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A/N: I love these two so much. <3


“So then when he went to pay for the book, the credit card machine began smoking, which made hi- whatever is the matter with you, Crowley?”

His dinner companion was slouched down in his chair, one elbow perched on the tabletop, his hand swishing the contents of a red glass of wine furiously, a mini tornado forming in the bottom of it.

He'd barely said a handful of words that evening, the ones he had uttered to the waiter had had the man going pale, then running as fast to the sanctuary of the kitchen as he could.

Crowley dropped one of his shoulders further, rubbing it hard against the back of the chair with an air of impatience. “It's that time of the century.”

Understanding alighted Aziraphale’s gaze as he immediately felt sympathy for Crowley. Having gone through it himself many times, he very much understood the demon's foul mood. That need for everything to happen at once and being forced to wait as the process sloughed along unhurriedly at its own pace.

It was a nuisance for angels and demons alike, the molting process, the big M. But that's what happened when you gave supernatural entities animal attributes. It was a design flaw no one was willing to own up to, least of all those sitting on the throne at the highest level of Heaven.

“Been giving you trouble?”

Crowley nodded impatiently. “Like nothing else. Usually isn't an issue, but a few dodgy areas are giving me Hell.”

Aziraphale pursed his lips as he thought the matter over, a rather wild idea popping up in his head. He put it down to Crowley's bad influence, which considering how long they'd known each other, was rather substantial.

He cleared his throat. “I could lend a hand…if you want.”

Going still, Crowley stared at him for a few seconds, his dark sunglasses giving nothing away. He suddenly smirked, leaning forward over the table, pulling down his glasses so the barest hint of his eyes was visible to Aziraphale. All matter of devilry resided in them.

“Feel free to give me all the assistance you desire,” Crowley said in a low tone, making Aziraphale's offer sound scandalous when it was anything but.

“Crowley,” Aziraphale chided, clicking his tongue in disapproval.

The demon sat back in his seat, chuckling underneath his breath. “Your place or mine?”

“Mine's closer,” Aziraphale replied, ignoring the connotation in Crowley's voice. He finally caught the waiter's gaze, who had been lurking nearby, holding Aziraphale's dessert of sticky date pudding hostage since Crowley snarled at him.

Aziraphale smiled encouragingly, signaling him over. The waiter cautiously brought it to their table, pushing the dessert towards Aziraphale as he kept a close eye on Crowley like he would bite any moment.

“A-Anything else?”

“No, thank you.”

Crowley dumped his coat on the floor as soon as they'd cleared the front door of the bookshop, making Aziraphale stoop down and pick it up to put in its proper place on the coat rack.

They walked towards the back of the shop where Crowley grabbed the chair from Aziraphale's desk and flipped it around, laying his arms over the top of it as he sat down. He removed his sunglasses, letting them hang loosely from his hand before tossing them on top of the desk.

Without preamble, the clothes on Crowley's upper body melted away, becoming so much smoke. As always, he was thin yet muscular, his skin unmarked by the passage of time.

“If you'll just unfurl them then,” Aziraphale suggested lightly, Crowley taking heed, a pair of dark black wings slowly forming on his back, some feathers of them disjointed or lost entirely around the edges.

Still, even with those imperfections, Aziraphale was reminded once again that the shiny wings were beautiful. Their color wasn't entirely black, glistening in a rainbow of dark hues in places as Crowley's wings shimmered in the overhead light.

Not meaning to, but unable to help himself, Aziraphale reached out, running a hand down a few feathers. Much like his own, they were silky to the touch. He reveled in their delicateness, fingertips stroking them as they quickly warmed in his hand.


Coming back to himself, Aziraphale dropped his hand. “Oh, right, of course. Which part is bothering you the most?”

Crowley partly turned, his slitted eyes narrowing in irritation as they pinned Aziraphale down. “It's all itchy so take your pick.”

He chose a spot that had seen better days, some of the feathers slipshod, and gently pulled one out. Crowley lightly sighed and encouraged, Aziraphale continued onward in his task.

Encountering hardness around a particular area, Aziraphale peered closer, glimpsing a thick formation of pliable waxy sheaths that held mature pinfeathers near the area of Crowley’s shoulders where his wings met flesh.  

His hand hovered over it nervously. If enough of the substance hadn't softened up, touching such an area could be painful.

“Just do it. It's driving me crazy, Aziraphale.”

Aziraphale nodded, pinching the light gray substance around the base of one pinfeather, which flaked apart in seconds, the newly grown feather unfurling in his fingertips.

He’d managed to free a few more when he noticed the muscles on Crowley’s shoulders had tensed up. Aziraphale paused, looking up, the back of Crowley’s neck a faint shade of red. 

Aziraphale’s brow creased. Usually, the demon was all but unflappable. “Are you…blushing?”

“Of course not.” Crowley absolutely was. This fact was confirmed when the tip of his ears darkened as well. “That would be ridiculous.”

“If you're quite sure,” Aziraphale said, noting that Crowley froze under his touch as he gradually worked through the section of trapped pinfeathers. He made sure to put them in proper alignment when they released, fingers rubbing them to the end.

When he'd finished preening Crowley's right wing, Aziraphale shifted to his left one, the same area near Crowley's shoulder blade full of pinfeathers. Clearly, it was an awkward area to manage alone.

By accident, Aziraphale caught a glimpse of Crowley's face in a nearby mirror. A light sheen of sweat covered his forehead, his eyes clenched shut, biting his lower lip as he grasped the back of the chair tightly.

It was not, as Aziraphale initially suspected, a look of pain. No, this was pleasure, and the one administering it was Aziraphale himself.

It was exquisite torture, but a kind of torture nonetheless.

“Do you wish me to stop?” Aziraphale asked quietly, lightly gripping another loose feather. From experience, he knew to have it all preened, the molting process finally completed, always felt good, something of a relief.

“Don’t you dare.” Aziraphale doubted Crowley had allowed anyone to lay hands on him in such a vulnerable state before, the trust on Crowley’s part saying much. Inwardly, Aziraphale was flattered at the high compliment.

More to the point, he also didn’t want to stop. If that was sinful, well, Aziraphale would be the first to admit he didn't live up to Heaven's expectations sometimes. Besides, what was life without a little temptation?

He experimentally sank his other hand deep into Crowley's wing, massaging the skin below the feathers, the demon's groan not going unnoticed.

Aziraphale's stomach jerked unexpectedly at the sound, sending a flash of heat through him that was immensely distracting. Redoubling his efforts, Aziraphale stuck to business, trying to ignore the growing tightness in his own body.

Every touch or slight tug on his part was a wave that broke over Crowley, his body trembling at times, Crowley’s breathing becoming unsteady in the loaded silence that stretched between them.

Having such tight control over someone outside of a bedroom was rather novel, Aziraphale wanting to draw the process out as long as he could because he knew it wouldn't last.

All too soon, with a sigh, Aziraphale laid a hand on the last pinfeather on Crowley's back, rolling itself between his fingers. With just a little hard pull at the base, it came free.

Underneath him, Crowley shuddered, turning his head to the side as he let out a long piercing hiss. The edge of a forked tongue peeked out on his lower lip.

Aziraphale was fascinated by the play of muscles on Crowley's back, wings snapping in the air as they twitched sporadically until Crowley eventually went slack, the edges of his wings brushing the floor.

A little lightheaded, his hands unsteady, feeling as if some of Crowley's euphoric state was contagious, Aziraphale leaned forward, pressing a soft kiss to the back of Crowley’s neck.

Somewhere inside himself was a mellow glow of contentment that he'd managed to draw such intense reactions from someone he cared deeply for.

“There, all done.”

Crowley chuckled darkly, eyelids lifting to reveal the sclera of his eyes were slowly returning to normal. “In more ways than one.”

The clothes on Crowley's lower half simmered for one moment, refreshing themselves, before snapping back to reality, Aziraphale flushing when he realized why.

He started to look away when Crowley stood up, turning to pull Aziraphale into his arms, his wings folding over the angel's shoulders and back, blocking out some of the light. They looked full and lush once more.

“Thank you, Angel.”

Aziraphale sputtered briefly, finally giving up on speech altogether as he carefully placed his arms around Crowley, sure some feathers were still overly sensitive. He figured his body language said everything and more for him.

“You're quite welcome.” He coughed awkwardly as he leaned backwards, acutely aware of Crowley's lingering hands on his waist. “Do you, uh, want to stay for a cup of tea?”

Crowley's answering smile was sin incarnate. “Love to.”

Aziraphale knew he was in trouble by the way his knees trembled. He felt a bit like he was about to be eaten, which he supposed was true in a way. Still, Aziraphale doubted any prey animal in nature felt so much excitement at the prospect of being set upon.

When the Bentley had rolled away around the corner sometime later, Aziraphale dipped his hand into his pocket and stroked the black feather inside it. It had long lost its owner’s warmth but remained a pleasant memento of the night's events.

Aziraphale wondered idly if when the time came around, Crowley would be willing to return the favor.

He rather hoped so.