Chloe opened her eyes, unsure of what had woken her, if anything. The room was dark but the dim glow emanating from under the closed door told her a light had been turned on in another part of the penthouse. Lucifer had been kind enough to let her stay with him, too kind actually. She had to beg him not to give up his room for her, insisting the guest room was just fine, and Chloe didn't want to infringe on his kindness by prying, but curiosity got the better of her and she slipped out into the hallway. She shivered slightly as the cold air hit her bare legs, her t-shirt only falling to mid-thigh, as she padded into the lounge. The room was empty and still. The cold Chloe felt permeated through the glass doors leading out to the balcony. A sliver of light reflected off them, cutting through the black of the night beyond the window.
Chloe's eyes followed the line of light. Lucifer's bathroom door was open just a crack. She stood there for a moment wondering if she should go in before a steely resolve settled over her and she walked across the lounge and his bedroom, her hand reaching out to push open the bathroom door. She froze at the last moment, suddenly nervous and, instead, knocked tentatively.
Something crashed to the floor inside the bathroom.
Chloe pushed open the bathroom door, "Lucifer, are you…" she started.
In comparison to the other rooms in the house, the bathroom was quite small. Stark white tiles lined the floor and walls. The shower in the corner, big enough for multiple people, Chloe noted, was also tiled white but the shower frame was a glinting gold. Opposite the shower, along the back wall was the toilet and next to it was a huge marble bench with a deep set sink. On the wall above the sink, a large gold-framed mirror captured the reflection of Lucifer's back. Lucifer stared at Chloe in shock.
He was wearing nothing but black slacks, his bare feet lost in the fluffy black mat under him. One hand was covered in slick white cream, the other held an open jar, its lid resting on the bench behind him.
"Why are you awake?" he whispered hoarsely.
"I, I woke up," Chloe fumbled lamely.
Lucifer just blinked, still gaping at her. They both just stood there.
"I'm sorry if I woke you. Please go back to bed Detective, nothing to worry about here," Lucifer said smoothly, schooling his gaping features and putting on a mask of indifference.
"You didn't wake me," Chloe said automatically. "And I don't want to go back to bed."
"Oh," Lucifer said, that nervous energy returning.
"What are you doing?" Chloe asked, her voice filled with naïve curiosity.
Although the bathroom was small, there was enough distance between them to warrant the need for Chloe to step closer to see what Lucifer was holding. Lucifer hurriedly wiped the cream along his torso and turned his back to her to screw the lid back on the jar.
"Is everything okay?" Chloe asked, reaching out to touch his shoulder. Lucifer froze for a heartbeat then whirled around to face her, the jar on the bench now hidden behind his back.
"Of course," Lucifer assured her, but his smile was weak and didn't reach his eyes
"What's that?" Chloe asked, gesturing to the jar behind his back.
"You should really go back to bed, never know what murder will need your attention tomorrow-"
Chloe quickly sidestepped Lucifer and snatched the jar from behind him.
Lucifer let out a frustrated sigh, "This does not concern you."
"Medicine?" Chloe asked surprised, her eyes narrowing as she skimmed the label. Her eyes widened in comprehension. "This is for your scars."
Lucifer nodded ever so slightly, "Now please give it back to me."
"Do you need help?" Chloe asked.
Lucifer frowns, "Why would I need help?"
"This is for the scars on your backs?" Chloe asked gently.
Lucifer looks down. "Please walk away," he said, his voice firm.
"I didn't know your scars bothered you," Chloe said quietly, reaching over to place her hand beneath Lucifer's chin, tilting his face up so she could meet his eyes.
"They don't," he muttered through gritted teeth.
"Then why are you using this?" Chloe raised her eyebrows.
Lucifer looked like he was about to shut her out but at the last moment his façade fell away. "It's nothing. I had Maze find something for me but it's ridiculous. I feel bloody ridiculous."
Chloe felt tears prick behind her eyes but she would not cry. "Why?" she whispered. "Because you can't reach your own back? Because you care about them?"
Lucifer just stared blankly.
"Turn around," Chloe commanded.
"What? No," Lucifer said with panic.
"Lucifer, I've already seen your scars."
"Doesn't mean you need to see them again," he retorted.
Chloe looked at him curiously.
"What?" he demanded.
"I didn't think you'd be self-conscious about your scars."
Chloe resisted the urge to roll her eyes.
"Please just go back to bed. I'm done here anyway."
"No, no you're not. I thought you didn't lie?"
"Please turn around."
Chloe could have sworn Lucifer nearly growled. Normally she would have backed off by now but her heart told her the Lucifer never had someone stay for him before and she wanted to prove that she wouldn't be intimated. He couldn't push her away. Not for this.
"Why are you even using this stuff? If you don't want to use it, don't use it. You don't need it."
"You don't think I need it?" he asked suddenly.
Chloe faltered. "Since when does Lucifer Morningstar care what other people think," she said playfully.
"I care what you think," he said softly.
Chloe inhaled sharply.
"I don't think you need it," she murmured. "Unless, unless you're in pain?"
"Sometimes," he whispered. "Not as much as they used to, unless you're around of course. I actually can't feel much of anything on my back anymore. It's quite numb," he finished matter of fact.
Chloe felt a weight drop into her stomach and a wave of nausea hit her. She ignored the strange comment about her and just said, "Really?"
"Will you tell me how you got them? The truth this time?"
"I always tell you the truth. I asked Maze to cut my wings off."
You asked Maze to cut up your back?" Chloe asked trying to make sense of it without the part about the wings.
Lucifer frowned but nodded.
"Why?" Chloe breathed.
"I didn't want to be reminded of my father, of who I once was. I didn't want to be an angel anymore."
Chloe shook her head softly, her heart breaking for this man who felt the need to scar himself to separate him from his cruel father.
"I'm sorry." She whispered.
"Don't be," he said curtly. Then he lowered his eyes, "I don't want you to be repulsed by me."
The confession stunned Chloe and her eyes flickered to the reflection of Lucifer's back in the mirror.
"You're not serious."
Lucifer said nothing.
"Have you ever looked in the mirror?" she said gesturing behind him.
Lucifer tilted his head confused.
"You're perfect. All of you. That's what I think and you should too."
"Chloe, please, don't say that," Lucifer practically begged.
"Because you're pure and precious, and you don't even realise…" Lucifer burst out angrily.
"It's just cruel… because I can't and you don't or won't, I'm not sure which."
"Lucifer," Chloe yelled. "You really can't think that I would be put off by your scars? I wouldn't be put off by anything about you, your physical or emotional scars Lucifer."
Lucifer went rigid. "I don't know…"
"I thought my feelings for you would be obvious," Chloe trailed off.
"I don't know. I don't know if this is real or if it's just part of my father's plan. I don't know if what you feel is in your control. I don't… I don't know how you feel. I can't let myself feel much because every time I'm happy, my father takes it away."
"You're right," Chloe whispered.
Lucifer looked away.
"You've made a lot of mistakes. You made the wrong assumptions about me, about us. You went about it all wrong. But you can start over, we can fix this."
"Lucifer it's not too late."
"Stop saying that," he explodes. "You don't know what I've done, you don't know who I am. You say you can deal with all my scars but you don't understand. You can't understand."
"No, you don't understand. You can be different now, whatever it is that you have done, you can change.
"Maybe I don't want to change," he glowered.
"Then don't. You can be happy Lucifer, I know you can."
"Chloe," he said through gritted teeth. "Go."
"Why did you let me stay if you didn't want me to see this side of you?"
"You're the one who bloody opened the door," he roared. He looked shocked at himself. He took a deep breath. "I can't stay away from you. You don't understand."
"Understand what?" Chloe asked, her voice trembling, her whole body shaking.
"I love you."
Lucifer shatters. He holds onto the bench behind him, tears pool in his eyes.
"I love you and it's not real. I thought it could have been but it's not. I love you and I thought it would be enough. But I can't even show you my bloody scars."
"Lucifer," Chloe breathed.
"Tell me it's real. Tell me that my scars don't remind you of who I am. Tell me I'm strong enough for you."
"Lucifer, listen! Your vulnerability is enough for me."
"For the love of Dad, I have lost my dignity. Please leave Detective."
"Okay, okay," Chloe breathed raising her hands in surrender. Chloe moved and Lucifer breathed a sigh of relief, only for her to move around him and pick up the jar that he had snatched back at some stage.
She backed away.
"Turn around, don't look back."
Lucifer had no fight left. He turned to face the mirror, watching Chloe's reflection as she unscrewed the lid. She dipped her fingers into the jar, coating her fingers in cream.
She placed the jar back down and put that hand on Lucifer's should to hold him steady. She rubbed the cream between her fingers on her other hand before gently running the tips of her fingers down Lucifer's back.
Slowly she began to work the cream into his skin, moving in soft circles over one scar and then the other. She traced the outline of each scar with agonising deliberation. She ran her knuckles over his bumpy, jagged skin. She massaged every crevice.
His back was slick with cream and sweat when Chloe removed her hand, kissing the base of his neck.
He turned around to face her.
"You think that I won't sleep with you because of your scars." Chloe began. Lucifer tried to cut in but Chloe raised a hand to silence him.
"That couldn't be further from the truth. You want to know the truth. I want to know if this is real too. I want to know who you are, this person you said you were before and who you you're trying to be now. I want you to be strong but also weak. You are enough for me. I want to be enough for you."