I was watching The Red and the Black again last night and was hit with the need to write this. It's such a delightfully intense scene, even before the kiss. :-D.

Happy reading!

... * ...

I'm waiting in the dark shadows of the corner when Mulder opens the door. It's easy to get into his apartment. Too easy. He should know this by now but he doesn't. He's one of the most paranoid people I know and yet he still feels somewhat secure in his home. Maybe it's only because he wants to. Maybe he needs to have a place he feels safe.

He'll never be safe. Seekers of truth are never safe.

I've left a note on the floor. Things are looking up. He'll understand it, even with his current lack of faith. I never would have thought anyone could strip his belief in the extraterrestrial from him. I guess it's possible, after all, but I know it's only temporary. I know he'll believe again. He has to. It's who he is.

I wait for him to bend over and examine it more closely before I leap out of the shadows and strike him. We stumble across the room a short ways as I reach around him and grab the gun from his waist. I point it at him immediately as he rolls onto his back, before he makes a move to grab it back or hit me. He sees it, acknowledges it and just...stops. It was a strange thing to see. Mulder doesn't just stop.

It bothers me.

So I say something, a phrase designed to get a reaction from him. "You must be losing it, Mulder. I can beat you with one hand."

I see a quick spark in his eyes, something close to amusement. "Is that how you like to beat yourself?"

Beat myself? I would need a conscience to beat myself. I think this with dry amusement and almost say it aloud but decide to intimidate him instead. I cock the gun and see just a flicker of worry in his eyes. "If those are my last words I can do better."

I almost smile at that. I shake my head, just a little. "I'm not here to kill you, Mulder. I'm here to help you."

I don't lower the gun. I'm not stupid. Even if Mulder believes me if I lower the gun he'll have it out of my hand and in my face in a matter of seconds.

"Hey thanks," Mulder says sarcastically. He still isn't moving. He tilts his head towards me slightly as he speaks but he's still just...laying there. Even when he knows he's trapped he's always in motion, somehow, in small ways or sometimes just with his eyes.

"If it wasn't in my best interests I would just as soon squeeze this trigger," I reply coolly. I would, too, but I'll admit, if only to myself, that I would miss him.

He's my favorite enemy, you see.

He knows it, knows I speak the truth. I can see it in his eyes. "Well what's stopping you?"

There's a touch of fear in his voice but he's mostly curious. He's also angry. I can see it building, slowly, steadily, waiting to burst out past his desire for knowledge so it can rip my throat out.

I shake myself, just slightly. I have to remember why I'm here. Why I've come to him. "Hear this, Agent Mulder. Listen very carefully because what I am telling you is deadly serious. There is a war raging and unless you pull your head out of the sand you and I and about five billion other people are going to go the way of the dinosaur." I pause to watch as interest and fury start to war with each other in his eyes. I've got his attention, in one way or another, and that's all that matters. "I'm talking planned invasion. The colonization of this planet by an extraterrestrial race."

He starts to laugh, a wry, darkly amused sort of sound that just shows how far he's stuck his head in the proverbial sand. "I thought you were serious!"

It's a little irritating, having him laugh at me while I have the gun. I shove it into his chest for emphasis and he shuts up pretty quick. "Skyland Mountain, the site in Pennsylvania, they're all alien lighthouses where the colonization will begin." He's getting mad again. He's turning his head away, towards the floor. His lips tighten into a hard line as he tries to stay quiet and for just a second I find myself oddly focused on his mouth. Then I remember I'm here to make a point. "But now a battle is being waged. A struggle for heaven and earth. Where there is one law; fight or die. And one rule; resist or serve."

He lifts his head a bit, looks at me, angry, curious, just a little desperate. "Serve who?"

I shake my head. "Not who." I wait for him to meet my eyes so I can drive the next word right into him. "What."

An explosive breath is exhaled sharply through his nose. He turns away again, then suddenly, sharply, back to me. "Krycek, you're a murderer, a liar and a coward. Just because you stick a gun in my chest I'm supposed to believe you're my friend?"

For a moment we just stare at each other, the air between us thick with tension. I see the fury and hatred and need in his eyes, the need to grasp at what I'm saying, to believe it.

"Get up," I mutter suddenly. I don't want him on the floor anymore. I want him level with me. I can't explain why but I think maybe, if he's sitting up and staring straight at me, it'll help this to sink in.

So he sits up, against the wall, and stares at me with his dark, passionate, hateful eyes.

I don't begrudge him that hate, though it doesn't mean I'll apologize for anything I've done. I'm a survivor, always have been, always will be. I won't be sorry for it. Not this late in life.

"I was sent by a man. A man who knows as I do. The resistance is in our grasp! And in yours. The mass incinerations were strikes by an alien rebellion to upset plans for occupation. Now one of these rebels is being held captive. And if he dies, so does the resistance."

He wants to believe. I see him struggling with his new doubt of himself, his memories, the things he's seen. He wants to believe, he wants to let that old spark flare to life again, and I want to help. In a sudden, strange fit of desire, I lunge forward and press my lips to his cheek. He tenses...and then relaxes. Accepts it.

There's always been something between us, something tense and heated. In the beginning, when I had him fooled, it might have been his desire to latch onto anyone who would believe him. Later, I knew it to be hatred. Now, somehow, our hatred has twisted. It is still hate, make no mistake of that, but there is a need to it, a hunger. I listen to that hunger. I have no reason not to.

I pull back and then lunge again, this time attacking his mouth. I feel him freeze beneath me, feel his hands snap up to grasp my shoulders. He pushes, hard, hard enough to set me back a bit but I'm not having any of it. I strike again, more forcefully, until I feel his lips give way beneath mine. He's still pushing at me but now his lips have parted and I'm invading his mouth with my tongue, teasing at his own until he begins to respond. I feel one of his hands dig into my hair and pull, hard enough to dislodge several hairs. In return I smash the side of my gun against the back of his head, locking him painfully against me. Teeth suddenly drive into my tongue, so I wait until he lets go and bite down on his lower lip.

It's savage and primal and perfect.

We finally break apart, panting with the desperate need for oxygen. His hands are on my chest now and for just a second I feel them curl inwards, almost gently, in a strange sort of caress. Then he shoves, hard, and I fall onto my back. I quickly roll to my feet and find myself grinning down at him with a savage kind of joy. For just a second, a strange, almost unbearably hot second, we'd been free. There is no other way to describe it. We'd fallen back on our most basic desires and acted on them and nothing else had existed.

For a second it seems he might smile back. He doesn't. But that glint is in his eyes, the same savagery that has effected me. Our gazes lock and hold and we understand each other. We understand what just happened and I acknowledge that it might happen again. I don't think he sees it but that's alright.

It'll just make it more fun for me.

I remember the gun in my hand and reality slaps me in the face. I shake myself, snapping out of the pleasantly simple place we'd fallen into, and lower the gun to the floor before sliding it towards him. He takes it, lays it against his leg and slips his finger onto the trigger.

But he doesn't lift it.

We continue to stare at each other a moment. He's waiting, wondering if this has all been some kind of elaborate trick, though he still doesn't lift the gun from his leg. He just watches me, his eyes as hateful and furious as before.

I smile, just a little, almost fondly.

"Good luck to you, my friend," I say in Russian.

He's not my friend. I know this. I don't have friends. I am a man with only varying degrees of enemies. But just because I can never trust anyone doesn't mean I can't like them, a little.

You see, he's my favorite enemy.

... * ...

END

Ah, that was fun! Hope you enjoyed it!