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Dear Marje: Ineffable Partners Edition

Chapter 4: shedding inhibitions

Summary: 概括:

Aziraphale moves his toaster into Crowley’s flat. Crowley is less than pleased.

Crowley stress-cleans. Aziraphale is bad at zoology.

Notes: 笔记:

(See the end of the chapter for notes.)

Chapter Text 章节正文

Dear Marje, 亲爱的玛吉,

I didn’t mean for you to receive that last email. My former mobile has been punished for its behaviour, and my new one knows better than to ever send something I don’t actually want sent. A bottle of Château d’Yquem should’ve appeared in your cellar, my treat. So, enjoy, and forget ever reading that whole last letter.

Now, about how things’re going with A… I might have asked him to move in with me? And he accepted. So, yeah. Honestly, ‘s not that different. He still comes over everyday, whenever he wants, and absolutely buries my flat with coziness. It’s just more official now, I guess.
现在,关于 A 的事情进展如何……我可能会要求他搬来和我一起住?他接受了。嗯是的。老实说,并没有那么不同。他仍然每天都来,只要他愿意,他就会过来,让我的公寓充满舒适感。我想现在更加正式了。

It all started when that bloody toaster of his decided to add trespassing to its charge sheet. The depraved, antwacky sod accidentally wound up crushed by a falling piano. But how else am I supposed to react when an aspiring killer shows up in the kitchen without warning? It was self-defense. ‘Sides, that thing is pure evil and it chose to stay in the piano’s path. Deserved everything it got.
这一切都始于他的那个该死的烤面包机决定在其指控单上添加非法侵入罪。这个堕落、古怪的草皮不小心被一架坠落的钢琴压碎了。但是,当一个有抱负的杀手毫无征兆地出现在厨房时,我该怎么反应呢?这是自卫。 ‘赛斯,那东西纯粹是邪恶的,它选择留在钢琴的道路上。所得到的一切都是他应得的。

‘Course, A disagreed. He was miffed by the “unwarranted destruction” of the homicidal maniac he had been merrily harbouring for decades. Naturally, I did my best to defend my perfectly reasonable desire not to be threatened with discorporation in my own flat.

I thought we were just arguing as usual, but then A went quiet. His face switched to silent mode, feelings all politely tucked away, body doing its best not to take up space. Before I could even begin to figure out what'd gone wrong, he drew himself up, announced that he wouldn’t want to stay somewhere he wasn’t welcome, and marched out of the flat.

I was left alone. I had messed up, and I knew I had to fix it. So, I went out and bought a much better, modern toaster. (It’ll even toast toast on only one side.) Then, I fixed his ancient, iniquitous toaster, threatened both of ‘em not to ever shock someone for sticking things in ‘em, and cleaned up the piano. (Bread! The non-murderous toaster toasts bread! Not toast.)
只剩下我一个人了。我把事情搞砸了,我知道我必须解决它。所以,我出去买了一台更好、更现代的烤面包机。 (它甚至只会在一侧烤面包。) 然后,我修好了他古老的、不道德的烤面包机,威胁他们两个不要因为有人把东西塞进去而电击他们,并清理了钢琴。 (面包!非杀人性的烤面包机烤的是面包!不是烤面包。)

After all that, I wasn’t sure what to do. I wanted to show him his bloodthirsty toaster was fixed, but I didn’t want to upset him by taking it out of the flat. While I plotted my next move, I took all of the picnic supplies out of the pantry and made sure none of them were slacking off. Just as I was finishing up the inspection, A returned.

In my experience, second chances aren’t always offered, so I launched myself at the opportunity to patch things up. I showed him both of the toasters, and I told him he could change anything he wanted in the flat. I said he makes the best changes, all the changes I really need, and I gave him a copy of the rental contract where I’d added him as a co-tenant. (I would've given him a key, but he already had one.) Then, I broke out a bottle of Côte-Rôtie and toasted our two toasters.
根据我的经验,第二次机会并不总是存在,所以我抓住了弥补问题的机会。我给他看了两台烤面包机,并告诉他他可以在公寓里改变任何他想要的东西。我说他做出了最好的改变,所有我真正需要的改变,然后我给了他一份租赁合同的副本,我将他添加为共同租户。 (我本想给他一把钥匙,但他已经有了一把。) 然后,我打开一瓶 Côte-Rôtie 并烤了我们的两个烤面包机。

A seemed a bit surprised at first, but he was beaming by the time I raised my glass. He repeated the toast, wiggled a bit, and everything was hunky-dory. A knows anywhere I live is automatically too cool for ancient “computing machines” or bloody tartan, so we skipped spelling out the details of our new arrangement for the alcohol.
A 起初似乎有点惊讶,但当我举起酒杯时,他已经笑了。他重复了一遍祝酒词,扭动了一下身体,一切都很顺利。 A 知道我住的任何地方对于古老的“计算机”或该死的格子呢来说都太酷了,所以我们跳过了详细说明我们新的酒精安排的细节。

The only weird thing is that he keeps asking me cryptic, pointed questions. I’m not sure what all he thinks I’ve agreed to. For example, while we were enjoying the wine, he asked me, “‘Owley, are you a snake?”

Which is a reference to how we met, so I answered back, “ ‘Course, yeah, you know I am. That’s me, I’m the original bloody Snake. All the other seprentsssss, snekssssss - all those other slithery bastards just copied it from me. Big trend-setter, me. Very future-looking.”

Apparently, that wasn’t the response he was looking for because he frowned and his forehead got all wrinkly with serious thoughts. Then, he said slowly (in that adorable voice that means he’s pissed as a fish that’s having a wee in the pool, but trying to speak clearly), “But you also re-, ris-, you’re also like a gorilla?”
显然,这不是他想要的答案,因为他皱起了眉头,额头因为严肃的想法而皱了起来。然后,他慢慢地说(那可爱的声音意味着他像一条在池子里撒尿的鱼一样生气,但试图说清楚),“但是你也——,里斯——,你也像一只大猩猩? ”

I thought about it really carefully, since it seemed important to him, and I said, “Yeah.” Then I twisted around a bit on the couch and kicked my feet through the air to prove it.

After all, I’ve got two legs just like a gorilla. I used not to have any (or, at least, none like gorillas’ve got), but now I have two. Don’t know how you get more like a gorilla than that. Damn leggy legs.

A replied, “Oh, I’m so glad.” At the time, he looked so happy, I just felt happy, too. But now, I think he thinks I gave him permission to bring tartan into the flat.

You see, A’s clever as anything, but he always gets the strangest ideas about animals when he’s drunk. Like gorillas building nests. Drunk him probably thinks that snakes don’t like tartan (which is mostly true), but gorillas do (which they definitely don’t.)
你看,A 很聪明,但他喝醉的时候总是会对动物产生一些奇怪的想法。就像大猩猩筑巢一样。喝醉了的他可能认为蛇不喜欢格子呢(这基本上是正确的),但大猩猩喜欢(它们绝对不喜欢。)

Anyway, that’s about everything that’s happened so far. A keeps asking questions about my bed, though, so I’m expecting tartan bedclothes to show up any day now.
无论如何,这就是迄今为止发生的一切。不过,A 一直在问有关我的床的问题,所以我希望格子呢床上用品随时都会出现。




A co-tenant with two toasters,

Tony 托尼

Dear Mx. Marje, 亲爱的麦克斯。玛杰,

I would be absolutely chuffed to continue our correspondence. It’s the least I can do after all of your assistance. And, to be perfectly honest, I greatly enjoy the freedom to share about my relationship with C.
我会很高兴继续我们的通信。在你们的帮助下,这是我至少能做的。而且,说实话,我非常享受分享我与 C 的关系的自由。

Several developments of note have occurred since my last letter. The first is that C and I had our very first domestic as cohabitants! It all began when C destroyed my toaster. He claimed it was an accident, but I have yet to be entirely convinced. Regardless, C initiated the hostilities.
自我上一封信以来,发生了一些值得注意的事态发展。首先是我和C有了我们的第一个同居家庭!这一切都是从C毁掉我的烤面包机开始的。他声称这是一次意外,但我还没有完全相信。无论如何,C 挑起了敌对行动。

I will admit that I was not precisely pleased by the unwarranted vandalism, and my umbrage may have contributed to the disagreement. But C’s response was unequivocally not cricket. He said that he had never invited my toaster into his flat and I had certainly never asked him about bringing it over, and I. Well, I found myself in need of some solitude, so I departed for my bookshop. Heaven knows that I would hate to remain somewhere I wasn’t truly welcome.

Later that night, however, I was waylaid by an alarming thought. What if C wasn’t being an ill-mannered nestmate? That would, after all, be quite unlike him. What if, instead, he had never intended for me to nest with him?
然而那天晚上晚些时候,我突然被一个令人担忧的想法所困扰。如果 C 不是一个没有礼貌的同居者怎么办?毕竟,这与他很不一样。相反,如果他从来没有打算让我和他一起筑巢怎么办?

You asked me to explain “nesting,” but the conjectures you offered were right on the mark. Nesting does involve sharing a home with someone. More importantly, building a nest together symbolizes that the involved beings have chosen each other as lifelong partners. Nestmates are allies, but above all, nestmates are each other’s home. So you can understand why I would expect C to invite me to nest with him, if he were to build a nest.

To explain why I doubted whether C nests, I will need to share a bit of background information. Hmm, how best to explain? Oh, yes, I know.
为了解释为什么我怀疑 C 是否嵌套,我需要分享一些背景信息。嗯,怎么解释才好呢?哦,是的,我知道。

Suppose that I am an aardvark, and aardvarks nest. C was an aardvark once, but that was a long, long time ago. Now, he’s a duck instead and also a, a snail! And I haven’t the faintest idea whether ducks or snails nest.
假设我是一只土豚,还有土豚筑巢。 C曾经是一只土豚,但那是很久很久以前的事了。现在,他变成了一只鸭子,同时也是一只,蜗牛!我根本不知道是鸭子还是蜗牛筑巢。

You see, when ducks were first created, they were aardvarks, and they nested. But did they continue to nest after they became ducks? A short time ago, I would have assumed not, but I’ve recently learned that aardvarks and ducks are not all that different, really. At least, not in the ways that matter most.

Despite these misgivings, I decided to return to C’s flat on the following day. I wasn’t lonely! I was just worried the flat might miss me if I didn’t visit. After all, it had grown quite accustomed to my daily visits, and it wasn’t its fault that C and I had argued.

At the flat, C and I conducted multiple rounds of direct communication. I confirmed that C does, in fact, nest. And C categorically declared that I was welcome to nest with him, provided that I leave the acquisition of all electrical and tartan objects to him.
在公寓里,我和C进行了多轮直接沟通。我证实C确实存在嵌套。 C明确表示欢迎我和他一起筑巢,只要我把所有电器和格子呢物品的收购都交给他。

I’m sure I can wangle some tartan into the flat, so there’s only one tiny matter that might benefit from your perspective. You see, some nestmates choose to snuggle with each other in their nests. If I were interested in trying such an activity with C, how would you recommend that I go about suggesting it?
我确信我可以在公寓里塞上一些格子呢,所以只有一件小事可能会从你的角度受益。你看,有些同窝者选择在自己的巢里互相依偎。如果我有兴趣用 C 尝试这样的活动,你会如何建议我去建议它?




Yours faithfully, 此致,
A. Francis A·弗朗西斯

Dear Tony and Mr. Francis,

Please read each other’s letters (included above) immediately and discuss them directly with words.




Thank you for the wine cellar,

Marjorie Potts 马乔里·波茨

Notes: 笔记:

I originally intended this fic to end with "fade to cuddles," but I think I have been convinced to write an epilogue. Assuming I wind up writing it, I will post it here, but I probably won't write it until December or later.
我原本打算以“渐渐拥抱”来结束这篇小说,但我想我已经被说服写一个尾声了。假设我最终写完它,我会将其发布在这里,但我可能要到 12 月或更晚才会写。

As always, thank you so much for reading! It's been an absolute delight to think that people other than me have enjoyed this story.