Part IV: Noah's Ark
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Apr. 22nd, 2007 | 04:23 pm
posted by: museofspeed in deomonic
It was far too wet for any sane entity to be out and about. Crowley blessed loudly and glared at the rain until it stopped falling on him. Three weeks already! God must be really annoyed.
Aziraphale eyed the rain from underneath his makeshift roof. He had been warned of the flood, God or rather, one of the other angels had been kind enough to let him know that building a raft would perhaps be a wise course of action. The angel shook his wings, water drops splashing everywhere though they made little difference in the unceasing downpour.
Crowley eyed the raft up ahead. Had one of the humans managed to survive besides Noah? Well, anyone would be better than walking on water in this infern- heavenly downpour. He sloshed ahead and pounded on the roof.
Aziraphale was surprised at the knock. No one but Noah had survived the flood, surely? He stuck his head out anyways, blinking at the demon there. "Crowley," he said, "You're soaking wet."
Crowley looked down at his clothes and blinked. They were dry. "Not anymore. Awful weather we're having, isn't it?"
"Terrible," Aziraphale agreed, "I'd hate to be out in it."
"Yeah, makes you feel bad for people who can't miracle away the water, doesn't it? I thought you were a human."
"Mmm. I wish I could help them." Aziraphale glanced worriedly at the water, "Though I've gotten strict orders not to." He looked at the demon again, as though noticing for the first time that Crowley was still out in the rain, though it wasn't reaching him. "Come in, then. You're only drawing attention to yourself, keeping the rain away like that."
"Yeah, the ducks seem really suspicious, don't they?" Crowley rolled his eyes, but he stepped into the raft. "Nice place you've got here," he remarked. "Cozy."
"If you'd rather have the ducks as company, you are free to join them. I made this raft only for one, I wasn't expecting anyone to come along," Aziraphale replied, shifting over to give the demon more space.
"Yeah, well, ducks are bloody boring." Crowley glared at one, and it sunk like a stone. "I'm sure you're better company, even if you're an angel."
Aziraphale waved his hand, and the duck popped back up from the water, looking confused. "You shouldn't do that," he said, ignoring the last comment. "It is hardly fair to them."
"I have to keep myself entertained somehow," Crowley sighed, but he left the ducks alone. "How long do you think it'll stay around for?"
"Drowning ducks is hardly the answer to your lack of entertainment," Aziraphale glanced out in the rain again, "After the 40 days and 40 nights of rain, they estimated it'd stick around for hundreds of days." Aziraphale replied, and a thought struck him as he looked at Crowley. "If you plan on staying here for all of it, we'll need a bigger raft."
"With you stopping me from sinking ducks all the time?" Crowley rolled his eyes and leaned back against the wall. It buckled slightly, and he sat up quickly. "Plus, aren't we enemies?"
"I merely asked because you haven't got a raft," Aziraphale tried his best not to look annoyed. "And yes, we are. Though doing Good towards Thy Enemy counts for something on my side, at least. Shows character."
"Nice of you to Do Good to me, then." Crowley scowled. "Don't think I don't appreciate it and all, but seeing as we can walk on water and keep ourselves relatively dry..."
Aziraphale narrowed his eyes, waiting for the catch. Crowley had that look in his eyes, a warning light going off in the back of Aziraphale's mind.
"And, of course, we get points for Taking Advantage of Thy Enemy's Hospitality." Crowley smirked, inching closer to Aziraphale.
Aziraphale eyed Crowley, "Whatever it is you have planned, you can forget them right now." He warned, moving away from the approaching demon.
"I'd worry more about the edge of the raft that you're so quickly approaching."
"You wouldn't dare!"
"Of course I would. I'm evil." Crowley gave Aziraphale a small push.
Aziraphale flailed his arms, fingers wrapping around Crowley's wrist as he went down. Crowley gave a little yelp and the two of them went tumbling into the icy water. Crowley struggled for a minute, then stood on top of the water, scowling slightly.
Aziraphale came up after him, stepping onto the raft and glaring at the demon as his clothes suddenly became dry. "I hope you're happy with yourself," he said testily, "you can walk on water for the next days. I'm not letting you back on my raft."
Crowley shrugged and snapped. The rain stopped falling on him and his clothes became dry and neat again. "This isn't the end of this, by the way. You may have the raft, but," he grinned slyly. "Who'll get Noah's soul?"
"Oh, don't you dare, Crowley. It's bad enough that you caused this flood, don't go off and tempting the one man He found fit to save." Aziraphale sighed, rubbing his eyes. "At least give the poor bloke some time to really rid the world of evil, before you go causing a flood again."
"I've got my orders, don't I? Plus, this flood isn't exactly my side's doing." Crowley looked up pointedly. "I wasn't the one that wanted to wipe out all mankind."
"He only did it because there was too much evil." Aziraphale said, looking pointedly at Crowley.
"I guess you're just not as good at your job, then. Nothing personal, I'm just better at corrupting souls, apparently." Crowley shrugged. "But shouldn't you be getting along? You never know when you might fall out of that raft again."
Aziraphale glared. "Doing Good is harder than going 'here, have something you aren't really allowed to have.'" Aziraphale said, taking a step away from the demon and the edge of the raft.
"Just my luck, then. God didn't design them very well for your side, did he?"
"I thought you were all for the Free Will, that's what is causing all this."
"Of course I am. It’s bloody useful. But it must be annoying for you."
"Oh, humans will learn eventually, I'm sure." Aziraphale said.
"Or maybe God’ll just drown them all when it looks like we’re winning." Crowley smirked. "I'm sure we'll see more of each other. Do enjoy the weather. And oh," he snapped his fingers. "I'd watch out for that leak in the roof."
Aziraphale blinked, the leak disappearing. "I'm sure our paths will cross."
Crowley grinned wickedly and walked away.
220 days later
Aziraphale would be glad when this whole flood business was behind them. Terribly dull days they were, with nothing more than ducks and the occasional other water bird as company, but they didn't talk much. He missed humans. They might have been corrupt and evil, but they could carry out conversations quite nicely, and they occasionally did listen to what he had to say. He sighed, lying back on the floor of the raft which was amazingly still intact. At least the water-level was sinking fairly quickly. There was even some sort of island up ahead.
Finally dry land. Crowley walked towards it, glaring at his sandals until they went back to being dry and spotless. He was somewhere in Tibet, he reckoned, and this mountain had to be pretty tall. It was the first dry land he'd seen in far longer than any entity should be made to stand on water. He sat down. He hadn't sat since back on the raft with Aziraphale. Sitting in water was just annoying, even if he could get it not to feel wet. He smiled. He felt like he could rest forever here.
During the flood Aziraphale had gotten a lot of practice at sleeping. It took up a lot of the time, something he had plenty of during the Flood. But now, it didn’t seem to be working, so he sat up and noticed the small hill of dry land seconds before the raft hit it.
Crowley felt a soft thump on the other side of the island. It couldn't be Noah, could it? He frowned and peaked around the other island. "Oh, fuck," he muttered. He recognized that raft. He'd been meticulously careful in his avoidance of it.
Aziraphale got a bit shakily to his feet. Over 200 days in a small raft had been murder for his legs. Perhaps he was becoming too much like the humans. He glanced around, and seeing no trees decided that it'd probably meant he was on a mountain. Still, it was land.
Ah, well. It was a nice day. No reason not to have a little fun. Crowley sauntered over to the angel. "Hello, Aziraphale. How've you been?" he asked brightly.
"Crowley." Aziraphale acknowledged, wings stretching to their full length for the first time in too long. "Admittedly it could be better, but at least it has been dry. Yourself?"
"Just peachy." Crowley grinned. "Lovely weather, at least."
"Oh yes. Amazing that the water levels stayed this way even after the rain stopped."
Crowley looked at him for a second. "Actually it makes sense. I mean, physics and all that. Do you know how much trouble it would cause to miracle all of this away? I mean, I'm sure God could do it, but still."
Aziraphale shuddered slightly, "I wouldn't even dare try it. Big trouble from both sides, I imagine." He said, giving the water a slightly thoughtful prod with his sandal. He focused on the demon again, "So what have you been up to?"
"Enjoying the land, mostly." Crowley scowled at the water. "Not all of us had nice little rafts, you know."
"I simply prepared," Aziraphale answered. "It is not an unusual thing to do."
"Yeah, if your side can tip you off. Handy, isn't it?"
Aziraphale was quiet for a while, staring out at the water. "Well, you know how He is. He likes showing that he has the Upper Hand, I suppose this made it more personal."
"Nice of Him." Crowley scowled slightly. He doubted he'd ever go on a boat forever. "Next time want to give me a bit of a head's up as well?"
"How?" Aziraphale asked, glancing at the demon. "It's not exactly as though we meet each other every day. We only run into each other every decade or so, mostly."
"Yes, well." Crowley still wasn't in a particularly good mood. "Would you have told me if you could have?"
Aziraphale was silent, thinking about it for a while. "Well," he said, drawing the word out as his thoughts gathered themselves. "It would be the right thing to do, wouldn't it? Anyways, better you than somebody else, I think. No offense meant, but you're not exactly the worst of the lot." He grinned worriedly. "But, well, yes. If I could have warned you, I suppose I would have."
Crowley looked at him in surprise. "You would have? Really?"
"Yes, I think so." Aziraphale answered, wringing his hands. "You'd do the same though, wouldn't you?"
"Of course," Crowley lied. He was a demon. Helping an angel wasn't really in the job description. Same with doing the right thing.
Aziraphale nodded, satisfied, though there is a wrinkle of worry on his forehead. Helping a demon wasn't in the job description of being an angel, but helping others was and so surely that made room for a sort of loophole there, didn't it?
"Huh." Crowley smiled. "Look up." Above them, a rainbow stretched across the sky.
Aziraphale glanced up, smiling slightly. "Heh, look at that."
"It's pretty," Crowley said. "Sort of makes you feel hopeful, you know?"
"Yeah, it does." Aziraphale agreed, suddenly feeling at peace.
He took it at a sign that Up There might have a Sense of Humor.