Lucifer snickered, falling into the chair beside Chloe’s desk, as the suspect was led out of the interrogation room and away into presumably less accommodating climes. The young woman heard the huff over the din of the precinct. She glared at him over her shoulder, yanking herself from Chloe’s loosening grasp as she was transferred to a uniformed officer.
His detective joined him at the desk, rubbing her wrist absently.
“With a grip like that, no wonder the man ended their relationship,” Lucifer stated, shaking his head in disbelief.
“Yeah, well, doesn’t mean she had to go and kill the guy,” Chloe answered, plopping into her seat. “Even if he did go and – you know,” she mumbled.
“Take her virginity?” Lucifer helpfully provided, a little too loudly for Chloe’s liking.
Chloe rolled her eyes toward the ceiling. “Obviously that doesn't justify murder."
“Absolutely,” Lucifer agreed, leaning back and outstretching his long legs, crossing them at the ankle. “Virginity is such a dull concept. As though a man could ever fundamentally change a woman.”
Chloe looked aghast at her partner, who didn’t seem to notice. “I thought you’d be all on the ‘virginity matters’ train.”
He rubbed his hands together absently. “Why?”
Chloe felt her mouth go dry. She nodded once, busying herself with arranging the papers on her desk.
He directed his gaze toward her. “Why?” he asked again, perhaps a bit forcefully.
She lifted her shoulder in a small shrug. “Just something I thought you’d be interested in. A before and after picture.” Her eyes widened mockingly. “Oh, look at what my dick can do.”
A passing officer glanced over, and Chloe ducked her head, closing her eyes in embarrassment. Lucifer, much to her surprise, simply relaxed further, not taking the bait.
“In my experience, it’s often the other way around.”
His gaze drifted away, his expression softening before he caught himself, looking back to her.
She narrowed her eyes suspiciously at the quick shift in his face, especially as it broke into a grin. He leaned closer, planting an elbow on the desk and resting his chin in his hand, the picture of interest.
“So tell me, detective,” he began, and she groaned internally, “who was the fumbling buffoon who deflowered you? Not detective douche, I presume.”
“Uh, no,” she said, a small smile making its way across her face as her eyebrows lifted. “I wasn’t some blushing bride.”
He nodded, but did not move away. His focus on her was becoming slightly unnerving.
In a swift motion, she struck his elbow away, his hand smacking the desk as he caught himself. She allowed herself to smile fully as he straightened his shoulders in indignation.
She glanced up at him through her lashes, allowing herself a quick look at his long, lean form beneath the tailored suit. She lowered her voice and leaned in conspiratorially. “I’ll tell you mine if you tell me yours.”
He brightened. “A deal, detective?”
She shrugged. “Just this once.”
He opened his mouth but she lifted a finger, silencing him as another officer approached.
“Later,” she said, her attention focusing on the note the officer was handing her.
Lucifer settled back, stiffening. He would tell her the truth, of course.
The cold feeling sweeping through his chest had more to do with the fact that he hadn’t told the story to anyone.
Later came and went.
Lucifer hadn’t forgotten about their deal, but it appeared the detective had, too distracted by a new lead on an old case to bother with any real semblance of a personal life.
Well, she did have the spawn to return home too, but that didn’t really count, did it?
After tracking down Jimmy “The Breakable” Bell, who gave them all they needed to know about his boss (the moniker was, surprisingly, quite correct), Chloe gathered her things at the precinct and made to head home.
Lucifer turned away, feeling dismissed, and had just started to take a step toward the stairs when she spoke.
“Drink?” she asked, nonchalantly.
He wheeled around on his heel. “Drink,” he repeated.
“At my place,” she said, lifting her eyes for a moment to meet his before swinging her bag over her shoulder.
She smiled at his complete bewilderment before strolling away, allowing herself to brush past. Her hand, holding the strap, brushed over his chest.
He breathed her in, her scent trailing after her. He watched, open mouthed, as she reached the steps.
She paused, waiting. “Are you coming?”
His confusion rapidly shifted into excitement. “Since you asked so nicely,” he said, taking a few long strides to meet, then overcome her, nearly bouncing up the steps. He reached the top as she trailed behind. “Places to go, detective,” he called down, gesturing for her to hurry.
Chloe was relieving the babysitter as Lucifer walked in the door, a few minutes behind her. Trixie perked up from her seat at the breakfast counter, but Chloe, without looking, darted out a hand, catching her from leaping out the seat.
Lucifer flinched at the movement, but with the child contained, relaxed. He held the door open for the babysitter to leave, who took the time to appreciatively gaze over Lucifer’s figure.
He chuckled, eyes dark, at her response, but shut the door behind her all the same.
“Did Mrs. Frank make you dinner yet, monkey?” Chloe asked, going around the counter into the kitchen.
“Nope!” Trixie responded, her smile growing impossibly wider as Lucifer took position beside her, leaving an arm’s length warily between them.
He watched Chloe pull a box of mac n’ cheese from the cupboard, and next thing she knew he was at her side, snagging the box from her hand and turning it over. “Honestly, detective,” he chided, reading, “cheesy poison? Even for your offspring, that’s just… cruel,” he decided, replacing the box back in the cupboard. “I didn’t die just so you could give yourselves cancer.”
He smacked his hands together, rubbing them excitedly as he took in the kitchen. His eyes settled on the refrigerator.
Chloe moved out of the way as Lucifer rummaged around the fridge, flinging ingredients and advice toward the two of them, deciding what on Earth he could make from her mess of an unsuitably stocked kitchen.
She slid into the seat beside her daughter with a sly smile and a wink.
After dinner, after the child had gone to bed and they had finished off half a bottle of wine, Lucifer settled back onto the couch beside the detective and wondered why he wasn’t more eager to leave.
The house was quiet, just the two of them talking – about the case, for the most part – and the day was done. Lux was waiting for him in all its glittering darkness, surely emptier without his presence luring people in.
Like he was bait.
The thought had him unconsciously furrowing his brows, which had Chloe curious.
“I didn’t think you’d be so reluctant on going through with a deal,” she said, gaining his attention.
“Of course not,” he assured, faking a confidence he did not, at the moment, feel. “But the deal was that you tell me, and then I, you.”
She pursed her lips, trying not to smile at his cheekiness. “Fine,” she said, boldly. “I was,” she hesitated for a moment, feeling preemptively judged, “18. He was one of my classmates when I was taking acting lessons.”
He crossed his legs, snaking an arm around the back of the couch to lean closer to her. “Go on.”
“Jonah Arc. Not his real name, just his acting moniker. Never got his real one,” she continued, eyes narrowing suspiciously at the only other person in her life she could say the same about.
He raised his eyebrows at that, but remained silent, lest she ask –
Well. He remained silent.
“It was fun. He was gorgeous,” she tossed her loose hair aside for effect, making Lucifer’s mouth go dry. “Black, built like – well, kind of like your brother,” she drew out, thinking.
He threw up his hands, sloshing the liquid in his glass enough that he quickly set it down on the coffee table. “Now I don’t want to know.”
She laughed. “I’m just kidding, Lucifer. Though the rest is true. We had been kind of dating for a little bit, not that 18 year olds can really get serious, but I liked him.” She wavered, deciding to tell him the next bit. “He had a waterbed. It was… awkward. But, I suppose, it always is.”
"Is it?" he asked, honestly.
She took a sip, then let the glass settle in her lap, trying to read his silence. “Enough for you?” she asked.
He swallowed, clearing his throat. “Never enough,” he teased, but she could tell his heart wasn’t in it.
“And you?” she asked, taking another sip and trying to remain casual. She wanted to know – at least, her curiosity was piqued – but his normal oversharing attitude was gone, leaving her on unsteady footing.
How he always managed to do that, she didn’t know.
“I was young, as well” he began. “Very young.”
Chloe stilled, hoping he couldn’t hear her heart, beating wildly against her ribcage.
“Probably too young,” he breathed out, then stood, fishing his phone out of his pocket. “There was a shipment, or was supposed to be one,” he said, dialing as he lifted the phone to his ear and walking toward the door, “of Stolichnaya, this morning, and I’ve just remembered I need to check with Maze about –”
He was out the door before he finished the sentence, leaving it open behind him.
Chloe let out a breath, biting her lip and staring at the wine glass he left behind.
He had a lot of puzzle pieces missing, but every time he offered her a new one to fill in a gap, she realized how much bigger the picture must be.
Lucifer managed to distract himself enough for the next couple of hours that the thought of reneging on a deal was pushed far enough in the back of his mind that he could continue on normally, unwilling to promise himself that he would tell her the story the next time he saw her.
Because he didn’t lie.
They continued on, as they always had, skirting over the edge of an issue that needed resolving in order to solve the case at hand, because there were more important things in the Universe than whatever Lucifer was hiding from her.
A week and a half later and Chloe, Linda, Maze and Ella found themselves at Lux, drinking themselves into giggles (or, in Maze’s case, something that seemed very similar to – but was definitely not – giggles), with Chloe trying her absolute best to steer the conversation away from the topic she had found herself thrown into.
Lucifer sat at the piano, throwing a glance over his shoulder every once in a while at the four women at the bar, thinking they didn’t notice.
“That one, that one, that one,” Maze was saying, quite loudly, and pointing to various people milling about the crowded room.
Linda was trying, unsuccessfully, to keep Maze’s finger down, hiding a laugh behind her hand.
“No way,” Ella injected. “All these people.”
Chloe shook her head good-naturedly, which had Ella widening her eyes.
“You’re serious? All these people?” she said, taking in the room, astonished.
“Believe it,” Maze said, throwing back a shot. “They come back, hoping for another throw down, but they don’t know Lucifer doesn’t do seconds.” Linda set down her drink, opening her mouth to speak. “You don’t count,” Maze quickly corrected. “You’re different.”
“And why’s that?” Linda asked.
Maze shrugged. “Lucifer’s always offered sex in repayment for other stuff.”
Chloe cleared her throat, staring at the back of the man in question as the room seemed to quiet around her. “He… prostituted himself?”
“Yeah,” Maze said, as though it was obvious. “It’s kind of the only currency in Hell.”
Linda smacked a hand on the bar in shock. “There’s money in Hell?”
Chloe couldn’t really hear the answer. Lucifer had looked back at them, even as a woman leaned over the piano, trying to get his attention.
Their eyes locked, and Chloe couldn’t bring herself to look away. She saw him trying to decipher the expression on her face, but the woman said something, and Lucifer turned away to answer.
By the time he looked back, she was gone.
Chloe needed some air.
It shouldn’t have been as much of a revelation as it was. Perhaps it was simply saying it out loud that had her reeling. Perhaps it was Maze’s blasé attitude about it all. But the reaction he had the other day – the look on his face, his unwillingness to speak about his first sexual encounter – left a sharp, stabbing pain her chest.
She blamed the alcohol for the flush in her face, even as she stepped out into the mild California night, tugging her light leather jacket around herself. The bouncers were still managing quite a long line of eager people.
Her hand had reached inside her clutch before the thought snapped into place that she was probably too drunk to drive, and she was turning back to head inside before she could consciously control her legs.
She managed to stop before reaching the top of the stairs, her body still in the shadow of the sparkling lights. Ella, Linda, and Maze had closed the space she had once occupied, laughing at something. Ella lifted her hand, ordering another drink.
She scanned the crowd for Lucifer, catching sight of the woman she had just seen him with, moving away from the piano.
He sat, tapping a cigarette in his palm before placing it between his lips and lighting up.
The music seemed to move around him as she watched, leaving him – and her – in a sphere of quiet. The bubble of people who usually surrounded him widened, as though there were a physical barrier between the piano and the rest of Lux.
He studied the burning end of the cigarette and furrowed his brows, thinking.
Then, as if drawn, he looked up, exactly to where she stood.
Even in the darkness, she was certain he could see her.
Unable to stop herself, her hand snapped out, and she pushed the elevator button. It opened and she stepped into the belly of it, letting herself be swallowed by the dark, orange light.
The penthouse was empty and blissfully, glaringly silent as she entered, compared to the noise downstairs. The quiet pressed in against her, echoing her heels on the tile. She became uncomfortably aware of the shortness of her skirt, trying to pull it down what little it would go.
At least her loose, cream-colored blouse wasn’t revealing – and her hair, back in a loose braid, wasn’t so –
She shook her head, closing her eyes and laughing at herself. Lucifer could probably find sexual innuendo in an empty flour sack, so it didn’t really matter what she was wearing.
Or why she was suddenly worried about it.
She was pouring out two drinks when the elevator opened and Lucifer strolled inside, tossing his jacket vaguely in the direction of a nearby chair. His white shirt glowed brightly against the darkness.
She set the glass down on the bar and he whirled around, startled.
“Detective,” he smiled pleasantly, looking her up and down as she came around to the front of the bar, glass in hand.
She took a big gulp of the burning, amber liquid, embracing the liquid courage and forcing herself to do what needed to be done. “Sit,” she stated, walking past toward the bedroom.
She heard him swipe the glass from the counter and down it in one before following her. “With pleasure,” he murmured.
The mattress gave pleasantly under her light weight and dipped again as he sat beside her. She finished her drink, handing the glass to him. He held onto it as she kicked off her heels, unable to drag his eyes away.
She scooted further back. Finally, he set the glass on the nightstand, twisting at the waist to better look at her.
She was a vision, like unraveled sunshine in the dark of night.
"What happened to your girls’ night?” he asked.
“I’m having it. Right here,” she said, her speech a little loose, tucking her legs demurely beneath her. He rested his weight on a hand, leaning closer. “Girls’ night is supposed to be about talking about stuff.”
“I thought it was supposed to be about getting moderately intoxicated and singing bad karaoke,” he responded.
“Bad?” she repeated, surprised.
“Well,” he said, a smile broadening on his face.
“Right. So,” she dragged out, dramatically plopping herself onto one side of the bed and patting the space beside her. “Talk.”
He eased himself down beside her, trying very hard to retain some distance.
For some reason.
“That’s not what usually happens at this part, darling.”
“Yep,” she said, the word popping off her lips. “You’re gonna tell me exactly what you owe me. You said you never go back on a deal, and this is me, and I’m cashing in.”
“You’re serious,” he said, his smile fading.
She nervously adjusted the pillow beneath her. “Talk to me,” she said, her gaze softening. “You said you were young.”
He huffed onto his back, sliding up a foot to his knee in repose. One hand came to his chest, undoing a top button, while the other stayed on the bed between them.
“I was,” he began, then faltered. He took in a deep breath, glancing over once.
She was listening, a hand tucked beneath her face as she pulled her knees up, closing her body.
“Young,” he continued, returning to stare back up at the ceiling. “As was she. Eve was the first –”
“Eve,” repeated Chloe. “As in, Adam and Eve.”
She bit her lip to keep from saying more, but he didn’t notice.
“She was the first woman. Not, technically, I suppose. But the first who –” He cleared his throat.
Chloe remained still, unwilling to spook her partner.
“– who meant anything. To me. To anyone.”
He was silent for a long moment, then made to sit up. Her firm hand, covering his own on his chest, stopped him.
“You made a deal,” she reminded him.
He settled back down, pulling out his hand to cover hers, keeping it there.
She could feel his heart, beating just beneath, thumming fierce and wild against her fingers.
“She was… gorgeous,” he decided. “Heaven's finest. Legs for days,” he continued, risking a glance at his partner.
She smiled at his smile, and he relaxed further.
“Dark as midnight, and twice as lovely,” he continued, studying the ceiling. “But… stifled. Lonely. Married, or whatever one might call that union, unfair as it was. Talk about ball and chain.” He took in a deep breath, his chest raising their joined hands. “She saw something in me. Something I hadn’t known was there.”
“What?” Chloe asked, gently.
He thought about it, softly rubbing circles over the top of her hand absently. “Who I was, then. The man I used to be. Well, let’s just say I wasn’t always this enigmatic.”
“No,” she drew out, teasing.
“It’s true,” he assured. “I used to be much more concerned with. Well. Rules. Or, more specifically, the rules. My Father’s will.” His hand stilled. “She asked me questions. Possibly because I was the only one she could ask, the only one who ever gave her any time of day. Or night,” he said, unable to help a sly grin. “And I answered, truthfully, and slowly came to realize: we had both been lied to.”
“The only thing that matters, detective.” He turned to look at her, drinking her in. “Who we were supposed to be. And I knew, then, that the man I was, wasn’t by choice. I was made that way, and she, too. We made a choice to be otherwise.”
"It destroyed us both."
The alcohol in Chloe’s bloodstream was making her far more willing to believe him than she’d like to admit – but even if the premise was bull, the emotion, the truth behind it, was real, she knew.
“And the apple?” she asked.
He turned further, lying to face her on his side, slipping their hands off his chest but not letting go. They settled on the cool sheets between them and he pressed on, the words pouring forth as though from a floodgate, unable to be stopped.
“She wanted what all women want.”
Chloe resisted rolling her eyes at what she could only guess was going to be his answer. “And what do all women want?”
He smiled lightly, his eyes soft. “Something more.”
The answer caught her off guard. She looked at her hand, slipped smoothly under his. She turned her palm, opening her fingers and slotting them between his own.
She huffed out a laugh at herself. “Exhibit A,” she whispered.
“Well, you asked,” he said playfully, and she pushed at his shoulder with her free hand.
He took the opportunity to entwine their fingers deeper.
“Enough?” he asked, a wave of hopefulness in his voice.
She looked deeply into his dark eyes, trying to gleam a fuller picture of the man lying in front of her, and she knew.
It would never be enough.
“For now,” she answered.