City of Bones – Chapter 8

Well, as always I was smug because I was being all regular with my posts, and then I jinxed it. Well anyway, I’m back now. Since I was neglecting you, I did finish the Mortal Instruments series (though there will apparently be a sixth and final book, which to be honest I am relieved about, because it’s like Clare took five books to learn how to write a cliffhanger, and by then I was like WAIT BUT THIS IS THE END? So, sorry for doubting you, Clare.)

OK, gentle reader, choose your WEAPON OF CHOICE.

We last left Clary after her stupid yet predictable decision to jump through the five-dimensional door at Madame Dorothea’s. She falls through space, she lands, someone lands on top of her. Obnoxious Shadowhunter, you came! How nice!

So they snipe at each other, Jace is like GOD YOU’RE SO INEXPERIENCED I HAD TO COME AND PROTECT YOU, and I am duly reminded of the great love story that is Twilight, and how we know these characters love each other because they’re awful to each other.

Was that a spoiler? Don’t lie, no it wasn’t. You already knew.

So it turns out they landed at Luke’s bookshop, and Clary’s kind of freaking out because why would her mam run away to here? But Jace tells her the door just takes you to wherever you’re thinking of. Which seems kind of unlikely, seeing as Clary’s mam wouldn’t have run away to here and Clary clearly isn’t thinking  “WOW WHAT A COINCIDENCE THAT WE ENDED UP HERE”

Anyway Clary’s like “I wasn’t even thinking of here!” and Jace is like “you probably were” (is she going for a “Clary was thinking of Luke’s house subconsciously” routine? Because that seems incredibly dangerous when it comes to five-dimensional doors, if there’s a chance it could pick up on involuntary mind-waves as well as voluntary ones.) Clary decides reluctantly to leave, since Luke told her to stay away from him, but Jace is like whatevs I’m going in. Clary follows him, and Jace lands down on something which turns out to be our favourite guy Simon! Joy!

They also snipe at each other as Simon’s identity as secret prowler is revealed, so who knows? Maybe they love each other too.

So Clary aks what’s going on, and Simon snaps that he hasn’t seen or heard from her in days and Luke’s been lying for her (wait, HOW DID HE KNOW WHAT WAS GOING ON? Don’t worry, none of the other characters will ever be interested enough in this to find out!) So he’s angry that she also has her hot new “dyed-blond wannabe goth” boyfriend, and Jace is like omg my hair is naturally blond. Seriously, I hope you enjoy contrived one-liners, because we have not yet even begun to scratch the surface. Who describes someone as “dyed-blond” in a potted insulting description? No one.

So Simon says he saw Luke packing a bag full of weapons which he implausibly remembers and even more implausibly thinks is relevant to his story as a “green duffel bag” and he asks Clary if she’s going to dismiss him, as [t]he last light of sunset struck gold sparks from Jace’s eyes, and Clary’s like hey Jace can I tell him the truth? Jace is like I’m bound to the Covenant not to tell, but you’re pretty much free.

Really? There are no little addenda about “BY THE WAY, YOU SHOULD NOT LET ANYONE NOT BOUND BY THE COVENANT TELL RANDOM PEOPLE ABOUT OUR EXISTENCE EITHER”? And you’re telling me that no one before has spilled the beans? This is the first ever time? Okay!

So she tells Simon everything, and Simon’s like so he’s a what? A Shadowhunter, says Clary. ACTUALLY A DEMON HUNTER, says Jace, because he is incapable of shutting the hell up. He makes an offhand comment about killing “naughty” werewolves and warlocks as well (hey remember Madame Dorothea and her with mother? feeling uncomfortable yet? i really would have liked this series more if there had been more examining of how well-deserved the reputation of Shadowhunters among Downworlders is).

Simon thinks the whole thing is great anyway, because he loves D&D, and there is some weird male bonding over hurr hurr some of the vampires are total babes hurr, and they all go into Luke’s house together. Jace uses his stele to unlock the door, and calls them mundanes, and Clary, in a rare moment of perception, thinks huh, I don’t think Simon’s ever going to like Jace really, despite the aforementioned ~*~vampire babes~*~. Well no shit, Clary, I wouldn’t like anyone who referred to me as a “mundane” either. Because I have self-respect.

So they poke around and Jace uses witchlight to light it up, and they see manacles in the wall (omg Simon don’t say they’re kinky!) and there’s blood on the insides which comes away in red-brown powder (weird) and it turns out someone tried to pull them out of the wall. So Clary’s like “wow it’s weird that the place hasn’t been torn apart like my apartment!” and she finds some of her clothes she kept here. For some reason, now Isabelle’s clothes are too big for her even though we keep being beaten over the head with how skinny she is and how “normal-siiiized” Clary is. They find the bag full of weapons and come across a chakram, because god forbid we don’t have an assortment of exotic weapons in this series. If Shadowhunters are so cool and mundanes are so crap, you’d think Shadowhunters wouldn’t be using mundane weapons at all, BUT WHATEVER.

They also find the photo frame that Clary threw at the demon, so Luke’s clearly been back to their apartment, and then they come to an epiphany!

Luke was the last person to use the five-dimensional door, and they came here because Clary wasn’t thinking of anything (again, super plausible but only because it’s Clary)! Madame Dorothea didn’t tell them because I dunno, I guess it’s more suspenseful this way even though she apparently knows Luke then I guess? So why was she always talking about him like she was a bit batty and he was the landlord at her beck and call? I… Just… oh whatever.

Also, in what seems to be a really stupid rule, the five-dimensional door which is totally built on like physics and string theory, stays tuned to the last place it went? That seems very unlikely to me, but then again, I am not a physicist, so ask Spuggy about that.

Jace is like hmm I guess she trusts him more than she trusts us, which means that he might not be-

He’s interrupted, but I am pretty sure he wasn’t going to say “a bad guy”. Classy, Jace. Classy.

So Simon’s like LUKE’S COMING AND THERE ARE TWO GUYS WITH HIM and Jace is like no, not guys, WARLOCKS! So they hide behind a screen in the office and Jace makes it one-way glass with his stele. So Luke and these two guys have macho conversation in which nothing is really said but it’s clear they don’t like each other, and it turns out they arent warlocks, just wearing warlock cloaks that they got from a couple of dead warlocks. Someone says “all the myths are true”, which is one of those things that sounds deep but I still don’t like. Anyone can invent a myth. Something like “all the myths are true” is meaningless unless it comes with rules. Only myths of a certain age, only myths with X believers. You can’t just be like “Slenderman is real now” because someone made him up on a forum and since then histrionic teenagers everywhere have made up sightings of him.

Blah blah Valentine sent them, they’re looking for something Jocelyn hid, this is plot so pay attention. Jocelyn is confirmed to be alive at least.

Clary’s like WOW ARE THEY TALKING ABOUT MY MAM because maybe Luke knows a load of Jocelyns, I don’t know.

She’s also confirmed to be a Shadowhunter, as is Luke, albeit in exile.

They ask about Jocelyn’s daughter, and Luke’s like eh, probs dead, they did send a demon after her, and conveniently demon poison makes people crumble away to ashes so you wouldn’t have found a body.

They threaten him but Luke bats the threat away easily (omg maybe there’s more to him than meets the eye!) and they leave. Clary, unable to conceive of lies, is obsessed with the idea that Luke doesn’t care about her mam.

OK, let me lay out straight one of my least favourite protagonist traits. Gullibility. I have no patience for characters who take everything they hear at face value, especially when it’s clearly a lie to protect them. Sure, lying to protect protagonists never works and always backfires, but when the protagonist suddenly turns around and believes that oh no, this guy who basically raised me has turned out to be a baddie because of a single thing he said, weighed against a lifetime of kindness, I just lose it. What a horrible way to think of people, that a single bad word can erase all their goodness. Being fooled by people’s kindness is different – I understand that we all want to believe people are inherently good, so when people appeal to that it’s easy to be drawn in, even draw ourselves in. IDK, I hate the idea of believing the worst of people.

Jace is like OK so they’re after the Mortal Cup and they think your mam has it, and Clary’s like yeah, seems legit. NOT. Jace says well anyway he seemed pretty friendly with those guys, and Simon for once has to be the voice of reason.

Really, Jace? You thought that was friendly? I can see now why you have no friends.

So Jace is like well they didn’t kill him, which means THEY’RE CLEARLY ON FRIENDLY TERMS, also they think he knows more than he’s telling.

Clary is  like well maybe they just didn’t want to kill another Shadowhunter, and Jace basically laughs in her face.




*lightning crash*

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