Work Header


Chapter Text

For a long moment afterwards, Crowley just lay there, staring up at the sun through the branches, listening to Aziraphale snuffle gently into the crook of his neck. His angel was curled up alongside him, one arm and one wing flung across Crowley's abdomen, one hand idly playing with his feathers. It tickled, a little, just a faint tingle. It'd probably be more, but after the thorough combing they'd just gone through, he doubted he'd be feeling much of anything in his wings for another hour or so yet.

Which was probably a good thing, because he had a feeling Aziraphale was going to go for the roots, once he opened his mouth. But he had to say something, or the angel was going to be really surprised when his brothers smited Crowley into the stone age once they went back inside.

"Angel?" he asked, hesitantly. Aziraphale murmured happily at him, nibbling absently at the underside of Crowley's jaw. The demon shivered fluidly, curled an arm around his angel's head to pull it back gently. "Ssstop that! Angel!" He giggled, which was not a very demonic thing to be doing, but he defied anyone to avoid it when you had an angel licking your ear and making little happy huffing sounds. "Ang ... Aziraphale! Sstop!"

Aziraphale desisted. Reluctantly. Bloody hell, if he'd known when he proposed this little addendum to the Arrangement that the angel would be so bloody physical about it, he'd ... have jumped in his bed all the faster, probably, but right now he needed his brains to be north of the border, thanks. Still, though. He made a note of the ear-licking for later.

"What is it, dearest?" Aziraphale sighed, propping himself up a little so he could look Crowley in the eyes. His face was flushed, and glowing ever so faintly, whether from happiness, or exertion, or a bit of angelic glory, or some combination of the three, Crowley didn't particularly care which. He just wanted to get a proper eyeful of the expression before it slipped into righteous wrath, like it was going to in about two seconds.

"Um. You know when I said, it's a nice morning to be sitting under the apple tree?" he started, slowly and cautiously.

Aziraphale narrowed his eyes. "Ye-es?"

Crowley swallowed. "And you know which room we put them in last night? You know, the one on this side of the house with the big bay windows?"

Aziraphale's face went very still. "Yes?" he said, flatly and dangerously. Crowley picked up the pace a bit in response. He wasn't going to say 'babbled'. Not even to himself.

"And you know how oblivious they've all been, and how sad they obviously are, and how frankly ridiculous it's been getting, and how if the little guy shoots one more longing look at that knuckle-headed human I'm going to have to do something drastic, and how the lot of them really, really need to get laid ...?"

"Crowley," Aziraphale interrupted, very sweetly. "What are you trying to say to me, dearest? In simple terms, and at a speed of less than twenty words a second, if at all possible."

Crowley gulped, and preemptively winched his wings a little higher along the ground, just a little further away from potentially grabby hands. "I may have ..." he started, nervously, and then decided to just bite the metaphorical bullet, already, and get it over with. "I may have put a couple of wards in the room to warn me when they woke up. And I may have put some slight attraction spells on the window. Just, you know, to hint a bit. And I may have ... lured-you-out-here-so-we-could-maybe-give-them-a-little-hands-on-demonstration ... Um. Don't kill me?"

Aziraphale stared at him, blue eyes dark and depthless and staring right through Crowley's skull at a point about an inch above the demon's left eye. "You may have ... tricked them into watching us, you mean. And tricked me into giving them something to watch. Is that ... what you're saying, dearest?"

Maybe Castiel and Gabriel wouldn't have to smite him back to the stone age. Maybe Aziraphale would just do it himself, and save them the trouble.

"Um. Yes?" he squeaked, trying to maybe surreptitiously edge away from the angel, but one plump arm wrapping around his ribs like banded steel put a quick stop to that. "I mean, it was all for their own good, angel, and I know you've been wanting to help them along as much as I have, and I thought, maybe just a little display, it couldn't hurt, but then you were all ... and you did that thing with my primaries, and that little curly thing you do with those three fingers, and I got all distracted and caught up, and ... and I could hardly be expected to not play along, not when you were doing that, and, um ... They might, possibly, have been watching us for the past half hour. While we. Um. While you. Ah."

He stopped. There just didn't seem to be much point in continuing. Aziraphale was perfectly aware of exactly what their little audience had been watching them do. He'd been there. He'd been very, very, very much there. And now he was very, very much here, leaning over Crowley, all wings and coiled power and slow wrath and bright blue eyes and ... dammit, Crowley was really going to have to have a word with this body about appropriate responses to threats of an angelic nature, because really! He could have sworn he was too used up for that, anyway ...

"Crowley?" Aziraphale said at last, a little distantly, his eyes still fixed somewhere around Crowley's hairline. The demon gulped a little bit.

"Yes?" he warbled, resisting the urge to reach up and fist his hands around his angel's back, just below the wing joints, resisted the urge to wrap himself around Aziraphale and just hold on until the angel calmed down. He resisted, because he did have some demonic pride, thank you very much.

"You're telling me," the angel went on, voice soft and contemplative, "that you tempted me into one of the best mornings of my life, tempted me into a morning of light and joy and sunshine and love ..."

"Er," Crowley attempted to interrupt, here, because hold the phone, he didn't remember tempting anything of the sort ...

"... All for the purpose of tempting four lonely, wounded souls into finding some little joy and fulfillment in a dark time ..."

"Um, angel, I don't think that's exactly what I said ..."

"... So that they could be happy, even just for a little while, in a place where they could be safe and we could watch over them. Because you didn't want them to be sad anymore. Because you wanted to show them what love and trust could be like, even between people who should be enemies."

Crowley blinked. A lot. "Um," he said, cautiously. "Actually, I was mostly thinking we should show them some of the practical stuff, because they're obviously either a bunch of virgins, or just plain stupid about each other. And, you know, have a bit of fun in the process. You know. With the outdoor sex, and all. Um."

He stopped, because his angel was smiling at him. No. His angel was beaming at him, rich and warm and proud, and curling one soft hand around his cheek, and shaking his head in loving exasperation. Which Crowley didn't understand in the slightest, but it was a very good look on the angel, so he didn't much care.

"Angel?" he asked, very softly. Aziraphale just smiled, and leaned in to press a soft kiss to his lips, just a gentle thing, more a promise than an action, a little lingering touch against him.

"Crowley, dearest, I do love you. You know that, don't you?"

"Um," he said, because his chest had tightened suddenly, and yes, absolutely, he needed to have such a long talk with this body, he needed to tell it a lot of things that it could panic about, and do things about, and there were some that ... "Yes," he whispered, very softly. "Yes, I do. You're mad, you know that? Crazy. Insane, even. You do know that?"

Aziraphale laughed lightly, nuzzling his cheek a bit. "Absolutely. We both are. But it's worth it, don't you think?"

Crowley thought about it, for a second. He thought about Castiel, who was quietly and sadly waiting, and had been for Someone knew how long. He thought about Gabriel, who in the thousand years he'd known the guy had never once lain down with someone who gave a shit about him. He thought about Heaven and Hell, and the fact that the lot of them would probably be much friendlier and less inclined to fight if the bastards could get bloody laid once in a while.

He thought about humanity, and wars and famines and death and apocalypses, and the fact that never, in all the years he'd been knocking around this dirtball, never had he ever seen a battlefield or warzone that didn't have some desperate people somewhere on it, sharing stuttering laughs and strong drinks, and clinging to some little warmth in all the pain, clinging to some little light in all the darkness. And never, in all that time, had a single one of them ever seemed more bright, more luminous, or more beautiful than they did in those battered moments.

He thought about that, and he thought about sunshine, and mutual temptations, and apple trees, and bright blue eyes, and knowing smiles, and an enemy who knew you well enough to trust you, to open wings beneath your fingers, to touch you and hold you and keep you from harm. He thought about arrangements and lust and maybe a little love, just a little, a terrible indulgence, he knew. And he thought about the poor saps upstairs watching, and what they could have, what they could know, if they just got their heads out of their asses and did something about it.

He thought about that, about all of that, and looked up at his angel, at his Aziraphale, smiling down at him from a web of sky and wing and branch and apple, and then he smiled, a slow, wicked curl of lips, a dark gleam of golden eyes, and nodded.

"Yes," he said, soft and laughing. "Oh, yes, angel. I think it's worth it." He grinned, leaning up to kiss the tip of his angel's nose, to slide along his cheek to nibble at his jaw, tease his ear. "Oh yes. So very worth it ..."

"Then, my dear," Aziraphale murmured, voice a little rough around the edges. "Then I think we are in perfect agreement." A soft little laugh. "And I won't smite you for your little trick, dearest. Since it was only with the best of intentions, after all."

Crowley laughed, reaching up to tug his angel down, to roll them over and bite his ear, to worry clever fingers into the downy feathers at the base of angelic wings and tease. "Oh angel," he grinned. "Don't you remember where good intentions lead?"

"Oh yes," Aziraphale sighed, wings arching beautifully, eyes shuttering over a smile. "Straight to Heaven, wasn't it?"

"Close enough," Crowley allowed, leaning in. "Close enough, angel."