Song to the Siren

A Good Omens fic

(Good Omens is copyrighted to Terry Pratchett and Neil Gaiman, to their publishers, and to anyone else who might own the rights. Xenogears belongs to Squaresoft and, again, other sharers in the rights.)

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Crowley stared at the TV screen, lips pursed, expression frustrated. *For fuck's sake,* he thought to himself, *I've been around since the beginning of time, and I can't even beat a stupid video game.*

At least they were easier than some of the old ones used to be--that was the result of some clever maneuvering on his part. It amused him, to see how everything was dumbed down in this millenium--education, quiz shows, and now video games catered now to the young and the stupid. He'd only played a few of the old ones, but he did remember that they'd been considerably harder. So it was a little embarrassing now that he couldn't beat *this* game.

He reached for a truffle--sin in edible form--and popped it into his mouth. "Suck my wang, Miang," he muttered around the chocolate, then jumped as the doorbell rang.

Crowley looked over at the door, still politely unopened, and rolled his eyes. The door was unlocked, he was obviously home, and Aziraphale *still* insisted on waiting till he was let in. He pressed the pause button and called out, "Come in, angel," then resumed playing his game. Almost immediately Miang hit him with an Ether spell, and Aziraphale was greeted with a particularly pungent curse.

Looking surprised, the angel froze where he stood, and said, "If you're that unhappy to see me, by all means, I'll go...."

Crowley snorted, not looking up from the screen. "Sorry. That wasn't directed at you. Have a seat." He gestured vaguely at the area around him.

Aziraphale sat on the floor; he was dripping wet from the storm outside, and didn't want to get Crowley's chairs wet (not that Crowley himself would particularly mind). An explosion on the television caught his attention, and he looked over at Crowley, who was quite engrossed in it himself. "What's this?" he asked, quirking an eyebrow.

"Xenogears," said Crowley absently. "Picked it up a few days ago while I was out. I was just randomly tempting some people--just having fun, you know--and I saw it for sale." He sighed. "I haven't been able to put the damned thing down since. I've almost beaten it, I think."

Aziraphale nodded, enlightened. "It's bad for you, you know," he said reprovingly. "Didn't you hear about that one little boy who got a seizure from watching all the moving lights and explosions on the telly?"

Crowley rolled his eyes. "That was *years* ago, angel," he said. "And I have a hunch that was probably the result of some demon having a little fun, rather than the little flashing lights themselves."

"You're probably right." Leaning over, Aziraphale picked up the last truffle in the box. "Do you want this?"

"Nah, go ahead."

Aziraphale gave him an amused look. "Have you eaten anything at all today, Crowley?"

"Nope."

"I thought not." He replaced the truffle and politely put the cover back on the box. "Have you heard anything from your superiors?" he wondered. He himself hadn't.

"No. I don't think I'm going to, either--oh, *hell*." Crowley watched in dismay as Miang killed one of his characters. "Oh, well. Elly's a blooming bint, anyway."

"That one just died," Aziraphale said helpfully, pointing at the screen. "Aren't you going to revive her or something?"

"No. She just wastes fuel." Crowley brooded. "Maybe I'm not supposed to win."

Aziraphale considered it. "I don't think so," he said after a pause. "They hardly have those sorts of futile battles this late on in the game. You did say you were far on, didn't you?"

"Yeah." Crowley grinned at him. "Sounds like you have a bit of a bad habit yourself, angel."

Aziraphale flushed and coughed. "Yes, well, I'm more old-school myself. Dragon Warrior, Breath of Fire, what have you...."

"You played *Dragon Warrior*? Aziraphale, I'm impressed."

Aziraphale smiled, pleased. "Why, thank you, Crowley. But these new games, I don't know, they just lack the same..." He paused, searching for a word. "They lack the spirit that the old games used to have, I think."

"Oh, I don't know." Crowley watched, resigned by now, as Fei went down. "They're pretty good fun. And such good graphics. Positively sinful, you know?"

"Positively," Aziraphale agreed.

"Yeah." Crowley revived him, then revived Elly for the hell of it. "You haven't been around for a while."

"I've been stocking up on some books," Aziraphale said, shrugging slightly. He drew his knees up to his chest and leaned against the coffee table. "It's been a quiet week. All these storms are lovely, don't you think?"

"You like storms? They kill people, don't they, angel?" Crowley glanced over at him.

Aziraphale shrugged again. "Oh, I don't know. I think the beauty of it really is partly how dangerous it is. It puts me in a contemplative mood--how something so beautiful can be so deadly, can cause so much pain."

Crowley's eyes shifted over to him, wondering if Aziraphale was aware of the double meaning in that sentence. "I should have imagined," he replied. "You can't enjoy anything without analyzing it."

Aziraphale frowned. "That's not true," he said, stung.

"Oh, yeah? What do you enjoy, then, angel?"

"You," he said without missing a beat. "I don't analyze you at all, Crowley."

Crowley looked at him for a long time. "You never wonder....?" he finally said.

Aziraphale shook his head, face softening. "It's not my business," he said. "Oh, thoughts have come to me--why someone like you, who can be so kind, chose to fall--but I've never dwelt on them. It seems... violating, somehow, to me. I didn't become close to you to judge you. I just find your company pleasant, and if that's sinful of me, or wrong, well, then...." He shrugged and smiled.

Crowley laughed quietly. "I think you just analyzed it, Aziraphale."

"Oh, trust me, dear boy," Aziraphale replied, "not nearly as much as I could have." He looked at the television. "You just died," he pointed out.

Startled, Crowley looked too. Appropriately sad music was flitting over a black background and the words 'GAME OVER'. He was silent for a long time. Then he said, "Is it still raining outside?"

Aziraphale nodded.

Crowley stood abruptly, brushing dust off of his black pants. He quirked an eyebrow down at Aziraphale, who looked serene and perfect as he sat on the floor with his light hair still damp from the rain. "You wanna go to a sidewalk cafe?" he asked. "I feel like watching the storm."

A smile curved Aziraphale's lips, blooming across his face like a hazy rainbow. "I'd love to," he said, and accepted the hand Crowley stretched out to him. He didn't bother to dust off his pants, just said, "Where to? I know a particularly lovely place...."

Chuckling, Crowley placed his hands on Aziraphale's back and propelled him towards the door, cutting off the angel in mid-sentence. "Let's just walk, angel," he said. "And see what we come to."

A nebulous expression crossed Aziraphale's face. "That sounds lovely to me." He held out his hand. "Be a gentleman and walk the angel down the hall, won't you?"

Crowley laughed and took the proferred hand. "You'll evangelize me yet, my dear," he said sarcastically, closing the door behind them.

Once outside Crowley was surprised; he hadn't realized the storms were that bad. It was raining hard enough to bruise, and lightning flashed in the horizon, one jagged bolt after the other with scarcely a lull in between. Aziraphale turned to him and smiled. "See? No one in their right mind could say this wasn't beautiful."

Crowley watched him without replying. Aziraphale's face was hard to see in the dim light, but occasionally a flash of lightning would illuminate it and the rain that ran down fine planes and hard angular lines. "Quite," he answered, and was rewarded with another smile even though he hadn't really specified what he was agreeing with--and he knew Aziraphale knew it. He tightened his grip on Aziraphale's hand, and leaned over to say in Aziraphale's ear, "I think I see something down there. Wanna go, angel?"

Aziraphale tilted his head, his hair brushing against Crowley's cheek. "All right," he said softly.

They started off down the street, which was half-deserted; no one wanted to be out in this storm. Crowley pressed his arm against Aziraphale's back and tried to shield the slightly smaller man from the rain, noting as he did so that Aziraphale didn't pull away from him; rather, he pressed closer, even though he wasn't getting any less wet.

A lightning bolt struck a distance away, dangerously close to the ground, and Aziraphale stopped and said, "Oh, let's watch."

They retreated under the awning of an old hotel. Aziraphale watched the lightning with rapt attention; Crowley, for his part, watched Aziraphale. As thunder rumbled its way across the horizon, he reached up and stroked Aziraphale's cheekbone, his fingers sliding slickly against the wet skin.

"Aziraphale," he murmured, close to where his fingers were. "What do you like about the storm so much?"

Aziraphale leaned ever so slightly into his caress. "It reminds me of you, I suppose," he replied quietly.

"I thought as much." Crowley slid his fingers down to Aziraphale's jaw and grasped it, tilting the angel's face up and into his kiss. Aziraphale made a soft sound, his breath gusting across Crowley's lips, and Crowley slipped his tongue into Aziraphale's mouth, closing his eyes as he encountered an engulfing warmth. He reached down and pulled Aziraphale's damp body against his; it was Aziraphale, bringing sweetness into the embrace, who threaded their fingers together.

When they parted, Crowley tucked Aziraphale's head against his shoulder and closed his eyes again, squeezing Aziraphale's fingers. "Angel," he said. "You ever analyzed this?"

"Love is from God," Aziraphale said, voice husky. His free hand brushed across the nape of Crowley's neck. "I leave it at that."

Crowley smiled. Why, he didn't know, but those words had brought him a pleasure he hadn't felt since his Fall. "I guess so," he said. He kissed Aziraphale on the cheek and pulled away, reluctantly, from the angel's warmth. "That cafe still sounds pretty good to me."

"And to me," said Aziraphale agreeably. "I hope they have good wine."

Crowley's smile turned wicked as he stepped out into the rain. "I'll taste it for you first, angel, and you can see how you like it from my mouth." He leered impressively.

Aziraphale just laughed and shook his head, following him. Crowley slipped an arm around his shoulders and they walked down the sidewalk, comfortable in each other's presence, barely noticing that the rain had slowed to a drizzle, and that the sun was coming out.

"I must admit," said Aziraphale thoughtfully, "I am terribly glad that the world didn't end."

"See? I told you so."

Aziraphale's gentle laughter floated down the street.