Gabe & Meg - "Wings are overrated."
Welp, this went from six sentences to *checks word count* a little over 1,200 words faster than I thought it would. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
(Also…assume this takes place at some vague point in an alternate canonverse in which Meg 2.0 and Gabriel are known to be alive at the same time. Cool? Cool.)
(Read on AO3)
“Wings are overrated,” declared Meg one afternoon as she and Gabriel lay in a tangle of sheets and naked limbs, her head against his chest and his arm wrapped around her shoulder. He let out a surprised snort at her words, and she tilted her head to look up at him, arching a brow. “No offense, feathers.”
Gabriel rolled his eyes. “Please. If you wanna offend me, you’re gonna have to try harder than that.”
“Hmm…” She rolled over and onto him, straddling his hips. “I could tell you you’re bad in bed.”
Gabriel chuckled, bringing his hands up to frame her hips. “You could,” he agreed, “but we both know that’d be a lie.”
“I’m a demon, baby.” She crawled up his chest until their faces were only inches apart. “Lying’s kinda part of the job.”
“Oho, so you admit it: I am good in bed.”
“I’ve had better.”
“Yeeah, kiddo, that’d sting a heck of a lot more if we hadn’t just established you lie for a living.”
“Shut up.” Meg leaned in and captured Gabriel’s lips with her own. She felt a thrum of satisfaction as he hummed in approval and kissed him harder, licking deep into his mouth and rolling against him until they were both clawing at one another, gasping for breath.
Their relationship, if it could even be called that, wasn’t one of deep and extended conversations. It was a secret, shadowy thing of fisted sheets in sleazy hotel rooms and muffled moans in dark broom closets. It was the scrape of her nails against Gabriel’s back while he bit rough kisses into her neck. It was heated, frenzied, no-strings-attached fucking once or twice every few months that left them both bruised and breathless but more alive than Meg had felt in as long as she could remember. She liked that, feeling alive. It was a welcome change after years spent just struggling to survive.
Suddenly, Gabriel pulled back just far enough for Meg to see him smirk, and in the blink of an eye, she was flat on her back, the archangel sitting smugly on top of her. With a huff of annoyance, she tried to pull him back down, only to be stopped by a hand on her chest.
“Hold your hellhounds, good lookin’,” drawled Gabriel, eyes sparkling even as Meg frowned up at him. “We’ll get back to our regularly scheduled programming in a minute. First, though, let’s talk more about wings. What’s your beef with them, anyway? Choke on a chicken bone back in your pre-smoke days?”
Meg glared. “Very funny.”
“Yeah, well try not to be disappointed, but there is no reason.”
“Sounds to me like you just haven’t been looking at the right wings.”
“Funny, sounds to me like you shutting the hell up.”
“Not my style.”
“Don’t know the meaning of it.” Gabriel cocked his head to the side, his teasing expression shifting into something more genuine. “Seriously, though. You ever even seen an angel’s wings?”
The way he was looking at her was so…open, and Meg’s first instinct was to bolt for cover. “Why do you wanna know?” she asked warily.
“Call it curiosity.”
“Rumor has it, that killed the cat.”
“Rumor has it, I’ve lived more than one life.”
Meg was silent, weighing her options. She could smoke out and flee, lie low for a while and find a new host in a different part of the country. It wouldn’t be the first time she’d done so since coming topside, and it was a strategy that had saved her life more times than she could count. She’d never fled an archangel before, though. Gabriel could stop her easily enough, she suspected—hell, he could kill her right now with a snap of his fingers if he wanted to—but, as much as she suspected that he could, she also knew, with a surprising amount of certainty, that he wouldn’t. If she tried to leave, he would let her go.
“So what if I haven’t?” she said at last, raising her chin in an attempt at defiance. “Seen an angel’s wings, I mean. You gonna tell me I’m just some dumb demon skank who wouldn’t know true beauty if it bit her in the ass?”
Gabriel gave her a lopsided smile. “Actually, I was thinking of showing you mine.”
Meg faltered. “Oh.”
“If you want to see them, that is.” Gabriel winked. “I know how you feel about curiosity and cats and all that. I also know, though,” he added, tone softening somewhat, “that I’m not the only here who’s lived more than one life.”
Meg regarded him carefully, chewing her bottom lip in thought. “This ain’t gonna burn my eyes out or anything, is it?”
Gabriel laughed. “Hey, I’m an ass, but I’m not that big of an ass. Those gorgeous peepers of yours’ll be just fine, scout’s honor.”
“And if I say no?”
“Then it’s no.”
“Really? Just like that?”
“Listen, kiddo, I don’t know what sort of douchenozzles you’ve been with in the past,” said Gabriel, frowning, “but the whole consent thing? Kinda a big deal as far as angels are concerned. It’s one of the few things I actually sorta like about us. You tell me you don’t want to see my wings, I’ll take your word on it, and then I’ll take those legs of yours and wrap them around my waist, and we can get back to trying to break this bed at least one more time before the sun comes up. Your call. So, what’ll it be?”
Meg hesitated. She knew she should say no. Seeing Gabriel’s wings would just be a string between them, and strings could get caught on things, could catch around your neck and strangle you like a noose when you least expected. If you wanted to survive, you had to get used to living with as few strings as possible…and yet somehow, in that moment, Meg found that she didn’t want to just survive. She wanted to feel alive.
“Okay,” she said finally. “Do it.”
“Yeah. Show me.”
The air in the room seemed to crackle, and suddenly, Gabriel was framed by a set of great, golden wings that billowed upward and outward, filling the room with a soft, shimmering glow. He gave a contented sigh and rolled his shoulders, wings opening and closing slightly in an apparent stretch. “That’s more like it. So, whaddya think?”
Gabriel’s tone was light and easy, but Meg thought she detected a flash of vulnerability in his eyes as he waited for her to say something. When she didn’t, he gave a forced sort of laugh and shifted his gaze to look at the wall. “Hey, look, I get it: it’s like you said, not your thing. I’ll just—”
Finally, Meg managed to unstick her voice. “Relax, feathers. They’re…” Beautiful, they were beautiful. Just so…incredibly…beautiful. “They’re fine, okay? Impressive, even.”
“Impressive, huh?” Gabriel grinned even as Meg rolled her eyes. “Well, well, well…” He shifted forward, crawling up until he was resting his elbows on either side of her head, his face hovering just above hers. Around them, his wings framed the sides of the bed, enveloping the two of them in a golden cocoon. “If I didn’t know any better, I’d say someone’s changed her mind about wing’s being overrated,” he said loftily, dipping down to brush his nose against hers.
Meg scoffed. “Don’t push your luck,” she said, before pulling him into a searing kiss.