Disclaimer: Alex Krycek and Fox Mulder were created by and belong to Chris Carter, 1013 productions and Fox Television. We're doing nasty things with them without permission, but also with no financial compensation or intended harm. Don't bother to sue us, we're broke.

Rated NC-17 for extreme sexual violence. Just in case you expected anything else, this is an S/M PWP. No walk in the park, this is the genuine article. Now, we weren't going to mention this, but then we thought that'd probably make at least a few folks angry... So, in the events of the following story, somebody happens to die. Don't worry, it's for best. :)

For Suze, because one hot sex scene deserves another, and for Amy, to lure you over to the dark side of the slash<g>.

Sweet Thing

By Zen&nancy

Alex Krycek considered the naked body kneeling at his side carefully. His form was nothing short of perfect. He had no reason to expect it to be otherwise; Mulder was a perfectionist. Back curved into the most appealing angle, ankles crossed in exactly the proper position to support his weight, head lowered and turned slightly away, Mulder was the picture of submission.

"Are you sure you want to go through with this?"

"Yes. I need this. I need you. I know you don't believe it. Help me prove it to you."

Mulder's voice was calm and serious. He looked directly into Alex's eyes, and Alex watched with dry, silent amusment as Mulder catalouged the distrust and suspicion he saw there. Alex told himself it wasn't his fault if the rules they played by were less complicated than the game itself. Alex's lips curled into a tight smile, "Oh, don't worry, Mulder, I will. Say goodbye to your senses, sweetheart."

Krycek moved quickly, covering his captive's eyes with a blindfold designed to stay in place under the most strenuous conditions. When he had cinched the elastic at the back tightly, he picked up the ball gag, and held it up to Mulder's lips.

"Any last words, Mulder?"

Alex wasn't sure if it was pride, stubbornness, or just plain fear that kept him silent, but Mulder didn't speak. He did open his mouth when the hard rubber ball of the gag was pressed against his lips. It was buckled quickly at the back of his head.

"Now you're mine. Really mine. Not like before. You don't get a safe word, and you're never gonna see it coming. How do you feel about that Mulder?" Krycek laughed, running his fingers through the incredibly fine, silky hair. "Well, I guess it's a little late to ask, isn't it?" Again, Alex chuckled, letting his fingertips linger at the back of Mulder's neck. "Don't worry, Mulder, I'll take care of you."

Krycek noted that the man on his knees stayed completely still through his entire monologue. Not a single muscle flickered as he walked in a slow circle around the very vulnerable, naked form. He admired the muscles outlined and defined by the ropes, and the perfect control that kept him statue-still. Again, he couldn't decide if this was a show of bravado, obedience, or fear. He looked incredible, and he knew it. The white rope set off the golden color of his skin, his lithe body drawn back like a bow. Alex swallowed hard, staring hungrily at the man on his knees before him. Everything about the way Mulder knelt was a challenge, to look at him was to long for the feel of the whip in his hand, to have the chance to bend the hard set of his shoulders, the line of his back. Alex let his eyes roam over the beautiful body for another moment, and then he gathered his determination, mindful of his ultimate goal.

"Listen to the silence, Mulder." The deceptively soft whisper were the last words he spoke, and then he stepped carefully away, backing soundlessly out of the room.

Kneeling in the exact center of the empty room, Mulder told himself that he would be able to hear Alex approach long before he could touch him. He would hear everything, before it happened. This was good, he needed the time to accept whatever was coming; but also bad, because Alex Krycek could be very quiet when he wanted to be. Kneeling on a cold floor alone in the dark, Mulder wondered exactly what it was that had prevented him from speaking when Alex had given him one last chance. Now that his lips were actually stretched around the ball of the gag, and the only noise he could make was a sound he was sure would set his nerves on edge, he couldn't remember what had caused the fit of pride that had kept him silent.

Alex had told him that it would happen this way, that he would leave him alone to wait once he was totally incapacitated. Knowing it was coming hadn't made it any easier. The first step Alex had taken away from him had triggered the dreaded panic that started in his head and went straight to his gut. When it happened, he would say anything, use whatever safeword Alex had given him, would literally scream for release if he had to, and say things that later astonished him. Now, he couldn't, and he was totally alone in the darkness. He had no idea how far away Alex really was, or when he would return.

Mulder concentrated on his breathing, as Alex had taught him, closing his eyes behind the blindfold. He inhaled steadily, letting his ribcage expand slowly to the extent of his bonds, trying to feel each individual wrap of the soft cotton rope that restrained him completely. There was rope around his legs, from just below his knees to mid-calf, and at his ankles, which held his wrists a slipknot away from relative freedom. Mulder stressed the ropes, pushing against the bonds, establishing his boundaries. He took a slow, deep breath, and imagined himself sinking into the concrete beneath him, imagined each inch of the cord that wrapped his legs. Then the rope that held his arms behind his back, a more complicated series of figure eight loops that restrained each arm and bound it to his torso. Then the length of cord that formed his collar, continuing in a series of decorative knots that bisected the length of his body, splitting into a Y just below his navel. It went around his groin, covering (and protecting) only his perineum and anus, everything else was left exposed, outlined and displayed for Alex's pleasure.

In the few minutes it took him to catalogue the complicated patterns of the ropes that bound him, he was able to calm his breathing and relax into the bondage, finding his center in the nothingness he'd been compelled to embrace. The fear was still there, but it was farther away, The ball gag in his mouth seemed to represent all of his frustration, his fear, and his failure. Maybe this time, he would make it all the way through the scene, and Alex wouldn't have to untie him prematurely. There was absolutely nothing he hated more than breaking, not even flame. Mulder told himself that not being able to see was no great disadvantage. It wouldn't change anything. When he was beaten, the whip would still fall just so many beats a minute, with the same amazingly uniform force. When he was penetrated with a dildo, or the vibrating plug Alex was fond of, he would take the same time and care to touch him and prepare him, whether he could speak to ask for kindness or not.

He couldn't quite believe that it had gone this far, that he had really consented to this. That he wanted it was unquestionable. Even now, as nervous and uncertain and full of stage fright as he was, his cock was fully distended, his erection bobbing against his stomach as he swayed slightly forward and back on his knees. Of course, wanting it was the easy part. He always wanted it, but that had nothing to do with how it felt when it actually happened.

Footsteps fell, coming closer, and stopped at what seemed like a short distance behind him. "Hello gorgeous. I'm back. Did you miss me? You're all worked up, huh? You're sweating. Relax. There's nothing else to do, you know that. Just take it one breath at time."

Alex's warm voice caressed him, and Mulder relaxed, almost hypnotized by the power and the devotion in Alex's deep, smooth voice.

Alex squatted down in front of his captive, so that he was at eye level with the blindfold, and spoke softly, his lips very close to Mulder's face. "You're so perfect like this, Mulder, I wish you could see yourself. You make such a beautiful picture."

Gentle hands reached out to grasp his erection, fingertips stroking lightly over his cock and balls. Mulder sucked in air through his nostrils, unable to control the slight jerk of his hips into Alex's hand.

"Relax, relax, we've got all the time in the world, you're not going anywhere, not unless I say so. So good, I know, you're trying so hard. I'm proud of you," Alex crooned, smiling in satisfaction when his captive threw his head back, pulling on the soft cords around Mulder's throat, which tightened all of his other bonds.

Mulder shuddered when the light petting stopped, his hips jerking forward once towards the touch he needed. Alex's hands came up to his face, fingertips lightly tracing his lips, stretched around the gag, and then the outline of the blindfold over his cheeks.

"That's it, work for it. You're almost there, I can tell. Just let go, give it to me. I'm going to take it from you anyway, so you might as well give it up."

The tense muscles in Mulder's face relaxed under his fingertips, and Alex smiled in satisfaction, rising slowly to his feet. He kept all of his motions slow and deliberate, knowing that Mulder was listening intently, tracking his every movement as best he could with his ears.

Mulder cocked his head to the side, listening to Alex take three steps to his left, and then the sound of the zipper being pulled on the black gym bag he'd set down a short distance away. Straining to hear, he tried to determine which items were being removed as Alex riffled though the duffel's contents. From what he could tell by sound, the two items he was most concerned about remained in the bag, at least for now. They were a box of red taper candles, and a low voltage stun gun.

"You know what this is, don't you? Just a little something to keep you under control. You need that, hmm? Yeah, of course you do, you're always trying to get ahead of me. Not this time, today we're going to learn a little patience." Alex spoke gently, his voice reassuring and steady as he drew the leather harness over his lover's erection.

The soft leather wrapped around the shaft of his cock, leaving the head exposed. It had laces like a corset, which Alex was drawing through the eyelets, lacing him up. If he could speak, at this point, Mulder would already be pleading for leniency, arguing about the tightness of the harness, which was designed to cause any sensation from mild discomfort to serious pain, depending on how tightly the laces were pulled. Alex drew the laces tight, tying a knot at the base when he was satisfied with the fit.

His captive's breath came in short pants through his nostrils, his chest rising and falling much more rapidly than it had a few moments before.

"Now you feel better, hmm? See, I told you it would be easier this way. Now you're safe, you're totally contained, you can't just decide to go flying off on me and get hysterical. No, you have to keep it, you have to hold the pain inside you, let it be part of you. You can't separate it like this, can you? No, I know you can't. This way, you don't get anything but what I give you. Sound, touch." Alex illustrated his point, letting two fingertips drag slowly from the back of the kneeling man's neck down his spine to the cleft between his cheeks, pulling on the rope that separated them just a little. "See, that's all you get. Whatever I want, nothing more. You can't talk, you can't see, can't move, can't even come, can you, gorgeous? No, all you can do is take it."

Going to the bag, Krycek extracted a pair of clamps, and an oversized black silk handkerchief. Coming back to his charge, he was pleased to see that, although a fresh sheen of sweat had broken out across his chest and abdomen, Mulder's breathing had evened out and slowed down, almost back to the relaxed resting rate he'd been breathing at before the harness had been fastened.

"That's what I like to see, acceptance. Such a good boy, I know you're working hard for me. I promise, I'll make it worth it."

Krycek went to his captive's back, pulling the cord that released the knot holding his wrists bound to his ankles. When Mulder didn't move at all, he smiled, and dropped a light kiss on his bare shoulder.

"Very good."

Alex was continually irritated by the modern notion that bondage was somehow 'lighter' than what people considered 'real S&M', meaning inflicting physical pain. People who thought that bondage was purely psychological, or not inherently challenging, had never had the experience of being tied at a dozen different points on their body and made to sit still. He'd studied Japanese rope bondage for the past two years, and had developed an intense respect for any bottom who was willing to do it. Mulder was a gift from heaven.

He couldn't do this unless he was tied, and when he was, he was the most obedient, responsive, expressive partner anyone could have asked for. Until, of course, he broke. It happened every time, they had both begun to think of it as inevitable. Today they were going to try to change that, and he was definitely feeling the responsibility he was about to undertake. Taking someone's senses away meant being aware of what they couldn't see, or say, for every single minute you kept them in that state. Alex knew that Mulder didn't really trust him, he just got off on his own fear. That was something else he intended to change today.

"Give me your body, Mulder, give it to me now, while you have the chance," Alex whispered enticingly, drawing cool silk slowly over the naked chest.

Mulder shivered, thrusting his chest out towards the barely felt sensations. Alex teased his nipples to aching hardness, holding each end of the silk taut to draw the fabric back and forth over his hot skin. Alex stroked and petted him languidly, with an easy, detached surety to his touch that made Mulder mad with pent up need and frustration.

Concentrating on the right nipple, Alex pinched it repeatedly with silk covered fingertips, twisting the hard point back and forth in his fingers. Alex sighed softly, stealing just a moment for himself, to worship the beauty, symmetry and strength that was Fox Mulder. He watched the pectoral muscles jump under his hands as he pressed the cold metal chain that connected the clamps to his captive's heated skin. Carefully, he closed the rubber covered tips of the clamp over the tiny, aroused nipple, turning the screw that tightened them a full turn, and then a tiny bit more.

Mulder exhaled noisily around his gag, arching his back to throw his chest out towards Alex. Beads of sweat ran from his hairline down his neck, the muscles trembling under the skin. Alex watched the slow acceptance of Mulder's body taking place, as he gave his left nipple the same treatment, tightening both of the clamps a little more once the left was secured.

The powerful, stinging pain was fading a little, soon it would only hurt when Alex pulled on the chain, or when he decided it was time for them to come off. Mulder closed off his mind to that possibility, telling himself that it wouldn't happen for a long time, and by the time it did, maybe he would want it. The pain of his pinched flesh was close, constant, not something he could block out or resist, but not unbearable either. Mulder tried to groan around the gag, arching his back and shoulder blades to feel the pull of the clamps even more.

"Oh yeah... Come on, get all hot and bothered for me, gorgeous, I like you best like this. That's right, work up a serious jones for it... you know you're gonna need it, cause I'm gonna tear you apart. Oh yes, I'm going to rip you to shreds, Mulder, and this time, you're not going to stop me."

Alex felt a rush of wild satisfaction when his words brought a slight moan out from around the gag. Every step with Mulder was a fight, and so often, the victories were painfully hollow. He never allowed himself to be fooled, or to lie to himself, he knew the helpless man at his feet had him wrapped around his little finger, had since the very first moment he'd laid eyes on him. It wasn't something they talked about. The last thing Mulder wanted from him was a passionate declaration of love and devotion. In fact, this was the only thing Mulder wanted from him, and he took it when and how he pleased, with very little interest in what, if anything, Alex got out of their meetings.

They were lovers, and sometimes even allies, but they weren't friends. Mulder didn't trust him, he might not even like him, but that didn't stop Mulder from taking what he wanted. There were times when Alex felt like Mulder had no more regard for him than he did the utility company that gave him his electricity. He used him in much the same way, taking exactly as much as he needed, and paying back as little as possible, only when a discontinuation of service was threatened.

Scolding himself for letting his concentration wander, Alex returned his attention to Mulder's state of arousal, letting the length of silk fall slowly over his erection.

"Is this mine, Mulder? It is now. I love the way you look all laced up, swollen and rosy. Sensitive, too, hmm?" Alex caressed the swollen tip left exposed by the harness, wrapping the silk around his fingers to pet him lightly. Abruptly, his touch withdrew, and he flicked the tip of Mulder's cock hard with his fingertips. With each hard flick to the dripping tip of his swollen flesh, Mulder's stomach muscles fluttered, and his shoulders jumped a little. His face, though, remained totally passive.

"You showing off, gorgeous? Trying to prove something here? There's nothing to prove. It doesn't matter how good you are now, because I'm not letting you go until I'm done with you. Understand?"

Alex smiled, a tight, closed-lipped little smile of satisfaction. Now he was starting to get the picture. The sooner Mulder decided he wasn't running the show, the better. It might save them some time, later, after they'd burned off a few more layers of Mulder's indifference and self-hatred. Going to squat behind him, Alex released the knots that bound his ankles, and then his legs.

"Get up."

Alex watched the flutter of each defined muscle on his captive's back as he tensed, surprised by the order. He waited almost a full second before stumbling to his feet. Both the graceless way he rose and that critical second of waiting were acts of defiance, more argument than he could get away with, and he knew it.

It made Alex seethe with deep, buried anger. There was no place for it here, and later, Mulder wouldn't want to talk about it. He might not want to see him at all. It was always like this, no matter what he did to him, which buttons he pushed, even when the pain was more than he could stand, Mulder pushed back. Every single time, Mulder proved that he was one step ahead of him; that he could take more than Alex had to give. That the combined efforts of his energy, imagination and skill were far less than what was required. Somehow, no matter how he compromised him, Mulder managed to send the message loud and clear. He was only there because the world had failed to offer him anything more interesting, for the moment at least.

Alex slammed the door closed on his emotions, and reached out for the roll of rope between Mulder's wrists. There was a pulley rigged with a thick rope from the ceiling, very high. The place was an old warehouse, and the corner of it he rented came for a ridiculously low sum of money. It was the closest thing he had to home at the moment, even if it was empty. It was a place to go, that was enough for him.

Grasping the rope with its metal clip, he pulled Mulder's arms up slowly behind his back, until he had to either lean forward or get his arms broken. He wrapped the rope twice around the bindings between Mulder's wrists, and clipped the hanging rope to itself, pulling him up a tiny bit more. All of Alex's movements were slow and deliberate, he kept a careful two feet back from his captive's legs, but Mulder didn't kick. Perhaps, he was just barely smart enough to know when he'd reached the limit, and couldn't push him even an inch farther.

Alex sighed, and made himself stand still for a full ten seconds before stepping up to Mulder's curved back, leaning deliberately over his arms to speak in his ear. His voice was gentle, and very low.

"Why do we have to argue, Mulder? Why can't you play nice? I certainly hope you're ready to pay for that little revolution. What the hell were you thinking? Don't you get it yet? I own your ass." Not one muscle on the body underneath him moved, Mulder's breathing was slow and easy, in spite of his weight half on top of him. "Maybe I just need to find a new way to prove it to you. Wouldn't want you to get bored, would we gorgeous?" His voice was still sweet, still concerned for his captive's welfare.

The muscle in Mulder's cheek jumped, maybe something that wanted to be a smile. Alex told himself calmly not to expect too much, not with words. Words meant nothing to Mulder. Anything, any single thing that anyone said was most likely a lie, the way Mulder saw the world. There were more intimate ways to communicate.

Going back to the bag, he took up two of his whips, and the weights for the nipple clamps. Last, he went to the inside pocket for the ear plugs he'd bought at the last minute in a fit of nerves, for backup. He laid the whips on the floor, behind the bound form. Walking around him with the ball weights on their light chains, Alex decided that it would be more effective to let him wait a little while.

Why do you have to despise yourself, Mulder? Alex asked himself, a twinge of desperation in his thoughts. I wish you wouldn't. It makes my job so much more difficult, so many layers of self loathing to strip away before we can get down to you and me. It's so senseless, when you are so much more important than anyone will ever admit. Watching you teaches me something every day. You have talents most people can't even appreciate.

For just a moment, standing before the blind, gagged and suspended Mulder, the anger almost overwhelmed him.

//Not now!// Alex snapped himself back, resolutely denying the fear that rose when he realized just how close to the surface his anger was. He made himself take three slow, deep breaths, flexing and relaxing the muscles of his arms and shoulders.

"Listen to me, Mulder." His soft words carried an implicit order to obey.

"You fucked up. This is where the games end. No more slack, no more bullshit. I've been patient, I've made excuses. Now, I'm not sure you're worth all the trouble. You think you want this? You think you have any right to be here at all, after all the shit you've pulled? I hope you do, Mulder. I hope you're absolutely certain."

Closing the space between them, Alex grabbed a fistful of the shiny, plain brown hair. Mulder jerked back from the impersonal touch, and Alex's other hand went to his wrists, yanking them up brutally until Mulder had to stumble forward blindly to save himself.

"You don't really want to disagree with me about this, do you?"

Alex's voice was a silky threat in his ear, as he raised the bound wrists a little higher. Mulder screamed behind the gag, tossing his head violently from side to side. "No, of course you don't. I didn't think so. You're just smart enough to keep yourself alive, aren't you Mulder?"

Lowering his captive's arms, Alex's returned to his hair, holding the gagged and blindfolded face up to look at him, if it could have.

"When I take that gag out I want the first words out of your mouth to be "I love you, Alex." He watched carefully for a reaction, but there was none. "Think about it, Mulder." Alex pressed the pilot's plugs into his ears, checking to make sure he'd put them in right by clapping his hands together close to Mulder's face. Not a muscle twitched. Mulder was completely cut off from him now.

Alex watched Mulder's flare of panic as he fought to draw more air into his lungs than he could get through his nose with detached calculation, waiting to see if he would conquer it on his own.

"Slow down, Mulder, save your breath, you're gonna need it."

Alex chuckled to himself humorlessly when he realized that he was speaking out loud simply to hear himself talk. Relaxing his grip, Alex let his fingers trail through Mulder's hair, lifting the fine, silky strands and letting them fall from his fingertips. When Mulder's breathing showed no sign of slowing down, he let his fingers wander to the back of his neck, petting him impersonally, like a dog.

"Get it together, gorgeous, I don't have all night." Alex murmured to himself, stroking the soft skin. The ropes allowed for very little movement in this position. All Mulder could do to express himself now was to toss his head, or bend his knees a little, until the pressure on his arms became unbearable.

Mulder relaxed gradually, first the tense muscles in his arms and legs, and then eventually his back and shoulders as well, until he was hanging limply from the ropes that bound him. Alex sighed, enjoying the perfect picture of submission. If only it were real. He wasn't fooled, this was because Mulder was ready, because he wanted the pain that was coming, not because he wanted to please him.

Transferring the weights to his left hand, Alex moved back a step, reaching for the clamp that held Mulder's left nipple. Mulder groaned around the gag a little when the small weights were attached, pulling on his cruelly pinched flesh. The pectoral muscles under Alex's hands trembled with the strain, the skin flushed from the rush of blood under the surface. Alex clipped the second set onto the clamp that held the right, his fingertips playing with the light chains thoughtfully. Fluttering his fingertips lightly around the clamps to bring circulation back, he waited until he was sure sensation had returned before tugging on the chains, pulling one and then the other until Mulder cried out around the gag in his mouth, throwing his head back in helpless supplication.

"Okay, whatever you want lover," Alex murmured, letting go with a final tug to each.

He went behind him, picking up the leather bat. It was an English riding instrument, like a crop, but with a wider half circle of leather at the end, flat instead of looped, like the crop. It traveled a little faster in the air, but it was lighter, and covered a larger surface, so it wasn't quite as nasty as the narrower crop. Mulder liked it, and Alex liked the way Mulder moved beneath its attention. Muscles jumped and rolled under the skin, like the Thoroughbred racehorses the instrument was meant for. The sight of Mulder's body in motion under the ropes was something he craved day and night. Alex reminded himself quietly to start slow, when his arm itched to slice into smooth, sleek muscle, to tear and shred and devour the golden skin before him.

The muscles over Mulder's shoulders rolled easily under the first round of blows, tensing and then relaxing after each strike with a control that spoke of extensive training. His head went down, all his weight and balance dropped to the balls of his feet. Alex stood behind him and a little to the side, gauging the weight of each blow carefully against Mulder's response.

When he failed to relax between the blows, Alex paused, stepping closer. His eyes moved slowly over Mulder's slightly abraded back, looking over each welt carefully.

"Very nice, Mulder," he growled softly, pushing his own swollen cock absentmindedly into a more comfortable angle in his jeans.

"Now we get serious."

Alex dropped the short jockey's bat, reaching for the braided cat. It was an expensive one, with a very tight braid and uniform knots that would leave perfect, dime sized welts to go on top of the larger, less serious marks left by the riding bat. Mulder was sweating profusely now, but his breath still came slow and even.

"That's right, Mulder, show me how much you can take, give it to me."

Alex spoke under his breath, his fingertips reaching out to trail lightly down Mulder's back. His fingers ran over the marks slowly, drawn into needy, hungry fascination.

Mulder flinched.

That made Alex laugh bitterly, and he stepped back, telling his unhearing captive, "Okay, have it your way then, gorgeous."

When he began again it was with a steady, more insistent rhythm. Mulder was moving a little in his bonds now, jerking back from each impact, the muscles trembling uncontrollably under the skin.

Alex groaned softly under his breath, glad that Mulder couldn't hear him. The power and beauty struggling in captivity before him made his heart pound painfully hard in his chest and his already aroused cock swell to epic proportions.

The joy and the rush of power that burned through him made everything seem sharper, more intense. The sounds Mulder made around the gag egged him on until he was hitting him harder than he'd really intended to at this stage, thin lines of red appearing on the skin as the braided lashes sliced over smooth, unmarked flesh.

Mulder twisted in his bonds, shifting his weight constantly from one foot to the other. Mulder was still playing cat and mouse with him though, and Alex knew it.

Renewing his efforts, Alex laid the next round of welts onto Mulder's back with exacting precision. He used his arm and his wrist to deliver every variety of sensation he could produce with the thin, amazingly versatile whip.

Blows that stung, with a snap of his wrist and a quick pull up on the lashes just as they reached Mulder's skin. Blows that sank deep into his flesh, the knotted ends of the lashes grouped tightly on his back. These brought a deep, throbbing pain and left a raised, purple welt. Fast surface blows that cut, and felt like being licked by a razor, leaving thin slices that brought a line of blood to the skin.

Finally, when he'd exhausted both his arm and Mulder's ability to take and transform the pain, he dropped the cat to the floor. Standing still for several minutes to catch his breath before approaching the bound and bleeding form, Alex surveyed his work, panting. His cock was achingly tight in his jeans, and for a moment he wasn't sure that he might not just come in him pants at the sight of him.

Every inch of skin from the tops of Mulder's shoulders to the cleft of his ass was marked by the whip. Long, narrow welts, the bruises already dark crimson and purple. Angry red knots, the skin blistered and swollen until it appeared paper thin. Razor thin lines of red, tiny drops of blood oozing where he'd sliced into his skin.

"God damn you're beautiful," Alex breathed, letting his eyes feast on the sight of Mulder bleeding for him.

Alex briefly considered removing the ear plugs and the gag, but he clamped down on his desire when he realized the temptation was motivated solely by his desire to hear Mulder scream. //Not yet, not yet. We've got a long way to go// Alex told himself firmly. Walking around Mulder's bound and bent form, he listened to his captive fight to calm his breathing. Mulder tossed his head from side to side, spraying drops of sweat from his soaked hair.

He's as ready as you're going to get him, Alex coached himself, trying to summon the control necessary for the next act of their play through the red haze of his desire. He thought briefly of how ridiculously inadequate the words they used were to describe these acts of hunger and recklessness. Standing directly in front of him, Alex reached for the elastic band of the blindfold, pulling it slowly off his captive's head. Mulder's eyes were tightly closed, his body still twisting and trembling from the exhaustive flogging.

Slowly, Alex reached out a steady hand and brushed his fingertips lightly over Mulder's eyelids. "Let me look at you, Mulder, open your eyes. Let me see it, gorgeous." His throaty whisper was full of longing and devotion, but when Mulder did open his eyes, he took a step back, and regarded him with a level, calculating gaze. What he saw in Mulder's wide open, hazel eyes was greed; greed and a kind of contempt.

It's never going to be enough, is it Mulder? Alex thought, a new bitterness poisoning his lust. It's never going to be enough to forgive yourself for wanting it in the first place. You don't want to come to terms with this, do you, Mulder? No, it's easier to hate us both for wanting it, to pretend that this is penance. For Samantha, for Scully, for everyone that's tried to love you and hurt themselves cracking their heads against that brick wall of yours. That's bullshit, Mulder. I know why we're here, even if you pretend not to.

Alex's eyes gave away nothing, they stared straight into Mulder's, meeting the contempt he found there with a cold, knowing acceptance. Mulder lowered his eyes, and Alex smiled. At least now they could dispense with the lies.

I need this, Mulder, I need it bad. If this is all you're ever going to give me, then don't take it away now, not now, please, Alex thought desperately, stepping around Mulder to release the hanging rope that held his hands.

Mulder stumbled forward when the tension that held him disappeared, grunting when Alex's hand came down on his body to put him upright. Mulder's eyes darted away from him when Alex lifted his head to look at him. The pupils were fully dilated, only small rings of dark green gray left around the black pools.

"You're high as fuck, baby. That's good, that's good. Let me take care of you." Alex murmured reverently, letting his hands move slowly over Mulder's chest. The skin was hot under his hands. Hot and hard and incredibly alive. At this critical moment, all he wanted to do was throw this body to the floor and force himself into it. To pound and pound into the tight, resisting heat of Mulder's ass. It was a fantasy that tormented him at all hours of the day. When he least expected it, his mind would conjure the image of Mulder, panting and struggling beneath him, angry and helpless.

Mulder couldn't hear him though, and Alex made himself take his hands off the burning body. Grabbing the sides of his captive's head, Alex forced Mulder to look at him, holding his head hard as he pushed him to his knees. Mulder went down under his pressure without resistance, but with a control he shouldn't have had. There was no trace of submission, or even exhaustion, in the fluid, controlled movements of Mulder dropping to his knees. His muscles bulged around the rope, rippling under the skin. Alex snarled and kicked his knees apart, making the muscles in Mulder's groin stretch as he pushed his legs wider, wanting him to feel the pain in his bound up cock.

"Feel it!" Alex snarled, hearing his own voice echo on the bare concrete walls.

Mulder's eyes were locked on him now, his head thrown back, as Alex pulled his arms slowly over his head. Blood ran in thin rivulets down his back as the skin was pulled and Mulder groaned softly around the gag. The pulley rope secured, Alex stepped back, putting a little distance between himself and the heat radiating off Mulder's body. The smell of his sweat and of his blood was strong in the unfiltered air, and Alex inhaled greedily, his hand straying for a moment to rub over the outline of his painfully hard cock in his jeans.

Mulder's eyes bored into him, hatred so strong Alex felt it go right through him, like a knife. Mulder didn't like to have his arms up over his head, it made him mean, more likely to fight. Alex turned away from him, going to his bag on the floor. He lit the red taper candle with a match, keeping the pack when he returned to Mulder on his knees.

Alex held the candle solemnly, just close enough to Mulder's face for him to feel the heat from the flame, and Mulder screamed around the gag. Long and loud, a continuous output of pure terror.

Alex pulled the candle back, and Mulder fought for breath noisily, choking around the ball in his mouth that prevented him from using his safeword. This wasn't consensual, and Alex knew it, they both did.

Alex listened to Mulder's screams echoing off the walls. Harsh, in spite of the muffle of the ball gag, painfully high, real, unmasked panic. Finally. Alex let himself savor the capitulation of Mulder for only a second. He had him, finally, and now he would find out what was beneath all the lies, and if he could make that creature love him. I'm going to do this to you, Mulder, I'm going to do it for you, and it's going to work, Alex coached himself, the anticipation almost more than he could stand. Stepping close to Mulder's body, he pulled the earplugs out.

Mulder's scream died, but his eyes remained frozen wide open and fixed on the candle flame. It moved slowly to the center of his chest and hovered there.

"Now you're here with me, gorgeous. Does it feel good? Does it feel good to be free of all that manipulation and lying you do, Mulder? Can you feel the flame? Does it hurt? I bet you can't even feel it, you're so terrified. Oh yeah, I know, baby, I know," Alex crooned, and when he was finished and it began to look like there was actually somebody home behind the terrified eyes, he tilted the candlestick, and let three drops of wax spill onto Mulder's white skin.

Mulder moaned pitifully, tears streaming from his eyes, closed now as his body twisted to the extent of his bonds, seeking relief.

"Take it slow, Mulder, we've got a long way to go," Alex advised, turning the candle upside down for a moment to let a thin red trail drip down his belly.

Mulder made choked, sobbing sounds behind the gag and Alex reached out for a fistful of his hair, holding his face up to watch. At a moment when he should have taken decisive action, he waited. Even Krycek wasn't sure exactly what he was waiting for, what expression or emotion he hoped to read in Mulder's contorted, tear streaked features, he only knew he needed it. He let his fingers slide through Mulder's hair, feeling the curve of his skull, waiting. Mulder's didn't open his eyes, and all he saw was a man absorbed in his own suffering.

"Feel it! Feel it now, Mulder. This is what you need, this is what you can't live without. Pain."

Alex guided the candle across Mulder's chest, tipping it so that wax spilled over his nipple, running in a thin line down his ribs. Mulder's body jerked spasmodically in his bonds, pectoral muscles jumping under the skin.

"Don't worry, baby, there's more where that came from." Alex chuckled softly, his hands petting Mulder's face encouragingly. Mulder's face jerked away from his light touch, his neck twisting sharply to avoid the cupped palm.

"Stop it!" Alex shouted, losing the last of his composure. "Stop it! Cut it out, Mulder! No more games. No more. You know you want me, you need me, Mulder. You need me because I can give you what no one else can, because I know what you really need, baby, I know even better than you do. Now stop playing the victim and let yourself enjoy it!"

Confusion and denial were plain in Mulder's wide, panicked eyes. Hot wax burned his sensitive flesh, and Mulder's head whipped from side to side in furious, panicked denial. He moaned around the gag, trying to form the sounds of refusal.

"Liar!" Alex roared, bringing the candle quickly up to Mulder's cheek. The flame licked his skin and Mulder tried desperately to shrink away from the burn. He was screaming at the top of his lungs, the gag muffling the sound only a little as it echoed in the high rafters.

"This is what you need," Alex snarled furiously, turning the candle deliberately upside down over Mulder's groin. Some of the red wax spattered over the leather harness, but four drops landed on the exposed head, and Mulder nearly dislocated his shoulders trying to twist his way free of the ropes, which gave not at all under his desperate struggle.

"I'm what you need, Mulder. I'm everything you've ever wanted, and you do whatever you have to set yourself up to fall here. You do it every time, Mulder. Face it, baby, you're addicted to me. You got a serious jones for this shit. You're one twisted, fucked puppy, and you know it. That's okay, right Mulder? It's okay, as long as you can rationalize it and justify it and convince yourself that I'm the one whose sick and monstrous, that I'm more fucked up than you are. Then it's okay to like it so much, right Mulder?" Alex hurtled the candle violently across the room. "WRONG!"

Alex took one long stride forward, so that he was standing directly in front of Mulder, and reached for his face, yanking his head up to look at him. "This isn't a game, Mulder, and I'm not for sale. Now I want the truth. Think very carefully about the first three words that come out of your mouth, Mulder. Very carefully," he repeated softly, reaching around to the back of his captive's head for the buckle of the ball gag. He had to yank it out of his mouth, Mulder's jaw was locked on the hard rubber.

"Fuck you Alex," Mulder wheezed, gasping for air.

His lungs expanded to their full capacity as Mulder gulped air through his mouth, his body shaking uncontrollably from the agonizing pain.

"No, no. You don't mean it," Alex answered him quickly, shaking his head in denial. "You love me, Mulder." A note of desperation was creeping into his voice.

"I don't love you. I could never love you. You're nothing," Mulder groaned slowly through gritted teeth, trying to make his voice strong.

Alex's hands dropped from Mulder's head, falling limply to his sides. He started at him, shaking his head in horror and denial. "No. No. Mulder..."

"Yes! I know what you want, Krycek, and you're never going to get it. You're the sick bastard, Alex, not me. You want to own me. You're never going to own me, Krycek. You're couldn't take care of a flea. You're a whore. You think this validates our relationship, you're deluding yourself. All you're ever going to get out of me is blood and cum."

Alex let out a howl of rage and pain, his mouth stretched into an ugly snarl. His hands came up to curl around Mulder's throat, his thumbs spread wide from his forefingers.

"I love you, Mulder. I've always loved you." Alex's eyes filled with tears, and he begged urgently, his hands shaking Mulder from the base of his neck. "Tell me the truth! Please, Mulder, tell me the truth. Tell me you love me!"

Mulder's eyes were bright, glaring up at him in angry satisfaction. "Never."

"Goodbye, Mulder." Alex's hands closed around Mulder's throat, choking off his last breath resolutely. He squeezed as hard as he could, careful to maintain continuously increasing pressure. "I love you, Mulder," Alex choked out in a whisper, watching the light of comprehension fade from Mulder's eyes.

In the end, it took very little. Mulder fought him not at all, although his body gagged and jerked spasmodically around the ropes. Blood seeped from his eye sockets, which bulged out hideously, like a fish, and then from his eardrums, trickling slowly down his neck. Finally, his eyes rolled back and his muscles relaxed as he fell heavily forward against Alex's thighs.

Slowly, Krycek's hands released him, stepping back mechanically as Mulder's body pitched forward, watching him fall to the concrete floor. A short, agonized cry escaped his throat, and then Krycek spun around, tearing out of the warehouse at a dead run. By the time Mulder's heart had ceased, he was several blocks away, running at top speed, tears streaming down his cheeks.

The End

Its safe in the city, to love in a doorway,

To wrangle some screams from the dawn

And isn't me, putting pain in a stranger?

Like a portrait in flashin',

Trails on a leash?

Will you see, that I'm scared and I'm lonely?

So I break up my room, yawn,

and roll into the center rings

And you know I once said

Boys, boys, its a sweet thing

Boys, boys, its a sweet thing, sweet thing

If you want it, boys, get it here, thing

'Cause hole, boys, is a cheap thing, cheap thing

I'm glad that you're older than me

Makes me feel important and free

Does that make you smile, isn't that me?

I'm in your way, and I'll steal every moment

If this trade is accursed,

and I'll bless you and turn to the crossroads,

and hamburgers, and

Boys, boys, it's a sweet thing, sweet thing

If you want it, boys, get it here, then

'Cause hole, boys, is a cheap thing, cheap thing

Lyrics borrowed without permission from David Bowie

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