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You may be a sinner (but your innocence is mine)

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1862.

Crowley had his eyes closed. His eyelids had felt heavy, so he granted them the desire to darken his vision. There wasn’t much to see either way, just a growing number of empty bottles.

He had been drinking for hours. He had been torturing himself for longer. He had started drinking to try and forget what had hurt him, as the humans usually did. It wasn’t working.

Crowley took a sip from the bottle he was holding. He was lying on the floor of his flat, as long as he was, his bones digging painfully in the hard surface. It wasn’t the most comfortable position to be drinking, but he didn’t care anymore. What could happen? That he would choke with the alcohol? But really, who cared? It was clear as hell that the angel didn’t.

The angel didn’t trust him.

Of course he didn’t. How could he? Crowley was a demon, he was the Adversary. He was evil and full of bad intentions. It didn’t matter how many years of devotion Crowley had dedicated to him. It wasn’t enough, and it would never be; he was still a demon and nothing that he did could make that change. Not in the eyes of his angel, either way.

The thing that tormented Crowley was that he had made himself believe that maybe, just maybe, the angel could feel the same as him. That maybe Aziraphale hadn’t accepted it yet; but that he could at least admit they were friends. Even if he couldn’t say it aloud. But fraternizing? Really?

Another wave of emotion rushed through him. He could practically see the disappointment in the angel’s eyes. He wanted to push that memory deep in a dark well, but he knew he wouldn’t be able. He couldn’t forget.

He had been so stupid.

He was risking so much, every single day, to be able to see Aziraphale. He risked his immortal life; he was ready to suffer all of eternity just to see Aziraphale once more. One minute of smiles, that’s all he needed; he could Fall again just to hear his laughter. He could set his wings on fire just to bring him his favourite crepes.

Was it too much to ask for some kind of insurance?

It was only a bit of holy water. He only wanted to have some kind of plan if things turned badly. He could die for his angel, yes, but he didn’t want to leave him alone to face Heaven and Hell. He wanted to be by his side, so he needed that protection.

It turned out that he had been wrong about his angel the entire time.

Crowley took another sip, long and desperate. He finished the bottle in one go; he threw it unto the wall, and it crashed, sending crystal everywhere.

He still had his eyes closed.

He didn’t want to open them ever again.

 

He woke up some days later. He was still wearing the same clothes he had been wearing when he met Aziraphale; they stank of alcohol and sadness. He scrunched his nose; what a pathetic demon he was. Every time the angel showed signs of mistrust, or denied his relationship with him, this was how he reacted. When had been the turning point? When had he started to feel so bloody in love with the angel that he had to drown himself in alcohol to make the feelings more bearable?

He didn’t want to get up. The floor was a good place for him. Maybe he could just lay there and sulk for the rest of eternity. Make the angel miss him, if that was possible.

Light was pouring from the window in a gentle manner. Too gentle for him. He wasn’t in the mood for soft things. He finally opened his eyes- and felt a wave of embarrassment when he saw the state of his living room. There were bottles everywhere, some of them shattered. The light coming from the window was reflecting on them, jumping from a bottle to the other, colouring the walls around them.

It was kind of beautiful. Like the stars.

With a grunt, he lifted his arm and snapped his fingers. Some curtains appeared out of thin air, covering up the light. He dropped his arm, which hit the floor with a thud.

Just when he was starting to feel sleepy again, a puff of smoke scared the shit out of him. A note appeared on top of his chest, and it was slightly burning. He took it and sat up. Hell wouldn’t even let him sulk in peace. He was really tempted to just let the paper burn until it disappeared, but he really didn’t want to get on Dagon’s bad side. He opened it with a sigh that promptly died in his throat when he read what was written on it.

“Follow Lydia Thompson. Get involved with this burlesque business. Tempt the masses just as you usually do.”

Crowley had heard about burlesque, of course; anything that could tempt a big number of people at once was always a source of ideas for him. He had a faint idea of who Lydia Thompson was; he was surprised that Hell wanted him to follow a specific person.

He kept thinking about it until the paper completely burned between his fingers. Maybe this wasn’t bad news, after all. It could even be a good idea: get involved in something, work a bit and tempt some people. It could be fun, and it would keep his mind busy. It seemed a bit of a hassle, but if he did his work well, Hell would be pleased and maybe he wouldn’t need the holy water after all. And, most importantly, he could put some distance between Aziraphale and him. Relearn how to be by himself without angelic company.

He got up from the floor, popping his bones while doing so. Time to find out where this Lydia was. 

 

 

                Crowley swore out loud and began redoing her lipstick. She was having a bad day. Her hair wasn’t turning out how she wanted it to be, and her dress felt a bit too tight. She had to restart her makeup a couple of times, and it was making her angry which was, in turn, provoking more mistakes. She sighed, trying to calm herself. It was just another day on the stage; she had done this several times now. She grabbed the lipstick with more strength, determined to do it perfectly.

It turned out Lydia Thompson had been in America. Crowley had been a part of the British Blondes for some months now- they were all the rage in New York. When Crowley found her, Lydia had arrived not too long ago. He had infiltrated her troop and learned quickly how to perform. Crowley had adopted a female-presenting form -which he had missed-. His (her) hair was now longer, just below the ears, and her bony figure had some curves that her performance dress favoured very much. She loved to perform, all eyes on her while she sang and danced. The way they cheered at the sexy bits and laughed at the satirical ones. It was such a clever way of temptation; she could tempt them into lust, but also spark a flame of rebellion inside the spectators with the comedy and its references to present political situations. She loved to inspire all the women in public to seek for a better life. Burlesque had quickly become one of her favourite temptation arts during those months.

Lydia was a delight. She was bold, and full of eccentric ideas that Crowley loved to be a part of. She had the power to influence the masses in a way that even a demon could envy. Even Crowley was under Lydia’s spell, and she was glad. It had been a blessing, truly (in the best sense). In front of the public, being the centre of their attention and adoration, Crowley felt seen. She could take the angel away from her mind for a bit, for just a breath. Her legs hurt, and she sweat, but she never miracled these inconveniences away. It was part of it all, and it made her feel that she was important. That she mattered.

She sometimes wondered if Aziraphale cared about her. But if he did, he did it in a way Crowley couldn’t understand.

 Crowley missed him.

She wanted to tell him about everything she was doing. About how difficult it had been to dance with heels but how fun it had been. How she picked songs to perform that made her think of Aziraphale, somehow.

How she looked for him in the audience.

She would see some blue eyes and her demonic heart would stop beating. It was ridiculous, and every single time she mentally slapped herself. How could it be Aziraphale? Probably he was busy reading and scaring customers away. Crowley could imagine it perfectly: Aziraphale, with his stupid glasses on and a hot chocolate beside him, reading some old as balls book, without realizing the lack of demonic presence around him. Crowley was sure that the angel hadn’t even realized she wasn’t there. All these thoughts made her throat tighten.

Crowley slammed the lipstick on the table. Oh, how tired she was of this. By the looks of it, she would need more than just a few months to get over 6000 years of pining. But her makeup was finally done; she could worry about it later. Now was the time to tempt some mortals.

She stood up, her heels clicking on the floor. She walked towards Lydia, who was waiting for her, near the curtains hiding the stage. She could hear the public making noise at the other side of the curtains: people talking, and glasses clinking together.

“You look perfect.” Lydia winked at Crowley. “Get out there and make some trouble.”

Lydia walked away, going to the other side of the curtains to welcome the customers.

Crowley felt nervous. She always did just before a performance. She stepped onto the stage, where a chair was waiting for her. She sat down, her back to the public. The curtains were still closed, hiding her. Crowley took a couple of breaths, trying to steady herself. She heard Lydia making the public laugh; then she presented the upcoming show.

The curtains opened, and the band started the music.

 

 

                Aziraphale slammed the book on the table, and immediately regretted it. The book didn’t deserve this kind of treatment. Well, it wasn’t really that good a book, as it wasn’t fulfilling its purpose of distracting the angel.

Aziraphale had been worrying himself sick for months. He hadn’t seen the demon since their fight in St. James’ Park. He knew that Crowley was probably grumpy, drinking himself to unconsciousness in his flat. Aziraphale couldn’t help but worry; it had been a pretty big fight, and the subject of it was even worse. How could Crowley even consider...

He didn’t even want to think about it.

Aziraphale took the mistreated book and stood up from his chair to put it in its shelf. He wasn’t in the mood for reading, and that’s like saying he wasn’t in the mood for anything. He didn’t even want to eat.

Aziraphale walked around his beloved bookshop, caressing the books.

Normally their interactions weren’t like this. Aziraphale would get mad about something petty, and Crowley would eventually come back, invite him to have dinner, or go to a concert together. Aziraphale would be delighted, and of course all would be forgotten, and again they would start dancing around each other. Crowley would miracle small things for him, and Aziraphale would smile, secretly, in a loving way.

But not this time.

He hadn’t even received a note. Nothing, complete radio silence. Maybe this time he should take the first step towards reconciliation? Aziraphale considered this for a bit. He knew that he was afraid, and what scared him, the possibility of Crowley being harmed. He understood Crowley’s reasoning behind asking for holy water, but he was afraid that Crowley was going to use it against himself to escape from Hell’s torture. He knew about Crowley’s self destructing tendencies. Aziraphale wanted to help him, not hand him a weapon.

But maybe Aziraphale was in the wrong. Maybe Crowley just wanted the angel to trust him, to give him the insurance he needed and nothing more.

Aziraphale needed some time to accept it, still. To make sure about Crowley’s intentions. And he was still worried for him.

And Aziraphale missed him.

He stopped walking. He had made a decision. Aziraphale closed his eyes, expanding his aura, trying to find the familiar demonic aura that he loved.

It took him more than expected; Crowley was further away than he thought. Aziraphale smiled; Crowley could run away all he wanted, but the angel had decided it was his turn to go look for him, so he was going to, even if Crowley was hiding in the other side of the universe.

 

Nights in New York had always been noisy, something Aziraphale wasn’t a big fan of. The streets were packed with people going from club to club, not wanting to end their night just yet.

In this kind of ambience Aziraphale had detected Crowley’s demonic presence.

Aziraphale was just outside a club. There was a lot of noise coming from inside, in a way that was alluring to the people in the streets. Aziraphale straightened his jacket and bowtie. He was fidgeting, nervous. Who could imagine the demon would come to a place like this? Aziraphale wasn’t a fan of big crowds, and even though it looked kind of fun, he much preferred to have a tête a tête with Crowley in a more... private place. Obviously it was out of the question to go back home; it had been difficult enough to reunite the courage to go look for the demon, and he was damned if he wasn’t going to see him before the night ended. Things never went according to Aziraphale’s plans, but he could at least do his very best no matter the situation. If Crowley had disappeared to a club in America to drink his bad mood away, that was where Aziraphale was going to go.

Aziraphale, feeling a bit braver than when he had arrived, entered the place. It was as crowded as it appeared on the exterior, maybe even more. The lights were dimmed, creating a mysterious ambience. All the tables were full, and waiters in beautiful and sensual attires were carrying drinks to the impatient public. There was a stage there, but the curtains were still closed. Aziraphale could sense the excitement, he could tell there was some demon miracle behind the amazing amount of people gathered there. Aziraphale took his hat off, and started fidgeting with it between his hands. He wasn’t a coward, but that didn’t mean he couldn’t feel nervous. He considered miracling a free table for him, but there were too many people there and it would have been too obvious for the mortals. Either way, he needed to start searching for a certain redhead, so he couldn’t stand still.

His eyes scanned the crowd, but he couldn’t find the demon. Was it because of the poor light? Aziraphale started to walk around, making people to get out of his way with tiny miracles (he hated to bump into people).

He walked around for a bit, getting more and more desperate. It was clear that Crowley wasn’t anywhere he could see, even though he could sense his demonic energy all over the place. When Aziraphale was about to ask one of the waitresses if she had seen any redheads lately, he saw an amazing looking woman stepping on the stage in front of the closed curtains. She had long, curly hair tied up, and she was in drag, with a buttoned jacket and stockings. The sound of her shoes clicking on the floor immediately attracted everyone’s attention, and the loud conversations and laughs began to die out. Aziraphale, realizing the show was probably about to begin, decided it was best to get out of there quickly. He felt sad; this had been an utter failure, and the most disappointing thing was that he had felt brave for once, and it was all for nothing. Brave to accept his growing feelings for Crowley, to really act on it and show him that he cared about him. That he trusted him, but he couldn’t take the risk of the demon getting hurt. And honestly, Aziraphale was kind of scared that he wouldn’t feel this courageous again, and that he would start worrying about their respective sides again. He had just wanted to do things right for once.

He started to move towards the exit while the woman began to present the upcoming show.

“Welcome, ladies and gentlemen! I know that you’re amazed by my looks, but my number is coming later! For now, enjoy the dance of our newest member: Asmodeus!”

Aziraphale stopped walking suddenly. It couldn’t be, could it?

He turned around and saw the curtains opening. The band began playing, and he saw a too familiar figure sitting facing the back of a chair, while his (her?) back was facing the public. She wore her red hair a bit short, just below the ears, and it curled beautifully. Her dress was tight around her body, and it was really see-through, hardly covering her. The design was incredible; it was as if the dress was made of black feathers, like she had wings and she was using them to cover herself. Aziraphale realized she was wearing a choker with a golden snake. His eyes couldn’t help but stare, following the trace of her body. He saw that her heels (black, of course) looked like there was a golden snake coiled around them. The angel smiled; this kind of attention to detail was so characteristic of his demon it made his heart ache.

Aziraphale sure as Heaven didn’t expect to see Crowley on the stage, looking so tempting. It wasn’t the first time he had seen Crowley doing some temptation job directly, but never quite like this.

Crowley was snapping her fingers, her arm upwards. She was casting Hell’s powers while maintaining the rhythm of the music, making Aziraphale smile. He could feel how everyone’s attention turned to the demon, even more than before; they were unnaturally focused on her. The inclination towards sin increased exponentially. Aziraphale’s angelic senses were screaming at him to do something, to calm everyone down. But he couldn’t. He was hypnotized. It had nothing to do with Crowley’s powers; a part of him had always felt like this when he watched the demon walk in that manner of hers, or when she laughed sarcastically at things Aziraphale said.

Crowley stopped snapping her fingers, and threw her head backwards; the public could steal a glance of her outrageously red lips. She straightened her back again, and stood up, and oh lord, she started moving her hips like a snake. Aziraphale took a shaky breath. He realized Crowley wasn’t wearing glasses, letting everyone see her stunning yellow eyes. It was surely intended to have a greater effect on the public, like a snake hypnotising her prey. No one looked like they found those eyes strange.  The fact that he was able to see her eyes made her look even more beautiful.

It was just too much. He wanted to stop staring, he wanted to fly away, scared of the intensity of his emotions, even more taking into account that the last time he had seen his beloved friend it had been over a fight.

Crowley continued dancing, unaware of the effects on Aziraphale. She danced like that was the main purpose of her corporation. She moved her head, making her red hair move around. Because her hair was kind of short, those movements made her slim neck stand out. Aziraphale found himself itching to caress it, to kiss it, to bite it.

Aziraphale closed his eyes for a second, trying to calm himself. He had felt that way about Crowley for some time now, but he hadn’t expected for it to blow into his face like that. How could he talk to Crowley, when he felt like his blood, that he normally didn’t need, had started to rush through his veins?

The courage he needed now wasn’t to talk to Crowley, with his heart opened for the demon to see. He needed it now to run away. He wasn’t strong enough to get away from his desires, and to stop seeing Crowley dance. All he could do was to stay there and desire to be something else; something that would let him love who he wanted, fearless. He felt as if his own nature betrayed him.

Crowley danced and Aziraphale tried not to doubt his belief in God.

Crowley sat down on the chair again, facing the public fully this time, opening her legs a couple of times with a seductive smile on her face. The public had stopped breathing normally a long time ago. She slipped down on the floor in a way no human could do.

It was at this moment that Aziraphale realized he hadn’t been paying attention to the music at all. With surprise, he realized it had been Crowley who had been singing all along. Amazingly, her voice didn’t shake as she was dancing, like it was no big effort at all to do both things at the same time.

I found a way to let you win
But I never really had a doubt
Standing in the light of your halo
I got my angel now

Aziraphale’s heart, that had been beating unfamiliarly in his chest, stopped. His heart was breaking. The excitement he had been feeling turned to sadness when he sensed the meaning behind that song.

Crowley’s voice was soothing in a way her dance wasn’t. It was like she was dancing to tempt, but singing to finally free her true emotions. Aziraphale wasn’t an expert on music, and he had never been a part of Heaven’s choir, but he was sure that no singer could beat a voice like that.

Everywhere I'm looking now
I'm surrounded by your embrace
Baby, I can see your halo
You know you're my saving grace

You're everything I need and more
It's written all over your face
Baby, I can feel your halo
Pray it won't fade away

Grace? Grace was what Aziraphale was beginning to doubt he still had. He was starting to doubt God; he was feeling love towards the enemy, and even though loving all of God’s creation was as angelic you could be he was sure this kind of overwhelming love, and lust, wasn’t part of it. How could he continue being an angel, when the creation he cared the most about was a demon?

He wanted to believe that God was making him feel this way for a reason. This thought was what was keeping him sane, the reason he hadn’t yet Fallen. Maybe God wanted him to love a demon. It didn’t make much sense, but God’s Ineffable Plan never did.

But if Aziraphale was wrong that meant that not taking rein on his emotions would result in putting Crowley in serious danger.

Crowley started singing the post-chorus, her voice drenched in emotion.  It was tearing Aziraphale’s heart apart to see her like this. He wanted to reassure the demon, to tell her what he truly felt; he trusted her more than he trusted Heaven. But he couldn’t. He would be putting them both at risk, and he had to continue to look for the goodness that maybe Heaven still had. He had to believe in it. If not, he would be left with nothing. So he stood there, his body still, with pain in his heart, watching the creature that God’s Grace had abandoned, even though she sang better than any angel.

Tears began to gather in his eyes, but he miracled them away. He tried to focus on Crowley’s dance. He wanted to memorize this vision, to remember why he was fighting, why he needed to be strong. He needed to be, for the both of them.

You're the only one that I want
Think I'm addicted to your light

I swore I'd never fall again
But this don't even feel like falling

It looked like Crowley was about to cry. Suddenly, she slapped her butt, and began swinging her hips even more. She smiled like nothing happened, like everything was fine. Aziraphale admired this; Crowley could sometimes control her emotions in a way Aziraphale was kind of envious of.  She had never let her emotions get in the middle of her performance, but for Aziraphale, getting to see what the demon truly felt in such a freeing way made her even more attractive. 

It was a wonder how humans could get anything done. How could they function normally, like making coffee, or taking the bus, when they could feel this amount of passion for people and things in the world? These fragile bodies made of stardust, that contained the explosion of the Big Bang, how could they keep on living with all this fire in their hearts? Aziraphale sure felt like he was burning in Hellfire, with all these emotions messing with his head.

Crowley, still smiling, looked at the public. There was a bit of sweat on her skin. Occult and ethereal creatures didn’t sweat unless they wanted to; maybe she was doing it to look more human, or she was using it to make her skin shine. Aziraphale found himself wanting to know how it tasted. Would it be sweet, as his favourite chocolates, or would it be spicy, because of her demonic nature?

Crowley’s eyes were scanning the public, probably trying to erase any doubts towards temptation the mortals could still be feeling. She was on the ground, her stomach facing down, her legs moving with the rhythm of the music. While she sang, her forked tongue could be seen from time to time, and it did funny things to Aziraphale’s stomach.

What he hadn’t planned was for their eyes to meet.

 

                She was feeling kind of tired, the kind of feeling you get after a productive day. Today’s dance had been her own idea, and she was really proud of the result. She had felt everyone’s unaltered attention through all of it, so it proved to be a good temptation dance. The song had been a mistake, though; it hit too close home. It had made her too emotional, making her think of her angel, and she was there to take her mind off of things for a bit. A more light-hearted song would probably be best for next time, even if the public didn’t exactly listen to the lyrics.

Attention wasn’t something she usually sought. She loved it, of course; she liked to dress in provocative ways, without it being too much. Temptation was her speciality, and she was proud of her work. She didn’t usually look for this type of observation, or being this dramatic while tempting, but she found out she was enjoying it. It wasn’t the type of life she would have, but doing this for short periods of time could be a great idea. She found a peace of mind while dancing that was similar, if not better, than sleeping, and sometimes she needed to take a break.

And if she was being perfectly honest, even though she liked getting some attention from humans, what she truly wanted was Aziraphale to look at her. He had, during the six millennia they’ve known each other, but it had always been a quick glance, followed by shyness sometimes, or a sarcastic comment. Always something to hide, to quickly forget  even happened. It had never been as openly and shamelessly as these mortals were looking at her.  It wasn’t what she wanted, but it was what she could get. Was it so bad to seek momentary attention, even if it wasn’t the most important one, to forget about her unrequited love for a second? And her imagination had always been good; she could always imagine she wasn’t on a stage, in front of dozens of strangers, but instead with her angel, doing a private dance, for his eyes only. She wouldn’t use her tempting powers; just her movements, her eyes locked in the angel’s eyes, trying to convey all her emotions in one of the oldest ways humans had tried to express themselves.

She turned to the public, swaying her legs, while she was lying on the floor, her head between her hands. In every dance she did she liked to look at the public in the eyes, to feel her dance working as intended. Her tempting work was in fact pretty simple; she would get them into the mood of sin, but not in a crazy sort of way. She wanted them to have a fun night, something they could explain as an anecdote to their friends. She made sure nothing bad happened to anyone there, nothing permanent they could regret later. Just innocent sin.

And that’s when she found him.

A pair of pale blue eyes were looking at her; shamelessly, openly. She knew those eyes too well; they haunted her in her best dreams. The angel was there, and he was looking at her; he had seen her dance, and he was smiling in a pleased way, like he was surprised. And he was looking at her.

For a second she thought she would stop dancing, making the spell be gone; but somehow she told her body to continue. What her body didn’t want to obey was the command to look away from those eyes. Now her performance was only for them to see. The mortals were still there; but she couldn’t care less.

She saw how Aziraphale broke the connection momentarily, and started to look at her, all of her, his eyes stopping to see her hips, her legs, her neck. She saw all of this, and she could feel her skin burning, as if those holy eyes could make her poor demonic soul burn away. She didn’t stop dancing, she didn’t stop looking at him; if she stopped she felt like he would disappear as a mirage, like something her feverish mind had made up out of desperation. Aziraphale returned his gaze to her eyes, and she saw lust and love in them, mixed together, matching the way she was feeling. It was like Aziraphale wanted her to see him looking at her. She felt her face hot, but her hands were cold from nervousness. Something was pulsing inside of her, seeing the centre of her desires finally looking at her with the emotions she had always wanted to see in him. Crowley wondered why the angel was there; maybe her wish of him being there had attracted him.

A thought raced through her mind, cold as ice.

What if Aziraphale was looking at her like that thanks to her demonic powers? She had been using them all night, coming from her body as waves. What if, somehow, the angel had been affected too? It was weird that Aziraphale could be affected this way. She wasn’t even using the full extent of her powers. But the chances weren’t zero.

This changed everything that was happening. The happiness she had allowed herself to feel died in a second. She was an optimist, of course; she normally believed that the world would always be by her side.

But not now. Not tonight. Not when they had just fought, not when she had realized the angel didn’t trust her and probably never would. The memories of the pain she had felt when they fought returned.

She had grown used of loving someone that couldn’t love her, not as she wanted him to. But to feel for a second that her feelings were being returned, and then having them smashed by the cold and hard reality was more than she could bear. She stopped looking at Aziraphale, and didn’t look at him for the rest of the dance. She could nearly feel his disappointment, but she couldn’t be sure she wasn’t projecting her own onto him.

She finished dancing. She looked at Aziraphale one last time, and she saw hurt there; and without waiting for the public to applaud, she fled the stage.

She could see Lydia trying to walk towards her, but she wasn’t in the mood for talking to anyone. She just wanted to run, run, run.

She got to the street, and she felt people staring at her. Her clothes weren’t appropriate to go out in the middle of the night. She discretely changed her corporation to the one she previously had.  She also made Lydia and everyone else from the British Blondes group forget about her. It was better for all of them to forget the crazy girl that appeared out of nowhere and disappeared again. This hurt a bit; Crowley had grown fond of those crazy girls trying to revolutionize the world from the stage. He would get over it; they were only mortals after all. Their friendship had always been temporary.

Crowley, using the remains of energy he had left, teleported himself to his flat in London. He felt nearly as tired as he had felt in the fourteenth century; he just wanted to go somewhere familiar where he could crawl into a bed and sleep forever. He went straight to his bed (that he used exclusively when he felt especially sad) and tried to fall asleep.

He felt his mind racing; everything had happened so fast. For a second he had seen the disappointment in Aziraphale’s eyes, and that vision was haunting him. He felt filthy. He had always felt that way, in some way; but that night the feeling was as strong as never. He felt like he sullied everything he touched with his demonic nature. He couldn’t help it; it came with being a demon. He didn’t want to be an angel, of course not. But he didn’t like some things that came with the definition of being a demon. He was unforgivable, and he couldn’t be nice. He was scared all of this could affect Aziraphale. He loved him as he was, even if he was too fixated with Heaven. He didn’t want the angel to Fall for him. He had tried to be as careful as he could; but that night he had finally messed everything up. He had used his temptation powers on Aziraphale, contaminating him with emotions and thoughts he shouldn’t have due to his ethereal nature. He had seen it; he had felt the lust in the angel. And even if there was love in there, he couldn’t know if he was just imagining it, trying to see what he dreamed of. It didn’t matter if Aziraphale loved him, romantically, if that were the case; Crowley knew he didn’t deserve it. He was a demon, a creature of darkness, full of sin and filthy thoughts.

What if Aziraphale was in danger of Falling now?

Crowley moved around in his bed. He decided, just before finally falling asleep, that what was best was to sleep for a long, long time. What he needed, and Aziraphale needed too, was to disappear for a period of time and forget about this in a more dramatic way than just doing burlesque. What was even better was that he wasn’t going to be there to accidentally mess things up for Aziraphale. He could leave the angel to be his Graceful self without a demon in his shadow. Heaven wouldn’t be suspicious of him, and all traces of Crowley’s powers would have time to disappear from the angel’s mind.

He didn’t want to admit it, but his last conscious thought was that he wished Aziraphale would miss him.

 

 

                The public applauded, even though the dancer wasn’t there anymore. Aziraphale was perplexed. What had just happened? He had felt a connection with Crowley, like she had only been dancing and singing for him, for a little while. His heart was still beating fast because of it. But suddenly, Crowley had averted his gaze, and she had run away. All the exciting and scary emotions Aziraphale had felt that night were gone with Crowley. He was confused, and hurt. Maybe Crowley had felt shame at seeing the angel looking at her perform; but if that were the case, why didn’t she run away the moment she saw Aziraphale? She was probably still mad about the holy water, and it was clear she didn’t want to talk to him. It was no use chasing her, then.

He just wanted to understand Crowley better, and for that reason he had come chasing her after the fight. But seeing how things had turned out, maybe they were too different for that. It didn’t matter how brave Aziraphale tried to be; he couldn’t get into the demon’s mind.

The confusion started being replaced by anger. Why couldn’t Crowley talk to him? Aziraphale desired for better communication between them; he didn’t want to continue denying their friendship. He felt other things beyond that, of course, but it was too dangerous to do something about it. And he wasn’t sure Crowley felt the same way towards him. It was probably the reason why she had run away, and why she hadn’t told him about her burlesque job. Even though they had the Arrangement, there were things Crowley didn’t want an angel to meddle with.

Frustrated, Aziraphale left the club, and prepared himself to teleport back to the bookshop. He couldn’t stand to be one more minute in New York. If Crowley didn’t want to talk to him, so be it; he was going to wait for the demon to take the first step towards reconciliation this time.

A part of him was scared Crowley never would. And he was sure he was going to miss her while he waited for her.

 

Chapter Text

1941

Nearly one century had passed, and Aziraphale hadn’t heard a thing from the demon during all that time. Anxiety would break his heart every time he thought about Crowley. It wasn’t the first time they didn’t see each other for a long period of time, but their fight made the situation different.

What’s more - it had been the first time Crowley had run away from Aziraphale.

Aziraphale couldn’t help but replay the events of that night in New York again and again. He felt that he had done something wrong, but couldn’t put his finger on what. He still felt angry and disappointed. Obviously Crowley couldn’t know how hard it had been for Aziraphale to gather the courage to go find him so they could reconcile, and it wasn’t fair to get angry with him for that. It still didn’t explain why Crowley had run away. Aziraphale felt frustrated that instead of making peace with the demon, things just got worse.

But most of all, he missed him.

Aziraphale, for once, had taken an interest in what was going on in the human world; it was his way to take his mind off Crowley.  During the day, he entertained himself with bookshop stuff, like scaring away customers and suspicious people. He visited from time to time a discreet gentleman’s club. Crowley’s performance had affected him in more than one way; it had made him interested in dancing.  His favourite dance so far was the gavotte - he felt like he could fly every time he danced, and it was the best method he currently had to distract himself.

The nights were tougher. There wasn’t much for him to do. In his bookshop, there were only him and his books. Normally books were a great help, but when Crowley was the centre of his concerns they never managed to get him away from his thoughts. He was now trying to read one, hot cocoa in hand. In fact, he wasn’t really reading, just staring blankly at space with the cup growing cold between his hands and the book on his lap.

What if Crowley had decided to take matters in his own hands, and went to find holy water on his own? Maybe things had gone badly and the demon was somewhere all alone and hurt. How many times had Crowley saved him? Aziraphale blushed when he remembered the last time in Paris. Crowley’s hairstyle then had been ridiculous, but the way his legs looked in stockings was impossible to forget. That reminded him of Crowley’s burlesque attire, and he blushed even more. The thought lead him to the moment he saw Crowley run away, and his thoughts spiralled again.

He could always try to find where the demon was, searching for his aura, like he had to find him in New York; but a part of him was scared that it would turn out for the worst again. He buried that annoying thought. He had to do it, and if Aziraphale only looked for his aura, without actually going where Crowley was, it would probably be alright. He nodded to himself, convinced. He started to concentrate, and instantly found him: Crowley was far nearer than expected. He was in his flat, and judging from his aura he was fine.

So... Crowley was just avoiding him. Aziraphale sunk even more in his chair. He didn’t how he was supposed to feel. Mad? Sad? Worried? He felt like he was feeling all negative emotions at the same time.

His phone rang, interrupting his increasing anxiety. He got up, miracling the cold cup into his kitchen. It was odd that someone was calling him so late at night. Aziraphale’s heart started pounding; could it be...?

“Hullo? A.Z. Fell at your service.”

“Am I talking to ze book seller?”

That wasn’t Crowley’s voice. Aziraphale’s heart sunk in his chest. He felt so silly-of course it wasn’t Crowley. It would have been too simple for Crowley to just appear when Aziraphale thought of him.

“Yes? Who am I talking to?”

“Zat’s not important. Let’s just say I sink we can help each ozer.”

Aziraphale frowned. That voice was familiar, somehow, with that heavy accent.

“Whatever do you mean?”

“Judging ze absence of clientele in your bookshop, looks like you need some money. And ze Fuhrer needs books. Special kind of books.”

Then it hit Aziraphale. He was talking to one of those Nazis that had been doing so many atrocities lately. He remembered those suspicious people that came to his bookshop some days ago; maybe this was related to it. Since how long had they been keeping an eye on him?

Aziraphale certainly didn’t want to help some Nazis. There was too much on his plate already.

“I’m sorry, but I don’t think I can help you.”

“And I’m sure you can. We’re looking for prophecy books. Isn’t zat your specialty?”

“I mean, it is, but I don’t think-”

“I repeat, you could get somezing out of zis, besides helping ze Fuhrer.”

Aziraphale was about to get a bit ruder, but he realized something. He really could be getting something out of that. It had been a long time since he had helped humanity actively; all this matter with Crowley had distracted him too much from his work as an angel. The instant he thought about it, Aziraphale felt like it was the correct decision. He needed a bit of air, to make the world better, bring a bit of good in the world. That would make him feel like himself again. And that way, when Crowley finally came back (Aziraphale didn’t even want to consider the possibility of the demon never coming back) he would have some work to do to trying to balance out all the good.

Aziraphale wiggled a bit, satisfied.  “Maybe I am a bit interested.”

 

                He was standing in a church, dim light coming from some candles. His books had been taken away from him, and now guns were been pointed at his direction. This wasn’t the situation he had planned for. It was scandalous how he had fallen for the trap so easily; he had been too impulsive. Aziraphale felt dumb, but he had meant well and he wasn’t feeling any regret. Even though, he was in danger of losing his beloved corporation.

Then he saw Crowley, and his heart felt like he had come home again.

What a ridiculous demon. Getting his feet burned for him. Running away from Aziraphale and disappearing for nearly a century, making the angel mad with worry, but the instant Aziraphale saw him again all he could remember was his longing for him. Is this what Aziraphale needed to do every time Crowley didn’t want to talk to him, get himself in danger?

Crowley saved him, and not only that: he saved his books too. He stood there, paralyzed, his hand burning where Crowley’s hand had brushed his. Crowley had returned, for him, to save him from a problem he had got into on his own volition. Aziraphale still didn’t understand why Crowley had run away that night, but now he was back and he cared for him. Crowley cared for him. He had to, or he wouldn’t have saved him either way. It didn’t feel like the other times Crowley had saved Aziraphale. He had used his powers to save his books, something Crowley knew was important for Aziraphale, and he did so just so Aziraphale wouldn’t be sad; there was no other explanation.

All this kept circling around Aziraphale’s head, while he looked at Crowley walking away from the destroyed church towards his new car.

Aziraphale loved Crowley. He was in love with him. And maybe Crowley loved him back.

Aziraphale could barely stop his wings from appearing into the physical world.

He quickly followed Crowley, taking his offer of driving him home. He just hoped Crowley would be a slow driver, as he was already feeling shaken. 

When they finally arrived to his bookshop, he wasn’t so sure what had been more dangerous: getting involved in Nazi business or Crowley driving like it was the end of the world.

“Really dear, do you really need to drive like that?”

Crowley had a huge grin on his face. They were still in the car, Aziraphale trying to catch his breathing (even if he didn’t need to). Aziraphale couldn’t pretend he was mad. He was still hugging his bag full of books and replaying Crowley saving him again and again in his mind.  The way Crowley looked in those clothes wasn’t helping him get back to normal, if he was being honest. The hat was a bit too much, but it was obvious Crowley loved the drama of it. He also looked so happy with his car - it had been a long time since he saw the demon so taken by a material object as he was for his Bentley. Aziraphale placed a tiny miracle in the car, something so light not even Crowley would notice, but enough to protect the driver from crashes. It didn’t feel enough as thanks though. He would have to think about something else later.

“Maybe I don’t have to, but isn’t it more fun like this?” Crowley looked at him while saying this. Aziraphale could see Crowley’s eyes shine maliciously even with his dark glasses. Aziraphale rolled his eyes. He looked at his hands, suddenly out of words. Even though he wasn’t looking at him, he could feel Crowley staring at him.

“Are you alright?” –The demon’s voice sounded concerned.

“Oh yes! Tip top. I was just wondering; would you like to come inside?”

Crowley raised an eyebrow.

Aziraphale started blushing immediately. “For a drink I mean. As a thank you”

“You don’t need to thank me, you know that.”

Aziraphale stopped looking at his hands, and looked at Crowley. Maybe looking at him directly would make him more convincing.

“Please?”

If his voice sounded a bit pleading to anyone it would probably be their imagination. He was an angel; he didn’t know how to manipulate, of course.

Crowley softened. “Oh, all right, a quick drink never hurt anybody”.

Aziraphale smiled, dimples appearing on his face, and they got out of the car.

 

In the back of the bookshop Aziraphale started to pour them some wine, when he noticed Crowley’s face when he sat down on the sofa. He stopped pouring immediately, putting the bottle aside, and walked towards him. Crowley looked at him as if nothing happened, his feet on top of a coffee table in front of him. Aziraphale crossed his arms.

“Dear. Would you mind taking off your shoes?” he said with a slightly menacing voice.

Crowley looked as if he was trying to make himself smaller. “I would prefer not to.”

Crowley noticed that Aziraphale was looking even more menacing, so he snapped his fingers and his shoes disappeared into thin air. Aziraphale gasped. Crowley’s feet looked burned and damaged, the skin alarmingly red. The normally shiny scales that adorned them looked scorched.

“Why didn’t you tell me your feet were this bad?” All menacing looks disappeared from Aziraphale, deep concern taking place in his features. “Don’t you dare move!”

Aziraphale walked away, and returned soon after with a towel and a bucket full of water. He kneeled next to the coffee table. Crowley hadn’t dare moved a millimetre from where he was.

“Don’t worry, this is plain water, it’s not holy or anything”. The instant those words crossed his lips, Aziraphale regretted them. He didn’t want to remind Crowley of holy water.

Luckily, Crowley just nodded, ignoring the opportunity to talk about their previous discussion. Aziraphale drenched the towel with water, and started to clean Crowley’s feet gently.

Crowley hissed - the water felt really cold against his burned feet, but it immediately started feeling better, and he relaxed a bit on his seat.

“I just can’t believe you walked into the church just like that. You should take better care of yourself”.

Crowley felt his face burning this time. He still had enough dignity to snap back: “Says the angel that found himself at Nazis gunpoint and nearly discorporating”.

 Aziraphale looked at him disapprovingly, and continued tending to Crowley.

Now that he was starting to feel better, Crowley could really take a look at Aziraphale. From this point of view, he could appreciate the angel’s long eyelashes - had they always been that long? His hands were taking care of him, gently, always gentle, even when he was reprimanding Crowley. That fact made Crowley’s throat feel dry. The angel was so kind; he always made him feel like he was bathing in the sun when he was with him. Crowley looked at his hair. The blond curls looked messier than usual, and there was some ash on it. Without thinking, he reached out towards it. His fingers dug into the hair, and it felt even softer than it looked.

Aziraphale stopped his motions and looked at him, surprised, and their eyes crossed just like that night in New York. Everything was quiet all around them. Crowley, slowly, shook the ashes away, without breaking eye contact. He could see Aziraphale gulp nervously, and immediately took his hand away. He didn’t want to stress the angel; he needed to be more careful. If Aziraphale looked disappointed for a moment it was surely a product of his imagination. Aziraphale broke the eye contact, and restarted healing him as if nothing had happened.

Aziraphale finally broke the silence that had settled between them.

“It would be a pity if this affected the way you dance. You do it rather fetchingly to be honest”. He gave him a tiny smile, his eyes shining.

Crowley smiled back. “You liked it?”

“Did I like it? I haven’t been able stop thinking about it.”

Crowley would have died on the spot if it wasn’t that he got distracted by water flying everywhere as a result of Aziraphale’s excited hand gestures. Crowley laughed and took off his drenched glasses to clean them with his shirt while Aziraphale apologized, but as he saw Crowley laughing he giggled too. Aziraphale put aside the bucket and stood up to go inspect if any of the books surrounding them had been affected by the unexpected rain.

Crowley tried to stand up. Surprisingly, his feet felt a lot better. He miracled his shoes on again, and walked towards the fussing angel.

“Do you need some help?”

Aziraphale turned around, with books in his hands. “What are you doing walking around? Go sit!”

The angel immediately continued checking his books. Crowley, a bit offended his help wasn’t needed, walked towards the sofa again, grabbing his until then forgotten glass of wine. He let himself fall into the sofa, and looked at Aziraphale, still rummaging through his books. He snapped his fingers and miracled all the books dry.

“Come join me angel, didn’t you want to try this wine with me?”

Aziraphale took his glass and made himself comfortable on the seat in front of Crowley. “I really do prefer to take care of my books the traditional way”.

“You’re an angel. What even is the traditional way for you?”

“A demon miracling them dry sure isn’t.”

Crowley made a face and took a sip of his wine. Aziraphale fidgeted with his glass, looking as if he was trying to find the courage to say something. Crowley sighed.

“Okay, out with it.”

Aziraphale took a deep breath. “What have you been doing this past century?”

Crowley cleared his throat. “I was napping”, he said quietly.

“Napping?”

“Yes. It’s a really normal behaviour for demons, you know, just being lazy and sleeping for long periods of time.”

Aziraphale didn’t look convinced, but he nodded, and Crowley felt relieved. He absolutely didn’t want to admit he slept one century away just because he was concerned for Aziraphale and didn’t want to cause him harm. It would have been like confessing, and he wasn’t ready to see Aziraphale’s reaction to that just yet. For now, he was happy to be near him, as much as Aziraphale would let him.

“And you didn’t get in trouble with... down there? You didn’t do anything truly evil during all that time.”

Crowley took another sip of his wine. “Pssshhh, don’t worry about that. Dagon was delighted with my work previous to that. Burlesque caused a stir in America.”

“But you weren’t there for too long.”

Crowley shrugged. “You know how this works. Humans do practically all our work themselves.”

Aziraphale was so relieved. Crowley had been completely fine all this time. He felt a bit silly-he had worried for nothing. Crowley suddenly taking a nap was a bit unexpected, but at least he hadn’t been avoiding him, right?

Talking about avoiding...

“Why did you run away that time?”

Crowley looked at him, suddenly very still. He thought for a while, trying to find an excuse, but he couldn’t. He didn’t like to lie to the angel (telling half truths to avoid tricky topics wasn’t lying). Bad thing was that there was a limit to avoiding questions.

“I didn’t expect to find you there in the public. I was focusing my demonic power on everyone, and then I found out you were there too. I got scared that maybe it was affecting you too.” – he mumbled into his glass. He didn’t dare to look at Aziraphale. He hoped it hadn’t sounded as close to a confession as he feared.

Aziraphale felt like he had been given too many gifts that night. First, he got to see Crowley again, after so much time separated. Then said demon saved him and his books in a truly selfless act. Now Crowley just said that he had ran away from Aziraphale just out of concern. He felt dizzy with all these proofs that Crowley truly cared for him, but as always, a part of him was scared to entertain the idea that Crowley loved him romantically. Aziraphale knew the demon cherished him, and that night he had made it absolutely clear, but maybe he didn’t love Aziraphale the way the angel loved him.  Crowley was a demon, after all, and Aziraphale was scared of being rejected. The uncertainties were too big, but what he knew for sure was that Crowley wanted to be his friend, so Aziraphale held on to it.

Aziraphale smiled radiantly, and raised his glass. “To our friendship!”

Crowley finally looked at him, and smiled back, a bit shy. “To our friendship.”

Crowley took a generous sip from his glass. Thank Someone Aziraphale hadn’t interpreted that as a confession. He ought to feel relieved, but his heart only felt disappointment.

 

1967

For Crowley, it was like light was always surrounding him. They were in the car, neon lights from the streets illuminating them softly. There was also an even softer light coming from the angel looking at him.  Said angel had caught him red-handed, making plans to steal holy water.

He had, in fact, done it on purpose. Crowley wanted Aziraphale to know he hadn’t given up on it. It had been a good plan, really. He wanted to know what Aziraphale would do; will he stop him or ignore his plans? At least, if he didn’t do anything, Crowley would finally get his hands on holy water.

Aziraphale was handing him a tartan thermos. Their fingers brushed when he took it, just like that one night in a destroyed church, some years ago. Crowley’s heart soared, to then come crashing down in flames when Aziraphale left him there in the car, alone.

Crowley didn’t know what had been going through the angel’s mind. Aziraphale had been debating with himself since Crowley saved his books. Crowley used his demonic powers selflessly, that night. There had been no excuse; he didn’t do it because of the Arrangement, nor as an evil act.

This meant a lot of things. Not only had it showed Crowley truly cared for him, even if he had disappeared for a long time. It also showed that maybe Aziraphale could be bolder. Hell hadn’t come to take Crowley away from him to torture him for all eternity, so maybe Heaven didn’t care either about what Aziraphale did. Maybe Aziraphale could do something reckless for once. Nothing that would mean him Falling, of course; he was sure if what he did was an act of love, he would be fine.

He was so tired of being scared, so he made a decision.

He would give Crowley holy water blessed by him. It was risky; an angel, giving holy water willingly to a demon, and being the one to bless it? It had never happened before, as far as he knew. He was worried, of course, but what kept him going was the fact that it was for Crowley. It was worth everything. Even if Hell hadn’t done anything to Crowley yet, it was only a matter of time until they found out. If this meant Aziraphale would be protecting him, he would do anything.

His fear that Crowley wanted the holy water to destroy himself if things went badly was still there. He could do nothing about it, so he decided to have faith. Aziraphale was an angel, after all – he knew about faith. And faith was blind, so he hoped that Crowley understood that by this act, he was showing how much he cared for Crowley, and that would be motivation enough not to kill himself.

Still, he wasn’t prepared to go as fast as Crowley wanted. Aziraphale wanted to be on Heaven’s side, he wanted to believe good still existed. If he was fine after giving the flaming sword away and lying to the face of God, he would be all right giving some holy water away too. He had started to believe this is what God wanted. This time he wasn’t just risking his well-being, but Crowley’s too, so he had to be extra careful. Oh, how he wanted to just be with Crowley, not a worry in the world, but Aziraphale needed to be 100% sure Heaven and Hell wouldn’t kill them both.

Since Aziraphale had seen Crowley dance, there had been a growing desire in him. Crowley had surely seen what effect he had on Aziraphale, and he had run away. He had come back, later, so Aziraphale interpreted that whatever Crowley had seen in his eyes that night hadn’t been enough to scare him away and end their friendship. He saw how touched Crowley was by the gift of holy water, and with that act Aziraphale had realized he could be bolder. From all these facts and the need to put aside some of his fears was born the desire of seeing how Aziraphale could truly affect Crowley. 

 

1994

Crowley was about to get out of the Bentley when the radio started to do funny things, even more than normal. When Dagon’s voice came out of it, Crowley sighed. He felt he was haunted by Dagon and Freddie Mercury at the same time.

Hello. Crowley, are you there?”

Crowley rested his head on the seat, feeling very tired all of a sudden.

“Yup. What’s up, my Lord?”

There’s a new job for you. Remember that wonderful thing you did with burlesque a few years ago?”

How could he forget about it, really. “Yeah, what of it?”

You have to go back. There’s a new club opening and you have to make sure to make burlesque famous again.”

Crowley frowned and looked at the radio. “Is it me or you’re too fixated on this burlesque business?”

Dagon’s voice sounded a bit aggressive. “Can’t a demon have a hobby? Get on with it! I’ll send the details later.”

Crowley made a confused face, shrugged and got out of the car.

 

Aziraphale and Crowley met at the park, some lettuce in hand (Crowley had watched a documentary about ducks some time ago and was shocked to know they have been practically poisoning the ducks up until then).

“So, what’s the matter?” said Aziraphale.

“Dagon tasked me with a new job. I have to go back to New York to a club and perform. Make sure burlesque gets famous again”.

Aziraphale nodded. “The burlesque world never got over your absence, I guess.”

Crowley smiled a bit, embarrassed.

Aziraphale tossed a bit of lettuce to the gathered ducks. “Turns out I have to go to New York too. I have to perform some kind of blessing, but they haven’t given me the full details yet.”

“Oh, want to flip a coin then? No use the both of us going.”

Aziraphale looked at him, surprised. “Do you really think I could perform in a club?”

Crowley hadn’t thought of that. “True, I guess that must be too much to ask from an angel. You could always be a waiter or something, and just stir everyone’s emotions a bit with a miracle.”

Aziraphale thought about it for a bit, and nodded, convinced. “But only if I lose, of course.”

Crowley smirked. “Of course. Heads, as always?”

Aziraphale confirmed it and Crowley tossed it. The coin landed on Crowley’s hand. “Tails. You’re going to New York.”

Aziraphale sighed, not at all disappointed for some reason. “Guess I have some work to do.”

He wiggled a bit, unable to restrain himself. He tossed the entire lettuce to the ducks, causing a commotion, and then walked away. Crowley felt confused about all that. Why would Aziraphale be happy to go to New York? He expected the angel to complain that he wanted to stay in his cozy bookshop.

Crowley stayed in the park a bit more, slightly interested in the duck battle for the lettuce, and a bit disappointed his mischief of making Aziraphale lose on purpose didn’t go as expected. Guess you never knew, with Aziraphale.

 

Crowley was getting worried. One week had already passed since Aziraphale headed to New York, and he hadn’t received any news from the angel. Not a message, a call, nothing. He didn’t understand what was taking him so long - it was only a blessing and some miracles here and there in a club.

Crowley was sitting on his throne, watching the Golden Girls, but he wasn’t actually paying attention. His mind kept wandering to Aziraphale. He couldn’t have gotten in some trouble, could he? He thought about it for a minute.

Of course Aziraphale could.

Crowley, with a groan, got up and started to gather energy to miracle himself to New York.

 

Crowley looked at the entrance sign of the club indicated by Dagon’s coordinates. Blue Angel. He rolled his eyes, not sure if this was a coincidence or someone was teasing him. He peeked inside; there seemed to be a lot of people. Looked like the angel was doing well–the club was a rage in town already. He couldn’t see his angel, though, so he would have to go inside.

Crowley just hoped he wouldn’t get mistaken by one of the dancers because of his tight trousers. Perks of being stylish.

He entered and miracled himself an empty seat, making all those around it look momentarily away so they didn’t get scandalised about people suddenly disappearing into thin air. They were going to just appear in another club though; Crowley wasn’t much for killing people just so he could sit.

The show hadn’t started yet, and people were getting restless. Crowley patiently waited for a waiter, hoping he would be lucky enough for them to be Aziraphale. Unluckily, a waitress he didn’t know came to his table.

“What would you like to drink?”

“Something strong, I don’t care what. Surprise me.”

She nodded, and just before she walked away, Crowley stopped her.

“Wait a minute, is there someone in the staff with nearly white hair, pale blue eyes and a cute smile?”

The waitress frowned, looking unsure. She didn’t look like she would share information about her co-workers easily. Clever girl, Crowley thought. He did need the information, though.

“He looks like an angel” Crowley continued, not giving up. “He told me he worked here.”

At this, the waitress’ expression changed, and smiled openly. “An angel, you say? I think you got something wrong, love, there’s no angel serving customers. But don’t worry, wait here a minute and you won’t be disappointed.”

She winked and walked away, leaving Crowley really confused. What did she mean by that? He got into one of his inhuman positions on the chair, restless. He really wanted to get up and look for Aziraphale, but what the human waitress told him worried him. Maybe he should wait a bit as she said; maybe Aziraphale was going to start his shift later. Plus, he had ordered a drink, so he couldn’t just get up and leave. He had liked that girl; he would definitely tip her later.

She came back some minutes later, carrying a large glass of something that looked promising. Crowley thanked her and she smiled in a way he could only be proud of as a demon. He shrugged and took a sip that burned his throat. Perfect; he had a feeling he would need a strong drink like that one to survive that night.

Lights changed, and the stage was suddenly the centre of attention. A man came to the stage, in front of the still closed curtains, and the public applauded, excited. He waved, smiling maliciously. He was wearing red lipstick, a shiny suit and a pair of amazing high heels Crowley was suddenly envious of. He took a mental note to miracle a pair like that later on. The man took the mic in front of him, clearing his throat.

“I know who you all came to see, so I won’t be long. I hope one day you come to see me, you little traitors.” Some people cheered to this. He threw them a kiss, and continued. “Without further ado, a big applause to the Heaven-sent Angel!”

At this, people clapped even louder than before. Crowley nearly choked on his drink. No, it was impossible. It had to be a coincidence; Aziraphale didn’t look pleased when he described this job. Aziraphale did unexpected things sometimes as the bastard he was, but this was going too far. It just couldn’t be. The waitress’ devil smile was turning around in his head while the curtains started to lift.

And there he was. Standing on the stage, alone, with his back on the public. He was wearing a white suit, or at least some of it, because he was visibly not wearing any trousers. He had a top-hat and he was leaning on a closed umbrella. Everything he was wearing was white-coloured and had glitter. Crowley’s mouth fell open, still in denial.

Aziraphale (it was no denying it was him) turned around still leaning on his white umbrella, with a bright smile on his face. He started walking around on the stage, spinning the umbrella. The public cheered for him, delighted. Aziraphale had a glittery eye shadow and his lips were bright red.

But that wasn’t what caught Crowley’s eyes.

Aziraphale, indeed, wasn’t wearing any trousers. Instead, he was wearing some kind of panties with jewellery on it, same jewellery his jacket had. His legs were covered with shiny stockings, and he was wearing some pearly shoes that reminded Crowley of the ones Aziraphale wore in that prison in Paris. He was wearing a bowtie, of course, and Crowley saw that it had a tartan pattern with some crystals on it.

Technically Aziraphale wasn’t naked, but for Crowley he was. He had never seen Aziraphale wear something so flashy and he was rocking it. The angel was practically glowing with happiness and confidence, and he was beautiful. Crowley felt like he was Falling again in the opposite direction. He couldn’t tear his eyes from Aziraphale’s legs, from those thighs that the stockings favoured so well.  

By the looks of it, Aziraphale was also making an effort. Those panties covered everything perfectly, but they were tight enough for that detail to not go unnoticed.

Crowley had long forgotten how to breathe. Even if he technically didn’t need to, he felt like he was out of air. His pants had never felt this tight before – damn this stupid corporations. He was also feeling his eyes going full snake. Aziraphale had obviously no idea Crowley was there and the effect he was having on the poor demon, that shiny bastard.

The song Singin’ in the rain was playing, and Aziraphale started to sing the lyrics. He had a pure voice that matched the white of his clothes; his eyes were sparkling. He had never looked more like an angel than he was at the moment. It looked like that was the perfect attire to discorporate demons on sight, judging by how Crowley was feeling.

Aziraphale danced towards a fake lamppost waiting for him on the stage. He spun around it while singing, until he faced the public again and made a wide gesture with his left arm, still holding the umbrella, and winked. Everyone went crazy about that, cheering; Crowley couldn’t blame them. His mind was completely blank and his face was burning more than Hellfire. He probably looked ridiculous, with his mouth open and his skin matching his hair, but his mind was completely elsewhere. He was shocked, yes, but he was also delighted to see Aziraphale like that, even more seductive than he normally already was. Crowley took great pleasure in watching Aziraphale doing anything, especially when the angel was enjoying himself. He liked to discover everything the angel liked and he had been surprised before. This new side of Aziraphale was an amazing discovery and Crowley was more than happy to centre his attention on him.

Aziraphale distanced himself from the lamppost and swung his legs, reminding Crowley the love Aziraphale had for the gavotte, and he smiled softly. Thinking about it, it wasn’t that big of a surprise that Aziraphale liked this type of show; he did love dancing the gavotte and doing magic shows, so it was kind of inevitable for Aziraphale to end up dancing for an audience. Still, Crowley was shocked Aziraphale was encouraging people to feel lust, but Crowley did ask that of him, and damn, what a great job he was doing. It made the demon proud of his angel. The audience was going to fall into good and fun temptation for sure, and it was thanks to Aziraphale. Crowley sensed angelic powers surrounding them, gently encouraging the public towards sin, and it was so undeniably Aziraphale in essence Crowley couldn’t stop grinning.

And he had believed the angel was in trouble? Crowley felt like he would be the one in trouble if the angel found out he was watching him, and honestly he couldn’t wait.

Aziraphale, then, disappeared to the back of the stage, and some dancers appeared. They were wearing black leather clothes, kind of like the ones Crowley was wearing, and they all had an umbrella in hand. Crowley was starting to feel disappointed. That was the end of the angel’s show? He didn’t care for these dancers.

When Crowley was about to drink the rest of his glass and leave, the song abruptly changed. He saw some girls standing closely together, then breaking apart, revealing what, or who, they were hiding.

It was Aziraphale – his dance hadn’t finished. When Crowley saw him, he gripped his fingers into the chair until they were white. If the previous outfit was scandalous, this one was mind-blowing. Aziraphale had taken his jacket and panty away (pity Crowley hadn’t been able to see the angel strip), showing what was underneath. He had some kind of white lingerie, barely covering him and revealing his softness. He was still wearing the bowtie, but the hat was nowhere in sight. The lace was beautiful and delicate, and it looked like it had a flower pattern. It was simple, compared to what he wore before, but it had a greater effect. He looked even more angel, the kind of angel that could take you to Heaven and tear you apart at the same time. Aziraphale didn’t look like it with his normal clothes, but besides being the softest creature on Earth he was also really strong, and he was now showing it proudly - his strong arms were out in the open.

Crowley felt like he was about to discorporate. The need to go up the stage and kidnap the angel was overcoming him. Crowley felt like he wanted to run away and sink his teeth into that softness at the same time, but the only thing he could do was to take a long sip from his drink. Thank Someone he ordered a strong one - that had been a good call. It distracted him from the desire to be taken in those arms.

Aziraphale had started singing the moment he reappeared, and his voice sounded more daring than before.

You have my heart, and we'll never be worlds apart

Aziraphale walked, swinging his hips in a way that made Crowley proud, to the centre of the stage. He had his umbrella in hand, and he placed it on the ground, putting his weight into it, still swinging his hips.

Crowley put the glass on the table, afraid he would grip it so hard it would shatter. He really needed to take better control of his emotions, but how could he, when the angel was dancing and looking like that?

Because

When the sun shines, we shine together
Told you I'll be here forever
Said I'll always be your friend
Took an oath that I'm a stick it out 'til the end

 

Crowley started to feel a bit emotional when he started to pay attention to the lyrics. He deeply wanted to believe Aziraphale had chosen that song thinking of him. Was it too optimistic to think that way?

Aziraphale began to kneel, the umbrella standing between his legs, and he fluttered his eyelashes to a public that couldn’t believe their luck to be able to watch that show. The angel stood up slowly, arching his back a bit, still singing. The way his body moved was feeding Crowley’s imagination. It had always been unbearably hot to watch Aziraphale eat and Crowley had always felt he could discorporate from it; he couldn’t have expected this, and his hands were itching from desire.

Now that it's raining more than ever
Know that we still have each other
You can stand under my umbrella

Crowley smiled brightly, realizing something and feeling dumb he hadn’t realize it before: the umbrella and the overall rain theme – it reminded him of Eden, when an angel sheltered a demon from the rain.

Aziraphale walked following the edge of the stage, still dancing. Crowley knew there were still more dancers in the background, but he had long forgotten about them. His eyes followed Aziraphale’s movements, craving that the angel would look up and see him. He was so close now, and he still hadn’t seen Crowley. Crowley felt a bit shy about the idea of Aziraphale discovering him, but at the same time he wanted to see the angel’s reaction. He only hoped Aziraphale wouldn’t be as dumb as to run away like Crowley did.

The song slowed down a bit, and to Crowley’s surprise, Aziraphale went to the stage’s stairs and started to go down, going towards the public, that applauded in excitement.

You can run into my arms
It's okay, don't be alarmed

Aziraphale began walking between the tables, softly caressing people’s arms while passing through. Crowley felt a tinge of jealousy at that, until he realized Aziraphale was going to walk near his table at some point or another. He ran a hand through his long hair, trying to look cool, and waited, excitement slowly increasing.

The moment arrived. Aziraphale turned around, a huge smile on his face, and saw the demon. His smile changed in a subtle way only Crowley could be aware of. He looked like a bastard, seeing how flustered Crowley was and he was proud of it. His eyes looked delighted to see him there, as if he had been waiting for him. Aziraphale walked towards Crowley, looking straight at him. Crowley saw everything happening in slow motion: Aziraphale’s manicured hands going towards his face, taking away his sunglasses and putting them on the table, without breaking their eye contact. Aziraphale smiled, satisfied, seeing the clear effect he was having on the demon, reflected in his eyes that had gone fully snake, and wiggled. His eyes looked at Crowley, all of him, like he did that night in New York many years ago, noticing the painful bulge in Crowley’s pants, the way he was gripping the chair.

Then, Aziraphale’s hand went through Crowley’s hair like the demon had gone seconds ago. He felt Aziraphale’s nails on his scalp, and he shivered. The angel gently pulled, making Crowley show his throat, and Aziraphale’s other hand caressed the exposed skin. He hadn’t stopped singing, and Crowley couldn’t stop looking at his bright red lips. Aziraphale leaned forward, looking like he was about to kiss Crowley’s throat.

Aziraphale, following the beat of the song, let him go and walked back to the stage. Crowley, feeling his hair totally dishevelled, looked at him go, still feeling the ghost of Aziraphale’s hands and nails on him. He felt disappointed; the quick physical contact had only made him desire more.

On the centre of the stage stood a white chair that one of the dancers had placed there while Crowley was distracted. Aziraphale walked towards it and sat down. He arched his back and spread his arms, while looking at the ceiling. Suddenly, water fell from it like it was raining inside the club, drenching the angel, the song ending the moment the water hit him. The rain only lasted a couple of seconds, but the dramatic effect was on point – the audience immediately broke into applause, and people stood up to cheer.

Crowley was still on his chair, not moving. His hand came up, snapping his fingers twice: one to leave a huge amount of money for the waitress that had so kindly made him stay for the show; and the other to miracle himself out of the club taking advantage of everyone’s distraction. He appeared in a suddenly vacant room inside a hotel not too far from the club, lying on the bed and facing the ceiling. He realized, too late, he had forgotten his sunglasses on the table.

He needed to take control of all these intense emotions and calm down. He had so many questions he wanted to ask the angel, but he wanted to be serene when he did that.

He looked below his waist. If he wanted to be serene, he would first need to take care of that.

Chapter Text

Crowley was having a panic attack. Or at least what he thought a panic attack was; his heart was beating like crazy and he felt the pulse behind his eyes. He couldn’t control his breathing, and his legs had developed a mind of their own making him walk around the hotel room like a mad man. His hands were shaking inside his trouser’s tight pockets.

He needed to talk to Aziraphale.

His body was reacting in so many different ways. Crowley had known Aziraphale for millennia – it wasn’t the first time he got nervous about the idea of seeing him. This time he wasn’t just nervous - anxiety was devouring him, mixed with excitement. His tongue licked his fangs remembering the way Aziraphale looked in stockings. His beautiful, manicured hands going through Crowley’s hair, lust darkening his eyes in a way that made Crowley’s insides burn.

Crowley clenched his fists, his nails painfully scratching his palms. He needed to concentrate and stay calm. He couldn’t go talk with Aziraphale like a demon being controlled by lust; that’s no way to have a conversation with an angel. Crowley wanted to know what the Hell was going through Aziraphale’s mind, how he could just dive in such a job.

Was the lust he had seen in Aziraphale’s eyes real?

Crowley’s small toe banged the coffee table. He yelled and fell to the floor, curling himself in a ball in a way no human spine could do. Fucking limbs. At that moment he just wanted to be a snake basking in sunlight and forget about stupid sexy angels in lingerie.

The thing was, he had already tried to talk to Aziraphale since that night. He had gone to the club the next day flowers in hand. Crowley had found the waitress that had helped him there, mopping the floor, and had informed him that Aziraphale had disappeared after the show. She had an amusing light in his eyes that shone when she saw him with those flowers and shaking hands. Crowley had returned to the hotel, disappointed, and now the flowers were mocking him from a vase on the coffee table. It had been two days since that, and there still was no sign of Aziraphale.

Where was the angel?

Maybe Aziraphale had returned to London, judging his job in New York done. The idea of Aziraphale going back without saying it to Crowley hurt a little, even if he didn’t want to admit it.

Crowley tossed his sunglasses away (as they were painfully pressing on his face) while still lying on the floor. They were a new pair he had miracled that morning, as he had forgotten the previous ones in the club. He hated to lose sunglasses, but the way Aziraphale had taken them off had been absolutely worth it. The angel was the only being in existence Crowley would let take his sunglasses off, and even if he had never told him that, it looked like the bastard somehow knew.

Crowley groaned. He wanted to see the angel (ignoring the way his stomach clenched at the idea of it). He could always look for his aura, even if he couldn’t find him physically. Crowley had the habit to do that from time to time, to make sure the angel hadn’t got into trouble.

He was happy to find the angel was still in New York, but the strange thing about it was that he couldn’t pinpoint where exactly. He could only sense a general angelic aura in the city, but it was too diluted. Crowley frowned and hugged his knees. Maybe Aziraphale was avoiding him after what happened that night in the club. He probably didn’t want to talk about it, ignoring whatever connection they had felt.

Disappointment went through him like waves and he felt a knot in his throat. Crowley really didn’t want to keep ignoring what had been going on between the two of them. He had always felt insecure about what Aziraphale felt, but now he wanted to explore what he thought he had seen in the angel’s eyes. Be done with it; lay everything out in the open.

If he was going to be rejected, so be it. Crowley already had experience in admiring the angel from afar.

He turned on his back, his arms and legs extended and his eyes on the luxury ceiling. What a stupid ceiling. Why did the humans need to make a ceiling look good and expensive? He liked the sin of greed as much as any demon, but he personally wasn’t a fan. Aziraphale would appreciate the intricate details of it, though.

And there he was again, going back again and again to Aziraphale. Always thinking about what the angel would like, in what way Crowley could make him happy and blushing. Always trying to make him smile, to make him look at him sideways in a pleased way thinking Crowley wouldn’t notice. He was a demon, and he was not nice, but that didn’t mean he couldn’t die trying to make the angel as happy as possible.

He groaned. What a pathetic excuse of a demon he was, lying on the floor pining for an angel.

He could always stand up and continue pining while looking for the angel. Or he could continue to lie on the floor.

He closed his eyes and took a nap.

 

Crowley woke up suddenly with the feeling of something settling on his chest. He grabbed it, still feeling dizzy and disoriented. It was a piece of paper. He had a strong sense of déjà-vu; it better not be Dagon requesting something. He straightened his back and turned the paper around in his hands, blinking sleepily.

Thanks to his demonic vision he could read it without turning the lights on. It was some kind of poster, not looking like something Dagon would send. He immediately recognized where it was from: it had “Blue Angel” printed in big letters. There was a picture of someone occupying the majority of it, and in the bottom there was a “TONIGHT!” written. There was also the hour it started.

His eyes widened in shock when he recognized who was on the poster. It was Aziraphale.

The angel was wearing a white night gown, falling from his shoulders, a feathered boa hugging his soft body. He was sitting on some stairs, his legs crossed, revealing a bit of leg and the high heels he was wearing. Crowley groaned at the sight of it, how it was innocently seducing, like Aziraphale wanted to make it seem like he hadn’t done it on purpose but definitely had.

Aziraphale’s chin rested on one of his hands, and the other sat at his lap in a way that reminded Crowley of how the angel looked when they got drunk and Aziraphale listened to every stupid thing that came out of Crowley’s mouth. 

Aziraphale had lipstick on, and his hair looked even more like clouds than normal. Crowley ached to kiss the lipstick off, to ruffle his hair and make him fall apart.

He finally tore his gaze from Aziraphale and looked at the rest of the poster. With cold realization, he saw that the TONIGHT! part meant that very night in roughly 10 minutes. He stood up, urgency rushing through his veins. He was NOT going to be late to that show. Crowley began to fold the poster, fully intending to carry it in his pocket for the rest of his life, when he noticed something in the back of it.

Someone had kissed it, leaving a lipstick mark. Crowley’s heart hammered against his ribcage. He touched it lightly, scared of smudging it, and flickered his tongue on his fingers. It smelled like sunshine and old books. Just like his angel.

Crowley couldn’t stop smiling. Aziraphale was playing with him, and he was more than happy to go along with it.

He miracled himself to the club, not bothering to walk over there –no time to lose. He appeared there, already sitting in front row, a drink in his hand. He felt so impatient, the poster in his pocket burning like a promise.

His fingers were tapping on the surface of the table, and he was looking everywhere. Crowley felt annoyed at everything; people making noise, not sitting down just yet; even the presenter from the other night was not doing his job and was obviously flirting with some dude. Why couldn’t them all sit down and be quiet, or do what they were supposed to do, so the show could start already?

Some people were starting to glare at him. He glared back, all of his demonic intent poured in each stare, scaring people into sitting down and being quiet.

The growing silence began to occupy all of the room, and it was a wonder the intensity of everyone’s stare on the curtains hadn’t incinerated them. Crowley was balancing his chair, unconsciously miracling it so he wouldn’t fall.

Finally the presenter walked on the stage. Crowley wasn’t paying attention to him at all; instead, he was looking at the small space between the curtains and the stage’s floor, trying to see any passing shadows. It turned out to be a failure, so he went back to his plan of glaring at everything until he could see his angel. Crowley stared at the presenter that began to look very uncomfortable. He stuttered a bit while presenting, until he finally gave up and reunited with the man he had been flirting with.

A shiver went down Crowley’s spine when the music began. He immediately released his chair, and sat with his back straight, all his attention focused on the still closed curtains. He ran his palms on his trousers, suddenly sweating. The show hadn’t started yet and he was already a mess.

The music was slow and sensual, all kinds of different from the other show. People cheered, excited for the change, and Crowley thickly swallowed. The curtains began to move, slowly revealing what was behind them, and someone began to sing.

The voice was deep and velvety, in a familiar and strange way. It resonated, the echoes of it vibrating directly to Crowley’s heart.

He had never heard the angel sing like that.

The curtains moved painfully slow, like it was their main purpose to torture the demon until the end, making him devour every bit he could see of Aziraphale. They moved vertically, so the first thing he saw were the shiny high heels Aziraphale was wearing. They were decorated with jewellery, with a pattern that went up his legs. Crowley couldn’t see where they ended, or properly admire the way they hugged the calves, as Aziraphale was wearing a long dress.

Its texture was soft and it shone in different ways as the light hit it. As the curtains rose, Crowley’s eyes swept along Aziraphale’s body, admiring the way the cloth hugged his round body. The angel had his hands on his hips, and he had a feathered boa (or maybe some kind of jacket?) hanging on his shoulders.

The curtain was finally kind enough to reveal Aziraphale’s face, and Crowley’s breath stopped in his throat. The angel looked utterly satisfied and daring, his smile enlightening the club. His cheeks looked a bit red, like he was a bit embarrassed but still brave enough to stand there with all the force of his being. His hair had been stylized in a subtle way Crowley appreciated, making it look like a cloud or perhaps a halo. He wondered how the angel could be feeling shy after the events of the previous show, as this dress, as beautiful and enticing as it was, wasn’t as half as revealing as what he had wore. He was also wearing the same bowtie; not even when performing he would get separated from his beloved bowties.

He was wearing the lipstick he had used to leave that mark on the poster. It looked fantastic on him - the way his lips moved was hypnotising. Crowley thought of Aziraphale kissing the paper, miracling it to him, making him come there to see him there like this. He was surely about to discorporate.

Aziraphale slowly walked towards the edge of the stage, where a microphone was waiting for him. Crowley wondered why it was there, as Aziraphale’s voice was powerful enough for everyone to hear.

The angel took the microphone, not separating it from its base, his fingers curling around it. Crowley noticed he was wearing gloves. He wanted to use his teeth to snatch them away and see how the angel would react. The intensity of the emotion scared him, and he grabbed his chair to make sure he wouldn’t stand up and just do it. The same had happened the other night - he had achieved to behave, but this time was different, as the angel had invited him on purpose. That made him feel more at edge.

Aziraphale approached the microphone, already in the perfect height for his lips to be nearly touching it. It looked like the microphone wasn’t even on; it was just for show.

Aziraphale’s eyes were partially closed, singing as he was feeling pleasure from every word.

There's no escape
I can't wait
I need a hit
Baby, give me it
You're dangerous
I'm loving it

 

Aziraphale paused, the music wrapping everyone with its sensual pace, and he looked at everyone in the public. Crowley had the feeling he was looking for him, making sure the demon was really there.

He finally found him, and when he did, Aziraphale smiled slowly, his teeth showing in a playful and dangerous way. Of course Crowley had come – the angel had wanted him there.  

Crowley thought of all the times their eyes had been locked on each other that way. It was always an electrifying experience, blue eyes on gold ones, Heaven and Hell colliding to create something new. This time it was not different and Crowley felt drunk of it, obsessed with it, like he was drowning and the angel’s eyes were the first breath of air that could save him.

The music changed slightly, and Aziraphale continued singing in a higher voice. His covered hands went to find the feathered jacket and, without tearing his gaze apart from Crowley’s, he began to slide it off his shoulders. The jacket fell in what looked like in slow motion.

That jacket hadn’t really covered much of Aziraphale’s skin, but the motion of him undressing for Crowley to see had an immediate effect. Crowley whimpered and Aziraphale smiled like he had heard that.

Aziraphale winked and the audience immediately went mad. The angel sure knew how to entertain, tempting and making everyone wish to see more of him.

Aziraphale let go of the microphone and run a hand through his right thigh, partially hugging himself and making the dress lift lightly, showing a bit more of leg. He continued upwards, through his plump hips and then his chest, not stopping his singing.

Oh,
The taste of your lips
I'm on a ride
You're toxic I'm slippin' under
With a taste of a poison paradise

I'm addicted to you
Don't you know that you're toxic?

 

His hand met his lips. Aziraphale opened his mouth and he caught the glove on one of his fingers with his teeth. Then he started to remove the glove, sliding it out of his hands, one finger at a time. Crowley was bewitched, his hand clutching his chair. With a final movement of his head, Aziraphale freed his hand and let the glove fall to the floor, near the jacket.

Stepping on it, Aziraphale walked towards the stairs and descended towards the public, just like the previous show. Crowley hoped he looked presentable and that his appearance didn’t reflect the mess he was inside.

Aziraphale, this time, walked directly to his table. He stood in front of Crowley, painfully close, his uncovered hand on his hips and the other one extended to him as an invitation. He had a malicious look in his eyes, and Crowley took his hand. The contact was enough to send an electric sensation to his entire body, even if he wasn’t directly touching Aziraphale’s skin.

The angel walked back to the stage, pulling Crowley behind him (that was trying very hard not to trip with his own useless limbs). Someone from the stage personnel left a chair waiting for them; Aziraphale proceeded to make Crowley sit down.

Aziraphale leaned on him, resting his uncovered hand on Crowley’s left shoulder. He brought his still unexposed hand to Crowley’s lips, raising one of his eyebrows suggestively. Crowley understood it instantly; he opened his mouth, feeling it dry, and bit into the glove from the angel’s index. Aziraphale was looking at his mouth, satisfaction glowing on his face, his melodic voice filling the room.

It's getting late
To give you up
I took a sip
From my devil's cup
Slowly, it's taking over me

 

Crowley could taste Aziraphale’s smell coming from the glove. His forked tongue experimentally licked it, and he could see from the angel’s smile that he had seen that. Aziraphale slipped his hand out of the glove. Crowley, mesmerized, didn’t let go of it at first, until Aziraphale softly chuckled. He opened his mouth, embarrassed, his tongue going through his teeth, wanting to taste more.

Aziraphale stood up and grabbed his bowtie, attracting Crowley’s attention to his lovely neck. He undid the knot with practised hands and slipped it from his neck in one rapid movement. Aziraphale walked around Crowley. The demon followed him with his eyes, not daring to turn around. He felt Aziraphale’s breath on his neck, like the angel had crouched down behind him. He was wondering what Aziraphale was going to do when the angel grabbed his arms, determined but gentle, and placed them behind him, around the back of his chair. Aziraphale took his wrists and tied them together with his bowtie. Crowley tugged at it, testing the knot, pleased to realize Aziraphale knew what he was doing. He felt thrilled at the idea of being entirely at the mercy of the angel, trusting him with all his soul and knowing Aziraphale knew that.

It was a pity they were in front of an audience, though. Crowley, more than ever, wished they could be alone, having the vision of Aziraphale this seductive just for him, without the excuse of having to tempt some humans.

Aziraphale walked back to being in front of the demon. He felt his blood pulsing through him every time he looked at Crowley and saw how well his plan was going. Aziraphale had been planning on this, Crowley sitting in front of him undone for decades. He had been waiting for an opportunity to make it work, and the convenient assignment from Hell fit his expectations just nicely. It had been worth intentionally losing the coin toss.

The look Crowley had given him during the first show had only fuelled his desire to go on, to push the demon even more. He had been performing for some days, always waiting for the demon to appear. At first he had planned on performing just once for Crowley, not wanting to risk it more than what was necessary, but the experience convinced him to keep on teasing Crowley. Aziraphale disappeared from his demonic radar to raise his desperation a bit for the big finale. He felt really proud of himself, especially with the detail of sending him the poster - he could sense that Crowley had it with him.

I'm addicted to you
Don't you know that you're toxic?
And I love what you do
Don't you know that you're toxic?
Don't you know that you're toxic?

 

Following the pace of the song, Aziraphale turned around and sat down on Crowley’s lap, his back facing him. He heard Crowley groan, and he felt the demon rock his hips slightly, chasing some relief. Aziraphale felt tempted on giving in, but they were in front of an audience. Not yet, he reminded himself. He grabbed Crowley’s leg, making him stop. He looked at him over his shoulder, appreciating Crowley’s flushed face and grinned, hoping the demon could understand that maybe not now but definitely later.

Aziraphale arched his back a bit, showing the zipper of his dress to Crowley. The demon swallowed. He leaned on him and took the zipper in his mouth, helping Aziraphale out of it. Aziraphale stood up and Crowley whined, feeling the loss of his touch. Aziraphale grabbed the dress and threw it to the rest of clothing he had been removing.

Crowley took the sight of him, nearly choking. What Aziraphale had been hiding underneath his dress was some kind of jewel bodysuit, barely covering him. His arms and legs were exposed, and the bodysuit reminded him vaguely of armour. His soft body was covered in jewels, like an angelic treasure. Crowley tugged from the bowtie again, wanting to jump on the angel and kiss him senseless already.

Aziraphale walked towards him, the music still sounding.

Intoxicate me now
With your lovin' now
I think I'm ready now
I think I'm ready now

 

He leaned on Crowley again, his perfume enveloping the demon.

Intoxicate me now
With your lovin' now

Aziraphale was really close - his lips, when they moved, brushed slightly Crowley’s ear.

I'm addicted to you
Don't you know that you're toxic?

 

The song ended; Aziraphale took his chance and licked Crowley’s ear teasingly.

Crowley widened his eyes, surprised, and a deep groan came from his throat. He couldn’t take it anymore. He miracled his hands free and snapped his fingers. The room went black.

 

Crowley’s mind jumped to the hotel room and miracled them both there. It was a struck of luck it wasn’t far away, as his mind wasn’t really focused.

The moment they appeared there, Crowley slammed Aziraphale to the wall, making sure he wasn’t hurting him. His hands were placed on the wall, at Aziraphale’s side. He wasn’t touching him, just trying to catch his breathing.

Aziraphale looked at him, his face completely peaceful, not showing any sign of distress about having a demon trapping him against a wall. They were painfully close, but not close enough; their breaths mingled together.

Crowley didn’t dare to look at him. The room was in semidarkness, light pouring from the windows coming from the streetlights. Crowley didn’t want Aziraphale to see his eyes through the sunglasses, the mess of him.

“Do you really think you could get out of thisss?” Crowley said, trying to find his composure.

He didn’t see it, but he could sense the tiny smile Aziraphale gave him.

Crowley leaned towards the angel, his nose caressing Aziraphale’s neck, his tongue on his skin. Aziraphale gasped, and Crowley felt the angel’s hands on his back, trying to close the space between them. That made Crowley groan, any physical contact Aziraphale gave him making him feel on the verge of losing it.

Aziraphale put his mouth near Crowley’s ear, just like a couple of minutes ago.

“I hope I wouldn’t; I wanted to see you like this”.

Crowley cupped Aziraphale’s face with his hands, finally looking at him; Aziraphale could see that his eyes were full snake behind the sunglasses, but his hands touched Aziraphale like he was a fragile, precious thing. He was shaking a bit, looking excited and undone. Aziraphale lifted his chin, like he was challenging the demon, his eyebrows raised in a suggestive manner.

Crowley took this opportunity to kiss him like he had wanted to for too long. Aziraphale arched his back, his hands suddenly running through red hair. Crowley bit his lower lip and Aziraphale bucked his hips, feeling Crowley’s smile in his mouth at his reaction.

Aziraphale sighed and Crowley stopped kissing him, inspecting Aziraphale’s face, looking for any sign of distress.

“Angel, are you sure about this?”

Aziraphale caressed Crowley’s chin with a tenderness that made Crowley’s heart jump.

“Maybe I wasn’t in the past, but I am here now, with you.”

Aziraphale grabbed Crowley’s shirt and reversed their positions, slamming gently the demon to the wall. Crowley made a surprised noise, not at all scared. Aziraphale looked at him, his turn to be worried.

“Too much?”

Crowley nearly forgot to answer; too distracted by the way the angel was pressing him to the wall, their bodies touching each other.

“Please-” his voice wasn’t obeying him anymore. “-never ssstop.”

Aziraphale kiss him behind his ear, on his jaw and his neck. Crowley grabbed Aziraphale’s shoulders, feeling his delicate skin under his fingers. Aziraphale placed his leg between Crowley’s, slightly touching his growing bulge, making Crowley hiss at the contact. 

“Isn’t it a bit unfair that I’m the one with less clothes on?” said Aziraphale in a velvety voice.

Crowley caressed Aziraphale’s side, marvelling at the sight of him, the skin exposed to his loving touch.

“It wasn’t exactly me that undressed for an audience, but I’m not complaining”.

Aziraphale smacked him lightly on the arm, smiling in spite of him. He ran a finger on the buttons on Crowley’s shirt, tugging it.

“I really want to see you undress for an audience”.

Crowley gulped at Aziraphale’s dark eyes, and tried to recover some dignity.

“Only if the audience is you”, he said with a low voice.

Aziraphale retreated and sat on the bed behind him, instantly taking on his offer. Crowley realized then he had made them appear next the bed, of all the places in the hotel’s room, making his intentions out in the open. He blushed, trying to hide it by starting to undress.

His love for Aziraphale had always been like a wound that never got to heal well. He wore it, exposed to the world and marking his skin. He felt it stretch every time he moved, always painfully aware of its presence, never fully healing. On occasions he would wear it proudly, his love for an angel on his skin. In others it haunted him, his nails scratching the surface of a love that wanted to bleed. But he needed it cured; he needed it to heal, because blood is not what an angel wants to see.

And now he could feel the wound pulsing, blood close to the surface. Angel eyes looking at him while he took his clothes away, while he was coming apart; angel eyes appreciating him, not judging him as filthy. Adoring eyes that set his wound on fire with the flame that laid within them.

His shirt dropped on the floor. He took his sunglasses and sent them flying, tearing a chuckle from Aziraphale. He took the snake belt out and dropped it dramatically. He did everything slowly, letting Aziraphale have time to look at all of him. His fingers went to the button of his trousers, and he moved his hips in what he hoped it was an enticing way and not like an awkward snake.

“My dear, come here”, said Aziraphale, offering his hand.

Crowley sauntered towards him, and Aziraphale placed his hands on his hips. He leaned and unfastened the button with his mouth, kissing the revealed skin.

Crowley was practically shaking, the force of his emotions overwhelming him. He touched Aziraphale’s hair reverently, and the angel looked at him with his shiny eyes, leaning on the touch. He wanted to do so many things to him, make him scream his name, but he had been wishing for so long the force of his wishes’ realization was overwhelming him.

Aziraphale caressed his stomach, gently; one of his hands still on his hips, pressure gently there, supporting him.

“We can slow down, if you want. It’s fine if you feel like this is too much.” Aziraphale chuckled, a bit embarrassed. “It’s a lot for me too, you know”.

Crowley frowned at this, and took Aziraphale’s hand from his stomach kissing it gently. The soft knuckles brushed his nose; how could someone be so soft, all parts of him?

“How could it be? You probably know about what I felt since forever.”

Aziraphale intertwined their fingers and pulled gently, the hand on Crowley’s hips guiding him; Crowley found himself sitting on Aziraphale’s lap. He took his chance and wrapped his hands around his neck, burying his face there. He breathed into Aziraphale’s scent; having him this close made him feel dizzy. He didn’t feel like he could get used to it.

Aziraphale wrapped his arms around him, squeezing a bit, marvelling about this skinny figure that was the focus of all his love. Could really this slim figure accept all of his feelings?

“I honestly wasn’t sure about it. I had so many doubts, and I still do; but not about you, not about us”.

Crowley looked at him, surprised. He wasn’t sure if Aziraphale was meaning what he thought he meant.

Aziraphale saw the doubt in his eyes, so he took his face in his hands and kissed him; gently this time. He felt Crowley’s body relax under his touch, his lips returning the kiss. Aziraphale broke the contact and put his forehead on Crowley’s.

“I love you, my wily old serpent. Don’t ever forget it, don’t ever doubt it.”

He saw Crowley tearing up a bit, his eyes wide. He smiled, his lips shaking a bit. “You have bewitched me, body and soul, is that it?” he said, never losing his sarcasm.

Aziraphale laughed and hugged him, kissed him. “You are impossible sometimes”.

Crowley was laughing too, the sound of his voice reverberating in Aziraphale’s heart. “I love you too.”

Even if he knew it, the fact of hearing it made something in Aziraphale snap. He felt a sort of happiness he thought was being invented just there, in this dark room, in the space between them. A space that needed to be closed.

He grabbed Crowley and pinned him beneath him, on the bed. Crowley pulled Aziraphale towards him with his arms around the angel’s neck, and kissed him again, his tongue slithering between the angels’s parted lips. Crowley let his hands wander on his body. Crowley knew the angel’s shape by heart, from all those years watching him – now he wanted to know his touch with his eyes closed. How delicious it was to feel Aziraphale’s weight on him; but he had other plans.

He tenderly pushed Aziraphale to the bed, and climbed on him. Crowley unfastened all the lace, kissing and licking the skin it revealed. Sometimes he would bite it and Aziraphale would make noises that pushed Crowley to go further.

Crowley opened Aziraphale’s legs and continued his administrations, worshipping his tights. He finally could give them all his attention, tracing them with his fangs, never losing sight of Aziraphale’s face. He wanted the angel to see how much Crowley adored him. His fingers caressed those impossible legs, never getting enough of them.

 He eventually got to Aziraphale’s obvious erection, still under clothing. He licked its length on top of the cloth, making Aziraphale moan. Crowley felt Aziraphale moving his hips, and grabbed his legs, steadying him. He continued moving his tongue, kissing from time to time, knowing well enough it probably wasn’t going to be enough for Aziraphale to come. He wanted to tease him as much as the angel had been teasing him.

Aziraphale grabbed his hair and pulled a bit. Crowley smiled, and decided he couldn’t keep denying his angel of what he wished. He finished removing Aziraphale’s clothes and took him in his mouth. Aziraphale groaned in a way Crowley had never heard, not even when the angel ate his favourites desserts.

Crowley played with his tongue, Aziraphale’s fingers steadily caressing his hair, sometimes pulling it slightly when Crowley did something Aziraphale especially appreciated. Crowley continued sucking and licking, moving his own hips against the mattress, Aziraphale’s fingers and moans driving him crazy. He greatly appreciated not having a gagging reflex.

 He had been looking at Aziraphale’s cock the entire time; Aziraphale pulled his hair again, making his head go backwards but without separating his mouth from Aziraphale’s cock. He saw the angel’s face - thanks to his night vision he could see Aziraphale’s red cheeks, his lips slightly opened, mid moan. When Aziraphale saw Crowley looking at him he bit his lower lip. When Crowley saw it, he immediately came, engulfing all of Aziraphale in his mouth and moaning into it. He felt Aziraphale coming too, and he took it all in.

Crowley let go of Aziraphale’s cock. He looked at Aziraphale, and realized the angel had been looking at him. He climbed towards him and lied at his side, putting his head on Aziraphale’s chest. He could feel Aziraphale breathing hard, and felt proud that he had made Aziraphale feel that way.

Aziraphale was still looking at him. The angel snapped his fingers, making the mess disappear. With the same hand he began caressing Crowley’s back.

“You’re beautiful.” Aziraphale couldn’t help letting out a shaky voice. He couldn’t believe the luck he had.

Crowley raised his head with the intention to kiss him, because the beautiful one was his angel; he was so gorgeous it was nearly painful to look at him, like the sun – all of this was what he wanted to say. The movement of his head made a lock of his hair fall on his eye painfully. Aziraphale laughed and removed it.

“Silly, silly snake. What would you do without me?”

Crowley smirked. “Be a very successful demon, without an angel thwarting me.”

Aziraphale pouted. Crowley kissed the pout, making Aziraphale look pleased. Crowley noted mentally the effectiveness of it – he was definetely going to use that method again in the future.

Crowley snuggled closer to the angel. It felt so good to be near him, his soft body pressing on him, his warmth soaking him. He could smell the angel, his taste still lingering on his tongue. It had been magic, and he couldn’t wait to do it again. He nibbled on Aziraphale’s shoulder without thinking.

Aziraphale sat up on the bed, his back resting on a pillow that hadn’t been there before. He took Crowley and put him on lap effortlessly. The way Aziraphale sometimes showed how strong he actually was made Crowley’s skin burn.

“I think it’s my turn to make you feel good”, said Aziraphale, sending thrills of anticipation down Crowley’s spine.

 Crowley felt his effort take an interest in all that. Aziraphale put his manicured fingers near his mouth, a bastard smile on his face, very much like the way he had looked when making Crowley take off his gloves. Crowley could only but obey and started licking them, his forked tongue covering every inch.

“That’s a dear.”

Crowley blushed at the praise, not stopping his administrations. When Aziraphale’s hand felt wet enough, he licked his lips, relishing on Aziraphale’s taste.

With that hand Aziraphale took both of their cocks and stroked them together. Crowley hissed and leaned on Aziraphale, sinking his nails in his shoulders. His hips moved, thrusting into Aziraphale’s hand. Aziraphale’s hair was tickling him on his cheek.

He could feel Aziraphale’s length against his, the angel’s hand moving, the stickiness of his own saliva and precum eliciting lewd noises. He could also hear Aziraphale moaning near his neck, his hot breath making his hair stand up.

Aziraphale’s hand had a steady rhythm, not wanting to go too fast; he wanted this to last as much as possible, enjoying the way the demon was becoming undone on top of him. He wanted the demon to feel as good as he had felt moments ago, seeing the demon work that lovely mouth and tongue of his.

 With his other hand he made Crowley straighten his back a bit. He wanted to look at his face, at those wonderful golden eyes.

“I love your eyes, have I ever told you that? Such a lovely shade of gold.”

“Ngk”, said Crowley.

Aziraphale looked positively lewd, his cock sliding against Crowley’s, his hair undone, his lipstick all over the place. His chest went up and down, the softness of it pearled with sweat. Crowley knew he would spend the next few millennia dreaming about that image.

Crowley gulped, trying to recover his voice. “You know”, he began saying, “I really liked what you did with your... your....”

His voice got lost, too distracted by the way Aziraphale’s fingers were moving at that instant.

“...my bowtie?” Aziraphale tilted his head in the most innocent manner, contrasting with the way he was using his hand.

Crowley nodded, and Aziraphale arched an eyebrow. He fully knew what Crowley meant, and was relishing in it, knowing what he was doing to Crowley. He snapped his fingers with his free hand. Suddenly, Crowley’s hands were tied together behind his back, his hands grabbing Aziraphale’s legs for support. His back was slightly arched, and Aziraphale leaned to lick one of his nipples.

Crowley’s hips were moving, unable to stop himself. He felt Aziraphale’s hand grab his ass.

Azirphale’s hands, his cock, the way his tongue was playing with him and the feeling of his ridiculous bowtie pressing on his wrist were too much - the overwhelming sensations were bringing him to the edge.

 Aziraphale groaned. Crowley wasn’t going to resist much more, and he could sense Aziraphale feeling a similar way.

“I’m – I’m clossse”, he whimpered.

“Me too.”

Aziraphale put his hand on his back, bringing him close, and licked his earlobe. Crowley came, his legs shaking. Aziraphale followed him not much later, his hand chasing their orgasms.

Crowley collapsed on Aziraphale. Aziraphale snapped his fingers, miracling them cleaned. His breathing was irregular. He hugged Crowley tightly, and kissed his shoulder. They still were kind of sticky, and the room was too hot, and they couldn’t believe the luck they had.

Suddenly, Crowley whispered, breaking the comfortable silence that had settled between them.

“You’re not going to Fall because of this, are you?”

Aziraphale took Crowley’s face between his hands, making the cunning yellow eyes look at him. He had some tears in them, and Aziraphale kissed Crowley between his eyes.

“Never. I did this out of love, and there is nothing God appreciates more than love. And what’s more, if I didn’t Fall in any of the times I indulged in too many sweets, or all the times I tempted for the Arrangement, how could I do it now?”

Crowley slowly nodded. “Yeah, you’ve never been a model angel, but you are good, and that’s what‘s really important.”

“You’re also good, even if you don’t like hearing about it.” Aziraphale smirked, his intentions of provoking Crowley clear as day.

Very good, by those moans of yours earlier”, he flickered his tongue to make his point across.

Aziraphale blushed, wiggling his shoulders, remembering what they had just done. He let himself fall into the pillow, taking the demon with him, who immediately wrapped himself around him in a very snake manner.

Aziraphale felt Crowley’s muscles relax under his touch, and immediately heard him snore softly. He realized Crowley hissed a bit when he slept, and the fact that he could have him there, in his arms, struck him hard - his eyes got a bit wet. He planted a kiss on auburn hair, because he wanted to, because he could. He moved his head to get a bit more comfortable, and his eyes landed on a table in the centre of the room, with a vase with some flowers in them. They looked kind of withered; with a thought, the angel miracled them healthy. He closed his eyes, satisfied.

And, for the first time in millennia, the angel slept.

 

 

                Some years went by, their love feeding their souls day by day. They were always careful of not being openly obvious, in case Heaven or Hell were watching.

Crowley would always be in the bookshop. Aziraphale got quickly used of seeing a snake sleeping on the bookshelves, of having all his vinyl records transforming into Queen’s Greatest Hits ones. Crowley always knew when the angel started to feel peckish even before the angel himself realized it; he would find himself holding hot cocoa and Crowley kissing him on the forehead.

They had all the time in the world; he took great care of knowing all sides of Crowley. He knew now Crowley was not a morning creature and that he took his coffee black, to look cool, but with lots of sugar in it because he could fool no one. Aziraphale now knew Crowley’s neck was sensitive, and loved the noises he made when he licked and bit it. Reading had never been as pleasurable as when he could caress Crowley’s hair while he slept on his lap.

Then Armageddon was put in motion.

 

 

 

Chapter Text

The bliss of being together had blinded them. Waking up in each other’s arms and the gentle pace of everyday life had made them forget where all this lead to: the end of the world. The purpose of them being on Earth had been to lead humans to one side or the other, technically with the War to end all Wars in their minds. They had taken too much joy living on Earth and lost themselves in all of it.

Time was unforgiving. The World had to end, the Apocalypse ticking closer and closer.

There was something that Aziraphale loved about Crowley. Don’t get him wrong, he loved everything about the demon (even if sometimes Aziraphale had to stop himself from smacking Crowley when he joked; God knows how much patience an angel can have), but this side of him was special. Crowley was an optimist - of course he would come up with some ridiculous plan to save the world while they were drunk.

Aziraphale always look forward to getting drunk with Crowley. The absurd conversations they would have were cherished in his mind. He remembered all the times they were just like this, their heads spinning, being familiar with each other with a kind intimacy in the air. Previous to the confession of how they truly felt (Aziraphale still blushed when he thought of that night, even if there have been plenty of other moments like that later on) those drinking sessions gave them the excuse of being too friendly with the other. Aziraphale remembered all the times he would touch Crowley in an apparently absent-minded way – his hand on Crowley’s knee, their legs slightly touching while sitting on Aziraphale’s couch. He remembered how he would always be delighted in the fact that Crowley never, ever, moved away.

Now things weren’t much different. They still liked to flirt while talking about silly things, their eyes lingering on each other for far too long. What had changed was that they now could let themselves go and taste the wine in each other’s lips.

After knowing Armageddon was coming, they had eaten together (Crowley closely looking at him how he munched every bite, a small smile on his face). Aziraphale had let himself be tempted to lunch, returning the temptation later and inviting Crowley to drink at his place, after the demon had stated that he desired “quite extraordinary amounts of alcohol”. Who could blame him, really.

The thing was, Crowley had already proposed to work together and stop Armageddon, showing that optimistic side of his, but Aziraphale wasn’t convinced. He wanted to save the world with all his angelic being; he wanted to have more days at the side of this silly demon. But he was an angel - he couldn’t just ignore the most important heavenly plan like it was nothing.

Oh, how he was tempted to say yes. Aziraphale looked at a drunk Crowley, sputtering nonsense about gorillas and whales, his hands flying everywhere; his heart twinged painfully at the thought that the times they could be like this were numbered.

The conversation about all kinds of animals turned to the topic at hand, and they sobered up, trying to clear their minds. If he was being honest, Aziraphale really didn’t want to talk about it. He wanted to enjoy his time with Crowley, every second of it, as the end was probably inevitable. Still, a part of him wanted to know what Crowley’s plan was. Crowley always did that to him; he made him try to find alternatives to things that seemed unsolvable.

That’s what Crowley was doing, his optimistic view pouring from him like light, his eyes scanning Aziraphale looking for a reaction. Aziraphale felt his heart nearly busting.

What Crowley said wasn’t even that bad of an idea. They could be godfathers, taking care of the Antichrist, making sure the kid stayed neutral. Maybe that way the Earth wouldn’t be destroyed, and that idea had to please Heaven, right? They were the good guys. There was no way that they, when presented with an alternative, still chose to destroy everything.

Right?

It was way easier to let himself go in how Crowley saw the world. He ended up accepting. Influencing people to do good had always being his job, so doing the same with the Antichrist wasn’t disobeying anyone.

But there was something bothering him.

“I think they will be watching us now.”

Crowley licked his lips, still feeling weird from sobering up moments ago. “Who now?”

Aziraphale didn’t look at him. He was fidgeting, his hands playing with the empty glass.

“Our... sides. Now that the Antichrist is here, I guess they’ll have to keep an eye on him.”

Crowley stared at him for a moment, not saying anything.

“We have our own side, angel.”

Aziraphale’s voice broke a bit when he answered. “No, we’re not; we’re still angel and demon.”

Crowley inhaled. He knew Aziraphale still held that opinion about their respective sides; the angel still believed that Heaven could be good and make the right decisions if given the opportunity. He knew he couldn’t convince Aziraphale; the angel needed to find out on his own.

 Crowley got up and knelt down next to Aziraphale. He covered Aziraphale’s hands with his own, circling the glass too, steadying the angel.

“What would you like to do, then?”

Aziraphale felt some tears in his eyes. He felt so dumb, getting emotional now, when just minutes ago they were having a good time. Everything felt like too much – he felt his head spinning, overwhelmed.

Crowley reached to his face and wiped his tears out, caressing his cheek. He waited for the angel to continue, even if he already had a feeling of where this was going, and it was making him feel like crying too.

“I think we should stop this, take a bit of a distance between us.”

It was as Crowley suspected. He nodded, feeling defeated. Crowley removed the glass they had been holding, and took the angel’s hands to his forehead, his eyes closed.

Aziraphale continued talking, trying to explain himself, seeing the sadness in Crowley’s expression.

“I am just too scared of them finding out. Until now they didn’t care much about our Earth business, but now...”

Crowley nodded again, still holding Aziraphale’s hands to his forehead. Feeling the angel’s skin against his own grounded him, but he felt that if he tried to say something, he would just weep.

“... and I know that Heaven can do the right thing. I need to obey them so we can win and at least we wouldn’t have to worry about Hell anymore. I can protect you from Heaven and... and everything we’ll be fine again....”

Aziraphale had tears falling down his face. He hated this. He hated the way Crowley looked now, the way his cold skin felt against his hands, because he knew they wouldn’t be able to be like that in a long time. He didn’t even know when they could go back to how their lives were these past years. Years that had only been a gift, a parenthesis filled with oblivion. They had convinced themselves everything was alright, and now they had to pay the price.

 Crowley opened his eyes, and took Aziraphale’s hands to his lips, while looking at Aziraphale in the eyes.

“I love you, my angel.” His voice was only a whisper against Aziraphale’s hands.

Aziraphale smiled despite everything. “I love you too. I’ll always do.”

Aziraphale gently pulled Crowley towards him, and Crowley let him. They kissed, their lips softly meeting. It tasted of angel’s tears, and Aziraphale felt like painful light was pouring from every crack in his heart. One of his hands found itself tangled in auburn hair, and he deepened the kiss – he always wanted more, always wanting his entire demon.

Crowley quietly moaned against his mouth, feeling the angel’s tongue against his. He tugged at the angel’s bowtie, trying to undo it.

Their time was limited now, so they had better make the most use of it, before things could get worse.

 

                There had been quite some time since Aziraphale tended a garden. He had always been tasked with soldier-like jobs. He existed to be a guardian, a defender and a protector. Taking care of living organisms could apparently be a part of it, but Heaven had always cared more for force than compassionate caring.

So he just used miracles to make sure that the Dowling’s gardens were healthy. Aziraphale miracled different kinds of flowers and plants, wanting it to be as full of colour as possible. He knew a bit about flower language and used that knowledge to declare his love to a certain demon. He couldn’t do it directly now, but he knew Crowley would appreciate it. With gentle hands, touching the ground, he would miracle all the flowers that meant secret and passionate love: gloxinias, maidenhair ferns, red carnations, and pink camellias – their colours showing the bleeding inside his heart.

And that certain demon, when making company to Warlock playing outside, would look at him from a distance. Aziraphale could feel those impossible golden eyes, and he would look at her; black silhouette against pink and red.  Aziraphale wished he knew how to paint, so he could show the world the beauty he saw in Crowley.

 Crowley had always been the one to have a caring side. She had wanted to care for the boy in a more direct way, her sweet spot for kids showing. Aziraphale had accepted it, going for the garden. He knew he would never be as good at his job as Crowley would be, as he knew how to grow plants in the “traditional” way. 

It was torture to go back to admiring Crowley from afar. She had chosen an appearance that was dangerously close to how she looked when she danced burlesque, all those years ago. Her short hair, just below the ears; lipstick following the shape of her lips. The way she walked with high heels; Aziraphale had even heard her sing a lullaby to Warlock, her sweet voice coming from the window.

Aziraphale missed her. He lived for the moments he could steal glances of her. He always found himself thinking of Crowley, even when reading, even in the few times he would try to sleep. His dreams were filled with red hair and sarcastic laughs. Now that he knew what Crowley’s kisses tasted like, food never felt the same way. Oscar Wilde had been wrong; yielding to temptation didn’t set him free – it made of him a willing slave. As a slave to Crowley’s love - that’s how he wanted to live the rest of his existence.

The simplicity of their lives before the Antichrist was born made Aziraphale ache and wish he had been born human, so he would be able to meet Crowley and fall in love with him freely, without caring about sides and the destruction of the world.

At least they could meet from time to time and compare their progress with the kid. Aziraphale fervently counted the days until those meetings, waiting for the moment he would be able to bicker with the demon. It didn’t feel the same way as before; Aziraphale always felt like the eyes of Heaven followed them everywhere, their cold judgement like a shadow in the back of his mind. His days passed, full of yearning, blossoming flowers of desperate love surrounding him - but the moment he had the centre of his desires in front of him, his hands would tug at his waistcoat and his bowtie. Aziraphale’s hands never tried to brush Crowley’s, never tried to stand closer to him than would be advisable. He couldn’t do it.

He had fallen into the pit of fear once again. The angel knew it hurt Crowley, even if the demon knew why it was like that. Aziraphale missed the exhilaration he had felt when he had been brave and put on a revealing outfit and danced.

Aziraphale felt like he was the wound damaging Crowley, and all he wanted to be was the remedy.

 

It was Friday, and they were going to meet in a concert in memory of Freddie Mercury. Crowley was excited; that week had been tough. Warlock was becoming a very rebellious kid – to Crowley’s pride - and he needed a break. His excitement maybe had something to do with the perspective of seeing the angel again, but he was trying very hard to play it cool. He didn’t want Aziraphale to think he was having difficulties adapting to their new life from a distance (even if it was also familiar) because he knew Aziraphale would worry and blame himself. Crowley pining at all hours was an old occurrence so there was nothing to worry about, really.

He had some time before going to the concert. He was wearing his favourite black shirt and tight pants, and he had styled his hair in the way he knew Aziraphale liked.

He missed the angel more than the 6000 years they hadn’t been together. Crowley now knew what it was like, to be in love and have his love reciprocated, and all he wanted was to drown in it forever. He wanted to bring pleasure to Aziraphale in all ways possible and make the angel shine with happiness. The way Aziraphale looked in the mornings, waking up, his hair a mess and a sleepy smile on his face that Crowley would always kiss.

Crowley was now lying on a bed, alone. The bed sheets felt cold. He was ready to go out, but there was still some time until the meeting. He had put some music on, and drank some wine, trying to distract himself; until he collapsed on the bed, defeated.

But four drinks I'm wasted
I can see you dancing, I can lay down next to you
At the foot of my bed
If I drink enough
I can taste your lipstick, I can lay down next to you
But it's all in my head
If I drink enough I swear that I will wake up next to you

Maybe the song choice had been too on point. He rolled over and closed his eyes, the angel filling his mind.

It was always like this. When the time to see Aziraphale again approached, his body would tense in the most delicious of ways, his heart hammering against his chest, his fingers aching. All his body was used to the way Aziraphale’s adapted to his and demanded contact yet again. But Crowley couldn’t do it. He couldn’t reach Aziraphale, couldn’t kiss him and bite his lips to hear him moan. He couldn’t hug him and feel Aziraphale’s plush fingers run through his hair; it didn’t matter how much his body ached for it.

So he had to silence his body himself.

He turned the music off with a thought and slipped a hand inside his pants. He had his eyes closed, as he didn’t want to see the reality of an empty bed. Good thing he had a great imagination, all those years with Aziraphale fuelling it. Now he knew what noises Aziraphale made when he took his cock in his mouth, using his tongue to bring him to the edge. Crowley knew how to move his hips to make Aziraphale cry his name. The taste of his lips was burned into his memory forever, and his fingers were in love with the tract of cloud-like hair.

His hand grabbed his already hard cock and started playing with it, his touch light at first. Because that was the way Aziraphale liked to do it; teasing him, making him practically beg for it, to then give him everything he wanted. That was the thing; Crowley not only knew how Aziraphale reacted when he made love to him - now he also knew how Aziraphale made love to Crowley. It haunted him, he dreamed of it, so he made use of it now. Desperate demon with endless desires.

He continued, his hand moving slowly and painfully, never enough. He moved his hips, trying to chase his own hand, wanting to come already. But no, he couldn’t let himself fall for it; he always wanted to do this right, taking time to imagine Aziraphale beside him perfectly. He could practically see him now, in his mind, lying alongside him with a bastardly smile. His eyes would twinkle maliciously, the air of innocence never truly leaving him. It drove Crowley mad every single time he saw him that way. At least Aziraphale lived in his mind to make love to.

His tongue flickered out of his mouth, trying to smell the angel. He obviously wasn’t there, but Crowley could nearly smell him, feel his weight on the bed.

He remembered something that would add to the experience. He snapped his fingers with his free hand, making a soft shirt appear. It was Aziraphale’s; he had lent it to Crowley some years ago, when Crowley was shivering from cold in his tiny dress. Aziraphale never let him be cold, even when it was technically Crowley’s fault for wearing revealing clothes.

He brought it to his face, the shirt brushing like feathers. He instantly thought of Aziraphale’s wings. Aziraphale’s feathers were softer than his, even if Crowley had more of a habit of grooming them. He was sure it wasn’t because Aziraphale was an angel – he was dead sure it was Aziraphale’s own personality being reflected on his wings, the softer part of him manifesting between Crowley’s fingers. Aziraphale’s wings were always a bit of a mess, so Crowley took the habit of grooming them. He loved to do it, putting his long fingers between the feathers, his nails gently scratching Aziraphale’s skin, eliciting soft moans from him.

Just thinking about it made him even harder, and Crowley took Aziraphale’s shirt in his mouth, biting it. His stroking rhythm sped up, and precum started to come out. Images of Aziraphale danced in his mind, his ears full of sounds that weren’t there. Aziraphale against a bookshelf, Crowley’s hands grabbing his thighs. Aziraphale licking Crowley’s ear, his wonderful hands all over him. The look in his angelic eyes when he took Crowley in his mouth.

Crowley ran his free hand in his own hair, imagining it was Aziraphale pulling it the way he did sometimes. His mouth was full of Aziraphale’s smell and he couldn’t get enough of it. He felt his toes curl when he finally came, his orgasm filling his senses, moaning into the shirt while he ruined it.

He gasped for air, trying to stabilize his body. His hair was sticking to his forehead uncomfortably, so he removed it. He turned around, his back on the bed and his eyes, finally opened, locked on the ceiling. Crowley snapped his fingers and miracled himself clean. He grabbed the shirt again, renovating the miracle that kept it cleaned and permanently smelling of Aziraphale. He was tempted of to put it on and go to the concert like that, just to see Aziraphale’s reaction. But he wouldn’t do it. It would only make the angel sad.

Crowley rearranged his trousers. His hair was a mess now, just like the way he felt inside.

His sheets felt uncomfortable now with the evident absence of an angel. He stood up, sauntering towards the mirror that hung on one of the walls. He looked at himself, and decided to pop open one more of the buttons of his shirt, making his chest more visible. Even if he knew nothing was going to happen between Aziraphale and him, Crowley still wanted to be attractive in Aziraphale’s eyes. He sure loved the way Aziraphale looked at him, so he had to make sure Aziraphale had something to look at. Crowley glared at his hair that knew better than not to tidy itself.

Crowley turned around, looking at himself one more time, and decided he looked good enough. Grabbing his sunglasses on the way, he headed out of the flat he was renting.

He had a date with an angel.

 

 

Aziraphale was feeling nervous. He was standing near the club where the concert was, his hands playing with his coat. He felt out of place, like every time he went to one of these events. Everyone was wearing very modern outfits and strange hairstyles; he could feel some of them staring at his old waistcoat and trousers. He knew he didn’t look like someone that would enjoy bebop, even if that was in fact true.

Aziraphale looked at his pocket watch, fidgeting with the chain. He couldn’t wait for the demon to get there already. He shouldn’t have come so early, though – he knew how other people stared at him in these kinds of places without Crowley at his side. Aziraphale didn’t really mind other people’s opinions but getting stared at so much could make anyone feel uncomfortable.

He heard a familiar voice coming from behind him, making his heart flutter.

“Waiting for me, angel?”

Crowley!”

He turned around with a big smile on his face, not even trying to hide it.

Crowley was finally there, walking towards him, also a bit earlier than their agreed meeting time. He approached the angel, hands in his pockets, his hips moving the usual way Aziraphale never got really used to.

“Oh good Lord”, Aziraphale muttered, unable to help himself.

Crowley had a sense for fashion that constantly evolved through the ages. He always tried to look cool, and Aziraphale loved to see the current fashion on him, how Crowley experimented with it. The demon always saved his best outfits when they went on dates, especially if it involved concerts. Music festivals and concerts were the kind of events Crowley really liked to show off his style (and dance moves).

That night was no different, and as always, it left Aziraphale speechless.

Crowley was wearing really tight pants as usual, but these ones had some kind of shiny fabric that made light bounce on Crowley’s legs when he walked. The effect was hypnotic – Aziraphale couldn’t tear his eyes off them.

When Aziraphale’s eyes finally decided to look at the rest of his outfit, he gasped. Crowley’s shirt was positively sinful. The fabric of the shirt was slightly transparent, enough for his torso to be appreciated depending on his posture and how the light hit it. It was also very tight, so Aziraphale could perfectly see his muscles moving beneath it. It had buttons, but Crowley had decided not to use most of them, leaving a good portion of his neck and chest out in the open. He was also wearing a black leather jacket that probably didn’t do much to warm him.

Aziraphale wondered how Crowley couldn’t be more of a big shot down in Hell, seeing how good he was at tempting others.

Crowley stood there, grinning, while Aziraphale looked at him. He took his hands out of his pockets and, with his arms extended, twirled, full of drama.

“See anything you like?”

Aziraphale blushed, realizing now that he had been very obvious in his staring.

“Oh, you perfectly know I do.”

Crowley laughed, delighted that his outfit elicited the reaction he wanted. Aziraphale finally tore his eyes off him.

“Come on, dear, let’s go inside already.”

Aziraphale walked towards the entrance. It was an outdoor concert, and the weather was perfect for it. There were no clouds so some stars could be appreciated. It was a pity the lights coming from the concert stage hid the majority of them.

They walked towards the zone near the stage, where there was going to be the majority of the public. They always did it that way, seeking where the humans gathered so they could go unnoticed. There was no way that Hell and Heaven agents would get into that multitude just to spy on them. The idea of them going to a concert was unbelievable enough.

Aziraphale hated crowds, though. He loved that he could have time with Crowley, of course, but his ideal date was far from this. Well, theoretically this wasn’t really a date - the main purpose of these meetings was to talk about their progress with the Antichrist. What Aziraphale thought of the meet-ups in his head was his own business.

People were everywhere around them, some of them pushing the pair. They had to stand closely as not to get crushed. Aziraphale was close enough to smell Crowley’s cologne; the familiarity of it made his heart stop for a bit. He missed that smell in his bed every day.  They weren’t close enough as to touch, but the proximity made Aziraphale somewhat excited.

They had gone to concerts together plenty of times before, but this was the first time they attended one since the Antichrist was born, four years ago. Until this point, they had maintained a safe distance between them – a distance they couldn’t have at that moment. They hadn’t been this close in a long time. Aziraphale felt very self-conscious, and the fact that the people around them were still glaring at him didn’t help.

He looked at his own shoes, embarrassed, wishing for the thousandth time that his outfit was more appropriate. He didn’t own any black clothes, though.

Crowley, sensing something was amiss, looked at him, arching his eyebrows. There was a lot of background noise, the public feeling restless waiting for the concert to start. He leaned on Aziraphale’s ear, to make sure the angel heard him.

“What’s wrong, angel?”

Aziraphale felt Crowley’s hot breath on his skin and shivered. He hoped his reaction to Crowley’s closeness had gone unnoticed.

“Oh, it’s nothing, my dear. It’s something very silly, don’t worry about it.” He chuckled, but it sounded fake.

Crowley’s eyebrows went further up, totally unconvinced.

“It’s not nothing if it makes you feel like that. Come on, tell me.”

Crowley’s voice was low and tender. Aziraphale knew that Crowley would never think that something that worried him was silly.

“Well, it’s just that... I’m wearing my old clothes.”

Crowley looked at him, up and down. “Yeah, so?”

“It’s just-” Aziraphale waved his hands around, frustrated. “Everyone is wearing modern clothes, and you look utterly fantastic, but I stand out so much in mine. I hate how people are looking at me.”

Crowley looked around, barely stopping himself from baring his teeth and hissing at the people surrounding them. How dare they fail to see how adorable his angel looked in his clothes? People averted their gaze from his scrutinizing glare. Now that no one was bothering them, Crowley looked at Aziraphale again. The angel was still looking kind of embarrassed and uncomfortable. People’s judgement had really gotten under his skin, and Crowley hated it.

“Come here” he said, with a sudden stroke of inspiration.

Aziraphale looked at him, surprised. They were already standing close, but Crowley’s tone made him forget about his insecurities about their relationship. He took a step closer to the demon.

Now their faces were practically the same level, and their breaths mingled together. Aziraphale’s pulse danced and he hoped Crowley couldn’t feel it from this proximity. Crowley looked at his lips, and Aziraphale wondered if he was about to kiss him, but Crowley raised his hands towards Aziraphale’s collar. He undid his bowtie, slowly and expertly, like the thousand times he had done it before. He took the bowtie and draped it around his own neck, still undone, the tartan pattern clashing with the black of his shirt. Aziraphale loved the sight of Crowley wearing his colours, and bit his lower lip. Crowley’s hands undid one, and then two of Aziraphale’s buttons; the angel could still feel Crowley’s eyes on his lips, even if they were hidden by his sunglasses.

His neck was more exposed, and he felt the air in the small square of chest that was now visible. Crowley’s delicate fingers didn’t touch his skin, careful to maintain their agreement even in that moment.

Crowley took a step back, and Aziraphale sighed at the loss of his proximity. Crowley took a good look at him, and then stepped closer again. He took Aziraphale’s right arm and carefully folded his sleeves to elbow level. He repeated this motion on Aziraphale’s other arm. His forearms were now open to view. It had been a long time since Aziraphale had exposed this much skin in public, even if it wasn’t much. It gave him a more relaxed look that was surely Crowley’s purpose.

“Is this okay?” Crowley asked. Aziraphale nodded. The changes weren’t very big, and even if it was not ideal, it was more appropriate for the occasion. Aziraphale could live with that.

Crowley swallowed. Aziraphale looked debauched, his neck and chest more visible, the folded sleeves showing Aziraphale’s strong arms. He could never get used to Aziraphale’s different states of undress – he had to make an herculean effort to step back and give Aziraphale some space, instead of kissing him and licking the exposed skin.

He decided to pointedly look at the stage for the rest of the night. Four years had gone by with them respecting their agreement and keeping their distance from each other, and now was not the time to go around and break it. It didn’t matter that Crowley was getting hard just by undoing some buttons and folding some sleeves. He had to keep his cool, look in front of him, and just state his experiences with Warlock as normally as he could.

From the corner of his eye he could appreciate that Aziraphale looked a bit more relaxed, his back straight again and a small smile in the corner of those impossibly soft lips. Crowley exhaled, glad to see Aziraphale looking more like himself - even if the state of his clothes was like torture to Crowley now.

Before the temptation to turn around and look at Aziraphale again could become too much, the artists made their entrance and the public cheered.

“Oh thank fucking Someone”, Crowley muttered under his breath.

The music started. The band was surprisingly good. They were not as good as Queen, of course, and Crowley missed Freddy Mercury’s voice and energy. The sound of Don’t Stop Me Now was blasting through the speakers, and people were dancing and singing all around them. Crowley realized that, because of their closeness to the stage, the music coming from the speakers was too loud, so he miracled an invisible bubble surrounding the angel and himself that made the noise more bearable.

“Oh, thank you.”

Aziraphale’s voice nearly made him turn around. He remembered the promise he made to himself just in time, and stopped his head mid-turn. He settled to just shake it, dismissing it.

“Of course, angel.”

He didn’t need to look at the angel to feel him beaming at him.

The concert continued. They informed the other about Warlock and agreed to keep up with their work just as they had been. Crowley thought about asking Aziraphale about the flowers he had seen blossoming all over the garden, but couldn’t. He knew a bit about flower language, as he had come up with it – he knew perfectly well what the angel was trying to tell him. It didn’t make the feeling of wanting to kiss him, blowing up their agreement, any easier.

“Well, people, it’s time to wrap things up. We’re gonna end this with a good, all time favourite!”

At the singer’s words, people started cheering. Love of My Life started playing, everyone singing along to it.

Crowley froze. Not that song, not now – things were already bad between Aziraphale and him. Aziraphale knew that this song meant a lot to him. He glanced at the angel, realizing with a jolt that Aziraphale was looking at him.

Crowley turned around. He had been able to not fully look at the angel until that point. He knew a lot about temptation, after all, and he knew from the start that eventually he was destined to fall back into it.

Aziraphale’s eyes looked sad. His mouth was trying to smile, without success. His hands – soft hands that had touched him in so many ways, always with love – were tugging at his coat. Crowley wanted to take those hands between his, stopping their movement, and calm the angel. He wanted to hug him, take him away from there and from all these loud strangers – away from a sad song that was beginning to settle in his mind. He took a step closer to Aziraphale.

“I – “

Crowley was interrupted by a couple making out and stumbling into him. He tripped (human limbs could be very traitorous) and he fell over Aziraphale. The angel, not missing a beat, took him in his arms breaking the fall. Crowley felt those arms surrounding him, heat coming off Aziraphale’s exposed skin. He blushed and stood up as quickly as his stupid legs let him.

Crowley couldn’t look at Aziraphale in the eyes. He felt embarrassed, and he may or may not miracled the couple to not have a successful night.

“Humans never cease to amaze, don’t they?”

Aziraphale’s voice didn’t sound sad now, not at all – there was even a hint of amusement. Crowley stopped looking at his own feet and managed to upper his eyes to Aziraphale’s face, finding the angel looking at him with an honest smile. He couldn’t help but smile back, happy that his own clumsiness had snapped the angel out of sad thoughts.

Crowley realized then that they were standing very close. He looked behind him and saw that there was no space. Perks of being close to the stage; the density of people was overwhelming, and there was no option but to stand close. He didn’t want to trip again and fall back into Aziraphale’s arms, no matter how much he wanted to.

Love of my life, can't you see?
Bring it back, bring it back (back)
Don't take it away from me
Because you don't know
What it means to me

Crowley was shaking. The fact that they had to stay a distance from each other didn’t mean he couldn’t say what he felt, right? And there were so many people there, so much noise. It was impossible that someone could hear him. He had to try, at least, and damn the consequences.

“Angel, I – “

Apparently, God had other plans for him that night. Someone stumbled against him again, and unfortunately, they were carrying a drink.  They drenched Crowley with something that stunk of beer, ruining his jacket and shirt.

“Fuck!”

“Oh, my dear, are you alright?”

Aziraphale grabbed his jacket, looking at the stain and trying to assess the damage. Crowley couldn’t help but appreciate how cute Aziraphale was when he worried about him, his teeth biting his lower lip and wrinkles around his eyes.

“Dude, I’m so sorry.”

Crowley looked around and saw the author of the heinous crime. He glared at him, making sure his sunglasses slipped on his nose just enough for them to see his eyes, and hissed a bit. The stupid human stepped back, horrified, and disappeared into the crowd. Crowley was fed up with humans.

“Crowley, I think your jacket is ruined. What a pity, it looked lovely on you.”

Crowley turned his head back to the angel. Oh no, not that, not the pout that made Crowley’s heart pound and head spin, making him do nice things. He didn’t understand how some angels thought they needed to actually fight demons when a face like that could make them surrender easily.

He could always miracle the jacket back to its impeccable state, but he didn’t really want to do it in the middle of the crowd. Crowley was tired of all these people, and he wanted to distract the angel so he wouldn’t be sad anymore. They needed to get away from the music for that.

“Let’s get away from here”, Crowley said, grabbing Aziraphale by the rolled-up sleeves.

They walked past the crowds towards the place where all the cars were parked. There were a few people there, drinking and doing other dubious activities. Crowley found his beloved Bentley in a secluded spot and they walked towards it.

“Are you alright?”

Aziraphale’s voice sounded worried. Crowley returned to reality, realizing he was still holding Aziraphale’s sleeve, and released him.

“Yeah, it’s fine, I was just tired of the crowd.”

They were near the Bentley now. Crowley extended his hand, ready to open the passenger’s door for Aziraphale, but the angel’s hand stopped him. Aziraphale had put his hand on Crowley’s extended arm, making the demon’s brain short circuit.

“You’re not going to get into the car with those stains, are you?”

Crowley’s eyebrows went up, and he looked at himself. His shirt was sticking uncomfortably to his torso, and the jacket was in a poor state. He couldn’t really let it stain the Bentley, that was for sure; he didn’t know what he had been thinking. He was about to snap his fingers to miracle them clean, but Aziraphale’s hand stopped him again.

Aziraphale was touching his hand.

It didn’t mean anything, of course – he was just stopping him from snapping his fingers. Crowley knew that. But it was the first time they had touched each other in four years. Crowley shivered at the feeling of Aziraphale’s skin against his. He really was done for, already reduced to a puddle by the tiniest of touches.

“Let me.”

Aziraphale’s voice was low and soft. Crowley couldn’t tear his eyes off him. They were so close to the Bentley, to driving away from the concert and back to their respective lives. But they weren’t there, not just yet.

Aziraphale felt like he was shaking like a flan. His hand had reacted without him thinking about it – Crowley ready to leave and go separate ways was suddenly too much. He didn’t want to go back; he wanted to stay with him as long as possible. Aziraphale knew that it didn’t really matter if Crowley stained the Bentley’s seat, he could always miracle it clean. That wasn’t going to stop him, though, not now that he had already stopped Crowley. Fear was eating his insides, but the damage had already been done – now he only could go along with it.

Aziraphale took Crowley’s jacket in his hands and slowly took it off him. He could feel Crowley’s gaze on him, surprise pouring from him. Aziraphale could smell the beer, but below it was that inherent Crowley’s scent that had been haunting him for millennia.

He put the jacket on the Bentley’s roof. Neither of them was breathing.

 Aziraphale didn’t know what to do next. Miracle the jacket back to a clean state? He hadn’t planned it this far – he knew that a miracle would be too quick and they would have to go home.

Crowley answered his questions for him. Aziraphale felt his long fingers on his face, his breath mingling with his. Aziraphale’s eyes went to Crowley’s lips, thinking he was about to kiss him for the second time that night, but Crowley stayed there, his golden eyes looking at him.

“I love you.”


Crowley’s words shocked him. He was not expecting it, and hearing those words again after such a long time set his heart on fire. Aziraphale couldn’t take it anymore and, Heaven be damned, grabbed Crowley’s shirt to bring him closer, as close as possible, to finally kiss him. He knew his own shirt would get dirty with beer, but he could always make Crowley miracle it clean later.

Crowley returned the kiss without hesitation, his hands going to Aziraphale’s face, cupping it gently, opposed to his hungry lips. Aziraphale couldn’t believe they were kissing, that he had started it. Four years of living in fear just like before, forgetting how it was not to worry about every single thing. He was there, now, kissing Crowley and feeling his body against his own, the taste of a slithered tongue in his own mouth. Aziraphale didn’t know what to do with his own hands – he wanted to run his fingers in reddish hair, caress Crowley’s neck, or maybe slither them under Crowley’s transparent shirt. Maybe he could take it off and lick Crowley’s nipples that had been visible all night.

There was a part of him, that he secretly hated, that was screaming. Armageddon is still in motion, it said, they might be watching – you’re not safe.

Crowley tugged at his lower lip with his teeth, tearing a whimper from Aziraphale.

“Wait, wait,” Aziraphale said despite himself, out of breath.

“What?”

Crowley’s lips were red and shiny; his hair a mess (had Aziraphale done that? He hadn’t even noticed), his shirt hanging crooked from his shoulders. All that Aziraphale wanted was to continue this, and let himself go, just for one night. That was what was truly dangerous; having the option, right there, to forget about everything and let his desires run wild. He couldn’t. It was putting both of their lives at risk, and it wasn’t only about them, but also about leaving the Antichrist alone if anything happened to them.

“We shouldn’t be doing this. They could be watching us.”

Crowley exhaled, trying to calm himself down a little. His fingers followed the shape of Aziraphale’s jaw absentmindedly.

“Well, I left my sound cancelling bubble still on. It could attract all possible attention, all that steady demonic energy concentrated in one point.”

Aziraphale frowned. “You didn’t turn it off?”

Crowley shrugged; a bit embarrassed. “I forgot.”

“But wouldn’t the humans think it strange, that in one spot the sound is less overbearing?”

Crowley smiled at that. Aziraphale, always worried about the tiniest of things.

“Nah. They are all too drunk to notice or care. And honestly, I think the concert is going to last a bit more. All concerts do that, they say it’s the last song so people cheer for them and then they come back to play a few more songs.”

Aziraphale nodded, gulping. His eyes appreciated all of Crowley again. He had a chance now. He could take it and have this one last moment of passion. If they didn’t continue now it would be impossible to do this again. It was in itself risky, but they wouldn’t be able to fool Heaven and Hell with the same method again.

It was now or never, and Aziraphale made his decision.

He slithered his hands under Crowley’s shirt like he had wanted to do. Crowley leaned on him, his breath hot against Aziraphale’s neck when he moaned. Crowley’s torso felt a bit sticky because of the beer, but it didn’t matter. Aziraphale didn’t mind getting his hands a bit dirty when he needed to.

His fingers followed the lines of Crowley’s torso. They had been together for years, and he knew Crowley’s human shape by heart, but he felt he could never get enough of this, of him, of getting to know his body time and again.

He scratched Crowley’s back, without really hurting him, just to tease him a bit. Aziraphale felt Crowley’s teeth scratch his neck in response, and his hips bucked, already wanting more.

Crowley, noticing that, snapped. He slammed Aziraphale to the Bentley, his knee finding its way between Aziraphale’s legs. He could feel Aziraphale already hard against his leg, and Crowley knew Aziraphale could feel the same from him. He ran his hand alongside Aziraphale’s thigh, loving how the angel’s softness felt under his fingers.

Crowley kissed Aziraphale, his teeth slightly brushing Aziraphale’s lips. It was messy, their noses colliding from time to time. Aziraphale had his fingers tangled in Crowley’s hair, never getting enough of feeling its softness, of hearing Crowley’s low groans when he pulled at it a bit. Aziraphale found himself rocking against Crowley’s leg, unable to help it. He felt Crowley’s grin against his skin, and the second after Crowley was also moving against him.

Crowley’s movements made clear that he was of a serpent nature. His hips thrust into Aziraphale, and the angel started moaning louder. He felt the demon grabbing one of his legs and lifting it, while he changed positions. Aziraphale’s cock twitched. Now Aziraphale could feel Crowley’s cock pressing against his own through their trousers. He wished they could have skin-to-skin contact, but they needed to be fast, and there was no way Aziraphale would get undressed in public, even if their little corner was deserted.

Aziraphale tilted his head upwards, looking at Crowley directly.

“You are so good to me, my dear. You always know how to make me feel good.”

Crowley moaned, ending the sound that came from his throat in a hiss. Aziraphale knew how much Crowley loved it when he talked to him like that.

Aziraphale dug his nails in Crowley’s shoulders, feeling the way his muscles worked. Crowley’s movement was driving him to the edge – feeling Crowley chasing his pleasure without restriction, his groans against Aziraphale’s skin, his back pressing into Crowley’s beloved Bentley.

“Aren’t you amazing? Please, just like that, yes...”

Aziraphale moved his own hips, following Crowley’s rhythm, and Crowley flickered his tongue into the shell of his ear, while Crowley’s nails pressed into his lifted leg, taking him apart.

Aziraphale came, moaning Crowley’s name between gasps. Crowley bucked his hips a few more times until he came, shuddering in Aziraphale’s arms, panting.

Crowley put Aziraphale’s leg on the ground gently. Aziraphale looked at Crowley with his softest expression, making Crowley’s hearts burst on sight. He was weak for him and the angel knew it.

“I love you too, my dear.”

Crowley’s expression softened too. He felt Aziraphale’s fingers brush against his forehead, tucking a strand of his hair behind his ear.

“You’re so beautiful. I love seeing you like this; I love how you make me feel. “

Crowley groaned at that. “You better stop it now unless you want a round two.”

Aziraphale flickered his eyelashes at him in the way he knew Crowley couldn’t resist.

“Who said that wasn’t my intention?”

Crowley grinned at that. He couldn’t precisely deny Aziraphale what he wanted.

 

                After enjoying the Bentley’s seats more than the poor car would’ve wanted to see, they returned home to their jobs as godfathers. They parted in silence, each of them going to the place they had been staying.

Crowley didn’t want to go there. He knew what was awaiting him; a cold, lonely bed, without the angel there to keep him warm. He felt tired, and he wanted to sleep, but what he wanted was to sleep with his head on Aziraphale’s lap. No pillow was as comfortable and lovely as Aziraphale’s thigh, and he never woke up as rested. Crowley resigned himself to a lonely night. The idea of going to Aziraphale’s flat and entering through the window was tempting, but he knew it was a bad idea. Better not – they had already been lucky that night, and Crowley’s optimism had a limit.

He opened his entrance door with a snap of his fingers, already undressing himself. With all of that (Crowley smiled devilishly when he remembered what they’ve done) he had completely forgotten about the state of his clothes. He miracled them clean with just a thought and made a mental note of wearing that outfit again in the future, just to see Aziraphale’s flustered face at the memories they would recall.

He passed in front of the mirror in the entrance hall, and something caught his eye. He went back and looked at his reflection. There was something there that hadn’t been when he styled his hair before going out. He touched it with reverence.

He had a flower tangled in his hair, just above his ear. It was a red camellia: you're a Flame in My Heart. Crowley felt his eyes water. Aziraphale, his dumb and sweet angel, basically doing a magic trick and putting one of his flowers in his hair when he tucked it behind his ear. Crowley had been too distracted by Aziraphale’s touch to notice.

Crowley disentangled the flower, and made it spin between his fingers, his heart on fire.

 

                                                                                                                                                                                            

Chapter Text

                Several years went by. The world kept turning even if their relationship had frozen in place. They didn’t risk doing what they did in the parking lot again, respecting the distance as much as they could. It was hard to do so; Crowley always found himself leaning on Aziraphale when the angel was eating, always attentive to his every movement. He itched to touch him, to speak freely to him. He wanted to go back to their life together, and the desire burned in him with every passing day. Even if Crowley was used to keeping his wanting at bay, it didn’t make anything easier.

It felt worse having to watch how Aziraphale was being deceived by Heaven. The angel believed in the rest of his peers with all his soul, and Crowley ached. He knew Aziraphale loved him, but that didn’t mean he wanted to be on their own side, and it was painfully obvious. Every time Aziraphale insisted that Heaven would win, that they would do the right thing and stop the war, Crowley’s mind kept screaming but what about me?

He never tried to say anything.

Crowley knew Aziraphale wouldn’t listen to it. It had been hard to convince Aziraphale to be the Antichrist’s godfather with him, and that was nothing comparing to fully putting Heaven aside.

Crowley knew that the only option was to wait for Heaven to finally betray Aziraphale’s idea of it. He hated that – waiting for the angel to get inevitably hurt. He despised his own futility, his lack of control. He wanted to protect Aziraphale form Heaven, knowing full well what they thought of angels that were different. His desires clashed; he wanted Aziraphale to realize Heaven’s true face, but without him Falling.

He loved Aziraphale endlessly, and he wouldn’t leave him Falling if the moment ever came. He would be there at his side.

 

They entered a shabby looking café, empty handed in their search for some records about the Antichrist. There weren’t much people there, and they didn’t even need to miracle a table free. Crowley took his hands out of his pockets the moment he sat down, shaking them slightly. He felt like he didn’t even know his hands anymore, like he was wearing someone else’s. He still felt the tact of Aziraphale’s jackets between his fingers. His body missed the momentary warmth of Aziraphale’s body against his, pinned on the wall. For one second, Crowley had thought that Aziraphale looked at his lips, with familiar desire in his eyes. It hadn’t been the first time Crowley had pinned Aziraphale against a wall, but never quite like this. He wondered what could have happened if the nun hadn’t chosen to appear at that moment. Would he have fallen to temptation and kissed the angel? Or maybe the angel would have done it?

The table was small, making them sit much closer than they would in a restaurant like the Ritz. Crowley’s knees touched Aziraphale’s underneath the table. It was the slightest of touches, nothing compared to the proximity they had just shared in the hospital, but it still sent a rush of energy all the way up Crowley’s legs. He tried not to think about it, but he didn’t dare move. Crowley hoped the angel wouldn’t move either.

A waiter came by, and Crowley ordered two teas and a cake, anticipating the angel’s desires. Aziraphale dedicated a tiny smile to him, making Crowley’s insides feel all soft like every time the angel smiled at him like that.

When the waiter walked away with their order, Aziraphale leaned on the table, closer to Crowley, making his heart bolt.

“I don’t know where we went wrong. It was a good idea; the hospital, the records…”

Crowley scoffed. “We didn’t keep in mind stupid Hastur with his inclination to burn everything he sees.”

Aziraphale straightened his back. “That’s what you get for trusting demons with an important job, I guess.”

Aziraphale’s movement made their knees knock, making Crowley’s brain short-circuit for a moment. He panicked for a second that felt like a decade, wondering if it was now too late to answer and that the angel would know what was going through his mind – Aziraphale’s body against his, blue eyes fluttering to his lips, the way the angel didn’t stop him from pinning him against the wall… He settled for answering:

“Ngk.”

Fuck.

“What was that, dear?”

Crowley cleared his throat, and crossed his arms on the table, trying to look calm and cool.

“I’m saying, I very much doubt the angels would have done a better job. This required a complex plan to…”

Aziraphale rolled his eyes. “Yes, yes, always with your evil plans. I think you just make everyone’s life more complicated that way. It’s not a surprise evil always finds its end at the hands of true justice.”

It was Crowley’s turn to roll his eyes. He hoped Aziraphale wasn’t going to start another “rocks of iniquity” conversation – he was sure he wouldn’t be able to make a good comeback.

Crowley leaned forward, putting more weight on his arms. He didn’t consider that this movement would make their knees collide yet again. In some kind of reflex, he separated his legs, but instead of breaking the contact, what he did was open Aziraphale’s legs in turn. The angel looked at him with wide eyes, shocked, and Crowley’s reaction wasn’t far from his. He swallowed, waiting for Aziraphale’s reaction.

The angel just wiggled a bit on his seat and closed his legs again, visibly trying not to address the subject. Crowley saw, with satisfaction, that he had thrown Aziraphale off, and that the angel was visibly red in the collar. He took this opportunity and closed his legs too, but this time trapping the angel’s knees between his. It was good to have long legs, for once.

The angel turned even more red. Crowley smirked at him. He had pinned the angel twice that day, in some way, making him feel that maybe the trip had been worth it. Aziraphale looked at him disapprovingly.

The waiter came with their orders and walked away again. Aziraphale took his fork, cut a piece of the cake and put it in his mouth.

Crowley, always a big fan of evil plans, had not considered in his calculations that the angel could chose to take revenge. That’s what the bastard chose to do, deliberately passing his tongue on the fork, slowly taking the piece of cake in. Aziraphale moaned and closed his eyes.

Crowley froze on the spot. Without thinking, he put a bit more pressure on Aziraphale’s knees between his, leaning forward. His gaze was focused on the angel, and his mouth felt dry. He watched as Aziraphale cut another piece of cake and opened his pink mouth, offering a momentary view of his tongue. Crowley wondered if he kissed him at that moment, he could taste its sweetness.

The angel munched and swallowed, his Adam’s apple bobbing and then cut another piece of cake. Aziraphale put the fork in his mouth, surrounding it with his lips. He took the fork out with a pop and moaned again, like the cake was the finest piece of dessert he had ever tasted and was not in fact the commonest of cakes in a greasy spoon café. Crowley noticed with desperation that there was a bit of cream at the side of Aziraphale’s mouth. Crowley’s tongue flickered out of his mouth for a second, before he could take a hold of himself. His desire to lick it and kiss the angel had been too strong. Crowley looked at Aziraphale’s eyes to see if the angel had noticed.

Aziraphale’s eyes were shining with mischief. He had noticed, a smirk forming on his mouth while he munched. Crowley felt a bit annoyed, mostly with himself – had he really not expected the angel to get back at him? Aziraphale knew too much. He knew how Crowley felt when Aziraphale ate like that.

Aziraphale, not tearing his eyes from Crowley’s, used his own tongue to lick the cream lingering on the corner of his mouth. Crowley whined. The demon moved his legs and crossed them, freeing the angel (and hiding something else). He tore his eyes from the angel’s mouth to stare at his plate, determined not to fall for Aziraphale’s tricks again.

Aziraphale continued eating. In a stroke of good will, he used the napkin to clean his mouth.

“You know, we might be able to get another human to find him.”

 

There was a secret Aziraphale had been trying to drown out for years. The thing was that Aziraphale kind of hated Heaven. He loved the idea of it, of course, and he loved his fellow angels because, well, he was also an angel and that was what he was supposed to do – love. That didn’t stop him from hating how Heaven truly was: cold without gentleness and empathy. He knew Heaven was capable of doing good things, sometimes, and that was what made them different from Hell. Aziraphale clung to that, desperately, because if he even partially condemned Heaven, he had nothing else to believe in.

Even acknowledging that, he still felt guilty about all the things he was hiding from Crowley. Years had gone by, and they were now trying to locate the missing Antichrist. He could blame Heaven for a lot of things, but at least they had the decency to do their job well. How could someone lose an entire Antichrist? It was beyond words.

Aziraphale knew where the kid was, now. He couldn’t tell Crowley and that was eating him inside. He knew that, if he told Crowley where the Destroyer of Worlds was currently hiding, the demon would run to the kid to stop him. He couldn’t let that happen; Aziraphale needed to see what Heaven would do first. He hoped they would stop all this nonsense and avoid going to war. He desperately tried to appeal to their good side, the side Aziraphale knew they had to have.

Heaven decided to break his heart.

He realized, in that moment, that he had been a fool. Of course, Heaven would not stop the Antichrist. He had hoped beyond reason, he had distanced himself from the love of his existence, he had lied and betrayed their relationship, for what? For a call to war?

The demon deserved so much better than him. At least, Aziraphale thought, he had managed to scare him away. He had told Crowley he didn’t like him in hopes Crowley would run away to somewhere far, far away. That had been the only good thing Aziraphale had done in years, probably. Now he could go up in flames with the world he had loved, as long as Crowley was safe.

He tried to warn the demon. It was the least thing he had to do; hoping Crowley had not yet gone away , he called him to confess.

His body was accidentally discorporated by the foolish acts of Shadwell and, as always, Heaven claimed him without him wanting them to.

 

 

I love you, and I always will. Never doubt it.”

“There’s no our side, Crowley, not anymore.”

“I don’t even like you.”


Aziraphale’s words had been resonating in his head for a while now. The memories of their time together and the ones from the past few days were mixed together. His heart felt blank. Crowley cared about the world, he really did – but Aziraphale had always been his priority. He knew he probably wasn’t Aziraphale’s. Now he knew for sure.

He felt something die in himself, engulfed in flames.

Heaven had always been in the middle of their relationship, always present like a curse. Always demanding the angel’s loyalty, taking him away from Crowley.

That loyalty had finally separated the two of them for good. Someone had killed Aziraphale.

Tears ran down his dirty face and dirty soul, screams hurting his throat. Heaven and Hell always took the best from him like burglars. They had taken now the only precious thing in his life.

If Aziraphale hadn’t been so caught up in Heaven’s business, maybe this wouldn’t have happened. They could have run away together, lived among the stars. On their own side. Crowley couldn’t blame him, not even then. How could he blame the angel for following his own nature? He was a creature of faith, a being of light that had since long escaped Crowley (the stars were the only remainder left).

Black soul and no will left, he crawled to a bar to drown himself in alcohol. He saw light reflected on the surface of the liquid, reminding him of Aziraphale. He drank, wishing to keep that light inside of him, to feel Aziraphale once again.

Like he had heard his silent prayer, Aziraphale appeared in front of him. Crowley felt that was what humans felt when they saw a miracle. Aziraphale returned to him, somehow, like a promise.

They saved the world together. Well, they didn’t really do much, but the intention was there and that was the important thing.

During all these events, the words Aziraphale had spoken never left Crowley’s mind. Aziraphale was at his side now, yes, but his heart still felt numb. He found himself disassociating from everything, tired of caring so much. It was important to him that the world wasn’t destroyed but he had left something behind him along the way. He just wanted everything to be over so he could just close his eyes and drift away.

Crowley wanted to do so in his angel’s arms. If he was still willing to, at least, and that thought made his numb heart come alive with pain.

He knew Aziraphale loved him. He believed in it, because the angel had told him so. Aziraphale didn’t want to be on his side, though, and Crowley doubted he could fill the emptiness that was now in Aziraphale’s heart, after Heaven’s betrayal.

Heaven and Hell came back to their respective offices, the tail between their legs. Aziraphale and Crowley waited on a bench, a bottle of wine passed back and forth between them. It was red wine, a very cheap one, and its taste was filling Crowley’s mouth in an uncomfortable yet familiar way. Cheap wine felt appropriate now, somehow, and he took big sips every time Aziraphale handed it to him, their fingers brushing.

They took the bus to London. Aziraphale sat at his side, their legs slightly touching. Crowley could feel every inch they had in contact, his heart trembling. He gave it a reprimanding thought – don’t get your hopes up. Let the angel decide, you need to wait for him. At that moment, Aziraphale took his hand and his body froze. Aziraphale’s fingers were cold and a bit sweaty, like he had been extremely stressed. It was unsurprising, taking into account the recent events. Crowley didn’t dare move in case he scared Aziraphale away. He felt the angel curl his fingers around his own, his thumb caressing Crowley’s stupid, shaking hand the way Aziraphale knew he liked. Aziraphale’s words were still torturing him, like a heavenly choir.

Aziraphale continued caressing him, not minding the fact that the demon was completely still, not even moving his own fingers to return the affection. Crowley could see the angel reflected on the window, and he observed him, not daring to look at him directly. It was silly to do so, as Aziraphale wasn’t looking at him either. The angel had his eyes fixed on their linked hands.

“You know, my dear, I have been really stupid. You were right and I didn’t listen to you.”

Crowley hated when Aziraphale undermined himself that way. He wanted to say something, to tell him that even if he agreed that what Aziraphale had done was dumb, he was in fact very clever. Crowley opened his mouth, but Aziraphale continued speaking and Crowley didn’t dare interrupt him.

“I hurt you in the worst of ways. I should have stayed by your side, ditching Heaven for good. How could I believe they would listen to me, that they would choose to not have this war?” Aziraphale let a dry laugh escape his mouth. His eyes were wet, and Crowley was hating every minute of this.

“The only thing I did right today was going to your side as soon as I came back to Earth discorporated. It’s amazing how it’s in the worst moments when your true priorities come to light.”

Aziraphale lifted Crowley’s hands and kissed it, his soft lips only a caress against Crowley’s skin.

“I am so sorry my dear. All the things I told you in the bandstand were to protect you, to drive you away so you could be safe. I’m sorry it took me this long to see that I don’t need to believe in Heaven to be an angel, and that I don’t need them at all. I need you. Sorry I was stranded and lost, and it took me so long to come back to you.”

Crowley was shaking with his whole body now. His heart came alive, at last, all numbness disappearing. The traitorous heaven choir in his mind shut up for good. He slowly turned around, his hand still in the angel’s, and he looked at Aziraphale. The angel was crying quietly, his eyes filled with fear. Crowley realized, in shock, that Aziraphale feared his reaction. It was unbelievable to think that Aziraphale could ever think that Crowley wouldn’t forgive him. He perfectly understood Aziraphale’s reasons even if they made him sad. Now he knew for sure Aziraphale loved him and would always come back to him – that was more than enough for Crowley.

“Angel, it doesn’t matter how long you take to come back to me. I will always wait for you. Don’t ever doubt that.” Crowley’s voice sounded a bit broken, emotion overcoming him.
Aziraphale smiled, his eyes finally twinkling in that way of his. He laughed, relieved, and Crowley returned the smile. He felt like he was home already. His eyes were watery too, but he restrained the tears, because he was a demon and demons didn’t cry. Even if the only other being in his side wouldn’t have cared if he cried or not.

Crowley put his head on Aziraphale’s shoulder, feeling his body finally relax.

“Do you remember a few years ago, all that burlesque business?” said Aziraphale, breaking the gentle silence that had settled between them.

“How could I forget it.” Crowley had a teasing grin on his face. Those memories had fuelled some of his alone time the past few years.

“I miss them. It was so exciting to do all that, and your reactions were amazing. You were quite the sight.”
Crowley blushed. The angel knew perfectly well what his words did to him, the bastard. He tried to gather some dignity.

“I can show you more reactions in my flat, if you want.” Crowley tried to sound seductive, but the emotions he was still feeling after their heart-to-heart conversation made him sound more pleading than he wished.

Aziraphale grinned, all traces of tears long gone. The future was uncertain, but they had just survived the Apocalypse and they were sitting next to each other, holding hands. Aziraphale wanted to be as positive as he could, trying not to think about his poor bookshop, and enjoy these moments with Crowley. He also had a prophecy burning in his pocket – the promise of some sort of solution to their situation.

They got to Crowley’s flat. Aziraphale tried not to criticize Crowley’s choice in decoration too much like he usually did. Crowley opened a bottle of some decent wine, judging by the smell coming of it, and Aziraphale sighed happily. He had not liked the cheap wine they had just shared and wanted to make the lingering taste disappear.

They sat down on Crowley’s sofa (which was miraculously more comfortable than before – either of them addressed it) and drank the whole bottle, their laughs filling the cold flat. Crowley wrapped himself around the angel, seeking warmth, and Aziraphale let him be.

His drunken mind went to recent events. They had suffered so much. Aziraphale was certain that they deserved some peace, to be able to live happily without any worries. He was more than tired of all this drama with Heaven and Hell, and he wanted it to be done with.

His mind drifted; it jumped from one event to the other, eventually leading to what had started their current relationship. Aziraphale thought of the fight he and Crowley had over holy water. It made him sad to remember it, his own fear manipulating everything he did. But it hadn’t been just that manipulating him, right? Heaven’s puritan ideas had controlled every step he took. He had tried so hard to fit in with the rest of angels, never really achieving it. Hell had also influenced his decisions, making him scared that they would do something to Crowley. Aziraphale had really thought Crowley would rather kill himself than be dragged to Hell again.

A thought came to his mind, sobering his mind. Crowley being dragged to Hell. They were surely going to do something to him, now that it was all out in the open. It had to be that – Beelzebub had been so clearly furious at the Apocalypse being stopped. There was no way they would be allowed to live happily ever after. And how would Hell kill Crowley once and for all? The answer was clear as, well, holy water.

He gently shook Crowley, who had drifted to sleep at some point. He was probably dead tired, and Aziraphale felt kind of bad waking him up, but there were more pressing things to take care of.

“Dear, wake up.”


“Hmpfsss?”


“Do you still have the holy water I gave you?”

Crowley blinked at him, still not really awake. “The what now?”

Aziraphale huffed, impatient. “The tartan thermos I gave you. With holy water. Do you still have some of it?”

Crowley looked around him like he was expecting the thermos to just miracle itself into view, his limbs still all around Aziraphale.

“Ah, no, I used it all against Ligur. Will not be missed.”


Aziraphale sighed.

“Why?” asked Crowley.

“I think Hell will come for you, and I wanted you to splash them with holy water before they could do anything to you. Ah, well, we’ll have to find another solution. Can I have my thermos back at least?”

Crowley groaned. He really didn’t want to untangle himself from the angel, but Aziraphale was already standing up. Before he could descend from Aziraphale’s lap, the angel took him in his arms like he weighted nothing. Crowley snapped his mouth shut in an instant, his head spinning. Either Aziraphale was completely unaware of his effect on Crowley, or he knew perfectly well and used it to shut Crowley’s protests up. Crowley wrapped his arms around Aziraphale’s neck, snuggling against it.

“Well, are you going to tell me where it is?” Aziraphale sounded amused.

“Oh, yeah, hm.” Crowley cleared his throat, trying to look as cool as he could while being princess-carried. “It’s on the table in the living room.”


Aziraphale walked towards the room and deposited a protesting Crowley on the ground. The thermos was there as promised, completely empty. Something caught Aziraphale’s eyes. The Mona Lisa sketch had been moved, revealing a safe he had not seen before. He arched an eyebrow at Crowley.

“I couldn’t just have holy water lying around my flat.”

Aziraphale approached the safe and saw the door was slightly opened.

“No, wait -- “

Aziraphale didn’t listen to Crowley and pushed the door completely open, peeking inside. The safe was not empty – there were some familiar objects there.

A poster with his own image, with a lipstick mark on it. A red camelia, somehow still as beautiful as when he had miracled it. A sparkling bowtie Aziraphale had thought he had lost somewhere.

He felt a lump in his throat. Crowley had kept these objects in the manner of precious things, inside this safe. Crowley, keeping these things all those years, like they were treasures.

He turned around to look at Crowley. The demon was completely red, staring at his shoes like they were suddenly very interesting. Aziraphale stood there for a moment, just looking at Crowley, his heart beating. He then rushed to him, took off his glasses, leaving them on the table, and kissed him, trying to convey all the emotions rushing through him.

There was something in kissing Aziraphale that was addictive. Aziraphale’s soft lips touched him like a prayer for which words didn’t exist, his heart healed by his angelic contact. Crowley pressed his body against Aziraphale’s familiar one. He felt like it didn’t matter how many times he touched Aziraphale, he would never really get used to it.

Aziraphale surrounded his hips with his arms, making Crowley arch his body against him. Crowley’s hands were getting lost in short, fluffy hair, and his tongue had found its place inside Aziraphale’s mouth. Crowley moaned, pressing even more against Aziraphale, wanting to feel if Aziraphale was as hard as him. Crowley was delighted to find it was true. He disentangled one of his hands from Aziraphale’s hair, and caressed Aziraphale’s cock through the fabric.

Aziraphale responded immediately by biting Crowley’s lip.

“Be good to me, dear. More.”

Crowley obeyed, and applied more intention to his movement. The teasing lasted two seconds, as Crowley unfastened Aziraphale’s buttons to put his hand inside his trousers. The skin to skin contact made Aziraphale buck his hips – Crowley felt the movement with his whole body, Aziraphale’s cock twitching against his hand. He worshipped Aziraphale’s length until the angel was a moaning mess. He sped up his rhythm until Aziraphale came, his final moan filling the room.

Crowley was about to miracle his hand clean, but Aziraphale took him by the wrist and brought his hand to his mouth. Aziraphale licked it, pink tongue following the shape of Crowley’s thin fingers, making him shudder at the sight. He felt like he could come just by looking at Aziraphale, licking his own come from Crowley’s hands, making sounds of pleasure like he was tasting a dessert. Aziraphale took Crowley’s fingers out of his mouth with a pop and licked his lips. His eyelashes fluttered.

“Shall we take this to the bedroom, my love?”

Crowley swallowed. He was soft for all of Aziraphale’s endearments and the angel knew it. Aziraphale knew way too well how to make Crowley weak at the knees, but Crowley didn’t mind. Not really.

He followed Aziraphale into his own bedroom, his hand in the angel’s. The bed was large enough for the two of them, not that having a small bed would have stopped the angel.

Aziraphale took him again in his arms and landed him on the bed, pinning him. Crowley saw Aziraphale leaning on him from above, strong hands pressing him against the mattress, and felt his cock twitch in response. Aziraphale kissed him on the lips, then his jaw and neck. Crowley wiggled in a serpentine way, trying to get out of Aziraphale’s grip – he wanted to touch the angel too, to love him and make him feel good until he couldn’t move, but Aziraphale didn’t let him.

“Let me return what you did to me that concert night.”

Aziraphale’s voice was low and gentle, a promise Crowley couldn’t deny. Aziraphale’s eyes, that had gone dark with lust, suddenly softened.

“If you want to of course.”

Crowley laughed at this. “I don’t think you could ever do something I wouldn’t want. But thanks for asking. I’ll definitely tell you if I want to stop.”

Aziraphale nodded, and his eyes turned dark again. He started undressing Crowley meticulously, his plump fingers retracing the shape of his body. Oh, how he had missed this. He had loved their little recreation in the parking lot, but he had really wanted to do this, love his demon properly, having all the night to themselves. They needed to trace a plan for what was coming, but they could think about it later. There was a time for everything, and this was theirs.

Aziraphale kissed and licked the skin he was slowly revealing. He loved the way Crowley whimpered and moved against his weight, trying to free himself without really wanting to. He had always loved the way Crowley reacted to Aziraphale’s attention and care, his flustered face and snake eyes looking at him adoringly. The angel always let Crowley spoil him and Aziraphale liked to return his affection.

His mouth followed the lines of Crowley’s torso, fingers tracing lines on Crowley’s waist. He liked the way Crowley’s hips moved when he felt the contact. Aziraphale put his hand on Crowley’s chest, grounding him gently, his other hand still doing circular moves now on Crowley’s hip bone. The skin was delicate and sensitive there, and it made Crowley shudder. Crowley’s hands were grabbing the blanket, trying not to touch Aziraphale, to let Aziraphale do it his way.

Aziraphale playfully tugged at Crowley’s buttons, not really trying to open them. Crowley whimpered, impatient, making Aziraphale chuckle. Oh, the bastard. Crowley made a mental note to get back at him for laughing at his suffering.

Aziraphale licked his belly, just above Crowley’s trousers. The hand on his chest moved and went to play with one of Crowley’s nipples. The licking turned into biting, and Crowley felt his cock twitch again, wanting more, always more.

Finally, Aziraphale undid his trousers. He straightened his back for a better angle and slowly slid them out. They got stuck by Crowley’s feet – they were too tight.

“How on Earth could you even breathe with these on?” said Aziraphale, exasperated, tugging at the trousers.


“It’s not as if you don’t appreciate the views.”

Aziraphale looked at a grinning Crowley. “Well, I suppose you’re right.”

Aziraphale tugged once more, taking the trousers off for good this time. He carefully folded them and was about to stand up and leave them somewhere, when an exasperated cry stopped him. Crowley snapped his fingers and all his remaining clothes disappeared.

“Oh, did you really need to do that? I wanted to be the one undressing you.” Aziraphale pouted.

Crowley rolled his eyes. “Look, angel, I love watching you being fussy, but I have waited too long to have you again. Please.” The last word came out more pleading than Crowley would ever admit – Aziraphale was kind enough not to point it out.

The angel sighed. “I hope you miracled your clothes neatly folded somewhere.”

“Of course, my angel.” Crowley was starting to sound condescending. Aziraphale arched an eyebrow. He couldn’t wait to make the demon swallow his sarcasm.

He needed to ask a question first, though.

“Why do I still have my clothes on?”

Crowley propped himself on his elbow, his grin looking more dangerous.

“Because I love watching you undress.”

Aziraphale rolled his eyes. “So, you don’t have the patience for me to undress you, but you do for watching me strip?”

Crowley said nothing and just wiggled his eyebrows. Good Lord give me patience. Aziraphale did say he wanted to pay back for the stunt on the Bentley, and the look Crowley was giving him was worth waiting a bit to make the demon scream.

Aziraphale undid his bowtie, and slowly slid it out, not diverting his eyes from Crowley’s. Aziraphale took off his jacket. He undid one, then two buttons of his waistcoat, his fingers working methodically. Crowley flickered his tongue between his teeth. Aziraphale removed his waistcoat and started working on his shirt. He could feel Crowley’s impatience grow, his fingers drumming against his chin. Aziraphale carefully unbuttoned it, not wanting to damage the precious buttons, and folded the shirt too, putting it aside. He could go faster, and he knew Crowley knew that too. The angel was kind of enjoying seeing Crowley squirm, full of impatience, yellow eyes staring at his too slowly working fingers. Aziraphale started working on his trousers.

“Okay, enough, please, I get it. I want you now, I’m sorry.” Crowley extended his hands to help him.

Aziraphale smiled, smugly, and snapped his fingers, miracling himself naked and placing his clothes neatly folded on a chair. Crowley sighed, finally seeing his angel without his clothes. He really should know better – when would he learn his schemes always turned on him?

Crowley wrapped his arms around Aziraphale’s neck, pulling him closer for a deep kiss. He moaned, feeling Aziraphale’s skin against his own. The angel’s arms cuddled him, his hands slowly caressing Crowley’s back. Aziraphale’s weight was grounding Crowley against the mattress. Crowley surrounded Aziraphale’s waist with his legs, pulling the angel even closer.

The angel tasted sweet and Crowley couldn’t get enough. He rocked his hips against Aziraphale, feeling the angel’s hardness against him. Aziraphale moaned in his mouth and Crowley felt his soul leave his body.

Aziraphale kissed Crowley’s jaw, then his neck. Crowley felt Aziraphale’s hands making circular movements on his back, then nails scratching all the way to his hips, making him thrust against Aziraphale. Aziraphale moved, and his mouth ended up kissing Crowley’s belly like before, his breath too close to Crowley’s twitching cock. Crowley’s hands grabbed Aziraphale’s hair the moment the angel took him in his mouth.

Maybe Aziraphale couldn’t do weird things with his tongue like Crowley did, but he sure knew how to use it. Aziraphale licked all of Crowley’s length before taking him into his mouth again. His tongue played with the head, and he hollowed his mouth. Crowley arched his back, whimpering. Aziraphale was grabbing his hips, immobilizing him.

Crowley looked at him, and the sight of Aziraphale nearly made him come. He looked positively sinful, red cheeks and batting eyelashes, pretty mouth working on Crowley. He could see his pretty hands grabbing him, making the muscles in his arms more defined below all that delicious softness. Crowley moaned again, and Aziraphale hummed in response, making Crowley buck his hips again.

Aziraphale moved one of his hands and started giving attention to his entrance. Crowley trembled at that.

Aziraphale took his cock out of his mouth, a trace of saliva and precum on his lips. “Everything okay?”

His voice sounded rough. Crowley made a noise, then cleared his throat. “Yeah, more than okay.”

Aziraphale smiled and took him again in his mouth. His finger continued caressing his entrance, not really doing more than that; Aziraphale had always been a tease.

“P-please…”

Aziraphale grinned around his cock. He miracled some lube on his fingers and finally one entered. Crowley made a noise he would have been ashamed of in other circumstances. Aziraphale carefully moved the finger, stretching the area and miracling some more lube.

Aziraphale slid the second finger in without warning. Crowley released Aziraphale’s hair to grab the blankets with force. He could feel Aziraphale’s impatience, but also his love and care. He thrust his hips again. Aziraphale decided to take his cock out of his mouth at that moment, making Crowley whine for the loss.

Aziraphale moved his fingers in and out. He was looking at Crowley like he was a piece of cake and he hadn’t eaten in a long time, and in some way, it was just like that. Crowley hissed and moved chasing Aziraphale’s fingers.

“I want you… I want to make you feel good too...” Crowley begged.

Aziraphale’s eyes shone. “You always take good care of me. You’re too good and lovely, my demon, my heart.”

Aziraphale took his own cock in his free hand and stroked it using lube. He put the head in Crowley’s entrance and pushed, making Crowley gasp. Aziraphale continued pushing, gently, taking the time for Crowley to get used to it. Crowley arched his back, taking all of it in. He felt the angel pulse inside of him, and he began rocking slightly, wanting to feel more.

Aziraphale bent over him, his hands at each side of Crowley, leaning on the bed. He started moving, thrusting into him. Aziraphale could see Crowley underneath him, his head thrown a bit backwards, showing his throat. His red hair was sticking to his forehead, and his eyes were full of love, making Aziraphale’s heart drum. He quickened his pace, wanting to hear more of Crowley’s voice, make him dig his nails even more in his back – to feel Crowley in every way, connected to him. He could feel Crowley’s cock hard and leaking precum against his stomach.

Crowley’s hands caressed his back, grabbed his butt. He slid his hands upwards again, digging his hands in all the soft spots, moaning all the way. Aziraphale had always loved the way Crowley took care of him – gentle hands grabbing and worshipping, mouth discovering all the places that needed attention.

Crowley wrapped his arms against Aziraphale’s neck and pushed him to the side with sudden force. Aziraphale gasped in surprise, and let Crowley move him. The angel found himself lying on his back this time, Crowley slithering on top of him, taking him in again. The demon began riding him, his impossible hips moving with a rapid rhythm that made the angel moan.

Crowley had lost his patience, his desire to pleasure the angel overcoming him. Aziraphale grabbed Crowley’s hips, his movements following Crowley’s. 

Crowley’s cock was bobbing between them, unattended, so Aziraphale took it in one of his hands, making Crowley clench all around him. Crowley slowed the pace a bit, making circular motions with his hips, while Aziraphale stroked him. The sound of skin against skin was filling the room, making Aziraphale twitch at the realization of it. Crowley quickened again.

“I love to see you this way, moving on top of me.” Aziraphale breathed.

Crowley groaned. He was feeling very sensitive - Aziraphale’s tongue earlier had nearly made him come. Being able to fuck Aziraphale like this, hear him praise him between moans was driving him near the edge. Aziraphale wasn’t far off either - he felt Aziraphale’s cock pulse inside of him.

Aziraphale admired Crowley’s body, the way it moved on top of him, his hands on his chest to steady himself. His beloved and gorgeous demon, making him feel good, clenching around him. He felt Crowley spilling in his hands, a deep voice coming from his throat. Aziraphale saw the mess he was, the orgasm making his legs shake. This vision was enough to reach his own orgasm, his toes curling.

Crowley collapsed on top of him. Aziraphale hugged him, slowly caressing Crowley’s back in a soothing way. He kissed the demon’s forehead. Crowley moved to his side, pulling Aziraphale out of him, and miracled them both cleaned.  Aziraphale’s arms were still around him, and Crowley happily rested his head on his chest.

Crowley was starting to doze off. Aziraphale wanted to focus on this happy feeling, on the relaxed demon against his body, finally together again. But he couldn’t. Now Aziraphale had his mind cleared he kept thinking of the danger lurking around them. He had left the final prophecy in his pocket, with the rest of the clothes on his chair. They should think of a plan, of a way to come out of everything alive.

He closed his eyes and sighed. The night hadn’t ended yet. Aziraphale had been feeling that they had all night to themselves, and it wasn’t entirely just a hunch – Heaven and Hell needed some time to calm down their troops after the failed Apocalypse. The angel considered this – maybe they could relax for a bit and think about it later. Maybe with a cup of tea. He was very tired – tired of this Armageddon business, being scared of their own lives, worrying if this moment together was going to be their last one.

“My dear?”

“Hrmmmf?”

Aziraphale nearly felt bad for interrupting Crowley’s starting nap again, just like before on the couch. Nearly.

“It’s been a long time since either of us danced.”
Crowley rested his chin on Aziraphale’s soft chest to look at him directly in the face. “What do you mean by that?”
“Well, I thought that, maybe, we could dance for a bit. We just saw the world nearly being destroyed and, well…”
“Lovely thought, angel, but even though I’m a demon and I could go for several rounds, I do feel a bit tired.”

Aziraphale blushed. “Oh no, I don’t mean that type of dance. I meant a slow dance, if you wanted to.”

Crowley looked at the fidgeting angel, arching one eyebrow. Aziraphale felt a bit nervous, thinking that maybe it would have been best to let the demon rest. Crowley had an inscrutable expression that made Aziraphale remember that he really valued his sleep. He was about to dismiss the idea when Crowley finally answered.

“Okay then. But only if I choose the song.”

Aziraphale smiled, making his dimples appear. Crowley hoped the angel wouldn’t insist on choosing the song himself looking like that, because he wouldn’t resist it.

They got up. Aziraphale miracled them both in cozy pajamas. Aziraphale miracled himself a tartan one, surprising no one, but was kind enough to miracle a black one for Crowley. Until, upon further inspection, Crowley realized it had a darker tartan pattern on top of the black. He frowned and glared at Aziraphale accusingly.

“Tartan is stylish”, Aziraphale defended.

His tone wasn’t open for discussion and Crowley decided not to push it. He could take it for once, as at least it was black and no one else would see him wearing it. He snapped his fingers, miracling the song to play. It came from nowhere and everywhere at the same time, as if the walls themselves were speakers.

Crowley put a hand on Aziraphale’s waist, his other hand taking Aziraphale’s. The angel put his free hand on Crowley’s shoulder.

Love me tender, love me sweet
Never let me go
You have made my life complete
And I love you so

Aziraphale looked at Crowley, surprised. He had expected some kind of bebop, not a song this soft. Crowley had a tiny smile on his lips, his eyes sweet. Aziraphale felt his heart grow a bit bigger, his love for this silly demon filling it.

They swayed to the slow pace of the song, relishing each other’s presence. Aziraphale closed his eyes and rested his forehead against Crowley’s, turning his head a bit, their cheeks touching too, short hair tickling against his skin.

Love me tender, love me long
Take me to your heart
For it's there that I belong
And will never part

Aziraphale felt his eyes fill with tears, his own happiness surrounding him. He loved Crowley and always would. He wanted to live all of eternity with him, experience all the world’s wonders with his hand in his. He had so many hopes for a future where they could dance as many times as they wanted to all the soft songs and bebop in history. He felt frustrated. Why couldn’t they be left alone to live this love together? He now knew he had to take things in his own hands, make a difference.

He moved slowly, taking Crowley’s face in his hands. Crowley leaned his head on Aziraphale’s touch, his eyes filled with love. Aziraphale kissed him tenderly.

Love me tender, love me dear
Tell me you are mine
I'll be yours through all the years
Till the end of time

The end of time could be that very night, for them. This could be their last dance. Aziraphale was happy either way, because he had Crowley there, with him, and that was enough.

His fighting intentions were for Crowley. To protect him and the love he had showed Aziraphale. The angel knew that the greatest form of love he had experienced was Crowley’s, and he would give his life for him. The very thought of Crowley getting hurt for the crime of falling in love was unfathomable.

The song ended, and they stood there, embracing each other. Aziraphale hugged Crowley, resting his head in the crook of Crowley’s neck, not wanting to part just yet and let this moment be finished. The lyrics of the song were turning around in his head. Take me to your heart, for it's there that I belong, and will never part... Tell me you are mine I'll be yours through all the years…

ye must choofe your faces wisely…

Aziraphale gasped. Maybe that was it – they had to never part, take each other into the heart, or in this case, into the other’s body. Literally.

He explained his plan to Crowley.

“See? You are so clever, I told you so.”

Aziraphale giggled. This wasn’t going to be their last dance; he was now sure.

 

 

They were dining at the Ritz. Aziraphale was talking, his eyes bright and his hands moving everywhere, excitedly explaining something to Crowley about a book or another. Crowley was hypnotized, looking at him. Gratitude was turning around in his veins. They had survived, unscathed, Aziraphale’s plan working perfectly. The angel had even got a bit feral asking for a duck. Crowley suppressed a laugh at the thought, not wanting to startle the angel.

They had left the garden. The future was now theirs to decide.

Crowley took Aziraphale’s hand because he just could. He wanted to feel his fingers in his hand, and slowly caress the back of his hand, so he did. In public, in broad daylight. Aziraphale gave him a soft smile and continued his explanation. Crowley was only too happy to listen.

Their food came. Aziraphale wiggled with excitement, and after squeezing his hand one last time, he let it go to focus on his food.

Aziraphale tasted the first bite of his duck, moaning appreciatively. The food was excellent; a ballotine of duck liver served with a port jelly, damson gel and a garnish of wood sorrel. On the side was pistachio cake as well as toasted brioche. Crowley leaned towards the angel, not caring much about his own serving; he much preferred to watch Aziraphale.

Aziraphale made a noise, like an exclamation, and swallowed. Crowley looked at him inquisitively, wondering what had just gone through Aziraphale’s mind.

“I almost forgot!”

“What, angel?” Crowley looked around, expecting to see some danger going towards them.

Then the angel grinned. “I have a bit of a surprise for you.”

His voice was velvety, the type of voice that sent shivers through Crowley’s spine. The demon straightened his back at that.

“Oh, yeah?”

Aziraphale nodded. “And I think you’ll like it very much. It involves some new lingerie and some dancing.”

Crowley widened his eyes, shocked to hear the angel say such things calmly while eating in public. He refrained the desire to take Aziraphale away from there, damned be the duck and the potential desserts (and Aziraphale making lewd sounds while eating).

“I think you’re going to greatly enjoy it. I have to confess, though, that my favourite dance of all is definitely the horizontal one.”

Crowley groaned, raising his hands exasperatedly. Aziraphale continued eating like it was nothing.

“How can you say that! Please don’t…” Aziraphale looked at him sideways, smugly. “It was such a bad joke… please don’t say that ever again! And in public…”

Crowley continued like this for a bit. He was bad at hiding he was, in fact, very embarrassed. Aziraphale continued to enjoy his food, but not as much as he enjoyed the spectacle that flustered Crowley was. Little did the demon know he was in for many more flustered moments.