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What Have I Told You?

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Crowley sprawled on the sofa, hands gesturing as he finished his explanation and legs slung over the arm for comfort. "The paper's here, if you want to read it for us." He fished it out of his pocket and rolled his head round so that he could rest his head on Aziraphale's knee and look up into his face.

Aziraphale plucked it from his fingers, skimmed it, lips compressed in growing anger and gave him a quick summary. "Two students, trying to get people to sign up to only use the stairs by any means they can. I do believe we'll need to work together on this."

"Don't we always?"

"And I believe I can make many of these lesson adjustments without having to say a word." He sighed and his face fell. "But not all of them."

Crowley grimaced back at him and offered a possible cheer up method. "They're also betting on us again. Well, you and your husband. Guess who's favourite?"

"You, my dear?"

"Only in that I'm your favourite." Crowley waited a moment until Aziraphale sipped his tea, then added helpfully. "No, the betting pool is on Gabriel."

Aziraphale choked on his mouthful of tea. The resulting spasms knocked Crowley off the sofa onto the floor. When they both finally got their breath back, Aziraphale spluttered, "What? Why?" before he noticed he was looking rather further down at Crowley than before. "My dear, what have I told you about wickedness holding the seeds of its own downfall?"

"Ngk." Crowley prised himself off the floor and back onto a seat before skipping the latest question in favour of the first. "Something about Gabriel popping in with one too many messages, I heard."

"Dear me." Aziraphale's mouth twitched. Then he glanced over and caught Crowley doing the same, and they both lost it in gales of laughter.

 

***

 

The students stepped up their investigation by asking Dr Fell what he thought of the other professors. Dr Fell demurred, "Oh, I couldn't possibly comment. It wouldn't be professional of me, dear boy."

They were too busy trying to piece together the clues that Dr Fell dropped about his husband Anthony to be disappointed for long. Unfortunately, the only physical description he came out with was that Anthony was taller than him, and lovely to look at, which didn't help much. Dr Fell wasn't exactly the tallest of people himself.

Otherwise the only description to come out of it was personality. A good heart, full of little kindnesses. An eye to protect others. A wicked sense of humour (but good hearted in the end). A liking for old cars and driving fast. ("Speed demon," Dr Fell murmured with a fond little smile, in response to a daring question about Dear Anthony's driving.)

For someone who could talk so much, Dr Fell revealed surprisingly little that was personal other than their deep, mutual, love. He'd be talking about them getting crepes in Paris together (for instance), and before you had time to blink he'd be off into a tangent about the French Revolution and how it was depicted in various books.

The description doesn't seem to fit any of the other teachers or professors, but they're pretty sure Dear Anthony is around the campus somewhere, because he gives Dr Fell lifts quite often. They come to a summation of Dear Anthony by general consensus. He must be rather like Dr Fell, kind and comfortable, perhaps with a slightly sharper sense of humour. Tall and handsome, and maybe dark (don't those three always go together, someone suggests, and there's general agreement.) A tall, dark, handsome gentleman with a sense of humour, and doesn't Professor Gabriel say the oddest things sometimes? There's slow nodding at that, and the odds on Gabriel shorten, while those on Dr Crowley (who was, after all, only thrown into the betting pool out of a sense of completeness) lengthen with no takers, because none of them can ever imagine those two being alike or together.