If you read City of Heavenly Fire, you can probably still remember how you felt when Jonathan died. Angry, sad, disappointed, unfair he died before he got a chance to live. I felt it all. So did my brain. My mind started playing with the concept What If Jonathan Had Lived? That’s why I’ve decided to write this series of short scenes. They all take place after the ending of COHF (apart from the first one) and all include Jonathan Morgenstern. I do not own these characters and these events never happened, it’s all from my imagination.This scene takes place in Central Park.
Jonathan was sitting on a bench in Central Park. Lately, he was coming here more often. He enjoyed the green and the peace, getting away from the Institute for a couple hours and most of all, the people watching. And the beauty was, that he could just sit there, and no one would raise an eyebrow. To them, he was just a normal sixteen-year-old boy. He noticed that every Saturday afternoon, there was the same girl in the park. She always sat in the grass across the path from him, jamming on her guitar. He had never seen her face up front, only from the side, but she fascinated him. And he loved listening to her playing guitar. It was something he looked forward to: just sitting in the park, listening to the girl playing guitar. One Saturday however, she wasn’t there. Jonathan sat down on his bench anyway, hoping she might show up later. After an hour, when he still hadn’t seen her, he grabbed his phone. He was sure she wouldn’t show up anymore, when he heard a voice next to him. “Sorry to bother, but can I ask you something?” His head jerked up with a jolt and breath was knocked out of his lungs. It was her. The girl. It was the first time he saw her face, but her guitar was slung over her shoulder, so he recognized her instantly. She was beautiful. Dirty blonde hair, braided loosely, brown eyes the color of chocolate and her skin was tanned. “Sure.” he managed to say. She tugged on the strap of her guitar and pointed at him. “What kind of tattoos are those?” For a few seconds, he couldn’t grasp what she meant but then his eyes widened. “You mean these?” he shoved up the sleeve of his shirt and showed her the angelic rune on his arm. She nodded. “You can see these?” he asked baffled. She nodded again, a frown in her forehead. “Impossible.” he breathed. “It is only impossible if you believe it is,” the girl said and after a moment of silence she added: “Alice in Wonderland.” That said him nothing and she could see it. She set her guitar on the ground. “I often see things, that probably should be impossible. I’ve seen people with tattoos like yours before, but I could never find out what they meant. So, I’m sorry for asking you, but I just.. I have to know why I can see them, but my friends can’t.” Jonathan chewed on his lower lip. “I don’t know if I can tell you.” He admitted, but after a moment of thought. “But it’s obvious you can see stuff, because I’m using glamour right now. You shouldn’t be able to see them at all.” Her nose wrinkled in confusion and he thought it was the cutest thing he’d ever seen. “Glamour?” she repeated and Jonathan sighed, running a hand through his hair. “Listen, I get you don’t want to tell me. I mean, you don’t know me and it’s obvious that whatever it is you’re keeping a secret, it’s important. So how about we meet again tomorrow? Then you have time to think if you can tell me, or ask if you can tell me, and if not, that’s fine. I just want to know why I’m different.” That last sentence did it, and Jonathan knew that whatever Clary or Jace or Alec would say, he was going to tell her. After all, he knew what it was like to be different. So he nodded. “Sure.” She grinned widely and picked up her guitar again. “Same spot, same time tomorrow?” He nodded and she smiled. “Great.” She was about to walk away, but stepped back and held out her hand. “By the way, I’m River.” Jonathan took her hand, it felt warm and soft against his. “Jonathan.” She slowly slipped her hand out of his and gave him another smile. “I’ll see you tomorrow then, Jonathan.” While she walked away he wondered why her saying his name, caused his stomach to stir.
“No way. You’re not going to tell some random chick our entire history. Have you lost your mind?!” Jace spat at him later that day. They were in the training room, where Jonathan had found him, Clary, Alec and Magnus practicing. “She’s not random, she can see things! I was using glamour and she saw my Marks anyway.” Jace sighed in frustration. “Maybe you weren’t using your glamour that good, after all, Johnny.” Jonathan lunged forward and grabbed Jace by his collar. Jace didn’t even flinch. “My name is Jonathan.” He breathed angrily. “Guys, stop it.” Clary tugged Jonathan back and he clenched his fists, his eyes shooting fire at Jace. “I, of all people, know what it’s like to see things that are not supposed to be there.” She said and Jace turned to her. “But you were, are, a shadowhunter. That girl, is obviously not.” Jonathan started to open his mouth, but Magnus stepped in. “There are, in fact, humans who can truly see us for who we are. I remember that in the London Institute, when your great-grandfather was your age-“ he pointed at Jace. “- there were a couple humans helping in the household. One of them even did the Ascension and married a shadowhunter. It’s called the Sight and some humans are gifted, or cursed, with it.” Jace looked at Magnus. “Don’t tell me she married my grandfather.” Magnus chuckled. “You should know better than that. You even met your great-grandmother, at Jocelyn and Luke’s wedding.” Clary’s eyes cleared up. “Tessa.” Magnus nodded. “Exactly. Sophie, the human, married one of the Lightwoods.” Alec didn’t know how to respond to that so he just huffed. “What is your point with this beautiful story, Magnus?” Jace asked dryly. “If she really has the Sight, we should help her, instead of leaving her to discover it on her own.” Clary shifted on her feet. “But how do we know if she really has the Sight?” Magnus smiled, and his cat eyes lit up. “There are enough options for that. Now, Jonathan, where did you say you were meeting again?”