Actions

Work Header

Worthy and Forgiven

Chapter Text

Lucifer is being weird.

Well, Dan thinks uncharitably as he leans back and inhales his second cup of much needed coffee of the day, more weird than usual.

Lucifer Morningstar has always been weird. Nightclub owner, part-time crime-fighting hobbyist, and bane of Dan’s life, Lucifer has always carelessly tread the very thin line between unpleasant necessity and aggravating loose cannon. Rude, selfish, unreliable and unpredictable, he has the truly terrifying habit of dragging Chloe head first into danger. She had literally been shot the day after she'd met him, for Chrissakes, and all because he had distracted her while she was on the job.

However, Dan considers grimly, he had also then gone and likely saved her life and helped protect Trixie from that rat bastard Malcolm, so Dan has grudgingly come to accept that Chloe is stuck with Lucifer for the foreseeable future, which means that - by extension - Dan is stuck with him too.

Which would be a hell of a lot easier if Dan understood him in the slightest.

The guy has always seemed to take an unholy glee at poking at Dan's buttons, with his oh-so-fantastic ‘nickname’ of douche, and those smug, superior looks he'd slide at Dan whenever he thought Chloe wasn't looking - though admittedly, those had petered off after Dan had turned himself in for stealing evidence for Malcolm. Dan had even thought that maybe they might even be able to work together like responsible adults.

But if Lucifer was weird normally, he'd become downright bizarre over the last month. Turning up half-dressed and at least half-drunk to a crime scene, barging in and making a suspect cry, punching Dan, and then walking in front of a sniper and trying to get shot. Something was clearly wrong with him.

And then there were those horrible scars on Lucifer’s back. What the hell were those? Dan had accidentally caught sight of them in the bathhouse and that flash of webbed, ruined skin had stayed with him. Had someone done that to him? Dan may not like the guy, but seriously. That looked messed up.

That was Lucifer Morningstar in a nutshell. Weird, annoying, and - occasionally - concerning.

Which brings Dan to now. Stuck in a car with Lucifer Morningstar contemplating how his life had become this.

Chapter Text

The day had started normally enough. Dan had caught a new case, the homicide of mid-level drug dealer, Jacob Anderson. It was his first major solo case since his demotion and Dan was looking forward to his life finally regaining some form of normalcy. He'd been prepping for a stakeout at an abandoned church rumoured to be the main suspect’s - one Cain Smythe, rival drug-dealer and dirtbag extraordinaire - base of operations, when who should arrive but Chloe and Lucifer, clearly mid-argument.

‘-no, Lucifer, I swear if you think I'm ever letting you come with me after the last time-’

‘Detective, you can't be serious! It was one time!’

‘Yes, Lucifer, one time too many! Far too many. I'm lucky they're letting me anywhere near another narcotics seminar after what you pulled at that last one.’

‘Oh, come now, don't exaggerate, Detective! It was just one bag of cocaine! One measly bag! Hardly worth getting yourself into a tizzy over. It wasn't even particularly good coc-’

Chloe grits her teeth. ‘Yeah. I wouldn’t finish that sentence, Lucifer. Not in the middle of a police station.’ She snorts. ‘I still don't even know how you squirmed your way out of trouble. Detective Michaels looked furious.’

‘Oh yes, dreadful man, terrible name. Luckily he was more than amenable to a little bit of fun on the side.’ Lucifer chuckles, low and filthy. ‘You know, he had this lovely little trick he did with his-’

Chloe throws up her hands. ‘I don't even want to know, Lucifer. God, I have to work with the man!’

Lucifer sniffs. ‘Well, I don't. And I don’t know what you're complaining about. After what I did to him I'm sure he'll be more than happy to work with either one of us if you so wish it.’

Chloe gives disgusted snort. ‘Yeah, I'll bet.’ She crosses her arms. ‘But you're not coming with me this time, Lucifer. I mean it. And that means no following me, no phone calls, no contacting me at all for the next six and a half hours. Promise me.’

‘Detective -’

‘Lucifer.’

Lucifer sighs dramatically and concedes with poor grace. ‘Fine, fine, I promise. Cross my heart hope to - well, you know.’

Chloe nods briskly. ‘Good. Thank you.’

Lucifer huffs. ‘Well, what I'm supposed to do, then? Just sit here like a good little boy until you deign to come back? I don't think so.’

Chloe frowns, then her sharp eyes travel to Dan - a previously unnoticed and deeply unwilling spectator to this conversation - who suddenly experiences a profound sinking feeling.

Chloe nods decisively.

‘You'll be with Dan for the day.’

‘What?’

‘Oh, hell no.’

It's hard to see whether it is Dan or Lucifer who looks less happy about this plan.

Chloe smiles wryly. ‘What? You like working with Dan. You couldn't seem to get enough of him last month.’

Lucifer grimaces. ‘That was last month, before he committed the grave sin of sleeping with my-’

Dan cuts him off quickly. ‘Chloe, can we talk?’ At her assent, Dan takes her arm and propels her several feet from Lucifer, who plonks himself down on the edge of Dan’s desk irritably.

Dan lowers his voice.

‘Seriously, Chloe? What did I do to deserve this?’

Chloe looks unimpressed. ‘You mean other than forgetting to pick Trixie up from school three times in the last fortnight?’

Dan winces. ‘Really, that many? Look, I'm sorry, Chlo, I've just been really busy helping out with cases and I guess things got away from me a bit.’

At her unyielding expression, Dan sighs. ‘But look, this is a big case for me. It's my first big case since I was demoted. I don't want to screw things up. And Lucifer - he's. Well, he's not as exactly easy to work with.’ Dan snorts derisively.

Chloe shakes her head. ‘He's a bit quirky, sure, Dan, but he's a great partner. And it's just for one day. You'll do fine with him.’

Dan looks at Lucifer.

Lucifer is apparently choking one of Dan's wobble-head figurines with Dan’s favourite hand-strengthener.

Dan looks at Chloe.

Chloe looks slightly abashed but sticks to her guns like a pro. ‘Look I get it, Dan, I do. But I really need to him occupied today, okay? Otherwise he'll crash the seminar, or, I don’t know, show up naked and get written up for soliciting. Again. It's just for one day. What's the worst that can happen?’

-

If you ask Dan, there are some questions they should all just stay away from.

Chapter Text

When Dan returns from his quick pow-pow with Chloe (in which he’d naturally folded like a cheap shirt), Lucifer is sitting on his desk swinging his legs and lightly kicking at Dan’s cabinet, leaving Dan with the distinct impression he'd just been handed babysitting duty by his ex. Frankly, he'd prefer Trixie. At least he could buy her off with chocolate cake.

Dan crosses his arms and regards him. Lucifer gives him an unimpressed look before springing to his feet and slipping into Dan’s space.

‘Howdy, pardner! How's it hanging?’

At ‘hanging’, the man’s eyes drop for an instant to Dan’s crotch and he smirks. Because of course he does. Dan manfully resists the twin urges to cross his legs and punch him out.

And he's back to using the godawful mock-American accent again. Great.

Dan scowls. ‘Drop the accent. You're with me today, apparently, which means you do what I say, when I say, or you can just stay here and cool your heels until Chloe gets back.’

Lucifer snaps off an ironic salute, expression insolent. ‘Sir, yes, sir!’

Dan snorts. ‘Cute.’

‘Yes, I thought so,’ says Lucifer brightly. Thankfully he drops the act and eyes Dan with just a hint of curiosity.

‘So, what are we up to, Dan?’

Dan huffs. ‘We’re not up to anything. I'm heading out to chase down a dangerous drug-pusher. You're tagging along till Chloe gets back.’

Lucifer grins lasciviously. ‘Ooh, a hunt for a dangerous man? How thrilling.’

-

It's not thrilling.

-

Lucifer loiters around while Dan finishes his prep, touching everything, chattering and generally making a nuisance of himself. In the space of five minutes the guy has touched, to date: Dan’s gun, all of Dan's collectible limited edition Mr Wobble Heads (including his personal favourite, Mr Police Wobble Head), his badge and, most annoyingly, Dan himself. (A ‘manly’ slap on the back which nearly knocks Dan flat onto his desk. Seriously, how is this guy that strong? He's like a bean pole!)

Dan wants to reconsider his policy of non-violence towards Chloe’s partner, but knowing Lucifer, he'd probably enjoy being punched in the face.

As Dan strides to his car, Lucifer trailing in his wake, Dan adults up and catches him up on the case.

Just as he's getting to explaining Smythe’s links to underground gambling and greyhound racing, Dan realises Lucifer has stopped walking.

Dan squints at him. The man is standing stock-still five feet away in the open air car park looking aghast.

‘What?’

Lucifer frowns. ‘We're going to a church? The abandoned church on Stephens Boulevard?’

Dan nods. ‘Yes. There have been a number of rumours that Smythe is using the church as his base of operations.’ He frowns. ‘Why?’

At Lucifer’s look of trepidation, Dan sighs. ‘Is this more of your Devil crap? Look man, I don't care if you think you're allergic to religion or whatever. Chloe said to keep you occ- I mean, bring you with today so you'll just have to grin and bear it.’

Lucifer swallows, looking uneasy. ‘Right. Yes, of course. Grin and bear it. I can do that.’ He looks unconvinced.

Dan frowns at him before nodding briskly and, with a muttered ‘good’, resumes his walk to the car.

-

Lucifer obviously cannot do that.

Chapter Text

They're twenty minutes into their stakeout outside the derelict church, and something is seriously wrong with Lucifer.

He’s never exactly been the calmest of men, but after twenty minutes of dead silence, accompanied by non-stop twitching and fidgeting, Dan is starting to get concerned.

After Lucifer adjusts the air conditioning vent for the fifth time, Dan decides he’s had enough.

‘Okay, what's up with you today, man?’

Lucifer freezes. His eyes flick to Dan’s, looking shifty as hell.

‘Whatever do you mean?’

Dan is unimpressed. ‘I mean that you've been acting weird ever since I told you where we were going. I know you're not a fan of churches but come on, man, what's eating you?’

Lucifer smiles, it looks wrong on his face. ‘Detective Espinoza-’ he wheedles.

Dan snorts. ‘Yeah, since when?’ He turns to look at Lucifer full on, noting the guy’s tight lips and tense, white-knuckled hands. ‘Come on, seriously. What’s wrong?’

Lucifer looks away, his hands fisting nervously in his expensive designer pants.

There’s a long moment, and Dan is just about ready to give up, when Lucifer speaks.

His voice is quiet, subdued, his face in profile, eyes fixed on the church unwaveringly.

‘Do you have a brother, Dan?’

Dan doesn’t know where this going.

‘Do I-? Ok sure, whatever, I'll bite. Yeah, I've got a brother. Lives out in Colorado.’

Lucifer looks at him, expression distant.

‘Older or younger?’

Dan frowns. ‘Younger. Why, looking for a date?’

This doesn't even earn a response. Lucifer’s expression is uncharacteristically blank and Dan feels uneasy.

He clears his throat. ‘Look, man. You're obviously upset. Why don't we call Chloe and you can talk to her about it?’ Dan shifts, reaching quickly for his phone, on the dashboard. ‘Yeah, let's call Chloe.’

Lucifer’s voice stops him, eerily calm.

‘I had a brother.’

Dan hand hangs in the air halfway to his phone. He turns to look at Lucifer. Lucifer is staring at his hands, expression detached.

‘Okay,’ he says warily.

‘I-’, Lucifer swallows. ‘His name was Uriel. We weren't exactly close.’

‘Yeah,’ says Dan equally quiet. ‘I get that. Brothers can be tricky.’

Lucifer doesn't seem to hear him. His eyes are very wide and dark. When he speaks, his voice is soft and intent.

‘You’ve killed. For Chloe.’

Dan stiffens. ‘Jesus! Seriously?’

Lucifer looks at him, searchingly. There is none of his usual glibness in his face but neither is there any trace of condemnation.

‘You shot Malcolm,’ he observes. ‘And two other miscreants to protect her, even though you knew you could lose your freedom, your liberty for it.’ Lucifer’s eyes bore into Dan’s. ‘You saved her life.’

Dan isn't sure where the hell this is going and frankly doesn’t want to know.

‘Right. Good talk,’ he says eventually, before exploding. ‘What the hell, man?’

Lucifer’s eyes flick down to his hands, which are twisting in his lap. Dan watches, confused and tense.

After a long, awkward pause which seems like hours but is probably only a moment or two, Lucifer speaks, voice unusually halting.

‘I- we fought. Uriel and I. I tried to reason with him, I did, but he wouldn't-’

A hoarse rasp of a breath. ‘He wouldn’t stop.’

He looks up, turning to address Dan, almost desperate. Dan is horrified to see his eyes are noticeably shining and feels a twisting in his gut about where this conversation is going.

Lucifer's eyes burn into Dan's.

‘I had to make a choice, do you understand? He wanted me to make a choice and I couldn't, and he was going to hurt her -’

Lucifer’s breath is coming quickly and he looks at Dan almost pleadingly as Dan stares back shocked and wordless.

‘He knew everything I was going to do before I even did - and the only thing I could do was-’

Lucifer swallows, a of loud silence, before a choked gasp.

‘There was a knife.’

Lucifer looks through the window, eyes unfocused, unseeing.

Dan’s heart is thumping. ‘Lucifer-’ but before he could ask (what? Did you kill your brother? What knife?) their eyes catch on the dark shadow of Smythe slipping around the front the church and Lucifer is suddenly out of the car, leaving Dan swearing and scrambling frantically for his gun.

-

What the hell is Dan supposed to do with that?!

Chapter Text

‘Chloe?’

Chloe, back from her seminar and sorting through the mound of papers on her desk, nods absently.

‘Hey, Dan, what's up?’

Dan shifts. ‘It's about Lucifer.’

She looks up, tucking an errant lock of blonde hair behind her ear. ‘Oh no. What did he do?’

Dan sighs. ‘Nothing. That I know of. I hope,’ he amends before hesitating. ‘It’s just- has he seemed... weird to you lately?’

Chloe smiles, picking up a file and sorting it into a pile. ‘Weird how? Lucifer-weird or weird-weird?’

Dan rubs his face, leaning a hip against Chloe’s desk. ‘Weird-weird.’

He grimaces. After their aborted conversation, Lucifer had all but fled from him, avoiding his eyes even when Dan had collared Smythe in the alley behind the shattered stained glass window. The ride back to the station had been eerily, uncomfortably silent until even the drug dealer had picked up on it and had so helpfully asked if they'd had a lover’s spat. Typical. Dan sighs and shifts slightly, tapping anxiously on Chloe’s desktop. ‘Look, has Lucifer ever mentioned a brother to you?’

Chloe looks up from her sorting, frowning. ‘You mean Amenadiel?’

Dan blinks. ‘Anema-what? No. Uriel, I think?’

Chloe shakes her head, chewing on her lip, a clear sign she’s running through some kind of mental rolodex, ‘No, I don't think so, why?’

Dan clears his throat. ‘I don’t know. We had a- a moment today on the stakeout at the church. And I'm worried about him, okay?’ He sighs.

Chloe runs a finger down the edge of one manila folder, a small look of consternation on her face. ‘The church? Which one? Not the one off of Stephens Boulevard?’

The street name makes Dan start. ‘Yes, actually, why?’

Chloe echoes Dan’s earlier sigh, heavy on the exhale. ‘That was Father Frank's church.’ In response to Dan's blank look, Chloe crosses her arms. ‘Father Frank Lawrence? The priest who was killed a few months ago by Erik Doyle - the Spider?’

A lightbulb belatedly blinks on for Dan. ‘Crap, yeah, I remember you telling me about that now.’

Chloe nods, expression dark in memory. ‘Yeah, Lucifer took it pretty hard. He really seemed to like him. Was that what got to him today? Maybe being there stirred up some memories.’

Dan frowns again. ‘I don’t know. He seemed pretty upset but he didn't mention anything about a priest. I think he was trying to tell me his brother had died. He was pretty... incoherent.’ He sighs, ‘He really hasn't said anything to you about a brother?’

Chloe looks concerned. ‘No, he hasn't. But-,’ she frowns, ‘-for a man normally all about oversharing, he has been really closed off lately. If his brother has passed away that would explain a lot.’ Her lips pinch, blue eyes clouded. ‘I'll try to talk to him.’

‘Good. Thanks Chlo. The guy's annoying as hell but he looked like he really needs to talk to someone.’

Someone who is hopefully not Dan. Dan might not like the guy but he really doesn’t want to have to arrest him.

Chloe nods thoughtfully, brow creased.

And that, Dan thinks, is that. Chloe will talk to Lucifer and Dan can stop worrying about the guy, and resume his usual apathy and irritation instead.

-

It was a nice hope, okay. It's not Dan’s fault he's an optimist.

Chapter Text

Lucifer goes out of his way to avoid Dan for the rest of the week. When Dan does spot him he looks like crap, eyes red, hair slightly mussed. He even misses a button on his shirt once, which Dan thinks is probably something kind of red flag in a man whose vanity normally outshines that of a peacock.

Lucifer dodges the topic of the mysterious brother whenever Chloe tries to broach it and continues to take insane, self-destructive risks on cases. Chloe confides in Dan that she’s worried. She’s more than a little concerned that Lucifer will, sooner or later, get himself shot. Or worse.

Dan, from their incredibly disturbing stakeout conversation and Lucifer’s bizarre words to Boris Sokolov during their sting a month ago, thinks Lucifer needs therapy - all the therapy, probably - and is genuinely surprised when Chloe tells him he's actually getting it. Guess the guy's got more insight than Dan gives him credit for.

It doesn’t seem to be doing much for him, though. Lucifer seems to be getting more on edge by the day, moping about the station, disappearing for hours at a time - presumably to Lux - picking petty arguments and getting into scrapes with all and sundry.

Although he's obviously attempting to keep up his usual ‘charming’ patter with the LAPD officers, Dan thinks the man seems brittle, like one good gust of wind might tear him apart.

Things come to a head during one of their quarterly interdepartmental meetings. Lucifer, dragged along by Chloe on the grounds that ‘it'll be good for you, Lucifer’ and ‘we have to work with these people, Lucifer’, is introduced as a LAPD civilian consultant to Detective Jesus Baptiste.

Baptiste, an experienced Vice detective of over twenty years, is a grim, short-haired man with two divorces under his belt and precisely no sense of humour. Given Lucifer’s reputation as a profligate nightclub owner with a penchant for sex, drugs, and rock’n’roll, and the man’s ridiculously smart mouth - two insults to the man's name in the first minute alone, good going, Lucifer - this goes over about as well as can be expected.

By which Dan means the following:

1) Baptiste calls Lucifer a no-good philanderer to his face and insinuates that he solicits prostitutes out of his club.

2) Lucifer corrects Baptiste’s assumption, helpfully asserting that Lucifer is obviously far more likely to undertake any said solicitation personally, given his ‘dad-given beauty and charm’. Offers to sleep with Baptiste to prove it, ‘despite your truly unfortunate name and overall piss-poor physiognomy’.

3) Baptiste is apparently a complete asshat and feels the need to issue slurs against not only Lucifer but also Chloe and the Homicide squad for working with him.

4) Lucifer punches Detective Baptiste squarely in the mouth in the middle of the crowded break room.

The upshot of all of this being that Dan winds up grabbing Detective Baptiste and wrestling him to the floor with the man’s arm wrenched behind his back, while Chloe grabs Lucifer by the arm and yanks him away. The rest of their colleagues stand around like a bunch of lemons and Dan, Chloe, and Lucifer get to endure fifteen and a half fun-filled minutes of Lt. Munroe’s unimpressed ranting (Chloe wisely elbowing Lucifer in the stomach every time he feels the need to pipe up).

Lucifer is sullen for the rest of the day but, under Chloe’s watchful and furious gaze, dutifully avoids any further contact with the man.

By the end of day, the station is all but deserted and Dan’s never been happier to see the weekend. He's grabbing his coat and keys when he sees them.

Baptiste has Lucifer backed into the wall next to the photocopier (a popular spot for arguments and clandestine make-outs alike). This doesn't look like a make-out session.

He's got Lucifer boxed in - an impressive feat for a stocky man at least three inches shorter than his opponent - hands on the wall on either side of Lucifer’s head. Lucifer’s jaw is clenched and he looks like a thunderstorm. For a moment Dan could almost swear he sees Lucifer’s eyes flash red, but it's just a trick of the light.

Dan thinks this is probably not good.

By the time he's within earshot, Dan can pick up enough of Baptiste’s low, vicious cadence and Lucifer’s snarling response to know that this is about to get really ugly really soon.

Lucifer may be surprisingly scrappy in a fight for a prissy British ex-pat, but Baptiste is a trained cop and armed to boot. And, given the look on his face and Lucifer’s prodding, he might even be stupid enough to draw. Wouldn’t be the first - or even the second - time Lucifer has provoked a cop into holding him at gunpoint.

‘Hey, guys,’ Dan interrupts cautiously, a friendly smile fixed on his face. ‘Everything alright here?’

Baptiste doesn’t so much as glance at him. ‘That depends. I was just having a nice chat with your consultant here about his business ventures. Family venture is it, buddy? I know your type. I wonder, what do you think I'd find if I went digging in your closet?’ His tone is snide.

Lucifer’s teeth are gritted, face closed off, but Dan doesn’t miss the man’s minute flinch at the word ‘family’. Lucifer’s voice when he speaks is tightly controlled. ‘Oh, I assure you I've never felt the need to hide anything in my closet. But you know you're more than welcome to come inside and investigate if you please - since you're clearly desperate for any excuse for us to remain in close quarters.’ Lucifer’s eyes drop deliberately, tauntingly, to Baptiste’s mouth.

Baptiste’s eyes flash and he surges threateningly, well and truly pushing into Lucifer’s space, only for Lucifer to laugh in his face and mirror him, looming over him in turn. At Baptiste’s snarl, Lucifer smirks, eyes dark and mocking. ‘Try it, Detective, go on. I'm dying to see what your head would look like on a platter.’

Dan looks between them warily and gives a short laugh. ‘Ookay, I think that's enough of a pissing contest for now. How ‘bout we break things up, fellas?’

Baptiste doesn’t move. ‘Or,’ he says, eyes fixed on Lucifer’s, ‘you could just take a walk, Espinoza, while I have a few more words with your ‘consultant’ here. How's that sound?’ He smiles, face intent, vindictive.

Dan tenses and steps closer. ‘Yeah, sorry. Not gonna to do that.’

Baptiste slams his palms against the wall hard on either side of Lucifer, provoking an involuntary start followed by a contemptuous glare from the man. He looks at Dan, incredulous. ‘Seriously? Come on, gimme a break, Detective. Step off. I promise you don't want to get involved in this.’

‘You're right, I don't,’ says Dan bluntly. ‘And I won't, because guess what? You’re going to go now and leave my buddy here alone.’ Dan drops his hand onto his belt pointedly, next to his holster.

Baptiste scowls but takes in Dan’s solid stance and pushes off the wall, away from Lucifer, with poor grace. ‘Fine,’ he says shortly. ‘But I'd watch my back around this one if I were you, Espinoza.’ He aims a derisive glare at Lucifer. ‘His type are like snakes in the grass. Can’t be trusted.’

He moves to shoulder past Dan, only for Dan to briefly grab his upper arm and directly hold his gaze, voice low. ‘Yeah, Jesus? Because from where I'm standing, looks like you're the guy I shouldn't turn my back on.’

Baptiste flushes, before tearing his arm out of Dan’s grip and finally taking his leave.

Dan relaxes, hand dropping away from his belt. ‘Hey, you okay, man?’

Lucifer is looking at him oddly. ‘Obviously,’ he says, before he adjusts his cuffs jerkily. ‘You hardly needed to intercede. I was handling it, Daniel.’ He adds, with a huff.

Dan sighs. Typical. He turns to leave. ‘Never said you weren't.’

Lucifer pauses for a moment before surprising Dan by trotting after him, staring at Dan with something strange in his eyes. When he speaks again he sounds confused. ‘You defended me against your compatriot.’

Dan snorts. ‘He's not much of a compatriot.’ Noting, almost against his will, the hollowness of Lucifer’s normally bright eyes, and his pinched mouth, Dan rubs his neck. ‘Hey, I was going to go grab a few drinks before I turn in tonight. Do you want to, I don't know, come with? After the day we've had, I think we're entitled.’ He says on an impulse he's almost certainly going to regret.

Lucifer looks startled and stoops his long neck to give Dan a searching glance. ‘Oh. Yes. Yes, I think I'd like that.’ He grins, a muted version of his usual sly beam. ‘Lux?’

Dan shakes his head, best to go somewhere more… neutral. ‘Nah, let's go out. There's a great bar off of Saints Boulevard.’

Lucifer seems amused. ‘Of course there is,’ he mutters, but falls into an easy step beside Dan who, in a fit of warmth, slaps him briefly on the shoulder.

‘Hey, don't worry about that guy. Baptiste’s a dick but he's all talk. He won't bother you.’ Dan frowns. ‘Probably. Hopefully.’ He clears his throat. ‘Actually, look, if he does try anything just let Chloe or me know, okay?’

Lucifer slides him another of his odd looks from Dan’s side before answering. ‘I have nothing to hide. You should know that, you’ve seen my books, Daniel.’ Lucifer gives him a subdued leer. At Dan’s unimpressed look Lucifer softens. ‘But if there is anything amiss, I promise you, I will indeed call upon you and the Detective for aid.’

-

Lucifer may be a loose cannon, Dan thinks after his third drink, but he's their loose cannon, and that probably makes all the difference.

Chapter Text

The bar Dan takes him to, Lucifer thinks dryly, could only generously be termed a ‘dive’. Lucifer regards the drink before him dubiously; bright green and, he deems, uniquely undeserving of the title of ‘cocktail’. Beside him, Detective Douche is getting well and truly soused, most probably in an attempt to drink away the taste of the godawful alcohol (certainly not because of Lucifer’s own presence, Lucifer is sure).

The bar, named Saints’ Row after its location, is a poorly lit monstrosity, decorated in truly miserable taste with intermittent ‘modern reimaginings’ of the lives and - more interestingly - deaths of several saints. Lucifer’s personal favourite thus far is the illustration of sad demise of St. Sebastian which really manages to capture the man’s exquisite physique. Daniel seems less than enthralled when Lucifer points this out, the philistine.

Dan is going on about some dreary little case he's been assigned - a robbery gone wrong involving a chap being inadvertently skewered with a poker. Surprisingly difficult to do for the average Joe (easy enough for Lucifer, of course, who had plenty of experience in his last job). Lucifer tells him as such, in an attempt to find a topic he can speak to the good douche about. (What do people even talk about if not sex, drugs, and more sex?)

Lucifer is halfway through enthusiastically explaining the art of introducing your skewer - be it your poker, pitchfork, or just your everyday blade in a pinch - into the torso and twisting just-so for maximum effect, making sure to catch the large bowel, naturally - when Dan, looking oddly greenish in hue, excuses himself, stumbling to the bathroom. Strange. Must be the disgusting excuse for liquor he keeps inhaling. Lucifer nods to himself, unsurprised that Detective Douche would be a lightweight.

He sighs disconsolately, now left alone near the sticky and depressing bar. As he turns in his chair to survey the room, his eyes catch on a rather lovely lady perched on a nearby stool. Why hello, there. Lucifer grins. Maybe this bar isn't such a dive, after all.

By the time Dan returns, Lucifer is making the acquaintance of Mary, an absolutely scrumptious creature with laughing dark eyes and Maze's skin (not literally of course - that would be incredibly creepy - though stranger things have happened), via introducing his tongue to her delectable mouth.

Lucifer admittedly did find her name rather off-putting at first but it's hardly her fault, and she certainly shouldn't be deprived of the best night of her life due to her parents’ folly - or his own Dad’s come to that, the wily old fox.

Dan looks rather irritated, for some unfathomable reason, standing to the side of Lucifer, hands propped on his shapely hips. Lucifer removes his tongue from the lovely Mary and smiles at him. ‘Daniel! Would you care to join us?’ Lucifer pats Dan’s empty seat invitingly. Dan glowers at him. He looks rather peaky, thinks Lucifer critically, and decidedly pissed - and not in the fun way.

‘Hey, you mind coming with me for a second?’ Detective Douche’s tone is short.

Lucifer resists the obvious innuendo and squints at him. Then he sighs and, with a pat to the shoulder and a sincere murmured apology to Mary, hops up to join Detective Douche by the ancient-looking jukebox by the wall on the far side of the room.

Dan crosses his arms, the expression on his face either one of constipation or admonishment. Lucifer frowns at him, baffled. ‘Well? Whatever is the matter, Dan?’

Dan looks away, the line of his shoulders rigid, before turning to gaze at Lucifer, eyes sharp.

‘What the hell do you think you're playing at?’

He sounds mad and Lucifer is still none-the-wiser as to what he supposedly did now. Lucifer huffs out a confused sigh. ‘I'm afraid you may need to be a bit more specific, Daniel.’

Dan glares with douche-y frustration. ‘With her.’ He jerks his thumb harshly in the direction of Mary's delightful posterior.

Lucifer narrows his eyes at him, deeply confused. ‘With Mary? I would have thought that was fairly obvious.’ At Dan’s unimpressed look, he elaborates. ‘I'm in the midst of seducing her!’ Lucifer smiles and pops his hands in his pockets. ‘Doing fairly well, too, but that goes without saying.’

He eyes Dan before adding generously. ‘You're more than welcome to join, of course. Given your excellent body and occasionally acceptable personality, I'm sure she wouldn't decline.’ He smiles at Dan enticingly.

But Detective Douche, to Lucifer’s puzzlement, just snorts out a bitter laugh.

‘Wow,’ he says scornfully. ‘You really are a piece of work, you know that?’

Lucifer frowns at him. ‘Excuse me?’

Dan shifts on his feet angrily, hands dropping to his hips. ‘I stood up for you today because I thought you were, I don't know, changing. But I guess I was wrong. You're really just the same old selfish Lucifer, aren’t you.’

Lucifer is getting fed up with this treatment, put out and perhaps just a little hurt. ‘I have no idea what you're talking about, Daniel! Are you quite alright?’

Dan glares. ‘I'm talking about Chloe, man.’

Lucifer frowns. ‘Chloe?’

Dan’s lips thin. ‘Yeah, Chloe. She told me what happened between you this week. That you guys nearly-’ He looks away, ‘-kissed.’

Lucifer startles. ‘She told you?’ He feels unaccountably betrayed.

Dan clears his throat. ‘Well, she told Ella and I just happened to overhe- look it doesn’t matter. The point is Chloe, for some reason, really cares about you. And you actually seem to care about her, too. So what the hell are you doing, man?’ Dan looks frustrated.

Lucifer frowns uncertainly. ‘Doing?’

Dan glares. ‘Picking up! In a third-rate bar, in front of her ex.’

Lucifer grins quickly. ‘You admit it's a dive of a bar, then.’ At Detective Douche’s glower, Lucifer sobers, ‘Why? Do you think she'd disapprove?’ He asks in concern.

Dan furrows his brow. ‘Are you for real?’

Lucifer nods, before having an epiphany. ‘Oh! You think she might expect monogamy?’

Dan stares at him before raising his eyebrows in disbelief and speaking slowly. ‘Yeah. Yeah, I think she might, man. I think she definitely might.’

Lucifer is taken aback. ‘That possibility didn't occur to me before.’

Dan boggles at him. It isn't a good look on him. ‘Didn't occur to you-? Wow.’

Lucifer nods absently, mind occupied. ‘This changes everything.’

Dan nods cautiously. ‘Yeah?’

‘Yes!’, exclaims Lucifer. ‘I've never tried monogamy before! I've always felt it was unnatural in the extreme. Love isn't meant to be constrained, Daniel. Love should be free! Why confine yourself to just one partner when there are so many others on offer?’

The Douche looks disgusted. ‘Right. Wow. So you don’t give a toss for how anyone feels. How Chloe feels.’ He snorts, shaking his head in disgust.

Lucifer frowns. ‘Of course, I care! I- care about the Detective. Very greatly, as a matter of fact. She has been very good to me, ever since the day we met.’ He looks away. ‘Possibly better than anyone I've ever known.’

Detective Douche is still frowning but something in the harshness of his face and set of his shoulders softens. ‘It honestly never occurred to you that sleeping around while you guys were working things out might bother her?’

Lucifer shakes his head. ‘Of course not! Why should it?’

Dan frowns. ‘But you see why it might be a problem for her now?’ Following Lucifer’s blank look, Dan sighs. ‘Come on, man. How would you feel if Chloe was seeing other men?’

Lucifer considers. ‘Relieved, I think. At least then I'd know she was indeed interested in sex. I mean,’ he says with a wave at Dan, ‘I know she must have had sex with you at some point to produce your progeny, but she’s always been strangely resistant to my charms. I was beginning to worry that sex may hold no appeal for her at all.’

Something occurs to him. ‘How
was the sex between you, anyway? Tell me you at least bedded each other more than the requisite minimum for procreation.’

Dan stares at him. ‘I can't believe you.’

Lucifer blinks at him, before perking up. ‘Oh, is this one of those questions you're not supposed to ask people? Doctor Linda tells me there are topics that aren't ‘socially appropriate’, whatever that means. Is that one of them?’

Dan nods. ‘Yeah,’ he says dryly. ‘That's definitely one of them.’

Lucifer is put out. ‘Well, that’s simply unacceptable. How am I supposed to learn anything about what the Detective needs or wants if there are whole vital topics completely verboten?’

Dan rubs his face, apparently tired. Lucifer sympathises. ‘You could always, I don't know, just ask her.’

Lucifer pouts. ‘I have! She won’t tell me! Hence my asking you.’

‘Of course, you have.’ Dan evidently gives in, sighing. ‘Look, man, so you've come to your senses, then? You’re not going to sleep with some floozy while you and Chloe are - whatever?’

Lucifer nods reluctantly. ‘It would appear so, since you're so adamant she would react poorly.’ He frowns. ‘Though I'll have you know Mary is no ‘floozy’. She's an actuary, believe it or not, and has a degree in classical music theory.’

Lucifer catches Dan’s look. ‘Yes, I know! I told her she was far too attractive to be an actuary as well.’

Lucifer sighs regretfully and straightens his cuffs. ‘Now, if you'll excuse me, I must go let her down gently. I'm sure she'll be highly disappointed. We were planning to have some fun with the cuffs back at my place later.’

At Daniel’s disgruntled expression, Lucifer has an idea. ‘Say, would you like me to set you up with her? I'll have you know I make an
excellent wingman.’ Lucifer smirks tightly at his own little joke.

Det. Douche looks dumbfounded but shakes his head. ‘No. No, I'm... good.’

‘Suit yourself,’ he shrugs, before eyeing him. ‘Wait, were you the one with sexual dysfunction in the marriage? It would explain you… seeing my- Charlotte. I had no idea you were so interested in sharks in human form.’

This seems to lead to Daniel opening and shutting his mouth unattractively, so after a moment of stammering silence, Lucifer shrugs and goes to break the poor woman's heart.

-

Humans, thinks Lucifer, have awfully strange hang-ups. It's all very confusing. Still, at least Lucifer now has Doctor Linda and Detective Douche to teach him about all their silly rules.

Lucifer has so many questions.

-

Mary is very disappointed, poor dove, and laudably expresses her dissatisfaction by pouring the remainder of her dry martini onto Dan’s lap.

Lucifer laughs gleefully and takes a picture for posterity on his mobile - sorry, ‘cell’. Additionally, in a fit of kindness, he chooses not to inform Dan that Mary had assumed that Dan was an overly possessive boyfriend bent on ruining Lucifer’s night of pleasure. It's not completely inaccurate, after all.

After Dan cleans up he grabs his jacket, clearly preparing to leave. Lucifer finds himself surprisingly disappointed. For the past few hours Lucifer has not thought even once of Uriel nor his growing trepidation regarding his mother. He’s felt comfortable and less overwhelmingly isolated. He’s had… fun.

‘Well,’ he says, for the first time in the night feeling awkward. ‘Thank you for the drink, Dan - awful though it was - and for explaining,’ Lucifer grimaces, ‘‘monogamy’ to me. I appreciate it.’

Dan looks surprised but nods. ‘Yeah, no problem.’

Lucifer looks at him for a moment before reaching into his jacket as they near the counter. ‘Here, allow me to at least pay for our drinks.’

At Dan’s demur, Lucifer shakes his head. ‘No, no, I insist. I… enjoyed your company tonight - and your assistance with Detective Jesus Wept earlier. It's the least I can do.’ Lucifer frowns and eyes Dan a little cautiously. ‘Are you sure there's nothing else you'd like in return? I'm sure we can come to some arrangement.’

But Detective Douche - Dan - shakes his head. ‘No, I'm good. I told you, Lucifer, I don't accept favours.’

Lucifer regards him. ‘Because of your corrupt former partner and erstwhile nemesis Malcolm, yes. But this wouldn't be a favour, Dan. More in the line of repayment. I- do not like to be in others’ debt.’

Dan frowns at him. ‘You're pretty big on doing deals and granting favours for someone not keen on debt.’

At Lucifer’s affronted look, he sighs.

‘You're not in my debt, man. You work with Chloe, we know each other.’ He hesitates. ‘We’re almost friends, in a way. I helped you out with Jesus because it was the right thing to do and because you looked like you needed a hand. Not to have you in my debt or whatever.’

‘Oh.’ Lucifer feels curiously overwhelmed. Countless aeons with no friends in sight - nor even a friendly soul save that of Maze, sworn to his service as she was - and now he has two? What an embarrassment of riches.

‘Well,’ he says uncertainly. ‘I thank you then, Dan.’

Dan seems taken aback but nods. ‘You're, um, welcome.’ He looks away. ‘For what it's worth, I didn't think tonight was half-bad either.’

He considers Lucifer for a moment in silence before adding, in almost a rush. ‘Hey, there's a Weaponizer marathon on TV on the weekend. You want to come watch?’

He seems to regret it the moment it's out of his mouth but Lucifer is already smiling delightedly and nodding. ‘Friends watch movies together, don't they? I'm told the ‘sleepover’ is a tried and true ritual of bonding. And, according to those charming internet videos, a very sexy one at that!’ At Dan’s startled mug, Lucifer grins and gives an exaggeratedly gentle punch to Dan’s shoulder. ‘I'd be honoured, Dan. Shall I bring popcorn?’

Dan opens and shuts his mouth for a moment. ‘It's not a sleep ov- we’re not actually frien-’ before apparently catching the unsure look on Lucifer’s face.

He yields with good grace and huffs a small laugh, wryly resigned. ‘Yeah, why not? I'll text you the time and my address.’

Lucifer beams and grabs his jacket. ‘No need, I already know where you live.’ And with that declaration and an overly-friendly clap to Dan's back, he leaves, oblivious to Dan's expression or the bartender handing him the bill.

-

Oh well, thinks Dan. Watching the Weaponizer films with Lucifer has got to beat watching them alone in his underwear.

What could possibly go wrong?

Chapter Text

The next few days pass uneventfully, which is something of a relief after recent weeks. True to his word, Dan informs Lucifer of the time of their movie ‘date’ - to Chloe’s obvious amusement. She, much to their shared chagrin, calls them ‘adorable’.

Lucifer finds himself feeling vaguely excited. He's never had the opportunity to watch his favourite films in company before - Maze has always been much more of a television and manga fanatic, and far too ‘cool’ (her words, not his) to deign to watch the Star Wars or Weaponizer films - and is curious as to what the experience will be like. Will they have a pillow fight like he saw in that wonderful documentary with the two lovely young ladies? Will there be shenanigans? Is this the same thing as ‘Netflix and chill’-ing? Lucifer looks forward to finding out.

Come Saturday evening, Lucifer arrives at 8pm on the dot to Dan’s sad little shoebox of an apartment, dressed in his usual immaculate black Armani suit and vest, crisp white open-necked shirt just peeking out at his collar.

Dan opens the door dressed, Lucifer notes in disdain, in ratty beige henley shirt and faded jeans. He's barefoot, tanned well-formed feet padding softly on carpet.

Lucifer produces his offerings of Bordeaux wine and popcorn for the bemused douche who sets them beside his six-pack of beer and box of pepperoni pizza. ‘Thanks, man.’

Dan eyes him, appearing oddly amused. ‘Why don’t you take a load off and settle in?’ He waves Lucifer to an ugly green sofa which has seen better days - or possibly, decades.

Lucifer warily perches on the edge of the sofa - oh sorry, ‘couch’ - and slaps his thighs. ‘So! What's the plan, Dan?’ He grins at the fortuitous rhyme.

Detective Douche seems nonplussed, takes a long draw from his beer bottle. (Mmm, lips.) ‘Plan? Well, I thought we could sit down, have a few beers - or wine-’ he casts a jaundiced eye at the Bordeaux wine, ‘-have some pizza and watch the first couple of films.’

Lucifer blinks. ‘That’s all? No braiding each other's hair or indulging in shenanigans?’ Lucifer likes the word ‘shenanigans’, it usually implies all kinds of lovely adventures. ‘No pillow fights in our pyjamas?’

Dan laughs, not unkindly. The douche has a rather nice laugh, Lucifer notes, feeling oddly proud. The sensation reminds him of whenever he succeeds in amusing the Detective and earning her mirth (rather than her wrath), a strange bubble of warmth rising in his chest.

‘No,’ Dan says in amusement. ‘No pillow fights, sorry.’ The man seems more relaxed in his home than is his wont around Lucifer at the precinct, folding himself onto the far end of the sofa with a sigh of pleasure. ‘Just two ordinary guys hanging out.’

He says it almost like a dare. Lucifer nods seriously, for some bizarre reason almost nervous. ‘Of course. Just two ordinary guys. Just two friendly douches. Just Netflix and chilling. We can do that.’

Dan flicks him an amused look. ‘Well, not that. Do you even know what that means? Actually, never mind, I don't want to know.’

Dan unmutes the television and hands Lucifer a beer, which he half-heartedly accepts. Lucifer crosses his long legs and settles back in the sofa as Kimo Vanzandt’s face swims onto the screen in a blaze of gunfire.

Lucifer had first seen the film five years ago, six months after his relocation to LA. It had been a busy time for him: settling in, setting up Lux, and learning the ways of men. It had startled him how greatly this world had changed in the millennia since he had last walked the earth. Technology, music, and culture had changed almost beyond recognition, while other things - sex, violence, the basic fears, and fundamental desires of mankind - had barely changed at all. Lucifer is rather proud at how well he has seamlessly integrated into life on Earth after countless aeons of reigning in hell, but some things, like ‘movie nights’ and ‘friendship’ are still incredibly fresh and novel to him, even now.

When Lucifer had first dived into these films it had been out of curiosity (and a healthy appreciation, of course, for the delightfully graphic and gratuitous violence, nudity and sex - the perfect audiovisual fodder for the Devil himself). They had also surprised him with their immersive nature, the thrilling sense of escapism and freedom he felt when he watched them. For a few precious hours Lucifer was able to live the life of Kimo Vanzandt and escape his own trying reality. To forget the Fall, the flame and the persistent emptiness that would, on occasion, sneak up on him. It truly was a divine gift.

Besides, did Lucifer mention the nudity?

Lucifer shifts on the lumpy seat and turns slightly to regard his compatriot. Dan's eyes are fixed on the screen, a fistful of popcorn halfway to his partly open mouth. Charming. Still, the man has relaxed back into the lurid green sofa (is Detective Douche colour-blind, perchance? It would certainly explain a lot). An advertisement break interrupts the flow of the narrative and Dan gets up with a groan, fetching Lucifer a slice of cold pizza on a styrofoam plate. Lucifer eyes it dubiously but accepts with his usual grace and poise. For some reason Dan snorts at him.

‘I'm surprised you don't have these films on DVD, given your obvious regard for them,’ ventures Lucifer as he takes a reluctant bite of the proffered pizza. Dan nods. ‘Yeah, I do actually, but- I don't know, I think there’s something to be said for watching them live on the box. Reminds me of being a kid somehow.’

Lucifer eyes him dubiously. ‘If you say so. Though I would have thought that someone with your lifespan would find life too short to sit through ads.’ Lucifer gestures at the screen which is currently showing a cat by all appearances making love to a washing machine. Whether the video is intended to sell cats or washing machines is anyone's guess, as far as Lucifer can tell.

Dan snorts in agreement. ‘Yeah, that's one part I could live without.’ He frowns slightly. ‘If they're boring you I can put the DVD on.’

Lucifer shrugs. ‘I don’t mind. I'm always up for a good bit of temptation, me.’ He eyes the tv, which is now displaying an obviously fake angel - awfully tacky wings, as if any self-respecting seraph would be caught dead with those things - kissing an attractive young man. ‘No matter how ridiculous or sacrilegious.’

Although actually. There's an idea.

Lucifer sets aside his plate of half-eaten pizza, wiping his finger tips discreetly on the sofa and smiles at Dan. ‘Speaking of which, I'm sure there's all manner of activities we could do to occupy ourselves during the breaks.’

Dan nods absently. ‘Yeah, yeah, sure.’ But before he has a chance to note Lucifer’s predatory grin, or him leaning in closer, the movie comes back on and Daniel is patently enraptured.

Lucifer huffs a sigh but returns to watching Vanzandt destroy a decent sized chunk of Costa Rica onscreen. Oh well.

There’s always next ad break.

Chapter Text

Two hours later and Kimo has just liberated a camp full of girls from terrorists. They're all half-dressed and surprisingly supple, and Lucifer is enraptured. Dan watches as Vanzandt tears through their ranks like an avenging angel, scattering blood and gore left, right and centre.

Lucifer abruptly nudges Dan in the stomach. When the hell did get so close? He's all but pressed up against Dan’s side, a surprisingly warm and comfortable presence.

‘Oh, look,’ he says, as Vanzandt tears some hapless black-clad goon’s arm off at the socket. ‘I've actually done that! It's messier than you'd think.’

Dan slides him a dubious look and edges away towards the other side of the couch. ‘... I'm sure.’

Lucifer’s eyes remain riveted on the screen, oblivious, crunching noisily on popcorn.

The movie had actually gone pretty well, if Dan ignores the weird moment where Lucifer tried to put one of his long arms behind Dan’s neck, which he fully intends to (because seriously, what?) But apart from that, Lucifer had been surprisingly good company, gasping at all the right bits, happily trading pieces of Weaponizer and Body Bags trivia with Dan.

Dan hasn’t ever known anyone else who matched his appreciation for the franchise. It's great for someone to actually get how amazing Wesley Cabot and Kimo Vanzandt are (even if Vanzandt did once hold a gun on Chloe). Dan still can't believe they solved Cabot’s murder. Damn. Lucifer turns out to be a veritable fount of factoids about Vanzandt and the film industry in large, even if he does seem to talk as though he believes the films actually happened, sometimes. It's been... fun.

Five hours and three movies later, Dan is pleasantly buzzed from the booze and the company. They're onto Weaponizer 4 now - which happens to be their shared favourite, mostly because of the rocket-propelled grenades and multiple, amazing explosions. They've just finished the scene where Vanzandt tortures his way through a cult of evil fundamentalist monks (something that seemed to provoke great glee in Lucifer) when Dan first notices something is wrong.

During most of the movies, Lucifer has been a rapt figure against Dan’s side. He keeps winding up almost snuggled against Dan - much to their obvious shared frustration - and hogging the blanket. Who knew the Devil was a snuggler?

But now he’s tense, almost shaking. Dan frowns and turns to look at him.

Lucifer’s eyes fix on the screen, unseeing, before he abruptly jumps up from Dan’s couch as though scalded, mutters an incoherent apology, and all but flees for Dan’s bathroom.

Dan stares after him, confused. What was that about? Dan glances back at the tv, frowning.

They're at one of the sadder bits of the movie. Vanzandt is forced to kill Phelps, his foster brother, who betrays Vanzandt and the CIA to the terrorists. It's a really heart-wrenching, well-acted scene. Vanzandt really brings across the devastation and guilt about killing his-

Oh. Shit.

Dan rubs at his forehead wearily before getting up and following Lucifer to the bathroom.

Lucifer is standing in front of the mirror, hunched over, head hanging low, hands braced on either side of the basin. He's splashed some water on his face at some point, water droplets dripping down from his face.

He startles violently at Dan's cough, rearing up, and his dark eyes make contact with Dan’s slate grey, wildly. He immediately turns his face away and swipes at it ineffectually with his hands.

Dan watches him silently, arms folded, leaning against the doorframe.

‘Want to talk about it?’

Lucifer swallows jerkily before putting on a faux-cheery smile. ‘Talk about what? Sorry, just needed to go for a quick bathroom break.’ He waves a hand at Dan's lowered toilet seat as if to say see.

Dan nods skeptically. ‘Uhuh. That why you leapt up like something bit you on the ass and then obviously only used my basin?’

At Lucifer’s expression, Dan smiles wryly. ‘I know, it’s like I'm detective or something.’ He says gently. ‘You wanna tell me what's going on with you? You've been odd ever since that stakeout we went on.’

Lucifer looks evasive, eyes red-rimmed and avoiding Dan’s.

Dan sighs. ‘Look, I'm not going to force you, man- you're not a perp.’ He pauses and tilts his head to make careful eye contact with Lucifer, who still looks mildly panicked. ‘But maybe I can help.’

Lucifer gives a brittle-sounding laugh. ‘You can’t. No-one can.’ His voice cracks.

Dan nods slowly. ‘Okay. Maybe I can't help, but I can listen if you want to get it off your chest. If you want to tell me what was really going on with you at the church last week.’

Lucifer face closes off, but his eyes look wild and desperate, as though he feels caged in the narrow confines of Dan's bathroom.

I can't.’ His voice is choked.

Dan rubs his face. ‘Okay, man, fine. But it looks like you need to tell someone or it'll eat you up.’ He smiles self-deprecatingly. ‘I know something about guilt and secrets.’

Lucifer nods understandingly. ‘You do. Because of what happened at Palmetto. Where you killed people and then lied to the Detective about it for months and allowed her reputation to be destroyed.’

Dan's jaw clenches automatically before he takes a deep breath and attempts to relax. From Lucifer’s lost expression he isn't even trying to get in a dig here and there's no point in snapping at him. No matter how good it would feel to do so.

Dan sighs, feeling exhausted. ‘Yeah. So if you want to tell me something - even if it’s something bad -’ he hesitates. ‘Look, I can't promise I'll look the other way, not if it's really bad. But I like to think I know you, know something about the sort of person you are, and I'm willing to try and listen if you want to talk.’

Lucifer looks away. ‘But you don't. Know me. Not really. Nobody does.’

Dan frowns, and is about to reply when Lucifer looks back, guard visibly back up. ‘Shouldn't we head back to your loveseat, Daniel? I believe we're missing the movie.’

Dan surveys him for a moment before sighing and stepping away from the doorway, extending his hand to his living room in a reluctant invitation. ‘Sure, let's head back.’

-

Dan could have told him that everyone feels alone and misunderstood some of the time. God knows he did after Palmetto Street.

Chapter Text

It's well after midnight by the time they finish the marathon. They'd both been tense for the rest of the film, on edge from their discussion, from confessions left unsaid.

The moment the credits start rolling Lucifer leaps up from the couch, snatching up his jacket, meticulously avoiding eye contact.

‘Well, thank you for the lovely night, Daniel and for the - nourishment.’ Lucifer half-babbles, casting an eye at the detritus of the pizza and beer.

Dan nods, slowly getting to his feet. Feeling a bit like a zookeeper approaching a skittish animal, he moves to intercept Lucifer before the man bolts, moving to stand tentatively between Lucifer and the door.

‘Hey, you going? It's pretty late, man, and I think you had at least half a dozen standard drinks in the last hour alone.’ Seriously, the way the guy puts away alcohol. How is he even standing?

Lucifer shifts his weight from one foot to another and casts a hunted glance over Dan’s shoulder, towards the door.

Dan raises his hands. ‘Not saying you have to talk, Lucifer, but it's 2am and you're- well, you're looking pretty rough. Why don't you nap here for tonight?’ He tries to defuse the tension with a chuckle. ‘Or am I such a crap host you want to get outta here like the dogs of hell are at your heels?’

Something like understanding crosses Lucifer’s face, and he stares at Dan like he's never seen him before. ‘Right,’ he says, expression complex, unreadable. ‘Of course, you're completely right, Daniel. I've been a poor guest and haven't even repaid your kind hospitality.’

Either unaware of or disregarding Dan’s confused furrowed brow, Lucifer carefully sets his jacket down on the sofa and starts to slowly unbutton his vest.

Dan stares at him, dumbfounded, as Lucifer calmly unbuttons his white shirt next, fingers dancing across downwards with ease of practice, face impassive. What is he doing?

The shirt comes off, revealing a tanned, lean torso. The man may not be built, but God, he's not exactly ugly either. He looks like an underwear model, miles of glowing skin, lightly defined muscle, a dark trail of hair heading lower-

At that thought, Dan throws up a hand. ‘Stop!’

Lucifer pauses, hands at his belt buckle, clearly planning to- what, go full frontal right in front of Dan?

Lucifer’s expression is puzzled. ‘What’s wrong? I thought this was what you wanted.’

Dan’s stomach clenches with an emotion Dan is either unable or unwilling to identify. ‘Why the hell would I want you to undress?!’

Lucifer cocks his head to the side and his brow furrows in what looks painfully like confusion. ‘So I can repay your hospitality, obviously. You made it clear you didn't want me to go.’

Dan has no idea what the hell to do with that. ‘No. Because it's late and you’re drunk. Not because I wanted-’ Dan drops his voice even though they’re alone in the room, ‘-to have sex with you!’

Lucifer blinks slowly, clearly taken aback. ‘Oh. Why not?’

Dan shakes his head in stunned incomprehension. ‘Oh, so many reasons.’ At Lucifer’s baffled look Dan elucidates. ‘Because I'm straight?’

To his eternal chagrin it somehow comes out as a question. Lucifer snorts. ‘Yes, I've heard that one before.’ He regards Dan, expression bemused. ‘So if we're not bumping uglies what are we doing?’

Dan rubs his neck tiredly. ‘Well, I'm going to bed.’ Seeing Lucifer open his mouth, Dan quickly interjects. ‘And I think you should stay on the couch.’ He eyes Lucifer’s still half-naked form for perhaps a second too long before tearing his gaze away and clearing his throat loudly. ‘I've got some nightclothes you can borrow.’

Lucifer seems to process this. ‘So you want me to stay in your flat - on your awful 'couch' - to literally just sleep?’ At Dan’s nod, Lucifer shrugs carelessly. ‘If you insist. It seems like a poor method of repayment to me, but when in Rome, as they say.’

Dan nods and, feeling like he'd dodged a bullet, escapes to fetch Lucifer clothes. All the clothes, preferably.

-

After setting Lucifer up on the couch - and numerous complaints about the colour, (‘Are you sure you're not colourblind, Daniel? You are aware this sofa is in fact lurid green?’), length (‘I'm sure this was built for a man of your more Napoleonic proportions, Dan, but where am I supposed to put my legs?’) and consistency (‘Is there meant to be a spring there, Detective?’) of Dan's beloved furniture - Dan settles into bed.

Before he drops off, he thinks that despite the weirdness and unexpected sadness, this is still one of the most fun nights he's had in awhile. Dan really needs to get a life.

As Dan's mind slips into the embrace of sleep, the last thing Dan sees is a flash of Lucifer’s eyes as they were in Dan’s bathroom, red-rimmed and sad and staring at Dan as though from across an untraversable gulf.

Chapter Text

The next morning Dan is rudely awakened by a sudden crash. He sits bolt upright and scrabbles, half-awake, for his gun.

He stumbles into the kitchen, hungover and wary, only to be greeted by the unlikely sight of Lucifer Morningstar in Dan’s far too loose UCLA college shirt and shorts, back to Dan while he cheerfully fries up something that smells delicious on Dan’s stove.

‘Jesus Christ,’ says Dan clutching his chest. ‘What the hell, man, I could have shot you!’

Lucifer gives him a flirtatious look over his shoulder, the dick. ‘Go on, then! I do love the smell of gunpowder in the morning.’

Dan snorts and rubs his eyes blearily. ‘Seriously, Apocalypse Now?’

Lucifer smiles dryly. ‘Not for another few years, actually - thankfully.’ He points a spatula Dan doesn’t even remember owning at him.

Dan shuffles into his kitchen, feeling old and creaky, only to be handed a steaming cup of fresh coffee. Dan nearly proposes on the spot. (He will forever deny that Chloe’s talents with coffee played a role in his proposal, but they may have been a minor factor.)

He mutters an absent thanks before taking a scalding sip. It takes like heaven and Dan is approximately 100% sure he doesn't own a coffee blend like this. He closes his eyes and moans, opening his eyes to catch the tail-end of a deeply amused glance from Lucifer. Dan clears his throat and takes another - more controlled - sip of the ambrosia. He leans against his counter, toes curling as he observes Lucifer doing something ridiculously fancy with Dan’s only skillet.

‘Wow, I never really got coffee fanatics but if coffee is meant to taste like this I’d almost be willing to sell my soul for a cup.’

Lucifer casts him a wry look. ‘Careful, Daniel. No cup of coffee - no matter how superb - is worth that price, and you never know who's listening.’

Dan furrows his brow. ‘Listeni- Oh, right, sorry, forgot who I was talking to.’

He watches for a moment as Lucifer expertly flips some waffles. Dan didn't even know he had waffles. ‘Thanks, man. You didn't have to cook.’

Lucifer raises a shoulder in an elegant shrug. ‘Perhaps not, but I wanted to. As recompense for your company and consideration lately.’ He eyes Dan suspiciously and as Dan takes another sip of delicious coffee says, ‘Especially as you seem to refuse sex, for some bizarre reason.’ Dan chokes into his mug.

Just as Dan’s sitting down to eat his amazing breakfast (waffles, bacon, egg, perfectly crisp toast, how does Lucifer even exist?), the doorbell rings. It's old Mrs Santinez, because of course it is. It isn't as though Dan doesn’t like Mrs S because who wouldn't - she’s at least ninety and makes the best beef casseroles in the neighbourhood - but she also has exactly no concept of boundaries and, like today, is always more than happy to barge in once someone has made the fatal error of opening a door to her.

‘Daniel, carino,’ she exclaims. ‘How is my favourite boy?’ She leans closer and beams. ‘I must tell you what those young Rodriguezes across at 16b have been up to, those naughty girls.’

She’s opening her mouth to no doubt tell Dan in excruciating detail what exactly the Rodriguez sisters - eighty years old if they're a day - have been doing, when she catches sight of Lucifer loitering in Dan’s kitchen, still barefoot and dressed in Dan’s shirt.

‘You should have said you had company!’ Her eyes travel up and down Lucifer appreciatively who gifts her an overly charming smile in return. ‘Especially such handsome company.’

Lucifer grins at her, taking her gnarled hand in his and making a production out of bowing over it. ‘Oh stop, darling. You'll make me blush, a compliment from a beautiful lady such as yourself.’

Mrs S flushes with pleasure while she continues to hold Lucifer’s hand for way longer than Dan thinks is called for.

‘Why Daniel, you cruel boy, where have you hiding this wonderful man?’ She reluctantly releases Lucifer’s hand and wheels over to Dan to pat his cheek, speaking in a stage whisper. ‘I'm so happy you're getting past your divorce, dear. That's the spirit, get right back onto the horse, that's what I always say.’

And with a wink to a horrified Dan, she wheels out his door, calling loudly, ‘I'll leave you two lovebirds alone now, pretend I was never here.’

Dan stares in shock at Lucifer who just raises his eyebrows at him archly.

‘Not a word,’ he warns.

Lucifer smirks. ‘Wouldn’t dream of it, Daniel.’ He waits until Dan takes a bite of his (frickin’ divine) bacon before adding, ‘I do like how she assumed that you would be the one doing the riding, though, don't you?’ and smirking when Dan nearly chokes to death.

-

Dan doesn’t care what Lucifer says. He'd sell his soul for the bacon alone.

-

To Dan's surprise Lucifer doesn't eat anything, instead opting for creepily watching Dan eat instead. At Dan's odd look, Lucifer disappears, only to reappear in what had to be record time dressed once again in his pristine suit.

Dan puts down his fork, feeling weirdly out of sorts. He clears his throat. ‘Heading home?’

‘Back to Lux, yes, unless the Detective has a new case for us. I could really go for a gruesome murder.’ He grins in a way Dan should probably find alarming.

Dan stands. ‘Well, thanks again, Lucifer. I had fun.’

Lucifer nods, eyes bright. ‘I, too. Perhaps we could have a Body Bags ‘marathon’ another day?’ He smiles tentatively.

Dan grins with a small laugh. ‘Yeah, I'd like that!’

He sobers as he regards Lucifer, the scene from last night in the bathroom flashing through his mind.

‘Look, man, if you do ever decide to talk? My door's open, and I'm sure Chloe’s is too.’

Lucifer starts then nods once, cautiously. He seems a little overwhelmed, eyes darting away briefly. ‘Thank you.’

He hesitates before looking back at Dan and saying, almost uncharacteristically solemn, ‘Perhaps one day I will.’

-

When Dan comes to work on Monday, it's to the baffling discovery of a pudding sitting innocuously on his desk, a bright yellow sticky note on the plate stating in neat red block lettering: ‘Property of Detective Dan Espinoza. Consume at your own peril.’

After having it tested by Ella and found to be non-poisonous, Dan eats it.

It's delicious.

If only Dan had any earthly clue who left it for him.

Chapter Text

Dan is just finishing up his final case report of the day when a dark shadow plops into the seat by his desk.

It's Lucifer, tapping his foot agitatedly and eying Dan intently.

Dan blinks. It's been a week since their movie night (not sleepover, no matter how many times Lucifer loudly calls it that) and he’s not seen much of him in the interim.

Chloe had caught a big case and she and Lucifer had been on the hunt for a Russian sniper assassinating former mob members across LA. By all accounts it had gotten pretty hairy, with Chloe and Lucifer only barely missing out on becoming the sniper’s next victims.

How this results in Lucifer glaring at him like Dan set his convertible alight escapes Dan.

As Dan reaches across his desk to sip at his coffee, Lucifer slaps at his hands. ‘Leave it,’ he says impatiently. He leans across Dan’s desk intently. ‘I promise I will buy, make or otherwise obtain - through any means necessary - an incredible, mouth-watering, orgasmic cup of joe for you if you do just one tiny, insignificant little favour for me.’

Dan blinks. Seriously?

‘Or,’ says Dan, grabbing his ‘substandard oil spill’ (according to Lucifer, on multiple occasions) and pointedly taking a slow sip. ‘I can just not do you a favour and buy myself a cup of coffee.’

Lucifer scowls at him. ‘Detective Douche-’ he pauses then takes a big breath. ‘Look. I need your help. Please. I'm not joking. I will quite literally do just about anything you want of me if you assist me in this. Sex is still on the table.’

At Dan's choke, Lucifer leans forward and smolders. ‘I am quite serious. I will literally drop to my knees, crawl under this-’ he casts a disdainful eye over Dan paper-ridded desk, ‘-quagmire you laughingly call a workstation and give you the best, wettest, most thorough head of your entire-’

‘Okay, okay, stop talking!’ Dan yelps, flinging his hands to almost cover his ears. ‘I'll help, just let me know what the hell it is you want!’

Lucifer smile is dark and rich with promise and- is that his hand creeping towards Dan’s thigh? ‘No sex!’ He barks. Lucifer squints at him as though Dan is the one being weird about this.

‘What do you want, Lucifer?’

Lucifer’s shoulders drop and all the sensuality disappears from his face and body as if it had never been there.

‘I need you to help me learn to use a gun.’ His eyes meet Dan’s, dark and intent.

At Dan’s surprised look, Lucifer huffs irritably. ‘I mean I know the basics. Point and shoot, just like sex.’ He pauses, consideringly. ‘Well, some sex. Well, boring sex. How hard can it be?’ He shrugs expressively before becoming more serious.

‘But I need to obtain a license and the Detective refuses to teach me. She says that - and I quote-’ his voice goes up a register and takes on a nasal American character, ‘-‘the day I let you carry a gun, Lucifer, you incredibly handsome devil you, is the day I shoot myself’.’

Lucifer huffs. ‘She seems to think I'm too irresponsible for a gun. Me!’ He looks at Dan indignantly.

Dan eyes him. ‘Imagine that.’

‘I know!’ Exclaims Lucifer before catching the wry look on Dan's face. ‘Oh, you were being sarcastic. Charming.’

He leans forward, elbows pressing against his thighs. ‘Look, Daniel, Dan, I wouldn't ask but the Detective-’, he looks away briefly. ‘Chloe nearly died yesterday because I was unable to protect her. I've never bothered with guns before because up until this moment I've never needed one, but if she’d been just an inch to the left yesterday-’ he swallows, eyes wide. ‘Detective Dan, please. I could really use your help. I would think that you, of all people, would understand.’

Dan shifts awkwardly, torn. On one hand, he wholeheartedly agrees with Chloe that giving Lucifer Morningstar a gun is sheer lunacy, but on the other he can't help but sympathise with Lucifer’s painfully obvious distress.

Faced with Lucifer’s pleading eyes (there's no way it's right that they look just like Trixie’s when she's begging shamelessly for cake) he caves. ‘Alright. But,’ he holds up his hand as Lucifer’s face lights up. ‘We do this my way, got it?’

Lucifer nods eagerly and leaps to his feet, practically bouncing on his heels.

Dan takes one look at the scarily exuberant idiot looming over his desk like a great, overgrown puppy and sighs deeply.

Damn.

Chloe’s going to kill Dan.

-

The LAPD gun range is vacant at this time of day. Dan reluctantly chooses a booth and sets up, Lucifer trailing behind him and taking in everything with patent fascination.

Dan hands Lucifer a pair of headphones and talks him through the assembly, disassembly, and components of a his LAPD issue handgun.

About halfway through he catches Lucifer’s look of disdain and stops. ‘What.’

Lucifer shrugs. ‘Why can’t we just focus on the good bit? How to shoot these bad boys?’

Dan sighs irritably. ‘See, this? This might be why Chloe doesn’t think you're ready for this.’ At Lucifer’s insulted expression, Dan ploughs on, voice sharp. ‘The assembly, disassembly, and maintenance of your gun is important, Lucifer. If you don't take care of your gun, things can go wrong. You could jam. You could hurt Chloe.’

At this Lucifer sobers up, looking a little downcast. ‘Oh. I didn't think about that.’ He seems slightly rueful.

Dan sighs. ‘Yeah, I'll bet. Going to listen to me now?’

Miracle of miracles, Lucifer actually listens to the rest of Dan's speech - even asking a few reasonably intelligent questions - but when it comes for Dan to teach him his stance and how to hold a gun he can see Lucifer perk up.

He's a natural.

It takes Dan maybe two minutes to adjust his stance appropriately and another few to impart some tips on how to hit the target, but by Lucifer’s tenth shot he's hitting bullseyes. There’s no way this is his first time holding a gun, which means Dan has just wasted the last hour of his life.

‘What the hell, man? Why didn't you tell me you already knew how to shoot?’

Lucifer frowns. ‘I didn't.’ At Dan's disbelieving look, Lucifer protests, ‘I swear, I didn't. It just comes easily to me, that's all. I can't help it if I'm naturally talented at everything I set myself to in life.’

Dan snorts but eyes him. Lucifer, he knows, has a whole thing about telling the truth (or at least what he perceives as the truth), which means that, given his earnest expression, this likely really is his first time.

Dan shakes his head, reluctantly impressed. ‘Wow. Then you're a natural, man. Kudos. You could become a marksman with these scores and a little work.’

Lucifer grins brightly. ‘Thank you!’ He slides Dan a sly look. ‘But I'm sure there's still room for a little more of your august guidance. I don't think my stance is quite right. I don't suppose you could help, Detective?’

Dan frowns. ‘Yeah, sure.’ He moves behind Lucifer to assess him. ‘Where do you think you're going wrong?’

Lucifer’s voice carries in the booth, warm and strangely satisfied. ‘My hips, I think. They feel a little off-centre. Would you mind adjusting them for me, friend Dan?’

Dan frowns and lightly places his hands on either side of Lucifer’s hips. ‘I don’t see the problem,’ he says puzzled, before noticing Lucifer’s shoulders shaking. The bastard’s laughing.

Dan flushes and yanks his hands away. ‘Oh, come on! Seriously, man?’ Lucifer’s laugh, echoing around the booth, bright and delighted, aggravates and warms him in equal measure.

-

Dan doesn’t think about Lucifer’s offer of the best blow job of his life, or the feel of his hips in Dan’s hands.

Nope, he does not think of it at all.

Chapter Text

It's the second Tuesday of the month, and Dan reluctantly invites Lucifer to his monthly poker game (which is 100% Chloe’s fault for informing Lucifer of its existence in the first place. Thanks, Chlo. So much.)

It's not a big gathering, just Dan and some old buddies from the gym and the force playing for petty cash and having a few beers, the game on in the background.

Dan is a little nervous because, try as he might, he can’t really see weird, fastidious, horrendously snobbish Lucifer fitting in with Dan’s crowd.

Turns out Dan didn't need to worry about Lucifer not getting on with Dan’s buddies.

He discovers this around the time he walks in on Lucifer in the kitchen, Lucifer’s hand down Steve's pants and Steve's mouth on his neck.

Steve is a burly ex-Marine in his fifties who has been married to a woman for nigh on twenty years, and whose main topics of interest - as far as Dan has been able to ascertain - seem to involve logging and basketball. Straight Steve, who again as far as Dan is aware, had never so much glanced at a man with interest in his life.

So shocked is Dan that he stares at the pair of them, open-mouthed for a minute, until Lucifer pulls his neck away from Steve's lips with a visceral wet squelch that does things to Dan’s stomach.

‘What are you doing?’ Dan yelps out.

Lucifer grins at Dan, completely unashamed. ‘Daniel! Why, I would have thought that was pretty obvious.’

Lucifer absently makes a deft twisting movement with his hand that has Steve gasping into his neck. At Dan's gobsmacked look Lucifer frowns, seemingly baffled.

‘What’s wrong? We don’t even have our naughty bits out yet!’ Then he seems to realise something, and some poor optimistic part of Dan thinks ‘oh thank God, he's coming to his senses’ before Lucifer grins, lightning quick.

‘Or did you want to join? Feel free,’ he leers cheerfully. ‘I'm more than up for it, Detective. And Steve doesn’t mind, do you, love?’ Lucifer slaps Steve's ass gleefully.

Dan automatically reaches for the six-pack of beer on his counter, grimly determined to get drunk enough to scrub this night from his memory, before abruptly snapping and grabbing Lucifer’s arm, pulling him away from Steve and out of the kitchen.

Lucifer yelps in surprise but lets himself be propelled away.

For lack of any other private spot in his apartment-for-one Dan drags him into his bedroom closet. Lucifer blinks at him, startled, before favouring him an enormous grin.

‘Why, Detective Espinoza, you do surprise me! So glad you've finally come to your senses. How would you like me? I'll admit the closet isn't the most romantic - or practical - location for a shag but points for a classic!’ He slaps his thighs enthusiastically. ‘So! On my knees or up against the wall? I do hope it's reinforced.’ He leers.

Dan stares at him, shocked, before waving his hands in the air between them furiously. ‘What the hell, man?!’

‘Oh,’ says Lucifer, seemingly surprised. ‘On your knees it is, then. I'm impressed.’

Dan glares furiously. ‘I'm not having sex with you!’

Lucifer deflates. ‘Oh. Well, I hate to ask, but what are we doing standing quite literally in your closet then? I hope you know how hard it is for me not to take this as a metaphor.’

Dan doesn’t know why he is still surprised by anything Lucifer says or does, he really doesn’t. ‘I thought we had this conversation, Lucifer.’

Lucifer blinks, puzzled. ‘Nooo? I don't recall ever having a conversation in a closet. Well,’ he pauses, considering, ‘not one with you, at any rate.’

Dan scrubs at his face in despair. Be patient, be patient, he tells himself. Pretend it's Trixie. Oh wait, actually no, that's creepy. Don't pretend it's Trixie.

‘I thought you agreed you shouldn't sleep with anyone else while you and Chloe were sorting out your-’ Dan waves his hand helplessly, ‘-whatever.’

Lucifer nods cautiously. ‘Yes, I recall. You stressed the likely importance of monogamy for her and I accepted that the Detective may not appreciate me bedding other women.’

Dan nods, relieved that they appear to be on the same page, for once. ‘Exactly. So what the hell was that?’

Lucifer seems nonplussed. ‘That,’ he echoes slowly as though Dan was clearly the one being slow on the uptake, ‘was very obviously a man, Daniel.’

Dan stares at him. Lucifer stares back, apparently genuinely confused.

Dan resists the urge to hit his head. ‘Still counts, Lucifer.’

Lucifer looks scandalised. ‘What?’ Then he scoffs, ‘So what, I'm not allowed to sleep with women or men now? That's ridiculous!’

Yeah. That’s what’s ridiculous. ‘Pretty sure Chloe's not going to see it that way, but you know what, man? You could always skip the middleman here and actually talk to her.’

Lucifer looks dubious. ‘Ah, but why do that when I have you? You're like my very own ‘Ask Aunt Mabel’ column. Perfect.’ He claps Dan forcefully on the back. ‘Thank you, Dan, pal and partner in crime, for illuminating me on this subject!’

And with that he trots back to Dan’s living room to resume decimating Dan’s unfortunate buddies at poker, leaving Dan standing alone in his closet questioning every decision he's ever made.

-

Lucifer not only wins poker night but also apparently feels the need to set Steve up with Dan’s other buddy Bruce by way of apology for the aborted orgasm.

Dan discovers this when he walks in on them making out in his closet.

Dan hates his life.

Chapter Text

‘Lucifer, would you can it with all the smartass comments?!’

Dan drops grumpily into his desk chair and glares at his - what, friend? Chloe’s hopefully-not-boyfriend? - oh yeah, his pain in the ass.

Lucifer eyes him sullenly. ‘I don’t know what you're talking about, Daniel. I've been the epitome of good behaviour. Angelic, even,’ he says in that snide tone that never fails to make Dan want to punch him.

Dan snorts disparagingly. ‘Yeah, ‘angelic’ is so not the word I'd go with.’

Lucifer smiles at him insincerely. ‘Well, it's not like you would know anything at all about celestial lifeforms, would you? That's just a tad outside the bounds of your pathetically limited worldview.’

Dan glares at him irritably, suspecting there's a dig at him somewhere in there. To be honest, Dan is this close to pulling the cop card and sticking him in a holding cell for time out.

But something is holding him back. Exasperated, he snaps. ‘What is up with you today, man?’

Lucifer’s been a nightmare ever since this morning. Antsy and uncontrollable, he's made one of Chloe’s witnesses cry and gotten the phone numbers of at least two others - including their erstwhile prime suspect - to Dan's loudly articulated disbelief. He's so lucky the guy didn’t turn out to be the freaking axe murderer.

But something feels wrong. Like he's missing what Chloe had once coined 'his usual absurd glee’.

He watches Lucifer closely this time as the man hesitates, taking in the tense line of his shoulders and the shifty eye contact, the faint bruise under his left eye he'd been weirdly closed-mouthed about.

Dan softens slightly despite himself.

‘Seriously, man, you okay?’

Lucifer’s shoulders drop a bit and his eyes fall almost absently on a poster raising awareness against domestic violence.

‘Just had a little tiff with my bro. No biggie.’

Dan nods slowly, worried. Turns out the only thing worse than an annoying, inappropriately bouncy Lucifer, is an unhappy, sad anime eyes Lucifer. It just feels wrong.

Ten minutes later it's home time, but Dan feels strangely loathe to just leave him like this all despondent and defeated.

He stretches his legs uneasily in his office chair, only to start as his boot catches on something. His gym bag. Oh yeah, he'd forgotten he was planning to head out for a workout tonight to burn off the extra tension.

An idea, horribly ill-advised as it is, pops into Dan's head with an almost audible ‘ping’. He grabs his gym bag and tugs it out from under his desk.

‘Hey, you wanna get out of here? Blow off some steam?’

At Lucifer's obvious perking up, and the smirk forming on his lips, Dan almost groans. ‘Oh definitely,’ Lucifer purrs. His eyes dance at Dan smugly. ‘I'm so glad you're finally surrendering to your true desires, Dan. Good show!’

Dan almost snaps back an automatic denial before narrowing his eyes at Lucifer’s stupid, taunting face. Oh, he wants to play it like that, does he?

‘Yeah, I guess you could say I am.’ Dan leans slowly forward towards Lucifer, making sure to catch Lucifer’s gaze directly, deliberately provocative. He speaks slowly in a sarcastic approximation of Lucifer’s ridiculous purr. ‘Let's go and have some hot… sweaty… physical fun.’

Lucifer blinks first, in surprise, and for a wonderful moment Dan feels almost triumphant. Then Lucifer lights up and jumps to his feet. Ah shit, Dan thinks with sudden alarm. Backfired. Abort, abort!

‘Lovely! Then what are we waiting for? Time to finally pop your cherry, Daniel!’

And with that he strolls off, leaving Dan open-mouthed, staring after him. ‘My- what. I don't. I'm not- I'm not a virgin, Lucifer!’

There’s a long moment of loud silence and, belatedly, Dan realises he just hollered that in the middle of the precinct.

Det. Matthews gives him a weird look from the next workstation. Dan glares at him repressively. ‘What, man? You got something to say?’

With a huff he snatches up his bag and jacket and stalks out after his dick of a non-friend.

-

Lucifer whines for what feels like the entire way to the gym, to the point where Dan almost threatens to ‘turn this car around, dammit’.

‘But I don’t want to go to the gym, Daniel. I have to, er… wash my hair tonight.’

Dan snorts. ‘Oh, you're coming, alright. You've been a pain in my ass all day and-’

Dan catches Lucifer’s smirk - no doubt thinking some puerile innuendo, the prick - and narrows his eyes. ‘-this'll be good for you.’

Dan takes a deep breath. ‘Exercise disciplines the mind and body, with proven benefit for mental health and overall wellbeing,’ he very nearly recites.

Okay. Dan may be a bit of a gym nut. So sue him.

Lucifer side eyes him warily. ‘Discipline, eh? Might have known you were the type.’

Dan frowns through his windscreen. ‘What type?’ He says defensively.

Lucifer scowls at a passing toy shop. ‘The whole ‘spare the rod, spoil the child’ philosophy.’ He snorts. ‘No wonder you slept with M-arlotte. You're just her type. Dad was big on discipline too.’

And they're back to Lucifer making no sense. Dan needs a Lucifer-English dictionary some day, he really does.

‘Look,’ he tries to soothe, ‘it'll be fine. You'll love it. I'll teach you some of my regimen. It'll help take your mind off-’ Dan's eyes flick unwillingly to the fading bruise on Lucifer’s cheek, ‘-things.’

Lucifer looks unconvinced. ‘But it’s boring and smelly, and I was promised sex.’

Dan accidentally slams on the brakes too hard. ‘No, you weren't.’

Lucifer practically pouts at him. Dan almost expects the next words out of his mouth to be a childish ‘you suck’ like Trixie when she was five.

‘Fine,’ says Lucifer reluctantly. ‘I'll go ‘work out’.’

Huh. Guess he's finally decided to grow up.

‘But I want ice cream afterwards.’

Or not.

Dan stares at him, hands resting on the steering wheel as he parks the car. ‘Why?’

Lucifer gazes at him, scandalised, as though Dan had just committed blasphemy. Actually no, Dan reflects, he'd probably approve of blasphemy.

‘Because ice cream,’ Lucifer enunciates slowly. ‘Cool, delicious, gelatinous and,’ he smirks, ‘nice and sticky. What's not to like?’

Dan shakes his head in defeat and leads his weird little friend into the gym.

-

At least Lucifer’s back to his usual chatty gibberish. After a day of almost palpable unhappiness from him, Dan tries not to feel relieved.

-

Lucifer is a big enough devil to admit his error.

He loves the gym.

His eyes joyously track body after hot, delicious body, appealingly sweaty and bared delectably to his gaze.

‘I take it all back,’ he says delightedly, turning to his trusty sidekick Dan. ‘You were right. This is doing wonders for my mental health and wellbeing.’

Dan sighs, looking put out for some reason. ‘Right, great. So happy you're enjoying the… scenery. Come on, lemme show you around.’ He puts a hand lightly on Lucifer’s back and steers him gently, pointing up all sorts of kinky looking paraphernalia, from big, bulky black barbells which wouldn't look out of place in a dungeon - crushing someone's chest, no doubt - to intriguing stretchy board things which put Lucifer in mind of the rack.

He watches bemused as the humans mill around, panting and gasping in various states of undress, toiling helplessly in the vain attempt to achieve an ideal that would always lie just out of their reach.

‘I'm impressed,’ he comments to Dan with a grin. ‘There I was striving for new and inventive punishments for you lot downstairs when look at you. Creating your very own perfect personalised hells. Kudos, Dan.’

He disregards Dan’s odd look, glancing around with interest as Dan leads him into the men’s locker room.

Lovely. All this almost nudity is giving Lucifer rather excellent flashbacks to those wondrous baths they'd attended for that sting. Ooh yes, nice and steamy.

He turns back to share this glee with his compatriot only to find Dan ferreting through his bag.

‘You'd better strip off,’ Dan says absently.

Lucifer beams, ‘Now you're getting it!’

Dan gives him an unfriendly look. ‘Oh for the love of- just take off your shirt, Lucifer. You can't work out in, in- what is that anyway, Prada?’

Lucifer sniffs. ‘Ted Baker, actually. And of course I can. I'll have you know, I've done all sorts of diverting things to all kinds of people in this suit.’ He pops his hands into his pockets and smiles unpleasantly. ‘Some of them even begged me to.’

Dan looks faintly nauseated. ‘Well trust me, you'll be much more comfortable out of that suit. Hang on,’ he mutters distractedly, ‘I'll go see if they've got a spare tee you can borrow.’

He wanders out of the locker room, completely oblivious to Lucifer shrugging philosophically and cheerfully beginning to strip.

-

‘Hey,’ calls Dan not two minutes later, ‘I've managed to rustle up a-’

He stops in his tracks.

Lucifer is butt naked and having what looks like a very fun conversation with a buff older man in a very small towel.

Seriously?’ Dan snaps to no-one in particular.

‘Daniel!’ Lucifer grins and turns around, giving Dan an eyeful of more than he ever wanted to see.

‘Lucifer!’ He barks, hastily looking up and staring fixedly at Lucifer’s bright eyes. Don't look down, he tells himself firmly. Nope, don't do it, Espinoza.

Lucifer looks completely unabashed, the dick. ‘What? You said I'd feel more comfortable out of that suit, and,’ he grins wickedly, ‘You were right. Much more comfortable. So much better air circulation around my-’

‘That's great,’ interrupts Dan hastily. ‘But you do realise you can't go out into the gym like that?’

At Lucifer’s worryingly blank look of incomprehension, Dan rephrases. ‘You can't go out there like that. Put some freaking pants on, man.’

‘If you insist,’ Lucifer huffs, seeming annoyed. He bends over and pulls on his pants, either unaware or unashamed of the looks he’s getting from other patrons.

‘I don't understand what you're so fussed about, the Greeks practically invented such masculine pursuits and they did it in all their deliciously greece-d up nuddy glory'. He abruptly grins, 'We simply must visit some time, Daniel! Maybe they could teach you a thing or two. Although,’ he considers, ‘Perhaps I'll give Olympus a miss. They're not exactly fans of my fam up there.’

Dan snorts at his babble and glares at a particularly slack-jawed jerk who is staring first at Lucifer’s ass then at his bare, well-toned back, lingering dazedly on the scars. ‘Hey,’ he says sharply, ‘eyes up, buddy.’

He turns back to find Lucifer blessedly decent and looking at Dan expectantly. ‘What?’

‘Aren't you going to change?’

Dan gives him an unimpressed look, not fooled for a moment by his expression of innocence.

‘That depends,’ says Dan dryly.

‘On what?’

‘Whether you're going to be a creep about it.’ At Lucifer’s insulted expression, Dan makes a twirling gesture with his hand. ‘Turn around.’

Lucifer huffs but easily complies. ‘You really are ridiculously prudish, has anyone ever mentioned that?’ He calls over his shoulder.

‘Can't say that they have,’ says Dan wryly, before pausing. He should be changing, but his eyes are strangely caught by Lucifer’s back. By the scars.

It's the first time he's really had a good look at them. At the baths it had just been a quick - and disturbing - glance, but now he finds it hard to tear his gaze away.

They're so vivid, webbed and striated, almost like burns or the imprint of feathers. In his nearly twenty years as a cop, Dan has seen so many kinds of brutality visited on innocent victims, so much cruelty and outright abuse, but he doesn't think he's ever seen anything like this. God, someone must have pinned Lucifer down and burnt him, how-

Lucifer’s voice draws him from his twisted reverie. ‘Can I turn around now?’ He sounds impatient. Dan starts, feeling abruptly guilty, like he'd been caught doing something he shouldn't.

He hastily grabs his workout clothes. ‘Sorry, nearly done.’

He swiftly changes into his t-shirt, shorts and trainers, feeling unsettled.

He clears his throat, keeping his eyes averted. ‘Ready.’

Lucifer swings around and gives him a slow once-over, eyes lingering on Dan’s bare arms. Dan crosses them, the guilt rapidly being replaced by much more welcome irritation.

Lucifer looks disappointed. ‘Must you wear that tedious shirt?’

Dan snorts, happy to be back on familiar footing. ‘I must, yeah.’ He sighs. ‘Come on, buddy. Let's start with the weights.’

Oh yeah, he’s looking forward to seeing smooth, never a hair out of place Lucifer puffing and straining under a barbell.

He’s looking forward to that a lot.

-

Lucifer doesn't puff and strain under the barbell.

Instead, Dan watches in patent disbelief as Lucifer, lying flat on his back on the bench, effortlessly bench presses a good 300lb barbell, without even breaking a sweat. How the hell is he doing that?

Half an hour ago Dan had led Lucifer to the weights and given him a crash course on rookie sizes and basic reps. Lucifer had listened and nodded, eyes wide and - in retrospect - suspiciously guileless.

He had accepted the first beginner’s barbell Dan had handed him, peering up at Dan innocently as he lay down flat on his back on the bench. ‘But what if it's too heavy, friend Dan? Whatever shall I do?’

Dan patted his bare shoulder awkwardly. God he wished Lucifer had put on a shirt, they were drawing stares.

Not that a man exercising shirtless was unusual in a gym but there was, Dan was willing to grudgingly concede, something about Lucifer, that seemed to draw people in like bees to honey. Lechers, thought Dan uncharitably, choosing to ignore the way his own eyes kept falling almost automatically to Lucifer’s lean frame, his smooth skin and perfect little nipples.

Wait- nipples?! Goddamn it.

He cleared his throat and quickly dropped his hand away from Lucifer’s shoulder. ‘Just let me know, buddy, and I'll spot you. Help you lift,’ he said at Lucifer’s questioning glance.

Lucifer grinned. ‘My, my, that sounds intimate - you helping me lift my load. So helpful, Dan.'

Dan snorted and pointedly let go of his hold of the first weight, expecting Lucifer grunt and have to push pretty hard on his first go, but Lucifer just held it, as easily as one might a feather.

He bench pressed it like a pro, without batting an eyelid. Dan stared at him.

Lucifer gave him an arch look. ‘Is that it? That's easy.’

Dan recovered quickly and narrowed his eyes at him. He went to get the next weight up, thinking maybe Lucifer was just a bit stronger than he looked, but Lucifer just smirked at him and lifted that just as easily.

Dan couldn't believe this. ‘You done this before?’

Lucifer grinned, ‘Nope, why?’

Dan shook his head in confusion. He frowned and went to fetch a higher barbell, almost double the weight. Hell of an escalation, but wanted to see what Lucifer’s game was.

He handed it to Lucifer, expecting at least a wince, but nothing. Lucifer just looked mildly bored. Dan watched him, baffled. ‘How are you doing that?’

Lucifer shrugged. ‘Supernatural strength and durability due to my hailing from the distant and celestial heavens?’

Dan snorted. ‘Oh, come on, man.'

Lucifer sighed. ‘Atheists,’ he muttered, weirdly. ‘Look, Detective, just consider this as one of those things I'm just naturally gifted in.’

Dan eyed him skeptically. ‘Uh-huh,’ he said before adding more weights.

He was going to get to the bottom of this if it killed him.

-

By the end of the half hour they had drawn quite a crowd, standing around and cheering as they watched Lucifer bench press weights better suited to men twice his size.

Dan gives up, bemused and just a little frustrated by the group of ridiculously fit and attractive men and women swarming around them. What did he say? Bees to honey.

‘Okay, man, I don't know how the hell you're doing it but you're definitely stronger than you look.’

Lucifer grimaces slightly. ‘Hell had nought to do with it, I can assure you.’

He casually drops the final barbell on the ground at Dan's feet and hops lightly up from the bench, thanking his adoring audience graciously.

He claps Dan on the back cheerily. ‘Well, that was bracing! Quite a lovely little warm up. What’s next?’ He gives Dan and expectant look.

Dan shakes his head in dismay. ‘What’s next is I get some of my workout done and you get to take a breather.’ He eyes Lucifer, looking for a hint of sweat or the slightest sign of fatigue - but nothing. God, this guy is weird.

Dan sits down on Lucifer’s bench and watches as the crowd dissipates around them. ‘Hey, man, you mind getting us some water?’

As Lucifer trots off with a slightly cross look at Dan and a muttered ‘What did your last slave die of?’ Dan frowns down at the discarded barbell. After a moment’s hesitation, he bends over and gingerly tries to lift it, thinking that maybe there's a trick to it or it’s the wrong weight, but no. It's so heavy Dan can barely lift it.

Huh. He drops it back down, noting with bemusement some odd dents in the bar, as though something had crushed the iron. Weird.

With a sigh he flops back and grudgingly begins his regimen, warming up to his own advanced weights, mind still turning.

There must be some explanation to all Lucifer’s weirdness.

Luckily, Dan is a detective.

Chapter Text

Lucifer is bored.

He’d had his bit of fun earlier with those silly little iron things, and watching Dan get progressively hot and sweaty had definitely held its own appeal - though to Lucifer’s disappointment he'd insisted on keeping that ugly shirt on. Plus ‘spotting’ apparently involved all sorts of delightful leaning over Dan, and warm, lingering helping, to Dan's obvious irritation.

But now Lucifer’s watching his friend do a number of boring things with what looks like a pale facsimile of a rowboat (somehow) and despite himself finds his mind drifting back to the row he'd had with Amenadiel last night.

Amenadiel had been in a mood ever since he'd Fallen and Lucifer cannot truthfully see why.

When Lucifer had Fallen all those aeons ago it had been an altogether more dramatic affair, literally memorialised by countless singers and poets across the ages.

It had also been, to Lucifer’s mind, infinitely more agonising.

Dad had sent dear old Mike to put him in his place and Michael - ever the good little boy - had. No hesitation, no questions asked. He’d grappled with Lucifer in his usual, hamfisted manner, and hurled him broken and bleeding into perdition to burn for eternity.

Lucifer had been left alone and hopeless for what felt like an age, before the first of the damned wandered in and Lucifer had been set to work.

If you ask Lucifer, Amenadiel had it
easy, just losing his more annoying powers and a few ugly feathers.

Amenadiel had not asked Lucifer, but Lucifer said as much to him anyway which may, in retrospect, have precipitated their little tiff.

Still, it was no excuse for Amenadiel to act such a boor, to bring up Uriel when he knew it was a low blow. Before either of them knew it things had devolved into a bout of fisticuffs.

Amenadiel may not be as strong as he’d been as Dad's dull little enforcer, but he still packed one hell of a punch, even half-Fallen.

Lucifer’s cheek still smarts faintly almost a day later - though he takes some comfort in knowing that he'd practically broken his brother's stupid nose in retaliation.

He also feels just a hint of creeping guilt, for reasons he cannot quite articulate.

Perhaps because arguing with Amenadiel when he is all grumpy and broody seems perhaps just a bit too much like kicking a chap when he's down. Or perhaps because he feels, just occasionally, a little responsible for Amenadiel’s Fall. Which is patently ridiculous as Amenadiel’s Fall isn't anyone's fault but Amenadiel’s. And maybe Maze’s. Probably Dad’s. Certainly not Lucifer’s.

Still. Perhaps rubbing salt in the wounds may not have been Lucifer’s brightest idea of late.

He sighs disconsolately.

Brothers. Can't live with them, can't punch them in the face. What's a devil to do?

-

Dan pants as he steps off the treadmill, wiping his face and neck down with his towel, beige shirt clinging damply to his pecs and shoulders.

He drops onto a nearby bench tiredly and abruptly realises his surroundings are suspiciously peaceful and dickish-chatter-free.

He frowns and glances around, irritably half-expecting to see Lucifer making out with a model or having an orgy with a men's rugby team or something equally him, only for his eyes to catch on a familiar figure sitting a few feet away, quietly staring off into space.

Dan hesitates before moving over to join him. He plonks down on the seat opposite and drains his drink bottle in one thirsty gulp before eying his friend thoughtfully. ‘Penny for them?'

Lucifer seems to rouse from his reverie with a small start. ‘Detective Dan! Finished already? I thought you were hellbent - ha - on trying each of these malevolent looking contraptions before we took our leave.’ He gives Dan a sardonic grin.

Dan ignores that, focussed on Lucifer’s strangely subdued demeanour. It's getting late and the gym is pretty quiet now, with just a few stragglers still going at it. Under the harsh electric lights Lucifer looks almost sallow, the bruise on his cheek turning an ugly greenish yellow. Dan nods at it and leans over his drink bottle to regard his friend closely. ‘Wanna talk about how you got that, now?’

Lucifer huffs, looking annoyed. ‘I told you. Got into a... minor tiff with my bro.’ He eyes Dan in what is probably mock-concern. ‘I had no idea you were old enough for the memory loss to set in, Daniel. You should probably see someone about that.’

He grins. ‘I can recommend a doctor - she's absolutely fantastic. And I don't just mean in bed. Very reasonable fees, which I'd be happy to cover for you as a small favour.’

Dan decides to graciously ignore this and ploughs on. ‘Anemadiel? He that adopted brother I met the other day?’ he hazards a guess, concerned as the last time they'd discussed brothers, Lucifer had seemed pretty upset and may or may not have confessed to a murder. Dan is still making an effort not to think too hard about that.

Lucifer snorts. ‘Amenadiel, yes.’ He gives Dan a faint stretch of a smile that doesn't reach his eyes. ‘He of the deplorable cosmos.’ Lucifer makes an exaggeratedly disgusted face. ‘And believe me, I wish he was adopted.’

Dan blinks. He has no earthly idea how that guy could look like that and not be adopted to be in the same family, but that's Lucifer for you. ‘Yeah,’ he says dryly. ‘I can really see the family resemblance.’

Lucifer snorts. ‘I doubt that. He's much less handsome than I am.’ He grins sharply and leans forward conspiratorially. ‘He gets that from Dad.’

Dan taps at his bottle absently, thinking. ‘So you and this guy - your brother - got into a fight and he, what... decked you?’

He frowns. Amenadull - or whatever his name is - is a big guy, taller even than the freakishly tall Lucifer, and built. Dan doesn’t like to think of Lucifer, prissy and chatty and annoying - even if he is apparently weirdly strong - going up against someone like that and losing.

‘You guys fight often?’ His mind goes back to a few times last year - hazy in memory because at the time he frankly couldn't have cared less - where Lucifer would turn up at the station looking worse for wear, eye blackened or lip split.

He may not know a whole lot about Lucifer’s family - well, not a whole lot that makes sense - but what he does see he doesn't like the look of.

Lucifer shrugs carelessly. ‘On occasion, when he's particularly aggravating. Usually raising the dead or committing fraud as a fake health professional in order to manipulate me.’

What? Dan frowns. ‘You want me to have a word with him?’ Dan shifts uncomfortably. He doesn't particularly want to get involved in whatever dysfunctional - and possibly criminal - dynamics plague the Morningstar family but he also can't just stand there while his buddy is hurting. He hesitates, before adding, voice low, ‘He give you those scars on your back too?’

Lucifer brow furrows with seeming confusion before he snorts dismissively. ‘Why? What are you going to do, arrest him?’

He smirks darkly. ‘Not that I'd object to that, but really, Detective, it's not a big deal. He’s-’ Lucifer hesitates, ‘-going through some things. And no, as it happens, he had nothing to do with my… back. He was rather unhappy about that, actually. Gave poor Maze quite the earful over it at the time.'

‘In any case,’ he sighs and looks away, seeming abashed. ‘The fight was probably my fault. Sort of. Ish. I wouldn't concern yourself with it, Dan. It's fine.’

Dan raises his eyebrows disbelievingly and leans back in his plastic chair. ‘Yeah,’ he says dryly, ‘it looks fine. Don't know why I'm so concerned.’

The sarcasm in his voice is fairly heavy, but Lucifer just nods obliviously.

Dan rubs at his forehead tiredly. It's late and he's tired, physically and emotionally, but his mind keeps going back to Lucifer’s bruise, and those scars on his back.

He wants to do... something. He's not sure what, but Dan has always been a man of action. Maybe not always good, smart, or particularly well thought out action, but he's never been comfortable being passive, had always felt better at least trying something.

Maybe if he could help Lucifer face his own problems he'd feel less worried- oh. Huh. There’s an idea.

Mind made up, he nods to himself and gets up. ‘Come on.’ He squeezes Lucifer’s shoulder and jerks his head towards the backroom door.

Dan has a plan.

-

Lucifer looks around the slightly darkened room dubiously.

‘A boxing ring,’ he says, tone deadpan. ‘Really?’

Dan nods. ‘Yeah, I was thinking you might want to learn the basics of self-defence, you know for the next time,’ he hesitates, feeling uneasy, ‘someone tries to take a pop at you.’

At Lucifer’s unimpressed look, Dan clears his throat and crosses his arms, trying for authoritative. ‘It's important for a guy to know how to defend himself, especially in our line of work. You never know what might come next, whether it's some nutjob with a gun, or a knife-wielding psycho. You need to be prepared, Lucifer.’

Lucifer raises his eyebrows, eyes very wide, and nods slowly. ‘Of course. You're completely correct. One never knows what unknown terrors await under even the most handsome of exteriors. How very insightful of you, Dan.’

‘So,’ he grins, ‘How do we start? Is it like dancing? Where would you like me to put my hands?’ He eyes Dan's body with a smirk. ‘Your waist?’

Dan stares at him. ‘Um, no. It's not- this isn't- it's not like dancing, bro. Let's um, let's start with boxing.’

Yes. Nice, platonic, relatively non-contact, boxing.

-

Their boxing is not remotely non-contact.

-

It occurs to Dan somewhere around the third time Lucifer wrestles him to the ground that a) Lucifer almost certainly knows how to fight, and b) he fights dirty.

He struggles vainly under Lucifer, the other man's hands wrapped around Dan's wrists like iron, pinning his arms flat to the floor. Dan bucks helplessly before freezing as he registers Lucifer crouched over him, crotch pressing almost directly on top of his while he grins down at Dan victoriously. ‘Well, Dan, ready to cry ‘uncle’?’

He looks thoughtful. ‘You know, we really should have set a safe word. I would have had I known you were so into rough play.’ He grants Dan a wicked grin. ‘You really are an adventurous lad. Not at all the dishwater dull douche I imagined you to be.’

Dan glares furiously up at him. ‘Get the hell off me, man!’ Lucifer raises his eyebrows in what looks like surprise before swiftly releasing Dan's wrists and smoothly rising from on top of him.

‘Easy, Daniel,’ he remonstrates, ‘no need to get tetchy. I was just flourishing under your wonderful tutelage.’ He smiles insincerely. ‘Like you said; it's important to be prepared in case of assault by naughty violent men.’

Dan sits up, rubbing his wrists resentfully. ‘What the hell, man? Is this some kind of a game to you? Why didn't you just tell me you know perfectly well how to fight?’

Lucifer shrugs slightly and offers him a hand up, which Dan accepts with poor grace. ‘Mostly because you just assumed I didn't. It was hysterical.’

Dan glowers. ‘Yeah, well, I won't be doing that again.’ He snatches up his jacket and heads towards the door only for Lucifer to start after him, expression dismayed. ‘Don't be mad, Daniel! I wasn't trying to mock you. Well,’ he considers, ‘alright, maybe I was, but I meant it kindly! That has to make a difference, doesn’t it?'

After a moment, he places a hesitant hand on Dan's lower arm to gently halt him. Dan grits his teeth before giving an annoyed huff and turning to look at him.

Lucifer looks uncertain and stupidly young in the darkened gym, his expression open and entreating.

He looks genuinely apologetic, and despite himself Dan finds it difficult to hold on to his anger. ‘Seriously, man?’ he snaps. ‘That wasn't cool. I was- actually worried about you. I was trying to help.’

Lucifer looks abashed. ‘I know. And it was rather sweet of you- if incredibly unnecessary.’ He shrugs lightly. ‘I just couldn't resist.’ He gives Dan a tentative, self-deprecating smile. ‘It has been noted that fighting temptation is not one of my many talents.’

Dan snorts. ‘Yeah, no kidding.’ He eyes Lucifer, feeling his anger gradually, reluctantly, drain away.

He thinks back to their last three fights. Lucifer, he can see now, had been having a rather long laugh at his expense.

‘Oh,’ Lucifer had said, not twenty minutes earlier, as Dan had shown him how to throw a punch and break out of a loose forearm restraint. ‘Thank you, Dan, for your thoughtful education. I'm so grateful to have a strong, brave man such as you teach me how to defend myself against the big, scary world.’

Okay, in retrospect, hindsight being 20/20 and all, that probably should have been a clue that Lucifer was poking fun at him.

And, Dan admits reluctantly, he himself had probably come across as just a bit condescending by assuming Lucifer had no significant fighting experience. He had actually seen the guy restrain the odd perp and generally terrorise assorted scumbags before, after all.

And that move he did at the end to slam Dan onto his back, with the knees and the weird little twisting pirouette? That was ridiculously good.

He rubs his forehead with one hand and his mouth twitches wryly. ‘Okay, so I may have been just a bit of a douche earlier too.’

He can't help smiling as Lucifer’s face breaks into a relieved grin. ‘Just ‘may have been’?’ Lucifer needles shamelessly, the dick.

Dan huffs a wry laugh. ‘Don’t push your luck, buddy.’ He eyes him, before clapping him briefly on the shoulder. ‘Why don't you teach me that last thing you did?’

Lucifer’s eyes brighten and he grins mischievously. ‘What, when I put you on your back?’

Dan rolls his eyes and snorts in reluctant amusement. ‘Yeah, that one. It was cool.’

Lucifer beams delightedly and starts to lead the way back to the ring. ‘I know! I actually learnt that one from a movie!’

Dan blinks, surprised. ‘Really?’

‘Yes’, returns Lucifer, sliding through the ropes with ease. ‘Kung Fu Master VI, Return of the Dragon', 1986, special edition. Han Lu does this amazing thing where he wards off these six sabre-wielding ninjas all at once, armed only with a carrot and a copper teaspoon.'

Lucifer bounces on his heels, looking at Dan excitedly. ‘I had to revise it a bit of course, but with a bit of practice it worked a treat on some of my more annoying brethren when they stalked me here a few years ago. Even Maze swears by it.’ Lucifer grins proudly.

Dan nods slowly, brain still struggling to get past ‘teaspoon’ and ‘brethren’. ‘Right, well. Sounds great. Can I have a go?’

-

Within ten minutes Dan has mastered the pirouette thing and within thirty he finally puts Lucifer on his back.

He’s crouched over Lucifer and panting with the effort of holding him down, his front right against Lucifer’s bare chest. With his lower half pressed very nearly crotch to crotch and his eyes staring down into Lucifer’s smirking face, Dan thinks that maybe - just maybe - he didn't think this plan through.

Shit.

-

It's nearly midnight when Lucifer and Dan stumble to the showers. Dan feels exhausted but weirdly happy and relaxed.

Lucifer is chattering on about some of the more outre moves he'd ‘adapted’ from the silver screen, looking stupidly energetic in sharp contrast to Dan.

Dan slumps down onto the bench, tired and still disgustingly aroused, and slowly accepts that he might be just a tiny bit screwed.

He watches as Lucifer dons his shirt again. Lucifer looks brighter, the shadows under his eyes receded, and Dan feels something warm bubbling in his chest, like affection.

‘Who taught you to fight?’ It's out before Dan was even cognizant of thinking it, but he feels very curious nonetheless. ‘Amenadell?’

Lucifer shrugs, expression a little distant. ‘Partly. And... Michael.’

He falls silent abruptly. Dan perks up; Lucifer has never mentioned a Michael before. ‘He another of your brothers?’

Lucifer looks away and snorts. ‘Unfortunately. I have many.' At Dan's curious look, Lucifer’s mouth tightens. ‘I wouldn't concern yourself with him. You'll never meet. Even I haven't seen him for aeons.’

As Dan's mind turns over the word ‘aeons’, Lucifer presses on. ‘But much of my fighting in recent years I actually picked up from Maze.’

Dan blinks. ‘Really?’ he asks, before thinking back to the duel with Mr Kang - triad terror - and snorting. ‘Actually never mind, I can see it now.’

Lucifer gives him a sly grin. ‘We did spend a rather long time in Hell together. An eternity, even. We had to do something to keep us occupied. And one can't have sex or torment miscreants all the time. Although,’ Lucifer’s eyes glint, ‘we did find the perfect blend was when we had a good, hard fight first, followed by a better, harder f-’

Dan stands up quickly, and hastily interrupts. ‘Aaand I think you're in the realms of oversharing now, buddy.’

Lucifer shrugs, and smiles unctuously. ‘What can I say? I'm a generous man.’

Dan snorts as he pulls on his jacket. ‘Yeah, that's one word for it,’ he mutters.

Lucifer buttons up his shirt and smiles almost absently. ‘She was actually rather proud, you know.’

Dan glances at him warily. ‘Of what?’

Lucifer grins. ‘I broke Amenadiel’s nose last night - which is no easy feat given his thick skull, let me assure you.’

Dan shakes his head, reluctantly amused. ‘Uh-huh. Guess you didn't need self-defence lessons at all, did you?’

Lucifer shrugs and smiles down at him. ‘Nope, but-’ he pauses before looking at Dan earnestly, ‘-I did enjoy them. You're quite an… acceptable teacher.’

Dan huffs. ‘If a bit slow on the uptake, huh.’

Lucifer makes a so-so gesture with his hand. ‘Well, no one's perfect. Well,’ he grins, ‘no one except me, but then I was specifically designed for perfection, so you mustn't feel too inferior by comparison, Daniel. You're only human.’

Dan snorts, bemused that he says that as though it were somehow optional. 'You say the weirdest things sometimes, buddy.'

-

‘Detective Dan, fellow student of the marital - sorry, martial - arts, I have just one question.’

Dan glances at him, hands drumming on the steering wheel as he drives towards Lux to drop off his friend. ‘Yeah? Shoot.’

Lucifer looks at him with an expression of pure solemnity. ‘Can we go get ice cream now?’

The car is filled with sound of Dan’s startled laughter for several warm minutes.

Chapter Text

And so Dan finds himself becoming friends with Lucifer, mostly when he wasn't paying attention. If you can call a relationship between a hard-bitten alpha dog of a cop (Dan, obviously) and a flirty, metrosexual Brit who thinks he's literally the Devil, and is in desperate need of either psychological help or a chastity belt, ‘friendship’.

They hang out occasionally, and when Chloe’s not working or off on one of her training days, Lucifer sometimes deigns to tag along with Dan.

Lucifer never mentions his brother Uriel or whatever happened in the church again, but he seems to be doing better, brighter and more his usual, aggravatingly cheerful self, so Dan lets it slip from his mind.

It's on one of Chloe’s off days when Dan and Lucifer enter the warehouse, hot on the pursuit of their perp, Adam Marcus, drug dealer and freshly christened murderer.

Dan signals Lucifer to stay behind him, and quickly scans the warehouse. It's dark and derelict, filthy white tarps hang from crates, obscuring his view. Dan swears under his breath. Backup is on the way, but there are no doubt multiple exits from this hellhole and there's no way Dan’s going to let this scumbag get away, not after he put two bullets into his poor ex-girlfriend and one-time accomplice, Rachel Lewis.

Dan systematically searches the floor, Lucifer a silent, dark presence at his back.

A creak resounds in the room and Dan snaps around - hands springing up with his gun - but he’s too late. A bullet whizzes past his right shoulder.

Marcus is standing there in a pool of ghostly half-light streaming in from a nearby window, a crazed look in his eyes. ‘Put it down!’ He shouts at Dan, voice shaking wildly. Another bullet nearly skims Dan’s cheek and Dan freezes.

Lucifer is still standing two feet away from Dan, body tense and coiled. Dan swallows, ‘Okay. Marcus, okay. Look, I'm putting down the gun, man. Just- don't do anything rash.’ Dan cautiously holds up his hands, moving the gun so it's off the dirtbag.

Marcus nods jerkily once. ‘Drop it.’ His voice is hoarse.

Dan swallows and glances at Lucifer out of the corner of his eye, hoping the man will show some sense for once and move away out of Marcus’ range. This could go really badly. Marcus is obviously on a hair-trigger, the muzzle of his gun shaking. He could shoot either one of them, maybe even by accident.

‘Okay,’ says Dan slowly. ‘Okay, I'm putting down the gun. Nobody needs to get hurt here, Marcus.’

Under Marcus’ avid gaze, Dan slowly bends down to place his gun on the floor, before standing cautiously, hands raised.

‘Alright?’

Marcus swallows convulsively, eyes wide and white-edged. ‘Kick it to me.’

Dan wants to swear but complies.

Marcus looks relieved, smiling shakily. ‘Good move, pig.’

Dan nods slowly. ‘Okay, you've got what you wanted. Now go, man. You've got my gun. We can't come after you.’

Dan prays he doesn't know about the backup Dan already called.

But Marcus shakes his head, expression wildly intent. ‘No can do. You'll tell them- you'll tell them you saw me. I'm sorry, but I can't let you do that. I just can't.

And with that he slowly raises his gun straight at Dan’s chest and fires.

-

The moment feels like eternity and yet, simultaneously, like no time at all.

One minute Dan sees him pull the trigger, hears the report of the gun, and in an instant braces himself for the bullet. The next-

Lucifer is just there, standing between Dan and the gun.

Dan freezes, heart in his mouth, hears the sick thud of a bullet hitting flesh, hitting Lucifer’s flesh, and braces, heart thumping, to see Lucifer fall because oh God he just got shot, oh God no.

But Lucifer doesn't fall, doesn’t even stumble. He grunts, but remains upright, back a stone line, remains standing even when Marcus panics and pumps two more bullets into him.

Marcus is freaking out and Dan - Dan doesn’t know what the hell is happening.

On the fourth bullet Lucifer snarls, a vicious animalistic sound Dan has never heard from him before, and advances on Marcus, unstoppable and terrifying.

He tears the gun from the man's hand like it's a water pistol and grabs him by the throat, hauling him up into mid-air as though he weighs nothing.

And his eyes-

His eyes are glowing and his face looks like every nightmare Dan has ever had, scalded and red, and almost completely unrecognizable, completely inhuman.

Oh God.

-

There’s a moment of shuddering silence, almost suspended in time, in amber, broken only by Dan's hoarse breaths and Marcus’ muffled screams before Dan chokes out-

Lucifer.’

Lucifer turns slowly, large hand still clamped on Marcus’ windpipe, but when he looks at Dan something shifts and his face is back to normal, to the stupid, handsome facade Dan knows so well, his eyes rich and dark again, not burning crimson.

But Dan knows what he saw.

He knows and he can never unsee it.

His hands itch for his gun, any gun, heart hammering in his chest as he stares at the man, the monster he'd briefly believed was a friend.

Lucifer is looking at him, something unfathomable in his eyes, before he swallows.

‘Dan-’ he begins, a weird note in his voice.

Dan interrupts him. ‘Put him down. Put him down right now.’ He's grateful that his own voice barely shakes.

Lucifer regards him silently and Dan thinks for a moment that he's going to ignore him, because oh God, of course he's going to ignore him, but then Lucifer slowly lowers Marcus until the man’s feet are once again touching the ground.

Dan nods jerkily before darting towards Marcus’ fallen gun and snatching it up, training it on the pair in front of him.

Lucifer’s face is quiet when Dan looks at him, eyes deep and as black as night. Dan holds his gun tightly, knuckles strained white. ‘Step away from him.’

Lucifer slowly nods and releases Marcus, who slumps back against a crate, gasping for air. Dan looks between them, the man who just tried to kill him, and the monster that's looking at Dan silently as though Dan is the one who's suddenly grown figurative horns.

Dan grits his teeth and fumbles at his belt for his handcuffs, tossing them at Marcus’ feet. ‘Put them on. Now.’

As the man complies, hands frantic with terror, Dan watches Lucifer closely, waiting for him to make the wrong move - any move - but Lucifer just stands there, hands held loosely by his side, staring at Dan.

Dan cautiously goes to quickly collect his gun from where it is lying discarded a few feet away. He stands over the perp with his eyes still fixed on Lucifer.

Lucifer swallows, looking nervous somehow.

‘Dan- Detective Espinoza, I-’

Dan cuts him off, voice harsh, desperately trying to disregard his pulse throbbing like butterfly wings in his neck. ‘I think you should go.’

Lucifer looks as though Dan has slapped him, face open and strangely raw, but then he takes a step back - head ducking down - and looks away.

‘Right,’ he says quietly, expression strange, almost bleak. ‘Right. Of course.’

And with that the man - the Devil? - turns on his heel and silently walks away.

-

Lucifer Morningstar is literally the Devil.

What the hell is Dan supposed to do now?

Chapter Text

Dan is avoiding him.

After the damned warehouse Lucifer didn’t know what to expect. A mob with torches and pitchforks? The full force of the LAPD? An exorcist?

But no. From the looks of things, Dan hadn’t so much as breathed a word to a single soul. But he also clearly mistrusts Lucifer- and why shouldn't he?

He saw Lucifer’s face; the true, mangled, deformed creature that lies just beneath his skin. Seen the Devil in Armani standing before him. Hell, he had no doubt now even pieced together Lucifer’s crime from his aborted confession of a month ago. Dan knows him for the monster he truly is now- why wouldn't he avoid him?

Lucifer is just grateful that Dan hasn't tried to drive him away from Chloe.

He's surprised to admit that something deep inside aches at the sudden distance between them. Lucifer hadn’t noticed how much he had grown used to the man's presence over the past few months until it was suddenly gone. How much he enjoyed poking Dan at his desk and chatting to him when Chloe wasn't about. How much he appreciated his friend’s support, as couched in douchery as it generally was.

But now that's over and, from the wary, jaded glances Dan throws at him whenever he thinks Lucifer isn't looking, will never be available to him again. Of course.

Lucifer gives a downcast look at Chloe’s desk. This is all his fault, yet another in the trail of destruction and devastation he inevitably leaves in his wake.

He startles as a large binder lands in front of him with a thump. Chloe is standing in front of him, arms folded across her chest, lips a thin line.

‘Okay, what did you do?’

Lucifer shifts in his seat and offers her an uneasy grin. ‘Whatever do you mean, Detective?’

Chloe gives him an unimpressed look. ‘You and Dan. He’s absolutely pissed at you. What on earth did you do?’

At Lucifer’s uncommunicative grimace, Chloe glares. ‘Is this about you and me? About whatever this is between us?’ She waves a angry hand between the two of them. ‘I thought you and Dan had grown up and worked through any problems you had with it.’

Lucifer glances away. ‘It's not that.’

Chloe looks unconvinced. She also looks furious and scary and Lucifer hunches his shoulders. ‘Did you know he spoke to Olivia? Tried to have you thrown off of cases, to get you to stop working with me? I can't believe him.’

Lucifer looks down, a bitter laugh bubbling up in his throat. ‘Of course he did.’ He sighs deeply, suddenly bone-tired. ‘But you mustn't blame Dan, Detective. It's my fault.’

Chloe snorts. ‘Probably,’ she says dryly. ‘But believe me, when I see him I'll be giving him a piece of my mind.’ Her fierce blue eyes flash and she whacks at the desk with one hand for emphasis.

She eyes Lucifer, taking in his slumped shoulders and downturned mouth. Her voice gentles. ‘Seriously though, what happened, Lucifer?’

Lucifer inspects his hands, voice heavy. ‘I saved his life, Detective, and in doing so revealed myself to be the monster I truly am.’ He swallows.

Chloe’s lovely forehead wrinkles. ‘You saved his life? What are you talking about?’

Lucifer sighs, defeated. ‘It doesn’t matter. Did the Lieutenant agree? Am I to be exiled forever from your presence?’

Chloe frowns. ‘Of course not.’ She regards him quietly. ‘Did you really think I'd what, just let them throw you out? We've done great work together, Lucifer, and nothing anyone says - not even Dan - can change that.’ Her tone gentles as Lucifer looks up at her with wide eyes. ‘And even if they did, do you really think you'd never see me again?’ She smiles at him, lips quirking up warmly. ‘Sorry, you can't get rid of me that easily.’

Lucifer stares at her, feeling almost impossibly young and vulnerable for a brief moment. Then he smiles tentatively, eyes brightening. ‘Nor you me, Detective.’

Chloe smiles before sitting down in her office chair beside him with a sigh. ‘Glad that's sorted,’ she says dryly. She regards him for a moment. ‘Look, whatever happened between you and Dan, shouldn't you fix it? I thought you two had a good thing going there.’

Lucifer slumps. ‘Believe me, nothing would give me greater pleasure that to ‘fix’ things with your charming douche of an ex, but some things-’ he looks up over in the direction of Dan, hunched, jaw clenched, over his desk, ‘-just can't be fixed.’

-

The sound of shouting echoes through the closed door of Chloe’s apartment and Lucifer freezes, fist raised on the verge of knocking. By his side Trixie looks concerned.

The Detective, bogged down in paperwork, had sent him to collect the spawn from her school. Lucifer had grumbled as he complied but was secretly pleased to be entrusted with such a task, no matter how distasteful and… sticky.

The Detective would normally have sent the child's father, but still incensed by what she perceived as Dan's poor treatment of Lucifer, Chloe had refused to speak with him or to heed Lucifer’s pleas for clemency on the man’s behalf.

The spawn tugs at Lucifer’s hand with alarming strength. ‘Are mommy and dad fighting?’

Lucifer opens his mouth to issue an automatic denial, only to wince as a particularly loud diatribe from the Detective to her errant ex-spouse penetrates the thin door. ‘...perhaps,’ he hedges.

The offspring’s miniature mouth downturns. ‘I hate it when they fight.’

Lucifer nods, uncomfortable, as further unpleasant hissed words bombard at them, prominently including the words ‘Lucifer’, ‘Trixie’, and ‘ass’.

‘I too.’

After a moment, Lucifer reluctantly screws up his once infamous courage and knocks timidly on the door. The voices abruptly fall silent, then, after a moment, Chloe appears at the door. Lucifer would consider her face attractively flushed if not for the pinched lips and the figurative steam coming out of her ears.

‘Hey, monkey,’ she forces a smile and bends down to hug her progeny. ‘Lucifer,’ she nods, ‘Would you like to come in?’

Frankly, Lucifer would rather go another round with Michael himself, but his hesitation must be all too obvious, for Chloe just wordlessly grabs his elbow and hauls him inside.

The owner of the other voice is revealed, unsurprisingly, to be Detective Douche, standing, hands on hips, by the kitchen island. He looks furious and on edge all at once. Lucifer swallows.

Dan's gaze immediately land on his offspring, standing between Chloe and Lucifer, and his eyes go wide. ‘Trixie! Come here.’ His voice is harsh, and his slate grey eyes fly up to meet Lucifer’s. He looks, thinks Lucifer with a jolt, terrified.

Trixie squints at her dad before moving towards his waiting arms. Dan hugs her tightly, his gaze never leaving Lucifer.

‘Hey, sweetheart, just go to your room for a bit, please.’ At the child's confused look, he manages a wonky smile. ‘There’s chocolate cake in it for you.’ This seems to satisfy her, for she gives him a muted version of her usual gap-toothed grin.

‘Alright, daddy. See you, Lucifer!’ She waves exuberantly at Lucifer who flaps a hand half-heartedly back.

Dan’s eyes are like that of a hawk, his body rigid. He turns to Chloe. ‘You let him pick up Trixie?’ he hisses.

Chloe glares back, undeterred. ‘Yes, because her father is behaving like an idiot. Seriously, what the hell, Dan? I know you and Lucifer have had your differences in the past, but what is your problem?’

As Dan opens his mouth to answer, Chloe folds her arms formidably and cuts across him. ‘And don't give me any more crap about him being the Devil. Come on, Dan. Lucifer’s my partner and my friend. He's a part of my life, now more than ever - whether you like it or not.’

She gives a disgusted shake of her head. ‘Now, you two are going to behave like adults and fix this. I don't care how. I'll be helping Trixie with her homework, and by the time we've finished, this thing had better be behind the pair of you.’

Trixie’s door closes, not with a slam but with a quiet, reproving ‘snick’, leaving Lucifer and Dan trapped together in Chloe’s living room.

-

Dan glares at Lucifer, plainly incensed. Lucifer stares at the wall and resists the urge to fidget.

A minute passes in screaming silence before Dan strides towards Lucifer, back like steel, hands clenched at his sides. ‘Outside,’ he says, voice brittle. ‘Now.’

Lucifer furrows his brow but nods and trails after him, wondering if this is how the walk to the noose feels like. He wouldn’t know. Nothing before has ever mattered to him the way life matters to humans.

He watches as Dan paces agitatedly in the small courtyard outside Selmer Apartments, his short, vicious gestures a contrast to the pleasant flower-filled surrounds.

Finally, with a desperate tug of his brown hair, Dan whirls around to glare at Lucifer. His face looks wild, the whites of his eyes showing prominently and Lucifer thinks with a sudden wrench, oh- I've broken him.

‘What the hell are you doing here?’

Lucifer blinks and hesitates before replying. ‘I'm afraid you're going to have to be more specific. ‘Here’ as in at the Detective’s home or ‘here’ as in this plane of reality or ‘here’ as in-’

Dan cuts across him. ‘Don’t play games with me, don't you freaking dare.’ He suddenly freezes, as though terrified.

Lucifer stares at him uncertainly then looks away. ‘If you're asking what I'm doing right here at this present moment, then it's because the Detective asked me to retrieve her spaw- child from school. That's all.’

This doesn't appear to appease Daniel, whose eyes bore into Lucifer like he could tear him apart through sheer force of will alone. Which, Lucifer thinks, given the strength of mind required to resist the murderous pull of Azrael’s Blade, is possibly not all that far-fetched.

Dan scoffs derisively. ‘So what, you were just helping out a friend?’

Lucifer nods cautiously. ‘That’s right. Just your friendly neighbourhood Devil.’ He winces on the last word as Dan's face spasms, hating, for the first time, his own careless tongue.

Dan folds his arms across his broad chest. ‘Sure. What are you really up to? What is all this-’ he waves a shaking hand to encompass the Detective’s home, and perhaps even the whole world, ‘-in aid of?’

Lucifer stares back at him at a loss. ‘Excuse me?’

Dan chokes, clearly at the limits of his mortal grasp on events. ‘What is your game, Lucifer? What does the Devil want with a, a LAPD cop and her family? What are you going to do to her?’

Lucifer swallows past the mysterious lump that he feels rising in his throat. ‘Do to her-? To Chloe? Nothing. Absolutely nothing, Dan.’

Dan shakes his head, incensed and disbelieving, moving back away from Lucifer slightly before all but lunging toward him. ‘Oho, no. No, I don't buy it. I saw you. I saw what you are. Your eyes, God, your face. You're a monster.’

Lucifer can’t help it, he flinches. He looks down, to the side, anywhere so long as it's away.

There’s a pause where they both breathe heavily.

At last he speaks.

‘I know.’

-

Dan watches the Devil.

For the past two days Dan has been in a near constant state of shock, rage, and terror.

It's like the whole world, the way he thinks of the universe and his place in it, the very laws of nature and reality themselves have been rearranged in a surreal kaleidoscope of never-ending horrors. And it’s all Lucifer’s fault.

But the main thing Dan keeps coming back to is how he feels so damn stupid.

He had been duped by the Devil himself, the Deceiver, Father of Lies, an unknowable, unfathomable evil from the dawn of time. Every Sunday School catechism, every parable his nana imparted to him spirals around his head, a constant reminder of how incredibly, thoroughly screwed he is.

But the worst part for him, the most galling and vicious, is that Lucifer looks just the same.

The same earnest dark eyes, lean, expressive body and hands - he seems just as he's always seemed to Dan. Warm and alive and deeply frustrating. Chloe’s weird, childish partner. Dan’s recent friend.

But he isn't Dan's friend. He isn't a rich playboy with a penchant for punishment, isn’t some nightclub owner with a shady past and severe issues. He isn't Chloe’s partner.

He's the Devil and Dan has no earthly clue what he wants.

He swallows convulsively and tries to breathe through the fear, the all-consuming terror, not of what the Devil might do to him, but of what this creature, this thing might want with his family, with Chloe and little Trixie, and of how very helpless Dan is to stop him.

He holds his arms close to chest and tries to breathe through the tightness in his throat.

And to make matters worse Lucifer - oh God, literally Lucifer - seems hellbent on playing this stupid, damn game with Dan. This innocent little ingenue act, playing with his food like Dan’s going to fall the same trick twice. The whole wounded bird thing- no, Dan's wasted too much time on that already. How Lucifer must have laughed.

He glares at the monster and snarls at him. He's not afraid, he's not.

‘Good,’ he says, savagely. ‘You admit you're a monster. Now, tell me the truth for once in your miserable life. What the hell do you want with my family?’

The Devil stares back, face still contorted in what looks like a facsimile of pain.

‘Nothing,’ he (it?) alleges, voice falsely hoarse. ‘The Detective - Chloe - is my friend. You must believe me Dan, I mean her - and you - no harm.’

Dan laughs bitterly. ‘No. I don't have believe you, Lucifer, because you're a liar.’ He steps closer, stabbing at the air between them with his hand. ‘You lied to me, you lied to Chloe-’

That gets a rise out of him, perhaps the first honest reaction Dan has ever seen from him.

‘I have never lied, Daniel! I have always been honest with you, with Chloe. From the very first I've told you, all of you, exactly who and what I am. It's not my fault none of you would believe me - even when the proof was staring you right in the face!’ He pauses, face intent.

Dan scoffs. ‘A lie of omission, then. You knew we wouldn't believe you, no one would. But-’ Dan gives him a twisted smile. ‘You could have shown us, couldn't you? At any time.’

Lucifer looks away, wordless. Dan ploughs on, relentless, ‘but you didn't, because you wanted to keep on playing your screwed up little game.’

Dan chokes, feeling suddenly empty. ‘What I don’t get is why? Why are you doing this to us? What do you want? Chloe’s soul? Trixie’s?’

Lucifer looks simultaneously horrified and confused. ‘What in the name of Hell would I want with her soul? Do you have any idea how bloody useless those things are? If I wanted souls, I would have just stayed in Hell.’ Lucifer looks disgusted.

Dan frowns but presses on, voice sharp. ‘Then what are you doing here?’

Lucifer mouth tightens. ‘What you've seen me doing, Dan - solving crime with the Detective, running an incredibly lucrative club and, I don't know, saving your life.’

Dan hesitates for a split second, caught on the memory of that warehouse, the gun, before he makes himself glace away, snorting dismissively. ‘So let me get this straight, you're not evil. You're just misunderstood.’

Lucifer nods emphatically. ‘Yes.’

Dan scoffs and smiles at him with bitter incredulity. ‘Right. And I'm supposed to believe that, am I?’

Yes,’ repeats Lucifer. ‘Because when I have I ever - deliberately - hurt you? Harmed any of you?’ Lucifer leans forward, expression fierce. ‘From the day I meet the Detective - your ex - I have done little other then attempt to protect her. To, I don't know, have her back. I have done things-’, he pauses and takes a shaky breath, ‘-terrible things I thought I would never do, in the name of protecting her. Just as you yourself did! I've done my best to repay the kindness and friendship she has offered me. Why would I ever harm her?’

He looks so damn earnest, fixing Dan with his giant freaking anime eyes, that for the first time since the warehouse Dan feels a flicker of doubt.

As he's trying to collect his thoughts and marshal his next attack, Chloe’s door starts to open. Both he and Lucifer’s jerk back to stare at it in alarm.

Dan whirls around and grabs Lucifer by the shoulder. ‘If any of that was true,’ he hisses urgently, glaring fiercely up into his eyes, ‘if you ever truly cared at all about Chloe’s happiness or wellbeing, you'd do the decent thing.’

Lucifer stares down at him, expression almost one of dread. ‘And what would that be?’ he asks hoarsely.

Dan’s face is harsh, eyes sharp with challenge, his mind bent on the basic, primitive urge to keep his loved ones, his family, safe. ‘Leave.’

Lucifer freezes in his hold, eyes almost wounded before he flicks his gaze to Chloe’s door, face drawn, conflicted, before then - oh thank god - giving a jerky nod.

He looks like he's swallowed a lemon. ‘If that is what you truly desire-’

Dan snaps, ‘Yes. Just- just stay the hell away from us.’

Lucifer gazes down at him, eyes seemingly searching Dan’s, before finally nodding once again, jaw clenched tight. And, as Chloe appears on her doorstep frowning, Lucifer steps out of Dan’s loosened grip and walks away into the growing twilight without once looking back.

-

Dan lies through his teeth to Chloe and Trixie about how Lucifer and he had talked, and that Lucifer had to go sort out something at Lux. He attempts to ignore Chloe’s suspicious frown and Trixie’s downcast expression, trying instead to cling to the idea that maybe now they'd be safe, that he'd just protected all of them.

Still, as he lies awake that night, tossing and turning and alone in his bed, all Dan can see is that strange, pained light in Lucifer’s eyes when he was told to leave.

Chapter Text

Dan lasts two days before he breaks.

It's the waiting that kills him. Going to work, endeavouring to avoid Chloe, to get through the day without gnawing off his nails with worry. Waiting for the other shoe to drop. It reminds him of the days following Palmetto Street when he felt any day might be his last day of freedom.

He had banished the Devil, told Lucifer where to go, but he never thought, even in his most desperate hopes, that Lucifer would listen.

But Lucifer's gone. Dan has seen neither hide nor hair of him since that night, and Dan doesn’t know if this is a good outcome or - and this is surely more likely - just another of the creature's games.

If it is a game, it's working. Dan hasn't slept a wink since that night and he's on his last straw.

Chloe’s also pissed at him. Lucifer, it appears, has kept his word; avoiding Chloe’s calls, and all but hiding from her increasingly frustrated visits.

It confuses Dan, brings all those creeping doubts to the fore, the suspicion that maybe Lucifer’s protestations of innocence may just have held a grain of truth.

He attempts to stamp the lingering thoughts down ruthlessly, but as the hours tick by with a furious Chloe, an eerily quiet workplace, and no Lucifer, he feels less and less certain.

By Friday night Dan has had enough. He yanks his jacket on, secures his gun, and makes his way to Lux.

One way or another, this ends tonight.

-

Lux is nothing like it usually is. Normally packed with gorgeous, carefree young women and men, right now it is unnaturally quiet and empty. There’s not a soul in sight, no servers, no ninja bartender lounging at the bar playing with her knives. No Lucifer, svelte and smug, the centre of attention, playing at the grand piano. Dan tries to ignore the uneasy feeling in the pit of his stomach and moves slowly up the stairs towards Lucifer’s penthouse.

Towards the lion's den.

As the elevator doors part, Dan hears soft piano music drifting out; lingering and poignant, notes trickling sorrowfully like raindrops on glass. He cautiously walks into the foyer, hand falling to the butt of his service weapon.

At his entrance, Lucifer looks up, dressed as he always seems to be, in a three piece suit, fitted maroon shirt and tailored black vest, his cuffs hanging loose at his wrists. At first glance in the darkened room he looks the same, just as handsome as he was the day Dan was first unfortunate enough to meet him, but as Dan draws closer he notes the shadows under his eyes, the gaunt cheekbones, the stubble that is more seven o'clock than five o'clock shadow.

He seems unsurprised to see Dan, taking a slow draw from his scotch before dropping his lit cigarette in the glass.

‘Detective Espinoza,’ he greets. His voice sounds tired and detached. ‘To what do I owe this visit?’

Dan regards him for a moment before saying quietly in the still air of the room. ‘You listened to me.’

Lucifer nods. ‘Of course.’ His gaze is very flat. ‘You told me to leave if I cared at all for the Detective’s happiness. So I did.’

Dan nods slowly, still processing. ‘Right. Even though you're the Devil.’

Lucifer abruptly slams down his hand on the piano top with unexpected rage, making Dan jump. Lucifer looks up at him sharply before looking away, seeming almost ashamed, voice tightly controlled. ‘That doesn’t mean anything, Daniel. It's just a job.’

‘Right,’ echoes Dan dubiously. He snorts. ‘One that involves a hell of a lot of torture.’ He holds Lucifer’s gaze challengingly, trying to ignore the tense, nervous shaking of his own muscles, the ache in his clenched jaw.

Lucifer’s mouth tightens and he shifts back on the bench so the shadows in the room obscure his eyes. ‘Of damned souls, yes. I only punish the wicked, Detective, just like you.’

Dan nods slowly. ‘I see.’

Lucifer laughs shortly, an uncharacteristically sharp and bitter edge to it. ‘No, you don't. How could you ever see?’ He snorts, smile jaded.

Dan watches him for a moment. He takes in Lucifer’s - the Devil’s - non-confrontational body language, his unusually downcast and defeated expression. ‘So tell me,’ he says, almost despite himself.

At Lucifer’s startled look, he elucidates. ‘You told me you never lie, that everything you've ever said to us is the truth. So prove it. Tell me why you're here, what your gameplan is. Tell me the truth. I'll listen.’

At Lucifer’s silence, Dan's voice hardens. ‘I need to know, Lucifer, everything. If anything you've said, all that garbage about caring about us and wanting to stay and-’ he snorts, ‘-‘fight crime’ is true, then tell me. I deserve to know. We all do.’

Lucifer regards him in silence for a moment, eyes deep and impossibly dark in the shadows of the room, before he nods. ‘Very well,’ he says, voice sombre. ‘I'll tell you everything.’

He slowly rises from his bench to move to the bar, pouring two drinks from a decanter of scotch. He moves slowly - as in a dream - to the balcony, and lowers himself onto one of the seats, placing the other glass on the small table in a clear invitation.

Dan cautiously sits on the edge of his seat, watching him.

Lucifer is still for a long moment, eyes fixed on the city. Shadows seem to cling to the edges of his frame as though he is only partially present in this realm, as though at any moment darkness might reach out and reclaim him.

When he speaks, his voice is hollow and distant.

‘I suppose it all started with the Fall.’

-

Lucifer talks for what feels like hours, voice steady but bereft of life, as though something in the past week had reached in and carved out his heart.

He speaks of the Fall and of the punishment that followed roughly, as though telling the tale in broad strokes of a paintbrush. He mentions torturing the wicked for whole eternities, of the whipping, beating, and starvation he visited on the souls at their own twisted behest, of the screams he’d wrung from those surrounding him for literal aeons. He speaks of his gradual disaffectation and his plan for escape, the long journey out of hell to LA’s shores one winter’s day nearly six years ago.

He speaks of landing on the beach, wet and shivering, Maze by his side, and cutting off his wings. Of starting anew in LA, opening Lux, then meeting Chloe and starting a new life as a civilian consultant for the LAPD.

Something in his face, previously half-consumed by the dark, almost imperceptibly lightens, the harsh lines of his mouth softening slightly.

Dan stares at him, his mind still stuck on wings. Lucifer apparently catches the look because for the first time since he started speaking he shows some life, raising an eyebrow. ‘What?’

Dan leans back, confused and for some reason mildly nauseated. ‘You cut off your wings? Like, your angel wings?’

Lucifer shrugs dispassionately. ‘Maze did, actually. I’m not an angel any more so why the bloody hell not?’

Dan swallows, for some reason slightly overwhelmed by this absurd detail. ‘No, it just seems a bit- extreme. Like giving yourself a lobotomy or something.’

Lucifer snorts. ‘More like an amputation, or having a pointlessly inflamed appendix surgically removed, but I see your point.’

Dan starts as a sudden realisation flashes through his brain. ‘Wait, so those scars on your back, they're-’

‘From my wings, yes.’ Lucifer nods tightly.

Dan nods, frowning, still feeling weirdly sick. ‘And those angel wings you had Chloe chasing a while back- they were yours? You got them back?’

Lucifer shrugs carelessly. ‘No. Well, yes, they were mine. I got them back. But they're burnt now. I set them alight.’ He smiles unpleasantly.

Dan raises his eyebrows disbelievingly. ‘You set your… wings... on fire?’

Lucifer smiles insincerely. ‘Yes! Well, not when I was still attached to them, obviously. That would be incredibly stupid.’ He snorts. ‘No, I set them on fire to make sure they couldn’t be used to send me back to Hell,’ he explains casually.

Dan nods slowly, feeling that somewhere, somehow, he'd lost control of this conversation. If he'd ever had it in the first place. ‘Because you were on vacation.’

The corners of Lucifer’s lips quirk up. ‘That’s right,’ he says encouragingly, slowly, as though talking to an exceedingly stupid child. Dan automatically glares at him before catching himself.

‘And these wings, they were all part of some big scheme by your brother Anemadell-’

Amenadiel.’

‘-yeah, him. Who also raised Malcolm from the dead and created that huge mess last year?’

It all sounds profoundly insane to Dan’s ears, but Lucifer just nods gamely.

Dan blinks, nonplussed. ‘And somehow, out of all of this, you became mortal.’

Lucifer nods again, smiling tightly. ‘Well,’ he says, ‘ish.’ He makes a see-saw gesture with his hand. ‘I'm vulnerable to injury around your lovely ex-wife. So,’ he smiles darkly, eyes cool and penetrating, and raises his glass. ‘While that gun of yours may be no use to you at present, if you truly wish to be rid of me for eternity all you need do is wait until I'm near your ex and then shoot me in the heart.’

Unaware or uncaring of Dan's startled expression, he shrugs. ‘Or brain, dealer’s choice. Or,’ he continues blithely, ‘I suppose there's always poisoning if you don't want the Detective cross at you. I recommend nightshade, personally, so much more agonising than hemlock.’

Dan stares at him, heart in this mouth. ‘I- what?’

Lucifer smiles with a short snort. ‘No need to hurry, Daniel,’ he says bracingly, ‘there's plenty of time. You only have the rest of eternity.’

He leans forward, eyes boring into Dan’s, a dark, wickedly cajoling smile on his lips, provocative.

‘Just think of it,’ he purrs. ‘All it takes is one measly little bullet, a little something in my tea, and poof! I'm out of your lives forever.’
He leans back, eyes glinting at Dan in the half-light, lips curled into a vicious smile. ‘Come on, it's what you said you wanted. Don't play coy now.’

Dan stares at him, shocked, and before he's even aware he's saying it, blurts out. ‘I don’t want you dead?’ It comes out as a question and Dan feels unsteady, unmoored, as though in a sea of confusion.

Lucifer barks a laugh. ‘Don’t be ridiculous, Dan! Of course you do. Don't worry,’ he says, leaning forward, eyes bright and wild. ‘I don’t judge. No, I leave that to the man upstairs- but I wouldn't be concerned about him. I mean,’ he grins sardonically. ‘Killing the devil? How much more of a sure thing, ticket to heaven can you get?’ He throws his head back and laughs, as though deranged.

Dan stares at him, at the man's toothy grin and the brittle, damaged look in his eyes, and feels- sick. Feels as though somewhere along the track he may have made a mistake.

He clears his throat and presses forward doggedly. ‘And Malcolm. What really happened? Trixie mentioned you got shot in the hanger, but Chloe said you were fine.’

Lucifer smiles thinly. ‘Oh, I got shot alright. Dear old Malcy boy popped me one right in the gut.’ He grins engagingly. ‘I died.’ He shrugs carelessly. ‘I came back though. Made a deal with Dad. Promised him- well, promised him all sorts, really.’ He averts his gaze, fiddling with his glass.

Dan frowns. ‘You made a deal with God? For what, your life?’

At Lucifer’s hesitation, Dan leans forward, sensing evasion with an instinct honed by a thousand interrogations. ‘What, Lucifer?’

‘It doesn’t matter.’ At Dan’s sharp look and tensed form, Lucifer looks away. ‘For Chloe, alright? I was dying and Malcolm had a gun and was going to make good on his insane vow to kill her. I just asked Him for a hand protecting her, that's all.’

He looks away, avoiding Dan’s eyes as though ashamed. Dan stares at him uncomprehendingly. ‘Right,’ he says at last. ‘And God, what, brought you back to life to protect her?’

‘Yes,’ says Lucifer simply, eyes flicking away from Dan to take in the view.

Dan swallows, heart thumping. ‘So you saved her life?’

Lucifer scoffs exaggeratedly. ‘Don’t be silly. I just distracted him. The Detective was the one who shot the vile miscreant.’ He smiles vindictively. ‘Good job, that.’

Dan nods slowly. ‘Sure.’ He clears his throat, taking in Lucifer’s twitching fingers, and nervous, uncertain eyes. He doesn't look so frightening now. In fact, now that Dan thinks about it, he hasn't really been frightening all that much apart from when he assaulted Marcus at the warehouse. No, Dan had just been frightened.

He regards the man - the Devil - for a moment in silence, watching as the man gets noticeably more anxious and twitchy as the minutes drag on.

Finally he snaps. ‘So,’ he says with false cheer. ‘When are we going to do this thing, Daniel?’

Dan frowns. ‘Do what?’

Lucifer smiles. ‘Why our appointment with me, you, and your gun! I can pencil you in for tomorrow morning at the station. How’s that work for you?’

Dan starts. ‘What? No. I'm not going to- kill you, man.’

Dan stills in sudden realisation. Oh.

He’s not

He’d come in prepared to do it, hand on his gun and on the offensive, ready to strike, but now the words are out of his mouth, and he knows they’re true.

He doesn’t want to kill Lucifer.

Lucifer frowns at him, clearly baffled. ‘Why not? I mean come on, Dan. I deserve it, you of all people know that.’ He smiles tightly, eyes sharp. ‘The things I've done- why, we've only just scratched the surface. The torture, the lives I've destroyed- your life, Chloe's life.’ He’s almost wheedling. ‘The crimes I've committed-’ he stops, swallowing.

Dan frowns, watching him, something uneasy clenching in his gut and memories of the ill-fated stakeout, their movie night, flashing through his mind. ‘What crimes?’ Dan’s voice is hoarse.

Lucifer looks down, before forcing himself to make eye contact with Dan, smile raw and self-deprecating. ‘I've almost told you so many times- I suppose it's fitting if you are the one to hear it now.’

He leans forward, eyes bright. ‘I've killed someone,’ he says. He looks away, swallows. ‘Not someone you’d know. Not a human. But my very own brother.’ He laughs shortly. ‘Now, what sort of a vile monster does that?’

Dan watches him, back tense. ‘Your brother,’ he pauses, eyes fixed on Lucifer, on the raw look in his eyes, his pale, drawn face. ‘Uriel?’ Dan’s voice is soft, almost gentle.

Lucifer nods. ‘That's right. So you do listen when I speak.’ He smiles wryly before looking away, expression hunted. When next he speaks his voice is rushed, hoarse, and lacking any trace of glibness. ‘I didn't want to. I've never killed anyone before. Hell doesn't count,’ he snorts quietly, edges of his mouth quirking up. ‘They're all dead there anyway.’

Dan watches him silently, as Lucifer stares out across over the balcony, seemingly lost. ‘It was my fault. He gave me a choice and I- just couldn't make it. Couldn't find another way out of there.’ He swallows then takes his glass and knocks back a rough swig. He snorts bitterly, staring into thin air, eyes distant and flat. ‘Story of my life.’

Dan takes this in, slowly puts the pieces together from these new details and their conversation in the car that seems so long ago. ‘You said he was going to hurt Chloe. Why would an angel want to hurt Chloe?’

Lucifer’s huffs a bitter laugh. ‘My fault, again. Obviously.’ He flicks a sharp, bitter glance at Dan over the rim of his now empty glass. ‘I reneged on my deal with Dad.’ Then he pauses, uncertain. ‘Though Uriel said he wasn't there under orders.’ He looks away. ‘So I think he just went after her because he knew it would hurt me.’ He shrugs, mouth downturned. ‘Either way,’ he says, ‘still my fault in the end.’ He raises his glass in a tired, mocking toast. ‘Everything always is, or haven’t you heard?’

Dan sits back, eyes fixed on the man lost in thought before him.

His gut is telling him Lucifer is speaking the truth, however wild and improbable that may be.

‘So you killed him. To save Chloe.’

At Lucifer’s nod Dan frowns, presses. ‘You didn't want to.’

Lucifer scowls at him. ‘Why would I want to kill him?’ He looks away. ‘Uriel was- annoying and stubborn and a real, bloody prick, but he was my brother. I loved him. I never wanted to hurt him.’ His voice is almost inaudible, face downturned, cast in shadow.

Dan watches, heart thrumming in his chest, feeling like that one time he went skydiving, like he’s about to take a mad, wild plunge into unknown depths.

His voice is hoarse. ‘And that's it? No, I don't know, evil satanic sacrifices? No babies consumed at midnight? You've never killed anyone else?’

Lucifer huffs bitterly, raises his glass. ‘Afraid not. So sorry to disappoint. Besides,’ he says dryly, ‘Why would I sacrifice anything to me? I'm Satan, darling.’

Dan stares at him, mind a jumble, before hunching over with his elbows on his thighs, and slowly scrubbing at his face. God, what a damned mess. He sighs. He can't believe he's doing this, but-

The look in Lucifer’s eyes. The mad, annoying ass who's dogged Chloe’s heels since day one. Who saved her life, who stepped in front of a bullet for Dan. Who looks so damn lost and broken now.

‘You're not a disappointment.’ There, it's out before he can stop himself.

Lucifer blinks at him. ‘Pardon me?’

Dan looks up, making eye contact with Lucifer's own black ones.

‘You're not a disappointment,’ he repeats. He takes a breath, feeling an odd peace come over him as he commits to see this... this thing through, whatever it is and wherever it might lead.

‘You’re not a monster.’

Lucifer is staring at him as though he's insane.

He raises his eyebrows disbelievingly. ‘Of course I am. Haven't you heard a word I've said?’ He frowns. ‘I'm a murderer, Daniel. I'm wicked to the core and deserve to be punished.’ He smiles tightly.

Dan shakes his head and leans back, one leg crossed over the other. ‘Why?’

Lucifer stares at him.

Dan presses on. ‘Why do you deserve to be punished? Because you're the Devil? Because you killed someone?’

Lucifer nods cautiously, as though sensing a trap but unable to evade it regardless. ‘That’s right.’

Dan shakes his head. ‘No.’ He sighs. ‘If that's it, if that's really all it is, then you don't, man.’

He looks directly into Lucifer’s confused gaze. ‘You killed someone defending Chloe. If that's what it sounds like, then he didn't give you much of a choice.’

Lucifer stares at him uncomprehendingly. ‘Are you… absolving me?’

Dan looks away. ‘I don’t know.’ He snorts. ‘I'm no priest. But I guess what I'm saying is that I-’ he hesitates. ‘I believe you.’ He shakes his head, leans back with a short laugh. ‘And maybe I'm an idiot for doing so, but I do. Believe you.’

Lucifer stares at him, eyes wide.

‘You believe me?’

‘Yeah.’ Dan regards him, this guy in front of him who looks so confused, so lost. Remembers the heart-break - for that's what it was, he sees that now - on his face in Chloe’s garden when he agreed to leave, to be banished. Remembers movies and flirting and popcorn and even more damn flirting, remembers the raw look on his face in the warehouse and later when Dan called him a monster, like Dan had flayed him alive.

Dan swallows and looks away.

He's still worried on some level, still concerned deep down that this is all an elaborate trick, a ruse, that Lucifer's just waiting until he falls for it before gleefully tearing him to pieces.

But what would be the point? Why would a divine being, a celestial freaking fallen angel, give a crap about Dan? About his life? About Chloe’s life?

Dan’s not important. Why would the Devil himself come to Earth specifically to mess with him? Why would he fake an interest in, Dan doesn’t know, crappy action movies and ice cream and Chloe? Why would he save Dan’s life?

No, the Devil wouldn't care. But Lucifer would. Lucifer has.

Dan has the creeping sensation that he's screwed up.

Chapter Text

Lucifer stares at Dan, deeply confused.

This conversation hasn't gone at all the way he had been expecting. When he'd seen Detective Douche standing framed in the golden light of the lift, jaw clenched and hand ready at his gun, Lucifer felt certain that Dan had finally come to end him.

Inconvenient that the man would have to wait until Lucifer was in the Detective’s presence, but there it was.

But Dan hadn’t tried to shoot him. Hadn't even expressed a desire to do so.

No, all he seemed to want was an explanation, perhaps so he could best decide Lucifer's fate. So Lucifer gave him one. Told him all the dirty little deets and waited for the man’s inevitable righteous condemnation.

But Dan, as is increasingly his wont, had surprised him.

Had listened intently, taken everything in, all Lucifer’s horrific crimes, his murderous sin, and had- accepted it. Accepted him.

Even Lucifer’s confession of fratricide didn't seem to shake him, quite the contrary. It made no sense. Which, Lucifer reflects, is just typical of Detective Dan (née Douche).

There's a long pause where Dan watches Lucifer while Lucifer tries to figure out what exactly is happening.

‘So,’ he says at last. ‘You're not going to kill me.’

Dan regards him, eyes quiet. ‘Why? Do you want me to kill you?’

Lucifer considers, unsure. ‘I don’t know,’ he says finally. ‘I should be punished for what I did. All evil-doers must be punished.’ He says with implacable certainty.

Dan nods slowly. ‘Right,’ he shifts in his seat, eying Lucifer. ‘What about me?’

Lucifer frowns at him, puzzled. ‘What about you?’

Dan raises a shoulder in a half-shrug, deceptively casual. ‘Do I deserve to be punished?’ At Lucifer’s confused look, Dan continues, voice low. ‘I shot Malcolm. Killed Aldi and his bodyguard in Palmetto.’ He hesitates, ‘Done... other stuff, more recently. Don't you think I should be punished for that?’ He pauses. ‘Should I be killed for it?’

Lucifer stares at him. ‘Of course not! You were protecting the Detective, why would- oh.’ He blinks. ‘Yes, I see what you did there.’

Dan smiles thinly and leans forward, eyes tired. ‘Look, what I did, what you did- it was wrong. We killed people and that's-’ he sighs, gaze distant. ‘That’s a crime. But. The way I see it is that we, neither of us, had much of a choice. We can't change what we did, we can't go back. All we can do is choose how to go forward. Whether we let it govern our lives or whether we just- go on. Attempt to make amends by doing good and try to make this world a better place.’

He swallows. ‘Or at least that's what I tell myself.’

Lucifer is unsure and looks away over the balcony to hide it. ‘We all have to pay our dues eventually, Dan.’ He huffs quietly, glancing down and smiling tightly. ‘My Dad is very big on the whole cosmic scale thing.’

‘Besides,’ he snorts wryly. ‘I'm the Devil, Dan. Making the world a better place isn't exactly my bag.’

Dan laughs briefly and, for the first time in their little tete-a-tete, smiles slightly. ‘Oh, I don't know about that. You work with Chloe, solve crimes-’ he pauses and smiles wryly, ‘-save douches.’ He tips his head sardonically. ‘Looks like you're doing good to me.’

Lucifer turns his head and laughs almost unwillingly. ‘Oh ugh.’ He gives a mock shudder of disgust. ‘Well, don't tell anyone.’ He raises an eyebrow. ‘I've got a reputation to maintain.’

Dan snorts and regards Lucifer with a hint of - is that affection on his face? ‘Yeah,’ he says dryly. ‘Because your reputation has been so helpful so far.’

Lucifer grins and ducks his head, conceding. He feels something in chest, light and alive, like joy, like relief. ‘True.’

-

There’s a beat where they regard each other, the mortal cop and the Devil.

Dan shifts in his seat uneasily, mind turning over the revelations of the past hour. One question still nags at his thoughts. Dan hesitates before taking the plunge.

'Why did you save me?'

At Lucifer’s surprised look, Dan swallows and continues. 'You didn't have to, man. You could've just let me die. Why didn't you?'

Lucifer stares at him, brow contracted as though confused, as though it should be obvious. 'Because you're my friend,' he says plainly before frowning, unsure and tentative. 'Aren't you?'

Dan gazes at him, chest tight with an emotion he doesn't care to name. 'Yeah,' he says quietly, looking at Lucifer, the Devil, his friend, intently. 'Yeah, I am.'

Lucifer’s answering smile is like the sun emerging from cloud. The Morning Star, Dan thinks, slightly unsteadily. Oh God, he's friends with a fallen angel. Bet his Nanna never saw this coming.

Eventually, Dan clears his throat. ‘So, um, you haven't told Chloe, then?’

Lucifer snorts and looks away. ‘No. I'm sure you can imagine why.’

Dan nods slowly before rubbing his forehead, feeling exhausted. ‘Don’t you think she deserves to know, man?’

Lucifer hesitates. Dan scrutinises him closely. ‘Oh,’ he realises, surprised. ‘You're afraid.’

Lucifer scoffs dismissively, glancing away, before abruptly swinging his head back to face Dan and snapping. ‘Of course I'm bloody afraid! Look at the way you reacted! Look at Linda!’ At Dan’s confused look, Lucifer adds irritably. ‘My therapist, Doctor Linda. I showed her my face and she cancelled all my sessions for a week!’

Dan raises his eyebrows and nods as he takes this in. ‘Right.’ Then he frowns. ‘But she's seeing you again now?’

Lucifer huffs. ‘Yes, of course. Just needed a bit of an adjustment period, apparently.’ He sighs deeply. ‘You know for a while there I was rather worried I'd snapped her mind. Human brains are ridiculously fragile.’ Catching Dan’s look, Lucifer sniffs and waves a hand at him. ‘Well, you'd know.’

‘Right,’ repeats Dan dubiously. ‘So, your therapist - so relieved you have one, by the way - knows you're-’

‘The Devil, yes.’ Lucifer nods impatiently.

‘Who else knows?’

Lucifer frowns. ‘Just you and her at present. Oh,’ he adds offhandedly. ‘And several miscreants, of course, but who's counting them?’

Dan nods. ‘But you haven't told Chloe. Even though you're-’ he looks away and coughs lightly, ‘-in love with her.’

Lucifer scoffs, almost automatically. ‘I'm not in-’ at Dan’s unconvinced expression, Lucifer shifts.

‘I've told her anyway. So many times! It's not my fault she doesn't believe me. Atheists,’ he mutters, in the same way Dan might say 'creationists' or 'flat earthers’. Well. Used to say. God, Dan misses being an atheist.

Dan looks at him. ‘You realise that's because you sound insane when you say that, right?’ In response to Lucifer’s indignant glare, Dan sighs. ‘Look. You need to show her, man. You know you need to. Chloe deserves to know, especially if this thing between you, whatever it is, goes any further.’

At Lucifer’s hesitation, Dan runs his hand down his face. ‘You need to be honest with her. And yes,’ he says at Lucifer’s look, ‘I do know that's rich coming from me. I lied to Chloe, Lucifer, for months and it destroyed our marriage, my job, nearly ended all our lives. Don't make the same mistake I did. Chloe deserves better than that.’

Lucifer swallows and hesitates before saying, ‘I know. I just.’ His gaze flicks up, almost helpless. ‘I don't want her to hate me. To see me as a monster.’

He looks down at his hands as the word seems to echo between them.

Dan licks his lips and shifts in his chair, feeling a sudden stab of guilt. ‘Look, man. I don't hate you. I mean, you fricking terrified me, but I don't hate you. Your therapist doesn’t hate you. I highly doubt Chloe will either. She really likes you, man.’ Dan snorts. ‘She practically declared her love for you in open court, and we both know that Chloe isn't one for big emotional displays.’

He catches Lucifer smiling tentatively at that.

Dan gives a muted grin in return before adding, ‘besides, if Chloe was going to hate you for something, let's face it, it would probably be your shining personality.’

Lucifer grins at that, bright eyes flashing up to meet Dan’s.

‘That's rich coming from you, Sir Douche.’

Dan snorts. ‘Yeah, I probably deserve that.’

Lucifer gives him a shit-eating grin. ‘Oh, you definitely do.’

And for a short while, they sit together in companionable silence, the stars twinkling overhead.

-

‘I made those, by the way,’ says Lucifer helpfully as Dan absently stares up at the sky some time later. ‘Do you like them?’

They're standing at the balcony overlooking the city, a strange sense of peace between them, interrupted only by Lucifer’s occasional, weird pronouncements. Like this one.

Dan blinks. ‘Oh. Um. Yeah, man. They're… very nice?’ He stares at his friend, still trying to wrap his head around Lucifer, Dan's childhood Sunday school lessons, and let there be light.

Lucifer eyes him irritably. ‘Nice?’ He repeats disgustedly. He huffs and looks over the balcony. ‘That boring yellow one up there is only keeping you alive. But, sure, so long as it's nice,’ he mutters grouchily into his whisky tumbler.

Dan winces, feeling on the back foot. ‘They're very pretty,’ he adds placatingly. ‘Beautiful,’ he amends quickly at Lucifer’s unimpressed glance.

Lucifer looks slightly mollified. ‘Thank you,’ he says with poor grace. He considers thoughtfully then points out a star, second to the right and faintly glimmering. 'Was such a pain making that one. Almost created another black hole and sucked the galaxy into oblivion. Lucky that didn't happen,’ he adds offhandedly.

‘Still,’ he grins with muted glee, oblivious to Dan's look of alarm. ‘Had fun tricking Uriel into that first black hole. Took ages for Amenadiel to yank him out. Didn't see that one coming.’ He falls silent briefly, gaze far away. ‘He always was a clumsy one growing up, constantly tripping over his own bloody wings.’ He huffs out a subdued laugh. 'Used to embarrass him to no end, let me tell you.'

He sighs, suddenly looking old. 'Stupid, stubborn Uriel. Always so good at controlling everything except the things that actually mattered.'

Dan nods and watches him quietly. ‘You miss him, don't you?’

Lucifer snorts and looks away. ‘We barely even spoke, not for millennia.’

Dan tries not to think about how long ‘millennia’ are but nods understandingly. ‘I don’t talk to my brother much either. But,’ he hesitates, ‘I still miss him, sometimes.’

Lucifer eyes him. ‘Oh, and did he try to murder your mother and partner too?’

At Dan’s unimpressed look, Lucifer sighs and looks away, back up at the stars. ‘I suppose… I do miss him. Sometimes. Or at least who he used to be. Who we used to be.’ He swallows, dark eyes reflecting the glittering lights of the sky and the city. He seems for a moment distant and unreachable, lost in his memories. When he speaks, his voice is very soft, nearly inaudible even in the calm of the balcony. ‘I miss them all.’

After a moment’s hesitation, Dan lifts his hand to squeeze Lucifer’s shoulder comfortingly while they stand silent and still, staring up at the stars.

-

‘Wait, wait. So Maze the scary ninja badass is literally a demon?’

‘Yes.’

‘... A demon stripped me naked and put me in my ex's bed.’

Did she now?’

‘Shut up.’

Chapter Text

Chloe is surprised to receive the text from Lucifer on Thursday.

The whole last week has been bizarre for her - Dan suddenly losing his mind, Lucifer moping around the station. Whatever stupid fight Lucifer had gotten into with Dan must have been horrific, but neither of them would talk about it, no matter what she did. All she got was some garbled nonsense from Dan about the Devil. (Which, seriously, Dan?)

It was absurd. Chloe refused to dwell on Dan's strange babble, because her partner may be strange, may sometimes do things that could only be described as inexplicable, but he wasn't the Devil, no matter what Dan - or Lucifer himself - said. Lucifer Morningstar was many things, but Chloe could never believe he was evil.

And then suddenly, just like that, it was all over and the two idiotic men in her life were friendly again. Not completely back to the whole adorable bromance thing they’d had going for the last couple of months, but a truce. They both seemed tentative, tip-toeing around each other as though they were terrified something might break. It was both really sweet and rather sad.

Chloe just wishes she knew what was going on.

And then there was the way Lucifer has been behaving weirdly towards her. First avoiding her calls and hiding in Lux for days last week, then suddenly back at work, dogging her heels as though he might never see her again. Looking at her with those big, sad beagle eyes, as though Chloe was the one who'd abruptly turned tail and vanished without so much as a word. Chloe is getting pretty sick of it.

And now there's this text. Curt and cryptic, just the words:


Detective,

Please meet me at Lux tonight at your convenience.

I have something to which I must confess.

Yours,

Lucifer


What the hell. What does he mean, ‘confess’? What did he do?

She stares down at her phone in consternation, before glancing at the clock. Quarter to six. Ok, that's it, she’s leaving. She's going to go to Lux and get to the bottom of this.

As she grabs her coat she sees Dan emerging from the breakroom, coffee in hand. Her eyes narrow. Two minutes later she collars him and propels him inside the deserted kitchen.

Dan looks nervous, suspiciously so. ‘Hey, Chloe, how are you going?’

Chloe ignores him. ‘What do you know about this?’ She shoves her phone under Dan’s nose.

Dan gives a little uncertain laugh before taking it gingerly. He squints down at the message. Something flicks rapidly across his face. It almost looks like he's impressed.

Oh, he definitely knows what's going on here.

‘What does he mean, Dan?’

Dan looks away shiftily. ‘Mean? No idea, sorry Chloe.’

Chloe crosses her arms. ‘Don’t lie to me, Dan.’ She says sharply. At Dan's wince she sighs.

‘Look, I know you won't tell me whatever happened between you last week - Lucifer won't either. But at least tell me this: is Lucifer in some kind of trouble? What does he think he needs to confess?’

Dan looks uncomfortable. ‘It's not really my place to say,’ he hedges.

Chloe glares. ‘Really?’

Dan rubs his forehead. He looks tired, like he hasn't been sleeping well recently. Just like Lucifer, Chloe thinks with a frown.

‘Look,’ says Dan. ‘Even if I tell you, you won’t believe me. It's something you really need to see with your own eyes. But,’ he sighs deeply, a vertical furrow appearing between his eyebrows. ‘When he does show you, Chloe-’

He hesitates. ‘Just keep an open mind, okay?’ he finishes lamely. ‘No matter what happens, what you see, Lucifer’s still Lucifer.’ He expels a harsh breath. ‘He’s still your friend. So just, stay calm, okay?’

And with a sad, worried frown, Dan escapes, leaving Chloe alone in the breakroom with a growing sense of unease.

-

It's a little after seven when Chloe arrives at Lux, dodging servers setting up for the long night ahead. She makes her way up to Lucifer’s home above the shop, more concerned than she'd care to admit.

Lucifer’s standing on the balcony, his long back towards her, still like a statue and a glass of something no doubt very rare and very expensive clasped lightly in one elegant hand. Chloe casts her eyes briefly on the small table by his hip, where they had nearly kissed.

They had never spoken of it since, but sometimes, in the long, dark hours of the night, Chloe would consider what-ifs, what might have been had they not, at that moment, been interrupted by an amorous - and soon to be dead - stewardess. Chloe's still coming to terms with the 'revelations' of that case, that Lucifer swings both - and possibly all - ways. Not that she minds. It's just a bit of shock after months of assuming he was the ultimate ladies' man to realise that she was wrong and that he was actually the ultimate everyone's man.

Because what Chloe really needs is more stupidly attractive competition. Not that she feels she needs to compete for his attention. At all. That would be ridiculous.

Chloe clears her throat and Lucifer visibly starts.

He turns slowly, almost reluctantly, to face her.

‘Detective,’ he says, tone uncertain. ‘You're earlier than I anticipated.’

He seems shaken but quickly offers her a subdued smile. ‘Eager to meet me, were you?’

Chloe smiles slightly at his weak reflexive charm and cautiously steps further into the room, taking the measure of his strange, disquieted mood. ‘I'm always happy to see you, Lucifer.’

He looks away, fingers drumming agitatedly on his glass.

Chloe steps forward tentatively, like one might approach a skittish horse.

She holds her phone up with a deliberately light smile, trying to project calm and unruffle his feathers. ‘Want to tell me what this is about?’

Lucifer's eyes dart to his message then back to her. He swallows, looking tremendously nervous.

‘Yes, of course.’ He clears his throat before giving her a false smile. ‘Why don’t you take a seat, Detective?’

He gestures to a leather loveseat beyond his piano. ‘Would you care for a drink?’

Chloe frowns as she slowly sits. ‘No thanks, I'm good. Lucifer, what is this about?’

Chloe watches in concern as Lucifer drains his glass quickly, before sloshing another generous three fingers into it and knocking that back too.

At last he eyes her, and, with obvious trepidation, walks over to reluctantly join her on the loveseat.

For a moment he looks at the wall, the floor, anywhere but at her, before she finally says, ‘Lucifer.’

His eyes snap back to hers. He looks… frightened, face pale and eyes terribly wide. Chloe’s sense of unease grows ominously.

‘Lucifer, what is it? You know you can tell me anything, right?’

For some reason he laughs briefly at that, sounding surprisingly jaded.

He looks back at her, face sharp. ‘No, Detective. I'm afraid I don't know that. But,’ he sighs, ‘it has been pointed out to me that I should confide in you nonetheless. That I owe you that much, at least.’

He looks depressed, shoulders hunched. ‘And all I can hope and - ha - pray for is that you don't hate me for what I'm about to show you. That I don't cause you yet more suffering.’

Chloe frowns, worried and hurting for him. ‘You're not making any sense, Lucifer. Show me what?’ She leans forward, concerned.

He sighs. ‘I know you said - a while back, after that blasted poker flamingo lady, you remember - that you didn't need to know my… secret. That you were satisfied with just my ‘eggs’.’ He takes a fortifying breath. ‘But I need you to know. If we are to become any- closer. I need you to know who I am. What I am. And, Detective? For what it’s worth, I am so sorry.’

Chloe frowns, worried and uncomprehending, but before she can say anything he-

Changes.

Just for a minute. One moment he’s his usual handsome, ridiculous, huge-eyed self and the next he's-

Not.

Her partner is gone and in his place sits a man, a strange creature, almost impressionistically hued in scarlets and blacks, hairless with dark ridges like scars across its face, and its eyes-

Are piercing, glowing a rich red, deep and sad and despite everything so very familiar.

Lucifer?’

And just like that it's gone, and Lucifer, her Lucifer’s face snaps back into place like he was never gone and he looks so frightened.

Chloe stares at him, breathless. ‘What was that?’

Lucifer swallows, dark eyes enormous in the half-light of the room.

‘That,’ he says hoarsely, ‘was me, I'm afraid.’

Chloe stares at him uncomprehending, mind still fixed on the image of that strange, familiar face burned into her brain.

‘You? How could- how could that be you?’

She nearly completely rejects the notion, almost stuffs it in that convenient little Pandora’s box in the back of her mind labelled ‘do not open,’ but despite herself her mind flashes back to that day, long ago now, when she'd shot him. When she'd thought she'd seen something, something alien and unholy in the shadows. Oh God, how-

Lucifer avoids her eyes, looking down at his hands. His voice sounds heavy and old. ‘It's true, Detective. Everything I've ever told you about who I am, what I am. It's all true.’

He looks up, almost desperately. ‘I've never lied to you, please know that. I've always endeavoured to be nothing but honest to you. But. I've never shown you and I-’ he looks away, ‘-probably should have a long time ago.’

Chloe swallows around the tightness in her throat. ‘The truth.’ She echoes. ‘That you're-’

‘The Devil, yes.’ His voice is quiet and his eyes keeping flitting everywhere, to and from her face, as though he can't bear to look for too long.

He swallows convulsively, eyes huge and dark. ‘I'll understand if you want to leave now,’ he says, voice hushed. ‘I won't- bother you, if that's what you want. I'll understand.’

He looks down.

Chloe is still processing.

‘You're the Devil,’ she repeats.

‘Yes,’ he says quietly.

‘You're the Devil,’ she tests.

He looks almost chagrined. ‘Yes,’ he half-snaps. ‘You needn't keep repeating it. Trust me, I'm well aware.’

Chloe shakes her head, mind spinning. ‘No, wait.’ She swallows. ‘That thing- I mean, that face I just saw, that was you?’

He nods, looking slightly sick. ‘I'm afraid so.’

Chloe nods distantly. ‘Okay. Okay. Wow.’

He frowns. ‘Wow?’

She nods distantly, lost in thought. ‘Wow,’ she agrees absently. Then she frowns suddenly, leaning forward. ‘That was you? What you really look like?’

Lucifer gives a shaky sort of shrug. ‘Well, not exactly- more a, a reflection of my inner darkness. A sort of proto-interdimensional quasi-conceptional complex variable hell-form, but-’ he says at her confounded expression, ‘Sure, yes, that's what I really look like. Sort of. Sometimes. Ish.’

Chloe slowly nods. ‘I see.’

Lucifer blinks owlishly, hesitant. ‘Do you?’

‘Not really, no,’ she admits. ‘But,’ she frowns. ‘Those burns, the scars-’

Lucifer snorts and looks away. ‘Hideous, aren’t they?’

She leans forward, eyes fixed on his. ‘What happened?’

He stares at her, uncertain. ‘I Fell from Heaven.’ He snorts bitterly and glances away again. ‘Well, more like pushed, but who's counting?’

She stares at him, heart in her throat. ‘Did it hurt?’

He stares back at her, helpless. ‘Yes,’ he says, voice hoarse, wrecked.

She nods, feeling all at once tremendously tired and so very, very sad.

He's still staring at her as if deeply confused.

She sits back and presses her knees hard with her hands, heart thumping in her chest. ‘So. You're really the Devil. You really are immortal. And you really do just like punishing people?’

He nods. ‘Well, when I'm with you. I didn't much care for it back in Hell when it was forced upon me.’

At her pensive nod he frowns, non-plussed. ‘Aren't you,’ he hesitates, ‘frightened of me?’

She regards him, takes in his oh-so-familiar face, his large, dark eyes, the vulnerable way he's holding himself, as though anticipating a blow at any moment. God, how long had he been holding this in?

‘Should I be?’

‘No!’ He all but yelps. He swallows and leans towards her, voice low and intent. ‘Never. I will never hurt you, Detective, not ever. Not on purpose. You have my word.’

And he's staring at her, so fierce and sincere, eyes as bright and passionate as they ever are and, despite everything, Chloe feels a rush of affection, of love for her friend, her partner.

She smiles, shakily but gently. She'll need some time to think, to sort out all her emotions, her confusion and her well and truly updated worldview, but in this moment something in her feels… okay. Like they can move past this and maybe even be the better for it. Somehow.

‘Then what's changed?’

-

‘Wait, so Charlotte Richards is your mother?’

‘Yep. Well, my mother in a disturbingly hot human body, but yes.’

‘And she wanted me to betray you?’

‘Well, that was after her gambit to incinerate you with a car bomb had failed, so yes.’

‘Your mother tried to kill me.’

‘Don’t take it so personally. Isn't it practically a human tradition for mother-in-laws to be nightmares? Not that she would ever be your mother-in-law of course, naturally.’

‘Naturally.’

‘More bourbon?’

‘I'd say so, yeah. Actually, Lucifer, probably just bring the bottle.’

-

Halfway to the bottom of their shared bottle, Lucifer pacing himself with just the odd glass, Chloe... less so, she blinks blearily and gazes up at him.

‘Hey, can I ask just one last question?’

Lucifer nods seriously, eyes intent. ‘Absolutely, Detective. Anything your heart desires.’

Chloe inclines her head solemnly, accepting his vow.

‘Is it ‘immortal’ with one ‘m’ or two?’

Lucifer stares at her. Chloe’s head sags slightly as the drink makes her wobble on her stool by the bar. After a moment she feels his hot hands, supporting her back and righting her. Heh, hot as hell. She giggles quietly.

Lucifer’s voice is bemused as it floats down to her ears.

‘... Two.’

As she starts to drift off, she feels a suit jacket being draped around her shoulders. Now warm and comfortable, she dozes off, head resting against a solid, shirt-clad chest, completely unaware of her partner’s startled and awed demeanour.

-

That night in Chloe’s sleep, she dreams of white feathers, burning crimson eyes and an overwhelming sense of safety and peace.

Chapter Text

When Dan comes into work on Friday it's with a sense of trepidation. Chloe isn't at her desk and Dan briefly considers calling her - or Lucifer - to work out just how much damage was done.

Then he spots Lucifer perching on Dan’s desk. He looks up at Dan's approach and he's positively glowing.

‘Friend Dan!’ He exclaims, leaping up and bounding towards Dan, face alight. He seizes Dan’s elbow. ‘She doesn't hate me!’ His expression is exultant.

Dan feels a wave of relief. ‘So you told her? And it went well?’

‘Better than well! She said I wasn't a monster.’ Lucifer looks more joyous at this proclamation than Dan thinks is probably healthy.

Dan nods, happy for him. ‘Well, I'm glad man, I really am.’

Abruptly Lucifer straightens, alert, his eyes catching sight of Chloe. ‘I've got to dash, but thank you, Dan.’ His deep, dark eyes gaze down at Dan warmly. ‘Sincerely. For being such a good... friend to me, even when you didn't need to, when you had no reason to be. For accepting me. You're a good man.’

He considers. ‘Well, mostly. Where it counts. Just maybe stay off the murder.’ And with that he claps Dan on the shoulder and leaves him standing like a lemon by his desk.

Dan watches him go to Chloe. Chloe is tucking a lock of her blonde hair behind her ear and smiling at her partner tentatively. Lucifer is grinning, wide and lovely. And Dan stands alone, feeling like there is a gulf separating him from them, from any happiness.

Watching them standing there in the light, so beautiful - Chloe’s eyes shining and smiling shyly, and Lucifer, dark and handsome and delighted, so obviously in love - Dan realises with a sudden twisting in his gut that he is in trouble.

God, so much trouble.

Fin