Crowley hoped that he'd honestly never return to Hell for as long as he lived, but as a demon, that was unlikely. And he had to admit, he was curious. Archangels didn't Fall on a daily basis and he himself had been the first and only one to Fall so he was understandably curious to see what had become of Gabriel. So, when Aziraphale finally fell asleep after his 'promotion' to Archangel, Crowley crept out of the cottage and slithered back into Hell.

As a former Archangel himself he had always been viewed with a mix of suspicion, fear and sometimes just pure hatred. The lower ranking demons would consent to do his biding if he ordered it but he was no Prince of Hell. Beelzebub was in command of Hell, make no mistake, but Beelzebub was no former Archangel either. They both knew that if Crowley had ever wanted to, he could have easily challenged Beelzebub for the position of 'Prince.' But he'd never wanted that. Just to be sure though, Beelzebub had sent Crowley up to earth to 'make some trouble' where he couldn't make his own claim as a 'Prince,' or even a 'Duke.' Though his imagination and love of keeping up with the times had done nothing for his reputation, demons couldn't deny that Crowley wasn't really someone you wanted as your enemy. But it was natural for demons to be violent, not necessarily smart.

"What're you doin' 'ere?" a voice demanded from out of the grimy shadows.

"What're you doin' here, sir, I think you mean," Crowley emphasised the word 'sir'. "Or 'lord,' I'll even settle for 'oh great master Crowley' if you're feeling generous."

"Righ'...sir," the lower ranking demon called Bogran, replied. He was covered in grime and mould and his clothes were moth eaten and singed, and he had piercing red eyes.

"Wanted to see the new recruit," Crowley said, "Where's he at?"

"Y'mean the Archangel?"

"Who else?"

"He's in the cells. Beelzebub's been down there since 'e got 'ere. He's a loud screamer," the demon grinned.

"Right, yeah great," Crowley said, brushing past him.


The cells of Hell were terrible, not that the rest of Hell wasn't terrible, but the cells were even worse. You could always hear the screams. No one was ever quite sure just who was doing the screaming, but all anyone cared about was that it wasn't them. This time however, everyone knew, from the mightiest Duke to the lowest of the lowest ranking demons, simply everyone knew that an Archangel had Fallen. And when an Archangel Fell, the most sadistic of torturers dusted off their talons and rushed to the cells.

Crowley strolled through the cast iron doors which swung open for him with an air of confidence that he didn't quite feel. He marched right up to the bars on the cage and leaned on them with a grin.

"Hiya, Gabe," Crowley grinned at the new demon.

Gabriel had seen better days that was for sure. His wings were of course black now and still smoking from the sulphur he'd have landed in. His eyes were fully black as well and his skin was burned and even peeling off in places. He had talons on each hand, jagged and grubby and just to add insult to injury, his once perfectly tailored suit had been destroyed beyond repair, torn and shredded by the claws of a thousand demons that had pulled him down. Each limb, wings included, was bolted into chains and given very little room to move in the cramped cell.

Beelzebub hissed in confusion and the several torturers and Dukes that were standing around the room looked on in bewilderment as the formerly silent Archangel, silent apart from his screams, finally reared up in anger and pulled at his chains.

"Don't...call me that!" Gabriel growled at him, he'd always hated that nickname.

"You didn't used to mind back when we were brothers Up there."

"I did mind! And we're not brothers!"

"Well, y'know, technically we are again now. You're a demon, I'm a demon...we're demon bro's now," Crowley smirked.

"When I get out of here you're the first one I'm coming after...you and Aziraphale! I'll destroy you both!"

"You're not getting out of here, Gabe," Crowley hissed back through the bars. "Hell hasn't had an Archangel in its cells for a long time. Isn't that right?" he turned to Beelzebub.

"What exxxxxactly are you doing here, demon Crowley?" Beelzebub demanded.

"Wanted to see the new recruit," Crowley shrugged. "What were you gonna call him?" he asked.

"Not zzzzzure yet," Beelzebub answered thoughtfully, "Now tell me what you..."

"Looks like you're having fun."

"Oh, we are," Ravadin, quite possibly one of the worst and most sadistic demons that Crowley had ever met, replied smiling, flashing his grimy, pointed teeth.

"We agreed...to leave each other alone," Beelzebub told Crowley, clearly displeased.

"And we are, and it's all going great, isn't it? I'm leaving you alone and you're leaving me alone and we're both better off. I'm only here to gloat. I am a demon after all."

"And he izzzzzz one of yours," Beelzebub remarked, mockingly, "Are you zure it'zzz not zzzzentiment?"

Crowley hissed and spat on the floor. "Not bloody likely, you damned overgrown piece of fly paper!"

Beelzebub shrugged at him and then turned to look at Gabriel. "I zzzeem to remember you being a lot more...cooperative then he is proving to be," the Prince of Hell said.

"You should keep him locked up in here...as in permanently," Crowley replied.

"I think he can be put to good uzzzzze...eventually. All former angels change their minds in time."

"Y'could put him to work cleaning the pits," Crowley grinned. The sulphur pits, which every new demon Fell into, were disgusting and loathed by all. The smell was putrid, the mould had taken over eons ago and the smog was so thick you could reach out and cut it with a knife.

"The pits haven't been cleaned for centuries," Beelzebub said, contemplatively and then also grinned.

"You poor clueless bastard," Ravadin the torturer chuckled at Gabriel and picked up a red hot poker, examining it with glee. "Pretty soon you're gonna miss our time together," he remarked.

"I'll leave you to it," Crowley said, waving a dismissive hand and walking away. "Have fun, Gabe!"

"You'll pay for this, Crawly!" the former archangel cried out, rattling his chains, "I swear on Heaven, you both will!"

"We'll see about that," Crowley muttered, without turning back.


When Crowley returned to the cottage, Aziraphale was awake and pacing in the living room in front of the fireplace, wringing his hands. His huge white wings were out and the feathers were trailing along the floor behind him, he'd almost tripped over them several times and did so again when the demon re appeared.

"Oh, bother," Aziraphale grumbled as he stumbled inelegantly and struggled to right himself.

"Angel?" Crowley said, furrowing his brow, "You should be asleep."

"Crowley!" the angel explained, smiling up at him but then he forced the smile from his face. "I've been worried sick about you. Where were you?" he asked. His first instinct had been to rush over and hug his lover but he'd stopped himself and put down his arms.

"Went for a walk," the demon lied coolly but the angel saw right through him.

"Please don't lie to me, love. We promised each other no more lies, only truth," Aziraphale begged him, his blue eyes watering and Crowley would've cursed that look if he could've. That look would be enough to make him drag down the stars he'd helped to create and mount them in a crown for Aziraphale to wear.

"I was out for a walk," Crowley insisted. "A lovely little walk...in...Hell," he admitted, quietly.

"What?!" Aziraphale yelled, glowing with divine light for a moment.

"Easy on the glow," the demon hissed.

"I'm sorry...but what on earth were you thinking?! You went willingly to Hell?! Do you have any idea how...how reckless that was?! They tried to destroy you the last time you were...well, when I was...they tried to discorporate you!"

"That's what demons do. Besides, you were a damn good actor when you were me. Even Beelzebub's still convinced we've got our little 'agreement' to leave each other alone."

"Yes, well I did try and be convincing, but I...oh, that's not the point, Crowley! You could've been..."

"I'm fine, angel, relax," Crowley sighed, slinking towards the fretting angel and petting his ruffled wings.

"Oh, that feels lovely," Aziraphale melted under his touch for a moment and then he stammered and backed away. "Stop trying to distract me!" he blushed.

"I'm trying to get you to calm down."

"Then don't do silly things like running off to Hell when I'm asleep!"

"You'd rather I went when you were awake?" Crowley raised an eyebrow.

"I'd rather you didn't go at all, you...you silly serpent you!"

"Ouch, the old 'serpent' dig, gets me right here," Crowley said mocking putting a hand over his heart. "Well, it would if I had one," he shrugged.

"Don't be ridiculous, of course you have a heart," Aziraphale replied.

"I'm a demon," Crowley scoffed. "Anyway, doesn't matter. What does matter is, I was perfectly safe. And I'm fine, see...nothing wrong with me...except maybe I stink a bit...sulphur and maybe some mould, y'know. Nothing a wash won't fix."

"Why on earth would you even consider going back there?"

"Just needed to check on something," the demon shrugged.

"On what? What could be so important that you risked..."

"I wanted to see what they were doing to that bastard Gabriel, okay, angel!" Crowley threw up his arms in frustration. "Just...stop bloody looking at me like that," he grumbled.

"Gabriel? What...and whatever do you mean, 'looking at you'?"

"Just...that look you get...your eyes just...gah," Crowley scrubbed a hand through his hair. "I can't say 'no' when you..." he trailed off.

"Well...I'm sorry," Aziraphale said, mournfully, turning around. "Is that better?" he asked.

"Look, I didn't mean...why are we even arguing about this? I'm fine, I only went to make sure that...that they don't just let him loose to do whatever he wants. He's a loose cannon, angel, he could be dangerous if he ever gets outta Hell."

"Dangerous?"

"Who'd you think he's gonna come after for all this? He was already out to get you even before She Felled him and Satan only knows what he's capable of now," Crowley said, walking over so that, again, he was standing in front of the angel.

"Me? But he wouldn't...surely..."

"You can't think there's anything good or reasonable in him, 'Zira, even you can't. Fallen angels are angry and dangerous, trust me, I know. But...he's not going anywhere, so it's fine."

"What are they...how is he?" Aziraphale asked.

"He's getting what he deserves," Crowley snorted.

"I see," the angel sighed. "I can't help but feel responsible for this," he admitted.

"She decided to Fell him, not you. If y'ask me it was a long time coming, he was a bastard even at the beginning."

"Is there any way we could...save him?"

"Why? It's what She wants and it's what he deserves for trying to slice and dice you with that sword," Crowley replied. "Even an army couldn't break anyone outta the cells in Hell, angel, that's the point of them. They're Archangel proof too so don't go getting any ideas...Archangel Aziraphale," he gave a small smile.

He neglected to mention that he had simply strolled in and strolled out only moment ago, but as a newly Fallen demon, he himself had spent a very long time in the cells, everyone did. Aziraphale would only be risking his own Grace and his safety if he attempted some kind of guilt driven rescue mission anyway.

Aziraphale's mournful expression was heart wrenching enough to convince Crowley, not that it was hardship, to tug the angel close to him, wrapping his arms around the angels shoulders and running his hands soothingly over the soft feathers of his wings. "I don't want to be an Archangel," Aziraphale muttered against him.

"I know," Crowley replied. Nether did he anymore really but it still stung just a little to see Aziraphale so willing to throw away such a gift so readily. Of course, he wouldn't ever say so. Aziraphale didn't even know that he had been an Archangel in the beginning and if Crowley and his way, then he never would.

"You're truly not hurt?" the angel asked.

"I'm fine," Crowley answered.

"You've a habit of keeping your injuries hidden from me, dear."

"Well, not this time. I'm fine," the demon replied. "Check if you don't believe me," he said raising an eyebrow.

"I believe you," Aziraphale said after a moment, "I trust you."

"Right...well, good," Crowley said and threw himself down into the sofa, gesturing for Aziraphale to sit beside him, which he did after he willed away his wings. The angel sat as close as was possible to Crowley and curled in with his head resting on the demon's shoulder.

"Crowley?" he hummed.

"Hmmm?"

"Was that...what humans call our 'first fight'?"

"What?! That was not our 'first fight'," Crowley scoffed, "That was so not a 'first fight'. Angel, we've known each other for 6,000 years, we've had arguments before. That wasn't really an argument anyway. And where'd you even hear that expression?"

"Anathema left me some magazines when she visited us last week. They're really quite informative," the angel answered, his hand toying coyly with the grey neck tie that Crowley always wore.

"Oh, yeah? What kinda magazines?"

"Ah...well..." Aziraphale blushed and shifted nervously.

"Oh, those kinds," Crowley chuckled, "Naughty angel."

"I was simply curious," the angel defended, "And Anathema had been so considerate in bringing them, I felt I simply had to read them, out of common courtesy if nothing else."

"If you say so."

"I do say so," Aziraphale replied smugly.

It was a quiet, though by no means an uncomfortable one, before Aziraphale spoke again in a much more timid sounding voice than before. "Crowley, dear?" he whispered.

"Yeah, angel?"

"Will you...promise me something? Now, you shouldn't think for a moment that I don't believe you capable of defending yourself, I know for a fact that you are very capable. But I worry. The thought of you alone in Hell...I trust you, love, it's every other demon in Hell that I don't trust. Please, please tell me if you ever feel the...need...to go back there again."

"I didn't want to go..."

"But you did go!" Aziraphale exclaimed, pushing himself up off Crowley to look him in the eyes.

"And I'd do it again. I need to know that we're safe...or as safe as we can be anyway. I'm not as...optimistic as you. I need proof. And I got it. So it's all good now," Crowley replied. "But if that's what you want, then ok, I'll tell you the next time I take a nose dive into Hell," he added.

"Thank you," Aziraphale sighed and lounged back down against the demon.


A.N. I decided to go with the theory that Crowley was an Archangel before he was a demon. It'll make for a much more interesting story now that Aziraphale is one too.