expression—did she look sad? Angry? Resigned?
Amatis gave a little gasp. “Unless—you do love him?”
“Amatis, I can’t—”
“You do! You do!” There was a sharp sound, as if Amatis had clapped her hands together. “I knew you did! I always knew it!”
“It doesn’t matter.” Jocelyn sounded tired. “It wouldn’t be fair to Luke.”
“I don’t want to hear it.” There was a rustling noise, and Jocelyn made a sound of protest. Clary wondered if Amatis had actually
grabbed hold of her mother. “If you love him, you go right now and tell him. Right now, before he goes to the Council.”
“But they want him to be their Council member! And he wants to—”
“All Lucian wants,” said Amatis firmly, “is you. You and Clary. That’s all he ever wanted. Now go.”
Before Clary had a chance to move, Jocelyn dashed out into the hallway. She headed toward the door—and saw Clary, flattened
against the wall. Halting, she opened her mouth in surprise.
“Clary!” She sounded as if she were trying to make her voice bright and cheerful, and failing miserably. “I didn’t realize you were
Clary stepped away from the wall, grabbed hold of the doorknob, and threw the door wide open. Bright sunlight poured into the
hall. Jocelyn stood blinking in the harsh illumination, her eyes on her daughter.
“If you don’t go after Luke,” Clary said, enunciating very clearly, “I, personally, will kill you.”
For a moment Jocelyn looked astonished. Then she smiled. “Well,” she said, “if you put it like that.”
A moment later she was out of the house, hurrying down the canal path toward the Accords Hall. Clary shut the door behind her
and leaned against it.
Amatis, emerging from the living room, darted past her to lean on the windowsill, glancing anxiously out through the pane. “Do you
think she’ll catch him before he gets to the Hall?”
“My mom’s spent her whole life chasing me around,” Clary said. “She moves fast.”
Amatis glanced toward her and smiled. “Oh, that reminds me,” she said. “Jace stopped by to see you. I think he’s hoping to see
you at the celebration tonight.”
“Is he?” Clary said thoughtfully. Might as well ask. Nothing ventured, nothing gained. “Amatis,” she said, and Luke’s sister
turned away from the window, looking at her curiously.
“That silver dress of yours, in the trunk,” said Clary. “Can I borrow it?”
The streets were already beginning to fill with people as Clary walked back through the city toward the Lightwoods’ house. It was
twilight, and the lights were beginning to go on, filling the air with a pale glow. Bunches of familiar-looking white flowers hung from
baskets on the walls, filling the air with their spicy smells. Dark gold fire-runes burned on the doors of the houses she passed; the
runes spoke of victory and rejoicing.
There were Shadowhunters out in the streets. None were wearing gear—they were in a variety of finery, from the modern to what
bordered on historical costumery. It was an unusually warm night, so few people were wearing coats, but there were plenty of
women in what looked to Clary like ball gowns, their full skirts sweeping the streets. A slim dark figure cut across the road ahead
of her as she turned onto the Lightwoods’ street, and she saw that it was Raphael, hand in hand with a tall dark-haired woman in a
red cocktail dress. He glanced over his shoulder and smiled at Clary, a smile that sent a little shiver over her, and she thought that it
was true that there really was something alien about Downworlders sometimes, something alien and frightening. Perhaps it was just
that everything that was frightening wasn’t necessarily also bad.
Although, she had her doubts about Raphael.
The front door of the Lightwoods’ house was open, and several of the family were already standing out on the pavement. Maryse
and Robert Lightwood were there, chatting with two other adults; when they turned, Clary saw with slight surprise that it was the
Penhallows, Aline’s parents. Maryse smiled at her past them; she was elegant in a dark blue silk suit, her hair tied back from her
severe face with a thick silver band. She looked like Isabelle—so much so that Clary wanted to reach out and put a hand on her
shoulder. Maryse still seemed so sad, even as she smiled, and Clary thought, She’s remembering Max, just like Isabelle was,
and thinking how much he would have liked all this.
“Clary!” Isabelle bounded down the front steps, her dark hair flying behind her. She was wearing neither of the outfits she’d
showed to Clary earlier, but an incredible gold satin dress that hugged her body like the closed petals of a flower. Her shoes were
spiked sandals, and Clary remembered what Isabelle had once said about how she liked her heels, and laughed to herself. “You
look fantastic.”
“Thanks.” Clary tugged a little self-consciously at the diaphanous material of the silver dress. It was probably the girliest thing she’d
ever worn. It left her shoulders uncovered, and every time she felt the ends of her hair tickle the bare skin there, she had to quell the
urge to hunt for a cardigan or hoodie to wrap herself in. “You too.”
Isabelle bent over to whisper in her ear. “Jace isn’t here.”
Clary pulled back. “Then where—?”
“Alec says he might be at the square, where the fireworks are going to be. I’m sorry—I have no idea what’s up with him.”
Clary shrugged, trying to hide her disappointment. “It’s okay.”
Alec and Aline tumbled out of the house after Isabelle, Aline in a bright red dress that made her hair look shockingly black. Alec
had dressed like he usually did, in a sweater and dark pants, though Clary had to admit that at least the sweater didn’t appear to
have any visible holes in it. He smiled at Clary, and she thought, with surprise, that actually he did look different. Lighter somehow,
as if a weight were off his shoulders.
“I’ve never been to a celebration that had Downworlders at it before,” said Aline, looking nervously down the street, where a
faerie girl whose long hair was braided with flowers—no, Clary thought, her hair was flowers, connected by delicate green
tendrils—was plucking some of the white blossoms out of a hanging basket, looking at them thoughtfully, and eating them.
“You’ll love it,” Isabelle said. “They know how to party.” She waved good-bye to her parents and they set off toward the plaza,
Clary still fighting the urge to cover the top half of her body by crossing her arms over her chest. The dress swirled out around her
feet like smoke curling on the wind. She thought of the smoke that had risen over Alicante earlier that day, and shivered.
“Hey!” Isabelle said, and Clary looked up to see Simon and Maia coming toward them up the street. She hadn’t seen Simon for
most of the day; he’d gone down to the Hall to observe the preliminary Council meeting because, he said, he was curious who
they’d choose to hold the vampires’ Council seat. Clary couldn’t imagine Maia wearing anything as girly as a dress, and indeed she
was clad in low-slung camo pants and a black T-shirt that said CHOOSE YOUR WEAPON and had a design of dice under the
words. It was a gamer tee, Clary thought, wondering if Maia was really a gamer or was wearing the T-shirt to impress Simon. If
so, it was a good choice. “You heading back down to Angel Square?”
Maia and Simon acknowledged that they were, and they headed toward the Hall together in a companionable group. Simon
dropped back to fall into step beside Clary, and they walked together in silence. It was good just to be close to Simon again—he
had been the first person she’d wanted to see once she was back in Alicante. She’d hugged him very tightly, glad he was alive, and
touched the Mark on his forehead.
“Did it save you?” she’d asked, desperate to hear that she hadn’t done what she had to him for no reason.
“It saved me,” was all he’d said in reply.
“I wish I could take it off you,” she’d said. “I wish I knew what might happen to you because of it.”
He’d taken hold of her wrist and drawn her hand gently back down to her side. “We’ll wait,” he’d said. “And we’ll see.”
She’d been watching him closely, but she had to admit that the Mark didn’t seem to be affecting him in any visible way. He seemed
just as he always had. Just like Simon. Only he’d taken to brushing his hair slightly differently, to cover the Mark; if you didn’t
already know it was there, you’d never guess.
“How was the meeting?” Clary asked him now, giving him a once-over to see if he’d dressed up for the celebration. He hadn’t, but
she hardly blamed him—the jeans and T-shirt he had on were all he had to wear. “Who’d they choose?”
“Not Raphael,” Simon said, sounding as if he were pleased about it. “Some other vampire. He had a pretentious name. Nightshade
or something.”
“You know, they asked me if I wanted to draw the symbol of the New Council,” Clary said. “It’s an honor. I said I’d do it. It’s
going to have the rune of the Council surrounded by the symbols of the four Downworlder families. A moon for the werewolves,
and I was thinking a four-leaf clover for the faeries. A spell book for the warlocks. But I can’t think of anything for the vampires.”
“How about a fang?” Simon suggested. “Maybe dripping blood.” He bared his teeth.
“Thank you,” Clary said. “That’s very helpful.”
“I’m glad they asked you,” Simon said, more seriously. “You deserve the honor. You deserve a medal, really, for what you did.
The Alliance rune and everything.”
Clary shrugged. “I don’t know. I mean, the battle barely went on for ten minutes, after all that. I don’t know how much I helped.”
“I was in that battle, Clary,” Simon said. “It may have been about ten minutes long, but it was the worst ten minutes of my life. And
I don’t really want to talk about it. But I will say that even in that ten minutes, there would have been a lot more death if it hadn’t
been for you. Besides, the battle was only part of it. If you hadn’t done what you did, there would be no New Council. We would
be Shadowhunters and Downworlders, hating each other, instead of Shadowhunters and Downworlders, going to a party
Clary felt a lump rising in her throat and stared straight ahead, willing herself not to tear up. “Thanks, Simon.” She hesitated, so
briefly that no one who wasn’t Simon would have noticed it. But he did.
“What’s wrong?” he asked her.
“I’m just wondering what we do when we get back home,” she said. “I mean, I know Magnus took care of your mom so she
hasn’t been freaking out that you’re gone, but—school. We’ve missed a ton of it. And I don’t even know…”
“You’re not going back,” Simon said quietly. “You think I don’t know that? You’re a Shadowhunter now. You’ll finish up your
education at the Institute.”
“And what about you? You’re a vampire. Are you just going to go back to high school?”
“Yeah,” Simon said, surprising her. “I am. I want a normal life, as much as I can have one. I want high school, and college, and all
of that.”
She squeezed his hand. “Then you should have it.” She smiled up at him. “Of course, everyone’s going to freak out when you show
up at school.”
“Freak out? Why?”
“Because you’re so much hotter now than when you left.” She shrugged. “It’s true. Must be a vampire thing.”
Simon looked baffled. “I’m hotter now?”
“Sure you are. I mean, look at those two. They’re both totally into you.” She pointed to a few feet in front of them, where Isabelle
and Maia had moved to walk side by side, their heads bent together.
Simon looked up ahead at the girls. Clary could almost swear he was blushing. “Are they? Sometimes they get together and
whisper and stare at me. I have no idea what it’s about.”
“Sure you don’t.” Clary grinned. “Poor you, you have two cute girls vying for your love. Your life is hard.”
“Fine. You tell me which one to choose, then.”
“No way. That’s on you.” She lowered her voice again. “Look, you can date whoever you want and I will totally support you. I
am all about support. Support is my middle name.”
“So that’s why you never told me your middle name. I figured it was something embarrassing.”
Clary ignored this. “But just promise me something, okay? I know how girls get. I know how they hate their boyfriends having a
best friend who’s a girl. Just promise me you won’t cut me out of your life totally. That we can still hang out sometimes.”
“Sometimes?” Simon shook his head. “Clary, you’re crazy.”
Her heart sank. “You mean…”
“I mean that I would never date a girl who insisted that I cut you out of my life. It’s non-negotiable. You want a piece of all this
fabulousness?” He gestured at himself. “Well, my best friend comes along with it. I wouldn’t cut you out of my life, Clary, any more
than I would cut off my right hand and give it to someone as a Valentine’s Day gift.”
“Gross,” said Clary. “Must you?”
He grinned. “I must.”
Angel Square was almost unrecognizable. The Hall glowed white at the far end of the plaza, partly obscured by an elaborate forest
of huge trees that had sprung up in the center of the square. They were clearly the product of magic—although, Clary thought,
remembering Magnus’s ability to whisk furniture and cups of coffee across Manhattan at the blink of an eye, maybe they were real,
if transplanted. The trees rose nearly to the height of the demon towers, their silvery trunks wrapped with ribbons, colored lights
caught in the whispering green nets of their branches. The square smelled of white flowers, smoke, and leaves. All around its edges
were placed tables and long benches, and groups of Shadowhunters and Downworlders crowded around them, laughing and
drinking and talking. Yet despite the laughter, there was a somberness mixed with the air of celebration—a present sorrow side by
side with joy.
The stores that lined the square had their doors thrown open, light spilling out onto the pavement. Partygoers streamed by, carrying
plates of food and long-stemmed glasses of wine and brightly colored liquids. Simon watched a kelpie skip past, carrying a glass of
blue fluid, and raised an eyebrow.
“It’s not like Magnus’s party,” Isabelle reassured him. “Everything here ought to be safe to drink.”
“Ought to be?” Aline looked worried.
Alec glanced toward the mini-forest, the colored lights reflecting in the blue irises of his eyes. Magnus stood in the shadow of a
tree, talking to a girl in a white dress with a cloud of pale brown hair. She turned as Magnus looked toward them, and Clary locked
eyes with her for a moment across the distance that separated them. There was something familiar about her, though Clary couldn’t
have said what it was.
Magnus broke away and came toward them, and the girl he’d been talking to slipped into the shadows of the trees and was gone.
He was dressed like a Victorian gentleman, in a long black frock coat over a violet silk vest. A square pocket handkerchief
embroidered with the initials M.B. protruded from his vest pocket.
“Nice vest,” said Alec with a smile.
“Would you like one exactly like it?” Magnus inquired. “In any color you prefer, of course.”
“I don’t really care about clothes,” Alex protested.
“And I love that about you,” Magnus announced, “though I would also love you if you owned, perhaps, one designer suit. What do
you say? Dolce? Zegna? Armani?”
Alec sputtered as Isabelle laughed, and Magnus took the opportunity to lean close to Clary and whisper in her ear. “The Accords
Hall steps. Go.”
She wanted to ask him what he meant, but he’d already turned back to Alec and the others. Besides, she had a feeling she knew.
She squeezed Simon’s wrist as she went, and he turned to smile at her before returning to his conversation with Maia.
She cut through the edge of the glamour forest to cross the square, weaving in and out of the shadows. The trees reached up to the
foot of the Hall stairs, which was probably why the steps were almost deserted. Though not entirely. Glancing toward the doors,
Clary could make out a familiar dark outline, seated in the shadow of a pillar. Her heart quickened.
She had to gather her skirt up in her hands to climb the stairs, afraid she’d step on and tear the delicate material. She almost wished
she had worn her normal clothes as she approached Jace, who was sitting with his back to a pillar, staring out over the square. He
wore his most mundane clothes—jeans, a white shirt, and a dark jacket over them. And for almost the first time since she’d met
him, she thought, he didn’t seem to be carrying any weapons.
She abruptly felt overdressed. She stopped a slight distance away from him, suddenly unsure what to say.
As if sensing her there, Jace looked up. He was holding something balanced in his lap, she saw, a silvery box. He looked tired.
There were shadows under his eyes, and his pale gold hair was untidy. His eyes widened. “Clary?”
“Who else would it be?”
He didn’t smile. “You don’t look like you.”
“It’s the dress.” She smoothed her hands down the material self-consciously. “I don’t usually wear things this…pretty.”
“You always look beautiful,” he said, and she remembered the first time he’d called her beautiful, in the greenhouse at the Institute.
He hadn’t said it like it was a compliment, but just as if it were an accepted fact, like the fact that she had red hair and liked to
draw. “But you look—distant. Like I couldn’t touch you.”
She came over then and sat down next to him on the wide top step. The stone was cold through the material of her dress. She held
her hand out to him; it was shaking slightly, just enough to be visible. “Touch me,” she said. “If you want to.”
He took her hand and laid it against his cheek for a moment. Then he set it back down in her lap. Clary shivered a little,
remembering Aline’s words back in Isabelle’s bedroom. Maybe he’s not interested anymore, now that it’s not forbidden. He
had said she looked distant, but the expression in his eyes was as remote as a faraway galaxy.
“What’s in the box?” she asked. He was still clutching the silver rectangle tightly in one hand. It was an expensive-looking object,
delicately carved with a pattern of birds.
“I went to Amatis’s earlier today, looking for you,” he said. “But you weren’t there. So I talked to Amatis. She gave me this.” He
indicated the box. “It belonged to my father.”
For a moment she just looked at him uncomprehendingly. This was Valentine’s? she thought, and then, with a jolt, No, that’s not
what he means. “Of course,” she said. “Amatis was married to Stephen Herondale.”
“I’ve been going through it,” he said. “Reading the letters, the journal pages. I thought if I did that, I might feel some sort of
connection to him. Something that would leap off the pages at me, saying, Yes, this is your father. But I don’t feel anything. Just
bits of paper. Anyone could have written these things.”
“Jace,” she said softly.
“And that’s another thing,” he said. “I don’t have a name anymore, do I? I’m not Jonathan Christopher—that was someone else.
But it’s the name I’m used to.”
“Who came up with Jace as a nickname? Did you come up with it yourself?”
Jace shook his head. “No. Valentine always called me Jonathan. And that’s what they called me when I first got to the Institute. I
was never supposed to think my name was Jonathan Christopher, you know—that was an accident. I got the name out of my
father’s journal, but it wasn’t me he was talking about. It wasn’t my progress he was recording. It was Seb—It was Jonathan’s. So
the first time I ever told Maryse that my middle name was Christopher, she told herself that she’d just remembered wrong, and
Christopher had been Michael’s son’s middle name. It had been ten years, after all. But that was when she started calling me Jace:
It was like she wanted to give me a new name, something that belonged to her, to my life in New York. And I liked it. I’d never
liked Jonathan.” He turned the box over in his hands. “I wonder if maybe Maryse knew, or guessed, but just didn’t want to know.
She loved me…and she didn’t want to believe it.”
“Which is why she was so upset when she found out you were Valentine’s son,” said Clary. “Because she thought she ought to
have known. She kind of did know. But we never do want to believe things like that about people we love. And, Jace, she was
right about you. She was right about who you really are. And you do have a name. Your name is Jace. Valentine didn’t give that
name to you. Maryse did. The only thing that makes a name important, and yours, is that it’s given to you by someone who loves
“Jace what?” he said. “Jace Herondale?”
“Oh, please,” she said. “You’re Jace Lightwood. You know that.”
He raised his eyes to hers. His lashes shadowed them thickly, darkening the gold. She thought he looked a little less remote, though
perhaps she was imagining it.
“Maybe you’re a different person than you thought you were,” she went on, hoping against hope that he understood what she
meant. “But no one becomes a totally different person overnight. Just finding out that Stephen was your biological father isn’t going
to automatically make you love him. And you don’t have to. Valentine wasn’t your real father, but not because you don’t have his
blood in your veins. He wasn’t your real father because he didn’t act like a father. He didn’t take care of you. It’s always been the
Lightwoods who have taken care of you. They’re your family. Just like Mom and Luke are mine.” She reached to touch his
shoulder, then drew her hand back. “I’m sorry,” she said. “Here I am lecturing you, and you probably came up here to be alone.”
“You’re right,” he said.
Clary felt the breath go out of her. “All right, then. I’ll go.” She stood up, forgetting to hold her dress up, and nearly stepped on the
“Clary!” Setting the box down, Jace scrambled to his feet. “Clary, wait. That wasn’t what I meant. I didn’t mean I wanted to be
alone. I meant you were right about Valentine—about the Lightwoods—”
She turned and looked at him. He was standing half in and half out of the shadows, the bright, colored lights of the party below
casting strange patterns across his skin. She thought of the first time she’d seen him. She’d thought he looked like a lion. Beautiful
and deadly. He looked different to her now. That hard, defensive casing he wore like armor was gone, and he wore his injuries
instead, visibly and proudly. He hadn’t even used his stele to take away the bruises on his face, along the line of his jaw, at his
throat where the skin showed above the collar of his shirt. But he looked beautiful to her still, more than before, because now he
seemed human—human, and real.
“You know,” she said, “Aline said maybe you wouldn’t be interested anymore. Now that it isn’t forbidden. Now that you could be
with me if you wanted to.” She shivered a little in the flimsy dress, gripping her elbows with her hands. “Is that true? Are you not…
“Interested? As if you were a—a book, or a piece of news? No, I’m not interested. I’m—” He broke off, groping for the word
the way someone might grope for a light switch in the dark. “Do you remember what I said to you before? About feeling like the
fact that you were my sister was a sort of cosmic joke on me? On both of us?”
“I remember.”
“I never believed it,” he said. “I mean, I believed it in a way—I let it drive me to despair, but I never felt it. Never felt you were my
sister. Because I didn’t feel about you the way you’re supposed to feel about your sister. But that didn’t mean I didn’t feel like you
were a part of me. I’ve always felt that.” Seeing her puzzled expression, he broke off with an impatient noise. “I’m not saying this
right. Clary, I hated every second that I thought you were my sister. I hated every moment that I thought what I felt for you meant
there was something wrong with me. But—”
“But what?” Clary’s heart was beating so hard it was making her feel more than a little dizzy.
“I could see the delight Valentine took in the way I felt about you. The way you felt about me. He used it as a weapon against us.
And that made me hate him. More than anything else he’d ever done to me, that made me hate him, and it made me turn against
him, and maybe that’s what I needed to do. Because there were times I didn’t know if I wanted to follow him or not. It was a hard
choice—harder than I like to remember.” His voice sounded tight.
“I asked you if I had a choice once,” Clary reminded him. “And you said, ‘We always have choices.’ You chose against Valentine.
In the end that was the choice you made, and it doesn’t matter how hard it was to make it. It matters that you did.”
“I know,” Jace said. “I’m just saying that I think I chose the way I did in part because of you. Since I’ve met you, everything I’ve
done has been in part because of you. I can’t untie myself from you, Clary—not my heart or my blood or my mind or any other
part of me. And I don’t want to.”
“You don’t?” she whispered.
He took a step toward her. His gaze was fastened on her face, as if he couldn’t look away. “I always thought love made you
stupid. Made you weak. A bad Shadowhunter. To love is to destroy. I believed that.”
She bit her lip, but she couldn’t look away from him, either.
“I used to think being a good warrior meant not caring,” he said. “About anything, myself especially. I took every risk I could. I
flung myself in the path of demons. I think I gave Alec a complex about what kind of fighter he was, just because he wanted to
live.” Jace smiled unevenly. “And then I met you. You were a mundane. Weak. Not a fighter. Never trained. And then I saw how
much you loved your mother, loved Simon, and how you’d walk into hell to save them. You did walk into that vampire hotel.
Shadowhunters with a decade of experience wouldn’t have tried that. Love didn’t make you weak, it made you stronger than
anyone I’d ever met. And I realized I was the one who was weak.”
“No.” She was shocked. “You’re not.”
“Maybe not anymore.” He took another step, and now he was close enough to touch her. “Valentine couldn’t believe I’d killed
Jonathan,” he said. “Couldn’t believe it because I was the weak one, and Jonathan was the one with more training. By all rights he
probably should have killed me. He nearly did. But I thought of you—I saw you there, clearly, as if you were standing in front of
me, watching me, and I knew I wanted to live, wanted it more than I’d ever wanted anything, if only so that I could see your face
one more time.”
She wished she could move, wished she could reach out and touch him, but she couldn’t. Her arms felt frozen at her sides. His face
was close to hers, so close that she could see her own reflection in the pupils of his eyes.
“And now I’m looking at you,” he said, “and you’re asking me if I still want you, as if I could stop loving you. As if I would want to
give up the thing that makes me stronger than anything else ever has. I never dared give much of myself to anyone before—bits of
myself to the Lightwoods, to Isabelle and Alec, but it took years to do it—but, Clary, since the first time I saw you, I have
belonged to you completely. I still do. If you want me.”
For a split second longer she stood motionless. Then, somehow, she had caught at the front of his shirt and pulled him toward her.
His arms went around her, lifting her almost out of her sandals, and then he was kissing her—or she was kissing him, she wasn’t
sure, and it didn’t matter. The feel of his mouth on hers was electric; her hands gripped his arms, pulling him hard against her. The
feel of his heart pounding through his shirt made her dizzy with joy. No one else’s heart beat like Jace’s did, or ever could.
He let her go at last and she gasped—she’d forgotten to breathe. He cupped her face between his hands, tracing the curve of her
cheekbones with his fingers. The light was back in his eyes, as bright as it had been by the lake, but now there was a wicked
sparkle to it. “There,” he said. “That wasn’t so bad, was it, even though it wasn’t forbidden?”
“I’ve had worse,” she said, with a shaky laugh.
“You know,” he said, bending to brush his mouth across hers, “if it’s the lack of forbidden you’re worried about, you could still
forbid me to do things.”
“What kinds of things?”
She felt him smile against her mouth. “Things like this.”
After some time they came down the stairs and into the square, where a crowd had begun to gather in anticipation of the fireworks.
Isabelle and the others had found a table near the corner of the square and were crowded around it on benches and chairs. As they
approached the group, Clary prepared to draw her hand out of Jace’s—and then stopped herself. They could hold hands if they
wanted to. There was nothing wrong with it. The thought almost took her breath away.
“You’re here!” Isabelle danced up to them in delight, carrying a glass of fuchsia liquid, which she thrust at Clary. “Have some of
Clary squinted at it. “Is it going to turn me into a rodent?”
“Where is the trust? I think it’s strawberry juice,” Isabelle said. “Anyway, it’s yummy. Jace?” She offered him the glass.
“I am a man,” he told her, “and men do not consume pink beverages. Get thee gone, woman, and bring me something brown.”
“Brown?” Isabelle made a face.
“Brown is a manly color,” said Jace, and yanked on a stray lock of Isabelle’s hair with his free hand. “In fact, look—Alec is
wearing it.”
Alec looked mournfully down at his sweater. “It was black,” he said. “But then it faded.”
“You could dress it up with a sequined headband,” Magnus suggested, offering his boyfriend something blue and sparkly. “Just a
“Resist the urge, Alec.” Simon was sitting on the edge of a low wall with Maia beside him, though she appeared to be deep in
conversation with Aline. “You’ll look like Olivia Newton-John in Xanadu.”
“There are worse things,” Magnus observed.
Simon detached himself from the wall and came over to Clary and Jace. With his hands in the back pockets of his jeans, he
regarded them thoughtfully for a long moment. At last he spoke.
“You look happy,” he said to Clary. He swiveled his gaze to Jace. “And a good thing for you that she does.”
Jace raised an eyebrow. “Is this the part where you tell me that if I hurt her, you’ll kill me?”
“No,” said Simon. “If you hurt Clary, she’s quite capable of killing you herself. Possibly with a variety of weapons.”
Jace looked pleased by the thought.
“Look,” Simon said. “I just wanted to say that it’s okay if you dislike me. If you make Clary happy, I’m fine with you.” He stuck
his hand out, and Jace took his own hand out of Clary’s and shook Simon’s, a bemused look on his face.
“I don’t dislike you,” he said. “In fact, because I actually do like you, I’m going to offer you some advice.”
“Advice?” Simon looked wary.
“I see that you are working this vampire angle with some success,” Jace said, indicating Isabelle and Maia with a nod of his head.
“And kudos. Lots of girls love that sensitive-undead thing. But I’d drop that whole musician angle if I were you. Vampire rock stars
are played out, and besides, you can’t possibly be very good.”
Simon sighed. “I don’t suppose there’s any chance you could reconsider the part where you didn’t like me?”
“Enough, both of you,” Clary said. “You can’t be complete jerks to each other forever, you know.”
“Technically,” said Simon, “I can.”
Jace made an inelegant noise; after a moment Clary realized that he was trying not to laugh, and only semi-succeeding.
Simon grinned. “Got you.”
“Well,” Clary said. “This is a beautiful moment.” She looked around for Isabelle, who would probably be nearly as pleased as she
was that Simon and Jace were getting along, albeit in their own peculiar way.
Instead she saw someone else.
Standing at the very edge of the glamoured forest, where shadow blended into light, was a slender woman in a green dress the
color of leaves, her long scarlet hair bound back by a golden circlet.
The Seelie Queen. She was looking directly at Clary, and as Clary met her gaze, she lifted up a slender hand and beckoned.
Whether it was her own desire or the strange compulsion of the Fair Folk, Clary wasn’t sure, but with a murmured excuse she
stepped away from the others and made her way to the edge of the forest, wending her way through riotous partygoers. She
became aware, as she drew close to the Queen, of a preponderance of faeries standing very near them, in a circle around their
Lady. Even if she wanted to appear alone, the Queen was not without her courtiers.
The Queen held up an imperious hand. “There,” she said. “And no closer.”
Clary, a few steps from the Queen, paused. “My lady,” she said, remembering the formal way that Jace had addressed the Queen
inside her court. “Why do you call me to your side?”
“I would have a favor from you,” said the Queen without preamble. “And of course, I would promise a favor in return.”
“A favor from me?” Clary said wonderingly. “But—you don’t even like me.”
The Queen touched her lips thoughtfully with a single long white finger. “The Fair Folk, unlike humans, do not concern themselves
overmuch with liking. Love, perhaps, and hate. Both are useful emotions. But liking…” She shrugged elegantly. “The Council has
not yet chosen which of our folk they would like to sit upon their seat,” she said. “I know that Lucian Graymark is like a father to
you. He would listen to what you asked him. I would like you to ask him if they would choose my knight Meliorn for the task.”
Clary thought back to the Accords Hall, and Meliorn say ing he did not want to fight in the battle unless the Night Children fought
as well. “I don’t think Luke likes him very much.”
“And again,” said the Queen, “you speak of liking.”
“When I saw you before, in the Seelie Court,” Clary said, “you called Jace and me brother and sister. But you knew we weren’t
really brother and sister. Didn’t you?”
The Queen smiled. “The same blood runs in your veins,” she said. “The blood of the Angel. All those who bear the Angel’s blood
are brother and sister under the skin.”
Clary shivered. “You could have told us the truth, though. And you didn’t.”
“I told you the truth as I saw it. We all tell the truth as we see it, do we not? Did you ever stop to wonder what untruths might have
been in the tale your mother told you, that served her purpose in telling it? Do you truly think you know each and every secret of
your past?”
Clary hesitated. Without knowing why, she suddenly heard Madame Dorothea’s voice in her head. You will fall in love with the
wrong person, the hedge-witch had said to Jace. Clary had come to assume that Dorothea had only been referring to how much
trouble Jace’s affection for Clary would bring them both. But still, there were blanks, she knew, in her memory—even now, things,
events, that had not come back to her. Secrets whose truths she’d never know. She had given them up for lost and unimportant,
but perhaps—
No. She felt her hands tighten at her sides. The Queen’s poison was a subtle one, but powerful. Was there anyone in the world
who could truly say they knew every secret about themselves? And weren’t some secrets better left alone?
She shook her head. “What you did in the Court,” she said. “Perhaps you didn’t lie. But you were unkind.” She started to turn
away. “And I have had enough unkindness.”
“Would you truly refuse a favor from the Queen of the Seelie Court?” the Queen demanded. “Not every mortal is granted such a
“I don’t need a favor from you,” Clary said. “I have everything I want.”
She turned her back on the Queen and walked away.
When she returned to the group she had left, she discovered that they had been joined by Robert and Maryse Lightwood, who
were—she saw with surprise—shaking hands with Magnus Bane, who had put the sparkly headband away and was being the
model of decorum. Maryse had her arm around Alec’s shoulder. The rest of her friends were sitting in a group along the wall; Clary
was about to move to join them, when she felt a tap on her shoulder.
“Clary!” It was her mother, smiling at her—and Luke stood beside her, his hand in hers. Jocelyn wasn’t dressed up at all; she wore
jeans, and a loose shirt that at least wasn’t stained with paint. You couldn’t have told from the way Luke was looking at her,
though, that she looked anything less than perfect. “I’m glad we finally found you.”
Clary grinned at Luke. “So you’re not moving to Idris, I take it?”
“Nah,” he said. He looked as happy as she’d ever seen him. “The pizza here is terrible.”
Jocelyn laughed and moved off to talk to Amatis, who was admiring a floating glass bubble filled with smoke that kept changing
colors. Clary looked at Luke. “Were you ever actually going to leave New York, or were you just saying that to get her to finally
make a move?”
“Clary,” said Luke, “I am shocked that you would suggest such a thing.” He grinned, then abruptly sobered. “You’re all right with
it, aren’t you? I know this means a big change in your life—I was going to see if you and your mother might want to move in with
me, since your apartment’s unlivable right now—”
Clary snorted. “A big change? My life has already changed totally. Several times.”
Luke glanced over toward Jace, who was watching them from his seat on the wall. Jace nodded at them, his mouth curling up at
the corner in an amused smile. “I guess it has,” Luke said.
“Change is good,” said Clary.
Luke held his hand up; the Alliance rune had faded, as it had for everyone, but his skin still bore the white telltale trace of it, the
scar that would never entirely disappear. He looked thoughtfully at the Mark. “So it is.”
“Clary!” Isabelle called from the wall. “Fireworks!”
Clary hit Luke lightly on the shoulder and went to join her friends. They were seated along the wall in a line: Jace, Isabelle, Simon,
Maia, and Aline. She stopped beside Jace. “I don’t see any fireworks,” she said, mock-scowling at Isabelle.
“Patience, grasshopper,” said Maia. “Good things come to those who wait.”
“I always thought that was ‘Good things come to those who do the wave,’” said Simon. “No wonder I’ve been so confused all my
“‘Confused’ is a nice word for it,” said Jace, but he was clearly only somewhat paying attention; he reached out and pulled Clary
toward him, almost absently, as if it were a reflex. She leaned back against his shoulder, looking up at the sky. Nothing lit the
heavens but the demon towers, glowing a soft silver-white against the darkness.
“Where did you go?” he asked, quietly enough that only she could hear the question.
“The Seelie Queen wanted me to do her a favor,” said Clary. “And she wanted to do me a favor in return.” She felt Jace tense.
“Relax. I told her no.”
“Not many people would turn down a favor from the Seelie Queen,” said Jace.
“I told her I didn’t need a favor,” said Clary. “I told her I had everything I wanted.”
Jace laughed at that, softly, and slid his hand up her arm to her shoulder; his fingers played idly with the chain around her neck, and
Clary glanced down at the glint of silver against her dress. She had worn the Morgenstern ring since Jace had left it for her, and
sometimes she wondered why. Did she really want to be reminded of Valentine? And yet, at the same time, was it ever right to
You couldn’t erase everything that caused you pain with its recollection. She didn’t want to forget Max or Madeleine, or Hodge, or
the Inquisitor, or even Sebastian. Every memory was valuable; even the bad ones. Valentine had wanted to forget: to forget that the
world had to change, and Shadowhunters had to change with it—to forget that Downworlders had souls, and all souls mattered to
the fabric of the world. He had wanted to think only of what made Shadowhunters different from Down worlders. But what had
been his undoing had been the way in which they were all the same.
“Clary,” Jace said, breaking her out of her reverie. He tightened his arms around her, and she raised her head; the crowd was
cheering as the first of the rockets went up. “Look.”
She looked as the fireworks exploded in a shower of sparks—sparks that painted the clouds overhead as they fell, one by one, in
streaking lines of golden fire, like angels falling from the sky.


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