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Standard Deviation

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Aziraphale (the name being a result of parents who he referred to as ‘bible nuts’) was a considerably cutoff person, one not too sure how to come to terms with his own emotions. It could have been his parents - being shunned when he left for university due to his dedication to science. You just couldn’t rely on God, not when it came to things that required universal proof.

How the sex thing started? He wasn’t quite sure himself. Aziraphale decided, after becoming a doctor and setting himself up in a hospital, that his true passion was to unlock the secrets of human sexuality. He thought that maybe sex - if he could just understand that one thing, he could find a purpose. He could mean something, something so much bigger than himself. In the sixties, human sexuality was a largely under-analyzed field of study and Aziraphale wanted to dive into that unknown realm of possibilities - the endless amount of room for discovery was incredible. What was sex, really? The stages of physical response, the different forms of stimulation, what did it all mean? How could you capture it, jolt it down physically, make it tangible? It was his burning passion to pioneer into the depths of it all.

He wasn’t looking for a partner when he came across Anthony Crowley. They met at a pub, surprisingly enough. It was in close proximity to the hospital and an area Aziraphale frequented regularly when he fancied a drink. He took a sip of his scotch, wincing at its strength as he eyed the man a few stools down who had been watching him for a while. He was dressed… unconventionally, all in black, adhering to the slowly emerging ‘punk’ era. His fiery red hair stood up and his circular sunglasses sat on the bridge of his nose. Aziraphale found the sunglasses most unusual, especially inside the dimly lit pub. He hadn’t realized he zoned out until the man was gone and a voice came from behind him.

“Doctor Aziraphale?”

Aziraphale spun around, sitting up properly and adjusting his bowtie. It was the man.

“I’m Crowley.”

“Quite an unusual name.”

“Says you. It’s Anthony Crowley, but I don’t like Anthony.” He spat the name out like it was acid burning on his tongue.

Crowley extended an arm and Aziraphale remarked during their handshake that their hands seemed to fit together perfectly. Crowley’s palm was rough and his fingers had calluses, contrary to Aziraphale’s own soft and tender hand. It was one of those perfect polar opposite situations.

“What can I do for you, Crowley?” He asked cautiously, withdrawing his hand. His eyes followed Crowley as he took a seat on the stool next to him, slouching against the counter.

“I was wondering about your study.”

It was abnormal for someone to approach him about his study so openly. Especially given how it was still quite under wraps, only an odd number of hospital staff aware of what went on in his exam room after-hours. “Oh, I see. Are you wanting to volunteer?”

“No, actually. At least not in the way you’re thinking. I want to work with you.”

They continued their conversation from there, Crowley sharing his similar passion for understanding human sexuality and making a discovery. He was currently working on obtaining a degree in psychology.

“I have to think about it.” Aziraphale said later that evening, after the two of them had shared likely one too many drinks.

And that’s where it all began. Flash forward to a few months later and Aziraphale and Crowley, who he deemed his research partner, have become a duo with a solid partnership. Aziraphale enjoyed pastries and tartan, and despite the obscene nature of his work, never cursed. Crowley enjoyed loud music, cigarettes, and his Bentley. It worked out, their relationship being strictly professional. They would sit in Aziraphale’s office into the late hours of the night reviewing notes and talking about whatever crossed their minds. For the first time in his life, Aziraphale felt like he had a connection with someone.

Instead of simply asking people about their sex lives, Aziraphale and Crowley actually observed volunteers engaging in self-stimulation and sexual intercourse. They had been criticized for their lax methodology and ethical standards, but it was truly just work to the both of them. They were no perverts, it was simply what needed to be done to obtain the purest results, all their volunteers completely consenting. There was no… attachment to the work, whether it be sexual or emotional. They didn’t squirm in their seats, their breath didn’t hitch, and their pants never felt too tight. They simply sat there, jotting down notes.

“Oh, bugger!” Aziraphale slammed down the phone one night and shouted rather harshly. He furiously reorganized the papers on his desk.

“What’s your problem?” Crowley quirked an eyebrow from the other side of the desk, tilting down his glasses. Aziraphale didn’t get around to asking why he always wore them.

“The, erm, volunteer we were expecting cancelled. I really wanted that data tonight for comparison.” They had no one scheduled for the remainder of the night and Aziraphale had planned to compare notes throughout the evening. Thanks, Patient J-93842!

“Data for…?” Crowley prompted.

“Self-stimulation. Male, that is. I needed it to compare to the woman’s data that we collected the other night and -”

“No problem.” He said simply, standing up suddenly and heading towards the exam room.

Aziraphale quickly followed behind him. “What are you doing?” Because there was no way in Hell he was about to do what he was thinking of.

Then without any hesitation, Crowley started to undo the buttons to his lab coat, letting it fall to the ground. Aziraphale gulped, too taken aback to form a sentence. He pulled his t-shirt over his head and swung it off in a single swift movement, tossing it carelessly behind him. Aziraphale could see the line of public hair trailing underneath his trousers and felt his blood run cold.

Crowley worked at the buckle of his belt and Aziraphale admired his shape. He was all hard at the edges, in the very places where Aziraphale was soft. They could fit together like a lock and a key he thought, rather poetically. It was just a thought, though. It meant nothing.

“You needed data, right?” Crowley offered. “Masturbatory data? With a male?” He began kicking off his characteristically tight jeans.

Aziraphale could only open his mouth then promptly close it.

“Why not me? If it’s an intake form issue, I’m glad to fill one out afterwards.” Crowley continued casually, innocently.

Aziraphale was being ridiculous, really. There was no reason why Crowley couldn’t be a subject, especially if he was offering willingly. It was probably nothing but a quick wank to him. Aziraphale watched this sort of stuff all the time, why should this be any different? “Right,” he began, gesturing to the door behind him, “I’ll just go back -”

“Just stay here, Aziraphale. We both know the observations are easier this way and I don’t mind you watching.”

There was a bed in the exam room, which is where the experiments took place. He pitied the bed, really, as it had been through a lot. When Crowley was fully nude, Aziraphale became paralyzed, his gaze following him as he climbed into the bed and taped the wires to his chest. He could not look away, not for his own life.

“Aziraphale?” Crowley’s voice jolted him out of his trance.

He had to get it together. This was work. He wasn’t - he wasn’t attracted to Crowley. No, he had his study and that was his sole priority. Aziraphale cleared his throat and tore his eyes away, mentally trying to restart his brain and steer it back into a professional setting. He grabbed a chair, seated himself by the bed, set his clipboard in his lap and clicked the stopwatch in his hand. “Begin.”

Crowley slid a hand down to his cock and Aziraphale refused to look anywhere apart from his clipboard. He gripped his pen, hands perspiring, and began to scribble anxiously. He wasn’t writing notes, that’s what the wires were for, he was just scribbling outright nonsense. Anything, anything but looking up. The room was silent, filled only with the sound of his pen scratching against paper and Crowley’s ragged breaths. A few minutes later and Aziraphale couldn’t resist the temptation. He allowed his gaze to trail from his clipboard, down to his brown Oxfords, and up to the bed. That, he would decide later, was definitely a mistake.

Crowley laid there, propped up on one elbow, and stroked himself. His cheeks were flushed and his bottom lip was caught between his teeth as he sucked in a shuddering breath. Then he met his eyes.

His sunglasses were off and his eyes were absolutely gorgeous. They were an amber color he had never seen, almost inhuman, with one pupil significantly more dilated than the other. They were incredibly unique and Aziraphale couldn’t understand why the man was so desperate to hide them. Or maybe he just thought the shades were cool.

Crowley’s eyes were clouded with something devious that made a shiver crawl down Aziraphale’s spine. It was lust. He was looking at him with such intensity, picking up his pace, and Aziraphale felt his own abonmen twitch.

Crowley let out a low moan, the kind Aziraphale would after a bite of magnificent sushi. He felt his chest rising and falling and had to look away after that, otherwise he may have just lost himself. He averted his gaze back to his clipboard, his face burning as he stared down at his lap. He couldn’t think of Crowley promiscuous and flushed face. Absolutely not. He had to, for the love of God, be professional.

“Look at me.” Crowley choked out suddenly and Aziraphale’s mind blanked. Did he really just -

“Look at me, Aziraphale.” He said again, pleaded, and this time Aziraphale obeyed, their eyes locking together for a second time.

“Fuck.” Crowley groaned.

Aziraphale imagined his tongue working at Crowley’s cock instead of his own hand, those damned eyes staring down at him as Crowley would grab a fistful of his tousled blonde hair, thrusting into his mouth. He imagined the noises Crowley would make then. The heat was building in the pit of his stomach. He did not look away, not for a second, and wanted so desperately to touch himself.

Aziraphale.” Crowley croaked barely above a whisper and Aziraphale looked down to watch as he spilled over his hand.

They stayed like that for a moment, Aziraphale seated uncomfortably in his chair, Crowley on the bed. The only sound was their irregular panting. Jesus Christ.

After a few more breaths, Aziraphale stood up abruptly. He had to turn it off - whatever he was feeling, he could absolutely not be feeling. Crowley was his coworker, for one. What had just happened meant nothing and Crowley was obviously just excited in the spur of the moment. He knew the man likely felt nothing for him and really, there could have been anyone sitting in that seat and it wouldn’t have gone down any other way.

It was arousal, isn’t that how it worked? Sex could be blinding, and when one is in such a state, they may feel things that aren’t genuine. He wasn’t attracted to Crowley and vice versa - they were simply colleagues and nothing more. It was best to understand that now before becoming invested.

“Thank you, Crowley.” Aziraphale tried to appear as collected as possible, the hoarseness of his own voice startling him. “You did… good.”