Title: It Tastes Sweeter (When You're Not Allowed)

Summery: At last! The Apple Orchard!

Warnings: The same spoilers as previously, I don't change much


Jo Harvelle leaned back against the rough wood of the trees trunk. Two girls stood on the tips of their toes, laughing and whispering to each other as they jumped at the small ripe fruits. Jo just reclined and watched with a tilted head, invisible to the occupants of the memories, and wondered aloud, "So, is this what normal people actually do?"

Beside her, one of Heavens most powerful weapons shrugged, "Probably not, that's the thing about memories – they can lie to you and make everything seem better than it actually is." Jo snorted at his answer, and Gabriel let a small smile pull at the corners of his lips. The early autumn sun beat down on the two, and Jo shrugged out of the dark green hunting jacket that she had claimed as her own, folding it carefully by her side. She slipped down from the sitting position and lying back, she wiggled farther under the shade of the tree and propped her feet up on the archangels lap.

"You know," he mussed, "It would probably be more comfortable if you switch your position a little."

"Like how?" She mumbled, eyes closed and hands folded behind her head. Gabriel snapped quickly, and Jo shot up at the unexpected warmth and softness under her head. Upright and confused, she blinked a few times – where the golden haired trickster was once directly in her sights, he was no where to be seen. Instead she was staring at a different part of the apple orchid than she had been watching. But, judging by the badly concealed laughter behind her, it was just the scene she had had her back to previously. Embarrassment burning across the bridge of her nose and at the tips of her ears, Jo strained her neck to look behind her. Gabriel was leaned against a tree, body shaking with laughter. Jo smirked and laid back down, the soft and warm object she was atop previously apparently was his leg.

"Gabriel: Messenger of God, Archangel, and pillow," He smirked, absently stroking the silky blonde hair that spilled out over his lap. She hummed in agreement and added, "One comfy ass pillow too, Gabe – really warm."

"I run hot, it's the Grace – or maybe the sugar – I haven't decided yet."

"Whatever it is, don't stop, I like it."

He chuckled, "Alright, Jo, I wont."

Gabriel could almost feel her smile against him, face pressed into denim clad legs and head cradled near his hip joint. He alternated between playing idly with the ends of her hair and just running his hands down it. She pressed back into his touch each time he did – and he tried force the warmth growing in his chest from him and remind himself that she was only his charge. She was only the little girl he was set to protect. She was his duty, his job. Not even the self-given reminder that he was well over three hundred times her age could quench it. Giving up and chocking back all the words he wanted to say, Gabriel sunk a little lower against the tree and kept on petting the hair of the little blonde angel on his lap.

"I wouldn't want to go back, Gabriel." She admitted, her voice a little more thick than usual.

"What are you talking about, Jo?"

"My Heaven, I don't think I want to ever go there – even if it becomes safe. I just, I don't know, maybe God – your dad – knows what he's doing. Because, I feel like no Heaven could be better than this." She stumbled through her words, rushing certain parts and drawing out some to avoid the rest. She bit her lip and attempted to bury herself farther against him. The hand stroking her hair froze and he lifted it and placed it back at his side.

"I know, Jo, trust me when I say I know what Heavens really like - and I wish it was little more like this." Before he could stop himself, he pushed the hair away from her head and brushed his lips against her temple. Her breath caught in her throat and retreated back into her lungs – her heartbeat stuttered at the gesture.

Gabriel recoiled in horror and stammered out apologies, "Jo, I'm sorry, I didn't think, I wasn't totally, I blame the apples, or the sunshine, or – not it's totally my fault, I'm sorry Jo, It wont happen again, I should probably just 'poof' off now."

"If you even think about flapping away, I may actually end you," she warned, lifting herself from her spot curled against him. She looked at him and tilted her head, pale locks of hair falling into her eyes. She was waiting for his usually reply to her threat, but it died halfway through crossing his mind, the poor rebuttal never crossing his tongue.

"Ok," he scooted slightly back, "I'll stay – but I promise, hands to myself." As if to prove his point, he lifted his hands and folded them carefully in his lap. Jo laughed and leaned forward, soft lips brushing against his. It was just a moment of contact, not full, but close enough to feel the hot puff of air from him hear the strangled whine crawl from his throat. She lifted one of his hands and placed it to the side of her face, cupping her cheek gently, and leaned farther in – this time pressing the two together in a proper kiss.

She pulled away and smiled, "There's not really any need to, Gabriel." She stood up and walked to another tree, leaving the archangel in a confused and distant haze. She leaned up to pluck one of the ripe, red apples and take a large bite from it. She moaned slightly, and looked over to where her angel was laying, only to find him gone. She didn't have time to question his sudden disappearance when Jo found herself pressed against the tree by an unearthly strong and hot body.

His hands tangled in her hair and his lips found hers with ease. He clung to the human like she was the final breath of air he had before the water took him under. Like she was the last moment of flying he could savor before his wings were clipped. And she responded with the same level of passion.

When he pulled away, mindful that she still needed to breathe, her face was flushed, her lips were swollen and her hair was in a mess.

He chuckled and stroked the red cheek with his thumb, "If I didn't know enough about humans, I would've said that you were embarrassed when you blush," he looked down at the now discarded fruit, "After all, it's not the first time an apple has caused a little shame."


A/N: My only excuse - it was National Novel Writing Month last month, and well - lets just say I made it with about an hour to spare . I feel like these are getting progressively longer - and worry not, I should be updating more/again shortly. As for looking forward to in the next chapter, lets just say Gabriel makes a side trip to a place Jo might belong...