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1: Things In Common

They have so much in common. Books, for one; they love manuscript anthologies, English incunabulas, the sinuous clarity of early italic type, volumes with odd marginalia and printers' errors.

They like farmhouse cheeses, dry Amontillado, little seckel pears. Giles brings a hamper when he visits, and they picnic in the back of the shop.

They get along beautifully.

Giles has thought of kissing Aziraphale. Has wondered if his mouth tastes of heaven.

They don't kiss; they talk. And if they talk too often about the others, the men they ought to hate, well, that's another thing they have in common.


2: Things to Talk About

Once a month they meet in a pub and swap stories. Crowley's into computers now: viruses, pop-up ads, server crashes, spam for penile enhancement and Nigerian millions. Ethan's more old-fashioned; he drops cursed twenty-pound notes, summons minor demons in train station lavatories, inflicts amnesia on random passers-by.

They're a lot alike. Once a woman asked if they were brothers. Crowley gave Ethan a long, wet, toothy kiss before he answered, "Yes."

After the pub, they get a room and fuck. Then, sprawled and sweaty, they talk about the others, the men they don't miss at all. It's their favorite topic.


3: Four at the Ritz

Over the lobster bisque, Crowley says "Funny how some people fancy themselves all good or all evil."

Over the herb-crusted lamb, Aziraphale says, "This world's really not a place for absolutes."

Over the mesclun salad, Crowley says, "Bad enough when heaven and hell get stroppy."

Over the tarte tatin, Aziraphale says, "A certain ambiguity's all right. Lets one get on with things."

After the walk to St. James' Park, Crowley and Aziraphale remember an urgent appointment elsewhere.

Giles says, "I think we've been had."

Ethan pulls a bread roll from his pocket. "Shut up and help me feed the ducks."