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Heaven Talks But Not To Me

Chapter Text

Earth

In retrospect, it should have been obvious that things were about to go downhill with the way the morning had gone: a phone call way too early in the morning, running out of cigarettes before he even made it out of the house, the traffic awful. None of that were telltale signs per se, but still, he figured he should have known. Things were bound to fall apart at some point after all.

“Do you reckon this case is going to be as dull as the last few?” Lucifer asked as he fiddled with the air conditioning in Detective Decker’s car.

“I don’t know how you can call any homicide case dull but this one doesn’t have an immediate suspect, yet, so I guess you can have some fun questioning people.” Chloe answered as she slapped Lucifer’s fingers away from the buttons, her eyes never leaving the road.

Lucifer huffed. “They were dull. All crimes of greed. Not one of them had a reason to kill anyone. They all just wanted their bloody money. I’m waiting for the day that someone tries to kill me for what I have with Lux and all.”

“Don’t say that.”

Lucifer raised an eyebrow at Chloe’s response. “Don’t say what?”

“Don’t talk about people killing you.” She said with emphasis.

“Detective, you do care for me after all.”

She gave an exasperated sigh. “Of course, I do, Lucifer. No matter how annoying you are, I still don’t want you dead.”

He smiled widely. “That’s nice to hear. But, as always, your worry is misplaced. No one can kill me. At least not, when you’re not around.”

“Right. The Devil is immortal, after all.”

“That he is.”

“And still he gets kidnapped and dropped somewhere in the desert. All powerful being that he is.”

Lucifer rolled his eyes. “Okay, let’s stop talking about me in the third person, shall we? The kidnapping is still a mystery that I will solve. But it doesn’t have to be of your concern. I’m fine. Mostly. I still feel violated, but I’ll deal with that as well. Dear old dad will pay, sooner or later.”

“If you want to talk to someone about that, I’m here.” Chloe said, her voice sincere. Even though she thought it was all a metaphor, she still cared and wanted to understand. Lucifer could tell that much.

“Thank you.” He was just as sincere.

|||

They reached the crime scene shortly after. The officer at the door of the building let them through with a nod and Lucifer followed Chloe out into the spacious garden of the mansion. The sun reflected off the pond in the middle and the entire scene would have been immensely beautiful, if it hadn’t been for the dead body propped up in the fountain.

Dan was waiting for them, watching Ella as she carefully took close-up pictures of the obviously strangled neck of the dead woman.

Chloe stepped up next to Dan. “Hey.”

“Hey, Chloe.”

Lucifer narrowed his eyes only the tiniest bit, when he saw Daniel place his hand on Chloe’s back for a second. Then he stopped himself. He had no reason to be jealous, it wasn’t his place. The Detective could be intimate with whomever she chose. And if that someone was Detective Douche, he wasn’t going to argue and he sure as hell wouldn’t be jealous.

Okay, maybe just a little bit.

“So, what have we got so far?” Chloe asked taking a couple steps closer to the body.

“Well,” Ella began, “she has been strangled but I don’t think that’s what killed her.”

“Then what did?” Lucifer asked.

Dan looked up at him as if he only just now noticed Lucifer was there as well. He gave Lucifer an irritated look. It was clear he somehow had a problem with the club owner being here, but Lucifer wasn’t going to push it, so he simply gave the Douche an innocent smile.

Ella got up from her crouch. “The bruise of the strangulation looks like it was done post mortem. I can’t tell you anything else until we get her out of the water.”

“Okay, then chop, chop. If you’re done with your pictures, get to it. Meanwhile, are there any witnesses to talk to? Who found the body?” Lucifer rubbed his hands together.

Dan once again turned to look at him. “You don’t call the shots around here, man. You’re the consultant, not the detective.”

“Dan, please.” Chloe stepped between them “He’s my partner and therefore his word is as valid as yours or mine.”

“Yeah, right.” Dan scoffed. “If you overlook the fact that he’s a nutcase.”

“What’s gotten into you lately? Since when are you this hostile with Lucifer?” Chloe crossed her arms. “I thought you two got along.”

“In my defense, I have been nothing but polite to the Douche, so this isn’t on me.”

Dan took a few quick steps towards Lucifer, crowding him, which to Lucifer looked ridiculous. He was taller than Daniel and with his wings and therefore his powers returned, Daniel didn’t stand a chance against the Devil. Lucifer simply smiled down at the detective, a condescending smile, confident if not cocky.

“What are you going to do?” Lucifer asked, his voice low, daring Daniel to make a move.

“Dan!” Chloe raised her voice and pushed between the two men. “Don’t do this. Not here.”

“Why do you still work with him? After everything he’s done? He left you. Twice! Without any explanation and then he comes crawling back without so much as an apology, fucks up your investigations and you just take him back!” Dan was on a roll now. “He lies, he runs shady business with shady people and we don’t even know who he really is!”

“I don’t lie!” Lucifer spat, every word carefully enunciated.

“He is my partner! He saved my life countless times.” Chloe countered. “And you don’t have to like it but I will work with him as long as I see fit and you will respect that. And you will respect him.

Dan seemed stunned. “Are you… are you actually sleeping with this guy?”

“What?” Chloe seemed perplexed.

“You’re fucking him, aren’t you?” Dan gave a small, disbelieving laugh. “Not only do you bring this mental case near my daughter, you have the audacity to fuck him and bring him around crime scenes.”

Chloe slapped him. Quite hard at that.

“How dare you?”, she hissed and stepped back from him, her eyes filled with rage.

Lucifer was about to step in, to stop this entire thing from escalating but something caught his eye. The sun reflected off of something far up the skyscraper that towered over them. First, he thought it had to be a window, but it set off his alarm bells.

A rifle scope.

“Everybody down!” He yelled and pulled Chloe, who was standing directly in front of him, down to the ground, shielding her with his own body. A shot rang out only a second later. He felt Chloe flinch underneath him, her hand grabbed his suit jacket tightly.

People panicked and threw themselves to the ground as well, Ella hid behind the fountain and Dan—Dan was on the ground, lying on his back, a slowly growing circle of red adorning the front of his shirt.

Lucifer felt his insides grow cold. Dan wasn’t breathing, his chest not rising and falling anymore. Lucifer couldn’t tear his eyes away as he still shielded Chloe. She hadn’t seen it, yet. He couldn’t let her see. He couldn’t do this to her.

His head snapped up. There was movement at the window where the shot had come from. The killer was fleeing. Lucifer got up from the ground in one fluid motion, almost too fast to be entirely human. He was just about to run after the bastard with the rifle, but Chloe’s sharp intake of breath stopped him in his tracks.

“Dan!” Chloe choked on the word and she scrambled over the floor to Daniel’s side. “Dan? Hey—Dan, please, no. Don’t do this to me, Dan.” She carefully lifted his head, her hand pressing on the bleeding bullet wound. “Please, no, no.” Her words turned into sobs and all Lucifer could do was stand and stare.

Again, he had failed to protect her and her loved ones.

“Somebody do something!” Chloe yelled out suddenly and it startled Lucifer into action.

“We need an ambulance!”, he pleaded. Ella nodded, her entire body shaking from shock. But still she started running to get help. Other officers had started running to catch whoever had shot at them. It was chaos all around. In the middle of it all lay Dan, Chloe next to him, both so very still compared to everything going on around them.

Lucifer kneeled down next to Chloe. His hands replaced hers on the wound and he pressed down hard. But there was no pulse. No life underneath his hands. He felt Chloe next to himself but he didn’t dare look up at her. She cradled Daniel’s head in her hands and he could hear her softly repeating ‘no, no’ over and over underneath her breath.

And for the first time in a very long time he swallowed his pride and turned heavenwards. Only for her. “Michael, please, brother.” Lucifer’s voice was barely more than whisper. “Let me help him. Let me heal him. Just this once. I beg of you, help me.” He didn’t expect an answer, not even a sign. And for the longest moment he was sure, none would come.

But suddenly warmth flooded his hands and then down into Daniel’s body. He almost let out a laugh of relief but stopped himself. He waited for any sign that something had changed and then he felt the faintest heartbeat underneath his fingertips and Dan took a rattling breath. Chloe choked on a breath and held onto Dan tighter. Lucifer kept pressing down on the wound until the ambulance arrived, knowing and trusting that Michael had done enough to save Dan somehow.

The EMP gently tried to move Chloe aside but she held onto Dan tightly, refusing to be removed.

“No, no, don’t take him away from me, please.” Chloe sobbed.

Lucifer took her face in his hands to force her to look at him, not thinking about the blood on his hands that now stained her already tear-stained face. “Chloe, look at me. Hey.” He waited until her eyes were focusing on him. “Chloe. They’re trying to help. They just want to help Dan. You need to let them do their job.”

Slowly she let go and Lucifer lifted her up from the ground to help her stand a few feet away from where the EMT now placed Dan’s body—no, still Dan—on a stretcher, an oxygen mask covering his face. Chloe buried her face in Lucifer’s chest and he held her, knowing nothing else to do than offer comfort.

When Dan was loaded into the ambulance, Lucifer carefully pushed Chloe at an arm’s length to look at her. “Detective. Chloe, can you come with me? I’ll drive you to the hospital.”

She nodded quickly but couldn’t form any words. She was in shock, that much Lucifer knew, and he was certainly not qualified to deal with anyone in shock. All his thoughts were spinning around a definite middle: let Dan be okay, because I can’t bear her losing someone she loves.

|||

They arrived at the hospital shortly after the ambulance and Lucifer guided Chloe to the ER, where a nurse told them they’d have to wait in the waiting room as long as Daniel was in a critical condition. Chloe tried to argue that she was his next of kin but that didn’t change anything. Daniel had been brought into surgery immediately and all they could do was wait.

“He can’t die, Lucifer. He can’t. Not after what I did. Not now.” Chloe whispered, her eyes had run out of tears half an hour ago and they were still waiting for news.

“This isn’t your fault, Chloe. There’s nothing you could have done.”

“But if he dies, the last thing I ever said to him—the last thing I did was slap him.” Her voice wavered as she spoke those words. “I can’t have that be the last thing I did.”

Lucifer lay his arm around her and she leaned into him. “It won’t be. He will be fine. Dan is strong, he will make it through this, I promise.”

“Don’t promise what you can’t keep.” She responded quietly.

“I promise, Chloe. And I don’t go back on my word.”

He already knew that to be true. He would help Daniel somehow. He had asked for Michael’s help and his brother had actually granted him his wish, lending Lucifer the power of healing that he didn’t possess himself. Michael of course would want something in return, for angels just like Lucifer rarely ever granted favors without some quid pro quo. But why not get something more out of this deal? Lucifer would grovel in front of his brother, if only it meant that Michael would help.

Just then, the ER nurse came through the door to their left. Chloe was on her feet immediately and waited for the young male to bring her the good news, but Lucifer saw something in his eyes before the man had spoken.

“Miss Decker?” Chloe nodded quickly and the nurse took in a breath before speaking. “I’m sorry to inform you, but Mr. Espinoza suffered from a loss of blood circulation during the surgery. There has been an absence of brainstem reflexes since then. We stabilized his vitals but I’m afraid there’s little hope he’ll recover.”

“What does that mean?” Chloe breathed out.

“We have machines keeping Mr. Espinoza alive at the moment but his brain has ceased to show any vital signs.”

“You’re saying he’s brain dead?”

“Yes. I’m sorry.”

Lucifer caught Chloe as she swayed. Her grip on his arm was so tight it would leave bruises but he didn’t mind.

Chloe’s eyes found the nurse. “Can I see him?”

“Yes, follow me.” He led them down a hall, then another. When he stopped in front of a door, he hesitated. “Don’t panic. Seeing him hooked up to the machines can be shocking.” Then he opened the door for Chloe.

Chloe rushed to Dan’s side and carefully took his hand into her hands. The tears started flowing again. Lucifer stayed back, not wanting to disrupt her moment of grief but finally stepped closer.

All Lucifer could think about as he looked down on Dan was that Michael hadn’t done much after all. Sure, Dan had survived until he reached the hospital, had died in surgery. So, technically Michael had saved his life only for the doctors to fuck things up. He could have done more.

Brain dead. It meant Dan’s soul was gone. His body alive, yes, but his soul had already passed the threshold into the next life. Lucifer would beg Michael, he would. The Devil himself would kneel in front of his brother just so that Chloe wouldn’t have to suffer. Lucifer would offer Michael anything, if only Michael agreed to return Daniel’s soul from Heaven.

Lucifer took Daniel’s other hand to feel the steady pulse beneath his fingertips, to reassure himself that there was a still a chance that he’d make it. To be sure that he wouldn’t break his promise to Chloe. And just then, underneath the pulse he felt it. A hum. A burning. Fire.

Daniel’s soul had not ascended. No, it had descended. Daniel Espinoza’s soul had gone to Hell. Dan Espinoza’s soul belonged to Lucifer.

Lucifer let out a shuddering breath. He didn’t need Michael.

“I’m sorry, Chloe, I—” He didn’t know what to say. He couldn’t lie to her but he couldn’t tell the truth, either. But she took the decision from him.

“It’s okay. You don’t have to be here.”

“Where is young Beatrice?” Lucifer swallowed hard at the thought of the child.

Chloe’s eyes became unfocused for a moment, then she took in a shaky breath. “She’s with Dan’s parents for the week. They’re on vacation. Oh God, what do I tell her? What—?”

She was about to hyperventilate. Lucifer quickly stepped around the bed and held her close. “It’s alright, Chloe. Breathe.” He murmured into her hair. “Don’t tell them anything, yet. Let them have a day or two more of peace.”

“I can’t do that.”

“Yes, you can”, he said determinedly. “Dan will make it through this. There’s no need to scare Beatrice or his parents.”

“How?” Chloe sobbed. “How is he going to make it through this?”

“I need you to have faith.”

“Faith in what?”

Lucifer looked down on her, took her hand and carefully placed it on Dan’s. “Have faith in Daniel.” He held on to Chloe as she held on to Dan and they stood in silence for a while, the beeping of the monitors the only sound in the room. Then, slowly, Lucifer freed himself from Chloe’s embrace.

“Detective, I have got to go.”

She nodded quickly, wiping at her eyes. “Yeah, of course, you’ve got things to do.”

“It’s not like that. I want to be here. For you. I don’t want to leave but I have to.” He bit the inside of his cheek until he tasted blood. “I have to keep my promise.” He moved towards the door, his hand leaving Chloe’s eventually. “I will be back soon.” And with that and a last look at Chloe he left.

|||

He rushed into Lux, slightly surprised to find Maze behind the bar with Patrick, who was restocking the bar. Since she didn’t work as his bartender anymore, Maze barely spent any time at the club. Now she was leaning on the bar, sipping a drink.

“Patrick, don’t open Lux tonight.” Lucifer commanded without so much as a ‘hello’, and beckoned Maze to follow him with a wave of his hand.

“Why not?” Maze questioned but put the glass down immediately.

Lucifer didn’t stop walking, kept making his way towards the elevator. “Daniel Espinoza is dead.”

Maze’s eyes widened. “What? How? Where’s Chloe?”

“Upstairs, Maze, now!”

She followed him quickly, the elevator doors sliding closed behind her. “Chloe is at the hospital with Dan. Brain dead. Soul gone but body still alive. And guess which direction the Douche took.”

“I already see where this is going and I’m not going to let you do it.” Maze objected.

“Oh, Mazie”, Lucifer smiled down at her as the elevator reached his loft. “You forget your place. I don’t need your permission to do anything.” He stepped out and took off his suit jacket.

“What about the consequences? What about that precious balance? You will fuck everything up by bringing him back to life. You father won’t like it.”

Lucifer scoffed. “When have you ever known me to care about what my father wants. Besides, I’ve sort of got Michael on my side. He already intervened once and that means Dan’s life won’t affect the balance. It’s only fair, I get to bring someone back after the disaster that was Malcolm Graham.”

“Listen to yourself.” Maze pleaded. “You’re talking yourself into this.”

“I promised Chloe, I wouldn’t let him die.”

“Then you won’t be able to keep that promise.”

“Yes, I will!” Lucifer roared and spun around to face Maze. And she cowered.

“Lucifer, your eyes…”

He knew. He could feel it. But that was impossible. His Devil face had been taken from him when the wings had reappeared, meaning his eyes shouldn’t be burning with the fires of hell right now. But still he felt it. “Impossible.” He muttered.

“They’re not red.” Maze said quietly.

Lucifer turned to look at himself in the glass behind the bar. Sure enough, his eyes were burning but not red, no. The reflection looking back at him had almost white glowing eyes. It wasn’t Lucifer. It was Samael. “No”, he breathed. “No! Take it back! Take them back!” He turned his head heavenwards. “I don’t want them. Not the wings, not the power, not the eyes. I don’t want to be him!”

“Lucifer, please.” Maze stepped closer to him. “Calm down. You’re going to start an earthquake.” Sure enough, slight trembles had shaken the apartment. “Look at me. You don’t have to be him. You’re still Lucifer. To me, you will always be Lucifer. And to Chloe as well. The wings won’t change that.” She paused. “And not that I think it’s a good idea but the wings are your only way to bring Dan back.”

The white glow faded from Lucifer’s eyes and his breath came easier. “You’re right. I define who I am, not him. Me.” He stepped away rolling up the sleeves of his shirt. “I won’t let him control me.”

“I get that.” Maze said slowly and Lucifer could tell she was choosing her words carefully. Whether it was due to his temper or something else he didn’t know. “Lucifer, you have always gone your own way but this is taking it too far. Think of the consequences.”

“Like what, hm? If I don’t do this, I will break a promise.” He leaned down on the piano with both elbows. The muscles in his back flexed involuntarily and he repressed the urge to stretch his wings. “If I don’t do this, Chloe will lose him. Beatrice will lose her father.”

“But if you do it, Dan will know the truth. He will tell Chloe and you don’t know what will happen then.”

Maze had a point. There was no way he would be able to keep his true identity from Daniel. Not that he was actively trying to hide it but neither Dan nor Chloe believed him. And Lucifer had the bad feeling that they would take their offspring and run. Losing Chloe…

He didn’t know, if he could bear that. But there was no choice, really.

“I am going to do this, Maze. You’re not under your oath anymore, I know that. But I would like you to accompany me.” He turned back to face the demon.

Maze hesitated. “No. I’m not going back.”

“Mazikeen—”

“No, Lucifer, I’m staying. You’ll do fine on your own. You have your wings.”

He grimaced. “That I do.” He rolled his shoulders once and then slowly let his wings unfurl. He carefully stretched them out as far as he could without knocking over any furniture and gave them an experimental flap. “I won’t be gone long, Maze.”

“I know. I’ll be here.” She said and stepped away further to give him space. “Be safe, Lucifer.”

“Always.”

And in a gust of wind he took flight, his wings cutting through dimensions easily, strong flaps of his wings taking Lucifer back to his domain, his kingdom. Once again, the Devil had returned to Hell.

Chapter Text

Hell

Lucifer’s wings swirled up the ash that covered the ground and only slowly it settled down again after his landing. He curled his wings around himself for a moment, protecting his eyes from the ash, before stretching them out to their full span.

He stood at the gates of Hell. Looking up, he felt torn, for it had been his home for millennia. However, he had found a new home and it was back on Earth, on the mortal plane. Still, he somehow couldn’t help the nostalgia.

Folding away his wings, Lucifer stepped closer to the gates, a small smile playing on his lips as a dark shape came from the shadows to stand in his way. The growl that came from the creature would have anyone running for the hills. Its eyes turned into a haunting red as it stared down the intruder.

Lucifer’s smile grew. “Why, hello there, Fenrir.” The hellhound perked up at Lucifer’s voice. “Come here, boy! Come on.” Still the hellhound didn’t seem convinced. It only took a small step forward, its head tilted to the side.

Hellhounds were quite a bit bigger than a regular dog. Fenrir’s head reached the height of Lucifer’s elbow, if not higher. His fur was black as smoke, a bit shaggy in places. The eyes were usually black as well but just like Lucifer’s used to, they glowed with hellfire from time to time. And he only had one head, thank you very much. Lucifer couldn’t quite understand the Old Greeks’ need to give every creature at least two heads. The hounds, just like his demons, Lucifer had created himself, Fenrir being his first.

“Fenrir, niis!” Lucifer ordered, slipping into Enochian easily. That seemed to get the hellhound’s attention. He came running at Lucifer, tongue lolling out of his mouth like the happiest dog anyone could imagine. If Lucifer hadn’t been, well, Lucifer, the beast would have knocked him straight to the ground.

He couldn’t help but chuckle as his fingers buried themselves into the thick fur of his hound. Fenrir had missed his master and to be honest, Lucifer had missed his companion.

“Where’s your brother, huh? Where did you leave little Strix?”

Fenrir immediately clamped his teeth down on to Lucifer’s arm, ripping his shirt with sharp teeth, pulling his master towards the still closed gates.
Of course, Fenrir wasn’t the only one guarding the gates. His younger brother Strix, Lucifer’s second personal hound, was guarding the gates from the other side. To most people it would seem unnecessary to guard the gates of Hell from both the inside and the outside. Who would want to break into Hell anyways, right? But Lucifer had had enough encounters with a certain trenchcoat-wearing man from Liverpool to know that some people wanted just that sometimes.

Lucifer firmly pushed Fenrir off so he could use both arms to push the doors open. Fenrir immediately took his place at Lucifer’s right heel, not right next to him but slightly behind. Together they stepped through the gates, which closed on their own right behind them. Lucifer began to whistle, a monotone note that reverberated almost eerily from the tall columns of Hell.

He didn’t have to wait long. Strix came running at him full speed, a black streak among the gray of the ash. The hellhound greeted him with just as much energy as Fenrir and Lucifer had trouble getting the beast off himself.

“There’s a good boy. Still know me, then.” Lucifer murmured as he scratched behind Strix’ ear. “We’ve got work to do, you two. And I want you at my side at all times. Clear?”

Both hounds flanked him and followed him into the maze of columns and doors. The deeper they got, the louder the screams became. Lucifer didn’t need to ask the way for he knew Hell like the back of his hand. He knew the name of every soul and knew exactly behind which door they resided. It was like a map ingrained in his head.

He strode through the narrow corridors at a fast pace. Not too fast, though. The few demons he passed threw themselves down in submission, quickly spreading the news: the King had returned. Lucifer couldn’t have them being suspicious of his actions, though, so he feigned casualness. No one dared to question him. Only very few demons would, one of them Mazikeen, and they were busy in the deepest torture chambers where they tortured those souls that didn’t torture themselves. The ones that didn’t feel guilt. Lucifer hoped none of his master torturers would make an appearance. The one thing the demons didn’t like was a soul being taken from them.

Hell’s plane was just as big as the mortal one, if not bigger. Not all of it occupied, no. But walking wouldn’t get Lucifer to his destination in time, so along his way he stepped into the shadows from time to time, travelling through them, reappearing hundreds of miles away. It was an alternative to flight that as far as he knew only himself had mastered aside from his hounds. He’d given them the same ability when he’d created them, so that they could be at his beck and call wherever he was.

Time in Hell was a complicated matter. Lucifer couldn’t exactly pinpoint how long his journey had taken him in Hell, could only estimate how much time had passed on earth.
But he finally reached the door he was looking for. No chains in front of it, no demon guarding it, no lock. Just a simple handle.

“Stay!” He ordered the hounds. “And guard this door.”

He steeled himself for anything that might await him inside and turned the handle, letting himself in.

Lucifer stood in the precinct of the LAPD. Cops were bustling around him but his eyes almost instantly found Chloe. Well, the hallucination of Chloe, made up by Dan’s mind.

“Focus.” Lucifer scolded himself. He was here for Dan not for Chloe.

Just then, Dan came walking up to Chloe’s desk. She looked up at him and smiled a little. “Hey, Dan. What’s up?”

“Chloe, I need to tell you something. It’s important.” Dan was shaking nervously but his voice was determined.

“Oh, it’s going to have to wait. We got this case here—”

“A case doesn’t matter right now.” Dan interrupted her, which made Chloe raise her eyebrows.

“Yes, it does.”

Dan stumbled over his words. “No, Chloe, listen. I need to say—I need you to know—”

“What?” Chloe snapped. “That you shot Malcolm? That you endangered our family? Put Trixie at risk?”

A cold sweat broke out on Dan’s forehead. “Chloe, please—”

“You destroyed our marriage. Left Trixie to grow up with her parents separated. Because of you, Malcolm killed all those people!” Chloe advanced on Dan and all he could do was back away. The room had become quiet. The other officers now stood to watch the scene, each face accusing Dan.

“Malcolm almost killed Trixie.” Chloe continued. “Malcolm almost killed me and Lucifer. You have all that blood on your hands, Dan.”

Now the other officers started advancing on Dan as well. “It’s your fault. It’s all your fault.” Their voices were like an ill-rehearsed choir, repeating the same words over and over. Daniel didn’t have anywhere to run from the angry mob, so he cowered in their middle.

Lucifer stood on the sidelines. Dan had not even noticed him, too caught up in his guilt. He was about to step in, try to snap Dan out of his delusions but then the scene changed around him and suddenly seemed all too familiar.

It was the hangar.

The hangar where Malcolm had taken Trixie and lured Chloe to. Where Lucifer had been shot and killed. Well, temporarily.

Dan was standing in the middle, facing Malcolm who held a gun. “So, are you willing to die, buddy?” Malcolm’s voice made Lucifer wish he could torture the man for a couple hundred years but that would have to wait.
He watched as Dan stood perplexed. “I don’t want to die.” He said finally. “I don’t.”

“Hm”, Malcolm tilted his head from one side to the other. “I had a feeling you would say that. You were never the martyr, huh? Always hurting everyone but yourself. Didn’t think that would change now.”

“Daddy?”

Dan spun around. Behind him stood Trixie holding Chloe’s hand. Next to Chloe stood an apparition of Lucifer. “Hey, Trixie, babe.” Dan breathed out, his voice torn somewhere between happiness and fear.

Malcolm was suddenly right behind Dan, leaning over his shoulder and whispering right into his ear. “Look at them, Daniel. They were so happy. Tragic it has to end like this.”

“What do you mean?” Dan asked panicked.

“Well, you weren’t willing to die. So, they will have to.”

With that three shots rung out. Blood began to pour from Chloe’s chest first, then Trixie’s, then Lucifer’s. Dan screamed. “No! No, please.” He couldn’t run to them for Malcolm had his arms wrapped tightly around Dan’s torso. “No, let me help them!”

“Too late.” Malcolm whispered. “You weren’t fast enough.”

Chloe and Lucifer fell to the ground. Trixie’s apparition, however, walked towards her father, the blood coloring her dress red. “Why don’t you love me, Daddy?” She asked, her voice as innocent as ever.

“No, baby, of course, I love you.” Dan sobbed.

“But you’re never there. You make mommy cry.”

“I’m so sorry, Trixie, I promise I’ll be better, please, I promise.”

That was all Lucifer could bear. He stepped right into Dan’s line of view, between Dan and Trixie. “Hello, Daniel. I know, this might be a tad hard for you right now but I need you to focus.”

Dan’s eyes jumped from Lucifer to the apparently dead Lucifer on the floor. “What—who—what is happening?”

“Focus, Daniel. Only look at me.” Lucifer ordered but when Dan didn’t listen, he reached up, holding Dan’s cheeks between his hands. “Just me.”

“Lucifer?” Dan’s voice, though still shaking, was now a little steadier.

“Yes. Now, listen to me. Listen carefully. None of this is real.”

“What?”

“It’s not real, Dan. You’re hallucinating. You’re making this all up in your head. Chloe and Trixie are safe and sound.”

Dan tried to shake his head but Lucifer’s hold on him was strong. “But they’re dead. Because of me. I screwed everything up.”

“No. They’re very much alive. All this is just your imagination. I need you to will it away. Focus only on me and my voice and ignore everything else. Ignore Malcolm, ignore Trixie and Chloe. They’re not here. It’s just me and you.”

Though Dan looked disbelieving, he stared at Lucifer and suddenly the hangar around them seemed to flicker and fade out. But only for the slightest of moments. Then it was back again and so was Chloe’s dead body right next to them.

Lucifer grimaced. “You almost had it, Daniel. Come now.”

“I got them killed?” Dan whispered, almost a question.

“No!” Lucifer yelled. “No, you almost had it. Dan, please.”

“It’s all my fault.” Dan’s eyes became unfocused as they filled with tears.

Lucifer shook his head determinedly. “No, it’s not. It’s not your fault. You wouldn’t understand but most of this is my fault or maybe Malcolm’s. Most of it could be Amenadiel’s fault, to be honest. My entire family fucked up your lives. But it’s not your fault. You tried to be there for Chloe. You saved her life by shooting Malcolm at Palmetto. You are a great dad to young Beatrice. She adores you and cherishes any minute she gets to spend with you. And I should know, because I am the one who gets to hear about it all the bloody time.” Lucifer took a breath. “You don’t deserve to torture yourself over this. And again, I should know, because I know torture and I know who deserves punishment.”

Dan was quiet now. He stared at Lucifer who was still holding his face in his hands. “It’s—”

“Not your fault. And this is not real.”

“It’s not real.”

The hangar became blurry around them, Chloe and Trixie disappeared. Everything around them went black until their eyes adjusted to the sparsely lit room they now stood in. Lucifer let go of Dan and took a few steps away.

“What—what is this? What happened?” Dan stuttered out. “Was I drugged?”

Lucifer exhaled a sigh of relief, then shook his head. “No, not quite.”

“Then what is this, Lucifer?”

The Devil gave Dan a calculating look. Then he stepped up to him and pressed his flat hand against Dan’s temple, forcing his own memories of Dan’s death into his mind. The images flashed before his own eyes as Dan let out a painful gasp. The reflection of the scope. Dan’s lifeless body. The ambulance. Chloe crying in his arms. The nurse telling them Dan hadn’t survived the surgery.

Lucifer let go. Dan fell to his knees, his legs giving out underneath him. He held his head, his breathing sharp and fast. Then he looked up, his eyes filled with confusion mostly. Confusion and fear.

“What did you just do?”

“Showed you what happened.”

Dan, still on the floor, pushed himself further away from Lucifer. “I died. I am dead?” Lucifer didn’t answer that question. He knew Dan knew the answer anyways. “Then what is this? Who are you?”

Lucifer slowly crouched down. “Isn’t it obvious? This is Hell, my dear Detective Douche.”

It was wrong, Lucifer knew that, to feel a little glee at the fear in Dan’s eyes.

“I am in Hell?” Dan tried to bring even more distance between himself and Lucifer but his back collided with the wall.

“Oh, yes.”

“Who are you?” The question was barely more than a whisper. “What are you?”

Lucifer tilted his head to the side. “You know who I am, Daniel. I am the Devil.” He waited for a reaction but Dan was frozen in his spot at the wall. “My name is Lucifer and you have known me for almost two years.”

“Impossible.” The word left Dan’s lips, quickly followed by “No, God, no, you’re not the Devil. This isn’t real.”

“It is quite real, I assure you.” Lucifer grumbled at the mention of his father. “I’ve told you the truth from the very beginning. I never lied about who I am.” He tried to get through to Dan but could tell that Dan was not very susceptible to the idea.

“You are just a guy.” Dan shook his head vigorously. “Delusional, sure. Suffering from some serious mental health issues caused by child trauma or something. But you’re not the Devil!”

“Then what is this, if not Hell? You’re dead. Deal with it.”

“So, you’ve come to torture me?”

Lucifer scoffed. “You were doing an excellent job of that yourself. No, I’m not here to torture you. I’m here to bail you out. So, come on. I don’t have all day.” He stood and held his hand out to Dan.

Dan didn’t take it. “Why would you let me out?”

“Is that really so hard to understand?” Lucifer questioned. “Do you think I want to see you dead? In Hell for that matter?” He held his hand out to Dan again to emphasize his point. “Now, get up.”

Dan didn’t move. Lucifer rolled his eyes and grabbed on to Dan’s jacket collar, pulling him up easily. Dan struggled and tried to pry Lucifer’s hand off of him but his strength was no match for the Devil’s.

“Now, listen up, Douche.” Lucifer said, his face only inches away from Dan’s. “I’m doing this out of the goodness of my heart. If I hadn’t promised I would get you out, I would happily let you rot down here for the rest of eternity. You don’t have any power here. So, don’t you dare defy me.”

All Dan could do was nod shakily. Lucifer could practically taste the fear rolling off the detective in waves.

“Excellent.” He let go of Dan who barely caught himself on the wall. “Now, you’re coming with me. And you will listen to every word I say, understood?”

Another nod. Lucifer turned and pushed against the wall behind him. A door opened for him seemingly from nowhere. The light outside was only slightly brighter than inside the room, the air full of bloody ash again. Dan stepped outside behind him hesitantly. His eyes were fixed on the dark columns that reached up into the dark until it was impossible to tell one from the other.

Twin growls suddenly filled the silence. Lucifer cursed under his breath. He had forgotten about the hounds.

They came towards him, trying to leap past him towards Dan. “No!” Lucifer yelled. He managed to bury his fingers in Strix’ fur as the beast ran past him and he held the hellhound back but Fenrir was too fast.

Fenrir crashed into Dan at full speed pushing him to the ground, his sharp claws buried themselves into Dan’s chest. Perhaps Dan was too shocked to cry out because he stayed all but silent except for a panicked whimper that escaped him when Fenrir’s fangs came close to his neck.

“Fenrir, uniglag!” Lucifer bellowed. “Get off of him! Come back here! Niis!”

Fenrir’s head spun to meet his master’s eyes and after a moment he complied. With a mix between a growl and a huff he stepped off Dan and his red eyes never left Dan as he went to stand beside Lucifer. Lucifer roughly grabbed Fenrir’s neck and pushed him to lie on the ground.

“When I say down, you stay down.” He growled at the hellhound.

He let go of Strix and Fenrir and offered his hand to Dan once again to help him up. “Are you hurt?”

Dan’s breathing was labored but after a couple of breaths he did take Lucifer’s hand. Lucifer pulled him up in a fluid motion and checked Dan’s chest. The jacket and shirt were torn, the skin underneath showed scratches but nothing deep. He felt Dan flinch when Lucifer’s hand touched him. “I won’t hurt you, Dan, don’t worry.”

Dan obviously didn’t believe that. But Lucifer didn’t have time to reassure him.

He gave a sharp whistle and both hellhounds stood and trotted over to Lucifer and Dan. Dan instantly walked backwards and away but Lucifer caught his arm and stopped him. “They won’t attack you again. They were just doing their job. Souls aren’t supposed to be outside their cells.” He explained. “Now, come. We need to move.” When Dan made no attempt no follow him, his eyes still fixed on Fenrir and Strix, Lucifer started to get frustrated. “Daniel, if you don’t come with me now, I will have the hellhounds drag you the entire way.”

That got Dan’s attention. He stumbled the first few steps but then followed Lucifer. Out of the corner of his eyes, Lucifer could see Dan constantly looking over his shoulder at the two hellhounds following them. Understandable, Lucifer thought, no one would want them breathing down their necks.

After a few turns Lucifer found what he was looking for, two tall pillars standing close, their shadows deep enough to allow him use. He grabbed Dan’s arm before he could protest. “This might feel a bit weird.” It was the only warning Dan got before Lucifer stepped into the shadow and pulled the detective with him.

On the other side a spacious room awaited them. Not a room, more of a hall. The ceiling was high, the floor seemed to be made from dark marble. It reflected everything in the room like a mirror. At the end of the hall a couple of steps led up to a throne. A throne made from smooth, black stone. The hall was ice cold.

Lucifer’s eyes had found the throne first and they lingered for a few seconds before he tore them away, focusing on Dan instead who swayed next to him. “Dizzy?”

Dan managed to nod, his eyes were extremely unfocused. He didn’t seem to be aware of his surroundings very clearly. Lucifer helped him sit down on the cold floor.

He turned his head to see Fenrir and Strix had followed them through the shadows. They circled the two men on the ground and eventually came to a halt beside their master, observing as the Devil comforted Dan with one hand on his back.

“What did you do?” Dan sounded accusing.

“I didn’t know it would affect you this much. I’ve never taken humans before.” Lucifer said nonchalantly.

Dan looked up and came face to face with Strix. He yelped and hurried to get away. Lucifer just rolled his eyes and grabbed Strix pulling him along towards the throne. Fenrir followed. In the cold Lucifer could see his own breath. No one had been here for over six years. That was a lot of time in Hell.

He could feel Dan’s eyes on him as he climbed the steps to the throne, the hellhounds curled up at the bottom of the steps. With an exhausted sigh, Lucifer sat down on the topmost step right underneath the throne. He didn’t want to sit up there on the throne. After all, he wasn’t here to retake it. He tried to clean some of the ash off his shirt but the gray flakes only stained the black even worse. He pulled a lighter and a cigarette from his pocket and proceeded to light it, blowing the smoke up into the air.

Dan had gotten up and now tentatively came closer. Lucifer saw him shiver, whether from the cold or out of fear he didn’t know. Cigarette in one hand, he lifted his left hand and vaguely waved it at the room. Instantly fire arose from the ground at the walls, lighting the entire room with glowing amber. Dan flinched so badly that he almost fell to the ground, his eyes wide and darting around the room looking for a way out.

Lucifer smiled a little. “Relax, Daniel.” He lowered his hand, flat palm pushing down nothing but air. The fire lost its intensity until it was only about a foot above the ground. “No need to panic at a little fire. I was just trying to warm the place up a little.”

Dan stopped a safe distance from the hellhounds, looking up at the Devil as he sat there and smoked. “What kind of game is this?”

“A game?”

“Yes, a game!” Dan raised his voice. “If you’re really the Devil, then what are you doing? You’re playing with me. Bringing me here? This place is no better than the cell. Especially not if I’m sharing this place with the Devil himself.”

“Dan, I stand by my word. I am getting you out of Hell. But there are things we need to discuss first and this place is as safe as it gets.” He took another puff of his cigarette. “We wouldn’t want any demons finding us, now do we? They would drag you right back to your cell.”

“Demons?”

“Yes, Daniel. Demons. The inhabitants of the infernal plane. Created by Yours Truly.”

“Shouldn’t they listen to you?”

Lucifer chuckled. “Oh, most of them do. But the king has been gone for a long time. Some of them won’t be so happy about me being here taking away souls.”

“You’re the king.” Daniel breathed. “That is your throne.”

“Yes, I thought that was quite obvious.” Lucifer said matter-of-factly. “Now, let’s get to the point. I don’t want to stay any longer than I have to.” He took he stub of his cigarette and incinerated it with a thought, leaving nothing, not even dust.

“Here’s what’s going to happen: I will take you back to Earth and put your soul back into your body. You”, he pointed a finger at Dan, “will not say a word about any of this to anyone. You won’t tell Chloe. You won’t tell anyone.”

You tell everyone you’re the Devil—” Dan began but Lucifer held up a hand.

“Ah, but do they believe? No. You didn’t believe it, Daniel. And how would we explain you suddenly believing in my ‘delusions’?” He smiled innocently. “You won’t say a word.”

Dan swallowed. “But how are you going to explain bringing me back from the dead? They will have pulled the plug on me, as soon as the have several doctors confirm the death of the brain.”

“That’s another thing: time moves differently in Hell than it does on earth. How long do you think you’ve been here, Daniel?”

Dan hesitated. “I can’t say for sure. A few months maybe.”

Lucifer’s smile got wider. “Not on earth. You were shot a few hours ago at most.”

It took Dan a few moments to process that. “How is that possible?”

“Different planes of reality. Very complicated.” Lucifer waved it off. “What’s important is that you will miraculously wake up a few hours after your surgery gone wrong. The doctors will think they made a mistake declaring you dead. And again, you won’t say a thing.”

Dan nodded.

“And lastly”, Lucifer spoke and stood, slowly sauntering down the stairs towards the detective, “I will take my hounds to Earth to ensure you don’t go on a killing spree. A ‘near death experience’ like this one may have some undesirable side effects. If you’re not careful, you may suffer some serious mental issues. And should you go berserk, my hellhounds will take you down.” Lucifer stopped right in front of Dan whose skin had taken on a pale color. “So, I advise you try your best to keep your brain from frying.”

“You will take those—those things back to earth?” 

“Indeed, I will. Your soul, though, has been marked for Hell. My hounds can smell that on a person.” Lucifer stated. “I won’t be around every minute of every day to keep you safe from them.”

“You mean, they are gonna hunt me?” Dan’s voice had taken on a slight manic tone.

“Yes, Daniel, do keep up. That’s why I will give you a mark of my own, letting them know that you are off limits until I say otherwise.” Lucifer reached his hand towards Dan’s chest but Dan quickly stepped back.

“Don’t touch me.” He spat.

Lucifer narrowed his eyes. “I’m trying to help here.”

“You’re the fucking Devil, for crying out loud! Why should I trust you?”

Lucifer had had enough. Faster than Dan could even see, he stood right in front of the detective and pressed his hand into his solar plexus. Dan screamed but couldn’t get away. Lucifer’s hand seemed to keep him glued in his spot.

Lucifer leaned in close until his lips were right next to Dan’s ear. “Know your place, Dan Espinoza. I am old. Very old. All you are is an insignificant speck of dust in my life. I could end you with nothing but a thought. So, you’d do well not to anger me.”

He pushed Dan away harshly. The man cowered from him, the fear in his eyes evident. Lucifer scoffed quietly, then walked past him towards the doors of the hall. He pushed them open revealing nothing but darkness and shadow.

“Mor’zul!” He didn’t have to wait long. Another hellhound took shape in the shadows, answering his master’s call. “That’s my boy.” Lucifer crouched to eyelevel with the hound. “Guard the gates. From now until I release you.” Mor’zul’s eyes flashed red in understanding and Lucifer dismissed him with a pat on his huge head. The hound melted into the darkness again and was gone.

Lucifer closed the doors to the hall again. A short whistle had both his hellhounds at his side.

“Time to go home, Daniel.” Lucifer said with a tight-lipped smile. “I need you to hold on to me.” When he saw Dan hesitate, he gave a pointed look towards Fenrir. “I can have him drag you.”

Dan shuddered and stepped closer. Lucifer grabbed the fur in the neck of Strix and Fenrir tightly, then motioned for Dan to hold on to his arm. When Dan closed one hand around his biceps, he smiled, a glint in his eyes. “With both hands.” Dan complied. “Good. Whatever you do, don’t let go.”

And in a rush of air, Lucifer’s wings brought them back to Earth.

Chapter Text

Earth

Lucifer all but crash landed in his penthouse above Lux. He really wasn’t to blame, though. Transporting two huge hellhounds and a screaming, struggling soul was not exactly easy. Adding to that, his flight muscles had seen better days as well. He vowed in that moment not to try and actually fly anytime in the near future. If travelling dimensions strained his wings and muscles like this, then actual flight would probably end horribly. After all, metaphysical flight was an entirely different thing than holding your own weight up against gravity

Fenrir and Strix quickly scurried away after the landing, possibly both a bit shocked from the wild ride. They both sought comfort near the fireplace. Lucifer leaned forward on, placing his hands on his knees for a moment to catch his breath.

He needed a shower. All that ash made him feel filthy. It would have to wait, though, for Dan’s soul was still very much present and not yet back in his body where it belonged. It was currently nothing but a shimmer in the air right in front of Lucifer. Souls without a body remained incorporeal on Earth which reminded Lucifer, he would need something to transport Dan’s soul to the hospital in. He should have an appropriate vessel somewhere. Maze would know.

“Maze!”

“Gee, calm down.” Maze appeared from the direction of the kitchen just in that moment, in her hand a glass of whiskey. “That was quick.”

“How long? Lucifer asked, concern in his voice.

“Barely five minutes.”

“That means the flight took me longer than expected.” He shrugged. “Never mind. I need a vessel capable of holding a soul.”

Maze smiled a little. “So, you’ve got him. He’s here?”

Lucifer nodded. “Right here. But I suppose you don’t see incorporeal souls? Don’t worry, you’re not missing much. He’s not conscious anyways. Without a body he can’t be aware of his surroundings.”

“Right.” Maze nodded. “I’ll go through your stuff and find something suitable. Should only take a few—What the actual fuck?!” Her gaze had landed on the two hellhounds in front of the fireplace.

“Oh, yes”, Lucifer declared happily. “We’ve got new pets. Well, not that new, actually. But you know what I mean.”

“You brought them to Earth? Are you serious?”

“Quite.” Lucifer replied, his eyes trained on Maze. “Why? What’s the problem?”

Maze bit her lip, clearly wanting to yell but she refrained from doing so. “You bring your personal hellhounds to Earth, knowing that they listen to you and only you. That’s risky. Very risky. They could get out of control.”

“Don’t lie to me, Maze. You know I don’t appreciate that. What is your problem with them being here?”

“You’re replacing me.”

Lucifer sighed. “You’re never here, Maze. You don’t live here and I freed you from your oath. So, who’s going to protect me, huh? It certainly won’t be you. You have your own life, your own friends, even your own job. I’m not replacing you, Maze, you’re still mine. But I need Fenrir now more than ever, seeing as I was kidnapped by a celestial most likely.”

Maze just nodded. “Alright, okay. I get it.” Then she sighed. “But why them? They don’t like me.”

“Because they’re mine. They’re not supposed to like anyone but me.”

“Fine. I’ll go look for that—thing you need. Be right back.”

Lucifer watched her leave. So did Strix with a warning growl rumbling low through the room. Lucifer smiled at that but went to crouch by his hound’s side. “Now, now, Strix. That’s no way to treat my friends. I want you two on your best behavior. No one in this penthouse gets attacked unless I say so.”

True to her word, Lucifer didn’t have to wait long for Maze’s return. She had found a small wooden box, covered in ancient inscriptions. Lucifer recognized it as a sort of old burial urn.

“Excellent, that should do.” He took the box from her and returned to Dan’s soul, aimlessly floating around. With one hand he opened the box, the other hand making a smooth motion towards the it that had the soul floating straight inside. When he closed the box, the inscriptions on it glowed slightly.

“How do you plan to return him into his body without anyone noticing? Without Chloe noticing, assuming she’s still sitting at his bedside?”

“I’ve got a few tricks up my sleeve.”

“You mean, your newly returned powers.” Maze stated.

“Yes, indeed. Amenadiel isn’t the only one who can meddle with time. I may not be quite as good at it but I can manage.” He smirked. “Now, if you’ll excuse me, I have somewhere to be.” He waved with the box in his hand as he made his way to the elevator, grabbing his suit jacket on the way. “Keep an eye out for my hounds, will you?”

Maze all but growled back at him as the elevator doors closed.

|||

Lucifer stood outside Dan’s room in the hospital, the box with Dan’s soul in one hand. He could see Chloe through the little window in the door. She had rested her head on her arms on top of Dan’s bed at some point and seemed to be asleep. Even in sleep she looked exhausted and so full of grief.

That alone convinced Lucifer that what he was doing was the right thing. If only it made Chloe happy again, he would willingly do anything in his power to achieve just that.

He took a deep breath in and let it out very slowly, trying to focus his power. He hadn’t done anything of the sort for a few thousand years but he hoped it was like muscle memory. As he released the last of his breath he simultaneously released his power. Time slowed down around him until the clock on the wall stopped ticking.

Lucifer smiled. “Still got it.”

Quickly he entered the room. The machines all stood still, suspended in time. In the back of his head he had to concentrate on keeping it that way. Standing next to Dan’s lifeless body, he opened the box and guided the soul out and towards its body. Slowly it settled over Dan’s chest, then Lucifer took a breath and pushed it in.

He’d done it. He’d actually done it. Dan would be alright. The relief felt like something heavy was removed from his shoulders. With a smile, Lucifer looked down at Chloe, her sleeping form completely frozen. Carefully, he moved a strand of her hair behind her ear, that had fallen and covered her eyes. He wished things back to the way they were with every fiber of his being. Back to when they had shared a kiss, back to when it seemed like they could both be happy. But life always seemed to get in the way.

Lucifer exited the room and closed the door, returning everything to its former state before releasing his hold on time.

Inside the room Dan shot up in his bed.

Lucifer could hear Chloe’s voice, panicked but at the same time so relieved. He would bet there were tears running down her face but he didn’t dare peek into the room, yet. Better give it another minute.

That plan, however, didn’t quite work out as Chloe came storming out of the room and promptly collided with him.

“Lucifer?” Her voice was shaky, then she seemed to grasp that he was really standing right in front of him. “You’re here. Lucifer—Dan, he’s awake!” She almost choked on her own words, forgetting to breathe. “He’s awake, he’s awake.” She wrapped her arms around him and he could feel her erratic heartbeat next to his own.

“Chloe, love, stay calm.” He didn’t know how to deal with her outburst of emotion to be honest.

She quickly let go of him and ran a hand through her hair. “I need to get a doctor—”

“I’ll do that. I’ll go find a doctor and you go back in to Dan.”

She nodded and he gently turned her back to the room. He made his way to the nurse’s desk, conveying the message that their patient had woken. The nurse instantly paged the doctor and hurried towards Dan’s room, Lucifer close behind her. In front of the room he hesitated. He couldn’t judge how Dan would react to seeing him walking into his hospital room. But what would Chloe think, if he just disappeared after Dan seemingly woke from his coma?

“Bugger this.” Lucifer entered the room behind the nurse to find Chloe desperately clutching Dan’s hand who seemed to be in pain. Right, he’s been shot, that must still hurt somewhat. Lucifer stayed by the door, not wanting to intrude but Chloe looked up and saw him and he could have sworn her eyes lit up even brighter. He smiled back at her, avoiding Dan’s eyes who had undoubtedly found him.

Fortunately, Dan’s line of sight was blocked by the doctor that came in and stood at the end of the bed. He started asking loads of questions about how Dan felt, where he hurt and he questioned the nurse about his status.

Dan stuttered out answers, Chloe at his side, rubbing his arm in comfort.

The doctor stepped to the side of Dan’s bed, carefully shining a small light into his eyes. “Mr. Espinoza, can you tell me how much you remember about the events of this afternoon?” The doctor asked slowly and held his pen ready over his clipboard.

Dan’s eyes found Lucifer standing at the wall in front of him, his jaw working to get an answer out. Lucifer held his gaze with a carefully blank stare that he hoped conveyed to Dan what would happen, if he said a single word about Lucifer. When Dan remained silent, the doctor repeated his question. Dan’s eyes were still fixed on Lucifer but no one seemed to notice.

Lucifer almost unnoticeably shook his head. Not a word.

Dan swallowed heavily before slowly stating, “I only remember the shot ringing out. We were near the fountain.” He paused. “We were arguing.”

“Do you remember about what?” The doctor inquired.

Dan slowly nodded his head towards Lucifer. “About him.”

The doctor and Chloe both turned to look at Lucifer who just shrugged with a face that said what can you do about it?. The doctor looked down at his notepad, then at Chloe. “That true?”

She nodded. “Yeah. Yeah, it’s true.”

“Well, then. On a first impression, it doesn’t look like you have sustained any permanent brain damage or amnesia. But we of course need to make further tests and keep you here for observation. Not to mention the bullet wound.”

The doctor proceeded to give the nurse instructions on pain medication and further treatment, then faced Chloe. “Detective Espinoza will recover with time but what he needs first and foremost is rest. I understand, you don’t want to leave him right now, but it’d be best if you only stayed for little while longer.”

Chloe nodded in understanding. “Just a few minutes. Thank you, Doctor.”

Both the doctor and the nurse left.

Lucifer cleared his throat and pointed towards the door. “I’ll give you two some space. Glad you’re with us again, Daniel. Chloe,” Lucifer nodded towards the detective, “I’ll see you soon.”

“Lucifer, wait.” Chloe called out as he turned to leave. “You—I need a ride home. Please.”

“Alright. Still, I’ll wait outside.”  And that he did.

Chloe found him outside waiting by his car, smoking a cigarette, flicking the ash to the ground every now and then. Lucifer looked up as he heard her approach. He nodded towards the car and silently they got in. No one said a word until they were halfway to Chloe’s apartment.

“Thank you, Lucifer.”

“We’re not there, yet, but you’re very welcome.”

“I don’t mean the car ride.”

Lucifer’s grip on the steering wheel tightened. “Then whatever for?” He swore to himself, if Dan had talked, he would personally escort him back to Hell.

“For—for having faith.” Chloe answered quietly. “You believed he would make it and it helped me believe as well.”

Lucifer narrowed his eyes a little. “What did you and Dan talk about?”

“What?” She seemed perplexed.

“After I left. What did he say?” Lucifer said with maybe a bit too much emphasis.

“Not really anything. He—he seems shaken up by the whole thing. I mean, who can blame him. He almost died.” She swallowed. “He just kept staring at me. And he stared at you, too. As if none of it were real.”

Lucifer stayed silent. It didn’t sound like Dan had disclosed anything about his time in Hell. That didn’t mean that he would trust him not to do so in the future, though. He would have to keep an eye on him.

“Anyways, the pain meds kicked in soon after you left and he fell asleep.” Chloe concluded. “I guess I’ll take a few days off work, visit him and explain the whole thing to his parents and… and to Trixie.”

“Sounds like a good idea. You staying home, I mean. You need a break from work.” Lucifer stated, his voice a little monotone. He just hoped, Chloe didn’t notice his tenseness.

“What about you?”

“What about me, Detective?”

“How are you doing?” Concern filled her voice.

“I am perfectly fine, Detective. Don’t you worry about me.” He gave her one of his signature smiles. It wasn’t a lie. He felt good, except he still desperately needed to shower to get the stench of Hell off.

He pulled his Corvette into the driveway of Chloe’s apartment complex. Chloe’s hand rested on the door handle for a second. “Will you come with me tomorrow? To the hospital?”

“I don’t think the Douche needs the excitement.”

“Lucifer.”

He shook his head. “I mean it, Detective. I think, it’d be best, if you go alone.”

She bit her lip and Lucifer felt his heart clench a little as she possibly made a wrong conclusion. “Alright.” She opened her door. “Good night, Lucifer.”

“Good night, Chloe.”

|||

 

For a moment Lucifer was confused as he reached Lux, no queue in front and no bouncer at the entrance but then he remembered that he’d told Patrick not to open the club tonight. And he was glad it wasn’t open. That meant he could spend the evening alone up in the penthouse, no responsibilities, just a shower and a stiff drink.

He rode the elevator up with his forehead leaning against the cool metal doors. He wouldn’t admit it but the day had exhausted him. Not just the flight to Hell and back but, and he would not ever say this out loud, the emotional distress of it had kicked his arse royally.

Personally, Dan didn’t mean that much to him. Yes, they had become friends or at least something akin to that but ever since his kidnapping, Dan had become less friendly and more hostile again, annoyed at every single thing Lucifer did. Judging from their argument earlier that day it had something to so with jealousy over his friendship with Chloe. It was rather irritating. But still, Lucifer didn’t care much for Dan.

But Chloe did, even though their marriage had gone down the drain. And Lucifer hated to say it but if Chloe cared for someone, he did as well. He’d gone over this before: if something were to happen to Beatrice, Lucifer would tear the city apart until he found those responsible. Or worse, if it was Chloe.

The elevator dinged and he quickly lifted his forehead from the door, so he wouldn’t fall. He shook his head a little and made a beeline for the bar. He didn’t want to think about that anymore.

Halfway to the bar, a warm body collided gently with his hip. He’d almost forgotten about his pets. With a smile he scratched behind Fenrir’s ear and then proceeded to pour himself a glass of Scotch. He emptied it a few seconds later and refilled it immediately before walking out to the balcony.  The view over LA grounded him, reminded him of how lucky he was to be here. On Earth, that was.

The shower that followed the drink was, dare he say it, heavenly. The warm, well, almost scalding hot water loosened up his muscles and he had to refrain from just unfurling his wings. He desperately wanted to but he had found not even his shower had enough space for the two appendages, each longer than he was tall.

They felt right on his back and at the same time he hated them with a passion. He wanted to ignore them, ignore the hidden meaning behind their reappearance. He just wanted to sort of pretend they weren’t there and only use them, if he had to and only for himself. Never for his father. He couldn’t deny, though, that he felt whole. Moving and using them was so natural that he almost couldn’t hate himself for enjoying it.

Emerging from the bathroom, he didn’t put on any clothes except for a pair of black sweatpants. Right afterwards he fell down on his pillow, closed his eyes and listened to the sounds of the city that could be heard faintly through the open windows in the penthouse.

His phone ringing on the nightstand woke him up hours later. His eyes barely open, he reached for the phone and accepted the call, not even bothering to look at the caller ID. His eyes were already closed again, anyway.

“Hello?”

“H-hi, Lucifer. It’s me.”

Lucifer’s eyes opened again instantly. “Detective? What can I do for you?” For a moment, there was no answer but Lucifer could hear her snivel a little. He bolted upright. “What’s wrong? What happened?”

“No, no. Nothing like that.” Chloe said quickly, from the sound of it a hand covering her mouth halfway. “It’s just—I called—I told Dan’s parents, when we got back from the hospital. And it just—I’m sorry.”

“Detective, you’re making very little sense.”

“I know, I’m sorry. I’m—I am outside Lux but it’s not open.” She swallowed. “I was wondering, if you’d let me in. I just can’t be alone tonight.” Her voice cracked a little.

Lucifer had frozen for a few seconds but then managed to compose himself. “Alright. All good, Detective. Don’t worry.” He ran a hand through his already disheveled hair. “Side entrance, I’ll buzz you up.”

“Thank you, Lucifer.”

He hung up, still sat on the bed, before he sprang into motion. His state of undress she would have to deal with because he had something far more important to take care of.

“Bollocks!” He cursed out loud. Where does one hide two humongous hellhounds? He couldn’t let her see them. They would never pass for normal dogs, even if one argued they were just on the bigger side. “Strix! Fenrir! Niis! Right now.”

He heard the click, click of their claws on the floor as they followed him past the elevator, past the library, heading towards his study. He opened the door and ushered them inside. “You stay here. And make no sound whatsoever.” They circled the room once, twice and then settled down on the rug. “Good boys.” Lucifer closed the door and locked it for good measure.

Then he hurried to the intercom to open the doors downstairs for Chloe. He watched her step into the elevator on the small screen showing him the security cameras. Even on the blurry image it was evident that she was exhausted. As she rode up, he quickly went to at least put on a shirt. Even though normally he would stop at nothing to come at her, today really wasn’t the best day to do that.

With the ‘ding’ of the elevator she stepped into the penthouse. Only a few steps, though, then she stopped, cautiously looking around, her jacket clenched between her hands. Lucifer came down the steps from his bedroom.

“Chloe, hey, come here and sit.” He motioned towards the couch. “Can I get you anything? Water? Tea? Something stronger?”

She came to sit on the couch but shook her head. “No, I’m—I’m good, thanks.” She sat down and he sat down across from her. “I’m really sorry to barge in here in the middle of the night. I didn’t know where else to go.”

“You’re always welcome here, you know that. I don’t mind.”

She hummed. “I had a bit of a late breakdown, I think.” She looked down at her hands instead of meeting his eyes. “All day I buried it and tried to be rational and not let my emotions get the best of me. But then,” she took a deep breath, “then I called Dan’s parents and told them what happened and after the call I just broke down. And I fell asleep eventually but I—the nightmares—I couldn’t stand being all alone in the apartment.”

Lucifer debated whether it would be appropriate to go and sit next to her. He stalled before deciding. “Where is Maze? She should be at the apartment.”

“I don’t know. Probably out on a bounty hunt. She never tells me, when she leaves for those.” Chloe looked up. “I worry about her as well.”

“Detective, you forget we’re talking about Maze here.”

She actually managed to smile a little at that. “Right.” Her hands fidgeted and Lucifer found himself wishing to hold them. Then she looked up, tears filling her eyes. “I keep seeing you die in that hangar. And then I keep seeing Dan die and—and I can’t—”

Maybe a little too fast Lucifer got up and sat down right next to Chloe, taking her into her arms as she let the tears fall. “Shh, it’s alright, Chloe.” Gently, he rubbed her back with one hand as he held her. “I’m right here. And Dan is alive as well. I won’t let anything else happen to you or anyone you love. I’ll do better.”

Chloe sniffed, her head leaning against his chest and her hands tightened on his shirt. “It’s not your fault.”

Lucifer closed his eyes for a moment. In a voice too quiet for Chloe to hear, he sighed, “If only that were true.”

They remained like that, neither of them knew for how long. Eventually Chloe disentangled himself from Lucifer’s hug. “I’m sorry. I’m ruining your shirt.”

“Don’t apologize.”

“I think, I’d like that drink now.” Chloe grimaced as she rubbed both hands across her face.

“Of course. Coming right up.”

He got up and returned with two glasses and a bottle of whiskey. He poured a generous amount in both glasses and handed one to Chloe. “Small sips. Don’t want you to get hammered.”

“Thank you.”

They finished their drinks in silence. Lucifer sat so close to Chloe that there was basically no space between them and she leaned into him. It felt comfortable to Lucifer and caused a stir of warmth inside him. “Stay the night, Detective.”

“Lucifer, I don’t want to intrude.”

“You’re not. I’m offering. I have a guest room with a second bathroom.” He smiled a little and bumped his shoulder with hers. “I don’t want you to be alone tonight, either.”

“Are you sure?”

“Yes, perfectly sure.”

Chloe nodded, though a little hesitant. “Okay.”

“Let’s get you settled in, then.” Lucifer offered her a hand, which she took, and he led her down the hallway to the guest room.
Right opposite his study. He may have not thought this through.

“I never realized how big your place is.” Chloe said absently as Lucifer opened the door to the guest room for her and just shrugged in response.

“I hope you’ll find everything you need. Bathroom’s through there, everything is at your disposal. Make yourself at home.” He stayed by the door as Chloe stepped inside and carefully lay her jacket down on the bed before looking back at him. He gave her a small smile. “If you need anything, you know where to find me. Don’t hesitate.”

She nodded. “I’ll be okay. Thank you.”

“Sleep well,” Lucifer said and almost as an afterthought, “Chloe”, before he closed the door. He leaned back against the door, sending an exasperated look heavenwards as he listened to any sounds coming from the room. From what he could tell, Chloe had moved to the bathroom.

He opened the door to his study and found both hounds exactly where he’d left them. They lifted their heads to look at him expectantly and he motioned for them to follow him. He led them through the main room towards his own bedroom. “I’ll have to do something about the open-door policy with you two around.” He grumbled to himself. “Anyone could walk in here unannounced. You two are lucky she called ahead.” He sat down on his bed and patted the space beside him for the hounds to jump up. “Who am I kidding? I was lucky she called ahead.”

Lucifer stayed awake all night. Or rather what was left of it. His thoughts drifted from one subject to the next and he didn’t find it surprising that most of them were about Chloe. Few about Dan and that entire situation. The rest were about his wings and the disappearance of his devil face.

Chloe slept soundly, though. Lucifer only heard her stir, when it was close to noon. He ordered Fenrir and Strix to stay in his own bathroom before making his way to the kitchen, which lay past the guestroom. Much like the main room of the penthouse, the kitchen had a wall made of glass that filled the room with sunlight. He began to cook breakfast, coffee and omelets, waiting for Chloe to emerge from her room.

She did soon after, wearing the same clothes as the day before except for the jeans, which she had foregone in favor of a pair of sweatpants. “Wow,” she uttered as she stepped into the kitchen. “I didn’t even know you had a kitchen in this place.”

“Where did you think I kept my food?” Lucifer answered in honest confusion but turned to smile at her.

“I thought you lived solely on liquor.”

“Not far from the truth.” Lucifer put down a cup of coffee on the kitchen island and motioned for her to sit. “Good morning, Detective.”

“Morning, Lucifer.” She sat down and nipped at her coffee. Lucifer was quick to set down a plate with an omelet in front of her.

“Eat up.”

She hesitated and then began to eat. Lucifer leaned down on the wooden surface of the island and looked at her. She gave him a questioning look in return. “What?”

“How are you feeling?”

“I’m… I’m doing okay.” She said in earnest. “What time is it?”

“Almost noon. Why?” Lucifer answered before stepping over to the coffee machine and making himself a cup. Chloe eyed him disbelievingly as he filled half the cup with whiskey before adding coffee but didn’t say anything, when Lucifer lifted the cup towards her and said “cheers”.

“I have to get to the station sometime today.”

“I thought you were taking some time off?”

She nodded. “Yeah, but I have to make a statement as a witness to the… to the shooting. They probably want you to come in as well.”

Lucifer quickly swallowed a mouthful of coffee. “Right. Though I am not entirely sure how much I have to offer. I didn’t see anything.”

“You were the one who saw the shooter.” Chloe argued. “You told everyone to get down. Who knows how many people would have gotten hurt, if it hadn’t been for you.”

“I didn’t see a person. I just saw a flash of light reflecting of a rifle scope.” He waved it off.

“And still you probably saved me from getting hurt, seeing as I was standing in the line of fire.” Chloe’s voice had gotten quieter. “Thanks for that.”

Lucifer didn’t deem that with an answer, just nodded and went on. “So, they want me at the precinct?”

“I guess so, yeah.”

“Fine. I’ll come in later, I have to take care of something else first, though.”

Chloe finished her coffee and agreed. “I wanted to visit Dan, anyways. How about we meet at the precinct? 3pm?”

Lucifer thought about it for a second. That would give him enough time to deal with the hellhound situation. “Agreed.”

|||

The precinct, as always, was bustling with cops doing their work. Lucifer arrived just as, as it seemed, a new case had come in and everyone was on their way out to a crime scene. He spotted Chloe at her desk, just sitting and waiting.

“I hope I’m not late. That’d be terribly unlike me.”

She looked up. “Do you pride yourself on punctuality? Because, if so, let me tell you, you’ve got some work to do regarding that.”

“I’m hurt.”

“Right.” She spun her chair around slowly. “You’re not late for that matter. But something’s come up, so the detective, who is to take our statement, has just left. We’re now waiting for the lieutenant to come talk to us.”

Lucifer sat on the edge of Chloe’s desk. “Excellent. I’m quite fond of the lieutenant.”

“We have a new lieutenant, Lucifer. You’ve not met him.”

“Him?”

Chloe gave him a slightly annoyed look. “Yes. Him. Your charm-voodoo thing won’t help you with this one.”

Lucifer grinned. “That’s where you’re wrong, Detective. You believe my charms only work on the female population. I assure you that’s not the case.”

“Dan doesn’t like you.” She argued, as if that proved anything.

“That’s because I don’t try with him.”

She was about to reply something but just in that moment her name was called out, followed by Lucifer’s. A tall, well-muscled man stood by the door of the lieutenant’s office, his gaze stern. “That’s our cue.” Chloe mumbled and got up. Her demeanor had changed from somewhat lighthearted to downright nervous in an instant.

Lucifer quickly caught up with her as she made her way towards the office. “What’s this man done to you?”

“He hasn’t done anything.”

“Then why are you scared to talk to him?”

Chloe’s steps faltered but then she kept going. “He’s my new boss and he doesn’t seem to like me very much. I’d be grateful, if you could try to behave around him.”

Lucifer raised an eyebrow. “If he behaves, I’ll do him the same honor.” He grumbled as he followed her inside the separate room.

“Detective, take a seat. Mr. Morningstar,” the lieutenant came to stand right in front of Lucifer, giving him a quick once over, “we haven’t had the pleasure to meet. Marcus Pierce, new lieutenant around here.” He held his hand out.

Lucifer gave him a calculating look. What was it with men trying to intimidate him, lately? He took the lieutenant’s hand and immediately all his alarm bells went off. Not human, they screamed. His powers reacted without him even realizing it and immediately the world around him stood still.

Including the lieutenant.

He pulled his hand back as if he’d been stung. This was not possible. He’d felt it, he was sure of it. The man wasn’t human, so why was he just as frozen as the rest of the world around him? Anything divine or infernal should not be affected by this?

Lucifer studied the man’s features. He couldn’t remember seeing him before, but that didn’t mean anything. He had never gotten to know most of his younger siblings. He didn’t reek of Hell, either, though. So not a demon. That only left the divine.

“Well, Lieutenant, which one of my pesky little siblings are you?” He asked into the quiet as he stepped around the man to assess him. “The stature would suggest a soldier. Phanuel, perhaps? Did Michael send you to collect his favor?” He couldn’t expect an answer but still he huffed when he didn’t get one. “Still doesn’t explain why you would parade around as a police lieutenant.” He stood in front of Pierce again, pointing a finger in his unresponsive face. “Whatever you want, don’t you dare pull the Detective into this. You leave her alone!”

He released his hold on time – silently cursing how easy the use of his powers had come back to him – and didn’t bother to take Pierce’s hand again before doing so. The man jumped a little as he felt Lucifer’s hand disappear from his own from one instant to the next. His eyes flew up to Lucifer’s and Lucifer could have sworn he saw a spark of understanding in them before his mask was back in place and he pretended to not have felt anything.

“Pleasure is all mine. Lieutenant Pierce.” He spoke the words with careful enunciation, giving them a sound of utter sarcasm.

Marcus Pierce cleared his throat before turning away and taking a seat behind his desk. “Please, Mr. Morningstar, take a seat as well. We’ve got some things to discuss.”

Lucifer did as he asked and caught an angry glance from Chloe in his direction. Apparently, he wasn’t behaving as well as she wanted him to.

“Alright, so, what can you tell me? About the shooting yesterday?”

Chloe looked at her partner, then began. “Well, not much. It was only a single shot and that hit Dan. I mean, Detective Espinoza.”

“Have either of you seen the shooter?” Pierce asked, his voice bored.

“No,” Lucifer answered. “Not the shooter, just a rifle up at a window in the office building.”

“You noticed a rifle at that distance?”

“It was hard not to notice.” Lucifer countered.

Pierce huffed but nodded. “From what I was told, Espinoza was the furthest from the shooter out of you three. You were both in the line of fire. So was a tech,” he quickly scanned his notes, “Ella Lopez.” He looked up at Lucifer. “How is it that none of you got hit? How did that bullet hit Espinoza, if you were all in front of him?”

“Lucifer saw the rifle and warned everyone just moments before the shot. Ella got out of the way and Lucifer pulled me down to the ground with him. Dan just wasn’t fast enough.” Chloe stated all of it without pause. Lucifer could almost feel the walls she had put up around herself, not letting any of her emotions show.

“I see.” Pierce nodded and stared at Lucifer. “Quite the reaction. I’m sure you would have saved Espinoza as well, if it had been a possibility.”

Lucifer reigned in his anger. This guy was pushing it. Angel or not, he would not let him off easy once he got him alone. “Are we done here?”

“Yes, quite.” Pierce dismissed them with a wave of his hand. When Chloe had almost reached the door, he spoke up once more. “I hear Espinoza is going to recover?”

Chloe turned around, the irritation obvious in her stance. “Yes, he will make a full recovery.”

Pierce smiled, though it looked like he had bitten into something sour. “Quite the miracle, wouldn’t you agree?”

Neither Chloe nor Lucifer deemed that worthy of an answer and both left the office, Lucifer maybe closing the door with a bit too much force.

“He’s an ass!” Chloe spit out as Lucifer followed her out of the precinct. “Don’t let him get to you.”

“I don’t intent to. He seems to be getting to you, though.”

“Stop profiling me.”

Lucifer was taken aback. “I’m not profiling you. I am merely concerned that this—this complete douchebag is going to make your life a living hell.”

“Because you would know what Hell is like, right?” Chloe spat back with a roll of her eyes.

“Yes. I would know.”

“Well, I don’t care. Pierce thinks very highly of himself and I will prove to him that I deserve his respect. And now,” she whirled around to Lucifer, when she reached her car, “I will go back to Dan. Without you. Because you can’t be bothered. Am I right?”

Lucifer grabbed her wrist and pulled her back towards him. “You’re angry with me. Why?”

“I’m not angry with you. I’m angry with—with Pierce, with myself, with the entire world. My life is a mess and it constantly gets worse and you are the only person I can depend on. But you can’t be honest with me about what’s hurting you, so I don’t know what I can do to help you.” She was close to tears now. “I want to help you. But whenever I try to understand what happened to you, you hide away or even run away. You won’t let anyone in. What happened to you in the desert?”

Lucifer let go of her wrist and stepped back. “I never meant to upset you.”

“I know you don’t mean to. I know that. But before your kidnapping you were ready to open up to me. You said, you’d tell me everything. Why are you shutting me out now?”

Lucifer struggled. Yes, he had wanted to tell her. He had been ready to drop all pretense but things had changed. He didn’t know where he stood. He didn’t know who he was. The wings had screwed everything up. He wasn’t God’s soldier but he wasn’t the King of Hell he once was, either. His devil face was gone. And exposing Chloe to the divine was dangerous. “I wanted to tell you.”

“And now you don’t.”

“I can’t.”

“Can’t or won’t?”

“Can’t. Because I can’t prove it. You don’t believe in anything I say, anyways.” His voice was low but Chloe understood.

“Right. We reached your Devil thing again, haven’t we?” She turned and opened her car door. “Forget it. I’m sorry, I pushed it. You don’t have to tell me anything.”

“Chloe…”

“Sorry, Lucifer. I have somewhere to be.” She slammed the door closed, started the engine and drove off without sparing him another glance.

Chapter Text

Back at his apartment, Lucifer found a spare set of Maze’s knives that she had left at Lux, when she moved, and proceeded to throw them at the stone wall that separated the living area from his bedroom. Some shattered from the force of impact, the rest buried themselves into the wall and stuck there, the handle quivering. When he ran out of knives, he threw his glass of Scotch, regretting it immediately. He went to the bar to get himself another. His temperature along with the room temperature had risen to what most people would call tropical heat.

He downed the glass of Scotch and was tempted to throw the new glass against the wall as well but thought better of it. He needed to calm down.

Chloe would never understand. He could never make her understand without frying her brain or scaring her to death. And Lucifer knew the one thing he wouldn’t survive would be Chloe leaving him for good.

The elevator dinged and Maze entered. “Wow, if I didn’t know any better, I’d say we’re back in Hell. Maybe you should turn the furnace down.”

“Don’t test me, Maze.” Lucifer growled. “Not today. Not, if you value your existence.”

Maze didn’t come any closer. “I guess, I’ll be leaving then. Anything I can do for you before I go?”

“Tell Patrick to not let anyone up. Not today, not tomorrow, not until I say so.” Lucifer ordered as he walked past Maze. He felt her shudder. He whirled towards her, his hands in fists at his side. “What? Now not even you can stand to be in my presence?”

“Not if you’re burning with this much celestial energy.” Maze said quietly and stepped away towards the elevator. “I’ll tell Patrick ‘no visitors’, then. Any exceptions?”

He could tell who she was hinting at. “None.” He said harshly. “Tell him to give you a keycard for the level below, while you’re at it.”

“What for?”

“Cleared it out for Fenrir and Strix. Couldn’t keep them up here. You’ll need the keycard to get in. That is, if you want in.” Maze nodded and Lucifer dismissed her with a wave of his hand. “Now, get going.”

She complied and soon he was alone again. He couldn’t exactly say, if that was a good thing but he feared what would happen, if he lost his temper. He got a text from Maze not much later, saying that the staff knew not to let anyone up and for him to text her once she could return. He left it on read but didn’t bother to answer. He was still frustrated.

After pacing around the piano for a while, debating whether he should play, he gave up. He was done. So done with all of it.

Within a few steps he was at the wall and pulled out one of the demon blades. He ripped his shirt off without care, shredding it in the process and with a rush of air around him, he released his wings. He didn’t even want to look at them, knowing the sight of those things on his back would probably make him nauseous. He reached back with the blade rammed it into the junction of the wing and his back. He had to bite back a scream as his vision blurred from the pain.

Falling to his knees, he took another stab at it and could feel it all too well, when he cut through bone. Just as he was about to cut in again and this time slice down, he felt someone behind him.

“Stop.”

Lucifer whirled around and an all too familiar face looked back at him. For he saw it every morning in the mirror.

“Please, brother, stop. Don’t do this to yourself.”

“Michael?” The blade fell from Lucifer’s hand, clattering to the ground. He stared up at his twin brother, standing right in front of him and he let out a shuddering breath.

Michael kneeled down in front of him, dark brown eyes meeting their exact mirror image. “Lucifer.” He smiled and reached out a hand towards Lucifer’s face, hesitantly. Lucifer suspected he wasn’t sure, whether he would like to be touched but it didn’t matter. He reached out towards Michael himself, carefully placing one hand on Michael’s cheek.

“You’re really here.”

“I am.” Michael breathed. “Oh, brother, I should have come sooner.”

Lucifer reveled in his brother’s presence. Reuniting with Michael had been something he’s dreamed about for eons. He couldn’t believe he finally got to see him again, touch him again. But then Michael reached out towards his blood-streaked wing and the spell was broken immediately. He pulled back so fast that Michael didn’t get the chance to feel the feathers. In a blink, Lucifer was several feet away from his brother, his wings crammed behind him.

“Lucifer—”

“You don’t touch them.” He hissed icily.

Michael held his hands up in a placating gesture. “I won’t.” He said sincerely but Lucifer could see the confusion and even hurt in his eyes. “But I—I used to—”

“Exactly,” Lucifer interrupted. “You used to.”

It was a thing of absolute trust. Angels didn’t just touch each other’s wings. Back in Heaven, millennia ago, before he was cast out, Lucifer would have let Michael touch them. But even back then he only trusted very few that much. He only remembered Michael and Gabriel ever touching them. Then, in Hell, no one had touched them, absolutely no one. Some of course had felt them as Lucifer ended their miserable existence with the razor-sharp edges of his feathers. Only Maze had really touched them as she cut them off his back but at that point he’d given up on them already, not caring whose fingers held on to the white feathers. Thinking back to it, he was glad it had been Maze.

But now, neither his brother nor anyone else would touch them. He wouldn’t let them.

“Let me at least heal you.” Michael pleaded but refrained from moving closer. He was treating Lucifer like a wounded animal.

“I don’t need your help!”

“You’re hurting, brother, please.”

Lucifer glared back at his brother. “Where were you, when I was hurting before? Where were you, when I got cast out? Oh, right! You were pushing me over the edge!” He scooted further away from Michael, tried to stand up but couldn’t get his legs to hold his weight, the pain shooting down his back making them unstable. “Why would you want to help now?”

Michael faltered. “You need to hear me out. I never wanted any of it.”

“Well, you seemed quite content to go along with father’s plans. Daddy’s little soldier would never disobey him, am I right?”

“He gave me a choice!” Michael suddenly yelled. “A horrible choice.”

Lucifer scoffed. “He doesn’t give us choices. He never has. We were to obey. That was the be all, end all.”

“Exactly! It wasn’t a choice. He called you a failed experiment that he had no use for anymore. He threatened to obliterate you, if I didn’t cast you into Hell.”

“A failed experiment?”

“He designed you just the way you are: with a sliver of doubt. He knew one day you would question him. He was testing you, trying to see, whether his favorite son would prove himself stronger than the doubt.” Michael tried to explain hastily. “He told me; said you were special. He also said, he would have to erase any mistakes he made from existence. If you failed your test, he would kill you.”

“All I did was ask a bloody question!

“I know. And it wasn’t fair—”

“When has he ever been fair?!” Lucifer yelled, something heavy settling over his chest. “He’s never shown me any fairness!”

“He loved you! You were his favorite! And he couldn’t kill you.” Michael shook his head desperately. “He couldn’t do it, so he asked me to cast you out instead. He didn’t want to see you die.”

“Who would damn his favorite son to stay in Hell for all eternity?”

Michael took a step towards Lucifer but the glare he received had him step back again. “He didn’t think anyone else would be strong enough.”

“Right.” His voice was bitter and full of disbelief. “And you didn’t think to tell me any of that over the past few millennia, when I was rotting down in Hell? Didn’t think I deserved an explanation?”

“I wasn’t allowed near you.”

“And you, of course, listened.” Once again, Lucifer tried to get up. This time he succeeded, using his healthy wing to steady himself until he could lean onto his piano to keep himself from collapsing again. “Why are you here, then? If you’re not allowed? Why did you help me save the human?”

Michael looked down. “I came despite his orders not to.”

Lucifer’s laugh was one of schadenfreude. “Not scared you’ll fall, brother?”

“If he had wanted to stop me, he would have.”

“How would you know?”

“Because I tried before!”

That shut Lucifer up for a second. Michael had tried to get to him in Hell but his father had stopped him. If that was true, it didn’t exactly help his father’s case but maybe Michael hadn’t abandoned him after all.

“Are you lying to me?”

“You would know, if I was. I could never lie to you, Lucifer.”

Lucifer narrowed his eyes. “Who knows? Time changes people. And relationships.”

“I understand that. I know, you don’t trust me and you don’t have any reason to. But I want you back, Lucifer. I want my brother back.”

“It’s not that easy, Michael.”

“No, it’s not.” Michael looked right into his brother’s eyes. “But I made a deal with the Devil.” He smirked. “And I heard, he prides himself on always keeping up his end of the bargain.”

Lucifer tilted his head in suspicion. “So, Daddy’s boy wants to deal with the Adversary? Is it opposite day?”

“This is no game. I helped you save the human mostly because I wanted to. Because it meant something to you. But I want to ask something in return.”

“Of course, you do.” Lucifer scoffed and pushed himself off the piano, stepping forward to stand right in front of his brother. “And what would you ask of me?”

“I ask that you try to forgive me for the part I played in your Fall.”

Lucifer’s irises blazed white. Michael stepped back instantly, but it wasn’t fear Lucifer saw in his eyes; it was something more akin to admiration.

“What?” Lucifer demanded. “No Samael? No Sam? Here’s the brother that you apparently missed for the last few thousand years.”

“But you’ve changed.” Michael once again reached out to Lucifer’s face and Lucifer didn’t stop him. His fingers touched his cheek and the white faded from Lucifer’s eyes. “Lucifer.” The name rolled off Michael’s tongue and it made something in Lucifer’s chest tighten.

“I don’t want to be him anymore. Samael,” Lucifer whispered with disdain. “I don’t want to be of God.”

“You’re not. You’re just Lucifer.” Michael assured him, his hand still on his brother’s cheek. “You’re your own man. The Devil, sure. But that’s just a title. What you are is an archangel and my brother.”

From Michael’s hand a warmth flooded into Lucifer’s cheek and all through him until it reached his back and his wing. Too late he realized what his brother was doing. He pulled back but it was done. His wing had been healed. “I told you, I didn’t want your help!” He spat at the other angel.

“Forgive me. But I couldn’t stand seeing you in pain. Now hide your wings. Anyone could walk in and see them.”

“I don’t listen to orders from you.”

“I know.” Michael smiled a little. “You never have. But that doesn’t stop me from giving them, does it?”

Lucifer almost growled at him in frustration and then gave in and hid his wings away, mostly to avoid knocking over all the furniture as he whirled around and stomped up the stairs to his bedroom. He needed a new shirt. Michael stayed where he was, a look of slight confusion on his face, before he followed his brother.

“Lucifer?”

“What?!”

“Will you consider my query? Will you try to forgive me?”

He basically ripped the shirt off the clothing hanger before turning back to face Michael. A muscle in his jaw clenched dangerously as he considered the angel before him. “Forgiveness has never been a strong suit of mine.” He said eventually. “And you are one of the few people I’d have thought would deserve it the least. However,” he paused and looked away, “I learned that people forgive despite the other person not deserving it. That’s what forgiveness is.” He stepped closer to Michael, his eyes searching for something, anything in his brother’s eyes that would convey dishonesty. But he couldn’t find it. “For you, Michael, I am willing to try.”

“Thank you, Lucifer.”

“Don’t make me regret it.” It was a threat, that much was clear. “Now piss off, I don’t want the company.”

With the sound of fluttering wings, Michael disappeared. He would be back after giving Lucifer some space, probably.

He heard his phone vibrate on the wooden surface of his living room table. With both hands, he rubbed across his face before deciding to at least check who it was. When he picked up the phone, he found that he had missed several calls and had received three messages from the detective.

Lucifer, are you there? Please answer your phone.

They won’t let me up to your apartment. Please answer the phone and hear me out.

I’m sorry about the way I acted. I was angry and let it out on you and I know I shouldn’t have. It wasn’t my place to demand answers from you. Especially not, if all this has something to do with your past. Please just know that you can talk to me about anything and if you don’t want to, that’s fine as well. I won’t push, anymore.
I’m sorry. Please don’t leave.

Lucifer held the phone in his hand, his eyes still on the screen. She was scared he’d leave. Just like he’d done before. That’s how much he’d hurt her with that stunt.

What was he supposed to say now? He wasn’t angry with her. All of this was probably way worse on her than it was on him and he couldn’t blame her for lashing out. After all, he truly had hurt her. He deserved her anger, even if she insisted it wasn’t directed towards him. Lucifer was sure, somewhere deep down she was angry at him.

Slowly, he typed out a message.

I won’t leave. Will you have me, if I come for a visit tomorrow?

 He hit send and waited to see, if she would answer right away. And she did soon after.

Of course.

Lucifer couldn’t help but smile. He would make it up to her somehow. But first, he had a little something to take care of.

|||

Pierce lived in a suburban area, the houses and lawns clean and orderly and no one on the streets after nine. Only a man walking his dog, whistling a tune as he did so. The driveway led up a small hill and the view over LA was sure to cost a small fortune. Pierce’s house was a little too spacious for a single man, Lucifer thought. He’d gotten the address from a very helpful female cop at the station. She had been eager to go through the personal information of the Lieutenant for Lucifer. He didn’t even have to offer anything in return.

The locked front door wasn’t an obstacle to the Devil. Locks couldn’t keep him out. Or in, for that matter. He wandered through the house without turning any light on, looking for any obvious signs that the Lieutenant wasn’t who he said he was but couldn’t find anything telling. In the end, he decided to go for a more direct approach and sat down on the recliner in the living area, waiting for Pierce to come home.

He waited for almost an hour. Long day at the office, he supposed.

Marcus Pierce came into his house, threw his bag and jacket to the side before proceeding to the kitchen. He filled a glass with water before stepping around the counter into the living area.

“Nice place you have here.”

The man almost dropped the glass in his hand. He whirled to find Lucifer sitting there, legs crossed, his long fingers carefully drumming on the armrest. “What the hell?”

“What the hell, indeed, my dear Lieutenant.” Lucifer stared the man down, the room still barely lit by the little light that came in from the street lamps outside. “Got nothing else to say for yourself?”

Pierce stood tall, using his full height to tower over Lucifer who was still seated. “You don’t have any right being here. Get out of my house before I arrest you for breaking and entering.”

“Oh, come now, stop with all that nonsense. We both know, you’re not going to do that.”

“I won’t?”

Lucifer grinned. “No, you won’t. You know why I’m here, don’t you?” Pierce didn’t answer. He just clenched his jaw and looked away from Lucifer. “Who are you?” Lucifer questioned him.

“Marcus Pierce.”

“Wrong answer.” Lucifer got up from the recliner and stepped closer to the other man. “Let’s try this again, shall we? Who are you?”

“I don’t know what you’re talking about.”

“You don’t?” Lucifer feigned surprise. “Look into my eyes and tell me that again.” His smile grew, when Pierce refused to look at him. “Come now, don’t be shy.” This time Pierce even took a step back but Lucifer was quick and had Pierce’s jaw in a tight grip a moment later. He turned the lieutenant’s face towards himself, feeling his opponent struggle. Pierce was strong, his own hands tried to get Lucifer’s off his jaw but he didn’t quite match the strength of the archangel.

“Last chance, my friend.” Lucifer hissed as he stared right into Pierce’s eyes. “You’re not of Hell, I would know. Because everyone down there was once my subject. So, that only leaves the Upstairs. Who are you?”

“I’m not an angel.” Pierce gritted out, his hands still clawing at Lucifer’s.

“Oh, but you know who I am, don’t you? You know exactly who I am and you want something from me or you wouldn’t have come.”

“Lucifer Morningstar.” His voice was strained with frustration. “The brightest of God’s angels. The Devil. The Adversary. Yes, I know who you are.”

“Then why don’t you do me the honor and tell me your name. It’s only fair, seeing as you know all of mine.”

For a moment, Pierce didn’t answer. Lucifer’s grip on him tightened. “Alright, alright, let me go first.” Lucifer did and the man in front of him grimaced, stepped back and rubbed his jaw before looking up at the Devil. “Cain. No last name.”

That wasn’t what Lucifer had expected. The world’s first murderer. He’d been wrong. The man was human. No celestial being and not infernal, either. Human. Just touched by the divine.

“Well, isn’t that a surprise.” He considered the man before him for a second. “Cain himself. Didn’t expect to ever cross paths with you. What do you want?”

“What makes you think that I want anything from you?”

“You knew I was here. You knew I am tied in with the precinct. And you are trying to tell me that it’s a coincidence that you became lieutenant at that particular precinct?”

“Maybe no coincidence but I am not here for you.”

“You know, I can force you to tell me what you really want. You’re human. Cursed to walk this earth for all eternity, sure, but still human. You answer to my powers like all the others.”

Cain’s eyes shot up to meet Lucifer’s, bitterness in them. “Having quite the bit of fun with those powers, are we? Glad to be back at full strength? Wings and all?”

Lucifer froze. The shadows suddenly seemed more prominent in the room, growing, almost as if they were alive. “You!” He shook with the effort of keeping his powers contained. “You kidnapped me! You gave me the wings and took away my face! It was you!”

“No, no, wait.” Cain held his hands up in surrender. “I kidnapped you, yes. But I didn’t have anything to do with the wings.”

“Then how do you know?”

“You don’t exactly hide it. You told Chloe Decker in the middle of the precinct the other day. I just overheard. And then you saved Espinoza, so I figured it was true.”

Lucifer still wasn’t convinced. “Then why kidnap me? What is your goal here?”

“Look, hear me out. I just wanted you out of the way for a couple of days for my own reasons. So, I knocked you out and payed those guys to take you to the desert. They were supposed to take you further but apparently they freaked, when you suddenly sprouted wings. My plan was to be in and out of here before you even returned. I didn’t want any trouble with you.”

“What, and you thought kidnapping me was the best way to ensure that?” Lucifer scoffed. “Bad idea, Cain. Very, very bad idea.”

“It had nothing to do with you.”

“Then what do you want, if not me?” Lucifer asked and caught Cain’s eyes with his own hypnotic gaze. “What is it that you desire?”

“I—I want,” Cain swallowed heavily, “to die.”

Lucifer was taken aback but then he couldn’t help but laugh. “Well, well. Look who’s tired of immortality.” He patted Cain’s shoulder condescendingly. “Sorry to break it to you, but I don’t think my dad will let that happen. The Mark is a curse and it’s not an easy one to break. That’s the thing about immortality: you can’t just escape it.”

“You can, apparently.” Cain said quietly.

“Yes, but that’s not me, that’s the detective’s—” And suddenly it clicked. Chloe. He felt his own eyes blaze with white, hot fire. In a blink he had Cain against the wall, one hand closing around his throat, pushing him upwards. “You won’t touch her. You won’t lay a finger on her.

“Lucifer—” Cain choked out.

“She’s not yours to take!”

“I don’t—wouldn’t take—”

Lucifer threw him to the side where he collided with the couch and crumpled on the floor, gasping for air.

“Please, Lucifer, listen. I won’t touch her.”

“You won’t, if you know what’s good for you. I may not be able to kill you but torture is a specialty of mine.” He said darkly.

“All I want is to die. I figured, if she made you mortal, maybe she could have the same effect on me. I only wanted to try… dying in her proximity.”

“You won’t even come close to her. Try and I will make you suffer.”

Cain got up from the floor slowly. “You won’t attack me in the middle of the precinct.” He stated. “And you can’t do anything to me that I haven’t done to myself already.”

Lucifer tilted his head to the side, his look menacing. “Have you ever been mauled to death by a hellhound?”

“You wouldn’t bring a hellhound to earth.” Cain said with determination but visibly paled.

A smile crossed Lucifer’s face. In his mind he called to the shadows. A growl filled the room, reverberating from the walls. Cain whirled around just as the large shape of Fenrir stepped out of the shadows of the dark room.

“Say hello to Fenrir, Cain.” Lucifer said, then switched to Enochian. “Don’t attack him, Fenrir. Scare him, but don’t attack.

The hound began to circle Cain, trapping him. Then he bounded forward and snapped at the man’s leg, his sharp teeth ripping the fabric of his trousers, a growl ever present. Cain visibly panicked a little.

“Call it off, Lucifer.”

“Why should I? Will you promise me to leave the detective alone, if I do?” Lucifer said, sounding bored.

“I work with her. I can’t stay away from her the entire time.” Cain’s eyes never left the hound but his voice was pleading.

“Then you won’t interact with her unless absolutely necessary. You won’t speak with her, if I’m not around.”

Cain laughed nervously. “Possessive much?” Fenrir snarled at Cain, when he felt his master’s anger rise. “Okay, alright. As long as it’s possible, I won’t come close to her, when you’re not around.” He took his eyes off Fenrir and looked up at the Devil instead. “But you will help me in return.”

“What makes you think you’re in any position to negotiate?”

“Help me kill myself and I will respect your wishes regarding Detective Decker.”

“It’s impossible to kill you.” Lucifer scoffed.

“Then at least try.

Lucifer pondered this for a few moments. “Let’s make this official, then. A deal.” Cain nodded to him but his apprehension at dealing with the Devil was evident. “Alright. Fenrir, back off.” The hellhound obeyed and Lucifer stepped up to Cain instead. “I will try my best to kill you and you will respect my every order when it comes to Chloe. Deal?”

Cain looked into Lucifer’s eyes, the contract between them binding. “Deal.”

Lucifer smirked. “And know what will happen, if you cross me.” He stepped past Cain, his fingers trailing through Fenrir’s fur. “I think that concludes our business here. Come along, Fenrir.” With his hound in his wake Lucifer faded into the shadows, leaving Cain standing alone in the dark of his own living room.

Chapter Text

Lucifer knocked on the door of Chloe’s apartment the evening after, a bottle of Merlot in hand. The door opened shortly after, revealing not the detective but Maze. She leaned against the doorframe, challenging smile on her face as she blocked the way.

“Mazikeen,” Lucifer greeted her warmly. “How goes the bounty hunting?”

“Slow.” She drawled in response. “How are your pets?”

“Adapting. You could walk them, if you wanted.”

She smiled all too sweetly. “I won’t go anywhere near them without you around. They’re all yours to entertain.”

“Oh, entertain them, I did.”

“That sounds promising. Found someone to punish?”

“Not really any of your business. You don’t work for me anymore.”

She grimaced. “So, still no visitors allowed?”

“None whatsoever.” He glanced past her into the apartment. “Enough with the chit chat. Is the detective here?”

Chloe’s voice answered from somewhere inside. “Is that Lucifer? Could you let him in?”

Maze pushed herself off the door frame and stepped around Lucifer. “I’m out. Don’t need to watch you two stare at each other longingly. It’s nauseating.”

“Watch it, Maze.” He said, his voice casual, and stepped inside. Before closing the door, he addressed Maze once more before she could disappear. “Oh, one more thing. Michael is in town. Leave him be, will you?” He closed the door on her shocked face. Just then, Chloe came into the room, her hair still a little wet from the shower. She skidded to a halt as she took in the sight of Lucifer in the room.

“You came.”

“Of course, I did. I said, I would, didn’t I?”

She nodded. “Yeah. I just—I wasn’t sure when you’d show.” She took a breath and then smiled. “Sit down, make yourself at home. Can I get you anything?”

“Well, I brought this along.” He held up the bottle of wine. “I was hoping you’d join in with my alcoholic tendencies.”

“I’ll never reach your level of tolerance but I’m willing to give it a try. Let me just get a couple of glasses for that.” She gestured to the living area behind her. “Please, sit down.”

“My pleasure.”

As he lowered himself on the couch he felt a little out of place in his three-piece suit and wondered for a moment, whether he should have foregone his usual attire for something a little more casual. But eventually he pushed the thought aside. He always dressed like this. Chloe wouldn’t mind.

She returned with two wine glasses and a corkscrew which she handed over to him. He opened up the bottle and filled both glasses generously as she sat down next to him, not too close but close enough.

“I’m glad you came. You have every right to be angry with me—”

“Ah, ah, Detective. You already apologized.” He handed her the glass and held out his own. “And I may have overreacted a little, so you’re not at fault.” His eyes found hers and he gave her an expectant look. “Still partners?”

“Still partners.” She agreed and clinked her glass against his before taking a sip. He couldn’t help but smile, when she lowered the glass in honest surprise. “This is really good wine.” She quickly took another sip.

“I should hope so.” Lucifer nodded. “This is a Le Pin. The bottle is worth a good three thousand dollars.”

Chloe almost choked on her mouthful of wine. She swallowed quickly. “Are you serious? Holy shit, and you thought this was an appropriate occasion?”

“Why, of course. But not to worry about the money, Detective, the wine was a gift from a friend of mine.”

They sat in silence for a little while, both content to just share the moment with each other. Lucifer found himself hoping she would gravitate closer to him a little for he ached to feel her warmth against his body. He refrained from making a move himself, though. She had too much on her plate emotionally right now and probably didn’t need the added complications, if he decided now was the right time to go further. And he also knew that it wasn’t the right time. Before he could let things progress any further, he would have to come clean with her and even though he knew it was wrong, he procrastinated doing so. He wasn’t ready. Wasn’t ready for her to stop looking at him like he was an actual human being and not some nightmare.

“How is Daniel doing?” Lucifer asked after a while, deeming it a safe topic.

“He’s recovering well. This morning the doctors even let him get up. He’s still on a lot of pain medication but they say the wound is healing up nicely and they will ease him off the meds over the next few days.” Chloe breathed in deeply. “His recovery really is nothing short of a miracle.”

“Oh, please, I’ve seen far more miraculous things.”

“Oh, really?” Chloe asked, a smile playing around her lips.

“Yes, really. The Douche would pale in comparison.” He teased. “No, in all seriousness, I’m glad he’s recovering. I know I am not the most compassionate person around but I do my best.” He winked and took another sip of wine. “Let me know, if there’s anything I can do.”

“Thank you.” Chloe smiled.

“When does Beatrice return?”

“Her grandparents will bring drop her off here again on the weekend. Until then I’m enjoying the peace and quiet.”

“Has Maze been any trouble?”

“No,” Chloe shook her head. “Not at all. She just came home yesterday asking what I’d done.” She looked down sheepishly. “She said you were demolishing your penthouse.”

“Overstatement.”

“I really didn’t mean to upset you that much.”

“It’s all water under the bridge. And I didn’t demolish anything, I broke a glass.”

Chloe raised an eyebrow. “On accident?”

“On purpose.”

“Well, as long as you can afford a new one, I guess that’s okay.”

“I’ll manage.” He grinned. “I’m resourceful like that. I could call in a favor just for someone to buy me a new glass.”

“Knowing you, you probably would.” She paused and looked up at him. “Would you do me a favor?”

Lucifer was taken aback by that. He tilted his head to the side a little. “You don’t really want to make a deal with me, Detective, do you?”

“Well, you are usually very good at getting what you want. And I—well, I want in on the shooter case.” She shrugged as if to say that it was no big deal. “I just want to help catch the guy who shot Dan. But they would never let me work it because I’m personally involved in this.”

“You want me to get you on the case?” Lucifer smirked.

“You have your thing, the ‘desire’ thing, and usually you can get whatever you want from people. Even if I still don’t get how you do it.”

“Perks of being the Devil.”

“Right. So, would you do it?” Chloe simply passed over the Devil comment. “For me?”

Lucifer thought about it for a second. He was making a lot of deals lately, it seemed. First Michael, then Cain. Now Chloe? He decided it probably wasn’t the best idea to make another deal, seeing as the last two were already grating on his nerves.

“I’ll get you on the case.” He agreed.

Chloe’s eyes lit up. “You will? That’s… great.” Her smile faltered a little. “What do you want in return? Or do I owe you?”

“No.” He replied quickly and with emphasis. “I’m doing this out of the goodness of my heart, if you can believe it.”

“Really? No strings attached?”

“None.” He shook his head. “I’ll get you on the case. First thing tomorrow morning.” Looking into her eyes, he added, “If you promise to be careful.” She nodded sincerely. “And you’ll have to take your partner along.”

“Wouldn’t dream of doing this without you.”

|||

Lucifer walked into Pierce’s office the next morning—Chloe he had advised to wait at her desk— head held high and a confident smile on his face. It made Pierce’s gaze turn sour instantly.

“What do you want? I haven’t been near your precious detective.”

Lucifer closed the door behind himself before facing Pierce. “Not what I came to talk about, Lieutenant. No, quite the opposite actually.” He placed both hands on the desk and leaned forward, staring Pierce right in the eye, who, when he noticed that was the case, quickly focused his eyes somewhere around Lucifer’s chin.

“Don’t.”

“Don’t what, Cain?”

“Don’t use your powers on me.”

“If I were to use them so blatantly, it wouldn’t be on you. That’d be a waste.”

“Then what?” Pierce hissed, eyes finding Lucifer’s but flickering away again right away, the dark eyes of the Devil too intense.

Lucifer tilted his head with a small smile. “Put Detective Decker on the case of the shooting.”

“Can’t do that. Conflict of interests.”

“Surely you can make an exception.”

The man scoffed. “What, because it’s you asking? I am under no obligation to do anything you want from me. I am your boss here, don’t forget that.”

“And I don’t like being denied, don’t forget that.”

“You don’t scare me, Lucifer.”

“Oh,” Lucifer pushed away from the desk, fake surprise in his voice. “Right. Have to think of something else then, won’t I? Alright, okay, how about this: I want whoever shot Daniel Espinoza to pay. If you don’t put Detective Decker on the case, I will hunt the miscreant down myself. And drop the body right in front of the precinct.”

Pierce laughed. “Empty threats, Lucifer. You’re still an angel, so you can’t kill humans.”

“Not with my own hands, no. But I have my demon, my hounds… I’ll find a way, I promise. Do you want that? Or would you rather have him brought in in one piece, alive and well enough to go through your little justice system?”

A muscle in Pierce’s jaw tensed and he stared Lucifer right in the eye. The staring contest lasted about half a minute, then Pierce stood suddenly, his posture screaming frustration. He stormed past Lucifer and pulled the door open with way too much force.

“Decker! You’re on Espinoza’s case from now on! I want results, understood?”

Lucifer saw Chloe nod quickly and with a smile in Pierce’s direction he left the office and joined Chloe at her desk. The door was slammed closed behind him again but it couldn’t wipe the smug smile off his face. Chloe gave him a look, eyes wide and then leaned in close.

“What did you say to him?”

“Nothing too mean, don’t worry.” He waved it off.

“Lucifer!” She grabbed his arm and turned hit towards herself. “Did you threaten my boss?”

“Is that what you think I’d do?” He raised his eyebrows expectantly and she was about to answer his question, he could tell, but then her mouth thinned into an angry line.

She smacked his arm. “You know, you’re scarily good at not telling the truth for someone who doesn’t lie.”

“I take that as a compliment. And you can relax, the Lieutenant is not easily undermined.”

“I’m just going to ignore that you still haven’t answered the question.”

“A very good decision.”

The next few hours they spent talking to the Detective previously on Dan’s case, catching up on what they had found so far. Lucifer mostly followed Chloe around, lounging behind her as she nodded along to every conversation and took in every piece of information. Eventually, she snapped in front of Lucifer’s face as he sat in her desk chair, throwing a quarter up in the air and entirely lost in thought.

“Hey, earth to Lucifer? Anybody home?”

“I’m all ears, Detective. What have you got?” He caught the quarter and slipped it into his jacket pocket.

“Well, they haven’t found much. They’re bringing in suspects one at a time based on hair they found at the crime scene. But so far, no luck, everyone’s got an alibi and to be quite honest, I don’t think this is the way to go about it.”

Lucifer frowned. “If they found hair, they’ve got DNA. Why do they have several suspects?”

“It wasn’t human hair. It was a dog’s. Well, two dogs to be precise.”

“Dog hair? And that’s what they going after? Everyone in Los bloody Angeles who owns a dog?”

“No, of course not.” She dropped the files she was holding on the desk in front of him and pointed out a particular line. “The breed isn’t too common, so they are looking for people who own an,” she glanced down at the information, “Irish Wolfshound and a Border Collie.”

“Well, it still seems a bit far-fetched to me.”

Chloe nodded, not seeming too impressed, either. “They found partial footprint as well. But that only let’s us guess that it was a male.”

“So, a man who had contact with an Irish Wolfshound and a Collie and likes to shoot at people with a military type rifle. That’s all they got after—how many days have they worked on this? Are you the only competent detective in this establishment?”

“Shh, don’t say that. They’ve been working on the case of the dead woman in the fountain simultaneously, so they had a lot on their plate. You can’t expect them to have looked at every angle, yet.” Suddenly her eyes lightened up. “Wait a minute, that’s it. Lucifer, you’re genius!” She grabbed the file again and flicked through it.

“Of course, I am. But what has brought on this sudden compliment?”

“They’re only checking those who own that type of dog. But look at it from the other side. You said it yourself, maybe the guy only came in contact with one. What if he works for an animal shelter?”

“Does that really bring us any closer?”

“Possibly? I don’t know.” She deflated, her enthusiasm dying down a bit.

“Can’t you check with your police database?”

“And what would you want me to check?”

Lucifer sat up a little. “Male, war veteran, specialized in far-ranged weaponry, owns a rifle and works at an animal shelter.”

Slowly, she began to nod. “That’s… actually a really good idea. Why a veteran, though?”

“The shot he tried to pull off wasn’t an easy one. At that range, facing the sun, it has to be more than just a hobby to him. So, I’m guessing trained and specialized.”

Chloe nodded, then smirked. “You know, you don’t give yourself enough credit. You’re good at this.”

“We both know, I always give credit where it’s due and this guess of mine hasn’t checked out, yet. But I will gladly rub in that I was right once you find something in your data base.”

“Yeah, I can see it coming, already.”

She shooed him out of her chair and began clicking through her computer. Lucifer leaned over her shoulder, trying not to get too distracted by her closeness. Needless to say, he failed. But he quickly focused again, when Chloe took in a sharp breath.

“It all fits.” She pointed at the screen. “Look. Finn Henley Jr. served in Afghanistan, specialized in far-ranged weapons and is currently employed at Portus’ Animal Shelter. He got a speeding ticket last month but otherwise his slate his clean.” She looked over her shoulder at her partner, a wide smile on her face. “But it fits.”

“What motive does he have, though?” Lucifer asked justifiably.

“I’m sure, if we questioned him, you could get it out of him.”

Lucifer returned her smile, though his was quite a bit more predatory. “I’m liking this plan.”

|||

Two days later Lucifer found himself in the Detective’s car, parked at the side of the road. Both him and Chloe stared at the entrance of a pub on the other side of the street. Had done so for nearly four hours now.

“He’s not going to show.”

“You don’t know that. You’re just trying to get out of this stakeout.” Chloe mumbled.

“Whatever gave you that idea?” Lucifer asked innocently but sighed afterwards. “Maze would have found him by now. He’s obviously gone off the grid. He won’t just show up at his usually frequented bar.”

He could tell Chloe was slowly crumbling. She had been against involving Maze from the start. When they’d gone to bring Finn Henley Jr in, his wife had declared him absent. The man had disappeared the day of Dan’s shooting but she hadn’t thought it necessary to inform the police, arguing that in their relationship it was entirely normal to skip out for a couple of days. In hindsight she had admitted that he’d acted a bit strange when she had last seen him.

That started Chloe and Lucifer’s chase for Henley Jr all across LA. They found a couple leads, traffic cameras that had recorded his van driving down the highway, a bar tender that distinctly remembered the man, but each trail had gone cold. The current stakeout had been Chloe grasping at straws but Lucifer couldn’t blame her.

Chloe looked at her partner in the passenger seat. “You’re sure Maze would find him?”

“Yes.” He said matter-of-factly. “She can find anyone.”

She let out a frustrated sigh. “I know.” She rubbed her forehead against an oncoming headache. “I just—I want to bring him in myself, you know? My case, my suspect. I want the satisfaction of catching him.”

“Understandable. But maybe it’s better to have him brought in at all.”

“You’re right.” She pulled out her phone. “I shouldn’t think that way. We’re doing this to find Dan’s killer and not for the glory.” Scrolling through her contacts, she hovered over Maze’s name. “She won’t rough him up too badly, will she? I mean, we don’t know for sure he’s guilty.”

Lucifer tilted his head from one side to the other. “Not too badly, no.”

“Very reassuring, thank you.” She pressed the call button and waited.

“This better be important, Decker. I’m in the middle of something.” Maze’s voice came from the car’s speakers.

“Aren’t you always? Look, I need your help finding someone.”

“And here I thought you needed a babysitter.”

“This is serious, Maze. I need you to find a suspect in a murder case. He’s gone off the grid and so far there’s no trace of him. His name is—”

Maze interrupted her. “I don’t want his name. I never said I’d help. Why should I? You probably won’t even pay me for it. I can make way more money with my current bounty, so no thank you, Decker. Find your guy on your own.”

“Maze, please—”

“Not interested.”

Lucifer, who had up until this point listened with a more and more annoyed look on his face, let out a breath, slowly but very steady to keep himself in check.

“Mazikeen.” There was a certain menacing, warning quality to his voice within that single word, a darker tone that he hoped would convey to Maze his current discontent.

For a few seconds there was silence on the other end of the line. Then Maze spat out a curse. “Fine. His name and anything else you can give me.” Chloe quickly gave her all the information they had, all the while glancing at Lucifer with a mixture of confusion and wonder and maybe a little fear. He forced himself to put on his usual smile and air of innocence as to not frighten her further. When she was done talking, Maze grumbled, “Pick him up at Lux in four and a half hours,” before hanging up.

“She thinks she’ll find him in four and a half hours?” Chloe asked disbelievingly.

“Maze is very efficient, when she wants to be.”

“How come she takes orders from you like that?” Her tone was careful as if she was expecting a bomb to go off any second.

He refused to look at her. “Old habits die hard, I guess.” He knew she wanted him to elaborate but what was he supposed to say? Maze is a demon who used to have but a single purpose which was serving the Devil. She’s not under oath anymore but she’s grown scared of me recently. Might have to do with the fact that for all intents and purposes I am back to being an archangel. Heaven’s most powerful weapon. Not that I want to be. For a moment he scolded himself for turning this into an identity crisis but then he figured that it was just another reason proving that he couldn’t tell Chloe the truth.

As if she’d been reading his thoughts, she said, “If you ever feel comfortable explaining all that stuff concerning your past to me, I’m here.” Her voice was soft, not demanding. She was giving him space even though, he could tell, she was bloody desperate to finally figure him out.

“Would it help to tell you again that I am the Devil?” He offered with a small smile.

She huffed but smiled as well. “Not really.”

“Didn’t think so.” He hesitated before continuing. “Thank you, though. For offering to listen.” She nodded back at him and he cleared his throat to ease the sudden tension. “So, how about we get going and head back to Lux? I’m sure we can find a way to pass the time until Maze gets back to us.”

“Sure,” Chloe agreed. “Nothing keeping us here anymore, I suppose. I have to swing by the hospital, though.”

“The hospital?”

She gave him a poignant look. “Dan? He’s in the hospital, remember?”

“Right, I forgot you humans take this long to recover.” He sighed. “Fine, hospital first.”

Chloe put the car in reverse and backed out of their parking spot, then navigated towards the main street. They reached the hospital shortly after and Lucifer debated with himself whether or not he should go inside. He still doubted Dan would be happy to see him and eventually he decided staying in the car was a much safer option.

Chloe, of course, didn’t get his apprehension at visiting Dan and visibly bit back her anger as she exited the car, promising to be back within twenty minutes. “And don’t you dare drive off.”

“I don’t even have the keys.” Lucifer argued.

“If Ella knows how to steal cars, I’m sure you do as well.”

“Fair point.” He sighed and settled deeper into the seat. He watched her enter the hospital and began to hum softly under his breath. The tune was a familiar one, ingrained into his very being, for it was one he’d learned back when he had still been part of the Host. He used to sing it in praise of his younger siblings as they began their existence, welcoming them. Briefly, he wondered who took up that job after his fall but he quickly shook his head to stop those reminiscing thoughts. He didn’t miss Heaven. He never wanted to go back. Blame it on Michael’s sudden appearance in his penthouse that those memories had begun to creep into his mind.

Michael.

Lucifer would have to talk to his brother some time soon. He was avoiding it, to be honest. Sure, he had promised to try and forgive him but he was nowhere near it, yet. Maybe he’d call Michael to Lux tonight. Putting it off much longer wouldn’t help either of them.

He stepped out of the car and proceeded to light up a cigarette, blowing the smoke up into the air. The habit calmed him and fortunately didn’t have the same ill effects on him as it would on a human. Thank dad for small miracles. Additionally, after having lost his Pentecostal coin, the cigarette gave his fingers something to fiddle with. Why the Devil of all people had a nervous tick like that, he didn’t dare ask. It was an all too human thing.

True to her word, Chloe returned about twenty minutes later. Lucifer could tell immediately that something was wrong. She was tense, her forehead scrunched up in deep thought, and she only noticed Lucifer leaning against the car, when she stood right in front of him.

“What’s wrong?”

She looked up into his eyes and he could see the gears turning in her mind. “Nothing’s wrong, per se. If anything, things are better than I hoped they would be.”

“Usually I’m the one talking in riddles. It doesn’t suit you to pick up the same habit, so would you care to explain what you mean by that?”

“Dan is being released tomorrow morning.”

That had Lucifer stunned. “That’s a bit rushed, isn’t it? Shouldn’t the Douche rest up a bit more?”

“He doesn’t need to apparently. The doctors were surprised as well but his recovery has been,” she paused as she struggled to find the right words, “a little too fast to be quite normal. A bullet wound doesn’t just heal up within four days.”

Lucifer tilted his head to the side. “That is a bit unusual indeed. What did Daniel say about that?”

“Nothing. He seems just as shocked about it all. Which, I guess, is a normal reaction to being shot, being declared for dead and then waking up again.” Chloe nodded to herself. “It sounds crazy.”

“Don’t fret about it too much. Rejoice that Dan will be back to his normal douche-y self and forget about all the worrisome stuff.”

“Hm,” Chloe narrowed her eyes at him. “Have you done anything to him?”

“Whatever do you mean?”

“I mentioned your name, saying you were waiting outside. He almost panicked.” She crossed her arms in front of her chest. “So, what have you done to him?”

Lucifer sighed. “Nothing you would disapprove of.”

She held his gaze for a few seconds longer, then nodded, apparently satisfied, and got in the car. Lucifer glanced heavenwards, but then opened the door on the passenger side. Chloe drove towards Lux and Lucifer told her not to bother about searching for a parking spot and drive up to the entrance instead.

She did as she was told and Lucifer got out of the car immediately upon arrival, nodding towards the valet who came over instantly.

“Evening, boss,” the young man greeted.

“Park her car, would you?” He handed his employee a couple of bills and then offered his arm to Chloe, who hesitated with a glance to the queue of women and men in fancy dress in front of the club. They were all watching her and Lucifer with interest, some with jealousy.

Lucifer’s grin was immensely pleased, when Chloe put her hand on his arm and with her chin held high, she let Lucifer guide her past the line of waiting people. He was proud to have Chloe on his arm and none of those people could measure up to her. If only he could have her by his side forever. It would be his own personal Heaven.

Lux was packed. Like usual, really, but Lucifer navigated through the crowd easily. The people seemed to part in front of him as he made his way towards the bar. He helped Chloe up onto one of the stools and nodded to Patrick who was immediately there to serve them.

“Boss,” Patrick acknowledged him, then turned to Chloe. “Miss Detective, what can I get you?” He inclined his head with a smile.

Chloe ducked her head a little at the attention she got from the barkeeper but quickly composed herself. “Whiskey, neat.” She replied swiftly.

Patrick raised an eyebrow. “Lucifer is rubbing off on you.” He winked and went to make her drink.

“If only you’d let me rub off on you, Detective.” Lucifer chimed in and was happy to see one of her genuine smiles, which he only got to see at the rarest of times.

“Well, let’s hope I can rub some manners off on you in return.”

“My manners are impeccable.”

“Not the word I’d choose.”

“Perhaps, immaculate, then.” Lucifer mused. “Infallible? Faultless, maybe.” He leaned in, his mouth right next to her ear. “Exquisite.

Chloe was saved by Patrick who returned with her whiskey and a glass of scotch, full to the brim, for Lucifer, who nodded his thanks and then motioned towards Chloe.

“Keep ‘em coming, if she wants them.”

“Lucifer, I couldn’t.”

“Of course, you could. You know not to worry about the cost.”

“Not what I meant.” Chloe shook her head. “I don’t know how you drink as much as you do without even getting tipsy, but I’d keel over after a second one of these.” She raised her glass to prove her point, but Lucifer simply clinked his against it with a smile.

“It was an offer.” He reassured her. “No obligation, Detective.”

She took a breath and sighed. “We’re here for business, anyways. Maze will be here with the bad guy soon, remember.”

“We still got a couple of hours to kill until then. So, what do you want to do?”

“Are you trying to work your desire mojo on me?”

Lucifer snorted. “I doubt that it would suddenly work. And no, I wasn’t trying. I was simply asking how you’d like to spend the evening.”

She shrugged. “I’m fine sitting here. I’m not going to dance with you, if that’s what you’re trying to achieve.”

“Oh, come on, Detective. You can’t look me in the eye and deny that you had fun last time. You need to live a little from time to time.”

She hummed and then shook her head. “I think I’ll pass today. But you know what I’d be up for?” Chloe leaned in closer to him and his smile grew.

“Oh, do tell.”

“You playing the piano.”

Lucifer laughed. “Your role would be so very passive in that, though. But alright. I suppose I could grant you your wish.” He reached around her to pick up his glass, downed the content in one swift gulp and smirked at her as he placed it back on the bar top.

He only made it halfway to the piano before something made him turn back around. And what he saw had him grit his teeth. There was a man right next to the detective, entirely too close, his suit a size too big and a sleazy smile on his face. The man’s hand rested on Chloe’s waist and she couldn’t back away, the bar behind her stopping her.

“What do you say? I’m taking you home with me and then I’ll make you feel real good.” Even the guy’s voice had a disgusting tone to it.

“No, thanks. I think I’ll pass. And now I suggest you let go of me.” Chloe countered with a forced and tight-lipped smile.

“But we haven’t had any fun, yet.”

“And we will have even less fun, if you don’t let go. I’m with the LAPD.”

The man laughed. “You’re nothing but a whore. A lousy one at that.”

That had Chloe push him, though he still held on tight to her arm, and he crashed painfully against a bar stool. He swore and was about to retaliate but he was stopped.

Lucifer’s hand clamped down on the back of the man’s neck and he pulled him away quite roughly. In his surprise he let go of Chloe and stumbled a few steps away. Lucifer was right back in his personal space, taking hold of the man’s collar.

“First of all,” Lucifer began, loud and clear, “I am in no way defending the Detective’s honor because she wouldn’t approve of such a thing and clearly doesn’t need defending. Second, I will not have you or anyone else harass someone, especially not in my club.” Oh, how he wished he could give this guy a taste of Hell. Just a flash of fire and brimstone. But without his Devil form, he had no way of doing so. His anger, however, was boiling over.

For a moment, the glasses on the table next to him shook and the shadows all around the club grew deeper. Lucifer pushed the man away, he stumbled against the bar and Lucifer slammed his head onto the unforgiving surface of the bar top, holding him down. He heard a few gasps from the other patrons but paid them no mind.

“Look, man, I didn’t mean to cause any trouble, okay?” The guy stuttered out.

“No, not okay. Not even slightly okay.” Lucifer hissed into his ear. “People like you make me sick.”

Suddenly there was a hand on his shoulder. He turned to find Chloe looking at him, her eyes filled with something akin to shock. “That’s enough. You need to let him go.”

He scoffed and turned back to his victim. “I’m just getting started.”

“Lucifer, please.”

He froze. Why did those words coming from her mouth always make him freeze? Just once he wanted to escape their pull. But no, with just two words, Chloe Decker had him at her mercy.

Slowly, very slowly, he let go of the man’s neck and stepped away, his mouth twisted in disgust. He looked to Chloe, then back to the man slumped against the bar.

“Out.” He hissed. When no one moved, he whirled around. “Out! Everybody out!” He yelled, which earned him several flinches and frightened stares before people quickly started to retreat to the exit. The douchebag, who probably suffered a mild concussion, gave Lucifer a wide berth as he followed everyone outside. Only when the bouncers closed the doors behind the last guest, Lucifer started to relax a little.

He turned to see Chloe still standing right where she had stood before. Her hands were shaking a little but otherwise she seemed okay. He avoided her eyes, scared to see the judgement that was sure to be there.

“I apologize.” He said towards the floor. “For losing my temper. Not for hurting that guy.”

“Lucifer…” Chloe stepped closer. “What’s going on with you?” She sounded more concerned than reprimanding and it got Lucifer looking up at her. “I haven’t seen you this,” she considered her next words, “this unhinged since the sniper.”

Uriel. His mind pushed the name to the forefront of his thoughts immediately and he grimaced. He had never told her the truth about what happened. How could he? She would either think him mad or she would lock him up for murder.

Maybe she ought to.

“Lucifer?” She came even closer. “I’m not angry that you roughed that man up. He was an asshole and probably deserved it and against my better judgement, I liked that he got hurt.” Her hand reached for his and he let it happen, even though he still couldn’t look her in the eye. “But I’m concerned about what this is doing to you. So, please, take care of yourself.”

“I’m sure you’re quite aware that I’m capable of taking care of myself.”

Chloe shook her head. “I didn’t mean physically. Believe me, I know, you’re scary strong. No, I meant, don’t beat yourself up. Give yourself a break from time to time. Do something for yourself, something that makes you happy. Because I fear that if you don’t, it’ll only get worse.”

“Why do you care about my mental wellbeing so much?”

“Is that really so hard to understand?” Their eyes met finally and Chloe smiled a little. “You’re important to me, Lucifer. You’re one of the most important people in my life. And I want you to be happy, because seeing you happy makes me happy.”

Lucifer was quite baffled by her words but quickly composed himself. “Well, then, I hope you know that I could say the same about you.”

“I know.” Chloe said quietly and squeezed his hand.

Chapter Text

True to her word, Maze arrived a few hours later. She was dragging a bound and gagged man behind her, not caring about the muffled yelps the man let out, when she dragged him down some stairs. Lucifer and Chloe sat at the bar and Chloe immediately got up, slightly alarmed at the man’s state. She came towards Maze but the demon ignored her and dragged the man all the way to Lucifer, dropping him off right at the Devil’s feet.

Lucifer smiled but Maze didn’t seem quite so amused.

“There you go. Just like you ordered. Just one little thing,” Maze sneered and took a step into Lucifer’s personal space. “I’m not here to run errands for you, Lucifer. Better remember that next time because I won’t do anything like this anymore. Not for you.”

“I never ordered you to do anything.” Lucifer stood from the bar stool and stepped closer to Maze, forcing her to take a step back. “You could have said no.”

“Right, like you didn’t threaten me into doing this.”

“I would never.” Lucifer’s voice had taken on a warning tone.

“Tell me that you wouldn’t have threatened me with the hounds. Tell me that you wouldn’t have called it betrayal. Look me in the eye and tell me!”

If Chloe hadn’t stood right in his line of sight, Lucifer thought he wouldn’t have been able to keep his eyes from burning with his power. “Careful, Mazikeen. One might think, you’re calling me a liar. You ought to leave before I do threaten you with the hounds.”

Maze narrowed her eyes but took a careful step back from Lucifer. She didn’t shy away from meeting his eyes, though. When she spoke, it was not English but a language of demons. “Your wings turned you right back into a fucking angel. All high and mighty. You’re no better than your siblings.”

“No need to be rude.” He wasn’t about to start a fight with the demon right in front of Chloe, so he held back the urge to make her suffer for that comment. Instead he took hold of Maze’s arm as she was about to turn away and caught her gaze with his dark eyes. “I give you my word, Maze, I was never going to force you. I would not have threatened you. And I appreciate your help in finding this man.” He felt Maze slowly relax under his grip as the words sank in. To emphasize his point, he also switched to Maze’s language. “I don’t take you for granted. And my word is my bond.”

Maze was silent, even when Lucifer let go of her arm. She glanced at Chloe, who had watched the entire exchange from the sidelines, and then nodded slowly. She started walking backwards, carefully avoiding the man on the ground, her eyes wandering from Chloe to Lucifer. “I’ll leave you to it, then.” She took a couple steps further. “I’m leaving for Canada tomorrow, so… don’t bother calling me for help anytime soon.”

“Why Canada?” Lucifer questioned.

“For one, there’s a bounty. Two, your brother gives me the creeps. And three, you do, too.”

Lucifer saw how Chloe gave Maze a scrutinizing look, but he understood Maze’s reasoning. Him and Michael, in one city. The two archangels foretold to bring the end of the world. That was sure to drive any demon away.

“You’ll come back, though, right?” Chloe suddenly spoke up and Maze turned to face her.

“Yes, I’ll be back. Trixie would miss her teacher.” And with that Maze took her leave.

Chloe’s eyes followed her to the door, but she turned back to her partner soon enough. “Okay, what just happened?”

Lucifer, who was inspecting the man on the ground who was currently struggling to get out of his bounds, didn’t look up. “Hm?”

“Seriously, Lucifer.” Chloe huffed. “What did she mean? What did you and Amenadiel do to her? And what the hell kind of language was that? I didn’t even know you spoke—whatever that was.”

“Actually, ‘the hell kind of language’ is exactly what that was. And she wasn’t talking about Amenadiel.” He stepped around the struggling man, not meeting Chloe’s eyes. “Now, how about we discuss that later and instead focus on our current problem right here.” He kicked the leg of the man, who was supposedly Henley Jr, and he let out another muffled yelp.

For a moment it seemed like Chloe would press on but then she shook her head slightly and turned to face the man on the ground. She kneeled next to him and pulled off the gag, leaving him bound at the wrists, however. “Tell me your name.”

“I ain’t telling you shit, bitch. This is kidnapping! I’ll call the police.”

“We are the police.” Chloe answered promptly. “Now talk.”

When Henley refused, Lucifer crouched down next to him. “I suggest you do as she asks.”

“I want a lawyer.”

“Oh, and why do you think you’ll need a lawyer? Done anything wrong, perhaps? Nasty little crimes? Murder?”

At Lucifer’s words, the man visibly paled and shook his head quickly. “I didn’t—”

Chloe sighed. “Name first. Are you Finn Henley Jr?” A nod answered her question. “Did you shoot a detective at our crime scene two days ago?”

“No. I didn’t.”

Lucifer grabbed the man’s collar and pulled him up from the ground a little. “Don’t lie. I hate liars.” He focused his eyes on Henley’s and immediately the other man’s struggling ceased. “Now, tell me, what is it you desire?”

“I want to forget that any of it happened. I want to forget the feeling of it.”

“What feeling?”

“The thing inside my head. It felt terrible.” The man shivered. “I didn’t want to do it. But it drove me to.”

“So, you did shoot the detective.” Lucifer growled.

“Yes, but I swear, it was like I was possessed!” Henley sobbed. “I never wanted to kill anyone. I didn’t want any of it.”

“Lucifer.” Chloe said quietly. He looked up to her and she motioned with her head to talk in private. He followed her a few steps away and she lowered her voice to not be overheard by Henley. “What do you make of this?”

“Well, he’s telling the truth as far as I can tell. I don’t know what that means, though.”

“So, you believe him that he was possessed?” The crease on her forehead deepened before her expression changed to annoyance. “Of course, you do. Devil, yes, I know. Alright, let’s work outside that metaphor for a second and say he was forced to do what he did.”

“Then we’re looking for someone who is behind this. Someone who made him do this.” Lucifer frowned. “Maybe he can tell us something about that.” He sauntered back to their suspect who had remained on the floor, and he crouched next to him again. “Tell me, if you weren’t the one pulling the strings, who was?”

“I don’t know. He was in my head and told me to shoot. I couldn’t—”

“Why Detective Espinoza?” Lucifer interrupted him. “Why did this someone want to kill the detective?”

Henley shook his head frantically. “He didn’t want the detective. He wanted the girl.”

Lucifer tensed. “Her?” He gritted out between clenched teeth, as he pointed to Chloe. “He wanted her dead?”

“No. No, he wanted the girl with the black hair.” The man whimpered, squeezing his eyes shut. “Black hair, petite, in her thirties—”

Lucifer sucked in a breath. “Miss Lopez was the intended target?”

“He told you all that?” Chloe questioned. “The one who put you up to this?”

“He didn’t tell me. I just knew.

Something dawned on Lucifer. The description Henley had given reawakened some old memories. He knew someone who liked to torture exactly that kind of woman. A demon back in Hell. It would fit. Everything Henley had just told them pointed towards actual demonic possession. It didn’t work like most humans thought, the demon never took possession of the actual body of a human. All the demon did was infiltrate a human’s mind and that was exactly what had happened to Henley apparently.

And then it all clicked into place. A murder, two weeks prior, a woman beat to death by her neighbor. Black hair, petite statue. The woman in the fountain at the scene where Dan had been shot. Black hair, around thirty years of age. Miss Lopez—

“Rhûn, you filthy worm, how did you escape Hell?” Lucifer whispered to himself. Rhûn had been a lowly demon until he showed great skill at getting into the human mind. After that he’d been promoted in Hell. All until the day that Rhûn had let a soul escape, causing havoc and disruption until Lucifer had to intervene himself. Something he rarely did.

That soul had been that of a woman. A woman in her late thirties, black hair, petite and yet cunning and fierce. Lucifer didn’t remember why she had been in Hell, but it didn’t matter right now. All that mattered was that Rhûn was running around LA, possessing people and forcing them to find and murder the woman he couldn’t contain. Righting his mistake. In a gruesome way and at the cost of innocent lives.

Chloe had apparently heard enough. “That’s it. You admit to having shot our detective, so I am taking you in. You have the right to remain silent. Everything you say can and will be held against you.”

Lucifer watched as she cuffed the man. His thoughts were circling around the demon. He couldn’t let the Detective work this case, knowing she would be chasing one of Hell’s torturers. But he had been the one to get her on the case in the first place. She would never drop it. Not without a good reason and any reason he would give her, she wouldn’t believe a word of it.

“Detective, I think this might be the work of a serial killer.” It was not a lie. But maybe this way she’d understand the severity of the situation.

“What do you mean?”

“If Miss Lopez was indeed the target, that puts her in connection to the woman in the fountain. They looked very similar to each other and so did the woman two weeks ago, who got beat to death.” Lucifer explained calmly. “I believe they’re all connected. Someone is killing them, following a very specific pattern.”

“That’s not possible. We know the woman from two weeks ago was killed by her neighbor and he’s in custody. Henley here may have tried to kill Ella, but he’s not connected to the woman two weeks ago.”

“But he just said, he didn’t pull the strings. Someone orchestrated this. And I believe that individual to be highly dangerous.”

Chloe frowned. “You may be right. But that only means, we need to catch whoever this is as fast as possible.”

Lucifer groaned internally. That had backfired. He wanted Chloe away from the demon, not investigating him with all she had. Bloody hell, he had to figure something out. “Very well, Detective. You take this poor excuse of a man in. I’ll think I’ll go and rest.”

“Do that. You look like hell.”

Lucifer smiled. “Pun intended, I assume.”

“Always.” She countered and gave him a small wave goodbye before roughly dragging Henley Jr towards the exit.

The Devil watched her leave. He found an abandoned shot of whiskey on the bar and tossed it back. He really did need rest, he thought, and immediately cursed himself for thinking it because Amenadiel chose that moment to walk into the club. Lucifer turned to face him and immediately saw the self-righteous anger in his brother’s eyes.

“Your arrogance knows no bounds, does it, Lucifer?”

“I don’t think I can be bothered to deem that with an answer.”

Amenadiel had reached him and gripped the collar of Lucifer’s shirt with one hand, forcing him to look him in the eye. “What were you thinking? Oh, wait, you weren’t thinking at all, were you?”

Lucifer’s eyes were fixed on his brother’s hand on his collar, seething with cold fury. “I suggest you unhand me.You wouldn’t want me to lose my temper.”

With a twitch in his eye, Amenadiel complied. He was no match for his younger brother and seemed to have realized that. Lucifer straightened his suit, his eyes not leaving his brother as the latter took a step back.

“Now, care to enlighten me what this is about?”

“You’re seriously asking that?” Amenadiel scoffed. “You brought back a soul from Hell, brother. You brought back Dan Espinoza.”

“That I did. And you, my dear brother, have no right to reprimand me for doing so. Do I need to remind you of the incident involving you and a certain murderous, corrupt Detective Malcolm Graham?”

“That was different—”

“Exactly!” Lucifer hissed. “Malcolm was a danger to everyone I care about, a murderer and a liar. He deserved Hell. Daniel did not.”

“You don’t get to decide that, Lucifer! There’s a balance to maintain. What do you think father will do now?”

“He won’t do a thing!” Lucifer yelled. He felt his eyes burn with his anger for a brief moment and only just held his wings back from bursting out into the open. He took two steps towards Amenadiel, who began to back away. “He won’t dare. And neither will you, brother, if you know what’s best for you.”

The sound of wings had Lucifer whirl around. Before he could do so much as blink, Michael was already striding past him towards Amenadiel, his dove grey wings raised in aggression. The razor-sharp feathers of his right wing pressed against Amenadiel’s throat as Michael pushed him against the wall. The air in the club began to smell of ozone.

“Michael?” Amenadiel asked, his voice shaking with fear and disbelief.

You!” Michael growled. “You tried to have my brother killed! You got him killed! I should eviscerate you for that alone!”

“I was only following father’s orders at the time.”

“He never ordered you to kill Sam! Never! You were supposed to persuade him to leave Earth. Nothing more.” Michael’s feathers pressed down harder and drew blood easily. “And now you dare to reprimand him?”

Lucifer put a hand on Michael’s shoulder, carefully avoiding the feathers of his twin’s wing. “Let him go, Michael. I’m alive and well.”

“I will not allow him to continue like this, Sam—”

“Stop calling me that!” Lucifer roared and it was accompanied by a serious quake of the ground beneath them. Michael turned his attention from Amenadiel to his twin and slowly lowered his wing. The Devil took a breath to calm himself before leveling his eyes at his brothers. “I need you to leave, Amenadiel. It seems my brother wants to tear you limb from limb right now, and at the moment I’m not inclined to stop him from doing so.”

Amenadiel dared to scoff at that. “Fine. I will take my leave. But you two are on very thin ice. Heaven needs a general. You can’t both be here. What will become of the Silver City in your absence, Michael?”

“I don’t care. Why don’t you go and check on it? Oh wait—I forgot.” He folded his wings neatly behind his back before they vanished. Hurt flashed across Amenadiel’s face but he hid it quickly, glaring at the two archangels as he left the club.

“Don’t look so smug, Michael. You’re no better than him. All this talk about how I’m my own man and the next minute you’re back to calling me by that wretched name.”

Michael looked down. “I apologize for that. I didn’t mean to.”

“Oh, you meant it alright.”

“No, Lucifer.” He put emphasis in the name of the Devil. “I meant what I said before. You are not Samael, you have changed, and I accept that wholly. But please forgive me, despite all that it’s hard for me to forget everything we had together.”

Lucifer pondered that for a minute. It was true, he had to admit. Michael and him had always been just that: Michael and Samael, Heaven’s generals, side by side, wherever they went. But things had changed, and it never did well to dwell on the past. “If I am to forgive you, you best remember two things first and foremost. There’s no going back to how things were, we’ll only move forward. And you will call me Lucifer from now on, or so help me, I’ll call this deal off.”

“Understood.”

“Good. Now, get out of here.”

“Will you come with me?”

Lucifer frowned. “And where exactly would we go, brother?”

“I thought maybe you’d like to stretch your wings and—”

“Don’t even finish that sentence.” Lucifer held up a hand. “I will not succumb to father’s manipulations by just accepting the wings and everything that came with them.”

“I don’t think it was father who gave you your wings back.”

“Who else would have the power? Mum’s gone. She didn’t do it.”

Michael shook his head. “No, I don’t think it was mum, either. I believe it was you.”

“What?”

“I have been watching you during your time here on Earth.”

“You perv.” Lucifer quipped but it lacked the usual snark.

“I believe we choose who we want to be. You gave yourself your wings back, when you realized that you wanted to be good.”

Lucifer scoffed. “That is one of the grandest jokes I’ve heard in all my time. Why would I do that? I don’t want them! Or the power! And why would I take away my own face?”

“You didn’t take it away. It’s still there. But simply the fact that you believe it’s not is keeping you from manifesting it.”

“I shouldn’t have to manifest it. It’s my face. It’s what I look like. Everything else is a glamour. So, why can’t I drop it?” Lucifer’s thoughts were reeling. Michael’s words made a weird sort of sense and at the same time it was absolutely absurd.

“I can’t give you answer to that. All I know is, that it won’t do you any good to ignore your wings or your powers because sooner or later you won’t be able to control them. And you could end up making things far worse.”

“That’s what I’m scared of, brother.” Lucifer admitted quietly. “The Lightbringer’s powers could be devastating. They’re supposed to bring the end of the world.”

“No, Lucifer. You are supposed to bring the end of the world. Powers or not.”

“But I would never want to destroy earth.”

Michael smiled. “Then don’t.” And with the sound of beating wings, he disappeared.

Chapter Text

Dan tuned out the nurse that was tasked with briefing him about everything he was to do after being released from the hospital. He didn’t need the rest she prescribed him. He didn’t even need the pain meds. He felt fine.

And that was what bothered him most. Well, there was one thing that bothered him even more.

That damn coma dream he’d had. Because it had to have been a dream. Dan had been telling that to himself for days now and the hospital didn’t offer any distraction whatsoever. His thoughts were constantly spinning around what happened.

No, he scolded himself. They were spinning around the dream.

There was no Hell and Lucifer most certainly wasn’t the Devil. Dan’s mind was playing tricks on him, weaving the club owner’s stupid delusions into his subconscious. He woke up panicked every night, his head filled with the scenes he’d dreamed up during his coma.

Which hadn’t really been a coma according to Chloe and the doctors. He had been dead, that’s what they all told him. He had died in surgery, they said. But that was all a load of bullshit, Dan had decided, because just like the things in his dream that was impossible. And he wouldn’t believe any of it.

That didn’t stop the panic creeping into him, though, every time someone mentioned Lucifer. The fact that Lucifer had not come back to visit him in the hospital after the day he’d woken up, puzzled Dan. Chloe had said, he’d been outside, but he never wanted to come see him. Not even to gloat or to make stupid puns.

Dan chalked it up to Lucifer being Lucifer. There was no way that the consultant was anything but a regular, if not delusional dude.

“Mr. Espinoza?” The nurse handed him a form. “I need you to sign this.”

Dan took the release form and signed it. There was a knock on the door and he looked up to find Chloe standing in the open door. “Hey.” She smiled at him.

“Hey.” It was the only answer he could think of. Eloquent as ever.

“Ready to go home?” She asked and stepped further into the room.

He looked to the nurse for confirmation, who nodded. “If he promises to take things slow and to come back should he experience any pain or dizziness. No exercise, and no work whatsoever. We may be releasing him against medical advice but still, he was in a coma. You can’t overexert yourself, Mr. Espinoza.”

All Dan could do was nod solemnly. “I understand. Thank you.” He returned the form and the nurse took her leave.

Chloe took him to her apartment. Only when she unlocked the door and held it open for him, he thought of Maze. “Is your roommate here?”

“Maze? No, she’s out on a bounty hunt. For a while, I think. She mentioned Canada.”

“Okay.” He breathed out, hating the relief that filled him at the news. Maze didn’t deserve his doubt. She was his daughter’s best friend and so was Lucifer, if he thought about it.

Chloe ushered him towards the couch and she eyed him for a moment before taking a seat beside him. “Dan, are you okay? Talk to me, please.”

“I’m alright, it’s just—it’s been a lot. And I don’t know what to believe anymore.”

“You’ve barely said fifty words since… since you woke up. And I worry that—” She broke off but Dan could figure what she wanted to say. She was worried that he had suffered some kind of lasting brain damage from the incident. To be honest, he hadn’t ruled out that possibility, yet. Maybe he really had lost it.

“I don’t know, if I really was dead, Chloe.” He whispered. “I just don’t know.”

She put her arms around his shoulder. “Tell me what I can do.”

“There’s nothing you can do. It’s fine. I’ll get back to myself. Don’t worry about me.”

“You know, I’ll worry about you anyways.” She said sincerely. “We all do.”

Dan couldn’t help but flinch slightly. ‘We’ probably included Lucifer. He was not sure, if he wanted that. Quickly, he cleared his throat and untangled himself from Chloe’s arm. “I think, I should just get home. Rest like the doctors said.”

Chloe was visibly taken aback. “I thought maybe you could just stay here for a while. Until you’ve recovered, you know. Trixie will be back from your parents’ tomorrow. She will love to have you here.”

Dan scratched his head and got up from the couch, anyways. “I’ll come visit her soon. She shouldn’t worry about me, either.”

“Dan, please, you don’t need to play the martyr.” Chloe pleaded. “Stay here and rest.”

“I’m sorry, but I really do think it’s best, if I go home. I need some time for myself. The hospital has really blown my sleeping rhythm to hell—” He choked on the word, images pushing into his mind. He quickly shoved them down and focused on Chloe in front of him. “I need to think some things through.”

Chloe bit her lip but she nodded. “I won’t force you, but I wish you’d stay.”

“I know.” Dan sighed. “Sorry.”

“I’ll drive you. That way you don’t have to pay a cab.” Chloe said absentmindedly, grabbed her jacket and car keys and led the way back to her car. The drive remained silent and Dan’s goodbye was half-hearted.

When he closed the door to his apartment behind himself, he dropped his bag to the side, slid down to the floor with his back pressed against the door and buried his face in his hands. He didn’t know the reason for his own tears. If he had to pick one, he would say they were tears of grief.

He didn’t leave his apartment until two days later.

 

|||

The building was more intimidating than he remembered. Taller somehow. Darker maybe?

“Oh, come on, it’s broad daylight, Dan. Pull yourself together!” He muttered to himself. Once again, he ran a hand through his already tousled hair before looking left, then right, and then crossing the street towards Lux.

Chloe had texted him earlier that morning she was taking Trixie to the movies for some mother-daughter time after her vacation. Dan was secretly glad, for he didn’t think he’d be able to keep it together around Chloe and his daughter.

As he neared the entrance, his steps began to falter. What if he really was walking right into the lion’s den? For all he knew, it could be the actual Devil waiting for him inside. Lucifer. That name suddenly felt so much heavier on his tongue. On the other hand, that was just ridiculous. Lucifer was just a man. A delusional man at that. All this Hell and Devil stuff that his mind had come up with during his coma had been the fruits of spending two years around a guy who believed he was the Devil. None of it could be real.

However, he shuddered at the all too real memories of—that place.

This time of day there were no bouncers at the door. But it wasn’t locked, either. Lucifer had somehow never feared intruders. The same was true for his penthouse. It had always baffled Dan some that anyone could just walk in there. The club itself was brighter than it was at night. The lights were turned up and a single guy was wiping down tables. He looked up, when he heard Dan enter.

“Not open, yet.” He grumbled.

“Hi,” Dan began, a little breathless. “Yeah, no, I know. I’m just—I’m here for…” He couldn’t finish the sentence, cleared his throat and tried anew. “I’m here to see your boss.”

The man grunted in acknowledgement. “He’s not seeing anyone at the moment. Come back in a few days.”

“I’m afraid this is rather urgent.”

The other man smiled. “Urgency doesn’t really bother Mr. Morningstar.”

“Doesn’t it?” Dan questioned, starting to get a little annoyed. “Well, can he be bothered to talk to the LAPD?”

“You’re a cop? Are you with Detective Decker?”

Dan scoffed in disbelief. “What? So, she’s allowed up?”

“Occasionally.” The man nodded. “Look, Detective, Mr. Morningstar has been in a mood these last few days. He ordered not to let anyone up and so far, he has not let anyone up to the penthouse except Miss Decker. I don’t know, if I can just let you up, even if you are LAPD.”

Dan nodded. He understood the man’s reluctance to go against his boss’ wishes. But Dan would have to insist. He had talked himself into coming here for the better part of three days, so he wasn’t about to just turn around and leave.

“Can you maybe call upstairs to ask him?” He tried.

“I—I guess I could. One second.” He went to the bar where he retrieved his phone. He dialed quickly and by heart and held the phone to his ear. Dan watched him, curious to see every reaction the man had to Lucifer. He wondered, if that guy knew he was working for the Devil.

Mentally, Dan slapped himself. Lucifer wasn’t the Devil. He was here to confirm that he wasn’t the Devil. So, until he talked to him, Dan would stick with ‘not the Devil’.

“Afternoon, boss. I’m downstairs and there’s someone here to see you. Says he’s LAPD. You said, not to let anyone up, so I—” He was interrupted by Lucifer on the other end of the line. Then he turned to Dan. “Sorry, who are you?”

“Espinoza. Dan Espinoza.”

“He says his name is Espinoza.” After relaying that information, he nodded once, then a second time. “Alright. Okay, thanks, boss.” He hung up and turned to Dan. “Go ahead.”

Dan was startled for a moment. “Oh, okay, yes.” Lucifer had actually agreed to see him. After avoiding Dan ever since the shooting, he was now just letting him walk into his penthouse. Dan really didn’t understand that man. “Thanks.” He said absently to the man and then walked up the small set of stairs towards the elevator.

It was the worst elevator ride he ever remembered taking. And that included the one time he got stuck in one for two hours. His anxiety was rising steadily and he tried to force it down in vain. The ding of the elevator arriving at the top had him flinch slightly, but he composed himself and took a step into the apartment.

Lucifer was sitting at the piano, wearing only sweatpants and a white shirt that was wide open, exposing his chest. He wasn’t really playing, only hitting the keys lightly and one at a time. It still created a melody but none Dan recognized. Lucifer looked up at Dan, his smile ever present.

“Daniel, to what do I owe the pleasure? This early in the morning?”

Dan swallowed. “It’s past noon.”

“Is it?” Lucifer’s fingers left the keys. “Well, I just got up.” He grinned and obviously waited for Dan to say something but the words were lodged in his throat somehow. “So, Daniel, how can I help you?”

Dan steeled himself and took a couple steps further into the room. “I’m here for… answers.”

“Can’t give you any answers, if you don’t ask any questions.” Lucifer supplied helpfully and tilted his head to the side, his eyes carefully assessing Dan.

“So, you don’t know why I’m here?” He asked carefully, secretly already hoping that that meant his whole coma dream was just that. A dream. And Lucifer didn’t know anything about it.

“Why don’t you enlighten me?” Lucifer spoke up. “I am on the edge of my seat. Figuratively. Please, do sit down. You’re so nervous it’s making me nervous.”

Dan glanced towards the couch. The way there led past Lucifer. He drew a breath past his nervously clenched teeth and slowly wandered towards the couch. He sat down on the edge, not letting himself relax. Lucifer was now between himself and the elevator, the realization caused his heart to jump uncomfortably.

“Go on, then. What have you got to tell me?” Lucifer had turned around on the piano stool, but he stayed sitting there and didn’t join Dan on the couch.

Dan watched the other man with alert eyes. “I had a dream.”

“A dream? And you came here to inform me of this? Since when am I your therapist, Daniel?” Lucifer laughed.

“The dream was about you.” Dan continued, unphased by Lucifer’s comment. “Well, sort of.”

“Now this is more like it.” Lucifer leaned forward, resting his arms on his knees. “Tell me all about your fantasies, Detective Douche.”

“It wasn’t anything like that!” Dan gritted out. “Okay, now listen. When I was in the hospital, before I woke up, I had this sort of coma dream. And it felt impossibly real.”

“And what part did I play in that dream?”

“You were…” Dan couldn’t bring the words past his lips, so he started differently. “I had died.” He paused, his eyes lingering nowhere in particular, the memories flashing in his mind. “The sniper killed me and I—I went to Hell. Actual Hell. It was,” he swallowed, “horrible. Dark at first and then things would happen, people would appear, and I thought I was back home but everything always ended with Chloe or Trixie dying. And it was always my fault.” He shook his head as he noticed he had drifted from what he actually wanted to say. “Then you were there.” He looked up at Lucifer.

The man on the piano stool was impossibly still, not moving a muscle and his face held no clues at all about what was going on in his head. “I was there.” Lucifer repeated and Dan didn’t know, whether it was a statement or a question.

“You told me I was in Hell. You—you said you were the Devil. And then you got me out of there and brought me back.”

Lucifer didn’t react. If anything, he looked impassive listening to Dan’s story.

“It was just a dream, right?”

“You want me to be the judge of that?”

“I just need you to tell me that all of it was some fucked up dream, my mind making up shit and weaving your delusions into it, because otherwise—” He stumbled over the words and quieted.

“Otherwise what?”

“I—I don’t know.”

Lucifer tilted his head at him and his eyes were dark and calculating. “The mind can be a very mysterious place at times, Daniel. I wouldn’t worry about it too much.”

Dan let out a sigh of relief. Was that a yes? Yes, it had been a dream? He pondered the thought for a moment and the more he thought about it, the more ridiculous this entire situation became. He had just told Lucifer of all people about his weird dreams and had actually thought the club owner could be the actual Devil. He scoffed. Ridiculous. He had acted like an idiot.

“Did it scare you?” Lucifer spoke up.

Dan startled at the question. “What do you mean?”

“Did Hell scare you?”

“Yeah… yeah, it was scary.” Dan looked down at his hands that shook slightly. “It made me feel the most awful things. Showed me terrible things. And then, you—well, the Devil in my dream—he was possibly the scariest thing, because he looked just like you.”

“What about the hounds?”

Dan swallowed. “Okay, yeah, those might have been worse than the Dev—” His heart made an erratic thump and then skipped two or three beats entirely. Adrenaline began to fill him and his muscles clenched tightly as he looked up at the man before him. “I didn’t mention the… I didn’t mention them.”

Lucifer smiled sadly. “No, I suppose you didn’t.”

“No.” Dan breathed but it was barely audible.

“Listen, Daniel.” Lucifer slowly stood, his hands held up in front of him placatingly. “I know, this might be hard to grasp—”

Dan jumped up from the couch and backed away. “No, no. Stop!”

Lucifer didn’t come any closer but continued to speak. “You already know the truth, Dan. I’ve already told you. But I need you to stay calm and listen.”

“You can’t be. You can’t be the—” Dan’s back hit the glass of the window.

“I’ve never lied to you about who I am.”

“None of that should exist!” Dan almost yelled. “Heaven, Hell, it’s not real! There is no Devil! You’re just a man.”

“I’m afraid that’s where you’re wrong. I’m not a man. I really am Lucifer, the Devil, ex-ruler of Hell, former angel.” Lucifer’s voice had taken on a very serious tone. “But you have nothing to fear from me, Dan.”

Suddenly, Dan pulled his gun, shaking hands pointing it straight at Lucifer’s chest. “Stay away from me.” He ordered shakily. Slowly, but with haste movements he started to walk towards the elevator, the gun never wavering. “Don’t come near me again.”

“Daniel, please, just let me explain.”

“Don’t! And leave Chloe alone. And stay the hell away from Trixie!”

“I can’t do that.”

Dan reached the elevator. “You will. Or I’ll—”

“What? You’ll arrest me? Kill me? Go ahead and shoot me, if it makes you feel better. But I can’t just abandon Chloe. She would never forgive me.”

“You stay away from her.”

The doors of the elevator closed between him and Lucifer and he let out a breath he didn’t know he was holding. His entire body shook and he almost dropped his gun. It was impossible. None of it could be real.

But it was. Lucifer Morningstar was the Devil. And Dan had been tricked by him, had become his friend, and he had not even kept him away from his daughter. Oh God—and God was real now—what had he gotten himself into? How was he going to save Chloe and Trixie from this fate? Lucifer would tempt them and they’d end up in Hell. Just like Dan.

But one other question remained: why had the Devil saved Dan from Hell and brought him back to life? Was it all some sort of sick game? How could he believe anything Lucifer had told him?

When the elevator reached the ground floor, Dan practically ran past the barkeep who was still cleaning tables, his gun still in hand. The man gave him a confused look but Dan ignored him and rushed out of the building.

He didn’t remember how he got to Chloe’s apartment, but he rang the doorbell before realizing that he had no idea what to say. His ran his fingers through his hair nervously, making it stick up in every direction. The door opening had him step back and seeing Chloe’s curious and concerned eyes look up at him finally caused him to breakdown.

“Oh my god, Dan, what happened?”

“Chloe, I—” He took a deep breath. “I know, how crazy this sounds, but I need you to stay away from Lucifer.”

“What? Dan, what is going on? What’s brought this on?” Chloe frowned, confusion evident. “Come on in, Dan, let’s talk. Let’s sit down, you relax, and then you tell me what’s up.”

“No, please, Chloe. I know, you won’t believe me, but he’s dangerous. He—” Dan faltered. “He’s very dangerous.”

“This has something to do with his past?” Chloe questioned and Dan cursed her keen perceptiveness.

“Yes, it does. And he’s not who you think he is.”

“What did he tell you?”

Dan froze. He couldn’t tell her. Lucifer had told him not to breathe a word to anyone about his identity. Dan feared what would happen, if he did. And to be honest, who would believe a word he said? Chloe wouldn’t.

“Nothing. He didn’t—Look, Chloe, I just need you to trust me.” He begged.

“Dan, you know I do. I trust you. But Lucifer… whatever happened in his past, it’s none of my business. I believe he’s a good man and he has given me no reason to distrust him so far.”

“Chloe.” Dan couldn’t say anything else. His throat was constricting and he felt tears coming to his eyes.

“Dan, I trust him. I do. Otherwise I would never let him near Trixie.”

“But I told you, he’s dangerous.”

Chloe bit her lip, her fingers on the doorframe tapping with nerves. “Tell me, then, has he hurt anyone?”

Dan was taken aback but then he slowly nodded. Yes, the Devil tortured people. “Probably.”

“Probably?” Chloe asked disbelievingly. “So, you don’t know.”

“Not for sure. But—”

“Has he killed anyone?” Chloe interrupted him.

Dan hesitated, then shook his head. “I don’t know that. Possibly. He would.”

“But he hasn’t, Dan. He hasn’t. You can’t accuse him for something he has not done.” Chloe started to sound frustrated. “Go home, Dan. Calm down and maybe you can explain this to me some other time. But I have to go pick Trixie up from her friend’s house.” Dan fought with himself to say something, but Chloe shook her head. “Go home, Dan.”

Dan took a breath, then another one, and then admitted defeat. He nodded and began to turn away. “Just be careful, Chloe.” It was all he could do. For now. On the way back to his car, he thought that maybe, someday, somehow, he could find a way to keep the Devil out of their lives. Until then, he would do his best to protect Chloe and Trixie.

Chapter Text

Even though he was still on leave due to his injury—that had healed entirely too quickly and Dan was sure it something to do with the fact that the Devil had resurrected him—Dan went to the precinct the next day. Chloe would be there. And he refused to let her spend her day with Lucifer without anyone keeping an eye on her.

He had come to a decision the night before, mostly because the fact that Lucifer had saved him and had also saved Chloe and Trixie, was bothering him. Why would the Devil save him, if he had already ended up in Hell? Dan couldn’t come up with a good answer. So, he had decided to sort of give Lucifer the benefit of the doubt. Sort of. He still didn’t want to spend any quality time with him but he wouldn’t shoot him on sight, either. He would keep an eye on him. And the precinct seemed like a good place to start. Neutral ground.

He ran into the new lieutenant first thing. The man was freakishly tall and had an air of authority that was hard to deny. Dan only spoke few words with him but he immediately disliked the guy. He seemed to think himself above the ‘normal folk’, which included Dan. Well, Dan knew how to play those situations: don’t get on his bad side, stay out of his way and soon the lieutenant would just ignore him.

Dan kept away from Chloe. She saw him, yes, but he just nodded to her and sat at his desk to look through paperwork. He didn’t work on anything, just read some reports. He mostly kept an eye on Chloe. He wanted to apologize to her but thought it best to give her space first. And after all, Dan stood by his point. Lucifer was dangerous and Chloe shouldn’t keep working with him.

Speak of the devil. Literally. Very, very literally.

Lucifer walked down the stairs into the bullpen with an ease in his steps that made him seem overly graceful. It was the first time Dan really looked at him ever since the shooting. But it also felt like it was the very first time Dan looked at him with his eyes actually open.

What most people called Lucifer’s irresistible charms, Dan could now recognize for what they really were: an illusion. Dan knew the truth now and suddenly Lucifer didn’t seem charming anymore. He seemed downright menacing. Though hidden by his constant smile, there was something cold in his eyes. A predator. Underneath his suit and scrawny stature, the man, the Devil, hid how powerful he was. Dan had seen the footage of one of Lucifer’s early cases with Chloe. Lucifer had thrown a football player through the air with one hand. Through a glass wall.

Dan shuddered. Who knew what else the guy could do?

Then Lucifer’s eyes fell on Dan and the smile on his face disappeared. It was replaced by something Dan couldn’t really place but if he had to, he would have guessed it was something akin to fear. Lucifer’s steps faltered and eventually he stopped altogether.

Dan sat at his desk, frozen. His brain sort of short-circuited on what to do and he could feel his heart beating in his throat. What would be better? Lucifer coming over to him or Lucifer going over to Chloe? Dan decided that neither option was desirable but he couldn’t stop Lucifer, either.

The Devil seemed irresolute as well. Eventually, with a pained expression on his face, he nodded towards Dan and turned to join Chloe at her desk. Dan breathed out, his body relaxing slightly. He hoped that at least with him right here, Lucifer wouldn’t try anything with Chloe.

Chloe greeted Lucifer as always. Dan could hear Lucifer’s voice more clearly than hers for he spoke loudly.

“Detective,” Lucifer sat down on the chair next to Chloe’s desk, grabbed a file and flicked through it. “Have we got anything exciting to investigate today?”

Dan could see Chloe shaking her head as she answered and just waved towards the pile of paperwork on her desk. Lucifer sighed loudly, put his feet up on the table and continued to look through the file he had picked up. Chloe asked him something else Dan couldn’t hear and Lucifer looked up at her, somewhat surprised, and then glanced at Dan.

Oh, shit. Chloe was telling Lucifer about Dan warning her. He stared down at the reports, feeling the blood rushing into his cheeks. After a moment, he chanced a look at Chloe and Lucifer who were arguing quietly now. Dan heard Chloe insist, “talk to him, Lucifer” and Lucifer shook his head vehemently, “I most certainly will not”. She gave her partner a frustrated look but let it slide.

Lucifer’s eyes met Dan’s across the room and Dan couldn’t help but stare. What was Lucifer doing? He didn’t seem angry, he didn’t seem to be plotting. He behaved as always, a stubborn child in an expensive suit. His face was not annoyed when he looked at Dan. If anything, it was apologetic.

Dan looked away. His thoughts were going a hundred miles an hour and questions were piling up much like the paperwork.

He ignored Lucifer and Chloe for the next hour, reading through every report on his desk. Even those he wrote himself. He looked up once to find Lucifer gone from his seat but the Devil came back only seconds later carrying a cup of steaming coffee that he placed in front of Chloe, who looked up in surprise but gave him a thankful smile. Lucifer sat down again, hadn’t even gotten himself a drink, and continued to flick through files, commenting on this and that as Chloe worked.

Dan couldn’t take it anymore. He had to get some of those questions out. He couldn’t figure out the Devil’s agenda and it vexed him. Talking to him was sort of out of the question, though, seeing as Dan would possibly run screaming, if he came in close proximity to the guy.

He was the freaking Devil, after all. Basically evil incarnate, even though that one was hard to fit to Lucifer’s persona.

Dan growled in frustration, earning a surprised look from one of his co-workers. He pulled out his phone and scrolled through his messages until he found Lucifer’s chat. Slowly, and with slightly sweaty fingers, he typed out a message and hit send.

So, not a method actor?

Across the room, Lucifer pulled out his phone from the inside pocket of his suit. He glanced at the notification and his eyes immediately found Dan. He raised an eyebrow as if to say really?, before unlocking the phone and typing a response.

Dan’s phone vibrated. No, I’m afraid not.

He stared at the message for a few seconds, trying to process. That was a very civil answer compared to what Lucifer usually texted him. Dan began to type his next question, rephrasing it twice.

If you’re really who you say you are, is there a God?

The answer came quickly. What is this? Twenty questions?

Dan didn’t know what to answer. Yes, he had questions but more like a thousand rather than twenty. A small voice in the back of his head was yelling something about you’re fucking texting the Devil, stop talking to him but Dan shoved it down forcefully. He was going to give this a try. What else was there to do? Before he could answer, though, his phone vibrated again.

As long as you keep the questions about the meaning of life to yourself, ask away.
The answer is yes.

God was real. Somewhere there was a guy, an entity, that had created the universe. Dan didn’t think, he was ever going to process all of this. Maybe he’d have to contact his old therapist again. He hesitated but continued his questioning.

Why are you here?

Here at the precinct? LA? America? Earth?

Earth?

Vacation.

LA?

For the pun.

Dan snorted. Of course. The Devil in the City of Angels. That definitely sounded like Lucifer. Well, like the Lucifer he knew. The Devil from the bible didn’t seem like the kind of guy to make puns.

What exactly do you mean by ‘vacation’?

The answer took a little longer than the ones before. I used to rule Hell, which was a punishment from my father, but you know Hell—it can get you down. So, I decided to take a time out. I’ve been to Earth many times before but this is the longest I have ever stayed.

Then who rules Hell in your absence?

That’s a little complicated. I’d rather not try to explain it over text.

Dan nodded to himself. If he was honest, none of this seemed real when reading it in a chat conversation. The Devil taking a vacation from Hell in LA? Yeah, right, the loony bin is that way. He put the phone down on his desk and pushed his chair away. He would get himself a coffee and maybe continue this insane questioning later.

He felt Lucifer’s eyes follow him as he crossed the room and disappeared behind the corner. On the way to the coffee machine Dan tried to decide whether to laugh at the fact that the Devil himself was sitting right in the middle of all these policemen and they were none the wiser. But he figured that it was way too scary a thought, if he was honest.

Then he almost dropped his coffee on the way back to his desk because said Devil was waiting for him, lounging in the chair opposite Dan’s. Lucifer saw him stop in his tracks and slowly raised his hands to the height of his face in a show of innocence. Dan still didn’t move. Lucifer sighed and rose from the chair, apparently deciding it was better to leave Dan alone.

That unfroze Dan and he took all his courage and walked up to his desk. He walked around the desk and Lucifer with as much distance as he could get away with but from the look on Lucifer’s face, he could tell that it hadn’t been subtle. The lump in his throat prevented him from forming any words, so all he could do was incline his head towards the chair Lucifer had been sitting in.

The Devil sat down again and waited until Dan had also taken his seat before leaning forward a bit and resting his arms on Dan’s desk. “I understand that it’s a lot to process for the human mind.”

“Understatement.” Dan choked out and quickly took a sip of his coffee, promptly burning his tongue. He swallowed quickly and took a deep breath. “When you say ‘human’, that means that you…”

Lucifer shrugged. “Not human, no.”

“Right.” Dan couldn’t meet Lucifer’s eyes and instead fidgeted with the lid of his coffee. “Up until a few days ago, ‘human’ wasn’t optional, when you met a guy and now you’ve come along and you’re—I don’t even know what you are.”

Lucifer gave him a somewhat sympathetic smile. “You’re scared saying it out loud will make it too real?”

“I’m scared I’ll be immediately admitted to an insane asylum, if I say it out loud.” Dan sipped on his coffee before looking up at Lucifer, still not quite at his eyes. “You are the Devil.” He stated and got a nod in response. “That’s not a species, though, is it?”

Lucifer grimaced. “No, that’s just a title. If you want to be splitting hairs, I’m an angel.” He rolled his shoulders a little at that.

“Fallen.” Dan added. “You’re a fallen angel.”

Lucifer narrowed his eyes. “Don’t speak of things you don’t understand.”

Dan swallowed, his throat suddenly too dry. Lucifer, apparently sensing his discomfort, sighed and put on a more friendly face. He picked up a pen from the desk, twirling it in his fingers before putting it down again, picking up the picture frame instead. Dan’s eyes followed his hands and he gritted his teeth as Lucifer inspected the picture of Chloe and Trixie, Trixie wearing a hat made from tin foil, looking proud as ever and Chloe smiling at her daughter’s winning pose.

“What do you want with Chloe?”

“Believe it or not, she’s my friend.” Lucifer said earnestly and put the picture down again. Before Dan could say anything, he continued. “And I understand, you want to protect her and your daughter. You want me to stay away from them, but I can’t do that. They have nothing to fear from me. And I won’t leave unless she asks me to.”

“But why? Why her? What has she done wrong?”

“Why do you assume she’s done anything wrong?”

Dan opened his mouth but couldn’t get the words out. He swallowed and tried again. “Because you’re the Devil. You are the root of humanity’s sins. You tempt people, drag their souls to Hell. There’s not really anything in history that speaks for you.”

Dan knew he had gone too far. Lucifer’s posture had gone from relaxed to very tense during his short speech and he was gripping the pen again, this time way too tight. “History is written by the winner, Daniel. Keep that in mind while you judge my character. And instead of just assuming everything you read about the Devil is true, how about you stick to what you know.” Lucifer got up. “It’s not me who’s the Devil but the Devil is me.

He had only taken about two steps, when Dan spoke up. “Wait.” Lucifer glanced down at him, disapproval in his eyes. “Please, wait. Explain it to me. I’m willing to listen.”

“Willing?” Lucifer scoffed. “I don’t have to explain myself to you. I did because I wished to help you come to terms with this but not if you’re going to be so small-minded about it.” With a sigh, Lucifer returned to the chair and placed his elbows on the table, suddenly way closer than before. “Drop your prejudices and maybe we can continue to answer your questions.”

All Dan could do was nod. His and Lucifer’s eyes were staring right at each other and he couldn’t tear them away, almost as if—

“Don’t use your voodoo shit on me!” He hissed.

Lucifer rolled his eyes and looked away. “I wasn’t doing anything.” His fingers were fidgeting and he placed them flat on the desk. “So, do you have questions or not?”

Dan gulped and picked at the lid of his coffee cup. “So, you’re saying you’re not evil. You just punish evil.”

“Oh, he has been listening.” Lucifer commented, sarcasm dripping from his voice. “Yes, Daniel. It was my job to punish those that sin. Have you ever known me to do particularly evil things?”

“You have driven people to insanity.”

“They deserved it.” Lucifer said coldly.

“Who are you to judge who deserves what?”

Lucifer raised an eyebrow. “It’s sort of in the job description.”

“But you aren’t God. You don’t get to decide who has to suffer.” Dan argued.

“Not God, no. But his son. The one that he tasked with precisely that.” Lucifer hissed, then sat up a bit straighter, trying to relax his posture. His right hand found an abandoned quarter underneath a sheet of paper. He pushed the paper away and placed his index finger on the coin, the rest of his hand resting on the desk. Then he lifted his index finger and right before Dan’s eyes the coin began to hover between the surface of the desk and Lucifer’s outstretched finger.

“What the fuck?” Dan breathed, his eyes never leaving the coin.

Lucifer looked up to see Dan’s expression that was a mixture between awe and honest fear. He let the coin drop immediately. “I apologize.” He pulled his hands back and let them fall into his lap. “I’m just a bit on edge. I need a damn cigarette.”

“You—” Dan was still staring at the quarter that now lay between them. “You can—you’re telekinetic?”

Lucifer snorted quietly. “Sure, call it that.”

“What else would you call that?”

“I don’t know.” He shrugged. “It’s just a parlor trick.”

Dan was just about to ask what he meant by that, when Chloe appeared next to them. “Everything okay with you two?”

Lucifer smiled up at her. “Just peachy, Detective.”

She looked at Dan, who hesitated but nodded. “Yeah, we’re good. Just have a lot to talk about.”

Chloe hummed. “Well, I hope that can wait for now. Dan, can you pick up Trixie and drop her off at my mom’s after school? The Lieutenant just dropped another case on me.”

“Sure,” Dan agreed, “I can do that.”

“Are you coming, Lucifer?” She asked her partner.

Lucifer got up from the chair and the two of them were just about to leave, when Dan got up hastily. Chloe, undisturbed by this, kept walking but Lucifer glanced back at Dan.

“Can I—I mean, I have more questions.” He stuttered out and felt embarrassed for how nervous the man in front of him made him.

Lucifer seemed to think about it for a moment before inclining his head. “If you’re free tonight, you can come by Lux.” He offered. “Without the prejudices, of course.” The Devil gave him a smile before following Chloe out of the precinct, leaving Dan behind, who wondered what his life had come to.

|||

Lux wasn’t quite a nightclub at around seven in the evening. It was more of a piano bar and to tell the truth, Lucifer preferred the club this way. Sure, there was something very appealing about a club packed with people, who wanted nothing more than to fulfill their most carnal desires. But the Devil, at his core, was classier than that. A glass of scotch, the sound of a piano, low lights and good company. That was even more appealing.

Right now, the noise of the club surrounded him as he sat at the bar and the hum of the low music grounded him in a way he couldn’t explain but still Lucifer couldn’t quite enjoy it. He’d left his brother upstairs in his penthouse and had fled to mingle with the patrons of Lux. His twin apparently now spent all his free time at Lucifer’s penthouse and it was quickly becoming old.He wasn’t ready to ‘hang out’ with Michael just yet. Though, he would be lying, if he said that being around his twin again—the only one who always seemed to understand him—wasn’t a good feeling. And the Devil never lied. So yes, he was glad Michael was around even if things were still awkward.

Lucifer had returned home after a long day, the new crime scene only worsening his suspicions that it was Rhun killing those women. It was his modus operandi right down to the victim’s glasses. He’d have to do something about the demon and fast but right now, Dan had greater importance.

If Daniel decided to show up, Lucifer vowed to right his wrongs with him. He didn’t need Dan as an enemy, so he would be on his best behavior and try his best not to spook the man too much. It was hard enough for Dan, he supposed, to come to terms with Lucifer’s status as the actual Devil, so he didn’t need to make it worse by scaring him.

He was impressed that Dan hadn’t lost it completely, yet, but had instead tried to approach Lucifer about the whole thing. He would have thought Dan would run screaming immediately but once again it seemed that he had underestimated the man. First, with Azrael’s blade and now this. Dan seemed to be dealing with divinity—or in this case the infernal—quite well.

And he hadn’t told Chloe. Which was a plus.

He felt Dan’s arrival before he even saw him. The nervous energy he brought with him was almost palpable in the air and Lucifer sighed internally, feeling the upcoming conversation was not going to easy in any way.

He didn’t turn around but waited patiently as Dan approached as he sipped his drink. He beckoned his bar tender to come over and had him pour Dan a glass as well. Then he glanced to his side as Dan finally reached the spot at the bar next to him.

“Evening,” Lucifer said in way of greeting and gestured towards the drink. “Yours.”

Dan stared at the glass on the bar top for a few seconds before slowly reaching to take it. The tremble in his fingers was less noticeable as he closed his hand around the tumbler. “Thanks.”

Lucifer took a breath. “Right, then. Shall we take this somewhere else?” He noticed Dan’s eyes widen in alarm and realized that Dan probably didn’t want to be alone with him. “Of course, only if you’re comfortable with that. We could also stay right here. Or maybe sit down in one of the more private booths?”

Dan swallowed before nodding. “Yeah, sure. The booth sounds fine.”

“Good, right.” Lucifer grabbed his drink, then thought better of it and leaned over the bar to grab a full bottle. He held both up with a triumphant smile and then led the way to the VIP area that held the private booths. He placed the bottle on the table and slid onto the round bench.

Dan, with both hands wrapped tightly around his own glass, sat down opposite of him. He didn’t look Lucifer in the eyes.

“Are you alright, Daniel?” He really didn’t know how to approach this.

Dan nodded quickly. “Yeah, I’m—good, I’m good.”

“I suppose you have questions?” Lucifer began. “I will try to answer them, if I can. And if I deem the question appropriate, of course.”

“Appropriate?”

“I reserve the right to not answer your questions, if they’re getting too personal or too philosophical.”

“Right, okay.” Dan glanced back towards the bar, then took a big gulp of his drink, grimacing as the alcohol burned down his throat.

“Daniel, look at me.” Lucifer asked and waited until Dan, however reluctantly, looked up. “I don’t mean you or anyone here any harm. I don’t mean harm to your family, either. Quite the opposite, actually. I would do anything to keep them safe.” He tried to see any reaction to his words in Dan’s expression. “I know, we haven’t always been on the same wavelength, but I don’t want to lose you as a friend.”

“You’re the literal Devil. Why are you here looking for friends?”

“Why does anyone want friends?”

Dan’s eyes narrowed. “So, you’re telling me, the Devil got lonely.”

“You’ve seen Hell. You’ve spent all of a blink of an eye there. I was down there for millennia and trust me, demons and tortured souls aren’t exactly the best company one can have.”

Dan swallowed and quickly avoided his eyes again. “I didn’t mean to insult—”

“You didn’t.” Lucifer interrupted. “Please, don’t start to walk on eggshells around me. I understand, this is a lot. But you have nothing to fear from me.”

“That’s easier said than done.” Dan muttered. “What happened when I was… dead, it’s constantly in my mind. I remember it all. And I remember you down there.” He paused for a moment before looking up at Lucifer with determination. “You scared the hell out of me. The things you did—” He broke off and shook his head.

“I apologize for scaring you.” Lucifer said earnestly. “Perhaps, I shouldn’t have thrown it all right into your face. It wasn’t the most thoughtful thing to just tell you that you’d died like that. In my defense, I was in a hurry to get out of Hell again and couldn’t take a lot of time to explain things to you.”

“How did you do it?”

“What exactly?”

Dan touched his own temple. “How did you show me—I saw myself die.”

“I showed you my memories of that morning.”

“But how?”

Lucifer’s eyebrows rose. “With intent. It can’t be explained how. It’s just something I can do.”

“Like an ability? Like the telekinesis?”

Lucifer shrugged. “I suppose so, yes. Though I don’t use those abilities. I had to, back in Hell, to get you to listen, but I refrain from doing anything the like usually.”

“Why?” Dan questioned.

“Too personal.” Lucifer grimaced. “For now.” Dan bit his lip and the sudden stop to their conversation was all too uncomfortable. “Any other questions you have?”

“A few.” Dan reached into his jacket, fumbling with a piece of paper. “I sort of made a—a list.” He smoothed out the wrinkled paper and placed it on the table in front of him.

Lucifer gave the paper a curious look and reached out to take a look at it. He hesitated, silently asking Dan for permission. Dan nodded for him to go ahead but he tensed up, when Lucifer’s fingers touched the paper, anxiety rising to a level at which Lucifer could feel it building up in the air around them.

“Relax, Daniel.” He said quietly. “Let’s take a look, then, shall we?”

He tilted the wrinkled paper, so that he would be able to make out the writing in the low light of the club. Some lines were aggressively crossed out and not readable anymore. The rest were neatly listed questions.

Who else is not human?

Hellhounds?

How does he drive people insane? Getting people to confess?

Immortal? How old?

Scars?

Can he lie?

Deals? Do they cost souls?

Handcuffs?

Who rules Hell?

Malcolm? What happened?

“Oh, well, let’s see.” Lucifer tilted his head to the side. “How about we just go down the list, yeah?” He poured himself another glass of scotch and filled Dan’s glass up as well. He emptied his own immediately.

“Can I throw in another question before you start?” Dan spoke up. “Can you get drunk?” At Lucifer’s amused smile, he added, “I mean, I’ve seen you drink amounts of alcohol that would kill a normal guy. I always thought, you were faking it. You know, not actually drinking alcohol.”

“I can get drunk, yes.” Lucifer smiled. “But it’s not easy. I could probably down everything behind the bar right now and walk away slightly tipsy. And half an hour later I’d be sober again.” Dan gave him a disbelieving look. “Needless to say, I’ve never gotten hammered. I like to try, though.”

“Well, then this is of no use to you.” Dan said and grabbed the bottle, filling his own glass up even further. He lifted his glass to Lucifer. “Cheers.” He emptied half the glass in one go, then motioned for Lucifer to go ahead. “I’m ready. Mostly.”

“Just don’t keel over before we’re done here.” He glanced down at the list. “Alright, who else is not human. Good first question. Well, there’s Mazikeen obviously. You know her, she’s my demon. Used to be my right hand but she doesn’t work for me anymore. So, she’s her own person—or demon, however you want to put it.”

“There’s an actual demon living with my child and ex-wife?” Dan asked in horror.

“Yes. There is. But don’t worry, Maze is quite fond of your family. She would never harm them.” Lucifer assured. “And she’d have to answer to me, if she did.”

Dan sipped more of his drink. “Way too surreal.” He muttered. “Way too surreal.”

“Next, my brother Amenadiel, though he doesn’t count anymore, since he’s fallen. He’s human now.”

“He’s an angel? And he fell?” Dan interrupted. “Like you?”

Lucifer slammed his glass down on the table with more force than necessary. “No! Not like me.” He glared at Dan. “I never fell from grace.”

“Sorry. I didn’t mean—I’ll shut up.”

For a moment, Lucifer considered explaining his fall to Daniel but that subject hit too close to home. He wasn’t ready to share that with Dan of all people. Instead he just continued his list of non-human people. “You don’t know any other supernatural beings. Well, you met my mother but she’s not here anymore. I sent her to another universe. There are other supernatural beings on earth, sure. The Endless, changelings, witches and so forth.”

“You have a mother?”

“Of course, you’d get stuck on that.” Lucifer sighed. “She’s not my mother in the way you think. Yes, she’s dear old dad’s ex-wife, a goddess, and she played a part in the creation of the universe and most angels. But she never birthed me.”

If possible, Dan’s eyes got wider with each word that left Lucifer’s mouth. “I met the goddess of creation?”

“Yes, she possessed the body of Charlotte Richards for a while. But she’s gone now. And she won’t return.”

All color drained from Dan’s face, his hand searched for his glass blindly and he emptied the rest of his drink. “I’m just not gonna think about it. I’m just going to ignore that you just told me, I slept with your mother. A goddess.” He laughed nervously. “Just go on, please.”

“That’s it.” Lucifer said.

“You mean, there’s no other angels or demons on Earth?”

“None you know.” The man across from him hummed in understanding. It was going to be a long evening, if every question caused Dan to hyperventilate. “We should hurry this along. Next question,” he glanced down, “Hellhounds?” Lucifer frowned. “I don’t understand the question.”

“You said, you’d bring them to Earth. Did you?”

“Yes.”

“Where are they?”

“Upstairs.”

Dan’s eyes found the ceiling. He stared at it as if he would somehow be able to see the hounds. Then he shook himself and looked back down. “They won’t come after me, right?”

“No, I marked you. They won’t hunt someone who bears my mark.”

“You did what?”

Lucifer sighed. “You were there, Daniel. I put a mark on your soul so that the hounds will know that you are under my protection and not to be harmed.” He leaned forward. “May I?” He reached out towards Dan’s chest.

“What are you doing?”

“Showing you what I’m talking about. It won’t hurt, I promise.”

When Dan didn’t say anything else, Lucifer went ahead and opened the topmost button of Dan’s shirt, revealing his chest. He placed his hand on Dan’s solar plexus and felt the mark he created immediately respond to his touch. He removed his hand and sure enough, on Dan’s chest now shone a white glowing mark, the shape of the Enochian letter L.

“Oh my god,” Dan breathed out and Lucifer let it slide this once. “What the fuck? Make it go away.”

“Unfortunately, I can’t. The hounds would be down here within seconds, pulling you right back to Hell.”

“So, what, it’s just going to keep glowing for everyone to see?”

“Oh, no. No, it will stop in a moment. It will remain invisible. The mark is only on your soul, not your body.”

Dan remained silent at that. He looked down at his own chest, watching as the first the glow of the mark faded before the mark itself disappeared. He touched the spot where it had been carefully, rubbed it, and then closed his shirt up again.

“May we should continue this some other day, Dan.” Lucifer offered. “Going down this list of yours, there won’t be a lot of answers you’ll be glad to hear. And I’d rather keep you sane.”

“No,” Dan shook his head firmly. “No, I need answers or I’ll go mad. I haven’t had a full night’s sleep in days.” His voice grew louder, agitation becoming obvious. “I keep seeing Hell and I can’t for the life of me figure out how to make it stop. I mean, I probably deserve it, right? Why else would I end up in Hell in the first place? I killed people, I lied, I destroyed my marriage. I deserve Hell apparently.”

Lucifer reached out to grab one of Dan’s shaking hands but apparently that was the wrong move. Dan flinched and pulled his hand away but Lucifer, with his hands now held up in a show of innocence, didn’t let himself be deterred. “Dan, listen to me. You didn’t go to Hell because you lied or even killed. That’s not how it works.”

“Do you decide who goes down and who doesn’t?”

“Dad forbid, no. And my father doesn’t either. Only those who feel guilt go to Hell. And I’m not talking about ‘oh no, I lied about eating the last donut’ guilt. I’m talking actual guilt. The kind of guilt that tortures the soul every minute of every day.”

Dan’s anguish turned into confusion. “So, I did go to Hell because I killed and lied and destroyed my marriage. Because I feel guilty about it.”

“Yes, ultimately that’s why you ended up downstairs but Dan, you shouldn’t have. You should not feel as much guilt for those things.” Lucifer stared Dan right in the eye, willing him to believe. “You know, I don’t lie. So, believe me when I say this. You shouldn’t have ended up in Hell. It was mostly a glitch in the system. It happens and I know, it’s not fair. But that’s how this sorry universe works.”

“Why can’t you do anything about it?” Dan all but whispered. “Why don’t you save those that end up in Hell, when they shouldn’t?”

“I can’t.”

“Can’t or won’t?”

“I can’t, alright!” Lucifer snapped. “There’s a greater balance to things. I can’t interfere, neither can my father or any other divine being. If we do, the consequences would be devastating.”

“Then why did you save me?”

The answer got stuck in Lucifer’s throat and he bit the inside of his cheek, struggling with himself. “I saved you because I—” He broke off and started anew. “Dan, I couldn’t leave you down there. You are… a friend to me. And you mean even more to Chloe.” Dan closed his eyes at the mention of her name and Lucifer carefully continued. “Had you died and gone to Heaven, I would have been angry, yes, would have yelled at my dad for centuries. But I would have had to accept it. You would have been at peace up in boring old Silver City.” He smiled a little as Dan’s eyes met his own. “But knowing you were suffering in Hell, I couldn’t stand sitting around doing nothing.” He looked down to where his hands were gripping the edge of the table tightly. “And I thought ‘to Hell with the consequences’. Only this once.”

“What’s God going to do?” Now there was honest fear in Dan’s voice. “Now that you interfered?”

“He won’t do anything.” Lucifer shook his head. “He gave me the green light on this.”

“You talk to God?!”

Lucifer scoffed. “No. They’re mostly very one-sided conversations where I yell myself hoarse and he doesn’t acknowledge any of it.” He realized how bitter he sounded and quickly cleared his throat. “He would have stopped me, though. From saving you. If my actions would have affected the balance, he wouldn’t have sat idly by. So, him doing nothing was very much a green light.”

They were both silent for the next few minutes. Lucifer decided to wait for Dan to make the next move. He didn’t want to push him. Since Dan had grabbed the bottle for himself, Lucifer didn’t have his drink to occupy himself with, and his fingers began fidgeting again. Then Dan cleared his throat.

“Maybe I really should leave.” He gave Lucifer a nervous glance. “All of this, it’s just too much.”

“I don’t mean to drive you away. I only suggested to pick this up another time. You do want answers, don’t you? You just said so.” Lucifer intervened. Panic was creeping in. If Dan left, hating him, despising him and thinking him a monster, Lucifer would never be able to mend things between them.

“True. But part of me is wondering why I am even sitting here with you. You’re the Devil.”

“I am. But what does that change?”

“Everything!” Dan threw his hands up. “You have no idea, do you? You have no idea what that means. You’re the actual Devil. The son of God. And I’m sitting across from you.” He buried his face in the palm of one hand for a moment. “This is crazy. And fucking terrifying.”

Lucifer tilted his head to the side. “I would not harm you, Daniel.”

“It’s not just that. By being who you are, you just took everything I thought I knew about the universe and crushed it under your foot. I don’t know what to believe anymore, I don’t know what to do anymore. Should I pray? Should I go to church? Should I stop believing in evolution?”

“I won’t stop you from doing any of those things. But you don’t have to. You have something very, very precious. And that is free will. When my father created you, he was very big on that. You get to do whatever you want, believe whatever you want. He would never force you to worship him.” He clenched his fists to still his fingers and then relaxed again. “If it makes you feel better, you could just pretend none of this happened. Let yourself believe that it was all a dream and continue to live your life like you always have. It won’t change a thing.”

“How could I ever forget?”

“Do you want to?”

Dan scoffed. “I can’t so what’s the point in wishing?”

Lucifer bit his lip. He almost offered. For weeks and weeks he had vowed to not use the abilities the wings had given back to him but in that moment he almost caved. He could make Dan forget. Could manipulate his thoughts and memories. He didn’t want to for several reasons. One, he didn’t want to utilize his powers. Two, he kind of liked the idea of having someone else in the know. Three, Dan could pave the way for him finally telling Chloe the whole truth. The list went on, so Lucifer really didn’t want to. But he could.

In the end, he kept his mouth shut, but he found himself wondering, whether it was wrong to put himself first. For whatever was going on in Dan’s mind was obviously hurting him.

Suddenly Dan got up. “I’m sorry. But this wasn’t a good idea.” He started walking away, then stopped, grabbed the bottle and without looking at Lucifer again, left the club.

Lucifer didn’t try to stop him. It would do no good. He had screwed it up, that much was clear. Dan didn’t accept his status as an immortal celestial and probably never would. He was scared, which was understandable. But it would make Lucifer’s life and working at the precinct so much harder.

“Farewell, Daniel.” His goodbye was drowned out by the music and even without it, Dan was already too far away to hear it.

Chapter Text

Lucifer stayed seated in the booth for another half an hour, simply staring at nothing and contemplating about things to come. His bartender had come over to check on him but he had shooed him away. When he finally stood, smoothing out the creases in his dress shirt, he had come to the decision that once again he would deal with this later. Priorities and all that. The demon situation needed his full attention. He just hoped that Dan didn’t decide to cause a stir with his newfound knowledge.

He tapped his hand on the bar in passing to get the bartender’s attention. “Keep it down tonight, will you?” Lucifer asked as the other man looked up. “Few patrons, low music. I don’t want a party.”

“Will you be playing, boss?”

“Not tonight.” He got a nod in answer. “Just—keep it down anyways.”

He made his way upstairs, the elevator slowly rising up to his penthouse. When the doors opened, he let out a small groan. He had almost forgotten about Michael. His brother was standing on the balcony, his back to Lucifer, overlooking LA. He was leaning on the railing and didn’t turn, when the sound of the elevator signaled Lucifer’s arrival.

“You’re still here.”

“I’m aware.” Michael only turned his head and watched as Lucifer slumped down on the couch.

Lucifer rolled his eyes. “That begs the question, why?”

“Where else am I supposed to go?” Michael seemed genuinely confused.

“I don’t know. And I don’t care. Anywhere but my penthouse. Why don’t you just go back?”

“Back to the Silver City? Our siblings would have my head.”

Lucifer scoffed. “Like they would dare to touch you.”

“You don’t know what it’s like up there nowadays.” Michael finally turned from the railing and faced his brother. “Father is barely ever present and some have began to question him. None of them would rebel, of course. None of them are quite as daring as you.” He smirked.

“What do you mean, they’re questioning him?” Lucifer had sat up straighter.

“Well, they’re not so much questioning father. They’re questioning the hierarchy of Heaven. I may be their general but that doesn’t mean they respect me or what I say anymore.”

“How long has it been that way?”

“A few hundred years.”

Lucifer nodded thoughtfully, then tilted his head to the side slowly. He gave Michael a scrutinizing look. “Don’t tell me you’re here for my help.” He got up and stood in front of his brother. “Is that why you’re really here? I get my wings back and suddenly I’m useful again.”

“You know that’s not true. That’s not why I’m here.”

“Oh, really? You just want our siblings back under your command and figured I’d scare them into submission.”

Michael stood a little taller. “Lucifer, stop! I am here for one reason only and that’s to fix things between us.”

“But failed to mention that Heaven is apparently falling apart.”

“You can’t step foot in there, anyways, so you couldn’t help, even if you wanted to!”

Lucifer froze. “That was a low blow, brother.”

He turned from Michael, intent on holing up in his bedroom and ignoring that his brother was even here. He thought about making a few phone calls, contacting those who owed him favors. Maybe someone could give him a lead on Rhûn before the demon continued his killing spree.

|||

Dan had almost made it home, when he lost his resolve. Back at Lux he had decided that it would be for the best, if he stayed away from the Devil. Nothing good would come of it and he needed to protect his family from things like him.

But as he stood at a red light a few blocks from his apartment, a voice in the back of his head got louder and louder.

His name was Lucifer. Lucifer Morningstar. Not the Devil. Sure, that was who Lucifer was but that didn’t change the fact that he stole Dan’s puddings, made inappropriate jokes at crime scenes, had even walked Trixie home from school on several occasions. Lucifer Morningstar had saved both Chloe and Trixie from Malcolm and he insisted to cook dinner for them from time to time because he disapproved of Chloe’s bland cuisine. He was cheesy, acted like a child and though Dan had refused to admit it for over almost two years, Lucifer was kind.

He was not the monster the Devil was supposed to be and even if the Devil didn’t deserve a second chance, Lucifer did. Lucifer deserved that Dan stuck by him.

Dan shuddered slightly as he thought about whether that meant that God and himself were on different sides now. But he also told himself that he didn’t have a clue as to how the universe worked. The bible said a lot of things but he found that he’d rather side with a man he’d known for two years now than believe in everything written in some old book.

The jarring sound of a car horn rudely awakened him from his thoughts. Quickly, he maneuvered through the busy lanes before finding a suitable spot to turn the car around. He would go back and finish his talk with Lucifer, if only to alleviate some of his fears regarding the guy. Because friend or not, he was man enough to admit that Lucifer was scary.

When he reached Lux again, the line of people waiting outside had grown longer. For a moment, he was unsure whether he would get in anytime soon but the recognizing nod from the bouncer as he came closer dispelled his worry. He ignored the groans from the waiting crowd as he was allowed inside instantly.

Dan made his way towards the booths where he and Lucifer had been sitting earlier but he found them empty, so he returned to the bar. “Hey, ‘scuse me, is Lucifer still here?” The man behind the bar nodded and jerked his head towards the ceiling, indicating that the club owner had gone upstairs. “Can I go up?”

“I guess. If the elevator isn’t locked, it should be fine.”

“Thanks.” Dan said and the taciturn bartender turned away again. Carefully he steered towards the stairs leading up to the upper level and the elevator. The crowd wasn’t as dense as usual, if his other visits to the club were anything to go by. The music was almost classy as well. It was unusual, to say the least, for clubs like these. It reminded him more of a piano bar than a nightclub. He supposed that was what Lucifer was going for.

Reaching the elevator doors, he firmly pressed the button to call it. The doors opened immediately, and he stepped in, pushing the button for Lucifer’s penthouse. The elevator closed. So, Lucifer didn’t lock the entry to his penthouse. Dan guessed that was a good thing. Perhaps that meant that Dan hadn’t pissed him off as much as he thought by leaving earlier.

The cart came to a stop with the telltale ping and the doors slid open.

He heard Lucifer groan. “I’m not seeing anyone, so whoever you are, go right back down again.”

Dan stepped out of the elevator cabin and came to a halt right next to the bar. His eyes adjusted to the dim light in the penthouse after a few seconds and they found Lucifer’s tall form standing near the couch. Dan frowned. It seemed Lucifer had changed out of his suit and had removed all product from his hair, for he looked somewhat different from just half an hour ago.

Movement to his right had him turn his head and he came face to face with—

He blinked a couple times as if to clear his vision, then took two steps back. “Holy shit.” He breathed out. “What the--? What is happening?”

To his right stood Lucifer and no, he had not changed out of his suit. But across the room stood another man and he was Lucifer’s mirror image. Dan was sure he was losing it.

Lucifer seemed genuinely confused as Dan’s eyes wandered from him to the other man and back but then he seemed to realize something. “Oh, right.” He nodded, grabbed a tall liquor bottle off the shelf, and then motioned for Dan to follow him to the couch. “It’s alright, Daniel. Pay him no mind.”

“There’s two of you?” Dan asked, his voice high.

“No, only one of me, thank you very much.” Lucifer answered. “Come on, sit down. I don’t want you to pass out from one too many revelations”

He let Lucifer lead him towards the couch. The second Lucifer silently watched the scene unfold until Dan had sat down.

“So, he knows?” Even the voice was the same.

Lucifer to Dan’s right scoffed. “What did you think would happen after I pulled him out of Hell?” He responded as he opened the bottle and filled up a glass and handed it to Dan. “I had to tell him. He deserved the truth.”

The other man remained silent, but Dan took a deep breath and he looked up from the glass in his hand to Lucifer. “So, you are Lucifer, right?” He received a nod in answer. “Then who’s he?”

“He’s my idiot brother.” Lucifer explained. “I thought that much was obvious.”

“Twin brother.” It wasn’t a question. Dan gulped down the contents of his glass. “Of course. Why the hell not. You have a fucking twin brother.” Somewhere in the back of his head he became aware of the fact that this brother had to be an angel. Like Amenadiel. “You never mentioned a twin brother.”

“If I told you about all my siblings, we’d be here all night.” Lucifer sighed. “Daniel, meet Michael, my twin brother. Michael, Dan Espinoza.” He waved his hand half-heartedly as he made introductions.

“Michael as in the archangel Michael?”

“The very same.”

Michael nodded towards Dan. “It’s a pleasure to meet you in person, Dan Espinoza.”

“This is so fucking weird.” Dan whispered. Lucifer didn’t usually address Dan in such a polite manner, so hearing those words from Michael was like being thrown into opposite day. Now that he was closer to Michael, it became obvious that he really looked exactly like Lucifer, if you ignored the clothes and the hair. However, Dan guessed, if Michael would put on one of Lucifer’s suits, Dan would never be able to tell them apart. He’d known twins before, of course, but usually they all had a feature from which he could tell them apart, especially adults. But Lucifer and Michael had no such thing. Even the posture, the way Michael stood there, was one hundred per cent Lucifer.

“I take it, you’re feeling better after what happened to you.” Michael continued, undeterred by Dan’s words.

“Yeah, I’m good.” Dan managed to say. “Recovered way too fast, really.”

Lucifer hummed. “Yeah, all thanks to my brother here, am I right, Michael?”

Dan almost choked, when Michael nodded. The angel sat down across from him and Lucifer. “I helped speed things a long, yes. To keep up my end of the bargain with you, brother.”

“You had already done so, when you helped me bring him back at the crime scene.”

“True. But I felt it unfair that he died so soon after. Helping his recovery was the least I could do.”

“What are you talking about?” Dan addressed Lucifer.

The Devil bit his lip. “You died immediately after you were shot. But I asked Michael to let me heal you, which is a power I don’t possess. He lent it to me for a moment, so I could bring you back. And it worked. You were brought to the hospital, alive, and the doctors managed to butcher your surgery, so you died a second time.”

Dan didn’t know what to say. The Devil, Lucifer himself, and his brother, the archangel Michael, had saved his life. Not just once, but apparently twice. He cleared his throat. “No offense—I don’t assume I know much of anything—but shouldn’t you two be mortal enemies?”

He seemed to have hit a sore spot because neither Lucifer nor Michael answered right away. Eventually Lucifer took a strained breath in. “Jury is currently out on that one. Let’s just say, our relationship has been on the mend ever since you died, Daniel. So, be proud of yourself.” Dan gave him a confused look. “Michael and I haven’t talked in millennia. Then you die and here we are. Almost civil.”

Michael’s eyes were on Lucifer, calculating, as he listened to his answer. Without looking at Dan, he spoke. “I have wronged my brother and he had every right to hate me. Well, almost every right. But I’m here to atone.”

“Yes, it’s all very touching. However, Dan and I have a conversation to finish, don’t we, Daniel?” Lucifer raised a questioning eyebrow. “That’s why you came back, isn’t it?”

“Yes,” Dan nodded. “I’m sorry, I left. I got… overwhelmed.”

“Understandable. Michael, would you be so kind? Leave us, will you?”

The angel tilted his head. “Where am I supposed to go?”

“Sightseeing, brother.” Lucifer hissed. “Anywhere but here! Go find Amenadiel. Or keep my hounds company, I don’t care.”

Dan flinched at the mention of the hounds and carefully scouted the room for any sign of them. Lucifer noticed and when his eyes met Dan’s for a moment, he shook his head. Dan breathed out. They weren’t here.

Michael got up, brushing non-existent dust off his shirt. “Very well. Let me know, when you’re free to talk.” He straightened a little and Lucifer quickly held up a hand.

“Ah, ah, ah.” He pointed towards the elevator. “There’s the way out.” Michael glared at his brother and Dan could practically taste the tension between them, before Michael simply turned on the spot and strode towards the lift.  As the doors slid closed, Lucifer let out a very put-upon sigh. “It takes everything out of me not to strangle him.”

“I’m still trying to process that you have a twin.” Dan mumbled. “It’s scary how much you are alike.”

“Oh, please.” Lucifer grimaced at Dan’s words. “We are nothing alike. In fact, we couldn’t be more different. But that’s not what we are here to talk about, is it? You have questions and we should get to answering them some time tonight. Where is that list of yours?”

“Must have left it downstairs.” Dan shrugged, then his eyes widened. “What if someone finds it?”

“So, what? They’ll think it’s a boat load of nonsense and throw it away. Another drink?”

Dan hesitated, then tried a careful smile. “Is the Devil trying to tempt me?”

Lucifer looked at him, trying to calculate the sincerity of the words, before offering a mischievous smile back. “You know me, Dan. I’m all about temptation and desire. And I’ll happily help anyone overcome their inhibitions.”

“More whiskey it is, then.” Dan held out his glass and Lucifer filled it back up. “Though, I won’t be able to drive home after this. I’ll have to call a cab.”

“Your tolerance is unbelievably low.”

“We can’t all be supernatural beings.”

Lucifer’s smile turned hopeful. “Does this mean, you don’t hate me?”

“I don’t hate you. But all this—it’s a lot and it scares the shit out of me.” Dan answered honestly. “But I’m trying to get over it. That’s why I’m here. So, questions?” Lucifer nodded for him to go ahead. “How old are you?”

The Devil snorted. “Good question. Do you want an exact number? Because I don’t think I know.” He tilted his head to the side a little. “I mean, I was around for quite some time before I made the sun and seeing as that’s how you measure time, I don’t think I can—”

“Say what now?” Dan spluttered. “Did you just say that you created the sun?”

“I created almost every star in this sorry universe. See, that was my job for a long time. I was the Lightbringer. That’s what my name means.” The explanation did nothing to calm Dan’s mind. He was sitting next to an immortal being, older than time itself, who apparently had the power to create stars. And he was just Dan. Just a human guy. Average even. How come he was the one sitting here next to the Devil?

“So, are you going to be here forever? After all of us are gone? Will you still be here?”

Lucifer slowly turned his glass around in his hands. “Most likely, yes.” Then he shrugged. “If I don’t die beforehand.”

“You can die?”

“Yes, there are a number of weapons that can kill me. I’m not always invulnerable.”

Dan thought back to the last few years. Lucifer had never really gotten hurt, or had he? Suddenly he remembered the time Chloe shot him. “You could get shot and die. Really?”

“Under certain circumstances, yes.” He didn’t elaborate any further and Dan thought it best not to press on it because Lucifer’s voice had taken on a rather strained tone. Instead he thought of a next question, while slowly sipping his drink.

“Is your last name really Morningstar? I mean, does the Devil even have a last name?”

That brought a smile back to Lucifer’s face. “It’s not really a last name but more of a title. Lucifer the Morningstar.” He smirked at Dan. “But when I came here, you humans were really adamant on me having a last name, if I wanted to get any papers.”

“Yeah, we like our bureaucracy.” Dan watched as Lucifer set down his glass and suddenly he was reminded of what Lucifer had done that morning at the precinct. “The thing with the coin—your telekinesis, is that the only power you have?”

Lucifer didn’t look at him. A quiet sigh escaped him as he leaned far back into the cushions of the couch. “It’s not the only ability I have, no. And you’ve seen it.” At Dan’s incredulous expression, he continued. “What do you call it? My mojo? My desire mojo? That’s not hypnosis. I really do have the power to draw out people’s desires.” He looked up at Dan, almost shyly. “I apologize for using that ability on you that one time. I’ve been told by my therapist that it is quite invasive.”

“Okay, hold on. You did that to me? And your therapist—does she know?”

“Back when Malcolm was on the loose, I used it on you. But that was the only time, I promise.” His voice was utterly sincere. “And yes, Linda knows about who I am.”

Dan nodded, trying to process. He appreciated the apology, but he figured that Lucifer could have made him say much worse things. He remembered only telling Lucifer about the lead they’d found. At the time, he’d cursed himself for giving in so easily but if Lucifer had used his mojo on him, that explained it.

“What happened with Malcolm?”

“What do you mean?”

“I want the whole story. I’m pretty certain that there was something else going on at the time.”

Lucifer frowned a little. “Yes, perhaps you don’t know the entirety of what happened. Well, Malcolm died and went to Hell. Much like you, if you think about it. My brother Amenadiel brought him back and tasked him with killing me, so that I would return to Hell. Back then that was all Amenadiel wanted, returning me to Hell. But I refused, and he got desperate. Hence the Malcolm stunt. So, you see, everything that happened with Malcolm was not your fault.” He paused, cleared his throat a little and then continued. “Malcolm was a loose cannon, though. Hell had driven him insane and he, of course, tried all he could to avoid ever going back there again. When he kidnapped young Beatrice, he was in possession of my Pentecostal coin, which would have granted him a one-way ticket out of Hell. I had bargained with him and gave him the coin in exchange for my life, I thought. I didn’t have all the facts back then.” He grimaced. “But when he died at the hangar, I made a deal with my father. Malcolm lost the coin and Chloe and Beatrice remained safe.”

“You asked God to keep them safe?”

“I did.”

“What did he get in return?”

“My father? Well, I was tasked with taking care of a little problem. My mum. But that’s all done now.” It was an evasive answer and Dan quickly changed the subject.

“The scars on your back… Is that really where you cut your wings off?”

Lucifer’s head snapped around to look at Dan and Dan shrank back into the couch. But Lucifer didn’t look angry, just surprised. “How do you even know about that?”

“Well, I saw the scars at the bathhouse. And when your container was stolen, Chloe mentioned the wings we were looking for were yours. I just put two and two together…”

“So, you did.” Lucifer nodded. “Yes, I had Maze cut my wings off and then I burned them, when I got them back after the theft.”

“But they’re limbs, right? That’s—that must be horrible. I mean, that’s like cutting off your arm.” Dan felt the blood leave his face at the thought.

“I didn’t need them anymore and I didn’t want them, so I got rid of them. End of story.”

“Right.” Dan downed the rest of his drink and reached for the bottle to fill it up again. He didn’t know what to think about all of that. What Lucifer described was some serious self-harm, and his coping mechanisms in general seemed a bit over the edge. The alcohol, the drugs. He may be a supernatural being but most of the time he was just man like everyone else, wasn’t he?

“Stop pitying me, Daniel.”

“Sorry, I—sorry.”

“Got any more questions, or not?”

“You said, explaining who ruled Hell was too complicated to do over text. Would you explain it now?” Dan asked, a little tentatively. He wasn’t sure, whether the subject was sensitive.

Lucifer sighed and squirmed in his seat. “It is a little complicated. As much as I love to say that I’m retired, that’s not entirely true. It’s a version of the truth.” He tapped his fingers on his leg as he spoke. “I may think of myself as Hell’s ex-ruler, but the truth is, as long as I’m alive, Hell will always be mine to rule.  There’s no one who can take up that task, if I’m not dead. Don’t ask me to explain how it works, but I was Hell’s first ruler and dominion only changes once the king is dead.” Lucifer’s smile at that was forced. “So, I can deny it all I want, but I will always be the king of Hell.”

There was regret in his voice mixed with resignation and Dan couldn’t help but feel sorry for Lucifer. He’d been alone in Hell for an eternity. No wonder he didn’t want to stay there any longer.

His own yawn interrupted his thoughts. Begrudgingly he had to admit that he hadn’t really slept that much the last few days and the alcohol had made him drowsy. Lucifer looked over at him, he’d noticed, too.

“You should sleep, Detective.”

Dan grimaced. “Probably. But it’ll just be all nightmares again. Maybe a little more of this,” he held up his glass, “and it’ll knock me out hard enough, so that the dreams stay away.”

Lucifer seemed to hesitate, debating with himself, before he sighed and spoke. “Sleep here, and I’ll make sure you don’t have any bad dreams tonight.”

“You can do that?”

“I can do a lot of things.”

“You only mentioned your desire mojo. And the telekinesis. I thought you didn’t lie.” Dan pointed out.

Lucifer smirked. “I never said I didn’t have any abilities other than the two. No lies told.”

Dan huffed and looked away. It was true, though. Lucifer didn’t lie. The fact that he was the actual Devil really sold that. But again, he was being evasive about what he could do and it unnerved Dan immensely.

“I think I’m just going to call a cab and be on my way.”

Lucifer’s face fell a little. “It wouldn’t be a bother. I have plenty of room here.”

“It’s not that.”

“I know it’s not. You don’t feel comfortable staying here, I get that. But I want to do right by you. I know, I frightened you and it wasn’t my intention. So, this is the least I can do as an apology. I can help you get some rest.” He faltered some as he looked Dan in the eye. “Of course, I understand… if you’d rather not.”

There was something akin to fear flickering across Lucifer’s face and Dan found his apprehension fading little by little. Maybe it was the alcohol. Slowly, he nodded. “I’ll stay, then.”

Lucifer’s face lit up in genuine surprise. He got up right away and motioned for Dan to follow. He did, but as soon as he stood the world began to spin precariously. He held on to the couch for a moment until the room stilled around him, then followed Lucifer towards the guest bedroom.

“You should find anything you need in there.” Lucifer pointed towards the huge closet that made up an entire wall of the room. “Bathroom’s through there. Let me know, when you’re finished.”

Dan eyed the luxurious bed, the closet and the doorway to the bathroom, before simply pulling off his jacket and kicking off his shoes. He mostly fell down on the bed but remained upright, looking up at the other man. “I think I’ll just crash like this.”

Lucifer frowned, then shook his head. “Very well.” He crouched in front of Dan, who suddenly had second thoughts about the whole thing as he looked at the Devil, the proximity filling him with unease. “Relax, Daniel. Now, look at me.”

“I am looking at you.”

“Look me in the eye.”

Dan complied and focused on Lucifer’s deep brown eyes. At once he got lost in them. He felt his arms grow slack beside him and he simply couldn’t look away, his gaze caught by whatever Lucifer was doing. Then his thoughts began to grow fuzzy, the edges of his vision blurred even further than they already had. It felt weird, but not in a bad way. He felt relaxed. At peace.

He couldn’t for the life of him tell how long he’d been staring into Lucifer’s eyes, when Lucifer looked away. He stood and patted Dan’s shoulder lightly. “Now, try to sleep. It should come easy.” He gently pushed Dan to lie down, as Dan barely felt in control over his own body. His eyes were already closing, when Lucifer gently pulled the door to the room closed, leaving Dan in the semi-darkness. He couldn’t remember the last time he’d felt this way. He wasn’t even sure, if he had ever felt this way. A feeling of complete serenity.

When sleep came, it was a soothing darkness that left Dan blissfully unaware of anything. No dreams invaded his mind that night.

The sunlight filtering through the only half-drawn curtains woke him the next morning. As Dan stretched, he began to take notice of his surroundings. Where the hell was he? From one second to the next he was sitting upright, frantically looking around the room. When he caught sight of the view from the window, he exhaled slowly.

He was at Lucifer’s penthouse.

A moment later he did a doubletake at that thought. He was at Lucifer’s penthouse. Had the day before really happened? He’d gotten drunk with the Devil of all people and had then decided to crash at his place. Nervous laughter escaped him. Maybe he was slowly going insane. At least he didn’t have a hangover, probably thanks to Lucifer’s choice of high-quality alcohol.

He slid off the bed and put his shoes back on. He thought it best to get home as quickly as possible. His phone told him it was still quite early, normally he wouldn’t even be awake at this time as he usually preferred to sleep in on his work-free days. But he felt rested. Very much so, if he thought about it.

“Oh, wow.” He whispered, when he suddenly remembered what Lucifer had done the night before. He had somehow gotten into his head, Dan had felt it as he had pushed down the memories of Hell and the thoughts about Lucifer himself. But now they were resurfacing with vigor.

Lucifer had most likely spent the night right here in the penthouse with him. Dan hated himself for thinking it, but he was relieved to find himself no worse for the wear. Lucifer hadn’t touched him. And why would he? He scolded himself. After all he had promised himself, he would give Lucifer a chance, no prejudices, no assumptions.

And so far, Lucifer had given him no reason to regret that choice. Well, disregarding everything that happened in Hell, because down there Dan had seen the Devil in his element. In Hell Lucifer hadn’t bothered with human pretense like he did here on Earth. Up here it was all carefully hidden away behind that handsome façade. But Dan couldn’t blame him. If he really wanted to find friends here, that façade made it a little easier to be around him.

After taking a few deep breaths, Dan opened the door and left the guest room. The living area was empty, the baby grand glistening in the early morning sun. Lucifer was nowhere in sight. For a moment Dan thought about simply leaving but something stopped him.

He made his way over to the couple of steps that led up to Lucifer’s bedroom and sure enough, Lucifer was lying there on his bed on his stomach. His shirt had been discarded on the floor next to the bed and Dan hoped that he wasn’t entirely naked under the sheet that covered him from the waist down. Lucifer’s head was turned facing him, but his eyes were closed, the soft breaths escaping him telltale of him being fast asleep.

Looking at the Devil as he slept, Dan had a hard time believing this man was really supposed to be evil incarnate.

Lucifer’s voice had Dan jump nearly out of his skin. He was about to apologize for staring at him as he slept, when he realized that Lucifer’s eyes hadn’t opened. He had mumbled something into the pillow, Dan hadn’t actually understood what it was. Taking a careful step backwards, he began his retreat but then Lucifer spoke again, louder and clearer this time, but that didn’t help Dan understand any of it.

Lucifer was talking in his sleep and it definitely wasn’t in English. Whatever language he spoke consisted of somewhat harsh sounds that still managed to flow in a melodic and smooth way. Dan thought, he wouldn’t even be able to form those sounds, if he tried.

Movement to the left caught Dan’s eye. He turned to look and this time he stumbled backwards. At the foot of the bed lay a humongous hellhound, its eyes eerily focused on Dan. It didn’t make a move to get up but when Dan stepped back further, he lost his footing and fell. He caught himself from slamming into the floor at full force, but the thump of his fall had the hellhound on its feet.

Dan panicked. “No, no, stay away.” But the hound bounded down the steps with ease and advanced on Dan, who pushed himself over the floor to get away. It was in vain and the hound cornered him against the wall. Dan squeezed his eyes shut, waiting for the impending attack.

But none came.

Slowly, Dan blinked his eyes open. The hound’s muzzle was right in his face and it…sniffed him?

“Leave him alone, Fenrir.” Dan’s eyes flew to where Lucifer was stepping down into the living area, hair curly and bare-chested. “You’re scaring him.”

Dan exhaled shakily. “Please, Lucifer, please. Call it off. Please.”

“Calm down, Daniel. He won’t hurt you, he’s just trying to get to know you.” Lucifer came closer. “Trust me, he’s a puppy. Just push him away.”

“Are you serious right now?” Dan hissed, and he flinched, when the hellhound’s nose brushed against his cheek. “Just call it off.”

“I’m trying to prove a point here, Daniel. Push him off.”

Dan tried to swallow despite his heart being stuck somewhere in his throat. Tentatively he raised a hand towards the hound’s chest and pushed. It was like pushing against a wall. He put more effort into it and with a small huff and a whine the hound backed off a few inches. The adrenaline rushing through him left Dan shaky, but he pushed the creature away bit by bit until he could push himself off the floor.

Lucifer stood there, leaning against the wall, his arms crossed and a smug smile on his lips. Dan sidestepped the hellhound, but it followed him as he tried to put some distance between them. “You bastard!” He pointed at Lucifer accusingly. “Why would you do this to me?”

Lucifer pushed himself off the wall. “I’m helping you overcome your trauma.”

“Ever heard of not subjecting traumatized people to their triggers?” Dan tried to sound angry, but the entire thing had left him a little bit breathless. He yelped, when the hound bumped into his side. Its head was at the height of his upper arm and the force of the headbutt almost pushed him over again.

Lucifer’s expression turned apologetic. He held out his hand towards his hound. “Niis.” The creature immediately left Dan’s side and pushed its head into Lucifer’s hand instead. “I apologize, Daniel. I merely meant to show you that he won’t hurt you again. It even looks like he has taken a liking to you.”

“That thing has taken a liking in me? Last time I saw it, it tried to kill me.”

“Well, he knows better now. And his name is Fenrir.”

“Of course, the deadly hound has a name.” Dan threw up his arms in exasperation. “I thought, you were telling me they weren’t here yesterday.”

Lucifer nodded. “Well, they were a level below us. I only called him here over night, so I could get some sleep.”

“He’s guarding you? From what?”

Lucifer grimaced. “There’s a killer running around LA, who I believe is not human. My hounds are here to protect me.” He crossed the room and made his way towards the kitchen. “Come on, I’ll make you a coffee. Do you want breakfast?”

“I was about to leave.”

“One coffee, Daniel.”

“Fine.” He followed Lucifer to the spacious kitchen, Fenrir right behind him much to his discomfort. When he took a seat at the kitchen island, Fenrir immediately placed his head on Dan’s lap. He pushed him away again but the hound whined and came closer again. “Please make him stop.” Dan begged.

“Indulge him and he’ll stop on his own.”

Indulge him?”

“Just pet him.” Lucifer sighed as he worked the fancy coffee machine. “Like I said, he’s a big puppy.”

Hesitatingly, Dan buried his fingers in the long black fur in Fenrir’s neck and scratched. The hound pushed his head into Dan’s hand and seemed to enjoy the attention. Lucifer placed a cup of coffee in front of Dan and gave him a look that conveyed “see?”.

“So, he’s not actually that dangerous?” Dan wondered.

“Oh, no, you misunderstand me. He’s a puppy with those he likes and knows. Anyone else, he’ll happily tear apart.”

“Great.” Dan sighed and pulled his hand back. Fenrir seemed to have enough for now, though, because he padded away, turned around in a circle before settling on the ground next to the kitchen island. Dan eyed him warily but picked up his coffee and took a sip. It was amazing coffee. He looked up at Lucifer watching him.

“How did you sleep?”

Dan nodded as he swallowed. “Whatever you did worked, I guess. So… thank you.”

“You’re welcome.”

“You talk in your sleep, you know that?”

Lucifer’s head snapped up and so did Fenrir’s. Dan, nervous with the sudden scrutiny, ducked his head. But Lucifer looked somewhat embarrassed. “I do?” Dan nodded in answer. “What did I say?”

“Couldn’t tell you. It wasn’t in English.”

“Oh.” Lucifer’s eyebrows rose. “Didn’t know I did that. I don’t dream a lot, so I didn’t think that I talked.” He paused. “Any idea what language it might have been?”

Dan frowned. “How many options are there? I mean, it wasn’t English, how many other languages do you speak?”

“All of them.” Lucifer shrugged. “The options are quite endless. I’m merely curious which language my subconscious reverted to.” He seemed to think about it for a moment, then spoke a sentence in another language, which was also completely unfamiliar to Dan.

Dan shook his head. “What was that?”

“Aramaic. I always rather liked it. So, was that it?”

“No, it was something way harsher. But also like kind of very melodic.” Dan tried his best to describe the mumbles he heard earlier.

Lucifer’s smile faltered. “Ugh, figures.” He let out what sounded like curses and it was that harsh language again. He picked up his own coffee and managed to look annoyed as he drank it.

“Are you going to tell me what that is? Is it the same language you speak with the hounds?”

Lucifer nodded. “It’s Enochian, my native language, if you will. The language of angels.” He sneered at the word. “It’s all Michael’s fault. Since he’s here, I find myself thinking of the Silver City and all those pesky angels and I slip back into Enochian. It’s bloody irritating.”

Dan was about to retort but was interrupted by Lucifer’s phone ringing somewhere in the living room. The Devil held up a finger to tell him to wait a second and walked out the kitchen. Dan’s eyes followed him and he frowned as his gaze fell on Lucifer’s bare back.

His scars were gone. The skin on his back was entirely unblemished. Had they healed? Could scars that big just heal over time?

Lucifer returned, the phone at his ear. “A good morning it is indeed, Detective. What can I do for you?” He paused as he listened to Chloe’s answer. “I wouldn’t miss it.” His voice was cheery but Dan could see the worry in his eyes. “I’ll be there as soon as I can, Detective.”

When he hung up, Dan spoke. “What’s going on?”

“Another woman has been murdered. The victim fits the pattern to the letter.”

“And that worries you?”

Lucifer’s expression was grim. “Yes, it does. Chloe shouldn’t be on this case. It’s too dangerous. She doesn’t know she’s chasing a demon.”

Dan paled. “An actual demon?”

“Most likely, yes. I need to find him before she does. She’s in grave danger only investigating him. And I don’t know how to protect her.” He closed his eyes for a moment, then spat out a curse. Fenrir stood immediately, a low growl reverberating through the room.

Dan shivered and etched away from the hound. Fenrir’s eyes were glowing a dull red, his master’s anger putting him on edge as he looked for the threat. Dan’s breathing quickened, claustrophobia setting in as he stood between the hellhound and the Devil.

Lucifer suddenly focused on Dan. “Daniel, will you do me a favor?” A smile began to show on his lips.

Dan shook his head vigorously. “Oh, no. I’m not getting involved in your favor business. I’m not about to make a deal with the Devil. I’d like to keep my soul, thank you very much.”

Lucifer snorted. “Who said anything about your soul? I’m not interested in that. Not to mention, I already sort of own your soul, so…” He trailed off. “No, Daniel, all I want is a favor. And you can ask one in return.”

“A favor?”

“Nothing more, nothing less.”

Dan licked his lips nervously. “And what would you ask of me?”

“Help me hunt down the demon and help me keep Chloe out of it.”

Dan scoffed. “Nobody can tell Chloe what to do. Not if she’s set on it.”

Lucifer rolled his eyes. “You’re not supposed to tell her anything. Just help distract her. Lend me your detective skills, so that I can get to the demon first.”

“Okay.” Dann nodded, however hesitant. “Nothing more.”

“Nothing more.” Lucifer agreed.

“And you owe me a favor in return?”

“One favor, to be named whenever you want.” Lucifer tilted his head, his eyes focused on Dan’s. “So, do we have a deal?”

“Deal.”

Chapter Text

Lucifer followed Dan to the crime scene in his Corvette. Dan had insisted on taking different cars, saying something about how weird it was that he’d stayed at Lucifer’s overnight. Lucifer hadn’t fought him on that, even though he couldn’t find any sense in that explanation.

When he stepped out of his car, Chloe approached him immediately. He gave her his best smile. “Detective. Here I am, as ordered.”

“I’m glad you’re here, Lucifer. I think you might be right with your theory. It really looks like a serial—” Chloe blinked, when Dan came over from where he’d parked his car. “Dan? What are you doing here?”

Dan scratched the back of his head. “I, ah, ran into Lucifer as he left for the crime scene and I thought I’d tag along.”

She glanced up at Lucifer, almost reprimanding. “Dan, you’re not supposed to be working. You are supposed to rest.”

“I think, perhaps, it could be good for Daniel to get back into the routine.” Lucifer said quickly. “He won’t overwork himself, he’s just observing, is he not? Better than staying cooped up in his apartment for weeks.”

Chloe raised an eyebrow at him. “So, what, have you two patched things up now? Best friends again?”

“Oh, far from it. The Douche still hates me with a passion and I wouldn’t have it any other way.” Lucifer grinned. “But I strongly believe he won’t shoot me and that’s a plus.”

“Whatever.” With a roll of her eyes, Chloe turned away. “We have murder to investigate, so get a move on. Lucifer,” she beckoned him to follow, “I think you really need to take a look at the body.”

Lucifer moved to follow Chloe, but Dan’s hand on his arm stopped him momentarily. He turned back to see Dan looking up at him, his eyes filled with worry. “Dude, I don’t hate you. I’m just having a hard time coming to terms with all of this, you know?”

“Are you sure that’s it? I can sense your unease from across the room. You barely look at me most of the time. You flinch whenever I move. Now, tell me you’re not afraid.” Lucifer challenged. “Tell me you don’t hate being around me?”

Dan visibly swallowed. “But I don’t hate you. I’m just a bit unnerved by you.”

“Don’t worry,” Lucifer waved a hand, “It’s not exactly a first for me. No one likes the Devil.” And with that he turned and followed Chloe towards the scene of the crime, leaving Dan behind.

Lucifer stood next to Chloe, looking at the body of a woman. The body had been moved post mortem to sit upright in a large armchair that was placed underneath a high window. The arms were neatly draped on the armrests, legs crossed, as if the woman was simply sitting and observing everything around her. Almost regally, Lucifer thought. It looked like a queen on a throne.

On top of it all, her hair was a deep ebony color and perched on her nose was a pair of glasses. Lucifer sighed. “Let me guess, she was in her thirties?”

Chloe nodded thoughtfully. “Yeah, seems like you were right about that whole serial killer thing. It’s too obvious for it to be a coincidence. But what I don’t get is, how does he do it?” She took a step back to look at the scene in its entirety. “I mean, we caught two of our killers already. And they’re not connected in any way, except they both served but that is not uncommon. So, who pulls the strings and how does he convince others to kill for him?”

Lucifer thought about telling her the truth for a second but then decided against it. She would be annoyed, she wouldn’t believe a word he said, and in the worst case she might even take him off the case, if she thought that he wasn’t taking it seriously.

He cleared his throat. “Why did you say I should look at this?”

“Hm?” Chloe looked up at him.

“You said, you think that I should really take a look at the body. Now I know that we are both aware that I am no forensic scientist and have very little actual knowledge about police work except for what I picked up from you, so why would you think I could be of help with this?”

“Well, first of all, as I’ve said before, you don’t give yourself enough credit. You are good at this, when you decide to play by the rules.” She rolled her eyes a little, when she saw Lucifer’s grin at her compliment. “And you were the one who figured out the pattern of the killer in the first place.”

“You would have made that connection a few minutes later, I’m sure.”

“I wasn’t finished.” She stepped around the armchair, carefully avoiding touching any possible evidence. “Not that I’m encouraging it, but you are the one who’s into this whole Devil thing, so maybe you can tell us what this is.” She reached up to pull the curtains on the window to the side, revealing smears of blood on the window pane.

Lucifer froze and of course Chloe noticed. “What is it, Lucifer? What does it say?”

They were runes. Very old runes. He didn’t think anyone on Earth was still ken to this language, but Lucifer was. And whoever had written this had known that he would be here. Well, bloody hell, Rhûn knew Lucifer was after him.

Lucifer closed his eyes for a second to collect his thoughts before taking a deep breath. “I can’t give you a very accurate translation into the English language, but I suppose the closest would be ‘long live the king’. Though it is written with a questioning intent, so it’s more like ‘long live the king, or does he?’.”

Chloe frowned, whether it was at the words or at Lucifer’s knowledge he didn’t know. She let the curtain fall back into place. “Is that message for us or for someone else?” She muttered. “Ugh, this is so frustrating! We don’t know what his end game is. We don’t know where he’s going to strike next and we can’t just protect every black-haired female in LA.”

“I think it’s a warning.”

Both Lucifer and Chloe spun around to see Dan standing in the door. He was looking at Lucifer, his eyes sending him a clear message: Dan had figured out the meaning as well.

“What do you mean?” Chloe inquired.

“It’s a warning for the ‘king’, whoever he is. He’s telling him that he’s not as untouchable as he might think.” Dan looked from Lucifer to Chloe who, from the looks of it, was wracking her brain trying to figure this out.

“So, that means—”

“He’s coming for him.” Lucifer interrupted. “He’s coming to murder the king.”

|||

The call came late at night. Well, for Lucifer it wasn’t that late, accustomed to nightclub hours as he was. But he thought the Detective would call this way past the spawn’s bedtime.

The caller was a man who liked to call himself Jigsawyer. He was a drug dealer, sometimes dealt with arms as well. He owed Lucifer for saving him from a deal gone wrong a few years back. All Lucifer had done back then was pay off the opposite party of that deal but still, Jigsawyer owed him a favor in return.

“Mr. Morningstar.” The man greeted, his oily voice sounding overly pleased with himself. “Word got around that you’re looking for someone. Or information that could lead to a certain someone.”

Lucifer flicked the stub of his cigarette over the railing of his balcony. “Indeed. What can you tell me?”

“Well, we had a bit of a situation a couple days back. I sold a gun to one Kennedy Marshal. He’s an ex-convict. Said he needed it for a job. Business as usual.” Lucifer’s lips turned into a thin line at that—after all Jigsawyer had just admitted to selling a gun for a hit—but he refrained from saying anything. The man on the other end of the line continued. “Day later, though, we get word that the gun was left at a crime scene and the cops tried to track it back to us. So, obviously, I sent my men after Kennedy. And here’s where it gets interesting for you, Mr. Morningstar. You said, you were looking for people talking about being possessed. Well, my men found Kennedy at the docks, holed up in a warehouse, totally out of it. Barely talked and when he did, he talked of demons.”

Lucifer perked up. This could actually be a good lead. “And where is dear Kennedy now?”

“Last I heard was the docks, but he could be anywhere. I didn’t have anyone track him.”

Lucifer let out an annoyed sigh and pinched the bridge of his nose with two fingers. “Amateurs. Alright, well, I suppose I’ll find him on my own, then.”

Jigsawyer cleared his throat nervously. “So… is my debt paid, then?”

“Once I find Kennedy Marshal and confirm that what you said is true, consider your debt paid.” Lucifer stated and hung up the phone.

Kennedy was a solid lead. He had to find him and soon. The message Rhûn had sent him was all too clear: he wouldn’t stop. And Lucifer could not allow one of his subjects to wreak havoc to LA right under his nose. Rhûn would be punished. One way or another.

For a moment he debated his best course of action. He had three options: find the man on his own, recruit Michael to help him, or recruit Dan to help him. He veered strongly towards option one, for he didn’t think working with Michael was going to end well, and for Dan it might be too dangerous.

However, he had asked Dan to help him with this case, so he thought he at least owed it to him to inform him of what he was up to. He dialed Dan’s number only a few moments later. The dial tone sounded several times before Dan picked up. His voice was groggy from sleep and Lucifer guessed he hadn’t checked the caller ID.

“What?!”

“Daniel, is this a bad time?”

A groan sounded at the other end of the line. “What about the time on the clock gave you that idea?”

“My, are we snarky today. Can’t have that, now, can we?” Lucifer chuckled. A sharp intake of breath from Dan told him it was the wrong thing to say. He mentally scolded himself. After all, he wanted to be careful with what he said around Daniel while the other man was still adjusting. “I did not mean for that to be any sort of threat.” He clarified but doubted that it made the situation any better.

Dan swallowed. “Why are you calling me, Lucifer?”

“Oh, right, I apologize. I only wanted to inform you that I have a lead on our supposed serial killer and I plan on following it. I don’t quite know where to start, yet, but regardless, I thought you should know.”

Dan was silent for a couple of moments. “Do you… want my help with this?”

“Are you offering?” The stunned silence on the other end made Lucifer smile. “Don’t worry, Dan. I don’t expect you to do anything. I just wanted to let you know, since, well, we are sort of working together on this.”

“But I could help. I mean, you said, I should lend you my detective skills. Is there anything I can do?” Dan asked and then quickly added, “Anything legal?”

“I would not ask anything untoward of you.” Lucifer laughed. “But, yes, you could help. Where do you suppose I should look for an ex-convict who recently murdered someone and is now on the run? I should also mention that he’s lost some of his marbles and lurked around the docks for days.”

Dan scoffed quietly. “You really don’t have anywhere to start. Well, um, have you tried looking where he was last seen? That would be the docks, I guess. It’s always good to start at his last known origin.”

“That would be the most plausible idea, yes. I shall do that.” Lucifer said. “Very well, Daniel, I’ll let you get back to sleep.”

“Shouldn’t I come along? I mean, you can’t go in alone without backup. That’s literally one of the first rules you learn on the force.”

“Well, I never enjoyed that sort of education, now have I?” Lucifer huffed. “I don’t need backup, Daniel. I can look out after myself.”

“From what I understood, you were knocked out and kidnapped just a couple of weeks ago.”

“Yes, everyone just loves to rub that in, don’t they?”

“Meet me at the docks in half an hour, Lucifer.”

“Fine. Snarky and pushy. Glad to see you back to your old self.” Lucifer replied too sweetly and hung up. He figured that if Dan felt comfortable enough to give him orders like that, he had probably gotten over the worst of his Lucifer-is-the-Devil-crisis. So, it wouldn’t do any good to keep walking on eggshells around him.

He picked up his leather jacket on the way out, for the skies had opened up that evening and the downpour outside was heavy. His usual suit would be drenched within seconds. He even forewent the Corvette and chose the Maserati instead, one he almost never used.

The docks weren’t too far, especially not, if you broke every speeding law there was, which was why Lucifer reached his destination too early. Dan wasn’t there, yet. He shot him a quick text to let him know where exactly he was waiting, then got out of the car to stand under the shelter of a slanted roof. He fumbled to pull out a cigarette and flicked his lighter open just as Dan’s car pulled up next to his. He lit the cigarette anyways waited as Dan came closer, his pace fast to get out of the rain as quickly as possible.

“Evening, Daniel.”

Apparently, he had been wrong in the assumption that Dan had seen him. The other man flinched terribly at his voice and his eyes frantically searched the dark of the building’s shadows. Lucifer took a step forward, deliberately slowly, so he wouldn’t spook Dan any further.

“Oh, shit, I didn’t see you.” Dan held one hand to his chest.

“Yeah, that happens at night.” Lucifer shrugged. “Are you ready to go? I’d rather not spend the entire night out here.”

Dan nodded. “Where are we going to start? The area isn’t exactly small.”

“Quite the needle in the haystack.” Lucifer agreed. “A single man hiding out here could be hard to find. Maybe I should have brought the hounds.” His face had taken on a contemplating expression.

Dan paled at the suggestion. “I’m glad you didn’t.”

“I thought, you and Fenrir have become friends.”

“That’s not the word I’d use. I still think he’s a menace.”

Lucifer chuckled. “Oh, how right you are. Which is why I wouldn’t bring him. Or his brother for that matter. Once you tell them to hunt, getting them to stop is quite the feat.” He began making his way towards the rows and rows of containers. Dan followed a few paces behind him.

“I thought they listened to you. Are you telling me, you don’t have them under control?”

“Oh, no. Of course, I have them under control. They’re bloodthirsty, though, and in that state of mind they tend to ignore my commands, if I don’t speak to them in Enochian.”

“So, if they’re calm they listen to English?”

“English and any other language but only if the commands come from me. They’re my personal hounds, connected to me. They basically read my mood more than they understand my words.” Lucifer turned to glance at Dan from the corner of his eye. “That being said, as long as I’m around, you don’t have to worry about them, you know that, right?”

“Sure.”

“You don’t sound very convinced.” Lucifer commented. “They won’t hurt you again, Daniel. They just won’t listen to you very well.”

Dan nodded absentmindedly. “Let’s just concentrate on finding your guy. Maybe we should split up and cover more ground that way.”

Lucifer frowned a little, but he saw the sense in the idea. “Do you have your gun with you?”

“I do. Why? Do you think the perp is armed?”

“I don’t know, but I’d prefer it, if you were capable of defending yourself.”

Dan scoffed. “You don’t have a gun, either.”

“When have you ever known me to need a gun?”

Dan opened his mouth to retort something, but he stopped himself, frowning. “How do you—”

“Another time, Daniel. Let’s just go. Yell, if you find him or need me.”

Dan exhaled in exasperation but nodded and they went their separate ways. Lucifer stalked around the containers with an inhuman silence. The deep shadows around him shielded him from view, as he rounded another corner. He didn’t come across a single soul anywhere.

Another fifteen minutes later, he was about to give up and return to Dan. Then his eyes fell on a dark red container, though, with its door slightly ajar. A smile crept upon his face. With sure steps he made his way over and pulled the door open all the way. His mile disappeared almost immediately. Yes, it was sure that someone had been here for quite some time but the state of the left behind furniture, if you could call it that, suggested that whoever it was hadn’t returned.

He stepped out of the container and took in his surroundings. Where would he go, if he had to leave this container behind? “Come out, come out, wherever you are.” He sang quietly.

Lucifer!

The scream ripped through the silence. It echoed across the vast area of the docks and rang in Lucifer’s ears as if it was right beside him. An ice-cold feeling ran down his spine. Wherever Dan was, he was in trouble.

Lucifer reached out mentally to find the mark he’d left on Dan’s soul. At this distance he should be able to feel it. He bit his lips, then squeezed his eyes shut trying to concentrate. “Come on, come on.” There it was. It was faint and far on the edge of his consciousness. But it was there. “I’m coming, Daniel.”

Quickly, he stepped into the shadows between the containers and disappeared. He travelled through them, Dan’s light coming closer and closer until he felt him right in front of him. The room he emerged in was small and smelled of mold. He stepped out of the deep shadow behind a few crates that piled up high towards the open window, the only light source in the room. The door was on the opposite side, handle missing.

With his back to Lucifer, Dan sat on the ground, his hands cuffed to a beam behind his back with Dan’s own handcuffs most likely. His head hung down, chin resting on his chest a small trail of blood running down his forehead from a nasty cut. Otherwise he seemed fine, and no one else was in the room.

Lucifer silently stepped towards him and clasped a hand over Dan’s mouth. Predictably, Dan let out a muffled yell and Lucifer quickly stepped into his field of view and held a finger up to his lips. Dan’s eyes widened with surprise.

“Just me, Daniel. Don’t scream.” He lifted his hand from Dan’s mouth slowly.

“How did you get in?” Dan whispered, a little out of breath.

“Shadows.” Lucifer said in way of an explanation and reached around Dan to free his hands. “Let’s get you out of here, shall we?” His fingers found the handcuffs and they sprung open. He caught them before they could clatter to the ground and handed them back to Dan, who sat and rubbed his wrists with a look of wonder in his eyes as Lucifer held out his cuffs. “Who did this?” Lucifer asked, his voice suddenly cold and low as he eyed the cut on Dan’s forehead.

“It was probably the guy you were trying to find. He seemed a bit out of it. But he hit me with a two-by-four and it knocked me out long enough for him to lock me up here. He took my gun as well.”

“Well, good thing you’ve got some pipes on you or I would have never known you’re in trouble.”

“He went out looking for you after I called your name, figuring that I wasn’t alone. But I guess he didn’t count on you being able to teleport into the room.” Dan grinned a little.

“I didn’t teleport.” Lucifer said with a grimace.

“Yeah, okay, maybe we should worry about how we’re going to get out of here.” Dan got up from the floor and stepped towards the heavy door that seemed impossible to open from this side. He pushed against it with his shoulder, but the door didn’t yield.

Lucifer followed and stood beside him. “Why worry?” He grinned. “Allow me.” He nudged Dan to the side a little. He barely even reached back before he slammed his flat hand against the door. It flew open with a bang, the hinges squeaking in protest, as the lock was entirely busted. Dan’s mouth was wide open as he watched Lucifer step over the threshold into the brightly lit storage hall on the other side. It was filled with more containers along the walls and a few piles of scrap metal here and there. When Dan didn’t follow, Lucifer turned to look at him. “What? You wanted out, didn’t you?”

“I just—I just didn’t know you could—”

“Yes, yes, I’m not an entirely useless asset most of the time. Now come on, I want to catch this guy. With any luck, that was enough ruckus for him to come running.”

He had barely finished his sentence, when a shot rang out and a bullet pinged off a metal pipe a few feet to his right. Instantly, he ducked and pulled Dan down as well. He couldn’t tell where the shooter was, but he knew they needed shelter. He grabbed Dan by his jacket and dragged him along as he hurried to take cover behind a hollowed-out truck.

“Bloody hell!” He hissed as another bullet buried itself into the metal of the truck’s hood.

“Did you not hear the part where I said he has my gun?” Dan said, annoyance almost covering the panic in his voice.

Lucifer sighed and glanced at Dan for a moment. “I need you to stay right here, alright? Don’t move. I’ll take care of him.”

“What?! Are you crazy?” Dan’s eyes were wide with shock. “You can’t just walk up to him while he’s—”

He broke off, when they heard footsteps approaching. They were quickly coming closer and they had nowhere to go, there was nothing else to hide behind around. Lucifer held his breath, listening closely. The footsteps stopped. The man, supposedly Kennedy Marshal, was standing right on the opposite side of the truck.

Without making a sound, Lucifer gently pushed Dan to the left towards the rear end of the truck, hoping that Kennedy would walk the other way around. But luck wasn’t on his side. Just as Dan reached the trunk, still ducked to remain unseen, Kennedy walked around the truck with a few quick steps, immediately spotting them.

He leveled the gun at Dan with a crazed smile on his face.

Lucifer reacted instantly. When the shot rang out, Lucifer had already grabbed Dan and had put himself between his friend and the gun. The bullet, quickly followed by two more, slammed into his chest, leaving three small holes in his shirt but otherwise left him unharmed.

He heard Dan’s shocked inhale behind him and felt the man’s hands reaching and holding onto his left arm from behind, but he paid him no mind. Instead he leveled his eyes at Kennedy who didn’t seem to have realized that the bullets hadn’t done him any harm. Lucifer took a step forward, eyes menacing, and Kennedy pulled the trigger once more.

Lucifer had prepared himself for getting hit once again but the usual jab of pressure from a bullet didn’t come. Instead, he heard Dan cry out in pain.

Lucifer whirled around. Dan was on his knees, clutching his right arm with his left, blood pooling on his jeans, dripping from the bullet wound in his forearm. “Dan!” Lucifer panicked. “No, no, no. Not again.” He was kneeling next to Dan before he knew it, the perp with the gun forgotten for the moment.

“Lucifer”, Dan breathed out, his eyes wide with pain, tears pooling inside, as he stared at Lucifer’s chest. “You’re hurt.”

“I’m perfectly fine. You on the other hand…” He turned to glare at Kennedy who was watching them with clear shock written across his face. When Lucifer’s eyes met his with a murderous glare, he lifted the gun once more and pulled the trigger.

The bullet struck Lucifer on his left temple and Dan’s shout next to him almost made him flinch more than the bullet. Without thinking about it much longer, Lucifer grabbed Dan around his waist, mindful of his injured arm. “Take a deep breath!” He ordered, though he doubted Dan was in any state to listen. It was the only warning he gave before he disappeared, Dan along with him, as he took flight.

He didn’t go very far. Lucifer and Dan appeared on the other side of the spacious hall behind one of the containers. Gently, he lowered Dan to lean against the cool metal exterior of it, then carefully held Dan’s face between both hands.

“Hey, look at me.” He spoke quietly. “Dan, focus and look at me.”

“What just happened?” Dan asked, his voice shaky. “What did you—”

“I’ll explain later. Are you alright? Can you breathe fine?” A nod was his answer, although a very timid one. “Good. Stay here and put pressure on your wound. Don’t move.”

And once again he disappeared, his wings taking him to stand right in the middle of the hall. “Kennedy Marshal!” He called out. “Come and get me! I’m right here. Go on and take another shot!”

The man appeared from behind the truck where Dan and Lucifer had hidden just moments ago. He was visibly confused, the gun still in his hand but pointed at nothing. His throat worked to stutter out a single word. “D-demon.”

Lucifer’s smile grew sinister. “Not exactly. Though I’ve got a couple of questions regarding one.” He advanced on the man with long strides and before Kennedy knew what was happening, Lucifer had him by the throat. “Care to tell me what I want to know?”

Kennedy’s fingers scraped across Lucifer’s hands at his throat and he tried to push against the Devil’s chest but to no avail. His attempts felt like a light breeze to Lucifer, if not less. “Please, I—please—” He choked. “I didn’t have a choice!”

“Oh, I’m not here because you killed that girl, though your punishment will be unparalleled, trust me. No, what I want to know is, where is Rhûn?”

“Who? What? I don’t know what you’re talking about?” Kennedy was panicking.

“Come now, don’t be shy. The demon who possessed you, where is he?”

“I don’t know.”

“Is he still in your head, huh? Does he peek in from time to time?” Lucifer’s fingers tightened around Kennedy’s throat, and he thought he felt his eyes burning. Kennedy immediately confirmed that assumption with a strangled yelp, his eyes bulging.  Lucifer squeezed his eyes shut to quench the white fire burning in his irises. Hate bubbled up from deep inside him, anger at his father for turning him back into this. An angel. A servant of God.

With a roar he lifted Kennedy up, turned and threw him halfway across the room. The man’s scream rang in his ears, but it couldn’t drown out the pounding of his own heart as it pumped fury through his veins. He watched Kennedy slam into the concrete and in the blink of an eye he disappeared from where he was standing, reappearing in the air right above Kennedy’s writhing form. Gracefully but with incredible force he landed on top of the man, one hand at his throat again, the other one slamming into his sternum. The crack of bone underneath his fist felt incredibly satisfying.

“Last chance.” He growled into the man’s ear. “Where is the demon?”

Kennedy’s face was white, his lips bloody from where he’d bitten them trying to keep from crying out. His cheeks were covered in tear tracks and his breathing was labored, his fractured or possibly broken sternum giving him trouble. “Please… I don’t know where he is.” He whimpered, shaking his head.

“Too bad. I guess, we’ll have to do this the hard way. Or maybe I should say the painful way.” He grabbed Kennedy by his chin and forced his eyes to meet his own.

Forcefully he pushed into Kennedy’s memories who promptly screamed at the intrusion. Lucifer knew it was painful, he wanted it to be and he was in no way trying to be gentle. The screams were tiresome, though, so he pushed further until he slowly took control, forcing Kennedy’s consciousness to a small corner of his mind. The screams died down as soon as Lucifer was in the front seat of Kennedy’s brain and he swiftly continued to dig through the man’s memories.

Eventually, he found what he was looking for. It was like a sort of residue Rhûn had left behind in the man’s mind. It was dark, black like tar and very tenacious. Lucifer figured it was a safe way for Rhûn to invade Kennedy’s head again, if he wanted to.

He latched onto the demon’s essence and immediately he was bombarded with new images, sounds, feelings. It felt like a waterfall, pouring it all down on Lucifer. Quickly, he pulled back.

He got what he needed. A location. A smile spread across his face and he was about to let Kennedy take control again, but he lingered for a moment longer, erasing the black residue in the man’s mind with a burst of his power, burning it away. Only then he dropped Kennedy’s head to the concrete floor.

“You’re welcome.”

Kennedy was on the brink of unconsciousness, blood trickling from his nose. A whimper left him but nothing more. Lucifer was tempted to press down onto his sternum once more to see if he would pass out but a sound to his right made him look up.

His eyes met Dan’s who was looking out from behind the container. His face was pale, probably from the pain and the blood loss caused by the bullet wound. His eyes were hyper alert, though, fixed on Lucifer and filled with terror. Oh, no. How long had he been watching? The entire time?

Slowly, Lucifer got up. He tried not to make any haste movements, so he wouldn’t frighten Dan, but it seemed that he had passed that point long ago. Dan pushed himself back using his uninjured arm, the panic in his eyes growing, if that was even possible. Lucifer could feel his anxiety pouring off of him in waves and he swallowed heavily.

He’d done that. Dan was this scared because of him. How could he have been so careless, letting him see all of that?

“Daniel, please, I—” What was he supposed to say? He couldn’t take any of it back. “Dan, I won’t hurt you.” He took a careful step forward. “And I won’t touch him again, either. Please… don’t be afraid.”

“You—you tortured him.” Dan’s voice was weak, quivering with how strained he was. “You almost killed him.”

“I would never have killed him. I promise you. I do not kill humans.” Another step forward. Dan didn’t shy away further.

“How am I supposed to believe that, when you can apparently crush us like bugs?”

Lucifer looked down for a moment but returned his eyes to Dan, trying to convey his honesty. “I could, yes, but it’s against my father’s rules. Angels are not allowed to kill humans. I may not follow a lot of my father’s orders but this one I obey invariably.” He paused and swallowed his pride. “And as much as I love to deny it, I am an angel. And I do not wish to harm the innocent.”

“And who is innocent in your eyes? Who else would you torture like you tortured him, huh?”

Lucifer’s eyes hardened. “He shot you. He hurt you. So, I hurt him in return. And I will do so with everyone who hurts those I care about.” He tried to interpret Dan’s expression, but Dan just shook his head minimally and held his injured arm closer to his chest.  “Let me take you home, Dan.”

“I need to go to a hospital! If you didn’t notice, I got shot.” Dan growled, anger mixing with the fear. “Not like you would know what that’s like, you freak!” He waved his hand at the bullet holes in Lucifer’s shirt.

He flinched a little at the insult but quickly glossed over it. He approached Dan, ignoring how the man’s breathing hitched, and crouched next to him. “I think, we can skip the hospital. We just need to get you home and then I can take care of your arm.”

Dan avoided his eyes now that Lucifer was closer, and Lucifer figured it was because Dan had witnessed him use his powers on Kennedy. With a quick intake of breath, Dan spoke. “What about him?” He nodded towards Kennedy behind Lucifer.

“You can’t expect me to help him.” Lucifer said with an expression of outright disgust on his face.

“He’s half dead because of you!”

“And he deserves way worse!” Lucifer roared.

Dan shrank back, he had been looking at Lucifer for a moment, but was now pointedly staring at Lucifer’s chest instead. Sighing, Lucifer closed his eyes, hiding the glow. He really needed to get that under control. “Please, Dan, let me take you home.” Dan hesitated but nodded. He tried to get up, but Lucifer stopped him, much to Dan’s confusion. “I wasn’t planning on driving, if you’re okay with that.”

Dan gulped. “You mean, you want to teleport us again?”

Lucifer didn’t correct him on his choice of words this time. “Yes.”

“It feels awful.” Dan muttered. “I mean, I barely had time to notice anything, but it feels like being ripped apart and being squeezed through a tube at the same time. Not painful, but very, very uncomfortable.”

“I’m sorry, I didn’t know.” Lucifer said solemnly. “I have never taken humans before.”

Dan just shrugged in answer. Slowly, silently asking for permission, Lucifer reached out to hold on to Dan’s waist once more. The other man didn’t stop him, so he held on tighter and got ready to use his wings to carry them. Dan tensed as Lucifer did the same.

“Best you take a deep breath and close your eyes. It will take a few moments longer this time.” Lucifer instructed quietly. As soon as he felt Dan breathe in, he took off.

|||

The teleporting didn’t feel any better the second time around. As soon as he felt something solid beneath himself again, Dan pulled away from Lucifer. He felt nauseous. The pain radiating from his arm, pulsing through his entire left side with every heartbeat only made it worse. He found, he was sitting on the couch in his own house. For whatever reason, he had assumed, Lucifer would bring him to the penthouse above Lux, but ‘home’ had apparently meant Dan’s apartment.

Lucifer stood up straight and took a few steps back himself, giving Dan space. There was something in his eyes, Dan would have guessed it was guilt. Lucifer was anxious as hell, no pun intended. And Dan couldn’t for the life of him figure out why.

Was the Devil really afraid? Was that possible? After what Dan had just seen him do? The man—no the angel—had crushed Kennedy Marshal without even breaking a sweat. It had made Dan realize that he really didn’t have any idea what Lucifer was capable of. And those eyes—

He supposed it was the shock alone that kept him from completely freaking out at the moment. This being right in front of him was dangerous. And Dan didn’t stand a chance against him.

“I’ll just—” Lucifer began, gesturing, but Dan couldn’t interpret any meaning from it. Lucifer grimaced. “Give me a second.”

He brought up both his hands in front of his chest as if he was about to pray. A moment later, Dan realized that that was exactly what he was doing. His head was slightly tilted back, eyes closed, his lips moving slightly.

“What are you doing?” Dan frowned.

“Calling my brother.”

“Your bro—” Dan began but flinched violently, when suddenly another figure stood next to Lucifer. The movement jarred his arm and he cursed, the pain spiking.

“What happened?” Michael took a step forward, past Lucifer, to take in the scene before him.

“Daniel got shot.” Lucifer stated matter-of-factly.

Michael raised an eyebrow. “By the looks of it, so did you. So, what happened?”

“Does it matter?” Lucifer said with a roll of his eyes. “We were following a lead. And things went downhill rather quickly.” He bit his lip. “Will you please help him?”

Michael scoffed and shook his head in disbelief. “I can’t believe you, brother. You get him into this situation and then you won’t even fix it on your own.”

“What would you have me do?” Lucifer challenged.

“You could very well heal him yourself!”

“I will not use them! I won’t let him control me like that.”

“Pride always was your weak spot, Lucifer.” Michael sneered. “You’ve already used them, haven’t you? So, why is this any different? He knows what you are, so what’s stopping you?”

Lucifer seemed like he was about to retort something, but he stopped. He worried his lip between his teeth and looked down. Dan had watched the entire exchange between the brothers silently, holding his arm to his chest, slowly getting more and more lightheaded from the blood loss.

Michael stared at his brother and when he didn’t get an answer, he huffed. “Fine. This one time.” He turned and approached Dan, crouching next to the couch. Just like Lucifer had done in the warehouse, he reached out, a silent question for permission in his eyes. He carefully placed his hand on Dan’s and Dan immediately felt heat spreading from where their skin touched. It warmed his arm, pooling around the bullet wound, easing the pain until it disappeared. A quiet ping sounded, when the bullet fell from his arm to the floor.

Michael pulled his hand away and Dan looked down at his arm. It was still covered in blood but there was no sign of the wound. It had healed entirely. Carefully, he moved his arm and breathed out harshly, when he felt no pain whatsoever. “Oh my god.” He whispered, then realized what he’d said and quickly corrected himself. “I mean—sorry, I didn’t mean—”

“Don’t worry about it.” Michael said, patted Dan’s knee amiably, before getting up and turning towards his brother. “You and I, we’re going to have a talk later.” He pointed at Lucifer’s chest, then went to walk past him. Lucifer’s hand on his shoulder stopped him.

“Thank you, Michael.”

“Only for you, brother.”

And with that, Michael disappeared right before Dan’s eyes again, a soft whump of displaced air sounding in the room.

Lucifer remained, standing awkwardly a few feet away from the couch, Dan was still sitting on. He shifted his stance slightly before coughing once. “I best take my leave as well. I’ll return your car to you before morning.”

“No.” Dan said determinedly. “You will not leave right now.” Lucifer’s eyes shot up to meet Dan’s and Dan continued, before his courage would leave him altogether. “I want answers. I want to know what you are actually capable of and you won’t leave anything out this time.”

For an awfully scary moment, Lucifer just stared at him, but then he nodded slowly. “As you wish.”

Dan shifted on the couch, not feeling quite ready to move anywhere else just yet. “Just—sit down, please.” Dan asked quietly, not wanting to admit how nervous Lucifer made him by just standing there. Lucifer obeyed his query and moved a chair from the dining table to stand across from Dan. He turned it, so the back was facing towards Dan and then straddled it, leaning his arms on the back rest.

Dan couldn’t help but look at Lucifer’s chest again, where three bullet holes were visible in his shirt, partially hidden by the leather jacket he was still wearing. The bullets had hit him right in the chest, not to mention the headshot that had followed.

“So, you’re bulletproof?”

Lucifer nodded. “I am.”

“But Chloe shot you.” Dan pointed out. “And you said, under certain circumstances you could get shot and killed.”

“That was the truth.” Lucifer straightened a bit and ran one hand through his hair. “When I am around Chloe, I lose my immortality. I wasn’t aware of that little fact, when she shot me, but I figured it out a little while later.”

“Why? Why would Chloe make you vulnerable?”

“The running theory is that it has something to do with her status as a literal miracle.” Lucifer grimaced a little. “She is the product of my father’s intent and Amenadiel’s blessing of her mother. Which not only causes my vulnerability but also makes her immune to my abilities.”

Dan’s jaw dropped. “Chloe was made by God specifically? Why would he do that?”

“No one knows my father’s plan. Most probably he’s doing it just to spite me.”

Dan took a moment to process that. Was anyone he knew normal anymore? Even Chloe was a product of divine intervention now. Who would reveal themselves as something supernatural next? He felt like his entire life was turning itself upside down. And not very gently.

He tried to focus, tried to get back to the point. “And you can teleport wherever you want? Just like that?”

Lucifer looked like that had been the question he’d hoped Dan wouldn’t ask. He grit his teeth a little before answering. “It’s not teleporting.”

“You’re trying to tell me you didn’t teleport us here?”

“Technically, I flew.”

“You what?”

Lucifer sighed. “I flew, alright? It’s flight, not teleportation. Even if it’s metaphysical flight.”

Dan tilted his head to the side a little. “But, wait, you said you cut your wings—” Suddenly he remembered the morning in Lucifer’s penthouse. He had seen Lucifer’s back and it had been completely devoid of any scars. “Your scars are gone.” He muttered.

“A recent development.” Lucifer nodded.

“So, what? You really have wings?” Dan asked, a laugh escaping him. “I mean, come on, that’s ridiculous.” At Lucifer’s stony expression, his amused smile faltered. “You’re serious? Where are they, then?”

“Hidden.” Lucifer stated courtly. “Can’t very well walk around with an eighteen-foot wingspan, now can I?”

Dan huffed. “Alright. Show me, then?”

“That wouldn’t be very wise. You see, divinity can be rather overwhelming to the human brain and I’d rather keep yours from turning into mush.”

“Yeah, right.” Dan crossed his arms. “Any more excuses you’d like to get out?”

Lucifer glared but Dan could see his determination faltering. After a few more moments, Lucifer let out a harsh curse in that native language of his, before reaching into his leather jacket. He pulled his closed fist out again, holding it out in front of him, his eyes fixed on Dan. “I want you to take a look at the feather—a very short look—and then we’ll see, whether you can deal with this.” He held out his fist towards Dan and opened it slowly.

It revealed a small down feather of the brightest white Dan had ever seen. He found himself almost unable to tear his eyes away from it, but when Lucifer pulled his hand back, Dan looked up to meet his eyes.

“Impressive, Daniel. I knew, you were more complex than most people give you credit for, but you’re not easily affected by the divine.” Lucifer hummed a little to himself. He let the feather disappear into his jacket again.

Dan raised his brows. “So, did I pass your little test?”

“Yes, you did.” Lucifer nodded, straightening a little before leaning his arms on the back rest of the chair again. He cracked his head to the side once, his eyes never leaving Dan. If Dan had to guess, he would have said that he was stalling. Eventually, Lucifer muttered, “try not to fall down in worship”, before rolling his shoulders in a smooth motion.

Right in front of Dan’s eyes two breathtakingly white wings slowly unfurled from Lucifer’s back.

Lucifer stopped short from stretching them out entirely for the room didn’t offer enough space. The wings curled forward a little and rose with Lucifer taking a breath in. All Dan could do was stare. Before him sat an angel. An actual angel. Though the leather jacket and dark jeans made him look every bit the avenging angel of punishment that he was. The white was a stark contrast to his dark hair, the vibrant color proof of his divine origin.

“Actual wings.” Dan whispered, trying to wrap his head around the fact that Lucifer had apparently flown him home using these exact wings. They were magnificent and terrifying in their beauty and otherworldliness.

He barely registered that he had leaned forward, lifting his hand, reaching for the white feathers. Lucifer’s reaction was instant. In the blink of an eye, he had pulled his wings back, raising them behind his back for a moment, a terrifying display of aggression, before he rolled his shoulders and they were gone.

“You don’t ever touch an angel’s wings without their explicit permission.” Lucifer stated calmly but there was tension behind his words.

Dan nodded, swallowing down any words. He almost felt ashamed for what he had been about to do. He had known it to be wrong, to touch them, but he still wanted it. “Sorry.” He said in a small voice.

Lucifer relaxed in his chair and waved a hand. “You didn’t know. Don’t worry about it.”

A few minutes passed with neither of them saying a word before Dan spoke up again. “Can you actually… you know, really fly? Not the metaphysical stuff you were talking about. Actual flight?”

Lucifer smiled a little. “You humans, always so obsessed with flying. Yes, Daniel, I can fly. Or at least I could. Haven’t flown in over six years, so my flight muscles are a bit worse for the wear. I’d have to work out a little before I attempt so much as a glide.”

“How are they back, if you cut them off?”

Lucifer seemed to think about that for a moment. “To be honest, I don’t know. I thought it was my father who gave them back, trying to force his control over me and making me his loyal soldier again”, he grimaced in disgust, “but lately I’m not so sure that’s the case.”

“I don’t understand.” Dan admitted.

“It’s complicated.” It seemed like that was the only answer he would get but then Lucifer took a breath and explained. “With the wings comes power and responsibility. I used to be Heaven’s general alongside Michael, and over time Hell caused me to grow even more powerful. When I cut my wings off, I rid myself of all that. I didn’t want it. I didn’t want to be a pawn in my father’s game.” Hurt flashed across his face at the admission but it was gone just as quickly. “And now they’re back and Michael says I might have done that myself. He thinks that I have control over it all, my power and my wings…” He trailed off.

Dan wasn’t sure, if he got any of that really. Lucifer didn’t want the power that was bestowed upon him, that much was clear. “If you don’t want them, the wings or the power, why don’t you just get rid of them again?”

“Oh, I’ve tried. I cut them off over and over again. I lost count of how many times.”

Dan gulped. He didn’t think his suggestion through. Cutting off body parts was still a rather gruesome act of self-harm. He couldn’t believe Lucifer had done that to himself. “You shouldn’t do that.”

“What?”

Was he really that clueless? “You shouldn’t hurt yourself. You think it’s your father’s doing—God’s doing. So, who knows, maybe he wants to hurt you and by cutting them off you’re playing right into his plan.”

“You don’t know my father’s plan.”

“And neither do you.”

Lucifer’s expression was caught somewhere between frustration and realization and Dan wondered, if he’d actually gotten through to him. Smiling a little, Lucifer flexed his back. “If the wings are really my own doing, maybe they’re not so bad. But everything else…”

“What else is there?”

“My abilities. They resurfaced, when the wings reappeared. My grace amplified, for lack of a better word. When I rid myself of the wings, my power and grace were stuffed deep down into my subconscious. I barely kept any of my abilities.” His fingers had begun to tap on the back rest of the chair, the rhythm unknown to Dan. “Now they’ve come back tenfold. And that scares me.”

Dan hesitated before asking his next question. “What can you do, then? What powers do you have?”

Lucifer chuckled but it missed any sort of joy. “We’d be having a shorter conversation, if I were to tell you what I can’t do.”

“Are you serious?”

“Deadly serious, in this case.” He rubbed one hand across his forehead. “Dan, you need to understand that I have done terrible things in my father’s name before I even went to Hell. I was his punisher even back then. Earth wasn’t his first little project, you know. There were many before you.”

“What happened to them?”

“I did.” Lucifer looked down, defeat radiating from his posture. “I destroyed them. I ended entire planets, brought more death than you can imagine.”

“Are you saying, you could wipe out the entire planet, if you wanted to?”

“Do you know what the apocalypse prophesizes?”

“Earth’s destruction, I guess.” Dan shrugged. It came out more relaxed than he was in that moment.

Lucifer nodded solemnly. “And it is supposed to happen by my hand. That was part of the reason I got rid of my power. Despite what everyone thinks, I have taken quite the liking to your little planet and I don’t want to be its destruction. And now,” he sighed, “my powers are back, stronger than ever before, and I’m scared that if I use them, I’ll get lost somewhere along the way and bring upon that so-called apocalypse.”

Dan blinked. “Surely it can’t happen, if you don’t want it to, right?”

“Dan, I cause earthquakes, when I lose my temper. I might incinerate all of Los bloody Angeles, if I were to lose control.”

The nausea was returning full force now. Dan thought, the edges of his vision were darkening but maybe that was just his imagination. Lucifer—the Lucifer, the Devil sitting right in front of him—could destroy the city in its entirety, if he were so inclined, with nothing but a thought.

Suddenly Dan found he couldn’t breathe. The air never reached his lungs, his chest felt too tight to let anything through. His hand found his own throat, trying in vain to do anything about what was happening. Dimly, somewhere in the back of his mind, he realized he was having a panic attack. He was trained to deal with people suffering from those, but he had never had one himself. He didn’t know what to do.

“Daniel?” Lucifer’s voice reached his ears through what felt like seven layers of thick cotton, echoing strangely inside his head. “Dan? Hey, Dan!”

He tried to pull backwards, when hands covered his cheeks and forced his head to face forward. However, he found he had no chance resisting. The long fingers splayed across his cheeks were strong and didn’t give him any choice but give in.

“Dan, please, calm down. Everything is alright.”

Was it really? How could anything ever be alright again? The Devil was currently trying to talk him out of his panic attack that he only had because of the Devil in the first place. His breathing had reached the point of erratic and it only seemed to get worse.

“I hate to do this, Daniel, please don’t make me.”

He couldn’t make sense of Lucifer’s words. They were all jumbled, when they reached his brain, and they got drowned out by the sound of his heart beating in his ears. As his eyes flicked from here to there trying to find anything that would calm the rising terror inside of him, they suddenly found their dark brown counterparts and he felt himself freeze.

Gently, Lucifer lowered his hands, his eyes focused on Dan’s, the latter feeling his chest expand with every breath he took. Breathing got easier again and the room behind Lucifer came into view once more. Dan hadn’t realized how everything had started to turn black.

A few minutes later, it could have been hours as well, Lucifer broke eye contact with him and retreated instantly, back to the chair he had been sitting on, leaving Dan staring at nothing in front of him. “I’m sorry.” Lucifer said, his voice quiet and maybe even ashamed. “I didn’t know what else to do.”

“… what did you do?” Dan asked, his voice breaking a little at the end of his question.

“All I did was soothe the terror. I promise, I didn’t get into your head. I won’t do that to you again.”

All Dan could do was nod. What else was he supposed to do? He was completely at Lucifer’s mercy, if the Devil wanted it. It made Dan feel impossibly powerless. He didn’t know what drove him to voice his thoughts, but he did anyways. “We must look like ants to you.”

“More like giants, really.” Lucifer muttered, and knowing Lucifer that was the utter truth.

“Why did you never tell anyone about any of this?” Dan realized the question was stupid as soon as it had left his mouth. Lucifer’s raised eyebrows only confirmed that.

Dan hadn’t expected him to answer, but he did. “I do not want to lose you. Any of you. Not you, not Chloe. Not even your spawn or Miss Lopez. You’re the first… friends I’ve ever had. And I feared that if I were to tell anyone, they would run scared. Just like everyone else who found out who or what I am.” The answer was brutally honest and Dan couldn’t help but think that Lucifer had never opened up like this before.

“So, that’s why you haven’t told Chloe.”

“Do you really think she would take this any differently than you?” Lucifer scoffed. “You know her. She is very adamant about what reality is and I would rip that away right from underneath her feet.”

Dan hummed. “Well, I suppose you’ve told her on many occasions. You just never showed her. The wings, I mean.”

“The wings would be better than the alternative I suppose.”

“You mean the eyes?”

Lucifer flinched a little. “I apologize for that. I didn’t mean for you to see.”

“Is that what you showed them? The ones that ended up like Jimmy Barnes? Did you show them your red eyes and they lost it to the point of insanity?”

“Well, I usually showed them more than the red eyes. I showed them what I call my Devil face. Not that that’s possible anym—” His head shot up and his eyes bore into Dan’s with an intensity that was almost scary. “Hold on. Repeat to me what you just said.”

“What?”

“Dan. What did you just say?!”

“I asked ‘did you show them your red eyes, so they lost—’” He stuttered out but Lucifer held up a hand to interrupt him.

“You said red. How do you know they were red?”

Dan was confused. “I saw them earlier. At the docks. You got angry and your eyes went red.”

Lucifer suddenly stood, pushing the chair away and approaching Dan with two careful steps. “They shouldn’t be. My Devil face was taken from me. My eyes shouldn’t be red.”

“But they were.”

Lucifer leaned down until his face was at one level with Dan’s. “What color are they now?” Dan gasped and shrank back into the cushions of the couch, when suddenly Lucifer’s eyes burned white. The air in the room smelled of ozone and Lucifer’s presence felt way bigger and more intense all of a sudden.

Dan couldn’t get his voice to work but his mouth formed the word white and immediately Lucifer’s eyes dimmed, returning to their usual dark color.

“I’m sorry. I shouldn’t have done that.” Lucifer backed away. “I should leave. And you should probably rest.”

“Lucifer—” Dan got up from the couch for the first time, his leg tingling with pins and needles. He didn’t know what else to say, though.

“I really have to go. I need to speak with my brother.” He was already at the door when he turned around once more. “Daniel?”

“Yes?”

“Should you ever find yourself in peril like you did today, I suppose you may pray to me.” Lucifer’s eyes were fixed on a point somewhere past Dan’s left shoulder.

“You hear people that pray to you?”

Lucifer smiled weakly at that. “The Devil doesn’t, no. But with my wings returned, the angel that I am does, if the one who prays truly believes.” He explained. “You’ll have to address me by another name, though, for me to hear. My old name, if you will. However, I will ask of you not to use that name in any other situation.”

Dan nodded, sensing Lucifer’s insistence on that topic. “Alright.”

Lucifer raised his eyes to meet Dan’s. “Samael. You may pray to Samael.”

Chapter Text

When Dan stepped out of his apartment building the next morning, he found his car parked in his usual spot. Lucifer really had returned it sometime last night. On the front seat he found his keys, which already made him shake his head—anyone could have stolen the car—but even worse was the post-it note on the steering wheel letting him know that his gun was in the glove department.

With an aggravated huff he got into his car and quickly pulled out of the parking space. When he arrived at the precinct, it was still early, and few people were already at their desks. He dropped his bad on his chair and immediately found his way towards the coffee maker and the vending machine. Breakfast was important after all.

As he waited, his cup filling with coffee to the brim, he glanced around, and his eyes fell on Lucifer, who was leaning against the glass wall of the conference room. An unusual sight to behold, if Dan was being honest. Lucifer wasn’t one to show up early, especially not, if Chloe wasn’t there, yet. Balancing his coffee in one hand and a sandwich from the vending machine in the other, he made his way over to Lucifer.

“Didn’t expect you to be here. What’s got you up so early?” Dan asked without greeting, as he came to a stop next to the taller man and took a bite out of his sandwich.

Lucifer gave a small shrug. “Don’t have anywhere else to be.” He gave Dan’s sandwich a disdainful look before shaking his head and going back to observing the room.

“Listen, man, about yesterday, I wanted to ask,” he pause and glanced over his shoulder to see whether anyone was close by, “did you get anything from Marshal or not? I mean, do you have a lead? Where to go next? Because I’m telling you, Chloe won’t take much longer before she figures something out. I’m sure of it. It’s like a gut feeling I’ve developed, when it comes to her.”

Lucifer tilted his head to the side a little, a small smile tugging at his lips. It made Dan feel like he was missing something. “Right, and where is the Detective? Is she here?”

“Not, yet, I think. But she’ll be here soon.” Dan said in answer. “So, Marshal? Anything to go on?”

“Oh, you want information from me, is that it?” The smile on his face grew.

“Of course, I do.” Dan frowned. “What’s going on? I mean, I thought, we were working together on this. You have to tell me stuff, if I’m supposed to help. Besides, what if that message was for real? He could be after you and that means you have to be smart about your next step. Maybe you could just let him come to you.”

The amusement was now abundantly clear on the other man’s face and when Dan’s confusion only deepened, he let out a snort.

“What’s so damn funny?”

Dan was quickly getting annoyed but when he gave Lucifer a once-over, his face fell almost instantly. Instead of his usual three-piece suit, the man was wearing a black button-down shirt, the sleeves rolled up to his elbows. Dan’s head snapped up and he took a wary half-step back.

“You’re not Lucifer, are you?”

“Of course not.” Michael chuckled and pushed his hands into the pockets of his jeans. He was still smiling, infinitely amused at the whole thing. “Oh, it’s grand how none of you notice. I mean, really, I wasn’t even trying to pretend to be my brother but still no one questioned me.”

“What are you doing here?” Dan hissed. “You can’t be here. What if someone sees you?”

“Have you been listening? Everyone already has seen me. What are you afraid is going to happen?” Michael raised a challenging eyebrow. “Even if they notice I’m not Lucifer, they’ll be content to hear that I am merely his brother and then they’ll go about their day.”

“Lucifer will be pissed.”

“Really?” Michael looked actually taken aback.

“Uh, yeah.” Dan stated.

“Why?”

“Because you are invading his privacy by being here.”

Michael was about to retort something, when out of nowhere Chloe appeared next to them. “Morning, you two. Scheming as usual, I see.” She grinned. “I’m kidding. But you do seem to spend a lot of time together lately. Not that I’m complaining.” She held up her hands.

“Chloe, hey. Morning.” Dan stuttered out and refused to look at Michael who was seemingly inspecting every inch of Chloe, his eyes raking all over her. “Good to see you.” He added quickly. “And no, no scheming going on here.”

“You’re really selling it, Dan.” She looked to Michael. “And simply by not saying a word, I already know you are hiding something, Mister Morningstar.”

“Is that so?” Michael countered.

“It is.” Chloe nodded firmly. “Anyways, I have to make a few calls. When you’re done here, come help me, would you?” She smiled at him and Dan hoped to God she wasn’t flirting with the wrong brother right now. Those hopes were crushed, when she started to turn away only to look back at Michael once more. “Nice shirt, by the way.”

As soon as she was out of earshot, Dan fumbled to get his phone out of his pocket. “That’s it. I’m calling Lucifer. You can’t be here.”

“Touchy, touchy.” Michael grumbled but didn’t make a move to stop Dan. Instead he simply continued to observe the room. He seemed fascinated by it, almost captivated by every little thing that was happening. Dan figured it was a ‘normal’ thing, seeing as the angel probably didn’t have a lot of contact with humans.

Lucifer picked up after the second ring. “What is it, Daniel?”

“Look, Lucifer,” he spoke with a hushed voice, fearing someone might hear him talk to Lucifer who was supposedly standing right next to him, “I’m at the precinct—”

“Oh, good, I’m here as well. Just in the parking lot. I’ll be up soon.”

Dan paled. “Lucifer, listen! Your brother is here.”

“What?”

“Michael is here. In the bullpen. Everyone thinks he’s you! Chloe has—”

“Did he touch her?!” Lucifer’s voice had taken on a menacing tone and Dan almost dropped the phone, his fingers were so shaky.

“No, no. He didn’t do anything.”

He heard Lucifer exhale on the other end of the line. “Where exactly is he right now?”

“Standing next to me, next to the door to the conference room.” Dan said, looking up at Michael. Lucifer hung up immediately after Dan had spoken and Dan gave his phone a bewildered look.

Michael just narrowed his eyes a little. “Why did you have to tell him?”

Dan was about to answer but with a rustling sound and the distinct sound of someone getting clocked in the jaw, Michael disappeared from one moment to the next. Dan stared at the spot where the angel had just stood and couldn’t help but let his jaw drop. Quickly he glanced around to see, whether anyone had witnessed the sudden disappearance, but no one had paid them any attention.

Dan shook his head and gulped down more of his coffee. He was never going to get used to this.

|||

As soon as his feet touched ground, Lucifer pushed Michael away forcefully, so much so that Michael stumbled and fell. He caught himself on one arm, but he didn’t have the opportunity to get up before his face was suddenly smashed into the sand of the beach they’d landed on. Lucifer was on top of him, one hand pushing his head into the ground, the other pressing hard into Michael’s back, right between his shoulder blades. He was breathing hard, the air hissing through his clenched teeth.

“How dare you?” The question was delivered way calmer than he actually was at the moment.

“Lucifer, please—”

“You don’t go anywhere near them, you understand?”

Michael pushed himself upwards, Lucifer losing his balance and falling back, landing on his ass in the sand. Both brothers got up quickly, neither wanting the other one to get the upper hand. They stood two strides away from each other, dark eyes boring into their counterparts, but neither one attacking.

“Why, huh?” Michael spoke first. “Why can’t I go near them?”

“Are you serious? You are an archangel, they’re human, and oh, before I forget, you look exactly like me!” Lucifer spat with fake humor in his voice. “They shouldn’t see you!”

Michael chuckled. “Really? Some great arguments you’ve got there. Last I checked, you are an archangel as well.”

Lucifer’s jaw clenched and he took a step forward, reducing the distance between them to a minimum. “Don’t.”

“Don’t what, Lucifer?” Michael threw up his arms. “Don’t speak the truth? Because that’s what it is. The truth. You are an archangel, whether you want to be or not. You are my brother.” He paused to see any reaction from Lucifer at his words, but Lucifer’s expression was closed off. “Why are you so adamant about keeping me away from everyone, everything you’ve built here?”

“You forget that I hated you for several millennia. Why should I trust you not to destroy my life here?”

Michael frowned. “You think I want to see you unhappy? You think I want to hurt you?” Lucifer didn’t answer. He turned away, his lips pressed together in a tight line. “Lucifer, I promised you, all I want is to mend things between us.”

“What, and you thought that would happen within a week? Give it a few hundred years and maybe I’ll consider trusting you again. But not like this. Not while I have—while I have all this.” He spread his arms, gesturing at everything around them. “I have built a life here, I have friends, if you can believe it, and I have Chloe. And you,” he pointed a finger at Michael’s chest, “you won’t take that away from me. Neither will father.”

“Not everyone’s out to get you.”

“Bit hard to believe that after everything that happened to me.”

They remained silent, standing next to each other for a few minutes, both looking at the waves crashing on the beach with a sound that was soothing and held the power of the ocean simultaneously.

“What’s the true reason that you don’t want me around them?” Michael asked eventually, his voice quieter than before.

Lucifer didn’t answer right away, thinking of a way to form his answer. “They don’t know about me. Except for Daniel now, I suppose.” A pause followed. “I don’t usually care much about the rules, but they have a certain sense to them sometimes. Divinity and humanity don’t always mix very well. I’ve been lucky so far, but it could go either way any given second.”

“You’re scared that they wouldn’t take it well.”

Lucifer scoffed. “Scared is a strong word.” His eyes were fixed on the horizon, where storm clouds were gathering. “I’m afraid, brother.” He swallowed the lump in his breath. “I don’t think I could take losing them.”

“And you think, if they meet me, they’ll figure it out? That you really are what you say you are?”

Lucifer turned to look at his brother. “Maybe, yeah.”

“You want them to know, though.” At Lucifer’s frown he continued. “I know you, Lucifer. You may be afraid but you want to get the secrets off your chest.”

“I want them to know, yes. But I want to tell them on my own terms. I don’t want to scare them.”

“You think, they’ll be scared of the Devil? Why not just show them the angel?”

Lucifer looked away again and grimaced. “First of all, there is a reason angels’ first words to mankind were ‘be not afraid’, and second, that would be just as much of a lie.”

“I’m not suggesting that you deny being the Devil. But maybe getting used to the idea of the supernatural is easier, when they’re not confronted with the infernal part first thing.” Michael shrugged a little, then smiled teasingly. “Admit it, you are scarier than the common angel.”

Lucifer couldn’t help but smile back at his brother. “Pathetic is what they are. Even back then, all of them groveling at father’s feet and then at mine, when he was busy.” Lucifer let out a put-upon sigh, then glanced sideways at Michael. “You were alright, though.”

“Because I didn’t grovel?”

“Exactly.”

They both chuckled a little, their anger dissipated.

“So, why not introduce me to your friends?” Michael suggested once more.

“And explain why I never mentioned a twin brother? Apparently, that’s an important thing to share, especially between friends.” Lucifer’s expression turned thoughtful. “Maybe, someday. Just not now while I still have a demon to catch.”

“Can I help with that?”

“Not really, no.” lucifer shook his head. “I’ll let you know, if I need your help beating the living daylights out of him. It’s always more fun to do that together and with Maze gone, you are the next best option.”

“I’ll happily be of assistance. Now, what do you say we get out of here before it starts raining. I believe, you need to get back to the station at some point. They’ll be wondering where you’ve disappeared to.” After a quick glance around to confirm that they were indeed alone, Michael revealed his wings, stretching them out to their full span for a moment. When Lucifer made no move to follow his example, he lowered his wings, then folded them away again. “Aren’t you coming?”

“I’m not going to fly back, if that’s what you’re planning to do. But nothing’s stopping you, so go ahead.”

“Why not? Why won’t you fly? I thought you had accepted your wings back.”

“I agreed not to hack them off again, and I don’t mind using them or my powers from time to time. But really only when it’s necessary.”

Michael shook his head. “That’s not the whole truth, is it?”

“I can’t fly, alright?!” Lucifer yelled, throwing his arms up in frustration. “I’m to weak to lift myself. It happens, when you don’t have your limbs attached for a few years.”

“Oh.” Michael said, eloquently.

“Yeah. So, I’m just going to take the shorter way.” Lucifer answered, referring to the metaphysical form of flight. “Don’t worry, I’ll get back to my old self in no time. Speaking of,” he took hold of Michael’s arm, “I’ve got questions for you. Something happened last night.”

“What?”

“You know, how you insisted that I hadn’t lost my Devil face?” Michael nodded at this. “Well, it seems you were right.”

“How so? It just reappeared?” Michael frowned.

“Not all the way, no. But apparently my eyes turned red as I took my anger out on the cretin that shot at Dan. They haven’t done that since I got my wings back.” He explained. “So, I am starting to believe that maybe you are right. Maybe I did this to myself but I can’t figure out how. I mean, how did I give myself my wings back?”

“You are more powerful than you believe yourself to be. Even father knew that. I mean, come on, why else were you the only angel that took part in creation? You are special.”

“Right.” Lucifer scoffed. “I never created wings, though.”

“You created stars with nothing but intent and power, Lucifer. I think, you can manage a pair of wings.” Michael nodded towards him. “You probably just need to concentrate.”

Lucifer looked at his brother with something akin to annoyance in his eyes. He let his eyes glow purposefully, showing them to Michael. “They’re white, though, no matter how much I want them to be red.”

Michael smiled a little and his own eyes changed. His weren’t white like Lucifer’s but more of an electric blue color. “That’s because you are an archangel. You hid that part of yourself, when you were in Hell, but it was always there.” His eyes returned to brown and so did Lucifer’s. “How did you feel last night, when your eyes were red again?”

“Are you my therapist now? Wanting to talk about my feelings?”

“Lucifer, how did you feel?”

“Angry.” Lucifer said through gritted teeth.

“That’s not it, though. You were angry, when I showed up at your apartment. Something must have been different last night.”

Lucifer thought for a moment. Maybe Michael was right. Kennedy Marshal hadn’t just angered him. A lot of things angered him lately and none of them had brought his red eyes back. No, Kennedy Marshal had stirred something else inside of him by attacking him. By attacking Daniel. Lucifer had wanted to hurt the man for his deeds, had wanted to punish him. “That’s it.” It made sense. He had wanted to punish. Punishment was the Devil’s job. So the Devil he’d become.

“You figured it out?” Michael asked, curiosity evident.

“I think, I may have.” He nodded and closed his eyes, searching his mind for that part of him that wanted to punish all those filthy evildoers he encountered. He thought about those who had hurt his friends. First and foremost, that brought up the image of Malcolm before his inner eye. He’d never gotten around to punishing him, though he supposed now he could, if he were to visit Hell willingly. He held on to that thought, the want to punish Malcolm and to torture him down in Hell, and opened his eyes, letting them burn.

Michael’s gaze met his and his brother’s expression turned… sorrowful? “Oh, Lucifer what have they done to you?” He whispered, a hand reaching up to rest on Lucifer’s cheek.

Lucifer pushed it away angrily. “They’re red.” He stated. It had worked, he knew it. “I don’t want or need your pity, Michael. This is who I am and this is who I want to be. It is what Hell made me.” He stepped backwards, slow steps, his gaze still fixed on his brother. “What I want”, he said with emphasis, “is your support. Nothing more. I want my brother.” And with that he disappeared leaving Michael alone on the beach as the first drops of rain began to fall.

When Lucifer entered the precinct, it was already pouring outside. With quick-paced steps he made his way towards the bullpen, keeping a look out for Chloe. She would take his mind off things, she always could. He found her speaking to another detective and he waited politely a few steps away. She noticed him a few moments later and thanked the other man before turning away.

“Hey, where were you?” Chloe asked first thing.

“I had to take care of a little situation. But all’s sorted now. No worries.”

Chloe nodded, then frowned a little. “Hm, was that situation you having to change your outfit?” She gave him a knowing look. “Should I not have said anything earlier? Is that why?”

“Whatever do you mean?” Lucifer questioned, looking down at his suit. “What’s wrong with my outfit?”

“Nothing’s wrong. I’ve come to appreciate your dressed-up look twenty-four seven.” She gestured to his entire body. “It makes you, well, you. But I admit, I liked seeing you in more casual clothes.” She smiled a little, her teeth catching her lip to keep the grin from growing wider. She quickly stepped around Lucifer on her way to her desk. “And I mean, that button-down showed off your arms. Can’t blame me for appreciating that.”

Lucifer failed to follow her for almost an entire thirty seconds. Chloe had just unknowingly complimented Michael’s choice of clothing. And here he stood, feeling jealous of his brother, though Chloe had no clue that it hadn’t been himself this morning. Maybe he would have to introduce them simply to keep that from ever happening again.

On second thought, that last bit about the arms was definitely a compliment. And since when did the Detective so blatantly flirt with him?

As he reached her desk, at which she was sitting now, he leaned down on the table, leveling their heads. “Right, has something happened that I’m not aware of?”

“What do you mean?”

“You’re acting strange. Did I do something wrong? Have I angered you and now you’re passive aggressively trying to get back at me?”

“No, Lucifer, don’t be ridiculous. Everything’s fine.”

“You never compliment me. You always say my ego is already big enough. You don’t even like it, when someone tells me ‘good job’ because you think it will go to my head.” He leaned even closer. “So, something has changed. What is it?”

Of all things he had expected, he didn’t see Chloe blushing coming. She quickly brushed a strand of hair behind her ear, looking down at her desk. “Well, I just—it’s stupid really.” When she looked up and saw Lucifer still staring at her, she crumbled. “Sorry, I was just trying to… I realized, I never say what I want and that it’s unfair to you, so I told myself to be more straightforward from now on.”

“So, you really were flirting with—me?” The crease on his forehead became even more prominent.

“Lucifer, we kissed. I know, it was some time ago and you are infuriating most of the time but I do like you. I just never know where we stand. And that’s what I’m trying to figure out. So, if you don’t want this,” she gestured at the air between them, “going any further, say it now, so I don’t make a fool of myself.”

“You could never.” Lucifer answered. Then he swallowed, pushed himself off the desk to stand straight. “I would very much like for this to go further. But there are things—I just wouldn’t want you to be disappointed. I don’t want you to get hurt.”

Chloe nodded. “I know, things are a bit complicated between us. But I also realized that if I don’t give it a real chance, there’s no way for it to work out. So, this is me giving us a chance.”

“Then we’ll give it a chance together, shall we?”

She mirrored the smile on this face. Lucifer couldn’t put a finger on it, but he felt warm somehow. Not an uncomfortable warmth, but a soothing one, somewhere on the inside. It gave him the needed confidence to ask his next question. “I realize, the spawn is home with you tonight, but would you like me to cook you both dinner tonight?”

“You’re willingly spending time with Trixie?”

“Sacrifices must be made, right?” He teased.

“Terrible sacrifices, I know.” She laughed, then looked up to meet his eyes. “How do you even know that I have her tonight?”

“It’s Wednesday. You always have her Wednesdays.” Lucifer stated surely.

Chloe’s smile was almost fond. “Yeah.” Then she nodded. “I’d love for you to cook.”

“Wonderful. Expect me by six thirty. That should be enough time for the offspring to get to bed on time, right?” He didn’t wait for an answer, instead pulled a chair over from another desk. “So, back to the case. Did you figure anything out? About who could be behind all these murders?”

She blinked a couple times, focusing on the files in front of her again. “Not much, no. I’m waiting for Ella actually to get back to me. She said, she may have found something, when she went over the case of the woman who got killed by her neighbor.”

Elle chose that exact moment to butt in. “Yeah, sorry, Chloe, but that was mostly a dead end.”

“Why only mostly?”

“Well, I looked over the tox screen of the perp that they made when he insisted he must have been drugged. And I compared it with the one from Henley Jr and while neither of them had any known drugs in their system, they found some kind of residue in their blood.” She placed the file on the desk, open on the page of the results. “They tried to figure out what it is but they couldn’t place it. And I looked over it as well.”

Lucifer tried to read the file upside down. “And what do you think it is, Miss Lopez?”

“I couldn’t tell you. If I didn’t know any better, I would say it’s sulfur but it’s not. It’s close, though.”

Lucifer tried to hide the small flinch. Sulfur. It was to be expected. He just didn’t think that anyone would actually find it. Good thing no one’s first conclusion to sulfur was demonic possession.

Chloe groaned quietly. “And we’re nowhere closer to solving anything. Did we at least find anything at the crime scene where Dan was shot? Did the shooter leave any kind of trace in that building?”

Ella shook her head. “No, sorry, the place was clean.”

“Alright.” Chloe straightened in her seat. “We just have to find a new angle. This isn’t the first time I’ve hit a dead end. Come on, Lucifer, think of something.”

“Me?”

“Yes, you. That’s why you’re my partner. You’re good at looking at things differently. What should be our next move?”

Lucifer tapped his fingers on the armrest of his chair as he thought about his answer. “Perhaps we missed another murder.” He suggested eventually.

“Another murder?”

“Yes. Maybe there have been others in the past that fit the profile, but the case was closed because it seemed solved. It’s a stretch but if there are more cases, there might be more evidence.”

Chloe contemplated his idea and then took a deep breath as she nodded. “That means a little digging is in order. Either of you want to help me?” She looked at both Ella and Lucifer expectantly, then huffed out a laugh. “Who am I kidding, Lucifer isn’t doing paperwork. Ella, you free to dig through old case files with me?”

Ella shrugged. “Sure, just have to hand out a few results from other cases respectively. I’ll be right back.” She turned on the spot and hurried away.

Lucifer smiled sheepishly. “Is it a really bad thing that I never help with these sort of things? Maybe I should help?”

“You want to help with the paperwork?” Chloe raised an incredulous eyebrow.

“Saying that I want to would be a lie, but maybe I should, right?”

Chloe laughed. “Don’t worry about it. You don’t have to change now just because we agreed to… you know.” She gestured vaguely. “I like the way our partnership works. And anyways, you have Lux to take care of as well. We wouldn’t want to overwork you.”

“The Devil doesn’t get burnout.”

“And still you seem like you could use a timeout. How about you go home, rest up a little and I’ll see you tonight? You don’t have to sit around here.”

“Alright. I’ll get everything in order for tonight, then.” He got up. “You better be home on time.”

“I’ll be there.” Chloe’s smile made him feel that warmth again. He didn’t know how to interpret that. Maybe he would have to talk to Dr. Linda about that.

The warmth didn’t fade all the way back to Lux.

|||

When Dan stepped into the penthouse above Lux, the first thing he noticed was the absence of the baby grand. He looked around, spotting it in the corner between the bar and the bedroom. It wasn’t the only piece of furniture that had been moved, either. The couch now stood parallel to the window, leaving a wide-open space right in the middle of the living area.

“Dan, what are you doing here?” Lucifer’s voice made him jump.

The Devil stood in the entrance to the hallway that lead towards the kitchen. His expression was proof of his annoyance. His arms crossed and leaning against the wall, he stared Dan down. What Dan noticed, though, was his outfit, a white t-shirt that showed off every muscle in his chest and arms, and dark grey sweatpants. Now that was very unlike him.

“Are you—I mean, you are Lucifer, right?” Dan asked carefully, not daring to move further into the room.

The sigh that answered him was exaggerated. “Yes, Daniel, I’m me. I swear, if you’re going to ask every single time from now on, I’ll kick my brother into a black hole.” He pushed himself off the wall and padded over towards the bar, his feet bare, to pick up a glass and pour a scotch. When he noticed Dan’s stare, he added, “Don’t worry, it’ll take him two or three years at most to get out. Now, what do you want? I’m a little busy.”

“Doing what?”

“What does it matter?”

Dan looked down at Lucifer’s outfit and raised an eyebrow. “It looks like you’re going for a run or something?”

“Well, I was working out until you came waltzing in here.” Lucifer murmured, pointing towards two barbells next to the couch that Dan hadn’t noticed before, and sipped on his drink.

“Working out? Why? Aren’t you crazy strong?”

Lucifer smiled sinisterly. “Compared to you, yes. Which is why I suggest you get to your point before I have to demonstrate just how much stronger I am.”

Dan swallowed. “Come on, man. You won’t hurt me. You said so yourself.”

“Care to wager?”

Dan shook his head, to decline the offer and to free his head a little. “I just came here to ask about the—the demon. I mean, I meant to ask you this morning, but I didn’t realize I was talking to Michael.” He cleared his throat. “I just meant to ask, whether you got any lead.”

“Oh, right. Kennedy Marshal wasn’t entirely useless, no.” Lucifer emptied his glass and carefully placed it back on the bar top. “I’ve got a location out of him.”

Dan was taken aback. “You know where the demon is? That’s—great. You can find it, then?”

“Not exactly.” Lucifer paced a couple steps into the room before turning back again. “I have an image of the location, but I don’t know where it is.” He looked up at Dan and tilted his head. “You know Los Angeles, quite well, I presume?”

“Yeah, born and raised here. Plus all the police work, so, yeah, I’ve been around.” He shrugged a little.

“Maybe you can find it, then.” Lucifer’s face lit up and he quickly stepped towards Dan, raising his hand, but suddenly he stopped in his movement, hesitating. “May I show you?”

“What do you mean?”

“Well, I’ve got the memory out of Kennedy Marshal’s mind. I don’t have a physical copy of it, so to say. All I can do is show you, “he touched his own temple, “in here.”

“Oh.” Dan breathed. Suddenly he remembered the feeling of having Lucifer’s memories shoved into his own head forcefully. It had hurt. It had been fucking nauseating and disorienting. He wasn’t sure, he wanted a repeat of that.

Sensing his hesitation, Lucifer was quick to assure him otherwise. “It will be gentle, I promise. I will be more diligent than the last time.”

“It won’t hurt?”

“Not likely.” Lucifer said, a little unsure. “It may still feel uncomfortable.”

Dan shuddered but eventually he gave in. What did he have to lose? Lucifer had done this before after all and it hadn’t hurt him in the long run. Dan nodded towards Lucifer, permitting him to come closer. Lucifer raised his hand, his movements slow, keeping eye contact with Dan in case he changed his mind, and placed his fingertips on Dan’s temple.

Dan grit his teeth, preparing himself for the onslaught of images like last time but it never came. Instead there was a slightly growing pressure as an image appeared before his inner eye. He saw the outside of a building, the wall covered in graffiti. Judging by the broken windows, the building was abandoned. A faint lettering above the barred door spelled Jones and, the following word was illegible.

When Lucifer’s fingers left his temple, the image faded from the forefront of his mind, but Dan could still remember it vividly. “So, that’s where the demon is hiding?”

“Supposedly, yes. Have you seen it before?”

“Not that I remember. Loads of houses look like that. How do you know that building is really the demon’s hideout? It could be any building it randomly passed.”

“Ah, one might think that, but,” Lucifer raised a finger and walked towards his couch table, picking up a piece of paper, “this graffiti is on that wall.”

Dan approached to take a closer look. It was a simple pencil sketch of a symbol that Dan remembered seeing right next to the door of the abandoned building. “What is it?”

“That is another message to me. It is the sigil of the Morningstar but it’s the wrong way around. It’s supposed to look like this.” He turned the piece of paper upside down.

“And what does it mean? This message?”

Lucifer frowned and looked down at the sigil himself. “It’s not as clear as the last message, I guess. But it can’t be anything good.” He tilted his head to the side, staring at the drawing. “So, do you think you can find it?”

“Yeah.” Dan agreed quickly. “Yeah, I’m sure, I can.”

“Great. You do that, then. But don’t go there!” He pointed a finger at Dan’s chest. “Don’t set foot there alone. It’s not safe.”

Dan swallowed and nodded. “I won’t.”

“Good. Now make yourself scarce, so I can finish my workout and get ready for later.”

“What’s happening later?”

Lucifer cringed as if he regretted saying anything. “I, uh—dinner. I’m going out for dinner.”

“Oh, right.” Dan bit his lip, looking anywhere but at the Devil. “…with Chloe?”

“At Chloe’s, to be precise.”

The silence between them following that statement was stifling. Dan fidgeted with the zipper of his jacket, debating quietly, whether he should just leave and not open that can of worms. Somehow, though, his mouth overrode his brain and he couldn’t stop himself.

“Is it a date?”

“Sort of.” Lucifer admitted, suddenly finding the ground wildly interesting. “We have agreed to, well, take our relationship a little further.”

Dan tensed. “I don’t think you should lead her on.”

Lucifer’s eyes narrowed and Dan already thought he’d gone too far this time. Who was he to tell the Devil what to do? But Lucifer looked down again after a moment. “I don’t mean to lead her on.”

“Well, you are. As long as she doesn’t know what she’s getting herself into, it’s unfair to her.”

“Do you think I don’t know that?” Lucifer’s voice had grown louder. He ran both hands through his hair, leaving it standing up into every direction. “I’m well aware that she would take Beatrice and run for the hills rather than look at me ever again, if she found out. She would never kiss me, would never want to be with me, if she knew what I really looked like. What I am.”

“I don’t think she would run.” Dan said quietly, somewhat fearing the archangel’s anger. “She would hear you out, if you were to tell her the truth. But even then, I don’t think you should consider an actual relationship with her. I mean, you’re not human. You said it yourself, you’ll outlive all of us. How could you be with her?”

This time Lucifer’s eyes turned cold, his body rigid with restrained anger. “That is not for you to decide. If she allows me to be in her life, I will be by her side until she sends me away.” He took a step into Dan’s personal space. “Because once she dies, I will never see her again. She will go to the one place I can never set foot in. So, I will take whatever time is given to me and make the best out of it.”

“Then at least tell her the truth.”

“I will, Daniel!” Lucifer almost yelled. “But it will be on my terms! Do you understand? Mine!”

The ground shook. Dan paled and staggered backwards, noticing the sudden heat in the room. As soon as Dan had taken just three steps, Lucifer’s eyes widened and he backed away himself hastily. He walked backwards into the couch table, stumbled and ungracefully landed on his butt.

“I’m sorry. I’m so sorry.” He whispered, his hands held up placatingly. “I didn’t mean to.”

The ground had already stilled and with Lucifer curled in on himself on the floor, his presence didn’t feel quite as overwhelming anymore, but still Dan felt dizzy as the adrenaline pumped through his body. He ended up on the floor as well, about ten feet away, shaking slightly as he tried to calm down. Looking at Lucifer, the man was quite in the same state.

“So, that was you losing you temper, huh?” He joked to try and lighten up the tense feeling that had arisen in the room.

Lucifer’s eyes slowly focused on him, his expression slightly confused. Eventually he nodded. “Not quite as bad as it could have been. But still it shouldn’t have happened. I’m sorry.”

“You couldn’t control it?” Dan questioned timidly and Lucifer shook his head. “Then you don’t have to apologize.”

“Are you okay?”

The question came a bit unexpected and Dan frowned, then answered. “Yeah, of course, yeah. I’m good.” He held up his hand, still trembling. “Just a bit shaken.” He carefully pushed himself off the floor, Lucifer doing the same but keeping a safe distance. “I should leave you to your workout.”

“Yeah, that’s probably best.” Lucifer murmured. Then, “Do you want a drink first? Calm the nerves, so to speak?” He tried to bring forth a smile, it seemed, but it was strained. Dan could tell, he was trying to come off as non-threatening as possible, the way he held himself and his expression being proof of that. When Dan didn’t answer right away, Lucifer pushed. “Have a drink, please. Stay for a moment longer.”

“Alright.”

When Dan had the drink that Lucifer had poured him in hand, sitting down on one of the stools at the bar, Lucifer went back to his workout, approaching the weights lying near the couch. He took one and brought it to the middle of the room, then began doing deadlifts.

Dan watched and sipped his drink from time to time. Neither of them spoke but it wasn’t awkward. It was a companionable silence. Eventually, Lucifer dropped the barbell and stepped towards a bar that was suspended from the ceiling in the middle of the room. As Lucifer jumped up and began doing pullups, Dan stood, leaving his drink on the bar, and sauntered over to the barbell.

He bent down to lift it but found it heavier than he expected. Once again, he tried, this time prepared to put some actual effort into it, but he couldn’t even move it. Hearing Lucifer snort and laugh, all while he was still doing pullups, Dan inspected the weights on the bar.

“Are you serious? How the hell can you lift that?”

“Supernatural strength, Daniel.”

“That’s just ridiculous.” Dan breathed and quickly returned to his drink at the bar. Thinking that Lucifer had lifted that bar with ease, he threw back the content of his glass.

“Feel free to pour yourself another one, if you want to.” Lucifer offered and dropped down from the bar, not even out of breath. Dan took him up on his offer and sat down again, quietly nursing his drink. After a few moments, he could feel Lucifer staring as he awkwardly stood a few paces away, fidgeting.

“What?”

“I was going to—” Lucifer began but broke off, then started anew. “Would you mind, if I manifested my wings?”

“Your wings?” Dan spluttered.

Lucifer shrugged somewhat sheepishly. “I mean, they’re the reason I’m working out in the first place, so…”

“Oh, right.” Dan took a quick gulp of his whiskey and wondered, when this kind of conversation had become normal for him.

“Do you mind?” Lucifer repeated his question.

Dan snorted. “Why are you asking me?”

“Well, I thought, you’d like some sort of heads up before I rub my more non-human side right in your face.” Lucifer quipped.

“Dude, you just caused an earthquake. I think on the scale of non-human you’ve already passed the ten.” He paused, the clarified. “Go ahead, if you want to. I can also leave you alone anytime.”

Lucifer gave him a look that Dan couldn’t interpret, then took a breath, then another one. “I don’t mind spending time with you, Dan.”

“Wow, thanks.”

“You know what I meant.”

“I do.” Dan smiled. “And I appreciate it. Also, I doubt I would be here, if you didn’t want me to be. Because if you hated me, I’d still be scared shitless.”

Lucifer rolled his eyes. “Yes, yes. Big scary Devil.” He turned away from Dan, approaching the bar at the ceiling again. Before he reached it, though, he rolled his shoulders back once and between one moment and the next his wings unfolded from nothingness. Dan couldn’t help but stare. Lucifer shook his right wing a little, the feathers puffing slightly, before he folded both wings closer to his back as he stood underneath the bar.

He turned around again, raising an eyebrow at Dan. “I can literally feel you staring.”

Dan ducked his head. “Sorry, I just—” He shook his head and looked down at his glass, managed to keep his eyes there for about two seconds before looking back at the wings again. “They’re quite something.”

“That they are.” Lucifer hummed and without much effort jumped up, grabbing onto the bar. Instead of pulling himself up with his arms, though, he let himself hang. Dan’s jaw dropped slightly as Lucifer raised his wings and beat them down once tentatively and then a second time with more force. They lifted him high, his chin way above the bar.

Awe could be the only description of what Dan felt at that moment. The wings were strong and weirdly it occurred to him for the first time that they were actual limbs that Lucifer had full control over. He couldn’t imagine what it would be like to suddenly have two more limbs that you could move and feel just like any other body part, but he quickly realized that Lucifer had never known it to be any different. Well, except for the six odd years he had spent without them. But those were a blink of an eye for Lucifer.

He watched as Lucifer lifted himself with his wings again and again. After some time, Lucifer let go, slowing the short drop from the ceiling a little with a short but powerful beat of his wings. Lucifer looked pleased as he met Dan’s eyes. “You’re still staring.”

Dan shrugged, undeterred. “How do they even go through your shirt?”

“How well do you understand quantum physics?”

“Not very well.”

“Then let’s just say, they exist in several planes of reality and I control how they are affected by matter.”

Dan huffed out a laugh. “Yeah, okay, I’ll pretend that explains it.” Dan finally emptied the last of his drink. “Do you mind my questions?”

“Not much.”

“Great, so, how strong are they? Your wings, I mean. If you weren’t out of shape, how much could you lift?”

Lucifer gave him a pointed look. “You ask the weirdest things.” He shook his head exasperatedly. “I have never tried to lift anything in flight other than myself. Never had the need to. But I suppose they are quite strong.”

His wings rustled as he stretched them to their full span. Now Dan understood why Lucifer had moved his furniture. They were huge, the outermost feathers longer than his arm. Dan wasn’t prepared for Lucifer to beat them forward, sending a gust of wind his way that almost made him fall off the barstool. When he had righted himself again, Lucifer had his wings folded neatly at his back.

“Whoa, okay, so they’re not just for show.”

“No.” Lucifer chuckled. “They’re weapons, Daniel.”

“Weapons?”

“Yes, weapons. The primaries are sharp. Very much so.”

“Why? What for?” Dan asked with disbelief coloring his voice.

“Angels were soldiers first.”

“So, what, you could kill someone with your wings?”

Lucifer hummed in answer. “Watch.” He unfolded his wings again slightly, bringing one forward. He lowered it until the edges of the primary feathers touched the marble floor, then moved it in a quick slicing motion across the shining surface.

Once again, Dan’s jaw dropped a little and he sucked in a sharp breath. The feathers, in all their soft and harmless appearance, had cut deep scratches into the marble.

“Like I said, weapons.” Lucifer repeated and with s shrug of his shoulders the wings suddenly winked out of existence.

“I’ll be careful not to end up on the wrong side of your temper.” Dan stated and whistled in admiration.

“I feel like I should also tell you that they have the ability to heal.” Lucifer admitted, looking down.

Dan frowned at first but then he understood. “That’s what your brother meant, right? He said, you could have healed me yourself.”

“Exactly. But I didn’t want to show you my wings or even worse, use them. All to spite my father.” He grimaced. “I apologize for putting my issues above your health. I should have helped you instead of calling my brother.”

Dan smiled sympathetically. “I get why you didn’t. Not to mention that I would have freaked out had you just whipped out your wings in the warehouse. So, it’s alright.” In an attempt at humor, he grinned wider. “But good to know that you can slice me open and  heal if afterwards, should you be inclined to.”

“Well, aren’t you glad that I’m on your side?” Lucifer winked, his mouth quirked up in a winning smile.

And Dan had to admit that, yes, he was glad the Devil was on his side.

Chapter Text

Evening came and Chloe paced from her the kitchen to the living room and back.

It was utterly ridiculous and she scolded herself for the better part of an hour, but Chloe couldn’t deny that she was nervous. Nervous of all things. It was just Lucifer, after all. They had had dinner together before. This wouldn’t be any different, would it? Just him and her and Trixie enjoying some food. He wasn’t going to stay after that, either, at least not if she could help it. That would be a little too fast for her liking.

But still, her entire body seemed to be tense with nerves. She could have slapped herself for it. Was it really so different now that they had agreed to try and take things further?

“Mommy, are you okay?”

Of course, Trixie would pick up on it. Sometimes she seemed to be just a bit too perceptive for her own good. “Yeah, monkey, everything’s great. I’m just a bit—bored, really. Don’t know what to do until Lucifer arrives.”

“You could watch TV with me?” Trixie smiled up at her from the couch. “Or I could show you my drawings that I made at school today.”

Chloe smiled. “Sure thing. Why don’t you go get them?” Her daughter quickly scrambled off the couch and skipped to her room, digging through her backpack until she found her drawings. She returned with several pieces of yellow paper and continued to climb onto the couch next to Chloe, then proudly held out her artwork.

“Look, mom, this one is you and me at the rides last year.”

Trixie’s drawings had evolved from stick figures to actual people in the last couple of months and Chloe could now clearly make out who was who. The first piece of paper showed a blond woman, herself, holding the hand of a little girl with dark hair, Trixie. The background was full of swirls and circles in several colors. It took a moment but then Chloe realized it was the roller coaster. “Great job, monkey! That roller coaster sure looks scary.”

“I wouldn’t have been scared. I can go on grown-up rides.”

“Maybe in a few years, Trix. You’re still al little small for that.”

Trixie pouted a little. “Promise?”

“I promise. One day, you’ll get to ride all the grown-up rides whenever you want.”

“Cool.” The smile that lit up the girl’s face wiped away all traces of her previous frown and she quickly pulled out another drawing from underneath the first one. “This one is all of us.”

Chloe smiled at the row of people depicted. On the very left was Ella. Trixie had taken a liking to the forensic scientist lately, for she always listened to her and played whatever game Trixie came up with. Next to her was Dan, one hand holding Ella’s, the other one holding Chloe’s hand. The figure next to her was wearing a dark suit and a devilish smile and there was no question who it was supposed to depict. On Lucifer’s right stood Maze, her knives in one hand, the other hand holding Trixie’s. Trixie herself was holding onto the hand of another little girl, Becca, Chloe presumed, Trixie’s friend from school.

“This one’s a keeper.” Chloe smiled and ruffled her daughter’s hair. “Should we put it up on the wall?” Trixie nodded enthusiastically, and Chloe went to get some tape.

As she put the picture to the wall, fixating it with two pieces of tape, she noticed several smudges around the people in the drawing. She looked closer and found them to be mostly erased lines. “Hey, Trixie, did you erase something from the picture?”

Trixie frowned up at her but then she seemed to realize what Chloe meant. “Oh, yeah, I did.”

“What was it?”

“Lucifer’s wings.”

Chloe blinked. “His wings? What do you mean?”

“Well, I read on Wikipedia that Lucifer is actually an angel and he has wings. So, I drew them as well but then I thought, maybe he hides them for a reason, so it didn’t feel right to leave them in the picture for everyone to see.”

“Oh.” Chloe nodded. Internally, she debated, whether it was wrong to discourage her daughter’s imagination by telling her that Lucifer was not really the Devil or an angel for that matter. Eventually, she decided against saying anything. Trixie would grow up soon enough and realize it for herself. “Well, I’m sure he wouldn’t have minded. It’s a great drawing either way.”

“I’ll show it to him later.” Trixie beamed.

“He should be here any minute.” Chloe agreed and definitely didn’t flinch at the knock on the door that sounded in just that second. Quickly she composed herself before stepping towards the door.

“Evening, Detective.” Lucifer greeted her with a bright smile, a bag of groceries safely tucked under one arm.

“Hi.” She tried to put on just as big of a smile, desperately trying to push her nerves down. “You actually knocked.”

“That’s what you keep telling me to do, isn’t it? I thought this was a good occasion to give it a try.”

Chloe shook her head fondly and stepped aside with a grand gesture of her arm. “Step inside, then.”

“With pleasure.” Lucifer walked past her and quickly stashed the groceries on the counter before Trixie could tackle him. Her arms wrapped around his legs as she looked up at the tall man with a toothy smile.

“Hi, Lucifer.”

“Hello, Beatrice.”

His greeting was void of the usual exasperation or terror, when faced with Trixie or any child really, and he didn’t try to pry her hands off his suit. Chloe wondered, if he was really getting used to Trixie or was doing all this just to please her. Either way, it was a sweet gesture in that moment and she gave him the benefit of the doubt.

“I drew a picture, Lucifer.”

“Have you now?

“Yeah, I wanted to show it to you. Will you come look at it?” She grabbed his arm as she let go of his legs and tried to pull him towards the wall of pictures. He didn’t move an inch, though, desperately glancing towards Chloe.

“Must I?” He questioned, still smiling but visibly uncomfortable.

“Yes.” Trixie insisted.

He obliged and let himself be dragged towards the picture. Trixie explained it to him, pointing out who was who and he nodded along, inspecting the little depictions closely. “You captured Maze and myself quite well, I must say. The Detective as well.”

Trixie lowered her voice and leaned towards him. “I drew your wings as well, but I didn’t know, if you hide them for a reason, so I erased them again. Mom says, you wouldn’t mind, though.”

Lucifer froze visibly. “You drew my wings?” He glanced over his shoulder towards Chloe.

She quickly shook her head, explaining. “She googled you and figured you must have wings.”

“Because you’re an angel.” Trixie added.

Lucifer’s mouth opened in a small ‘o’ shape and he turned back to look at the picture. “I see.” He paused. “Smart thinking, Beatrice.” His voice had become somewhat thoughtful.

“If you like it, you can have it.” Trixie offered. “You can take it home.”

Lucifer looked down at Trixie and slowly his smile returned. “That is very nice of you, Beatrice, but I think it looks far better here on the wall. What do you say, I accept your gift, and we both agree that you take care of it here?” Trixie nodded quickly and Lucifer smoothed a slightly crinkled edge of the paper. “I have something to give you in return.” He stated, his voice soft.

He returned to the counter and from the bag he somehow produced a single flower, a yellow rose. The stem was short and void of any thorns. He crouched down and held the flower out towards Trixie. “This is for the little Lady Beatrice.”

“It’s so pretty.” Trixie whispered in awe as she took the flower from him and carefully turned it in her hand.

“How about we put it in a glass of water, hm?” Chloe proposed. She stepped towards the sink and filled a glass up before holding it out to Trixie who placed the flower inside. “Now, where do you want to put it?”

“I’ll go and put it on my nightstand. That way I can look at it, when I’m in bed.”

“Good idea. You go do that, monkey.”

As Trixie hurried to her room, carefully balancing the glass full of water, Chloe turned towards Lucifer again. All words got stuck in her throat, though, for he was holding out another rose, a deep red one, his smile suddenly careful, almost nervous.

“And this one is for the Lady Chloe.”

She was almost too flustered to actually take it but she reached out and her fingers brushed over his as she took hold of the stem. Her eyes met his over the petals of the rose and she smiled, hoping to chase away the insecurity in his gaze.

“Thank you.” She breathed before in the spur of the moment she leaned forward and, standing on her tip toes, pressed a quick kiss to his cheek. “It’s very pretty.” As she walked past him to get a vase for the flower, she intentionally brushed against him and felt him tense slightly at the contact. She wondered for a brief moment, whether he was uncomfortable but then she quickly remembered that this was Lucifer, playboy extraordinaire, who had wanted to get her into bed since day one. Even if his attempts to convince her had significantly lessened over time.

He cleared his throat behind her. “Shall I start with dinner right away?”

“Sure, I could eat.” She nodded, still appreciating the dark petals of the rose. “What are you going to make?”

“Well, I wasn’t sure what you or Beatrice liked best, so you have the option to choose between either a steak dinner or fajitas.”

“You bought everything for two dinners? Lucifer, we would have made do with anything you cooked. There was no need.”

“Oh, of course there was.” Lucifer waved her off as he began to unpack his grocery bag. “So, what will it be? Maybe ask your spawn for her opinion.”

Chloe hummed but shook her head. “No, she will take the fajitas right away and I really want to try your steak, so…” She wiggled her eyebrows.

“Steak it is, then.” Lucifer grinned. “I could always leave the rest of the ingredients in your fridge for you to cook fajitas tomorrow.”

“Sounds good.”

She reached up to a cupboard and got out two wine glasses. “I can’t quite offer you anything like the wine you brought last time, but can I interest you in a bottle from the store?”

He barely grimaced but she saw it anyway, making her laugh. “Detective, you are assuming I didn’t think to bring wine myself.” He pointed towards a bottle he had just placed on the counter.

“Even better.” Chloe opened up the wine bottle, letting it air for a few moments before filling up heir glasses. Trixie returned to the kitchen, grabbing her glass of soda that she’d abandoned there earlier, and skipped off to watch TV a little more. Chloe leaned on the counter and held up her glass to toast with Lucifer.

His smile was carefree and genuine, and she couldn’t quite remember, when she’d last seen him this relaxed. Ever since his kidnapping he’d been tense, on edge somehow, but all of that seemed to be wiped away in this very moment.

She sipped on her wine as she watched him work. “Can I help you with anything?”

“No need, Detective. I’ve got it all handled.”

“You don’t have to keep calling me Detective.”

He stilled and looked up at her. “What else am I supposed to call you?”

“You do know my name, right?” She teased.

“What a silly question. Of course, I do.”

“Then why don’t you use it?”

Lucifer swallowed and focused on his task again, peeling and chopping potatoes. “I like calling you Detective. It’s a nickname of sorts, I suppose.”

“I’m not saying you should stop entirely. But it feels very formal for when we’re alone.”

“Alright. Chloe.”

Although she smiled, she almost regretted telling him to call her by her name. Hearing him say it like it was a prayer caused a multitude of feelings to stir up in her body. How could an accent make her name sound so different? Or maybe it wasn’t the accent as much as his voice.

Quickly, she tried to distract herself. “You don’t really have a nickname, do you? Oh no, wait, your brother calls you Luci.” She chuckled and took another sip of her wine.

Lucifer grimaced. “Yes, unfortunately he does. And I endure because he’s my brother. Most of my siblings called me one name or another.”

“You have more siblings? How many?”

His mouth turned into a thin line. “Too many.”

She knew she had broached a difficult subject, talking about his family, but a part of her had hoped that maybe he was ready to open up a little. Trying to keep his mood from going sour, Chloe was about to ask a different question, but suddenly he spoke up again.

“I’m not on the best of terms with most of my siblings. I suppose they hate me as much as I hate them.” He didn’t look at her as he spoke and his tone of voice spoke volumes about how much he really didn’t want to talk about this. “I haven’t spoken to them in a long time. Well…” He bit his lip, something Chloe was sure she’d never seen him do. “My brother has been in town for a few days now.”

“Another brother?” Chloe’s eyebrows shot up. “Oh, that’s who Maze was talking about.” At Lucifer’s confused stare she added, “You know, when she told us she was leaving? She mentioned she didn’t want to be around your brother and you.”

“Yes.” Lucifer nodded. “I suppose Michael and I are a little much to handle sometimes.”

“Michael.” Chloe stated, trying to keep the disbelief out of her voice. She swore to herself, if she ever met Lucifer’s parents, she’d give them a piece of her mind for naming their sons Lucifer and Michael. Like seriously, who in their right mind could ever think that was a good idea.

“We’re trying to mend our relationship, Michael and I.” Lucifer spoke through gritted teeth. “It might take a few centuries, though.”

“Well, I’m not going to pretend to know what happened between you two, but I’m proud of you for trying.”

Lucifer hummed, his hands busy chopping more vegetables. They both remained quiet for a few moments before Lucifer suddenly spoke up. “I ought to introduce you to him some time.”

Chloe swallowed her sip of wine quickly and nodded. “Sure. If you want to.”

“As long as you promise not to swoon over him.” He pointed at her accusingly, unfortunately with the knife still in hand. When he noticed, he placed the knife down, but still looked at her expectantly.

“What?”

“Well, do you promise?”

“Lucifer, we’re here trying to start a relationship and you’re scared I’ll leave you at the first sight of another man?”

Lucifer had the dignity to look scolded but still he didn’t give in. “I’d still like you to promise, though. I know my brother, Detective.”

“Alright, alright.” She laughed. “I promise, I will not leave you for your brother.”

“Thank you.” Lucifer nodded and turned to the stove.

The rest of the dinner preparations were spent with light conversation, Chloe asking Lucifer to explain the steps of his recipe to her. Chloe laughed, whenever he gave her shocked looks for not knowing the spice he used or anything similarly outrageous.

When the smell of the steak cooking filled the kitchen, Trixie came bounding back from the living area. Chloe asked her to set the table for the three of them and Trixie went right ahead, scurrying towards the cupboards, weaving around Lucifer with ease. Lucifer in turn lifted the pans and pots high above her head, when she passed him, trying and avoiding running into her as he worked.

Trixie finished with setting the table just as Lucifer declared he was done as well and carried his creations to the table. Chloe took Trixie to wash her hands and when they both returned from the bathroom, Lucifer had set everything artfully on the table. There was even a single candle in the middle of the table, yet unlit.

When he saw Chloe smiling at it fondly, he shrugged. “Well, it isn’t a real steak dinner without a little candlelight.” He produced his lighter from his pocket and flicked it a few times in exasperation as it refused to work. “Oh, come on.” He gave a short angry glance heavenwards, pausing in his attempts.

Chloe laughed lightly. “I’m sure, I have a lighter somewhere.”

“Don’t bother, I’ve got it.” Lucifer stopped her and flicked the lighter again. This time it lit up immediately, the flame glowing an almost white-blue before turning orange, and Lucifer lit the candle before the flame could go out again.

Chloe sat in her chair, still smiling cheekily. “Would have been bad for your image, if the Devil couldn’t even light a candle.”

“I managed, didn’t I?” Lucifer sat down opposite of her and Trixie, grabbing the wine bottle and filling up both their glasses again. “Well, then. Dig in.” He gestured invitingly towards the food and Chloe filled her plate, waiting for him and Trixie to do the same before taking a bite.

She almost moaned at her first taste of the steak. “That’s it, Lucifer, you’ll have to cook more often.”

“It will be my pleasure. Anything to save you from too much take out.”

Chloe caught his eyes and the smile he gave her was almost breathtaking. “Thanks for this, Lucifer.”

“You are very welcome.” He replied. The silence stretched from a few moments to several seconds as the looked at each other.

“Are you kissing now?”

Trixie’s voice ended their stare instantly as Chloe shook her head quickly to clear her mind. “Trixie!” She admonished her daughter but the little girl had a knowing smile on her face.

“Because, you know, I’d totally be okay with that.”

Chloe couldn’t help but blush a little and quickly looked down. The fact that her daughter liked Lucifer wasn’t a secret, but it made Chloe’s heart warm a little knowing that Trixie wouldn’t mind them dating, either. “Well, mommy and Lucifer are trying to figure out, if we want to be in a relationship, so maybe we will. Kiss, I mean.”

She could practically feel Lucifer’s eyes on her, but she couldn’t bring herself to look up at him. He eventually cleared his voice. “I’m glad you approve, child, but this is not a topic we should have over dinner. And maybe we shouldn’t discuss it with you present, either.”

“I can handle grown-up stuff.” Trixie argued.

“I’m sure you can or you wouldn’t be living with Maze.”

“When is Maze coming back?” Trixie asked, taking a full one-eighty from one topic to the next.

“I don’t know, monkey. Sorry. But I’m sure she misses you, wherever she is.”

“I miss her, too.” Trixie pouted a little, then looked up at Lucifer. “Do you know, when she’s coming back?”

“Unfortunately not. But I suppose it will be sooner rather than later.”

“I’m sure, she’s kicking ass somewhere!”

“Trixie, language.” Chloe intervened quickly.

“I meant butt.”

“Sure, you did.” Chloe ruffled her hair. “Now, eat up, before it’s all cold.”

They finished dinner quickly after that and Chloe sent Trixie off to get ready for bed, promising her a bedtime story once she was done. Then she helped Lucifer clear the table and put the dishes away. When Trixie came running from her room once more, Chloe paused.

“Do you mind waiting, while I put her to bed?”

“Not at all.” Lucifer replied swiftly and held up his wine glass. “I can always sit down and nurse this while I wait.”

“I’ll be quick. Trixie, say goodnight to Lucifer.”

The girl threw her arms around Lucifer’s legs once more, too fast for him to back away in time, and he sighed a little but endured the hug. “Good night, Lucifer.”

“Good night, offspring.”

When Chloe emerged from Trixie’s room after reading her a story, gently closing the door behind herself, she found Lucifer on the couch. His glass was empty but he filled it up once more as she approached with her own glass to sit beside him. He clinked his glass against hers, his smile infectious.

“I’m glad we did this, Lucifer.” Chloe said openly.

He nodded approvingly. “So am I, Detective. So am I. Though I suppose at some point you should let me take you out on a date without the spawn present.”

“Yeah, I suppose you should, too.”

“How very demanding you are. Lucifer likes.”

“Don’t tell me that turns you on, being bossed around.” Chloe covered her eyes with one hand and Lucifer laughed lowly.

“Why? Are you offering?”

She let out an overly exasperated sigh but laughed with him. She reached for his glass and set it on the table along with her own. Carefully, she scooted closer to him on the couch, leaning into his personal space. “Maybe I am.”

His breathing hitched as she leaned even closer and his eyes dropped to her lips for a moment. “Don’t tease the Devil, darling.”

“Who said anything about teasing?”

Determinedly, she leaned forward and she could already feel his breath ghosting across her skin, when he suddenly leaned back. She pressed her lips together, and awkwardly pulled back as well.

“Am I going too fast?” She mostly addressed her lap with that question but she could see him perk up from the corner of her eyes. “I am going too fast, aren’t I? I’m sorry.”

“No, Detective, no. This is—I’m afraid this is my fault. I’m just not—”

“Not ready.” She finished for him. “Lucifer, I don’t want to pressure you into this.”

“You are not pressuring me.”

“Then why are you holding back?” This time she looked him in the eye and all she could see was conflict. He was struggling, but with what? “I’m not what you really want, huh. I mean, how could I be? I’m a single mom and you are Lucifer Morningstar, LA’s most wanted bachelor. You don’t want a relationship because it will cramp your style.”

“No, that’s not true.” Lucifer argued and sat up, turning his body towards her. “Please, believe me, when I say there’s nothing I’d want more.”

“But what about all your one-night-stands?”

“I don’t care about some one-night-stand.” He shook his head vehemently. “And you are not going too fast. I’m just—” He didn’t say any more and Chloe threw her hands up a little exasperated.

“You’re just what?”

“I’m scared.”

That, she hadn’t expected. Lucifer never admitted to being scared of anything. And what could he possibly be scared of? “What are you scared of?”

He looked down, his hands were fidgeting, turning the ring on his finger round and round. “I don’t want to lose you once you realize that I’m—that I am not what you think I am.”

“Lucifer, I know who you are.”

“Do you really?”

“Of course. You are my partner and you have my back, no matter what. If this is about your past, I’ve told you, I don’t care about that. What counts is the here and now and you have not given me a single reason to distrust you so far. Lucifer, you are a good man.” She reached out to hold his hand, effectively stopping him from playing with his ring. “I don’t know why you don’t believe that. If you ever want to tell me, I’m here for you, but until then I will keep reminding you of it.”

He was silent for a moment, but his thumb slowly started caressing circles on the back of her hand. “There are some things I want to tell you. Things you should know before you—before we take this any further. Because I don’t want you doing things you will regret once you know.” He let out a shaky breath. “Because at the moment you cannot make an informed choice.”

Chloe nodded. She thought, she understood that. There were things in his past that he wasn’t proud of and he thought that she would run, once he told her. In his mind, Chloe knowing about these things and Chloe wanting to be with him were mutually exclusive. She didn’t know how to convince him otherwise but firmly promised herself that once he opened up to her, she would prove him wrong.

Because there was nothing that would so easily drive her away from him. Not anymore.

“That’s okay. Then we’ll take this as slow as you want.” She tried to catch his eye and when she did, he smiled softly. Chloe returned his smile, squeezing his hand. “So, am I allowed to kiss you or would you rather I didn’t?”

“Detective—” He paused, then cleared his throat. “Chloe. Don’t get me wrong, I want you to kiss me. I want that and so much more, but I need you to understand that you—"

“That I might regret it later. Okay.” She nodded. “Well, right now, I’m quite convinced that I won’t regret it, so if that’s all that’s holding us back…” She leaned forward and didn’t give him the chance to draw back. He didn’t flinch and didn’t try to pull away, either, so she pressed his lips to his. She lingered until she felt him relax and when she ended the kiss, she didn’t back away but stayed right in his personal space. Her eyes were so close to his that she could make out a million different shades of brown in them. “Not yet regretting it.” She whispered.

“Not yet.” There was despair in his voice, foreboding that she would change her mind, but she couldn’t find it in herself to care.

“Well then, you just work on telling me whatever it is you want to tell me. No pressure whatsoever. Take your time. But in the meantime, I will kiss you with no regrets. Deal?”

Lucifer hesitated and Chloe knew that once he agreed to this deal, he wouldn’t back out of it. For a moment, she almost thought he wouldn’t take it but then he inclined his head. “Deal.”

“That’s all I ask.”

When Lucifer left, about two hours later, Chloe stood on her tip toes to once again press her lips to his. This time, he showed no signs of unease and happily kissed her back. His hands gently framed her face as he held her there for a few moments.

She was the one to draw back eventually. “Good night, Lucifer.” She breathed against his lips and she could feel his smile, when she pecked them one last time.

“Good night. Chloe.”

“I’ll see you tomorrow, yeah?”

She gave him a small wave as he rounded the corner of the building and remained standing in the door until she heard the familiar rumble of the engine of his beloved Corvette. When it faded into the night, she turned and went back inside, firmly closing and locking the apartment door behind her.

The smile never left her face. Why had she avoided this the entire time they’d been working together? Oh right, Lucifer was kind of difficult, when it came to these sorts of things. Which was ridiculous. He was the perfect gentleman, albeit without even noticing it.

With a content sigh, she wandered over to the couch table to pick up their wine glasses. On her way to the kitchen, humming a non-distinct melody, she passed the wall of Trixie’s drawings and her eyes fell on the drawing Trixie had gifted Lucifer. She frowned. It didn’t look the same.

She put the wine glasses down on the counter, then turned the lights up a little and returned to look at the picture. Where there had been only smudges of erased pencil before, now there were two incredibly detailed wings spreading out from Lucifer’s back. They fanned out behind the people in the drawing on each side, taking up the entire background. The feathers were drawn with practiced precision, not one line seemed out of place. Really, the only thing out of place were the artistically-drawn wings themselves in the otherwise childlike drawing.

In the corner, incredibly tiny, yet neat, underneath Trixie’s scribbly signature stood the initials L.M., which had Chloe shake her head in awed disbelief.

Lucifer had added his own wings to the picture. Maybe, just maybe, he was ready to forgive himself for his past, Chloe thought. Maybe this was a step in the right direction.

|||

Lucifer wandered down the steps into his club packed with people. The music was loud, the atmosphere filled with the hum of energy that these people exuded. He took it all in, then weaved through the patrons towards the bar. Most girls and a number of men gave him inviting smiles, which he politely returned but he didn’t stop for any of them.

As far as he knew, he was no longer single and none of them would ever measure up to what it felt like to have Chloe kiss him. They just couldn’t compare. No one ever would.

Patrick hurried to finish pouring a drink for a customer before immediately attending to his boss. Moments later Lucifer had his drink in hand and toasted it towards Patrick in thanks.

“There was a guy asking for you, boss. He, ah, seemed to be rather intent on finding you.”

Lucifer raised his brows. “Where is he now?”

“Still around, I think. I’ve seen him a couple of times, but I couldn’t keep an eye on him the entire time. Sorry.”

Lucifer just nodded as he sipped his drink and observed the crowd. “If what he wanted was really that important, he’ll come back. But if you see him, let me know.”

“Will do.”

Lucifer pushed himself off the bar and with one hand in his pocket he mingled with the patrons of his club. He struck up a conversation or two but was sure to never give them the idea that he was interested. His thoughts kept circling around Chloe anyways and he was about to retire upstairs after only an hour, when a man slid into the booth he was currently lounging in.

His stature was rather lanky, his hair a dirty blonde that stuck up in any and every direction. He would have passed for a normal guy in his thirties and Lucifer would never have given him a second thought, if it hadn’t been for the icy smile on the man’s lips.

“Requesting an audience, my Lord.

Lucifer’s eyes narrowed and though he wasn’t showing it, his body had tensed, ready for a fight. All his senses were on high alert and he instantly smelled the reek of Hell that surrounded the other man. When Lucifer spoke, his voice was dark and backed with the power of the Devil.

“Request denied, Rhûn.”

“Too bad.” Rhûn laughed. “Because I will talk, whether you want it or not.”

Lucifer fixated the demon with a deadly glare. “You made a mistake coming here. A grave mistake. Did you really think that after everything you’ve done, after all your meddling in my life, you would ever get to walk out of here again?”

“I will walk out of here, and you won’t do a thing to stop me.”

“Are you sure about that?”

“Oh, yes. Very sure. Because for one, you wouldn’t want to cause a scene in front of all these people.”

Lucifer chuckled darkly. “I could wipe you from existence right here, right now, and no one would even notice.”

“But you won’t.”

“And why is that?”

“Because you want that Detective of yours to keep breathing, am I right?”

Lucifer froze, his body deadly still. His eyes began to glow a dim red that most people would have explained away as a trick of the light. “You dare threaten—”

“Oh, yes, I dare!” Rhûn hissed. “You don’t get to boss me around anymore. And I promise you, if I die, your Detective will die as well.”

Lucifer’s mind was racing, while at the same time he tried to calm down and keep his power from disintegrating the demon and possibly the club right with him. Rhûn was implying that he wasn’t working alone and that either meant that he had possessed someone or there was another demon on the loose. The latter seemed more plausible, for Lucifer doubted Rhûn had the power to keep up a possession after he died.

“How did you get out?”

“Wouldn’t you love to know?” The answer was accompanied by a toothy smile.

Slowly but surely, Lucifer was losing his patience. “What do you want from me, then? Why are you here? I’m retired, in case you hadn’t noticed, and I don’t plan on returning, so why don’t you go fight over the throne a little bit?”

“You mean your throne. The one that will eternally be yours and yours alone? Yeah, don’t think for a second that I’m that stupid. There’s no point in trying to rule Hell.” The demon shrugged and looked around, his gaze lingering on the people that surrounded them. “It’s much easier to build up a kingdom here.” He turned back to look at Lucifer. “But you are in the way.”

“And I will always be in your way. You have killed innocent people, Rhûn, and I believe you are aware that I don’t take kindly to murderers.”

“I don’t think you understand my point very well.” Rhûn hissed. “So, listen carefully. I want you to piss off to Hell and stay there or Astaroth will kill your precious Detective friend. He will be thrilled, don’t you think?”

Astaroth. He was on Earth as well, then. Lucifer fought to keep his temper in check. Rhûn didn’t seem to mind the Devil’s anger rising as he continued.

“I will give you three days. Three days. If you are still here by then, the Detective dies.”

“You think you can get past me?” Lucifer growled.

Rhûn just smiled. “Without your pet Lilim around, I don’t think that will be a problem for Astaroth and I.” Gracefully he slid out of the booth. “I must be going, but it was great catching up, my Lord.”

“You don’t dare speak my name?” Lucifer challenged and Rhûn turned back once more.

“Lucifer.”

A stone-cold expression settled on Lucifer’s face that had a few girls that stood close quickly make themselves scarce. His voice was low and dangerous in every sense of the word.

“Mark my words. That name will haunt you even in death.”

He watched the demon disappear in the crowd and it took him longer than he wished to calm down even just a little. He reigned in his anger and as if drowned out by a flood it was all replaced with bone-deep fear.

Chloe. She was in danger. Rhûn would hurt her, torture her. Kill her. He would hurt Beatrice. And it was all because of him. He couldn’t let that happen. He had to do something.

Lucifer’s breath came quicker and quicker. What were his options? Return to Hell and hope that it would be enough to appease Rhûn? Take on both Rhûn and Astaroth? Protect Chloe at all hours of the day until the demons came and then take them out?

He was out of the booth and on his way to the parking garage before he even realized where he was going. Maze. He needed Maze. But he called her and she didn’t pick up. Not even the option of a voicemail came. Cursing her and the phone, he slipped into the Corvette and pulled out of the parking space. His fingers were tight around the steering wheel, maybe a little too tight. Mentally repeating his options over and over again, he tried to count his breaths to avoid having a panic attack. To be quite honest, he didn’t know, if he could get panic attacks but if Dan’s recent panic attack had been anything to go by, those were not pleasant.

The city flew past him; he was going way too fast, but he had to get back to Chloe’s apartment as soon as possible. Rhûn was a demon, so, who knew what he was going to do. He might not keep his word and go after Chloe right away. In hindsight, Lucifer thought, he should have flown to Chloe straight away instead of taking the car. It would have saved him so much time. Precious time. Time he really didn’t have.

And one question kept flying around in his head: what was he supposed to tell Chloe?

It took him several moments to realize that he’d already arrived at Chloe’s apartment complex and he was just sitting in the car, the engine still running. He had no clue how he was going to go about this. After what felt like another eternity he forced himself out of the car and his legs carried him towards Chloe’s apartment, even though he could have sworn they should never have been able to carry his weight.

He opted to knock quietly instead of going for the doorbell, thinking of Beatrice already asleep. Chloe wouldn’t like it, if she woke. Who was he kidding? Chloe wouldn’t like him showing up again in the middle of the night and nothing he had to tell her was going to convince her that he had to.

The door opened faster than he would have thought. Chloe’s expression spoke of deep confusion.

“Lucifer? What—did you forget something?”

“Detective. I’m sorry, I don’t mean to be a bother but—” What was he supposed to say?

“What happened?”

“Chloe, I need you to take Beatrice and leave the city.”

She blinked at him, her mouth slightly open. “Lucifer, you’re scaring me. What is going on?”

“Please,” he begged. “I need you to get as far away from here as possible.”

“No, Lucifer, I can’t.” She shook her head, but the shape of her mouth showed her evident worry. “Come inside. Please explain what’s going on.”

“Chloe, I fear for your life, if you stay. Please, I implore you, please leave. Just for a few days. Just until I can take care of this.” His hands had somehow found their way into his hair and they gripped it tight. The pain he felt an all too friendly reminder of Chloe’s effect on him.

“No, Lucifer, you can’t just tell me that my life is in danger and not tell me why.”

“That serial killer is after you, Chloe.” He took a step closer, his hands almost reaching for her face, but they clenched to fists right next to her cheek. “I can’t let him hurt you.”

“You know who it is.” Chloe breathed. “You know who the killer is.”

He couldn’t even deny it at this point, so he gave up trying. “Yes, and he threatened you, Chloe. If I don’t do as he asks, he will hurt you, and I can’t let that happen, so I need you to leave.”

“I can’t just leave the city. What about Trixie? If I am in danger, she’s in danger. Lucifer! Look at me! What if he hurts Trixie? You need to tell me what’s going on.”

“I can’t.”

“Why not?”

“Because you don’t believe me.” His voice cracked at the end and he couldn’t find the strength to lift his head and look up at her. But he heard her sigh.

“Lucifer, you can’t pull a stunt like that. If this is all within your metaphors—I really thought I was in danger.”

You are in danger. He couldn’t say it out loud. He couldn’t make her believe. So, he wasn’t going to try. Maybe she was safer, anyways, if she didn’t know. Lucifer would just have to protect her. He had three days until Rhûn would come for her and Lucifer would simply put an end to it before it came to that.

“I apologize, Detective. It was not my intention to frighten you.” He didn’t meet her eyes again, instead opting to keep his gaze fixed on the doormat.

“I know, you didn’t want to frighten me. But I need you to understand that this has to stop. Things like this, I’m not sure I can deal with that. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t mind your devil talk, I really don’t. But when it reaches the point where you pull Trixie into this, it’s too much.”

“I understand.” Lucifer nodded. “I won’t do it again.”

“Are you okay, Lucifer?” She took a step outside and her hand rested on his arm. “Do you want to talk about something?”

“No, I should leave you to get some rest. I shouldn’t have come.” He carefully pulled his arm back from her touch, but she quickly reached out and engulfed him in a hug that he only slowly returned. “Detective, I don’t ever want to see you get hurt again.” He whispered into her hair.

“I don’t want to see you get hurt, either.” Chloe responded. “That’s what this is all about. I care so much for you, Lucifer. I don’t want you hurting. So, please, whatever it is, know that I am here for you.”

“Thank you, Chloe.” He breathed in her scent deeply before letting go. “Again, I’m sorry. I’ll leave you to get some sleep.”

She nodded and they both raised their hands in goodbye. He heard the door close as he walked back to his car, coming to a stop next to it. Pulling his phone from the inside pocket of his suit jacket, he quickly shot a text to Dan.

Need that location as soon as possible.

He let the phone slip back into his pocket, locked his car and kept walking.

And if he patrolled around the apartment building all night, his hounds a constant presence in the shadows following his every step, no one ever knew.

|||

“We’ve got a package here for Dan Espinoza.”

Dan looked up at the uniformed officer that held up a small brown parcel, standing at the bottom of the stairs leading into the bullpen. He raised his hand to get his attention. “That’s me.”

The officer smiled and nodded, bringing the package to his desk. “There you go. Some guy dropped it off at the front desk.”

“Thanks, man.” Dan clapped him on the shoulder and the officer took his leave. The package only had his name and the address of the precinct written on it. He couldn’t remember ordering anything, but it could also just be some old comics from Jones from Narcotics, with whom he traded those from time to time.

Holding the package in one hand, he quickly typed away on his phone, answering Lucifer’s text that had come in late last night. I’m on it. I’ll get back to you with the info as soon as I can.

When he hit send and looked up, he saw Chloe arriving at her desk with a stack of files and quickly made his way over to her, the package in his hand. “Hey, Chloe.”

“Oh, hey, Dan.” She smiled at him. “How are you?”

“I’m good, yeah. You seem happy.”

“I am. Weirdly enough. I really am happy.” Her smile didn’t waver, but she now looked somewhat shy about it.

“Did anything happen that I should know about?”

“Hm, no.” She shook her head quickly. “Nothing really, nothing you should know about.”

Dan rolled his eyes a little, placed the package on her desk and leaned forward, both hands on her stack of files. “Come on, Chloe. This has to do with Lucifer, doesn’t it? Your dinner date last night?”

“How do you know about that?” Chloe looked affronted.

“Lucifer, of course.”

“Right. Is he here, yet?” She looked down at the files but couldn’t take one, Dan blocking her.

“Not that I know.” Dan shrugged and waved it off, looking Chloe straight in the eye. “Chloe, I don’t mind that you’re dating him.” He grinned a little at her. “I just want to know, if he’s the reason you are this happy.”

“If you must know, yes. He is the reason I’m happy. We had a nice evening.” She stared at him defiantly. “What’s it to you?”

“Well, it would still be my obligation to kick his ass, if he hurt you, so, I have to know these things.” Though, I’d probably just break my foot, if I were to do that, he added silently. Along with most other bones in my body.

“Really, Dan? Alpha male much?”

“Oh, trust me, I would never try to question Lucifer’s alpha male status.” He pushed off the desk, finally giving her access to her files. “Just be careful, alright. I don’t want you to get hurt.” He tried to convey how serious he was about this. Maybe, and that was a big maybe, Dan had accepted who Lucifer was and also accepted that Lucifer didn’t mean any harm to Chloe or him, but still, he couldn’t know for sure that Lucifer wouldn’t harm them unintentionally. After all, he had confessed to Dan about not being in control.

“I can take care of myself, Dan. Thank you very much.”

“Yes, you can. But Lucifer is a loose cannon sometimes, admit it.”

“Even if he was, Dan, my relationship with him isn’t really any of your business.”

“I know that, I—” He stopped, a sound deterring him from what he wanted to say. “Do you hear that?”

Chloe looked up at him, her eyes questioning, but then realization hit her. “Dan, what’s in that parcel?”

“I don’t know. Someone dropped it off for me.”

There was a definite ticking sound coming from inside the brown package. Dan felt all the blood leave his face as he stared at it.

“Dan?” Chloe breathed out, her hand reaching to push him back.

“Chloe?”

Just as his eyes met hers, the ticking stopped, giving way to a quick succession of beeps. And Dan couldn’t stop it, had no time to get away, no time to save Chloe or warn anyone else.

As the last beep sounded, his eyes met Chloe’s, filled with fear, and he only hoped that Trixie would be okay.

Chapter Text

The blast he’d expected never came.

Or at least not a blast on the expected scale. The noise of the explosive had Dan’s ears ringing as if someone had just fired a gun next to his head.

He only realized he had his eyes squeezed shut, when he had to force them open as Chloe’s hand gripped his wrist in a vice-like grip. What he saw, when he blinked his eyes open, was Chloe’s desk in total disarray. The bomb had gone off, scattering all her belongings on the floor in a six-feet radius. The parcel itself was pretty much destroyed but the remainder of the bomb was still recognizable, a circular scorch mark burned into the desk framing it.

“Dan?” Chloe’s voice sounded like she was far away.

“Oh my god, Chloe.” He found himself hugging her tightly, ignoring the sudden bustling of people that were now all around them. “Chloe, you’re okay.”

“I thought that was it.” Chloe breathed into his ear. “I thought we were going to—”

“We’re alright. We’re fine.” The adrenaline that pumped through his body made him shaky, but he needed to get his thoughts in order. This had been a planned attack, an attempt on his life.

“Someone get a forensic over here and everyone else step away.”

Dan still held on to Chloe as several pairs of hands pulled them both further away. He couldn’t tell who it was until suddenly he was engulfed in another tight hug. Ella. The woman didn’t say a word, just held on to both Chloe and him tightly. When Chloe gently pried her off a little, Dan could see tears rolling down Ella’s face.

“I’m sorry, but if that had been—if it had been—”

“I know, Ella.” Chloe soothed her, one hand rubbing Ella’s arm. “But we’re okay. It was probably just supposed to scare us.”

Another voice joined in from behind Dan. “Yeah, I would say so.” A tech held up a note in an evidence bag. “This was inside, wrapped in fireproof foil.”

Dan stepped closer, reaching out to take the bag in his hand. The note was hand-written, the penmanship neat and cursive. It was just a single sentence, but it made a shiver run down his back, leaving him feeling numb.

Aren’t you glad that bomb wasn’t any bigger, my Lord?

He could only guess, but he saw his chances at getting it right quite high. This was another message to Lucifer. A message conveying how easy it was for the demon to kill everyone Lucifer knew. Dan would have dropped the evidence bag, if it hadn’t been for Chloe grabbing it, taking a look at the note herself.

“What is this? What is going on? Dan, who sent you this?”

All he could do was shake his head. He had no way of explaining this and he wasn’t very keen on trying, either. “I need some air. I need to—I need to get out of here.”

His way outside was a blur, past anxious policemen, past Lieutenant Pierce, who was observing the entire scene with a distant expression on his face, lips pressed together in a tight line. Dan couldn’t stop and think about how weird his behavior was. His mind was too focused on getting outside, where there was fresh air and no enclosed spaces.

Only when he reached the parking lot he stopped. Breathing heavily, he leaned forward, his hands gripping his knees. He almost keeled over right there. Almost.

“Dan?” Chloe’s voice made him look up. She had followed him outside, her face hauntingly pale, but she seemed to be calmer that Dan himself felt. “Dan, are you alright?”

He nodded, halfway through the nod deciding to shake his head instead. “I’m not—Chloe, if that bomb had blown us all up… I can’t stop thinking about Trixie.”

“Yeah, me neither. But we’re okay. It was just a scare tactic.”

“How does that make it any better? Who knows, the next bomb could arrive at the precinct tomorrow morning. What if that one’s big enough to take down a part of the building?”

“They will take precautions until they figure out who did this.”

“I know protocol, Chloe. But still this happened right under everyone’s noses.”

Chloe rubbed her brow, then turned away as her brave mask crumbled. A sob escaped her and she covered her mouth with her hand. “It was addressed to you, Dan. They wanted you dead.”

Dan pulled her into his arms once more. “No, Chloe. You just said, it was meant to be a scare.”

“It’s still a threat to you. Specifically addressed to you.” Her tears began to seep into his shirt but neither of them cared.

“The message wasn’t for me, though, I don’t think. No one has reason to address me as my Lord.”

“Who is it meant for, then?”

“Maybe the police force as an entirety?”

Chloe pulled away and frowned. “Sounds a little off.”

“Yeah, I don’t know. Maybe not.” Dan shrugged. He didn’t know what else to say, but he had to keep Lucifer’s name out of it. If Chloe made that connection, she’d surely be sucked into this whole mess.

“Are you going to be okay?” Chloe questioned him and he nodded. “I’m going to go back in. Someone has to have seen who brought the package.” She patted his arm once more before turning back towards the entrance.

Dan didn’t want to go back in. He needed to talk to Lucifer. With still slightly shaking hands he fumbled his phone out of his pocket, pressing Lucifer’s name in his contact list.

“Have you got found the location, Daniel?”

“No, Lucifer. And that’s not important right now. I need you to come to the precinct. Right now.”

“Why so urgently?”

Dan swallowed around the lump in his throat. “Please, something’s happened. And I need you here.”

Lucifer seemed to understand his pleading as what it was, his voice suddenly void of any humor. “Where are you exactly?” There was a crackling sound as if the reception had turned bad but it stopped just as fast as it had begun. “I’m on the roof, where do you want me.”

Dan took a deep breath, trying to get his thoughts in order and ignoring the fact that Lucifer once again crossed several miles in the blink of an eye. “Just stay where you are, I’ll come meet you. We need to talk privately.” After that he hung up, stashing his phone in the back pocket of his jeans.

He returned inside, avoiding talking to any officers, and instead pushing through several doors until he reached the staircase, which he took two at a time. Arriving at the top, he had to catch his breath but it made him feel a little more alive.

The door to the roof was already open, Lucifer leaning in the doorframe. With the sun backlighting him, Dan was once again slightly overwhelmed by his presence but the Devil seemed unperturbed by his hesitation.

“What was so urgent?” Lucifer jumped straight to the point. “I was trying to catch up on some sleep.”

“Well, your beauty sleep will have to wait.” Dan grumbled and he stepped past Lucifer onto the roof. He wrung his hands as he turned back to face Lucifer, who had followed him the couple of steps away from the door. “There was a bomb.”

“There was what?!”

“A bomb. Down in the bullpen.”

Lucifer’s eyes widened and Dan barely had time to blink before Lucifer’s hands were suddenly checking him for injuries.

Dan shrugged his hands off. “I’m fine, Lucifer.”

“Chloe?”

“She’s fine as well. No one got hurt.”

“Then what?”

“The bomb came in a package. A package addressed to me.” Dan explained. “And there was a message, which I think was for you.” He gulped. “Aren’t you glad that bomb wasn’t any bigger, my Lord?”

Lucifer’s expression went from worry to confusion and then to outright rage. Dan took a step back and then another, when a wave of heat hit him emitting from Lucifer.

“Lucifer?”

Phama par miketh.” Lucifer growled the foreign words, his voice reverberating as if ten people had spoken and not just one and it prickled all the way down Dan’s spine. Lucifer’s hands were clenched in fists, shaking with his anger. And his eyes glowed red.

Dan stumbled backwards. Lucifer’s presence had become stifling, too much, terrifying. He wanted to vomit at the feeling. All of his instincts were screaming at him to run, a primal sort of fear filling him in response to the seething archangel in front of him.

Devil, his mind screamed.

As he took another step, the ground shook and Dan fell. He caught himself on his elbows, pain shooting through his arms from hitting the rough surface. The tremble of the earth was soon followed by a second one and after the third one it didn’t stop anymore.

As the earth shook, Lucifer just stood there, unmoving save for his fists that flinched with his restrained fury. His deep red eyes were not focused on anything, staring blankly ahead. Dan could have sworn that he saw flames licking up Lucifer’s fists but he couldn’t be sure for looking at the Devil made him want to take a leap off the side of the building.

Those eyes—they held Hell inside.

At some point he must have squeezed his eyes shut, his fingers desperately trying to find something to hold on to but the shaking earth was unforgiving. Screams from somewhere below them pushed Dan back into rational thinking. There were people getting hurt. The earthquake could kill someone.

Ignoring his own wellbeing entirely, Dan struggled to get to his feet, lost his footing again but persevered. He had to get to Lucifer and get him to stop doing whatever he was doing before there would be actual damage. With great difficulty he managed to stand and inch closer to Lucifer step by step. The red eyes didn’t see him as he stood before the Devil, they were looking right through him. The heat radiating from Lucifer, however, had sweat drip down Dan’s temple.

“Lucifer, you need to stop.” Dan addressed him and was rewarded with an even stronger tremble of the ground beneath him. “Lucifer!”

Lucifer didn’t react. He seemed trapped, his anger consuming him so wholly that he didn’t take notice of his surroundings anymore. Determined, Dan stepped even closer and placed a shaking hand on Lucifer’s arm, carefully avoiding looking him right in the eye.

“Lucifer, please. You need to calm down. You don’t want this. You don’t want to hurt people.” He wasn’t entirely sure, if he was trying to convince the Devil or himself of that but either worked fine, he supposed.

Lucifer growled in answer. It was deep and mostly inhuman, impossible to imitate. But the heat didn’t waver and the earth didn’t still. Dan didn’t want to do it, everything in his body and mind screamed that he shouldn’t, but what choice did he have? People could die, many people at that. If he could stop it, he had to.

“Please, Lucifer, don’t make me do this.” He pleaded but still to no avail. Dan took a breath and reached back. “You leave me no choice.” With all the strength he could muster, Dan slammed his fist to the side of Lucifer’s cheek.

Lucifer’s head snapped to the side from the blow. For an impossibly long second nothing happened. The next moment Dan found himself slammed into the ground, his back hitting the rooftop hard, Lucifer’s foot one his forearm and the sharp tip of a feather a fraction of an inch away from his throat. He didn’t dare move another muscle.

Lucifer looked down at him, his eyes a little crazed but not red anymore. The earth had stopped shaking as well, so Dan had gotten what he wanted out of that stunt. Now as long as Lucifer didn’t decide to end his life, it would be alright.

“Fuck!”

Dan had never heard Lucifer swear like that. Or at least not in English. The wing at his throat disappeared as Lucifer pulled it back and hid them away instantly. The crushing weight of Lucifer’s foot on his arm lessened as well and then the Devil kneeled at his side, his hands hovering over Dan, not daring to actually touch him.

“I am so sorry, Dan. I’m sorry. I didn’t mean to hurt you.”

“’s alright.” Dan groaned.

“It’s not.” Lucifer shook his head. “Are you hurt?”

Dan raised his head from the ground, looking down at himself. “I’ll have a few bruises but I’ll be fine.”

Lucifer looked like he was about to say something else but then he just backed away, first on his knees but then he got up and brought more distance between them. “I lost it.”

Dan pushed himself up as well, his back aching from the impact. “You sort of did, yes. I’m sorry I hit you.”

Lucifer gave him a puzzled look, then seemed to realize that that must have been what had happened. “You’re lucky Chloe is close or you would have broken your hand.” He closed his eyes and slowly let out a breath. “I’m sorry, I should go.”

“No, Lucifer, wait—”

“No, I need to get away.”

“What you need to do, is go see Chloe.” Dan insisted.

“What, so I can hurt her, too?” Lucifer growled out. “Don’t you think I’ve done enough damage?”

“You didn’t hurt me.”

Lucifer grimaced at the lie and spun around in a circle, his hands anxiously running through his hair, before he faced Dan again. “Don’t you see that this is what happens? This is all I’m good for. I bring destruction and devastation. I am poison. I shouldn’t be around any of you.”

Dan desperately shook his head. “Don’t you dare leave her again.”

“Dan, look around. Listen—” He spread his arms wide, encompassing the view of the city, and Dan heard the sirens of ambulances sounding all around them. “I hurt dad knows how many people just now. I hurt you. It’s a miracle that you’re still sane after looking into my eyes. All of this, it’s only going to get worse.”

“You don’t know that.”

“Don’t I?” Lucifer let out a joyless laugh. “You don’t know anything about the things I’ve done.”

“Then do them better this time around. Don’t repeat your mistakes!”

He got a scoff in answer and Lucifer turned away from him with a dismissive gesture. Determinedly, Dan stepped forward and grabbed Lucifer’s arm, in hindsight a wrong decision. In that exact moment as Dan’s grip tightened, Lucifer took flight. He was aggressively ripped through space, impossibly disappearing from the rooftop and reappearing moments later somewhere else, he didn’t know where. All he knew was, there was sand everywhere and the heat scorching his neck was awful.

The next second, he fell over, barely catching himself on his hands and knees before throwing up the contents of his stomach into the sand.

“What the hell were you thinking?!” Lucifer’s voice reached his ears from somewhere behind him. “That could have ripped you apart!”

Dan crawled away from where he’d vomited and dropped down into the sand, his arms no longer capable of holding him. “How was I supposed to know you were going to take off like that?” He groaned, fighting the lingering nausea. “What do you mean ‘rip me apart’?”

“If you’d let go, you’d be lost between here and there. It would’ve killed you!” Lucifer stood above him now, his shadow falling over Dan’s face. “I wasn’t prepared for passengers.”

“Well, I wasn’t prepared to be a fucking passenger, so give it a rest.”

Lucifer harrumphed and turned away. Carefully, Dan pushed himself up, taking in his surroundings. They were in the desert, that much was clear, though he didn’t know what they were doing here.

“Where are we?”

“Devil’s Playground. Fitting, don’t you think?” Lucifer hissed and from somewhere he produced a blade, curved and black like Maze’s but several inches longer. Dan eyed it warily, wondering whether his moment had come and Lucifer would send him back to Hell. But Lucifer didn’t pay him much attention. Instead he raised his voice, eyes directed at the blue skies above them. “Is this what you want, old man? Do you want me to destroy your precious earth? It’s all just a game to you! Well, guess what, I’m done playing!” He raised the knife towards the sky in threat.

“What are you doing?” Dan breathed, terror creeping up on him as the Devil yelled at God.

“I’m getting rid of them, the wings and the powers. He can shove them up his arse.” Lucifer seethed. “No matter what Michael says, the wings were not my choice and I will not let the Almighty violate me like that any longer.”

Dan saw the beginning of the telltale roll of his shoulders to bring forth his wings but then Lucifer froze, his eyes fixed on a spot behind Dan, who quickly turned his head only to see Lucifer’s twin standing a few feet behind him.

“Lucifer, don’t do this.” Michael spoke calmly.

“Piss off, Michael. I don’t need to hear more of your pep talks.”

“We had a deal.”

Lucifer scoffed. “Nowhere in that deal did I agree to not cut them off again. So, by all means, brother, try to stop me. Or better yet, why don’t you do the honors? It’s awfully difficult to reach your own back with a knife.”

“You know I won’t do that.”

“Then maybe Dan wants to have a go.” Lucifer announced and held the knife out towards Dan who was still on the ground and immediately shook his head at the suggestion.

“Please, Lucifer, stop.” Michael pleaded. “This is not the way to deal with this.”

“Then what am I supposed to do?!” Lucifer’s yell was halfway swallowed by a sob and he fell to his knees, the knife loosely in his hand. “I don’t know what to do anymore.”

“Then let us help.” Dan spoke quietly, almost surprised that he’d said anything at all. The entire situation seemed way out of his league, stuck between two archangels somewhere in the middle of nowhere. But he knew when someone needed help, and Lucifer did.

Michael stepped past Dan towards his brother. Dan noticed his feet were bare on the scorching sand. Slowly, Michael sank to his knees as well and lifted Lucifer’s chin with two fingers to look him in the eye. “Daniel is right, brother. We can help. I’ll assist you in finding that demon and I will keep you in check, if you’re scared that you will lose control over your powers.”

“And I’ll get you that location.” Dan added. “I promise, I will.”

“Two demons.”

“What?” Michael frowned.

“Rhûn is working with Astaroth, Michael. They want me back in Hell, out of their way. They threatened Chloe and then sent that bomb to the precinct. Rhûn gave me three days to leave. That bomb was to show me how easily they can kill her.”

Dan swallowed heavily. Three days. Maybe only two now. He didn’t like that time limit at all. “So, what? You leave Earth or Chloe dies?”

“Essentially.” Lucifer nodded as Michael looked back at Dan, trying to gouge his reaction to this. “I will not let it come to that, though. If I don’t find them before my time is up, I will go back to Hell.”

Michael frowned a little, then clapped Lucifer’s shoulder. “And give in to two little demons? My brother wouldn’t do that. He’s the Devil after all. He has more fight in him that that.”

“What would you have me do, Michael?”

“You accept our help and we’ll show them what happens to those who fuck with the Devil. We won’t lose.”

A slow smile began to show on Lucifer’s face, turning his expression dangerously sinister. “Where do we start?”

“First, you get him out of here before he suffers from a heatstroke.” Michael pointed at Dan. “I’ll go and search the city for any traces of demonic activity.”

Dan agreed. “I’ll get right on finding that building. And you,” he pointed at Lucifer, “go and check up on Chloe.”

“Alright, fine.” Lucifer stood and held out a hand for Dan to pull him up from the sand. Dan only took it hesitantly, slightly terrified of immediately being teleported again, but Lucifer waited until he stood. “Are you ready?”

“As I’ll ever be.” Dan squeezed his eyes shut and took a deep breath as he felt Lucifer’s arms around his waist. The feeling of being sucked through a tube hit him once more but it was nowhere near as bad as the last time. Apparently, it made a difference whether Lucifer was aware of his passengers or not.

When he opened his eyes, he stood in his own living room. He sighed and looked around as Lucifer let go of him. “I left my car at the precinct.”

“I’ll return it to you again. Sorry for all the flying.”

“It’s awful.” Dan shook himself. “I seriously hope it’s not as bad for you as it is for me.”

“It’s not.” Lucifer confirmed. “Now, have you got a room without windows in this apartment?”

“The pantry. Why?”

Lucifer ignored his question and found his way to the kitchen, opening the door to the small pantry. He nodded once as he inspected it, then closed the door once more, closing his eyes for a second.

Dan was about to ask again what he was doing but then Lucifer opened the door again and Dan took stumble backwards in surprise. Fenrir and the second hellhound stepped out of his pantry one after the other. Their low growls filled the air as they took in their new surroundings.

“Lucifer, what are you—” Dan flinched, when the hellhound whose name Dan didn’t recall immediately fixed him with a dangerous glare as he spoke. “What are they doing here?”

“I called them here to protect you. If you think, I’m leaving you here unprotected after this morning, you better think again. That bomb was addressed to you, so they know who you are.” Lucifer pointed out, which didn’t exactly help Dan feel any better. “The hounds will protect you while I’m gone.”

“Lucifer,” Dan began, “you know they scare the fuck out of me. You can’t leave me here alone with them.”

“They won’t hurt you.” Lucifer sighed as he explained this fact for the umpteenth time. “I give you my word. While I’m gone, your word is law to them. They understand you and they will not disobey you. Please, Dan, it will make me feel better knowing that you’re safe.”

Dan grumbled a little. “I don’t even know that one’s name.”

“Strix.” Lucifer grinned. “And Fenrir you know and love.”

“Right.” Dan forced a smile in return. “Fine. I guess I’ll just get to work, then, and find that building. You’re going to the precinct?”

“Yes. I’ll make sure Chloe is safe.”

And without saying goodbye, Lucifer disappeared into thin air, leaving Dan behind with two humungous hellhounds lazily padding around his apartment. Fenrir pushed his head into Dan’s hand as he passed him and Dan indulged him for a moment before he went and got his laptop. He had work to do.

|||

The precinct was still bustling with nervous energy, when Lucifer returned. He pushed through groups of policemen, all huddled in the foyer as others worked on processing any and all evidence that could be found in the bullpen. He couldn’t see Chloe, though, and it grated on his nerves how no one seemed to be able to tell him where she was.

His worry was somewhat dissipated, when he finally saw her. However, the fact that she was currently in the Lieutenant’s office with none other than Cain himself had him clench his fists tightly, fighting to keep his anger in.

Chloe turned her head and saw him through the windows of the private office. Her guarded and stressed expression made way for a relieved smile and she didn’t even once look back at Pierce as she almost ran from the office.

Lucifer met her halfway and for once didn’t hesitate to return the hug she initiated. Her arms wrapped tightly around him, seemingly unconcerned with a possible audience to their little moment.

“I’m so glad you’re here. Where were you, when the earthquake hit? Are you hurt?” She mumbled into his shoulder.

“Me? I’m fine. What about you?” He intentionally didn’t answer her first question.

“I’m okay. No one here got hurt, surprisingly enough. The news said the epicenter was right around here somewhere. I already called the babysitter, Trixie is okay as well. It wasn’t as bad as here.”

Lucifer subtly pressed his lips to her hair. “I’m sorry I wasn’t here earlier.” He whispered. “I’m so happy you are okay. I don’t know what I would have done, had you—” He couldn’t finish the thought. “What about the bomb? People are saying there was a bomb? And you were right there?”

“I’m alright.” She slowly retreated from the embrace. “No one got hurt by that either. It was nothing. And there wasn’t anything you could have done.”

“How did the bomb get inside the precinct?”

Chloe looked around to see Pierce watching them from his office intently. “They don’t exactly know what happened, yet. And it’s driving everyone nuts. I mean, it’s such a huge security breach, it should be impossible.”

“But someone must have brought it in.”

“It was dropped off at the front desk, addressed to Dan.” She saw him flinch a little but glossed over it. “The guy who dropped it off is in the interview room. They caught him on camera obviously. But he swears it’s not him on the recording, although it’s pretty clear. Same clothes and everything.”

“Let me talk to the cretin and I’ll get the truth out of him.” Lucifer said through clenched teeth but he felt Chloe’s hand on his arm and he immediately relaxed a little.

“It’s not my case, so I can’t let you do that.”

“Well, someone needs to get it out of him.”

“He insists on not remembering a thing from this morning. It’s like he’s suffering from memory loss.”

Lucifer scoffed. Chloe probably thought it was disbelief but Lucifer was all too sure that the guy really didn’t remember a thing. It sounded like he was possessed like all the others and short of torturing him by possessing him himself there was no way he’d get any information out of him. Rhûn was good at that.

“There was a message with the bomb.” Chloe continued carefully. “They’re trying to figure out what it’s supposed to mean, but I’m quite sure I already know.”

Lucifer raised an eyebrow. He didn’t want to say anything for he’d have to admit that he already knew what the message was and who it was meant for. Chloe pulled out her phone and showed him a picture. It showed the note, sealed in an evidence bag, the words clearly legible. All Lucifer could do was nod, not trusting his voice.

“I think it’s our serial killer. The one behind all the murders we’ve been investigating. According to you, the message at that crime scene mentioned the words ‘long live the king’, right?” She continued after Lucifer nodded in affirmation. “And this note is addressed to a ‘Lord’. He’s talking to the same person and now that the precinct was targeted it only confirms my theory that the message at the crime scene was also meant for the police.”

“You think, the killer is addressing the LAPD?”

Chloe nodded vigorously. “There has to be someone here who knows more than they’re letting on. Someone here is connected to all of this.” She glanced around once more. “And if my gut feeling is right, which it usually is, Pierce knows something.”

“The Lieutenant? What did he do?” Lucifer’s eyes narrowed as he fixed his gaze on the door to Pierce’s office.

“No, Lucifer, we can’t jump the gun on this. I don’t have any proof. He didn’t do anything but he’s off, you know? He looks at me like I’m—I can’t place it, but it’s like he’s somehow feels superior.”

Marcus Pierce chose that moment to pull open the door of his office, standing proud in the doorframe. “Morningstar. We need to have a talk. My office, please.”

Lucifer turned his eyes on the other man, his gaze cold as ice. “Can’t that wait?”

“I’m afraid it can’t. Now, if you’d be so kind.”

“Go, Lucifer.” Chloe said in a hushed voice. “Just don’t mention what I just said. He probably just wants to question you about the bomb.” She pushed him towards the Lieutenant a little. “I’ll wait right here.”

“Fine.” Lucifer put on a forced smile that did nothing to hide his anger. He pushed past Pierce into the office, then Pierce threw the door closed behind him, shutting out the noise of the bullpen. “We had a deal, Cain.”

“I could tell you the same thing. So far you have not shown any effort to keep up your end of it.”

Lucifer chuckled darkly. “You’ve got a few things to learn about making deals. We never specified a time frame for our agreement, all I said was that I’d try but never when. And since I’m immortal and so are you, I literally have all the time in the world.” Lucifer explained. “You on the other hand, you agreed to stay away from Chloe and what I saw just a few minutes ago was quite the opposite.”

“What are you going to do about it? Torture me? Right in front of her?”

“Careful, Cain. You don’t want to test me. Not today, not ever.”

Cain crossed his arms in front of his chest. “Yeah, I noticed your little temper tantrum earlier. I wonder how many people you killed.”

Lucifer surged forward, getting right into Cain’s personal space. “I didn’t kill anyone.

“Are you sure?”

For a moment, Lucifer was almost about to rise to the bait but he stopped himself, thinking about Chloe watching them. Instead he smiled dangerously. “Our deal is off for you didn’t hold up your end of it. And from now on, you and I are enemies.”

“There’s nothing you can do to me. I can’t die.”

“But nothing’s keeping me from breaking your spine, paralyzing you from the neck down, so that you can’t even take your own life. Or how would you like spending the rest of eternity on the bottom of the Pacific, drowning over and over again until you lose your mind?” Lucifer tilted his head to the side. “My imagination is going wild here. So many delicious possibilities.” Pierce didn’t retort, his throat working hard to swallow. It seemed Lucifer had met a nerve. “I think we’re done here.” He turned away but stopped before opening the door. “And if you even think about going after anyone I care about, there won’t be anywhere on this plane of existence where you’ll be safe from me.”

He left Pierce in his office, slamming the door a little too hard on his way out. Chloe stood frozen right where she said she’d stay, her eyes wide and staring at Lucifer.

“What did you do?” She whispered, obviously shocked.

“Taught him his place.” Lucifer growled. “Don’t go anywhere near him again.”

“What?” She grabbed Lucifer’s arm and turned him to face her. “What is going on? Did you threaten him?”

“I did.”

“Lucifer, you can’t do that.”

“Well, I just did, so it seems I can.”

“It’s a wonder you haven’t been banned from setting foot in the precinct ever again.” Chloe shook her head and turned away. “Can’t believe I’m still working with you.”

“Why do you work with me?” Lucifer found himself asking, although he partially dreaded the answer. “I’m not of much use to you, so why do you keep working with me? Why are you trying so hard to make this work?”

“I thought that was obvious, Lucifer.”

“It isn’t to me. Dad knows why humans do what they do. I don’t get most human mannerisms.”

Chloe turned back to look him in the eye. “Humans baffle you, I know. You seem to be adapting, though. To me you are one of the most human people I’ve met, despite everything weird about you. Because you show compassion and care. Something most humans fail to do. So, even if you think you are the Devil, that doesn’t mean I think any different about you.”

“I’m as far from human as they come.” He mumbled, but he was fascinated by her words.

“And still I care about you.” Chloe admitted. “That’s why I’m trying to make this work.”

And if that wasn’t the most amazing and simultaneously most heart-shattering thing he’d heard her say.

Lucifer prayed he wouldn’t fail her.

|||

Soon Chloe left to check on Beatrice and to relieve the babysitter from her duties. Lucifer didn’t like letting her leave on her own but he didn’t dare push. Her trust in him was already strained. His own anxiety was rising seemingly with every minute that passed. His promise to her was going to give him even more sleepless nights.

He watched her leave in her car, then searched the carpark for Dan’s car. He found it quickly. The door opened under his touch and the engine started all on its own, and he maneuvered out of the parking space with practiced ease. As he reached Dan’s apartment building, his shoulders almost hurt from his tense posture.

Lucifer let himself into the apartment, not bothering to knock or ring the doorbell, figuring Dan wouldn’t exactly mind at this point. The other man was sitting at his desk, typing away at his laptop, several maps spread out on the table next to him. Both hounds lay at his feet, only lifting their heads slightly in greeting of their master.

“Found anything?”

Dan jumped a little at his voice, obviously he’d been lost in his work. He looked up, registered Lucifer standing there and looked down again, shaking his head. “Sorry.”

Lucifer sighed. “We’re running out of time. And I was stupid enough to make another enemy.” He paced up and down the small space of the living room.

“Another enemy?” Dan asked hesitantly.

“Yes.” Lucifer said, exasperated. “Your lieutenant. You need to stay away from him.”

“What? Why?”

“Because, Dan, he’s an immortal who is trying to use Chloe for his own benefits. Bad news, alright?”

“Al-alright.” Dan stammered.

Lucifer stopped in front of Dan’s desk, leaning down on both arms. “Just—keep looking. I’ll go check in with Michael, see if he’s found a trace of them. Don’t leave your apartment.” He turned to leave, when Fenrir got up to follow him, he gently pushed the beast back down. “Stay. Both of you. Protect him with your lives.”

In the next moment he was gone, taking flight to return to his penthouse. Somewhere in the back of his mind he wondered where along the line he’d gotten so used to his wings.

Hours later, Lucifer entered Chloe’s apartment through the shadows in Maze’s currently unoccupied room. He immediately heard the spawn talking to her mother, her voice happily chattering away as she spoke of something involving ponies. He heard Chloe’s laugh and it made his heart clench for reasons he couldn’t quite discern.

It was dark outside already—Lucifer was quite sure Beatrice should be in bed—and the room was almost pitch-black. Only a sliver of light from a streetlight outside stretched over Maze’s bed. Lucifer sighed quietly and slid down the wall next to the door until he sat on the floor. Michael hadn’t found anything, neither had Dan, so he had no choice but to play the waiting game.

He would watch over them all night. Nothing, no one, would get to them. He’d sooner die.

Silently, he listened as Chloe ushered Beatrice to bed ten minutes later. He couldn’t quite hear the bedtime story she read to her daughter but the hum of her voice through the closed door was enough to calm him, if only slightly.

Lucifer remained seated on the floor of Maze’s room until Chloe had gone to bed as well. Even then, he didn’t move for another half hour. But in the silence, his thoughts were merciless. What if the demon came through the front door? Rhûn would reach Chloe’s room faster than Lucifer in that case. And on top of it, Rhûn had the advantage of surprise.

The Devil began fidgeting, getting restless. Eventually, he stood and opened the door as quietly as possible, barely even noticing that it was locked as it opened under his touch anyways. The lights were off in the apartment, long shadows spread out over the floor, the couch and the kitchen counter, cast by the light that sneaked past the drawn curtains. It reminded him all too unpleasantly of Hell and he gently pushed one curtain to the side to let in a little more light. Not that he didn’t like the dark, in fact it made him feel safe, but he somehow feared it might take Chloe from him. He knew it was ridiculous, but Linda had explained to him that fears often were just that.

Taking several deep breaths, he sat down on the couch, his eyes now fixed on the doors of Chloe’s and Beatrice’s rooms. Absentmindedly, he picked at a loose thread of a pillow, fraying it further and further.

Lucifer found his eyes drooping about an hour later, having spent it quietly sitting there, his limbs becoming stiff from lack of movement. He grunted and slapped his own cheek a little. The lack of sleep from the night before was obviously catching up with him. And he was getting tired. The happenings of the last few days were probably adding to that.

Bloody hell, he was the Devil. He could survive a couple of days without sleep. And he was determined to stay up.

That plan worked out exceptionally well he found as he woke up, startled by a gentle touch on his knee.

“Beatrice, what are you doing up?” He breathed, his eyes quickly scanning the room for a threat or maybe for Chloe.

“I had to pee. Why are you on our sofa in the middle of the night?” She didn’t exactly speak quietly and Lucifer quickly sat up straighter, holding a finger to his lips. The child simply shook her head. “Mommy doesn’t wake up easily.”

Lucifer grimaced. “Still, I’d rather not get caught by her.”

“So, mommy doesn’t know you’re here.”

“No, she does not and I would appreciate it, if you didn’t tell her.” He gave her a meaningful look, quickly adding, “There’s cash in it for you.”

Beatrice grinned widely. “You were never here.”

“Good girl.”

“Still, why are you here?”

She was relentless, that one. “I’m just making sure that you and your mother are safe.”

All he got in answer was an earnest nod. She seemed to take this explanation at face value, not questioning it in the slightest. After a pause, she looked up at him with a sad expression. “Is mommy okay?”

“At the moment, I believe so. Why would you ask that?”

“I read on the internet that maybe she is depressed. It’s a sickness that makes you sad.”

Lucifer felt a pang in his chest, her words hitting him hard. “Beatrice, is your mother sad often?”

“Well, not always. She was happy yesterday, when you were here. But she’s not as happy as she used to be. She was happier before dad left. Or at least I think so.”

Lucifer knew he should comfort the girl, but he really had no idea where to start. “I am not the best at dealing with human emotions, child. But as I understood, you and your mother talk to each other about these things. So, ask her. She will tell you the truth about how she’s feeling.” Lucifer assured her. “I have also learned that not everything the internet says is true. And that one should not google symptoms of illnesses.” He frowned a little and it made Beatrice smile again.

“Have you ever been depressed?”

Lucifer raised an eyebrow at her. “I am a celestial being. I’m not sure I can get depressed.” He silently debated that for a moment. “On second thought, maybe I can.”

“What does celestial mean?” Trixie frowned, her big eyes curiously studying Lucifer’s face.

“It means that I am not human but an angel.”

Trixie seemed to accept this as a fact without question, her next question already lined up, as she nestled herself under Lucifer’s right arm cuddling up to him. “Is it true that I can talk to Heaven, if I pray? That’s what my abuela always says.”

Lucifer didn’t fight the physical affection for once. Instead he placed his hand on Trixie’s head and nodded. “Yes, that is true, indeed.”

“Is Heaven going to answer me?”

“Perhaps.” Lucifer tilted his head in thought. “Your chances with directing a prayer at my father and getting an answer are rather slim, though. Maybe, if you really do want an answer, don’t pray to God but to my siblings. Gabriel, Raphael or Azrael perhaps.”

Trixie seemed excited at the idea. “Have you tried it?”

“Many times, child.”

“And did you get an answer?”

“It’s not that easy for me. My connection to the Upstairs is a bit poor.” Lucifer glanced upwards, his hand absentmindedly had started to slowly caress Trixie’s hair.

She sighed. “So, Heaven doesn’t answer. I knew it wouldn’t. Nobody ever answered me, when I tried before.”

“Then maybe you didn’t really believe it would.” She huffed into his side. “You have to trust that they will hear you, otherwise they won’t talk to you. When they do, it may not be in words, most of them answer in actions. But still, Heaven talks,” he stated determinedly, and almost as an afterthought, “just not to me.”

“That doesn’t seem very fair.” Trixie pouted. “Maybe if I get an answer, I’ll ask them to answer you.”

Lucifer couldn’t help but smile. “That is very kind of you, Beatrice.”

She remained silent after that and Lucifer eventually noticed that she’d fallen asleep at his side, her fingers clutching his shirt. Gently, he nudged her but she seemed to have a similarly deep sleep as her mother. Without disturbing her too much, he lifted her in his arms, her almost non-existent weight baffling her. For a human, she was extra fragile. Which thence meant that he’d take extra care not to let her get hurt.

Keeping his steps light, he carried the girl back to her bedroom and placed her back in bed, he even tucked her blanket around her again. His eyes fell on the rose on her nightstand and he couldn’t help but feel glad that he’d chosen to give it to her. He would probably not admit it out loud, but she was his friend.

The remainder of the night, Lucifer spent leaning against the kitchen counter, staying vigilant. Only when he heard the Detective’s alarm clock go off, he returned to Maze’s room and left the way he’d come.

|||

Dan didn’t get any sleep that night. As the sun rose, he still sat in front of his laptop, trying to find anything that would lead him to the building Lucifer had shown him. Around seven he began making calls again, having stopped trying to reach anyone at two in the morning, when no one picked up anymore.

It was frustrating. He hadn’t found anything and he was slowly losing hope that he would. There simply was no building in LA that had the matching lettering or graffiti. Dan couldn’t give up, though, for Chloe’s life was at stake.

Whenever he yelled in frustration, whether at his laptop or the phone as he hung up, both Fenrir and Strix raised their heads and began to growl, anticipating a threat. They only calmed down, if Dan assured them that it was fine, which was weird in itself, talking to them as if they were human. But he really didn’t have the time to think about what his life had become. No movie plot could ever come up with the craziness that was Dan’s life now.

Dan froze. Then he dropped the energy drink that he had been about to take a sip from.

That was it.

Two phone calls and an email later, Dan had found the building. The image he received in answer to his mail showed the front of the building. It was missing the sigil of the Morningstar but otherwise matched the one in his memory in every detail.

He dialed Lucifer’s number in record time and hissed “come on, come on” as he willed Lucifer to pick up. Two seconds later, he did.

“I found it, Lucifer. I found the building!”

“Where?”

“It’s a movie set. It’s not an actual building. It’s a hollow set in Hollywood.”

He heard Lucifer take a deep breath on the other end of the line. “Send me the address. And the hounds.”

“You’re going after the demons? Are you taking Michael?”

“Michael will stay close to Chloe, in case they come for her. Rhûn doesn’t know my brother is on Earth, so he won’t expect him.”

“Will you be alright on your own?” Dan asked.

“This is not your fight, Daniel. But thank you.”

“You can’t go alone. They’re dangerous.”

“So am I. And I’ll have my hounds.” Lucifer reassured him. “I will be fine. This will all be over soon.”

“I hope you’re right.”

After he hung up, he found the hounds restlessly searching for a shadow dark enough to return to their master. Dan let them into the pantry again and watched them seamlessly melt into the darkness.

|||

It took some work on Lucifer’s part to get onto the production sets of Hollywood’s finest but his charm and a little mojo got him where he wanted to go easily enough. His hounds were following him in the shadows and he caught a glimpse of them every now and then, even though Los Angeles didn’t offer a lot of dark shadows this early in the morning. Around Lucifer though they seemed to deepen, stretching further than they should as the Devil walked past.

Now that he knew the approximate area of where to look, he found the building easily enough. His sigil adorned the wall of the building for everyone to see but of course no one questioned the graffiti, plastered as the rest of the building was with it.

Ignoring the few people that were milling about the set, Lucifer circled the building, finding a side entrance, which he vastly preferred to the front entrance. If he was doing this alone, he’d rather have the element of surprise on his side.

The door swung open as he pushed it and revealed the inside to be entirely hollow, no rooms, no walls, just a few wooden structures to keep up the outer wall. The sun lit the place through the dirty windows but only sparsely.

Carefully, Lucifer pushed the door closed again and began to whistle a low note. Fenrir and Strix responded instantly, their massive forms pushing outward from the shadows in the corners.

“Search the place.” Lucifer commanded and the hounds’ eyes flashed red for a moment in understanding before they began their hunt. Lucifer himself walked around the interior of the mostly square building but quickly realized that there was no point. It was clean, all too clean. There was no trace of any demonic activity, not even the faintest scent of Hell floated in the air. If the hounds hadn’t found it by now, he doubted he would.

Frustrated, he kicked an abandoned crew chair that slammed into the wall from the force, a little bit of rubble coming down from the wall with it.

“This was supposed to be it!” He hissed. Desperation was sneaking up on him. He was running out of time and fast. Fenrir and Strix returned, circling him without a new task, and Lucifer took hold of the scruff in their necks and took flight without thinking twice about it.

As soon as his feet touched ground in his penthouse, a thought hit him and it made him stagger from shock. What if all that had been a distraction? What if the demons had wanted to get him away from Chloe? Had they come for her while he was out chasing the wind?

But no, they would never get past Michael and if they had shown up, his brother would have let him know immediately. So, Chloe was fine. She had to be. This, however, didn’t stop him from taking flight once more, appearing in the parking lot of Chloe’s apartment complex moments later. He felt Michael’s presence close by, having gotten more attuned to him again over the last couple of days, and he knew that his brother must have noticed him as well but Michael stayed out of sight as Lucifer walked up to Chloe’s door and rang the doorbell.

“Lucifer, what are you doing here?” Chloe asked right as she answered the door. “Actually, scratch that question. What I actually want to know is, were you in my apartment last night?”

Lucifer blinked once. “Why would you ask that?”

Her face immediately showed disapproval. “Lucifer, I can tell that you’re avoiding the actual answer. Why were you here? Did you break into my apartment at night? While I was asleep?”

“You’ll find that I didn’t break in.”

“Yeah, I know about your weird lock thing. But even if you unlock a door, that’s still breaking and entering.”

Lucifer rolled his eyes. All he cared for was that Chloe was safe and that she was, so he endured her anger. “Did the spawn talk? If so, she can forget about the money.”

Chloe sputtered. “Trixie knew? Lucifer, you—I don’t even know what to do with you.”

“Hold on, how do you know I was there, if your offspring didn’t spill the beans?”

“Let’s see.” She held up one finger as she began listing the clues. “Maze’s door wasn’t locked anymore.” A second finger. “The pillow on the couch looks quite a bit worse for the wear.” Third finger. “The apartment smells like whiskey. That’s enough evidence for me. Now, would you like to tell me why you were here?”

“I was just looking out for you.”

“Why?” She crossed her arms in front of her chest. “What gives you the impression that I need a bodyguard?”

Lucifer fidgeted. He really didn’t know how to answer that one. Half-truths were barely ever an option with her anymore as she seemed to have picked up on that and now knew how to distinguish those from everything else he said.

Suddenly her expression softened. “Lucifer, is this about the bomb?” He supposed it wasn’t entirely untrue, so he nodded. “That was nothing. It wasn’t for me and I’m entirely fine. You don’t need to protect me from that anymore.”

“It scared me still.”

“Then tell me next time and we can talk and maybe I can help you.”

Again, he nodded. “Just—tell me, if anything weird happens. If you see anyone strange around more than once.”

“No one’s stalking me. The chances that the bomber knows about me are very slim. It was addressed to Dan after all. Not to me.”

“That is true.” Lucifer agreed.

“Then maybe you should worry about Dan and not me.” Chloe smiled a little. “However, for the record, I did not suggest that you break into his apartment at night.”

“Ridiculous notion, Detective. I would never.”

“With how close you two have gotten, I find that hard to believe. Shall I call him and let him know to barricade the door?” It was supposed to be a joke but Lucifer couldn’t help but tense at the question.

“Maybe we should give him a call.”

“What? Why?” Chloe asked, still smiling.

“You’re right. Maybe the bomber is coming after him. We should make sure he’s safe.” His voice was monotone as his thoughts drifted. Michael had been here watching Chloe, Lucifer had been turning the set building upside down and had taken his hounds with him.

No one had thought to watch out for Daniel.

He fumbled to get his own phone out of his jacket pocket and Chloe’s face fell, when she picked up on his worry. Lucifer dialed, secretly hoping that Dan would pick up immediately and had already been waiting for his call.

But he did no such thing.

“No, no, no. Daniel, pick up.”

“I’ll try him.” Chloe breathed and hurried inside to get to her own phone. “Lucifer he isn’t picking up.” Her hands shook as she dialed Dan again. “Maybe he’s just driving and doesn’t want to pick up his phone.”

“Or something happened.”

Chloe hesitated but then she grabbed her car keys. “I’m driving.” For once, Lucifer didn’t argue, his heart going a mile a minute as he thought about all the worst-case scenarios.

The Detective turned on the siren of her police cruiser, ignoring the speed limit and several red lights as she ped through the city. Lucifer in the passenger seat still thought that maybe he should have flown, it would have been faster. They reached Dan’s apartment building in record time, though, and both jumped from the car, leaving the doors standing open, the light on the roof still flashing as they ran to get to Dan’s door.

Lucifer didn’t know, if it was possible for the heart to actually stop as long as he thought his did before it started up again.

Dan’s door was open. The lock busted.

Dan’s furniture was overturned, the signs of a struggle obvious in every broken vase, every book on the floor. Chloe was dead silent as she stepped over a chair, her hands wrapped tightly around her gun held in front of her.

Lucifer had stopped right at the door. The air smelled of sulfur.

Chapter Text

Chloe had called after him as Lucifer practically ran from the scene. He couldn’t stand seeing Dan’s apartment in its current state. Not if it was all his fault. Dan could be hurt or even dead because of him. For dad’s sake, he wished he could throw up.

“Lucifer! Where are you going?” Chloe yelled after him, her voice breaking in her desperation. He knew there would be tears in her eyes, if he turned to look at her now. “Lucifer!” But he payed her no mind. He had to find Dan. That was all that mattered. “Lucifer Morningstar, if you don’t stop right this second and tell me what you know, I swear on my life, I will never speak to you again!”

That had him falter and he slowed down some, Chloe catching up a few meters as she chased after him. He considered telling her everything he knew but he also knew that she wouldn’t believe him and she would hate him even more for talking in riddles, when Dan’s life was on the line. Eventually, he persevered and kept walking. “I can’t, Detective. It’s not safe.”

“For fuck’s sake, Lucifer, this is not the time! This is Dan. He is in danger and you need to stop playing your stupid games just this once!”

“It’s not a game!” He whirled around and she almost ran into him.

“Then act like it!”

They stood in front of each other, both breathing heavily, from nerves and anger. Chloe’s fists at her sides shook slightly and Lucifer in turn fought to keep his powers under control. He couldn’t let Chloe see. He couldn’t drag her into this. Not like this. She deserved to be introduced to all this gently and not in the middle of a fight to the death.

“Chloe, you have to know that I would never knowingly endanger Daniel.”

“Are you doing anything to help him, then? I mean, really, what can you do? We need to call this in, put out a BOLO, check his phone—you alone can’t help him.” She cried. “So, stop trying to be some kind of martyr and help me.”

“I’m sorry, Detective, but not this time.” He shook his head and stepped back. “I will find him, I promise you that. But I will do so without your help, for I cannot stand to see you in the same danger as him.”

“That’s my call, though. You don’t get to decide, whether I am allowed to put myself in danger.”

“But I do get to decide, whether or not I put you in danger. And I won’t.”

“Lucifer—”

“We don’t have the time to argue, Detective. I am sorry for keeping you in the dark, but I have to do this. I have to go.”

He turned and began to walk away, fully expecting Chloe to run after him or to continue yelling or maybe even to never speak to him again. But she remained where she was. “Keep your promise, Lucifer.”

He looked back. “Detective?”

“You promised to find him. Don’t you dare break your word.”

Lucifer inclined his head, as if in obeying a command. “I would rather cease to exist.”

He didn’t look back again as he hurried away. As soon as he was out of Chloe’s sight, behind the corner of the next building, he disappeared into thin air, landing in his penthouse moments later. His hounds paced the living area agitatedly, growls reverberating through the room as they felt their master’s distress.

Michael!

His eyes glanced hectically around the room, waiting for his brother to appear but the other archangel didn’t show. Fenrir let out a harsh bark, his jaws snapping, when Lucifer let out a frustrated scream, his eyes turning from their usual dark brown to burning crimson. The temperature in the room rose exponentially.

“Michael, you bastard, I need you!” Lucifer yelled towards the ceiling. “If you can hear me—if you are ignoring me, I will make sure you know what torture by my hands feels like.” Still no sign of his brother. “Fine! Bloody hell, I’ll do it myself.”

Lucifer closed his eyes and extended his consciousness outwards. He had to find Daniel. The human bore his mark, so, it should be possible. It should be a beacon calling to Lucifer. However, a nagging feeling in the back of his head already told him that it was no use. If he couldn’t find the demons before, it meant they had some sort of protective warding against angels set up wherever they were. And if that’s where they’d taken Dan, Lucifer had no way of finding him.

He could do only one thing. And he knew he shouldn’t.

Sending the hounds out on a hunt could mean hundreds of casualties for they weren’t the best at differentiating between those that sometimes told a lie and those that were actual damned souls destined for Hell. They would take anyone down they’d come across. Was Dan’s life worth killing hundreds of others and sending them straight to Hell?

The answer was maybe. For Dan was one of the only friends the Devil had ever had and Lucifer wasn’t about to give him up so easily. Just as he was about to turn and face his hounds, he felt Michael approach, a moment later the sound of his wings signaled his arrival.

“Lucifer? What’s going on?”

“Where the hell were you?” Lucifer was in his brother’s face immediately, one hand clenched tightly in the fabric of Michael’s shirt.

“When you showed up at Chloe Decker’s home, I figured you took over watching her. So, I returned to Heaven.”

“What was so bloody important that you had to go back right now? You knew I was working against the clock here and you just disappear?”

“I’m here now, Lucifer. Calm down. What is it you want from me?”

Lucifer squeezed his eyes shut, which were still burning. If Michael was bothered by it, he didn’t show it. “They took Dan. Rhûn took him and I can’t find him. Please, brother, I need your help. You need to have some way of finding him.”

“Lucifer, you know as well as I do that I can’t, if you can’t. I don’t have any more power than you do.”

“Yes, you do. You were always stronger. You always knew the answer to everything.” Desperation laced Lucifer’s voice as he shook his brother’s shoulders. “Michael, you always find a way.”

“No, brother. Not this time.”

“You can’t just—you won’t even try!”

Michael grabbed both of Lucifer’s hands tightly and held them up to his own temples. “Brother, if anyone can do it, you can. Take whatever power you need.” He placed Lucifer’s fingers on both sides of his own head before leaning forward until their forehead touched.

Lucifer was stunned. It was no light choice for an angel to offer his own power to others. It put that angel at the other one’s mercy. Lucifer knew that he himself would think more than twice about doing something this reckless. But he knew that it meant Michael trusted him completely.

“Go on, Lucifer. Find him.”

Lucifer gasped for breath before closing his eyes and doing as told. Slowly, he siphoned power from Michael adding to his own until he knew he had to be glowing with the divine power that flowed through him. Once again, he pushed his mind outwards, further and further, becoming aware of every person, every animal, every plant in his surroundings. Further until he felt everyone’s heartbeat in a radius of five miles. And then further until he was aware of every living being in Los Angeles.

But still he didn’t feel Dan.

He gritted his teeth and pushed further. He felt Michael flinch against him a little, when his consciousness stretched to include the surrounding counties. “Lucifer, slow down.” But Lucifer continued to build his power. “Brother, please, stop. It’s getting too much.” He could barely distinguish between Michael’s voice and the hundreds of thousands of voices that filled his mind. “Lucifer, you can’t—you’ll hurt yourself!” Michael’s voice was very insistent now but Lucifer couldn’t give up now. He had to search more diligently.

Michael began to struggle now, his hands trying to push Lucifer away as he desperately tried to pull out of his brother’s grip. Lucifer could feel Michael trying to close his mind off and focused on stopping him, which was enough of an opening for Michael to break out of Lucifer’s physical hold.

Lucifer’s scream shook the building as his mind came rushing back. With an earsplitting sound and a loud crash every single window of Lucifer’s penthouse exploded inwards, glass shards covering both brothers as they stood a few feet away from each other breathing heavily.

A moment later, Lucifer collapsed. Blood came from his nose, he noticed, as he pressed the back of his hand to his face to stop the dripping. He barely registered Michael who suddenly appeared at his side, his hands lifting Lucifer’s head to look up.

“Lucifer, look at me.” Michael was pale, all color seemed to have drained from his face. Possibly a side effect of Lucifer taking his power. “How could you be so reckless?”

Lucifer scoffed. “Spare me your concern. At worst, I’d have incapacitated myself.”

“Well, Dan isn’t really helped with you unconscious and incapable of rescuing him.”

“Doesn’t seem to matter, seeing as I can’t find him anyway.” He looked around at the remnants of his windows scattered around them. The glass reflected the sun, the refracted light dotting the walls with golden freckles. He wanted to curse his father for not offering any help but he knew it would do no good. God had nothing to do with this and if he wanted to be angry with the way the sun happily shone on Los Angeles as if everything was fine and dandy, he only had himself to blame for creating it in the first place. When he felt a tear on his own cheek, he buried his head under his own arms. “Brother, what am I to do?”

“We’ll find him.”

“How can you be so sure?”

Michael smiled, albeit a bit mournfully. “Unlike you, I have faith that father will not sit idly by and watch you suffer.”

“You apparently missed the memo—father doesn’t give a damn about me.”

“That’s where you’re wrong. You were always his favorite and that hasn’t changed.”

Lucifer didn’t argue but he vehemently denied the notion that his father cared for him. A caring father didn’t condemn his son. A caring father wouldn’t manipulate his son into doing what he wanted. But there was no point in trying to convince Michael of that because at the moment finding Dan had priority.

Carefully, he pushed himself off the floor, swaying slightly. The glass crunched underneath his feet as he took a few steps towards the bar. His gaze fell upon his hounds. They were keeping their distance from Michael and Lucifer could sense their confusion at being confronted by someone looking and sounding exactly like their master. He hummed a few low words in Enochian and they visibly relaxed, daring to come closer again.

“I considered letting them hunt but I fear they might wreak havoc upon the city.” He murmured.

“You know you can’t do that.”

“I know.” Lucifer said, his laughter dry and joyless. “But I thought about it. How else am I going to find him? They’re hiding him behind some kind of warding.”

Samael?

Lucifer’s head snapped up. His eyes found those of his brother but he only looked back at him somewhat surprised at Lucifer’s sudden start. “Did you just—"

Samael. Please tell me you can hear me. Please, Lucifer, I need your help.

“What is it, Lucifer?” Michael approached him but Lucifer held up a hand to shush him.

“I think it might be—” Holy shit! Dan was praying to him. He almost laughed out loud as joy filled him. He was alive and now Lucifer could find him. “It’s Dan. He’s praying.”

Samael, Rhûn has me. I’m sorry. But if you can hear me, please… I don’t want to die.

“He’s praying to you?” Michael breathed out. “He’s alright?”

Lucifer nodded. “For now. And I know where he is.” He could feel him, the prayer glowing like a beacon in his mind, Dan’s fear and desperation fueling it. “I have to go save him.”

“You’re not going alone. I’m coming with you. And we need a plan.” Michael joined his side and held on to Lucifer’s shoulder. “We’ll take them down together.”

Lucifer smiled, his irises once again changing to crimson. “They’ll wish they’d never crossed me.”

|||

With a flutter of wings Lucifer appeared in a hallway plunged into darkness. The walls and the floor were tiled, his shoes clicking with every step that he made towards a set of double doors at the end of the hall.

 

Behind the door the color blue awaited Lucifer. He pushed through the double doors that swung back and fourth behind him after he’d passed them and stepped into a world of blue. The pool took up the majority of the room, the water eerily reflected the low lights in unpredictable patterns against the walls and the ceiling, which were mostly covered in blue and white tiles. Along the walls stood lockers, one dark blue, the next a lighter blue, the next white.

But in the sparse light all of it looked blue.

Lucifer stood on the edge of the long pool, a starting block next to him on both sides. On the far end opposite him stood Dan, his clothes clinging to his body, soaked. At his chest he held the round weight of a barbell, both arms hugging it tightly to his body, as a chain sneaked its way around Dan’s ankle, tying him to the weight.

Tears were streaming down Dan’s cheeks freely. His eyes were fixed on Lucifer, pleading, but he didn’t move a muscle, didn’t call out to him.

Lucifer’s eyes narrowed dangerously. They had possessed Dan but left him very much aware of it. It was torture of the finest kind to take over the body but not the mind, making a person prisoner in their own head.

A voice to the left clued him in to the whereabouts of at least one of the demons.

“Lucifer.” The contempt filling the voice was deliciously obvious. “We didn’t exactly expect you so soon.”

“Astaroth, I assume. Show yourself.”

The demon stepped out from behind a pillar between the lockers on the left wall. “You’re taking all the fun out of it. We didn’t even get to send you another threat.”

“What? Kidnapping Dan wasn’t threat enough?”

“Oh, right, your little friend over there. Don’t worry, he’s having the time of his life, isn’t that right?” Astaroth called the last words out to Dan, who didn’t react, couldn’t react.

“Where’s Rhûn?” Lucifer asked, hoping to find out which demon was possessing Dan, Rhûn being the more obvious answer. Low laughter was his answer, coming from the right side of the room this time.

“Oh, my Lord, you really do ruin all the fun.” Rhûn stepped from the shadows at the end of the pool and wandered closer to Dan. “We were hoping to make your decision easier by taking your little Detective here. You know the deal, Lucifer. You go back to Hell or the Detective dies.”

Lucifer was about to growl a threat back at the demon but the words startled him. Was he getting this right? He tilted his head to the side. “So, what? You’re going to force him to jump in? Drown himself?”

Astaroth chuckled full of mirth. “Watching them drown is just so satisfying. The struggle, the slow loss of strength, there’s nothing quite like it.”

Lucifer pushed further. “Why do you think I care about the Detective?”

Rhûn scoffed. He placed a finger on Dan’s cheek, tracing a tear track down to his chin. “Don’t play coy with us, Lucifer. We have heard enough rumors. Your little Detective here is quite special, isn’t he?”

Could it be? Had they really gotten it wrong? “Oh, and what rumors have you heard about the Detective?”

“That he makes you vulnerable. He makes the Devil killable. And you have developed feelings for this human. It’s so obvious, too.”

Lucifer couldn’t help but laugh. Demons, so dumb the lot of them. They had mistaken Dan for the Detective. All this time, they had been threatening to kill Dan, thinking Lucifer had feelings for him. They had never been after Chloe. He laughed and buried his hands in the pockets of his trousers as he slowly took a few steps along the edge of the pool towards the left side, towards Astaroth. “It’s obvious, you say.”

“Of course, it is. You pulled this pathetic stain out of Hell. You spend every free minute with him.”

“Monitoring my every move, have you?”

“From time to time. Enough to figure you out, Lucifer.” Rhûn puffed his chest almost proudly. “You have gone soft, my Lord. Wings cut off, in love with a human, one that makes you bleed, and they even say, you’ve lost face.”

“Right, right.” Lucifer nodded along. “And what’s your great plan here? I go back to Hell, then what? Will you let him go?”

“Maybe.” Rhûn shrugged, his eyes following Lucifer as he continued his way along the edge of the pool. “He’s pathetic, though. All the crying. Maybe I’ll just kill him for that alone.”

“You’d be going back on a deal with me, if you did that.”

“Do you really think I’m scared of breaking a deal with you?”

Lucifer smiled and now rounded the corner of the pool, still approaching Astaroth painstakingly slowly. “And if I don’t go to Hell voluntarily?”

“Astaroth and me will make you watch as the Detective boy here takes a leap and just before he dies, we’ll kill the oh-so-killable Devil and send you both straight to Hell.”

Lucifer pursed his lips in mock praise. “Solid plan.” He came to a stop, still half the length of the pool between him and Astaroth. “Have you considered that you won’t be able to best me so easily?” He held a finger up. “No, wait, better question. How do you think I pulled him out of Hell?”

Rhûn glanced at Astaroth. “You have that coin of yours.”

“Pentecostal coins are one-way only, you utter idiot. And I lost mine quite a while ago. Any other guesses?” The demons both assessed him with dark eyes, but the Devil could feel their nerves growing. “Let me spell it out for you, then. I’m not as weak as you think I am.”

“You don’t even have your pet Lilim around, Lucifer. We can take you any day.”

Lucifer scoffed harshly. “Even if I was alone, you wouldn’t stand a chance. But as luck would have it, I am not alone.” A dangerous smile lifted the corner of his mouth. “Michael?”

His brother appeared right behind Rhûn and Dan, pulling the demons away from Dan roughly, throwing him into the wall of lockers on the right as if he were a puppet. The impact shattered a couple locks and locker doors fell from their hinges, hitting the floor along with the demon.

Astaroth growled and his face flickered to reveal the demon underneath, showing off way too many teeth. He was about to attack Lucifer, running towards the waiting Devil at full speed but a shout stopped him. Rhûn had freed himself from the rubble and stood, one hand up to stop Astaroth, the other pointed at Dan. “One move, Lucifer,” he gasped between words, “one more move from you or your brother and the Detective jumps.”

Lucifer grit his teeth, the muscle in his jaw visibly spasming. His eyes found Dan’s, which were wide and pained, full of fear. There was little Lucifer could do. If Dan jumped, he’d have to jump after him to pull him out and he would bet both demons would stop him from doing so at all costs. Michael might be able to fight them both off but Lucifer would not take any chances when it came to Dan’s life.

Without wasting another second, he focused his thoughts as much as he could. “Dan, do you trust me?” He knew Dan couldn’t answer but his own eyes were fixed on Dan’s and he hoped that the spark of relief he thought he saw in the man’s eyes was answer enough.

With all he had, Lucifer pushed inside Dan’s mind. He immediately felt the dark tendrils of Rhûn’s power wrapped around Dan’s thoughts, the man’s consciousness trapped within. Burning the demon’s presence out of Dan’s mind wasn’t exactly safe and he would have to be quick about it, before Rhûn could act against him. He feared for Dan’s sanity, though, so burning the demon out with his grace was out of the question.

He focused his power on Dan instead and before Rhûn could do anything about it, Lucifer had pushed the demon into a far corner of Dan’s mind, taking over in his stead. Immediately he had Dan step away from the pool’s edge before dropping the heavy weight. As it clattered to the floor, Rhûn let out a scream of surprise and anger.

Lucifer just smiled and he could feel Dan smile with him. “You’re not the only one who can possess people.” He hissed. “And I’m stronger than a pathetic little demon like you.”

“You’ll pay for that.” Rhûn growled. “You’ll pay! Astaroth, finish him!”

Lucifer barely had the time to turn around before Astaroth suddenly had a gun pointed at him. For a moment he froze at the sight, his subconscious reminding him of the pain of being shot, but then he remembered Chloe was nowhere near.

The shot was horribly loud in the vast room, reverberating from the walls, so loud that the small ping of the bullet as it hit the tiles at Lucifer’s feet was barely audible. Both demons stared at Lucifer, who looked down at his own chest before slowly lifting his head, a sinister smile adorning his lips. “It seems your intel was wrong. And you just made another big mistake.”

|||

All Dan could do was watch as the scene unfolded in front of his eyes. Very literally in this case for he had no control over his body. He was but a spectator shoved into the deep back of his own consciousness, watching his surroundings like a very realistic 3D movie.

Everything that had happened to him in the last ten hours made him want to curl up in the corner of a room and never look at the world again. He didn’t know what it was that kept him going, thinking that it would have been only logical for him to have broken down at this point. Maybe it was the sheer irony of feeling relief flood him, when the Devil showed up to his rescue. He couldn’t remember ever being so happy to see Lucifer than in that moment.

His body had already not been his for several hours at that point, though it seemed that his thoughts were still his own to command. Lucifer must have heard his prayer or he wouldn’t have found him. The demons hadn’t been prepared for him to show up so soon. The one called Rhûn had boasted earlier about how he was going to torture Dan for the next twelve hours and only then let Lucifer know where to find him. His prayer had thrown a wrench into that plan.

The weight in his arms barely registered anymore, his impending drowning had somehow lost its importance as he listened to the Devil making veiled threats towards the demons. Dan figured it out just as Lucifer did. The demons had gotten a few key points wrong in their plan: they had mistaken him for Chloe. As quickly as he realized that, he steered his thoughts away in case Rhûn read his mind again. Instead he focused on Lucifer who supposedly had the situation under control. To anyone else Lucifer may have seemed almost calm but Dan could see the anger boiling underneath the Devil’s skin as slowly made his way along the edge of the pool.

Then, one moment Rhûn stood right next to him, the demon’s presence in his head making him awfully nauseous but unable to throw up, and the next moment Michael appeared and pulled the demon away. Dan would have screamed, if he’d been able to, as the demon’s pain from hitting the wall with an immense force penetrated his own mind. As Rhûn pulled himself off the floor, the anger evident in his expression, suddenly the oily presence in Dan’s head tightened in a painful way as if the demon had plunged his hand into his head and given his brain a good squeeze. At that moment he didn’t even know how he remained conscious.

“One move, Lucifer, one more move from you or your brother and the Detective jumps.”

With absolute horror, Dan felt his own center of gravity shifting forward. The edge of the pool was barely an inch from his bare feet and he could not even look down. He was forced to stare right at Lucifer whose eyes were fixed right back at him.

In any other situation, Dan thought, he would have been scared of those impossibly dark eyes. They held something within them that Dan couldn’t quite put in words. He’d only seen it once before because usually Lucifer hid it well behind a smile and the behavior of a ten-year-old. But in those dark eyes was something ancient. Something powerful. It rivaled the red eyes of the Devil in frightfulness.

“Dan, do you trust me?”

And he did. When he had come to trust the Devil with his life, he didn’t know, but he found that he really did. He tried to convey this and it seemed Lucifer had either understood the message or simply decided to go ahead anyway.

For the next thing Dan felt was another presence making itself known inside his mind, this one not as black and oily as the demon but what it lacked in darkness it made up in intensity. Again, he would have screamed, had his voice been his to control. His head felt like it was about to explode. Maybe it already had, he wasn’t quite sure. When he realized what Lucifer was doing, he expected Rhûn to disappear, to leave his mind and for himself to be in control of his body again but that wasn’t the case.

Instead Rhûn’s presence was diminished but remained, stubbornly black in his thoughts. Lucifer took over and Dan felt his body move backwards several steps. The weight dropped from his arms and he felt his muscles scream in pain for a moment before it somehow dulled as Lucifer took the pain upon himself. Lucifer made him take a few more steps, away from the edge and out of the way of a possibly impending battle.

Just why didn’t Lucifer give him back control? Why was he possessing his body just like Rhûn had?

Dan didn’t get any answers. Everything happened impossibly fast after that. Rhûn screamed in frustration and Astaroth suddenly pulled a gun and pulled the trigger immediately. Dan could feel Lucifer’s presence in his head waver for a fraction of a second as the bullet hit him straight in the chest but other than that, the Devil was fine.

“It seems your intel was wrong. And you just made another big mistake.”

The last of Lucifer’s words sounded as if several people had spoken, and as he stalked forward with frightening menace, approaching Astaroth who had quickly given up the gun in favor of a wickedly curved blade, Michael attacked Rhûn. The archangel had revealed his wings, the sharp edges of the primaries sang as he spun in a graceful turn, missing Rhûn by mere inches as the demon dodged to the side. Rhûn slashed at the angel’s wings with his own daggers but he was no match in speed for Michael. It was in no way an evenly-matched fight. It took a strong punch and a kick to the demon’s ribs for him to go down, a swipe of the wings disarmed him.

“Scum.” Michael spat and grabbed the demon by the throat, lifting him high as he hid his wings away. “What do you want me to do with him, brother?”

“Give me one moment here.” Lucifer, on the other side of the pool had begun a deathly dance with Astaroth, evading the demon’s blade with graceful movements, a smile on his lips at all times. He even stopped to adjust his handcuffs at one point.

“And to think I once thought you worthy of a place by my side, Astaroth.” Lucifer chuckled. “You’re weak. So weak that you follow someone as pathetic as Rhûn.” He shook his head in mock disapproval.

Astaroth growled in answer and lunged forward again. His human face had disappeared completely and he showed of a maw filled with yellowing teeth instead that stretched over most of his face. Lucifer held out his hand before Astaroth reached him, closing it to a fist. The demon was stopped in his tracks and slowly but surely he was lifted into the air as Lucifer turned his closed fist upwards.

“Oh, how I wish we were back in Hell, so that I could tear every single bone from your body and beat you to death with each one.” Lucifer’s voice was icy cold as he approached the demon suspended before him and apparently choking with a lack of air. Suddenly, Lucifer reached out, his hands on Astaroth’s thigh. Dan heard two loud cracks, his mind helpfully supplying that, yes, that was the sound of breaking bones, and the Lucifer twisted the demon’s leg in a way that Dan wished to un-see immediately. The bone jutted out of the flesh, white but covered in dark, shiny red. Lucifer took hold of it and in one smooth motion ripped it out. Astaroth’s scream echoed in the room.

Lucifer just stood in front of him, a sadistic smile on his face as he inspected the bone in his hand. “I guess, I’ll just have to settle for beating you to death once. And what better bone to do it with than the femur.”

Without warning, Astaroth dropped to the ground, hitting the tiles hard and he had no time to scoot away before Lucifer brutally hit him across the face with the bone. The demon’s head snapped to the side with a crack from the incredible force. The next hit followed right after, just as hard, if not harder than the first one.

“I made you, Astaroth. I created you. And now I will unmake you for you have far outstayed your welcome in this universe.” Lucifer took the bone in both hands and brought it down on his own knee, breaking it in two before plunging one of the jagged ends into Astaroth’s chest and the other one right in between his eyes. “Sleep tight.”

Dan watched in silent horror as Astaroth’s skin gradually took on a gray color. It crept from his wounds outwards until the demon’s entire body looked like it was sculpted out of ash. Lucifer stood over him and watched with his head tilted to the side. Then, as if he was simply blowing out a candle, Lucifer huffed out a breath and the body dissolved like ashes and dust in the wind.

With a satisfied smile on his lips, Lucifer turned towards Rhûn, who was still struggling in Michael’s grip, even more so now after he’d witnessed how easily Lucifer had taken out the archdemon. As Dan blinked, Lucifer disappeared and reappeared right next to his brother, who dropped Rhûn to the floor where the demon desperately tried to get away. But it was no use.

Lucifer took two quick steps and kicked the demon down again. Rhûn landed on his stomach with Lucifer’s foot painfully rammed into his spine. “Not so fast. I haven’t come up with an adequate punishment for you, yet. Rhûn, Rhûn.” Lucifer tutted disapprovingly. “The things you’ve done. You must have known that I wouldn’t let you get away with it. I mean, really, what were you thinking?”

“Screw you!” Rhûn coughed.

“I think I’ll pass. I would never touch something as filthy as you.” Lucifer crouched down, his foot still on Rhûn’s back. “I have just one question for you, really.” He leaned down until his mouth was close to the demon’s ear. “How did you get out?”

The demon’s laugh reverberated eerily. “Wouldn’t you like to know?”

“You’re just begging for me to torture it out of you right now.”

“You’re welcome to try. Go ahead. Go right ahead and watch as I destroy your precious Detective’s mind from the inside out.”

Dan panicked internally and he could literally feel Lucifer panic right along with him. He also felt the dark and oily presence of the demon still in his head as it began to move and struggle. Lucifer had contained him but he wasn’t incapacitated.

Lucifer let out a growl that was entirely inhuman and Dan felt him fight back Rhûn inside his head. Dan’s eyes were still forcibly fixed on the scene before him and for a moment he wondered why Lucifer made him watch all of this. Why didn’t he just let Dan close his eyes? Was he even aware of Dan at the moment? Probably not.

Had he been able to move his own head he would have been spared of what he saw next.

As the temperature steadily rose around them, Michael giving Lucifer space as he felt his brother’s temper growing, Lucifer’s eyes suddenly blazed red and he plunged his hand into Rhûn’s back, straight through clothes, skin, muscle and bone. “You will not hurt him anymore.” Lucifer growled and then his entire figure seemed to flicker before Dan’s eyes. For a split second he saw something terrible taking Lucifer’s place. It was a thing of nightmares and it made the blood in Dan’s veins freeze altogether.

It was gone just as quickly as it had appeared and Dan couldn’t quite tell, whether he’d really seen that, or what the hell that had been. He just wanted out. He wanted—needed this to be over.

As Lucifer ripped his hand out of Rhûn’s back, the demon’s heart in his hand and dripping dark red blood everywhere, Lucifer’s eyes dimmed and returned to brown and finally Dan could feel the demon’s presence disappear from his head. It crumbled along with the demon’s body on the floor and Lucifer immediately looked up at Dan, worry filling his eyes.

“Dan?” He asked breathlessly and then Dan felt him retreat from his mind as well. Suddenly he could feel his own body again, could feel the cold of his soaked clothes and shiver in response, and he wanted to feel relief but none came for his legs chose that moment to give out under him.

As his body hit the cold tiles, he finally closed his eyes and part of him never wanted to open them again.

|||

“He’s waking up.”

“Hey, Dan. Hey.”

Chloe’s face before him was blurry but he could tell it was her, the worried tone of her voice was all too familiar. Her hair was messily pulled back into a pony tail and she looked like she hadn’t slept at all.

“Wha’ ‘s goin’ on?” He slurred, his tongue feeling like it was made of lead. It stuck to the bottom of his mouth stubbornly and when he tried to swallow he noticed just how dry his throat was.

“Drink this, Mr. Espinoza.” A glass of water materialized from somewhere, whoever was holding it was unfamiliar to Dan, the voice suggested a male. He tried to take slow sips of the water and it felt amazing running down his throat. When the glass disappeared, whoever it was beside him helped him sit up slightly.

Dan tried to focus on his surroundings. It was obviously a hospital room, white walls, a single bed and a heart rate monitor attached to him.

“How are you feeling?” It was possibly a nurse, maybe even the doctor. He carefully observed Dan as he rubbed a hand across his face.

“I’m feeling fine.” Dan said defiantly. “My head hurts a little. What is going on? What happened?”

“You were kidnapped, Dan.” That was Chloe. “They broke into your apartment and knocked you out.”

Dan tried to dig through his memory to figure all of this out and suddenly it all came rushing back. The demon Rhûn had broken through his apartment door and he’d tried to run, lock himself in his bedroom but he’d had no chance. That was all he remembered about the break-in.

However, he remembered a lot of things that happened after that. He’d woken up gagged and bound in a shower stall of a public pool. The shower had been turned on, ice-cold water soaking him through until he shivered uncontrollably. Then Rhûn had come and, oh god, the demon’s face had been a horrible sight to see. Dan winced at the memory.

Rhûn had dragged him through the hallways of the pool house, before untying him and kicking him into the lap pool. He’d swallowed water and panicked but managed to drag himself to the edge and out of the water. The demon had stood above him, kicking him in the ribs a few times before another man had shown up. He had turned out to be a demon as well.

At that point Dan had already come to terms with the fact that he would most likely die in that pool. The demons had talked about Lucifer, had laughed and kicked Dan from time to time. He hadn’t dared to move and he had known that running was probably futile. When Rhûn had started teasing hi, though, he’d remembered something.

“No one is coming to save you. Especially not Lucifer.”

That was when Dan remembered Lucifer’s words. He could pray to him, so that he’d rescue him. For a moment he’d struggled to recall the name Lucifer had given him but it had come back to him. With his eyes squeezed shut, he had silently called out to Samael, and at the same time he’d prayed that it would work, that Lucifer could really hear him.

Shortly after that, Rhûn had possessed him and Dan felt like throwing up at the memory of how his body had suddenly stopped responding to his command. He had watched himself attach a chain and a weight to his own ankle, all the while silently screaming inside his own head.

Then Lucifer had come. The Devil had, with Michael’s help, taken the demons out, had ripped them both apart. And that’s where Dan’s memories became fuzzy. He couldn’t remember anything past that. But he had somehow ended up in the hospital.

“How did I get here?”

Chloe glanced at the doctor and then back at him. “Lucifer somehow found you and brought you to the hospital. You were unconscious. He just texted me that you were alright and your whereabouts and then disappeared. I called him but he won’t answer, so I didn’t get anything out of him.” She paused. “Do you know who abducted you? Do you know where you were?”

“It was—I was at a pool. It was mostly dark, the lights were off. There were two men but…” What was he supposed to say? Lucifer didn’t want her to hear anything about the demons and both her and the doctor would declare him insane. “I don’t know where they went. I really don’t remember much of anything.”

Chloe nodded. “Don’t worry about it. I’m sure, Lucifer can clear some of this up. I’m just glad he found you. The doctor says you just have a few bruises around your ribs and a light concussion but otherwise you are okay.”

“How long have I been here?”

“Just today. Lucifer brought you in last night.”

“And when can I leave?”

The doctor made a noise of disapproval. “Mr. Espinoza, I would recommend you stay here for at least the next two days. You’ve been through a lot lately, I’ve heard, and I have also been told that you haven’t been resting up as you should. You need to let your body rest for a while.”

“I don’t need rest. I feel fine.”

“Dan—” Chloe began but didn’t say anything else.

“I cannot force you to stay here but I would highly implore you did.” The doctor said with a tight-lipped smile. I will send the nurse for some pain medication and then you will rest. Miss Decker, I will have to ask you to leave.”

Chloe nodded solemnly. “I will leave with the nurse, if that’s okay.”

Fifteen minutes later, Dan was alone and slowly getting drowsy from the pain medication that he’d had protested vehemently. Chloe had eventually convinced him to take them, so that he would at least have a restful night.

He didn’t want to sleep. He knew his dreams would be haunted by images of the demon’s faces, images of Lucifer ripping people apart, eyes crimson and dangerous. However, he was mostly scared to not be able to move in his dreams, to lose control of his body once again. But the truth was, Dan was exhausted. After a while he couldn’t fight it anymore, though, and his eyes started to drift shut.

It was entirely dark in his room, when he suddenly woke up. At first, he thought that a dream had woken him up but he quickly realized that that wasn’t the case, when he noticed that he wasn’t alone in the room.

“Don’t panic, it’s just me.”

The tall figure near the window had a distinct British accent. Dan felt his breaths coming in quicker and the heart rate monitor next to his bed quietly began to pick up speed, the pause between beeps becoming shorter and shorter.

“Hey, hey, it’s alright.” Lucifer held his hands up and didn’t come any closer.

Dan wanted to fight the rising panic at the sight of the Devil but he found he couldn’t push the images out of his mind. Lucifer with his hands covered in blood; Lucifer with glowing red eyes; Lucifer breaking the demon’s bones; Lucifer but not Lucifer, a flicker of something red and terrifying. Dan couldn’t quite remember what it was he’d seen and he really didn’t want to.

“Stay away. Please.” His own voice sounded pathetically weak.

“I don’t mean you harm.”

“Please, Lucifer, I can’t be around you right now.”

The other man paused and lowered his hands back to his sides. “I’m Michael.”

It took Dan a few moments to register what the other had said but when he did, he slowly let out a shaky breath. “I’m not sure that makes it much better.”  

“I’m just here to watch over you.”

“Did Lucifer send you?”

Michael tilted his head back and forth. “Sort of. He wanted to look after you but he thought he wouldn’t be welcome. He didn’t want you to be alone, either, though, so I thought I’d offer to check up on you.” Michael shrugged. “I guess, he was right about not being welcome.”

Dan swallowed. Lucifer had known how he would react to everything that had happened. And he’d stayed away. Dan found he could appreciate the Devil’s thoughtfulness but it didn’t change the fact that Lucifer had scared the crap out of him. He had been in his head, for fuck’s sake.

“Are you feeling alright, Dan?” Michael asked carefully.

“I’m fine. They gave me pain medication.”

“You are in pain?” Michael immediately take a step closer but refrained from touching Dan. “I can take care of your injuries, if you’ll let me.”

“Why are you helping me?”

“Because you are important to my brother.”

“And you’re trying to get into his good graces?”

Michael smiled a little. “That’s the obvious conclusion, isn’t it? But no, that’s not why. You have to understand that Lucifer and I used to be very close. We never strayed from each other’s side and we would have died for each other. There used to be a time, when were almost the same person. We felt what the other one felt and we feared what the other one feared.” Michael took a breath and let it out slowly. “The more time we spend together, the more I feel like we could get back to that point. I have missed my brother. You don’t know what it’s like to be separated from your brother for several thousand years.”

Dan stared at the archangel. He was right, he couldn’t imagine what that was like. “So, you want to help because…?”

“Because I don’t ever want to see my brother suffer again. And he cares for you, so, seeing you suffer is like watching him suffer.” He held out his hand, as if asking for a dance, leaving the choice to Dan, whether he was going to take it or not.

Dan hesitated, he couldn’t fight his brain as it merged images of Lucifer with Michael in front of him, but he slowly reached out to take the angel’s hand. Once more, heat flowed through his arm and into his entire body. His head stopped hurting and his vision became a little clearer. The ache of his chest, when he breathed in, had faded as well, when Michael let go of his hand.

“I’ll let you rest now. I’m sorry to have disturbed you.”

“Thank you, Michael.”

“You are quite welcome.”

The archangel stepped away from the bed and Dan already anticipated his sudden disappearance. Before he could stop himself, he held up a hand. “Wait, could you…” He bit his lip as he paused. Michael watched him attentively and raised an eyebrow, showing that he was listening. “Could you let Lucifer know that I’m okay? That I’m not mad at him and that he doesn’t have to stay away?”

“I’ll tell him. Anything else?”

Dan looked around sheepishly. “Do you have any way of getting me out of here as fast as possible?”

Michael gave him a smile in return. “I’ll see what I can do.” He bowed slightly. “I will take my leave now. Rest well.” And he disappeared into thin air, accompanied by the sound of fluttering wings.

|||

The hospital released him first thing next morning. Dan didn’t know what Michael had done to achieve that but he was secretly grateful. He’d had enough of hospitals and he had no need for them, either, with the archangel constantly healing him. Dan called Chloe to let her know that he was going home. She didn’t sound happy but she didn’t argue much. She did, however, insist that he’d let Lucifer know that she needed to speak with him, should Dan see him.

He talked to Trixie for a little while. Apparently, Chloe had told her most of what happened and his little girl had been worried but he assured her that everything was fine and that he’d visit her as soon as possible.

After the phone call, he contemplated texting Lucifer. Calling him was not an option, Dan thought, for he didn’t trust his voice in that situation. Texting was safer. But in the end, he didn’t even send the text. He figured he could give it another couple of hours. Maybe he’d talk to him tomorrow.

Reaching his apartment door, the first thing he noticed was the yellow police tape. He sighed inwardly. Was his apartment a crime scene even though he’d been found? Maybe he should stay with Chloe for a few days just to make sure that he wasn’t screwing with an investigation here. Chloe hadn’t mentioned that he couldn’t go into his apartment, though, so he deemed it safe.

However, he wasn’t quite sure that he felt safe in his apartment anymore. It would take him some time to get over all the craziness that had happened to him. At least the demons were out of the picture now.

Dan closed the door of his apartment behind himself and carelessly dropped his bag next to the door on the floor. He toed off his sneakers and shrugged out of his jacket. His apartment didn’t really look any worse for the wear. Someone had cleaned it up. Thinking about it, someone also had repaired the door, for the last time he’d seen it, Rhûn had busted it entirely. Stretching a little, he padded down the small hallway and into the living room.

“Morning, Daniel.”

Fuck!” Dan exclaimed and jumped back. The curtains were drawn and in the half-dark of the living room, he could barely make out the figure stretched out on his couch but he would know the voice anywhere. No, scratch that, lately it could be one of two people and he really couldn’t tell them apart. “Lucifer?”

“Got it in one.”

“Jesus, you can’t just break in here and give me a heart attack.”

Lucifer chuckled. “I’d pay to see him break into people’s homes. Clueless idiot, my half-brother was.”

Dan ignored the implied fact that Lucifer had known Jesus in favor of letting out a long sigh, trying to calm down from the sudden adrenaline. He also had no idea what to do now. True, he’d told Michael that he wasn’t mad at Lucifer but that didn’t mean that he didn’t feel at least a little uneasy after what he’d witnessed.

“What are you doing here?”

“Came to apologize.” Lucifer declared towards the ceiling. “So, sorry.” He huffed out a laugh. “That wasn’t that hard. I should always do apologies after a few drinks.”

“Are you… drunk?”

Lucifer grinned at him and held up his thumb and index finger, an inch apart. “Little bit.”

“What the hell? I thought you said, you couldn’t get drunk.”

“Never said no such thing, Sir Douche. I said it takes a lot more to get me drunk and staying drunk is even harder.” His arms gesticulated lazily in the air above him.

“How much did you drink?”

“Let’s just say, I’ll have to restock Lux.”

Dan slumped down on the recliner opposite of the couch Lucifer was sprawled on. “Wow, man. You really don’t do anything halfway.”

“What would be the point?” Lucifer spat and turned to look at Dan. He noticed immediately that the Devil’s pupils were incredibly dilated.

“Dude, are you high as well?”

“As a bloody kite.” Lucifer grinned widely.

Dan buried his face in his hands, then rubbed across his eyes a few times. He really didn’t know what his life had become. An hour ago, he had been sure that he was dead frightened of the man currently opposite of him, but the state Lucifer was in had Dan throw that thought out the window. What he’d seen Lucifer do he could not forget and if he was honest with himself, it was for the best. Knowing Lucifer was possibly violent was something entirely different than seeing it, but Dan knew that Lucifer had been there to protect him and Lucifer would never intentionally hurt him like he’d hurt those demons. In the end, Dan felt like he knew Lucifer better now. He knew his friend, the Devil, better now.

Suddenly, Lucifer spoke up, his voice quiet and tinged with sadness. “Are you scared of me?”

“I’ve been thinking about that.” Dan answered honestly. “And I’ve come to the conclusion that in certain situations I definitely am. But not in the way you think.”

“I don’t understand.”

“Of course not. You’re just a tiny bit out of it.”

Lucifer chuckled. “Sarcasm. Nice touch.” He continued to stare at the ceiling. “I didn’t mean to scare you. I never mean to.”

“I know.”

“I don’t want to scare her, either.”

Dan frowned. “Do you mean Chloe?”

“Of course. The Detective would be repulsed, if I were to reveal the truth to her. I just know it. She’ll run away like everyone else.”

“I didn’t run. I’m still here. And from what I understood, so is your therapist.”

Lucifer threw his arms up. “But she hasn’t seen what you have! She would run, if she knew—and so would Chloe. Honestly, why you’re just calmly sitting there puzzles me.”

“Yeah, me too.”

“Could she love someone ugly?”

Dan was totally taken aback by the question. “Excuse me?”

“Would the Detective ever love someone ugly?”

“Is this supposed to be an insult?”

Lucifer sighed. “I don’t mean you, Douche. I meant myself.”

“Even if Chloe cared about looks, you, Mister Ego-Bigger-Than-The-Sun, must know that you’re not exactly ugly.”

Lucifer gave him a side-eye. “Are you serious?” He narrowed his eyes, scrutinizing Dan. “I thought you saw.”

“Saw what?”

“My other face. Back at the pool, I thought you saw my Devil face.”

Dan shuddered. He had seen something alright. But it was barely anything but a flicker of something—something so inhuman that Dan couldn’t recreate it before his inner eye. And truly, he didn’t want to. He figured his brain had repressed the memory as a form of self-preservation. “I don’t quite remember what I saw.” Dan admitted in a quiet voice.

Lucifer let out what could only be interpreted as a sigh of relief. “Good.”

“What is your Devil face, then?”

“It’s something that sends most people running for the hills. I’ve shown it to suspects before. It’s a punishment. They usually lose whatever wits they have left, when they see it. Which is why I’m glad you didn’t get a good look.”

“But what is it?”

“It’s what I really look like. All this,” he gestured to his entire person, “is a glamour showing you what I used to look like before the Fall.” He paused. “And when I fell, I burned, leaving me looking like the worst burn victim you could imagine.”

“And seeing that scares people?”

“That, and the accompanying visions of Hell they see.”

Dan swallowed. “You could show it whenever you wanted? Like your wings?”

Lucifer nodded, his movements jerky. “Don’t ever ask to see it.”

“After what you just told me and remembering several suspects that ended up in the loony bin, I think I’ll pass.” Dan showed a strained smile. “The eyes were quite enough for me to have nightmares for the rest of my life.”

“I’m sorry.” He sounded genuinely upset and Dan supposed that if he weren’t as inebriated, his emotions would be more carefully guarded.

“I’m getting you a glass of water. Mostly because on the way to the kitchen I can come to terms with the fact that the Devil is having an emotional breakdown on my couch and even though I know he’s immortal I am wondering how he is still alive after he’s mixed tons of alcohol with heavy drugs.” Dan got up. “So, yeah, I’ll be right back.”

“No!” Lucifer suddenly sat up decidedly too quickly for his current state. “Don’t leave. Please, I—” He paused, then sighed heavily. “Bugger this, now I’m sober again.”

“Seriously?”

“Yes. Don’t suppose you’d get me some scotch instead of that water?”

Dan rolled his eyes. “No way, man.”

“Pity.”

“What are you going to tell the police?” Dan asked after a few moments of silence.

Lucifer groaned. “I’ll avoid telling them most of what happened obviously. From what I overheard at the station yesterday, though, there is no actual investigation. As soon as I give my statement, they’ll drop it.” He leaned back. “Hopefully, that includes Chloe.”

“Lucifer, you have to tell her.”

“I know. It’s getting ridiculous.”

Dan blinked a couple of times. “So, you’re actually going to tell her?”

Lucifer closed his eyes and stayed silent. Dan already thought he wouldn’t answer, when he finally did speak up. “One week.”

“What?”

“Give me one week. A week for me to spend time with her, one week to be with her and make her happy. Then I’ll tell her.”

“You want to show her that you’re just you, huh?”

Lucifer nodded minimally. “And I want to have good last memories to remember her by.”

“You really think she’ll abandon you? Just like that?”

“I’ve learned it’s better to expect the worst. That way you’re never disappointed.” His eyes were on Dan and once more Dan saw something ancient in them but this time it wasn’t terrifying. It was something infinitely sad. Something lonely. And he realized that Lucifer was used to being alone, being abandoned and hated.

“I’m still here.” Dan offered. “I’ll convince her to listen to you somehow.”

Lucifer smiled, although there was sadness hidden behind it. “I don’t think you understand how much it means to me that you’re still here. Thank you, Dan. For staying.”

Dan just nodded in acknowledgement. He didn’t know what to say to that. Instead he cleared his throat a little. “What are you going to do, if she…”

“If she runs? If she hates me?” Lucifer offered.

Dan nodded slowly.

“Then I don’t think there’s much keeping me here.” Lucifer admitted, looking down at his hands. “I don’t think I could stand staying in LA, should that be the case.”

“You won’t go back to Hell, though, right?”

“Does it matter? Knowing that she is out there but doesn’t ever want to see me again is just as bad as Hell. Maybe worse.”

Dan swallowed. “I don’t want you to go back to Hell.”

The look Lucifer gave him was unreadable to Dan. “I guess I will cross that bridge, when I get to it.”

Dan nodded and swore to himself that he would do anything to get Chloe to give Lucifer a chance. Because Lucifer deserved it. Lucifer deserved a chance at happiness.

Chapter Text

Chloe’s lips immediately pressed into a thin line, when she spotted her partner sauntering into the bullpen. He made his way over to her, completely undeterred by anyone who greeted him or stood in his way. They all parted like water and he only had eyes for her. Pity, really, that at the moment she was more than a little pissed at him.

“I sincerely hope that you are here to give your statement and that you have a very good explanation as to what happened with Dan.” She hissed, when he was within earshot. “If that’s not the case, I’ll—I swear, I’ll—”

“Oh, please, do go on, Detective. I’d love to hear what sort of punishments you will come up with.” Lucifer suggestively pressed his tongue against the inside of his cheek. “Is it something sinful?”

“I can’t believe you, Lucifer! The nerve you’ve got!” She knew her face was most likely red as a tomato at this point.

“Relax, Detective. I have already given my statement. You know, to the chap who was in charge of investigating Dan’s disappearance. He promised to do some follow-up work but told me everything was taken care of.”

Chloe blew air out through her nose. “Just because I’m not on this case it doesn’t mean that I don’t want to know what happened. Sit down”, she ordered sharply, “and tell me.”

Lucifer pulled out the chair opposite her desk and gracefully sat down, crossing his legs and leaning far back comfortably. “Dan was taken from his apartment, as you know. Dan should know more about what happened there than me.”

“Yeah, he described the guy a little but so far they didn’t find anyone.”

“And you know this even though you are not supposed to be involved in this investigation?” Lucifer asked, his eyebrows teasingly rose high.

“Of course, I do. This is Dan we’re talking about. He got shot and almost died just about two weeks ago. So, excuse me, if I worry!”

He held his hands up in surrender and Chloe mentally tried to calm herself down. She shouldn’t yell at him. After all, he found Dan and from what she’d seen in these past two weeks, the self-proclaimed Devil had started to care for Dan quite a bit. “All I want to know is, how did you find him?”

Lucifer spoke slowly, as if carefully choosing his words. “I was lucky. I wouldn’t have found him, if a friend of mine hadn’t gotten a message to me. It helped me find him.”

Chloe nodded. She knew he was holding something back and assumed it was something about this contact of his. Probably not an entirely legal contact and she decided she wasn’t going to push. For Lucifer’s sake. She had long ago accepted he wasn’t always on the right side of the law but she had grown to look past that as long as he used his connections for the right reasons.

“Thank you.”

“Pardon?”

“Thank you, Lucifer. You came through on your promise.”

He smiled weakly. “You’re welcome, I suppose.”

“When you found him…” She hesitated a little. “Was the guy that took him there? Were they… hurting him?”

Lucifer’s dark eyes were fixed on hers and she could see the anger inside, albeit carefully veiled. “When I found him, there weren’t any other humans around.”

“The bastards just left him there.” Chloe said bitterly. “I hope they find them. I bet they were criminals with a grudge against Dan. Maybe he arrested them before.”

“I’d rather you didn’t get yourself so upset over this any longer.” Lucifer said, leaning forward in his chair. “Get your mind off of it. Be glad that Dan is alright and let the other Detective handle this.”

Chloe squeezed her eyes shut. He was right but it wasn’t an easy thing to just forget. “Fine. Alright. You know what?” She got up. “I’m going to request some time off.”

Lucifer blinked in surprise. “Really? I was just about to suggest that.”

“Yeah, I brought in the guy who shot Dan and the guy who killed that woman and left the symbols on the window turned himself in yesterday. The rest is not in my hands at the moment and I need time to spend with my family. With Dan. With Trixie.”

She saw Lucifer’s face fall but a second later he plastered a wide smile over it and nodded affirmatively. “Right on, Detective.” He got up as well and brushed down the pants of his grey suit. “May I request to reserve one of those free days to spend time with you?”

Chloe smiled at his formal approach. And, well, they were technically dating even though neither of them had ever used that specific word. “Yes, you may. You even may spend an evening with me, Trixie and a game of Monopoly. You owe us a rematch.”

“I’d be delighted to.”

Half an hour later, Chloe had cleared her request for a week off work and she felt a heavy weight slowly lifting from her chest. Trixie would be insanely happy to have her around all the time and she had to admit to herself that her workload and the constant worry of the last few weeks had taken a lot out of her. When she returned to her desk, Lucifer had disappeared, most likely he’d gotten bored without a case to work. That man had the attention span of a five-year-old.

|||

The surfaces of the bathroom were almost too shiny. Apparently, there was such a thing as too clean because that was exactly what the mansion was in Lucifer’s eyes. It was clean and bare and so very much not-lived-in. It felt uncomfortable.

He had relocated within the last half hour, from the penthouse to one of his other LA properties, namely his mansion in the Hollywood Hills. The penthouse was under repairs from his little glass-shattering incident and he’d decided the mansion would be the perfect place to spend a little time away from everything but by now he was having second thoughts. Why had he bought this house in the first place? It was too big. Too empty. Lux was always filled with people and the penthouse still small enough to hole up in, when he didn’t feel like having company. But this place really wasn’t the location one would hole up in because it was entirely too uncomfortable in its unlived-in state. The only good thing was the view from the patio outside and the greater distance to any neighbors. And maybe the fact that this place had even less doors than his penthouse. He hated doors.

Lucifer stood in the bathroom, both hands gripping the marble of the two parallel sinks, the wall before him almost entirely covered by the huge mirror that showed him his reflection and the luxurious bathroom behind him. He’d rid himself of his suit jacket and the waistcoat underneath, leaving only his dark gray shirt halfway tucked into the trousers of his suit. He was leaning forward, his face close to the mirror as he studied his own features.

So far, he hadn’t seen it for himself but he knew his Devil face was back. He’d known it back at the pool, when it had come to the surface for a split second, had caught a glimpse of his scarred and burned hands. But he had refrained from revealing it, testing it again after that.

He scrutinized his appearance in the mirror, this face that ever since his Fall had been a mask to hide the true monster underneath. At least that was what is was supposed to be. A mask. A glamour, right? He scoffed. Of course, it was. He could even feel it now, if he concentrated on it, how keeping up the glamour was constantly siphoning the tiniest amount of his power. As he studied his reflection, he wondered what he was trying to find. Maybe some sort of sign that this wasn’t his true face. Some sort of proof that the glamour was just an illusion and that the face underneath was what he truly looked like. He couldn’t find anything of the sort, though. Maybe he’d perfected his glamour over the ages to the point where it was undetectable. To the point where he himself forgot that this was a mask.

Wishful thinking.

Gritting his teeth, he dropped the glamour from one moment to the next. His eyes turned crimson, the sclera black in stark contrast to the red skin that surrounded his eyes. The scars that stretched across his bare skull stood out with a slightly different shade of red.

It was a familiar sight. This had been his face for thousands of years and he had gotten used to it. Part of him was relived to have it back and he felt a weight drop from his shoulders as he looked at the proof that he really was back to his old self. But he couldn’t help but notice the way his chest constricted, for this face also made him the monster that everyone was so afraid of. This was the thing that Chloe would run from.

With a shake of his head he reasserted his glamour and the handsome face of Lucifer Morningstar returned. He pushed away from the sink, standing tall in the middle of the bathroom, before willing his wings into the physical plane. They unfurled in all their bright white glory and he shook the left wing a little trying to align a few stray feathers. They remained stubbornly tangled, though, so he brought the wing forward and realigned the feathers with the fingers of his right hand. It was a habitual movement that had him pause for a moment. When had he gotten so used to them?

The muscles on his back flexed with the movement of his wings. He’d kept up his workout and by now he felt almost confident that the wings would carry him but he felt absolutely no urge to test that theory any time soon. He had no need for flying. The Corvette and even the metaphysical flight were enough to get him around. No sense in accidentally revealing himself to some random human by soaring over LA.

Carefully stretching the wings as far as he could in the bathroom—his wingspan was definitely not meant for the insides—he then proceeded to fold them comfortably at his back. Once more he leaned forward a little and dropped his glamour.

White, glowing eyes looked back at him, his face otherwise unchanged. He blinked them back to brown and tried again, focusing to hide his human face, but still he only managed to let his eyes turn white.

“Interesting.” Lucifer mumbled to himself. Apparently, the Devil and the angel were two separate parts of him. He couldn’t show his Devil face while his wings were showing. With a shrug he hid them away and let his eyes glow with red fire, then returning them to brown before letting them turn white once more. He grinned.

It was entirely his choice, who he wanted to be. Well, as long as he didn’t lose his temper, he supposed. Should that be the case, he doubted that he would be able to make a conscious decision, whether he wanted to be an angel or the Devil.

Content with the outcome of this little experiment, he left the bathroom, steering towards the kitchen where he picked up a drink before sauntering out onto the patio. The sun was high in the sky, bathing Los Angeles in a warm light. Fenrir and Strix were both lying out in the open, half in the shade of the house, half in the scorching midday sun. Lucifer guessed they were enjoying the change of scenery even though they weren’t really used to sunlight having spent their entire lives in Hell.

Fenrir was watching him attentively and Lucifer smiled, clicking his tongue to call him over. The huge hound immediately jumped up and panted happily, when Lucifer began scratching the fur in his neck. “Hey, there, big boy. Do you miss home?” The hound didn’t react, opting to just continue to push his head into Lucifer’s chest. He sighed. “This isn’t really the place for you and your brother. You don’t have anything to do here, can’t run, can’t play. It must be dreadfully boring for you.”

His phone rang in his suit pocket and he ignored it for the first few moments. Surely, whoever it was could call again some other time. However, it could be the Detective and she’s be angry with him, if he ignored his phone. With a sigh, he pulled the phone out and saw Dan’s name on the caller ID. He accepted the call.

“What can I do for you?”

Lucifer, are you okay? Where are you?

Lucifer pulled the phone away from his ear a little at Dan’s loud inquisition and gave it a bewildered look before pressing it to his ear again. “However touching your worry about my wellbeing might be, what has brought this on?”

Dan let out a long breath. “Maybe the state of your penthouse, man. I come up here and it looks like a bomb went off. Where are you? What happened?

Lucifer placed his glass on the railing of the patio and hung up without answering. Giving Fenrir a last pat on the head, he took flight, landing in his penthouse with the sound of glass crunching underneath his shoes. Dan stood near the bar and yelped at his sudden appearance.

“Dude, you can’t keep doing that!” Dan pointed an accusing finger at him as Lucifer walked over to him. “You’ll give me a heart attack one day.”

“Oh, stop whining, Douche.” Lucifer waved him off and sauntered past the Detective towards his bar. With great disappointment he realized that not just the windows had suffered from his little stunt but a few of his most loved bottles as well. He supposed he could have brought his drink along but it would most likely have spilled on the flight here.

Dan seemed unbothered by his lack of a beverage and continued his questioning. “What happened here?”

“I happened.”

“What?”

“Look,” Lucifer sighed, “as you can see, this really isn’t the place for a long conversation right now. Also, I left the hounds unattended. So, how about we continue this elsewhere.”

“Oh, no.” Dan backed away quickly, stumbling slightly. “No, no. I’m not letting you teleport me again. I’m done with that.”

“Would you prefer to take the car?”

“Are you serious?”

Lucifer rolled his eyes in exasperation. This conversation was pointless and going nowhere. Deciding quickly that Dan’s wrath was worth it, he closed the distance between Dan and him and as he wrapped his arms around Dan’s waist tightly, he advised, “I suggest you take a deep breath.”

“No, wait, Lucifer—”

But Lucifer took off despite Dan’s protests. He felt Dan cling to him for dear life all the way and with a surge of guilt for acting against the man’s wishes, he made sure to land extra gently. He lowered Dan to the ground on the patio, the man was shaking as his fingers were still tightly curled into the fabric of Lucifer’s suit.

“You absolute asshole!” Dan growled out and leaned his head down on his knees. “I told you how awful it feels.”

“Apologies.” Lucifer mumbled. Then, as he saw Fenrir approaching with his tail wagging happily, he added, “Heads up, Daniel.”

Fenrir all but tackled Dan in his seated position and then, as Dan lay on his back, proceeded to slump down across his stomach. Dan groaned a little from the weight but otherwise made no move to stop the hellhound. He even huffed out a chuckle and let his hand fall onto Fenrir’s back, patting the giant hound gently. “Hi, there. I take it, you missed me?”

Fenrir huffed in response and settled his head on Dan’s chest. Lucifer laughed. “You’re aware that he plans on keeping you there, right?”

“At the moment it helps with the vertigo.” Dan said, closing his eyes for a second. “But maybe you could tell him to let me up?”

Lucifer grinned, picking his drink up from where he’d left it earlier. “Go bother your brother, Fenrir. Dan and I want to talk.” Fenrir rumbled in response, making no move to get up. “He won’t leave without saying goodbye, right, Daniel? Zacar!”

The hellhound huffed but obeyed, letting Dan get up but he stayed at his side as he brushed his clothes off before joining Lucifer at the railing. “So, where are we?” He asked as he took in the view over the city. “Hollywood Hills?”

“Yes, a little ways west of the Griffith Observatory.”

“Ah, the red mansion.” Dan nodded. At Lucifer’s questioning expression, he explained. “I looked into you, when you started working with Chloe and made a list of all the properties in your name. Found quite a few.”

“But probably only the ones in Los Angeles, am I right?”

“Where else do you have property?”

“Oh, all over the place. Perth, Singapore, London obviously, Hamburg, Barcelona—the list goes on.”

“Wow, just how much money do you have?” Dan stared at him a little disbelievingly.

“Enough.”

“Yeah, I would say so.” Dan huffed and leaned on the railing. “So, are you going to tell me what happened to your penthouse?”

“Hm, it was an accident. So, now I’m staying here until the damage is fixed, which they will hopefully start with tomorrow.”

“Evasive as ever. I want to know what happened. I mean, you said you happened, but every window was smashed inwards, so I’m going to rule out that you just had a fit of rage.”

Lucifer levelled him with a calculating glare. “What happened is that I was trying to find you, when Rhûn had taken you. Michael tried to help, I built up quite the amount of power and then failed to control it adequately.”

“So, you did that with your mind?” Dan asked slowly, trying to piece the information together.

“Unfortunately, yes.” Lucifer gritted his teeth. “I don’t plan on it happening anymore. Now that the demons are gone, there should be no immediate threat, meaning I can now refrain from using any of my abilities. Hopefully.”

“You really hate them that much?”

Lucifer shrugged. “I just don’t see the point in using them anymore. I’m here among humans, so why not let me try to live like one. I don’t care for power. I have no need for it here. In Heaven I needed them to keep order, to keep my rank among my brothers and sisters. But here… all I want here is to live.”

Dan stayed silent for a few moments, then tentatively raised another question. “What’s Heaven like?”

“Must we talk about this?”

“Sorry, I was just curious.” Dan said quickly and shook his head. “You don’t have to talk about it.”

They both remained silent until Lucifer suddenly spoke up. “My perspective on what Heaven is like is a little biased. I hated it, that’s ultimately why I was kicked out.” His grin was bitter. “However, I cannot tell you what Heaven is like for you. Every soul creates their own version of Heaven, just like all of you create your own Hell. So, I don’t know what it would look like for you. You might share it with some of your loved ones, if they are up there, or it might just be what you call Nirvana. Blissful serenity and nothing else.” He swallowed around a lump that was quickly growing in his throat. His fingers played with his now empty tumbler. He wasn’t sure what made him open up to Daniel. Maybe it was the fact that he was the first human he could talk to about these things. “Human souls arrive at the gates of the Silver City and are then led through the city towards their—well, I suppose you could call it a door. Behind it, their Heaven awaits. Those doors always seemed like a prison to me, though. The souls are locked away behind them, never to come out again. They could leave, return to the Silver City, if they so desired but none of them ever do. It’s just like Hell in that way. Endless doors with souls trapped behind them.”

Dan swallowed hard, supposedly remembering his time in Hell. He didn’t look at Lucifer but the Devil could tell the other man was listening intently.

“I hate doors.” Lucifer added and Dan huffed out a laugh and something that sounded like ‘of course, you do’. “They remind me of both Heaven and Hell and well, I never really liked either of those places. To angels, Heaven is just the Silver City. We don’t get a door to ourselves, and even if we did, we would not experience what a human soul does. You could say, our souls and minds are a little too complex to be fooled into the illusion of a happy ever after. Human souls are simpler, easier to manipulate.”

“Trying very hard not to be offended here.”

“It’s not an insult. I’d give a lot to experience life like you do.” Lucifer admitted honestly. “Eternity might sound inviting but I doubt you can comprehend what it actually means. Thousands upon thousands of years of memories, all of them crammed into your brain and it’s almost impossible to forget any of it, no matter how hard you try. And it never ends.” He heard Dan suck in a breath next to him but he continued. “I suppose I’ve come to terms with it, but for the longest time I longed for it to end.” He chuckled despite the heavy subject matter. “Committing suicide is not that easy for someone like me, though, so I’ve given up on it. But now I’ve gone and gotten attached to you lot and it forces me to deal with the fact that someday I’ll lose you. All of you.”

“Lose us?”

“You’ll go to Heaven and I cannot ever follow.”

“Shit, man.” Dan winced and looked up at Lucifer.

“Don’t pity me. I’m fine. And I plan to make the most of the time I have.”

“So, you’re still planning on telling Chloe the truth? She mentioned that she took some days off work.”

“Yes, however, she mostly plans to spend that time with you and your offspring. I only reserved one day for myself.”

Dan scoffed. “She will not spend the entire week with me. Trust me, she wants to spend time with you just as much as you want to spend time with her. She may be concerned for my wellbeing but that doesn’t mean she won’t cave, when you ask her out. And Trixie will beg for you to come over as well, I bet.”

“You think so?”

“Oh, yes. And if I’m wrong, I’ll make sure that she includes you into whatever she’s planning with me.”

Lucifer gave him a puzzled look. “Why are you trying so hard to be helpful? What do you want in return?”

“This isn’t one of your deals, Lucifer. This is me being a wingman. Though I can’t believe I’m actually doing this, you being the Devil, Chloe being my ex-wife. I must be one beer short of a six-pack.” Dan mused. “But then again, I’ve accepted that a hellhound has taken a liking in me and oddly enough, I like him as well.”

“Yes, there must be something deeply wrong with you.” Lucifer agreed, a smile playing around his lips. “So, did you just come to chat or did you want something?”

“You know, without work my schedule is surprisingly very free and not counting the guys from my improv group I don’t have a lot of people to hang out with.”

“And you came to ‘hang out’ with me?”

Dan’s eyes were fixed on a point somewhere along the horizon. “I came to thank you, Lucifer. You saved my life. Again, I might add.”

“You wouldn’t have been in trouble, if it wasn’t for me. No thanks needed. If anything, I should apologize.”

“You couldn’t have known about the demons. Don’t blame yourself.”

“But I could have protected you better. Instead they tortured you. Possessed you.” He felt his anger flare, his eyes flickering red for a moment before he got his temper under control. “And to top it all off, they got off too easy for their crimes.”

Dan blew up his cheeks and let the air out slowly. “I wouldn’t call what you did to them ‘too easy’.”

“That’s because you don’t know the first thing about torture.”

“Right. But you do, because apparently you created them. The demons. And not to mention, you can possess people as well, right? You possessed me.

Lucifer flinched and the glass he’d placed precariously on the railing tumbled and fell. The crash on the wood of the patio was loud in the silence between them but apart from looking down at the smashed glass, neither of them moved to clean up the mess.

“You have my word that I will never do that again, Dan. If I had known another way to protect you from Rhûn’s influence, I would have gladly foregone possessing you. It was a last resort.” Lucifer explained with sincerity. “It’s an infernal power. I never had it as an angel. And I don’t use it lightly.”

“But you do that whole desire thing to people. Isn’t that the same?”

“No, it’s not. All that does is lessen inhibitions. I suggest they tell me, but they don’t have to. I don’t get into their heads. They could resist it, if they knew how.”

Dan grumbled something but didn’t respond otherwise. With a sigh, Lucifer turned away from the railing. This conversation really hadn’t gone where he wanted it to. The only good thing here was that Dan was not running screaming after everything that had happened to him, partially by Lucifer’s hand. No, instead that stupidly brave man had come to thank him.

Lucifer lowered himself on one of the benches that stood on the patio. It was a set complete with matching table and cushions. And like everything around here it was too clean. He stayed silent for a few minutes, Dan making no move to start up the conversation again, either. The man had begun to slowly scratch Fenrir’s neck and the hound seemed to enjoy himself immensely.

“I didn’t create all of the demons.” Lucifer began slowly. “Astaroth, yes. Several others, Mazikeen among them. But the rest of them were created by Hell itself. It happens sometimes that when a human soul has been in Hell for a long time, they start to change, twist into something new until they’re more demon than human. Rhûn was one of them.”

“That’s something that could have happened to me, if I’d stayed down there?”

“No, it only happens to those even Hell can’t break. You’d have to be pretty messed up for that to be the case. And you’re not evil, Dan.”

“Thanks, Satan.”

“You’ve been sitting on that for a long time, haven’t you?”

Dan chuckled. “Oh, yeah.” He cleared his throat and came to stand in front of Lucifer. “Now, before you sit here sulking all day—”

“The Devil does not sulk!”

“—call Chloe, ask her to come over. And I’m calling an Uber to get me back to my car.”

“Why call Chloe?”

“Do you really want an answer to that?” Dan raised an eyebrow. “Sometimes you really are clueless when it comes to relationships. Show her that you think about her, show her that you want to spend time with her.”

Lucifer pondered that for a moment. “Alright, I suppose you have a point.” He got up. “You sure, you want to call an Uber?”

“Oh, yes. I’m done teleporting around!”

“Flying.” Lucifer corrected.

“Whatever. Just call her.”

|||

Even though Chloe had been looking forward to spending time with her daughter now that she had some time off work, she had immediately given in, when Trixie had begged to stay at her friend’s house over night. She had quickly decided that an afternoon and evening alone would be immensely relaxing, and she had been right, she thought, as she settled on the couch with a cup of tea and a new book, instead of having to pick up Trixie from school.

Tomorrow, she would call Dan and maybe on Saturday they could take Trixie to the fair. But today was a good day to spend some time on her own. Gently, she blew on the hot tea, loving the way the cup warmed her palms. Just as she took a sip, careful not to burn her tongue, her phone rang. Internally, she groaned. Time off was supposed to be time off. If the precinct was calling, she swore she wouldn’t answer; a voice in her head called her out on that lie. She put the tea down and disentangled herself from the blanket to go and pick up her phone from the counter.

It wasn’t the precinct, though. The caller ID showed Lucifer’s name and Chloe bit her lip to keep herself from smiling too wide. It wasn’t often that he called her and most of those calls were work related. Seeing as they didn’t have a case at the moment, she dared to hope that this was a social call.

She swiped the screen to answer the call. “Hi there.”

“Detective!” Chipper as ever, she thought, when he greeted her as usual. “Am I interrupting something?”

“Nothing important. What’s up?”

“I wanted to request that one day of your time today, if possible.”

Chloe blinked. “Right now? I mean—the day is already half over.”

“If it’s inconvenient, then, by all means, say so, Detective.”

She glanced at her book on the coffee table, then at the clock and then decided she could stay in another time. “No, it’s all good. I’d love to spend the evening with you. What did you have in mind?”

“Excellent!” She could practically hear his grin over the phone. “I wasn’t planning anything outstanding, to be honest. I just thought it was too quiet around here and sought company. You could bring a movie, I’ll provide the snacks, how does that sound?”

“A movie night?” Chloe asked disbelievingly. “Since when do you do movie nights?”

“You prefer those to going out, don’t you? I thought you might appreciate it.”

Shaking her head fondly, she agreed. “You better be prepared to watch more than one movie, though.”

“It’s still early.”

“True. I’ll be on my way, soon, then. I’m just going to finish my tea.” She explained and made her way over to the couch again.

“Yes, about that, my penthouse is currently under repairs. I’ve relocated for the time being. The drive from your place is a little bit longer than to Lux. Is that okay?” He sounded terribly unsure, Chloe thought, but she was too busy contemplating what had happened to his penthouse. She didn’t want to ask, but it was very likely that he’d once again trashed it in a fight with Amenadiel.

“No problem. Just send me the address. I’m sure I’ll find it.”

“I will. See you soon, Detective.”

Soon after he hung up, her phone buzzed with a message from him with the address followed by a devil emoji. That man seemed uncapable of sending a message without adding that particular emoji at least once. Shaking her head, she picked up her cup of tea and tried to drink it as quickly as she could. The scalding hot beverage was giving her a hard time, though, so she took it along to her room, where she quickly changed. Yoga pants and a sweater were not Meeting-Lucifer-Morningstar-Clothes. She struggled a little to put her hair up in a neat ponytail and eventually just decided to leave it down. This was a casual meeting after all. Just hanging out. It couldn’t be considered a date.

She tried the tea again and this time it was bearable to down the cup. Back in the kitchen, she threw her wallet and keys into her bag and after standing in front of her DVD collection for a few minutes, one finger tapping her chin, she threw the Lord Of The Rings trilogy into her bag as well.

A little while later she pulled up next to Lucifer’s Corvette on the spacious driveway of a mansion in the Hollywood Hills. Had the convertible not been there, she wouldn’t have been sure that she’d gotten the right place. The mansion she stood before was somehow so very different from Lucifer’s usual style. It wasn’t shiny in that sort of sense that would make Lucifer look its way but more reserved in its glamour. Mentally, she was still debating whether or not she should confront him about what happened to the penthouse that made him move here.

With her bag in hand, she approached the front door and rang the doorbell, even though she was almost sure the door would be unlocked for everyone to just stroll in. Still, she figured she should stick with common courtesy. Someone in this relationship had to after all.

It didn’t take Lucifer long to appear at the door. His initial bright smile at her sight quickly faded to something akin to nervousness. “Detective! I’m glad you made it. Come in.” He stepped aside to let her enter and closed the door behind her.

“This place is quite something, Lucifer. Isn’t it a little big for just you alone?”

His nervous chuckle made Chloe turn around to look at him instead of taking in the entry hall that was almost as big as her entire living room and kitchen combined. Lucifer stood and fidgeted with the cufflinks on his arm. His eyes were focused somewhere to the left of her. “Funny you should bring that up.” He grimaced a little.

“Why is that?” Chloe felt more than a little apprehensive to hear the answer. Was he going to drop another wife on her? Did he live here with someone else?

“Maybe you’d like to take off you jacket and come to the living room before I dive into that.” Lucifer suggested, one hand guiding her way towards an archway that led into the kitchen that transitioned seamlessly into the living room. Chloe took in the spacious rooms, trying to imagine Lucifer living here. It somehow didn’t fit.

He took her jacket, draping it over a stool at the kitchen island. “Can I offer you something to drink?”

“Hm, still a bit early for alcohol for me, I think. Maybe just a glass of water for now, thanks.”

“As you wish.”

As he handed her the water, she could see the miniscule shake of his hand. Was he really that nervous? What was happening? “This is slowly becoming very uncomfortable. What is going on, Lucifer?”

“Well,” he began, then paused before continuing, “you remember me mentioning my brother?” Chloe nodded in response. “As it happens, he showed up just before you. I, of course, told him, I was expecting company and he was about to leave again but I figured that I might as well take this chance and introduce you to him.” The words had left him in a hurry, his tongue stumbling over some of them as he hurried to get all of it out. He was definitely nervous, Chloe could tell, otherwise he would have just led with ‘meet my brother, Detective’.

“Oh, okay. Of course.” Chloe put down her glass of water on the kitchen island and brushed down her blouse. “Sorry, I wasn’t expecting that. I’d be happy to meet him.”

“Right.” Lucifer nodded courtly. “Then I suppose we should get this over with.” He made a gesture to the wide-open glass sliding door in the living room that led out onto a spacious wooden patio overlooking the city. He took the lead on their way outside but paused and turned back to her once more. “Remember not to swoon.” He reminded her with a warning finger.

“Lucifer,” she laughed, “I promised, I won’t.”

He inclined his head and was about to continue on his way but stopped once more. “I suppose I should warn you.”

“About what?”

“Michael is—well, he’s not just my brother. He’s my… twin.”

Chloe stared at him, not blinking for a few moments. Had she just heard that right?

Lucifer’s face had resumed its apprehensive expression. “I apologize. I was told, I should lead with that.”

“Yeah, maybe you should have—sorry, wait,” she held up both hands, “could you repeat that?”

“Michael is my twin brother.”

Chloe shook her head. Hearing it a second time didn’t make it any easier to believe. Carefully, she looked past Lucifer’s shoulder, trying to see someone out on the patio but her view was mostly blocked by Lucifer himself and a few, very big potted palm trees. She returned her gaze to her partner. “Is this a metaphor?”

His face scrunched up in exasperation. “It is most definitely not a metaphor, Detective. What would that metaphor even imply?”

“I’m still trying to figure that out.”

“It’s fascinating, those explanations you come up with.” He scoffed quietly. “Come along, then.”

He turned and strode outside, his hands stuffed into his suit pockets, ducking out of the way of a few leaves of a palm tree and disappearing from Chloe’s view. After a couple moments, she quickly followed, scolding herself a little for hurting his feelings because surely she had done so with that metaphor comment.

She stepped outside, following where Lucifer had gone and saw two men standing at the railing, one of them leaning on it with both forearms, the other one turned in her direction with his back leaning against the railing.

Chloe froze. The man that was looking at her was Lucifer. He had to be. His face was that of her partner, his hair a little windswept but just the same as her partner’s. However, he was wearing a dark red button-down shirt with the sleeves rolled up to his elbows. And Lucifer had not been wearing that just a moment ago.

Her eyes flickered to the other man whose back she would know anywhere and for fuck’s sake, he was wearing Lucifer’s suit.

“Holy shit.”

She was still glued to the spot as Lucifer turned around and saw her standing there. A pained expression flickered across his face but it was quickly hidden behind his usual façade. All Chloe could do, though, was stare. Lucifer stood upright and pushed his brother forward into Chloe’s direction rather forcefully.

“Go on, then.” Chloe heard him say. “Don’t be rude, introduce yourself.”

It shook Chloe out of her trance and determinedly she approached both men, holding out her hand towards Michael. Somewhere in the back of her head, a small voice was yelling and quite literally throwing a tantrum. This entire encounter could be put on the list of most surreal things she had seen in her life. That list had grown exponentially since meeting Lucifer and that man just kept adding to it. Twins weren’t uncommon but it was something entirely different to suddenly have your partner of three years standing before you twice. Especially, if said partner was Lucifer Morningstar.

“Chloe Decker. It’s nice, though somewhat weird to meet you.”

The man before her smiled and fuck, if that wasn’t Lucifer’s smile, she didn’t know what it was. He took her hand but instead of shaking it, he inclined his head suggesting a bow. “Likewise, Miss Decker. My name is Michael. Which, I suppose, my brother has already mentioned.” He glanced sideways at Lucifer who watched the exchange with scrutinizing eyes.

Chloe meanwhile was entirely too distracted by the fact that Michael’s voice equaled Lucifer’s to the last nuance. How was she ever going to tell them apart? Sure, their clothes gave it away but apart from that, they were literally indistinguishable.

Michael tried to catch her eyes before he spoke. “Was my brother gentleman enough to warn you?”

“Oh, please, when am I not a gentleman?” Lucifer chimed in and stepped closer. Chloe noticed how his arm brushed that of his brother but neither moved to retain the personal space. “Now that we have the introductions out of the way—”

“Well, your brother could have mentioned a twin earlier, but yes, he did warn me. Though I didn’t believe it until just now.” Chloe intercepted him and then turned to address Lucifer. “Seriously, Lucifer, a twin brother you just forgot to mention? Sorry, but it seemed farfetched.”

“Just like everything else I say, right?”

“I’m sorry, I didn’t believe you. Can’t really deny it now, can I?” She gestured towards Michael.

“Well, as to why I never mentioned him, Detective, I just never thought to see him again. So, I didn’t bother. It was a little shortsighted on my part.” He shrugged.

“How long will you be staying in LA, Michael?” Chloe asked.

Michael seemed to hesitate, exchanging a look with Lucifer first before answering. “I have not yet decided on the duration of my stay. For now, it will be as long as my brother will have me.”

“Oh, so you’re staying here with him? Is that why you moved out here?”

Lucifer inclined his head. “Among other reasons.”

Michael smiled and patted Lucifer’s arm once. “I should take my leave, brother. After all, you had an evening planned, right? I don’t want to be in the way.” He looked down at Chloe. “It was a pleasure to officially meet you, Miss Decker. I’m glad my brother got around to introducing us.”

Chloe was about to return the sentiment but Michael’s wording had her tilt her head. “Wait a second. What do you mean ‘officially’? Don’t tell me we actually—” She gestured from Michael to herself agitatedly but couldn’t finish the question.

Lucifer chuckled and brought one arm around his brother’s shoulders. “Oh, this should be grand. Got something to confess, Michael?”

Michael just closed his eyes for a moment, huffing out a breath. “I owe you an apology, Miss Decker. You are right, we have met before.”

“When? What happened? When?!

Michael visibly cringed and it made Lucifer, who still leaned on his brother’s shoulders smile even wider. “I visited the precinct once and you mistook me for Lucifer. I’m sorry, I didn’t correct you. I was there without Lucifer’s knowledge or permission.”

Chloe’s mind backpedaled and immediately latched onto the memory of said day. Looking back at it, with the knowledge she had now, it was obvious just which day it was. “Oh, wow.” She stared somewhere into the middle-distance with wide eyes. “I think I need to sit down.”

Lucifer was quick to let go of his brother and offer his arm to Chloe. She took it gratefully and he led her over to a cushioned bench on the patio that was part of a set complete with a table. On the table were several plates, bowls with dips and a little basket with bread that smelled like it was fresh out of the oven. Her stomach growled but she was way too distracted to think about food right now.

Michael had followed them to the table and sat down on the opposite bench, his eyes glancing towards Lucifer again and again as if to confirm that he was doing the right thing. Or maybe to confirm that Lucifer was not pissed at him.

“Miss Decker—”

“Please, just call me Chloe.” She said and at his surprised expression she added, “I mean, you look like Lucifer and sound like him and imagining him calling me ‘Miss Decker’ is just weird.”

“He’s not me, Detective.” Lucifer stated immediately and Chloe placed a hand on his knee to reaffirm him.

“He’s not. Which is why he’s not allowed to call me Detective.”

“Very well, Chloe, then. I apologize for pretending to be my brother. It was not right and I should not have done it.”

Chloe waved a hand. “It’s okay. It’s just—weird. I mean, had you told me that you were Lucifer’s twin brother, I wouldn’t have believed it, either. No, wait, maybe I would have, with Lucifer’s not lying thing and all.” She shook her head to clear her mind. “Nothing could have prepared me for this to be honest.”

“Have you never met twins before, Detective?”

“Of course, I have. But tell me that you wouldn’t be confused, if I suddenly introduced you to my twin sister.”

“Fair point.”

“Hold up, Dan was there as well. He was talking to you, Michael. And he had no idea.”

Michael hummed and looked down and Chloe’s eyes narrowed, when she felt Lucifer tense a little next to her. Lucifer eventually looked at her with a sheepish expression on his face. “Daniel met Michael shortly after he got released from the hospital after the shooting.”

“Dan knew?”

“Yes.”

“He knew you had a twin brother?”

“Yes. He did.”

“And he didn’t even let it slip.” Chloe said more to herself than to the brothers. “Oh wow.”

Michael gave both Chloe and Lucifer a bright smile. “I am glad we could clear that up.” He reached out to take a piece of bread from the little basket, dipped it into one of the bowls and toasted it towards Lucifer. “I’ll take my leave now, Lucifer.”

“You can stay in one of the rooms upstairs, you know that, right?”

Michael glanced at Chloe. “I don’t think I should impose on your date?”

Chloe exchanged a look with Lucifer and they silently agreed. “It’s not that kind of date.” She assured him. “Sit, have some food with us. We’re not kicking you out, right, Lucifer?”

“Anything she says.” Lucifer agreed.

“Oh, anything?” Chloe asked with a playful smile.

Anything, Detective.”

Michael snorted but quickly hid his smile behind his food. “If that is so, I will gladly get to know my brother’s girlfriend a little more.”

Chloe couldn’t help but smile. She was Lucifer’s girlfriend now, wasn’t she? Not just partners, though they always would be. It felt good to be something more. She bumped her shoulder into Lucifer’s, who gave her a fond look before offering her the bread and a plate of cold cuts and cheeses. Chloe gladly filled her plate.

With a piece of bread on way to her mouth and a smile playing on her lips, she asked, “So, who’s older?”

Lucifer and Michael responded in complete sync. “Don’t ask.”

|||

When the sun began to set, they finally relocated to the living room and Lucifer sent Michael upstairs to have the room and the TV and couch—and Chloe—to himself. He didn’t mind his brother being here, not anymore. If he was honest, it felt like being complete again after a very long time spent without his brother. Maybe it was for the best that Michael decided to ask him for forgiveness.

Chloe had gotten along with him well. But Lucifer’s fears concerning her falling for his brother immediately had turned out to be unnecessary. She had not swooned over Michael, the good brother, instead she had sat close to him, the Devil, playfully shoving him, when he had teased her about some dip on her nose.

It had felt the most domestic he’d ever experienced. And now they were cuddled up on the couch, her head comfortably lying on his shoulder as they watched a movie about a small human, who apparently wasn’t a child, followed by several people, one of them a dwarf who was the only comic relief, on a mission to destroy a ring, all the while looking quite constipated. Lucifer could appreciate the music very much, though, along with the beautiful scenery of New Zealand.

“You seem really close with your brother.” Chloe suddenly spoke up over the sound of the movie.

“What gave you that idea?”

“The way you behave around him. You don’t do that around anyone else. Not even around Amenadiel.”

Lucifer frowned, his hand on top of Chloe’s stilled in its movements. “I don’t think I’m following. How do I behave?”

Chloe interlaced her fingers with his. “Well, you let him touch you. You don’t shy away from touching him in turn. There’s no personal space between you two and usually you stay as far away from people as possible. Don’t be mad, but you don’t really like bodily contact if it isn’t sex.”

“You are currently touching me and we are not having sex, I believe. If we are, you should have said something, I would have at least taken my trousers off.”

She snorted. “You’re such an ass. I don’t count at the moment, seeing as we have established that we’re dating.”

“Hm, right.” Lucifer hummed. “So, you’re saying, Michael and I come off as very touchy-feely.”

“Not overly so, but I noticed you don’t immediately flinch away from him.”

“I suppose that’s true. It’s also an improvement. A few weeks ago, we were at each other’s throat, when he tried to touch me.”

Chloe hummed in responde and stayed quiet for a little while before speaking up again. “Seeing you two next to each other is tripping me out, just so you know.”

“Are we really that bad?”

“If you were to put on the same clothes, no one could ever tell you apart. I mean, can anyone? Your parents? Your other siblings? Can they tell who’s who?”

“My parents could always tell. A mum just knows, I suppose and dad has this omniscience thing going on, which really makes it a moot point.” Lucifer grumbled a little. “But Daniel struggles as well, so, you’re not alone.”

“Dan can’t tell you apart, either?”

“Not at all, it seems. He has started to ask me whenever we meet, whether I’m me. It’s starting to get annoying.”

Chloe laughed. “I can imagine.”

“Just don’t tell me, you’re going to start doing that as well.”

“I’ll try not to.” She said, but her voice was full of mischief. “Only to rile you up.”

“That’s very considerate, my dear, thank you.”

“Why did Michael suddenly show up?”

Lucifer pondered the question for a few moments as the unfortunately named Frodo stole a boat and the even more unfortunately named Sam almost drowned to stop him. “The truth is, I reached out to Michael for help first. That’s why he figured coming to Los Angeles and patching things up with me was a clever idea.”

“Hm, he seems like he’s really trying.”

“What do you mean?”

Chloe shifted her position a little. “Sometimes, I tend to be quite good at reading people. And Michael is trying very hard to please you. You can see it in the way he talks. He agrees with whatever you say, he looks at you often while he speaks, even when talking to me, and he constantly checks with you, whether the subject or his answers are appropriate.”

“You never turn the detective mode off, do you?”

He could feel her grin. “There’s no off-switch.”

“Yes, I am quite acquainted with that kind of problem.” He whispered into her ear.

She slapped his hand lightly. “I knew you would turn this into something sexual.”

“You walked right into that one, my darling.”

“I know. There’s just no winning with you.”

“I’m the best prize there is.”

“Stop!” Chloe laughed, and grabbed a pillow to push it at him, while freeing herself from his grasp. “Before I decide to play dirty.”

Lucifer leaned forward, his voice teasing. “Oh, Detective, I’d love to see you play dirty. What are you going to do?”

He wasn’t expecting Chloe to simply lean forward and close the distance between them. Her lips on his felt like the purest ecstasy he’d ever known. The feeling ran along every nerve in his body and his brain short-circuited for a small moment before he carefully returned the kiss. He couldn’t help but think that this was the third time she’d simply kissed him without any warning. A part of him was still yelling about how this was a terrible idea and how terrified she’d be of her own actions, if she knew the whole truth, but the pure joy of kissing her overrode that part easily.

Gently, he cupped her cheek in his hand. She responded by deepening the kiss, both her hands were suddenly at the back of his head until on took a hold of his hair and the other one slid down towards his back.

Lucifer had kissed a lot of women in his time but none of the had ever made him feel like this. And the worst part was, he could not even describe it. Putting it in words seemed inadequate. Maybe this was what Heaven was supposed to feel like. Actual Heaven had never measured up to this and Lucifer doubted it ever would.

Why had angels never been allowed to feel this? Did they even want to feel like this? Or was he the only one?

Chloe’s hand glided along the whole of his back and Lucifer pushed all doubts aside in favor of pressing his body closer to Chloe’s. Suddenly Chloe froze and pulled back. Lucifer would never openly admit that he let out something close to a whine at the loss of her touch but he pulled away as well, not wanting to continue touching her, if she so obviously didn’t want it anymore.

“I’m so sorry.” Chloe breathed out. “I didn’t think—did I hurt you?”

Lucifer was taken aback. “What do you mean? No, you didn’t hurt me.”

“But I—” She gestured towards Lucifer. “I thought maybe they hurt. And even if they don’t, I shouldn’t have just assumed that touching them was okay. I’m sorry.”

“Chloe,” Lucifer took hold of her wrists to get her to look at him. “I don’t know what you’re talking about.”

“Your scars.”

Lucifer’s mouth formed a little ‘o’ at the realization. “No, Chloe, don’t worry about—that. My back doesn’t hurt. And I don’t mind what you just did.”

“I just assumed—last time you didn’t want me to touch them.”

“That is true. A lot of things have changed since then.” Lucifer looked at their intertwined hands. “That whole thing is still a sensitive subject but if you don’t mind, I’ll explain it to you another time. Hopefully soon. I’m working up to it.”

Chloe nodded, her expression serious and understanding. “Okay. I won’t push.”

“You’re not doing anything wrong, Chloe.” He assured her. “I just seem to have a lot of issues at times.”

Chloe smiled and reached out to engulf Lucifer into a hug, and he wouldn’t even have fought it, but a sudden noise from the hallway had them both look over Chloe’s shoulder. “Was that your brother?”

Lucifer was already halfway off the couch. “No, Michael’s upstairs.”

“Got any pets running around?” Chloe joked and turned the volume of the TV off.

Lucifer just shook his head, listening for any other noise. “They’re upstairs as well.”

“What?”

“Shh.” Lucifer held up his hand and Chloe fell silent. “Stay here, I’ll go see what it was.”

“No, Lucifer, someone could have broken in. You’re not confronting them alone.” Chloe hissed.

Lucifer could feel Michael approaching and silently cursed his brother for appearing right there in the living room. Fortunately, he did so behind Chloe and not right in front of her, so she didn’t see him appear out of thin air. Still she flinched, when he suddenly spoke, and Lucifer guessed from her surprised expression that she was indeed wondering where he’d just come from. “There’s someone in the house, Lucifer.”

“You don’t say.” Lucifer hissed. “Stay here with Chloe, while I go and see who it is.”

Michael quickly stepped around the couch and held his brother back. “Bad idea. How about I go and you stay here? If I need you, I’ll yell.”

Lucifer glared but stayed silent. Michael had a point. With Chloe so close he was vulnerable whereas Michael was still completely immortal. He would be in no danger from whoever it was. Lucifer nodded for his brother to go ahead and he watched as Michael silently crossed the kitchen towards the entry hall.

Both Lucifer and Chloe stayed completely silent, holding their breath to hear what was going on. For a few moments it was eerily quiet in the house, only the distant traffic of the city could still be heard through the open glass door. The sudden sound of a scuffle had both Lucifer and Chloe on their feet immediately and moments later they both hurried through the kitchen towards the sound of Michael fighting someone off.

Before Lucifer had taken a step into the hall, though, he already knew what was happening. “Michael, let her go!” He commanded but his brother didn’t listen. Both him and the woman he was fighting fell into Lucifer and Chloe’s line of sight in a tangle of limbs and, not surprisingly, knives.

“Is that—” Chloe asked behind him but her voice faltered at the sheer brutality of the fight.

“Michael!” Lucifer repeated. “Don’t make me pull you off her.”

There was a grunt and Michael somehow wedged his foot under the woman’s stomach, kicking her away. He was on his feet moments later, taking his place right next to Lucifer, both standing in front of Chloe, who pushed her way through the gap in between them.

The woman got off the floor, her knives in both hands glistening in the low light, her breathing heavy and her hair in disarray. She took a step forward, taking in the three people standing in front of her with a mix between a smile and a scowl.

“Well.” Lucifer next to her crossed his arms and leaned against the side of the archway to the kitchen. “Welcome back, Maze. And dare I say it, you’ve missed all the fun.”

Chapter Text

Maze glared at Lucifer, and simultaneously spun her knives once in both hands, then pointed her left blade at Michael and spat, “Amenadiel I understand—he stopped being Daddy’s boy after all—but him? You trust him?”

“Mazikeen,” Lucifer sighed. “This really shouldn’t be any of your concern.”

“Not my concern? Did you take another hit on the head? That scumbag is the one who kicked you out!”

Michael visibly flinched at the exchange, and Lucifer contemplated stopping this fight right there but before he could take so much as a step, Chloe rushed forward with her arms raised.

“Maze, I’ve missed you.” She carefully avoided Maze’s knives as she hugged the demon, who was too dumbfounded to do anything but endure the embrace. Lucifer would have scolded Chloe for getting into the middle of this celestial standoff and totally ignoring the tension in the room, but he quickly realized that Chloe had done a smart thing, immediately dissolving any conflict between his brother and Maze. “Trixie will be so happy that you’re back.”

Maze cracked a half-smile. “How is the little human?”

“She’s good. And considering all that’s happened that’s quite something to say.”

Maze snapped her head towards Lucifer and blurted, “What happened?”

Asserting himself between Maze and Michael, Lucifer glanced down at the demon, “I’ll fill you in on everything, Maze, but for now, Michael is not your enemy and I forbid you from acting against him.”

The demon scoffed. “Forbid me?”

“Yes,” Lucifer replied vehemently. With Chloe’s eyes focused on Maze still, Lucifer let his eyes flash red, long enough to ensure Maze saw. “I forbid you.”

Maze stilled. Her mouth opened but for a few seconds she didn’t say a word. Chloe’s confused gaze found Lucifer but she didn’t say anything, either. Eventually, Maze found her voice. “Understood. But I demand to know everything I missed.”

“Demand,” Michael sneered, but Lucifer held up a hand to silence him.

“You will get your answers Maze. Not now, though. It’s really not the time or place.”

Chloe shuffled back a few steps. “If I’m imposing, I can leave anytime.”

“No,” Lucifer said, maybe a little too quickly. “I mean, you are not imposing. You don’t have to leave. Maze can make herself scarce.”

“No, no, I should get home. Obviously, you guys need to catch up,” Chloe reasoned.

“But, Detective—Chloe, this evening was supposed to be just for us.”

“We’ll do it again some other day, then. We have time. No need to rush this.”

He felt like yelling, pulling his hair—anything really to vent his frustration. For once in his life, time wasn’t something he had. It felt clearer to him with every second that ticked by; one day this would all be over, whether that day would come next week or in forty odd years. Chloe seemed to pick up on his desperation somehow for she quickly crossed the distance between them, pulling him towards the door. He let himself be pulled along.

“Lucifer, are you okay?” she asked, when they were out of sight from Maze and Michael.

“I don’t want you to leave.” He thought it came out more desperate than he had intended.

“It’s not like this is the last time we’re seeing each other. But I really think it’s best to end the evening here. We can always pick it up another day.” She stood on her toes, pressing a lingering kiss to his lips that made him tingle with something he couldn’t quite put in words. When she took a step back, her aqua eyes searching his, he felt himself relax.

“You left your jacket and your purse in the kitchen. Let me go fetch them for you.” He turned quickly and hurried back through the hallway towards the kitchen, right past Maze and his brother who eyed each other carefully. As far as he could tell, neither of them had moved an inch. Getting them to trust each other would be quite the feat.

He returned to Chloe, who stood outside the door, looking pensive. With a gentle smile, he handed over her things.

“Thanks, Lucifer.”

“Oh, wait, I forgot your movies. Let me just—”

Chloe’s finger on his lips silenced him. “Leave them. It gives me a reason to come back.”

Lucifer gave an indignant huff. “I would hope you’d be coming back for me and not for a DVD set.”

“I don’t know, I mean, I really like those movies. The sword-fighting alone. You can’t measure up to that.” Chloe grinned, knowingly winding him up.

“Detective, I’ll have you know that I can sword fight, better than those wannabes even.”

Chloe laughed, throwing her head back slightly. “This is dangerously close to a conversation I really don’t want to have as I’m leaving.”

“I disagree, Detective, it will give you the needed incentive to come back for me.”

“That it does.” She placed her hand on his cheek, her thumb carefully tracing his lip, before leaning up to kiss him once more. “Good night, Lucifer,” she whispered, her mouth still right next to his.

He watched as she got into her car and didn’t move until the taillights of her sedan disappeared at the end of the driveway. Looking up at the dark sky, he almost prayed, but he knew no one was listening. He found himself wishing that someone would listen. How could he ever tell her the truth? How could he ever risk losing this? A part of him wished he hadn’t agreed to taking it further because now he had gotten a taste and if the Devil was one thing it was insatiable. Knowing that he would never get to be with her like he’d been this evening, if he were to reveal the truth to her. The tingling from before was rapidly turning to ice spreading within his chest making it difficult to breathe.

With one last glance at the sky, he turned on the spot and made his way back inside before Michael and Maze could have the chance to tear each other apart. The demon’s eyes warily flickered from Lucifer to his brother and back, her posture tense. Her knives were still at the ready and she showed no desire the sheathe them any time soon.

“Maze, darling, would you quit it with the hostility?”

“With him around? Are you kidding me?”

Lucifer sighed and pinched the bridge of his nose. “He is not to be threatened in any way. Michael is not here to cause trouble and I expect you to trust my judgement on that.”

Maze stared at him with incredulity. Pointing her right knife at Lucifer, she hissed, “I will not show him any respect after what he’s done to you. I remember what you said about him. Every word. You hate your brother. Almost as much as you hate your father. And you expect me to welcome him with open arms and ignore all the pain he has put you through? Worship every step he takes?”

“I don’t need worship from you, demon,” Michael spat but Lucifer threw up a hand to stop him.

“Not helping, brother.”

Maze had taken a step towards Michael, taking the bait. Lucifer quickly intervened, though, stepping between them, his eyes narrowed at Maze, warning her off. “You will not touch him.”

“I believe that’s my choice. You won’t stop me from teaching this prick a lesson.”

“Have you forgotten who he is?” Lucifer challenged her. “You don’t stand a chance against my brother and I don’t want you to get vanquished. And for the record, if anyone is going to teach my brother a lesson, it will be me.” His eyes slowly bled through with red, deliberately showing them to Maze once more.

“You really got it back, then.”

“Oh, yes, I did. And believe it or not, Michael helped.”

“And your wings?”

“Still attached.”

“I want to know what happened,” Maze demanded.

Lucifer’s eyes returned to their usual brown. “And I will happily fill you in, if you put your weapons away and come sit down. Calm and civilized.”

Michael behind him snorted. “I don’t think civilized is in her vocabulary.”

That apparently was the last straw for Maze. With a cry of outrage, she jumped forward, barreling past Lucifer who could only barely dodge one of her knives. Michael saw her coming, though, and with a slightly menacing smile on his lips he gracefully evaded the demon blades before bringing his elbow to Maze’s head with such force that the demon flew to the side.

Lucifer let out a growl when Maze got hit. The growl was echoes by both Fenrir and Strix who appeared from the shadows as their master called for them, their eyes red and every step a threat in itself. Maze ignored them, though she had clearly noticed their presence, and threw a knife at Michael. The archangel managed to lean back just in time, the blade skimming the fabric of his shirt. It left no mark on him but he was distracted for the tiniest of moments, giving Maze the chance to jump up and attack once more. Before she could reach him, though, Lucifer whistled sharply with two fingers in his mouth.

Maze instinctively stilled, while Fenrir took the whistle as the command that it was and bounded forward, teeth bared as he pushed Maze to the ground once more. Strix closed in on Michael, teeth bared in a snarl but not attacking.

“If either of you make one more move, I won’t hold the hounds back,” Lucifer seethed, his gaze mostly fixed on Maze who dropped her remaining knife as she lay on her back with the hellhound’s paws on her chest. She pressed her head back into the rug on the floor, her neck bared to Fenrir’s fangs, submitting.

Lucifer was in Michael’s face not a moment later. “Leave. Now, brother.”

Michael sneered at Maze one last time before he disappeared in a gust of wind that made Lucifer’s hair escape its careful gel confines. He felt Strix’ discontent at losing sight of his prey but he quickly switched targets and began to circle Fenrir and Maze on the ground.

Uniglag,” Lucifer ordered Fenrir and the hound jumped off of Maze. The demon huffed out a breath that was part relief, part annoyance and got up, brushing down her clothes.

“Get them out of here or I’m not staying.”

Lucifer tutted. “You don’t get to make demands. Not after attacking my brother, when I specifically told you not to. The hounds stay. And if you want answers, so will you.”

He turned on his heel, returning to the living room of the mansion, Fenrir and Strix trailing behind him and Maze not far behind, either. She eyed the hounds warily as they lay down at their master’s feet where he stood at the door to the patio. Almost absentmindedly, he retrieved a cigarette from the pack in his pocket, lighting up.

“Where have you been, Maze?”

“I told you. Canada.”

“A bounty? That took you over a week? Am I supposed to believe that?”

“It’s the truth.” Maze stood next to him, ignoring the warning growl she got from Fenrir. “There were… complications. But that’s not important. I want to know what’s happened here.”

Lucifer regarded her with a calculating look. Deeming her answer a truthful one, he explained, “The murders, the attack on Daniel, that was Rhûn’s work.”

“Rhûn’s topside?!”

“Not anymore.” Lucifer smiled dangerously. “Him and Astaroth escaped somehow. I still believe they had help and I will figure out who freed them but all in due time. In short, Rhûn wanted to get rid of me, convince me to return to my kingdom,” the cigarette between his fingers flared up as his anger stirred, “and they kidnapped Dan as leverage over me.”

“So, Dan found out the truth about you?”

“He found out before the demons got their claws into him. He even helped me find them.”

Maze’s brows climbed up her forehead. “He didn’t run?”

“Well,” Lucifer tilted his head, “he was uncomfortable in my presence and it took him two or three long conversations to get over that initial shock, I suppose. But he’s fine. He adjusted as much as you would expect. I trust him.”

“Wow, it must be opposite day.” Maze whistled in wonder. “First Michael, now Dan Espinoza. A few weeks ago, you wouldn’t have trusted either of them. And now you do?”

“Things have changed, Maze. I needed someone to confide in. I needed my brother’s perspective on—I needed someone. You weren’t here. So, I looked elsewhere.”

“And your Devil face?”

Lucifer shrugged. “It came back, when I realized that it was my own choice. I gave myself my wings back and took my face, when I thought I didn’t deserve it. But I have come to terms with who I am now and that’s the Devil, free to be whoever I want to be. So, I’m keeping the wings and the power and my face.”

“Do you have them under control?” Maze asked guardedly. “When I left, you were bleeding power all over the place. It’s better now but still very noticeable. Are you still going to accidentally nuke the city at some point?”

“Relax, Maze. I’ve caused the odd earthquake, yes. But I don’t plan on wreaking havoc any time soon. Even if I were to lose sight of myself, Michael can keep me in check.” He paused and mumbled to himself, “Dan too. Well, if Chloe is near, that is.”

Maze scoffed and crossed her arms in front of her chest. “You trust Michael to stop you? What if he takes advantage of the situation and stabs you in the back? Literally? Like before?”

“He won’t,” Lucifer growled out, his eyes briefly flashing white. “Michael is none of your concern. If you two can’t be civil with each other, just avoid each other. I don’t want to intervene every time and you don’t want that, either, believe me. Because sooner or later, I will lose my temper.”

Maze didn’t respond, keeping her eyes firmly fixed on the skyline outside. Lucifer flicked the bud of his cigarette away, for once not caring where it landed and turned to settle on the couch, where just a few minutes ago he’d sat with the Detective. Oh, how he wished she hadn’t left. The evening had been way too short in his opinion and he dreaded that it might have been the last one he’d ever spend with her like that.

That reminded him, “Oh, Maze, I will tell Chloe the truth. Come Wednesday, I hope. Her and I are moving forward at a pace where I cannot have her stay ignorant of my true identity any longer.”

“Are you serious? First Dan, now Chloe? How do you think that is going to go down?”

“I don’t know but Dan has given me hope to believe that she will accept it.” Lucifer reached out one hand from where he was sitting on the couch and buried it in Strix’ fur, gently running it through the tangles and scratching the hound’s neck where he knew he liked it. It seemed his pets calmed him down with their presence alone or he would have lashed out at Maze for her comments already.

“Right. She will just embrace the Devil as her lover, won’t she?”

“It doesn’t matter, whether or not she does. What matters is that I am finally going to stop pretending to be someone I’m not. I’m finally being truthful. And if she decides she can’t live with the truth, I’ll accept that.”

“You are an idiot, if you think that’s ever going to happen.”

 Lucifer flashed her a condescending smile. “It really isn’t your place to judge. You are not in my service anymore.”

Maze’s expression suddenly lost all traces of confrontation. Her gaze fell to the floor around Lucifer’s feet and her hands clenched once, twice before she pushed them into the pockets of her leather jacket. “That is actually something I’d like to discuss.”

“What is?”

“I—I mean, I would—” Maze looked up to the ceiling, then down at the hounds, her eyes never meeting Lucifer’s. “I want to be under oath to you again.”

Of all the things she could have requested, Lucifer was sure that was the last thing he’d expected to hear from her. Slowly, he leaned forward, his elbows resting on his knees and his fingers resting against each other in front of his face. “Say that again.”

“I want to return to your services.”

“Why on earth would you want that? I freed you. After millennia. And now you just—want it all undone?”

“Yes. Please.”

Now Lucifer was almost concerned. Maze wasn’t one to beg. “I want a reason, Mazikeen. Why do you want to submit to me?”

“I—” It seemed she really struggled to voice her thoughts. Several tries later, she finally made the words tumble from her mouth. “I need somewhere to belong.”

“And you believe that place is with me?” Lucifer asked. “You have your job with the LAPD. You have your flat with Chloe and her offspring and you have Linda. Isn’t that a place you belong?”

“No. All of that is fleeting. Temporary.”

Lucifer couldn’t help but wince in sympathy. She was right, after all. All their relationships here were temporary. No one here would live long enough to be anything but a moment compared to their lifespan. “That didn’t bother you before. Why now?”

“Oh, for crying out loud,” Maze exclaimed. “Something happened in Canada that gave me a little perspective, okay? Isn’t that reason enough?”

“Maze? Tell me what happened.” It wasn’t a command. He kept his voice gentle, asking her to confide in him and eventually she did, her voice strained with grief.

“Turns out my bounty was innocent. I tried to help him, I grew to like him and, in the end, he got himself killed.” She rushed the words and Lucifer knew she was keeping the details to herself as much as she could. “So, yeah, it made me realize that they are all way too fragile to get attached.”

“And that’s why you’re coming back to me.”

“You will always be there, won’t you? You won’t disappear on me. You won’t abandon me.”

Lucifer rose from the couch, standing before Maze, his hands resting on her shoulders that slumped in defeat. “I would never abandon you, Maze. My Maze. You will always have me.”

“Then, please, take me back.”

“You don’t have to be under oath for me to be around.”

“But I want to be. I need to have a purpose again. The Devil’s right hand. Your confidante. Whoever you need me to be.”

Lucifer cupped Maze’s face, the side that he knew was covered by her glamour. “If you do this, I won’t let you go again. That was a one-time thing. You can’t change your mind in two weeks and decide you don’t want it anymore.”

“I understand.”

“Do you?”

“Yes. Lucifer, I know what this means. I’ve been in your service for thousands of years. I never expected to be free in the first place.”

“If you’re sure about this,” Lucifer nodded. “I won’t stop you. If that’s what you want.”

“It is.”

Lucifer took a step back and spread his arms wide in invitation, his eyes lingering on Maze’s determined face. Maze let out a breath, her lips only barely parted, then she slowly lowered herself to one knee before Lucifer. Fenrir stood and paced around the demon’s kneeling form as Maze slowly began reciting an oath in her native tongue.

It bound her to Lucifer, stating her submission, her service and her loyalty. Lucifer felt the words slowly taking hold as she spoke them, forming a binding contract between the two of them. A prickling sensation ran down his spine. It was all too reminiscent of when he’d first landed in Hell.

Maze finished, the last words quiet and her head bowed, avoiding Lucifer’s eyes. He closed the distance between them and gently lifted her chin with two fingers, silently asking her to rise, which she did.

“I accept your oath, Mazikeen of the Lilim,” he stated firmly. For a moment, he searched her eyes for any last regrets but found only determination. “One last thing.”

Maze nodded and produced one of her blades. She sliced the glistening edge across her palm, blood welling up almost instantly. She held her palm higher, offering it up to Lucifer, who dipped a finger into the dark red, his eyes never leaving Maze’s.

I bind thee, Mazikeen.” The Enochian filled the room with static electricity and ozone as the power behind the words took hold. Lucifer brought his finger up to his mouth and licked it clean of the blood, swallowing once. He heard Maze take a shaking breath in. She most likely felt the immediate effect of the bond more clearly than himself, seeing as she was the subject bound.

“I believe that concludes our business for the night, my Lord,” Maze spoke. “If you don’t have any immediate requests for me, I’d like to return to my apartment.”

Lucifer smiled. “Go. Spend the rest of the evening with Chloe. Catch up with her, that sort of thing.” Once more he gently cupped Maze’s face. “My Maze. I’m here, if you need me. Always. But you’re your own person. Don’t forget that.”

“I won’t.” She returned his smile. “Someone needs to talk back to you after all.”

|||

Two nights later, Lux was in full swing and Lucifer mingled with the patrons of his club, his thoughts, however, kept revolving around Chloe. They came to a screeching halt, when he spotted a familiar soul in the crowd.

Dan hadn’t actually been to Lux that often, at least not as a customer. Sure, once and again he’d been here, chasing after Chloe or lately even to spend some time with Lucifer. However, he had never come here to drink in the club as a patron. It was surreal for Lucifer, seeing the man make his way towards the bar, pushing past the barely-clad bodies of several young women as they danced. He leaned on the bar, glanced around, and overall, he looked slightly out of place in his bomber jacket.

Dan was looking around as if trying to find a familiar face among the throngs of gyrating bodies. Lucifer watched him with interest while hidden in his booth, wondering whether Dan was here for him or not. Surely, he would have mentioned it to him before coming, why bother coming here if not for him? They had never discussed meeting up today; in fact, Chloe had mentioned that she was spending the day with Dan and their offspring.

Dan turned towards the bar, patiently waiting his turn to order and apparently giving up looking for Lucifer, if he’d been looking at all. Lucifer sipped from his tumbler, ignoring the woman that had been slithering her way into his vicinity.  Lately, he’d made an effort not to over-engage with any of his patrons. Sure, he flirted and chatted a little here and there—he had a reputation to uphold after all, thank you very much—but he always made it clear that all invitations ended at the elevator door.

The raven-haired woman to his left began to caress his thigh with slow strokes and he quickly grabbed her wrist, removing it from his person. “Sorry, love, but that’s not happening.” He firmly placed her hand back in her own lap, pointedly ignoring her annoyed pout. He meandered his way out from the booth, mumbled a quick “excuse me” as he left her behind.

Lucifer moved through the crowd with practiced ease as he neared the bar. He was still debating, whether to approach Dan, when a group of three men surrounded the detective. All three were wearing designer clothes, but Lucifer zeroed in on their malevolent grins and duplicitous eyes. They were grinning at Dan in a way that immediately gave off asshole vibes.

“Well, well, if it isn’t Dumb Daniel.” The tallest of the three had spoken and he slapped Dan on the shoulder harder than a friend would. Dan took a deep breath through his teeth, straightened his back, and turned towards the men with a glint of barely restrained hatred in his eyes.

“Doug, still an insecure child, I see,” Dan said, his jaw clenched. Lucifer was now close enough to eavesdrop on their conversation from behind, still out of sight. He leaned on the bar instead, watching as Patrick worked, but, in truth, all his attention was focused on Dan’s current situation.

“Oh, Dan, you’re not still bitter about High School, are you? I thought, you’d finally be smart enough to let go of the past. Was I mistaken?” Doug pretentiously announced to anyone in earshot. “What is a beat cop like you doing in an establishment like this anyways? This isn’t quite your scene. How did you even pay the entry fee? I am surprised they let you in with this...get-up.” He waved at Dan’s jacket.

Dan’s jaw clenched, but he didn’t answer. The other two men sniggered at Doug’s comment and bumped their fists. Bullies, Lucifer thought indignantly and he barely resisted the urge to storm over to them and show them just what he thought about people like them.

Doug laughed at Dan’s silence. “You haven’t changed, Dumb Daniel. You always were at the bottom of the food chain and you always will be. I’m just going to assume that you had to spent just about all of your savings to get in here. But who do you think you are kidding? You don’t belong here.” He shook his head with fake pity. “Or did you cheat your way past the bouncer with that badge of yours?” He gasped in mock surprise.

Dan’s grip on his glass tightened. Lucifer was just about done listening to Doug’s comments but he held back. Dan wouldn’t appreciate him barging in, much less if he were to beat some sense into them. So, Lucifer tapped on the bar with his knuckles twice, getting Patrick’s attention. He leaned forward and spoke quietly. “Dan Espinoza is on the list starting now.” Patrick nodded in understanding and went about his work.

Lucifer heard Dan scoff while staring at his drink. He, apparently, had reached his breaking point with his bullies as well. “You guys are real mature.” Dan waved towards Patrick, pulling out his wallet to pay for his unfinished drink but the bartender shook his head with a small smile playing on his lips.

“You don’t pay here.”

Dan’s eyebrows rose immediately but he quickly hid his surprise as much as he could. “I don’t?”

“Boss’s orders.” Patrick shrugged and pushed Dan’s glass closer to him, an invitation to drink up.

Doug and his two lackies were dumbfounded. They eyed Dan with barely veiled surprise that quickly morphed into distaste. Dan didn’t seem to care, though. “Right. Tell Lucifer thanks, will you?”

“Tell him yourself,” Patrick suggested and nodded towards Lucifer, who still pretended not to be privy to the situation. Lucifer lifted his tumbler to his mouth and hid his smile behind it as he felt Dan’s eyes on him.

Dan cleared his throat. “If you idiots would excuse me, I’m in need of some better company.” With that, Dan grabbed his drink and shuffled along the bar towards Lucifer. He placed his glass next to Lucifer’s, who finally turned to face him, making sure to look nothing but surprised, if not innocent.

“Dan, what a pleasure.”

“Since when, Lucifer?” Dan asked with a disbelieving shake of his head. “Since when do I drink for free?”

“I thought you’d appreciate being on that list. It’s not a very long one, mind you. Only three names are on it, including you.” He beamed at Dan but soon his smile froze as he felt one of Dan’s bullies approaching.

“Doug Gunner. You probably heard of me,” he introduced himself, even though Lucifer hadn’t even turned around. Slowly, he turned to look down at the man, taking note of Dan’s tense posture. Perhaps he needed to teach this idiot a lesson. Doug held out his hand towards Lucifer, who glanced down at it with obvious disgust and refrained from taking it.

“Can’t say that I have, and how did you get into my club?”

Doug looked visibly confused. “I, uh, payed to get in here.”

“Right, and as the owner I reserve the right to throw out whoever doesn’t belong in this establishment.”

Doug chuckled nervously. “Now wait a minute. You say, you own this place. Why, that makes you Lucifer Morningstar. I’ve heard a lot about you and I think I have a profitable business proposition if we were to team up.”

“I don’t do business with an ignoramus like you,” Lucifer spat. “Now leave me be before I really do make you vacate the premises.”

“You can’t do that.” It was the first time one of the other two men had spoken up.

Lucifer chuckled darkly and he could feel the anxiety of the three men rising, reveling in it. “Oh, you’ll see that I can. I could also do much worse.”

He suddenly felt Dan’s hand on his arm and looked down at him. “They’re not worth it, Lucifer. Please, stop.” He quickly let go of Lucifer’s arm but held his gaze. “Can we just go upstairs? The company down here is just awful.” One corner of his mouth quirked upwards with a smile but it was strained.

Lucifer hesitated but not for long. He wouldn’t go against Dan’s wishes, especially because the entire situation wasn’t any of his business in the first place. “Good idea. Lead the way.”

Dan grabbed his drink, not even sparing the three men another glance before walking away. Lucifer was right behind him, ever so tempted to turn around and finish what he’d started but he restrained himself.

He leaned in close to Dan from behind as they made their way towards the elevator. “Are you sure you don’t want me to teach them a lesson?”

“Quite sure, Lucifer.”

“I just want to scare them.”

“The people you scare end up in asylums.”

“I could also just break some bones.”

Dan glanced backwards, meeting Lucifer’s eyes. “You’re actually being serious. Wow, just—no, Lucifer. You will not break their bones.”

“So, you’re letting them get away entirely unpunished?”

“It’s called taking the high road.”

“You can’t tell me that you don’t long to beat some semblance of sense into them.”

Dan shivered. “Stop.”

He was tempted, Lucifer could feel it. It’s what he was good at—tempting people. Tempting them to follow their desires. Dan was in no way immune to him, not like Chloe was. If he were to turn the dial on his powers just a little further, Dan would cave. But it would be the wrong thing to do. Lucifer let out a put-upon sigh and pressed the button to call the elevator. “As you wish.”

The ride upstairs was awkward at best. Lucifer hadn’t been up in the penthouse since his little accident with the glass but he’d been assured that it had all been fixed yesterday. He sincerely hoped to find a few bottles underneath the bar that had survived the incident. Restocking would take a little time but he was sure with Maze’s help, he would manage.

Dan didn’t say another word and Lucifer refrained from his usual quips, fearing that Dan really wasn’t in the mood. As the ding sounded, announcing their arrival in the penthouse, Dan spoke up.

“Did you just do something to me?”

“In a way, yes. I apologize.” Lucifer avoided Dan’s gaze and chose to go and immediately started his search for alcohol to keep himself occupied.

“What does that mean? What did you do? You weren’t… in my head. Not really,” Dan voiced his thoughts, trying to make sense of it.

“I wasn’t. But I have a certain effect on people, as you may have noticed. I don’t have to get into their heads for that to take hold.”

“What do you do to them?”

Lucifer held up an unbroken bottle triumphantly, poured himself a healthy amount and took a swig of his drink before answering. “I lessen inhibitions.”

“You said that before. That’s what you do, when you ask people about their desires. But that’s not what you just did.”

“Well, what people usually see, when they look at me, is temptation. That’s why they throw themselves at me. I don’t have to talk to them for that, it just is. But let’s just say I can dial that effect up quite a bit. Suggesting things, planting thoughts and ideas.”

Dan’s eyes followed him as he wandered over to the couch. “I never threw myself at you and neither did Chloe.”

“Chloe is an exception. My powers don’t work on her. And with you, well, I turned the dial down with you. Way down. I didn’t like you much at first, so I stopped you from feeling that way about me.”

“So, you’re saying that you could dial it up and I would throw myself at you like everyone else? That’s ridiculous, dude, I don’t like you like that. You’re with Chloe. Not to mention that you’re the Devil.”

Lucifer flashed him a grin. “Do you want a taste of my magnetic personality?”

“You don’t have a magnetic personality,” Dan scoffed but he sounded like he didn’t believe his own words. He sauntered over to the couch to sit beside Lucifer, sinking down into the cushions with a sigh. “So, you could turn it down with everyone, if you wanted to?”

“Unfortunately, no.”

“Why not?”

“Well, let’s just say most people would start avoiding me entirely.” Dan frowned at him and Lucifer reluctantly elaborated. “They’d feel that something’s off about me and instinctively give me a wide berth. Which would be very irritating, plus it’s hard to run a successful club like that.”

“Is it off now?” Dan questioned. “Because I don’t feel like running.”

“I’d like to think that you know me well enough to know I’m nothing to be afraid of.” Lucifer flashed his friend a grin. “But no, it’s not off entirely. You’d know, if it was.”

“And if you were to turn it up? What then?”

“You felt it downstairs,” Lucifer reminded him. “I could have talked you into letting me hurt them. You would have condoned it. But as it were, you have quite a strong mind. You’re not easily tempted. And I won’t take your free will from you like that. I don’t do that to anyone,” he added with emphasis. “I could, yes, but I never would.”

“Your powers are scary, man.”

“Hence my attempts to rid myself of them. Yet, you trust me for whatever reason,” Lucifer mused. It was weird how their relationship had developed. Dan trusted him but the same was true the other way around. Lucifer trusted Dan. Trusted him enough to talk about his insecurities regarding his powers, trusted him to keep his secrets. It was strange. Before he could go down that rabbit hole any further, he stood and held his hand out for Dan’s glass. “Another drink?”

Dan handed over his tumbler and Lucifer returned to the bar. He fished two ice cubes from the cooled drawer, dropping them in Dan’s glass before pushing the drawer closed with, in hindsight, a little too much force. His thumb got caught in the drawer and he hissed as pain shot through his nerves and he quickly pulled the drawer open to free his finger.

His head snapped up to Dan. “What is Chloe doing here?”

“W-what?” Dan stuttered. “How do you know she’s coming?”

“Not coming. Here already,” Lucifer said. “I’m vulnerable. That means she’s close by.”

Dan looked like a child that had been caught with his hands in the cookie jar. “I’m sorry. I told her not to do this.”

“Do what exactly?”

The elevator saved Dan from answering. The doors slid open revealing Chloe, her hair down and framing her face in waves of gold, in her hands two bags, one of which looked like a gift bag, all shiny and silver. Her face bore a wide smile as her eyes fell on Lucifer.

“Hey, I hope I’m not too late. Traffic was awful.”

“Late for what exactly? What is going on?” Lucifer stepped away from the bar, his eyes wandering from Chloe to Dan suspiciously. “You were supposedly spending the day together. Why are you both here?”

Chloe came up to him, a spring in her step that Lucifer only saw, when she was genuinely excited about something. “You didn’t think we’d forget, right?”

“Forget?”

She placed both bags on the counter gingerly, before suddenly throwing her arms around Lucifer’s neck. “Happy birthday, you idiot.” Lucifer froze. He barely managed to return the hug at all. She thought it was his birthday? Chloe squeezed him a little tighter, then let go and stepped back, sheepishly. “I know, I know, last year we didn’t really celebrate. I don’t think I ever even mentioned it and I’m sorry but with the whole Candy thing last year… I ignored it, to be honest. But we can’t have a repeat of that.”

“We can’t?” Lucifer grimaced. “I assure you, Detective, there’s no need to celebrate.”

“Of course, there is. And it’s by no means a party, don’t worry. I couldn’t get anyone to come over on such short notice except for Dan,” Chloe explained and reached for the bags, pulling out a jar of distinctively green fluid. “Ella was busy, though she said she would try to drop by later. Linda is out of town. Maze laughed in my face, when I asked, for whatever reason, and Amenadiel said he wouldn’t be welcome and I wasn’t going to get in the middle of whatever feud you have with your brother.”

“Detective, really, I don’t need any celebrations.”

“Come on, Lucifer. It’s just us three and a little alcohol.” She pouted a little and Lucifer was reminded of her spawn. “If you don’t want to celebrate your birthday, we can pretend to celebrate my week off. But you have to take the shot and accept your present.”

Truth be told, Lucifer felt awful. The Detective had gotten him a present, had tried to organize a surprise party and was wasting her time celebrating his birthday and it was all a lie. It wasn’t his birthday. It never would be. He really hadn’t thought this through, when he’d thrown that rebirthday-party. How could he tell her? How could he explain this?

“Oh”, Chloe suddenly spoke up. “I left my phone in the car. Sorry, I have to go get it in case the sitter calls. I’ll be back in a second.” She hurried back into the elevator. Just before the doors closed on her, she called, “Don’t you dare start without me.” Then he was alone with Dan again.

“Like I said, I told her not to do this,” Dan piped up from somewhere behind Lucifer, whose eyes were fixed on the closed doors of the elevator.

“It’s not… it’s not my birthday.”

“I figured.” Dan came up behind him, one hand clapping down on Lucifer’s shoulder heavily. “Mr. Older-Than-The-Sun doesn’t have a birthday, does he?”

Lucifer slowly shook his head. “How am I supposed to tell her?”

“You don’t. You let her celebrate and play along.”

“That would be a lie.”

“Oh, come on. Two years ago you celebrated your birthday as well. What’s the big deal?”

“That was on a technicality. I never said it was my birthday.”

Dan sighed. “Look, man. I know you want to tell her the truth and all, but she’s been looking forward to this. She wants to make you happy. Don’t ruin this for her. Just play along for the night.”

“I can’t lie to her like that,” Lucifer protested. He was still staring at the elevator, unable to tear his eyes away as his mind worked through the problem at hand.

“You won’t have to tell a single lie. Just don’t correct her, bluff a little. You do that all the time. And don’t tell me this time it’s different.” Dan carefully grabbed both his shoulders and turned him around. “Stop panicking.”

“I’m not.”

“Good. Then act like it.” Dan picked up the tumblers that Lucifer had abandoned on the bar and held one out to the Devil. “You got this.”

Lucifer threw the contents of his glass back in one gulp and nodded at Dan. “You’re right. I’ll just ignore the birthday part.”

Chloe returned to the penthouse not much later, her phone in hand and her smile still brightening her face. “Alright. Birthday shot first, then we’re diving into the better stuff.” She caught sight of Lucifer’s strained expression and Lucifer saw her joyful smile falter. “Is it okay that we’re here? I didn’t mean to impose on you, especially if you didn’t want any company today. Just say the word and we’ll be out of your hair.”

“No!” Lucifer exclaimed immediately. “No, no. This is quite alright. I’m just—surprised. But you are in no way imposing.” To reassure her, he gestured towards the jar of pickle juice. “Work your magic, Detective.”

Chloe took him up on his suggestion and began pouring shots for the three of them. Behind her back, Dan made a gesture that conveyed both calm and breathe and Lucifer did his best to follow the instructions. None the wiser, Chloe handed both men a shot glass and lifted her own to toast.

“Here’s to you,” she announced before throwing back her whiskey shot quickly followed by the pickle juice. Lucifer and Dan followed suit.

“Alright,” Dan spoke up then. “How about you point me in the direction of your sound system, so we can liven up the party a little. And you open your gift, hm?”

Too stumped still by everything that was transpiring, Lucifer complied. As Dan wandered off, Chloe pushed the gift bag closer to Lucifer. Her smile was back, genuine and lovely, and Lucifer forced himself to breathe and return the smile. He didn’t want her to feel unwelcome but he knew his initial reaction had not exactly been enthusiastic. As he reached for the gift bag, he tried to read Chloe’s face, tried to figure out what he should be expecting but Chloe had a mean poker face, when she wanted to.

“Should I expect something to jump out at me?”

“Somehow, I doubt you’d like a pet. Too much like a child, am I right? They require so much attention,” the Detective said with a very serious expression.

“Ah, that’s where you’re wrong. You just need the right kind of pet. One that doesn’t whine or pee on your carpet.” He flashed her a grin and reached into the bag, pulling out a rectangular present wrapped in light blue paper. “Is it a phone book?” he joked. Judging from the weight, it couldn’t be a normal paperback, but it seemed to be some kind of book.

“Open it and see for yourself.”

He did. The wrapping paper fell away, revealing a sleek, black and leather-bound photo album. The cover was covered with swirls of glitter—Lucifer presumed it was the spawn’s artwork—and in neater writing for Lucifer. He glanced up at Chloe, who had her bottom lip between her teeth as she watched him turn the album around, inspecting it from all sides. Carefully, as if it was made of glass, he opened it to the first page. It showed a picture of a booth down in the club, Lucifer sitting next to the Detective, one arm behind her on the backrest of the booth and a smile on his lips as he apparently listened to what Chloe was saying. The lights of the club illuminated their faces with oranges and blues while the background was out of focus, other partygoers nothing but blurry shapes.

“Where did you get this?” he asked in awe. He remembered the day, clearly, like he remembered everything else but he didn’t remember anyone taking pictures.

“Your bartender. Patrick,” Chloe explained. “I like that picture. So, I put it first.”

Lucifer’s eyes got wider as he began turning page after page. They were filled with pictures. Of him, of Chloe, of Beatrice, Ella or Dan, Maze, even Amenadiel and Linda, taken at the precinct, Chloe’s apartment, Lux and so many other places.

“This is—” He searched for the right words.

“Do you like it?” Chloe asked, ducking her head a little. “I asked around for any and all pictures anyone had. Trixie helped putting them into the album and she even put the little heart stickers on those pages she liked best.” Lucifer turned another page, finding one of said stickers underneath a picture of Maze and Beatrice posing with their knives, plastic ones in the offspring’s case. “I had no idea what to get you, I mean, what don’t you already have? So, I thought, memories of the last two years would be something you might like.”

“It’s wonderful.”

Chloe’s eyes shot up. “It is?”

“It’s the best present I have ever received,” Lucifer stated, closing the book and running his fingers along the glittery lines on the front. “Thank you.”

Before Chloe could answer the music suddenly set in, a little too loud to be comfortable and both of the flinched a little, their moment ripped away violently. “Sorry, sorry,” Dan yelled and turned it way down until the music was little more than background noise.

Chloe rolled her eyes, then stepped closer to Lucifer, giving him a side hug. “You’re welcome.”

“Should we get comfortable?” Lucifer gestured to the couch. “I’ll bring the booze.”

The next half hour was spent with light and fun conversation, that got more and more relaxed with every sip of alcohol. Lucifer had all but forgotten how awful he felt about the not-quite-birthday-lie, when suddenly Chloe nudged his side.

“Where’s your brother?”

“Which one?”

“Michael, of course. I mean, it’s his birthday, too, isn’t it? Twins and all.”

Dan choked on his drink, coughing violently until he could breathe again. “You know about Michael?”

Chloe started to laugh and couldn’t stop, her laughter eventually turning into giggles at Dan’s shocked expression. Lucifer couldn’t help but chuckle as well. “Yes, Sir Douche, I introduced them. You don’t have to keep that secret anymore.”

Chloe, still giggling, asked, “Is it true that you keep asking him, whether he’s Lucifer or not?”

Dan looked almost offended. “Have you seen them? They look exactly alike! You can’t tell me you can tell them apart.”

“Well, as I’ve been told I already mistook Michael for Lucifer once, so I’m going to say no.”

“Damn right. They are indistinguishable.”

“So, where is he? Still in LA?” Chloe returned to her original question.

“Yes, still at the mansion, I believe.”

“Alone?”

“Yes.”

Chloe frowned. “Maybe you should ask him to come over. He shouldn’t be all alone on his birthday.”

Lucifer ached to enlighten her regarding the birthday issue but Dan was quicker. “Yeah, why don’t you go call him?”

“I’m not sure he’d want to come.”

“Can’t hurt to ask,” Dan insisted.

Chloe hummed and nodded enthusiastically, her buzz now obvious. “You go do that and I’ll go pee real quick.” She stood, swaying only slightly, and made her way towards Lucifer’s bathroom.

Lucifer buried his head in his hands with a sigh. Now he could have to ask Michael to lie for him. He glanced at Dan, who just shrugged. No help at all. Rubbing his hands across his face, he eventually grimaced and brought his palms together in prayer. He made sure to give a quick explanation of his situation to Michael along with the request to be here in thirty minutes. As an afterthought he added the demand to use the elevator instead of his wings, then dropped his hands.

“Is he coming?” Dan asked.

“This thing isn’t a phone. He can’t answer me. All I could do was ask.”

“But can’t he pray to you?”

Lucifer scowled. “You know how this works, Dan. He would have to use my other name and I forbid him from doing so.”

“Why do you hate that name so much?”

“That’s not something I’ll discuss with you,” Lucifer said through his teeth. “Do not bring up the topic of my name again, understood?”

Dan held up both hands in surrender and didn’t say another word. Lucifer considered whether his words had been too harsh. After all, Dan couldn’t know the memories connected to his old name. He thought about apologizing but that’s when Chloe returned and Dan quickly dove into light conversation again, filling up all their glasses with a smile, disregarding their conversation entirely. Ella had apparently texted Chloe, letting them know she wouldn’t make it tonight but wished Lucifer all the best, promising a hug the next time they saw each other. Lucifer was secretly relieved. At least that meant he wouldn’t have to introduce Ella to his brother.

Thirty minutes later Lucifer was figuratively on the edge of his seat, dreading each moment for it could be the one that would have Michael walking through the door. But then forty-five minutes passed and he didn’t show. Lucifer was torn between relief and annoyance. After all, he’d asked his brother nicely.

“Suppose he had better things to do,” he shrugged it off and Chloe put a hand on his as they sat next to each other on the couch.

“It probably was a bit too spontaneous. But just as well, that leaves more booze for us.” She grinned widely at him and Dan lifted his glass in agreement.

“Maybe you should slow down, darling. From what I hear, you handle your booze in a very questionable way,” Lucifer teased.

“Oh, please, I handle it better than Linda.”

“If you say so, Detective.”

“I do, Satan.”

For the second time that night, Dan choked on his whiskey and Lucifer laughed wholeheartedly. “I prefer Old Scratch, love.”

Chloe just patted his chest condescendingly. “You do you, Lucifer.”

When their evening drew to an end—Chloe had to relieve the babysitter from her duties—Lucifer accompanied both Dan and Chloe downstairs to the underground garage to wait for their cabs. Dan let Chloe take the first one and Chloe gave Lucifer a quick peck on the lips in goodbye, limiting their PDA around Dan to a minimum.

“Good night, Lucifer. I’ll see you tomorrow.”

“Thanks for tonight, Chloe.”

She smiled. “Anytime.” After that she got in the cab and Lucifer watched it drive away until the taillights disappeared around the corner of the garage.

Dan cleared his throat behind him. “Hope you had fun tonight despite the obvious issue.”

“It was bearable.” The grin on Lucifer’s face betrayed his words. It had been a great evening and he was glad for every moment he got to spend with his friends. Thinking about his friends reminded him of the photo album sitting on his couch table waiting for him to look at for the next few hours. “Oh, that reminds me. As we wait for your cab…”

“What’s up?”

“Well, I feel with it not actually being my birthday, I don’t deserve to get presents.” Dan looked like he was about to interrupt but Lucifer quickly continued. “I’m not exactly accustomed to receiving presents. For me it’s always quid pro quo.”

“This time it doesn’t have to be.”

“I have something to give, though. I just didn’t know who to give it to.” Lucifer reached into the inside pocket of his suit jacket. “Say, does your offspring oversee her own financials?”

“She’s nine.”

“That doesn’t answer my question.”

“No,” Dan shook his head, chuckling. “She doesn’t.”

“Then, I suppose, I should give this to you instead.” He held out an envelope towards Dan who hesitantly took it. “Consider it reparation for putting up with me and for gifting me the photo album.”

Dan frowned as he fumbled to open the envelope. He unfolded the papers inside, his eyes flying over the first few lines of writing before widening rapidly. “What is this?”

“It’s for young Beatrice, of course. Chloe mentioned it a few months ago, how terribly steep the cost can be and that she’s been saving money ever since the offspring was born. I’m sure, she would object to me giving you this but really, I don’t need the money—”

“Lucifer,” Dan stopped him. “What is this?”

“It’s an account in Beatrice Espinoza’s name. To finance her education,” Lucifer clarified. When Dan only gaped at him and the papers in his hands, he tried to explain himself further. “I couldn’t just sit and watch the Detective saving every last penny just to ensure her daughter’s future. Not when to me it’s no trouble at all to pay for it. So, I had that account set up a while ago, made some inquiries about the average cost of a college education and then made sure there was more than enough.”

“This is way too much, Lucifer.”

The Devil waved it off. “It’s nothing to me. Please take it. It makes me feel better.”

A laugh made both men look up. “First free drinks and now this? You are a charity case, Dumb Daniel.” It was the idiot bully from the club. He was sauntering in their direction and Lucifer felt Dan’s anger rise, just like his own.

“I don’t believe anyone asked for your opinion, you twat. Now run along before I get nasty.” Lucifer knew the guy wouldn’t take any threat seriously but this time he was determined to make good on his threats. He shifted his stance, now standing between Dan and Gunner.

“Aw, your little boyfriend is so protective of you. That’s almost cute, you know, if it wasn’t so disgusting.” Doug came to a stop a few feet away, his smile so fake it made Lucifer want to punch it off his face.

“Keep talking and it’ll be your worst regret.”

“Oh, and he’s dramatic as well.”

Dan stepped forward and put a hand on Lucifer’s chest, pushing him back a little. “Come on, leave it. He’s an idiot.”

“That he is and it’s one of the reasons why I would love to hear him scream,” Lucifer replied darkly, his gaze zeroed in on Gunner. Dan tried to push him back further but Lucifer stopped giving in, remaining in place like a concrete wall.

“Don’t, Lucifer. Don’t hurt him.”

Doug took a step forward, making Lucifer tense. “Still a coward, Dan, huh? What man lets his wife walk all over him? Oh, wait, ex-wife, right?”

With a pang one of the overhead lights exploded in a shower of sparks, the rest of the lights began to flicker, some going out. Subconsciously Lucifer knew that had been his doing but in that moment he didn’t care. He didn’t care that he hadn’t meant to do that and he didn’t care that he could feel Dan’s fear spiking right next to him. Before Dan could hold him back, he strode towards Gunner and had him by the collar of his shirt instantly. Pulling the man close to his face, he growled, the shadows all around him moving and stretching in ways they really shouldn’t.

“Now you will learn what it means to regret, you insect.”

“Lucifer, no—” Dan breathed out and came closer but Lucifer forced him to a stop, telekinetically pushing him a few steps back again.

“Sorry, Dan, but you will not stop me this time.” Releasing the shaking Doug’s shirt but keeping him in place with his gaze, Lucifer placed both hands on the man’s temples. “Take a good look, Doug Gunner, at what awaits you.”

And Lucifer pushed Hell into the man’s mind.

He made sure to bury it deep into his subconscious, ensuring that it would haunt his every dream from now on. Doug screamed, then, his eyes rolling backwards, and he dropped to the floor. Lucifer tilted his head to the side and regarded him with a disgusted scowl. The lights had stopped their flickering but a few bulbs seemed to have burned out, leaving the garage darker than before. Turning slowly, he faced Dan who was pale as a sheet.

“What did you do to him?”

“I became his nightmare.”

“I told you not to hurt him,” Dan protested.

“And he’s physically unharmed,” Lucifer stated and spread his arms, presenting his handiwork to Dan with a mock bow, just as a cab stopped at the exit of the garage. “I think, that’s your cue to leave.”

Dan grimaced, looking conflicted, his hand clutching the envelope so hard that the paper was creased. After a few moments, he took a step backwards, then another. “I know I can’t stop you from doling out punishment. But please don’t hurt anyone else on my behalf.”

“It wasn’t just on your behalf,” Lucifer clarified. “But you have my word that I won’t harm him any further. He won’t remember any of this. Just leave and don’t concern yourself with him anymore.”

Dan nodded, the color had still not returned to his face, and then quickly retreated towards the cab. He chanced a last glance at the Devil before he got in and the cabbie drove off. Lucifer couldn’t find it in himself to regret his actions, even though he knew he’d scared Dan again, complicating their relationship once more. Doug Gunner had deserved his wrath for disrespecting him and the ones he cared about.

Brushing off his suit, he decided to have Maze deal with the unconscious man and shot her a text before stepping back towards the elevator. As he waited for the doors to open, for a moment he felt eyes on him, making the hairs on his neck stand on end and he glanced over his shoulder at the semi-darkness of the garage but didn’t see anyone. He shrugged the feeling off, pushed the button for the penthouse firmly and let the doors close on his satisfied smile.