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A Futile Attempt to Move On

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Crowley put down the chocolates. “Us?” he asked faintly.

“Yes.”

He tilted his head to the side with forced nonchalance. “What about us?”

“You know what,” he said patiently.

A pause. “Are you sure?”

“Yes,” Aziraphale twiddled his thumbs. “I do believe we’ve waited long enough.”

Crowley lowered his arm slowly. He gripped the edge of the table, knuckles turning white. He appeared unsure of himself. “So.”

Aziraphale licked his lips. “I’d like to apologize.”

“Huh?” he raised his eyebrows. “Why?”

“For when I pushed you away and said I didn’t like you,” he recalled with shame. “I was terribly frightened of the reality that Heaven was wrong about everything, and I took it out on you, since I wasn’t even supposed to like you, and yet you shared my bed.”

He swallowed audibly.

Aziraphale played with the ring on his little finger. “I didn’t have to go that far. Please forgive me.”

“Angel,” he breathed, “I knew you were full of shit. I get it.”

“You did?” he asked with relief. “Oh, but still, it was awfully rude of me, and as you pointed out, a lie. You didn’t deserve that.” 

His grin didn’t quite meet his eyes—or, sunglasses. “I’m a demon; I can take some fake insults.”

“I can’t take giving them,” he insisted. “And I apologize for shutting you out with Adam.”

“You went through a crisis of faith, yeah?” His smile grew more genuine. “I understand that entirely. It’s hard. I’ve known you since Eden and how hard it’s been for you to listen to your gut rather than Heaven. That’s been your thing. I saw through Heaven’s nonsense sooner, that’s all. It’s fine.”

Aziraphale wasn’t satisfied. “You’re letting me off the hook rather easily.”

“You’re being too hard on yourself,” he said. “You’re a bastard, but not that much.”

Aziraphale shook his head, still feeling like Crowley was being too understanding. “I still shouldn’t have.” He squeezed the ring in his palm, feeling the metal dig into his skin. “I shouldn’t have denied my feelings for you.”

Crowley inhaled audibly, his grip tightening on the table. “I still knew,” he said in a quiet, slightly hoarse voice. “I felt it. It’s how I knew you were full of it.”

“You can feel it?” he asked in surprise. “But you’re Fallen.”

He sighed. “It sounds cheesy, but I can only feel yours. When we went to the nunnery? I couldn’t feel the love you felt, but. For some reason, I’ve always felt yours. Can’t explain it.”

Aziraphale was glad that he hadn’t badly hurt Crowley, then, at least not as much as he thought he did. “Well,” he slid the ring back on his finger, “I’m glad you could feel it.” He hesitantly laid his hand on top of Crowley’s. “I never stopped, you know,” he murmured.

Crowley ducked his head, a deep flush blooming on his cheeks. “I do know,” he said softly. “It was hard to ignore for all those decades.”

“Always there,” he felt his eyes glaze over.

“Poking and prodding at me.”

“Begging for attention.” Aziraphale was rubbing a slow circle into Crowley’s skin without even knowing.

Crowley kept his face turned downwards. “It made things better and worse,” he murmured, a frightening amount of vulnerability in his voice. “Being able to feel what you feel, that is. It’s good, knowing you care. But knowing was almost like a curse.”

“I know,” Aziraphale said, entirely empathetic. He sighed. The pain of the last 80 (6,000) years was fresh. “I didn’t want to end it, I hope you know.”

Crowley’s hand tensed under his. “I know, and you were right; we would’ve been killed. I wanted to be angry at you, but I knew there was no other way and that it hurt you, too. We would’ve died and the world would’ve ended several decades later.”

“It was a terrible situation,” he bemoaned.

“I was so angry at the situation,” Crowley shook his head. “I…” he laughed hollowly. “I finally got what I wanted and reality smacked me in the face. Us in the face,” he corrected himself.

Aziraphale slid his hand up to his bicep, the fabric of his jacket smooth underneath his palm. He hated to see him so miserable. “It’s over now. They think we’re indestructible. We don’t work for them anymore. If they see us together, in bed, even, what could they do to us?”

Crowley lifted his head. “In bed?” he asked hesitantly.

Aziraphale leaned a little closer, his body drawing to Crowley’s like a magnet. He used his other hand to pluck the sunglasses off and set them on the table, gulping when golden eyes peered into his.“If you would be so inclined,” he gave a short, nervous laugh. His hand came to rest on his chest, feeling a hard, quick pulse beneath his palm. “Your heart is fluttering like a bird’s,” he murmured.

Crowley was so red he looked feverish. His face was pinched in pain. “Aziraphale, listen. If you do this, you can’t take it back. I can’t pretend it never happened a second time.”

“Why would I do that?” he asked genuinely, feeling the quick pulse reverberate throughout his body. “We’re safe.”

Crowley looked torn, as if he were fighting to listen to his head instead of his heart. “You have to know what you’re getting yourself into. I’m a demon, I’ll never not be a demon. I’m not nice. I’m difficult to be around. I make trouble and I like it.”

Aziraphale chose not to argue about his being nice. “Yes,” he nodded, “I know all of this. Do you think one day I’ll dislike you and leave?”

“I’m just giving you all the warning labels so you know can’t act surprised if I do something you don’t like,” Crowley said.

“I’ve known you since Eden,” he repeated Crowley’s earlier statement, “I’m not going to wake up one day and hate you. The only thing that kept us apart is gone. If we had to separate for some reason, believe me, I’d be just as upset as you.”

Crowley pressed his lips together and turned his face to the side. “Once I have you, I’m not letting you go.”

Aziraphale could smell his cologne, and leaned forward, his body acting on its own accord so their torsos were flush up against each other. “If I really wanted to go, you would let me,” he countered. “You’d never force me into anything.”

Crowley’s jaw clenched. He knew it was true.

“But I promise you don’t have to worry about that,” he attempted to quiet his fears, the old, familiar warmth glowing in his abdomen. “You don’t have to push me away to prevent yourself from getting hurt.” 

Crowley scrunched up his nose with an annoyed, mortified groan. “I’m not,” he protested weakly. “I’m just saying. If there’s any doubt in your mind, don’t even finish this conversation, ‘cause I can’t stand feeling this and not being able to do anything,” he told him, growing distraught. He gritted his teeth, eyes shutting tightly. “I feel you now.” His shoulders drooped. “You’ve no idea what it’s like. There’s been an emptiness in me, like a gnawing thing since She cast me out, but I finally feel love and I cannot lose this again,” he said harshly, hands shaking.

Aziraphale bit the inside of his cheek to hold back a gasp, his vision blurring. He rapidly blinked away the wetness. He never thought of that aspect. He knew the Fallen lost Her love, but he didn’t think it hurt Crowley this badly. Oh, Crowley, my poor darling. What a sensitive soul. He knew, then, that he would have to try to make up for it for the rest of his immortality.

Crowley opened his eyes, looking at him directly, suffering in his eyes. “I hated feeling this when I knew I couldn’t have you. Aziraphale,” he practically begged, voice cracking and trembling as it did two days prior when he was drunk and sitting at the bar, “if we can’t do this forev-um, for the foreseeable future, just end this now and stop being cruel.”

“You know I love you deeply,” Aziraphale somehow said without letting out a sob, despite his throat feeling tight enough for asphyxiation. He was sure the heartache pressing into his ribcage was from both of them. Holding his hand wasn’t enough, so he put his chin on Crowley’s shoulder and wrapped his arms around his back. They were both trembling. “You won’t go a day without me loving you. I’ve never been more sincere about anything in my life when I say we’re never going back. I hated it, too, my dearest boy.”

Crowley buried his face in his soft curls, arms around his soft middle and just holding. His breaths were loud and quivering, filling the room. “ Fuck, the things you do to me.”

Aziraphale wanted to do this all day long. Crowley was so warm and solid in his arms, their chests pressed together, hearts beating in sync. He didn’t think he ever loved Crowley more than at this moment. He was allowing himself to be the picture of vulnerability, admitting to his insecurities, shaking, and on the verge of tears. Aziraphale was blessed to be the only one to witness this side of him. “The feeling is mutual,” he said through his dizzying daze of emotions. A pang flicked his heart. His demon was such a forgiving creature. “An irrational part of me worried you wouldn’t after the way I acted,” Aziraphale told him.

Crowley huffed out an irritated breath, ruffling his hair. “I already told you—”

“Thank you for still loving me,” Aziraphale interrupted, the pitch of his voice raising, his ears burning. Saying this out loud was so new, so revealing.

Crowley pushed him back by the shoulders, his jaw dropped, pupils widening. Then his lips snapped shut. His pupils narrowed back into slits. “I’m—you stupid angel, wh-who thanks someone for something like that?” He sounded scandalized. “Love is supposed to be thankless.”

That was the single sweetest thing Aziraphale ever heard, and the bouquet beside them bloomed vibrantly as a joyful bubble of laughter escaped him. “Crowley!”

“Shut up,” he hissed, neck turning very red very quickly. He averted his gaze quickly and instead focusing on his discarded glasses. “Shut uuuup. I didn’t mean that. I’m selfish. I want you all to myself. See? Greedy.”

Aziraphale bit his lip to stop his smile from being wide enough to hurt.

Crowley looked at him from out of the corner of his eyes, and then turned exasperated. “Oh, Hell, you can’t go around making faces like that. It’s…”

“Yes?” he prompted.

“It’s fucking cute ,” he growled. “Satan, I’m gonna have to go drown a duck later or something.”

“You’ll do no such thing!”

“Can’t help it!” he said dramatically. “You’re making me all—“ he waved his hand, “—gross and mushy.”

“You’re in love,” Aziraphale said gently, with fondness and amazement. 

Crowley instantly softened. “Yeah.” He sniffed, cheek twitching. “I was a bit much a minute ago, wasn’t I?”

“No,” Aziraphale said, not wanting him to feel ashamed of his emotions. “After everything that’s happened, I think your caution was completely understandable.” His arms were still around Crowley, loosely now. “You do get it now, yes? You have me.”

Crowley’s lower lip wobbled before he bit it. “Uh huh.”

The raw desperation was seeping out of their auras. They were calming down. Even Crowley’s furious scarlet blush was easing into a lovely dusting of rose-petal pink. Aziraphale took a deep, steadying breath.

“Can I ask you something stupid?” Crowley looked at him, bordering on shy.

“Yes?”

“Well,” he played with Aziraphale’s bow tie. “You’re an angel, so of course your love feels,” he made a face, “warm and kind and all that rubbish.”

Aziraphale knew that he was feeling more at ease if his sarcasm was coming back. “Right?”

“What’s mine feel like? Is it, dark and possessive and, you know, unpleasant?” To anyone else he would have appeared only idly curious, but he was self-conscious.

“Goodness, no,” Aziraphale denied quickly. He focused on the sensation hugging his soul. He smiled. “Since I awakened beside you and allowed myself to let you in, it’s always been nothing short of warm and pure.”

Crowley looked at him like he’d grown ten heads, then rolled his eyes hard and hissed. “Satan, don’t say that! I’m a demon! I’m—”

“Not nice, I know,” Aziraphale rolled his eyes in turn. “But I absolutely know what I feel.” His hands slid down to his waist. “It’s just us,” he said, “you don’t have to deny it.”

Crowley looked like he wanted to put up a fight, but sighed, resting his forehead against his. “...All right.”

Aziraphale beamed. “All right?”

“When it’s just us, I’ll tell you I love you and all those things I’m not supposed to do.”

Aziraphale couldn’t help but giggle, and Crowley grinned. Aziraphale squeezed his hips. “Crowley, why haven’t we kissed yet?”

He chuckled, breath ghosting over his face. “I dunno. Bit ridiculous, really, after all the fuss.”

Aziraphale slid their lips together like two puzzle pieces fitting into place. It wasn’t hot and needy (at least not yet), but more like finally sitting down after wandering aimlessly through the desert. Crowley would sneer if he brought up biblical references now, so he focused on the kiss instead. Crowley’s lips were unbelievably soft, puckering slightly and sucking. He lightly wrapped his hand around the back of Aziraphale’s neck. The kiss was long and slow, an unhurried caressing of lips as they both fully accepted that, yes, they had all the time in the world. Aziraphale gave a pleased little hum, the bouquet on the table gradually growing more vibrant. Crowley’s mouth was so plush and silky smooth, and Aziraphale’s tongue grazed over his bottom lip, needing to feel more of those soft lips. His tongue retreated only to have Crowley copy his action, and he took it further by hesitantly taking Aziraphale’s bottom lip and leaving a featherlight nibble.

Aziraphale’s hands twitched and he pressed their bodies together so that their thighs were touching, too. He sucked Crowley’s upper lip, enjoying the whine that reached his ears. This was so right. Their kissing grew deeper, lips parted, hot, wet tongues meeting (tongues were sort of slimey, weren’t they? Ah, well, it couldn’t be helped), hearts pounding. Crowley was the one to break it, golden irises taking up his whole eyes, pupils widened, face as if he were in a trance. He was utterly beautiful. He searched Aziraphale’s eyes, but went back to kissing before he could be asked what for. Aziraphale felt hands run through his hair, and he shivered, discovering that being petted was quite nice. Then, Crowley’s mouth left his and began pressing affectionate kisses to the corner of his mouth, his round cheeks, the soft swell of his jawline, the sensitive skin by his ear.

Aziraphale’s grip tightened on his hips, his mouth dropping open in a gasp. It was like someone lit a match in his body, the uncommon yet welcomed sensation of arousal entering his body. “I do still have a bed,” he suggested. 

Crowley was nuzzling his neck with his damp lips. “Mmmm.”

“You listening?”

Crowley lifted his head and blinked slowly, appearing drunk. “Bed,” his brain caught up, his posture straightening. “Mhm. I want. Yeah. Let’s do it.”

Aziraphale did always find his moments of incoherent babbling incredibly endearing. It was a little awkward to walk with the growing pressure between his legs, but they made it to the bedroom hand-in-hand without much issue besides getting distracted against a bookshelf for a minute. 

Then they were lying side by side on the bed, hands on chests, arms, stomachs, shoulders, everywhere. He was so unused to being touched, and Aziraphale noted how lonely most of his existence had been. Humans held each other, even if all they did was hug. Angels didn’t touch each other. He didn’t allow himself to get attached enough to humans for them to touch him, not really. Forming a deep relationship would be seen as inappropriate by Heaven, and it would be terrible to have a human companion age and die while he stayed the same. Crowley was his one true companion. His hand was currently up Aziraphale’s waistcoat, long fingers splayed across his stomach, and he was sucking his neck.

Aziraphale shivered pleasantly, slotting his thigh in between Crowley’s legs, feeling himself harden at the small moan buzzed against his skin. His eyes widened when Crowley started to move his hips, rocking his erection against his thigh. Did he even know he was doing it? He seemed rather in a world of his own. He was paying a great deal of attention to his neck, sucking so Aziraphale’s nerves jolted with electricity.

“Crowley?” he asked.

“Huh?” he lifted his head, almost looking disappointed that he had to stop what he was doing.

Aziraphale kissed his cheek, filling with anticipation, but not anxiety. That was gone. After all, they’d done this before. “How do you want it, Crowley?”

Crowley’s Adam’s apple bobbed. “Ah...Um…” His eyes shifted around the room, unused to being without his sunglasses.

“You can tell me,” he offered a small smile.

Crowley didn’t look at him. “With you in. Um. Inside.”

Aziraphale, oh dear, felt a twitch below the belt. That was a terrifically appealing suggestion. He pecked him on the lips. “Certainly.”

Crowley looked at him, flushed. “O...kay. Great. So?”

“I think we should undress now,” he said, removing his leg from in between Crowley’s.

“Right.” He lifted his hand, and it hovered in the air.

Aziraphale kissed him. “Go on, dear.”

Fingers twitching, he said, “Oh, sod it,” and undressed them both with a snap of his fingers, leaving their clothes in a heap on the floor.

Aziraphale blinked, looking down at his own nude form. “That’s one way to do it.”

Crowley’s eyes were exploring his body, lips parted, his cock hardening.

Aziraphale couldn’t help but blush. “I believe it’s a sin for me to inspire lust,” he joked weakly. 

Crowley gripped his chin and pulled him into a searing kiss, tongue tracing the seam of his lips and splitting at the tip, going forked.

“Oh,” he gasped, “your tongue.”

Crowley made a questioning noise.

“Like a snake.”

He retracted it. “Sorry,” he muttered.

Aziraphale let himself touch Crowley’s chest. “Not a problem at all.” He watched, transfixed, when he experimentally rubbed his nipple and Crowley’s mouth dropped open. The flesh puckered beneath the pad of his thumb. Crowley seemed to have stopped breathing, his eyes wide and watching Aziraphale’s hand. 

“Sensitive,” Aziraphale observed. Out of the depths of his memory, the image of Crowley writhing as he had his nipples licked flashed before his eyes. He got on top of Crowley, rolling him onto his back, and got to work.

Crowley gasped sharply, and coughed as he exhaled. “Ah! Damn, forgot how good this felt.”

Aziraphale’s tongue circled his right nipple and his thumb played with his left. He may not have been incredibly experienced, but these bodies appeared to be well-equipped to know what they want and take the lead. He lapped over the pink bud, becoming fully hard when Crowley moaned and bucked his hips.

Crowley reached into the air and a bottle manifested. He pushed it into Aziraphale’s unoccupied hand. 

“For doing the thing,” he rasped.

Aziraphale saw that it was lubricant. Good thinking, since he didn’t have any. Heat swirling in his pelvis, and unscrewed the cap with his thumb. He squeezed some onto his fingers. “We didn’t do this last time,” he said. “Why’d you choose this?”

Crowley licked his lips. “Heard it’s cool.”

Aziraphale giggled. “‘Cool’?”

Crowley twisted his mouth to the side. “Don’t laugh.”

“You’re funny.” His finger approached down there, and he swallowed hard. The vulnerability of Crowley’s position not at all lost on him.

“Really?” he grinned, and then it was gone with another gasp, his hands flying to Aziraphale’s shoulders to find something to grip.

Aziraphale was pushing in a finger, amazed by how hot he was inside. Their eyes locked, and he had to kiss Crowley. Their kiss was sloppy and kind of more like bumping mouths together as Crowley’s moaning grew louder and louder, but it was fine. Aziraphale found himself leaking as Crowle squirmed from his ministrations, and they did their little mouth bumping until Aziraphale was working two fingers inside of him. 

“C’mon,” Crowley panted, his hair damp and sticking to his forehead.

“Are you sure?”

“Yes, yes,” he hissed. 

Aziraphale gazed down at him, drawing out his fingers. His heart fluttered, taking in the view. Crowley’s messy red hair was over his eyebrows, skin glistening with sweat and pink from the chest up. He was enticing enough to be an incubus. Aziraphale felt a little anxiety in him, but could tell the energy was coming from Crowley. “It’s all right,” he stroked his cheek with his clean fingers. He wanted to be as close as possible, for both their sakes, after being apart for so long. He was overcome with the need to hold him. 

“Roll onto your side, please,” Aziraphale said.

Crowley did as he was told, glancing back at him curiously over his shoulder.

Aziraphale laid down next to him, chest facing his back. He wrapped his arms around his chest and hooked his leg over his hip, breath shaking when his tip nudged his entrance. His lungs emptied when he slowly pushed into the tight heat. This. Oh, Lord, this was divine. Aziraphale moaned and buried his face into Crowley’s shoulder blade, his body trembling with pleasure and the effort to fight against his body’s instinct to slam into him.

Crowley was panting out a succession of ah! ah! ah! .

“You okay?” Aziraphale slurred. He was getting drunk with pleasure, and he only just started.

Crowley nodded frantically, hands flying to Aziraphale’s and lacing their fingers together. “It’s good,” he hissed.

Aziraphale was fully seated inside him, holding his body tightly against his chest. He moved his hips backwards and slid back in, hot tight glorious walls stroking his entire erection. He built up a deep, steady rhythm, Crowley’s body rocking against the mattress with each thrust, which somehow made him more aroused. Aziraphale bit his shoulder, groaning.

“Ungh!” Crowley moaned. His face was upturned and his mouth was open, his voice loud in the quiet flat above the sleepy bookshop. He was unselfconscious, lost in their bubble of pleasure. He was gorgeous.

“You’re marvelous,” Aziraphale told him, lips near his ear. Crowley’s heartbeat was thundering beneath his hands. He nuzzled the back of his neck, placing sloppy, wet kisses there. He needed to pepper him with kisses, because even know he wanted more . Finally, finally, finally , they could do this, let loose and shirk the roles their superiors dictated. He could finally allow himself to care for him, and in turn be on the receiving end of Crowley’s devotion without feeling guilty.

Crowley turned his face and whined into the pillow, muffling curses into the fabric. His hands squeezed Aziraphale’s tight enough to hurt. “Hah, nnnugh, I feel you everywhere .”

Aziraphale was losing control rather quickly, thrusting harder, brimming with love. He lifted his head to see his face.

Crowley’s face was still buried in the pillow, his eyes shut, breathing out of his mouth.

“Darling boy, look at me,” he kissed the snake tattoo on the side of his face.

Crowley turned his face, golden eyes raw and wet. He looked at Aziraphale and groaned, eyes shutting and face falling back to the pillow. “Fuck, Aziraphale, can’t— oh —you can’t look at me like that!”

Hearing his own name in such a needy voice made Aziraphale shift his hips and slam, drawing a long moan from them both. “Like you’re everything to me?” he asked sincerely.

Crowley mewled into the pillow. Aziraphale hugged him, practically squeezing, his body tingling everywhere. His toes curled. He changed the angle again, and Crowley cried out.

“Crowley?” he asked in alarm.

His nails were digging into Aziraphale’s skin, back arching, and then one hand let go and flew to his cock. “The fuck ? That’s good. I dunno why b-but, ngk, keep going!”

Aziraphale watched, and the sight was so intoxicating that he felt his bollocks pulling up, and he vaguely remembered that was a sign it was all coming to an end. As much as his body needed release, he was almost disappointed. But he remembered something about the human prostate and how it apparently assisted orgasms, and figured that was what probably set Crowley off, so it would be over for him soon, too. Aziraphale drove into him, dimly aware of how harsh his breaths sounded. Their shared love was highlighting the experience, glowing inside him. “Make yourself feel good,” he whispered into his ear. 

“Ugh!” Crowley let out through gritted teeth as he jerked himself off. He pressed his lips together tightly to stop little whines from coming out, his body starting to writhe in Aziraphale’s arms.

“You amaze me,” he whispered, completely genuine. “Yo-you’re so charming.” The love and pleasure was now one, overflowing in his chest. It was the best feeling in the world. “Thank you for, oh goodness, for letting me see you like this.”

Crowley’s hand moved faster, strained, broken syllables tumbling from his lips. He was wrecked, breaths more like sobs than anything else.

Aziraphale kissed the shell of his ear. I love you so much. I feel your love for me, and thank you, beautiful, you brave boy, thank you. I’ll take care of you forever.

Crowley stiffened, and then snapped back to life, and he would have been thrashing if it were not for Aziraphale’s grip on him. “Oh, oh , Aziraphale!” he yelled. “I can’t, it’s happening!” His walls suddenly clamped around Aziraphale and he spilled onto their hands, quickly turning to bite the pillow to stifle his shout, his aura overpowering Aziraphale and curling around him. Aziraphale choked out a moan, surprised by the intensity of his orgasm as he thrust erratically and shot his release into his body. Everything went white, a slight ringing in his ears as he shook and held onto the equally trembling body against him. 

His vision gradually came back, the sounds of Crowley’s breathing entering his ears. Aziraphale pulled out, shivering, and miracling away the mess. He kept hugging him, though, face buried into his sweaty back, his heartbeat calming. They were quiet for a long time, to the point where it was concerning. Aziraphale put his head on the pillow. “Crowley?”

Crowley tiredly turned around in his arms, blinking blearily. He was debauched, yet sweet. “Hey.” His voice was hoarse so he cleared his throat. “What was that white light?” he squinted.

“You saw it, too?”

“Yeah.”

“Don’t know.”  He gave a puff of laughter. “Maybe the force of our love combined?”

Crowley performatively sighed. “Gross.”

“Don’t pretend,” Aziraphale rubbed the tips of their noses together and kissed him softly. “I felt your aura everywhere, you faker.”

Crowley’s lips quirked into a smile. “Hm. I felt yours, too. Still feel it.”

“And I yours.”

He chewed his swollen bottom lip. “You know you projected your thought towards the end?”

“Projected?” he furrowed his eyebrows.

Crowley kissed the corner of his mouth. “Stop thanking me for loving you.”

“Oh.” He didn’t know telepathy was possible for them. Maybe it was only when they were connected like that? “You weren’t meant to hear.”

Crowley just grumbled and nudged Aziraphale onto his back so he could curl up at his side, head on his shoulder. His face was hidden. “Would it be overkill if I said it out loud? I mean, after that aura business and stuff.”

Aziraphale wrapped his arm around him, playing dumb. “Said what?”

Crowley’s finger came up to trace patterns in his fair chest hair. “Love you. A lot. You mean more than the world to me.”

Aziraphale sighed in bliss. “Not overkill, lovely.”

Crowley poked his chest. “You’ve been giving me lots of nicknames over the past 24 hours.”

“It’s all come very naturally, dear,” he said, turning his face to rest his cheek on top of his head.

Crowley sighed dramatically. “You ruined me as a demon, you know.” He yawned. “I was the original tempter, and here I am, willing to do anything for a bloody angel.”

Aziraphale wondered if he knew just how much he revealed himself when trying to be sarcastic. “Here I am, an angel, in bed with a demon.”

“A foul fiend,” he said playfully.

“A wily, devilishly handsome serpent.”

He titled his head up, eyes relaxed and liquid gold. “How did you ever convince Hell you were me? You’re so,” he narrowed his eyes, “soft.”

Aziraphale chuckled. “I’m a very good actor.” He placed a light kiss to his forehead. “Did I tell you how I frightened the demons?”

“No,” he said with a smirk.

An impish curl to his grin, he said, “They were behind glass, you see, and I splashed holy water at them.”

Crowley was proud. “You’re awful,” he said affectionately. “That’s sadistic.”

“I know,” he said triumphantly.

“I breathed hellfire at Gabriel, Uriel, and Sandalphon.”

Aziraphale kissed him as a reward. “I wish I had been there to see it. I didn’t know you could breathe hellfire.”

“Course I can. I’d show you, but it’d suck if I killed you now after all this.”

That startled a giggle out of Aziraphale. “That’s morbid.”

Crowley shrugged, yawning again. “Mmmf. The past two days’ve worn me out more than the past 6,000 years.”

“You did stop time,” Aziraphale reminded him, “and just enjoyed a nice romp.”

“Don’t call it that!”

“A vigorous session of love-making?”

Anyway , yeah, stopping time takes a lot out of me. But it’s so cliche, falling asleep after fucking.”

“Last night, you said I deserved a nap for saving the world. You deserve the same.” He combed his hand through Crowley’s hair and cradled the back of his head. “I think we deserve a bloody long rest.”

“Yeah,” Crowley agreed, cuddling his face into Aziraphale’s neck. (He would have turned into a snake if he knew Aziraphale thought he was cuddling.) “Guess you’re right. It’s weird not having assignments anymore.”

“It is, but,” he smiled at the ceiling, “it’s a relief.”

Crowley settled in the crook of his neck, arm wrapping around his stomach. “I might sleep for a week, fair warning.”

“Are you serious?”

“I am, actually.”

“Let me get some books, then.”

“You don’t have to stay with me.”

“Don’t be silly.”

Crowley slept for four days instead of a week, and the whole time Aziraphale was there, re-reading some of his favorites. The covers were over them, and he didn’t think reading could get any better, but being snuggled up in bed with a warm demon snoring and occasionally cuddling into his neck was a new, wondrous experience. It was surreal. He didn’t have to wonder where Crowley was or worry for his safety. He didn’t have to ignore his heartache anymore. Not all of the pain disappeared, not immediately; millennia of repression was quite a lot to get over. But Aziraphale never felt this content before. He remembered Crowley calling him his soulmate. Did God create soulmates? He didn’t know, but if She didn’t, they must have been the closest possible thing to the concept. He felt complete.

Four days later, Aziraphale was sitting up, choosing what to read next out of the large pile beside the bed when he heard a deep sigh. He looked over, smiling and perking up.

Crowley rubbed his eye with his knuckle, a crease from the pillow across his left cheek. His sleepy, golden eyes blinked once at Aziraphale, and a tender smile graced his features. “Hey, angel.”

“Hello, dear.”