Maryse and Max return to the Institute in “Love is a Devil,” intent on having Alec lead his little brother’s rune ceremony, a rite of passage for a Shadowhunter in training. The Shadowhunters are all on edge with Valentine on the loose though, Clary and Jace especially. Isabelle is also dealing with her withdrawal from yin fen. In addition to all of these distractions, they’re all forced to confront their deepest fears.

Raphael has a heart

Remember when last week’s episode ended with Izzy taking a huge risk and approaching a vampire for some venom?

Raphael helped her out before a group of vampires forced her to trade her own blood for a fix. Of course, the fix Izzy gets from Raphael’s bite doesn’t last long and she goes looking for more, getting Raphael to bite her again even as he urges that she needs to sweat it out and get it all out of her system.

It’s nice to see Raphael, despite his abrasive nature, coming to Izzy’s rescue repeatedly in this episode. It’s a shame that her addiction has placed her in this damsel-in-distress situation, but Emeraude Toubia is playing Izzy’s desperation perfectly. I’m definitely looking forward to seeing these two interact more in the future.

Clary suddenly returns Simon’s feelings

Simon confesses his feelings to Clary after texting her for a late night meet up.

To the surprise of probably everyone watching the show, she immediately kisses him and decides that yes, these two lifelong friends should take the romantic leap. The question is: why?

There hasn’t been any indication on the show so far that Clary has anything but friendly, maybe familial, feelings for Simon. She spent so long mooning over Jace before the reveal that he’s her brother that she hasn’t shown so much as a flicker of interest in anyone else.

It makes her sudden eagerness to jump into Simon’s arms a little suspect. Does she really want to explore a relationship with Simon? Or is she risking her friendship with him to force herself to forget about Jace?

Iris is responsible for everything

The main cast of characters gradually get more and more angry with one another throughout the party celebrating Max’s rune ceremony.

Clary thinks Simon is already cheating on her with Maya, Alec tries to throw himself off a building in his guilt (and Clary’s urging) at Jocelyn’s death. Jace and Maryse come to blows. It gets more and more obvious that something strange is going on, but Magnus is the only one who actually figures out that there’s magic at play and everyone has been hallucinating.

As it turns out, Iris, the warlock that Clary owes a blood debt, has been keeping them all busy at Valentine’s insistence. He took her little girl Madsy from her, and in return for Madsy’s safety, she masqueraded as a cat to get into Magnus’ apartment. Her appearance with Valentine at the top of the episode makes it clear that she’s going to be involved, but having it turn out that she’s been living in the apartment as a cat the whole time?

Clever. I applaud that decision.

That angel blood reveal

Why was Clary able to communicate with an angel last week? And why has she been receiving visions of runes? Because, just as Jace has demon blood in his veins, Clary apparently has a larger than normal amount of angel blood in her for a Shadowhunter. If Valentine can get his hands on Clary, he won’t need an angel. Talk about a teaser!

The verdict and what’s next

Because of the nature of the hallucination storyline, this episode felt a little disjointed. That’s by design though, so that can be forgiven. More confusing is Clary jumping into a relationship with Simon.

3 out of 5 stars.

In next week’s “Bound by Blood,” Clary will find herself having to repay an owed debt while Downworlders discover that she’s a part of Valentine’s grand plan. Meanwhile, Isabelle and Raphael grow closer while Alec gets suspicious.