I’m With You ( I Love You ).
A/N: This is my second Fierrochase fanfiction! It’s based on this prompt, and I hope
Also posted on fanfiction.net.
“You look stunning, my dear.” Sif says, adjusting Alex’s veil with a gentle smile. “I have never seen a more beautiful bride.”
Groom. Not a bride. A groom.
Alex’s chest tightens and the urge to correct the blonde goddess is all too real, but no one hears him – he isn’t even sure if his pleas are spoken aloud. His mismatched eyes fall on his reflection in the plate glass window, and his throats convulses with repulsion. His skin glows; a dark smoky shadow brings out the gold in his eyes, and his lips look stained with freshly picked roses. His hair, dyed its usual noxious shade of green, is pulled back into a chignon woven with white flowers. He looks gorgeous.
“Thank you,” Is all Alex manages to get out, right before he clamps his lips together so he doesn’t do something embarrassing like let out a donkey’s ear splitting bray.
It’s finally here. The long awaited wedding. He’s wearing a gown that most brides-to-be would have sold their souls for. This is a couture confection of thousands of chiffon rosettes hand-stitched together by the combined efforts of Jack and Blitzen to create an ethereal, cloud-like elegance. The strapless bodice hugs his waist, and the fifty-foot train is bound to cause a commotion when he makes his grand entrance. It’s a six-figure dress, a one-of-a-kind showstopper that only Blitzen can create. And it belongs to Alex, having kindly been donated by Blitzen’s Best (and Jack) as a wedding present for the bride and the groom. Alex knows that spending all of eternity with Magnus after stopping the end of the world should make him happy, but there’s some dull, disgusting sensation swimming through his body that he thinks might burst out.
Sif turns to give Alex her last words of motherly advice before she leaves to check on Magnus – Gods forbid that the groom be allowed to dress himself. “Walk straight! Don’t slouch! And for the Gods of Asgard, smile! It’s your wedding!”
Alex tries, but his lips feel frozen in place.
“That needs work,” Sif shakes her head with a fond smile, but glides out of the antechamber, leaving Alex alone with his thoughts.
Downstairs, Alex can faintly hear the door opening and closing, over and over. The sounds of laughter, chatter and greetings compete with the soft melody of piano notes. The ceremony’s supposed to be starting soon. Annabeth, Sam and Mallory will be coming in any minute now to coo and fuss over the blushing bride-to-be. No no no. He can’t face thousands of guests; not when he’s dressed like this, in a dress that makes him feel itchy and hot and unused to his own skin. It’s as if he’s ten years old all over again, forced to wear suits and neatly pressed pants that had felt plain wrong.
Alex lingers by the door, his hand squeezing the knob so tightly that the faceted surface cuts into his palm. The thought of running has crossed his mind, but the image of Magnus waiting alone at the altar is enough to rule out that idea. The walls fold in on him. The world spins too fast, with colours too bright for his eyes, sounds too loud in his ears. And suddenly, it doesn’t matter if there are repercussions; he has to find a quiet place to breathe. Breathe. Just breathe. Alex tries to focus on the breath entering and leaving his lungs, so his mind can’t wander back to the dress and Magnus.
Alex starts walking with no destination in mind. He doesn’t know where to go. Where to go, what to do, or whom to speak to.
“Alex? Is that you? What are you doing here?”
Magnus, looking so very dashing in his tuxedo, stands at the window to Alex’s right, peering down at the crowd of elegantly dressed guests, who call gaily to each other as they arrived. The blond looks up when he hears the click of satin heels on marble tiles, and Alex can feel his stare all the way down the length of the hallway. Normally, Alex would have been gratified with the reaction his outfit has garnered – the expression on Magnus’ face closely resembles a cow repeatedly being hit with a shovel – but then panic sets in, making his heart race and his palms sweat.
“Alex? What’s wrong?” Magnus tries to grab Alex when he attempts to slip past.
A hysterical laugh nearly bubbles its way past his throat. Hi honey, I know this is a bit sudden, but I’m a male today - is there a spare tuxedo lying around that I could borrow? I won’t be able to wear the dress that Blitzen has poured his sweat, blood and tears into making, either! The guilt flares up, of Alex single-handedly ruining the wedding that his friends (and in-laws) have worked so hard to prepare.
“I … I …” Alex wants to say that he’s fine. That he’s just nervous. That these heels are killing him. Alex loves Magnus; he doesn’t want to hurt him. He doesn’t want to drive Magnus away.
“You’re a male today.” It’s a statement, not a question.
He knows. Of course. Alex closes his eyes on a pained breath, his chest constricting. Magnus has always had an uncanny ability to determine which gender Alex is. It’s convenient, in the sense that Magnus is able to use correct pronouns (and glare at people who don’t), but now, it only serves as a reminder that Magnus is able to see right through him – and all of the lies that Alex tries to come up with.
“I’m sorry.” Alex whispers in response, keeping his eyes glued to the pristine white pumps that peek out from beneath vast, sweeping skirts. “I’m so so sorry.”
“I’m sorry. I’m sorry.” Like a small child, Alex repeats himself, over and over again. “I know I’m causing a lot of trouble. I’m –” Alex catches his apology in mid breath. More sorries would only make things worse.
“We’ll – We could postpone?” A wild, frantic kind of hope fills him, snuffing out the tilted, crazed feeling crawling in his stomach that thrashes his insides. “No, no, that wouldn’t work, everyone’s already here –”
Magnus is mad, he hates me, he’s going to leave. Simply thinking about it is enough to bring on dry heaves of anxiety. His knees shake so badly that the chiffon and tulle quiver in wavelets down to the floor. The concern radiating from Magnus seems to take tangible shape and form around them.
“No, you know what? Screw it, it’s fine.” Alex’s exhalation tears out of him like a child crying so hard, so long, he works consciously for breath. “This is fine. I’ll be fine. The dress is fine. Everything’s going to be fine. I love you, and it doesn’t matter what I wear. Magnus Chase, I love you and we’re going to get married today, and I’m going to glide down that aisle if it’s the last thing I do –”
“Alex.” Warm hands bracket his face, cutting Alex off mid-sentence as amber and brown eyes are forced to meet stormy grey ones. “Alex. It’s okay. I promise.”
Whatever protest Alex has is cut off when Magnus draws Alex close, pressing soft kisses to his forehead, his nose, his cheeks, his lips, so tenderly that Alex could melt against him despite his worries. Alex sags, nestling his head into the crook of Magnus’ neck. He smells of warm summer nights and spun sugar, and the smell is familiar from spending nights curled up with Magnus in sheets that smell exactly like him.
“It’s fine.” Magnus smiles gently, running his palm down the bare skin of Alex’s arm, giving delicate fingers a reassuring squeeze for good measure. “C’mon. Let’s go see Blitz. He’ll get you sorted out.”
Alex lets Magnus lead him down the hallway, in the opposite direction of where he had originally come from. Clutching onto Magnus like a drowning person would a lifeline, Alex tries to draw comfort from their intertwined fingers, and the fact that Magnus is with him. Magnus never complains, not even when his hands are clasped in a white-knuckled grip.
A rich red carpet pads their footsteps. They stop outside a door, panelled with a honey-coloured wood.
“It’s okay,” Magnus says softly, when the colour drains out of Alex’s face, all at once. He puts his lips to Alex’s forehead and hugs him tightly. “Trust me.”
Alex gives an almost imperceptible nod, and Magnus cracks open the door the tiniest bit.
The first thing Magnus hears is the sound of kissing – and judging from the look on Alex’s face, the other boy can hear it too. The suck and smooch, gasping breath, moans of pleasure. He cranes his neck, trying to peer inside the room. He was sure this was Blitzen’s room … He knows spying on people isn’t exactly moral, but he wants to see if his friends are inside.
Magnus almost wishes he hadn’t looked. There’s a sharp intake of breath from Alex, who angles his head, trying to see around Magnus. The sight of Blitzen and Hearthstone twined together, kissing each other hungrily sears itself into his retinas.
The door knob slips through Magnus’ frozen fingers and crashes against the wall. Hearthstone and Blitzen break apart, their heads turn toward the noise, and then their faces pale when they see Magnus and Alex standing in the door frame. If Magnus hadn’t been so taken aback, he would have been amused at how Blitzen and Hearthstone look as though they’d been caught sneaking cookies. He very pointedly does not stare at Alex, who snorts quietly in amusement.
“We – Uh –” Magnus opens and closes his mouth like a koi, face flushing red underneath his tan. There’s a lot he wants to say, some choice phrases being – “Holy hel!” and “When did the two of you hook up?” – but instead, all that comes out of his mouth is a weak, “Uh – Blitzen, have you made out – I mean, laid out the tuxedo?”
“It’s – It’s in the other room, I’ll uh, go get it.” Blitzen mumbles, already moving away. Hearthstone follows. Magnus thinks he’s blushing.
“Did I hear you wrong or did you just say ‘tuxedo’?” Interrupting a dwarf and an elf trying to get it on is admittedly enough to put a smile on Alex’s face, wan as it might be.
“Oh, yeah - I kind of asked Blitz to make a tuxedo for you,” Magnus answers, a half-smile tugging at the corners of his mouth. “Just – Just in case, you know?”
“You did what?” Disbelief clouds Alex’s vision as he tilts his head up to gauge Magnus’ expression. Yup, serious face. He’s not lying. “Just in case,” Alex repeats dumbly, feeling pressure burning at the back of his eyelids. “Just in case.”
The tears threaten, but Alex sucks them back. It’s a startling, but not unpleasant feeling, to think that someone – that Magnus – actually loves and cares enough for him to put his needs and wants above theirs. Not for the first time, Alex wonders what he’s done to deserve such a selfless boyfriend, who wholeheartedly accepts Alex for who he is as naturally as breathing. His throat gets all thick, making speaking impossible.
Interpreting his silence as displeasure, Magnus continues, his voice flavoured with a hint of worry. “Uh – Yeah, I mean, it seemed like a good idea at the time, and Blitz and Jack were more than happy to make another tux for you. Jack even insisted on making a label that said, ‘Jack helped’, and you should have seen him –”
Even in heels, Alex still has to stand up on his tiptoes to kiss Magnus, effectively eliciting a startled squeak from the blond. Their lips meet, tentatively at first, then hungrily, and slightly breathless, Alex says, “I love you.”
Wrapping Alex’s slight frame in his arms, Magnus smiles. “I love you, too.”
“Not that I don’t like the dress, but why exactly have you decided to keep it?” Magnus squeaks in a very unsexy voice.
He feels the bed shake with the force of his husband’s laughter. Magnus opens his eyes to see Alex hovering above him. In one quick motion, Alex moves to straddle him, his knees pressing on the bed on either side of Magnus’ hips. Pulse fluttering wildly, Magnus’ eyes meet Alex’s, who is a sight to behold in a white wedding dress and veil. Tuelle and chiffon ( along with Alex Fierro ) have never looked more alluring. Magnus licks his lips.
“What, are you disappointed? Or were you expecting something a little more … Risqué?” Alex’s eyes gleam with wicked humour, a sly smirk playing across full, upturned lips. “Maybe tomorrow night, dear.”
He laughs again when Magnus chokes. It makes Magnus feel as though he’s just drunk liquid sunshine. “No, I just thought you’d like to rip this off me. The dress was a gift, you know. It’s mine now.”
“It’s too pretty to rip off,” Magnus protests half-heartedly, even as his fingers inch towards the zipper at Alex’s back.
Alex shivers when warm fingers brush against bare skin. He shifts his head and kisses the side of Magnus’ neck, and up beneath his ear. Lightly, so lightly, they could have been sighs instead of kisses. Magnus holds him tighter, pressing Alex close to him.
Alex smiles, and it’s a stamp against Magnus’ neck. “Then get it off carefully so I can wear it again.”