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On one bright shining morning after the apocalypse that wasn't, Crowley wakes up with a penis. It's rather awkward, as he'd convinced Aziraphale some years before to try not only sleeping but sleeping together, which is soothing to the parts of their bodies that function on a mammalian-and-lower level. Now there is a cheerful new part to his anatomy making itself known and bidding the whole world a perky new morning, and particularly bringing that joyous news of the cock's crow to Aziraphale's backside.

Crowley has been sleeping regularly on a voluntary basis since he first tried it several thousand years before, though not dreaming [1], and he has never woken up with a new body part. He has on some particularly dire occasions woken up with his wings out, but that's only a matter of their shifting planes of reality, not of their deciding to exist.

"Aziraphale," Crowley says, prodding the angel's shoulder. "Did you do a miracle in your sleep?"

"Did I--what sort of miracle?" Aziraphale asks muzzily. He is not an angel of the morning[2]."I don't think so."

"Well, I didn't wish for it." Crowley lets him go before the new protuberance can get any more demanding. Already it's asking for all sorts of things that he does not in fact want, most of them in connection with the man-shaped being next to him.

Crowley's temptations tend more to the gustatory when he is dealing with Aziraphale, due to past experience and Aziraphale's long-standing conviction that anything humans have to do in order to maintain their bodies can't be inherently sinful.There has been the odd theological argument about the sanctity of Victoria sponge, but while sober Crowley prefers to concede this point.

The more optional a human activity is, the more they tend to worry about it, though Crowley doesn’t. Procreative sex is entirely out of the question with Aziraphale, but since that's not how they've ever acquired new physical forms--thank Whoever's responsible for that decision--it's never been directly relevant. In much the same vein as eating and blinking, Aziraphale breathes most of the time, not just when he's around people who would be uncomfortable on a subconscious level if he stopped doing it. In the right mood, he has been known to gasp, sigh heavily, and make an assortment of other noises native to Earth, including the occasional groan when he sits.

Thinking of Aziraphale's capacity to moan is not deterring the happy flesh in the slightest. Crowley blesses it sincerely and miracles himself a dressing gown several sizes too big. It arrives in embroidered purple silk, which is louche but too clingy, and immediately switches to extremely plush Turkish cotton.

"Are you quite all right, my dear?"

"Not precisely." Crowley thinks wistfully of his usual lack of genitalia and tries to will it back into being. His unwonted anatomy responds with a slight twitch and no sign of fading into entropy. "I feel like a medieval manuscript."

"Illuminated?"

"With a penis around the edge for no apparent reason." He does not immediately show Aziraphale the brazen appendage, mostly because it is extremely interested in being shown off and Crowley has his limits on what sort of bastard he's going to be. Besides, the shape of the thing isn't news, only its location.

Aziraphale wakes up all of a piece, for once, and blinks at him in something approaching horror. "Wait--that's the miracle you thought I might have done?" He sits up on the edge of the bed, much too close for discomfort. "Really, it's hardly my style."

"Perhaps you dreamed of restoring statuary," Crowley says, holding his robe firmly closed.

"No, I don't dream of anything like that. Did you?"

"My--His people aren't the ones with drawers full of willies." Though the deforestation of Classical statues[3] was one of those human foibles that both sides had appreciated, Hell for the destruction of beauty and Heaven for the removal of something that might be titillating for the subset of the population whose only access to naked people was marble representations of same.

"As if you'd have trouble getting into the Vatican."

Crowley waves this away. "I'm not a statue, so I didn't need to. This is something much stranger than sneaking around St. Peter's Basilica."

Aziraphale presses his plush lips together and Crowley wishes he wouldn't, as the images the motion evokes are tempting Crowley more than anyone else, and not in ways Aziraphale would appreciate. "It must be there for some reason."

"Really? Haven't we seen enough of the universe to know that some things are ineffable?"

"Well, yes, the Plan, but--"

"She sees the sparrow fall, and grants demons upwardly mobile parts on their pudenda, to remind us of what we can't have?" The urge to make a joke of it is all Crowley's, but the specific frustration doesn't belong to him. He rubs his hand over his face.

"Sparrows," Aziraphale says. Then he has the sort of idea that ought not to occur to him but sometimes does when he is not properly awake. "If you manifest your wings, will it get a pair, too? Is that where those Roman symbols came from, you old snake?"

"I kept my snake to myself in ancient Rome, thank you very much." Crowley shudders, thinking of the few orgies he'd attempted to attend and how badly they'd gone[4]. At least the thought of candied tongues or gold-covered nuts distracts him from wanting Aziraphale in unprecedented ways for a moment.

But only for a moment, because while the spirit is willing, the flesh is weak. Part of Crowley wants the corporeal parts of Aziraphale very badly, in the sticky ways humans want each other that demons, at least this demon, tend to leave as one of their quirks when not actively exploiting the weakness. Besides, Crowley's obscene gestures have more to do with making sure that phone boxes and dating apps are full of pictures of sexually available humans than exposing himself to anyone, human or otherwise.

The longing throbs through him, along with thoughts of Aziraphale's body, warm and soft and, in the dreams of the urges that go from the genitals to the spine and back again, surely willing.

Crowley closes his eyes and thinks of cocoa, of sushi, of angelic wings, but it does him no good. "Is there anything humans can't sexualize?" he asks, and if he sounds despairing, at least he's with the one being who knows him well enough that he can be a bit off his guard[5].

It takes several long moments before Aziraphale says, "I shouldn't think so, no. They're very inventive in that regard."

"I wish I didn't know why." There have been endless crimes blamed on "passion" over the millennia, and generally Crowley has counted them as victories without digging into them further to find the motivation. If the true motivation was this primal urge, no wonder there are so many such crimes, and so many humans to commit them.

"Let me have a go at making it go away."

Crowley hisses through his teeth. "Don't touch me."

"Oh," Aziraphale sounds appalled. "No, I didn't mean like that."

"Why not--I mean--good." Crowley opens his eyes, because if he's going to let Aziraphale work on him, he wants to see it, especially if it is that sort of working somehow. Maybe Aziraphale’s hand will slip--no.

Aziraphale frowns and makes a decisive gesture at Crowley's crotch--not the gesture said crotch wants--and absolutely nothing happens. "Hm," he says, because he hasn't yet got the hang of swearing casually. He twitches a finger and is holding two cups of tea a moment later, handing the one that’s so strong it could hold a spoon upright to Crowley, who takes it automatically. "I'm not sure what could cause that," he says after a sip of his own tea.

"There haven't been any diabolical bulletins lately," Crowley says into the sturdy mug, while Aziraphale holds his transparent china with a precise grip. "Not that I think they'd bother with something this petty."

"I can't think what anyone would hope to accomplish by it."

"Distraction. Absolute screaming distraction." That gives Crowley the unpleasant suspicion that Heaven is responsible somehow, except that if they had wanted to distract him properly, they'd have appended lustful urges to Aziraphale as well. "You don't, ah. You don't fancy it, do you?"

Aziraphale wrinkles his nose. "Not any more than the rest of your body."

The rejection fails to make it diminish either in presence or in exuberance. "Fuck," Crowley says.

"Really? Do you think--"

"No!" That seems like exactly the sort of thing that would make the change permanent in a human tale, especially the sort built on ancient morality and told to children to warn them about the things at the edges of their limited perception[6]. "I'll--I'll manage it," Crowley says, and flees into Aziraphale's washroom, then the cramped loo. The appliance has books piled on the back and the lid, all recent publications--the collectibles wouldn't do well in so humid a location--and once Crowley has consolidated the stacks on the floor, the place smells dusty and well-read, like Aziraphale's wings.

It shouldn't make any part of him thrill with joy, but there he is, thrilling like anything. Crowley stifles a groan and palms the newest addition to himself, which positively leaps with pleasure. Touching the overheated skin is like taking flight or sharing the substance of himself as those of angelic stock can, whether it looks outwardly like a press of foreheads or the sensitive adventure that is pressing essence to essence or palm to palm[7]. The body's instincts take over and keep him going once he's started, caressing and rubbing and overwhelming him in short order with the sheer joy of friction.

Orgasm hits like the second cousin twice removed of a divine bolt of fire, racing through him, and leaves him gasping, bracing himself on the back of the loo with one hand and with the other empty but for a tingling sensation and a slippery mess that he miracles away.

"Fuck," Crowley says again, and investigates the flattened region thoroughly to be sure that all traces of the morning's fuckery have gone.

Aziraphale calls, "Did you hurt yourself? Only you shouted."

"I'm fine," Crowley calls back, and opens the door. He doesn't recall shouting, but the physical act is all a bit of a blur. "I'm back to normal," he says, and drops the robe.

"Ah, good." Aziraphale gives him a once-over that burns his skin as much as any lustful touches ever have. "You do seem more yourself. I was doing a bit of reading--apparently Venus is retrograde right now, which can cause troubles in romantic relationships, and there's something going on with Eris, Pluto, and Xena--you know, the eleventh planet--that none of the human astrologers can quantify yet. It has something to do with change, that's all they know."

"They've found it, have they?" Crowley asks, feeling a little tender around the edges from whatever that was.

"What? Oh, yes, the astronomers have been quite busy. It keeps all the occultists on their toes."

"If that's all they have to worry about, perhaps we should get back to work," Crowley says, though neither of them have done anything in the line of their old work in some time.

"Or we could celebrate your recovery." Aziraphale offers him a hand, palm up.

Crowley smiles and takes it, losing himself in touch for the second time that day.

Some years later, when Aziraphale wakes up with three stout tentacles and bony ridges where he is normally unadorned, he looks more Centaurian than human. Crowley lets him out of bed long enough to confirm that it's Xena and Eris wreaking havoc again before he tempts him to a long period of self-gratification.

[fin]

***

[1] At least, not dreams that he would ever care to recall while awake. Either they are the sort of old school fire-and-brimstone that fuels the most passionate human preachers, or they are full of light and silver. Either way, he tends to wake up with tears on his cheeks. [back]

[2] Aziraphale would be appalled at the implication that he is bad at any time of Her day, and also at the implications of the song Crowley tends to hum when Aziraphale is muddling through making himself tea the human way. [back]

[3] Or in any case the removal of wood therefrom. [back]

[4] He hadn't thought much of the tricks they did with food, and while he was pro-human suffering in the general sense, some of the ways they'd used their slaves had been enough to send him back to his villa to write a report claiming credit. [back]

[5] Even whilst en garde. [back]

[6] Fairy tales are not a trove of literal truth, but like parables, they speak to the truths humans have trouble speaking straightforwardly. Humans need metaphors to learn how to be human because explaining it straight out is terribly embarrassing. [back]

[7] As far as Crowley's concerned, Romeo and Juliet is a fever dream written by someone who walked in on the wrong entities at the wrong time, though they'd been well in the grips of the Arrangement at the time but not yet to the stage of such things. Palm to palm is holy kiss, but also an unholy kiss. It all depends on who's doing the kissing. [back]