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It's been three days since Clary was attacked by a Ravener demon. She has some incredible vivid dreams.
She finally wakes up in a gorgeous room, complete with a ceiling "painted with a rococo motif of clouds and cherubs" (5.20). Heavenly, right?
Wrong. Not so heavenly is the fact that she's surrounded by people who think she's going to die.
Fully regaining consciousness, Clary officially meets Isabelle, who has been providing Clary with a cup of one of Hodge's "tisanes."
Isabelle lets Clary borrow some of her clothes so she can get ready to meet Hodge.
After she's dressed, Clary finds Jace who escorts her to Hodge's library. They travel through the Institute, which looks a lot like a monastery would look if it were designed by Frank Lloyd Wright and photographed by Annie Leibovitz for Vanity Fair.
Jace tells Clary about the Lightwoods: Isabelle, Alec, and Max, who is the youngest and is away overseas. It's nice to keep a sibling in reserve for any sequels that may arise.
The Lightwoods aren't on vacation. They're ambassadors in Idris, the Shadowhunter home country, which isn't visible to human eyes. It's squeezed somewhere between Germany and France. So… near Luxembourg?
They arrive at Hodge's library, which is a book-filled tower and we totally want to go to there. If only Hodge and his creepy raven, Hugo, weren't always hanging around.
But he's not the only one ruining the peaceful serenity of the library. Isabelle and her brother Alec are there too. Alec and Jace bicker about Jace's decision to bring Clary, whom they call a mundie, into the Institute.
See, Alec's afraid of being reported to the Clave, which seems to be the Shadowhunter's governing body.
Jace says that Clary isn't exactly a mundie. After all, he Marked her with a rune to protect her, and that might have killed an ordinary mundie. So she has to be special somehow.
As evidence, Jace gets Clary to show them the rune, which consists of "three faint overlapping circles" (154).
Clary's just a little miffed that Jace could have killed her. Hey, we would be mad too, but only because Jace tattooed her with a Venn Diagram, which is not exactly the sexiest tattoo in the world.
In order to clear up the confusion about whether she's some sort of mystical Shadowhunter or not, Clary calls Luke on the Institute phone. How would that show up on caller ID?
He's not exactly helpful. He tells Clary that her mother wasn't found. Also, "I've got my own problems, and I don't need to be bothered by yours" (5.186). Wow. He's a standup guy, that Luke. Very honorable.
After Clary dabs her eyes on Hodge's handkerchief, it's time for a Shadowhunter history lesson. Phew! Finally. We were hoping we'd get one of these eventually.
Shadowhunters are created from humans who drink the Angel Raziel's blood from the Mortal Cup. Okay. Got that.
The Cup disappeared after Valentine, a Shadowhunter-gone-rogue, and his group (called the Circle) tried to overthrow the peace Accords between Shadowhunters and Downworlders. Downworlders, by the way, are part-demons, like warlocks and vampires.
Even though Valentine sounds pretty despicable, Hodge seems to admire him, calling him "a visionary, a man of great personal charm and conviction" (5.246). What's that about?
As if Clary needs more information, Hodge decides to summon the Silent Brothers (they sound fun!) to teach her more.