THE STAND

3

Robert Lightwood ran his sweaty hand through his hair as he followed his youngest son to his room; Max had interrupted him in his study. He had told Robert that he was sorry but there was a phone call for him, asking to speak with Robert Lightwood; that was not the reason Robert's hands were sweaty or why his heart was racing out of his chest, she was the reason. When Robert asked his son who was on the phone for him; Max gave him a name that Robert had never expected or wanted to hear again in his lifetime; Seraphina Morgenstern.

Following Max into his room; Robert watched as his young child picked up the phone handing it to him; Robert swallowed hard as his placed the phone to his ear. There was silence on both ends at first; Robert hoped that maybe she had ended the call

"Dad when you get done with that lady will you ask her if I can speak with Clary again; please" Max was looking directly up at his father as he spoke

Robert quickly hushed Max hoping that if Seraphina was still on the other end she had not heard anything; much to his dissatisfaction she heard


"Robert; are you not going to speak; I know that you would never forget your manners, especially with me"

Robert was pouring sweat as looked down at his son

"Max; leave now; shut the door behind you"

Max opened his mouth to protest but his father gave him a hard stare, letting him know not to argue; Max quietly left his room shutting the door behind him

"TSK, TSK, TSK; I would have never thought you would be impolite to a Morgenstern, Robert; you of all people know that we do NOT like to be kept waiting"

Robert took his left hand, running it down his face; taking a deep breath he spoke in a shaky voice

"I apologize for making you wait Ms. Seraphina; my son Max was in the room"

Seraphina quickly cut him off, "It has never stopped you before when a child was present; has it"

Robert sat down slowly on Max's bed, fearing that his legs would give out on him at any given moment

"Seraphina; I do not understand what this is about; I thought you ran from them; who is this Clary"

"How dare you ask me, Seraphina Morgenstern any questions; you are nothing Robert Lightwood; I can destroy not only you but your entire family in a blink of an eye if I wish. Now you will listen and follow my instructions; do you understand me Robert"

"Yes; yes ma'am I understand"

"Good, this is good Robert; now I am going to give you an address; you are to bring your entire family with you to this address, including Jace; understand "

"Yes Ms. Seraphina"

"Robert do you have something to write the address down"

Robert quickly grabbed a crayon and piece of drawing paper; Seraphina gave him the address and directions upon their arrival; before ending the call she spoke once more

"Oh and Robert"

"Yes"

"If you try and run with your family or try to deceive me in anyway at all; I will not only hunt you but your entire family as well; we both know how traitors of the Morgenstern's die, don't we"

The call ended

Robert's hand was shaking as he placed the phone down on Max's bed; he knew that he would have to take his family to The Institute as Seraphina called it; he had no other choice, she would surely torture and kill them all if they tried to run


Her whole body was trembling as she lay on the bed curled in a tiny ball; Clary's arms were wrapped tightly around her legs as she rocked back and forth. Speaking to someone as Seraphina; even if it was Robert Lightwood; was too much for Clary; she had promised herself long ago that she would never be that person again. Her breathing started slowing as she loosened her grip around her legs; standing up from the bed she walked in the restroom staring at her reflection. She began to speak as she continued to gaze in the mirror

"You are not like him Clary; you do not want to inflict pain on anyone; you do not enjoy hurting anyone; you are good Clary Fray; you are kind; you are not a Morgenstern"

Clary nodded as she continued to repeat the sentence over and over in her head; tucked away in her heart somewhere she knew that the words she kept repeating were not entirely true; the truth was that a part of Clary liked scaring Robert; wanted revenge on Robert Lightwood, wanted to cause him pain for what he had done to her over and over again.

After a few moments Clary quickly turned away from the mirror; she began packing all of her personal belongings in her small black bag; after she finished she took wipes to clean every surface that she may have touched before leaving the hotel for the very last time


Clary was terrified while heading toward her destination; she was not hidden as she traveled, her red crimson hair flew in the wind trailing behind her as she walked and her bright green eyes were piercing through every stranger as they passed by. Clary knew how dangerous it was, walking out without her disguise, especially now with Valentine searching for the Lightwoods as well. She did not have a choice in the matter; Clary knew that when she came face to face with Robert Lightwood, she would have to be Seraphina Morgenstern, and Seraphina feared no one.

Walking down a dark alleyway to make her turn toward the Institute Clary saw the Lightwoods from a distance; she could not believe that Robert was not taking his family through the more secluded areas to blend in somewhat; he was being careless with his family, careless with Max. She continued watching to make sure that Robert had followed her instructions to bring his entire family, including Jace; she counted silently realizing he had brought them all with him as instructed, at least the correct number of people. Clary turned away quickly making her way to the back entrance of the Institute

Once inside she began flipping hundreds of switches; illuminating the large area; on the outside the Institute may look like a dump but on the inside it was truly magnificent. Clary stood in what one would call the foyer as she took everything in; the first floor of the Institute looked something like an abandoned church; if you were to walk in from the street, you would never guess that anyone lived in the floors that resided above this one. Clary was still admiring the first floor when she heard a loud banging and what she thought was a little girl having a temper tantrum. Quickly she made her way to the front entrance; there she carefully unlatched the wooden door in several places; once the door was free from locks Clary pulled the door to allow her guest entrance.

Standing on the other side of the entrance; were an older couple, three teenagers; two boys, one girl; and a younger boy. Clary stilled only for a moment to study the group of six before waving them in; once the group was safely inside she turned toward the door and began to secure the locks in place.

Clary took a deep breath before she turned to face the Lightwood family; the moment she met their curious faces, she was no longer Clary, she was Seraphina Lightwood

"Robert it has been such a long time, has it not" Seraphina looked at Robert analyzing his every move, just as her father had taught her. He did not look like the man she knew years ago; he looked older of course but there was something different about his eyes. The eyes she looked upon now were not shining with the evil gleam that Seraphina remembered so well; no these eyes showed something entirely different, possibly remorse. She watched Robert's body posture as he stiffened clearly uncomfortable with her presence

"Yes; yes it has Ms. Seraphina; the years have been good to you, I presume"

Ignoring Robert completely Seraphina's eyes began to roam over his family one by one

"Robert; such rudeness; are you not going to introduce me to your lovely family" Seraphina's eyes continued to analyze the rest of the Lightwood family as Robert spoke

"Of course, Maryse is my wife; Alex and Isabelle are our set of twins, Max is our youngest and this is Jace our adopted son"

"Ha, you adopted him; truly Robert, you have no shame do you" Seraphina shook her head; walking in front of the group

Maryse, the wife was a very attractive woman; slender and tall, with beautiful long brown hair and dark brown eyes

Alex; the twin was a very attractive man, almost too attractive; striking sky blue eyes, brown hair also

Isabelle; the other twin was gorgeous, almost an exact copy of her mother but younger

Max; the youngest, had dark brown hair with brown eyes, he also wore glasses

Jace; the adopted child; was striking to say the least, blonde hair with bewitching golden eyes


Seraphina noticed Robert placing a hand on Jace's shoulder after she spoke; as if to stop Jace from doing something reckless

A mischievous grin appeared on her face; walking straight towards Jace

"Jace; is there anything you would like to say; any questions"

Seraphina noticed how the golden teenager's body shook as he tried to contain his anger; he was good she had to admit but she was better

"Well if not; let me show you to your rooms"

Seraphina walked over to one of the wooden paneled walls; no one would have guessed that there was an elevator hidden behind the panel; pushing the panel aside Clary carefully opened the elevator doors

"We cannot all fit at one time; Robert; take your wife and two twins to the second floor; Jace, Max and I will wait until the elevator returns"

Robert had a worried look, but did not refuse as he ushered his wife, Alex and Izzy in the elevator; pressing the button the elevator doors slowly closed; leaving Max and Jace alone with Seraphina


Seraphina walked over to sit down on one of the old church pews; knowing the elevator would take a while to come back down

"Max; it is Max right" Seraphina asked while sitting on the pew

Max turned toward her; nodding the young boy attempted to walk towards her but Jace quickly stopped him

"Max you need to stay right beside me" Jace warned

"Ha, you think that I invited your family here to harm you; please if I wanted to hurt any of you, I would have already done so" Seraphina rolled her eyes at the teen; turning her attention back to Max, Clary noticed that he held his manga comic book

"Max is that manga; I used to love reading those; it took me a while to learn that I had to read right to left though" soon after the words left her mouth, Seraphina knew she had made a terrible mistake. Her eyes shot up to search the young boy's face, praying he did not connect her with Clary Fray. Max's gaze locked with Seraphina; she could see some type of recollection in his eyes, but unsure if Max had actually made the connection between Clary and herself.

Just as Max opened his mouth to say something the elevator door opened; breaking the connection between Seraphina and Max



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