Fandom: Androsynth Chronicles
Continuing the "Coffee at Christmas" arc.
Nick was not one of those in line for coffee. Dean was a little disappointed, but not surprised. He had long ago resolved to let Nick come to the church of his own free will, however long that might take. Besides, Dean now had a miracle to proclaim, before everyone left the building. Joining the oil that burned for ten days and the miracle of loaves and fishes, was the bottomless pot of coffee. The story got picked up and repeated around the planet within an hour.
~ ~ ~
"Here," Dean said, pouring the last cup of coffee for Nick after all was said and done, promises extracted from the coffee-seekers, tasks delegated and the church cleaned up and set to rights. The pot really did sound empty this time.
"You really think there was a miracle," Nick said flatly.
"I do. God works in mysterious ways. Water into wine wouldn't impress Androsynth nearly as much as unending coffee." Dean, now in everyday clothes, had his own single cup of the stuff. "Did you bring sugar?"
Nick snorted. "Of course I did. And some milk, though it's room temperature now." He handed the small glass bottle to Dean, who poured some into his mug. Nick himself preferred his coffee highly sweetened and very strong.
"So you didn't rig it somehow?" Nick continued, spooning sugar into his cup.
"No, I didn't. Besides, you had the coffee before Mass, not me. During Mass, the pot was on the altar the whole time. Someone would have had to swap it without the entire congregation seeing. As far as I can tell, nobody did. But a half pound of coffee couldn't have made enough for a few hundred people and still had some left over. Ergo, a miracle."
"Well, let me try this miracle coffee." Nick blew on it and tried it.
Dean sipped his own. It was strong and full-bodied and tasted wonderful. Nick, for his part, had his eyes closed and looked positively ecstatic. "Oh, that's been a long time," he said at last.
"Yes it has."
They savored their coffee for several long minutes before Nick spoke again. "You realize the Council is going to have eight varieties of panic about all this."
Dean nodded. "Oh, I'm sure they will. They're probably trying to reach me right now."
"You're not worried?"
"I have St. Drogo on my side." Nick looked confused, so Dean elaborated: "St. Drogo is the patron saint of coffee and coffeehouses. Tomorrow, my church will get a name at last. I have a saint, a miracle, the courage of my convictions and a few hundred eyewitnesses, some of whom may even remember that they agreed to join the church. I'm a public figure, sort of, and remember, the Council agreed to leave us alone for the most part."
"The Council did, but the populace didn't," Nick pointed out, then took another long sip. "Mm, that's good stuff. If this is what I could expect every Sunday, I'd join, that's for sure."
"That's not likely," Dean admitted. He lifted the pot again and shook it slightly; there was no sound of remaining liquid. "I think the miracle's over, and unless we have another benefactor like Fred, it's back to wine at Mass."
"Pity," Nick said. "Tell you what, as soon as we're done with our cups, I'll race you back home."
"That's a long way to run."
"I don't think we'll mind so much, once the caffeine hits our brains. Besides, your Christmas present's at home. Not that you deserve it after giving away all our coffee, but you can still have it."
Dean smiled as Nick looked offended at the alleged snub. "It's not another dog-hair sweater, is it?"
"You will never let that go, will you? No, I wouldn't waste something valuable like that on you after you gave away the last one." Nick drained the last drops from his cup and stood. "C'mon then, I can feel it working. Race you."