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The draftsman’s enviably steady hand was obvious despite the simplicity of the sketch. The body was roughly outlined in wispy silverpoint, now oxidised brown. Blotchy gesso crumbled at the corners of the yellowed paper. The shamelessly reclining model was barely made decent by omission. His face, however, was turning to the spectator in very fine detail, making use of the sharpness and precision of its medium. The model had the familiar long nose, and sculpted goatee, although the pair of dark eyes lacked the usual serpentine pupils. Crowley’s mouth twitched, aligning with the one-sided smirk of his likeness. The work had not been signed, just an oily thumb print in the corner. DaVinci was a slob…

There were of course means to preserve it flawlessly. But for some reason, Crowley found comfort in the strange melancholy aroused by the visible signs of time separating him from that day.

Hidden behind the drawing in its sleek simple frame, was Crowley’s safe. The multidimensional space contained a miscellany of items. Many of them held unfathomable power, some had sentimental value, and one was truly singular. Shoved far back, into space and time was a small clay jar. Wax paper sealed its mouth, tied with a piece of string. It contained apple jam. The. Apple. Jam. This small jar would always make the demon’s alternatively beating heart metaphysically skip a beat. Would it not be absolutely dangerously fascinating if Crowley did the right thing that day and Aziraphale the wrong…

Sentiments aside, Crowley was curious, what would another bite of The Apple do to a mortal. So, when humans were kicked out of Eden, God ending Her psychological experiment with some lingering resentment, the tree was cut down, and a few apples mysteriously disappeared with a small barely audible pop.

 

***

 

During the so-called dark ages (or darker, after all, history does have a tendency to disprove categorical labels in retrospect), in a small shop that nested in a squat building on one of the dirtier streets of Paris, Crowley and Aziraphale had crepes before it was fashionable. The angel discovered the place, which surprisingly remained open after yet another plague. Apparently consuming the house specialty either killed you on the spot or gave you immunity to pretty much anything.

Celebrating the clearing of the disease, the angel and the demon were too drunk to care that the oil was on the rancid side, and odd black crumbs of every previous meal cooked on that skillet integrated themselves into the thin batter. They were immersed in dissssscussion. Their unsteady tongues struggled to form an analysis of human genius. At this particular junction, Aziraphale had a delightful frown between his wheaty brows, as he voiced his admiration for the mortal, who came up with weird and clever shit like this…this… thin… pancake thing…

“Crepe!” Crowley interjected indignantly with an abundantly French affectation.

Not sparing even a raised brow towards this display of linguistic aptitude, Aziraphale continued wondering aloud if the merciful God Herself gave people tips. He punctuated his theory with small pauses, stuffing the oily pieces in his mouth. Who in their right mind would think of mixing eggs with powdered wheat grain, and water or milk… why? What strange accident could have precluded a person from eating a perfectly good egg as is and instead to smear it thinly over a hot flat surface? The angel sucked on his finger, eyeing the empty plate wistfully. Took a swig from a clay cup and got distracted by another idea. Oh wait, who would make flour to begin with! What purpose did it serve? Crowley jinxed the cheap wine into something more palatable and nodded adding his own theories to the solving of the mystery, but mostly enjoying how the angel’s soft light hair got a proper unapologetic cowlick from all the times he ran his fingers through it backwards lost in yet another hypothesis.

 

***

 

The answer came to Crowley in year of their Lady 1476. He was hiding in Florence, trying to ignore the Spanish inquisition, and whiled his time away by fostering the beautiful city under the rule of an exuberant banker, Lorenzo de’ Medici, into the glorious new Sodom.

It was easy.

Florence embraced the idea of free will wholeheartedly, in all its forms. Freethinkers, deviants, visionaries gathered under the wing of the semi-benevolent ruler. Crowley commissioned some of the more questionable pieces of art, vacillating his favours between Botticelli and Verrocchio. However, recently there was no escaping gossip of Verrocchio’s rebellious charge. Famous for his good looks, unfinished artwork, and ambitious visions, the young maestro’s recent endeavour was flying experiments (prudently performed on others) and a stint in prison for sodomy. One fine spring day, Crowley chanced upon him, when the man dropped by Verrocchio’s workshop after his release from Bargello. As Crowley heard, it was his first, and as history will show, not his last time behind bars. The young man’s name was Leonardo, he came from the small town of Vinci.

On that relatively memorable day Crowley made a mental note, to tell Aziraphale that all you need for a pancake is one man who forgoes: “should I be doing this” part, while going: “what would happen if…”

The artist’s muddy-green eyes studied Crowley. Verrocchio unfinished introductions were left hanging in the air, neither Leonardo nor the demon were paying much attention. Crowley preened and took a strategic step to the side. The light, falling through the tall window behind him, caught the dark hair on fire, framing the sharp face and high cheekbones. He looked down at da Vinci, who was half a head shorter. The artist’s lips parted, he coked his head, taking in the attractive view orchestrated for him. Nervous fingers twitched in creative anticipation.

“I would like to paint your portrait…” Leonardo circled the tall stately figure and came back to a raised eyebrow and a small one-sided smile.

“Leonardo!” Verrocchio shrugged a reprimanding shoulder at his student. “Lord Crowley was not inquiring after a portrait… he…”

“May I see your eyes?” The artist’s attention focussed on a new idea, and all formalities were aborted as nonessential function. Nervous twitching fingers even flew up, prudently curtailing their daring ascension halfway to the demon’s face.

Crowley placated flustered Verrocchio with an elegant gesture. Taking his tinted glasses off with a flourish, he blinked on the illusion of human eyes.

“Oh…” Leonardo moved closer.

“Why not,” the demon curved his lips into a textbook definition of a sinful smile, appraising the young man. The artist’s agile mind sat comfortably in an agile body. The dark hair was cropped very short, apparently, in an effort to combat the parasites that hitched a ride from prison. His face was smart and open, with frowning brows and roguish eyes that already began to undress Crowley through a professional squint.

“What fascinating proportions!.. So far from ideal… yet it fits so well, so…” Leonardo moved in closer, scratching at the stubbled cheek in contemplation. Crowley’s brow twitched at the comment and he adjusted the scabbard on his hip reflexively. “…so ineffable…”

The demon blinked and took a step back, disturbing the artistic reverie.

Even though the young Maestro had given himself a good scrubbing, spreading the scent of lye and fragrant oils around his person, the demon’s long nose, picked up the underlying miasma of a dungeon. Bat dung had a tendency to linger, Crowley did not want it to linger on him.  

 

 

 

The spacious study barely contained the mess Leonardo tended to accumulate around himself. A couple of weeks in, and it was plastered with sketches and studies of Crowley’s face, hands, body. The first several sittings were a blur of drawing, scrutinising, and innuendo on both sides, resulting in more and more revealing works, that left Leonardo squirming and having to excuse himself a couple of times per sitting. Cheap thrills for the demon, but he could not refuse himself a small diversion of bowing down over Leonardo’s shoulder, reaching for higher shelves, or bending to retrieve a wayward sheet, feeling the two pinpricks of artist’s gaze follow him. 

Da Vinci was a decent painter, but he was losing himself in pursuit of perfection, claiming that there is something he is missing in Lord Antonio. To which Crowley shrugged and smiled indulgently. He would not agree with Leonardo. Looking at his own form, so masterfully conjured on paper and canvas, Crowley recognised himself not at any specific moment, but in entirety. A mortal saw him, and somehow through him, but he failed to comprehend what exactly he saw and drew. It made the demon wonder how far this skill could be pushed…

Leonardo worked — they talked. Da Vinci would pull out notebook after notebook of the most outlandish ideas that were not just before his time, the time itself took to occasionally thumbing through searching for directions. And just like he “grasped” Crowley, Leonardo seemed to be able to intuit the workings of things, however, the practical discoveries that could make his inventions possible had not yet been made. A link was missing between his vivid imagination and the engineering reality of it. Materials were wrong, the scale… the short-tempered inventor constantly threw himself into something new before finishing the previous endeavour, blindly stumbling onto more and more premature revelations that the world was not yet ready for. He showed Crowley beginnings of his anatomy studies, notes on the nature of things.

Da Vinci vehemently denied religious thought, claiming that all supernatural is just misunderstood science. Never had the demon encountered such persuasive argument against his own existence. His demonic senses reeled, but he gritted his teeth and stalled his antagonistic nature.

This time too, having arrived for the sitting, Crowley found Maestro sweating over a new project, their arrangements forgotten. Time slipped through Leonardo’s fingers when he was engrossed in one of his inventions. The half-finished canvases and sketches were moved, making room for wood and metal carcasses of bizarre devices, the room was drowning in acrid fumes of something psychedelic. Looming through the dusky layered smoke, was da Vinci’s back hunched over a pair of leather batwings that were supposed to carry a man through the air. By Crowley’s estimation, not too far… and only if he jumped of a high and windy enough cliff and wasn’t planning to land in one piece. The demon felt a tendril of decisively un-demonic worry for the mortal’s wellbeing. After all, Crowley liked his toys to remain in mint condition. He really should do the world a favour…

And indeed, there was a fascinating way to kill (by specifically not killing) three birds with one proverbial stone, which he had been pondering for a while now. Crowley drummed his finger on the doorframe, it was all coming together. One brow rose in mischief. Leonardo’s lean figure was framed by the doorway, lost in the momentum of creation. And the demon wondered to himself “what if…”

 

 

 

An apprentice will have to do another trip for more tempera eggs. A bag of flour materialised at the snap of Crowley’s fingers, water from the well formed a thin, glittering rope, suspended in mid-air, and poured into a clay pitcher. A familiar doubtful crease between Aziraphale’s brows loomed in his mind’s eye, as the batter was mixed, and the pesky clumps cursed away under his breath. Crowley refused to linger on doubts.

With an afterthought of oil, the batter pooled onto the skillet, with a sizzle and the rush of a fatty aroma. In a few minutes Crowley was looking at a shapeless uneven lump of rubbery goo. A failed attempt at flipping it made those parts of alleged crepe, which were not yet suffused with the iron surface, explode in a small mushroom-shaped cloud of flour. Crowley raised both brows, evaporated the dying creation off the pan, and looked at the bowl with the rest of the batter. The bowl rattled with apprehension. He sighed, brushed his white hands on his black brocade breeches. Cursed. Magicked the stains off.

His mental image of Aziraphale was smirking smugly, a flick of the angelic wrist sending the crepe into a beautiful summersault, then catching it landing on the other side perfectly.

Crowley sat down at the table. Looked at the dirty dishes, eggshells, explosions of flour on the table and floor and decided to choose his battles wisely. He settled into the chair, put his legs up on another one, and snapped the fingers again.

When Crowley was done, Leonardo conveniently recalled that he had not eaten the whole day and found himself not at all surprised but rather pleased when he discovered a humble meal waiting for him in the kitchen. Lord Antonio even considered that he preferred not to eat meat. Without much preamble, the artist washed off the ink and chalk off his hands and sat at the table. With pleasantries rolling off his tongue, the artist rolled the (perfectly golden with just the right shade of browning on both side) crepe into a tube and proceeded to stuff it into his mouth with his fingers, while getting into a discussion about who invented crepes and why.

Leonardo went off on a tirade with intermissions long enough for the identical twins of the perfect crepe to disappear between his lips. The stack on a large chipped plate (which usually prided itself at being a palette) was rapidly diminishing. Yet, Maestro, side-tracked by conversation, ignored the small jar of jam that was sitting right next to him. Crowley nodded at the artist, distracting him with a question, meanwhile the jar moved into his open palm, and nervous fingers automatically tore at the string.

The demon settled on his chair, took his glasses off, liberally smeared some fresh butter onto a “thin pancake”, and stuffed it in his mouth. The magicked ones did not taste the same. Or maybe it was the absence of the brown charcoaly bits… He cocked his head, in a manner that Aziraphale recently began to find endearing. Like most things, the human touch of cooking had a certain barbaric but irreplaceable quality.

Leonardo slathered the jam liberally onto another thin buttery circle. The demon poured more wine into the cup, took a quick sip, and stilled, watching. Whatever substance was clouding Leonardo’s mind worked as a buffer, softening the first blow. Nevertheless, the effect was rather dramatic.

Leonardo’s face contorted unattractively, he gasped and held his breath, eyes bulging, hands clawing at the air. Neurons in his brain were firing, creating new connections, reaching into human discoveries across the spectrum of time, past and future, forgotten and those, humanity was yet to come upon. Then he breathed out with a pained whistle in his throat. Eyes swam in and out of focus, eyelids fluttered. His fingers were still trembling, suspended in the air in front of him in mid-reach.

Birds chirped outside the foggy window, bright light came in through the open door. Summer air smelled of freshly cut grass and earth, with a whiff of the stable, where the demon could hear Bentley in his Andalusian steed form dig the ground with a hoof and grumble at missing out on a treat.

In front of him Leonardo now breathed in deep gulps, risking an oxygen high.

“Leonardo…” the demon called out to the stunned artist. The glassy stare swivelled in his direction, pupils distended and shrunk, taking in the dark light that demon emanated.

“Who are you?” For a moment, Crowley worried the second bite undid the effect of that primordial first. He hazarded a familiar lie.

“I am Lord Anthony Crowley, from Lon—,”

But the artist interrupted him with a slow breathy: “Nohhhh…” he raised his arm, pointing a shaky finger.

“Oh...?”

“Are you not a person?” Leonardo aimed at him a squinting gaze framed by furrowed brows.

“Well…” Crowley spread his hands and shrugged.

“No part of you is even remotely human… you only look it!”

“Well…”

“—it all makes sense now! Your eyes, and…” Leonardo gave up on the sentence, buttery fingers clutched at the table, as he propelled himself to his feet and made a few unsteady steps to hover over his generous host. Who arched away in his chair, pressing into the rickety back.

“Who are you?” the artist brought his face close, peering into the vertical pupils. Crowley allowed the intrusion into his personal space and smiled. A forked tongue escaped between his teeth for a moment.

“Oh…” Leonardo sat down and missed the stool landing on his ass at the demon’s feet. With the same sense of awe, his fingers traced the narrow black shoe, buffed to perfection. “No hooves?”

“Well…some of us do have them…”

The artist slid his palm along the demon’s calf, rubbing at the dark leather of the boot.

“You look so human…”

“This is a human form I take,” Crowley conceded, looking down at Maestro between his knees, fondling his footwear.

Leonardo tended to stutter when overwhelmed. He surely was overwhelmed now, distended pupils drowned out the irises. “How c-c-could I have missed it…”

“You would be surprised,” Crowley smirked at the mortal.

“May I see the other… form…?” the restless caress ascended his thigh.

“Humans don’t really have the capacity to comprehend it safely,” the demon patiently catered to da Vinci’s curiosity. Indeed, mortals tended to lose control of their various bodily functions when they encountered his true form, the one that encompassed the eternal energy of a fallen angel, a toxic mix of corrupt and holy, shaped roughly like one or several of Gods beloved earthly creations.

But the artists looked into the serpentine eyes not with fear, but with curiosity. Hunger for knowledge was The Apple’s poison.

“It would be worth it… to know you!”

Crowley felt a pang of pride. Letting these creatures out of the Garden-prison may not have been the right thing to do, but it was in retrospect the right thing to do.

Chasing his newfound insight Leonardo spoke again: “Is it… this form… your body… alive? Do you breathe?” the questing palm landed on his abdomen. The man looked up, settling comfortably in his position.

“It is mostly cosmetic; I can however choose bodily functions if I so desire,” the artist’s absentminded fingers tugged at the lacing of his delicate linen shirt.

“Fascinating… Can I see it? Was it someone’s body before you took it?”

“No,” it was after a fashion, Crowley’s own work of art.

“So, what bodily functions do you maintain?” the hand rose to the demon’s chest. “No heartbeat?” Crowley smiled and let his heart pick up a pace. Digestion woke up as well, working on the crepe now. Leonardo pressed an ear to his chest, closed his eyes.

“Sounds just like a person’s, but you can stop it…”

“I usually keep it going, drowns out the noise, you know. And people sometimes notice…”

“You breath too,” the artist drew a long breath. Crowley understood with some apprehension that da Vinci was sniffing him.

“I need air to form words…” he shrugged, allowing further intrusion into his personal space. 

“Oh…” Now Leonardo stood kneeling, for all intents and purposes hugging the demon. “You ate though… then you need to…” he looked down then up again.

So, this is where this was going: “I do prefer to forgo digestion… we can expel food or drink by magic.”

“I see, then you are clean there,” Maestro hmmed, coking his head. By now it was evident that his interests were multifaceted not only in regards to arts and sciences.

A slight blush rose on Crowley’s high cheekbones, (courtesy of having a pulse) at such overt pronouncement.

Then the artist blinked a few times and continued: “Do you have… all parts there too?”

“The body is indeed adequately… equipped,” a roguish smile chased away the blush.

A stray thought wormed its way into the demon’s head. Unlike all those countless times he was with men or women, and everyone in-between, not one of his lovers had a faculty to know him. Even when he made an effort to actually comprehend what sex meant and did to mortals — honed his skills, seducing without magic. Gaining appreciation for that moment when humans made an irrevocable decision to forgo soul for flesh, as any demon should. Even then none of them chose Crowley the demon… Never Crowley, only a reasonable facsimile. None of them knew who he was, only what he was to them. And this was essentially how it worked. Sex is not a sin, when one loves, even when one was simply in lust — these are all natural instincts, nothing more. Nothing inherently wrong about sex. It was the sex Crowley was having and who he had it with, that led to the soul’s demise. Lust was fuelled by greed, envy, jealousy. As he scanned the feelings pouring out of his bed-mates, he saw but projections, never a reflection of himself, and found it unflattering and vexing. Very soon, he blocked himself from feeling anything during sex, secluding himself in a calm sepia-toned space between his ears, driving the bodily vessel to perform whatever acts necessary. He let his body go through the motions yet spared himself the indignity of being a mere echo of the mortals’ neurosis. After all what is a demon if not vain.

And now, he found himself looking at Leonardo’s art… even without the Apple Maestro saw him. Glimpsed beyond the veil of illusion that shrouded the world. It was tempting if not to show him his true shape than to give him a glimpse of the demonic nature through… other avenues.

Meanwhile da Vinci’s mind was already working on the next thought: “If I were to cut you open, could you show me how the blood flows, how organs work when they are inside a living being?”

Woooooahhh.. that escalated quickly. Crowley’s somewhat emotional and thoroughly anachronistic train of thought screeched to a halt, sparks flying from under the rusty wheels.

He scrambled for an explanation, that would not reveal that the vessel could be damaged beyond repair, tempted to just bedazzle the man with a spell.

“If you knew, whom would you tell, Maessssstro…” Crowley’s voice lowered into a velvety hiss. Leonardo’s breath hitched, as his face rose to look the demon in the eye again.

“I… it could save lives!” the artist blinked, small birthmark under his eye twitching with a tick.

“It would land you on a pyre, on a sssstake. Maybe both! An artistic shish kebab.”

Leonardo lowered his gaze.

“I can show you sssssomething elssss,” a decision was shaping in the demon’s mind.

For the heck of it… wings spread around them, smoky grey. They filled the small, crammed kitchen. And Leonardo froze again, eyes growing even wider. He breathed out something so blasphemous that would make a lesser demon blush. This one, however, stretched the tendons, shaking off the feeling of another dimension still clinging to the feathers. The muscles twitched, in half flap. Dust rose into the air, dancing in the light.

“So this is the size necessary to lift a person…” da Vinci scrambled to his feet, ran his fingers over the feathers, picking through the longer smooth ones to get to the soft dawn underneath. The demon winced. “How is it attached… wouldn’t it be like another set of arms?”

“Shoulder blades…”

“I see!”

Multidimensional wings sat over the demon’s doublet, without tearing it. Leonardo explored the junction and then looked at the proud owner of the plumage with confusion. 

“You see… Heaven and Hell exist alongside this world, not up or down. Just a hairbreadth away, but never intersecting, unless necessary. While I move freely between these realms, my wings exist in that world, in another dimension, dimensions are currently intersecting just at this point.”

Leonardo shook his head.

“I was right! It is all science!”

The demon smirked but did not feel like arguing for now. Maestro’s fingers were stroking the feathers just so… he licked his lips and breathed through his mouth.

“Show me!”

“What?”

“Everything… how are they attached to your body?”

Crowley whispered a spell, leaving himself naked from the waist up. Leonardo made him stand, ran warm hands up his back, fingering the junction, figuring out the complicated bone structure that both existed and didn’t.

“They smell nice,” he suddenly said, putting his face into the soft feathers.

“I do keep them clean,” Crowley endeavoured a complicated quadruple shrug.

“I thought you would smell of sulphur and brimstone…”

The demon smiled and let the wings disappear. Leonardo was left standing with a few soft down feathers stuck to his fingers.

“Keep them, for luck…” Crowley watched as confused artist looked for some receptacle to hold the present. Deposited the feathers into a small wooden box, closed it and returned to the topless demons.

He brought his hand up again, placing it in the centre of the demon’s chest.

“It is beating faster…”

“I did magic with bodily functions running, does that to us.”

“Does anything else change? Eyes, tongue, wings…?” Leonardo was circling him, bowing down, and stepping away to get a full picture.

“In my human form? Not really…”

“No tail?” he bent down to inspect demonic buttocks.

“No, no tail, at least not for me…”

Leonardo’s tanned palm slid down the tight abdomen, stopping at the waistline of fashionable buttoned breeches.

Crowley lowered his face a little bit and allowed the artist to get distracted with the way his eyes fell half-shut, serpentine pupils widening. Leonardo cocked his head to meet Crowley’s smirk with his own lips.

The human was warm, and his pulse beat under the thin barrier of slightly clammy skin. A real one, it was escalating now, visible on the neck. Crowley thumbed the pulsing artery. The light smell of sweat mixed with the odour of the potent herbs the man was smoking before, some butter and apple lingered in the mussed, dark hair.

There was a backlog after centuries of cold control, Crowley’s vessel knew what to do, but the senses were catching up with a second delay, rusty and overwhelmed him with the multi-channelled experience. 

 

 

 

The artist moaned, the scent of musk intensified — so much was happening in the body now prone before the demon on the dishevelled bedding of the artist’s narrow cot. Crowley let Leonardo’s cock slide out of his mouth to a dissatisfied whimper, that changed to a moan of approval when he gave it a lick from the balls up to the tip and sucked at the head. Then sat back on his heels. 

“Is sodomy a sin…” Leonardo asked with uncooperative tongue, propping himself on the elbows watching Crowley tending to the fastenings of his own pants. The artist’s eyes lit with curiosity and for a moment, Crowley considered putting some extravagant illusion on his member. But reconsidered. Da Vinci visibly tensed and then relaxed — relief mixed with slight disappointment.

“That depends on how you see it, Leonardo,” the demon stretched next to the artist, pressing the man into the wall, sliding a palm from the thigh up his side. Leonardo pulled him into another kiss.

“Is fucking a demon a sin…” question was muffled by a mouthful of demon’s lips.

“Would you stop if it was?”

Leonardo flashed a set of good white teeth at him and shook his head, in a fluid almost serpentine motion that fit so well to the occasion he straddled the demon, using the narrow bed wisely. Crowley allowed himself to focus on the pleasant sensation between his own legs that was gaining a single-minded purpose.

His human vessel instructed him — muscles straining, the hormones spicing his blood, hastened by a thrashing heart — intricate processes like a kaleidoscope of vibrant patterns that changed with every slide of the skin against skin. Turned out the artist kept a bottle of good olive oil next to his bed and had no inhibition of taking his own comfort into his own hands. Crowley did not object this division of labour and enjoyed the view. Watched Leo prepare for him, noting how even just looking at the lean body, hunched over tending to his task, at the half-closed eyes that focussed on him, sent needles of anticipation through his own vessel. Crowley slid a hand down his own chest, down the abdomen, keeping eyes locked at the artist who obviously enjoyed both the process and the view.

“Impatient!” Leo licked his lips, observing the hand’s progress.

“You are slow, mortal!” Crowley teasingly gave himself a stroke.

“I want to like it as much as you will!”

“Come here,” He pulled Leo forward, guiding him to crouch on all fours over him, legs wide open, leaning into the kiss. The demon’s fingers counted the vertebrae of his spine down to the crevice and touched the lubricated entrance. Leonardo cursed, pressing forehead into the demon’s chest, as the warm wave of a spell spread inside of him, teasing the muscles, opening him up. He pushed back, onto the massaging fingers. Collecting himself enough, he kissed Crowley’s collarbone, and tweaked the nipple, looming in his line of vision.

“Cocky bastard…” Crowley hissed as the artist’s teeth teased the hard little pebble.

Leonardo paused in his task: “Haven’t heard a more accurate description of myself in ages!”

Crowley’s fingers squeezed the round buttock. Leonardo was breathing heavily into his neck — ready. He felt his own body respond, swept away by the other’s want for him. The artist’s hand touched him lightly, spreading the oil, and he pushed into the slick palm.

This mortal. A breath of fresh air amidst stifling clout of inquisition, bigotry, cruelty. A new man, a heretic of the highest order. He gave da Vinci a moment, kneading the tensing thighs. Leonardo distracted him with another kiss, and Crowley almost missed the moment when his lover moved and suddenly in one smooth slide he was engulfed into the tight heat of another man. Nothing new…yet he arched, with a shuddering breath.

“I will take it as a compliment,” Leonardo laughed and bucked his hips a fraction. Crowley caught the momentum with his body and his mind, entering as deep as he could. Joined to his lover’s sensations, simultaneously feeling the tightness and the stretch, noting every process between the two of them. Leonardo lifted himself until only the tip of his lover’s cock was sheathed inside the tight heat, and changing the angle slowly slid back, shuddering, flinging back his head with an unabashed moan.

Crowley felt the life and pleasure and death coiled around his cock. He saw the seams, the stitching where the soul was attached. He tasted the mortality — a fragile flavour, the potency of something truly momentarily alive next to the surrogate that was his own vessel.

He tilted his hips to meet the torturous slow pace, measuring each movement, the angle, and the intensity, giving the delightful edge of just a little pain. Leonardo was whispering his name, awash in waves of tailored ecstasy. The body astride Crowley …

Leonardo…

… knew that Crowley was a demon, yet had no faculty to truly rebuke or comprehend the intrusion into his being, only take what was given. Being entered and moulded, eager and pliant. Hell was invited in… accelerating…

The artist stilled, tight around him, fell forward, biting his lips in a messy kiss, keening, fists tight in sheets, cock weeping between them. “More… not yet…” he pleaded into the demon’s mouth. Crowley moaned, digging ruthless nails into the artist’s back.

This was almost worse than when he tried before. The sense of Absolute power that Leonardo’s knowing capitulation offered… The demonic essence reared, attracted to the possibility of such profound carnage. The demon growled, pushing sharply into the willing heat. Extinguish this divine light with just one flick. He thrust harder, and Leonardo cried, barely holding up. But the afterglow of Crowley’s angelic past hurt from the immense brutality of men’s fragility and predicament. It tore at him – he stilled, holding the artist’s hips in place. The honed, treasured control that the demon prided himself in, was slipping, raw predatory impulses and forgotten vestiges of angelic flooded him, amplified with the high of the mortal’s carnal pleasure.

Crowley saw the duality of himself reflected in the handsome, sweaty artist riding him. Leo’s lips parted in one continuous moan, his body twitched, protesting the sudden pause, locked in place with Crowley’s bruising grip. Leonardo reached to touch himself. The demon caught his wrist, stopping him, cradled him, turning them around.

Settled Leo on his back, and fitted the man’s legs around himself, pushing back the arousal just a notch, gently rubbing the strained thighs. Crowley leaned down, kissing the heaving chest, and eager nipples. Restoring the equilibrium, he forced himself to release all grip of Leonardo, but the fine thread of connecting pleasure. He bowed down teasing the parted lips with the skilled forked tongue. Rubbing the tip of his erection on the loosened opening. Da Vinci squirmed trying to push onto the cock, some feverish nonsense spilled into the kiss. The Artist’s leaking member pulsated, pressed into Crowley’s abdomen. He waited a few more moments, smiling at the evident desperation. Bracing himself, he looked into the human’s eyes and finally slowly slid into him, tuning to the thrum of his desire, he let Leonardo guide him. Gently coaxing them back to the boiling point. He took time giving what he could, Crowley let his own vessel ride the wave of the other’s pleasure. He caressed him, inside and out. Leonardo held onto him, leaving raised welts with bitten fingernails on his arms, shoulders, back. On the artist’s cue finally releasing his own body from the staunch control, Crowley finished inside the tight spasming heat.

“If it was a sin…” Maestro smiled at him, legs still hugging him in place. Crowley let the softening member slide out of his slippery fingers with the final stroke. Da Vinci’s breath caught, and he reached out to touch the pointy ear in a curious caress. “Did you seduce me… or I — you?”

“It was a dream,” Crowley smiled softly, or a mistake… Whispered a spell. “Someone else will sin with you, Artissssstah.”

He carefully pulled out of the now sleeping man, assessing the steps he had to take. Vanished all traces of himself from the enticingly debauched thighs. Stood up, rematerializing his clothes back into perfect order, flicking his wrist, and cleaning up the mess. Dishevelled bed, the remaining pancakes, The Apple Jam.

“I wonder where your knowledge will take you…” The demon looked down on his own polished boots, fighting the urge to glance back at the artist sleeping fitfully as another feverish delightful dream was overcoming him. A face etched in da Vinci’s mind, a tall dark man with hungry eyes and another proud name, whom he will seek and find in his tumultuous future. Another sinner.

 

 

 

Crowley left without a second glance. Taking with him the unfinished sketch for the never started portrait. Bentley blew a raspberry as the master mounted him, a small accost for smelling so much of a human. Crowley’s vessel still reverberated with pleasure. He took a long breath shutting down the sensations — this was safer. All up for tempting the demon was, but the experience proved to be confusing and too involved. He ticked it off his curiosity list and nodded to himself, satisfied and vaguely unnerved. At least this way he knew where he stood, and had control over himself, which in his books was always a priority.

He carefully extricated himself from the fabric of reality. Changing the face that those who needed to remember him will recall, dispersing the vestiges of his stay in Florence over a dozen aliases.

Mortality was a sad cruel joke by the world’s Saddest and Cruellest Joker… and yet at every turn the humans rebelled against the very core flaw of their creation – and so far… they won!

As an afterthought – he snapped his fingers, and the batwings in da Vicni’s study rearranged itself.

“Make me proud!” he smiled to the wind.