[identity profile] mollivanders.livejournal.com posting in [community profile] prefer_my_life
Title: there's a longing in my bones
Fandom: Being Human
Rating: G
Characters: Hal, Alex, Tom
Author's Note: Word Count – 2,175. Set Post-S5, a little AU from the extra DVD scene but still the same general idea.
Disclaimer: The characters belong to the BBC, as always.

This time, when Hal drives the stake deep into the Devil’s chest, he can feel it.

An echo reverberates through his body followed by a sharp tug in his stomach that feels achingly familiar, like the wrong end of a Muscovite lance. The Devil falls back, slowly, and Hal feels himself pulled by gravity just the same. He falls heavy on the soft grass, his breath slow and ragged after all these years. From the corner of his eye, he can see Alex’s outstretched arm, her hand cradling the empty vial of blood.

(In the dark, her specter flickers.)

But just as his eyes slide shut, wondering where Tom is, a loud snap of fingers clicks by his ear.

“Not just yet, govenah,” the archangel says, his voice a soft purr.

(He doesn’t remember the rest.)

+

When he comes to, he’s sitting between Alex and Tom on their old couch in the old hotel.

“Are we dead?” he asks, his voice rasping in his throat. Alex arches her eyebrow at him and he shuts his eyes, pulling himself together. “I mean, did it work?” he asks.

“I’d rather say it did, govenah,” the archangel interrupts and when Hal’s eyes snap open, Remiel is leaning on his cane, peering at the three of them intently. “For this Devil, at least. What an upstart. There’ll be another after him, of course, but you did save the world and all that.”

“So we are dead then,” Tom says and Remiel shrugs. “If you like.”

Next to him, Alex crosses her arms and stares at the archangel suspiciously. “And we’re just supposed to trust you? What are we doing here then? I don’t feel dead, do I?”

“Well you wouldn’t,” Remiel says and runs his hand back through his jet black curls. “Heaven thought you’d like a little reward first, so I slowed time down. Fractions of a billisecond are passing out there while you decide. Stay here, or wake up.”

Tom glances at Alex and Hal worriedly. “What’s going to happen to them if we wake up?” he asks. “I’ve seen what happens when a vampire dies.”

“Of course you have, dear boy,” Remiel says fondly. “Look, I can’t tell you what’s going to happen to you. I’m not a fortune teller. But,” he adds before they can interrupt him again, “I can give you a little more time here.”

“How do we know you’re not the Devil again?” Alex asks, shifting on the couch so her knee pokes into Hal’s leg. “That this isn’t some dream world?”

“I felt it,” Hal says softly. “It was different.”

“I want a deck of cards,” Alex says stubbornly and Remiel smirks. “Gambling is a vice. Not allowed in heaven, and all that.”

“What about me? I want to see Allison then,” Tom says and Remiel spreads his hands. “If you read the fine print, you’ll see that Visitations To The Living are Not Allowed.”

Turning from Tom’s disappointed face, Remiel focuses his gaze on Hal. His eyes were painful to look at, a swirl of purple and gold sparks that matched his pressed suit. “And what would you like, Harry Yorke?”

The answer came from deep within him – near where the Muscovite lance had pierced him.

“I’d like to spend some more time with my friends,” he says quietly.

+

Alex had chosen it, on a whim. She’d never even been to Paris and technically, Hal wasn’t sure this counted. Still, Tom was speaking with quick excitement and Alex’s arm was linked through his, so Hal didn’t really give a toss.

(Somewhere in a field, half a minute had passed.)

“He said no Visitations To The Living,” Alex points out, curiosity leaking through her voice. “Who do you think is here, then?” It wasn’t crowded but they certainly were not alone. Other people passed them by. Perhaps they were memories, or other ghosts. Either way, Paris fairly sparkled with life.

He’d forgotten how clamorous the city could be.

“Dead people, probably,” Tom says, distracted. “I want to find a cheese shop and eat brie and every other kind of cheese.”

“I never took you for a connoisseur, Tom,” Hal says.

“A what?”

After the cheese shop, Alex pulls them into a wine shop, and Hal felt the sun hot on his neck. His feet were sore, and he was inclined to find someplace to sit down.

“I suggest we find a café to drink that,” he says when Alex produces a vintage cabernet sauvignon for his appraisal.

They find a café at twilight, one with a view of the Seine that captures the light from the setting sun. Alex doesn’t pay attention to much else as Hal pulls her chair out for her and Tom orders another cheese platter.

Well, when you’re nearly dead, Hal supposed, you didn’t have to worry about getting sick from too much cheese. Or anything, really.

“Perhaps it is our imagination,” he says, looking at Tom and Alex in turn. “But we used to imagine being human. Why should this be any different?”

(His gaze lingers on Alex’s face a moment too long.)

The table is silent for a long moment before Alex speaks, her eyes focused on the fork that Tom keeps spinning on the table.

“I don’t want to die,” she says quietly, and Tom looks up, shame in his eyes.

“I know,” Hal says. “I’m sorry. So very sorry –”

“No, you don’t understand,” she says. “Not that. It’s just…I’d like to stay here a while longer.”

He pours them all another glass of wine.

Finis
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