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Light as a Feather [(Gen) | part 2]

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With expert movements, Crowley gets to work.

Aziraphale's wings aren't in as bad a state as they first expected. Some feathers are in disarray and most are lacking their shine, but none seem to be missing or grown in wrong direction, and barely any are broken.

The demon strokes over and in-between feathers, using their hands and small demonic miracles to brush out all the dead ends and rubbing the oil from the glands between them with the pads of their fingers.

They massage the skin underneath with the oil, too, seeing that it has gotten dry in patches. 

Slowly but steadily, the wings start to shine again.

 

It takes a while for Crowley to go over every part of Aziraphale’s wings.

They move on from the parts Aziraphale couldn't reach himself to also cover everything else, whether Aziraphale has already gone over it or not, taking care of every single feather, being more thorough than Aziraphale himself ever was.

About halfway through the first wing, Aziraphale is so relaxed that he is swaying on his knees, threatening to fall over. Crowley motions for Aziraphale to lay down on the bed then, letting him lay down and relax into the grooming as if he were in a human massage salon.

By the end of it, he is boneless under Crowley's hands, feeling good in a way he hasn't since- perhaps- forever, both in his physical body and his ethereal mind.

 

Crowley watches Aziraphale, smiling at how the angel's wings are shimmering in the soft light.

He looks so content, so relaxed- and he is beautiful

Crowley must have said it out loud, as Aziraphale turns around and smiles at them.

"As are you, Crowley" he says softly, and the demon ducks their head.

"I'm not-"

"You are, my dearest" Aziraphale motions for them to move, and once Crowley is next to him, Aziraphale sits up.

"You are" he whispers and pecks Crowley on the lips. "Now- I suppose your wings wouldn't have been much better looked after than mine, lately?"

Crowley can't hide a wince at the fact that Aziraphale seems to believe that they only started to neglect their wings since the apocalypse that wasn't, the way the angel did. As if until then, other demons would have offered to do it. As if, even if they had, Crowley had trusted them enough to accept. 

"Yeah, guess you could say that" Crowley says, suddenly self-conscious, and forces themselves to pop the wings into their plane of existence despite it. They still hope Aziraphale can't tell how deep the damage runs for them... But from the way the angel's eyes turn sad, he can.

"Oh, Crowley, dearest... Why didn't you ever say something?"

They make a face. "We weren't- we were on different sides, before. It's not like I didn't already trust you, but- not like that."

Aziraphale softly smiles at them. "I understand, my darling. But now, will you let me?"

Crowley can only whisper. "Of course"

 

Aziraphale motions for them to lay down, and the angel starts to touch the wings, gently wiping them clean and putting them into order. He is so soft with them- it feels so good, so undeserved still- Crowley hides their face in a pillow and can't stop the tears.

Didn't they say before that Demons Don't Cry

Well, this one does.

The tears, first slowly falling, won't stop, and a sob is making their upper body shudder despite Crowley's best efforts to stop it.

If Aziraphale notices, he doesn't say anything, simply continuing his movements on the feathers.

Crowley is grateful for it.

Maybe, some day, they will be able to open up to Aziraphale fully, letting him hold them while they break down. The thought isn't as fear inducing now as it once was, as long as the other person is Aziraphale... But for now Crowley is content to simply cry for themselves, feeling Aziraphale's hands on their wings and letting the angel do this for them.