Anthony J. Crowley, fallen angel, the Serpent of Eden, professional nuisance, and demon who was definitely not a little, was most assuredly not jealous of the little currently seated on Aziraphale's lap. The little who was at this moment being bottle fed, looked at adoringly, and just generally being pampered, and petted, and cooed over by the aforementioned angel. His angel.
Anthony J. Crowley, fallen angel, the Serpent of Eden, professional nuisance, and demon who was definitely not a little, was also lying.
It has all started with a customer. In Aziraphale's opinion the best kind of customer. One who didn't want to buy his books, so much as sit down with him over a nice cup of tea and talk about his books. Aziraphale had known the man (who's name was Nathaniel though that's not particularly important) for what was either a few months or a few years now. The keeping track of time not being to important to a celestial being. And over this time Aziraphale had been introduced to Annie, who was Nathaniel's little and frequently accompanied Nathaniel to the shop. She colored or played quietly with her toys while Aziraphale and Nathaniel talked about the use of allegory in the Gothic novel or how Kindles were lovely but not as good as a real book which you could hold, smell, and taste too, if you particularly wanted to.
Aziraphale being an angel, a being made of love, light, comfort, as well as other angel-y things and a care giver besides was immediately loved by Annie, and she often curled into his lap instead of her own daddy's when she bored of her coloring or her toys. And it was this implicit trust that Annie had for Aziraphale that prompted Nathaniel to ask Aziraphale to watch Annie for a few days while he went away to do something boring and business-y.
Aziraphale said yes, for he had missed taking care of a little. Though he hadn't realized quite how much until a little was sat in his lap, gazing up at him with large, trusting eyes.
Aziraphale told Crowley none of this. So it was a complete surprise to Crowley when he entered the bookshop to take Aziraphale out for sushi or maybe some nice middle eastern cuisine, he found Aziraphale on the floor with a little in the middle of what appeared to be a thrilling game of princesses and dragons. (Aziraphale was the princess, obviously)
"Oh dear, is it Tuesday already?"
"Yes, Angel, it's Tuesday. What's this then?" He gestured to the sprawling mess of dolls and plushies.
"Oh, I'm watching dear Annie here while her Daddy is away. I'm afraid I'll have to take a rain check on dinner tonight dear boy. Why don't you stay in tonight with us? I have a nice bottle of merlot in the back."
Crowley did stay. They had dinner, sandwiches and salad for Aziraphale and Annie, and nothing for Crowley. Then after dinner drink. Wine for Aziraphale and Crowley and a bottle of milk for Annie, hand fed to her by Aziraphale as she cuddled up on his lap and rested her head on his shoulder. She stared knowingly out at Crowley from behind the bottle. "Look at me," she seemed to say without words "I'm where you've longed to be for years, and unlike you I deserve to be here. I'm good enough to sit in your angel's lap and have his affection lavished on me."
Crowley listened as Aziraphale nattered on about how nice it was to care for Annie. She was such a good girl, so quite, and imaginative, and clever. All the time he was speaking, Crowley sunk a bit lower in his seat, till he was lying half on the floor. A burning in the pit of his stomach that had nothing to do with the alcohol. He definitely didn't want to be the one on Aziraphale's lap nursing a bottle, being called good and clever. No absolutely not. He was just a little put out that his friend was ignoring him so thoroughly. That was all.
Crowley slunk down a bit further.
Aziraphale turned up his face to look at Crowley from where he had been staring adoringly at Annie's sleeping face. Crowley straighted up, finally he thought, his angel was paying some attention to him.
"Isn't she just the most precious thing?" Aziraphale asked. Looking at Crowley expectantly. Then he wasn't looking at Crowley anymore. He was looking at a large black and red snake. Then he was looking at a smaller red an black snake. Then he was looking at the space where a red and black snake used to be.
"I wonder whatever is the matter with him" Aziraphale mussed. Baselines were funny sometimes, no classification to give you an idea of what they were going to do next. Aziraphale shook his head and tisked.
Crowley had been Sulking (capitol S) for three days now. He had laid on the cold concrete floor of his apartment in a gangly heap of limbs and self pity. Now that he was no linger employed by the forces of hell he had all the time in the world to sulk, and he intended to do just that.
He lasted till Saturday.
Aziraphale had called (which Crowley had ignored) and left an appalingly awkward message on his answering machine inviting him out to lunch later that day because Annie was leaving.
Annie was leaving. Aziraphale wouldn't be changing her, or cuddling her, or playing dolls with her or looking at her with that glowing look of love and adoration (that he'd never look at Crowley with) anymore.
Things could go back to exactly the way they were before. Which was exactly what Crowley convinced himself he wanted.
Wanting anything else was dangerous for Crowley. Afterall even if Crowley stopped taking the slightly (very) illegal pills that suppressed his little side, there was no reason whatsoever to believe that Aziraphale would want to take care of him. Aziraphale, who until just recently could hardly stomach calling him his friend, would never want to be his caretaker. When he was little he was messy, needy, and clingy, absolutely repugnant. He wasn't even proper little shaped, too tall and bony to comfortably be carried or held.
No, if Aziraphale ever got a little it would be someone like Annie. Small and cute, with baby fat rounded cheeks. Someone who wouldn't want to cling to Aziraphale and never let go, because they we're so small and the world was so very big and cruel, and Aziraphale was so very kind and comforting.
So kind and comforting he'd spoiled Crowley for anyone else. Even if Crowley could bear the thought of being so vulnerable around any other living or celestial being. No one else but Aziraphale would ever do. And Aziraphale would never have him.
So Crowley would just muddle on like he had been doing for the past six thousand years, thank you very much. The pills took most of the urges for soft toys, or pacis, or someone to cuddle away. They let him keep a clear enough head to drive the Bentley and go out to dinner with Aziraphale. They also gave him enough control over his bladder he wasn't having accidents everywhere. And when the desire to have simeine to cuddle or a soft toy or to suck his thumb overwhelmed him, he just curled up into a very, very small ball in the middle of his bed and waited for these feelings to pass, while he may or may nit have sobbed quietly. (He did) And when he forgot to miracle his bladder empty and wet his bed or pants he could just miracle them clean again and try and forget the utter humiliation he felt. He was doing just fine on his own taking care if himself thank you very much. After all he had to, no one else was going to do it for him.
I'm not doing much proof reading as I write, so I'll go back and fix the glaringly obvious mistakes sometime in the future.
Crowley fidgeted, and sulked, (small s) and glared from his position sprawled over one of Aziraphale's over stuffed chairs.
Annie was still there. Her daddy was late, and Crowley was fuming. She gave Crowley a knowing look and snuggled up closer to the angel. Crowley glared, and contemplated for a second pulling down his dark glasses just a bit and giving her a scare.
But then Aziraphale would be cross with him, and their first evening out together in forever (about a week) would be ruined.
Aziraphale had just started stroking Annie's ribbon filled hair when the door to the shop chimed. Annie was lifted from her comfy perch upon Aziraphale's lap and tucked into her Daddy's arms. She and Nathaniel said their enthusiastic hellos, and exchanged kisses, before Anne was put down on the sofa and Nathaniel and Aziraphale excused themselves to the other room to talk.
"You never told me you had a little if your own. I wouldn't have asked you to look after Annie if I knew."
Aziraphale looked perplexed. "Dear boy, you must be mistaken, I don't have a little."
Nathaniel lifted an eyebrow. "The red head in the other room? " They both turned to look back at the other room where Crowley was squirming impatiently in his seat and glaring at Annie, who glared right back.
"No, Crowley may be a bit childish at times, but he's a baseline."
Now it was Nathaniel's turn to look confused. "Are you sure? There's just something about him."
"Oh, I'm sure. " said Aziraphale with a little more confidence than he felt. "We've known each other a very long time, and well, I'd know wouldn't I?"
Nathaniel shrugged, and Aziraphale contemplated. This wasn't the first time that someone had mistook Crowley for a little, but It was the first time that Aziraphale was considering that maybe they weren't entirely wrong. There was just something about the way Crowley had been acting lately that made Aziraphale a bit suspicious. And since Crowley wasn't likely to give him a straight answer if he asked (he never did when it came to things like this) he would just have to find out on his own.
Crowley was going to take a nap. For the average human this meant about a couple of hours of sleep. For Crowley this could mean a couple days to a century of sleep. He was thinking this time, of a nice short kip of a couple weeks. (The whole apocalypse business had been a bit stressful) Since even he could not expect his plants to keep up to his rigorous standards for them without water for such a period of time, he would need someone to mist them. And there was only one being in the whole of creation that he trusted to be in his apartment while he slept.
While Aziraphale was not particularly happy about Crowley taking another nap. (He had missed him during the 19th century) He recognized it for the opportunity it was. Not to snoop, mind you. Angels most certainly didn't snoop. But to collect valuable information about the current goings-on of his dearest friends life.
Aziraphale really was worried for Crowley. Littles needed love, affection, and care, things that Crowley had gotten precious little of in his existence even for a baseline. And if he was a little, well Aziraphale didn't like to think of it. He couldn't stand to think of
a little Crowley so alone and unloved for so long.
If Crowley was a little, Aziraphale reasoned, he would probably have comfort items stashed somewhere in his apartment. So if Aziraphale could just find a stash of pacis or stuffed toys, or a baby blanket or blocks, or something, well then he would know for certain, wouldn't he?
He watered Crowley's plants first. Because he was an angel, and he kept his promises. (He was also entirely too nice to them, Crowley would be appalled) Then he found the bedroom just to make certain Crowley was asleep. He was. Only a shock of red hair sticking out from a pile of dark colored covers.(he resisted the urge to go over and tuck Crowley in, and place a gentle kiss on his forehead) Then he began his quest.
Crowley's apartment was horrendously barren and cold. There we're no bottles or sippys in the kitchen, no glasses or plates or food either, barring a basket of apples. (Aziraphale suspected theses were for aesthetic purposes only)
There was very little in the way of decoration or places to sit. (A throne? Really Crowley?) In addition to having no little comforts, Crowley seemed to allow himself no ordinary comforts either save his bed. Aziraphale had been through most of Crowley's apartment now, and had not found a single thing that would point to Crowley being a little. He had even searched Crowley's bedroom aided by a couple miracles to make sure Crowley didn't wake. He had found nothing, absolutely nothing.
Aziraphale shivered it was cold in Crowley's apartment. Absolutely UN suitable for a cold blood demon such as Crowley. Next winter Aziraphale was going to see if he couldn't get Crowley to come and stay with him in the bookshop where it was warm and cozy.
Aziraphale meandered into the last place in Crowley's apartment he hadn't looked without any real hope he would find anything. It was a very nice bathroom as far as bathrooms went Aziraphale supposed. He opened the closet, which was empty. Then he opened the medicine cabinet, which was not.
Rows upon rows of little suppressant drugs lined the shelves. Suppressant drugs that were both very strong and very illegal.
"Oh dear" said Aziraphale.
Aziraphale felt a bit ill. Even though he was a celestial being and he was fairly certain it was relatively impossible for him to actually be ill.
Crowley had been taking suppressants, probably for centuries now. Before the pills there were powders and tonics, and before those there were herbal concoctions.
Aziraphale understood Crowley's need to hide his true nature around the other demons. He even understood a little why Crowley had kept it from him all these years. But ever since the apocalypse, they were free. There was no reason for Crowley to hide anymore. The only think that had prevented Aziraphale from developing a more intimate relationship with Crowley was that their classifications didn't match. And even if Crowley didn't want a closer relationship with Aziraphale, surely he knew that Aziraphale would welcome him with open arms and be happy to play with and care for him when ever he needed it. If only as a babysitter instead of a caregiver.
Obviously for some reason Crowley felt he still had to hide around Aziraphale. Well, Aziraphale was just going to have to show him that that wasn't the case.
He knew Crowley well enough to know that if he brought the topic up directly Crowley would probably turn into a snake and slither into some tiny crevice somewhere for the foreseeable future or actually pack up and run away to Alpha Centuari.
If Aziraphale was going to be successful he was going to have to be subtle. So he checked in on Crowley one last time. And if he did place a gentle kiss on the top Crowley's messy red hair, only he had to know. Then the angel set off, because after all he had preparations to make before Crowley work up.
Aziraphale didn't know exactly what age Crowley was as a little. He rather suspected he was very, very young due to the strength of the suppressants he was taking. So he stocked up on bottles and sippies and pacifiers, all in reds and blacks, and greys. Colors Crowley would like. A few packs of diapers and pull ups, (he really did suspect that Crowley would be very little) as well as all the powders, creams, and lotions that would be needed with them. He purchased great heaps of blankets and cushions, again in colors Crowley would like. A few toys that made pleasings sounds or played music when you fiddled with them. And finally two plush bears. One a white angel (who he added a stylish little tartan bow to) and the other a red demon.
Armed with his purchases, Aziraphale headed back to the bookshop. Most of his shopping was tucked away for use in the (hopefully not to distant) future but most of the cushions and blankets, as well as the angel bear were piled on his most comfy sofa. And a single red pacifier was set on the sofa's end table.
Now all Aziraphale had to do was wait for Crowley to wake up.
Crowley sauntered into the bookshop for the first time after his little nap. His plants were lush and green, the world hadn't ended, and his angel was waiting patiently in his bookshop for Crowley to take him out to dinner. Crowley's only current complaint was thatbthe weather was getting bit rainy and nippy. But all and all Crowley was as happy a demon as he had ever been. (his standard of happiness it should be noted was not particular high)
So obviously something terrible was going to happen.
"What' Crowley drawled "Is that?"
"A teddy bear dear, surely you've seen one before. They have been around since the early 1900s I believe."
"I've seen a bloody teddy bear before angel, but why's it here?"
Aziraphale turned from the manuscript he was doing something with, and peered over the glasses over the reading glasses he didn't need. "I picked it up in the shop the other day, I rather thought it was darling." Aziraphale gestured towards the sofa, which seemed to have sprouted a mound of cushions and blankets that Crowley didn't remember being there before. "Do sit down dear boy, I'll be a minute. I have to finish this up before we go.
Crowley slunk to the sofa, and when he sat down he immediately sunk into the cashmere softness of blankets. And he melted into the softness, splaying himself over the entirety of the sofa. It was nice, and warm. And if he nuzzled his cheek into the blankets, well Aziraphale's back was turned to him and he couldn't possibly see.
He contemplated running a hand thought the soft looking fur of the teddy, which did so look like his angel with it's little tartan bow. But he had better self control than than that. He knew if he touched it, he'd want to hold it. Then want would Aziraphale turn around to see but him cuddling his plush toy. And surely his angel would have questions about that. Best not to risk it.
After while Crowley got rather bored of laying on the sofa with his eyes closed and basking in the warmth. He opened his eyes and begin to examine the familiar clutter of the bookshop. It always brought him comfort to be here, to see all of the comfortable things his Angel had surrounded himself with over the years. Looking around also assured him that the bookshop was still there, not burning up in flames. And his angel was there too, amongst his books exactly where he was supposed to be.
It was only by chance that when Crowley turned his head a little to make sure his angel was still there that a flash of red caught his eye. It was a pacifier, sitting innocently on the end table. Probably one of Annie's, left over from Aziraphale's adventures in babysitting. Maybe Aziraphale himself hadn't noticed it was left there. It was sitting just out of plain sight, squashed a little between a lamp and a book
Would it be so bad if Crowley just reached out and stuck it in his pocket? Maybe took it home and pretended, just pretended that Aziraphale had bought it just for him? He'd never had a pacifier before. In a few moments of weakness (and often when he was sleeping) he would suck on his thumb. Which was but well his thumb was rather long and bony. He imagined Aziraphale gently removing his thumb from his mouth and replacing it with the paci. Just like he had seen Aziraphale do for Annie. Aziraphale would pet his hair and smile lovingly at him. Maybe hold out the angel bear for Crowley to hold.
Crowley jerked himself upright. His thoughts we're headed in a dangerous direction. He stood up to pester Aziraphale that it had been long enough and he wanted to go out to dinner now.
Without his really meaning to, Crowley's fingers closed around the little plastic item, and swiftly tucked it into his jacket pocket, before whining to Aziraphale.
Later that night, Aziraphale would notice a pacifier missing from his side table and smile. While simultaneously in a rather cold cement apartment Crowley would be having a staring contest with a piece of red plastic until he reached out with long fingers to grasp it, bring it to his mouth, and finally give a tentative suck.
Aziraphale hadn't intended for things to work out this way. But he couldn't say he was particularly upset that they had.
London had been experiencing a string of particularly dreary weather, even for London. To cheer things up a bit, Aziraphale thought he'd take a walk in the park and feed the ducks. Of course this meant taking Crowley along as well. Things were never quite as nice when he didn't have Crowley along.
Crowley didn't particularly like the cold, something Aziraphale had noted over the years (something to do with being a snake he figured) and besides the time spent as Nanny Ashtoreth, Aziraphale couldn't recall ever seeing him in the wintertime. Today though it didn't seem to yet be too cold for the coldblooded Crowley. That is untill it started to rain.
It was a nasty sort of rain that seemed to sneak up on them with very little prior warning. Huge freezing raindrops pelted down upon them with alarming force. Icy wind ripped past them, and thunder boomed in the distance. Crowley was looking more and more pale (with an alarming blueish tinge) as they scurried for home. By the time they had made it too the bookshop, Aziraphale was practically carrying Crowley. poor Crowley who's eyes were driving around lazy and unfocused as violent shivers racked his thin frame.
Aziraphale had read a Beginners Guide to Herpetology for just such an occasion, and knew just what to do.
He gathered all the blankets he had bought for Crowley off the sofa and hurried upstairs. He miracled the rather thick layer of dust off his bed, and piled the blankets on. Next he miracles up a tlrather mage heat lamp and pointed it towards the bed. He then scurried back down and carried up Crowley.
Crowley really was unnaturally light and painfully thin. Aziraphale wondered if he could coax him into taking a few bites from his plate the next time they went out to eat.
He miracled Crowley out of hus freezung wet cloths and into a fuzzy black sweater, grey, red, and black tartan pajama pants, (tartan was stylish) and fuzzy black socks. He would have preferred to get Crowley into a nice set of footie pajamas, but well he didn't think that would go over well just yet.
Aziraphale miracled his own pajamas on (a nice cream and pale blue tartan) and laid down in bed arranging Crowley on top of him, and the mound of blankets on top of Crowley. As an afterthought, he miracled up the angel teddy to tuck into one of Crowley's arms. Very soon Crowley's thumb found it's way into his mouth. Aziraphale begin to stroke bright red hair as Crowley's shivering subsided and his breathing evened out.
When Crowley woke up he found he was deliciously warm. He remembered being very cold and wasn't exactly sure why he was warm now, but he wasn't going to complain. His head was still quite foggy and his thoughts were all muddled. The thing underneath his was so plush and warm. He was so warm. He wiggled into the warmth further, so warm and wet. Wet. WET. WET!
The think he was lying on moved, and begin to stroke his hair. Aziraphale's voice washed over him. "Oh there we are dear boy. I'm glad to see you awake. Don't worry darling it's understandable, you were so ill. No harm done. I'll just clean you right up, you'll see."
Crowley felt his pants and the bed become dry again. But it didn't really make things all that better. He hadn't just wet his pants or his bed this time, he had wet on Aziraphale! He had wet on his angel! He burried his face (which was now a shade of red that matched his hair) into Aziraphale's ample midsection.
Forget Hell, forget the apocalypse, this was his worst nightmare. He could absolutely never show his face to his angel again. He would have to move to Alpha Centuari after all. Though come to think of it, it really wasn't quite as bad as he feared. Aziraphale hadn't seemed disgusted or disappointed like Crowley thought he would be. Aziraphale thought that Crowley's accident had only happened because he was a ill. So Aziraphale didn't suspect that Crowley was a little at all! Maybe he wouldn't have to go to Alpha Centuari. Maybe he could just snuggle back down into the warmth of his angel again. After all, when would he ever have another chance to be this close with Aziraphale again?
The storm raged on outside the bookshop. Weathermen made very inaccurate predictions about how long it would last. Some people thought it was a sign of the apocalypses, others though it was the result of global warming. All of these people were wrong.
Inside the bookshop Aziraphale was fussing endlessly over Crowley. Who started feeling rather sluggish if he was away from the warmth of Aziraphale or the heat lamp for too long. Since Crowley had woken up for a second time Aziraphale hadn't left his side which was slightly inconvenient for Crowley as he really needed another dose of little suppressant quite soon. He couldn't even miracle one up with Aziraphale plastered to his side. Quite literally, Aziraphale had taken to holding Crowley very close no matter where he was or what he was doind so that Crowley always had a source of heat.
Not that Crowley was complaining. Actually he was, but it was half hearted at best. He was soaking up the attention as much as the warmth from his angel. He knew that this fussing would end as soon as the rain did, and it warmed up to snake sustaining temperatures once more.
He worried a bit about what would happen if he missed a few doses of suppressant, he had been talking the for an awfully long time now. But in the end he decided it wasn't wort leaving the warm glow of Aziraphale's care and concern for. After all what was the worst that could happen? If he acted a bit oddly or someone forbid, had another accident, he could just blame it on being under the weather with the sudden cold like he had before. Aziraphale would never know the difference.
Aziraphale however, did know the difference. He had watched as Crowley became more quite and clingy over the course of the day. He only complained a handful of times about Aziraphale's insistace, (after a slightly alarming incident where Crowley tried to leave the bookshop after he woke up an returned a few minutes later an alarming shade of blue) that Crowley never leave his sight. He even ate half of the soup Aziraphale spoon fed him, though he did glare the entire time.
Aziraphale had sneaking suspicions that his demon really wasn't very good at taking care of himself. Snakes needed special sorts of attention, a tempature controlled environment, nice cozy places to burrow into, regular feeding and watering. And a snake was essentialy Crowley was in this form, just an oddly human shaped one. Combine that with his needs as a little, and it was obvious that Crowley had needed special attention and care. Attention and care that Aziraphale feared Crowley had never received before and must be absolutely desperate for.
He certainly seemed to have settled in relatively nicely to Aziraphale's ministrations. Crowley had spent most of the day cuddled up to Aziraphale either on the bed or the bookshop sofa, half dozing as Aziraphale read aloud from a book of fairy tales. When Crowley was awake Aziraphale brought a cup of milky tea to Crowley's lips and tipped it back so he could drink. Snakes were, or so he had read, particularly susceptible to dehydration when it was cold. He wiped the little trickle of tea that inevitably would run down Crowley's chin away with a tartan hankie. Wistful for the day that he could use a bottle without the fear of Crowley running off to another galaxy for his troubles.
Having been feeding Crowley large quantiles of tea and soups all day, Aziraphale felt he should have predicted the event that happened that evening on the bookshop sofa.
He was reading aloud to a slightly awake Crowley, when he felt a little trickle of warmth against his thigh. Un bothered he continued reading as the warmth steadly grew, until somwhere in his brain it registered that the warmth was also wet. Then in short order he realized the cause of the warm wetness, even before Crowley did. He scooped Crowley up before he has a chance to start fussing, and carried him up to the bed room. Aziraphale then arranged himself and Crowley onto the bed so that Crowley was cradled securely in his arms.
"Darling" Aziraphale began. "I know you aren't well, and even if you were it isn't something I'd ever be cross with you for, but maybe it would be best if we put you in some protection? Just for now, hmm?"
While that was what Aziraphale said, what Crowley heard was "I'm getting awful tired of you peeing on me"
"No" Crowley mumbled and tried to wiggle himself free, but Aziraphale kept a firm grip in him.
Aziraphale placed a kiss on the top of Crowley's head. "I just don't want you to be uncomfortable. And you are uncomfortable when it happens aren't you dear?"
Red faced, Crowley nodded into Aziraphale's chest.
"You will be brave for me, won't you."
Crowley really wanted to say no. He had never worn a diaper before. Even before when the elixirs and tonics didn't work as well and his pants and bed seemed to be more often wet than dry. But this was Aziraphale who was asking, and really when it came down to it, was there anything in all of creation that Crowley wouldn't do for his angel? He nodded his head "yes."
"Oh very good!" Aziraphale exclaimed, sounding genuinely delighted.
In one swift motion, Crowley found himself lying on his back on what he could only imagine was a changing pad,being creamed and powdered. Then before he knew it a thick fluffy diaper patterned with planets and stars was being pulled up between his legs.
Aziraphale pulled Crowley's pajamas bottoms back up, and patted him on the leg. He smiled down gently, "There we are dear boy, all comfy now."
Crowley just glared.
Aziraphale smiled brighter.
After Crowley's accident and subsequent diapering, the day continued on just as it had before. Only now Crowley was doing significantly more pouting. Thought it was hard to be too cross all snuggled up next to his angel.
He dozed alot, though he didn't dream, the feeling of warmth and comfort following him into his sleep.
The storm had let up for a bit in the evening only to start up again a couple of hour later. Aziraphale had absolutely no intention of letting out of his sight until the storm was well and truly gone, then maybe not for a long time after that as well. Caring for Crowley and having him constantly with him, had brought Aziraphale a sort of peace and fulfilment he had never known before, and he would be loath to give that up.
When Crowley was a little more awake, Aziraphale had given him some markers and paper to occupy himself with while he read something that Crowley, and indeed pretty much any other being living or celestial would find dreadfully boring.
Crowley begin by writing out a list of every swear word he knew, in every language he knew. (Which was all of them) Then he moved on to drawing all of the rude and naught things he could think of. (Which was alot) When he tired of that he tried to very stealthy write 'property of Anthony J. Crowley' on Aziraphale's arm. Aziraphale humored him, and pretended he didn't notice until Crowley finished. Then he looked down at his arm and promptly stole the pen from Crowley's hand and wrote 'property of Aziraphale" on Crowley's arm. Which elicited honest to someone giggles out of the demon. Aziraphale than proceeded to tickle his naughty charge into absolute hysterics.
After Aziraphale forced another bowl of soup down his throat, (gently spooned into his mouth) he announced that it was time for bed. Crowley opened one yellow eye. "You don't sleep."
"I thought I might try it dear. Will you come and keeo me company?"
Crowley gave a sleepy nod. "It wouldn't do for his angel to be lonely after all."
Crowley snuggled into Aziraphale's shoulder as he was carries up to bed. Aziraphale laid him on the bed, and swiftly tugged his pajama pants off his spindly legs exposing a very wet diaper. "No!" Crowley jumped up a placed his hands in front of the diaper.
"Dear, what's this about? You need a new diaper before bed."
Crowley shook his head. "You said it was only once!"
"No dear, I said it was until you didn't need them anymore."
Crowley crossed his arms and glared. "I don't need diapers." This however is a rather unconvincing argument to make while you are standing with your currently very wet and sagging diaper on full display.
Aziraphale gave a pointed look at Crowley's yellowed diaper. "All of your stars and planets have gone blue"
Crowley looked down at his diaper, the once yellow planted and star had indeed gone blue. He looked at Aziraphale with questioning scrunch of his eyebrows.
Aziraphale beamed at him. "Oh isn't it a clever little trick? They go from yellow to blue when you wet."
It was admittedly, thought Crowley poking at his diaper, pretty cool.
Aziraphale reached out for Crowley. "Now come here darling, and I'll get you in a lovely new one with the stars all yellow again."
Crowley scurried out of his reach. His back hit the corner and he slid to the floor, and brought he knobby knees up to his face so he could rest his forehead on them. "No, don't want you to change me"
"Oh" said Aziraphale sounding rather hurt.
"It's yucky." Crowley hastened to add, not wanting his angel to think he didn't want him. That Crowley wouldn't prefer him over anyone or anything in all of creation. "And you shouldn't have to."
"And probably don't want to" Though Crowley didn't say that aloud.
Aziraphale's face softened. "Is that all? Crowley darling is only wee, it's just your body doing what bodies do. I don't mind at all. You're very dear to me, and I just want to make sure you're comfortable and happy and well looked after. So won't you come here and let me do that?" He held out his arms invitingly.
Crowley couldn't just sit there with his angel asking for a hug like that. So he got up and scurried into his arms.
Aziraphale held his little demon for a long while, then placed a kiss on the top of his ginger hair and laid him down on the changing mat. He swiftly got rid of the old diaper, wiped him down, powdered him up, and taped Crowley up in a nice new one. Once he was done, Aziraphale gave Crowley's belly a soft kiss, just above the waistband of his diaper.
He then tucked them both into bed. Before long Crowley's thumb had found its way into his mouth once again. And Aziraphale decided to do what he'd been wanting to do all day. He gently pulled Crowley's thumb out, and replaced it with a pacifier he miracled up. As soon as Crowley latched on he started suckling and seemed to melt further into Aziraphale in complete relaxation.
For a while Aziraphale just stared adoringly down at the sleeping Crowley, his pacifier bobbing gently between his lips and his soft breaths tickling Aziraphale's neck. Before he too drifted off.
The sun shone over London once again. Though by the predictions of all the Weathermen but one (named Farrah Fahrenheit, who had wanted to be a taxidermist instead) would not do so for long. A second storm was on the horizon. (metaphorically as well, but we'll get to that later)
Though for the moment it had warmed up quite nicely in the wake of the storm. Though the weather was still overall cool, the sun now shown down, it's rays warming whatever they happened to touch.
It seemed to have perked Crowley right up. He was, much to Aziraphale's dismay progressively becoming less sleepy, cuddly, and willing to be carried. And he was now absolutely insisting that he go back to his flat to tend to his plants before the rest of the storm came through. Aziraphale was absolutely panicked at the thought of Crowley leaving. Though he didn't feel he could at this point insist Crowley stay, or force his company on Crowley for the trip. (He had multiple times offered and suggested that he go with)
Crowley was a stubborn little demon though. So all Aziraphale could do was to try an make sure Crowley was as best prepared for the trip out as he could be, and wait for him to arrive home safely. Crowley had absolutely refused to wear a diaper outside of the bookshop, but Aziraphale had managed to talk him into a pull up. Assuring him multiple times that absolutely no one could see it under his clothes.
He wrapped Crowley up in a jacket and scarf. Though he knew it wouldn't really do him any good, as Crowley didn't produce any body heat of his own. It made him feel better to do it. He made sure Crowley had his cell phone (which always remained fully charged simply because it was expected to do so) so that he could call if anything happened.
Aziraphale watched with worry from the front of his book shop as Crowley walked away. Even though Crowley must have made the trip from Aziraphale's bookshop to his flat hundreds of times over the centuries, Aziraphale worried. Crowley was the most precious thing he had, and they had made such tentative progress the past day. He couldn't help but feel that Crowley was rather vulnerable at the moment, and he worried.
Crowley would absolutely never call himself vulnerable, no matter how apt a term it was for him. He was an impenetrable fortress. (Except when it came to his angel where in he was more like a pillow fort)
The first thing Crowley did after entering his apartment ( which he managed to get to all by himself, thank you very much) was to make a dash to the bathroom and pop open one of the many pill bottles lining the shelves and dry swallow one. He than stuck the bottle in his coat pocket, and went to tend to his plants. (Tend here means to mist and yell at them)
Little suppressants were illegal for a reason, besides being detrimental to the overall health and wellbeing of a little, it was a very jarring and unpleasant experience to be pulled out of one's natural headspace. Crowley had, without realizing it, been falling into headspace. So when the suppressants kicked in about half an hour later, the did so with all the finesse of a charging heard of cattle and practicaly knocked Crowley off his feet.
He dropped the plant mister and slunk to the floor. He was overcome with massive waves of shame that threatened to drown him. What had he done. What had he done! Aziraphale, good, sweet, kind, lovely Aziraphale, had been forced to take care of his sorry self. Had cleaned up his messes and changed his diapers, put up with his endless pathetic clinging.
Aziraphale was nice about it sure. Aziraphale was always nice. Aziraphale would probably still be nice to you if you were trying to dip his hands in hellfire.(though not if you were trying to buy one of his books) But Crowley should never have put him in that position in the first place. Never made him care for him like the pathetic useless thing he was. Next time the weather turned bad, and Crowley got hypothermia he would just crawl back to his apartment and suffer in silence like he should.
Tremors racked Crowley's thin body. He felt Ill now in a way that had nothing to do with the cold. He obviously couldn't go back to the bookshop. He couldn't face Aziraphale after what he had put him through. Maybe in a couple hundred years he could get up the nerve to go and see his angel again, and maybe they would just pretend that this dreadful event had never happened. (Though Crowley was sure it would take at least another thousand or so years to not feel a deep sense of shame every time he so much as thought of Aziraphale)
Crowley curled up in the fetal position in his cement floor. He periodically shook with the force of his sobs. He wasn't quite crying exactly. Afterall he didn't actually have tear ducts. But it was as close as he could come to it.
Crowley was miserable, he'd ben lying on his cold concrete floor for hours now. Sometime during his sobbing he'd thoroughly soaked his pull up once again (having already wet it once without really noticing on the walk to his apartment) and it had leaked. Forming wet marks down the legs of his pats which had long since become cold, clammy, and uncomfortable. He was freezing and miserable, and Crowley had no intention to do anything to better his situation. He deserved to be miserable, he thought, and curled up tighter. He would just say here till he rotted. Till he grew mold. Till he was more skin and bones than he already was.
Meanwhile in the bookshop Aziraphale was fretting terribly. It had been hours since Crowley had gone. The sky was becoming increasing dark and ominous, and that cement apartment was no place for someone cold blooded to be when the weather turned nippy.
He was trying to be patient, not to smother Crowley, but with every passing moment he imagined more and more dreadful things happing to his demon. His mind had gone from : Is Crowley warm enough? Does he need a change? Has he gotten lost? To : What if Hell or Heaven had come for him.
He really couldn't take it anymore. He grabbed his coat and headed for Crowley's apartment.
Crowley heard the door open and Aziraphale's voice call out to him. His blood ran cold. (Er, colder than it already was that is) He couldn't let his angel see him like this. So Crowley did what Crowley often did when he was in a pinch. He turned into a snake, and slithered somewhere no one could find him.
Somewhere no one but Aziraphale could find him apparently. It was as if Aziraphale possesed some sort of Crowley homing device. It only took a few minutes of the angel poking around to find him coiled up behind a plant.
Aziraphale placed his hand on his chest and sighed in relief. "Oh there you are dear boy. Ready to go home now?"
As much as he wished it was, the bookshop was not on fact Crowley's home, and he had no intention of going back there and forcing his angel to play nursemaid to his sorry self. He shook his little snake head "no."
"You want to stay here? Darling, I'm not sure, it really is quite cold and there isn't anyplace for us to sit."
Crowley shook his head "no" again. His angel wasn't meant to stay here either! Couldn't he just go? Leave Crowley alone like he should be?
"I don't suppose that you'd like to change back?"
A very vigorous head shake "no."
A crack of lightning shook the air, and the thunder that followed reverberated ominously through London.
"Dear I really must insist you come back with me." Aziraphale held out an arm for Crowley to slither up.
Crowley took stock of his options. He could just stay here, but then Aziraphale would stay too and he would be cold and uncomfortable in Crowley's barren apartment. Or he could go to the Bookshop and Aziraphale would no doubt try and look after him again. Bcause that's what angels did wasn't it, tend to the wretched? Or, (and this was a really splendid idead if Crowley did say so himself) Crowley could go back to the bookshop with Aziraphale, but he could just stay a snake.
What did he need as a snake? Just a semi warm little crevice to curl up in and wait out the storm. Aziraphale need not care for him at all! He would be very good and not make a bit of trouble for his angel when he'd already made so much before. And when this was all over, he'd find some way to make it all up to Aziraphale.
Resolute now in his course of action, Crowley uncoiled and slithered up Aziraphale's arm.
Something was terribly wrong, and it had been ever since Crowley went out. It wasn't that he was a snake now. Aziraphale didn't mind that in the least. If for whatever reason Crowley felt more comfortable as a snake, well then Aziraphale was happy to take care of him in that form as well. And he did make a rather adorable snake with a lovely little snoot that Aziraphale would just love to boop.
It was however the way that Crowley was acting as a snake that was troubling him. Aziraphale had thought that they might set up on the sofa like they had been doing. He thought that Crowley might enjoy being draped around Aziraphale's neck as he read aloud. However the instant Aziraphale set foot back in the bookshop Crowley had slithered down and was off like a shot.
It took Aziraphale ages to find him in the stacks of books. When he did finally manage to get settled on the sofa, Crowley slithered off again.
Aziraphale thought that maybe Crowley was too warm wrapped around him, so he fetched a wicker basket. Which he filled with some if the soft blankets he had bought for Crowley as well as the angel and demon teddies, so that Crowley might have something to coil himself around if he pleased.
Aziraphale had again fetched his wayward demon and placed him in the basket. Crowley looked rapturously happy for a few moments, his darling little snake eyes widened as he wriggled down into the cashmere blanket. (Aziraphale had standards for Crowley since it seemed he had so few for himself) The he stilled, gave Aziraphale the saddest most pitiful look a snake could possibly give and slithered away again.
Maybe what Crowley needed was a little space. So Aziraphale would give Crowley space. He let Crowley curl himself up in some obscure nook and didn't bother him until he thought that the demon might be getting a bit peckish, and really ought to drink something as well.
Crowley refused when Aziraphale peeped into his hidey hole and asked if he wanted anything. Then when Aziraphale brought him something anyway he wouldn't take it. He just hid his little head between his coils. This happened several times over the course if the day and Aziraphale was beside himself.
He wasn't too worried about Crowley not eating, but snakes we're at a particularly high risk for dehydration when it got cold. And while Crowley couldn't die per say he could certainly still suffer.
It must, thought Aziraphale, be something he did or was doing wrong. He racked his brain for ideas of what he might have done to make the demon frightened or uncomfortable. But he just didn't know. If only Crowley would talk to him, tell him what he did wrong, and how he could fix it. That was the thing about Crowley though, he never talked about anything important. At least not when it came to himself.
All these centuries, he had been talking care of Aziraphale. Saving him from revolutions and spies, making sure his books were safe taking him out to dinner, scaring particularly persistent customers away from the shop. Now the one time when he tried to take care of Crowley a little, give something back to him after all the giving Crowley had been doing for six thousand years, he went and mucked it all up.
Now Crowley was sad, or frightened, or something. Aziraphale really didn't know. He just wanted to make it up to Crowley, whatever it was that he'd done to put him in such a state. Then have Crowley all tucked up in his arms warm and safe where he ought to be.
He was beginning to wonder if this had all been such a good idea. Maybe he wasn't the best caregiver for Crowley. Maybe he should look for someone else. Someone who wouldn't make Crowley feel like he had to slither away and hide. Someone who could love his kind, mischievous, demon the way he deserved to be loved. The way Aziraphale apparently couldn't.
If I was really wicked, I would just end the whole thing here.
Crowley had spent the day making himself as unobtrusive and un bothersome to his angel as he could. He didn't fall into the trap of curling up with Aziraphale in the sofa, or snuggling down into that deliciously soft basket. Instead he simply curled up out of the way and tried to be as unobtrusive as demonly possible.
As a snake, Crowley didn't urinate the way he did as a human. Instead of pee he excreted a whitle chalky substance. But that didn't particularly matter. He wasn't going to make his angel go from cleaning up his human messes to his snake messes. His plan was simple, if he didn't eat or drink anything, he couldn't forget to miracle it away before he made a mess. Aziraphale wouldn't have to clean anything up and they'd both be happy. Well, Aziraphale would be happy. And Aziraphale's happiness made Crowley happy.
Crowley wriggled, trying to make himself comfortable on the cool wooden floor. He wondered if he could possibley sneak one of those wonderfully soft blankets over here. But it seemed just now like far to big of a task to undertake.
He really was rather bored. He missed Aziraphale reading aloud to him. They had been in the middle of the Little Prince when Crowley had left to water his plants. He wondered if he would ever find out how it ended now. He supposed he could get (shoplift) a copy for himself. But his snake eyes weren't well suited to reading. Stories seemed so much better when Aziraphale read them anyway.
With a sigh, he rested his head in his coils. There was nothing else to do, he might as well sleep. So he slept, and he dreamed.
Crowley was sitting cross legged on a he floor of the bookshop. He was surrounded by Annie's toys, but they weren't Annie's they we're his. He was concentrating very intently on building a very tall and very wobbly castle out of blocks, so that he could throw his stuffed dragon at it and watch it satisfyingly crash to the floor.
Someone snuck up behind him and pressed a kiss into his hair.
"Are you almost done playing dear?" Aziraphale gently carded his hand through Crowley's hair.
Crowley nodded, not bothering to try and speak around his pacifier.
He launched his dragon at the castle, blocks noisily clattering to the ground. As so as he was finished he was scooped up into Aziraphale's arms.
Aziraphale arranged them on the sofa so that Crowley's head was resting on Aziraphale's shoulder. He gently pried the paci out from Crowley's mouth. Before Crowley had the chance to fuss about the loss of his beloved paci a spoon was gently placed in his open mouth. Crowley didn't know what it was, but it did taste rather nice. So he swallowed the mush, burrowed down further in Aziraphale's arms, and opened his mouth again.
After Crowley was fed, and getting rather sleepy, the rubber teat of a bottle was placed in his mouth. He suckled the sweet creamy milk half asleep. About halfway through the bottle he could feel his diaper grow warm and wet, but it didn't matter. Aziraphale was there, smiling down at him with love and adoration, the way he had smiled down at Annie. Crowley knew that so long as Aziraphale was there smiling like that everything would be alright in the end.
Then Crowley woke up to find that Aziraphale was indeed staring at him. One blue eye pressed against the opening to his little hidey hole. It wasn't a stare full of love and adoration however. Instead his angel looked sad and resigned. They stared at each other for a minuet, blue eye meeting yellow. Than Aziraphale spoke.
"Crowley we need to talk."
"We need to talk."
Crowley's little snake heart plummeted somewhere to the region of his tail.
Crowley was certain that never in the history of the world had anything good ever come after those words. Whatever Aziraphale was going to say next most assuredly wouldn't be anything Crowley wanted to hear. And Crowley had the nasty, sneaking suspicion that he knew what Aziraphale wanted to talk about.
He wouldn't even be mean about it. Because Aziraphale was too good to be mean, even though he must be getting rather cross with Crowley by now.
Crowley could picture the conversation, which would go something like this, "Crowley dear, I know we've been seeing more of each other after the apocalypse that wasn't actually the apocalypse. But really this is a bit much isn't it? And you have been making quite a mess. So when this storm is over, why don't you pop back to yours for a bit? Maybe we can meet up for dinner again in a couple decades."
And Crowley would be alone again, just like that. Because he couldn't stop being little, and weak, and needy no matter how many suppressants he took or how hard he tried to pretend he wasn't.
Aziraphale was holding a hand out towards Crowley. Slowly Crowley uncoiled and slithered towards him. Feeling very much like a condemned man making his last walk to the gallows.
Aziraphale set Crowley down on one end of the sofa, then sat down on the opposite. Outside of Crowley's recent brush with hypothermia, he and Aziraphale had hardly ever touched over the centuries. Though Aziraphale had never seemed further away from Crowley as he was at this moment.
The silence stretched on between them. Aziraphale looked like he was trying very hard to think of all the right words to say. While Crowley hunkered down as if he expected a physical blow.
When Aziraphale saw this, the sadness in his eyes deepened immeasurably. He lifted his had as if to reach out and touch Crowley, but his hand paused in mid air, twitched, and returned to his side.
"Crowley dear, I'm afraid I've done something terribly wrong."
Crowley flicked his forked tongue in confusion. Of Course Aziraphale hadn't done anything wrong. Aziraphale was an angel. The best angel. The only good one of the lot. He couldn't do anything wrong! (Except maybe pop into France dressed an aristocrat during the French revolution for crepes. Or getting himself inconveniently discorperated. But those we're just little personality quirks really.)
Aziraphale continued on. "You know you really are my dearest friend Crowley. And I did so want to take care of you for once, but I fear I've made a dreadful mess of it."
This wasn't going at all like Crowley thought it would, and he was thoroughly and utterly confused. Made a mess of things. Aziraphale didn't make a mess of things, that was what Crowley did.
Meanwhile Aziraphale was still babbling on.
"So I wonder, Crowley dear, if you wouldn't be happiest, or that is to say happier, somewhere else? With someone else?"
That was more like it Crowley thought, Aziraphale's very polite version of 'it's not you, it's me. But whoever it is please leave.'
Crowley slunk of the sofa, and became significantly more human shaped. He figited and squirmed a little, he had forgotten that his pants were wet and they we're presently very cold, itchy, and stuck uncomfortably to his legs. He couldn't bear to look at his angel, so he kept his yellow gaze affixed to his snake skin boots.
"Of course angel." He mumbled, and bolted for the door.
Well, that hadn't gone at all as Aziraphale had intended. Aziraphale was really rather alarmed. Crowley hadn't actually talked to him at all. He had expected that they could either fix whatever Aziraphale was doing that troubled Crowley so, and Aziraphale could continue on taking care of him. (The far superior option in Aziraphale's mind) Or they could see about finding someone that Crowley would feel more comfortable with. (An option that made Aziraphale feel a bit nauseous, if he was being honest)
Aziraphale would of course, continue to look after Crowley until they found someone more suitable. He hadn't expected Crowley to bolt out the door like a frightened rabbit. It was almost as if Aziraphale had chased him out with a broom, and oh. Oh. That was what he had done wasn't it.
Not chaced Crowley out with a broom, but asked him to leave. That's what it must have sounded like to Crowley. 'Wouldn't you rather be somewhere else?" He had asked the absolute dope he was. Crowley thought he wasn't wanted.
A crack of thunder interrupted his self
flagellation. The rain! He had chaced Crowley out into the rain!
He bolted out the frint door, not bothering with a coat or locking up. He would find Crowley, bring him back to the bookshop. The he would sit Crowley down and make certain that he knew in the plainest and simplest of terms that no matter if Aziraphale wasn't compatible to be to a caregiver for him, he would always care for Crowley when he needed it. The bookshop (and Aziraphale's arms) would always be open to him. In fact, Aziraphale would vastly prefer if Crowley stayed at the bookshop, and never set foot in that tomb he called an apartment ever again.
Meanwhile Crowley was finally seeing some benefits to the rain. Yes, it made him wet and cold. It made his bones ache, and his shoulders shiver, and his head hurt. But at least since he was now drenched from head to toe, no one could tell he had wet himself. He could have miracled the mess away, but he hardly felt up to it just now. And he rather thought he deserved his shame and misery anyway, as well as the unpleasant burning sensation that had started on his private bits and inner thighs.
Crowley didn't go back home. If he was being honest with himself, (which he seldom was) his apartment wasn't home. Never had been. Home was a bookshop and a fussy angel. A bookshop that he'd just been asked to leave by said fussy angel.
Crowley plastered himself to a bench in Saint James' Park. Their bench. He really was pathetic, still clinging to Aziraphale when he knew he wasn't wanted. It didn't matter that they we're free of their respective sides. In the end they we're still an angel and a demon. Aziraphale was and always would be so much better than him, gracing Crowley with his time and occasionally even affection because he was being kind to a lesser creature.
Crowley let his head down onto the bench with a solid whack.(which rather hurt) And proceeded to stew in his misery, in a scene that would be considered overdramatic in even the worst of penny dreadful novels.
He didn't even look up when he heard his name being frantically called.
"Bugger off, I'm having a moment here." He said into the bench.
Crowley's head snapped up. Aziraphale stood over him, a pillar of light against the darkness of the storm. (Both literally and metaphorically)
"Whatever are you doing out here!"
Crowley was a bit put out by that. "You told me to leave!" His voice rose, and maybe cracked a little as well.
Aziraphale's expression softened. "I didn't mean to. It was only that you seemed so unhappy there. You wouldn't cuddle, or eat, or be anything but a snake."
"I was trying to stay out of your way." Crowley mumbled, "Not be a bother." His head was swaying now. Or was it the ground? He wasn't sure.
"You're never a bother."Aziraphale said softly, but Crowley didn't hear him, his eyes had gone completely unfocused and his head slumped back.
Aziraphale wasted no time in gathering Crowley up into his arms and scurrying back to the bookshop with him.
Ever since the whole garden and apple fiasco. God had cursed Crowley to be a snake for a he rest of his days. This wasn't however quite as literal as it sounded. Crowley obviously wasn't always a snake. Instead he was bound to some degree by a snake's biology, subject to needs of his coporeal form in a way that no other demon or angel was. Crowley had no way to control over the internal temperature of his body. He couldn't smell but with his tongue or change his eyes from yellow slits.
So Crowley needed to take care of himself. (even more so because he was also a little) The one thing ( besides his actually job) he was completely dreadful at doing.
How he had managed not to get himself discorperated for so long was a mystery to Aziraphale.
He placed Crowley on the bed, and begin stripping him of his wet things. He could have just snapped his fingers, but as a caregiver he found much more satisfaction in doing things the human way. And as an angel he believed in the healing powers of love and affection.
Aziraphale carefully removed each piece of sopping wet black attire. Than vigorously rubbed each gangly limb to try and get a bit of blood flowing once again. It seemed to be working as by the time Aziraphale was talking off Crowley's pants, Crowley had regained consciousness. He was staring at Aziraphale with half closed eyes (Aziraphale having removed those dreadful dark glasses first thing. He really did like looking at Crowley's eyes.)
Aziraphale was horrified when he finally got Crowley's pants worked down enough to expose his sodden pull up. all of the skin from Crowley's knees to his groin was redened, raw, and extremely painful looking.
Underneath the pull up was worse, much worse. All of Crowley's sensitive bits were completely covered in some of the worst diaper rash he had ever seen.
"Oh Crowley" He sighed and waved a hand over the raw, burning skin, leaving in freshly healed and pale in his wake.
Crowley just blinked up sleepily at him, a bit confused that he wasn't in pain anymore.
Aziraphale creamed and powdered Crowley vigorously, even though the rash was gone. (And wouldn't ever be coming back if he had anything to say about it.) Then taped him up in a fresh diaper, and deposited him back in the same cozy pajamas as before.(freshly laundered via miracle)
He miracled up his own pajamas and tucked himself and Crowley into bed. He popped a gray paci into Crowley's mouth to substitute the thumb he had been nursing on. Then he tucked the angel and devil bears in besides his little demon.
Crowley rubbed his face against the devil bear's fur in his sleep. And worried his fingers against the angel bear's tartan ribbon.
Aziraphale noted that Crowley might like a baby blanket. One with a soft side and lots of little tags for thin little fingers to feel. Or maybe one of those nice big, soft play cubes. One with all manner of beads, tags, bells, teethers, and other little fidly things for Crowley to play with.
In his sleep, Crowley snuggled further into Aziraphale. And that thought Aziraphale was exactly where he was going to say until he warmed up and then became lucid enough to have a conversation. A proper conversation, thought Aziraphale. One with them both saying words. One where Crowley didn't bolt from the room halfway through, or turn into a snake, or try and jump out a window, or something. (Aziraphale wasnt quite sure how he would manage this, but he was determined)
Then Crowley would stay in the bookshop till it stopped raining (it was really beginning to remind Aziraphale of another rainstorm a very long time ago. He did hope no one was building an ark) and be taken care of by Aziraphale. Hopefully by then they would have talked through what Crowley wanted to do afterwards.(Aziraphale did so hope it was stay here with him)
Yes, thought Aziraphale, that would be just how things would go.
Aziraphale woke to an empty bed. Which was unusual. First that he woke at all, as he was not in the habit of sleeping with any sort of regularity. Secondly because there was presently supposed to be a second occupant of the bed.
Oh, why couldn't Crowley ever just stay where he was put?
Fortunately this time Aziraphale didn't have to run all over London in the rain. as Crowley was downstairs in the bookshop pawing through the coat rack.
"Crowley dear what ever are you doing there?"
Crowley didn't appear to hear him, he just kept clumsily fumbling through coat pockets. Aziraphale walked over and placed a gentle hand on Crowley's shoulder. Crowley turnedhis head and looked up at Aziraphale, but his yellow eyes were bleary and unfocused. Though Crowley was looking right at him, Aziraphale highly doubted that the demon registered he was there.
Aziraphale asked again, gentler this time. "Darling, what are you looking for?"
"Pills" mumbled Crowley.
"Pills?" Aziraphale parroted back.
"Pills. Pills so 'ziraphale dun know I'm little."
A gear had begun to turn slowly in Aziraphale's brain, and a thought was forming. "Aziraphale.. " Aziraphale paused and began again. "Aziraphale doesn't know you're a little?
"Uh uh, he thinks I'm sick. Snake sick, cause it's cold." Crowley paused in his rummaging and scrunched up his face in thought. "I am sick, n 'Aziraphale is being reaaaalllyyy nice to me n it makes me little." He raised a long finger to his lips. "Shhhhh. Don't tell angel."
Aziraphale bent over and picked up Crowley. Who gave a few rebellious wiggles, and then went limp in his arms. Aziraphale carried him upstairs to the bedroom. Though he didn't place him back in bed. Instead he miracled them a nice plush rocking chair, big enough so that Crowley's feet wouldn't drag on the ground while he sat draped over Aziraphale's lap.
He wasn't quite sure if Crowley was sleepwalking, or if this was a side affect of the hypothermia or maybe the little suppressant drugs. But Aziraphale's had gotten two rather important realization from speaking from his delirious demon.
One: Crowley did not realize that Aziraphale knew he was a little. Honestly, Aziraphale really wasn't sure how Crowley hadn't realized he knew. Yes, he had try to be subtle at first, but he really couldn't help himself and had been babying Crowley a rather lot lately. He had been changing his diapers, giving him pacis, tucking him to bed and spoon feeding him. He couldn't help himself, and Crowley did seem to need the attention so. (Around this time it was also beginning to occur to Aziraphale that his best friend, his littlest love, his dearest demon might be a bit of an idiot)
Second : There was a third option that Crowley could choose. Instead of staying with Aziraphale or finding another caregiver, Crowley could just continue on as he had been. Downing little suppressants and pretending his was a baseline, just like he had been doing for the last six thousand years.
Aziraphale could live with Crowley being taken care of by someone else.(he wouldn't be particularly happy about it, but he could live with it.) That way at least he could know that Crowley was being taken care of. And occasionally see little Crowley, and maybe have a nice cuddle with him or babysit if his caretaker was away. If things went back to they way they were before, Aziraphale would probably never see Crowley be little again.
Aziraphale wouldn't get to cuddle him ever. Or make sure he ate, or that his diapers we're changed, so that he didn't get a nasty rash ever again. Or bottle feed him, or go to sleep with Crowley tucked safely in his arms. And no one else would be there to do it either.
Instead Aziraphale would just be left to endlessly fret over if Crowley had eaten. If he had wet the bed. If he needed a hug and no one was there to give him one.
He clutched the sleeping Crowley closer to him, and listened to his gentle breathing mingle with the thrum of the rain beating down against the window outside. Aziraphale rocked them both gently. These may be the last days he ever had with little Crowley. Taken from him as abruptly as they we're given.
If they we're to be the last days he had with little Crowley, then they would be the best. Crowley would never be so loved as Aziraphale would love him. Crowley would want for nothing. Be petted and loved and adored. Then maybe, just maybe, in the end he would choose to stay.
Crowley was still sleeping quietly cuddled up on him, and it was all very nice, bu Aziraphale was beginning to feel a bit peckish. His thoughts had turned to the tripple layer chocolate fudge cake he had chilling in the refrigerator.
Very gently he rearranged Crowley in his arms. Crowley's head still rested on Aziraphale's shoulder, while one of Aziraphale's hands curled around Crowley's thin midsection, while the other supported his bottom.
As soon as his hand made contact with Crowley's rear end, he knew that his trip to the kitchen would be slightly delayed, as Crowley had rater thoroughly wet his diaper in his sleep.
Aziraphale managed not to wake Crowley during the diaper change. Then picked him back up and carried him to the kitchen. He arranged Crowely on his hip, and fetched his (rather large) slice of cake and cup of tea one handed.
He sat himself and Crowley down in one of his over stuffed armchairs and began to tuck in. About halfway through Aziraphale's slice of cake, Crowley began wriggling and snuffling in his shoulder. Aziraphale saw a golden eye peek out at him curiously.
Aziraphale offered up his cake filled fork to Crowley. "Would you like a slice of cake dear?"
Aziraphale had often fed Crowley off his own plate over the centuries. Crowley almost never ate, and even if Crowley couldn't exactly starve to death Aziraphale worried at how thin the demon was.
Crowley thought about it, then opened his mouth, sticking out his little forked tounge in the process. Which Aziraphale thought was just darling. He popped the cake into Crowley's mouth, than took a bite for himself. It went on this way, Aziraphale alternating between feeding himself and Crowley until they had finished.
Than Aziraphale sipped his tea and they sat in silence until, he brain to hear an odd smacking sound in his left ear. He turned his head to realize it was Crowley sleepily smacking his lips together, and it occurred to the Angel that Crowley must be thirsy.
Aziraphale felt he had come to a pivotal moment. He very muchly wanted to feed Crowley a bottle. But he also thought that if Crowley we're just a bit more aware, he would object to such babyish treatment. (rather vehemently)
Oh but Aziraphale did so want to, and they had come this far. He wasn't even sure Crowley would remember this come morning. Which was, Aziraphale thought a rather melancholy thought. He did so wish that Crowley would enjoy this as much as he would. But Aziraphale knew this might be his only chance to ever do so, so he miracled up a warm bottle of milk.
The teat was gently nudged against Crowley's mouth. A bead of milk formed on the tip of the nipple and a little forked tongue curiously reached out to taste it.
Crowley must have decided he liked it, because he latched on vigorously and began sucking. His already half lidded eyes closed completely and he snuggled down further into the warm plushness of Aziraphale.
A warm contentment washed over Aziraphale, and he watched Crowley with adoring eyes trying to sear this moment into his memory perfectly. So when he no longer had little Crowley(or probably even big Crowley) hear with him he could remember this time, and find maybe not happiness, but some measure of contentment.
When Crowley finished with his bottle Aziraphale gently tugged it out of his mouth and quickly replaced it with a paci so that Crowley would feel no loss. He kissed the sleeping demon's forehead, and miracled up a book. He read as Crowley napped contentedly on him, and for just this moment in time Aziraphale fell that all was well.
Anthony J. Crowley had really mucked things up this time worse than he ever had before. Worst than loosing the Antichrist. Worst than falling from heaven.
You see there was a reason, besides general laziness that Crowley slept so much. After the whole bit with the apple and the garden Crowley tended to be very snake like.(thank you God) So whenever he found himself too hot or too cold, he got sluggish and sleepy. This usually resulted in him dozing on and off for long periods of time. When you spend the majority of your time, sleeping, falling asleep, or waking up just to go back to sleep a few minutes later, you begin to have trouble separating the things that happened to you while you we're asleep,(i. e. Dreams) from the things that happened to you when you we're awake.
So when Crowley woke up, and was for the first time in a long while thinking clearly (as clearly as Crowley ever thought) he simply believed the past couple of days to have been a dream. Not even a particularly odd one. He had often dreamt of Aziraphale in this manner.
So Crowley just closed his eyes and snuggled back into the covers for a nice lie in. It took him a few wiggles to realize that theses weren't his sheets. Instead of the silk sheets he usually slept on, these felt suspiciously like particularly soft cotton. And for that matter, the warmth pressed up against the left of him was new as well.
Crowley slowly opened one yellow eye. It was worse than he could have possibly imagined. There sleeping peacefully next to him was Aziraphale.
Crowley had to know. So he peeked under the tartan covers and looked down at himself. It was just as bad as he had feared, worse even. He was wearing feetie pajamas. Admittedly the we're feetie pajamas that Crowley himself would have picked out if he had ever entertained the notion of buying such a thing. They we're a soft grey patterned with little black and red snakes. But they we're still feetie pajamas.
Crowley really hoped he was still dreaming. He pinched himself. He didn't wake up, he was still laying beside his angel wearing feetie pajamas. He pinched himself again. He still didn't wake up. He bit his hand, fangs sinking into his skin drawing blood. He was forced to admit that maybe he wasn't dreaming.
If Crowley wasn't dreaming than it could only mean one thing. Aziraphale knew. Aziraphale KNEW!
Crowley was starting to remember with mortifing clarity some of the events of the past few days. Aziraphale had bottle fed him! Also, at some point, Crowley was almost certain there had been a bath filled with bubbles and little yellow ducks. That wasn't even mentioning all of the diaper changes, and who knew what other hideously embarrassung things that had happened.
Crowley was going to go back to his apartment, write an apology letter to Aziraphale, than crawl under a rock somewhere and discorperate from embarrassment.
Aziraphale shifted next to him. And Crowley quickly rolled over and closed his eyes. He felt a wet squish under him, and Crowley knew he had wet himself once again. He hated being a little. He always had, since the very beginning. He didn't understand why he was like this, so useless and disgusting, he couldn't even sleep without waking up to a mess he created because he simply couldn't control his bladder as he slept. He could hardly control it when he was awake for that matter.
Why was he like this.
That had been one of the questions that had gotten him kicked out of his heaven in he end. Crowley didn't know if there had been other littles in heaven, if there was he hadn't met them. He'd never seen an angel who was a caregiver untill he had met Aziraphale, but well angels didn't go around advertising those sorts of things either.
It was a thing kept just as secret in Hell. If there were any littles or caregivers in Hell, they kept it very well hidden. Neither heaven nor hell was particularly kind to the weak and useless. And that's just what littles were. What he was.
Aziraphale was awake now, and Crowley could hear him moving about the room. Then gentle hands, were on him trying to lift him up. Crowley wriggled away. He was just going to stay right here with his shame and self loathing thank you very much. And absolutely never look Aziraphale in the eye again for rest of existance.
Aziraphale was rubbing Crowley's back which though it felt pleasant, made Crowley feel even worse.
"Darling, I'm going to make breakfast. Don't you want to come with?"
Crowley most certainly did not. He wriggled further away and pressed his face harder into the pillow. Maybe if he pressed hard enough, he could suffocate himself and discorperate so he'd never have to face Aziraphale.
"Alright dear boy if you want to a bit of a lie in that's fine."
Crowley heard some shuffling and felt movement on and around the bed. He had no clue what the angel was doing. For maybe the first time in six thousand years, Crowley wished Aziraphale would just leave.
Eventually he did, and Crowley listened for a whole as Aziraphale puttered about the kitchen.
As he listened an idea began to take shape in his mind. (Not it should be noted, a particularly good idea) If he had was very quite, he might be able to sneak past the kitchen door, down the stairs, and make a runner for the bookshop door.
Crowley gingerly wriggled his way out of the covers, only to find that Aziraphale had laid pillows around the edges of the bed so he wouldn't fall out. The way you would do for a baby or very little toddler. Crowley's face went a little red. Climbing to the edge of the bed he bumped into the angel and devil teddies. He thought for a moment about talking them with him, but well they we're Aziraphale's weren't they. Instead he just placed a kiss on each of their furry heads and gently placed them back on the bed.
He peeked his head out the bedroom door. Aziraphale was no where in sight. So he made a quick scurry past the kitchen. Rounding the corner to the stairs he knocked a stack off books over with a pointed elbow. At first the noise and falling of books paralized him in fright, he could feel his diaper growing warm again. But he didn't have time to worry about his most recent accident, because panic had set in. He bolted down the stairs two at a time. He almost slipped and fell down the stairs, buy managed to grab a hold of the railing at the last secind and continue his frightened race to the door.
He weaved through bookshelves till he found the front door. He frantically fumbled with the knob, somehow in the last few minutes of his life having completely forgotten how to work a doorknob. Then something froze Crowley in his tracks. Behind him, a voice, Aziraphale's voice, because who else could it be? It was always Aziraphale.
"Crowley dear, please don't go."
Aziraphale looked at Crowley. Who had apparently not realized that he was about to burst onto the streets of SoHo wearing feetie pajamas with a pacifier still placed firmly in his mouth and sans dark glasses.
His poor demon was stood stock still, looking for all the world like a deer caught in the headlights of a speeding Bentley. (It should be noted that Crowley had never actually hit a deer with the Bentley. Deer in the middle of the road about to be hit always suddenly found themselves suddenly and miraculously standing on the side of the road ath the very last second as the Bently sped past)
Aziraphale cautiously approached Crowley. He longed to pick him up and carry him back upstairs, and perch the demon on his lap as they both had a nice breakfast. But now (and Aziraphale couldn't believe he was saying this) wasn't the time for food.
Very slowly he reached out and gently grasped one of the demon's hands. Feeling that he was trembling slightly. Aziraphale gently tugged Crowley over to the sofa and sat so that there was a bit of distance between them but not so much that Aziraphale couldn't quickly reach out to grab his flighty demon if he decided toake another run for it.
"Crowley dear, I think we both know that you're a little."
"No" Crowley said, but it was muffled by his paci. Crowley looked surprised for a second, than opened his mouth and let the paci fall to his lap. Crowley went stiff. He stared at it as if he had never seen a pacifier before. Then his cheeks went red and his chin dropped to his chest. "Don't want to be a little." Crowley mumbled to his lap.
"Oh, Crowley dear. " Aziraphale was fighting not to just bring Crowley into his lap for a good cuddle. "How do you know, have you.... Have you ever really let your self be little before?"
Crowley looked at Aziraphale aghast. "Of course not, everything's so hard when you're little everythings so hard. And messy!! And the you have to clean up the messes, but its too hard because you're little. So you can't make anything better you just lie there while everything gets worse and worse and think about how useless you are. Crowley slipped forward and put his head in his hands. "I don't want to be little."
"It doesn't always have to be like that, if you had someone to care for you.. "
Crowley interrupted with a snort. "Who'd want to take care of me?" Bitterness laced his voice like.... Like... Like something that laced things.
"I would" Aziraphale said hesitantly.
Crowley snorted again.
"I would!" Aziraphale said again, firmer this time.
"Because you're an angel. Because you're supposed to be nice."
"Well, yes." Aziraphale was an angel and he was nice, but he also wanted to take care of Crowley because Crowley was Crowley. Though he wasn't sure how to say that just yet. Instead he said "A month."
Crowley looked confused. "A month?"
"Yes dear, a month. You stay with me here for a month, and let me take care of you. If you decide that you like it, we can make the arrangement permanent."
"And if I don't?"
"Well then, things can go back to they way they were and we can never speak of it again."
Crowley snorted for the third time this morning. "You'll get tired of me."
"I won't" said Aziraphale but he could tell that Crowley didn't believe him.
"My plants.. "
"You can bring them here."
Crowley thought about it. Aziraphale would get tired of him. Sooner or later Aziraphale would get sick of dealing with Crowley's endless accidents and clinging. And while it would be humiliating to be cared for so intimately by Aziraphale, it would also be so very, very, nice. And Aziraphale did say that when it was over they would never speak of it again. Crowley would probably never have another chance like this again.
He nodded his head slowly, not daring to look up at Aziraphale and said "alright angel."
Aziraphale clapped his hands together, and beamed. (though Crowley with his gaze still in his lap could not see how his angel was smiling at him) "Oh very good Crowley! Let's get you changed then have a nice spot of breakfast."
Crowley turned red, and wondered how he was going to survive this next month.
Crowley was fussing. Well, Crowley wouldn't call it fussing, he would call it a sensible and reasonable putting forth of his argument for why this was A : not necessary, and B: not needed. ( It might have helped if someone had told Crowley that theses were the same two points)
Aziraphale would call it unnecessarily detaining breakfast.
Crowley had so far put forth the sentiment that he didn't need diapers. Which neither of them believed. Then that Crowley could change his own diapers, which Aziraphale wouldn't allow. Then Crowley had suggested that he just miracle his bladder away all together. Which Aziraphale really wouldn't allow. "All of your organs are in your corporation for a reason Crowley. Except maybe the appendix, I'm not entirely certain what that does."
Crowley helpfully offered "Randomly explode and kill you?"
Now it was quite a bit later than Aziraphale had planned on having breakfast, and Aziraphale was getting hungry and maybe his angelic composure was slipping just the smallest bit and he was getting a teeny bit cross. So he gave Crowley a firm but gentle smack to the backside and told him "That's enough, don't be naughty. Get onto the bed, so I can change you."
Aziraphale wasn't prepared for the look of utter betrayal that graced Crowley's face, as all fight seemed to instantly drain from the thin demon as he shuffled with resignation over to the bed and laid himself out on the changing mat. Than covered his face with his hands and stayed that way for the rest of the diaper change.
Aziraphale couldn't shake the feeling that he had done something wrong. Crowley had always been rather sensitive under that thin varnish of cool bravado and swaggering hips.(though Aziraphale had always suspected that the swagger might be because Crowley had a few more vertebrae than most people) In Crowley's current state he was even more sensitive than usual. Aziraphale wasnt sure if it was the smack to his bottom, or the bit of crossness that Aziraphale had let seep into his tone that had set Crowley off. Whatever it was he resolved to never do it again. He didn't like the quiet and reticent demon it left him with.
He dressed the demon in a plain black onesie he miracled up, and slipped a pair of grey shorts, with three little silver buttons on the front, up and over Crowley's diaper. He placed soft red socks on his feet, (no need to bother with shoes, Aziraphale highly doubted they would be leaving the bookshop) and placed a red paci in Crowley's mouth.
Crowley let Aziraphale carry him and spoon feed him eggs and toast with jam. He didn't fuss when Aziraphale tipped a sippy cup of cold milk up to his lips. Or when Aziraphale wiped off his slightly stick face with a wet napkin.
Aziraphale was getting a bit disquieted at this point. He had to din something to make things better, so he asked Crowley what he would like to do today. Crowley just mumbled back that it didn't matter. Aziraphale insisted and Crowley hesitantly asked something about a Prince, which confused Aziraphale.
"Could you say that just a bit louder darling?"
"Could we finish reading the Little Prince?" Crowley asked in a slightly more audible mumble.
Aziraphale was delighted. "Oh you remember that!"
Crowley nodded. "Wanna hear the end."
"Of course dear boy! Of course!"
Aziraphale bustled about, tucking Crowley onto his lap with the angel and devil bears and giving him a sippy cup of juice to suck on. He found where they had left off and began to read.
Crowley really did need more toys Aziraphale thought as Crowley dragged in another one of his plants. (He did so hope Crowley wasn't going to do anything too terrible to the poor thing) Crowley set about arranging it with the others now spread across the bookshop floor. Crowley chewed on his pacifier in concentration as he begin to stack books up in a big wall next to the forest of houseplants.
Aziraphale was technicaly spying on his charge. He had caught Crowley sneakily playing with the bears a couple times today, but no matter how much Aziraphale said it was alright, Crowley always stopped playing as soon as he knew he was caught.
So Aziraphale had left Crowley in the bookshop and told him he was popping upstairs to make dinner. Aziraphale really had meant to make dinner, but he couldn't resist just a little peek at what Crowley was doing. So far though, whatever game he was playing had Aziraphale stumped.
He peeked back at Crowley who now had both Angel and Devil bears perched on top off the book wall and was mumbling out dialogue from behind his paci. It seemed quite familiar, and all of a sudden Aziraphale realized why. It was the first time they met, in the garden. Crowley was reenacting their first meeting. Aziraphale melted. (Not, of course literally) Crowley really was sweet.
Aziraphale actually went up stairs to make lunch this time, leaving Crowley to play his game in the bookshop. Aziraphale wondered if Crowley had really ever had toys before. It didn't seem he'd ever allowed himself to be little.
Well, thought Aziraphale, that would just have to change wouldn't it. Crowley would have all the toys he liked now. Of Course Aziraphale could just miracle up the toys, but he wanted Crowley to have a proper experience at a toy shop where he could run about and pick whatever he wanted off the shelves. He thought Crowley would probably like that, greed after all was a very demonic pastime. Certainly Aziraphale wouldn't mind a few more things cluttering up the shop.
It was all perfectly settled then. Aziraphale would feed dinner to both Crowley and himself. He would give Crowley the diaper change he most certainly would need by then. Attire Crowley in suitable going out clothes, pack a diaper bag, and then they would head to the toy shop.
He was sure Crowley would be pleased.
"No" Crowley said and sunk petulantly down onto the floor. Unlike most littles, Crowley never threw tantrums. Not the noisy kind that involved screaming and wailing, and possibly tossing of nearby objects. Instead when Crowley was upset he would sulk. This generally involved sliding onto the floor in a heap of too long limbs and petulant demon. Then remaining on the floor for long periods of time.
"Why ever not?" Asked Aziraphale looking rather baffled.
Crowley looked up at him from his spot on the floor. "People will see me."
Aziraphale blinked, "Well yes that does tend to happen when you go out."
"Noooo, Angel, they'll see me when I'm little."
Aziraphale had never paid too much attention to what the humans surrounding him thought. He really couldn't be bothered to keep up with anything humans did or thought if it wasn't directly related to food or books.
Crowley on the other hand thought of his appearance to others rather alot. And spent a good deal of time making sure that he came off as cool and mysterious and slightly dangerous. (In his head only, literally no one in the history of the planet had ever looked at Crowley and said "oh isn't he cool, mysterious, and slightly dangerous. They generally said, "oh there goes that odd Goth chap, bit of an idiot, isn't he?")
Going out in public with a diaper on and a pacifier in his mouth holding Aziraphale's hand would mean everyone who saw him would know the very thing he had spent his whole life hiding. It would be utterly humiliating.
Crowley didn't know why Aziraphale wanted to take him to the toy store anyway. Surely it would just be a waste, Crowley was only going to be here and little for a month at most and probably not even that. It was only the first day and he had already made Aziraphale cross enough with him to give him a smack. It was obvious that Aziraphale wasn't particularly enjoying caring for Crowley and Crowley both feared that his little time with Aziraphale would be coming to a swift end very soon.
Crowley certainly didn't deserve a trip to the toy store anyway. He was naughty, Aziraphale had said so himself. Rotten little demons who couldn't even manage to behave themselves for one day certainly didn't get treats at toy shops.
But for some reason known only to Aziraphale and probably God, Aziraphale was insistent. "We'll dress you so no one can tell you're wearing a diaper dear. And you needed have your paci if you don't want it."
Crowley really, really, really, to say no. But he knew he was being naughty again, by not just doing what Aziraphale said. Aziraphale must be getting a bit cross with him. Crowley had after all managed to be naught now twice in one day. What couldn't he just be good, do what Aziraphale wanted? Make it less difficult for Aziraphale who was already stuck with the unpleasant task of caring for him.
He peered at Aziraphale with one yellow eye. "No little clothes?"
Aziraphale beamed "I promise you won't be able to look at you on the street and tell you're a little." But Aziraphale thought to himself whatever he dressed Crowley in would certainly be little appropriate. No more see through shirts and shoelace/tassle/necktie abominations for his little demon, no sir.
"And no diaper bag." It didn't matter what he was dressed like if Aziraphale went around carrying a diaper bag."
Aziraphale ruffled Crowley's hair. "I'll use my leather satchel. The one I carry books in sometimes."(This explanation was unnecessary, as what else would a bag of Aziraphale's be used for)
Crowley nodded, and said with great reluctance, but hope that it would please his angel. "Alright."
"Splendid." Aziraphale clasped his hands together. "Let's get you ready."
Crowley was changed into a fresh diaper, then dressed. He had to admit that the clothes Aziraphale chose for him weren't too dreadfull at all.
Aziraphale had pulled up black leggings over his diaper. Then pulled a oversized read sweater over his head. The arms flopped down over his hands and the hem came down only a couple of inches above his knee. Assuring that Crowley's diaper was completely obscured from view. The sweater also had a picture of black Bentley knitted in the front of it. Which Crowley absolutely loved, even if he would never admit it. Aziraphale then placed red socks and tied black converse shoes on Crowley's feet.
Crowley watched with a blush from his perch on the bed as Aziraphale busted around packing diapers, lotions, and powders into the leather bag.
Once he had finished he gently placed Crowley's dark glasses on, and removed the pacifier from his mouth and placed it in a small box. The he placed the box in leather bag and Crowley was left to sit there feeling a bit lost without the comforting wight of his paci in his mouth.
Aziraphale carried Crowley to the front door, where he placed him down on his feet. He fussed foe a while over whether it was warm enough for Crowley to go without a coat or not. (In the end it was decided that yes, it was warm enough that Crowley didn't need a coat)
Aziraphale than took one of Crowley's thin, pale hands in his own chubby one, and they left the bookshop.
Crowley's heart sank.
Aziraphale had taken them to London's largest store catering exclusively to littles. Crowley had studiously avoided the place since it had oppened. Just like he had avoided any shop or place that had to much to do with littles
In light of London's recent string of bad weather, the shop was relatively empty. Which made Crowley feel just the littlest bit better.
Crowley lagged a little behind Aziraphale, half hiding behind him, peering out at the rows upon rows of toys, bottles, pacifiers, diapers, and clothes. Aziraphale gently pushed Crowley towards the toys, and told him to pick a few things out.
Crowley looked around cautiously. There were so many toys. He'd never had any before, besides his bears. He looked from the toys to Aziraphale and back again, terrified that he would make the wrong decision.
Aziraphale just kisses Crowley on the temple and told him he would be in the section with bottles and dinnerware, then walked away.
Crowley was both relieved and nervous to be on his own. Aziraphale's absence did make looking through the toys much easier. Crowley wandered into the doll section where his eyes where his eyes were drawn to a line of historical dolls. Specifically one in an elaborate black and white Victorian era dress. He name on the package was Lenore, and she was clever and mischievous and liked to explore the various castle ruins that littered the moors she lived on. She also liked music and poetry and studying various reptiles. She came with a book where she solved the mystery of the Wailing Ghost of Allan Manor, he thought Aziraphale might read to him. Crowley cradled the box in his arms and went to look for Aziraphale. Just to make sure his Angel hadn't left him.
He spotted Aziraphale where he said he would be, by the bottles and sippy cups. He was beaming, talking animatedly to two littles. Crowley creeped closer without being seen.
The littles were a boy and girl that looked to be twins. They were small and cute, chubby cheeked and freckled, the way littles ought to be. The way Crowley wasn't.
They looked to be older littles from the way they we're dressed and their lack of pacifiers or plushies as well as the confident way the held themselves while talking to a stranger. Maybe about at the age range of 4 to 7 years, significantly older than Crowley's 0 to 3.(though if you asked Crowley, and he actually admitted to being a little, he would tell you he was at the higher end of the scale at about seven. His thumb sucking tendencies and lack of bladder control would argue otherwise however)
Of course Aziraphale wasn't a normal stranger. He was an angel, and a caregiver. Littles couldn't help but flock to him like moths to a flame.
Crowley turned away, and headed back to the toy section. He wandered aimlessly until he found himself in the plushy section. There we're so many staring at him with embroidered or black marble eyes. He ran his fingers through their fur, and wished that he could take all of them home with him. Bur Aziraphale would hardly be happy with that. So Crowley looked for the ones that just had to come home with him. A large green snake long enough to wrap around his shoulders was his first choice. His second was a black unicorn with holographic hooves and horn. (Crowley had really rather missed unicorns since that unforunate incident at the ark.)
He contemplated choosing another, but he wasn't even sure if Aziraphale would let him have this many. Crowley hoped he wouldn't make him put one back, because he was already sure he wouldn't be able to choose between them.
Crowley than spent a long time carefully examining the other toys. His angel wouldn't like it if he was too greedy, so he thought it would be best to only pick out one more. In the end he decided on a block set you could use to make a rather large castle, it even came with little dolls dressed up as nights and nobles and a toy dragon.
Crowley was working on balancing the castle set in his arms along with his doll and plushies, when he noticed that one of the littles from before had walked up to him.
"Are you Mr. Aziraphale's little?" He asked?
Crowley gave a hesitant nod.
The little was licking a rainbow lolly, that Crowley rather suspect Aziraphale had given him. (Because Aziraphale was maybe the only stranger you could ever take candy from and feel like you done the completely safe and right thing)
"Are you a baby?"
"No." Crowley said vehemently.
The little gave him a long look from over his oversized lollypop. "I think you are. I saw Mr. Aziraphale getting bottles and... diapers." Upon saying this last bit the little gave him a look that made Crowley's insides squirm in a very uncomfortable way. "My Momma says no one likes baby littles, cause no one wants to change diapers forever." The little took another lick of his lolly.
Crowley started to protest (or more accurately lie) that he wasn't a baby and didn't need diapers. But while he had been occupied with the little in front of him, the other little had snuck behind him and in a swift motion put her hands up his sweater and yanked his leggings down to his knees. Then she pulled his sweater up to hips exposing his diaper. Rather unfortunately, as it so often did in times of strife, Crowley's bladder choose this moment to empty itself.
For a moment all three were in shock, as a faint hissing sound could be heard and Crowley's diaper darkened. Then the twins burst out in peals of laughter.
Crowley stood frozen, still clinging to his armfull of toys. He was a demon, the serpent of Eden he had faced demons and angels, the Antichrist and Satan himself, yet here he was unable to defend himself from two mortal littles. Unable to do anything but tremble as they laughed at him an called him "diaper baby" in a tone low enough that it wouldn't be heard by any of the other few patrons of the shop. No one would be coming to rescue Crowley.
Crowley was glad for once that he couldn't actually cry tears. If he could he was sure he would be weeping profusely by now, and 'crybaby' would be added to the list of taunts.
Eventually the littles got bored of Crowley's humiliation. And Crowley was left alone to set down his toys and pull up his leggings over his now sodden diaper.
He really wanted Aziraphale to come and make everything better. Yet at the same time he really didn't want Aziraphale to know what an absolutely pathetic baby he had been.
He waited a while before going to find Aziraphale. Making sure his trembling had subsided, so Aziraphale wouldn't know something was wrong.
Aziraphale didn't make Crowley put one of the stuffed toys back, which Crowley was immeasurably grateful for. He clung to both of them as they walked out of the store. It seemed more important just now to have the comfort of clinging to the plush, than being ashamed if people saw him.
The headed home, and Aziraphale placed an arm around Crowley as they walked, and Crowley snuggled down into his side. Crowley thought for a moment that he might be alright. That was until Aziraphale begin talking about a delight couple of littles that he had met at the shop.
And if Aziraphale felt Crowley trembling, he thought it was only because Crowley must have caught a chill.
"No one wants to change diapers forever." Crowley couldn't get the words of the other little out of his head.
Especially as he had been given a rather stern reprimand by Aziraphale that night for not telling him when Crowley had wet when they were out so he could be changed. Aziraphale had even clicked his tounge and tisked, then examined Crowley embarrassingly thoroughly for the beginnings of any rashes.
As Crowley sat on the floor making his block castle, an ideas begain to form in his head, it went something like this: (A) He wanted to stay with Aziraphale as long as possible. This wouldn't happen if Aziraphale got tired of taking care of him. (B) The thing both he and Aziraphale seemed to dislike most about his being little was his inability to control his bladder and constant need of diaper changes. (Conclusion) If Crowley could control his bladder just a bit better, he wouldn't need diapers. Aziraphale wouldn't have to change him, and he would like, or at least tolerate, taking care of Crowley better, and Crowley could stay longer.
It was a brilliant plan if Crowley did say so himself. Crowley suched on his pacifier thoughtfully. First on the agenda was to get Aziraphale to let him wear pull ups instead of diapers. He had a much better chance of
Crowley waited until he had to pee. Well until he thought that maybe he might have to pee. He was never quite sure. Then he got up (a bit reluctantly) from his playing, and went to find Aziraphale.
He tugged on Aziraphale's sleeve. Aziraphale turned to Crowley and asked "What is it dear boy."
Crowley looked absolutely everywhere except at Aziraphale as he said "Got to pee."
"Oh, you need a diaper change."
Crowley shook his head, still not looking at Aziraphale "Got to use the bathroom."
Aziraphale looked a bit suspicious. "Are you sure dear? You aren't... Well you aren't really very good at knowing when you have to go. "
Crowley glared, and nodded that yes he was sure. (This was a lie)
So Aziraphale picked him up and took him to the bathroom. He undid his diaper and set him on the toilet. Which was embarrassingly babyish, but better than not getting to go to the toilet at all, so Crowley didn't complain. Much.
He only let out the smallest trickle of pee into the toilet, but it was something, and Crowley felt rather around of himself for it. Aziraphale however seemed less impressed. And soon Crowley was being scooped up and placed on a the changing mat. (Crowley refused to think of it as his changing mat.)
Aziraphale had gotten out another diaper. (Crowley had without realizing wet the other a little/without realizing it, and even if he hadn't Aziraphale wouldn't dream of not putting Crowley in a fresh one)
"Wanna pull up"
Aziraphale paused. "Are you sure dear? Last time you wore one you got a nasty rash! and leaked! They really aren't as absorbent as diapers."
Well they wouldn't leak this time, because Crowley had no intention of wetting in them. He nodded, "I'm sure."
Aziraphale looked skeptical, but nodded and said "Alright dear, but you must promise that you will tell me if you wet them, so I can change you right away."
Crowley nodded, and Aziraphale went to fetch a pull up instead.
Aziraphale than left Crowley with a sippy cup of juice to play with his castle again. Crowley shifted, pull ups really weren't as comfortable as diapers. But Crowley was determined, and so he ignored it, and went about his playing.
Crowley was just getting to the good bit in his story where the bad guy won, got the Castle and married the good guy when he noticed that he was suddenly sitting in dampness. Self loathing (more than usual) creeped up his spine and made a home in Crowley's head.
He was no good at this. The only reason he had ever been able to get away without diapers it this long was a combination of the little suppressants and miricaling away the few (many) accidents he happened to have.
He couldn't just miricale away things now. He was in too close of proximity to Aziraphale. Aziraphale would know, (they could always tell when one ore the other preformed a miricale, it felt like a little tickle in the back of one's head) then he would be curious and want to know what Crowley was miricaling. And Crowley would be in trouble again and probably called naught and maybe given another smack.
Crowley had just resigned himself to the shameful admission he would have to make to Aziraphale, when a though came to him. He could just change himself! He knew where Aziraphale kept the pull ups and diapers. All Crowley would have to do would be to change out of his wet one into a dry one. Crowley snuck upstairs, taking his doll Lenore with him for moral support.
He made it into the bedroom, retrieved a fresh pull up from the closet. Then Crowley slid down his pants and wet pull up, and slid on the new one. Easy. Except for one tiny detail. What to do with the old one. Which was as now sitting in the middle of the bedroom floor and most certainly could not stay there.
Crowley picked it up and took it to the bathroom, shoving it in the cabinet under the sink in the very, very back.
Crowley would repeat this ritual three times again that day. Twice he tried to rush to the bathroom, but just didn't make it in time. Leaving him with a growing sense of shame and failure. The third time he was snuggled up all cosy and warm on Aziraphale's lap, nursing a bottle of warm milk and being read to and didn't notice at all that his pull up had gotten warm and wet.
It was relatively easy to sneak away from Aziraphale, who often left Crowley alone to play or so that he could prepare food. And when Aziraphale went to change Crowley into his night diaper that evening and found his pull up dry, the look of surprise on Aziraphale's face was very rewarding to Crowley.(even if Crowley had technically cheated to achieve his results)
That night he snuggled up to Aziraphale, and waited for the angel's breathing to even out. When Crowley was sure that Aziraphale was asleep, he carefully extracted himself from the angels arms and crept out of the bedroom. He padded down the hall to the bathroom and retrieved his pile of soggy pullups from under the sink. (Holding them as far way from himself as possible because of the rather sour smell they were emitting) he made it downstairs and halfway across the bookshop to the back door where the garbage cans we're located, when the lights suddenly switched on. Crowley stood frozen.
Aziraphale's voice washed over him sounding sleepy and irritated "Crowley, what on earth are you doing doing! "
Aziraphale was a little concerned about Crowley. Well, Aziraphale was a little mire concern led than usual about Crowley. He was always concerned about Crowley, for Crowley was often very concerning.
It seemed that in someways Crowley was easing into finally letting himself be a little. He was playing with his toys, he didn't stop the second Aziraphale entered the room anymore. He let Aziraphale cuddle and carry him. Ate every the was fed, let Aziraphale give him a bottle and read to him. It was somewhat concerning that Crowley was so complacent. Crowley was while not particularly nasty or troublesome, rather mischevious at dramatic at heart.
Aziraphale chalked the change in behavior up to a transitional period. As Crowley became more comfortable being a little, he would go back to being the mischevious little hellion Aziraphale loved.
The request for pull ups was rather surprising. Taking into consideration exactly how little Crowley was, diapers we're the far more appropriate choice. But Aziraphale thought it must just ne a little phase Crowley was going through at the moment. A few wet pull ups from not quite making it to the bathroom and Crowley would tire of the whole thing and he would be back in diapers.
At least Aziraphale hoped so. He did rather miss the quality time that they spent together during diaper changes. When Crowley was so soft and cute and vulnerable before him. While Aziraphale would love Crowley at whatever age he fell at. He did prefer Crowley as a baby best of all. There was something so cozy and fulfilling about taking care of a baby little.
Crowley having no wet pull ups was quite frankly alarming. Aziraphale had watched Crowley drink several sippy cups full of juice and tea thought the day. And had fed him a bottle of warm milk while he had read aloud to him. As much as he hated to doubt his dear demon he highly doubted that Crowley was making it to the bathroom in time, and he hadn't sensed any miricales being done. He was really beginning to wonder if something wasn't wrong with Crowley's corporation.
He tucked Crowley into bed, as well as the devil and angel bears, the plush snake and unicorn, and Lenore the doll. (Aziraphale was not thrilled with sleeping in the same bed as the hard plastic and rather pointy Lenore, but Crowley insisted she would be lonely if she couldn't come to bed with everyone else. Aziraphale could hardly say no to his little demons large, pleading yellow eyes) Aziraphale resolved to wait until morning to really start worrying. After all Crowley hadn't complained of any sort of pain or discomfort. Maybe Crowley really was making it to the bathroom? In any case Aziraphale was almost certain that there would be a wet diaper in the morning. Crowley always wet in his sleep.
Aziraphale was startled that night to wake up to a bed that was empty.(save for himself and Crowley's toys) He immediately jumped out of bed and started looking for his wayward demon. It was hardly the first time Crowley had run off, but Aziraphale had so hoped they we're past this.
Crowley wasn't anywhere upstairs, so Aziraphale made his way downstairs to the bookshop. He turned on the light and there, rather unexpectedly was Crowley, stood frozen his hand out stretched with something dangling from it.
"Crowley, what on earth are you doing! "
Crowley didn't answer. He dropped whatever was in his hand which landed on the floor with a wet squelch. Then the demon begain to shake in a rather alarming fashion and emit strange pained little mewels.
Aziraphale rather feared at first that Crowley was having some sort of seizure. Then soon realized that the demon was crying. Not with tears, as snakes rather lacked tear ducts, but crying all the same.
Aziraphale rushed right over and took the demon in his arms. He was hit my a rather pungent smell of urine. And he noticed that the thing Crowley had been holding was a pile of soiled pull ups. Well that did explain things. Aziraphale had no idea why Crowley felt the need to hide wet pull ups of all things from him. He miracled the sodden mess away, and carried the trembling Crowley over to the sofa.
A few miracles later, and Aziraphale was wrapping his demon in soft blankets, tucking his toys in with him. A pressing a bottle of warm milk, honey, and just a bit of vodka (for restorative purposes) to the demons mouth.
Crowley nursed, while Aziraphale stroked red hair, which had begun to grow out and was falling over Crowley pale face. Crowley still shook, but it had subsided from the rather terrifying epileptic-esque fit he'd been having before.
When Crowley finished his bottle, Aziraphale checked his diaper. Crowley always wet when he had a bottle. And Crowley begain to shutter and writhe again.
Aziraphale held him tight and stroked his back, wishing he could tell the demon everything was going to be alright. But he didn't know that. He didn't even know why Crowley was so upset in the first place.
For just this once, Aziraphale snapped his fingers and Crowley was in a fresh diaper. This seemed to calm Crowley down a little. Squeezing Crowley rather tightly to his chest. Aziraphale said "Crowley dear. I'm going to ask you a few questions. Do you think you can answer? "
Crowley hid his reddened face in Aziraphale's chest. "I'm in trouble, and I'm going to get smacks."
Aziraphale was confused. 'Smacks?' he had never hit Crowley. He wouldn't dream of it. "Crowley dear, I won't hit you, you know that right?"
Crowley peered up at him. "You did before."
"I never! ""Aziraphale begain, than paused, "When did I smack you? "
"When I didn't want a diaper change. I was naughty and you smacked me cause I'm bad. " Crowley hunkered down in Aziraphale's lap and stuck his thumb in his mouth.
That little tap on Crowley's rear, and Crowley believed he was being hit because he was bad? Aziraphale was horrified.
"I'm very sorry Crowley"
Crowley paused in his vigorous thumbs sucking to look up at Aziraphale suspiciously. "But I was naughty."
"No dear boy, you were being a bit stubborn, not naughty. Naughty would be doing a crayon drawing in one of my first editions."
Crowley looked aghast. "I wouldn't! You love your dumb old books. I wouldn't ruin something you love."
"I know dear." Aziraphale kissed the top of. Crowley's head. "And I promise no more more smacks. If you're ever really naughty you can sit in the corner."
Crowley looked both satisfied and suspicious. Buy he seemed to have settled down and was no longer trembling. Aziraphale really hated to disruption this new found peace, but he had to ask. "Crowley dear, why were you hiding your wet pull ups?"
Crowley slunk down even further in Aziraphale's lap. He seemed dangerously close to turning into a snake as little black scales were being to form on his face.
"Crowley dear, I need you stay human shaped. Can you do that for me."
He received a hesitant nod. The scales begain to recede.
Aziraphale stroked the demon's cheek. "Now Crowley whatever you tell me, I won't be mad."
Crowley gave him a look that said without words 'sure, you won't'
"I won't!" Aziraphale said primly. "You'll tell me, then we'll both have some cocoa, and have a cuddle and go back to bed."
Snakey eyes looked suspiciously at the angel. "Promise?"
"Promise." Said Aziraphale
"Don't want to wear diapers anymore."
Aziraphale had hoped that wasn't the case. He didn't want his demon to get so big that he no longer needed Aziraphale's loving care. But in the end, this was about what Crowley needed wasn't it? So Aziraphale took a deep breath. "Why don't you want to dear? "
"So you don't have to change me anymore. No one likes baby littles. No one wants to change diapers forever."
"Oh Crowley." Aziraphale clutched him tighter. "You know dear, how there are different kinds of little's who fall at different ages?"
Crowley nodded, he knew that very well, because he fell at the littlest and absolute worst end of the spectrum.
"Well there are different kinds of caregivers as well who prefer caring for different types of littles. Personally I prefer caring for a very young little."
Crowley stared at his angel in disbelief.
Aziraphale forged on. "I rather like having someone who will let me carry and cuddle them constantly. And I like nothing better than to read aloud to a little while having them cozy in my lap nursing a bottle." He brought Crowley head forward and placed a kiss to his temple.
"You can't like changing diapers." Came the almost petulant voice of his little demon.
"I don't mind it one bit." Said Aziraphale firmly. "The God given biological tendencies of the physical form are perfectly nautual. "
Here Crowley rolled his eyes.
"Besides" continued Aziraphale, "It's rather.... Intimate to care for someone it that way. And I feel, well... I feel closer to you when I do it."
"You shouldn't be closer to me." Came the now very definitely petulant voice of his demon.
"Why ever not dear?"
"Cause I'm a demon and you're an angel."
"That hardly matters now, does it?"
Crowley had now slid so far down that he was curled into a ball on Aziraphale's lap. His face hidden in the angel's ample tummy.
"You deserve better than me." Came the muffled voice form Aziraphale's midsection.
Aziraphale reached down and pulled the demon up so that he was sitting up on Aziraphale's lap. He tipped Crowley's chin up with a finger. "Crowley dear, please look at me. There is no one better for you than me, not in the whole of creation. I love you. Little or big, I'll always want to love you and care for you. I know you don't believe me when I say it dear, but I'm going to show you, and maybe someday you will."
Crowley was trembling again and Aziraphale pulled him close, gently rocking him back and forth. Crowley pulled out his thumb with a wet 'pop' and not looking at Aziraphale said softly, "I love you too."
For several days Crowley had clung to Aziraphale like moss to a damp wall. Only allowing himself to be put down briefly for diaper changes. While most would find a clinging demon an irritation at best, Aziraphale was not most people, and was more that happy to indulge his demon. He petted and pampered Crowley. Peppering him with kisses on his head and face. Spending many hours cuddled up together reading aloud to Crowley while he nursed a bottle, or reading silently as Crowley played or slept.
It was during a one of these times when Aziraphale was startled from his reading by a kiss on one chubby cheek. He looked up at Crowley who said (more to his lap, than Aziraphale) "I love you." And promptly pulled his blanket over his head.
Aziraphale smiled at the demon shaped lump of blanket, and hugged it tight, placing a kiss on what Aziraphale rather hoped was Crowley's head. "I love you to dear boy. " And they sat there, curled up together for a long time neither of them speaking. Until Aziraphale decided it was past time for a diaper check. And he carried his wriggling demon in for a change.
Aziraphale was contemplating making some changes to the bookshop. Not large ones, mind you, just ones that might make Crowley more comfortable here. A television for certain. While Aziraphale found them just a tad (very, he found them very) obnoxious, he knew that Crowley rather enjoyed them. He had thought about a crib, but well, he didn't want Crowley to sleep away from him. The only reason Aziraphale slept at all was so that he could do it with Crowley. Similarly he wasn't too find of the idea of a highchair. He liked eating and feeding Crowley while he was cuddled on his lap.
He rather suspected that Crowley would pitch a full fledged fit if he got a changing table. But he might enjoy a playtent so that he could have a space of his own in the bookshop to play in, while Aziraphale did shop things like take inventory. (Aziraphale's way of taking inventory was to simply hole himself up in the backroom with a cup of cocoa and a good book for a couple hours. Aziraphale did not need to count his books. He knew exactly how many he had and where they were. He just like to occasionally do real bookshop owner things. It made him feel credible.)
Aziraphale had never been able to spend so much time with Crowley before. They had often gone decades or centuries without seeing each other before they had bother settled in London. Then even, it wasn't uncommon for moths or years to pass between visits. Now Crowley was here with him so very close. Aziraphale couldn't imagine going for months or years without seeing his demon again
Crowley seemed to be happy with the arrangement as well. He was for the first time in his rather lengthy existence slipping fully into his little headspace.
But well, nothing could ever happen in life without a few complications.
Aziraphale had kept the shop closed ever since Crowley had been staying with him. Not that it mattered particularly what with Aziraphale's store policy of avoiding selling books at all costs. However when you ran a bookshop, sometimes people wanted to sell you books. (Which Aziraphale much preferred)
Sometimes these people would call you up while you were bottle feeding the sleepy demon in you lap, and ask if you wanted to buy a very rate book that you had been after for years. They would ask if you wanted to arrange a meeting for tomorrow to view the book. Then without thinking you would say yes. When you hung up the phone there would be a worried pair of demonic yellow eyes petting up at you.
This presented a teeny bit of a problem. Crowley didn't want to go out again while he was little, and the Demon was in no state to try and force himself to be big. Aziraphale couldn't and wouldn't leave Crowley alone. And for various reasons (mostly supernatural and demonic shyness related) a babysitter was out of the question entirely.
Aziraphale didn't want to push Crowley to go out again. So a compromise was reached. Crowley would go out as a snake and wrap himself around Aziraphale's neck as they walked, then slither into Aziraphale's leather satchel while they went in.
This was working splendidly until Crowley got bored. And when Crowley got bored interesting things happened.
He slithered his way out of the satchel while Aziraphale was examining the manuscript. And spotted the seller's wife. Crowley just couldn't help himself, and she absently reached for a biscuit only to find a black and red snake curled up on her tea tray. (She would later swear she heard it his "hi")
Aziraphale apologized profusely for his pet snake. Paid for his new very old book and hastily made an exit.
Outside, Aziraphale said "Really, Crowley, really?" to writhing black and red mass around his neck. Crowley was still giving a snakey sort of laughing hiss. And this rather irritated Aziraphale, so he picked up Crowley, plopped him in the satchel and latched it.
He didn't hear the hissed "Ssssssorry" that came from the bag. Or the little whine of "pleasssse let me out, I'll be good." As Aziraphale determinedly made his way back to the bookshop.
This thought Crowley, was much worse than the dark and bumpy satchel ride him. Worse than the corner time (without his doll or plushies for comfort) he had been subjected to when they had gotten home. Worse than Aziraphale feeding him and putting him straight to bed without a bottle or story, then not joining him. Just placing pillows all around the edge so Crowley couldn't fall out and leaving him! Alone! All night!
Aziraphale was ignoring him. He'd gotten Crowley up for breakfast and a diaper change. (Though by the time he did it was closer to lunch) There were no tickles and few cuddles, Aziraphale was perpetualy distracted. He forgot to put powder or lotion on Crowley before he did up the new diaper. He only dressed Crowley in a plain black onesie, which Crowley hated. (Not the onesie itself but the fact that anyone could see he was wearing a diaper) The angel also managed to smear scrambled eggs all over Crowley's face during breakfast as Aziraphale seemed to have entirely forgotten where Crowley's mouth was located.
Then Crowley was plopped on the floor in front of his toys and told to play. Which had been several hours ago now. Crowley was lonely and bored and wanted cuddles. Surely he couldn't still be being punished for scaring one teensy insignificant human could he? It wasn't like he had bitten her or anything. It wasn't his fault she didn't like snakes. She had even chucked a tea cup at him, which had hit him on the snoot and rather hurt.
Crowley's diaper was beginning to get cold and itchy. He wriggled uncomfortably. He was also thirsty as the sippy cup of juice the angel had given him had long since been drunk. Also a bit peckish, which was entirely Aziraphale's fault for feeding him so regularly. He chewed on his paci thoughtfuly, and made up his mind to go and look for his angel.
Aziraphale was sat at his desk hunched over his new purchase. Crowley hesitantly came up to the angel and tapped him on the shoulder.
Aziraphale turned around to look at him. "Oh.... Yes, Crowley dear. What is it? "
"Hungry" Crowley said than after a pause, "and wet."
"Of course dear, I'll just be a minute. Why don't you go and wait for me? Hmmm? "
So Crowley did. The minute turned to minutes, which ticked into a half an hour, than an hour, then an hour and a half, till two hours had passed. Crowley shifted uncomfortably and realize a puddle had formed under him where his diaper had leaked. He wanted Aziraphale.
He got up to find his angel, trying very, very hard (and rather failing) not to be upset.
He tapped the angel's shoulder. "Oh, yes Crowley dear." Aziraphale got up from his book, and Crowley could have cried with relief. Aziraphale scooped him up then made a face. "You're all wet dear boy."
Crowley scowled. He was all wet because Aziraphale had waited forever to change him. But he said nothing. If Crowley had learned one thing in hell (Crowley had in fact learned many things in hell) it was that complaining about your punishment only made it worse. If Crowley could just last it out till the Angel decided Crowley's punishment was over then things would go back to way thery were, with cuddles and warm bottles, and ATTENTION from his angel.
Aziraphale changed Crowley, putting an extra bit of diaper cream on the slightly redened skin. Then he miracled (not cooked, as he usualy did) pasta for dinner. Aziraphale ate methodically not slowly savoring each bite and making little noises like he usually did. He fed Crowley in much the same way, and forgot to give him a sippy of anything to drink with his meal. Crowley tugged at the Angel's waistcoat and said "thirsty" and was finally rewarded with a sippy full of juice.
Aziraphale then decided that Crowley needed a nap. Yes, Crowley thought a nap was perfect! A nap meant that he and Aziraphale would snuggle together wrapped up in blankets with all of Crowley's plushies, either on the sofa or the couch and Crowley would get a warm bottle of milk or cocoa. Aziraphale might read aloud to him or or Crowley might just listen to Aziraphale's heartbeat lul him to sleep.
This was not, however, what happened. Aziraphale deposited the demon on the bed, still clutching his red sippy cup of juice. Kissed him on the forehead, turned off the lights, and went back downstairs.
Crowley lay there in the empty bed. Most of his favorite blankets, all of his stuffies and Lenore the doll were downstairs. He had nothing and no one to cuddle with. He felt truly achingly alone. So the demon curled up into a ball an begain to sob.
It had been seven hours since Aziraphale had laid Crowley down for a nap. Seven hours! Crowley had slept for some of that time, but he had dreamed of the bookshop on fire and not finding his angel anywhere. He woke up wetting his already soaked diaper and with a rather unpleasant cold feeling in his gut that was making his insides squirm.
He sat in the middle of the bed and drew his legs up to his chest roccimg back and forth. The demon such his thumb in his mouth and begain to suck vigorously. (Aziraphale had forgotten to leave Crowley a pacifier and the demon didn't know where any of them we're, and was in no state to think of miracling one up.)
Crowley couldn't absolutely could not take it anymore. He absolutely and without question had to figure out a way to make Aziraphale pay attention to him again.
An idea begain to form. Aziraphale may be punishing him,(and Crowley may have deserved it) but the angel was really good and kind and gentle, at heart. If Crowley was hurt, really, really hurt surely the angel wouldn't withhold a few cuddles from him. After all Aziraphale had been so very good to him when he had that last touch of hypothermia. But it wasn't cold enough outside for that. Or hot enough to get heat stroke.
Crowley racked his brains. (such as they were) Then he had it, the perfect idea! (this was debatable, very debatable)
Crowley slid off the bed and tip toed down the hall until he found his destination. He reminded himself several times that he couldn't actually die. And it wasn't likely he would discorperate. Then he took a deep breath, brought his hands up to cover his head and face, and threw himself down the stairs.
Crowley lay spred eagle at the bottom of the stairs. His head hurt, his ribs hurt, his right shoulder hurt, his left leg hurt. Crowley felt as if he was, at the moment a being simply compiled of various different hurts. But it was all worth it. Here scurrying toward him was his angel.
"Whatever happened!? "
Crowley looked up with half lidded eyes. "Fell" It wasn't really a lie. Crowley had fell, he'd just fell on purpose.
Aziraphale tisked, and looked the demon over, healing all the bruises and aches and fractures as he went along. Crowley basked under the angel's attention. And almost (almost, mind you) made a small happy noise when Aziraphale picked him up.
Crowley was carried in to the bedroom and given a diaper change then tucked back in bed. Crowley fully expected Aziraphale to climb in with him, and they could have a nice cuddle. This was not what happened. Aziraphale started walking away, towards the door, intending to leave!
So Crowley did the sensible, rational, logical thing and pitched a fit. As far as fits go it was a rather impressive one. Crowley howled and sobbed. He thrashed around the bed, clawing and kicking, pounding his fists against the mattress. He beat his head against the pillows and wailed.
When he finally got tired, and his trembling and sobbing had died down, he looked up to find that Aziraphale was gone. He'd simply left Crowley there to suffer, all alone. He'd even turned out the lights.
Something was very wrong with his angel. If there was one thing Crowley knew in the world it was his angel. And this wasn't like Aziraphale at all.
Crowley had seen Aziraphale pause in a warzone to comfort a dying dog. He had seen Aziraphale show kindness and compassion to the worst humanity had to offer. He had once made Crowley stop the Bently so he could help a snail cross the road. Aziraphale would never leave anything to suffer, let alone someone he claimed to love. (Crowley still had his doubts about this)
Something was very wrong indeed.
So my tumblr is DamagedDolly666 if you would like to pop over there and message me a picture of your tear stained face, plot ideas,(I won't garentee I'll use them), threats to murder me if I don't give Crowley all the love and cuddles he deserves, whatever.
I post mostly aesthetic/art/fandom/fashion stuff. Fair warning, there is horror stuff and might be some gore/menhera/medical stuff. Mostly teeth. I really like teeth.
Crowley was going to have to do things. Crowley hated doing things, he wasn't really very good at doing things either. There was after all a reason he had lied to Hell for so long instead of actually doing his job. (Other than that he simply didn't want to)
He got up off the bed and stood up, pondering what to do first, because you had to do something first didn't you?
He stripped off his onesie and diaper, which he had wet sometime during his fit. And padded to the closet where Aziraphale had put some of his diapers and clothes. He pulled on a pull up, and some dark red leggings. Then he wrestled himself into a long black and red striped sweater. (He had forgotten how much bloody effort it was to dress himself.) He plopped down on the floor to wrestle on some black socks and black boots. He tucked the laces in the boot instead of tying them. Crowley had never learned to tie shoelaces. He had always simply miracled them tied. However he couldn't now, he didn't want to give Aziraphale any indication whatsoever that he was up to something.
Crowley got up from the floor and headed downstairs.
He paused at the sofa and the pile of his toys that had been abandoned there. He picked up all of his toys and sat them in a row on the sofa. He kissed each one of their heads and quietly told them that he loved them. First the angel and devil bears, then the snake, the unicorn, and finally Lenore. It felt a lot like the goodbye Crowley hoped it wasn't.
He resolutly walked to where Aziraphale was still reading. He could see in the dim lamp light that the angel's eyes had gone glassy, and his face looked strangely tight and drawn.
Crowley sat down cross legged and stuck his thumb in his mouth then watched as the angel read fervently. Crowley thought that he knew what this was. He also hoped very, very much that he was wrong.
If it was what he thought it was, Crowley had only ever heard of one other like it, owned by the Marquis De Sade. (It hadn't ended particularly well) Crowley believed it was one of hell's inventions, (though it might have been heaven's, their inventions were often worse than hell's) but infinatly worse than pop-up adds, or traffic on the M25, or the strange and inconvenient hours post offices were open.
Crowley had to do this, he told himself. He had to be not pathetic for once, he had to actually get this right. For Aziraphale. For his angel. He got up and crept towards Aziraphale, tapping him on the shoulder.
Aziraphale didn't answer, didn't even look behind.
"I love you Angel." Crowley said, but this elicited no response. "I'm sorry Aziraphale."
Then Crowley than gave his angel a sharp whack between the shoulder blades where his wings met his back. Aziraphale jerked around and Crowley grabbed the rather large (and quite heavy) book and ran. Crowley took the stairs two at a time, grateful for once for his corporations long, gangly legs which easily outpaced Aziraphale's shorter ones.
Crowley shut and locked the bedroom door behind him. And pitched the book into the fireplace that Aziraphale never like. Then he oppened up his mouth and with one deep breath spewed hellfire all over it.
Buy this time Aziraphale had miracled the door open and was now standing beside Crowley staring at the book in the fireplace smoldering into ashes. He rounded in Crowley.
"What have you done. What have you done you foul little devil!" Aziraphale raised a hand, and before Crowley could blink that hand was coming down on the side of his face with a resounding smack.
Two things than happened to Crowley in rather rapid succession. He felt his bladder empty into his pullups and he fell backwards onto his bottom with a thump and a wet squish.
He huddled himself in the corner of the room, sucking his thumb and running his fingers over the hem of his sweater. Crowley watched Aziraphale as he watched the fire.
As the last embers dyed away, he saw the glassy sheen begin to receede from the angels eyes. He turned around and looked at Crowley curled up in the corner, than back at the fireplace, then back at Crowley once more. Blue eyes begain to fill with tears.
"Oh Crowley, what have I done? What have I done? "
How is this so popular. HoW? I just couldn't sleep one night, and on a whim I was like 'I'm going to do some self indulgent perving up of one of my favorite books/shows with a sort of niche fetish of mine. Oh, and make Crowley suffer as much as possible, cause i'm into that." Now it has like 4,000 hits, and I dOn'T kNoW wHaT's GoInG on.
Crowley got up slowly and approached the angel. He stood before him and without hesitation wrapped his arms around Aziraphale. He could feel the angel tremble under him.
Crowley gently led Aziraphale over to the bed, he miracled Aziraphale clothes off, and a white nightshirt on. (Which Aziraphale had owned and kept in excellent condition since 1887, thank you very much.) Crowley gently pushed Aziraphale down on the pile of pillows. (Aziraphale was rather fond of pillows) Then he toed off his boots and climbed in with the angel. Crowley slithered over to Aziraphale and wrapped himself around Aziraphale as beat he could in his human form.
Aziraphale buried his face into Crowley's hair, and Crowley could feel the hot wetness of tears. His angel shook under him. Crowley just held him until his breathing evened out and only when Crowley knew for certain the angel was asleep did he let himself drift off as well.
Aziraphale woke to a warm wetness seeping on to one of his thighs and a gentle hissing noise. Crowley had wet the bed. Aziraphale snuck one hand down to Crowley's bottom to and felt a pull up instead of Crowley's usual (and much needed) diaper. He didn't remember putting Crowley in a pull up. He didn't remember much of the past day or two. He pulled Crowley closer to him.
Aziraphale had worked so hard to gain Crowley's trust. To let the demon know that he would always and forever take care of him.(till the world really did end, till they both crumbled to dust) Now look what he'd gone and done. Just as Crowley was getting comfortable around him. Comfortable enough to play in front of Aziraphale. Comfortable to let the angle bottle fed him and change his diapers and love him, wholly and without restraint. Aziraphale had buggered it up. Royaly. He had betrayed Crowley. Crowley his friend, his love, the one being who he cherished above all others in the universe. The being who he would and had, defied heaven and hell for. Crowley who, (if it really came down to it, and there was absolutely no other options because he really would make a dreadful demon) he would fall for.
Aziraphale had struck Crowley. Aziraphale had hit him and neglected him. How long had Crowley been changing his own pullups? Had Aziraphale fed him? Cuddled him? Aziraphale was almost horribly, nauseatingly certain that he had barely paid his poor demon any attention at all. And Crowley was a creature who needed attention, he craved it. There was always something soft, and raw, and aching about the demon. Even though Crowley tried to hide it with a swagger and fashionable clothing, pretending to be the bastard that he so wasn't. The bastard that Aziraphale often was.
Aziraphale waved a hand over his demon. Miracling away the mess Crowley had made, and a new diaper on the little demon. He longed to take care of Crowley, but felt as if he didn't deserve to touch him after what he had done. Maybe Crowley would never want Aziraphale to touch him again. He could hardly blame the demon. Maybe Crowley would leave.
An eternity without Crowley in it seemed much too vast and cold for Aziraphale's liking. Curling up on the plush sofa reading wouldn't be the same without Crowley's cool (he was after all cold blooded) weight in his lap. Crowley wouldn't ever pester him when he was making dinner or yell at his plants. The would never go out to dinner again, or the park. There would just be Aziraphale and the large, achingly demon shaped hole beside him where Crowley used to be.
He pulled the demon even closer to him. He miracled up Crowley's blankets and toys to tuck around him. Then a pacifier in place of his thumb. Crowley snuffled and wriggled further into Aziraphale's warmpth in his sleep.
Aziraphale clung to the demon and silently wept.
My local Walmart is moving literally everything around for the next like eight weeks and I feel it can only be the nefarious work of the demon Crowley. Like bro, I just want to buy hummus, and Halloween decorations.
Crowley woke up snuggled up against his angel. His blankets were pulled up around him, he was hugging his plushies, (his diaper was a little wet, but that was inconsequencial) he had a pacifier firmly placed in his mouth, Aziraphale was there (had he mentioned that? It was important) and all was right with the world. Or at leat Crowley thought so. Others, say for instance the angel lying next to him might have a different opinion on the matter.
Aziraphale sat up, and slid off the bed. Crowley sat up as well and watched as Aziraphale stood awkwardly in the middle of the floor.
The angel nervously wrung a handkerchief (lace edged) that had just appeared in his hands. "Crowley dear, I really am terribly sorry. I know you might never forgive me, and I don't know if I can ever make it up to you.. "
Crowley cut him off "It's alright angel" he said with a shrug.
"It most certainly isn't!"
Crowley shrugged again and shifted on the bed. "I'm wet." The demon looked pleading at Aziraphale.
"Oh yes, dear, of course."
Aziraphale snapped his fingers and Crowley's diaper was dry. Crowley frowned. Getting his diaper changes the human way was embarrassing but it was also time that he had Aziraphale's undivided attention, and Crowley was loathe to give that up.
He lifted his arms up, in the universal symbol of 'pick me up please'. Aziraphale did pick him up after some hesitation. But the angel didn't hold him tight like he usually did. Instead he held on gingerly as if the demon was made of something very breakable, and kept Crowley at a distance from him.
Crowley didn't like this. He didn't like it either when Aziraphale miracled up a highchair to place him in instead of holding him on his lap like usual. Crowley wriggled and glared his disquiet with the new seating arrangements.
Aziraphale fed him runny eggs and toast. (As someone who was mostly a snake, Crowley quite liked eggs) Then Aziraphale picked him up in his too loose hold once again and took them downstairs to the sofa. He sat. Crowley on one end and himself on the other, and though it was only a few feet, the distance between them seemed insurmountable.
Crowley was beginning to wonder if he had done something wrong. Maybe burning the book hadn't been enough? Maybe it had changed Aziraphale forever.(this thought frightened the demon terribly) Maybe Aziraphale was just mad at him for destroying a book? (Book burning had always been one of the worst sins imaginable to the Angel. He had been practicaly inconsolable after the Library of Alexandria burnt down)
Crowley was cold, and wriggled around on the sofa for a few minutes, contemplating just going over and trying to crawl in the angel's lap when he spoke. Crowley stopped his wriggling.
"Crowley, I need you to tell me what that book was"
Crowley frowned, "cold"
"I'm sorry dear, what?
"I'm cooolllddd" Crowley definitely didn't whine.
"Oh certainly dear" And Aziraphale snapped up a heating pad and several of his blankets, which was not what Crowley wanted at all.
"Unicorn? " Crowley asked, and this time Aziraphale knew exactly what he meant. Crowley clutched his unicorn and huddled down into his blankets and heating pad, then popped his pacifier out of his mouth. "The book was made in the fourteenth century...
"The book was made in the fourteenth century (both Aziraphale and Crowley shuttered at the mention of that particular era) in a monistary. I dunno know if it was a Satanic one or one of your lot's. I never had anything to do with it, just heard about it on the demonic grapevine. I heard the story two ways see. Either it was made to tempt people so they would do the thing they we're tempted to do so they'd end up downstairs. Or they wouldn't do the thing they were tempted to do and they'd go upstairs." (Crowley secretly thought it sounded more like Gabriel's logic than any of his lot's, but he didn't want to upset the angel further, so he just snuggled down further with his unicorn and continued)
"Do you remember the chaps that wrote Malleus Maleficarum?"
Aziraphale nodded he remembered very well the book that had started the witch hysteria and that whole nasty dumping in the river, burning at the stake business.
"Well it was given to one of them, not sure which. Don't even remember their blood names really. Anyway he was a bit of a sadist, well more of a bit really. That was the problem of the book it made people's desires stronger and the only thing that people ever seemed to really desire was to hurt one another.
Well after the entire witch hunting debacle, it went missing for a bit, then popped up in the Marquis de Sade's library."
"Oh dear" Said Aziraphale.
"Then it disappeared again till you got it, as far as I know angel."
"How does it... Well how does it work exactly? Does it make people do things they wouldn't already do? "
"Nah," said Crowley who was getting rather bored of this explanation stuff. He rather wished they would just get to the bit at the end where he got to snuggle with Aziraphale. Maybe with a nice bottle of milk, honey and vodka again. "It's like.... "Crowley paused and thought for a moment. "Well, have you ever seen the Lord of the Rings?"
"You mean the novel? By Tolkien? Nice chap, knew rather a lot about languages and flowers, very interesting to talk to. He signed my copy, first edition, you know, 'to my dear friend Aziraphale. '"
Crowley popped his thumb out of his mouth which had found its way there during Aziraphale's ramblings. "The book is like the one ring. Does the same sort of stuff, whispered little things in your ear. I imagine it told you to keep reading. " Crowley wriggled in his seat, he rather fancied a nap now. But Aziraphale wasn't looking at him, he was staring in a rather melancholic manner off into the distance. Crowley tears glistening down pale cheeks.
"I hit you."
Crowley shrugged "It's alright angel."
"No it isn't! If the book worked like you said it does it must mean that I... That I desired to hit you." Aziraphale broke down in sobs.
Crowley shrugged again. Plenty of people had hit him before. Occasionally he wanted to hit himself (very hard) and Aziraphale hadn't even been his right mind when he did it. Crowley didn't see what all the fuss was about. But Aziraphale was crying, and Crowley had to do something.
He got up, tucked his unicorn under one arm, and walked over to Aziraphale, pulling the angel up from the sofa. Crowley took his hand and led him back upstairs to the bedroom. He undressed the angel and laid him down on his mountain of pillows.
Crowley sat cross legged on the bed facing Aziraphale. He miracled a cup of cocoa for the angel. But Aziraphale's hands shook and sloshed some over the rim of the angel wing mug, so Crowley gently placed his hands over the angel's and helped him bring the much to his lips. After Crowley helped Aziraphale finish his Cocoa, he tucked the rather unresponsive angel into bed, then slithered in himself.
He tried to curl up to Aziraphale, but the angel stiffened up, so Crowley retreated to his side of the bed. He clutched his stuffies and sucked his pacifier for comfort. Aziraphale was just, reasoned Crowley reasonably, probably just suffering the after effects of whatever hold that the cursed (literally) book had on him. Crowley watched his angel intently as he fell into an uneasy slumber.
Aziraphale would be back to normal when they woke up. Probably. Maybe. Hopefully.
Please Go... Sa... Somebody, let his angel be alright.
One of the first things Aziraphale noticed when he woke up was that Crowley had tucked several of his stuffed toys and blankets around Aziraphale. Such kindness (though he would never tell Crowley that he though it was kind) made the angles melt. Yet at the same time, Aziraphale felt dreadful, he didn't deserve such care and kindnesses from the little demon he had been so dreadful to. He could feel tears starting up again.
"Aziraphale?" Came a rather quiet voice from the other side of the bed. Crowley was waring his dark glasses again. Aziraphale longed to reach over and take them off, but with current circumstances Aziraphale couldn't blame Crowley for hiding.
"Aziraphale, do you want me to leave? "
"No, Crowley dear, I don't want you to leave." But I don't deserve to have you here either was the part Aziraphale didn't say. "Do you... Do you want to leave? "
"No" Crowley said simply, and got up from the bed. "Wait here and the demon padded away.
He brought back breakfast and a book on a great silver tray. Crowley plonked it on Aziraphale's lap looking very satisfied with himself. Aziraphale begain to cry again.
"I'm sorry angel! Do you not like jam on toast? Did I get the eggs wrong? Is it the book?"
"No darling, " Aziraphale wiped at his eyes with a miracled handkerchief, "it's only that I don't deserve this, I don't deserve you."
Crowley looked dreadfully confused. Crowley was dreadfully confused.
"I hit you Crowley! "
Crowley shrugged (he felt like he had been doing that an awful lot lately) "so? "
"So! Crowley you do know that people shouldn't go around hitting you, least of all your caretaker. And what a dreadful caretaker I turned out to be."
Crowley launched himself at the bed, just narrowly avoiding spilling breakfast. Aziraphale he demon latched himself firmly to one of Aziraphale's legs "Nooooo, you're the best angel! You're taking care of me, you can do whatever you want with me!"
Aziraphale was aghast. "No Crowley I can't! Taking care of you should mean just that, taking care of you. Loving you, always."
"I'm naughty, I like making trouble, and I'm frustrating, aaaannndd I burnt your book. "
Aziraphale pulled the demon up to his lap and held him gently. "Crowley darling listen to me. First of all that, and I can hardly believe I'm saying this, is a book the world is better off without. Secondly, I know that you're a troublesome little devil. I won't punish you for being mischevious. I won't punish you unless your really, really naughty. Then I would never consciously do it by causing you pain. If I ever hurt you Crowley I expect you to tell me dear. Can you do that? "
Crowley gave a small nod. Though Aziraphale was rather unsure if Crowley really did understand. Actions seemed to convince his dear demon more that words ever did.
A little miracle reheated breakfast, and Aziraphale fed both Crowley and himself. He was going to give Crowley a bottle, but thought it might be best to check Crowley's diaper first. Crowley had never to Aziraphale's knowledge gone to sleep and not woken up with a wet bed or diaper.
Aziraphale was going to miracle Crowley a new diaper, when a rather timid request was made from a red faced demon. "The other way"
"The other way? You mean in the change mat?"
Aziraphale beamed and picked the demon up. "I'm so proud of you darling." Aziraphale rubbed the demon's thin tummy, while he placed a pacifier in his mouth.
Crowley was now a similar shade of red as his hair. "I just don't like all your holier than thou angel magic being used on me." Crowley sniffed.
Aziraphale just kept beaming down at the demon as he changed his rather sodden diaper. (Really Aziraphale was going to have to start checking Crowley's diaper much more often. The demon could rarely be relied on the tell Aziraphale when he was wet.) The angel was extra gentle with Crowley, carefully rubbing in lotion and pouring powder. The demon was treated. To what was rather a barrage of belly kisses from the angel, that made Crowley giggle (Crowley would sooner take a holy water bath than admit that such a sound ever came from his mouth) and writhe.
Crowley of course didn't actually need diapers. (Unless of course he didn't want to have wet pants ever couple of hours and a wet bed ever night) But, he had to admit it wasn't quite so bad wearing them if it meant getting so much of his angels undivided attention.
After the diaper change Crowley tugged on Aziraphale's sleeve. "Bottle?"
"Of course dear boy"
"Oh really Crowley"
"Oh alright dear"
Apparently Crowley's new favorite pastime was staring at Aziraphale. It was as though Crowley expected the angel to leave or bust out in tears, or maybe discorperate at any given second.
Crowley had also taken to getting things for the angel, books, sandwiches to nibble on, cups of tea, blankets, his reading glasses. (which Aziraphale really didn't need, he just thought they made him look clever and distinguished) There was even one rather disastrous incident where Crowley attempted to make Aziraphale a cup of cocoa then human way. (Oh dear God the mess!)
Crowley was also insisting that he didn't need things. He didn't need a diaper change (he did, rather badly in fact) He could miracle up his own sippy cup of juice. Aziraphale should just stay right there and rest, thank you very much.
Aziraphale was tired of resting. As much as it was nice to know how much Crowley loved and cared for him, Aziraphale vastly preferred being the one doing the taking care of. So Aziraphale was determined that he was going to get Crowley to let himself slide back into his little headspace and let Aziraphale take care of him again.
Aziraphale snuck away while Crowley was napping. It was rather difficult to disentangle himself from the demon, but Aziraphale managed it. He got a phone book and looked up a number, then made a telephone call.
The package came the next day when Aziraphale was dressing Crowley, he set the demon down on the bed and told him to stay put while he went to get the door.
Crowley as Aziraphale rather expected, did not in fact stay put. The angel caught sight of him sneaking about behind bookshelves. The dear thing hadn't even bothered to finish getting dressed. He was currently lurking around the bookshop in just a diaper and shirt that said "lil devil."
"You might as well come out darling, the package is for you."
"For me? " Crowley asked, but muffled around his pacifier it came out as more like "fuh muh? "
Aziraphale knew what he meant anyway. "Yes dear boy" the angel gestured to the large, recently opened box. "Why don't you come and see? "
Crowley scurried over and peered in the box. He looked up at Aziraphale, them back to the large assortment of toys in the box, then back to Aziraphale. His expression was so hesitant an cautious, it nearly broke the angel's heart.
Aziraphale smiled down gently and carefully nudged the little demon back towards the box. "Go on dear"
Crowley's eyes widened, and then he gave a very fangy smile and quite literally dived in the box.
Things had been going almost well. Both Crowley and Aziraphale seemed to have relaxed a little. Aziraphale was being very certaun to give Crowley all the gentle live and attention he needed, then a bit besides, because whatever Crowley thought he did deserve it.
Crowley had, for the most part stopped looking at Aziraphale like he was going to suddenly disappear. They had had a rather lovely and uneventful couple of days. There days were filled with cuddles and reading aloud, eating, diaper changes, playing, and more lazy cuddling.
Crowley remembered very little of heaven, but he was certain it wasn't as nice as this. He had his angel's undivided attention. His angel who didn't seem to mind (for reasons Crowley couldn't fathom) changing him, cuddling him, feeding him, reading to him. Aziraphale didn't even seem to mind when Crowley turned into a snake and played in the packing peanuts that we're in the box of toys Aziraphale gave him. (There was a mess, lots of mess, packing peanuts everywhere)
Now it was evening, Crowley was tucked up against Aziraphale on the sofa. His growing collect of stuffies and dolls spread out on the sofa behind him. Aziraphale was reading aloud the next book in the Lenore series which he had gotten Crowley. (Along with a doll of Annabelle. Who was Lenore's unlikevly best friend, a ghost girl that drowned on the moors.)
Crowley was clutching both dolls tightly as Aziraphale was getting to the climax of the story. The jewel thief was chasing Lenore in the dark, and he had just cornered her in the ruins of the old castle when... there was a knock on the door. (Not on a knock on the door in the book, mind you. A knock on the door of the bookshop)
Aziraphale told Crowley to stay put, and went to answer the door. Grumbling all the while about what sort of rude personage would come attempting to buy one of his precious books at this most definitely unsociable hour.
When he got to the door, Aziraphale found that it was not indeed a customer but Nathaniel, who was holding a large pile of luggage in one arm and Annie in the other.
"I'm sorry Aziraphale, but there's been a family emergency, and well... Can I leave Annie with you for a while? "
In most circumstances, Aziraphale would say something like 'Certainly my dear boy, I'd be delighted to care for Annie for however long you need. " However now Aziraphale had a little of his own to think about. Crowley was just barley comfortable with Aziraphale seeing him little. He didn't imagine that Crowley would much appreciate him bringing someone else into the equation.
"Normally I would absolutely love to, but, you see dear boy, I've recently taken on a little of my own and... "
"Is it the readhead?" Nathaniel smiled in a rather wide and alarming fashion.
"Knew it." Nathaniel said still smiling rather disconcertingly. Aziraphale was reminded rather unhappily of a shark. "Anyway," Nathaniel pushed, rather aggressively, Annie and a couple of obnoxiously pink bags into Aziraphale's arms, "I've got to be off. " he waved over his shoulder when he was halfway down the street. "Call you"
Aziraphale was left in his door way holding a little and her bags and thinking how Crowley really wasn't going to take this well.
Aziraphale left Annie in the front room of the bookshop for a minute, so that he could go to talk to Crowley.
Crowley was as expected, less than pleased. (In fact he was very displeased) If Aziraphale hadn't begged him (with big blue eyes and a little pout) he would have changed clothes, downed a handful of suppressants, and trimped back to his apartment till this new menace was gone. (Why did that it seem so hard to get his angel's undivided attention for any length of time? Why did things have to keep happening? Crowley didn't like things happening. He was seriously contemplating seeing if he could stop time again)
Aziraphale though that it might be nice for Crowley and Annie to be friends. Crowley thought otherwise. He thought it might be nice if Annie left and never came back. But he promised Aziraphale he wouldn't be terrible to her.
Annie ran into the room, and gave an odd sort of half shriek laugh when she saw him. Crowley's bladder (the traitor) released into his diaper and he cowered (he would call it strategically retreating) down into his blankets. Giving the squealing little a glare she couldn't see behind his dark glasses.
Annie then plopped herself on the sofa by Crowley, "Hi baby." She said, rather unnecessarily loudly, given that she was less than a foot away from Crowley.
Crowley glared again, "I'm not a baby." But Annie's attention had already wandered to Aziraphale.
Aziraphale looked a little apprehensive, but smiled down at the both of them and told them he was going to make night time bottles for the both of them, and wouldn't they play nice together?
As soon as Aziraphale left Annie grabbed a hold of Crowley's thin arm and yanked him up out of his cocoon of blankets.
"Get your toys, and I'll get mine. I wanna play."
Crowley rather reluctantly (very, very reluctantly) gathered up his toys and brought them over to where Annie had spread her own out on the floor.
She gave a pointed look to the buldge that his diaper made in the crotch of his feetie pajamas. "Not a baby huh?"
Crowley glared, "what do you wear then?"
Crowley thought he rally had her here. Annie proudly pulled up her skirt to reveal pink princess patterned pull ups.
"They're still diapers." Crowley informed her smugly.
Annie did not like this. "They are not!" (If she had been standing, it is likely that this exclamation would have been punctuated by a stomped foot.) "They are big girl panties, I can take off if I need to go potty. You're wearing baby diapers. You can't take them off cause you don't need to, cause you don't know when you have to go potty do you? " This last bit was said with a rather self satisfied smile, and Crowley really didn't care for how true it was.
"If you go to the bathroom so well why do you still need pull up diapers then? Why don't you just wear regular panties then? It's because you sssstilll have accidentsssss, isssn't it?" Crowley smugly hissed.
Annie's reasonable and articulate response was throw Ballerina Barbie at his head and pout. "Bet you mess your diapers."
"Nope" Crowley said, which was the truth. He could tell when that particular bodily function was imminent, and just miricale it away. Unlike his traitorous bladder, which decided to empty itself without his concent or any prior warning whatsoever.
Crowley and Annie proceeded to have an argument about whether or not Crowley should play with dolls on account of his being a boy. (Or rather a celestial entity in a currently male shaped corporation) The argument lasted until Aziraphale came back, then Annie, suddenly stopped speaking and was all smiles and giggles for Aziraphale. She got her bottle first, whicjlh definitely didn't bother Crowley at all. Not one bit. No sir.
Crowley in bed happily snuggled in his angel's plush arms. Annie was banished to the spare room. ( which hadn't existed until recently) Things were looking up for Crowley. He had all his toys around him, he was lazily playing with his plush activity cube, chasing star shaped beads around on their strings and tugging at little plush planets that squeaked satisfyingly like dying mice when he squeezed them. Aziraphale was humming something and Crowley felt himself drifting off.
Crowley was awoken by something landing in the middle of the bed. Then careening towards his angel. Crowley was extremely alarmed until he realized it was just Annie, who was now clinging to Aziraphale and squalling about missing her daddy.
Aziraphale being the soft, (headed) kind hearted, (mostly, when people weren't trying to buy his books) angel that he was, agreeded to let the distraught little sleep with them. He did not mean for her to take up residence in the middle of the bed, seperating Crowley and himself, but that's what she did.
Crowley put his dark glasses back on, so Annie wouldn't see his snakey eyes by accident, and curled up on his side of the bed away from his angel and the leech currently clinging to him. Annie didn't seem to even be happy with this, as every so often she would use her heel to five Crowley a good, solid kick.
At around the third kick Crowley gathered up his toys and blankets and went to sleep on the plush sofa in the bookshop. Aziraphale, being asleep at the time didn't notice. Annie however, who was awake did notice, and smiled before snuggling into Aziraphale.
Crowley couldn't sleep. He had only been here with Aziraphale for a little while, a blink in time compared to their semi immortal existences, but he found that he now couldn't sleep without the angel's warmpth beside him. The cold, wet, and slightly itchy diaper didn't help much either. Crowley wouldn't ever wake Aziraphale up just to change him, but even if he did he would have to do it in front of Annie. That was a humiliation Crowley couldn't take.
He finally drifted off into an uneasy slumber as the first rays of dawn shown over the horizon.
Crowley woke up to Aziraphale standing over him holding a smiling Annie on one hip. "What are you doing down here, dear boy? I was terribly worried when I couldn't fins you this morning."
Crowley shrugged, "too crowded in bed" he mumbled, "too hot."
"Oh dear I see, next time wake me up when you're uncomfortable and we can sort it out together hmm? " He ruffled Crowley's hair, which had grown out halfway to his shoulders and begain to curl.
Aziraphale then set Annie down and told her and Crowley to play nicely while he made breakfast.
"Did you wet your diaper last night baby?"
"No" Crowley ground out, which was a lie. He had wet again during his sleep and now needed a diaper change quite desperately. "Did you?"
Annie pulled up her nightshirt to reveal her unsoiled pullups "nope" she said popping the p. "Why do you wear those weird glasses all the time?"
Crowley sniffed, "I have an eye condition, light hurts them" This was not entirely a lie, Crowley snake like eyeballs we're very sensitive to light, which was part of the reason he wore the dark glasses so frequently.
Annie reached for his glasses, and Crowley smacked her hand away. She recoiled, then looked from her had to Crowley and smiled. The wail she gave was deafening.
Aziraphale came running. "Whatever happened? "
Annie clung to the angel. "He hit me!"
Aziraphale looked to Crowley. "She tried to take of my glasses! "
"Look Annie dear, Crowley doesn't like it when you touch his glasses. And Crowley darling? Please don't hit Annie. Now are we alright?"
Annie gave a noded, and so did Crowley. (Reluctantly very, reluctantly)
"Well now," Aziraphale said, "Annie will you be alright here for a moment whole I go get Crowley changed?"
Annie smiled, "I've course, I'm a big girl!"
Aziraphale patted her on the head "Yes you are darling"
As Crowley was being carried upstairs, he could see over Aziraphale's shoulder Annie mouthing the word "baby" over and over.,
Up until right this moment, Crowley had thought that Annie was just the garden variety brat. Now he suspected it was much worse.
All day Annie had been doing her level best to get Crowley into trouble, while at the same time showing what a big and responsible girl she was. She seemed to enjoy reminding Crowley of his place as a "dumb baby" at every turn. Crowley was fuming. (Not literally, though he had been known to) Her most irritating habit to date had been paying very close attention for the any subtle hissing noises or diaper sagging, any hint that Crowley had had an accident. Then she would gleefully run and tell Aziraphale. Crowley hated it.
Crowley's chance for revenge came when Aziraphale's ancient phone rang. (Aziraphale never paid phone bills, the phone worked simply because he expected it to) It was not a customer as Aziraphale had feared. It was someone who was offering to sell him a rare book. (Because it worked out so well last time) Aziraphale being Aziraphale, was thinking less about the previous catastrophe and more about the possibility of acquiring a new very old book he hadn't yet read.
But there was a teeny impediment to Aziraphale's book buying dreams. Or more specifically two teeny impediments. Annie however had a suggestion. "I'll watch the baby!"
Aziraphale looked apprehensive. "Oh, I don't know dear."
"I'm a big girl, I can take care of baby Crowley. Daddy lets me watch Anton by myself sometimes, and he's a baby like Crowley. He wears diapers and everything."
Aziraphale still looked apprehensive.
An idea was forming in Crowley's head, it was squirming around his mind taking form. Crowley smiled, showing teeth that were too sharp to be human. "It's okay Aziraphale, you can go."
"Crowley dear, are you sure you'll be alright?"
"Alright dear, now I'll only be gone for an hour. The number of the man with the book is buy the telephone, so you can call if anything happeneds. Don't answer the door. And Crowley dear, I'll change you before I go. You two just stay downstairs and play here alright?"
Aziraphale hugged them both and kissed Crowley on the cheek. He looked over them one more time worriedly. Crowley nodded his assurance. And Aziraphale left, looking back no less then five times before he was out the door.
Annie stood up and loomed over Crowley her hands on her hips "I'm in charge now dumb baby."
Crowley just smiled, no matter what happened during this hour, Crowley intended to run into Aziraphale's arms and cry about how how mean Annie had been to him.
It was less dreadfull that Crowley had imagined. Mostly Annie just bossed him around, kept asking if the baby had wet his diaper and made him play very boring Barbie games.
About fifteen minutes in Annie stood up and announced that she had to go to the bathroom. (like a big girl) She then ordered Crowley to stay put and not play with any of her toys while she was going to the bathroom. (like a big girl)
Crowley just sucked on his paci and nodded having paid no intention whatsoever to what she was saying.
After a while it occurred to Crowley that Annie had been gone an awful long time. So Crowley got up and crept towards the bathroom, only to find it empty. He poked around some more, only to hear rustling from the backroom of the backroom (this is where Aziraphale kept the most rare of his books, and all of his misprinted bibles. It was usually kept locked, and Aziraphale kept the key in his bedroom. Crowley narrowed his eyes. What was Annie doing in there?
Being the overly dramatic demon that Crowley was, he opened the door with a bag, stood in the doorway with his arms crossed and asked "What are you doing?"
Annie glared at him, "nothing!"
Yellow eyes narrowed "You clearly weren't doing nothing in this locked room you aren't supposed to be in." Annie had been staring intently at the shelves of books, trailing her finger over the spines, almost like she was looking for something. Crowley was really quite suspicious at this point. "You," Crowley continued, "were looking for ssssomething weren't you?"
Annie leveled him with another glare. "So what if I was? What are you going to do about it anyway?"
"I don't think Aziraphale would be happy to know he'sss harboring a little sssssneak thief, who'ssss after one of his precious booksss." Crowley hissed happily. For once he had the upper hand against this new menace.
"You really think Aziraphale would believe you? He doesn't even want you here."
"He does so! " Crowley almost believe it when he said it.
"No he doesn't. Him and my daddy talked an awful lot ya know. He told NY daddy all about what kind of little he wanted, and it definitely wasn't you."
"Aziraphale said he liked baby littles!"
"Yea, but not like you. You think you're a good little? You too tall and skinny, and you have those weird glasses, I bet your eyes look weird too. You're never any fun, most of the time you act like you don't want to be a little at all. Who'd want a nasty little sulking baby like you around? Aziraphale's probably only taking care of you cause he feels sorry for you."
"That's not true!" Though Crowley no linger believed that. He couldn't let Annie win, even if the dreadful little brat was right. And he certainly wouldn't let her steal from his angel. "And it doesn't change the fact that you're a rotten little thief. Bet your daddy won't like that!"
Annie gave him a look that managed to convey that she believed him to be the dumbest thing currently in existence. "You do you think told me to take the book you dumb little baby!"
Crowley hadn't thought of this. But rotten little Annie and her equaly rotten daddy weren't going to get a thing of Aziraphale's if Crowley had anything to say about the matter. "Bad things happen to people who try to steal Aziraphale's books."
"Yea?" Scoffed Annie. "Like what?"
"Like this" Crowley then gave the little brat a delightful peek at his most terrifying, fangy snake face. Her cries as she ran past him screaming were music to Crowley's snake little ears. They however, didn't quite sooth the gnawing doubts that Annie's words had set loose somewhere in the region of Crowley's guts.
It had been a very peculiar book buying experience for Aziraphale, mostly because he hadn't actually bought a book. Generally even when the seller didn't have the book they said they did, or it was damaged, or not a first edition Aziraphale bought it anyway. Generally paying too much. (Crowley referred to this as being a sucker)
This time there was no book, just two men and two women in a rather sterile, obviously rented office who seemed intent on wasting his time. They had just attempted to stall actually showing him the book, talking about such riviting topics as the weather. Until Aziraphale insisted he see the book, and they we're forced to admit that they in fact did not actually possess it. (Someone said something about leaving it their other trousers. A story which Aziraphale highly doubted)
So mire than a bit irritated to be taken out on a fool's errand, Aziraphale rushed back. He was worried about how Crowley was doing with Annie. Though he wouldn't tell her, Aziraphale had significant doubts about Annie's caretaking abilities. He wouldn't have gone at all if Crowley hadn't said to. Though he rather feared that his Demon was putting on a brave face for his benefit.
When he returned to the bookshop it was rather worse than he had suspected. Annie was locked in the bathroom bawling, and Crowley was curled up on the sofa playing with his dolls.
It took Aziraphale a good half an hour to convince Annie to unlock the door and let him in. Aziraphale could make out very little of what she said in between fits of bawling, only the word Crowley, snake, and monster. Aziraphale had a rater sneaking suspicion he knew what had happened.
Aziraphale sent Crowley upstairs to wait for him in their bedroom. He coaxed Annie out of the bathroom, and she made a mad dash for the telephone. Insisting on calling her daddy.
Nathaniel arrived in under an hour. He seemed rather confused and more than a little bit suspicious. He collected his little and her horrendously pink luggage, and left. Aziraphale let out a sigh of relief. At least he probably wouldn't be asked to babysit on such short notice (no notice, none whatsoever) again. However he rather feared that he had lost a friendship out out of this whole ordeal.
He tromped upstairs to deal with his little demon.
"Really Crowley? I know Annie was a bit... difficult at times, bur did you really need to traumatize the poor thing?"
Crowley crossed his arms and gave a (rather cute) pout. "She was trying to seal one of your books, one of the really old ones!"
"Really Crowley I hardly think a such a young little would have any interest in one of my rare books."
"He father, Norman, or Nate or whatever told her to."
"Nathaniel. And in all the time I've known him Nathaniel has never so much as shown interest in trying to buy a book. Why should he steal one?"
"I don't know! I'm not.... I'm not... Wonder Woman!"
"Reallt, Crowley what you did was very naughty. You're to have some corner time for this!"
Crowley was summarily plopped in the corner, and left there. Crowley treacherous little mind begain to wander, and not to any place pleasant. Aziraphale hadn't belived him. Just like Annie had said. Did that mean all the other things she had said we're true, about Aziraphale wanting a different kind of little? A little who was happy? Small? Just plain not Crowley?
He could certainly see Aziraphale doing that. Taking care of Crowley with all the love and adoration he could muster because his angel was a self sacrificing idiot like that. There was no reason (at least in the mind of Anthony J. Crowley) that Aziraphale should be stuck taking care of him when it wasn't what he really wanted.
So Crowley decided to for once in his life (it was actually many many more times than once, but he would never admit it) do the good thing.
Crowley left. He was decent about it this time. He left a note so Aziraphale wouldn't worry. It read as follows, in Crowley's horrible chicken scratch hand writing. (Crowley's snake eyes we're as ill suited for writing as they were reading)
Sorry, got to go. Urgent demon business. Don't worry, I'm very big noe and can take care of myself.
Crowley scratched the love out vigorously, and then gathered up his toys and miracled them back to his apartment. L He couldn't stand the thought of Aziraphale's next little playing with the toys that Aziraphale had bought for him. Then Crowley left.
Crowley imagined Aziraphale would be rather relived to find him gone. He imagined the angel giving a sigh of relief and settling down with a book for a quiet night without a needy little demon clinging to him making him read children's novels when he rather read Wilde (for approximately the four thousandth time) or Socrates or something equally boring.
Crowley entered his apartment. Had it always been so cold? So barren? He was doing the right thing, he reminded himself, and curled up in the middle of his bed still fully dressed.
Aziraphale was rather looking forward to a cozy night with just him and Crowley. Annie had been, well, rather difficult, and Aziraphale suspected it was far worse for Crowley. (Annie almost made Aziraphale miss baby Warlock, almost)
Certainly his demon would need plenty of cuddles and love that Aziraphale would be happy to provide. Aziraphale had even been thinking of getting Crowley a little surprise. He had just the thing in mind he was sure the demon would love.
He warmed up a nice bottle of milk for Crowley, with honey and a splash of vodka, just like he liked. He collected the next book in the Lenore series and headed out to spring his naughty little demon from the corner, tell him he was forgiven, and have a delightfully quiet evening of cuddles together.
This was not what happened. Instead of his little demon in the corner, Aziraphale found a sloppily written note. Urgent demon business his left wing!
Running off, Aziraphale thought, was rather a bit of an overreaction to a few minutes in the corner, in Aziraphale's opinion. But then again maybe Crowley just needed some space, sometime to be big. Sometime away from Aziraphale.
Well Aziraphale could do that. After all he didn't need to have Crowley with him for every second of every day. He didn't need to have the demon snuggled up next to him while he was reading, a comforting weight in him. He didn't need to hear the darling little noises of satisfaction that Crowley made when he drank a bottle. Or see the sweet little shy faces that Crowley made during a diaper change and tried to hide with his hands until Aziraphale kissed his belly and Crowley would giggle. (Crowley would of course vehemently deny that he had ever giggled in his life) He didn't.
It was three o'clock in the morning. Aziraphale didn't see any point in sleeping without Crowley, so he had stayed up reading. Though he wasn't having much success, he had current read the same paragraph six times mow and still had no bloody idea what it said.
He was interrupted from giving it a go for the seventh time by a feeling that something was suddenly and terribly wrong. Aziraphale went to investigate.
Meanwhile in an setirle cement apartment a demon dreamt of falling. He careened downwards. His wings were on fire, the heart of his corporation beat frantically in its chest. He was terrified. He screamed and shook, he was still falling, falling forever like Alice down the rabbit hole. The he wasn't anymore, the crack of his hitting the ground could be both heard and felt for miles.
Crowley looked down to find he had wet himself. He wasn't in Hell now like he thought, he was in the bookshop. He looked around for Aziraphale, frantically running through the maze of bookshelves and clutter. There was Aziraphale on the sofa, with Annie in his lap feeding her a bottle. Aziraphale looked up and down at Crowley with a look of utter disgust. "Real Crowley, can't you control yourself?"
Crowley looked down at himself, he was naked, every rib and knobby joint on display. With the exception of a diaper, which was wet, very wet, and as he watched it grew warm again and he could see it overflow and drip down his legs making a puddle on the floor.
When Crowley looked up again, to apologize, Aziraphale was gone. Annie sat in his place smiling. Flames licked up around her, the bookshop was on fire. The bookshop was on fire! He frantically tried to find his angel. But his angel was nowhere to be seen. Annie's laughter echoed throughout the bookshop as Crowley sank to the floor and sobbed.
Crowley woke up sobbing.
"Now there, there dear."
It was Aziraphale's voice. Crowley launched himself up from the bed and settled on Aziraphale's lap, still trembling and crying in his tearless way.
Pudgy hands came up to stoke red hair. Crowley melted into his angel a little. He could feel his diaper grow warm, but just like in his dream it was already too wet to hold. Crowley could feel the warmpth run down his legs and bottom to pool in Aziraphale's lap. For once Crowley didn't care about his humiliating lack of bladder control. Keeping hold of his angel and making sure he was safe, and here, and not discorperated was more important.
Then Crowley was sent careening back onto the bed. Aziraphale stood up and looked down at his now wet lap in absolutely disgust. "You vile little creature!" He told Crowley, but it wasn't with Aziraphale's voice. It was all wrong. This was all wrong.
Crowley tried to freeze the not-Aziraphale in place, but the not-Aziraphale just tilted his head and gave Crowley a funny look. So Crowley did to only other thing he could think to do, he opened his mouth.
A pillar of hellfire engulfed the not-Aziraphale. He screamed. It was a horrible sound, but after a few minutes it went static-y like a bad radio station. Then it gradually faded away to nothingness, along with the not-Aziraphale. The only thing left if him now was a bit of scorching on Crowley's floor.
Crowley jumped out of bed, he had to find the real Aziraphale and make certain that he was alright.
The bookshop wasn't on fire this time. Yet Crowley new, deep down in the marrow of his snakey little bones that something was wrong. He crept around silently, until he heard voices, then he changed into a snake and slithered closer. (Changing into a snake also gave Crowley the added benefit of getting out of his wet diaper and pants, which were now both very cold and very itchy)
Then someone scooped him up from behind. "Crowley?! Darling boy whatever are you doing here? Are you hurt? Did they frighten you?"
Now this was his Aziraphale. The genuine article. No substitutions accepted.
"I'm fine angel, why haven't you gotten rid of them yet?"
"They're looking for something specific, I thought I would find out which book it was before I sent them on their way."
Aziraphale readjust Crowley's lengthy body in his arms. They both fell silent and listened. There was a lot of shuffling and cursing. They didn't seem to understand Aziraphale's system of organization. (No one did, with the exception of Aziraphale himself, and it was done that way very, very purposefully) Then someone mentioned a title.
Aziraphale tisked. "Well they won't find that in there." Then he carried Crowley over to the sofa and tucked him in to a pile of blankets. "Now listen to me Crowley. You stay here. You hear me? I'll only be a second to take care of this." Aziraphale emphasize his point with a stern tap on Crowley's snoot.
Aziraphale then went to take care of things. There was some swearing, crashing, and a loud whooshing sound. Crowley was a bit sorry he couldn't see it. Aziraphale almost never got really cross, but when he did it was a sight to behold.
Crowley snuggled down in the blankets and he heard his angels footfalls retreating from the backroom.
Aziraphale came back with a bottle of milk. (With honey and vodka) He picked up Crowley and set him on his lap and held the bottle out. Aziraphale had thought that Crowley would turn back into his more humanish form, but instead the snake latched on to the bottle. Aziraphale pulled it away.
"Crowley dear, can you even nurse as a snake?"
Crowley didn't know. If he had possessed shoulders he would have shrugged them.
"Are you sure you don't want to turn back darling boy?"
Yes Crowley was sure. He was going to stay a snake. Specifically a snake wrapped around Aziraphale, until he was certain the angel was safe from whatever the hell was currently going on. Instead of actually articulating this, Crowley just made another grab for the bottle and latched on. It took him several tries to get it just right, but he eventually got milk to flow from the nipple and settled down happily in his angel's lap.
Aziraphale made a "hmm" noise above him as he stroked his scales. "Crowley dear, in the morning I think we need to have a little talk about what's been going on."
Crowley lightly dozed that night curled protectively around Aziraphale. At some pont Aziraphale had popped a pacifier in his snakey little mouth. It was a bit difficult to suck on as a snake, but the familiar weight was comforting all the same.
Crowley half expected another imposter to show up, maybe disguised as him, and Crowley was ready to deep fry them in hell fire to protect his angel.
In the morning Aziraphale sat him down on the sofa again, and tried to get him to change back into a form with limbs.
Crowley refused, he felt more comfortable as a snake at the moment. It gave him some (imagined) distance from the angel's coddling care.
Aziraphale relented, and begain to talk. "Crowley dear, last night did you leave on your own or did they take you?"
"I left" Crowley said not lookin Aziraphale in the eyes, then proceeded to tell Aziraphale about the imposter in his apartment. (He left out the bit where he had an accident in said imposter's lap while clinging to him after a nightmare)
"Oh dear, oh dear" Aziraphale clutched the snake closer to him. "Was it one of yours? One of Hell's?"
Crowley shook his head. "No, not one of Hell's."
"Everyone I chased out of here last night trying to get that wretched book you burned was most definitely human. I froze them, gave them a rather stern talking to, and sent them on their way with the idea that they had never heard of that particular book before."
What, thought Crowley, an Aziraphale sort of solution that was.
Aziraphale continued looking pensive "Nathaniel was among them you know, and those other people who called me about that book the other day. I had thought... Well I had thought Nathaniel was my friend. Apparently he had ulterior motives all the while. Dreadful creature, and dragging little Annie into this whole mess. Oh I am sorry I didn't believe you about her Crowley."
Crowley just gave his sad angel a nuzzle. "It'ssss alright."
"Oh no it isn't! I keep failing you Crowley!" Tears were threatening to fall from blue eyes now.
"It'ssss alright angel, I know you don't really want to take care of me anyway."
Aziraphale blinked stupidly. "I don't what!? Where on earth did you get an idea like that from?"
Crowley hunkered down a little farther into his own coils.
"Annie told me you talked to her daddy and told her what kind of little you wanted. And it wassssn't me. It wassssn't anything like me"
Aziraphale took Crowley's face in his hand and gently brought it up to look at his own. Somewhere in Aziraphale's mind something had finally stopped short circuiting and made a connection.
"Crowley listen to me very carefully darling. Annie was lying. It's you, it's always been you. I know I was frighted before, of your side, of mine, but you have to have known... I've always wanted to be with you. Even before I knew I loved you Crowley.
Even when I thought that our designations weren't compatible, I wanted you around. I loved you. When I found out that you we're a little I was so excited Crowley, so very excited. We might finally, truly be together.
Caring for you dear boy, is an absolute joy. I have felt happy and peace in a way I have never known before. If it was up to me you would never leave. I live you darling, I love caring for you. I love you as a little, as a snake, as a demon, as everything that you are. "
Aziraphale kissed Crowley's snoot gently. "I love you"
Crowley was suddenly not a snake anymore. He clung to Aziraphale and shook and trembled, letting out the occasional sob. He didn't know how or why, and he certainly didn't deserve it, but Aziraphale loved him. Aziraphale loved him.
Aziraphale rubbed Crowley's back as the demon's sobs died down. He was flint to miracle up a bottle of milky tea to soothe the little, when a warm dampness in his lap came to his attention.
This seemed to distress Crowley terribly. Aziraphale didn't understand why a little diaper leak had his demon so distraught, and Crowley was in no real condition to inform Aziraphale.
Aziraphale looked around for any of Crowley's toys, only to realize that the demon must have taken them when he left. A little miracle and that was fixed, the angel bear was presses into Crowley's hands and a pacifier was pressed into his mouth as Aziraphale carried him upstairs.
He lay Crowley out on the bed on the changing mat, removing his way pants and diaper only to discover his baby had acquired another nasty diaper rash. Aziraphale kept one hand on Crowley's thin belly and rubbed, while the other trailed over Crowley's diaper area, healing the redened and painful looking skin.
Crowley was obviously dreadful at caring for himself, and Aziraphale vowed to never let the demon be more than five feet away from him at any time. Ever. He didn't rediaper Crowley, but finished undressing him. Then he wrapped his slender demon up in a plush blanket and carried him in to the bathroom, giving him reassuring little bounces all the while.
Crowley's face scrunched up in the most adorable look of confusion as Aziraphale went about filling the tub. He had a lovely large claw foot bathtub as though he did not necessarily need to bath (the same way he did not need to eat or sleep) he did enjoy the occasional bubble bath. He thought that Crowley might enjoy one now.
He deposited his demon in the warm water. He miracled up a little ship to sail around th bathtub and a large toy octopus. It didn't try make Crowley long to make a game of trying to catch the little ship and use to octopus to sink it. Aziraphale was happy to see Crowley being anything other than a limp sobbing mass of little demon.
He managed to distract Crowley from his game long enough to wash each of his long limbs. He then rubbed shampoo and conditioner into Crowley's hair, which made the demon give happy little moans behind his pacifier as Aziraphale carefully massaged his scalp and rinsed his hair.
Crowley was then picked up and wrapped in soft warm towel. Aziraphale carried him back to the bed and the changing mat still laid out there. He gave his demon a thorough coating of lotion and powder before fastening a fresh diaper on his little demon.
Then the angel set about massaging ever inch of Crowley with baby lotion. As with the hair washing, Crowley again begain to let out little moans of pleasure from behind his pacifier. All of the demon's long limbs went limp, and maybe for the first time in his existence Aziraphale saw Crowley truly relaxed.
Halfway through the massage, Aziraphale noticed Crowley's diaper grow dark. But Crowley didn't seem yo notice at all, his head was thrown back and his face had an expression of bliss on it the angel had never seen before. Aziraphale was exceptionally proud of the fact that it was him that had made Crowley so relaxed, so at peace.
Crowley didn't react at all when Aziraphale changed his diaper. It could have probably held another wetting, but any risk of developing a rash would not be tolerated under Aziraphale's loving care. He continued the massage.
When every last exceptionally thin finger and toe had been thoroughly lotioned, Aziraphale dressed Crowley in a pair of black feetie pajamas covered in silver constellations. (Complete with silver snaps running down the crotch and inside of the legs for easy diaper changes)
Crowley was almost half asleep by the time Aziraphale sat down with him in the rocking chair and fed him a bottle of warm milky tea. The bottle soon dropped from Crowley's mouth and was lovingly replaced with a pacifier.
Aziraphale just held his baby close for a long time. He listened to his soft breathing and the occasional crinkle of his nappy as he shifted in his sleep. Aziraphale inhaled the babyish smell of the demon and took in the way he had one pale hand clasping tightly the worn fabric of Aziraphale's waistcoat as if he was afraid the angel would disappear if he wasn't held on to.
Aziraphale would do almost anything to keep Crowley here like this, safe and warm in his arms forever. He pressed a kiss to Crowley's soft hair, and summoned the telephone. He had a call to make.
Aziraphale hefted a wriggling Crowley a little higher on his hip. Crowley had wanted to get down so they could split up to search for origin of the mysterious (and rather annoying) sound, but Aziraphale had vehemently opposed that idea. What if it was something dangerous? Crowley just rolled his eyes and stopped attempting to escape his angel's hold.
The tapping had been going on for a good five minutes or so now. It sounded like tapping on glass. But they had checked all the windows both in the apartment and the bookshop and found nothing. They wandered around playing a sort of odd game of warmer/colder, only instead of getting warmer or colder the sound got louder or fainter. Untill they eventually pinpointed in to the bathroom.
Aziraphale gripped Crowley tighter and pushed open the door.
There was someone in the mirror. This wouldn't be unusual if that someone was Crowley or Aziraphale, but this person was neither.
They were exceptionally pale and had short curly black bob and rather unsettlingly pale blue eyes. They were rather obviously a little, judging by the purple pacifier they were currently sucking on. They spit out said pacifier, and looked over Aziraphale and Crowley, then said with the air of someone who had somewhere important to be, "Took you long enough."
They we're then shoved away with a "I wanna see!" by what appeared to be the exact same person.
The doppelganger looked at Aziraphale then was pushed away by the first one. This resulted in a small brawl about who should get to occupy the small mirror first.
Crowley snickered behind his own pacifier. He had an idea of what these two were, but apparently rumors of their horrific-ness had been greatly over exaggerated. Finally they were both pulled aside by a new person. This new addition to Aziraphale's bathroom mirror was a rather elegant looking woman with elaboratly braded hair, though here skin was very dark, she also somehow managed to look pale at the same time.
She shooed the two littles away, with much complaining on their end, then turned to Aziraphale and Crowley.
"I do apologize about that. The twins are rather mischevious at times."
Aziraphale gave Crowley a look. (Which Crowley did not appreciate in the least) "No bother at all.... Er... Are you the contact Anathema said would call? Because I was expected you do it tomorrow you see.... and by telephone."
The woman smiled. She had far to many teeth, and they were all far too white. "Yes, I'm Helena, pleased to make your acquaintance the Angel Aziraphale, and the Demon Crowley."
"And yours Helena." Aziraphale nodded politely, still a little confused by the whole ordeal.
"I'm afraid phones tend not to work here very reliably, Angel Aziraphale."
"They scream alot" piped up one of the twins who had stuck their head in the mirror frame behind Helena. She shooed them off.
Helena took in Aziraphale's still baffled expression "Maybe it would be better if we met in person. Someone will be by to escort you here tomorrow."
The mirror then abruptly went back to showing only Aziraphale and Crowley's reflections once more.
"Well that was peculiar."
Crowley nodded into Aziraphale's neck. "They're mirror wraiths. They're supposed to be peculiar."
"Mirror wraiths? Surely those are just human ghost stories?"
"They aren't ghosts. They're a reflection."
Aziraphale wrinkled his brow. "A reflection, of what?"
Crowley wriggled closer to Aziraphale, he was tired of standing in the bathroom (or technically being held by Aziraphale, who was the one doing the standing in the bathroom) and he felt quite ready for a bottle and a nap.
Aziraphale gave a thoughtful hum. Then took Crowley back downstairs where he did in fact receive his bottle (with vanilla this time) and his nap.
It wasn't untill bedtime that the subject came up again. Crowley had had a diaper change and was placed in his feetie pajamas, fed a nightime bottle by his adoring angel, then tucked into bed with a paci, his blankets, and all of his toys and dolls. Crowley had his ear against Aziraphale's chest listening to the angel's steady heart beat.
"Did god make them?"
Crowley gave a sleepy "hmm?"
"The errr... Mirror Wraiths, did God make them?"
Crowley shifted more of his long body onto his plush angel. "Mmm... No, not as far as I can tell. They were just sort of a by-product of everything god did make. It's like.... It's like when you have crack in the wall you don't ever pay much mind to untill one day you look in and there's all sorts of mold and fungus growing there."
"Ah," Aziraphale said and Crowley yawned. Aziraphale stroked Crowley's hair and gently placed his paci back in his mouth. He stared down at the sleeping demon, watching the pacifier bob softly up and down with the demon's sucking. Whatever was going on. Whatever happened, Aziraphale knew only that he would do everything in his power not to loose this. Not to loose Crowley.
Aziraphale was worrying. This was not altogether unusual. Aziraphale was always worring about something, Crowley, Heaven, people trying to buy his books, giving away his flaming sword, Crowley, which restaurant had the best crepes, the apocalypse, Crowley, did he mention Crowley?
But today Aziraphale was worring more than usual. He had never been to the weird little no man's land that lurked behind mirrors before. Certainly he had known it had existed, the way he had known there was a space between his dresser and the wall. He had seldom thought of it however and always expected that it would be empty as it should be.
Aziraphale took special care in getting Crowley ready that morning. He reveled in caring for the demon. Tenderly bathing him, and combing out his red. hair. (Crowley enjoyed this very, very much, and evertime Aziraphale stopped he whined and nudged the angel's hand) He carefully packed the demon's diaper bag. Checking several times to make sure he hadn't forgotten anything. Would Crowley need a bottle? How many diapers would he need? (this was all of course irrelevant as Aziraphale could simply miracle up whatever he didn't have) He finally deemed the bag acceptable and proceeded to give Crowley another lotion massage, then diapered and dressed him.
Crowley had wanted to be, or at least pretend to be, big when they went. This sent Aziraphale into a small panic, and Crowley relented very quickly. Aziraphale did make sure to dress Crowley so his diaper didn't show. It made the demon feel better. Aziraphale was rather proud of the grey leggings, black sweater covered sparkling silver stars and planets, and black combat boots. As Crowley lit up when he saw the sweater and spent several minutes examining himself in the mirror, turning back and forth making the celestial bodies sparkle and shimmer in the bathroom light.
Crowley was not worried. He had met a few mirror wraiths before, and besides one or two that went around getting their jollys out of doing nothing more than scaring the piss (sometimes literally) out of whatever stupid human decided to call on them. (Such mirror wraiths include but are not limited to, Bloody Mary and the Midnight Man) They mostly seemed content to stay in their own little pockets of reality, doing, well, whatever mirror wraiths did in their spare time. They seemed in Crowley's opinion to be a rather okay lot, less murderous than humans, entirely un concerned with good and evil, and they certainly had less paperwork than heaven or hell. And if worst came to worst, Crowley could just obliterate them all with Hellfire.
Aziraphale did not approve of this plan. It seemss nothing Crowley said or could say would lessen the Angel's worries, so Crowley just let Aziraphale fuss over him and hold him close.
Aziraphale was rocking back and fourth feeding Crowley his fifth bottle this morning. (There had been a higher amount of wet diapers and subsiquent diaper changes as well) When the mirror wraiths came. They rang the bell this time.
There were two men, or at least they looked man shaped. One was tall and thin, taller even than Crowley. He was pale and had brown stringy hair and the most abhorrent fashion taste that Crowley had ever seen. He was wearing a shirt obviously from the ninteen seventies so horrificly patterned that it made Crowley's eyes ache a little to look at. It was paired with high waisted grey checked suit pants Crowley recognized as having been in fashion sometimes during the 1800s. This atrocious assemble was topped off with knee high black boots.
His companion was only slightly better at dressing himself. He was average height, bald, and dark skinned. He was attired in the sort of dull black suit you would expect to see the average mortician in. It was offset by a lurid pink, and very, very frilly dress shirt.
They were both a bit faded and blurry around the edges. Looking at them gave one the same feeling as looking at a very old photograph.
They introduces themselves as Jack and Gregor,( Jack being the taller one) and gestured to a waiting car, which was just as old as Crowley's Bentley.
Aziraphale fussed over getting Crowley into his coat. Then decided the addition of a hat and scarf was completely and utterly necessary. He retrieved the leather satchel that served as Crowley's diaper bag and carried Crowley out to the waiting car.
They parked at the entrance of what looked to be a abandoned mansion. Thery were lead inside and discovered that it was in fact very abandoned. Broken windows, peeling wallpaper, cobwebs everywhere. It was spooky. And even though Crowley had previously stated that he liked spooky, he clung to Aziraphale a little tighter.
They were lead down a long hallway untill they all stood in front of a large floor length mirror. Gregor then took a gentle but firm hold of Aziraphale and Jack did the same for Crowley and they stepped through.
They were standing in the same mansion, only now the hallway was facing the other way and at the end of it stood the twins from earlier.
They moved towards the group in unison. "Come play with us Crowley, come play with us forever and ever."
If you asked Crowley about the whole affair he would not say that he gave rather high pitched yelp, wet his diaper and cowered into Aziraphale's neck. That however is precisely what he did.
The twins begain to laugh. "Isn't that funny?" one of them said. "We saw it on the television" said the other. "But seriously, do you wanna play?" Asked the first one.
Aziraphale scolded them "you've frightened him." (Aziraphale did not add that he had been frightened as well)
"I wasn't frightened" Came Crowley's rather small voice, his face still half pressed against Aziraphale's shoulder.
Aziraphale ignored him. "He won't want to play with you if you frighten him."
"We're sorry!" "We won't frighten you again!" "Yea, you can frighten other people with us instead!"
The twins were shooed off by Jack, with a promise that maybe Crowley could play with them once everyone was done talking.
They we're lead to a sitting room where Helena was seated regally on a fainting sofa attired in layers of mismatched fabrics and dripping with necklaces and bracelets.
Aziraphale sat on the sofa across from her and situated Crowley across his lap. Gregor sat next to Helena and Jack sprawled over a chair.
Crowley half listened nestled into his soft angel as Helena explained how sometimes things found their way into this odd little bettwen places realm they resided in. One such thing was a book. And that book was taken by another mirror wraith (who was now a bit of ash on Crowley's floor) who had been convinced and/or significantly bribed by an organization of magic users (not true magic users like Anethema, but a sort of pale imitation who tried really, really hard to be what Anethema was) to take the book to earth and give it to them.
Helena didn't exactly know why the book had been given to Aziraphale. Though she speculated that they did not know of Aziraphale's angel nature, and expected the book to be let loose upon the world via his bookshop. Unfortunately they had chosen the only bookshop that went out of it's way not to sell book. Also the only one run by an angel and housing a demon.
After hearing of how Crowley and Aziraphale respectively disposed of each of their intruders Helena didn't think there would be further trouble. Though one could never be certain. Trouble of some description after all seemed to always find it's way to you eventually.
Helena and the other mirror wraiths that resided in this particular location expressed a wish to form a truce or a friend ship with the angelic and demonic duo, as they had with Anethema. She also called Crowley a precious little darling, which Crowley ignored with a alight huff. Aziraphale however puffed up with pride and agreed stroking Crowley cheek softly, which almost but not quite, made up for being called precious.
By this time the twins had snuck, or more accurately tromped loudly, into the room. One of them had curled up on Helena's lap and the other had spread themselves all over Jack in a tangle of limbs. Now the had perked up again, sensing an end to the serious bits of the conversation.
"Can Crowley come play with us? " "pleeeeease?" "We never get to play with other littles?" "Please? "
Aziraphale was hesitant to let Crowley out of his sight and Helena seemed to sense this. "Might it be alright if they stayed here in the parlor with us?"
Aziraphale relented and set Crowley down. The twins bolted over two him and each held out a hand. Crowley was hesitant. All of his previous experiences with other littles had been less than pleasant. In fact they had been most decidedly unpleasant. At the very least Crowley didn't think these littles would tease him for his diaper wearing, as they both had rather obvious diaper buldges in their clothes themselves. He looked over his should at Aziraphale, who smiled encouragingly. Then he reached out and took their hands.
They led him over to a corner of the room filled with blankets, pillows, toys, and what had to be the largest most ornate dollhouse Crowley had ever seen. They plopped down in the mess of blankets and pillow and Crowley did the same, sucking on his pacifier nervously.
The twins introduced themselves as Edgar and Ellen. Crowley wasn't sure which one was which neither of them particularly looked more like an Edgar or an Ellen than the other. And were dressed identically in high collared floral shirts, purple shortalls with snap crotches, and stripped socks, with no shoes. They also had purple pacifiers attached to clips hanging off their shirts.
The twins didn't seem to care to delay playing anymore, so they went straight into a game of dolls in the big doll house. Crowley was rather unsure what to do, but they pulled him over and let him have his pick of the dolls to play with.
Unlike with Annie they listened to Crowley's ideas for the game, and often thought he had good one. After a while Crowley relaxed and begain to enjoy the game. He was rather surprised when the lights of the dollhouse begain to flicker and all of the little doors and windows opened and shut with ferocity. The twins simply explained that "it just did that sometimes" and he had to be careful not to get his fingers caught in a door. Then they continued playing as if it wasn't happening at all. Crowley just shrugged and followed suit.
After they got bored of their doll house game, they all laid in the mess of blankets and pillows and asked each other questions about what they liked and didn't like. Crowley found, rather surprisingly that they had a fair amount in common. He was half asleep when Aziraphale scooped him up. One of the mirror wraiths directed them to a bathroom with a changing table where they could have a bit of privacy to change Crowley.
"Well," Aziraphale said as he was powdering a freshly cleaned Crowley, "that went much better than expected. They really aren't bad at all"
Crowley mumbled a "told you so" from behind his pacifier.
"Well better safe than sorry, as I always say."(this was a lie, this was infact the first time Aziraphale had ever said it) Aziraphale gently taped up Crowley's diaper and lovingly ran his fingers around the edges of the legs to make sure the leak guards were in place. "And how did you find the twins"
"They were alright" Crowley sniffed.
"Well you seemed to be having fun. And they seemed to like you very much."
Crowley peered up at Aziraphale, rather suspicious that anyone would like him. Aziraphale just smiled down at him. "They've asked us back you know. Tea for us, and a play date with the twins for you. I won't say yes if you don't want me to Crowley. I won't ever put you through anything like with what happened with Annie ever again you know."
Crowley thought for a minute as Aziraphale pulled his leggings back up. "You can say yes"
Truthfully Crowley really didn't mind the twins when they weren't recreating bits of the Shining. They hadn't called him any names yet, and they when they played Crowley had forgotten for a little while how terribly ashamed he was of being a little and had had fun with the twins. Aziraphale smiled down at him again and hoisted Crowley on his hip.
They went back out where Aziraphale sat down and was handed a cup of tea. He then miracled up a bottle for Crowley and shifted the demon so he was lying across his shoulder. The twins were also being fed bottles in Helena's and Gregor's laps respectively.
Crowley's eyes began to get rather heavy, and the bottle was taken from his mouth and replaced with his pacifier. He was then carried and placed gently down on the pile of blankets, a twin was placed on each side, and they were all tucked in. Crowley felt Aziraphale kiss his brow than his unicorn being slid into his grasp and he clutched it to his chest. On either side of him Edgar and Ellen cuddled closer, and linked their hands together over his chest. Warm and drowsy, Crowley fell asleep to the sound of the twins gentle breathing.
He woke up to the twins gentle whispers. They we're absolutely delighted he was awake, and pounced on him like.... Like... Cats... Yes, cats, those are things that pounce, aren't they?
They all had a bit of a wrestling match, which ended when both twins pinned Crowley down a begain to vigorously tickle him. They had lifted up his sweater and were mercilessly tickling his ribs and thin stomach. Crowley was howling with laughter and wriggling ferociously. He hadn't noticed that his leggings had slipped down on his spindly legs exposing his diaper. He did however notice his diaper growing warm and the twins ceasing their onslaught to sit back on their heels and stare at him.
Crowley froze and a feeling of deep and pervasive dread creeped up his spine. He looked over to Aziraphale in the far side of the large room, but neither he nor the rest of the mirror wraiths were paying them any attention. There would be no help from that quarter for the demon.
One of the twins leaned forward to get a better look at his diaper and exclaimed "that is so neat"
Crowley did not in fact see what was so neat about his body's disgusting habit of betraying him in the most embarrassing and intimate of ways. (Usually at the most inconvenient of times as well) He was expecting some sort of humiliation, a chanting of 'diaper baby' he probably deserved. Because that was what he was wasn't it? A disgusting little baby who couldn't control himself and needed diapers and someone to change him. Crowley squeezed his eyes shut.
But the jeers never came. Just a soft and reverent whisper of "You made the stars disappear" Then a pouting "Our diapers don't do that."
Crowley opened his eyes find the twins both unsnapping then shucking off their shortalls. They were both indeed wearing diapers too, but unlike Crowley they seemed completely and utterly unashamed of that fact. Also unlike Crowley their diapers we're cloth, covered with pink nursery pink plastic pants, and Crowley could see they were also very wet.
They stood up, and extended a hand each out to Crowley. The utter synchronization with which they moved was a little unsettling to the demon, but he placed his unicorn under his arm and he took their hands anyway. "Where are we going?" he asked, pulling his leggings back up over his sagging diaper.
The twins gave him an odd look in perfect unison. "We're wet, we want a diaper change. " "Don't you want one too?" "And to ask if we can get neat diapers like yours. " "And we want sippys, we're thirsty" "Are you thirsty?"
They didn't wait for Crowley's answer, they just pulled Crowley after them. Crowley most definitely did not want to ask Aziraphale for a sippy cup or a diaper change. Crowley couldn't bring himself to ask such a humiliating and babyish thing in front of everyone.
The twins plopped themselves into the laps of Helena and Grego, still in just their shirts, diapers, and socks, and begain to beg for 'neat diapers where the stars disappeared when you wet them like Crowley had.'
Crowley just blushed and half ran into Aziraphale's arms, so he could hide his face in the angel's neck. Aziraphale thought it was absolutely adorable that the twins wanted diapers like Crowley had, and offered them some from Crowley's diaper bag. (The bag held much, much more than it should have been physically capable of holding. It's current contents included two packs of diapers, baby wipes, a large bottle of baby power, baby lotion, and baby oil, two bottles, two sippy cups, two pacifiers, all of Crowley's dolls and plushies, several blankets, the changing mat, several assorted snacks, a heating pad and three books) The twins we're delighted. Jack gathered supplies, and Helena laid out a changing mat. Then they proceeded to change the twins in the middle of the floor.
Crowley looked away, he shuddered at the thought of having his diaper changed in front of everyone.Aziraphale placed him on his hip and they went to the bathroom again for Crowley's change.
Seeing the vast differences in the twins and Crowley's behavior gave Aziraphale an odd feeling somewhere in the region of his stomach. The angel only hoped with time, reassurance, and love that Crowley would one day be as free and unashamed of himself as the twins were.
He gave Crowley's thin tummy several kisses when he was done with the diaper change, making the demon squirm and giggle.
He pulled Crowley's leggings back up over his diaper and hoisted him in his hip again. He miracled up a sippy of juice for the demon, and carried him back out to the parlor.
The twins proudly showed Crowley their new diapers, and had seemed to decide that they we're going to give up pants altogether.
Aziraphale said that it had been lovely, but they probably should be going. The twins accosted Crowley. Who was set down so that they could give him a goodbye hug and a kiss to each cheek and make him promise to come back again and play because they were friends now.
That last bit made Crowley feel all warm and peculiar inside. He had had few friends before (none, not a one) save Aziraphale. He waved shyly to the twins as Aziraphale carried him down the hallway, until Gregor and Jack escorted them through the mirror and he could no longer see his new friends waving back.
Crowley's wings ached and itched. His back ached. The pain and itching thrummed up his spine and made his head throb. It had been building up for a while now but Crowley had been able to ignore it untill now.
He knew of course what it was, as it happened (most inconveniently) every year. He was molting. Molting shouldn't actually be this painful. Usually it was slightly itchy and uncomfortable at worst. Then you found another feathery friend to groom your wings for you, or of you were in a pinch, you undertook the daunting task yourself. Then you were fine and dandy and the whole thing was over just like that. But this of course, with Crowley being Crowley (stubborn, self loathing, sulking and a little bit stupid) was not the way he choose to go about it.
Instead Crowley did what he always did when presented with a problem. He ignored it, and hoped it would go away. Usually it did. However it also usually came back worse the next year.
It wasn't that demons in general didn't form friendships and groom each other, they did. (It should be noted that demon friendships usually involved alot of swearing at one another and the mural causing of chaos, making them very difficult to distinguish from demon rivalry) It was just that Crowley didn't make friends. He'd never been good at it. Even in the scant fragments of memory he retained from heaven he'd always been alone. He knew humans sure, but that was always in passing. the only friendship he'd every really had was with Aziraphale, and that took the dogged persistence of six thousand years to obtain. Crowley certainly wasn't going to make Aziraphale groom the disgusting mess his wings we're after several thousand years of complete and utter neglect. And Crowley had no intention of ever letting the twins see his wings let alone grrom them. (Crowley also thought they wouldn't be particularly good at it, they were always so over enthusiastic about everything and a bit rough)
So Crowley was just going to grit his teeth an bear it. Like he always did. It might be a teeny bit more difficult now since he had a fussy angel hovering over him ever moment of every day. (Not that he was complaining mind you, just the opposite) Crowley would just have to be very careful not to let Aziraphale see what a mess he had made of himself.
It was, like many things easier said than done. It was hard to get comfortable in any position, even his favorite spot curled up on Aziraphale's plush tummy, he couldn't stay in for long. He had lost what little appetite he had. He ate dutifuly, so as not to alert Aziraphale to something being wrong, but every bite tasted like ash in his mouth.
Diaper changes were horrific. While Crowley never considered them exactly pleasant (though he did thoroughly enjoy the attention his angel lavish on him) he now dreaded every one. It was so hard to lay with his aching back on the changing mat while Aziraphale moved his legs to get his diapers off and on. Every little jostle sent a jolt of electric pain up his spine that reverberated up his phantom wings.
Crowley really, really, wanted to cry. But it was only, he told himself placatingly, a few more days. A few more days and it would be fine. He would be fine. He was just being a big baby about the whole thing. No need to cry or bother Aziraphale. He would be fine. Just tickety-boo.
Something was terribly wrong with Crowley and Aziraphale was beside himself (not literally) with worry. Crowley was acting very peculiarly. He wasn't playing with his dolls, or castle, or soft toys. He was avoiding diaper changes like the plague. When Aziraphale did manage to herd the demon to the bedroom for one, as soon as he laid down on the change mat, Crowley went all stiff and begain wincing. Aziraphale had thought that the regular feedings we're giving Crowley an appetite, but now Crowley chewed his meals with such a robotic lack of enjoyment it was almost painful for the food loving angel to witness.
The demon even seemed disinterested in his bottles, which worried Aziraphale terribly. He had tried all the demons favorites, milky tea, forumla with a hint of vanilla, milk with honey and vodka. Nothing seemed to spark Crowley's interest.
Maybe the worst thing of all of this was that Crowley no longer cuddled with him. That is to say, yes Crowley would curl up with the angel, but he was forever wiggling and grimacing and shifting positions like he wanted to be anywhere else. Though it pained him. Aziraphale finally just laid Crowley out on the sofa where he rolled on his belly and splayed out all of thin limbs, pressing his face into the cushions so Aziraphale could no longer see his lovely eyes. Aziraphale sat in chair and stared forlornly at his little demon, hating every inch of distance between them, and hating even more the growing distance between them that had nothing to do with physical space.
The last time Crowley had acted like this he had left. Aziraphale was terrified that he would leave again. He had the sudden and horrifying realization that this must be how Crowley felt. Always afraid that the one he loved above all else would just willingly get up and walk away from him one day.
Crowley must be the stronger of the two then, because Aziraphale couldn't stand it. The terrible, sickening worry. If Crowley would only tell him what was wrong maybe Aziraphale could fix it.
Of course Crowley being Crowley, he just said "I'm fine angel." Which was a dreadfully obvious lie. Crowley was a dreadful liar. But Aziraphale was too frightened that pushing Crowley would push him away further.
He tucked the squirming demon into bed with him and tucked a stray curl being his ear.
For a long time both angel and demon laid away and suffered quietly. Together, yet still very, very alone.
Crowley's wings were on fire. He opened his mouth to scream but nothing came out. He could hear the crying of his fellow fallen angels around him. They comforted one another as they mourned the loss of heaven. Of the only comfort and security they had ever known. No one came to comfort him.
He tried to cry but no tears came. He just fell helplessly to the ground in a great heap of pain and smoldering feathers. He felt so small. He had always felt small, but never quire so small and helpless as he did at this very moment.
He turned his face upwards to the heavens that had once been his home. Perched above him looking down at him with pure malice was all the angels who had not fallen, Gabriel, Michael, Uriel, Raziel, Haniel, Cassiel. And there, there was Aziraphale amongst them. He was not looking at him with contempt like the others, only with pity. Which was somehow much, much worse.
Then they all started laughing and jeering at him, so loudly that Crowley could hear it from the heavens. He looked down at himself to see what they we're laughing about. For a moment he didn't understand. Then he saw it. An even darker stain spreading across his dark robes, leaving a horrible burning trail of warmpth down his legs before pooling on the ground around him.
Crowley woke up to the sensation of wetting his diaper. (if his biology had been just a little more human he would have been in a cold sweat) He could feel some of the liquid escaping the diaper and no doubt soiling both his pajamas and the bed.
This had happened for the past several nights. Though it had had always been discovered in the morning by Aziraphale while Crowley was still asleep. Aziraphale was starting to talk about about taking precautions and Crowley had absolutely no idea what that meant. Crowley was already in diapers. What more could there possibly be to control his rampant bedwetting. Crowley desperately hoped that Aziraphale didn't mean sleeping in separate beds. Crowley was certain that Aziraphale must be dreadfully tired of being peed on by now. But Crowley rather selfishly couldn't stand the thought of not being able to sleep with his angel.
Tonight there was a simple solution however, Crowley could just miracle everything, the bed, the blankets, his pajamas, his diaper, dry again. Crowley prepared himself, annnnddd... He couldn't do it. The pain was too much, he felt too sick. Unlike most things that affected his physical form, the state of his wings was linked heavily to his coporeal form, and it was leecing heavily off his occult power. In simple terms, it meant that Crowley was too sick to muster up the energy to miracle away his disgusting mess.
He closed his eyes. If he could only lessen the pain a little. Just have a bit of a reprive, he was sure he'd be fine. Crowley carefully extracted himself from bed and slunk to the bathroom. His wet diaper and pajamas chafed uncomfortably against his legs, but Crowley barley noticed. His wings and back hurt so much. His heart pounded uncomfortably in his chest. He was almost certain that he was going to discorperate.
He made it to the bathroom his mouth dry and his hands shaking. He turned the faucet on cold, and cupped his hand under it, spitting out his pacifier and greedily slurping up the water in his palms. He stood there for a long time drinking handfull after handfull. He would have vastly preferred a sippy cup, as he was shaking quite badly and slopping a great deal of it down the front of his pajamas. He drank untill his belly was full, and sloshing a bit unpleasantly.
Then Crowley gingerly lowered himself to the middle of the cold tile floor.He grimaced as his diaper squished unpleasantly. He stuck his paci back in his mouth and sucked fervently. Then he leaned forwards and let his wings spread out in a huge, black, feathery, mass.
Crowley couldn't take it anymore and begain to cy in earnest. Sobs wracking his thin frame. He brought both trembling hands up to cover his mouth so that he wouldn't wake up his angel with his needy sobs.
Crowley felt very small, and very alone. He was hurting so much and it wasn't getting better. What little strength he possesed left him, and Crowley collapsed into a miserable, sobbing heap on the linoleum.
Aziraphale awoke to his greatest fears being recognized. Crowley was gone.
There was a rather large wet patch on the bed where Crowley's diaper had obviously leaked. This had become a growing problem lately, in the day as well as at night, no matter how many times Aziraphale checked or changed his demon, he seemed to inevitably end up with leaky diaper. It distressed Crowley terribly to wake up to wet pajamas, or to soil his clothes, or the sofa, or leave puddles on the floor when he was wearing protection in the first place. Aziraphale was contemplating using thicker diapers and maybe plastic pants as well on the demon. After all, all this leaking couldn't be comfortable for the poor dear. But Crowley was so unreasonably sensitive about his diaper use.(which as Aziraphale kept reminding Crowley was perfectly normal and natural for a little of his age and nothing to be ashamed of) Aziraphale feared a fit if he tried.
Crowley had mercifuly not run off far this time. Aziraphale could hear noises coming from the bathroom, though he had no idea what the demon could be up to in there. He highly doubted that Crowley had suddenly gained enough bladder control to make it to the toilet, and was just going for a wee.
Hr pushed open the unlocked bathroom door, and the sight that greated him broke his heart. (Metaphorically, his corporation's blood was still in prefect working order, pumping blood like it should, but there was an unpleasant tightness in his chest and a pit forming in his stomach) "Oh Crowley" he breath.
Aziraphale had seen Crowley's wings only twice befor. Once in the garden, and once during the apocalypse. Both time Aziraphale had hardly paid them any mind, but he was pretty sure they hadn't looked this dreadful before. (Had they?) They we're patchy and scraggly, unshed feathers caught in with attached ones. All dull, sad looking black, lacking the proper sheen and luster that wings should have. Aziraphale could see bits that were obviously inflamed, and he hated to think how swollen and sore his oil glands must be.
Poor darling, when was the last time anyone had groomed him!? The last time he had groomed himself? No wonder the poor dear had been so out of sorts lately.
Aziraphale bent down and very gently picked up his sobbing demon. "He mummmered a sad little " 'ziraphale? 'M fine" but Aziraphale just shushed him, and placed him gently in the bathtub, which had suddenly and via miracle grown large enough to accommodate Crowley stretched out wings.
Aziraphale miracled Crowley's soiled pajamas away. Then he miracled, a clean extra thick diaper and a pair of plastic pants (clear, so Crowley could still see the planet and stars on his diaper) on the demon. He thought Crowley might be a bit out of it to notice the extra and much needed padding and plastic between his legs.
Aziraphale got the spray nozzle ( another new addition to the bathtub) and set it to a gentle, yet warm temperature. Then the angel set to work. He wet all of Crowley's wings down, which made the poor thing cry harder, but needed to be done. Aziraphale miracled up his angel teddy for Crowley to hold. It was the only thing Aziraphale could think to do, as the demon was already vigorously sucking a pacifier.
Then Aziraphale ran his fingers through the dark wings, working loose any un-attached feathers. He mummered soft reassurances to the demon. He told him what a darling boy he was, and how much Azriphale loved him. And oh, how brave he was being, because Aziraphale knew this must hurt terribly. Aziraphale also told the demon how sorry he was that he had to cause him pain. How sorry he was that he hadn't figured it out sooner. How sorry he was that this wasn't something he could just miricale away.
By the time the last loose feather had fallen, Aziraphale was crying in earnest. Silently, because he couldn't bear to upset Crowley further. He wiped his tears away with a damp hand. He must pull himself together for Crowley who was hurting now.
Aziraphale warmed upt the water a little more and begain to gently work to get the little caps off the new feathers that had grown through. Aziraphale was horrified to find that even the new growth looked pale and sickly.
He moved on to Crowley's oil glands. They spurted oil with the lightest touch of Aziraphale's hand. He begain massaging the oil into Crowley's wings, paying special attention to the sore bits. Aziraphale noticed a few small bumps and realized that Crowley had ingrown feathers that were most likely infected.
Aziraphale prepared himself for what he would have to do. He miracled up some disinfectant, and wiped down each bump carefully the he squeezed. Crowley writhed in pain under him, crying and howling. Aziraphale comforted him, whispering 'sorry' over and over again into his hair. He then informed Crowley that he would have to be brave, and stay very still while Aziraphale did this.
Crowley just shook his head and said so quietly that Aziraphale almost didn't catch it "no Papa"
Aziraphale heart swelled with love and broke all the the same instance. He had been waiting with baited breath for Crowley to give him a name. A name that Crowley had picked out just for him. But said like this, said so heartbreakingly with his little crying and in pain. Aziraphale knew he would have to deny Crowley's plea. His eyes filled with tears once more. "I'm sorry darling" Aziraphale kissed Crowley's brow and returned to unpleasant task.
By the time Aziraphale had extracted the last ingrown feather, Crowley was slumped forward in the tub limp. His eyes were glassy and unfocused. Aziraphale gave him one last rub down with wing oil which hopefully would help begiin the healing.
He then gently picked up his demon and carried him to the bed.
He miracled away the mess from Crowley's diaper leak. Then miracled a fresh, thicker diaper and clean plastic pants onto the demon. He didn't want any more diaper leaks interfering with his baby's rest and healing.
He positioned Crowley on to his belly and pulled up the covers, making sure he has all his stuffed friends with him. Aziraphale then healed pillow on either side of the demon and gently spread his wings out and splayed them over the pillows.
He wished he could hold his little, but it would currently be uncomfortable for both of them. Instead Aziraphale sat on a chair by the bed and prepared to watch over Crowley for however long he slept, be that a night or a century. Aziraphale would be there for him.
Crowley slept for three days. Aziraphale never left his side. He read mostly, looking up ilfrom his book often to see if Crowley needed the covers s pulled back up, or his wings rearranged, or a diaper change. Aziraphale oiled his wings every day. The red bits were slowly becoming less swollen and red. They no longer felt hot to the touch. Crowley was getting better. He would be alright in the end.
Crowley woke up to a sore back and even more sore wings. But the intense burning pain was gone. Then Aziraphale was there, stoking his hair, telling him how glad he was that he was awake now. Asking if Crowley wanted anything.
Crowley's mind felt slow and hazy. He wanted Aziraphale, so he wriggled over on his belly to climb into the angel's lap. Aziraphale gently held him, being very careful of his wings. His wings. His ugly malformed wings we're still out. He gave them a shake in preparation of putting them back where they belonged. (Where Crowley actually belived they belonged was the deepest pits of Hell or a landfill somewhere, but as he couldn't just cut them off the inbetween space where he usually kept them tucked away from sight would have to do)
Crowley looked at Aziraphale startled.
"They need to be left out while their healing."
"Crowley dear, I really must insist"
Aziraphale looked a little startled. He had never thought of any bit of Crowley as ugly. Even the bit of him that had made the M25 into the horrid disaster it currently was. He put a chubby finger under his littles chin and pulled a tactic that had never failed him when dealing with the demon yet, "Darling please, for me? "
Crowley gave a reluctant nod. Of course he would for Aziraphale, there was little he wouldn't do for the angel. If Aziraphale wanted his grotesque wings out, he'd leave his grotesque wings out. Even if having them out made him feel ugly and exposed.
The demon burrowed his face into Aziraphale's neck. He smacked his lips together. "Bottle?"
Aziraphale smiled. "Of course dear boy."
Crowley had his bottle while Aziraphale used his free hand to stroke his hair. Then instead of curling up together with a book or a bit of television (which Aziraphale had gotten just for him) Crowley was carried back to the bed an laid out on his tummy.
Crowley wriggled, his diaper was barely wet at all. And besides how would Aziraphale change his diaper while he was laying on his tummy anyway. Maybe they were going to have a nap? But Aziraphale didn't seem to be getting into bed with him. Crowley was rather frightened that Aziraphale was going to leave him alone in the bad and go back downstairs, like he had not to long ago when he was under nefarious bookish influences.
Instead Aziraphale came up behind him on the bed and touched his left oil gland. Crowley jumped. Aziraphale placed a hand on his back, and starting working the oil into Crowley's wing. Aziraphale was grooming him. Touching his foul wings. Crowley was sick with guilt. It was so wrong. Aziraphale shouldn't be tainting his purity by touching Crowley's foul and hell blacked wings.
Crowley, as Crowley always did chose the rational and logical response to the situation. (Sarcasm, this is sarcasm) Crowley pitched a fit.
He writhed and cried and thrashed. He tried, rather unsuccessfuly, to wriggle himelf out of Aziraphale's hold.
Aziraphale was taken aback. He was taken very far aback. "Crowley darling, does it hurt that badly?"
Between his sobs and flails, Crowley managed to get out "no angel. Don't want you to touch"
Aziraphale frowned. "Really Crowley, I have to, they must be groomed you know."
The eloquent response he got back was "no"
"Crowley listen here darling, I need to do this, so you must hold still. I'm sorry you don't like your wings touched, but you did this to yourself."
Crowley lost it, not that he ever had much of it in the first place. "SorrysorrysorryI'msosorryangelpapapleasedon'tI'msorrysorrysorry"
Aziraphale carefully gathered up the bawling demon in his arms. He strokes his face, from the snake tattoo at his temple to his cheek in a soothing motion. "Now what's all this dear boy? You have To tell me darling I don't understand."
"You can't touch my wings they're dirty"
Aziraphale was going to tell Crowley that he'd just washed and groomed them, but then it occurred to him that Crowley meant 'dirty' in metaphorical rather than a literal sense.
"Darling, your wings are part of you." Here Crowley shuttered "I love them. I love you. Not one bit of you is ugly or dirty. You trust me don't you? " Aziraphale received a vigorous nod yes. "Then trust me when I tell you this. I love to care for you my darling baby boy. Grooming your wings is no different from feeding you, or changing your diaper,or dressing you, or having a cuddle. I want to do it. I love to do it." He kissed Crowley's brow. "Now will you let me?"
Crowley didn't looks terribly convinced, but gave a hesitant nod yes anyway.
Aziraphale made sure Crowley had every comfort this time. His plushies, a pacifier, blankets pulled up to his lower back. This was, Aziraphale realized something like wetting and diaper changes for Crowley. A part of himself he had neglected so severely out of shame. Aziraphale would just have to be loving and persistent, and one day Crowley might finally learn that it was alright. It was all alright. Aziraphale loved him, even when ( and this was pretty much always) Crowley did not love himself.
Aziraphale knew that he and Crowley needed to talk. However he was hesitant to start. Crowley had been a bit fragile lately. He was still recovering and a bit sore. He tensed up and hid his face every time that Aziraphale groomed oil into his wings. Aziraphale worried that presenting such a difficult topic as this (the topic was difficult only to Crowley to most everyone else it was rather simple) would cause his demon more unneeded stress. But it had to be done.
He did it while Crowley was relaxed in his lap, nursing a warm bottle, stuffed snake clutched in his arms. "Darling I want you to listen"
Crowley turned his half lidded eyes up towards the angel and gave a hmm.
"Next time you don't feel well I want you to tell me."
Crowley stiffened. Aziraphale continued.
"I need you to be honest with me darling. You really did worry me, and you don't want to worry me do you? I won't ever be cross with you for telling me that you don't feel well. And I don't want you to worry that you're putting me out." He petted Crowley's curls back from his face.
Crowley released the bottle from his mouth with a pop. "But I am, I'm being trouble." Crowley murmered looking away from Aziraphale.
Aziraphale just petted his hair patiently. "No darling, being troublesome is painting on the walls, or poisoning the bread we feed the ducks with. Being ill is just something that happens. Even if it's from something you did darling, I need you to tell me. Can you promise me that?"
Crowley gave a very reluctant nod. Aziraphale gave him his very best smile in return. "I'm so proud of you darling!"
He nudged the bottle against Crowley's lips and the demon latched on. He kept on a steady stream of nonsense chatter untill Crowley drifted off to sleep.
The demon had been asleep for only a little while when there was a familiar tapping that echoed through the bookshop. He adjusted positions so the sleeping little demon was on his hip and went to the bathroom.
Helena was in the mirror, her face softened when she spied Crowley asleep (and slightly drooling) on Aziraphale's shoulder. "Hello Helena"
"Hello angel Aziraphale. I wished to speak to you."
"Oh.. Nothing's happened has it? I mean nothing with Nathaniel and his group of.. Of.. Delinquents? Oh dear it's not another dreadful thing that's come from your world is it? Er... Not to say that you're world is dreadful dear, I didn't meant that at all just.. "
Helena raised a slim brown hand to stop Aziraphale's impressive word vomiting. She gave a small smile. "No angel Aziraphale, nothing like that. Only the twins wish to have their new friend over for a play date."She gave a raised eyebrow to someone or something that Aziraphale couldn't see. "They're being rather persistent about the whole matter. maybe tomorrow?"
"Oh well then, Crowley hasn't been well."
"Nothing serious I hope?" Helena gave a rather soppy look at Crowley as he snuffled into the angels neck.
"Oh no, just a bit of trouble with his wings." Aziraphale gently pushed a curl from Crowley's sleeping face. "But I will have to ask him if he feels up to it."
Helena was suddenly being rather squished between two over exuberant twins. "are those Crowley's wings?" "Neat!" "We'll take really good care of Crowley when we play with him!" "Yea, we won't break him, or play rough games or anything." "And we'll nap with him whenever he wants to!"
Aziraphale smiled "I'll be sure to tell him that.
Helena shooed the twins away, and informed him that to get in contact with her all he had to do was tap on the mirror and say her name three times while spinning in counterclockwise circles in a darkened room. (It should be noted that the spinning and the dark were not strictly nessecary, Helena just thought that it added ambiance.) She then disappeared, and Aziraphale took Crowley back the the sofa.
Aziraphale laid out on his back and arranged Crowley over him, so that his wings draped off the sofa. It wasn't long before large yellow eyes begain to open.
"Well there you are dear boy. Have a nice nap, hmmmm?"
Crowley gave a nod.
"Helena called while you were sleeping. Do you feel up to a play date with the twins tomorrow? The wished for you to know that they would take very good care of you"
Crowley sneered. "I don't need taking care of angel" ( these were awfully big words from someone who had just today had his diaper changed, his clothes put on by his angel. As well as had his breakfast, dinner, and a bottle fed to him by said angel. And who would in the very near future be receiving another diaper change.)
Aziraphale, rather amused just smiled and asked "So you don't wasn't to play with the twins then? Pity and they seemed so excited. "
Crowley gave a huff. "I didn't say that angel"
Aziraphale smiled a bit wider, and gave his pouting little demon a peck on the cheek. "Well it's settled then, you'll have a nice playdate with the twins tomorrow."
Crowley was content. Dare he say it, almost happy? His wings had almost completely healed. Aziraphale was smiling and plying him with tons of affection, which Crowley soaked up the way he soaked up warm sunlight when he was a snake.
He spread out bonelessly on the bed sucking on his pacifier as Aziraphale rubbed baby lotion into his skin while humming something happy and a bit off key. (It was really very off key, but blinded by love, Crowley hardly noticed)
Crowley was in such a good mood in fact that his fussing was extremely minimal (for Crowley) when Aziraphale pulled plastic pants (just a precaution dear, Aziraphale informed him) up over his thicker diaper.(Aziraphale had though that he had been a sneaky angel, and that Crowley hadn't noticed the switch to bulkier protection, but Crowley had. Crowley however hadn't said anything out of the deep seated shame that he not only needed diapers, but the thickes babyish kind they sold) And he almost didn't complain at all when Aziraphale dressed him in a black long sleeve onsie and red and black tartan trousers with snaps up the legs. Crowley fussed equaly over the trousers being tartan and them having babyish snaps. (Though he would never tell Aziraphale this, Crowley did think that these tartan trousers, and only these did actually look kind of stylish)
Crowley brought along Lenore and Annabelle. He kind of wanted to show off his dolls to the twins. He was reasonably sure that the wouldn't make fun of him. Aziraphale gathered up Crowley and Crowley's diaper bag and they left with Jack and Gregor who had not cultivated any better fashion sense in the time since the angel and demon had last seen them. Jack was wearing an abhorrently lime green furry sweater, that Crowley thought it looked rather like he had skinned a muppet to make.
But while Jack may have the worst fashion sense Crowley had ever laid his aching eyes upon, he also snuck him sour candies (the kind that Aziraphale never had because he hated anything tart) on the ride there.
Gregor had just patted him on the head, and smiled and called him cute, of all nauseating things, when Crowley hissed at him. Crowley wasn't cute, he was terrifying. (Only Crowley actually held this opinion.)
As soon as they steeped through the mirror they we're accosted by the twins. Crowley was set down, and found himself squashed between Edgar and Ellen in a bone crunching hug as the twins babbles at him from being their pacifiers. Aziraphale patted them on their curly heads and reminded them of their promise to be gentle to the demon. Crowley glared at Aziraphale. He didn't need to be treated gently. (Though he was secretly glad that the twins we're no longer holding him quite so tightly. While he didn't actually need to breathe, he rather liked having the option.)
The twins let go, and bounced around him. "Angel Aziraphale said you were sick" "so we made you a present""a get well present" "we made it all by ourselves!"
A very badly wrapped, and rather lumpy package was thrust into the demon's hands. Crowley stared down at it for a while in confusion. Edgar and Ellen had made something for him? Crowley had rarely received any gifts in his six thousand years, and the vast majority if them had been given to him recently by Aziraphale. But this thing he was holding was obviously for him, as the twins were now bouncing up and down and chanting "Open it! Open it!" Crowley gave a confused little scrunch of his brow, and ripped open the package.
It was a blanket. Made of irregularly sized scraps of material that looked like they had been scraps dug up from the bottom of someone's sewing basket. They were all held together with the sloppiest, wonkiest stitching Crowley had ever seen. (Aziraphale would end up performing a minor miracle to ensure that it never fell apart) As he looked closer he saw that every bit of material was something he might have chosen for himself. Blacks, reds, and grays, dark fabrics with stars or vines trailing across them. There was even a bit of pink fabric with little red cartoon devils on it. As well as a bits of fabric covered in cute little snakes with their red forked touges stuck adorably out. Around the edges it had differently sized textured ribbons in blacks, reds, and greys.
Crowley started to shake. The twins looked a little concerned. Crowley let out an odd strangled sounding noise. The twins looked very concerned.
They turned to Aziraphale, since Crowley didn't seem to be in any condition to answer them. "Is he alright?" "Does he not like it?" "Is he dying?"
Aziraphale gave a small smile to the twins, "it's how he cries darlings"
"Happy crying right?"
"Yes, dears, I think it's very happy crying"
Crowley's brain managed to start working enough to let out a rather strangled sounding "thank you" to the twins as he clutched the blankie close.
The twins looked relived, then pounced on the demon, squishing him between them in another (slightly gentler) hug, declaring "you're welcome" in perfect unison.
Yea, Crowley thought, he was almost happy.
Crowley carried his dolls in one arm, as one of the twins dragged him along by his other arm. The other twin bounced along happily in front of them. The mirror wraiths dimension seemed to be just one very long hallway full of different doors. It was dark and oppressive, Crowley thought the word was gloomy, but the twins seemed delighted to show Crowley. They pointed at different doors and tried to explain to him what was behind them. Some we're normal, like that one is Gregor's room. Some were a bit more unusual, like one goes to the other hallway. Some we're just downright strange, like we don't know what's in that one, but it screams alot.
The twins door was purple with a little sign that read Edgar and Ellen's nursery. Under the sign was tacked a dismembered doll head.
The twins nursery was chaotic and smelt strongly of baby lotion and dried flowers with just a hint of pee. They had a large, dark, old fashioned (and rather cozy looking) looking crib stuffed with soft toys and blankets, and changing table overflowing with diapers, plastic pants, lotions, and powders. There was as well as a dresser and bookshelf. Clothes, blankets pillows, books and toys were spread haphazardly in piles all across the floor. But what drew Crowley's attention was the shelves and shelves of dolls. They all looked old, paint chipping, porcelain cracked, eyes clouded over, missing limbs or heads. Crowley thought that they were all completely terrifying. But Edgar and Ellen we're so happy to introduce Crowley, Lenore, and Annabelle to each and every creepy monstrosity, so Crowley didn't have the heart to tell the twins how much they gave him the heebie jeebies.
The twins then suggested they make a blanket fort, and started gathering blankets from their floor and crib. Crowley just stood there awkwardly. He didn't know how to make a blanket fort, but he didn't want to tell the twins this and look like a big dumb baby on front of his new friends. But one of the twins handed him the corner of a pink fluffy blanket and told him to drape it over the changing table.
The blanket fort was impressive, if Crowley did say so himself. It covered most of the twin's nursery, and had different rooms inside it sectioned off with blanket walls.(this was Crowley's idea, which the twins thought was absolutely great) they had even made a sort of second story out of the crib.
They had brought in Crowley's dolls and some of the twins, and were currently on a great mystery adventure that involved ghosts and secret passages. When their adventure had ended the twins decided they were thirsty and wanted sippy cups of juice and in need of a diaper change. (This last one was rather obvious as the twins weren't wearing pants again and their diapers were sagging in their plastic pants.)
They each grabbed one of Crowley's thin pale hands and dragged him back to the parlor where Aziraphale and the other mirror wraiths were sitting, having tea and talking. (no doubt about unspeakably boring things) The twins just bounced in and loudly stated that they needed a diaper change and sippy cups. Crowley blushed, and was unspeakably glad that no one asked if he needed a diaper change. (he did, rather badly) Aziraphale just picked him up and excused them to go to the bathroom so Crowley could be changed in privacy, while the twins were changed on the parlor floor.
When Aziraphale asked while he pouring baby power onto Crowley during his diaper change if he was having fun, he rather suprised himself when he could honestly answer that yes he was. After the diaper changing was done, the three littles were sent off with full sippy cups and dry diapers to go play again.
The twins and Crowley we're all laying piled together in their blanket fort, debating on what they were going to play next. The twins then shared the sort of look that only twins could share, and turned together in prefect synch towards Crowley and asked in one voive. "Have you ever played knock knock?"
"Er.. No" Crowley admitted hoping it wouldn't make him look dumb or babish that he didn't know "what's knock knock? "
Crowley still had no idea what knock knock was, ans he was playing it. Or at least he thought he was playing it. Currently he and the twins were just going from room to room knocking twice on every wall. Crowley was beginning to think that this was maybe the most boring game in existence. (On par with watching grass grow and paint dry) When there was a knock back.
It was faint but there it was two knocks somewhere off in the distance. Edgar and Ellen looked excitedly at one another. There then grabbed Crowley's hands and dashed into another room, and knocked twice there. Again there was two knocks in response. The twins grinned manically. Two more knocks sounded before they even reached the next room. The twins didn't knock this time. They turned to Crowley. "We all split up now. Don't knock anymore. You just have to keep moving. You can hide if you see it, but you have to keep moving from room to room. Most importantly don't let it catch you!"
The twins then stood on tip toes to kiss each of Crowley's cheeks, then they each ran off in a different direction. Crowley stared after them questions like 'what am I not supposed to let catch me' and 'what do I do if it catches me' bouncing around in Crowley's head.
Crowley wandered through rooms that seemed to get creepier and creepier. He definitely wasn't frightened, he was a demon. He had walked the halls of Hell. (not for very long mind you, he had wriggled his way into Earth duty as soon as he possibly could) He had seen wars, revolution, destruction. He had stopped the apocalypse. Well, he had been there when the apocalypse had been stopped. So it totally didn't frighten him that he had absolutely no idea what sort of creatures lurked in this between dimension. Crowley definitely didn't feel like crying. He also most definitely didn't want his angel to scoop him up in his soft arms and give him a cuddle.
There was a knock, then another, closer to Crowley then they had been before. Crowley sped up. Behind the next door he oppened, he found a room full of what looked to be abandoned furniture with dust covers. The knocking sounded again, even closer. Crowley ducked under a table and hid, obscured by the dust cover. He pulled his legs up to his chest and popped his pacifier into his mouth and sucked nervously.
There was more knocking. Crowley squeezed his eyes shut. He hoped that whatever it was would leave him alone and go after one of the twins. It was their stupid game after all.
The knocking came even louder this time. Why was it so dark in here? The knocking was very loud now. Crowley could hear his heart attempting to beat it's way out of his corporation's chest. He lifted the dust cover and peeped out of his hiding place. There was nothing, it was fine after all. Crowley gave a sigh of relief. It was only a game, he was being a big baby after all. Then, an unreasonably tall figure seemingly made out of pure darkness floated across the room and disappeared into the wall. Crowley droped the dust cover and scooted back under the table, he decided he wasn't being such a baby after all, and his panic was absolutely warranted.
Crowley remembered, maybe a bit belatedly, what the twins had said about not staying in one place too long. This suited Crowley just fine, he was going to leave his hiding spot and run straight into Aziraphale's warm and safe embrace. He would miracle himself there, but he wasn't sure exactly where there was, and if you didn't have a decent idea of where you were miracling yourself you ran the rush of ending up stuck in a wall, or the floor, or an inconveniently placed tree.
Crowley took a deep breath, then poked his head out. No creepy shadow people in sight, he made a mad dash for the door.
Crowley made it too the hall and raced down it, looking for any doors that were familiar. But there were none. Was this even the same hallway? The twins had said something about a second hallway.
Crowly tried another door, hoping it would lead him to back to the hallway he was semi familiar with, but it just lead into a room full of dusty taxidermy animals. Crowley closed that door quickly and tried, and other, and another. The knocking was getting louder and more frequent. What ever it was it was coming for him.
Was Crowley going to be stuck here trying to outrun some sort creepy specter forever. What would it do when it caught him? Discorperate him? Possess him then use his body to hurt Aziraphale? Take him to an even more nightmarish realm? Make him watch the Sound of Music on repeat forever?
The knocking was right behind him now. Crowley couldn't bring himself to look behind. He was running now. He made a mad dash for a random door. Holding true to Crowley's luck, which was consistently bad, it was locked. He frantically jerked at the door handle. Let him in, let him in, let him in, why wouldn't it let him in? Why didn't things do as they were expected to do here?
There was an odd groaning sound. Crowley turned around, and pushed his back flush with the door. The floor of the hallway was disappearing. Breaking off to reveal a swirling void of nothingness. Then through the nothingness a giant eye appeared. But Crowley's attention was soon taken away from that particular horror to the black thing floating menacingly towards him.
The air grew colder as it got closer, it had a shadowy grotesquely deformed face and long thin claw like hands that stretched towards the demon. Crowley cowared, he slid down the wall till he landed on his diapered bottom with a wet squish.
The fingers grazed his cheek, and a deep rasping voice whispered "I've got you."
Crowley squeezed his eyes shut and he felt his already soaked diaper warm as the contents of his bladder emptied into the padding. He could feel himself trembling and his heart was beating so fast Crowley was absolutely sure he was going to discorperate. He didn't even get to say goodbye to his angel. Crowley let out a strangled whimper.
Crowley heard the twins laughter, but he didn't look up from the ball he had tightly curled himself in. He was sure that they we're laughing at him. Or he was discorperate and this was hell, and it wasn't the twins at all but some demons having a laugh seeing how far the mighy Crowley had fallen.(it should be noted that no one in hell had ever actually thought of Crowley as 'mighty')
"Crowley?" "Crowley" "Are you alright?" "What's wrong?" "What happened?"
Crowley opened one eye to look at the twins, and managed to stumble through an incredibly shaky explanation of what had happened.
The twins gave each other a look. ".... ummm.... " ".... uhhhh... " "that's.... " "that's what's supposed to happen " "its fun? " "Well we think it's fun" "we didn't know you wouldn't" "We made sure it was a nice one that would chase you" " we wouldn't let a mean one chase you"
Crowley glared up at the twins "How could being chased by that horrible grotesque creature be fun?"
The twins gave each other another look. "That's.... That's what we look like" "You think we're horrible?"
"You look like that?"
The twins weren't looking at him anymore. "Yea.. Sometimes." "Helena n' Gregor n' Jack n' us just like being solid so we can stay here and do stuff." "Some of us just like to drift around"
Oh... Crowley understood now. What he had seen was the true form of a wraith. Just like a giant snake was his, or a great big mess of wings and eyes was Aziraphale's. (And most angels, some were also worringly enough perpetually on fire in their true forms. Crowley had no idea what that was about) Crowley also realized something else. He had just called his best (only, besides Aziraphale) friends horrible grotesque creatures which was what one might call a teeny bit of a faux pas. Even if he was still cross with the twins for making him play their nightmare inducing version of hide and go seek.
"I don't really think your horrible" Crowley sniffed "And I wasn't that scared. I was just a bit startled because you didn't tell me what was going to happen. Also because the floor fell away, and there was a giant eye. Why the bloody hell was there a giant eye!"
The twins still looked rather sullen and a bit sad, but at least they we're looking at Crowley and nit at the ground now. "It's just an illusion." "We can all do it." "But you can do it best when you're not so solid" "it's just part of the game." "We didn't know you would be scared! Honest we didn't! " " we didn't know you we're.... Scared of... Us."
Crowley didn't know what to say. The twins were weird and often frightening, but they didn't mean to be. They frightened Crowley the way he frighted humans when he was a snake, by simply exiting and being strange and foreign and potentially dangerous.
One of the twins turned to look intensely at the demon. Then the other life's up their pale gaze to join their sibling's, their eyes damp with tears "We promised Aziraphale we'd take good care of you, and we did bad. " "really, really bad" "and now your scared of us. Do you... Do you not want to be our friend anymore?"
Crowley was still very shaken. (for a demon Crowley had always been a bit of a coward, though he would describe it as sensibly precautious) "No," he said and the twins looked ready to begin crying in earnest now. "Erm... No, I mean I don't want to not be friends anymore.... I mean.. I do want to be friends... I mean... Oh bugger... Can we just go back to the blanket fort?"
The twins pounced on him. Hugging him tightly and Crowley was almost certain wiping their snotty noses all over his clothes. They babbled about how 'they would be much better friends now' and 'they wouldn't scare him anymore because they'd ask him before doing anything whether it was scary or not'
They pulled Crowley up and each grabbed one of his hands to happily lead him back through the maze of hallways and rooms back to the safety of their blanket fort. And if Crowley realized that his diaper was a bit more soiled than it was usually was, well a quick miracle took care of it and absolutely no one need ever know exactly how frighted he really was.
The twins seemed absolutely determined to make things up to Crowley. He got the best spot in the blanket fort, which was the crib. The twins piled up bankets, soft toys, and cushions around him. One of the twins turned on the mobile, and little plush deer and stars begain to dance to a twinkling music box melody.
One of the twins (Edgar? Ellen? Crowley was never quite sure) lifted a tiger in the universal symbol of 'wait here, I've got an idea' The twin then wiggled their way out of the crib, crawled through the rest of the blanket fort and ran out the door.
Crowley had no idea what the twin was up to, but he was happily sunggled up with the other one for a nice little nap. He watched the mobile dance above him. He rather liked it. Maybe he could ask Aziraphale for one of his own. One with stars and planets, maybe playing a music box version of the Devil's Trill Sonata. Crowley gave a frown. Aziraphale had got him an awful lot of things lately, his dolls, his plushies, his toys, his blankets, his pacifiers, lots of little clothes, not to mention the small fortune the angel must spend on diapers since he often insisted on doing things the 'proper human way' and buying them. Crowley really couldn't ask him for anything else. He didn't want his angel thinking he was greedy. He brought his blanking to his face to press it to his cheek.
But he was wasn't he? He was a dreadfully greedy little demon. Greedy for Aziraphale's love and attention mostly. He couldn't help himself thought. After six thousand years of loving and spoiling and saving his angel, it was so very nice to have his angel love him for once. Not of course, that Crowley deserved it. He didn't deserve love, his creator had drilled that particular lesson into his head very early on in his existence.
All of Crowley's memories of heaven were fragmented. Crowley ofen thought the fall must have broken his mind a little. Or maybe God just thought that he didn't deserve his memories, the way he didn't deserve the name that God had given him when he was created.
Even in heaven Crowley had been alone. Sent off in the void to make the stars. So small in that immense darkness. He had little place in heaven when he returned. It wasn't untill Adam and Eve's children had children and they started recogning the differences between baselines, littles, and caregivers that Crowley had truly realized what he was. The other humans taught the littles to be ashamed of their crying, messes, and unending need for affection, but Crowley had always been ashamed.
"Why?" He had asked God. Why make me like this. One question in an unending sting of them. And everyone knew how that had ended, with one unpleasant free fall into rivers of hellfire and unending agony.
Another angel was given his name. One who wasn't so little and useless. One who didn't ask questions.
Crowley snuggled into the twin. He wished he could be mire like they were. They had no idea they were supposed to be ashamed of their littleness. To them it was just how they were. It was neither right nor wrong, shameful or admirable, it just was.
Crowley had just closed his eyes and was drifting off to sleep with his unhappy thoughts when he heard the second twin return.
They wriggled themselves in the crib and maneuvered so that a pillow was on their lap and Crowley's head on that pillow. He felt a familiar teat be placed at his lips. Oh G.. Sa.. Someone No! Crowley wasn't about to let anyone who wasn't Aziraphale do something so degrading as feed him a bottle. He clamped his lips shut.
The twin stroked his red curls. "Crowley don't you want your bottle? I thought... I thought it would make you feel better. Are you..... Are you still angry with us?"
Crowley felt a bit bad. They didn't understand why Crowley both lived and hated this all at the same time. They didn't understand why he fought it so hard while dying to give in. Crowley made a quiet decision and oppened his mouth. Here things weren't really real anyway he thought giving a bottle a suck. (Aziraphale must have made it as it was thick and creamy and heavily vanilla flavored, just the way he liked it) Here there was no shame.
Crowley woke up in a tangle of limbs, his own and the many that seemed to belong to the twins. They enthusiastically bounced up, fussing over Crowley asking if he slept well and if he needed a diaper change. Crowley nodded, because he couldn't yet bring himself to say it out loud.
Crowley and the twins walked hand in hand down the hallway. Crowley definitely didn't keep a close eye on the floor just in case it decided to start falling away again. He also most definitely wasn't completely frightened by giant, slightly manivolant eyes that may or may not be staring at him from that sark void. Crowley knew it had just been an illusion, something that had been made up for the amusement of his strange friend, that did not however make Crowley any less frightened of it. It was bad enough he knew that God was always watching him be a complete and utter failure. He didn't need random giant eyes to start doing it as well.
In the parlor there was Aziraphale waiting for Crowley with a smile and open arms. Crowley happily climbed into his angel's lap. One of the twins handed Aziraphale the empty bottle Crowley had been fed earlier. Crowley blushed a little, but Aziraphale seemed pleased and patted the twin on the head and told them what a good friend they were to Crowley. The twin then scuttled off to bother one of the other mirror wraiths. Aziraphale lifted Crowley, and Crowley knew without needing to ask that they were going to the bathroom for a diaper change.
Aziraphale hummed during the change, tickling Crowley's thin belly and telling him what a delightful little sit down he was having with the mirror wraiths. Did Crowley know they had a library? Why some of the books in there Aziraphale had never even heard of before! And the mirror wraiths had been so kind as to let Aziraphale borrow some. He thought about attempting to buy some books from them, but he really wasn't certain what they used as currency. They didn't think much of money. Their sofa cushions, said Aziraphale, was just stuffed with it. Apparently it just kept showing up there.
He asked if Crowley would be ready to leave in a while. (To an almoat immortal being such as Aziraphale 'a while' could just as easily mean a few minutes as it could a few years) Crowley wanted both to go home and stay and play with his friends. But he didn't want to make a fuss (Specifically he didn't want to make a fuss for Aziraphale, who looked after the undeserving little demon so well. Crowley wasn't opposed to making fusses in general) so Crowley simply nodded 'yes'.
They were all given fresh sippy cups of juice and kisses and sent off to play again. They retuned to the blanket fort. The twins begain to think very hard about what they could play next. One sprung up suddenly and scurried out of the fort.
They returned with a large basket of supplies which was plopped down in front of Crowley. "We can fingerpaint!... Errr... Crowley fingerpainting is scary is it? "
With a teeny bit of a glare glaringly glared at the twin Crowley informed them that no, he didn't find fingerpainting particularly frightening, thank you very much. The twins laid down paper for catching messes in the blanket fort then set out three large peices of paper for painting on. The poured paints into little cups and then tied long plastic bibs around their necks. They tied one around Crowley's as well. It was not his favorite fashion statement.
The twins begain painting right away, little flecks of paint flying everywhere. Crowley just stared had his blank white sheet of paper. He thought very long and very hard about what to pain, then he stoped thinking and painted what came naturally to him.
Later when Aziraphale and Crowley had arrived home, Crowley would shyly present Aziraphale with his painting. Aziraphale would be a bit in awe. Of course he would love anything his little made for him. But this was actually good. It was a beautiful and fairly accurate, if his astronomy books were to be belived rendition of a galaxy. A rainbow of colors swirled together in the darkness interspersed with shimmering white stars. (the twins had had glitter) Aziraphale shed a bit of a tear as he miracled up a frame and hung it proudly on the wall of his sitting room and library (all rooms in Aziraphale's flat were part library) as Crowley blushed. (The demon hadn't meant for Aziraphale to make such a fuss about it, it wasn't even goooood) Aziraphale pulled Crowley towards him in an embrace and leaned up to kiss his cheek and give a quiet thank you to his darling.
While Aziraphale was changing Crowley into his nighttime diapers, Aziraphale asked the question Crowley dreaded. What was that miracle he had felt him preforming at the mirror wraiths'? Crowley being the lying liar he was told Aziraphale that it was just meant to get a toy from one of the top shelves in the twin's room. Crowley relaxed a big satisfied with his lie and that he really was a very good liar. Aziraphale would never find out the shameful and disgusting thing that he had done. Even more shameful and disgusting than the things he usual did. And that, thought Crowley was really something considering he was currently lying on a changing mat getting his soaked diaper changed to a new even thicker night diaper (Crowly hated his night diapers, the made his usual slight diaper waddle much more pronounced so that his profound lack of bladder control would be obvious to anyone who looked at him.) because he would without question be helplessly wetting himself while he slept tonight. Ever since his little, tiny, the tiniest, accident Crowley had been feeling evwn smaller and more disgusting than usual. Crowly rubbed his blanky over his cheeks, nose, and the sensitive bit just under his nose and above his lip. He was determined his angel would never know the gross thing he had done.
Aziraphale looked suspiciously down at his dearest little demon. For someone who had made a rather successful career out of lying to hell, Crowley was an absolutely terrible liar. He had no idea how Hell hadn't caught on ages ago. He was a little (quite a bit) worried about what his baby felt the need to hid from him. He rather hoped that would someday be at a point where the demon felt comfortable to come to Aziraphale with anything he wanted or needed and know that the angel would love him and care for him no matter what his troubles.
So I just noticed it's been an entire month since I started writing this nonsense.
There was something about Crowley's fingerpainting that was bothering him. It wasn't anything to do with the painting itself, which was absolutely lovely. But that it triggered some niggling little part of Aziraphale's brain that told him he had seen it somewhere before.
He had certainly never seen it in person. He was far from a high enough level angel to have anything to do with the stars. It had been mundane duties in heaven, then guarding the eastern gate, untill he was sent to do Earth duty. (Bit of a punishment really for the whole fiasco at the garden) So Aziraphale thought that he must have seen it, or something like it in one of his astronomy books.
He'd just had his dinner, and fed Crowley his. So he placed Crowley on a nest of blankets on the floor witha sippy cup and his toys and the television remote (really what would humans think of next) to play or watch Golden Girls or whatever Crowley did when by himself.
Aziraphale then went to peruse his collecton of astronomy books. It wasn't to long before Aziraphale found it:
Messier 83 or M83, also known as the Southern Pinwheel Galaxy and NGC 5236, is a barred spiral galaxy approximately 15 million light-years away in the constellation Hydra. Nicolas Louis de Lacaille discovered M83 on February 23, 1752 at the Cape of Good Hope
As Aziraphale stared at the glossy accompaning photograph a realization begain to dawn on him. He took the book and hurried himself over to where he had hung Crowley's fingerpainting. He held up the book so that the photography and the painting we're side by side. Crowley had not painted simply a good likeness of the galaxy but an exact replica of it. Aziraphale was dumbfounded.
He took the book with him and sat on the sofa, lifting Crowley from his nest of blankets to his lap. Crowley looked a bit irritated to have his playing so abruptly ceaced, but turned to the angel with inquiring eyes.
"Crowley darling" he held up the book with it open to the aforementioned page. "Do you recognize this?"
Crowley nodded, letting his pacifier fall and drop to his lap "that's the galaxy I painted for you" Crowley squinted his snakey little eyes at the text on the page. "They named it? That's a dumb name. When I made it I just called it that pretty pinkish one with all the swirly purple bits."
Aziraphale blinked rather dumbly. "You made it. You couldn't have! The archangel Rafael made the stars. That would make you the archangel Rafael."
Crowley nodded, a little unhappy frown forming on his face. "That used to be my name"
"But there is an archangel Rafael now. The one with the staff and the healing and you can't be him!"
Crowley gave his angel a little glare. "I'm not now am I? I just used to be the Archangel Rafael, I was sent to make the stars, then I was called back to heaven and stared asking all sorts of nasty little questions, then boom. Down the bad angel laundry shoot and God was giving some one else... Someone better, my name"
"Don't look at me like that angel" Crowley crossed his arms and looked away grumpily. "I don't want your pity." The demon pouted.
"Crowley dear boy, it's not pity. I just... Am so sorry that something so dreadful happened to you" Aziraphale had stringently avoided questioning the ineffable decisions of the allmighty all of his existence. But it was very difficult to keep it up when faced with such balant cruelty as this. To send Crowley, no it would have been Raphel then, off alone to the stars, then to exile him for asking questions, well that wasn't even the worst part was it. The allmighty had just replaced him after he fell. Took his name and gave it to a new angel. Aziraphale had lived his whole existence believing that there was only one archangel Rafael. He imagined most if not all the rest of the angels did as well. It was almost as if Crowley had never existed at all in heaven. His only legacy as an angel the stars that were attributed to another Rafael.
"Same thing angel." Crowley was worring his blankie between his fingers and was sucking on some to it's little ribbon tags. The conversation was obviously distressing his baby, but there was one burning question that Aziraphale must have the answer to. "Crowley" he begain...
"Crowley" he begain, "We're you always little?"
Crowley nodded and looked sullen "Always"
"And you were sent out alone to make the stars?"
Crowley nodded again.
"And when you came back to heaven, did you have a caregiver?"
Crowley looked a bit confused. "Of course not angel, there weren't any in heaven. Your the only other celestial being I've ever met who wasn't a baseline."
"Crowley, there were caregivers in heaven, quite a few in fact. There were other angels who were little as well. There we're more caregivers than littles. Littles were highly prized. It wasn't uncommon to have two or three caregivers to a little."
Crowley looked as though Aziraphale had slapped him. Aziraphale eyes were feeling a bit teary by now. He brought out a tartan handkerchief to dab at them.
"You knew what you were? I mean you knew what littles and caregivers were and that you we're one? Way back in heaven?"
"Yes of course Crowley... You... You didn't?"
"No!" Crowley said he pressed himself as close to they angel as he could get and still be two separate entities. "I only found out from watching the humans! I thought I was just weak and useless." Crowley looked back up at Aziraphale with the saddest yellow eyes. "If there were caregivers in heaven why didn't I have one? Why didn't anyone want me?"
Aziraphale could feel his hear breaking as the demon collapsed into sobs on his chest. He knew your heart breaking was a metaphor, but Aziraphale felt a real pain throbbing somewhere deep in his chest. He didn't know what to tell Crowley. He didn't know why the archangel Rafael, one of the most powerful archangels, closest to and most beloved by God would be allowes to be so small and so, so unloved and un looked after. There had been a surplus of caregivers in heaven. Surely at least some of the higher up angels in their numbers had know of Rafael being a little, and such a small one at that. Why hadn't they competed for the place as his caregiver the way they had for ever other little in heaven? Why had no one even bothered to inform Crowley that he was a little? Aziraphale didn't know. He didn't know.
He just held Crowley tighter as he shook and sobbed, and told him how much he was loved now. How much Aziraphale loved him. How he was a darling boy, and a joy to look after. Aziraphale told Crowley that he was the best possible little Aziraphale could ever have asked foe and if the other caregivers in heaven couldn't see how wonderful he was then that was their monumental loss.
He kissed Crowley's fiery curls. He could feel the tears slip from his eyes and fall onto his baby's head. It was a long while before Aziraphale and Crowley both calmed down enough for Aziraphale to gather up Crowley for his nighttime botttle and diaper change. (Aziraphale found it best to impliment the bottle before the diaper change as Crowley would, without fail, always wet when being fed his bottle) He tucked him into bed carefully making sure Crowley had his pacifier and blankey his plushies and dolls. The he slipped into bed besides his little love.
Crowley snuggled into him and rather tired out from his crying fit, he fell right to sleep. Aziraphale stayed awake for a long time and just watched Crowley. Crowley was so much more damaged than Aziraphale had ever thought possible. How had he functioned for so long in the face of such utter neglect? It was no wonder he was so reluctant to be little. Six thousand years, and not a scrap of affection to be had. Aziraphale willed himself not to cry as he stared at Crowley's pacifier bobbing up and down with the demon's rhythmic sucking.
Aziraphale hoped the memories wouldn't give Crowley nightmares. He wished he could just give him pleasant dreams the way he could humans, but the allmighty had robbed Crowley of even that. For maybe the first time in his creation Aziraphale was really and truly mad at his creator. Sure he had seen the horrors and injustices of the world, but they had always felt like distant certainties. All suffering for a greater good. Or so Aziraphale had been told. But to see the one he loved suffering like this. What purpose did it server. What purpose could it possibly serve to create a being who needed so much love and attention and to give them none? Then when they asked why, to toss them from the only home they had ever known into eternal suffering.
Crowley who was better by far than most of the angels that remained in heaven. Crowley who loved so much. Aziraphale may not be able to feel it, but he knew it. By Crowley actions, by his expressions, and words Aziraphale knew without a shadow of a doubt that Crowley loved. That Crowley loved him. It had been in every dinner, every walk, ever time he saved Aziraphale or Aziraphale's books, or miracled away a spot on his jacket. Aziraphale had always known Crowley had loved him, though fear kept them (him) from ever acknowledging that obvious fact.
He kissed Crowley's brow. By Go... Er... Well Someone, Aziraphale would show Crowley that he was loved too.
Aziraphale was being suspiciously nice to Crowley. Aziraphale was of course always nice to Crowley. He always had been even when Crowley had just been a strange demon that had slithered up to him on a garden wall thousands of years ago. Crowley didn't know if it was because he was an angel full of love and goodness, and all that rot, or because he was a caretaker, or more likely both.
Crowley had never deserved Aziraphale's kindness. If there was one thing that the demon had learned early on in his existence, it was that he was unworthy. Unworthy of having someone to love him. Unworthy to ask questions or even stand before his creator. Unworthy of heaven. He had even proved himself unworthy as a demon, which was quite a feat. All this however didn't stop Crowley from, greedy thing that he was, wanting Aziraphale's affections.
For some bizarre reason Aziraphale seemed willing to indulge his wretched demon. Crowley devoured every iota of love his Angel gave him. But now his angel was being too kind, too gentle with him, and it made Crowley suspicious. Had Aziraphale decided, after what Crowley had told him last nigh, that he didn't want the little no other caregiver in heaven had wanted either? Was he being so nice to Crowley to make the blow of 'sorry dear boy, but I've decided due to new information that this isn't quite working out" easier on Crowley when it finally came?
If that was so, Crowley thought, well he'd just enjoy every last second he could before Aziraphale finally saw sense and he was out on his demonic posterior.
Crowley had woken up to Aziraphale staring down at him, then lovingly peppering him with kisses, which made the demon squirm and giggle. Aziraphale then gave him his morning diaper change, smiling all the while and telling Crowley what a delightful and darling boy he was. Personally Crowley didn't see how wetting the bed made him 'delightful' or 'darling' at all. He rather thought that it made him gross and a nuisance. But he wasn't going to say that to Aziraphale, who for some reason found his absolute lack of bladder control endearing for reasons Crowley couldn't fathom.
Aziraphale then carried a still a bit sleepy Crowley around on his hip as he made breakfast. He let Crowley break the eggs, which resulted in a mess, but Aziraphale wasn't cross that he had bits of yolk on his face. He just gave Crowley a soppy smile. ( Crowley narrowed his eyes, that had deserved at least a 'really Crowley')
Aziraphale had made Crowley's favorite. They sat down together at the table and Aziraphale tied a red bib around Crowley's neck. ( this was a new addition after Crowley had managed to spill an entire large spoonful of mashed potatoes and gravy all down his front.) Crowley pouted but Aziraphale just booped his nose. He brought a fork full of egss to the littles lips, and Crowley happily devoured them.
Crowley got a bottle of warm milk with his breakfast instead of the usual sippy cup of juice. Then Aziraphale picked him up and carried him into the bathroom and popped him up on the changing table there. (Another new addition to their lives, though Crowley was still usually changed on the changing mat in the bedroom.) Something about lying on the changing table in only his diaper, sucking on his bottle of warm milk made Crowley feel smaller than he ever had before. Especially when he realized that he was also wetting his diaper as he lied there watching Aziraphale draw him a bath. (The sound of running water always seemed to trigger Crowley's bladder to release. Then again so did being frighted, being relaxed, sleeping, having a bottle, sneezing, walking, come to think of, the list might be shorter if Crowley just listed want didn't make him wet himself)
Aziraphale took off Crowley's diaper. "Wet already dear?" Aziraphale asked, which made Crowley blush and squirm. He knew he was such a baby to have flooded diapers that were only put on an hour and a half ago. But Aziraphale didn't seem cross at all, and made it up to Crowley with heaps of kisses and a bit of tickling.
The tickling however, made Crowley start to wet again. (Had Crowley added ticking to the list of things that made him wet?) Aziraphale and Crowley both stared at the growing puddle on the changing table. Aziraphale was amused. Crowley was horrified. Aziraphale just laughed and miracled the mess away.
He then deposited the demon in the tub, and with much, much coaxing got Crowley to let out his wings for a wash. He then placed Crowley's ship and toy octopus in the bath, along with something new. A large toy shark that begain to glow different colors as soon as Aziraphale plopped it in the water. Crowley's eyes lit up and he lunged for the shark. Reflexivly his wings flapped behind him.
Water flew everywhere. One white haired Angel who had beenkneeling next to the bath tub found himself drenched from head to oxford covered toe.
Crowley clutched his shark to his naked chest and trembled. Aziraphale had been so kind today and Crowley was ruining everything. He'd made mess of the kitchen when they we're making breakfast, peed all over the changing table, now he'd flooded the bathroom and soaked his angel. He stared worriedly at Aziraphale, waiting for a reprimand, for Aziraphale to finally just be tired of him and the never ending trouble he seemed to bring.
But Aziraphale just laughed. A deep, joyous laughter that came from the belly. Crowley was very worried that Aziraphale had lost his mind. Then the astuck his hand in the bathwater and splashed Crowley. Apparently Aziraphale had lost his mind. The angel splashed Crowley again, then looked at him expectantly. Crowley gave a tentative splash back.
Aziraphale looked elated. Though Crowley was worried for the apparent sanity of his angel, he couldn't help himself from getting caught up in the splashing war his angel seemed determined to start. By the end there wasn't a dry bit of bathroom, angel, or demon left and the water was growing cold. Aziraphale, still chuckling, miracled everything but the demon dry, and the bath water warm again. He kissed the top of his head and begain to scrub him gently clean while Crowley occupied himself with attacking his ship with the shark and octopus.
Once he was clean and plucked from the bath, Aziraphale carefully dried off Crowley's wings then allowed him to put them away. Crowley was laid on the changing mat, pacifier in his mouth ready for a diapering. Aziraphale even skipped putting the plastic pants on the demon when he asked with a pout. (The thicker diapers stayed though, Aziraphale wouldn't put his little demon through the stress of leaking if he could help it.)
Aziraphale started to rub baby lotion into Crowley's spindly limbs when he struck. (Not literally, Crowley was the snake of this relationship and did all the literal striking within) "Crowley darling, I would really like to ask you to do something for me."
Crowley's limp body tensed. He didn't know for certain what was coming, but he was certain it would be dreadful. Today had been too good to be true. Nothing that was goof for Crowley ever stayed good for long.
Aziraphale produced a fussy little leather bound pocket calander. (Which alway showed the current year and month simply because it was expected to.) There was small cramped writing that Crowley's snake eyes could quite get in focus in the little square the angel was pointing at.
"You see dear, I usually go for a manicure every week. A bit of an indulgence on my part to be sure, but really, keeping up the health of my corporation is an absolute must if you ask me." (Crowley didn't really see how having one's nails trimmed, buffed, and given a clear coat of gloss was nessecary for the health of anyone's corporation, but he let his angel ramble on) "I've skipped the last three appointments, and well Denise, the lovely girl who does my nails called after me the other day, you wouldn't member it dear, it was while you were napping. She was rather worried. I'd never missed so many appointments before. Well I had to tell her something didn't I? "
Crowley wasn't sure he liked where this was going.
"Well I may have told her I was looking after a little. And well, I also may have told her that I would bring the aforementioned little to my next appointment? I thought if you wanted to come we could make a day of it. Go out to dinner afterwards, maybe to the park, stop at a shop or two, get you a treat?
We are getting rather low on diapers, and I know I could just miracle up more but I do so prefer to do it the human way. Oh and bay powder and lotion, we could definitely use some more of that."
Aziraphale paused in his massaging and looked down at his demon with the gentlest of gentle expressions.
"I know that your hesitant to go out when you're little darling boy. And I will certainly understand and not be a bit cross with you if you say no. I just want you to understand that if you do say yes, we won't go where anyone knows you when your big and a I will be so very, very proud to show you off as my little darling. So very, very proud."
Aziraphale squeezed Crowley's lotion softened foot.
How in the Hel.... Somewhere was Crowley supposed to say no to his angel when he put it like that? He was really didn't want to go out when he was so little. He felt like every human that laid eyes on him was thinking what a disgusting little diaper baby he was. But Aziraphale wanted it. And Aziraphale would be there with him. Nothing was ever quite so bad when Aziraphale was with him, and he did so want to make his angel happy.
Crowley nodded. "Alright angel"
Though around his pacifier it sounded more like "alllthight angle" Aziraphale knew what he meant.
The angel clapped his hands together happily. "Oh Crowley, I'm so proud of you dear boy! Everyone at the manicurists will just love you!"
Crowley gave a bit of a grimace and lied back to enjoy the rest of his baby lotion massage. He had expected something much worse that a trip to the manicurist and feeding ducks at the park. It really was Crowley's fault that Aziraphale had missed three of his manicures. Three. (A long disused half a brain cell in Crowley's mind coughed and sputtered to life) Three appointments. One every week. This would be the fourth. Four weeks. Four weeks in a month. This meant that Crowley's month of being little with Aziraphale was almost up. It could end any day now. How could it already have been a month?
Crowley wasn't ready to be big again. He wasn't ready to leave Aziraphale. He wasn't ready to go back to not eating, and sleeping alone, and miracling away his own messes when he wet himself. Crowley just wasn't ready.
Crowley was not nervous. It was more of a creeping feeling of dread that had been building since this morning. Aziraphale had woken him up, changed him, fed him breakfast, then dressed him like always. Aziraphale had paused for a few moments to coo over 'how darling' Crowley's outfit was. The angel had attired him in a dark red long sleeve shirt, light grey shortalls with black vines embroidered across the front pocket and leg cuffs, black leggings, and dark red combat boots. Crowley sort of liked it himself even if it was a little babyish. His only real objections were the snaps going up the crotch and the fact that Crowley was absolutely sure there was a significantly noticeable diaper buldge around his crotch and backside.
Aziraphale, the liar that he was, assured Crowley that there wasn't. And even if there was, absolutely no one was going to make fun of him for it. It was very normal and natural for a little of Crowley's age to wear diapers. Look, Aziraphale said, at Edgar and Ellen. No one would mind him a bit.
Well that certainly hadn't been Crowley's experience. It hadn't just been recently, with the littles who had pantsed him in the toy shop and called him diaper baby. It had begun way before that. Thousands and thousands of years before.
Crowley remembered only bits of his time as an angel. Mostly he remembered making the stars. He also remembered feeling so utterly small, he had vauge memories of returing to heaven and following around two of the other archangels. (He tried to remember which ones, but their faces blurred in hisind and it gave him a dreadful, throbbing headache when he tried.)
One day, some of the other angels cornered him. They told him that the angels he had been following around, the ones he thought were his friends,(and maybe his protectors) wanted nothing to do with him. They were disgusted to have his useless self always trailing after them, but we're two nice to say it himself? Didn't he know what everyone in heaven whispered? That he had been made wrong, God had experimented, and the experiment had failed. He was unworthy of his title of archangel. He was unworthy to be an angel at all.
Crowley kept to himself after that. Crowley could remember the endless loneliness that permeated his time in heaven, then questions, so many questions. All ricocheting around his head like pinballs. They grew louder and louder, untill he was just bursting with them. Untill he went to God. Then there was his fall. Crowley remembered his fall best of all. He felt for the first time in his existence pain, and terror, which had not untill then existed in heaven.
The demons we're surprisingly a bit better. Crowley didn't know if they knew or not. They just ignored him. He spent ages curled up in a little corner of hell rocking back and forth trying to soothe himself untill someone came up to him and told him to stop being useless go upstairs and make some trouble.
It was alright in the garden, he was a snake there most of the time. But as Adam and Eve got their eviction notice and begain rearing a new generation of the human race Crowley was sent out amongst them to make trouble too. And, as Crowley soon found out, it was easiest to make that trouble when one wasn't confined to slithering everywhere one needed to go.
He learned what he was when the humans learned it, a little. An eternal child, created to always need. Need someone to care for them, clean up after them, love them. And to balance the whole thing out there we're caregivers. Caregivers who we're made with a need to care for, well everyone and everything really. But most especially littles.
Crowley has thought he might have finally found his place in the universe. He had a name now for what he was! He could find a caregiver. Someone who wouldn't mind that now that he ate and drank like a human, he could never seem to stop wetting his robes, and occasionally (before he figured out how to miracle it away before it came out) soiled them as well. His caregiver wouldn't mind that he sucked his thumb or bits of his robe for comfort. They would hold him when he felt small and frightened and he would never feel alone again. In return Crowley would love them with everything that he was. He would protect them from heaven and hell. He would cuddle them when they were sad. He would miracle them up anything they desired.
Finding a caregiver was a very short lived dream for the demon. He learned how littles were thought of 'weak' and 'useless' being choice descriptions. Caregivers we're a bit better. They at least had something to offer, but moat people thought it was wasted on useless littles. Caregivers natural tendancies would be much more useful if they became healers or tended baseline's real proper children who might grow up to be useful in ways littles never would.
Even the caregivers who did want littles seemed to far prefer the older ones. The ones who could at least sometimes make it to the bathroom (or chamber pot or commode, or what ever was in fashion that century) Who didn't need to constantly be attached to a caregiver's hip being cuddled and bottle fed. The littlest littles, the ones like Crowley, we're often looked down upon and discarded. Even caregivers often tired of the endless diaper changes and clinging. In a world so harsh and unforging, no one could afford to provide for the needs of useless babies who would always stay that, useless babies.
Even in more modern time, when humans said they 'no longer discriminated' Where having a little was a sign of affluence and it was obvious with a look into the books of any adoption agency that older littles were still vastly preferred.
Crowley had made up his mind very early on that he just wouldn't be a little anymore. No one was going to care for him. Least of all his most beautiful and perfect angel. So he just wouldn't be little anymore. He sought out the herbs a and poultices, and later powders and pills, that would make him be less little. And Crowley never looked back.
Untill now. Now he had tasted the forbidden fruit... And it was delicious. Aziraphale was so, so kind and good to him. One month of his loving care was more than Crowley could ever deserve. Even the mirror wraiths had been lovely to him. He had made friends! Friends!
But as Aziraphale gathered up Crowley's diaper bag and hoisted the demon on his hip and made his way to the shop door, Crowley knew the world of humans would not be so kind.
Denise was a very tall woman with an afro which made her appear even taller, and five multicolored talons on each hand. The shop which was small and owned by Denise (Aziraphale had always had a thing for patronizing small businesses) was populated with two other employees. The first was middle aged man with a platinum blond dye job on his slightly receding hair, and a pink paisley shirt. The second was a young woman with pink hair who was rather loudly chomping on an atrociously large wad of bubble gum, blowing and popping the occasional bubble.
In the absence of any other customers they all converged on Aziraphale and Crowley like vultures on roadkill. Crowley hid his face in Aziraphale's neck as they all cooed over him. This only served to make them coo more at what a shy little dear he was. Crowley lifted his head up long enough to shoot them all a glare. (No one could be sufficiently cowed by Crowley's glare, as it was hidden behind his dark glasses)
Unfortunately for Crowley the nature of a manicure meant that he would have to set Crowley down. Crowley was not pleased. He squirmed unhappily when Aziraphale placed him on the big squishy sofa in the waiting area. Aziraphale kissed Crowley's cheek placatingly, and told him he would only be a little while. (He didn't insult either of them by asking the demon to be good.)
Crowley clutched his angel bear and his blankie tightly and sucked on his pacifier nervously as Aziraphale walked back with Denise and Crowley was left alone. He wasn't alone for very long however. The pink haired one, who had introduced herself as Missy, plopped down beside him. She popped another bubble. "Hey baby"
Crowley looked up at her.
"I gots an idea, how bout you and I go back and I'll do your nails, just like your Daddy's gettin done? I got lots of pretty colors to pick from."
Crowley contemplated the offer for a moment. "Black?"
Missy smiled, "Of course you cute little goth you" (on a side note Crowley had invented Goth, also Punk, but not Emo though it was heavily inspired by him and one particularly awful haircut he had once sported)
Crowley was exceptionally pleased with his shiny new black nails, which Aziraphale wasn't even charged for. Aziraphale was pleased that Crowley was pleased. And when Denise said she hoped that the two of them would be back again, Aziraphale thought it might be a real possibility. It was so lovely to go places with Crowley by his side. Aziraphale hoped that if the rest of the day went this splendidly, Crowley could be coaxed into making this a regular occurrence.
He picked Crowley up and felt his comforting weight against him. "Now dear, we shall go and get you some new toys shall we?"
He felt his little demon nod into his neck. So Aziraphale happily started of for the nearest shop that catered to littles.
Crowley refused to leave Aziraphale's side in the shop. He did consent to being put down, as Aziraphale needed his hands to carry things that weren't Crowley. Crowley even stuck by Aziraphale when he bought powder and lotion and wipes and diapers. Even though he flushed red when Aziraphale picked up the kind that proclaimed on the package that they were 'Extra absorbent' for 'Baby Littles and heavy wetters'. (Also the amount of packages of diapers Aziraphale was getting could hardly be nessicary, could it?) After getting a few new bottles, sippy cups, and clothing, as well as a shiny new red pacifier that said 'little devil' on it, they moved on to more interesting things. Namely the toys.
Aziraphale encouraged Crowley to pick some things out. He choose a large set of wooden blocks (good for building with and knocking down) a big toy dragon with shiny red scales, a sleek black plush duck, a red and black furby (though Crowley had invented them, he had never had one himself) and a mobile that had stars and planets on it. With each purchase Crowley looked back at Aziraphale worried that it was too many things, too much money, but Aziraphale just smiled and encouraged the demon on.
Once their purchases were paid for and discretely miracled back to the bookshop, with the exception of the duck which stayed with Crowley, Aziraphale took Crowley to a tiny Italian restaurant where Crowley had never been but everyone greeted Aziraphale by name. Crowley was subjected to the indignanty of a high chair and a bib. But it was rather worth it for two reasons. First that Crowley got to eat his pasta with his hands and make just as much mess as he pleased. And he pleases to make a lot of mess. (Aziraphale found his messy little demon happily eating fistfulls of pasta with sauce smeared all around his mouth and down his bib one of the most endearing sights he had ever seen. He wished very much that he had had a camera so he could capture his little looking so adorable and care free forever)
The second reason was the absolute rapture in which Aziraphale tucked away at his own pasta. Crowley had always liked to watch Aziraphale eat. He always enjoyed it so much, and Crowley enjoyed his angel enjoying things.
Once dinner was finished, and one rather messy demon was wrangled and wiped down with baby wipes, Aziraphale and Crowley headed to the park for ice cream and duck feeding.
In Aziraphale's arms, sucking on his paci and clutching his blanket and ducky, Crowley found himself suprised by how well the day had gone. No one had tried to run him out of their village, (though that might have been because London was not technically a village) No one had called him a diaper baby or a waste of space, and if Crowley was on the receiving end of any dirty looks he had been so focused on his angel, he hadn't noticed.
Maybe it was the difference of having a caregiver. Maybe it was the difference of having Aziraphale.
Yes, thought Crowley, snuggling into his angel, nothing could spoil this day now.
Crowley wouldn't admit it, but he rather like ducks. Today they hadn't sat on the bench, but walked right up to the edge of the water where a flock of ducks sensed the presence of bread and swarmed the quacking and tugging on their clothing with hungry little beaks.
Crowley had plopped himself down (with a bit of a squish, he hadn't had a diaper change in a while. Aziraphale had wanted to change him at the restaurant, but Crowley had insisted and pleaded in equal measures that it could wait untill they we're home) and was covered in hungry ducks.
Crowley begain to laugh as the ducks swarmed him. This tipped the first domino in a series of events. As Crowley laughed his pacifier fell out of his mouth. One of the ducks who witnessed this found it an enticingly shiny object and waddled up to Crowley's lap to make a grab for it. He was successful, and waddled away just as fast as his little duck feet could carry him, which was surprisingly fast.
Crowley jumped up dislodging a plethora of ducks as he went after the fowl thief. Demon chased duck. Duck ran from demon. Unbeknownst to either of them a man in an expensive suit was talking on an equally expensive phone and walking hurriedly towards them like he had somewhere important to be. (He didn't really, he was just the kind of person who thought anywhere he was or was going was important, because he was important)
Crowley focused on his duck chase didn't notice the man. The man did however notice Crowley. He did not stop or slow his rapid pace, he expected Crowley to stop for him the fact that Crowley had not seen him nonwithstanding.
Obviously disaster was imminent. The man barreled into the demon. Crowley went flying, ripping his leggings and skinning both his knees and an elbow. The man' s escaped unscaled, his expensive phone however did not. It went flying out of his hand and cracked on the ground in a heap of broken glass and warped plastic. The man after staring for a few seconds at the wreckage that used to be his cellular phone, turned on Crowley who was just sitting up holding his sore elbow to his chest and trying desperately not to cry.
"You little bastard!"
Crowley looked up at the man who was charging towards him. He picked the gangly demon up by his collar and dragged him over the pile of scarp that was formerly a phone and shoved his head down very close to it. So Crowley couldn't help but look at it. "You see that you little bastard? That's a 15,000 dollar phone you just ruined!"
Now if Crowley were feeling just slightly less little, he would have gone a snakey there and then and gave this unpleasant personage the fright of his life. Crowley however, was feeling very, very little at the moment. All this time he had been progressivly slipping farther and farther into littlespace. Now his nice day out with Aziraphale had put him in the littlest state he had ever been in. His knees and elbow hurt, he was confused and on the verge of a crying fit, he just wanted his Papa.
His Papa was coming, storming towards the man in a sort of ritcheous fury after he had seen what had been done to his little. He pushed the man back and took a shaking Crowley into his arms. "Now see here you... You... Despicable person! How dare you treat a baby in such a manner!"
The man's stare was cold as he narrowed his eyes at the sobbing little. "That's not a baby, that's a genetic mistake. If you want to take that little bastard out you should get him a leash so he doesn't bother decent people!"
What happened next was obscured in a blinding flash of white light that ended with his waking up in the hospital every bit of him aching, (He would also soon after develope an extremely bad and remarkably stubborn case of genital warts) and Crowley and Aziraphale safely tucked away back home in the bookshop.
Aziraphale healed Crowley's poor little knees and elbow and apologized endlessly to his baby. Crowley just shrugged and said "don't worry angel it happens all the time"
Aziraphale was aghast. "What do you mean it happens all the time?"
Crowley shrugged "It just does. Lots of people don't like littles."
"You mean this has happened to you before?"
Crowley nodded "Yea, when I first was on earth, before I figured out how to hide it. It really is no big deal angel. "
"No, big!? ... No big deal!?" Aziraphale took a deep breath. "Crowley dear, I'm going to change you and then I'm going ro make some tea for me and a bottle for you, and then if you please, your going to tell me all about these things that happened to you that are 'no big deal' Can you do that for me?"
Crowley shrugged. He didn't see why Aziraphale was so interested. Surely he had seen plenty of cruelty to littles in his six thousand years on earth. But, well, if it made his angel happy Crowley would tell him all of the miserable stories of his unhappy existence he wanted to hear.
Crowley was cosily settled down in Aziraphale's lap with a tummy full of milk and an only a now slightly damp diaper. He was cocooned in blankets with his plushies and dolls ad blankey to keep him company. He rested his head against his angel's chest and listened to his unnecessary, yet comforting, heartbeat.
Aziraphale asked he start from the beginning so he did. He stared with what he remembered of his creation, then heaven, his fall, hell, the garden then his time amongst the humans. He told Aziraphale that the only thing angels, demons, and humans seemed to ever agree about was that littles we're useless. He told about every time that sentiment had been echoed over and over again to him right up to his first trip to the toy store and the littles that pulled down his leggings and mocked him as he wet his diaper.
He told Aziraphale about the time that he had accidentally wet himself when he was sleeping on a boat trip in ancient Rome and woke up to the fellow he had been friends with tossing him overboard. He talked about that one unfortunate run in with a witchfinder who believed that all littles were possesed by Satan. He had been caught absentmindedly sucking his thumb and rubbing his fingers soothingly over his coat buttons. The entire towns reaction to this was to attempt to burn him ath the stake. Or maybe tourture him for a bit first under the guise of "questioning him to make sure he was possessed" and then burn him at the stake. He hadn't stayed to find out.
He told Aziraphale of ever time he was run out of a village, or a group of people had tried to corner him in a dark alley to "have some fun with him."
He relayed this with the same amount of emotion as one would use to read a particularly tedious tax return.
He didn't tell Aziraphale how frighted he was. How he had often wet or soiled himself with fear. How terribly alone and unloved he had felt. How he had often cried himself to sleep at night wondering why everyone hated him so much for a thing that he didn't choose and couldn't change.
When he had finished he looked up at Aziraphale a and noticed the tears streaming down his face. Crowley gently wiped them away with the edge of his blanky. "I don't know why you wanted to hear all this if it makes you cry angel."
Aziraphale sniffed and squeezed Crowley so tightly that if the demon had needed to breathe it would have posed a significant problem.
"Crowley dear, darling boy, I am so very, very sorry. I know I can't change any of the truly awful things that have happened to you. I want you to know that if anything like that ever happens again, I want you to come straight away and get me and I will take care of it for you. I'm so terribly sorry I didn't protect you before, but I will in the future darling. No one will ever hurt you like that again. "
"I can take care of myself angel. I did it for ages and I'm just fine" (this was largely a matter of opinion)
Aziraphale's gaze went all soft and sad at the same time. "I know dear. You're so unbelievably strong and brave my darling baby boy. But just because you can take care of yourself, doesn't mean you should always have to. You've taken such good care of me for so long Crowley now let me take care if you for a bit"
Crowley just shrugged. He didn't want to make trouble for his angel. But that's what he seemed to bring. It must be a hard enough job to look after such a baby as him without him running crying to Aziraphale every time someone made fun of him for wetting himself. It did however make him feel oddly warm and a bit gooey inside (Crowley wondered if his corporation's organs were malfunctioning) that Aziraphale had offered to stand up for him. (Someday Crowley would learn that this is how it felt to be loved)
Tears were still silently trickling down Aziraphale's cheeks so Crowley again used his blankey to wipe them away. His angel shouldn't cry for him. Crowley kissed both of Aziraphale's cheeks, where the tear tracks had glistened just moments before. "I love you" he whispered to the angel who was to good and pure for hell and earth and heaven itself, and most certainly to good and pure for the disgraceful demon Crowley.
Crowley couldn't bear to see his angel so sad. So he gave his best pleading eyes to tempt the angel. "Read to me? Winnie the Pooh?" (Aziraphale adored Whinnie the Pooh and had memoried all the books. He enjoyed it more than Crowley who had a bit of a preference for things like Alice in Wonderland and the Little Prince.)
Whinnie the Pooh had never failed to cheer up the Angel before and it did not fall short of expectations this time. Aziraphale gave a watery smile. "Would you like a bottle as well dear?"
Crowley nodded and was hoisted up on the angel's hip. As Aziraphale made milky tea that would be poured into a red baby bottle and a white angel wing mug respectively, Crowley contemplated the mind boggling fact that someway, somehow, against all odds and reason, this beautiful, perfect angel cared for him. Him. Crowley. Terrible angel and even worse demon. Disgusting little who no one wanted.
He nuzzeld into the angel's neck. There really was nothing for it, Crowley figured, but to enjoy it while it lasted.
Crowley was getting the most delightful of belly rubs. Sometime during the night he had gotten a bit too hot and wriggled out of his feetie pajamas to sleep in only his diaper and plastic pants. In the morning Aziraphale had been completely charmed by the sight of his baby splayed on his back across the bed like a languid cat. The dear thing attired in only his diaper and plastic pants, clutching his blankey and devil bear. His red pacifier gently bobbing up and down in his mouth Aziraphale couldn't resist. He miracled Crowley's soggy night diaper dry. Though he prefered by far to change Crowley the human way, he didnt want to disturb his darling demon just now by moving him about. He then miracled the baby lotion into his hand
Rubbing it between his hands to warm it, then he begins to rub his baby's exposed tummy.
He explore Crowley's ribs which he is please to see are no longer so exposed that he can stick half the length of his finger in the divits between them. He is equally pleased to find that Crowley's stomach is now flat between his hipbones and no longer concave. With just a bit of loving care (and the consumption of actual food) his demon is looking so much better.
Crowley is awake now, yellow eyes staring at the angel. His little is making the cutest little noises of pleasure as Aziraphale continues his ministrations. Crowley's whole spindly body had gone limp. Aziraphale loves these moments. He loves being the reason that Crowley looks so pleased and relaxed.
Aziraphale can hear faint hissing sounds, and notices a darkening and sagging of Crowley's diaper. He pauses, wondering if the demon will want to cover up or hide now. He knows that his baby is deeply ashamed of his diapers and inability to keep them dry. This is the first time Crowley's diapers have been so exposed to Aziraphale when Crowley was wetting them.
Crowley however doesn't seem to care about his accident at all. He just wriggles a little and nudges Aziraphale's hand to get the angel to start rubbing again.
Aziraphale's eyes go a bit misty. Crowley is placing so much trust in him. Crowley trusts him to touch such vulnerable parts of his corporation. Crowley trusts him not to make fun of his wetting like so many others had. Crowley trusts Aziraphale to care for him.
Aziraphale wants this forever. He wants Crowley hear with him, this little and affectionate, and carefree always. But Aziraphale knows that he need to give Crowley a choice in the matter. He had already pushed Crowley to be little, to wear diapers, to go outside.
The month was up and it had to be Crowley's choice to stay. Aziraphale was almost sure he would. Crowley seemed fairly happy with him, and despite a few setbacks they had made wonderful progress together. It had to be Crowley's decision though.
Besides, Crowley might want a bit of time to be big, now that the agreed upon month was up. Aziraphale would never keep Crowley from going out and driving the Bentley, or making a bit of Mischief, or whatever else the demon usually did to amuse himself. But if Aziraphale was very lucky, and he thought he just might be, Crowley would still come home to him every night for a diapering, and bottle, and a cuddle.
"Crowley darling" he said, still rubbing the demon's tummy. "It's been a moth since we made our deal dear boy, and I was wondering if you wouldn't like to be big for a while?"
Crowley stiffened a bit, and wriggled up to sit propped up on his elbows. He gave an odd little smile. "Of course angel, I'll be big again tomorrow. Very big. The biggest"
Aziraphale smiled at the demon. He had sort od figured Crowley might want a bit of time to be a bit bigger after so long (for Crowley) spent in little space. "Now Crowley, I have something very important to ask you. You can take your time to answer if you want. Remember whatever you decide I won't be cross. Do you want our relationship to continue?"
Crowley shot him an unreadable look. "Of course angel! I love you. If you still want to. It will be just like before."
Aziraphale smiled widely and kissed Crowley's face untill the demon smiled and tried to wiggle away from him. It was official Anthony J Crowley was his little now. He felt gratuitously soppy for the demon.
Crowley must have felt the same, because the rest of the day he clung to Aziraphale whining softly for kisses and cuddles. He asked several times for Aziraphale to read him stories and to feed him bottles. Aziraphale was more than happy to indulge Crowley, even if it did mean an increase in diaper changes.
All in all, it was a lovely, cozy day in with his baby. As Aziraphale tucked his freshly diapered demon into bed with his plushies, blankey, and pacifier, he couldn't help but think how lovely everything would be from now on.
In an odd turn of events Crowley was awake before Aziraphale. He sat up in bed to find the demon already dressed in his old clothes. (Including that dreadfull little shoelace/ tie/ tassle abomination Aziraphale had hoped he was rid of forever) He looked a bit stiff and uncomfortable, figiting and shifting from foot to foot when he noticed Aziraphale was awake.
This...well it just wasn't how Aziraphale had thought the morning would go. He had planned to wake Crowley up with kisses. Then he would help Crowley pick out clothes and a pullup for the day if Crowley wanted. Or, if the demon wanted to dress himself, Aziraphale would just leave him to it and go make them some breakfast after making sure his demon had a pull up on.
He knew Crowley might object slightly to a pullup when he was big, but Aziraphale was going to insist upon it for two reasons.
First his darling demon had no more control over his bladder when he was big then when he was little. (Even the strongest of suppressants taken at many times the recommend dosages hadn't been enough to completely quell Crowley's bed and pants wetting) Aziraphale couldn't really bear the thought of sending Crowley out into the world without making sure he was wearing at least some kind of protection. (Aziraphale would prefer that Crowley be snugly taped up in a thick diaper and plastic pants for good measure. He hated to see how upset his baby got when he leaked. But he knew that he would never be able to talk Crowley into wearing something that would be so visible under his ridiculously tight trousers while he was big)
Second, because Aziraphale wanted Crowley to have a constant reminder of Aziraphale discreetly tucked away under his clothes while he was out. A reminder that the angel loved him and would take care of him even when he was big. A reminder that at the end of the day he would come home and be Aziraphale's darling baby boy once again.
Apparently none of that would happen now, as for some reason Crowley felt the need to dress in secret early on the morning as if Aziraphale hadn't seen his bare corporation many, many times by now. At least, though Aziraphale with a bit of a sulk. They could still have breakfast together.
They did not have breakfast. As Aziraphale made to get up, Crowley begain to babble."Angel! Just going to say goodbye. I'm very big now and have lots of demony things to do. So I'm just going to pop off."
He darted over and gave Aziraphale a quick kiss on the cheek then was out the door before Aziraphale could even blink. Well... That hadn't gone to plan at all.
But it was alright, Aziraphale thought, Crowley was probably just feeling a bit awkward coming out of little space and couldnt wait to go for a drive in the Bentley or something.
Aziraphale got himself dressed and had a rather lonely breakfast all by his lonesome. He then puttered down to opent the bookshop for the first time in a month. It wasn't that he particularly wanted nasty customers to come in and try and make off with his precious tomes mind you. It just seemed like the ting to do. Chasing away a customer or two would distract him from the little bit of separation anxiety he could feel from his demon's absence.
Aziraphale would get used to Crowley's big days with a bit of time, he told himself. When Crowley was big they could sometimes make a day of it go to the Ritz or get absolutely plastered on wine from Aziraphale's storage room.
The at the end of the day, Crowley would be tucked in Aziraphale's arms, diaper on his bottom, pacifier in his mouth, cuddly toys and blankets clutched in thin hands, right where he belonged.
Yes, thought Aziraphale, from now on existence for the both of them would be absolutely splendid!
Crowley flopped on his slightly musty smelling bed. His apartment felt more cold and barren than ever before when he had just spent a moth in the cozy bookshop, basking in the glow of his angel's warmpth.
He wondered how long he would have to wait untill it would be appropriate to ask Aziraphale for some little time again? Ideally maybe Crowley would like a little day every month, but that would probably be far too much. A day twice a year maybe? He couldn't possibly hope for a whole month every year like he had just had. It was terribly generous for his angel to be so willing to look after him while he was little. Crowley didn't want to impose so much that Aziraphale tired of him. Maybe a month every five years?
Crowley flopped onto his back and stared at his ceiling. Why was he being such a baby about this. He had just had a month (give or take) of being little. It was more time than he had spent being little in six thousand years. Surely it should be enough? But it wasn't. It hadn't made the burning need to be little and smothered in care and affection lessen, it had just made it stronger.
It had barely been a couple hours and Crowley was already longing for the bookshop, his blankey, his toys, his pacifiers, and most importantly his angel. As the demon gave an uncomfortable wriggle in the large, rapidly cooling wet spot of pee he had just made, he could maybe admit, if only to himself and maybe his angel, that he missed his diapers too.
Sure he could miracle up one, but it would hardly be the same. Crowley found some slightly shameful comfort now in being swaddled in a thick diaper. But that comfort came from knowing that his angel had lovingly taped it on him, and when he inevitably soaked it, his angel would be there to tell him it was alright and change him with affection and tummy kisses.
The (rather unnecessarily loud in Crowley's opinion) crinkling of his diaper, and the thick bulk between his legs, and the plasticy rustle of his plastic pants had reminded him that he was a gross pants wetting baby, but he was also loved by the best angel in existence. If he wore a diaper now it would just remind him that there would be no angel to change him anymore.
Crowley would be strong, he thought as he tried to keep his lip from wobbling. He would just have to be alright untill the next time he could reasonably ask his angel for some more little time.
He miracled his mess away. He would just go back to taking his suppressants. He walked on slightly shaky legs to his bathroom. He had been talking one at a time a few times a day, but he thought his current condition called for something more drastic. He opened the bottle poured several in his hand and tipped back the handful of pills.
Unfortunately for Crowley his body did not seem to be on the same page as he was, and didn't seem to particularly want to go back to pretending to be big. It rejected the suppressant. Hard.
Crowley spent the next few hours violently reching up pills and everything he had ever eaten. (This was a slight exaggeration, but only a slight one) Sometime during his heaving he had thoroughly wet himself again. His whole thin frame shook, and he felt cold and clammy and all around ill. He was terribly worried that he would discorperate.
He didn't think that what with his current standing with Hell, they would be too keen on giving him another corporation anytime soon.
He'd never see his angel again. Never take him to the Ritz again. Never feed the ducks together. Never again have a cuddle with him. Never lay on his angel's lap nursing a warm bottle being read to with his angel's soothing voice he snuggled in further to his angel's plump warmpth. Crowley was scared.
Eventually with much more heaving and crying, and another accident or two, it begain to end. Crowley sat back in the puddle he had made on the linoleum, still shaking. He waited a while, but when no more heaving came, he decided he would get up and go to bed to sleep away the next million years.
He cleaned himself and the floor up with a tired miracle. Miracled his clothes away and fell into his bed exhausted. He curls up in his covers, but the slippery silk felt wrong against his skin. He found didn't know quite what to do with his arms without something comforting to hold. There was no Aziraphale to hold the demon either.
After a while of uncomfortable tossing and turning, Crowley shakily sat up and gathered all his pillows up. He miracled up a tartan night shirt (like one owned by a specific angel) and shoved all yje pillows into it. He made sure to pad the middle especially well. Then, lying his head on the belly of the makeshift Aziraphale, Crowley finally fell into a fit full sleep.
Aziraphale was getting a tad worried. When Crowley hadn't come home that night, Aziraphale had just told himself Crowley had needed a bit more time to be big. When Crowley still hadn't shown up the next day Aziraphale thought that maybe the demon just needed a bit more time to be big. Three days, surely that would be enough? When he wasn't home by the fourth day, Aziraphale started to fret in earnest.
He had been worried about the demon since he left. Small worries. Would Crowley eat enough? Would he remember to miracle away his accidents in a timely manner so he didn't get a rash?
Now he was fretting that he had done something wrong. Something to make Crowley not want to come back to him. What if he had found a new caregiver. Or been kidnapped (demon-napped? little-napped? Baby-napped? Snake-napped?) What if he had been kidnapped by a caregiver? Crowley was adorable. Surely any caregiver would want the little demon for their own.
Aziraphale picked up the phone, intending to call Crowley's flat for a start and see if his baby was there. The he put the phone back down. What if Crowley thought he was smothering him? Aziraphale had always been fussy. He wanted to care for things, from preserving precious books to making sure a demon he had just met didn't get soaked in an incoming downpour. What if that's why Crowley hadn't come back?
Tomorrow, Aziraphale told himself, he would call tomorrow. It would be a week after all since the demon had left. (A work week, but still in Aziraphale's opinion a week) He would just call and see if the demon wanted to come home. Surely he was feeling the need to be little again by now?
Midday the next day Aziraphale made the call. The conversation went something like this.
"Hello Crowley dear!"
"Angel?" Came the groggy reply.
"Yes Crowley dear, it's me."
"Did you want something?"
"Ahhh.. Just to see how you are?" And when you'll be coming back home to me where you belong. Aziraphale wanted to say, but he didn't want to push Crowley.
"Mm mm fine. I'mmm sleepin'.
"Oh?" Crowley was sleeping? Did he have a diaper on? Had he wet the bed? Was he alright? Crowley always got overwhelmed having to clean himself up after an accident. Was he sleeping alright without his night time bottle of warm milk? His blankey? His plushies? His dolls? His paci? And most importantly, why wasn't Crowley home sleeping with him?
"Mmmmh. Isssss that all angel?"
"Errr.... Ummmm.... Yes." Aziraphale said though he wasn't very sure of that at all.
"K" said Crowley and hung up.
Aziraphale spent the rest of the day staring forlornly out of the window, wondering what he'd done so wrong to chase away his baby, when Crowley had just agreed to be his little.
The next day he received a box of rather expensive French pastries from his favorite bakery. There was a note that read simply
To my Angel,
So apparently Crowley wasn't cross with him? Otherwise why would he be sending him delicious French pastries? Aziraphale was confused and distraught. Crowley still wasn't coming home. Aziraphale didn't know what to do. Crowley was his own person.. Demon.. Whatever. The point was Crowley could make his own choices and Aziraphale had no right to interfere.
At the same time ever instinct he had as a caregiver was screaming at him to march right over to Crowley's sad excuse for a home and scoop him up and carry him back to the bookshop where he would be safe and looked after and give him a cuddle.
Aziraphale didn't know what to do, so, like the sensible creature he was, he decided to do nothing. Literally nothing. He stopped opening the bookshop. He stopped having any interest in his books. He stopped having any interest in his three meals a day plus snacks either. He just puttered around the bookshop, which was still as cluttered as ever but somehow felt terribly, achingly empty.
Aziraphale drifted through days in a grey haze. Everything in his home only served to remind him more of his demon's absence. There was the sofa where he had given Crowley his bottles and read to him as they snuggled. The toy castle where he and the demon had played knights and dragons sat next to the sofa. Crowley's beautiful fingerpainting still hung in the wall. The bathroom had his baby's changing table stacked with diapers and wipes, lotions and powders. The demon's bath toys were still in the tub. Aziraphale's bed, which Aziraphale had thought would be Aziraphale and Crowley's bed now, was still filled with Crowley's blankey, plushies, dolls, and blankets. His red pacifier sat on the nightstand along with last night's empty bedtime bottle and the book Aziraphale had been reading to the demon.
Everything was just as Crowley had left it, patiently waiting for the demon to come back. Aziraphale feared however that they, and he would be waiting a long time.
The angel dabbed at his eyes with a tartan handkerchief. He miracled up his pajamas and got in bed. He gathered Crowley's blankie and devil bear to him. Taking in the faint babish scent of his demon. Aziraphale lied there for a very long time in a heavy grey haze. Wishing it was his baby that he was clutching.
When Aziraphale heard knocking he sat bolt upright. Immediately he was pulled from the not quite asleep, but not quite awake either state he had been in. Crowley! Oh how he hoped it might be Crowley coming back to him.
Aziraphale's short lived hopes were dashed and summarily sunk, like a ship on the rocks when he realized the knocking was coming from the bathroom mirror. Aziraphale shuffled in to find Helena, Edgar and Ellen staring back at him.
He gave them all a sad smile. (At least Aziraphale thought he was smiling, what he was doing however was more of a pained grimace.)
The twins were bouncing around trying to peek behind Aziraphale. "Is Crowley here?" "Where's Crowley?" "We miss him!" "We wanna play!"
Aziraphale felt rather like crying when he had to explain to the twins and Helena that Crowley was no longer here with him by choice. That the demon had decided to be big for a while, and went back to his own flat to do, well, whatever demons did. The twins matching smiles faded as Aziraphale informed them that he did not, in fact, know when (if ever) the demon would be back.
The twins had stopped bouncing by now and Helen wore a look of concern.
"But, that's not right!" One of the twins said (Aziraphale wasn't certain which)
"Yea, Crowley loves you to bits. He wouldn't just leave!" The other chimed in. "Does he even have his stuffies or his blankey?" "Did he take Lenore and Annabelle?" "Who will give him bottles and diaper changes?"
No, Aziraphale answered, Crowley hadn't taken any of those things, and he probably didn't want them anymore as he was big at the moment.
The twins however vehemently opposed this notion. "Crowley loves his dolls and plushies and blankets! You don't stop liking those things just cause you're big." "And you can't not be little for so long! You just can't!"
Helena sent the now distressed twins away to find Jack and Gregor for a bottle, with a kiss to each of their foreheads. Then she turned to Aziraphale and demanded he recount everything that had happened up untill Crowley had left.
When he was done, Helena looked grave. She echoed the twins sentiments "this doesn't seem right."
Aziraphale then had an idea. A good idea. (Aziraphale having an idea wasn't particularly unusual, Aziraphale had had many ideas over his thousands of years of existence. However most of them were catastrophicly bad) "Could you just check up on Crowley for me? Just pop in through his bathroom mirror and make sure he's alright?"
Helena nodded. "Yes, I rather believe that would be a good idea in present circumstances. Are you sure you do not want to go angel Aziraphale?"
Aziraphale shook his head. "I couldn't. Crowley is his own person... Errr... Demon and can make his own choices. I wouldn't want him to think I was smothering him, and loose him entirely."
Helena nodded, still looking a bit grave. "I will need something of his. Something that is close to him, a toy or piece of clothing perhaps."
Aziraphale went to the bed and retrieved Crowley's blankie. Helena stuck one slender brown hand out of the mirror, and Aziraphale gently handed her the blanket.
They nodded to each other and said their polite goodbyes. The Aziraphale was left staring at his own pathetic reflection in the mirror.
He begain to pace nervously. He hoped that Crowley was alright. That he was taking care of himself. That he would be back soon.
At the same time he worried that Crowley was alright, better than alright. He worried that Crowley was perfectly happy away from Aziraphale and didn't feel the need or even want to ever come back home to him.
Aziraphale paced harder. He debated praying, but considering recent events, he wasn't certain god was still taking incoming prayers from him.
All Aziraphale could do was wait.
Crowley didn't feel good. In fact he felt terrible. He had tried to take suppressants again twice ( in significantly smaller doses) but again he had been bent over the toilet shaking and dry heaving. Everything in his stomach had long since been evacuated.
He managed to crawl back to bed, where he covered himself up with every blanket he owned and buried his face into the Aziraphale pillow. He was so tired, and his stomach was on fire. He was also freezing. A condition that was not helped by the fact that he was lying in a puddle of his own wee that he didn't have the strength to miracle away.
His diaper area and thighs also were feeling a bit raw, but Crowley considered that a fairly minor discomfort compared to all his other woes. He just shifted to the dry side of the bed. That proved to be a temporary solution however as Crowley soon woke from a uneasy sleep to find himself in a new, freshly produced wet spot. Crowley gave up and just lied there on the bed listlessly.
He drifted in and out of a very uncomfortable sleep where in he had vauge nightmares he couldn't remember upon waking. So when he heard a faint tapping, he wasn't sure if he was awake or asleep.
The tapping persisted. Crowley grumbled and buried his head farther into pillow Aziraphale's chest. "If you're going to kill me, just come and get it over with!" He called out to whatever bugaboo was lurking around the place tapping.
He was highly alarmed however, when there we're more noises. Followed by his bedroom door opening, and a dark, blurry figure stepping in. Crowley, never much of a fighter, pulled the blankets up over his head and closed his eyes. The figure came towards him. Crowley could hear footsteps. He cowered. He was sure that whatever it was was going to eat him or drag him back down to hell... Or worse, up to heaven. Instead it just laid a gentle hand on his head.
"Demon Crowley sweetie" Came a soft voice that he was almost certain he knew. "Can you take of the blanket for me sweetheart?"
Crowley brought the blanket down far enough so that his yellow eyes peeked out. There sitting on the edge of his bed was Helena the mirror wraith.
Crowley relaxed. "Wha' r you doing here?"
"The twins wanted to play, and I couldn't find you and the angel Aziraphale told me you left, so I was worried about you and came to check on you."
"Mmmm fine. And I can't play... Mmm not little anymore."
"Are you sure sweetie? You don't look very well. Are you sure you wouldn't like to tell me what's wrong, then we could get you out of that wet bed and cleaned up? Maybe have a nice warm bottle?"
"Noooo mmmm fine"
Helena petted his hair. "Please tell me what's wrong? I won't be mad."
Crowley rather wanted his suffering to end at this point, so he gave in and told Helena "I took pills. Little suppressants, nnnn they made me sick."
Helena's hand was still stroking Crowley's hair, much like Aziraphale used to do. "And why did you do that instead of going back to Aziraphale?"
" I can't. ''ziraphale let me be little for a month. Now I have to be big again. ''ziraphale said I should be big. He's only gonna take care of me sometimes, when I absolutely need to be little like every five years or so. That way he won't get tired of me, n I get to be little sometimes."
Helena, who had never met an angel or demon before Aziraphale and Crowley wondered if they were all this stupid.
"Crowley sweetie," Helena said as gently as she possibly could "I don't think that's what Aziraphale meant at all. When I saw the Angel Aziraphale he seemed very upset that you hadn't come home."
Crowley sat bolt upright, which made his vision go a little black around the edges for a second or two.
Helena placed her hands in his shoulders to steady the demon. "What are you doing sweetie?"
" 'ziraphale is sad. Gonna go be big n make him happy again."
"Crowley sweetheart, I think you being big is what's making him sad."
Crowley looked adorably confused, and let out an articulate "whaaaa?"
Helena put it in the simplest terms she possible could "Crowley, Aziraphale likes it when you're little. He likes taking care of you. When you're gone, he misses you, and it makes him sad."
Crowley nose scrunched up and his unfocused yellow eyes showed no signs of recognition. "But I'mmm groooosss when I'm little. Looookkk!" Crowley cried, wrenching the blankets off himself to show his soaked boxers and bed as if this wasn't something that Helena hadn't already known from the instant she stepped in his bedroom. ( Helena was very familiar with the faint smell of pee coming from the bed. Also Crowley had wrapped all the blankets around him exposing his first wet patch on the opposite side of the bed.)
Helena resisted the urge to sigh. "Sweetie, I don't think you're disgusting, and neither does Aziraphale." (Dumb as a box of rocks maybe, but not disgusting) She gathered the demon on her lap paying no mind to the dampness that was seeping into her skirts. "How about this. We take care if you for a bit. Just a little while. You know the twins would love to dress you up and give you a bottle and have a cuddle. Then we call Aziraphale so he can see you and know you're alright. Then he can decide if he wants to take care of you or not.(The only person who had any doubt that Aziraphale wouldn't jump at the chance to have his baby back was the baby in question.) And if he doesn't you can stay with us for a while, the twins would just love that. This way Aziraphale won't have any pressure on him to care for you just because no one else will."
That, thought Crowley, made sense. Perfect sense. And when Aziraphale told them he had had enough of Crowley for a while, he could stay with the twins for a little bit untill he felt big again, or they got tired of him, or Aziraphale wanted to be his Papa again. Crowley gave a solemn nod. "Okay"
Helena carried Crowley over to the bathroom mirror where the twins were peering in, waiting to see if their friend was alright.
"Edgar, Ellen, sweethearts, would you please go and get some diapering supplies. Don't forget the rash cream. And some blankets and pillows. One of your pacifiers, maybe a plush toy, and two bottles one of warm ginger tea and the other with cold juice. Also some of your clothes that might fit Crowley. Something soft ans comfortable, I think. Also, please tell Jack or Gregor to go and get the Angel Aziraphale if you will. "
The twins nodded. "Is Crowley alright?" "Is Aziraphale going to take him home?" "Are we going to take care of him?" "We'll take really good care of him!" "We won't let him run off and pretend to be big."
Helena smiled. "We're going to take care of him until the angel Aziraphale comes. If the demon Crowley doesn't go back with him, then he will come home with us."
The twins cheered, then scurried off to complete their appointed tasks. Helena sat both herself and Crowley on a dry bit of the bed from somewhere in her many mismatched layers she produced a familiar blankie. Crowley latched on to it and immediately begain sucking on the ribbon fringe. Helena started singing softly to him a rather morbid albeit relaxing tune about a higwayman and his lover who killed herself rather than betray him. It sounded vaguely familiar he thought, as Helena stroked his hair.
The twins returned with Jack in tow. They all had their arms full off things which they plopped in a great pile in the middle of Crowley's bedroom. He was laid out on a changing mat and divested of his underhsirt and soaked black boxers, which were the only items of clothing he wore.
It was the first time anyone other than Aziraphale had changed Crowley and Crowley was mortified. It didn't help that the twins stared at his genitalia in a sort of awe (this brought up questions in Crowley's mind about what exactly the demon wraiths had between their legs, but well, it was rather rude to ask.) untill Helena shooed them off to "go and distract the baby from his diaper change."
Crowley thought that there was nothing the twins could do to take his mind off this new humiliation. But they proved him wrong. They sat on either side of him and each held up one hand. A crack stated to form between their outstreched hands, it grew wider and wider until Crowley could see a multicolored swirling galaxy shinning through. He stared at it. It wasn't any of the ones he had created. He knew that deep down in his (formerly) celestial form. Then all at once Crowley realized what was happing. The twins we're doing this. It was an illusion they had created for him, like a mobile, but much cooler. (Crowley did not have the heart to tell the twins that there we're no dismembered eyeballs or random guernsey cows floating in space)
The illusion worked. Crowley was so caught up watching the galaxy swirl and comets shoot about that before he knew it Helena had finished pinning him up in thick cloth diapers (complete with a thick layering of diaper rash cream on a rather nasty looking diaper rash the demon had acquired) and was pulling up a pair if pink plastic pants with fat little ducks waddling across them. (Crowley might have complained a bit, though he rather did like the ducks, but Helena and the twins we're being so nice to him and he didn't want to seem ungrateful.)
The twins then took over and attempted to dress him like he was one of their creepy dolls. Keeping in mind Crowley's preferred color scheme, the twins had picked out a big soft black knitted sweater, black and white stripped thigh high socks (that would be more like knee socks on Crowley's gangly legs) and a red skirt, which had fuzzy white bunnies hopping along the bottom edge.
The twins wrangled the sweater over his head, and with much maneuvering and pulling they got him in it. All arms and head eventually in their appointed holes. Then the pulled up the socks, one twin holding up his thin leg, the other pulling on the sock. Crowley had tried to do it himself, or at leasy help with his own dressing, but the twins had just batted his hands away and told him if he was good and let them do this, there would be lots of cuddles later. Crowley gave up. Cuddles sounded nice anyway.
The twins fore went the skirt. They came to the mutual decision that they needed to see Crowley's diapers at all times. Since Crowley was, in the twin's opinions, dreadful at knowing both when he had wet himself and asking someone to change his diaper, the twins would just have to do it for him. They would see when he was wet and find someone to change him so his diaper rash could go away and he wouldn't get another one.
Crowley it should be noted was not particularly pleased with this plan. However, it did save him from the embarrassment of having to ask for his own diaper changed. Which he often just didn't do. Aziraphale usually notice fairly soon anyway.
Jack picked up Crowley and bounced him on his hip as the twins arranged pillows and blankets in a corner of the bedroom. Jack smelt of formaldehyde had a stupidly large and slightly unsettling grin. He mock wispered in Crowley's ear "If you come and stay with us, Helena hides the sweets, but don't worry I have a stash that im perfectly willing to share with cute babies."
Helena looked up from where she was was fluffing pillows. "I don't hide the sweets from the babies. I had them from you, you twit."
Jack placed the hand that wasn't supporting Crowley's diapered bum on his chest. "Tisk, tisk, tisk," he said in his best impression of someone's offended auntie "such language in front of the children."
Helena gave in and let out a long suffering sigh. The twins giggled.
Jack turned to Crowley again. "I'm the fun one. Gregor is boring and Helena is mean. (Here he punctuated his sentiment by sticking out his tongue at Helena) I let littles play in my laboratory and conduct experiments with me"
"Poking at dead things all day does not under any way fall the category of science."
"You don't understand my scientific genius!" Jack laid his hand across his forehead dramatically. Which made Crowley give a little smile. (It should be noted that Jack only had the barest idea of what science was. He had read Frankenstein and Herbert West Reanimatior and decided to become a scientist. What Jack belived science to be was stitching together pieces of dead things and trying to make them become alive again. Jack however always failed at this, maybe because he only had the barest idea of what 'alive' meant in the first place.)
Jack plopped down on the blanket with Crowley. Helena sat next to him, and one of the twin's climbed in her lap. Jack placed a pillow down in his lap, and then laid Crowley's head gently down onto the pillow. The twin in Helena's lap produced to bottle of ginger tea, and brought it to Crowley's lips. The demon latched on reflexively. The remaining twin laid beside Crowley, covering them both with a blanket and rubbing the demon's exceedingly sore tummy.
Crowley nursed his bottle. The twins sucked their pacifiers. They all fell into a comfortable silence. Crowley was warm and comfortable and being fed something that was soothing his achey tummy, things were getting better for the demon now. But he couldn't help but think that the situation would be much improved if Aziraphale was here with them.
Aziraphale's first reaction to seeing his baby snuggled up in a pile of pillows, blankets, and mirror wraiths was relief. His second was jealousy. Crowley looked so relaxed in the arms of others, when he should be in Aziraphale's arms looking that way.
Helena extracted herself from the pile of sleeping littles. She picked up and carried the twin that had been on her lap. They opened their eyes and blearily blinked at the angel. Then the twin stuck one of Helena's many braids in their mouth and begin to gnaw on the bead at the end of it. Helena produced a pink pacifier out of somewhere in her skirts and gently removed the now slobbery braid from the twin's mouth and replaced it with the pacifier.
The twin, still half asleep was then handed off to Gregor, who went over to sit with Jack, Crowley and the other twin.
Helena took Aziraphale's arm and gently led him to Crowley's living room. (Which was a rather generous term for a room that housed only a television table and throne.) She turned to Aziraphale. "The demon Crowley seems to be under the impression that you had an arrangement that Crowley would only be little and under your care only when he absolutely couldn't be big anymore. I believe the time frame he gave me was a month every five years. (Mirror wraiths had very little concept of time, but Helena instinctivly knew that however much time this would amount to was not enough for Crowley)
Aziraphale's eyes widened "Why on earth would he think that!? We did have a bit of a trial period to make certain the entire thing would work, but it certainly did. And Crowley was quite happy. He seemed quite happy. And hr agreed that we should continue our relationship as it was! Why would he want to leave?"
Idiots! Helena resisted the urge to bash her head against the wall. Or Aziraphale's. As satisfing as that would be, it would not get her any closer to the ultimate goal of making sure that Aziraphale and Crowley were one again reunited as caregiver and little and both of them knew it.
Helena gathered herself up and used a more patient and clearer method of speaking than she had ever used on the twins. " Angel Aziraphale, I think that the little demon Crowley will do whatever he thinks you want him do. And in this case he thinks that you are only willing to care for him for short periods of time."
Aziraphale was looking more and more distraught. He was wringing a tartan handkerchief in his hands and pacing. "Oh dear. Oh dear, I thought I was perfectly clear. I know that the poor dear boy has trouble believing that I love him. But I really did think we had understood each other."
Aziraphale dabbed at his eyes. Helena placed a reassuring hand on the angel's arm. "Gregor once told me that things do not change but with time and persistence." Helena paused "I think he read it somewhere. But my point rather is that you cannot expect the demon Crowley to change the way he thinks in so quickly."
Aziraphale sniffed. He had always known more or less what to do in his life. Follow God's orders. Do what was goo, and compassionate, and kind. Often Aziraphale hadn't wanted to do the "right thing" (as dictated by God and/or Gabriel) now all Aziraphale wanted was to do the right thing by Crowley. He just wasn't certain what that was. "What do I do?" He pleaded to Helena.
Helena patted Aziraphale's arm. "Do not fret so. You have others who care for both you and the little demon Crowley. We will help you. And, " said Helena with a smile "I have an idea."
Crowley woke up to two notable things. First that his diaper was wet, and that wet cloth diapers felt very different than his wet disposables did. The second was that his angel was standing over him. He began to reach up to make grabby hands at his angel. Quickly though he pulled them back, and muttered a quite "sorry" from behind his pacifier.
Aziraphale picked the demon up anyway and carried him away from the pile of pillows and sleeping mirror wraiths. He took Crowley to his living room, but miracled up a soft squishy sofa for them instead of sitting on Crowley's throne. (Which was the only available seating in the entirety of the apartment. Crowley had never seen the need to by a second chair as he was the only person who ever came in his apartment.)
Aziraphale arranged them so that Aziraphale sat on the sofa and Crowley sat on his lap facing the angel. "Now dear, whatever are you sorry for?"
"Not being able to be big like I should be."
Aziraphale stroked the demon's face. "Darling when I asked if you wanted to be big for a bit, I meant it as a question, dear boy, not a suggestion. I fully assumed that you would come back when you felt little for a bottle and a diaper and to go back to being my baby. I was quite lonely when you didn't come back you know. I miss you when you're not there. You are certainly free to go off and do whatever you want when you're big, but you're certainly free to stay with me as well"
"Sorry" Said Crowley again.
"Darling, I want you to come home with me and be my little. Not for a little while but for ever. Till we turn to dust. If you need or want to be big for a while that's more than fine. I love you when you're big. I love you when you're little. But I don't want you to be big or little just because you think it's what I want dear boy. All I want is for you to be happy and looked after and preferably with me, whatever you are. And I can absolutely never see this happening, but if something ever happenes and I can't or don't wish to care for you for any period of time. Helen said that she, Gregor, Jack, and the twins would be more than happy to look after you for a little while. Now is that alright with you." There, thought Aziraphale, he thought that had covered everything that Helena had mentioned. He'd spoken clearly like she had said to. Made sure he told Crowley that he was loved. He would adress all of Crowley's gnawing insecurities over and over again until they were no longer there to trouble the demon. It wouldn't fix them fot some time of course. But it might be a start. Maybe at the least, Crowley would run off every other day but cause he was convinced Aziraphale didn't want him anymore.
Of course it was alright with Crowley. It was all he had ever wanted. To be with Aziraphale. Now he was presented with the chance to be with his angel when he was both big and little. Crowley couldn't help but feel it was to good to be true, and that something would happen, probably something he would do to make Aziraphale not want him anymore. But that could be years away. Crowley just clung to Aziraphale and said a simple "yes."
"Now dear boy, would you like to be big or little for a while? Either way you do need a diaper change." He patted Crowley's bottom.
Crowley looked down and gathered up his courage. (it should be noted there wasn't a particular lot to gather) "I'm little"
Aziraphale kissed Crowley on the nose and scooped him up. "Would you like your diaper changed here, or in the bedroom."
Most of the mirror wraiths had already seen him get diapered before so the demon didn't suppose it mattered. So he muttered into Aziraphale's neck "bedroom" Maybe the twins would show him the galaxy again. It really was, thought Crowley, a neat trick.
The twins we're perfectly happy to distract Crowley again. Until the galaxy that Crowley was watching swirl calming suddenly disappeared as the twins scuttled down to where Aziraphale was changing his diaper. They watched in awe as Aziraphale miracled away the demon's diaper rash.
Two sets of pale blue eyes stared at the angel. "Aziraphale?" "When we get diaper rashes, will you make them go away for us like that too?" "Please?"
Aziraphale smiled, "Of course, dears."
The twins then nodded, and crawled back to Crowley where they made a game of the demon suggesting different things for the twins to put in their little illusion. They could apparently do other things, make gardens, and forests, alien landscapes, worlds makes of candy appear. They were limited only by their imaginations and concepts that they could grasp. Crowley still like the stars best.
Crowley was soon powdered and lotioned, and pinned up in fresh dry diapers (borrowed from the diaper bag Helena had had the twins bring) and the ducky plastic pants. The twins fetched the red skirt and helped (or at least tried to help) Aziraphale pull it up the demon's long, long legs and over his diapers.
Aziraphale turned to Crowley. "Darling, I think is best we go home now. Is that alright with you?"
Aziraphale saw Helena nodding approvingly from across the room. Ask his approval, she had said. Give him small choices and make it clear that he would still be loved no matter what his answer was.
"Now dear, would you like the twins, and their caretakers to come with us back to the bookshop?"
Crowley looked at the mirror wraith and back again nervously.
"It's alright darling, no one will be upset whatever you choose."
"Wan the twins to come too." Crowley mumbled.
The baby was then rewarded with a kiss on the cheek.
Aziraphale saw Helena smile. It would no doubt be difficult to get Crowley to express any desires of his own free will. Which was quite ironic, if you think about it, that a demon who's forte was desire should be so reticent with his own. But, well, Crowley was always a bit of an odd duck, wasn't he. However with Helena's help he had made a start. Crowley would one day be content, and happy, and sure of himself (or at least sure enough of himself to ask for things small things even, an ice cream, a toy, a cuddle) if it killed him. Aziraphale was determined to undertake this process with all of the care, love and focus he used when repairing one of his beloved books.
He kissed the demon again, watching as the mirror wraiths gathered up the twins and everything they had brought. Yes, they'd be alrigt in the end, him and Crowley... probably.
Crowley was back where he belonged. Not in heaven, not in Hell, not in a barren apartment, but a cluttered and slightly dusty bookshop with the angel who loved him.
He was currently playing with his toy castle with the twins. Aziraphale and the other mirror wraiths made sure they had full sippy cups and dry diapers, and plenty of blankets and pillows to make themselves comfortable on. Then they left the littles to their game and retired with cups of tea (and coffee for Jack, the heathen that he was) for conversation.
The conversation was mostly about Crowley. Aziraphale half expected the demon to somehow know that they we're speaking of him and burst in with a few choice words in mind, but he never did. Aziraphale spoke about Crowley and the others listened, occasionally interjecting with a question, until they had finished.
It was Gregor who was usually very quite who made the observation, "Crowley is not two separate entities. Big or little Crowley is still Crowley. And his one desire seems to be to please the one he loves, which is you Aziraphale. He is at his most vulnerable with you because he cares for you, and to care is to make vulnerable. Even more so because he is little."
It rather hit Aziraphale just than, like a wall of hellfire or a swing from a flaming sword, just how much Crowley loved him. How much he always had. How far the demon had always gone out of his way to please Aziraphale. Aziraphale had always fancied himself a being of love, but Crowley, Crowley was truly a creature of boundless love. (At least for Aziraphale)
Helena brought the Angel out of his mussings. " He rather reminds me of the twins when I first met them."
Aziraphale had never thought of the mirror wraiths having a past. They seemed as if they had simply been always she way they were, and would always continue to be that way. Curious he encourages Helena to continued.
Apparently Helena had existed floating around her dimension, occasionally popping by to earth. She observed many things over many years, and one day had se had simply decided she wanted to become solid so that she could experience the world as the living did. So she became solid, because it never occurred to her that she couldn't do it. The she wandered around the mirror world for a while before coming to mansion where she now resided.
The twins we're already there, but not quite as Aziraphale knew them now. Feral, was the word that Helena used. They were solid like ahe was, but they lived there with another mirror wraith who was not nearly as solid as they. Though not quite in the natural translucent state of mirror wraiths either. They called her Mama. Though they thought of her as their mother it seemed that she did not care to care for the twins in the way a mother or caregiver ought to. The twins clamored for the love and affection Mama did not give, even as they did not no quite what it was they wanted.
Helena had had a string desire to give the twins the care their 'Mama' would not, as she found them to be quite clever and charming when they weren't trying to chew on her leg or attempting to eat the wallpaper. Eventually Helena made a home with the twins, and Mama showed up less and less. Others throughout the years passed through, but only Jack and Gregor stayed. They two enjoyed the comfortable life Heleba had built and caring for the twins.
"She stills shows up sometimes, dreadfully thing!" As Helena got more agitated the bit of blurting all mirror wraiths had around their edges intensified. "And the twins are so happy to see her and she couldn't care less!"
Gregor laid a hand over Helena's significantly blurrier one. She took a deep breath. "My point is, that Crowley and the twins are all littles who have been hurt in similar ways. It takes time to make a home, to make them understand the way the ought to be loved. And I rather think that the twin's association with the demon Crowley will be good for him, as they have been as he has been."
Aziraphale agreed heartily. He permitted himself to wonder a bit why the universe was so dreadful to wonderful creatures like the twins and Crowley, who as if knowing they had been mentioned came bursting in, dragging Crowley behind them, proclaiming their and Crowley's need for diaper changes. They wiggled into Jack and Helena's laps and Crowley climbed into his. Looking down at the little in his lap, Aziraphale was only more determined than ever to make sure that Crowley was one day as happy and comfortable as the twins had become.
Aziraphale had discovered online shopping. He had a specific idea of what he wanted and had booted up the ancient (or so said Crowley) computer that Crowley had shown him how to use in many painstaking hours of explanation. He brought up the google dot com and searched. It brought up more results than he had expected, and after a bit of tentative clucking on things Aziraphale discovered that he could actually purchase the item over the interweb!
The fact that Aziraphale didn't own a credit card and thought that a PayPal was a friend who lent you money didn't stop the angel in the least. He expected it to work and so it did.
This led to him looking up other items for his darling baby boy. There was such variety, and Crowley would definitely like this, and he most certainly needed some of those, and well those were just adorable weren't they?
Now standing in the bookshop staring up at the mountain of boxes a delivery man had just placed into his bookshop, he couldn't help but think that he had maybe overdone it a tad.
Crowley had toddled down to investigate the noise. He was sucking on a paci, and clutching Lenore, and Aziraphale recognized his wet diaper walk. (more of a waddle really) Crowley came up to the angel and eyed the stacks of boxes. He popped the pacifier out of his mouth. "Books?" He guessed.
"Err... No. It's... Other things."
Crowley raised an eyebrow. "Do you have a shopping addiction I should know about angel?" Crowley was apparently not completely little today. Though he was still clutching to his doll and pacifier, Aziraphale certainly wouldn't mention it. Crowley could be as big or little or whatever mixture of the two he pleased.
"No, there, err... For you actually."
Crowley raised both eyebrows this time. "I don't need anything else." He told the angel clutching Lenore tighter to his chest. "And anyway, we haven't even put up my mobile from the last time."
"Ah.. Yes... Been meaning to do that. So I take it you don't want to know what's inside then?"
"I never said that angel!'
Aziraphale smiled. He insisted Crowley have a diaper change first, ignoring the demon's unconvincing whines of "it can wait." Aziraphale could respect most of Crowley's decisions, just not ones that led to diaper rash.
When his baby was suitably clean and dry, he miracled the boxes into the sitting room. Aziraphale preferred doing many things the human way, but lugging around heavy and awkwardly shaped boxes was not one of them.
Aziraphale opened two of the larger ones first, and was fathers surprised to see that the contents of both boxes we're in peices, with one lengthy instruction manual per box. (Aziraphale had not bothered to read the part of the item description that said 'some assembly required') Aziraphale got the reading glasses he didn't need, and started in on the first manual.
Crowley was soon bored. Aziraphale had to be the only being in existence who actually ever bothered to read the instructions, cover to cover even. Crowley wanted to see what was in to other boxes, but figured that his angel would be cross with him if he opened them without him. So Crowley had to think of something else to occupy himself with. Luckily Aziraphale had removed all of the parts of his purchases and was laying them on the floor, which left two large boxes of styrofoam packing peanuts. They weren't really bid enough for a tall gangly demon to play in, but they we're more than big enough for a smallish red and black snake to play in. Crowley snuck a peak at Aziraphale, who's face was comforted in concentration as he tried to figure out the minute differences between screws A and B. (It is large a matter of debate if there was any difference at all) The demon smiled, he doubted Aziraphale would notice at all.
Aziraphale did in fact notice the sudden absence of Crowley and the sudden presence of a snake writhing around in the cardboard boxes, spreading packing peanuts all over the floor as he happily writhed about. Aziraphale just smiled, and went back to wrestling with his purchases.
Aziraphale did manage to get the first one complete, with only minimal swearing. He was rather proud of himself, even if maybe in the end one or two miracles were used.
He found his baby buried in packing peanuts so that only two little yellow eyes could be seen. He picked him up and happily took him over to show him his completed project.
'No' Crowley thought.
"No" Crowley said.
"Why ever not my dear? I'm sure it will be so much more comfortable for you when we go out."
"I'm not a baby."
Aziraphale used ever ounce of angelic willpower he had not to roll his eyes.
"Oh well then, we can not use it if you don't want to. I did have a special feature added that I thought that maybe you would like. But if you're sure."
"What special feature?" Crowley's interests were peaked.
"Oh, you'd have to get inside to see dear."
Crowley looked at stroller. It was black and stylish looking with a cream, black, and red tartan hood. It looked rather nice for a stroller, but Crowley could only think of what a baby he'd look like in it. Aziraphale had bought it for him however, and just one peek inside where there was no one else about couldn't hurt. He became signifantly more human shaped and crawled in. The thing was in a reclining position, so it was more like a pram at the moment than a stroller.
"Lay back dear."
Crowley did. It was rather comfortable, nice and dark with some blankets and plushies it wouldn't be a bad napping spot at all. Aziraphale turned down the hood. And suddenly the darkness was lit with a rainbow of colors and stars dancing around the inside of the pram. This thought Crowley, wouldn't be so bad after all, as long as Aziraphale kept the top down so no one could see him.
He felt the stroller being moved, and well, that really was quite nice thought Crowley drowsily. He gave a jaw dislocating yawn. (Literally, Crowley was a snake after all) It wouldn't hurt too much if he just closed his eyes for a moment.
A moment turned out to be many moments, and Crowley hardly notices when Aziraphale reached in to give him his pacifier, blankie, snake plushie, and to tuck him in with soft blankets.
While Aziraphale wasn't sure Crowley would be quite ready to go out in it, he didn't think that the pram would be going anywhere anytime soon.
Aziraphale had also bought Crowley a black play tent for the bookshop, that was circled by a red playpen. It made Crowley feel like he had his own castle with a wall, keeping him safe from the threats outside. (Though the only real threats in the bookshop we're annoying customers and inconvenient diaper changes)
He gathered up all of his toys and blankie and placed them in the tent, along with his blankets, pillows, and spare pacifiers. He also made Aziraphale crawl in the play tent with him. If he was gathering up his most precious things to keep safe in the play tent, of course his angel needed to be in there.
Aziraphale had the idea of also storing some of Crowley's favorite books in the tent as well so Aziraphale and Crowley could cuddle up there together and read. Crowley had just finished his bottle, and Aziraphale had finished the chapter of the Wizard of Oz they were on, when Crowley made a tentative request.
The angel in question smiled down at him. "Yes dear?"
"Can the, ummm... If you wouldn't mind... I mean we won't make a mess. Or if we do, we'll clean it right up. And we'll be quite. So can I?"
"Err... Crowley you haven't actually asked me anything yet."
"Oh," This was harder than he had thought. His angel was definitely going to say no anyway. "Can I invite the twins over to play, I wanna show them my playtent?"
"Oh of course!" Aziraphale beamed.
Crowley scrunched his eyebrows together, he had definitely expected a "no." "Aren't you worried we're gonna be loud and messy?"
"Well I would appreciate it of you didn't touch my books without permission, and didn't break anything on purpose, but I don't see why you shouldn't have your friends over."
The twins were even more thrilled than Crowley at the prospect. Soon the play date morphed into a sleep over. (An odd choice of activity for creatures who did not technically need to sleep.) After the twins and Crowley had ironed out the details of all the things they would do and all the games they would play, Aziraphale sent Crowley to go and play and Helena did the same for the twins.
Aziraphale looked at Helena, "Are you certain you're alright with letting the twins come over without you."
Helena nodded "I trust you angel Aziraphale to look after them, and if you don't mind I can link a few of your mirror's to our home so that we may travel directly to and from you dwelling."
The twins clambored through the mirror the next day. Both were clad in black floral onesies with pink skirts, a oversized tartan shirt hanging open and a too large purple sweater over that. Pink stripped socks, and rather beat up looking black boots, and necklaces made of what appeared to be doll eyes completed the assemble.
The both carried identical purple diaper bags, several dolls, and one large suitcase plastered with what looked to bits of various old fashioned looking wall papers. The excitedly scurried over to hug Aziraphale and Crowley. They deposited the luggage in the sitting room and Crowley excitedly showed them his playtent. The twins loved it, exclaiming that it was like a blanket fort you never had to take down.
They played for a long while in the playtent. The twins apparently could make all sorts of illusions that made playing even more fun once they mad absolutely certain it wouldn't scare Crowley. If the playtent was a ship, the twins could make it seem as if it was really floating on the ocean.
They could make it seem as if they were in the middle of a jungle or on the moon. It was great fun thought if you touched the water or a leaf, your hand would go straight through, and you would get a bit of a chill up your spine.
They were between games and just laying in the tent talking when the subject of play parks came up. Apparently the twins had never been to one and wanted to know if Crowley had. They had read about them, and thought the sounded great fun. Crowley shook his head, he hadn't, though he did know that there were little's play parks in London. The twins then decided that they must all go to a play park.
Crowley wasn't sure he wanted to bother Aziraphale, after all he already had had the twins over, wasn't that enough imposition on his angel for now? But he did want to make his friends happy.
Aziraphale said "Yes."
Though he did insist in diaper changes all around before they left, and fussed forever over what to take. Should he take all three diaper bags? Just one? Bottles, they surely need bottles. And how cold was it out now? Would they need coats?
Aziraphale also clipped all of their pacifiers to their clothing. Which the twins didn't mind at all. (Their pacifier clips, like their pacifiers were identical and purple) Crowley's was in the shape of a grey snake, and it somehow felt even more babish than just sucking on the paci. But he had little time to worry about that, or if he should put his dolls in the bag instead of holding them, or if the buldge of his diapers could be seen in his pants, (It could) because the twins were grabbing his hand and dragging him out the door, chattering about how much fun they were going to have.
The twins got rather quite as they walked through the bustling London streets. Crowley looked at them where they wete walking a bit behind him and Aziraphale and noticed that they were clinging together and looked a bit overwhelmed.
Crowley realized that it must be rather overwhelming for the twins. All this noise, all these people, in a world that was so unfamiliar to them. He pulled on Aziraphale's sleeve to get the angel's attention. Then he and Aziraphale dropped back and each took one of the twin's hands.
They were in luck and the little's play park that they visited was largely empty. It was after all a bit of an odd hour for people who didn't have the liberty of having a shop which they could close at anytime because the didn't actually want to sell anything in said shop. Aziraphale was quite glad, as it would be much better for both the self-conscious Crowley and the crowd phobic twins if they had a bit of space to themselves.
Aziraphale settled down on a bench and fished a book out of the diaper bag. (He had in the end, only brought one, which was Crowley's. Though it had been stuffed far past the limits of any bag not owned by a supernatural entity) The twins, seeming far less overwhelmed now they were off the crowded streets, pulled Crowley towards the slides.
It was easy for Crowley to forget his embarrassment when he was with the twins. He got so wrapped up in their world, and way of being, in which odd things were perfectly acceptable, that it suddenly didn't matter that his sweater had rode up and you could see the waistband of his diaper. The twins didn't mind. Aziraphale didn't mind. And they were really all the important people. So why should he mind?
They methodically played their way through the park. They had gotten through the slides, the jungle gym, the seesaw, the merry go round, the spring riders, when the twins made the executive decision they should all go and get their diapers changed before heading to the swings. Crowley of course followed along, he did rather need his diaper changed as well.
Aziraphale took them one at a time to the changing room set up by the park. Crowley went first, by the twin's insistence. Freshly diapered, Crowley headed over to the swings to wait for Edgar and Ellen.
He had been having fun. The twins knew all the best and weirdest games to play. And the fact that they could become significantly less solid at will made things like see sawing all the more fun. (And probably slightly more dangerous for the only corporeal being playing) Crowley wasn't feeling at all self conscious as he began swinging happily, waiting for the twins to come to play.
He tipped his head back as he swung, letting the cool breeze run through his curls. Then his feet made impact with something solid. Crowley skidded to a stop.
In front of him stood an young baseline, in maybe his early twenties, adorned in a hoodie and track pants, a scowl darkening his face. "Hey freak, I want that swing?"
Crowley turned to look at the five other empty swings beside his. Then at the other swing set a little farther down the park. Then he looked back at the baseline and scowled back. "No. Get your own."
The baseline's eyes narrowed. "I said I wanted that one."
"And I said no" Crowley popped his pacifier back in his mouth and begin to swing again. Forcing the baseline to either move or be hit with Crowley's combat boot laden feet.
The baseline chose to move, and went off somewhere. Crowley didn't particular care where. He was just glad to be rid of the weird, rude, and slightly creepy (and not in the semi good way the twins were) personage.
Crowley smirked at his triumph over evil, well... Over slight annoyance. When he felt a hard push at his back as he swung forwards. This and the motion of the swing caused Crowley to loose his grip on the chains and go flying towards the ground. Right before he found himself splayed on the ground with a mouth full of dirt, two skinned knees, and a broken wrist, he wondered if God had slapped a 'kick me' sign on his back shortly after his creation that he had never noticed.
The twins who had seen the baseline sneak around and rather violently push Crowley off his swing, were not pleased with this blatant display of demon abuse. They stomped right over to the swing which the baseline was now standing on. "You hurt our friend!"
"YeP" he replied popping the p. "What ya gonna do about it... Freaks?"
The twins shared a look. Then they both scanned the park to make sure that no one else was around. They turned back to the baseline and started to change. Always a bit blurry, they begin to become almost transparent. They grew taller and thinner, their hands and fingers grew impossibly long and mishapen. Their faces lost features and became darkened and contorted grotesque parodies of their former selves.
The baseline went pale. He fell backwards off the swing with a heavy thud, scrambling backwards in the dirt. A trail of wetness darkened his pantlegs as he made a series of choked garbled noises. The twins made a deep, unholy, reverberating sound in unison and lunged forwards. The baseline scrambled to his feet and was out of the park faster then he'd ever moved in his life.
The twins turned towards their friend who had stopped sobbing to stare at them. They became signifantly more solid and regained their usual features. They started towards Crowley, intending to help their friend up, but they pulled back unsure.
They shared a worried look. "Are you frightened of us now?" "We're sorry" "We only meant to scare him, not you" "Do you still want to be friends?"
Crowley who had seen some unpleasant looking things (and demons, for instance Hastur) in Hell, was still a little bit off put by the weird twisted nightmare creatures that were his friend's natural forms. It had frightened him a little, just the teensiest bit, when they had suddenly become something from the Conjuring. But these were his friends. Edgar and Ellen. Who made him his blankie and distracted him so he wouldn't be embarrassed during diaper changes. He had slept cuddled with them in a blanket fort they had built together. Yes they were weird and slightly horrifying, and frankly their true forms made him wet himself, but they were his friends. Good friends, who made sure he was happy and comfortable and loved him as he was. So Crowley could certainly do the same for them.
He picked himself up, gently holding his hurting wrist, and went over to stand before the twins and gave them a slightly awkward one armed hug. He quietly whispered "thank you" and "love you". Words which he had never before said to anyone but Aziraphale. (That he could remember)
Edgar and Ellen hugged him back. Then gently examined him, asking him where it hurt. Taking note of Crowley's skinned knees and popped snaps on his pants revealing a sagging diaper Crowley had wet on his descent downwards. (And then wet a bit more when his friends had gone ghastly) They were going to go get Aziraphale, but said angel was already quickly making his way towards them.
Aziraphale had not had a direct line of sight to the swings. There was a large price of play equipment blocking he majority of his view. He began to get suspicious that something was wrong when he thought he heard Crowley's rather unique sobs.
Obviously being a not completely incompetent caretaker, he rushed over to se what was the matter. He had rounded the play equipment just in time to see his baby on the ground by the swings set sobbing. The twins have some exchange with a young man on the swings. Then a scene straight from a horror film.
Aziraphale hurried to gather up his distraught baby in his arms. He looked him over for injuries and was horrified to find after a cursory examination that in addition to his skinned knees Crowley had a broken wrist. A broken bone! His demon must be in terrible pain. He waisted no time in fixing it.
The angel had full intentions of reprimanding the twins for showing their true forms in public. However Crowley hastily came to their rescue, and explained everything as Aziraphale was miracling his skinned knees healed.
Aziraphale did not, in general, approve of using one's supernatural powers to scare the beejesus out of mortals. (Though sometimes it couldn't be helped, the were just such jumpy things) However in this case he fully approved of what the twins had done after what that dreadful delinquent had done to his baby.
The twins got cuddles from the angel. Who was equally grateful to the twins and absolutely agahst that something like that could happen with him so near. He was seriously contemplating sticking Crowley in the stroller every time they went out an not ever letting it out of his sight. Or maybe he'd just carry the demon everywhere. That could work.
After Crowley was healed he asked around his thumb "Are we gonna go home now?"
Aziraphale was about to say yes, when one of the twins interrupted. "No, we weren't finished playing"
"Maybe in light of what happened.. " Aziraphale started gently, but the other twin interrupted. "That's the whole point!"
"Yea" said the first twin. "He wanted us to stop having fun."
"Err... Yes" Aziraphale conceded still not quite seeing what the littles were getting at.
"We shouldn't not have fun, just because someone thinks we shouldn't have fun." "That's stupid"
Crowley could sort of see their point. All of his existence he had been made to feel badly about what he was, because other people thought he should. That was, as Edgar and Ellen so eloquently put it 'stupid'.
"I wanna stay and play" Crowley told Aziraphale.
Aziraphale looked a but surprised, but aquested. Aziraphale was fairly happy to reward his little demon with anything he asked for if only he asked for it.
He took Crowley to get changed, bringing the twins along with him. Then they returned to they play park. Aziraphale didn't return to his bench to read, but stayed with the littles. He alternated pushing the three on the swings, then watched (a bit worriedly) as they climbed all over the play equipment.
Crowley, he noted, was smiling and laughing with the twins as they played. The demon, much to Aziraphale's surprise, seemed alright. It wasn't too long ago when such an event would send his baby into maudlin hysterics. But Crowley seemed to have brushed off the event without much thought.
Aziraphale gave a watery smile at the direction of his thoughts. Crowley was changing. Not just reinventing himself with a new haircut or new clothes. But really truly changing, deep down, where it mattered. Certainly they had both changed many times over their existences, maybe in far more subtle ways than humans did, but they had changed. Azirphale thought that this new change was one that would benefit Crowley. He might, one day, be able to just be happy as he was. Happy with Aziraphale. Happy together.
There was a stop on the way home to a toy shop. Where Aziraphale bought the twins matching purple furbies (The twins had adored Crowley's). for being such good friends to his baby. He would later have a teeny bit of buyer's remorse foe this purchase when all three furbies were loudly and obnoxiously chattering to each other. But the twins deserved them.
Elsewhere a young baseline with rather wet trousers had just run in to his house, slamming the door and locking it behind him, before collapsing in a rather pathetic heap against said door.
The baseline's mother, who had become irritated with him shortly after he was born and found that irritation to only grow stronger as the years progressed, didn't even bother to look up from the television. "What's wrong with you"
This prompted a lengthy and unbelievable explanation of what had happened at the park. (This explanation omitted the blatant harrasment of littles he had gone to the park to do) Which his mother did not believe one bit until she finally bothered to look up at her offspring. He was horribly pale, literally white as paper. Sweat was pouring off him. His right eye was twitching and his hands we're shaking.
'Huh' she thought turning back to the TV, maybe there was something to this ghost business after all. She would mention to Margie next time she got her hair done. She knew Margie sometimes took her little to that park.
As Aziraphale observed three dirt streaked faces back at the bookshop he decided a bath was in order. He had asked the twins and Crowley if they wanted seperate baths, but the twins decided that they much rather all bathe together so they could play in the bath with Crowley.
Crowley who had lived through periods of human history in which public bath houses we're the norm was un bothered by this decision.
The twins, as it turns out, we're very anatomically incorrect. They looked like dolls when their clothes were removed. They had no hair on their bodies, (which was the usual for littles) no nipples, (which was not the usual for anyone, and Crowley rather wondered if Sargent Shadwell's nipple obsession stemed from once meeting a mirror wraith.) and absolutely no genitalia whatsoever. Between their legs was a smooth umblemish expanse of pale skin. Crowley only imagined there was some sort of small holes somewhere for excretion purposes.
As soon as Aziraphale plopped Crowley in the bath, he reflexivly brought out his wings, and it was the twin's turn to stare. They clamored towards the demon babbling "So awesome!" "Can we touch them?" "What do they feel like?" Can you move them?" "Can you fly?" "Does Aziraphale have them too?"
Crowley hunkered back a bit. Though willing to show Aziraphale now, he was still a bit self conscious of his wings. Not wanting to make his friends cross with him, he nodded that they could touch. The twins touched them with such reverence, like they were something precious. The twins had even more reverence for them when the found that flapping them produced huge splashing waves in the large tub. (Now large enough to very comfortably fit Crowley, his wings, and two anatomically incorrect twins)
In very short order, the entirety of the bathroom was soaking wet. Aziraphale was rather glad that this was the only room of his whole bookshop and adjoining flat that he had chosen not to store books in. He managed to somehow get soap on all of them, shampoo and conditioner was a bit more difficult, the twins were much more squirmy than Crowley, (ironic, considering Crowley was a literal snake) and seemed terribly afraid that Aziraphale would get shampoo in their eyes.
Crowley went first to show the twins that Aziraphale would be very careful. And they stopped trying to wriggle away from the angel.
Once everyone was out of the bath and diapered, Aziraphale got to work on putting them in their pajamas. Black footie pajamas covered in sparking silver stars for Crowley and purple lace trimmed night shirts for the twins with soft blue socks.
Aziraphale sat on the sofa and Crowley sat in Aziraphale. The little demon nursed his bottle. The twins snuggled up to each side of the angel, happily nursing their own bottles. Aziraphale read them all a bedtime story as they cuddled.
One the story had reached it's end and the bottles were empty, Aziraphale changed diapers one last time and the three littles crawled into the playtent amid a mountain of pillows and blankets and plush toys. They all had their pacifiers firmly lodhed in their mouths and were snuggling their plushies and blankies. (The twin's blankies had dead eyed doll heads sewn in the middle of them that rattled when you shook them, because apparently the twins owned nothing that wasn't absurdly creepy and/or disturbing.)
Aziraphale tucked them all in, placing gentle kisses to each forehead. He sat on the sofa watching the pile sleeping littles. The angel had already made the decision to stay up all night, close by, in case one of them needed something.
Aziraphale worried about Crowley. He worried that he had done the wrong thing. He had always known that Crowley was rather soft underneath all the demonic wiles, fashionable black outfits, and trendy haircuts. He just hadn't realized how soft he really was. Aziraphale thought that breaking down the walls Crowley had (metaphorically) built around himself would be a good thing. It didn't occur to him that there was a very good reason Crowley had constructed them in the first place. That when stripped so thoroughly of his defenses he would become so terribly, achingly vulnerable. And vulnerability attracted predators.
He worried a little less after today. Crowley was growing a bit of self respect, and in the gaps of vulnerability that were still left he had friends, and Aziraphale, to make certain he was and would be alright.
Aziraphale still worried of course, he would always worry. Terrible things could and would still happen, and they seemed to happen to his little demon with a frequency that was quite frankly alarming. But Crowley was becoming better equipped to handle the terrible things, and maybe with a little help, even be somewhat alright after they were over and done with.
Aziraphale had to believe that every bad thing that happened would end with Crowley being alright. If it didn't than Aziraphale would march straight up to heaven and fight God himself. It didn't matter that it was a suicide mission. If Crowley wasn't in the world, it would no longer be a world in which Aziraphale wanted to live in. No angel, no other demon, no human could ever be to him again what Crowley was to him now. (All of Aziraphale's copies of the classic romances were well read.While 'soft'was a very accurate term for the angel, 'soppy' was also equally as accurate)
Aziraphale opened his very old, and rather boring novel, miracled himself a cup of rich cocoa and prepared to watch over his baby.
I have acquired a shiny new beta in the form of littlebird20, so you may notice a lack of glaringly obvious typos from now on.
The next morning, the twins were packed up and taken home. (Aziraphale had received a bit of a scolding from Helena for taking the twins out in the bustling London crowds. Then he received praise for doing it so well. As the twins, who like most mirror wraiths, were quite adverse to large noisy groups of humans, were not ill affected in the slightest.)
A few days after the twins return to their natural habitat, Crowley was big. Actually big this time, not just pretending, or wishing really hard, or acting big until he somehow miraculously became big and stayed that way forever.
Crowley wore his tight black pants (which Aziraphale half-wondered if he had painted on) and a cozy red sweater. He did concede to a pull-up, in order to save Aziraphale's sofa and floors a rather unnecessary soiling.
They took this opportunity to move - or rather, miracle, (as there was absolutely no manual labor involved in the process) the rest of Crowley's possessions to Aziraphale's bookshop.
Crowley's possessions were mostly various pieces of art, one dreadfully gaudy throne (which Aziraphale refused to refer to as art), a bit of furniture, a vast collcetion of musical recordings -complete with the various devices on which to play them- and, surprisingly enough, a small collection of astronomy books.
Aziraphale did a great deal of pointless protesting about a certain statue in the demon's possession. Of course Aziraphale would let the dreadful, distasteful thing in his bookshop in the end, as it was something of his demon's and his demon deserved to have everything he ever wanted. (Even it what he wanted offended the majority of Aziraphale's sensibilities.) He just also felt the need to make sure Crowley knew exactly what he thought of it.
Crowley kept the now even emptier apartment. It made him feel better to have someplace to go in case of an emergency. It wasn't as though anyone was going to be bothered about it anyway, as the apartment didn't, in fact, exist to most people's knowledge.
It felt so right, them being together and living together, that Aziraphale wondered why they hadn't done it sooner. Then he remembered their attempted executions by both Heaven and Hell, and thought that not moving in together until now had probably been for the best.
They had dinner at the Ritz to celebrate. Aziraphale ate his dinner, and most of Crowley's, while they both drank to excess. It was just like old times. They stumbled back to the bookshop and clumsily made their way to the sitting room.
Aziraphale sat down on the sofa and fully expected that Crowley would come to sit with him. Crowley, however, sprawled himself over the chair.
Oh well.... That was alright, thought Aziraphale. Maybe Crowley was a bit warm - flushed by the massive quantities of alcohol he'd just consumed - and didn't want to be cuddled up to another warm body for fear of overheating. Or maybe Crowley just fancied a little space at the moment.
They eventually sobered up a bit and came to the mutual agreement that they should go to bed. Aziraphale was rather looking forward to crawling into bed and having his first cuddle of the day with his demon.
Aziraphale miracled his tartan night shirt on, keeping an eye on Crowley as the demon rummaged around the closet, just in case he needed any help with dressing or undressing. Crowley had been big all day, and seemed to still be now, but Aziraphale hadn't yet learned all of the different little tells that would inform him on what point on the spectrum of 'Very Big Crowley to Very Little Baby Crowley' his demon was.
Also, even when he was big, Crowley's control over his gangly limbs was less than impressive. The demon was rather floppy at the best of times, a side effect of being a snake Aziraphale supposed.
But Crowley, apparently not finding what he was looking for, just miracled on a pair of plain black pajama shorts and a black tank top. Then he left the room.
Aziraphale simply assumed the demon had gone to get a glass of water or something like that, and crawled into bed himself. He, of course, read while he waited.
About 25 pages in, Aziraphale got a tad concerned. He got up, took off his reading glasses, and went demon hunting; which was a far less dramatic endeavor than it sounded. After some searching, he found his demon sleeping in the bed from his old apartment. The bed had been moved into a spare room that had not previously existed untill today. But Aziraphale's shop had always been very accommodating to whatever he had brought into it.
This, thought Aziraphale, was fine. It was absolutely alright if Crowley wanted to spend the night in...separate accommodations. Aziraphale didn't feel oddly betrayed and unwanted at all. It was all fine, all absolutely tickety-boo.
Aziraphale would just go and sleep in his own bed. Alone. He'd have plenty of time to read that way. No demon to squish him, or hog the covers, or shove bony knees and elbows into his soft bits. Yes, Aziraphale convinced himself, it would be absolutely grand to have a night to himself. Just him. In his big bed. All alone.
There was a line in the sand. Not literal sand, of course. Crowley didn't like sand too much. It always managed to migrate into the strangest and most uncomfortable places. A metaphorical line in the sand...the sand that didn't exist.
One line separating him as a Little from him when he was Big. The rules that applied to the two Crowleys were very different.
Little Crowley could have cuddles. He could be messy and needy, and Aziraphale would just smile and take care of him. Little Crowley could comfort himself by sucking on his thumb, or a pacifier, or the fringe of his blankie. Little Crowley could play with toys and snuggle with plushies. Little Crowley could also just walk up to the angel, plop in his lap, and demand cuddles and kisses.
Big Crowley could do exactly none of those things. It wasn't like Big Crowley wanted to anyway. Even though occasionally he thought it might be nice to have something to hold while watching TV. And once in a while he found his thumb wandering it's way up to his mouth. Crowley always swiftly shoved his errant thumb into his pocket as soon as he noticed it. Big Crowley didn't do that. Big Crowley didn't need to do that. He didn't need any of it. He could do other equally good things. He could drive the Bentley. He could pay taxes.
(Crowley had never paid taxes in the entirety of his existence. If he was being truthful, he wasn't entirely sure what they were. Only that a lot of maths were involved, and maths were an evil far beyond anything Crowley had ever dreamed up.)
He could take Aziraphale out to dinner.
That last one was very important. Crowley liked the way things had been between them before. Not the looming threat of both their sides finding out and enacting swift and brutal punishments upon them, but the other stuff. The meetings, and the drinking, and the dinners. He didn't want to lose all that. He wanted to both be Aziraphale's baby and his equal. He wanted to be able to take care of the angel like he used to. Aziraphale, after all, took such good care of him. A little break from Crowley's clinging and a nice dinner was the least Aziraphale deserved.
Though Crowley was finding the whole thing a bit difficult. It seemed now that Little him had had a taste of real love and comfort, Big him wanted it as well.
Days when Crowley was Big were a teensy bit difficult for the demon. When he went to bed Big, he almost always had nightmares. Crowley suspected it was the lack of any of his comfort items. His pacifier, his blankie, his plushies, his angel. He always wet the bed, his pull-ups having leaked sometime in the night. He thought about wearing diapers, but somehow the idea had firmly lodged itself in his mind that only Little Crowley should have diapers as well.
After spending a good few minutes in the early morning shaking and crying, or trying not to shake and cry, Crowley managed to get himself out of bed. He miracled away his nighttime accident. He got dressed. He made his way to the kitchen to make breakfast for his angel.
Crowley always insisted on taking care of all meals when he was Big. It made him feel like he was contributing something to their relationship. Though mostly they went out to eat, as Crowley wasn't a particularly good cook and breakfast food was about all he could manage.
The days did tend to get better from there. It would be like old times again. They would often spend Crowley's Big days out. Taking walks in the park, dining at restaurants, going to see shows and plays, going for drives in the Bentley. It was all quite lovely. Crowley had even once almost held Aziraphale's hand. He had pulled back at the last minute, afraid that Aziraphale wouldn't like his clinging when he was Big and should be beyond such things.
Eventually, Crowley would start to feel Little again. Then he could climb into his angel's lap and have the cuddles and plushies that he definitely hadn't missed when he was Big.
Crowley was rather pleased with himself for being able to strike up such a balanced balance of Big and Little. Crowley was happy, well happier than he had ever been. His angel seemed happy. Maybe things had worked out after all, Crowley thought, staring at his angel who was sitting on the sofa across the room absorbed in some dusty old tome.
Aziraphale looked up and gave a little smile the demon's way. Yes, thought Crowley, things were working out perfectly well
Crowley's behavior was begining to worry Aziraphale. And my, wasn't that becoming a reoccurring theme. He knew, of course, that Crowley would want to be Big, or sometimes just feel less Little than other times. He had never had a Little of his own, but he had minded countless others over the centuries. Littles tended to be the same person, with the same level of affection and largely the same tastes as when they were Big. Often, habits and comforts would carry over from being Little to being Big. It wasn't uncommon for a Little to be seen sucking on a pacifier or carrying around a plush animal or doll even when they were in their Big headspace. This knowledge made Crowley's recent behavior all the more baffling.
It had begun with Crowley's notable lack of affection towards the angel when he was Big. Crowley was an extremely affectionate baby. So when he was Big the utter lack of physical contact or 'I love yous' was rather jarring to the angel, to say the least.
Hugging hadn't been something that was done in Heaven for a long while now. Even in the beginning, when angels had done such things, Aziraphale hadn't been close enough with any of them to partake in such a thing. Then a human had done it - hugged him - and Aziraphale had melted into a big puddle of angel in the Little's arms. Aziraphale had found it to be even better when a certain demon did it. Now that he had been spoiled with constant affection, going back to none felt quite distressing.
Aziraphale at first assumed that Crowley must simply not like being touched when he was Big. That was a tad unusual, but fine. It wasn't fine, however - in Aziraphale's opinion - when in handing the demon a wine glass and accidentally brushing fingers, the demon shot back as if Aziraphale's touch had been painful to him. He then grabbed his wine glass and skittered to the opposite side of the room, leaving a vast gaping distance between them and Aziraphale's heart somewhere in the region of his shoes.
The angel noted other peculiarities about Big Crowley as well. Such as his avoidance of all of his beloved toys. It wasn't as if he just didn't feel like playing with them at the moment. Crowley wouldn't even look at them, or acknowledge their existence. It was very bizarre to see the demon sitting next to his cherished dolls and watching him look absolutely anywhere but at them.
Crowley also never said that he loved Aziraphale when he was Big. Which bothered Aziraphale endlessly.
He was beginning to suspect that some ridiculous idea was churning in his demon’s mind. Aziraphale was not going to stand for this sort of nonsense again. He wasn't going to sit or lie down for it either.
Whatever was going on in Crowley's head would be divuldged and promptly sorted out before Aziraphale ended up chasing a wayward demon through London again. He had had quite enough of that for an existence, thank you very much.
He asked his demon several times if something was wrong or if there was something he would like to talk about. Every time, Crowley simply gave Aziraphale a baffled look and said, “Of course not angel...Is there something wrong with you?"
Aziraphale decided that more serious methods would have to be employed if he was going to get anything out of Crowley. Subtlety was a must, (though it wasn't strictly speaking, Aziraphale's strong suit) getting a straight answer from the demon when he had made up his mind not to divulge something was akin to pulling hen's teeth.
He went to the bathroom mirror and called for reinforcements.
The mirror wraiths agreed that Crowley's behavior was highly suspect. Since all attempts to talk to Crowley and discuss the matter as if he was a normal, reasonable person had failed, they would have to get a bit more creative.
The twins were called, informed of the matter, and a plan was made.
Aziraphale walked downstairs to find Crowley splayed over the sofa playing a game on his phone, judging by the obnoxious music and sound effects emanating from said device. He was lying on his belly, like the snake he was, and his Queen shirt had ridden up to expose the waistband of his pull-up. If Crowley was Little, Aziraphale would have simply gone over and pulled down the hem of his shirt, knowing how Crowley felt about his diapers showing. But if he did that now, it was highly likely the demon would jump through the roof.
Aziraphale just gave a sigh and sat on the chair across from the sofa. "Crowley, darling, I was just talking to the mirror wraiths and wondered if you wouldn't like a play date with Edgar and Ellen tonight?"
Crowley looked up from his brightly colored screen. "I'm Biggg angel," he whined. "I can't have a playdate."
"Aahh, of course. More of a movie date then? The twins mentioned to me the newest film they've seen was... Ah.. 'Psychic' I believe by that fellow Hotchcock."
"Hitchcock, angel, it's Hitchcock! And it's 'Psycho' not 'Psychic'! The twins like horror movies?" He paused and made a face at himself. "Silly question. Tell them to come right over. I'll show them way better than ‘Psycho.’ Do they even know that films come in color?"
"Oh, I don't think so," replied Aziraphale, who was getting up to go back and inform the twins.
"Aziraphale?" Came Crowley's small sounding voice. "Will the twins be Big too?"
"Yes, I believe they will."
Crowley turned back to his game looking thoughtful.
As promised, the twins bounded through the mirror later that day. Big twins did not dress much differently than Little twins apparently. They both wore identical grayish pink oversized sweater dresses, black and grey stripped leggings, and black boots. This was accented with grey bows in their curly hair, and necklaces that appeared to be made out of small, real bones. They also carried their purple diaper bags.
They plopped down on the sofa, making themselves comfortable in the pile of blankets Aziraphale had put out for their movie night. (Aziraphale himself would not be joining them, horror was not quite to Aziraphale's tastes.)
Crowley eyed the twins suspiciously as they brought out a couple of dolls to cuddle during the film. "I thought you were Big."
The twins rolled their eyes in perfect sync. "We are."
Crowley gestured towards the dolls. "You have dolls,” he said, which prompted another eye roll from the twins.
"We know," one said, speaking very slowly and clearly the way one might to a particularly slow toddler. "We like dolls,” said the other in the exact same tone.
"You're Big,” the demon said pointedly. “You're not supposed to have dollies,” Crowley said, wildly gesturing around with the remote.
Apparently, thought the twins, getting to the root of Crowley's behavior would be far easier than they had thought. And Aziraphale made it seem like dealing with Crowley was hard.
"Why not?" "Yes, we like dolls. We like them when we're Little and we like them when we're Big." "We don't stop liking the things we like just because we're Big or Little.”
Crowley flopped dramatically back on the sofa. "Well, I don't want to be a baby all the time,” Crowley sniffed.
"Playing with dolls, or wanting a cuddle, or having a paci doesn't make you a baby, Crowley. We like doing other things when we're big too." "Like taxidermy, archery, knife juggling, reading."
Crowley wasn't surprised at any of those hobbies, but he was still feeling like a petulant little brat tonight, even though he was technically Big. He put on his most impressive sneer. (Which wasn't very impressive at all.) "Don't the others ever get tired of your clinging?"
Four pale blue eyes bored into his soul. (Crowley wasn't sure if he technically had one, but if he did that's where they were boring.) He felt the immediate urge to squeak out a "sorry.”
"We're not clingy." "We're affectionate" "Caregivers like to be cuddled too.” One of the twins went in for a bit of a low blow. "Wouldn't Aziraphale be sad if you just suddenly stopped ever wanting to cuddle?"
Crowley didn't have anything more to say. He just hunkered into the chair and started the movie. They did end up havig a rather good time. Apparently they all found human's concepts of horror ridiculously funny. Aziraphale could hear their bellows of laughter from upstairs.
Two films into the night and Crowley found his thumb slipping into his mouth. He looked over to the twins. One was chewing on a teether and the other was offering their doll a slice of pepperoni pizza. (It really wouldn't surprise Crowley at this point if the doll took a bite.) It really wouldn't hurt, maybe just this one time, to suck his thumb when he was Big. The twins certainly wouldn't mind, and he was cozy and wanted the comforting weight of something in his mouth.
By the middle of the third film, Crowley was asleep. One twin elbowed the other and pointed towards the sleeping demon. They found the remote and paused the film. Crowley had shown them how when the pizza had come. They then made their way upstairs.
They found Aziraphale hunched over some ancient tome, decorative spectacles perched on his nose, gloves on his hands. The twins, being the tactful creatures that they were put their thoughts in the most delicate way they knew how.
"You're an idiot.”
"You're an idiot." "And Crowley's an idiot." "He's our friend, and we love him, but he's an idiot." "We love you too, but you're also an idiot." "A very idiotic idiot." "Also, we're really wet and need a diaper change."
One twin nudged the other. "We probably should have asked for the diaper change before we called him an idiot."
The nudged twin nodded in agreement. "We might be changing ourselves."
Aziraphale wasn't sure if he should be offended or not. He settled on slightly cross and a bit curious. "Errr, dear boy...gir...Er dear twins, how exactly am I an idiot?"
Another sycronized eye roll from the twins. "You never say anything to Crowley!"
"That's not true, we talk all the time."
"Noooo, you never say anything important!" "Crowley thinks you don't like cuddles." "Or that you don't want cuddles when he's Big. We're not sure."
"I don't want to push Crowley into doing anything he doesn't want to do...”
The twins cut him off with a strangled frustrated noise made in unison. "He's doing things he doesn't want to now!" "He just does whatever it is he thinks you want and since you won't tell him, it's usually highly inaccurate!" "Then you’re sad. Then he's sad that you’re sad." "Just tell him what you want and ask what he wants."
It sounded so simple the way the twins said it. Crowley not hugging him because he thought that was what he wanted. Of course, Aziraphale had never told him otherwise. Crowley really did go too fast for him sometimes. Not just physically, but the way he thought. The way his mind jumped to (usually wrong) conclusions so quickly.
"Talk to Crowley.” “We're going home, we're sleepy.” “Also, Crowley's diaper leaked and he wet your sofa." “Oh, and tell Crowley to call us when he wants to finish the movie."
Aziraphale gave the twins a smile. They did mean well. (Usually.) Maybe being called an idiot was occasionally what he needed. "Would you like a change first?"
The twins nodded. Once he got them changed, and packed up, and back through the mirror. He went to find his demon.
Crowley had indeed wet through his pull-up. Aziraphale miracled the mess away. He lifted the demon up and carried him to bed. He miracled a diaper and some cozy pajamas that were neither particularly Big or Little - a black long sleeve top, red tartan bottoms, and black fuzzy socks - on the demon. He tucked him into bed, replacing his thumb with a pacifier. He kissed the demon's forehead.
Aziraphale supposed he had just expected Big Crowley to understand things without having them said to him. He wasn't sure why he had expected Big and Little Crowley to behave differently. They were the same person, and as it turned out, needed things explained to them in the exact same way.
Aziraphale shook his head, feeling a bit cross with himself. He'd just have to do with Big Crowley exactly what he did with Little Crowley, have a sit down. Make sure Crowley knew that no matter what he chose Aziraphale loved him. Talk about what ridiculous misconceptions the demon had cooked up in his head and inform him of how wrong he was. Then maybe inform Crowley that he did indeed like cuddles from Crowley very much. It didn’t matter if they were from Big Crowley or Little Crowley, and that he missed them very much when Crowley choose not to give them to him.
Crowley rubbed his eyes. "Whaaa?” He said, intelligently. He looked at Aziraphale. "Where are the twins?"
"They went home last night dear, when you fell asleep."
"I didn't fall asleep. I was resting my eyes."
"Ahhh yes then. My mistake. They went home while you were resting your eyes."
Crowley hissed at the angel's dripping sarcasm.
"Now how about we get you some breakfast?"
"Mmm not Little, I don't need breakfast."
"Well, I'm going to have breakfast. While you are certainly free to do whatever you please, I would like it very much if you'd join me."
Aziraphale got up and began walking towards the kitchen. There was a pause, then the sound of a demon scrambling to catch up with him.
"I'll make breakfast, angel.”
"That would be lovely, Crowley dear."
They had a nice breakfast. Crowley could do wonderful things with eggs. When they had finished, Aziraphale led Crowley to sit on the sofa with him.
"Crowley dear, I would like to talk.”
Crowley groaned and shifted uncomfortably. (Aziraphale wasn't sure if the uncomfortable shifting was due to the idea of talking or the fact that the demon was still in his extremely wet night diaper.) "We've talked about everything, angel. What could there possibly be left to talk about now?"
"I don't like it when you sleep in the other room."
Crowley stopped his fidgeting, surprised.
"No, I don't. I also don't particularly like the way you won't touch me when you're Big. I miss you, Crowley. I know it's a bit silly as you're still here, but I, well...I do miss you. I want to sleep next to you always. When you’re Big or Little or anything in between. And I like when you hug me or hold my hand. I don't like that you being Big seems to mean that you don't love me."
Crowley's eyes widened. He leaped on Aziraphale, his diaper giving a squish as he landed in the angel’s lap. "I love you, I do, angel! I'm sorry,” he cried into Aziraphale's shoulder. Aziraphale patted the demon's back.
"Darling boy, do you like sleeping in separate beds when you're Big, or do you do it because you think I like it?"
Crowley looked bit shifty. "I thought when I was Big, it should be like it was before between us,” he mumbled.
"Ah...Well I certainly don't want it to be like before. It will be in some ways. I think we should keep the good bits. But we've addeded so many more good things to our relationship, Crowley." Here the angel got a rather soppy look on his face that made Crowley grimace and his heart flutter simultaneously. "After all, before I couldn't do this." Aziraphale then proceeded to kiss Crowley's face over and over untill the demon gently pushed him back.
They were both silent for a moment. Crowley opened his mouth, then closed it again. The process repeated a few more times making the demon closely resemble a fish.
The trouble with saying things, important things, is that you couldn't unsay them.
"I don't want you to think less of me."
"Whatever do you mean dear?" Aziraphale stroked red curls out of his baby's face.
"Sometimes I do Little things when I'm Big. Like suck my thumb or have my blankie. I don't always want you to think of me as a baby."
"Crowley, you are a baby. My baby." Crowley's head dropped, but Aziraphale gently tipped his chin up again. "But that doesn't mean I think any less of you, you silly old serpent. Liking those things when you’re Big doesn't make you any less Big. Or any less the demon who saved me from Nazis, or did that terrible thing you did to the M25, or stopped the Apocalypse. Well...helped stop the Apocalypse. Well...was there when the Apocalypse was stopped. But I digress, where was I? Oh yes, I happen to like the ‘Adventures of Winnie the Pooh,’ and you don't think less of me for that, do you?”
Crowley shook his head. Winnie the Pooh, no. Bad magic tricks, yes. (He had seriously contemplated burning that book of coin tricks when Aziraphale had first gotten it and relentlessly attempted them all with the demon as a semi-captive audience.)
"Well then, I shan't think any less of you for any of the things you like. Now if there is something you want, or don't want, when you’re Big or Little, I would like you to tell me, and we can discuss it. And I shall do the same. Words. Communication. Those things, I think, we probably should try them on a more regular basis. I really don't want to loose you darling, especially to our own stupidity."
Crowley bristled a little at being called stupid. But as Aziraphale had admitted he was equally stupid, Crowley figured it was alright. He probably could ask. Aziraphale had told him to ask. His angel might say no, but he'd probably do it nicely. Probably.
Aziraphale blinked. "I'm sorry, what was that dear boy?"
Crowley's blush spread to his hairline. He contemplated the nearest window suitable for jumping out purposes. "I want you to change my diapers when I'm Big. It makes me feel safe, and warm, and cozy,” the demon hurried to explain, looking anywhere but at his angel.
Crowley definitely shouldn't have said anything. Was it too late to jump out the window?
"Of course I will darling!" Aziraphale rewarded Crowley with a tight hug and many kisses.
He made Crowley feel safe. He, Aziraphale, did that. It made his eyes go misty. Crowley was so good, underneath it all. He had not just thought that things were a bit wrong, but done something about it. Certainly he reveled in making people a bit miserable, slightly irritating them, and causing a bit of low grade chaos, but when it really came down to it, Crowley was kind.
He saved children from the great flood. (To defy God.) Posed as a witchfinder in order to clear women accused of witchcraft and save them from the pyre. (To foil the plans of the church.) Gave homeless people money on the street. (In the hopes they would spend it on alcohol or drugs and encourage sin, of course.)
Aziraphale often wondered how he, who was infinitely less loving and more selfish than Crowley, had remained when Crowley had fallen. If he had done one really good, worthwhile thing on his own merit it was to make this strange and loving creature feel safe.
Crowley reached up a hand to gently brush a tear away that was making it's way down the angel’s cheek.
"You're crying, angel."
Aziraphale smiled down at the demon. "Yes, I'm just so very happy my dear.”
Crowley felt good. He felt better than good. He had been out on the town that night, making mischief, encouraging bad eating habits and drunken tattoos. A somewhat wet pull-up - warm between his legs - reminded him that he was going home to his angel, and cuddles, and his angel's stupid milky tea that he definitely didn't like. Or maybe wine if he was still feeling Big.
He was walking along the street, whistling to himself, when he caught a flash of smoky gray hair in a park. This would have been largely unremarkable if he had not clearly seen a crown perched atop said hair, and experienced an unmistakable feeling of dread that accompanied the sighting.
It couldn't be...
It probably was.
Crowley crept closer. He hid behind a tree to watch.
Pollution, whose full name was Pollution and Pestilence, but was often called Pollution for short, was up-ending trash cans all over the park. (It was, Crowley noted by chance, the play park where he and the twins had played not too long ago.) Pestilence paused, back to the tree that sheltered the demon, and a monotone voice rang out. "I know you're there. You might as well come out and help me."
Crowley’s pull-up grew significantly warmer and wetter. Oh well, he thought, as he slunk out from behind the tree. It could have been worse. It could have been Death or War. He wasn't particularly keen on Famine either, who last Crowley had heard was busying himself running pro-anorexia websites.
Crowley reluctantly tromped over and began spreading the contents of the bag of garbage Pollution thrust into his hands around the park. As a demon, Crowley should probably like to litter more than he did. As it was, he had always cared (though he would deny it to his discorperation) about the plants and the green growing things too much to ever be a very good litterbug.
Once they were done Crowley stood awkwardly in the middle of the play park that currently looked like it had been hit with a very localized tornado. Pollution sat down in one of the swings and gestured with a lazy glare for Crowley to sit down in the swing next to her.
Crowley felt his pull-up squish and it was no longer a reminder of the loving angel he had waiting for him at home, but a potential for crippling embarrassment.
He didn't know the horsemen well, he had always avoided them at all costs. He knew firsthand, however, the suffering they could bring.
Pollution brought out some food from the pocket of her large, shapeless gray hoodie. It was the kind you could buy at any gas station, wrapped in layers of plastic and stuffed with preservatives. She offered some of it to Crowley.
Crowley wasn't particularly hungry. He had also had been largely spoiled by his angel's idea of good food, which most definitely did not include soggy, plastic-wrapped ham and cheese sandwiches and copious packets of slightly hard gummy worms.
Crowley took the offered food anyway. He didn't think that offending Pollution and Pestilence was necessarily a smart thing to do.
He nibbled on a stick of beef jerky as Pestilence tore into a packet of Sour Patch Kids.
"Err...So what are you up to these days? Now that you're retired?"
A pair of cloudy eyes gazed up at the demon in confusion. "Spreading pollution and pestilence."
"Oh, I thought you might just...You know, take up a hobby now? I mean now that you don't technically have to spread disease and destruction?"
Pollution brighted up, a odd half-lopsided smile spread across her face. "I do have hobbies! See."
Pollution thrust her phone at him, bringing up images of garbage island, asking Crowley, “Isn't it magnificent?" And showing him several anti-vaccine Facebook pages that she had started.
Crowley felt a bit of pity stirring inside him for her and for War and Famine and Death, too. While angels, humans, and demons would always largely remain what they were created to be. They did have some ability to grow and change within those god-given limitations. The Horsemen didn't. Ever fiber of what they were, every waking hour (which was all of them, as none of the horsemen slept) was spent fulfilling the singular purpose that god had given them. They could conceive of nothing else beyond that. What, Crowley thought, a dreadfully tedious and dull existence to be so stagnant.
They finished their food (using the term in the loosest possible manner) and pitched the trash on the ground. They both stood up and Crowley rather hoped that this would be the end of his visit with Pollution and Pestilence. But, because he was Crowley, things obviously didn't go his way. But the hem of his sweater got caught in the bit that connected the swing to the chain.
As he was fussing with that, trying to get the sweater that his angel had gotten for him undone without any damage, he didn't realize quite how far he was pulling up his sweater. His thin tummy was exposed along with the waistband of his pull-up. There was no mistaking it for anything else. No one made Little’s products to be discreet, because no one thought there was any need to.
When Crowley had finished freeing his sweater from the evil swing chain, he looked up to find that Pollution was staring at him with a grin that sent shivers down the demon's too long spine.
Crowley did. He wasn't sure if it was the smart thing to do, but it was the thing he did.
Pollution walked off in the direction of the changing station and came back with a bag that was emitting an unpleasant odor. Pollution then ripped it open and began spreading soiled diapers on the park ground. Crowley held his nose, feeling a little nauseous. When Pollution was done, the smell not seeming to bother her at all, she turned to Crowley smiling even wider. "They take forever to biodegrade."
And that was it. Pollution and the demon parted ways. It could have been worse, for the demon, not the park. Crowley waited a while untill he thought Pollution was gone. He was going to preform a miracle and clean up the park, but he still felt a little nauseous. He'd just swing by tommorrow
Crowley started home.
He was halfway back to the bookshop when he was doubled over with a sudden, excruciating stomach cramp. He spent several minutes bent in pain before he righted himself and began walking again, a bit faster this time.
He was only a few yards further along when he found himself doubled over and violently vomiting into the nearest trash can.
He tried to preform a demonic miracle on himself, but no dice. This had happened once before, the only other time he had had any personal contact with Pollution and Pestilence. Though last time, he had just been coughing up blood for two weeks straight. At least, Crowley was pretty sure, Pollution couldn't discorporate him.
That didn't comfort him much. He tried hurrying back to the bookshop as fast as he could. He felt terrible. His stomach hurt, he was freezing, and he could feel himself rapidly slipping into Little space. He wanted his Papa.
He made it through the bookshop's front door, trembling and crying. He immediately collapsed on the floor in another violent fit of vomiting. He could feel something warm and unpleasantly mushy in the back of his diaper, but he was too sick to be as disgusted and mortified as he would usually be. Still, the vomiting and the accident had triggered a new wave of misery and subsequent sobbing for the demon.
He could think of only one thing to do, and in one great shaky bellow he cried out for his Papa.
Aziraphale was having a pleasant night in. Clad in his coziest, most oversized oatmeal-colored sweater. He had made himself a nice cup of cocoa and settled down on his plush sofa to catch up on some reading. (Aziraphale, though an immortal being, was never, and would never be, entirely caught up on his reading. There was just so much to read. So many interesting stories, and humans - clever things that they were - were always writing down more.)
Crowley was feeling Big and was out on the town, no doubt causing mild havoc and minor annoyances. Before he had left, Aziraphale had made sure to make sure that the demon had his cell phone and that he would call Aziraphale if he found himself in any trouble at all.
Jonathan Strange and Mr. Norrel had just become plunged into eternal darkness when Aziraphale heard the shop door open. Crowley was home. Aziraphale was abruptly jolted out of his happiness when he heard an agonizing cry.
Crowley had called out for his Papa.
Aziraphale adored being called Papa by his baby. He loved being called Angel by Crowley as well, but there was something about being called Papa that was just softer...more intimate.
Unfortunately, Crowley rarely ever called Aziraphale Papa. He seemed to only do it when he was deeply regressed and hurting. Aziraphale hoped that one day they could come to a place in their relationship where a happy Crowley could call him Papa. But, that it seemed, was not today.
The unfortunate demon was lying on his belly on the floor, his long limbs flopped out every which way. Aziraphale noticed almost all at once several very telling indicators to his demon's condition.
First, the pile of vomit next to said demon. Secondly, that Crowley's entire thin form was shaking violently. Thirdly, the unmistakable and rather unpleasant odor of a soiled diaper.
First things first, Aziraphale miracled the vomit away. Then he wasted no time in picking up his baby, being careful not to support him by his bum and spread the unpleasant mess. Aziraphale placed a hand on the demon's forehead, fulling intending to miracle the malady away...nothing happened. Aziraphale tried again, more nothing.
"Crowley darling," he said, gently rousing the groggy demon. "I need you to tell me what happened. How did you get ill?”
"Mmmm by a play park, saw Pollution 'n Pestilence. Made me help her spread garbage, then left."
And oh, that explained it, didn't it. Any celestial being who had any contact with Pollution and Pestilence was generally out of commission with some unpleasant malady incurable by miracle for a few days to a couple of weeks after meeting with Pollution. It was part of the reason that they outsourced any dealings with the Horsemen now.
Well, Aziraphale thought, he would just have to take care of his poor baby the human way until he recovered.
He brought Crowley up to the flat. Standing before the changing table with a sniveling demon in his arms, Aziraphale was presented with the first problem of the night. If he laid Crowley down, the mess in his diaper would spread, and Aziraphale didn't think that the demon would like that one bit. He knew, however, that Crowley found diaper changes comforting, even if he was loath to admit it.
"Crowley darling, would you like me to change you the usual way, or miracle you changed? Or...oh! How about I miracle your pull-up clean, then change you into a diaper?"
"Last one,” came Crowley's voice, muffled from where he had his face pressed into Aziraphale's shoulder.
Aziraphale had his baby diapered very quickly, as he was rather worried about the increasing shaking the now naked demon was doing. He carried Crowley over to the closet and asked what he wanted to wear. Crowley plucked at the sweater that the angel was wearing.
" You...err...want to wear my sweater?" Crowley had never made secret what he thought of Aziraphale's fashion sense. The angel had never dreamed that Crowley would ever want to wear any of his clothing.
Crowley nodded and tugged at the sweater again.
Aziraphale set Crowley down on the bed, so that he could tug off the sweater and help Crowley into it. The sweater, which was large on Aziraphale's slightly chubby frame, absolutely dwarfed the skinny demon. Crowley seemed very pleased with it, though, and nestled down into the oversized garment, grabbing fistfulls of the oversized garment to nuzzle. Aziraphale melted. Crowley really was so sweet. (Not that he would say that outloud within the demon's hearing.)
Aziraphale tugged warm thermal pajama bottoms - black with little shiny white stars - up the demons legs and over his diaper and plastic pants. Then came a pair of black fuzzy socks slipped on the baby's cold feet. Aziraphale then miracled his own pajamas on, gathered up Crowley, and crawled into bed.
Aziraphale put a pacifier in Crowley's mouth in place of the thumb that had been there. (The last thing that the demon needed at this point was exposure to any more germs. He had quite enough right now, thank you very much.) The angel carefully arranged his baby so that he could clutch at his plushies and blankie, but still be curled up on Aziraphale's plush tummy. He tucked the blankets in around the shivering demon and begun to hum (terribly and off key) as he stroked long red hair.
Crowley's eyes slowly slipped shut, and Aziraphale followed him into sleep not long after.
Aziraphale woke up to a demon retching on him. (Which was, incidentally, not the worst way he had ever woken up.) Crowley was crying his odd, tearless cry. Shaking and sobbing, he kept whimpering out little, pitiful whines of "sorry" over and over again.
Aziraphale miracled away the messes, both the one that was spread over themselves and the bed, and the one that was in the demon's diaper.
Crowley didn't stop sobbing. Aziraphale gathered him up wrapped in blankets, making sure he had his blankie and at least one plushy. The angel gently stroked the baby's back, trying to get him to calm down. "Shhhh, shhhhh, what's the matter darling?"
"Tummy hurts!" Crowley cried.
Aziraphale felt as if the admission physically hurt him as well. It had been bad enough to see humans suffer like this for thousands of years. It made Aziraphale feel like his insides were made of particularly lively worms. Not a pleasant sensation at all. Especially when Heaven had ordered him not to interfere.
But to see Crowley, whom he loved above all else, suffer was infinitly worse. Maybe this was what Hell truly was. Not the actual place, but the idea of it. Aziraphale didn't know what to do. He couldn't just miracle this away. He didn't know what to do to help, or even mildy relieve his baby's suffering.
How dreadful, Aziraphale thought - not for the first time, to be human. To know that eventually, all would come to sickness and suffering you could do nothing about.
Oh, Aziraphale chastised himself, these maudlin thoughts weren't helping Crowley or himself. He carried his still sobbing baby to the bathroom mirror and turned off the lights, knocked, and spun around. (gently and slowly as he was currently holding a nauseous demon.)
He had rather hoped to get Helena. He got Gregor and Jack instead. At least they seemed eager to help. Jack scrambled through the mirror, comically long limbs flapping every which way. Aziraphale stepped back as Jack ended up in a heap on the floor. He popped right back up, however, to lend a hand to Gregor.
The mirror wraiths sat Aziraphale and Crowley down on the sofa. And gave them both a once over. Aziraphale hadn't realized he had been crying untill Gregor offered him a hankie trimmed with violet lace.
The angel wiped his eyes.
"Do you haven any books on human illnesses?" Gregor asked, after Aziraphale finished explaining what had happened to his poor baby.
Oh...oh! Books! Of course he had books! Why didn't he think of that? Oh, he really was a hopeless idiot.
Gregor went downstairs to fetch any relevant books on medicine, while Jack stayed upstairs with Crowley and Aziraphale. Crowley had opened his eyes half-way, and Jack was cooing to the demon. Jack turned twards Aziraphale with an unpleasantly large grin that made Jack look more like a maniac than he usually did. "He's so Little now."
Jack wiggled his grotesquely long fingers in front of Crowley's face. The demon reached up, grabbed the wriggling digits, and bit down with his pointy little fangs extended. The demon looked quite pleased with himself as Jack nursed his slightly bleeding digits. Aziraphale smothered a chuckle into his hand.
Even at his Littlest, Crowley was still, after all, Crowley.
Gregor came back, arms full of books of various usefullness. (Aziraphale didn't think that any book that suggested blood letting as a cure would be particularly helpful.)
Gregor opened one of the tomes and flicked through till he found a particular passage:
“For vomiting Littles, the main risk is water loss, or dehydration, especially if fever causes them to sweat more or they are also losing fluid through diarrhea. When vomiting is severe or prolonged, a Little may lose sodium, potassium, and chloride. These minerals have a crucial role in the transmission of nerve impulses and the contraction of muscles, and in regulating the body’s fluid balance.”
"When was the last time that Crowley had a wet diaper?"
Aziraphale had to think. "Oh, err...Last evening, when he came home."
"And the last time he drank something?"
Aziraphale...Aziraphale didn't know, and he said as much. He might cry again. He felt like he was going to cry again. He was a dreadful caregiver.
Gregor nodded, "He might then be dehydrated."
Dehydrated. Dehydrated! You could die from that. Over a prolonged period of time, given, but still! Aziraphale let out an awful sort of keening noise.
Jack thumped him on the back in solidarity. While Crowley brought a hand out of his blanket cocoon to lay on Aziraphale's cheek. Aziraphale grasped his baby's hand, feeling extremely undeserving.
Gregor said gently. "Do not borrow trouble Aziraphale. Where do you keep the bottles?"
Getting Crowley to drink something turned out to be more difficult than expected. Plain water came back up almost as soon as it had gone down. Juice was held down slightly longer, but eventually ended up back out from whence it had came. Each, round of vomiting induced more crying. The more Crowley cried, the more worried Aziraphale got. The more Crowley could sense the Angel's unhappiness. Which resulted in even more crying. Which resulted in Aziraphale growing even more worried, and so on and so forth.
Jack and Gregor were maybe not the best equipped to calm a distressed pair of ethereal beings. But they did give it a good old college try. (Though neither of them had been to college, and only one of them actually knew what a college was.)
When the sobbing and fretting had died down they tried again. There was a mutual decision that milk or formula would be no good. Aziraphale ended up, after a bit of discussion, miracling up a bottle of cold Little's electrolyte drink.
Crowley turned his head away and made petulant little noises. Aziraphale stroked his hair. "Darling, darling please? For me?"
Crowley grumpily accepted, fixing the bottle with a suspicious look.
Jack clapped Aziraphale on the back again, making Aziraphale wince.
"Don't worry old boy. If he can't drink, I've got these tubes you hook into a needle, poke the needle in a vein, then boom! You can put anything in there. Embalming fluid. Poison. Saline solution. Err...Maybe not the first two,” he amended, after a glare from Aziraphale.
The angel closed his eyes. He really hoped that this worked. That Crowley could keep the electrolyte drink down. He really, really didn't want Jack to start poking bits of tubing in his baby.
Everyone was just sitting, starring at the demon bundled up in Aziraphale's lap, waiting for something to happen. For him to vomit up the few swallows of electrolyte drink he just had. Crowley kept glaring at his spectators, though in his current state instead of the fear he intended, it only illicited a string of "Awwws.”
Eventually, Crowley fell asleep, not having vomited. Jack wandered into the kitchen. (Aziraphale was too procupied with the state of Crowley to be too concerned about what Jack was getting up to.) Gregor kept paging through medical books. Aziraphale reached for one, intending to help, but was stopped by a dark hand over his.
"Maybe it is best that you not."
"Why? What do you think it is? Is it terrible? Is it fatal? Tell me. Tell me!" Aziraphale's voice had risen to a pitch that he didn't know it could.
He composed himself. Settling back down into the sofa, readjusting the sleeping demon. Aziraphale looked at Gregor, a little embarrassed at his lack of decorum. "I, ah...do apologize."
Gregor, looking unbothered, nodded. "It is quite understandable. There are many maladies the Little one could have, given his current symptoms. However, you, like us, are far less frail than humanity. I suspect that he shall recover, given time and proper care. If there is no improvement in his condition by tommorrow, we will seek the help of the witch Anathema."
"Ahhh...yes. That sounds very sensible." Very sensible indeed. Why couldn't Aziraphale be so sensible? Sensible was what Crowley needed right now. Not a useless fretting angel who couldn't even figure out that a vomiting demon might need something to drink.
"It is because you love him so,” Gregor, who apparently had some sort of mind reading powers, said. "You cannot think as you might were it someone else. Crowley needs you, more than all else now. I see the bond you have, and I know that such love is rare. Among my kind, humans, and I imagine amongst your people as well."
"Crowley is my people,” Aziraphale answered without thinking.
Gregor smiled. "I cannot say for certain that everything will be alright, yet somehow, I believe it will be."
Crowley opened his eyes, and looked up at Aziraphale. He smacked his lips, and stuck his little forked tounge out as if looking for something.
Oh...oh! He was thirsty. Aziraphale hurried to get the bottle of Little's electrolyte drink from earlier. It was still cold, as it was expected to be. He brought it to the demon's lips. Crowley sucked greedily. Aziraphale was beyond thrilled. He smiled up at Gregor, who smiled gently back, as if to say "see, I told you."
Crowley finished over half the bottle before he was asleep again.
This process repeated several times over the night. Crowley woke up, drank, and went back to sleep. Jack wandered back in and turned on the TV, with no volume and subtitles on, so as not to wake the sleeping demon. Gregor made them tea - coffee for Jack - and fetched Jonathan Strange and Mr. Norrel for Aziraphale to occupy himself with. The he returned to his chair, and took up a medical book once again.
Aziraphale was infinitately glad they wouldn't be leaving him alone. He was ever so slightly less frightened of Crowley's uncertain future with them there.
As dawn broke over the city, Aziraphale was roused from his reading by a quiet hissing, half muffled by the blanket swaddling his baby. Crowley was wetting his diaper. Aziraphale wriggled a chubby hand bettwen the blankets to check. Sneaking one finger past the leg holes of the plastic pants and diaper to feel the soggy padding. Aziraphale was overjoyed. Crowley was not, in fact, dehydrated. He wouldn't have a long and unpleasant discorporation. It was probably just a tummy bug and not the Black Plague or Meningitis, or something worse the humans hadn't even come up with a name for yet.
Aziraphale's diaper checking had woken up the sleeping demon. "Darling! Dear boy! You've wet your diaper!"
Aziraphale then proceeded to plaster Crowley's face in kisses. For his part, the groggy demon absolutely didn't understand why something he did multiple time a day was worthy of such praise. But so long as he kept getting such attention from his angel he certainly didn't mind.
Crowley snuggled in deeper to Aziraphale's warmth as the angel embraced him.
I posted my drawings of the mirror wraiths on deviant art. Sooo if you want to look at some bad blurry sketches of Gregor, Jack, Helena, and the twins here you go:
The chilly autumn air reddened the two men's cheeks as they walked into the play park. The little pendulum hanging from the dark-haired one's hand swinging in furious circles.
He smiled. Taking in the scene of destruction. "This was definitely the location of supernatural activity. The tracking spell led us here and this mess only confirms it. It can only mean one thing." He turned to the shorter blond as if expecting an answer.
"Err...that ghosts have no respect for public spaces and like to litter?"
Judging by the glare he got, the blond could only assume this had not been the right answer.
"It means that our summoning spells have been working! Soon we will be ready for the final step!"
"Uhhh, if it was our summoning spells that summoned the ghost or whatever, why did it show up in a random play park and not like...in the summoning circle?"
This earned the blonde another glare.
"Magic is not an exact science."
"I don't think it's a science at all,” the blond muttered, but was largely ignored. "I just wonder,” he said, speaking up this time, "If we aren't...you know. Correlating unrelated events?"
Another glare. "There have been rumors of ghost sightings in this play park ever since what?"
"Ever since we started the summoning rituals,” he recited dutifully.
And what intricate summoning rituals they were, the blonde thought. Taken from the most reveared tome ‘Ye Olde Google.’ At least now a days they had upgraded to actual, physical, spooky-looking books.
"Yes, ever since we started our summoning. Now when we try a new, more powefull spell. This happens. Obviously we are growing stronger. I think its almost time to meet with him again and make the deal for the final summoning.”
Oh yes, the blond thought. Let's make a deal with a weird, socially awkward stranger who showed up at our door one day and asked if we wanted to make a deal with him to summon a demon. What could go wrong?
The older man turned and begain walking purposefully out of the play park. "Are you comming?" He called over his shoulder. "I'm stopping for waffles."
The blonde hurried to catch up. Ah well, there were some perks to this gig after all.
At some point, a deliriously tired Aziraphale and Crowley had been led to bed by Gregor and Jack, despite Aziraphale’s protests that he didn't, in fact, need to sleep. He tried waving Jack off as he attempted to remove his shoes. "I can do myself. I don't need help"
Gregor look at Aziraphale from where he was tucking Crowley into the covers. "I know you can. Just because you can, does not mean you should always have to."
And oh. Hadn't Aziraphale said something like that to Crowley once?
In the end, Aziraphale just miracled himself some pajamas. Jack had been going at the buttons on his waistcoat. Aziraphale wasn't quite sure how he felt about that. Mirror wraits, as a species, he had come to learn, didn't have the qualms about well...almost anything the human race did. Embarrassment simply wasn't a thing for them. Aziraphale, however, had been around humans long enough to catch the dreadful habit of shame, and would prefer not to bee seen naked in all his pudgy glory, thank you very much...
It was still very nice of them, though. Maybe it wasn't so bad that he hadn't gotten Helena like he had wanted to.
Admittedly, Aziraphale felt significantly better when he woke up. The ominous pressing darkness of his worries was no longer suffocating his mind. Crowley was curled against his chest, rubbing the sleeve of his too big sweater against his cheek adorably. His eyes looked significantly less glassy and unfocused than they had last night.
The angel sat up and pulled the Little up with him. He nuzzles his nose into red hair, and took in the babyish scent. "And how are we this morning, my dear little boy? No more nasty spitting up?"
Crowley shook his head ‘no.’ He was still very Little and apparently quite non-verbal. Aziraphale checked his diaper and was glad to find that Crowley had wet.
After the diaper change, Aziraphale brought Crowley back to lay on the bed, squirted some baby lotion into his hands, and began rubbing the demon's belly. Crowley gave happy little wiggles and made the most adorable little noises from behind his pacifier. Crowley was so much more animated than he had been last night.
He was dressed again in Aziraphale's sweater and the black thermal bottoms. Aziraphale had significant doubts he would ever be getting that particular sweater back, but found he didn't mind all that much. Crowley could have anything of his he liked. Crowley could have anything at all.
He carried the demon to the kitchen to see if couldn't eat a bit of breakfast. He was a bit surprised to see Jack and Gregor still there, sitting at the kitchen table. He could smell something peculiar, smoky like burnt toast, and assumed that they must have been having breakfast.
Jack hopped up and stood in front of Aziraphale, blocking his entrance.
"Look, I'm terribly sorry about your toaster."
"Well...I was trying to make French toast, and I...well. It's toast, isn't it? I mean, where else are you supposed to put toast?"
"He dipped it in the batter and then put it in the toaster,” Gregor helpfully pipped up from his spot at the table.
Aziraphale blinked dumbly. Jack shifted from door to foot and gave the angel a crooked smile.
"Oh err...yes, it's um...fine. I'll just get a new one."
Apeased by Aziraphale's forgiveness, Jack steped aside and the angel got a look at the remains of his toaster smoldering in the sink.
Aziraphale snapped his fingers and the toaster was un-blackened and sitting in it's usual place once more. Jack examined it. Shoving a couple of pieces of toast in. "Bloody brilliant! That's what that is. I don't suppose you could teach me?”
"No, I'm afraid not. It's a God-given talent only."
Jack shrugged and went back to examining the toaster.
Aziraphale sat down at the table, positioning the demon comfortably in his lap. He was handed a bottle full of darkish liquid and he looked at Gregor questioningly.
"It's ginger tea. A traditional remedy."
Oh, thought Aziraphale, that didn't sound so bad. At least he hadn't picked another equally traditional remedy such as leeches or trepanation. Crowley took the bottle and sucked eagerly.
Gregor, it turns out, was a much better cook than Jack. (Which really didn't take much.) He had made eggs and bacon for Aziraphale and toast for Crowley, which was perfectly edible and not burnt in the least. Crowley successfully ate two whole pieces of toast, minus the crust. Then began nodding off again against Aziraphale's shoulder.
"He seems better today,” Gregor remarked.
"Ahh yes, not a bit of vomiting today. I err...wanted to thank you for coming over last night when I was err...” (many words could have fit here such as hysterical, beside himself, panicked, unreasonably melodramatic and frenzied, but Aziraphale choose none of them.)
Last night he had been entirely convinced that Crowley would be discorporated before morning, now in the warm light of day he felt silly and foolish.
Gregor just placed his dark hand atop Aziraphale's pale one. "It was no trouble,” he said in a tone that made it clear that would be the end of that.
Aziraphale smiled gratefuly. "You can go home if you like. We'll be alright. I think after Crowley's nap, a nice bath is in order.
"Are you certain?"
Aziraphale gave a bit of a smile. "Yes I think so."
Gregor nodded. “The recipe for the ginger tea is on the counter. You will call us if there is the slightest need to." (It wasn't a request. Gregor thought, rightly, that Aziraphale might be more likely to seek help if it was something required and not something offered.)
He embraced Aziraphale, careful not to wake the sleeping demon. Then he retrieved Jack from where he was leaning against the counter, nibbling on burnt pieces of toast, and left.
Aziraphale kissed the demon's brow. A bit of rest, a bit of love, and Crowley would be well again.
This wasn't going to end well, Eddie thought as he arranged the candles, flicking his blonde hair our of his heavily eye-linered eyes. He had seen the movies: the Exorcist, the Conjuring, Annabelle, Insidious, the Rite. He had even endured through every increasingly awful Paranormal Activity film. None of them ended well.
He supposed he could just...not do it. That was always an option. But if he refused, he knew that the boss would pitch him right put of the Coven and back onto the street from whence he came. And as much as Eddie didn't want to summon a demon. He also didn't want to leave.
Magic was the only thing Eddie had ever shown the slightest bit of aptitude for. It was the consensus of Eddie's father, his teachers, his friends, and that one random shouty man in the park that one time, that Eddie was a loser. A lifelong and probably terminal condition. He was a nobody going nowhere. He wasn't particularly good looking or clever. He didn't have any ambition. He didn't have any talents. He didn't have a wealthy family to secure him a place in the world, despite him being completely useless.
Eddie just couldn't give up the one good thing he had going for him.
He sighed and began to carefully trace out complicated sigils on the ground in red paint. (For dramatic effect.) He would just stock up on crucifixes and holy water. Maybe get a Bible. He wondered if it would still work if he didn't believe in God. He wasn't looking forward to finding out.
Crowley was laid out on the sofa for his nap. Aziraphale placed his pacifier into his mouth, tucked his plush duck and his blankie into his hands, and tucked the covers around him.
Aziraphale thought that he might get a crib. Not for the night time, but for the occasional nap. Crowley liked to sleep much more than Aziraphale. Crowley even, in some cases, seemed to need sleep. A side effect of being a snake, Aziraphale supposed. If it was too cold or too hot or if he had eaten too much, Crowley would get slow and sluggish until he rested up. Aziraphale found himself terribly worried about Crowley falling off the sofa, even though he never had before.
The crib could go in the sitting room, tucked in the corner by Aziraphale's favorite reading chair. Aziraphale could read and glance up at his sleeping demon every so often. He'd need a mobile of course, lots of cozy blankets and pillows, maybe some crib toys.
Later, Aziraphale would go down and boot up his ancient computer or maybe take Crowley out to go shopping when he was feeling better.
Two yellow eyes were peering at him now, pulling him from his imaginary shopping. Aziraphale went over to pick up his baby, fully expecting to be greeted by happy cuddles. He was not.
Because things never had the decency to happen as Aziraphale expected them to.
Instead, the demon scooted as far from Aziraphale as the sofa would allow and pulled his blanket over his head. Aziraphale was puzzled for a moment, but then he detected a sour smell in the air and realized what must have happened. Without hesitation or mercy he picked up the demon and sat him on his lap. Then gently extracted a curly head out from under the gray blanket.
"Really, Crowley, that's quite enough of that,” he said, firmly but gently. "We've lived through periods of history where when one walked down the street they had a very good chance of having someone empty their chamber pot out a window and all over their head. I really don't know why you think that a bit of bodily waste would upset me. I know you've made a bit of mess in your diaper while you were sleeping. But it's nothing to fuss so over. What we're going to do is get that messy diaper off you and get you in a nice warm bath. Then you’ll get a nice, clean new diaper, and fresh new pajamas, and we'll have a cuddle and maybe something to eat, and watch a bit of ‘Moomin Valley.’" (‘Moomin Valley’ was currently the only television show that Crowley and Aziraphale both enjoyed, and therefore could enjoy together. It was soft and dreamy and whimsical. Perfect for a demon in Little space or an angel who was easily overwhelmed by how loud and bright the television could often be.) “How's that sound? Hmm?"
Crowley didn't say anything. Aziraphale hadn't expected him to. Crowley just put his arms around Aziraphale's neck and hugged tight, burying his face into the angel's neck.
Aziraphale was very careful not to make the slightest indication that he was in any way upset by changing Crowley's soiled diaper. He didn't wrinkle his nose against the smell, he didn't frown. He just smiled and cooed to Crowley the whole time. He wanted to show Crowley no matter how troublesome or mucky taking care of him got, Aziraphale was more than happy to do it.
Crowley perked up in the bath, splashing around with the army of little yellow ducks Aziraphale had recently purchased. Aziraphale gently washed his baby, paying special attention to the red hair that was now down to his shoulders. He wondered if Crowley would be amenable to him braiding it. He had always wanted to that in the early days. Crowley had often let village children braid his hair, and Aziraphale had sometimes selfishly wished it was him, instead, playing with the red curls.
Aziraphale lifted the demon out of the bath. He got a gentle drying and a fresh new diaper, then he was laid on the bed to be given a baby lotion massage while he drank more warm ginger tea from a bottle.
He didn't get fresh new pajamas, however. Any and all attempts to dress the demon in anything other than Aziraphale's oversized sweater was met with resistance. Aziraphale, being largely weak - at least where a certain demon was concerned - miracled everything clean and fluffed and pleasant smelling once more.
Crowley ate almost an entire bowl of rice pilaf and Aziraphale couldn't be happier. They snuggled together on the sofa for a few episodes of ‘Moomin Valley.’
Looking down at the demon in his arms, who was staring intently at the screen, caught up in Moomin Troll's latest adventure, he came to a realization. This was Crowley as he truly was. All the time Aziraphale had known the demon he had expended monumental effort to put forth the appearance of being dangerous and mysterious and cool. Crowley had always been putting on a performance. Now he was sweet and soft in Aziraphale’s arms. Not bothering to be what he was expected to be. Or what he thought he should be. Just happily existing, safely curled up in the angel's warm embrace, unselfconscious and so achingly pure. Aziraphale felt unbelievably privileged to see the demon this way. It felt sacred in ways that churches and temples and mosques never had to him.
The angel wiped away the tears that had gathered in the corners of his eyes. He kissed his baby's head. This was right. No uncertainty this time. This was the right thing. Him and Crowley here, like this, soft and together.
The black robes were pretty awesome, but Eddie still felt a bit apprehensive about the whole thing. His bosses’ new friend and the other dude (introduced as his 'associate') he had brought with him didn't help assuage Eddie's nerves. They looked and acted as sketchy as it was possible for people to look and act. One was dressed (and smelt) like he had just clawed his way out of his own grave and the other seemed to have no idea how to be a human being.
They had gathered together the whole coven, Nathaniel, Annie, Ling, Charlotte, Charles, and him. It was all very somber and ceremonial. Just like on TV. Even for Eddie's Hot Topic tastes, they were overdoing the entire thing just a touch. They turned the lights off, made him light all the candles, (Eddie was always put in charge of all tasks the others didn't want to do), and stood around the pentagram and began to chant.
The two strangers (Eddie had never learned their names, and mostly referred to them as the “Creeps,” because that's what that gave him) stood watching them intently.
Eddie wasn't entirely convinced something was going to happen. Magic he had seen. He could believe in magic. Demons though, seemed a bit far fetched. Though not believing that something existed didn't mean that Eddie couldn't also be afraid of it. He fingered the just-in-case crucifix in his pocket.
He could feel a change in the air as they chanted. A strange heavy tugging started in his chest. Slowly, something dark started to materialize in the center of the summoning circle.
All hell had broken loose. (Not literally, mind you. If it had, there would be significantly more Hellhounds and a distinct stench of sulfur in the air.) The shabby blond man had broken out in ugly peaks of laughter. The tall guy in the gray suit was smiling his unsettling smile with all his too-white, too-perfect teeth, even though Nathaniel was yelling at him. Certain there had been some great fuck-up. Since it couldn't possibly be Nathaniel's fault, (Nothing ever was, according to the reliable source that was Nathaniel) it had to be the man in gray's.
Eddie just felt sick. The creature in the summoning circle was probably a demon. Judging by the horrible yellow eyes. It was also most definitely a Little. Demons were supposed to be frightening, snarling, grotesque creatures. Not thin, human-looking redhead's curled in a ball, furiously sucking on a pacifier, glaring rather the least frightening (and rather adorable) glare Eddie had ever seen.
Eventually the man in gray (who, from all of Nathaniel's yelling, Eddie gathered was named Gabriel) had enough of Nathaniel. "Shut up,” he said. And Nathaniel did. Gabriel waved his hand in a dismissive motion, “Go away." Nathaniel, looking a little dazed, did just that.
The rest of the coven just stood around awkwardly staring at Gabriel and shifting from foot to foot. He waved his hand again and they all fled. Eddie was perfectly happy to go with them. Then, the scruffy blond who had never heard of personal hygiene barked, “Not you! You stay!"
Eddie knew, with a deep sinking feeling, that he meant him.
As soon as he was turned around a heavy book was thrust into his hands. Gabriel tapped the open page. “Draw this right between the door and the summoning circle,” he said.
It looked like another summoning circle, though this one didn't have a pentagram in the middle. "Why do we need another summoning circle? We already have the demon.”
Eddie's legs were kicked out from under him and he landed on the cement floor of the basement with a hard thud. A can of paint was shoved in his face and his shaggy hair was roughly grasped and his head forced downward to press against the book that was now, like him, sprawled on the floor. "None of your fucking concern. Now do what you're told, you little pissant.”
"Really, Hastur, language!" chided Gabriel. Though he didn't, Eddie noted, object at all to how Hastur was treating him.
Eddied grumbled unkind things under his breath (he hoped Hastur couldn't hear) and got to work.
As Eddie painted, and Gabriel stood there like a great, dumb-looking statue, Hastur took this opportunity to go and torment the demon in the summoning circle.
He grasped the Little's face and in the most sickening, mocking voice Eddie had ever heard said, “Well Craaaawwwllyy don't we make a darling widdle baby?"
Crawly's answer to this was to extend his fangs to their fullest possible length and bite down hard on Hastur's hand.
Hastur yanked his hand out of Crowley's mouth. "You little bastard!" Hastur smacked Crowley so hard that he fell backwards in a lifeless heap.
"Hey, don't do that man! He's only a baby!"
Hastur was in a worse mood than usual now. (And he was usually in a pretty bad mood.) He stomped up to Eddie and yanked his up by the collar of his shirt. "Do you have something to say to me?"
Hastur's breath was fetid and the look in his dark eyes (Eddie couldn't tell you what color they were, only that they we're dark) was terrifying. “No,” Eddie squeaked out, some latent bit of self-preservation taking hold.
"I thought so." Hastur dropped him back onto the floor.
Gabriel rolled his eyes. "Please, can we get on with it. You'll have all the time in the world to do whatever you want with the demon Crowley after we're done."
"Fine,” Hastur spat out, literally spitting at Gabriel's shiny shoes. He missed, and went to sulk in a dark corner and occasionally throw small objects at the heap of sweater and curls that was the demon Crowley.
Crowley had still felt a bit icky from his recent illness (thank you Pollution), but was largely content (and very, very small) curled up in his Papa's arms watching ‘Moomin Valley.’ His eyelids were growing heavy as he sucked gently on his pacifier and cuddled his blankie and duck, leaning back into the warmth of his angel.
He started to feel an odd tugging sensation around his belly. He thought at first that he might simply need to vomit again, but then the tugging spread out to his limbs. It shent shivers up his too-long spine. It was as if someone were stepping on his grave or calling his name. His real name, not Anthony J. Crowley, but the real one. The one that God had cursed him with after he Fell. The one that had power. Oh...oh...something clicked in Crowley's brain just as he felt his corporation being tugged in one great final tug.
It felt like someone was trying, and succeeding, to shove his entire body through a straw. He couldn't breathe, which was alarming, even though he didn't need to. The cozy warmth of the angel he had been sitting on was replaced with cold hard concrete and a strange heavy feeling in all of his limbs. He felt his bladder release, warming the inside of his diaper. Crowley squeezed his eyes shut, not wanting to look at his new reality.
The trouble with summoning demons is that it was a largely overrated past time. If done right, you got the demon, sure. The binding power if the summoning circle held them in check so they could not harm you. The problem was that same power also meant they couldn't use their powers for you, either. No making you suddenly obscenely wealthy, or giving your rotten father a sudden heart attack, or making that pretty redhead at the coffee shop fall madly in love with you.
There were two things that you could do with a summoned demon. The first was to ask them questions. These were generally the intellectual sort of questions, about the existence of God, the nature of good and evil, boring theological rot.
The second thing you could do was to give them away. Bind them in a box or bottle, or a particularly gaudy lamp, and set it up so the seals that bind them will break. Set the demon upon your rival, or you rotten father, and hope they are feeling particularly vengeful.
Crowley didn't know what the black robed figures (Black robes really? Really? What was this? An Ed Woodfilm?) all staring down at him with half-shocked expressions wanted from him.
The summoning circle was pressing at all sides of Crowley, putting tremendous pressure on not his physical form, but his incorporeal being. It was giving him a terrible headache. Pain shot in hot, sharp bursts in Crowley's skull. It did not help that he was still feeling yucky and very, very little. His stomach churned uncomfortably. The yelling that was happening now wasn't helping matters either.
Crowley finally looked up when he heard Gabriel's name in amongst the other yellings.
It couldn't be the Archangel Gabriel. No way. He was up in Heaven, doing boring bureaucratic things and being pompous. He was definitely not here. It must be another Gabriel.
And just as a delightful extra, Hastur was here as well. Crowley really wanted to cry. He absolutely wouldn't, though. Gabriel and Hastur might throw him in a vat of Holy Water or shove rosaries down his throat or whatever foul things the two of them had concocted for him. But they wouldn't see him cry.
Crowley was also not going out without a fight. (Not that he thought he could give a particularly good one in his present circumstances.) Biting Hastur was exceptionally satisfying. Even if it did earn him a slap that sent him reeling. He was left largely alone after that. Though he could feel small things occasionally bouncing off his back. (He couldn't see, but he suspected it was Hastur's doing.)
Crowley just curled up and tried not to cry. He felt small and helpless and afraid. This was why he hadn't wanted to be a Little. This utter feeling of helplessness. Existence was already a terrifying thing to navigate when you were Big, but when you were Little it was so, so much worse. He wanted someone to make things better. Because he was too weak and helpless to do it himself. He wanted his Papa.
Aziraphale would come for him. He would. Crowley had always come when Aziraphale was in trouble. Surely the angel would try to save him now? Surely his Papa would come and make things better? But what if he couldn't find Crowley? What if he he found him and Hastur and Gabriel discorporated him? Or worse? Maybe it was better that Aziraphale didn't come. That he stayed safe. Away from Crowley.
Crowley would be alright, really he would. If only his Papa was alright.
At least they had had the time that they did together. And what a wonderful time together it was, too. The very best time.
Crowley closed his eyes tighter. And shoved the sobs that threatened to rise right back down his throat.
Taking a moment from the abject torture of Crowley to give much credit to my beta LittleBird20, who is doing a wonderful job and is appreciated very much.💕
Tune in the same time tomorrow for more misery! But, not actually at the same time. My uploading schedule is erratic as A. Z. Fell's shop hours.
The coven was currently doing what the coven did best: drinking and making merry. Celebrating their first big successful spell. Ling and Charlotte were sharing drunken kisses on the sofa. Nathaniel was twirling Annie around in some sort of mock waltz. Charles was attempting to make drunken conversation with Garbriel (who was largely ignoring him and tapping away on a sleek silver phone.) Hastur had slumped in a corner surrounded by piles of empty liquor bottles.
They were all waiting, but only Gabriel knew for what. Eddie looked down at his wine glass and felt sick. It was a feeling that hadn't left him ever since the summoning.
It had been hours now. Five? Eight? Eddie wasn't sure. But he knew it was rather a long time. And they had left him. Just turned off the lights and left the Little demon in the cold and dark of the basement.
Eddie set his glass down and slipped out. No one noticed him leave. There were, Eddie thought, some perks to largely being ignored unless someone wanted something. And he hoped that none of them did for a while. He went to his room first, then Annie's nursery. He had to be careful in Annie's nursery to take only what he was sure she wouldn't miss. It wasn't that hard. Annie was extremely spoiled. She had a lot of things stuffed in closets that she had decided she didn't like. (Usually shortly after she had gotten it and probably after she had begged for it.)
He stuffed all the things he would need in his black backpack. Then he carfully crept towards the basement. (Stopping to take the chains off of his black parachute pants because they were making too much noise, rattling and clanging together.)
The demon was still curled up in the middle of the summoning circle. Eddie didn't turn on the basment light. Instead, he had a lantern that shone soft yellow beams on the curled up creature. Eddie noticed a dark puddle of liquid the demon was lying in, and realize the Little must have wet through his diaper.
Eddie sat at the edge of the summoning circle and took a deep breath. He leaned forward, stretching out a hand. "Umm...Crawly? Crowley? Crowley, I think it was. Are you a awake? Are you...alive?"
He half-expected the instant his hand made contact with Crowley's shoulder, the demon would turn around in a hissing, snarling visage of horror. (Eddie, as previously stated, had seen a lot of horror movies.) It didn't happen. Slowly, the lump that was Crowley shifted, until two yellow eyes were peeking out at him warily. The demon wasn't horrifying. He just looked sad and defeated and maybe a little bit cross.
"I'm not going to hurt you. For what it's worth, man, I'm really sorry about this. I'm going to try and help you a bit, if that's alright?"
The demon didn't answer. It just looked at him with those sad, wary eyes.
Eddie laid out a towel and brought out the supplies. He looked to Crowley again. "Is it alright if I change you? I promise I won't hurt you. I don't want to leave you down here in that icky diaper all night."
Crowley just huffed and went limp. His head hitting the concrete with an unpleasant smack. He just lay there for a while, Eddie staring at him, until he lifted his head and gave Eddie a look that plainly said "what are you waiting for?" This was apparently all the permission Eddie was going to get.
He maneuvered the slender form on to the towel and pulled down his pants. Eddie was no stranger to changing diapers. He was a Caregiver. (Though he wasn't particularly pleased with his designation. It had been the last straw that had ended his tumultuous relationship with his father and had gotten him kicked out of the house once and for all.) And as the only other caregiver in the house besides Nathaniel, (and also the lowest man on the proverbial totem pole), he had been tasked as Little Annie's defunct (and largely unpaid) babysitter. He wasn't overly happy with the job. Annie was a brat, Big or Little and Eddie had the bruises from where she had kicked him in the shins to prove it.
Crowley didn't fuss as his diaper was changed. He just looked terribly resigned as one of Annie's pink princess diapers was taped around his waist.
Eddie used a towel to clean up Crowley's plastic pants as best as he could before slipping them back on the demon. He pulled out a pair of his own black fleece pajamas pants to replace the demon's wet ones.
All throughout the diaper change, the demon had been rubbing a fist full of sweater against his face in a self-soothing motion. Eddie reached in his bag and took out a white and cream plush owl and held it out to the demon. Crowley looked at it duboiusly. Eddie wiggled it and put on a voice. “Annie decided she doesn't like me and that makes me sad. Will you be my friend?"
That did the trick. The owl was snatched out of Eddie's hand and cuddled to the demon.
Eddie took the towel and mopped up the wee from the earlier diaper leak, then laid down a blanket and a pillow on the hard floor. Crowley eagerly scuttled into the warm spot and curled up. (The summoning circle that he was contained in didn't allow for tall demons to stretch out within, so really, there was nothing else for Crowley to do but curl up.) Eddie tucked another blanket over him.
He sat down beside him and began to rub the demon's back. "If anyone comes down, I'm going to have to take the blankets and owl away. I'll give them back once they’re gone. But I'm pretty sure if that gross Hastur dude sees you with them, he won't be happy. Do you understand?"
“For what it's worth, and I don't think its worth very much, I am really, really sorry. I thought you would be, you know...more demon-y. Horns, snarling, taste for human flesh, that sort of thing. I didn't expect you to actually be a person." Eddie paused and thought for a moment.
"I don't think the others think you’re a person. Fuck, I don't think they think I'm a person half the time. I don't know what's going to happen now. I'd let you go, but I’m pretty sure Gabriel and Hastur would just make us summon you again. Even if I refused. I think they could make me. They're really fucking scary.”
Eddie rested his head on his knees and sighed. There was silence for a while, untill the demon let out a little pained whimper.
Eddie looked up. Crowley's eyes were half rolled up into his head, and his back was arching off the ground. Eddie kneeled by his side, at a loss for what to do.
When Crowley stilled, he asked "Is it being in the summoning circle? Is that hurting you?"
Crowley nodded weakly.
Eddie sat back and buried his head in his hands. The demon looked so ill. He was pale and drawn, his eyes sukened into their sockets. It was such a rapid decline from even a scant few hours earlier when he had first been summoned.
When Eddie was small, he had found a little black kitten helplessly mewing in an alleyway on one rainy walk home from school. He had picked it up, wrapped it up in his coat, and taken it home.
His mother had scolded him for probably taking the kitten away from it's mother. But she had let him keep it all the same. She had warned him many times not to get attached to the sickly thing.
He hadn't listened. He had named it Salem and it was going to be his best friend. He would love it and take good care of it, and it would in return love him and be his best friend. For a while it looked like Salem would get better. He started to drink his milk and got up to walk around a little. Then he seemed tired. Eddie thought this was normal, he was always tired after he got sick too. The kitten would rest and it would be fine.
It wasn't fine. Eddie had come home from school one day only for his mother to tell him, in a conversational tone, that the kitten had died and she had put it out with the trash. Eddie started to cry. His mother frowned at him and said that she had told him not to get attached. And it was probably his fault anyway for taking it away from it's mother. Eddie cried harder.
Looking down at the listless demon on the floor next to him, Eddie worried that history was repeating itself, and that just like with Salem, this would also be his fault.