Eve is a blueprint where Adam was a draft.
Lucifer loves her for six thousand years before he finds another human, another woman, who makes him think the blueprint wasn’t wasted. That, perhaps, Eve was a blueprint for miracles only - that other humans can only have parts of her: innocence or playfulness or curiosity or wholeheartedness or dirty mouths.
He comes across her eyes on Earth, eventually: her smile. The freedom in her limbs in Rome, her curious eyes in Renaissance Florence, the toss of her hair in Napoleon’s France.
For the longest time, he hates the lack of her in every soul that falls to his kingdom.
For the longest time, surrounded by rotten souls and soulless demons, he has to bring her image to the front of his mind like humans hold up images of Mary. He has to remind himself, again and again, that he was only setting her free, that setting her free was worth the rest - the grind of humanity they both unleashed, ugly and desperate as it is.
He wonders if he’d storm Heaven again if she came to Hell and asked for a way out.
He likes to think he would.
He didn’t have a shape for his wanting before she was molded for it.
He wanders the Earth, sometimes, and dreams of her lips. Of her leaning her head back on his shoulder, in the safe cage of his wings with only the sun above them, and what she whispered in his ear. Her questions, her laughter, how she changed the course of his beliefs by loving him enough to ask for his thoughts.
For the first few millennia, before his half-brother broke the seals of Hell and Lucifer could come and go, all he knew of her was that her children’s children had more of Adam’s coarse clay. Small-minded and grasping, careless, cruel; so convinced that they owned everything they could break and take. And the rest of them, the ones who had some of her Grace, had none of her freedom.
Heaven is not a place for freedom. No one knows that better than Lucifer. The unfairness of it sickens him - the best of her children blame her and hate her for the very gift she gave them, and the others squander it.
After the seals are broken, in the lulls between wars that fill his halls with souls to punish, he looks for beaches where he can be alone and think about her.
It takes a long time to see the beauty in it. In humanity. It takes a long time until he’s ready for it.
When it happens, it’s humbling. He falls silent before a painting in Florence, nothing but woven fabric and oil and powder and a layer of egg white, put together with the hair of animals, and he knows she would love it. Knows that she probably does, up There, where she must be bored and tired of obeying rules made for smaller, duller souls.
He walks out into the street and looks up, wishing she could meet his eyes. He wants to share this simple awe with her: they both love beauty more than harmony, the notes more than the song, and humans can create beauty that renders him speechless. How did it take him so long to see it?
A man walks past and looks at him with Eve’s laughing eyes, and Lucifer swallows down some of his pride. He smiles back.
“What is it you truly desire?” he asks, curious.
The man blinks at him and says, “A patron.”
Lucifer gives him his heart’s desire. For the rest of the man’s life, Lucifer goes to his workshop to watch him work. When they kiss, he can almost hear Eve whispering filth in his ear, and it’s still the sweetest sound he knows.
The man’s name lives on for generations.
His soul descends to Lucifer’s kingdom, where he can’t bear to look at Lucifer’s real face, but they can still talk through a locked door. The key is Lucifer’s last gift to him. It’s the only key he ever makes.
Lucifer doesn’t understand most of the restrictions.
He doesn’t understand why the path to Heaven is so narrow, why harm to others is not the only way to fall from it. Purgatory is by far the largest of the realms, and he sneaks in sometimes to hear the stories.
He thinks of the blood on his brothers’ hands, up above at their Father’s side, and he burns.
He thinks of Eve in Heaven, in splendor but so far from the sort of beauty that she truly loves, and he lets the last of his regret melt away.
His Father made him, from the honey in his voice to the venom in his heart. He made Lucifer into an enemy with His own words, His own Will, and then He gave Lucifer a kingdom and nothing but time to hate Him from it.
But He has no right to Lucifer’s heart, so Lucifer picks the side his Father loves the most and loves the worst, and loves it in his own way, for its own sake and for hers.
He loves their frailty, the breathtaking beauty they’re capable of, the way they hold on to each other, their mouths and hands on him. Loves them for the way they can make him laugh like she did, for being imperfect and sometimes worthy of her lineage and the war he fought with her smile in mind.
He’s the Devil. He’s King of Hell. He can do whatever he wants, even love.
Mazikeen is the closest thing he has to a companion, but she is a subject. She meets him at his darkest and questions him, prods him, welcomes his cruelty and inflicts it. Magnifies it; makes it its own perfect, filthy art.
Sometimes, the only sound as pure as Lucifer’s praise of old is a howl that Mazikeen draws in Lucifer’s name.
Lucifer knows that she has no soul. He knows that she neither understands nor has any curiosity toward humans, that she sometimes looks at him and sees an angel and it makes her more savage, like she can make him darker through her own actions. He knows all of that.
Even so, Hell is Hell because it’s lonely. There is a cell that locks from the inside, and there is Mazikeen with her bloodthirst and twisted humor; even in Hell, Lucifer has something.
Even if Hell is Hell because it’s lonely, Lucifer would take it over Heaven. The only thing Heaven has that he still wants is her.
He grows bored.
He goes to Los Angeles with Mazikeen. He buys a nightclub. He fucks and he sings and he doles out punishment and he revels in it, and he doesn’t think about his Father, and he sees Eve every time he makes someone come - sees her in every human lost in dancing at Lux.
He doesn’t know he’s about to fall in love, or that he’s about to see Eve again, all these millennia later. He doesn’t know that there is a miracle worthy of Eve’s line about to crash into his orbit and it will be the thing he was really made for, twisted and broken for.
He doesn’t know he’s ready to change until he does, the same way he didn’t know he was ready to wage war against Heaven until he was in the middle of it, but the first time he plays the piano at Lux, he plays it for Eve.
He thinks of her lips and the wild scent of the Garden, and he closes his eyes. He can feel the sunlight in the tunnel of his wings and her hands gripping his knees like the armrests of a throne, and before he opens his mouth on the first note, he looks up and hopes she can see him.
He hopes she knows that he’d do it again.