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The one where Aziraphale convinces Crowley to tempt Gabriel into telling them whether inter-departmental sex is a firing offense

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"What's an angel like you doing on a material plane like thisss?" Crowley hisses, emerging from the shadows of the alleyway and waggling his eyebrows. Gabriel is so startled he actually materializes his wings, which makes it totally worth it, even though one of them boffs Crowley in the face and sends his glasses flying.

"My tailor!" Gabriel sputters. Something Crowley loves about angels is their complete inability to play it cool when taken by surprise.

"I assure you, I am not," he cackles. "Guess again?"

Gabriel makes an annoyed noise and returns his wings to the astral plane. His ears have gone pinkish.

"You're lucky none of the mortals saw that," Crowley adds, "though you never were a subtle one, were you? Tell me, what did Mary say that time you— oh, hey, there'll be none of that!" He gestures hastily at Gabriel's right hand, which is letting off a gradually intensifying shower of violet sparks like some kind of eldritch loading screen. "No smiting! Just here to talk! I have information!"

Gabriel speculatively lowers his five-fingered taser and crosses his arms. "What could you possibly know that is of value to me?"

"Excuse you! One: demon here? Are infernal machinations suddenly not of Heavenly interest? Two: knowledge may as well be my brand. Tree of it ring a bell? Practically the knowledge demon, me. Anyway, I've got loads. Heaps of plots I could let you in on. They love me Downstairs."

"Uh huh," Gabriel says skeptically, but Crowley can tell he has his attention now. "Not very... like a demon, though, telling secrets to an archangel."

"Wee-ell, I'm obviously not going to just tell them to you straight off. It'd be a quid pro quo," he says conspiratorially.

Gabriel looks at him blankly. Crowley sighs.

"That's when I tell you a thing and then you tell me a thing back," he explains.

Gabriel brightens. "So then we would both know a new thing. But really, I shouldn't."

Time for Crowley to play his trump card. "I know where Beelzebub hid your seventh set of eyes," he tempts.

That gets Gabriel going. "You don't! Where?"

"Sending them Downstairs to spy took some stones, I'll give you that much. Anyway, you answer my thing first and I'll tell you where to find them."

He savors the pinched expression on Gabriel's face as he nods.

"Alright!" He claps his hands together. "Angels and demons. What laws are on the Heavenly books vis-à-vis occult fraternization?" He lays the emphasis on thick to get his point across. As he should have anticipated, Gabriel is even thicker.

"We're fraternizing a bit right now, aren't we? Just a little?"

"No, I mean," he lowers his voice to a whisper, "carnal embrace."

Gabriel takes several quick steps backwards. "Look here! I'm sure you were once a very fine angel, once, but I have no idea where you got the notion that I'd be amenable to that sort of thing." He even has the nerve to look a bit pitying, which frankly, ugh.

"You'd be lucky to have me, you bozo!" Crowley snaps. "But I'm not making a pass at you. It's got nothing to do with you, you idiot."

Gabriel's brow knits sharply and he's suddenly all business. "So you're tempting one of my colleagues, then, are you?"

Crowley cringes. "N-no, no, maybe it is about you, then," he lies, "but it's not for me, alright? I'm... uh, asking for another demon? Yeah. Totally different demon. Can't stand coitus, myself."

Gabriel looks... flattered now? And a little curious? And that's just offensive, because he wasn't interested at all when he thought it was Crowley and he's the only demon on the books without weeping sores, for Hell's sake.

"You can tell your friend that it isn't technically forbidden," Gabriel says slyly. "There was some talk among the top brass about amending the Nephilim laws a few hundred years ago but nothing ever came of it. The Metatron wanted to leave it open-ended." He rolls his eyes. "Wouldn't say why he wanted to do that, mind," he adds in a voice that suggests he has a theory or two.

Crowley wrinkles his nose. "I always did get a weird vibe from the Metatron. I swear the article wasn't part of his name back when I was up there."

"No, he just added that," Gabriel confirms. "Just put it right on his nameplate, plainly as you please. Said God had modified it, actually." He sounds scandalized. "Like God would do that. Imagine, 'the Gabriel'! Honestly."

Crowley chuckles despite himself. "One last thing about the sex. Would it... be safe then, you think? No... exploding?"

"Might tingle?" Gabriel shrugs.

Crowley nods and straightens. "Alright, you held up your end here. Your eyes are in the chest cavity of a partially mummified raccoon in the Odessa catacombs. Here, I drew you a map with the right area marked out. It's sort of under a boulder a bit? Good luck."

Gabriel squints at the mess of squiggly lines on the cocktail napkin, frowning. When he looks up Crowley is gone.


"Angel! Fetch your pocketbook, angel, because you were right and I owe you twenty!" Crowley tosses a crumpled bill in Aziraphale's general direction as he barrels through the bookshop door. He's miracled himself a few extra eye teeth to make his feral grin that much wider.

"Oh, I just knew he'd go for it, dear boy,” Aziraphale says happily, plucking the banknote from the air. “Honestly, the man has five thousand and ninety-nine other pairs of eyes, how vain is he? He lost that set ages ago from what you told me, and trust me, nobody's ever noticed."

"Right?!" Crowley exclaims. "What a loon!"

"So? What did he say?" Aziraphale asks, fussing with the carnation in his buttonhole. "Since you came bounding rather than slinking back, dare I... assume the news was good?"

"It was!" Crowley laughs, and allows himself to be yanked into an exuberant hug. "Break out that relic of a cask of frankincense you've got hidden behind the Agatha Christies, angel," he murmurs affectionately into Aziraphale’s hair. "And yes, I do know you've still got that. Been holding onto it since Canaan, haven't you, you fond old fool?"


Fifty score fathoms beneath a traffic jam in Los Angeles, a red telephone rings. Beelzebub rolls their eyes and shakes the sugar water off their hands before snapping up the receiver.

"Ugh, what izz it? This izz my lunch break."

"Beelz, you wicked creature!" Gabriel's voice trumpets from the receiver. "You might just have asked me yourself, you know." His voice drops an octave and several dozen decibels. "It's sweet of you to care about whether I'd, well, you know..." He whistles and makes a ker-plunk sound. Then, a little more loudly and much more manically, "Can I just say? I have always admired your clothes. And your hair looks just like a raincloud, did you know that?"

A beat of silence. "I have no idea what you're talking about, Gabriel," Beelzebub says wearily. "But feel free to zzay more."