Chloe watches in dismay as the elevators close. Wait...what?
Ella throws a handful of cash through the crack and “Officer Snake-Hips” grinds on the detective like she’s a stripper pole. Shake my booty while I still...what? Dammit, Lucifer!
“Will you stop that?” she turns and growls at the entertainer before stalking away to her desk...
Later in the day, she heads to Linda’s office. “I had a question about a case and I can’t get a hold of him,” she lies. Linda shoots her a knowing glance but says nothing so Chloe continues. “We were celebrating my birthday at the precinct and he just bailed.”
Linda offers the detective a seat but Chloe tries to decline. “No....i’m fine...it’s probably just Lucifer being Lucifer, ya know?” She finds herself sitting down to talk anyway.
“I know you’re busy,” Chloe continues. “I checked Lux and he wasn’t there. And, I thought I’d go up to the penthouse to check but the last time he went AWOL, I went up there, to check on him and all his furniture was covered in sheets and he had run off to Vegas.”
She chuckles nervously, “of course, that’s when we were getting together-which we TOTALLY are not any more, nor will we. But, you know, it’s my birthday...(nods)...mmmhmmm....wow....good couch...”
“I know,” Linda looks sympathetic. “And I understand. Birthdays can be emotional.”
The detective shrugs. “I guess. No, I’m good. I’m good. He’s probably just in the penthouse passed out or something. Emphasis on something.”
Linda smiles kindly, “How bout I go with you?”
Chloe looks at her for a long moment then takes a deep breath, “Please.”
Chloe sighs as she looks at the damage done to Lucifer’s wall. “This...Look at this. This is nuts.
Linda chuckles, “Yeah. But super-fun.”
The detective looks sad as she sits down on the bed. “This is...it’s pointless cracking into this safe because no matter what we find, it’s not going to change the fact that a) there are things about Lucifer that I will NEVER understand, and b) spackle’s NOT gonna help the Assyrian antique wall.” She points in the direction of the safe to make her point.
Linda looks at the detective over her glasses, “I think you and I both know that this isn’t about spackle.”
Chloe blushes uncomfortably. “He left. On my birthday. And I wasn’t expecting a big party Or anything huge. Maybe a card.”
The therapist cocks her head, “You know...Lucifer is a non-traditional guy. And he celebrates in....non-traditional ways.”
The detective nods, “Right! Like going to Vegas with some radish.”
Linda sighs, “Lucifer cares for you. I’m sure he’s going to come back with some crazy explanation...”
Chloe cuts her off in frustration, “That I’ll probably never hear about. And that’s fine. It’s fine. I just hate that I sound jealous.” Her eyes well with tears, “‘Cause I’m not. I’m not jealous. I’m not. I just, um....he’s just my friend, you know?
Linda nods sympathetically as a tear trickles down her friend’s face, “I know.”
Dan chooses that moment to return, brandishing his container of spackle like it’s a winning lottery ticket. “What did I tell you? I am the man,” he smirks.
Choe raises her glass to her friends and smiles, “Cheers. To the weirdest birthday I’ve ever had. And thank you for the party. Such as it is.”
They drink their toast and Dan looks around, “So....you, what? Decided to just randomly show up at Lucifer’s place when he’s not here to drink his booze and break into his safe,” he arches a brow at his ex-wife’s attire, “wearing his shirt?”
Chloe and Linda blink slowly at each other then look back at Dan, “Yup,” they reply in unison. “Pretty much,” Chloe finishes off with a drunken nod. She pffts a lock of stray hair out of her face.
Dan chuckles and rubs the back of his neck, “That’s weird, Chlo. Even for you.”
She shrugs and points toward Lucifer’s closet, “We WERE going to raid his sock drawer but graceful idiot that I am,” she points at the mermaid painting on the floor, “I knocked this down, we saw the safe and...well...ya know...”
Dan looks down at the painting and takes another quick drink. “ That ...painting?” he croaks then clears his throat. “It’s horrible. All that money. You’d think he has better taste.”
She shrugs and picks the canvas up off the floor to give it a good look before laying it on the bed. She cocks her head and furrows her brow, “I dunno. It’s kinda cute. I like it.”
Dan drinks again, “Right. Um. So, seriously. The sock drawer? Don’t know if I’m brave enough to digging in any of his drawers, honestly. Looking for joints or something?”
Linda gives an exaggerated, drunken shake of her head, “Oh, noooo. You can learn a lot about a person from how they stay organized. Or not.” She waggles her eyebrows and lowers her voice to a conspirator’s whisper, “He is quite the mystery, don’t you think?”
Chloe bursts out laughing and gestures around, “I think we can agree that Lucifer Morningstar has a serious OCD issue when it comes to keeping things neat and clean. He keeps running me out of hand sanitizer.”
“That’s because you...” Linda claps her mouth shut and eyes open wide as the detectives both turn to look at her. “Um...because you have a child. You know how they carry germs.”
They nod in agreement, “Yeah.” Chloe nudges Dan, “Hey, remember how sick you got after we first put Trixie in daycare?”
He rolls his blue-grey eyes, “Oh God, don’t remind me. I’ve never been that sick in my life.”
Chloe laughs as she walks past her ex-husband toward the bar for a refill “You were such a baby about it.” He and Linda follow. They pour another round, Dan grabs another beer, then they troop off to the closet in question.
The light comes on automatically as they step into the room, “Because, of course,” Chloe smirks.
Dan issues a long whistle as he looks around, “Hoe. Lee. Shit.”
The walls of the room are covered from floor to twelve-foot ceiling with built-in storage. The rich, cherry cabinetry is roughly ten feet high capped with two-feet of crown molding. The top half of each section houses perfectly-pressed suits and shirts of varying colors, textures, and patterns. The bottom half alternates between drawers and shoe racks. A large square island is filled with drawers and topped with gleaming black marble. The room smells vaguely of smoke and cedar.
Chloe snickers as she looks around, “Seriously? Are you shocked?” She raises her hand to brush it along a section of pressed shirts, “Grouped by color, no less.” The blonde detective continues her perusal of the space, “Even the shoes.”
She picks one up, “I mean, seriously. Who even knew Manolo Blahnik made men’s shoes? He’s like Carrie Bradshaw was reincarnated as a man. And not a single pair of sneakers.” The black suede oxford is replaced and her hand brushes the handle of a drawer, “Does he even wear socks?”
“Yes,” Linda answers before thinking. She blushes furiously as she takes a drink.
Chloe snickers again and points, “Right! You’ve “shagged” him!” It’s her turn to blush when she pulls on a handle to find a drawer full of leather straps. She closes it quickly. “Maybe this is a bad idea.”
Dan laughs, “Oh, come on, Chloe. You know he’s gotta have toys and stuff. Probably leather for every occasion.” He laughs, “and organized by color!”
His ex-wife shakes her head, “Ew.” She reaches for a drawer on the island and laughs when she finds it full of pocket squares. Each is perfectly folded. Not only is it grouped by color but the transition from one color to the next creates a perfect rainbow. Chloe laughs and points, “Guys, look. THIS is ridiculous.”
She laughs harder as she looks around again, “Can you imagine him coming home from the dry-cleaners and spending hours putting things away in perfect order? I can just imagine me calling him for a case and him telling me he can’t do it because it’s Laundry Day.”
Dan snickers as he walks toward the door, “I gotta hit the head. I’ll be right back.”
Chloe and Linda giggle as they explore more of Lucifer’s closet. The detective is particularly tickled to find that he actually has a couple of drawers filled with casual-wear. “But no gym clothes. How does he stay in shape?”
Linda snickers and shoots her a wink, “He gets in a lot of cardio.”
Finally, the sock drawer is found and proves to be a crushing disappointment. “They’re all black. I mean, some have small patterns on them, but still,” she harrumphs. “For all he’s Mr. Look-At-Me, you’d think he’d be more fun in the clothing department. Even his underwear is all black. Talk about boring!”
The therapist shrugs, “I think he simply prefers to let quality speak for itself.” She winks, “Like, sure, the boxers are all black, but they’re silk .”
The detective smirks, “Yeah, maybe.”
Dan returns and as he enters the space, the pocket of his jacket catches the pull of a particularly deep drawer and it comes out a few inches. He looks down to see feathers, “What the Hell...?” he murmurs as he pulls it open further.
Chloe and Linda both look to the source of his consternation. The therapist chokes on her drink while the detective chuckles. “He had another pair made” and “Oh God, we missed one” come out of both their mouths, then the women look at each other, eyes wide.
“What?” all three of them say at the same time.
Chloe points, “Remember he had a pair that were stolen? It’s part of his schtick, right? “The Devil” and all that,” she finishes with air quotes. She shakes her head, “He is really committed to it, isn’t he?”
Linda drinks and says nothing, so the detective continues with a dismissive wave, “I know you’re not allowed to...you know. Confidentiality and all that.”
The therapist nods without saying anything. Allowing the others in the room to draw their own conclusions.
Dan pulls the drawer out farther, “Maybe he had a Victoria’s Secret Angel over. Anybody want to try them on?” His chuckle dies in his throat as the rest of the wing comes into view. Including the stump end with the dried blood and crusted bits of flesh.
“Wait!” Linda cries out too late.
The detectives’ faces grow pale as they stare at each other. That’s where I cut my wings off , echoes in Chloe’s head as her eyes widen and her jaw drops.
Dan scrubs a hand over his face and steps back, one hand pointing, “That’s....um.....” He turns his gaze to Linda, “not.....fake,” he finishes weakly then downs the rest of his beer.
Chloe’s eyes don’t move from the drawer, “Liiiiinnnndaaaa....”
The therapist shoves the drawer closed and looks at her friends, “We should go.”
The blonde detective blinks rapidly then shakes her head, “Wait...”
Dan leans heavily against the door jamb, jaw still slack and blue-grey eyes wide. “Umm...he...”
Linda watches her friends carefully, holding her breath and trying to gauge their reactions.
Chloe blinks again then narrows her eyes at Linda, “It’s true. Everything he said about who he is.”
“I...um....I can’t...” the therapist stammers.
Her friend cocks her head and raises her eyebrows. “Seriously? You’re going to pull the “appropriate” card now ? I’m pretty sure you can make one more exception for this obviously special case to come clean.” She points at her still-gobsmacked ex-husband, “It’s just us.”
Linda is still obviously struggling when Chloe rests her hand on the smaller woman’s shoulder, “He’s been telling us from the get-go. Seriously, from almost the moment each of us met him, he’s been all “I’m The Devil this” or “I’m The Devil that.” He’s clearly okay with people knowing.”
The therapist looks down, “Sort of,” she murmurs. She nods at the drawer, “Finding out that he’s not...making that up can be....difficult.” She huffs softly, “But....um....” she looks up into their faces, “yeah.”
“Fuck,” Dan finally comes back to himself. “Wow. So, God and all that stuff...?”
Linda gives a sharp nod, “yeah,” she says again.
Chloe blinks then looks at her empty glass, “I need another drink.”
They vacate the closet and the detectives slowly look around Lucifer’s penthouse as if seeing it the first time. Dan runs his hand over the damage on the wall by the safe, “He’s going to kill us.” Blink. “ Literally kill us and send us to Hell.”
Linda laughs in spite of herself, “He’s not going to kill you. This is still Lucifer you’re talking about. He steals gummy bears for crying out loud. He doesn’t kill people,” she explains. Angels, but not humans , she clarifies silently as she reaches for a bottle and pours.
Chloe snorts, “Right. He’ll just punish us.”
The therapist points, “Not you , at least. Maybe just Dan.”
“What?” squeaks the subject of the comment. He pales again as Linda laughs and waves him off, “I’m kidding, Dan. Lucifer isn’t going to do anything to you for finding out. He’ll probably be more concerned that you don’t want to see him again. Or keep working with him or....” she sips her drink.
Chloe’s eyebrows go up, “Or, what?” she asks nervously as she refills her own drink.
Linda’s eyebrows go up, her expression one of askance, “You’re kidding right?” Chloe doesn’t answer, so Linda continues, Dan’s presence be damned, “You’re in love with him, Chloe. And he knows.”
The detective’s face flushes scarlet, “I...um...I...” her eyebrows come down and she points accusingly, “Well... you slept with him!”
Linda smirks and raises her glass in a toast, “Yes, I did. And it was good .” She winks, “I definitely recommend it.”
Chloe’s mouth drops open as Dan replies from behind the bar where he found a bottle of mezcal, “Hello...?” and gestures at himself. “Excuse me?”
The therapist shrugs, “He sleeps with men, too, so I’m sure you could talk him into it.”
Dan’s eyes fly wide and Chloe laughs heartily. “What?! No! I don’t want to...gross. No! I’m not...”
“Oh come on, Dan,” Chloe giggles. “Don’t you want to get flipped by The Skillet?” The giggles evolve into a full-blown guffaw as she wraps her arm around her stomach and loses herself in her mirth.
He frowns and points at his ex-wife while looking at Linda, “No! It’s just...you know.....it’s hard to think about my wife...ex-wife...being in l-....you know.....caring like that about someone else.” He pauses and looks nervous, “ especially if that someone else is...um......” He shakes his head and rubs the back of his neck while looking down. “Oh, God. This is so fucked up. God ...crap.”
Chloe’s laughter settles a little bit, “Why’s he here, Linda?” she asks.
The smaller woman shrugs, “Why does anyone look for a change of scene? He was tired of being...where he was. It wasn’t working for him. So, he came here and made a home. Reinvented himself.”
Dan scowls, “You make it sound so normal . He’s...not.”
Chloe begins to pace, a finger tapping her lip, “I don’t know. He’s definitely strange, but...if you think about it in context...could be worse. A lot worse.”
Her ex-husband puts a hand on his hip and squares his stance defensively, “Come on, Chlo. You’re going to make a case for this guy? He’s The Devil! I bet he’s got you charmed.”
Linda shakes her head, “No. She’s actually the only one that doesn’t work on.”
Chloe nods and points at Dan, “Right! See? But, really, if you think about all the weird, impulsive stuff he does and says. When he goes on about “humans this” and “humans that.” He really doesn’t understand.” She looks at Linda, “So....he really had wings?”
The therapist nods absently, “Has.” Her friends gawk as she continues, “They keep growing back.”
Chloe narrows her eyes, “Keep growing back? What do you mean?”
In for a penny, in for a pound , Linda decides. “He kept cutting them off.” She continues in spite of Chloe’s shocked gasp. “He doesn’t want them but I convinced him to stop. For now.” She takes a heavy pull from her glass.
Dan frowns, “Doesn’t want...wings? Why?” He looks toward the glass wall that overlooks the city, “Man, I’d be flying everywhere. Could you imagine not having to worry about traffic?”
“He thinks his father is behind it,” Linda answers. “The....tension between, um, them, is real.”
“You mean God?” Dan asks. “As in the tension between Satan and God. Like from the Bible.”
She nods and looks at Chloe to see a tear trickling down her cheek. “Are you okay?” she asks quietly.
Chloe nods as she wipes her face, “Yeah. I just...thinking about him doing that to himself. I can’t imagine...”
Dan nods in agreement, “That’s serious self-mutilation. We’ve come across people who self-harm, but this...”
Another tear trickles down Chloe’s face, “You said he knows that I.....care about him? Do you think it matters?”
The therapist smiles kindly, “A great deal,” she assures the other woman.
Dan nods in agreement, “Yeah. I see that. When you were poisoned, he wouldn’t stop until he had that formula. I don’t know where he got it from because the professor was dead, but...”
Chloe looks up sharply and catches Linda’s eye. The therapist looks away but the detective calls her attention back, “How did he do that, Linda?” she asks with her voice shaking.
Linda takes another drink and shakes her head, “I really don’t want to talk about that.”
The taller woman steps closer, “Did he go...did....he...” That makes one of us. “Oh my God, he died,” she whispers hoarsely as her hand covers her mouth.
Linda looks down at her feet and still doesn’t answer.
“But how?” Chloe asks. “How can he die if he’s, you know...immortal?”
The therapist bobs her head side to side, “Let’s just say there are some circumstances when his immortality is....questionable.”
Two pairs of blue eyes widen. “What circumstances, Linda?” Chloe demands. The therapist clams up again but the detective is insistent. “If I’m going to work with him, I need to know when he can get hurt.”
“Look, Chloe,” Linda begins, “All this isn’t really my story to tell. I think you should ask Lucifer when he gets back.” She raises her eyebrows, “You need to talk to him now that you know.” Her gaze flits between the detectives, “Both of you.”
Chloe paces again, “I shot him when we first started working together. He was so surprised that it hurt. That he was bleeding.” She frowns and continues pacing, tapping her finger. “I’ve seen him hurt before. Said that he and his brother fought.” One angel can hurt another. But, seriously, how many angels to we run into on the regular? She blinks. I really don’t know and I’m not sure I want to.
The blonde continues to wrack her brain then she remembers when he arrived at her house so late after the Dunlear case. It seems you make me vulnerable, too. She blinks. Me? Then she looks at Linda with understanding lighting her eyes. The therapist lowers her eyes but still says nothing.
“It’s me,” she says softly.
“What?” Dan asks.
“Me. I make him vulnerable. He told me after we arrested Vanessa Dunlear,” she explains. “But why?” She frowns, “I’m immune to his charms. I make him vulnerable...what the Hell?” She laughs mockingly, “Literally.”
Linda sighs heavily, “I really think you should be asking Lucifer this.”
Chloe notes how the therapist’s posture has changed and realizes she needs to stop interrogating the other woman. She nods and moves to lead the way out of the closet, “Let’s play some cards.”
“Cards?” Linda asks.
The detective smiles and continues walking into the main space, “Yeah. I always carry a deck to play with Trixie in case we have to wait someplace.” She bumps Dan’s shoulder, “You owe me a re-match anyway.”
Her ex-husband laughs, “Sure, I do. I beat you fair and square last time. And the time before that.”
Chloe grabs the deck out of her purse and sits on the floor next to the coffee table then starts to shuffle, “Grab a bottle, Espinoza. You’re going down.”
Dan and Linda laugh as they approach and take their seats at the table to start playing.
Chloe rouses to the sound of Lucifer’s voice softly filling the space behind her.
“...I went to Las Vegas. And...even though it was for a very good reason, I didn’t tell you because last time I went on a Vegas jaunt, there were some very unpleasant feelings involved.”
She opens her eyes... Oh.
“For both of us,” he continues. “And...well...I didn’t want to dredge any of those up so I.....bluffed. But I’ve come to realize perhaps bluffing is the same as lying, and that’s, as you know, something I never want to do.”
The detective forces herself to not react when his large, warm hand gently rests on her side. “Especially to you.” Her heart races as his thumb strokes her skin through his shirt.
“Heh-lo...someone’s been busy.” He seems to have noticed the damage caused by their evening’s adventure. Will he be angry?
Lucifer gets up and Chloe hears the electronic sound of buttons being pushed. She sits up and fake yawns.
He turns to smile at her, “Oh. Perfect timing. You’ve woken up just in time for your surprise.”
He doesn’t seem angry , she thinks to herself. “Surprise? What surprise?”
He hefts a small grey box with a black ribbon, “Well, forgive my tardiness, but I thought it prudent to deliver your gift in private.” He sits on the bed and flashes an expectant smile.
Is he...nervous? Chloe smiles at box then at Lucifer, “Thank you.” She opens the box and removes a long chain with a pendant on it. Is that gold...? Copper...? “It’s beautiful,” she comments as she watches the light glint off the metal.
Lucifer flashes an almost-shy grin, “Oh...it’s...”
Her brows furrow as she looks more closely, “What is it?”
Lucifer chuckles. “It’s the bullet. From when you shot me. Remember in the warehouse early in our partnership?”
Chloe nods with a small smile, “Yeah. I remember.”
Lucifer shrugs, “I thought since I’ll never likely penetrate you, I’d commemorate the one time you penetrated me.”
The detective bursts out laughing and her partner’s grin grows cheeky. “So, uh....happy birthday, Detective.”
Chloe opens her arms for a hug and Lucifer hesitates a second then huffs softly before taking her up on the invitation. He lowers himself to rest his head on her shoulder as her arms wrap around him. He sighs and closes his eyes, enjoying the moment as she absently strokes his back.
“Lucifer?” she asks quietly.
He begins to draw away but her embrace tightens to let him know that isn’t what she desires. Her pulse is racing. Perhaps she wishes to kiss me again? “Yes, Detective?” he responds quietly.
Her hand resumes stroking his back and he shivers, forcing himself to focus on the sensation to keep his wings from announcing their unwanted presence.
“I believe you,” she whispers. Chloe draws away just enough to capture his startled gaze with her own and he sees tears welling. “I’m sorry I didn’t before.” Her voice cracks and she bites her lip, obviously concerned over his reaction.
Lucifer frowns as his eyes scan her face then he scowls toward his living room, “You...know? Truly?” He looks back at her, “The good Doctor let the cat out of the proverbial bag, then? Alcohol have a negative interaction with professional responsibility, did it?”
His face flushes in anger. It was too much to ask for a human to keep this sort of thing under wraps , he fumes to himself. He lowers his head in defeat and increases the distance between them, “I’ll let you make your escape then.” He waves toward the pair of former friends passed out on his sofa. “May wish to rouse them as well and be on your way. I’ll...make myself scarce.”
Lucifer moves as if to stand but Chloe wraps her hand around his wrist and holds him still. Her other hand reaches to turn his face toward her then gently strokes his cheek, “I’m not going anywhere, Lucifer,” she smiles sadly. “I’m trying to say I’m sorry you felt like you couldn’t trust me.”
He looks back toward the passed out therapist then to the detective in his bed, “How did you...?”
Chloe blushes furiously, “It wasn’t Linda. We....um....we were really, really drunk. I wanted to see your closet. Dan’s jacket hooked on a drawer. There was a, um, wing. All Linda said was that we should ask you our questions. Told us it’s not her story to tell.”
Lucifer nods, “Ah. I see. I....appreciate the Doctor’s discretion, then.” He frowns, “So....why are you and Daniel still here, Detective? Too drunk to even dial an Uber? Certainly you must have realized you were playing in...a monster’s lair,” he finishes quietly as he looks down at the bed.
The detective scoots closer to him, “You are not...” She reaches for his chin and raises his face so he has to look at her, “Look at me, Mister. You are NOT a monster.” Blue eyes flash angrily and his eyes flick away. “I said look at me.”
He can do nothing but obey and his heart breaks at what he sees. She’s furious.
“You are my friend, Lucifer. My partner. And I will shoot anyone who says otherwise,” she growls.
He smirks, “Even me, Detective?”
She arches a blonde eyebrow and glances at his leg then back to his face, “I already shot you, so that’s covered.” Chloe’s thumb strokes his cheek, “Honestly, though. You’re not.”
Lucifer coughs a laugh, “You have no idea the things I’ve done, Detective.”
She nods, “you’re right.” She shrugs, “I’m sure you’ve had to do some things I’ll never understand.”
He lowers his gaze to the bed again. Ashamed.
Chloe scoots closer, “But I can only judge the people in my life by how they have treated me and my family.”
Lucifer looks up at her, an eyebrow arched, and she chuckles.
“You are such a pain in the ass. Everything is a joke and you’re the most irreverent....um...person?...I’ve ever met. Would it kill you to follow a rule once in a while?” She pauses and tears fill her eyes as she takes a deep breath.”
“Detective, I...” he begins but she shakes her head to stop him.
“You are also the bravest, most selfless....” she exhales sharply while he stares at her. “You....Lucifer, you died . For me. For Trixie...” The tears fall and she covers her eyes with a hand as her shoulders shake.
He rests a trembling hand gently on her shoulder, “Detective....Chloe...please.” He swallows heavily. “Don’t,” he whispers hoarsely.
She continues to cry softly as she leans forward to lay her head on his shoulder. His arms wrap around her without him thinking about it. A large hand strokes her back, “I’m not worth this, darling.”
Chloe growls softly as she looks at him, “You are worth it,” she counters. He opens his mouth but she cuts him off, “You’re worth it to me, dammit. What I don’t understand is why you did it.”
Lucifer smiles as he reaches to brush a tear from her cheek, “You already know the answer to that, Chloe.” He leans forward slowly and presses his lips to hers. Tentative and uncertain until she reciprocates. Lucifer sighs as his tongue brushes her lips and she opens her mouth to invite him in. Her arms wrap around his neck to pull him closer as he tries to convey his feelings for her through his kiss. She moans in encouragement as their tongues dance.
After several minutes, they pull away for breath and her fingers reach up to touch her lips. Wonder lights her blue eyes as she stares at him. “Oh,” she whispers with a shy smile.
He laughs softly as his hand buries itself in her hair and pulls her forward again, “Oh, indeed,” he murmurs in agreement as he pulls her closer.