City of Bones (The Mortal Instruments Series #1)
Author: Cassandra Clare
Synopsis: When fifteen-year-old Clary Fray heads out to the Pandemonium Club in New York City, she hardly expects to witness a murder -- much less a murder committed by three teenagers covered with strange tattoos and brandishing bizarre weapons. Then the body disappears into thin air. It's hard to call the police when the murderers are invisible to everyone else and when there is nothing -- not even a smear of blood -- to show that a boy has died. Or was he a boy?
This is Clary's first meeting with the Shadowhunters, warriors dedicated to ridding the earth of demons. It's also her first encounter with Jace, a Shadowhunter who looks a little like an angel and acts a lot like a jerk. Within twenty-four hours Clary is pulled into Jace's world with a vengeance, when her mother disappears and Clary herself is attacked by a demon. But why would demons be interested in ordinary mundanes like Clary and her mother? And how did Clary suddenly get the Sight? The Shadowhunters would like to know. . . .
The midnight flower was already shedding petals. They drifted toward the floor, glimmering like slivers of starlight. “When I was twelve, I wanted a tattoo,” Clary said. “My mom wouldn’t let me have that, either.”
Jace didn’t laugh. “Most Shadowhunters get their first Marks at twelve. It must have been in your blood.”
“Maybe. Although I doubt most Shadowhunters get a tattoo of Donatello from the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles on their left shoulder.”
Jace looked baffled. “You wanted a turtle on your shoulder?”
“I wanted to cover my chicken pox scar.” She pulled the strap of the tank top aside slightly, showing the star-shaped white mark at the top of her shoulder. “See?”
He looked away. “It’s getting late,” he said. “We should go back downstairs.”
Clary pulled her strap back up awkwardly. As if he wanted to see her stupid scars.
The next words tumbled out of her mouth without any volition on her part. “Have you and Isabelle ever—dated?”
Now he did look at her. The moonlight leached the color out of his eyes. They were more silver than gold now. “Isabelle?” he said blankly.
“I thought--” Now she felt even more awkward. “Simon was wondering.”
“Maybe he should ask her.”
“I’m not sure he wants to,” Clary said. “Anyway, never mind. It’s none of my business.”
He smiled unnervingly. “The answer is no. I mean, there may have been a time when one or the other of us considered it, but she’s almost a sister to me. It would be strange.”
“You mean Isabelle and you never--”
“Never,” said Jace.
“She hates me,” observed Clary.
“No, she doesn’t,” he said, to her surprise. “You just make her nervous, because she’s always been the only girl in a crowd of adoring boys, now she isn’t anymore.”
“But she’s so beautiful.”
“So are you,” said Jace, “and very different from how she is, and she can’t help but notice that. She’s always wanted to be small and delicate, you know. She hates being taller than most boys.”
Clary said nothing to this, because she had nothing to say. Beautiful. He’d called her beautiful. Nobody had ever called her that before, except her mother, which didn’t count. Mothers were required to think you were beautiful. She stared at him.
“We should probably go downstairs,” he said again. She was sure she was making him uncomfortable with the staring, but she didn’t seem to be able to stop.
“All right,” she said finally. To her relief, her voice sounded normal. It was a further relief to look away from him as she turned around. The moon, directly overhead now, lit everything nearly to daylight brightness. In between one step and another she saw a white spark struck off something on the floor: It was the knife Jace had been using to cut apples, lying on its side. She jerked hastily back to avoid stepping on it, and her shoulder bumped his—he put a hand out to steady her, just as she turned to apologize, and then she was somehow in the circle of his arm and he was kissing her.
It was at first almost as if he hadn’t wanted to kiss her: His mouth was hard on hers, unyielding; then he put both arms around her and pulled her against him. His lips softened. She could feel the rapid beat of his heart, taste the sweetness of apples still on his mouth. She wound her hands into his hair, as she’d wanted to do since the first time she’d seen him. His hair curled around her fingers, silky and fine. Her heart was hammering, and there was a rushing sound in her ears, like beating wings—
Jace drew away from her with a muffled exclamation, though his arms were still around her. “Don’t panic, but we’ve got an audience.”
Clary turned her head. Perched on a nearby tree branch was Hugo, watching them beadily from bright black eyes. So the sound she’d heard had been wings rather than demented passion. That was disappointing.
“If he’s here, Hodge won’t be far behind,” said Jace under his breath. “We should go.”
“Is he spying on you?” Clary hissed. “Hodge, I mean.”
“No. He just likes to come up here to think. Too bad—we were having such a scintillating conversation.” He laughed soundlessly.
They made their way back downstairs the way they had come, but it felt like a different journey entirely to Clary. Jace kept her hand in his, sending tiny electrical shocks traveling up and down her veins from every point where he touched her: her fingers, her wrist, the palm of her hand. Her mind was buzzing with questions, but she was too afraid of breaking the mood to ask him any of them. He’s said “too bad,” so she guessed their evening was over, at least the kissing part.
They reached her door. She leaned against the wall beside it, looking up at him. “Thanks for the birthday picnic,” she said, trying to keep her tone neutral.
He seemed reluctant to let go of her hand. “Are you going to sleep?”
He’s just being polite, she told herself. Then again, this was Jace. He was never polite. She decided to answer the question with a question. “Aren’t you tired?”
His voice was low. “I’ve never been more awake.”
He bent to kiss her, cupping her face with his free hand. Their lips touched, lightly at first, and then with a stronger pressure. (Chapter 17, pgs. 313-317)