Just looking at his smug face is enough to send you into a frenzy. Your body vibrates with barely contained need. Need to reach out and grasp anything and everything. The impulse to scratch at his worn leather with your fingernails is almost too much and the promise of the pleasant thrum down your spine, that you know the action will give you, almost wins out.
But you don’t. You can’t. You’re not allowed to let it show.
So instead of reaching out, you swing out. Your fist collides with his face emitting a satisfying smack. It gives you as much pleasure as you imagine grabbing a handful of leather would, so you find yourself not regretting your decision.
“Mulder, you don’t have to do this,” he growls out through a rapidly reddening clenched jaw.
The sound of his husky voice, deeper now than usual, maybe because of pain or simply desire to be believed, you don’t really know. Strange enough, you don’t really care; either way, the voice affects you the same way.
Your body now burns, from the shell of your skin all the way down to your bones. You can’t help it, and you wish it wouldn’t, but your body reacts to the man in front of you in a way that both shames you and excites you.
“Shut up, Krycek,” you snarl as you swing out again.
He wasn’t expecting another hit so soon and your punch sends him sprawling onto the dirt at your feet. You know it has to hurt because a bruise is already beginning to form across the skin of his cheek. If you look close enough, you’re almost certain you can see the bruise forming on his soul as well. That deep dark pit that should resemble a soul, at least.
The surprise is visible for a second but the fleeting insight swiftly disappears as his façade falls back into place. He looks up at you with those pretty green eyes of his, far too pretty to belong on a man’s face, let alone an assassin’s. He blinks once, twice and seems to make a conscious effort to get back on his feet.
You want to be a dick. You want to lean across the gap between your bodies and nudge him as he shakily rises so badly but, again, you curb your urges. You briefly reflect that you deserve some sort of a medal as your hands shake uncontrollably.
You watch him stand back up, spine straight and chin held defiantly high. Somehow, the bruise does little to detract from the solid stance; if anything it only makes him look better, stronger even. You hate that.
Waiting, you expect him to strike you back. You wait longer until eventually you are just staring as he stares back.
“Do you think you can hold off on your urges long enough for me to explain myself?” Krycek taunts in a voice that implies he already knows the answer.
“What can a dead man know that would interest me?” You answer as spitefully as you can manage.
“You’d be surprised at what a dead man knows, Mulder.”
Krycek lifts his hands into the air as a show of good faith, as a sign to you that he means no harm. You deliberately ignore the offer and instead focus on the mismatched colour of his hands. One of them shines and reflects light off its plastic surface.
He notices your calculating gaze directed at his prosthetic and frowns at you. You try to keep your face blank; you probably fail.
With his good hand, he reaches into his jacket. The moment it disappears behind the leather you spring into action again. You’re not stupid. His feigning innocence is not going to fool you for a second.
This time, your punch catches him open mouthed. He was probably in the motion of explaining himself as he reached into his jacket but your quickness and paranoia, as well as your fist, stifle his words. Instead of shock, resignation, with a hint of annoyance, flashes across his face when he recovers from the strike. Blood begins to run from his lip but he ignores it. When his hand re-emerges from his jacket there is a manila folder in its grasp.
Embarrassment, at being wrong and having jumped the gun, is an emotion that doesn’t even register with you. Lust, on the other hand, is a different matter.
“If you knew what I went through to get these, you’d keep a tighter rein on those fists of yours,” Krycek spat, along with a mouthful of blood.
“Don’t count on it,” is all you can manage in response.
“Mulder, I didn’t come here just to piss you off. If you can believe it, I actually want to help you.”
And damn it if Krycek doesn’t sound sincere. You almost want to believe him. Almost being the factoring word here.
“I can believe a lot of things, Krycek, but not that,” you say in parting as you turn on your heel and begin to walk away. You trust him enough not to put a bullet in your turned back but not enough to believe he suddenly wants to be best friends.
“Wait!” Krycek shouts before you get too far. “For fucks sake, Mulder. Please stay.”
It is not the ‘wait’ that gets you to turn around, it’s the ‘please’. You like the feeling the word gives your ego, especially when it comes out of Krycek’s mouth.
The man in the distance looks ragged. There is a fist shaped bruise on his cheek; his lip is swollen and bloody; his fake arm hangs dead by his side and his pretty green eyes insist that you come back. And who are you to say no.
You close the distance slightly and Krycek sighs in relief. He flourishes the folder in his hand and then tosses it onto the dirt between your feet.
“Pick it up. Just read it,” he says, adding “please” as an afterthought.
Looking at him, the folder on the ground and then back to his pleading gaze, you realise that he knows the word affects you. You begin wonder if he knows just how much it affects you. The often referred to fantasy containing Krycek writhing underneath you, the word ‘please’ a constant litany out of his ravaged mouth, takes over your brain. Would he still use the word so baiting if he knew?
You reach down for the folder, watching Krycek’s eyes on the way down and the way back up. He looked happy about you deeming him trustworthy enough to even bother with and as you turn the folder over in your hands you come to a decision.
You can’t do this alone.