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Ineffable Husbands - PG edit

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After the Apocalypse happened - or rather, didn’t - and Crowley and Aziraphale visited each other's respective Head Offices for a spot of not-actually-torture, they dined at the Ritz. Crowley drank coffee, and quite a lot of very good champagne. Aziraphale drank tea and several glasses of the same champagne - and ate somewhere in the vicinity of 72 courses. Or that’s how it seemed to Crowley, at least - it may have been 23, or 12, or perhaps only 7 - but however many courses it actually was, Aziraphale enjoyed a wide array of foods, and Crowley enjoyed his company while he ate them. *

Aziraphale finished his dessert, wiped his mouth delicately with the napkin, and leaned back in his seat with a smile Crowley knew indicated his appetite was finally sated. Crowley smiled in response, and asked “shall I get the bill?”.
“Oh, thank you dear, that would be lovely of you,” was the reply. Crowley paid the bill, and offered his arm to Aziraphale.
“Where to now, Angel?”
“Would you care to come back to the bookshop? We can see Adam’s new additions, share some wine…oh goodness, the wine! I wonder whether an 11-year-old Antichrist knows about wine collections?”
“I’m sure he knows people have them, Angel - though I can’t guarantee yours will have been restored exactly as it was. Let’s go and find out.”

They walked companionably, arm-in-arm - new for them, but very pleasant – to the bookshop. Upon their arrival Aziraphale opened the door, and said “after you, my dear.” Crowley, having already noticed that morning a few of the more obvious additions Adam had made to Aziraphale’s collection, heaved a sigh of relief at seeing the shop so almost-normal. He wasn’t entirely sure he’d ever get over seeing it burning, and was equally uncertain he’d ever be willing to leave Aziraphale’s side after the shock of (almost) losing him.

Aziraphale stepped into the shop behind Crowley, closed the door, and spun in a slow circle, taking it in. He hadn’t seen it aflame, but he knew from what Crowley had told him that everything short of Agnes’s book and Crowley himself had been burnt to cinders, so seeing it restored was comforting.
“Books first, or wine?” he asked, and had barely finished the question when Crowley answered “WINE!” They walked to the rear of the bookstore aiming for the back room, and discovered something Crowley HADN’T noticed that morning - a door signed “staff only”, behind which there was a staircase leading down, where previously no such door or staircase had existed. After exchanging curious looks they turned on the light, and headed slowly down the stairs.

If Aziraphale was surprised by some of Adam’s additions to his books, he was positively astonished at the addition of a basement cellar stocked floor to ceiling and wall to wall with wine racks, none of which had a vacancy. He recognised some of the bottles - including the Chateauneuf-du-Pape he and Crowley had shared the week before the world didn’t end - but many had CLEARLY been added by Adam, as there had simply never been this much wine in the building in the entire time Aziraphale had lived there.

Crowley let out a low whistle of appreciation, and said, “Angel, I think we can safely say that Adam is aware of wine collections.”
“Indeed! And look - some of these wines I’ve never tried before - there’s an incredible variety here. I wonder how he chose which bottles to add.”
They continued looking at rack after rack of wine, until Crowley remarked “I’m starting to notice a pattern here, Angel.”
“If you’ve noticed that the wines seem to be sorted by country, I’ve noticed the same pattern, dear. Adam was certainly thorough in his additions. I don’t even know where to start!”

“Alphabetically?” suggested Crowley.
“Alphabetically by what - country of origin?”
“By year then, Angel?”
“Goodness Crowley dear, we might never get to opening a bottle if we try it that way, when they’re not sorted by year.”
“Actually Angel, I think they are.”
“They are?”
“By country, then varietal, then year if I’m right - and I’m pretty sure I am.”
“Hmm…you know, I think you ARE right about that. I wonder if Adam did it on purpose, or the wine decided for itself?”
“Heaven knows, Angel, but at least there is method to this - well, not madness, but whatever you want to call it.”
Aziraphale looked at Crowley and smiled. “No, not madness, though I am still wondering how Adam chose all these wines. Obviously some were simply restored, but the others - how does an 11-year-old choose wine?”
“We could look them up online, see if they have anything in common?”
“We could do that I suppose, but you know my computer isn’t really up to that sort of thing. Though you are forever telling me ‘there’s an app for that’ whenever you’re holding that infernal mobile telephone of yours. I don’t suppose there’s an app for wine, is there?”

“Of course there are wine apps, Angel - how do you think I choose the ones I bring over?”
“I thought you just brought the ones you already knew we liked, dear.”
“Well, sometimes I do, but how many times have I brought a DIFFERENT wine to try over the years?”
“I never really thought about that. Alright, what does your wine app say about,” Aziraphale peered at an Australian wine he’d never heard of, “Brown Brothers Dolcetto & Syrah”.
“It’s a sweet red, Angel - though apparently it’s almost purple.”
“I haven’t had a sweet red in years - should we give it a go, do you think?”
“I think that’s the best thing you’ve said since we left the Ritz, so yes, let’s pop the cork.”
“It doesn’t have a cork, Crowley dear - it’s a screw cap.”
“Then let’s go upstairs and unscrew the cap - I need a drink before we continue looking at any more of Adam’s additions to the cellar OR the bookstore.”

They walked back upstairs, Aziraphale carrying the bottle of Dolcetto & Syrah, and went through to the old back room - which was also different from how they remembered it. For one thing, Aziraphale had never owned a TV, a Playstation, an Xbox, a Wii, or surround sound speakers. He’d also never owned a gramophone, though this was an addition he liked instantly, as Crowley let out another of his appreciative low whistles. Anything that got that sort of response from the demon was likely to be very good indeed, as Aziraphale had discovered repeatedly throughout their long acquaintance. Another look around the room showed further additions - a collection of DVDs, Blu-rays, and games, presumably to play on the large TV mounted to the wall - and an even larger collection of vinyl records, which Crowley immediately went to peruse.

“Say what you like about Adam’s taste in books Angel, but his taste in music is flawlessssssss...” the demon hissed to a halt.
“Are you quite all right Crowley dear?” asked Aziraphale.
“This is MY record collection! What is MY record collection doing in YOUR back room?”
“Perhaps Adam thought the acoustics are better here than in your flat?”
“They’re not though, I know they’re not, because I miracled that flat myself - the acoustics are perfect!”
“Then I really don’t know my dear, but I’m sure they’ll sound lovely on that beautiful old gramophone,” Aziraphale soothed. Crowley took a deep breath - a habit he’d picked up from living around humans for so long - and visibly tried to calm himself.

“Let me get you that glass of wine,” Aziraphale said, heading to the kitchenette. Crowley flipped through his records, finally choosing one, and gently sliding it from its slipcase. He put it on the turntable of the gramophone, and lowered the needle reverently. The sounds of Johann Strauss’s Blue Danube Waltz filled the room, and Crowley sighed with relief. It wasn’t quite the same as in his flat, but even without demonically perfected acoustics it sounded wonderful.

Aziraphale returned with their glasses of wine, and handed one to Crowley. “I always loved this one, you know,” he said.
“Me too, Angel.”
“I never learnt to waltz though, sadly.”
“You never learnt to waltz?” Crowley asked.
“No, I only ever learnt the Gavotte. I probably could have learnt other dances I suppose, but so many of them require a partner…” Aziraphale trailed off.
“I could teach you, if you’d like.”
“Would you, Crowley dear?”
“Sure, why not? ’S not difficult.”
“Well…alright then. If you would be so kind, please.”
“Kindness isn’t my strong suit Angel, you know that, but I can teach you to waltz regardless.”
“I wish you wouldn’t say things like that.”

“Things like what, Angel?” Crowley asked, narrowing his eyes behind his perpetually-in-place sunglasses.
“That you aren’t kind. You are. You may not like admitting it, having spent so long working for Hell, but you’re one of the kindest people I’ve ever known.” Crowley visibly blushed, and looked at the floor.
“’M not. Don’t say that, Angel, I can’t be.”
“You are, and I’m going to keep telling you so until you believe me, even if that takes another 6000 years. Now, are you going to teach me how to waltz, or am I going to have to find an app on your telephone that’s hardly ever used as a telephone?”

“I’ll teach you, ‘Ziraphale, and it’s just a phone, not a telephone. There are apps you could use though, if you’d prefer to learn that way.”
“I most certainly would not prefer it! I’d have to learn to use the t- the phone first, and I’d need you to teach me that. Which I DON’T want you to do. It may be very useful for finding out things about this lovely wine we’re drinking, but I have no desire whatsoever to learn how to dance by using an app. Especially when I have you right here to do it.”
“Alright Angel, come here then,” Crowley said, sounding only a little gruff and more than slightly amused.

They both put their wine glasses on nearby surfaces, and Aziraphale took the handful of steps to Crowley’s side, then stood there looking rather like a deer caught in the headlights. Crowley gave a half-smile, and said “Right Angel, which part do you want to learn?”.
“What do you mean, which part? I want to learn the whole dance.”
“Well traditionally in a waltz the gentleman leads and the lady follows, but as neither of us is a lady, I can teach you whichever you’d rather learn - I know both.”
“Oh, I hadn’t thought of that. I suppose since you WILL be leading either way, you may as well teach me the lady’s part.”
“Right. Ok. Well. If you’re going to follow, then you should put your left hand on my right shoulder, and your right hand in my left hand.” Aziraphale did so, trembling slightly, and blinked rapidly when Crowley put his hand at his waist, and gently adjusted the way their hands were clasped.

“Breathe, Angel,” Crowley encouraged. Aziraphale was still looking quite startled, and Crowley worried he was going too fast for the angel, as he’d done in the past.
Aziraphale took a steadying breath and said “Well now I know what to do with my arms, what do I do with the rest of me?”
Crowley smiled, and gently explained the basic steps of the waltz - how he would lead, how Aziraphale should follow, and not to worry if he couldn’t get it right straight away - they had plenty of time, and nowhere else to be.

After an hour or so of waltzing around the lounge room Aziraphale no longer needed to look down to avoid stepping on Crowley’s toes, and had finally ceased apologising for getting it wrong. After two hours Crowley was quite proud of the progress they had made, and had been slowly reeling Aziraphale closer, so that their torsos were almost touching, and they were dancing cheek to cheek. Crowley tilted his head so that his lips were at Aziraphale’s ear, and whispered so quietly that even as close as they were, a human would not have heard it, “I love you, Angel.”

Aziraphale froze, then stepped back just enough to see Crowley’s face. He lifted his hands, gently removed Crowley’s sunglasses, and placed them next to his wine glass. He then put his hands on either side of Crowley’s face, and said “I know you do, my dear. I’ve known for a long time that you loved me. I’m so sorry it’s taken me until now to catch up.”
“Do you? Are you? Are you saying you love me too, Aziraphale?”
“Yes, Crowley dear, I’m saying I love you too. Would it be alright if I kiss you now?”
“That’s not an answer, my love.”
“Yes. Please. Please do.” Aziraphale smiled a little smile at the consecutive pleases, then drew closer, stretched a little, and kissed the love of his very long life for the first time.

It started off slowly, and gently, with small pauses between kisses, until gradually they melted together, with no space between them but their clothing - their hands in each other’s hair, cradling each other’s faces, holding each other close. They explored each other’s mouths with their tongues, and they discovered that despite never having kissed the other previously, they were both very good at it. After what may have been 2 hours or 3.5 weeks (neither of them knew, time could have sped up or stopped entirely and they wouldn’t have noticed), they broke apart, resting their foreheads together and smiling beatifically at each other.

Eventually Crowley broke the silence. “Angel?”
“Yes dear?”
“That wasn’t your first kiss, was it?”
“How many people have you kissed before me, Angel?”
“Just one, Crowley dear.”
“Did you love him?”
“Of course,” Aziraphale said innocently.
Damned angels, thought Crowley. LOVE had almost no meaning left, the way they threw it around.
“Loved how?”
“I loved him the way I’ve loved my other human friends throughout the years. He kissed me, just the once. I asked him to stop. It didn’t feel right, somehow. Not how it felt, kissing you just now.”
“Did he love you?”
“I think so. He never said as much, though.”
“I always thought…”
“What did you think?”
“I thought you were too good for him. Too good for everybody, really - me included. I…”
“I’m not too good for you, Crowley, dearest - if anything you’re too good for me.”
"I’m. I’m not. I’m not GOOD.”
“Hush. Yes, you are. I couldn’t possibly love you as I do if you weren’t.”

Aziraphale placed a gentle kiss on Crowley’s lips, then asked “It wasn’t your first kiss either, was it my love?”
“May I enquire?”
“You may.”
“Is that why the Bentley...?”
“Did you love him?”
“Not enough to be able to save him.”
“You wanted to save him?”
“Of course I wanted to save him, he wrote a bloody song asking me to.”
“You think he wrote Save Me for you?”
“I thought Brian May wrote Save Me?”
“I might be wrong, but I don’t think Freddie wrote it - sang it beautifully of course, but I’m pretty sure Brian wrote it.”
“Since when do you know so much about who wrote which Queen song?”
“I may not have a mobile phone with a thousand apps at my fingertips, but I do know how to find Queen’s discography, my dear…and I have heard those songs so very many times in your car, I couldn’t help but do a little research. I know they’re not be-bop.”
Crowley gave a half-hearted laugh and said “No, Angel, no matter who wrote Save Me, they’re definitely not be-bop.”

For a little while (or a long while, nobody was keeping track) they simply stood in Aziraphale's lounge room, holding each other close, and listening to the music still playing on the gramophone. Aziraphale was the first to shift, releasing his hold on Crowley's torso, taking his hand instead, and leading him to the couch. Crowley sprawled in his usual fashion, with one slender leg along the length of the lounge, and the other angled to the floor. Aziraphale, rather than sitting with his typically upright posture in the neighbouring armchair, sat instead between his thighs, and leaned in to kiss Crowley again.

It seemed to Crowley that Aziraphale couldn't get enough of kissing him, and frankly, he wasn't complaining. Aziraphale tasted like wine, and sunshine, and a lingering hint of the decadent mud cake he'd eaten for dessert however many hours ago at the Ritz. Had he enquired, Aziraphale would have told Crowley that he in turn tasted like wine, and moonlight, and the freshest of apples.

As their kisses deepened their hands began to explore, until Crowley paused the kissing to ask “Angel, would you object very strongly if I removed your bow-tie?”.
“Not so long as you treat it gently, my dear.”
“I promise I'll be gentle with everything, Angel.”
“Be gentle with my clothing, darling. I promise I won't break. I'm stronger than I look.”
“I know how strong you are, Aziraphale. I'm not afraid of breaking you - I'm afraid of breaking me.”
“Of breaking yourself? How so?”

“I thought I'd lost you. I thought I'd lost you and I hadn't told you how much you mean to me, how much you've always meant to me, how much you will ALWAYS mean to me. I love you more than I ever loved Her - and we were CREATED to love Her. I remember how it felt, before I fell - was pushed - was sent packing. I remember that love, and it doesn't come close to how I feel about you. I loved you, from the very first day we met. You treated me with kindness instead of cruelty, and I fell all over again, but instead of hurting like my fall from Grace, it felt wonderful to fall. And I've been falling ever since. More and more in love with you with each passing century, until this last one, when I fell more in love with you than I ever thought possible. I love you, Aziraphale, and losing you - even for a day - nearly destroyed me. So yes, I am absolutely terrified of breaking.”

“Oh, my darling. I…I…I'm so sorry I made you wait for such an incredibly long time. I've loved you, deep down, for many years, but I could never admit it to myself, let alone to you or anyone else, because I was terrified of what that might mean. To be in love with a demon - to have romantic feelings at all - it didn't seem angelic, it didn't seem Heavenly, it didn't seem right. But I see now that I was wrong, and a terrible coward, and I want to spend the rest of my life - however long that may be - with you by my side, and in my heart.”
“You mean that, Angel?”
“Of course I mean it, Crowley. I love you, and I will shout it from every rooftop in London if that's what it takes for you to believe me.”
Crowley wrapped an arm around his waist and pulled him closer. “No need for that right now, Angel. Maybe later, if you really want to. Just kiss me some more, would you?”
“I think that can be arranged, dear.”

As they kissed this time, Crowley very carefully untied and removed Aziraphale's bow-tie (folding then tucking it into the breast pocket of Aziraphale's coat for safekeeping), then undid the top button of his collar. He kissed along Aziraphale's jawline, the skin soft against his lips, then down the side of his neck. Undoing another button, Crowley kissed further down Aziraphale's neck, to where he could feel his pulse, hammering away at a speed much like Crowley's own racing heart. He kissed his way across to Aziraphale's Adam's apple, then up the other side of his neck, making his way back to the mouth which eagerly greeted the return of his own.

Aziraphale then shifted his position slightly, and kissed the same path on Crowley - made all the simpler by the demon's much more exposed neck. Perhaps there was something positive to be said for modern clothing after all! Aziraphale gently removed the shimmering silver scarf that served as a tie for his beloved, draping it loosely about his own neck, and resumed kissing a now smirking Crowley.

“You know, I was hoping to reduce the number of layers you're wearing, Angel - not exchange your clothing for mine.”
“How many layers were you hoping to remove, my dear?”
“I hadn't thought of an exact number. How many layers are you wearing?”
“On my upper body? Not including your scarf? Four.”
“Then at least two...maybe all of them, if you'd like that. You can keep wearing my scarf if you really want to though.”
“Goodness. All of them?”
“I've seen most of it before remember - centuries ago, when fashions were different.”
“Well, yes, but under VERY different circumstances. And I wasn't quite so soft back then.”
“What's wrong with being soft, Angel?”
“Oh, well, Gabriel…”

“Don't even think about finishing that sentence, Aziraphale. Gabriel is a self-righteous prat, and has his head so far up his own backside he'd be able to see what he ate for breakfast, if he ever ate anything. His opinion on your body is worth less than what I paid for this nail polish. Which I stole.”

“Oh you didn't, did you?”
“Yes, but the store owner is doing a dodgy on his taxes, so he deserves to have a bottle of As Black As My Soul nail polish stolen every now and then, especially when he's buying it for a pittance from China and then charging £15 for the stuff. That's not the point. The point is, Angel, I love you as you are. Soft. Inside and out.”
“Really, Crowley?”
“Really really, Angel. Imagine if you were stick thin and bony like me! All sharp angles cutting into each other? No, I love your softness. Always have, always will.”
“Well then, let's get rid of a layer. Not your scarf though, I hadn't realised it was so soft, I want to keep wearing it for now. My coat. And perhaps our shoes and socks?”
“Oh, shoes and socks can definitely go, see y'later footwear!” Crowley snapped his fingers and they were gone - shoes safely tucked under Aziraphale's bed, though Aziraphale wouldn't know that until quite some time later - especially given that he didn't yet know he owned a bed. The old well-loved coat wasn't vanished though. Crowley gently took Aziraphale by the waist and indicated that he should stand - which he did, immediately followed by Crowley himself.

Crowley gently and oh-so-slowly slid the coat from Aziraphale's shoulders, softly caressing as his hands slid down Aziraphale's arms. Aziraphale shuddered slightly at the sensation, and closed his eyes. Crowley took the coat, draping it carefully over a nearby chair to ensure it would not be damaged, then returned to kiss his angel. And what a wonderful sensation kissing his angel was! He could quite happily do nothing else for the next several years, and not tire of it.

Aziraphale meanwhile had begun daydreaming about where all this kissing might lead. Crowley had already said he wanted to remove more of his clothing, but what might he do once it was gone? Would he still be so certain that he liked Aziraphale's soft belly once he could see it? Crowley had never lied to him about anything important - well, except for that “I won't even think about you!” nonsense, but that was such a blatant falsehood it hardly counted. He wanted to take Crowley at his word, but Gabriel - stupid, heartless Gabriel - had got into his head and made him doubt. And yet - what if Crowley truly was attracted to his curves?

“Everything alright, Angel?” Crowley asked.
“Oh, yes, very much so my dear. I just seem to have spaced out for a little while. It's perfectly alright though. I'm back now.”
“Where'd you go off to, if it's ok for me to ask?”
“Of course you can ask, my love. I'm not entirely sure what the answer is though. The future, perhaps.”
“A good future, I hope?”
“Oh yes, very good indeed.”

“Was I in it, Angel?”
“Yes, you were, my dear.”
“Well, that's alright then. If you're going to daydream while we're kissing, I'm glad I'm in it, at least.”
“Oh, darling, my mind was simply wandering ahead of my body. We were still right here in this room, a little further along than we are at this moment.”
“So you were daydreaming about me kissing you, while I was kissing you?”
"Um, yes, well, when you put it that way it does seem rather foolish. I should be focused on enjoying the kissing that's happening, rather than fantasising about the kissing that may happen.”
“Will happen, Angel. Not may happen. Will happen, if you want it to. Whenever you'd like.”
“In that case, I'd like it soon. Would you be a dear and help me out of my waistcoat, please?”
“It would be my pleasure Angel - but first, would you do your pocket watch? I don't want to damage it."

Crowley had wondered in the past what it might be like to have a more intimate relationship with Aziraphale. He never dared to truly think he might find out, but a small quiet part of him had hoped that someday - a very nebulous hypothetical someday - he might be graced with the opportunity to find out. Given that the furthest he'd gone with Freddie Mercury was some kissing more than 3 decades previous, Aziraphale should probably be made aware of his lack of experience, in case he expected Crowley to take the lead into unknown territory.

He was kissing Aziraphale as he worried over this, and a crease between his brows as he removed Aziraphale's waistcoat was the tell that showed something wasn't quite right - which the angel noticed as his eyes fluttered open between kisses. Aziraphale gently ended the kiss, cupping Crowley's cheek with one hand, and running the thumb of the other between his brows.

“What's the matter, my love?”
“I know you too well for that to work, it's not nothing. Please tell me.”
“I'mworriedI'mgoingtomessthingsup” Crowley mumbled, half under his breath. Aziraphale had excellent hearing though, (as all angels do,) and asked “Why are you worried about that?”
“Well, neither have I. We can figure it out together.”
“You don't mind?”
“Why on Earth would I mind, Crowley? I love you. I'm IN love with you, as humans say. As a matter of fact, I quite like the thought of us figuring it out as we go along.”
“You're not disappointed?”
“Heaven's no! A little surprised perhaps, given that your walk inspires lust wherever you go - but disappointed? Not at all!”

“Huh. Are you serious about my walk inspiring lust?”
“I thought that as a demon you could sense vices the way I can sense virtues?”
“I can. But humans are so full of lust all the time it never occurred to me that I was a factor.”
“Well you are, believe me. I've lost count of the number of people I've had to miracle to safety because they were too busy looking at your hips to pay attention to where they were walking or driving.”
“Really, Angel?”
“Really really, my love.”
“Does it inspire lust in you?”
“Of course it does, Crowley dear. It's just fortunate that MY lust for you is accompanied by copious amounts of love, or I'd have taken the million light-year free-fall…or sauntered vaguely downwards. Whichever analogy you prefer today.”

“So…should I continue removing layers, Angel?”
“Why don't we subtract one of yours this time? I do believe there's room on that chair for your jacket to accompany my coat and waistcoat.”
“That's still not an answer, you know.”
“Please Angel, would you help me with my jacket?”
“Such lovely manners. I'd be happy to oblige.”
“Don't patronise me.”
“I'm not patronising you dear, I'm complimenting you. Good manners are uncommon enough in Heaven and Humanity - I honestly thought Hell would freeze over before I found a polite demon, and yet you've been polite to me on almost every occasion we've seen each other, across 6000 years. It's one of the many things I love about you.”

As Aziraphale made this little speech, he circled behind Crowley, and gently drew his jacket off. He then placed it on the chair with his own previously shed layers, and went back to face Crowley, running his hands over Crowley's chest. Crowley put his hands on Aziraphale's waist to draw him closer, closed his eyes, and kissed him.
“So, what should we do now?” Aziraphale asked, wrapping his arms around Crowley once again.
“Anything, Aziraphale, anything you like. As long as it's with you.”
“Goodness. 'Anything' is very wide-ranging. Could you possibly narrow it down just a little, my dear?”
“Angel, there are so many things I'd like for us to do together, it's like the downstairs cellar all over again. I suddenly have so many options I never knew I could have, and I don't know how to choose. Why don't we move to the bedroom though?”
“Well, uh, for one thing I don't have a bed, in order to have a bedroom.”
“Yes you do. I saw it this morning.”
“I. What? Is that another addition of Adam's?”
“I suppose it must be, if it didn't exist before the fire.”
“It may have existed somewhere, but it definitely wasn't mine before the fire. Alright, let's see this new bed I apparently own.”

They walked down the short hallway to what had once been a small cluttered storeroom where Aziraphale kept things he never used but couldn't bear to part with, and was now a truly massive bedroom with the largest bed Aziraphale had ever seen, a rocking chair with a reading lamp and small table beside it, and a walk-in wardrobe filled with exquisitely tailored suits, in both Aziraphale creams and Crowley blacks. Clearly Adam had known something they hadn't…until they did--an unfortunate tendency of children. Aziraphale looked around the room, wondering what else they could possibly be surprised with today, and noticed his shoes under the bed. Well at least now he knew where Crowley had miracled them to. He supposed his socks were either in the laundry hamper, or clean and back in the drawer.

He finished the assessment of his - their? - new bedroom, and turned to Crowley. Crowley smiled at him, and extended a hand. Aziraphale stepped forward, took it, and put his other hand on Crowley's chest. “I love you, my dear.”
“I love you too, Angel.”
“So what now?”
“Now we do whatever we want, for as long as we like.”
“Ooh, golly, that sounds rather splendid.” Aziraphale grinned like a child set loose in a candy store.
“It does, doesn't it?”


* Crowley, like most demons - and angels too for that matter - has never been a big eater. Not needing sustenance in the way mortal beings do, this isn’t a problem unless an observant human makes the mistake of noticing, and passing comment. Aziraphale is practically a hedonist by comparison, enjoying food on a regular basis, and making that enjoyment known through a variety of facial expressions and sounds that indicate a state of rapture most people would never apply to anything as mundane as food - no matter how good the food might be. Crowley has wondered on many occasions throughout the past six millennia whether Aziraphale did this intentionally to provoke a response from him, or didn't actually realise what he was doing. [return to text]