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by Fan4Richie, written for Ursula

Yeah, I knew he was trouble from the moment he walked in the room...six feet of green eyed, brown haired, long eye-lashed trouble. He was wearing black leather and blue jeans, and from the moment I saw him, he had my heart on a chain. He walked straight by my partner, Dana Scully. She sat behind her big walnut wood desk...never could get the money to buy me a desk. I sat behind a slightly wobbly card table. I saw her eyes follow his ass...blue eyes bouncing off that tight-cheeked piece of paradise.

He held out his hand and said, "Krycek, Alex Krycek..." He had a breathy growl of a voice...like he spent a lot of time in smoke filled rooms, singing the blues and with his looks, making them for a hell of a lot of sad sack guys and gals.

I leaned back in my chair and looked him slowly up and down, pausing in the middle until a deep red blush settled over his high sharp cheeks. "Yeah, babe, what can I do for you?"

He blinked those errant eyes, big limpid pools of innocence. Did I buy it? Nah, but I was thinking about leasing a piece.

So, babe, give me another...I can take it. Oh, forgot to introduce myself...Fox Mulder, private dick. Well, it's been around a few times, but I wouldn't exactly call it public anyway.

This was my life...one cheap office...and a dive upstairs with a pull out bed and an ironing board that served as my table. A cockroach called Archy and a stray alley cat named Mehitabel were my best friends—other than Scully.

About Scully, she's a hard boiled egg...Looks petite and pretty and has big eyes as innocent as a frigging bluebird, but let me tell you, cross that little beauty and she'll have your balls for breakfast.

I'm not a bad looking guy myself when the light is right, you know. My nose is a bit on the big side and my chin a little on the weak side, but hey, I'll do. You look at me the right way and I'm pretty. You look at me the wrong way and...Well, babe, don't do it.

"Thanks, babe. This story makes a guy thirsty. Line another one up."

"So where was I? Oh, Yeah, the hook..."


"Have a seat, Krycek. What's your beef?" I said. He sat down. He didn't just plunk that ass down. He stretched and undulated until he was sure I couldn't take my eyes off him. And for a guy whose last date was with a plain brown covered magazine, this was just about enough to get a rise. Still, I eyed him like the cheap trick he was decked out to be.

Another flutter of those eyelashes. He said, "Mr. Mulder, I work at the Pussy Cat Club. I'm a performer...my stage name is..." He lowered those pretty eyes and then brought the whole show back to my face. He said in that just-got-laid voice, "The Velvet Rat."

"The Velvet Rat?" I exclaimed, choking back a laugh.

Krycek blushed and said, "It was supposed to be "Cat" but the marquee guy thought it was funny."

"I've heard of the Pussy Cat Club", I admitted. Hell, yes, I had. A classy place that I could hardly afford unless a client paid big. Not often that one did.

Scully would have done all right on her own, but women had a hard time taking a man seriously in a job like private detective and they doubted Scully's abilities when they found out that the good-looking guy wasn't her secretary. A lot of women think that testosterone runs our lives, making our judgment untrustworthy. Scully doesn't think that way; she says I'd have no common sense even if I were a woman.

"My career is very important to me," the hot babe said. "It didn't seem to be a problem at first. You see, when I auditioned, they said I didn't have enough experience. So they said, be a cigarette seller and we'll see. I had hoped for more. I won six amateur contests in my hometown. But I needed the money so I said yes. My second week on the job, the owner finally came by. He was an unpleasant man...gray haired, wrinkled, a bad suit, and he smoked constantly. He kept calling me over and he would run his hand over my ass. You know the outfits the cigarette sellers wear? Black velvet shorts, net stockings, red sleeveless silk tee shirt? He tucked a fifty in my waist band and said, buy something pretty."

So I was lost for a few minutes, mentally dressing Alex, the babe, in those minute black shorts and the tiny muscle shirt. And then undressing him.

Scully said, "You could have given it back, Mr. Krycek. It would have been the decent thing to do."

Krycek sighed and sniffled. Scully stood up with a faint sound of disgust and found him a wad of tissue. He looked up at her and made it obvious that he was a two way street with two yield signs, no stop sign.

He replied, "I know it was, but I was barely making enough money to eat and have a roof over my head. That fifty was a chance at a real costume."

I went over to sit on the edge of Scully's desk. Mine falls over if you try that. Krycek followed, sitting in the good client chair, the one without the duct-taped rip in the seat upholstery. He dabbed at his tear filled eyes. "The next night," he said, "A limo pulled up outside my room. It was Mr. Spender's limo. The driver was an oily zoot suited tough gal named Louisa Cardinal. She said that Mr. Spender wanted a private audition. I was so excited that I didn't even think."

Scully muttered something about "Air headed bimbos."

I shushed her and patted Krycek's arm. "Tell me all about it, chico."

Krycek sighed and took out his compact; he didn't powder his nose, just glanced at his eyes. Scully was right. What a bimbo! But hot, sexy, long-legged bimbos are my favorite kind.

Krycek continued. "He lived in a big house on Queen Anne. It was very beautiful and I was thrilled just to be there. He was in the living room. I walked in. He turned on the phonograph and I went into my act. I put my heart and soul into it. See, besides dancing, I play the guitar and sing. In the club, when I'm done, I sing a little blues number. By the end, all I'm wearing is my guitar."

I was thinking that I might tell him I needed to see the act just to get a good picture of the story in my head. Scully kicked me. Guess she has known me for too long.

Krycek said, "The long and short of it...Spender said he loved my act. He asked me for dinner and a few drinks. When I wanted to get dressed, he said to have a drink first. Next thing I knew I was in his bed. It wasn't a Mickey Finn. It was something different. No matter what he told me to do, I did it."

Krycek burst into bigger tears. He said, "Mr. Mulder, he took pictures. He said if I squealed that he could have me arrested for prostitution. Ever since that night, I have been his slave in all but name. Sure, I dance at the club now, but that's as much freedom as I get. I couldn't be here now, except the old man's son covered for me. Jeffrey is as almost as much a prisoner as I am. All his dad thinks about is matching him up to the right women, someone with money and power. And his mother, Cassandra, is so cock-whipped that she won't stand up to him. All she thinks about anyway is aliens. Illegal aliens and conspiracies. So Mr. Mulder, can you help me? Can you get those pictures back so I can be free to pursue my art?"

The bimbo didn't even have cash, but the diamond earrings he gave me were one hell of a retainer. As soon as he left, I knew that Scully would start. And I was right.

Scully shoved out of her desk and slammed the door...after a last peek at that undulating ass. "What a load of crap!" she yelled.

Wincing, I retreated behind my pitiful card table. Scully wasn't having it. She crossed the room and said, "After all your talk about wanting equal rights...don't you know that men like that set your cause back fifty years? Do you really want to have women looking at you and just seeing your pretty face and thinking about a piece of your ass?"

I didn't swing that way. After two horrible relationships, I decided that women were not my thing. I just couldn't seem to find a lover who respected my mind. No, they wanted to whip my butt and keep me barefoot in the kitchen. I was lucky that neither of them had any interest in pregnancy. Otherwise, I'd also have a kid to take care of. I don't think I had much dad potential. Poor kid, even Archy, the cockroach, complained about my cooking. If I had a kid, the social workers would probably have to take the poor little tyke. For all they say about how powerful paternal instinct is, I just didn't want to have a kid. Sure they all said that my biological clock would push me harder in a few years, but I doubt it. Maybe every woman didn't want to be a breadwinner just like every man didn't really secretly yearn for the right women to marry him and protect him.

Scully poked her sharp little finger in my face and said, "Well?"

I stared down at my badly worn shoes and sulked for a while. It didn't work. Scully said, "Are you going to take his case?"

I finally looked up and said, "Yes, I am."

Luckily, Pendrell showed up just then. He worked as a laboratory technician at a blood lab down the street. He was everything that I was not; nicely dressed, his sweet rosy complexion subtly highlighted with makeup and the latest styled suit on his trim body. He was Scully's perfect man. She could respect him intellectually while not having to be embarrassed to be seen with him. Pendrell was so traditional that I bet he still waxed his chest to get rid of the unsightly hair.

Scully forgot about me as her lover entered the room. "Oh, Pendy," she said, fondling the silk of his suit. "Did you get all dressed up just for me?"

Pendrell blushed prettily and span around to show off his outfit. He said, "I hoped that you would like it."

Scully said, "I like it. I love it. Let's go someplace nice and dance."

Scully shot one glance back at me as she left. She said, "Mulder, try to use your brains instead of your balls. Think about Krycek. He's a tramp. I've seen guys like him my whole life. He's trouble. Trouble with a big "T". You know I want you to be happy, but you need a steady woman or a man with more common sense than you yourself?. And, Mulder, be careful."

One minute after she left, I cleaned out the petty cash and started for the Pussy Cat Club. There was just time to catch the show.


The Pussy Cat Club was just as I remembered it. The door was part of the show. A blonde woman in a lion tamer's outfit held two perfectly matched twin brutes at the end of her chain. The guys were dressed in fake lion skins that barely covered their rippling thigh muscles. Both were tawny, tanned, and had jaws so stalwart that they could have cracked walnuts like I munched sunflower seeds.

The line of women waiting to get in was rowdy. Out-of-towners, glad to shake the disapproving eyes of their hubbies, vied with the local in-crowd. I saw that Krycek was on the advertising poster. He posed demurely with one naked thigh peeping out from behind a guitar. Damn, I wanted the poster! As I was admiring the finer points of the art, I felt a hand grope my ass.

A husky female voice said, "Oh, sweetie, what's a nice guy like you doing alone at a dive like this?"

"Having my ass groped by a total stranger," was my reply. Now I remembered why I usually asked a female date to take me here. Maybe I should have waited for Scully. A pretty guy alone at a place like this was a target for a hell of a lot of sexual harassment. The women were so keyed up that the line just about reeked of estrogen. The few other men were with their dates. They were all better dressed than me and looked resentfully at my unescorted presence as if I was here just to put a move on their dames.

The woman laughed. She was a brown haired gal with those huge shoulder pads in her power suit. She looked self-confident and was a beauty, not classical in her looks, but attractive all the same. Two other women who looked adoringly at her every move accompanied her. She said, "Why don't you sit at my table, pretty thing? I'll get you in sooner. The name's Didi, Didi Xander."

Okay, so I could be a bit of a slut myself...Mulder-Slut was my last girl friend's favorite name for me. I batted my eyelashes and smiled as if I was just a little shy. She ate it up. A subservient little woman came out and said, "Oh, Ms. Xander, you don't have to wait out here. Your table is ready now."

You could feel the power rush after that expensively outfitted woman. I let myself be dragged along in the undertow. I found myself sitting next to her at the stage front table. One of her sycophants, a big woman named Mary, gushed, "Ms. Xander is a famous writer. She's also a producer. A very important woman."

I smiled even though Didi's hand was creeping along my thigh. One of the cocktail waiters sidled up. He wore the same outfit as the cigarette-boys, but his sheer sleeveless shirt was gold lame instead of red silk. He posed like Michelangelo's David; one hip jutted just a little to show off his cute round bottom. Mary, who seemed to be the wag of the group, tucked a sizable tip into the tight velvet shorts. He wiggled as if offering a little more for the money. I bit my lip, swallowing a lecture on sexual harassment. This wasn't the time or place.

The music started and the first act slunk into the spotlight. He was costumed as a Mounty...incongruous in the traditional double-breasted red uniform, which was so much better suited to a woman. Naturally, they struck up Indian Love Call for his turn. He was really good, graceful and sexy. He was gorgeous; his face was sweet and innocent and he had beautiful eyes. The wolf dog that danced with him was a funny touch at first, but later you could see how the pair were in perfect harmony as if reading each other's minds. He finished covered only by the broad brimmed black hat and the shiny boots. The group of woman applauded wildly as he exited; I wiggled in my chair, aware of the exact length of my cock as it pressed against my cheap trousers.

Didi looked at my heated face and said, "Oh, I see, sweetie, that's what you like...any chance that I could watch some time?"

I blushed and she said, "Just teasing...maybe."

The next act didn't appeal to me too much. The guy was vapidly pretty and his act was run of the mill. I noticed that the room was falling silent as the man left the stage. Then a yearning whisper filled the room...

"Velvet...Velvet...Ratty boy..." came the female demand. Oh yeah, if I had been hard before, now I was steel...

The music sounded like a primal heartbeat. The beat of the drums was loud enough to resonate in my chest. The saxophones kicked in, moaning low and sweet as if they were about to come. The stage was in total darkness. The first trickle of light merely caught a glisten of velvet. It licked its way up from tight black jeans to Krycek's poet-shirt.

Krycek sat on a lounge, his guitar in hand. One bare foot rested on the fabric of the lounge. The other just touched the floor, spreading his shapely thighs wide apart. He sang in French to the throbbing tune. He didn't quite have a professional voice, but it was perfect in this context. Krycek was a lover longing for his sweetheart. After a verse or two, he set the guitar down on the lounge. His hands raked up the velvet shirt; fingers played beneath, revealing his sparsely haired belly, shining ivory in the dimmed lights.

Krycek sighed and walked toward the edge of the stage. He prowled, showing his stuff as his hips teased beneath the black denim. His shirt eased away, revealing a well-developed chest. He hadn't shaved or waxed, but the few hairs that sprinkled his stomach and chest seemed primal and sexy rather than uncouth. A drop of sweat trickled down his body, slowly gliding down and disappearing into the waistband of his jeans. He began to sing again, his voice yearning. By chance or purpose, he was looking my way as his extraordinary eyes gazed out at the audience. I knew enough French from the finishing school to recognize that he was using the male gender as he called to his demon lover.

His hands stroked his body as he moved and slowly he writhed out of his jeans. No breakaway clothing for this man. His act was so genuine that every member of the audience must have felt a voyeuristic thrill to see it. Now, he stood clad only in a black pair of boxers. He followed the undulations of the music, roaming the stage with increasing frenzy. His hands molded his flesh under the satin drawers. His fingers delved beneath them as he arched, his passion on display to the crowd. There was a last rumble and a blink of the light.

When the stage lit again he was sprawled on the couch, his guitar barely covering enough to advert a raid. My hungry eyes explored his lean hips, imagining my hands tight on that silken flesh. I found myself staring at one black curl, revealed periodically as the guitar gently wept out his song.

"Oh, God," I exclaimed after the stage had blacked out and the lights come back on. It took a while for the women to settle down. For a moment, I felt unsure of myself. Nice boys don't go to places like this and every woman in that crowd was on edge. The room throbbed with their sexuality. I had to tell myself that I was liberated man. The wet spot on my boxers reminded me of just how much I had enjoyed the act. Even if guys only had one orgasm, it didn't mean that it wasn't natural for us to have sexual feelings...

I didn't have long to recover. A well-dressed man moved toward Didi's table. She eyed him with a wary expression. "Ms. Xander," he said, as if coyly flirting. He wore too much blush, his eye shadow was green, and he had just a hint of lipstick on his nicotine yellow teeth. I eschewed make-up myself but that didn't mean I didn't know how to put it on. My father may have drunk too much behind his lace curtains, but he taught me every manly wile. It wasn't his fault that I had no taste for the frills of my gender.

Spender held out his hand and Didi shook it firmly.

"I'm Carl Spender, the owner of this club," he announced.

I noticed he had in tow an over-dressed young man who seemed about to die of mortification. Spender shoved the young man into view and said, "This is my lovely son, Jeffrey."

Jeffrey was all right. Thank God that he subscribed to Cosmo magazine or something because he had a palette perfect makeup job. His pants were a little revealing, snug in the crotch, but he didn't look cheap as his father did. He wasn't a beauty, but he did have a sensuous mouth and sweet, sad eyes.

Spender warbled, "Jeffrey isn't attached right now, Ms. Xander. He just completed finishing school. He was the star of the debutante ball last fall. He wore a lovely suit designed by Madame Russell. It cost me more than two thousand dollars."

The poor kid was just dying. Didi had a warm heart to go with her roving hands. She smiled at Jeffrey and said, "You sound as if you are the sort of a young man who would enjoy a private party. And I happen to be having one this Saturday."

Didi was subtle enough to hide the hints, but she went right into, "I'd love to have a couple of your entertainers come too. Perhaps that beautiful man who sang and maybe the other one who was dressed as a Canadian Mounty?"

Spender looked as if that was hardly what he had planned, but the long silence from Didi said volumes about her expectations. I stayed in the background for a while until I had the urge to get away from Spender. I stood up and said, "Got to powder my nose."

Jeffrey quickly stood and said, "I'll go with you."

As I left, Didi remarked, "It's so cute the way guys always like to go to the powder room together. Makes a gal wonder what you talk about in there."

I could about hear Spender batting his eyelashes at the woman. He said, "Well, about how attractive women are, of course. We can't say that around you, after all. We'd lose all our mystery..."

Jeff Spender checked everywhere as soon as we entered the restroom. He did need a piss and after three drinks, so did I. I eyed his shorts...pretty silk number with little fleur de lis all over them. Despite my vow to live like a woman in a woman's world, I still had a yen for pretty things. I fought the urge to ask him where he'd bought them.

Spender shook it dry then sprayed a little male deodorant over his crotch. He was one of those guys who always liked to be fresh and pretty for the women. I said, "Your father is something else. He really must care about you the way he talks."

Spender said in a shaky voice, "I hate him. I really hate him. My mom met him in a place like this...I know he married her for the money. He controls almost every minute of my life and I am going crazy. He's trying to marry me into some important family. I want to marry for love...why can't he understand that?"

I bit back my response. Poor kid was hook and line for the whole romantic rap. Why disillusion him? Wait until his princess charming was off fighting dragons and he was stuck cleaning the castle.

Jeffrey said, "You're Alex's private detective. I recognize you. He described you in great detail. See, I don't mind what my Dad does...my Mom has her sweet young psychics on the side anyway. But Alex is so unhappy. I just have to help him."

I said, "Can you sneak me into his dressing room?"

Jeffrey shook his head. He replied, "Some of the customers are pretty pushy. Dad keeps the performers guarded. I'm not supposed to know this, but I think Dad makes the dancers go out on dates that he picks. He doesn't let just any stage door Jane pick them up. But if Alex goes to that party; I'll do something to distract Louisa...she would be a lot more concerned about Jeffy picking the wrong woman then she would be about Daddy's kept boy disappearing for a while."

Jeff plainly regarded this as a romantic escape from his father's tyranny. I didn't know about the romance although I wouldn't mind a tumble with that velvet rat. Besides, Scully and I need the work. The earrings locked in our cheesy office safe might finally buy me that desk...

Jeff hurriedly powdered his nose and refreshed his lipstick. He looked at me a little strangely as I ignored the well-lit make up mirrors. He said, "If you forgot your makeup kit, you can borrow mine."

I replied, "No, I don't wear any. Tell Krycek I'll see him at the party."

Jeffrey said, "Okay, um, here...so you can buy a party suit and get your hair done."

The kid handed me two hundred dollars from the fat money roll he carried. I tucked it in my pocket. I guessed I would have to buy something or I wouldn't blend in at that party. I gritted my teeth. Would I have to put out for Didi to get an invite?


I gazed into my drink like the meaning of the universe was in the swirling molecules. Hell, maybe it was. I couldn't tell if Sam, the bartender, was listening, but it didn't matter. It still beat getting a free trip to the psych ward for talking to myself. I swiveled on the barstool as a group of women came into the room. I let my legs swing wider, teasing them with a view of my package. Maybe I had learned a trick or two from Krycek. My confidence gained me an appraising look, but the business women were too intimidated to try any pick up lines.

I said, "So, anyway, I swallowed my pride and asked Pendrell to give me a hint or two. I hadn't looked in a fashion magazine since I broke out of finishing school. The beauty shop was absolute hell...the horror...the horror...sixty minutes of nothing but gossip and doggy comments about men who weren't there that day."

Sam finished polishing a glass and commented, "But your hair looks great, Mulder."

I snapped, "That's not the point..."

The bartender smirked and said, "You never did say whether you had to put out for Didi Xander."

I felt my cheeks heat...the ones on my face; I know what you're thinking. "No," I replied. "I told her that I was in love with Krycek and would do anything to see him. She's a dame with a heart of gold even if she does pinch like a lobster."

The bartender leaned on her muscled arms and asked, "So that party...what happened there? Was it as wild as the newspaper said?"

"Wilder," I replied, thinking back to that night.

I strutted into the office, decked out in my party suit. I had gone for the whole show...tight pants, cut away jacket to show a little cleavage in my ass. Plenty of sequins on the coat...

The tight fit of my dress shoes pinched my toes and I was uncomfortably aware of my lift and separate underwear. The padding and support emphasized my cock and balls, pushing them forward like I was offering them on a platter. Now I remember why giving up all this shit had seemed like such a good idea.

It was funny though how you could give something up for twelve years and it all comes back. I hadn't used a lick of makeup in all that time, but now I was cover-boy material. It made me feel very strange and I didn't like the way Scully looked me up and down, a pink color traveling from her cheeks down her neck. Scully said, "Why, Mulder, you are a guy!"

I curled a lip at her and said, "Yeah, I stand up to pee too. So what's new?"

Scully said, "Sorry, it's just that you look...you look so pretty."

If she pinched me, she was a goner even if she was my best friend and partner...

I said, "I'm going under cover..."

Scully said, "I think I should go with you. Mulder, you know things happen to you..."

Okay, so sometimes I dropped a gun, got bashed in the head; it wasn't because I was a guy. Damn it, I was as good as any woman, no matter what Jane Edgar Hoover said.

I shook my head and said, "Scully, you don't have to protect me. I think I can control my testosterone long enough to solve this case. Hey, how many blackmail cases have we solved this year...dozens...the case of the Harried Widow, the case of the Purloined Loin, the case of the Missing Series Star...Now that was a rough one. Remember the producer killed him for the insurance and tried to cover it up?"

Still looking worried, Scully said, "Just be careful. I'd hate to have to break in a new partner."

With these words in my ears, I walked out the door. It was a tough world out there, but I was tougher. I was Fox Mulder, private dick...

I have to admit part of me wanted to go crawling home to daddy when I was dropped off at that party. I could hear the wild shrieks of laughter from a block away. There were enough of those paper Japanese lanterns to ignite a fleet. The champagne corks popping sounded like a fifty gun salute. I straightened my back, put steel in my buns, and walked up to the door.

The butler was at least six foot tall. She was very blonde and Nordic, one long cool drink of water. She said, "May I take your coat, sir?"

With her glacial blue eyes on me I felt as if I was stripping right in front of her. I saw Didi in the crowd. She had the Mounty on one arm and a pretty tawny number on the other. She struggled out from her trophy males to greet me with a warm kiss on my cheek. She whispered, "He faked a headache and he's lying down in one of the guest rooms. Third door on the left."

I didn't need to know which one was Louisa Cardinal. She exuded an air of menace, a human shark trolling through the crowd. Her eyes were flat and cold. I could see the extra bulge beneath her arm that had nothing to do with an ill-fitting bra. I shivered as her reptilian gaze traveled up and down my body. She was like a mortician, getting ready to fit me for a shroud.

I knew I couldn't slip upstairs with that tough number watching me. I looked around and saw Jeff. He knew how to pick them. He was chatting up one of the entertainers...a woman who looked like she could drag little Jeffy into a cave and send him back bowlegged. She already had her hand wedged into the waistband of his pants. Cardinal's eyes widened as she saw Jeff slip out the door with the bad woman. She was off like a shot and I pitied the gal who made the move on the debutante.

As Louisa shot out the door, I made for the stairs. I could have found that bedroom door by radiant heat alone. I didn't bother to knock. I had the feeling I was expected.

Krycek lay on that bed like a prime piece of beef. One arm was behind his neck and the other gently cupped his balls. His legs were as wide open as the Golden Gates and I was already reaching for my toll.

I thought about playing hard to get. Scully's words about not letting my hormones run my brain drummed in my ears, but it would have taken a saint or a eunuch to resist that ivory skinned beauty. However, I struck a pose against the door, lit a cigarette and gave into a fit of coughing as I remembered that I didn't smoke.

"Mulder," he said, trilling my name out in a way that made me feel dirty, hot, and bothered. "You have to help me. It's getting worse."

Krycek sniffed and I was sunk. I grabbed my clean handkerchief and crossed the room like the devil was on my tail. He took the thing and dabbed at his eyes. I suddenly realized that those long lashes were real. I don't care how waterproof mascara is supposed to be. You can always see its traces on white cloth. From those sooty lashes, I was drawn to look into his eyes and the next thing I knew we were in a clinch. My faux silk party suit was piled on top of his designer threads. Our lips were welded together like platinum to gold in a wedding band. I knew I should come up for air, but that kiss made autoerotic asphyxiation into a team sport.

A pinpoint of consciousness later, I realized I was on my back, Krycek crouched between my wide-open legs. He was playing me like a flute and the music emerging from my throat was damn close to The Flight of the Valkyrie. His tongue was curled around the head of my cock, tickling the inside of the slit with humming bird darts. One of those long fingers that I had admired was strumming in my anus, finding my g spot with ease. No matter what the sex therapists said, I had never found that magic heterosexual-sex only miracle pleasure spot on the underside of my cock. No matter how much they tell me that the ultimate orgasm was rubbing that against a vagina, I had never felt it. But this...this was buzzing my body into one moaning, groaning pleasure dome. His big green eyes ate me up as he swallowed me deep. I think I hit high C before I dissolved into a wasted heap.

It took me a bit to get the picture as he coaxed me over on my side. I was still a blissed out puddle of man as I lay there with him kissing the back of my neck. I felt his finger slide back inside of me, eased by something that felt greasy and warm. I opened my legs wider. Just call me Mulder-Slut. I couldn't get enough of him. I was just going to be the good guy and let him get his piece of paradise. One orgasm is all we're good for...that's what they told us in human sexuality in college. I remember the pitying looks the women gave the few guys in the class when they heard that.

I guess Krycek must have skipped the sex education classes. Maybe he challenged the credits.

His finger gave way to another while his free hand quivered up and down my shaft. I was relaxed, not expecting much more than some nice feelings as I gave back pleasure in my turn. The brief burn as he slid inside me was familiar and welcome. I relaxed to it, enjoying being filled. I expected that he'd be in a rush. But instead his hot hard length inside of me slid in and out with a maddening slowness. I pushed back, trying to let him know that it was okay. I was ready. Give it your best shot, babe.

Krycek must have had nerves of steel because he just let it build and build, his hand strumming my cock...and that full, teasing sensation inside of me. When his cock brushed over my g spot, I wailed. Forget one orgasm. I knew I was building for one hell of a second coming. I was writhing on the bed...proving all over that I wasn't the kind of good boy who didn't really enjoy sex. I yowled like a cat in heat and he echoed my cries right back. His hand flew on my shaft as his cock dissolved my insides in wave after wave of pleasure. The sudden release as we both came was like spiral force, flinging us briefly apart.

Krycek cleaned us up and then crawled into my arms. My wild thing now seemed shy and timid, gazing into my eyes like I was his knight in shining armor and he was my sweet laddy, ready to give his favor to his chosen champion as she rode off to war.

"I didn't know it could be like this," he said.

As I said to my sister, the bartender and piano player, 'Play it, Sam, play it again'.

I knew he was taking me for a ride...you don't learn those tricks in grammar school. But I was ready to buy a lifetime pass.

Krycek whispered in my ear, "Spender will be out of town tomorrow. I know he keeps the pictures in the safe in his bedroom. It's hidden in this bust of David in his room. Please, Mulder, I can't take what he's doing to me. He's making me into a prostitute and he beats me. Look."

Krycek pointed to some fresh bruises near his nipple and to an abrasion behind his ear. The insides of his thighs were also marked. None of it would show under a show spotlight. Dancing must have been painful with those welts on his legs. I felt like I was ten feet tall as I cuddled him close. "Don't worry. You give me that bust and I'll get you out of this mess."

Krycek looked at me with those scintillating eyes and I was lost. I told myself that he wasn't a bad boy, he was just playing the script Spender wrote. I'd have to ditch Scully. She'd never approve of me breaking into a house to crack the case...


The thick fog was on me like a fur coat on a dowager. I had a cab drop me a block away from Spender's place. His Queen Anne house cast a snobby eye on the hoi polloi of the neighborhood. It was tiered in at least four levels, each boasting decks or balconies to take advantage of the views. This morning, I had found detailed floor plans of both Spender's office at the Pussy Cat Club and his house slipped under my door. Stamping my feet in the clinging cold, I waited until the house was dark and silent before making my move.

I found Spender's bedroom without a hitch. The bust of David stood against a wall. It stood, large and heavy set, on a marble-like display. I felt like a pervert as I ran my hands all over the statue looking for an opening. I finally found an indentation along the sides and pushed heavily on it. The bust sprang apart. I looked down at a combination lock. All right, time to see if my lessons from the Amazing Madame Amanda, safecracker extraordinary, had paid off.

I wore a stethoscope that I had purloined from one of my frequent emergency room trips. Straining, I could just barely hear the tumbles of the lock. It took me two tries before I hit the right sequence. The safe opened smoothly and spilled its lush loot in front of my greedy eyes. Spender had an incredible collection. A velvet bag held uncut diamonds. Several jewelry rolls contained necklaces, earrings, tie tacks and bracelets enough to decorate the King of England. A plastic keeper held a signed Marilyn Monroe rookie baseball card.

Hell, Spender really was a blackmailer. I found a package of compromising snapshots of a presidential candidate with that hot starlet, Joe DiMaggio. He had their love letters too. After a long moment of thought, I tucked the whole nasty file into my knapsack.

A moment later, I found the Krycek file. I was glad that I was wearing gloves. The file was sticky with a residue that I didn't mind when it was fresh, but found repulsive in this form. Apparently Spender found the evidence of his dalliance with Krycek exciting material.

I growled to myself when I found a date book. Young Jeffy was right. Spender used his pretty boys to troll in important women and catch them in the act. He had his nicotine stained fingers in a lot of high places. Not a popular guy. I finally stuffed every file I could find into my backpack. I was going to bring this evil man down.

Before going to the Pussy Cat Club, I stopped at the all night bus depot and rented a locker for thirty days. A few incidents along the way had taught me not to bring evidence home or to the office. I placed the files into the locker, scribbled Maggie Scully's address on an envelope and mailed her the key with a note asking her to keep it for me. I didn't have to say that she should give it to Scully if I disappeared. Maggie Scully was an officer in Naval Intelligence. She was a tough number and would know what to do with this information.

The Pussy Cat Club was closed by the time I arrived. I took out my handy lock picking kit and set to work. That lock was as easy as the dancers that frequented this shady dive. The club was redolent of smoke, booze, and still had a hint of the raging hormones that resulted from the heated performances. I made my way to the back and found the door with the neat gold sign that said Spender.

The small flashlight that I gripped in my teeth clattered to the floor as I turned its beam toward the desk that dominated the richly appointed office. I had just seen enough to tell me that Krycek's problem was no longer how he was going to get away from Spender. The man's head lay on the big green blotter. I didn't need to check his pulse. No one could have survived with a hole that big in their skull. As I stepped closer for a look, I heard an alarm ringing out. Seconds later, before the alarm could possibly have been heard, sirens clamored, approaching the club at great speed.

I hoped Scully hadn't spent too much money on Pendrell. I had a feeling she was going to need it to bail me out. I wasn't stupid enough to run. I just stood there waiting for the cops to show. Hell, I hadn't touched the body nor was I carrying a piece. I was ready to blink my pretty eyes and pout my seductive lips. To hell with principles, there are times when masculine wiles are justified.

I stood with my hands raised as a trio of cops burst on the scene. I recognized Lieutenant Fowley and put a brave face on it. We had broken up years before when she said she wanted a husband who stayed at home. One woman in the household is enough, she had said, wanting me to quit my job. I pasted a sickly grin on my face as she recognized me.

Fowley walked over and had a look at the body. Her eyes traveled to the open safe door. She nodded to the big male cop that had arrived first on the scene. She said, "Skinner, search this man thoroughly."

The cop was big. I don't mean tall...I mean this guy rippled with muscles. He looked as if he woke up every morning and bent an iron bar into a chair to sit at the breakfast table. His voice rumbled from somewhere in the subbasement. "Yes, Ma'am," he said. He had nice eyes, big, brown and soft, but he was all business as he patted me down. I recognized the type. A man in a woman's job, knowing he had to be twice as good to prove he could do it.

As his ham of a hand patted my inseam, I felt the urge to press forward a little. I blinked my eyes and said, "I don't usually go this far on the first date."

Skinner ignored my comment and said, "He's clean, ma'am. Nothing on him but some burglary tools."

Fowley had sorted some clues into an evidence bag. She made way for the medical examiner. Looking me up and down, she said, "Mulder, you haven't changed a bit. And unless this guy has found a unique way to commit suicide, you are in a hell of a lot of trouble."

Giving me a last look from her sharp blue eyes, Fowley shook her tawny head of hair and her aristocratic face scowled. "Book him, Skinner," she bade as she turned back to the crime scene.

Sitting in the back of the squad car, my wrists tightly bound in cuffs, my thoughts turned to Krycek. A pretty face, a sad story, and I had fallen for it. That guy who set the marquee must have been a mind reader. The blinking lights advertising "The Velvet Rat" had it right. Krycek had fucked me over in more than one way...he was a rat with a pretty face and a beguiling song.


"Pass me some of those sunflower shells, Sam." I said, spinning my shot glass in idle circles. My sister had blown off her job as a psychologist and bought this bar instead. I liked it. It had atmosphere and class. And besides, mom and dad hated it.

Sam shoved the bowl in my direction and went to serve the well-dressed woman who had just walked in the door. I looked at the gal out of the corner of my eyes. She was beautiful...her hair was red like Scully's and her green eyes were almost as pretty as Krycek's. She looked confident, poised, and I bet her underwear cost more than my suit. She was just the kind of woman that dad had always said I should marry. 'Someone to take care of you,' dad had said, 'and cure you of your notions.'

Sure, dad, and have you gone to that support group for alcoholic homemakers yet, Mr. Happy-with-his-life?

Sam came back and snatched a handful of seeds from the bowl. She remarked, "Fox, I should go into bail bonding on the side. I could make a living just from your escapades."

I muttered, "Don't call me, Fox."

Sam snickered. I love her dearly and she is the least chauvinistic woman that I know, but in some ways she is still the younger sister who took my dolls and painted them green.

Sam asked, "So how did you get out of jail?"


The jail was busy as ever, despite the late hour. I was plunked down to wait to be booked, seated with the usual array of hookers and dopers. The sleazy guy that sat next to me wore hot pants despite the cold, damp weather. His shirt was open to his naval and a gold ring hung from his nipple. He was wearing a jock support that pushed his cock out as if he had a permanent erection. I think it was one of the padded kind. The hooker reeked of cheap perfume. His face was caked with makeup and his blond hair was brittle with bleaching. He chewed gum with a vacant expression, waiting for his pimp to show up and bail him out.

I recognized one of the other hookers from my days on the force here. Charlie was an elegant black man who wore a classy dress suit instead of the tawdry garb of the other men. He looked at me with surprise and said, "Mulder, I thought you quit?"

I said, "I did. I'm just having a little problem. How about you? This isn't your scene."

Charlie snorted and said, "A little mishap. One of my Janes has decided that she is in love with me and wants to take me away from all this. She turned me into the cops when I was entertaining an out of town guest. I'll get it straightened out."

I settled back on the bench, watching the parade of woman being booked in. Charlie asked, "Hey, Mulder, why'd you quit vice?"

I said, "Dead end job for me. I was starting to feel that I wasn't any different from the guys that I was arresting every day."

That was the truth. The day I was turned down for the FBI academy, I realized that I was never going to be promoted out of Vice. I looked in the mirror as I went out on decoy duty and I felt exactly like the hooker I saw. I turned in my resignation at the end of the day.

I looked up from my thoughts as Skinner's mass blotted out the rest of the room. "They're ready to book you now," he said.

Two of the men's section jailers were out sick that night, leaving only one on guard. Lucky Skinner, he was drafted for the duty of searching me and booking me into the jail.

As I grabbed my ankles, I reflected that Skinner was seeing me at one of my best angles. Despite his professional attitude, he looked a little interested. Too bad, under different circumstances, this could have been fun.

I called my lawyer, one of the few male attorneys in the town. He yawned into the phone and mournfully asked, "Again, Mulder?"

I said, "Be kind, Frohike, it's not my fault. I was framed."

Frohike promised to call Scully and I hung up. Skinner walked me to a holding cell, past reaching hands and vulgarly whistling women. He looked uncomfortable... more so actually than I was. I smirked at him and said, "I worked vice when I was stationed here. I had a huge choice between working juvenile and working vice. Surprised that they let you into major crimes. Maybe things are improving since I was here."

Skinner showed a flicker of humor. He said, "Maybe, but I'm too plain to work as a decoy and they said I intimidated the kids."

I laughed and entered the jail cell. Home, sweet home. Between a jail cell and a hospital bed, sometimes I wondered if I really needed to rent that room. I had barely laid my head down on the rock hard mattress when a voice said, "Up and at them, Mulder. Fowley wants to talk to you."

Diana looked no more mussed than she had a few hours ago. When we lived together, I never saw her look frazzled. I'd wake up and see her lying flat on her back, hair still smooth and face looking freshly washed. If she didn't have morning breath, I'd have turned her in as one of those pod creatures in my favorite Weird Science magazine.

Fowley said, "Lord knows there are times when I'd love to pin something on you, Mulder. But I don't think you're guilty. Skinner tells me that you didn't have any powder burns or residue on your hands or clothing. No one found a gun on you or on the premises. Sing, Mulder. Explain what you were doing there."

It took a good thirty minutes to tell her the story. I could see by her expression that she believed me and also that she thought I was stupid, bamboozled by a conman. She nodded at Skinner and said, "Go check this Krycek out. Bring the son in also. We should find out if Jeffrey Spender was supposed to inherit anything from his old man."

I swallowed my pride and told Diana about the files I had found...just fibbing a little by saying a source had got them to me. She was very interested in seeing them. Off she went to get the manager to open my locker. I was sent back to my cell to contemplate my troubles. I just wish I could stop seeing Krycek's beautiful green eyes and sweet pink lips... I knew I had been played for a fool. The man had used me and blown town.

Sure enough, when Skinner came back, he had Jeffrey Spender, but not Alex Krycek. Jeffrey's makeup was smeared. His face was puffy from crying and his nose, a near match for what I liked to think was my classical Roman proboscis, was very red. They arrested him as a possible material witness and put him in my cell. He was scared to death. His father may have been a cheap crook, but he hadn't let Jeffrey experience the seamier side of life.

I sprawled back against the wall and watched the kid fall apart. He sobbed, "I've read about those places. Am I going to be raped by some inmate crazed for female company? And I read about this guy who the guards molested. They say the women just walk in and use you when they feel like it."

I said, "Jeff, you're only being held as a material witness."

Jeff sniffed and wiped his face on a wad of toilet tissue. He said, "I heard them saying that I had a motive if I inherited anything from dad. I don't think that I am. As far as I know, the only thing he has in his name is a part interest in the club. My mom is the one with all the money."

Well, he sounded to me as if he really didn't know what his father was doing. I settled back and asked, "What about Krycek? Do you think that your father might have left him something?"

Jeffrey's eyes widened and he said, "I doubt it. Alex cried a lot because dad was so mean to him. That's why I was trying to help him get away. My dad was just using him. He loved having control of people. That was his thing. But that wasn't what I wanted to tell you. I told that Fowley woman. I don't think Alex ran away. His guitar is still there and he loved that thing. He wouldn't take off without it. I was out on a date tonight. Someone I met at the party. When I got home, Alex's room looked ransacked. I think someone took him."

I digested this information slowly. Did I dare hope that Alex was just what he told me? What had really happened? I wanted to believe in him. Damn, I needed out of this cell and out where I could find the truth.

Frohike and Scully showed up together. Well, that made Frohike happy. He was pathetically head over tails in love with my partner. Even though Frohike was an avowed masculinist, I half thought that he would have thrown it all over if Scully had offered him a lace apron. Luckily for the cause, Frohike wasn't Scully's type. She liked them sweet and neat like Brian Pendrell. Frohike tried his best, but he always looked like a scarecrow stuffed in a suit. His thick hairline was receding and he had worry lines on top of wrinkles. His beetling brow always reminded me a little of a gorilla at the zoo. But he was a good lawyer and he worked cheap. Besides, we were co-conspirators in a world that didn't want men in professional roles.

Arraignment was promptly at nine a.m. I dressed in the suit that Scully had brought and was taken in to face the judge. I was surprised to hear Diana Fowley testify in my favor. She said that I wasn't her only suspect and that there was reasonable doubt despite the fact that I had been at the scene when the police appeared.

Judge Rosie O'Meara was a traditionalist. She never had a male law clerk and pictures of her nicely dressed husband and children appeared in all of her election campaign literature. I could tell she wished she could order me into some responsible woman's custody. However, she restrained herself, although the bail she set was so high that I'd have to beg for an advance from my trust account to cover it. I forgot to mention that. My grandfather had campaigned for the male vote. He said I was the only grandchild worthy of his heritage. That fund had paid for my education and still yielded enough interest to get me through the lean times.

Glad to be free, I breathed in a draught of air as I left the court. Scully said, "Mulder...did you really have to break into that office? You know Krycek set you up. What were you thinking? You could have been killed."

I said, "But I wasn't. And I don't think Krycek set me up. Jeff Spender says that Krycek left his guitar at the house. He says that Alex would never leave it behind. So I think the man's been kidnapped or worse..."

Scully just shook her head in disbelief. Skinner had appeared out of nowhere. He said, "Mulder, I want to talk to you."

The large man looked at Scully and Frohike and said, "Alone."

I said, "Okay, you can give me a ride home. I have to clean up before I get back on the case."

Scully muttered, "What case? Our client has vanished."

I pointed out, "He still paid us. Those earrings should cover our time. Besides, if we don't solve this, I think I'm going to have a hell of a lot more reading time. Either that or I'm going to have a shocking new hairdo."

Scully shut up at that. She cared about me even though she constantly questioned my sanity and ability to plan. I nodded at her and at Frohike and followed Skinner toward the parking lot.

The cop car smelled of smoke, piss, and a subtle odor that my reptile brain translated as fear. It was old home week to me. I settled back, suddenly aware of how tired I was.

Skinner said, "It took me a while, but I finally remembered where I had met the victim. I work late a lot. You know how the man's john is by the secretarial pool? A mile away from the cow-pen. I had been keeping awake with some of that terrible unit coffee and that night, I just had it. I went in and used the woman's can. Someone came in and I put my feet up on the door. I felt stupid, not wanting to be caught in the wrong restroom."

"Suddenly I heard Fowley's voice. A man's voice answered. She was arguing with some one. She was yelling, "You slut...I thought we had something. After all the things I've done for you! Don't you think I'd hear that you brought one of those boys home again?"

Skinner said, "The man had a soft oily kind of voice. He kept telling her that he loved her. Was grateful that she saw something in an older man. He swore that he was just helping the dancer out."

Skinner laughed. He said, "Fowley's one of those women who can't resist a certain kind of man. Pretty soon, I heard soft sounds. They were kissing. She invited him into her office, mentioning the couch in there."

I blushed. I knew that couch. One day I went in to talk to Diana about a transfer to major crimes. She seemed warm and receptive. I told her how much I wanted to be part of a real investigative team and she rubbed my back. I should have said something, but didn't. One step at a time and a few days later, I was on that couch with her riding me like a cowgirl. When I moved in she told me, 'Well, now you can't transfer. After all, we're involved.' Feel of a velvet lined trap shutting.

Skinner's eyes seemed to catch my reaction. Maybe he heard about the couch. I wondered if he was Fowley's type too?

Skinner said, "I had to finish a report. I went back to my desk. I saw the man leave, but he didn't see me. I decided to get out before Fowley had a chance to realize I might have overheard anything. She has quite a temper."

I knew that. I shivered as old memories flooded back. How had I let that woman trap me in an abusive relationship? Well, never mind. It sounded as if Spender had handled her. Skinner said, "There were other nights I heard arguments from her office. I grew to recognize his voice. But what the hell? Her sex life was her business. I knew I didn't want her inquiring into mine."

There was something about the way he said that which confirmed my instincts. He was my kind of man. I said, "But it does make her a suspect. You heard what I said about Krycek. Believe me. Both he and Jeffrey Spender say that Carl Spender was keeping Alex as a sexual captive. He had the poor boy convinced he'd be thrown in jail if he tried to leave him. If Fowley was jealous, she was as much a suspect as Jeffrey Spender or myself.

Another thought shuddered through my head. Fowley liked to play pussycat games. I wondered if she had found a pretty little rat with which to play them?


"Shit!" I exclaimed as I slammed head first into the wall of logic. What had I done? Diana had those files...had Spender kept pictures or letters from her? Blinded by the past, I had allowed her to take the evidence that showed why more than one person had a very good reason to wish Carl Spender dead.

Skinner looked at me with his placid cow eyes. He asked, "What?"

I said, "I am a certified Grade A idiot. I told Fowley where to find the files I acquired from Spender's safe."

A very small smile twitched across Skinner's very large face. He said, "Acquired? That's an interesting choice of words."

I said, "I may have been an idiot, but I don't want to make a habit out of it. Look, I need help."

Skinner said, "You want me to risk my career for you?"

I just looked at him. I had just met the man, but I felt I had known him in another life, another place. I said, "Risk it for justice, Skinner."

There was a long silence. I felt Skinner's decision and stretched out my hand to him. He was my brother in a struggle we had to win for every boy who wanted to be a cop, a lawyer, or an engineer. Skinner clasped my hand and said, "All right. I've tried to play it safe, but I know Fowley is rotten."

So that was that smell I had sensed around Diana. She was a bad cop...nothing smells worse than a bad cop.

Skinner said, "What about this Krycek? Could he be in this with her? Or is he a victim?"

"A victim," I replied. I shuddered and said, "Hopefully a living one. Diana—Diana can be vindictive. In fact, I don't understand why she's being so cooperative. She could have blocked my bail. She could have made a case."

Skinner stopped the car, following me up to my room. I sat down on my unmade bed until I heard a cry from the window. I opened it and let Mehitabel in to eat. After I filled her dish, I sprinkled a few crumbs of food in Archie's glass bowl. Skinner looked and said, "Ugh, a cockroach?"

Archie wiggled his antenna and brushed his fore arms together. I said, "Hey, I had fish and they all died. Archie here is just about indestructible. I like him."

Skinner looked at me as if I was nuts, but he accepted it. He prowled around the room until he found the poster that had been delivered. He whistled long and low as he perused it. He said, "This is him? This is Krycek?"

I nodded. Skinner said, "That's one hot number. I understand why Spender might want to risk the wrath of Fowley for him."

"Yeah," I agreed. I yawned and realized that I had to grab a couple hours of sleep if I was going to be able to think. I slammed back into my bed and said, "Hang around Skinner, or meet me back here. The files from Spender's office are missing. I bet I know who has them."

Two hours later I stood drinking a cup of joe. The window in my room was cracked and dirty. Whatever light shown through was as dim as the smile on the guy who just lost the election. I heard a yowl and realized that Mehitabel was paying a rare morning visit. We had an arrangement. She evicted the mice and I paid her with a bowl of cat food plus the right to sleep next to the radiator, payable on demand. Other than that, she led her life and I led mine. Still curious, I let her in. She surprised me by coiling around my legs until I leaned down to see if she had suffered a run in with a neighborhood dog.

Just as I leaned down, a bullet plowed in and aced a hole right in the middle of an old picture of my other bad date, Phoebe Greene. I hit the floor, contemplating a crack that looked just like a profile of Jesus.

I heard Skinner curse and then a thud sounded. He wriggled on his belly to join me and said, "You piss anyone off lately besides Fowley."

I replied, "Believe me. You don't have the time to hear how many."

A while later I held up my blow-up play-pal...genuine hair and nice little orifices at the mouth and ass. Blam! The doll met its doom. I growled, "Now, I'm mad. What did Victor do to anyone?"

Skinner said, "You keep him busy. I'm going to try to go around and ambush him."

I watched his powerful buttocks wiggle as he writhed across the door. Damn, and with Victor deflated, I was up arousal creek without a hole to plug.

You'd think that the sniper would have tired of shooting household appliances and trinkets. I sacrificed a surfboard I had purchased from a surfer on the skids, lacy bloomers my dad had sent me for Christmas, and a large economy sized package of condoms, only one missing.

Just as I was looking for something else to hold up, I heard a shout... "Hands up. Police!"

I groaned. I couldn't believe Skinner was going by the book in these circumstances. However, a shot followed.

Taking a chance, I took a quick peek out the window. Nothing. Angling over the edge, I saw a crumpled figure at street level. Skinner stood over it as if he was about to yodel a gorilla yell of victory.

I beat it down the rusted stairs of the fire escape. You could hear windows slamming and shades being drawn shut by concerned citizens all over the block.

Skinner had blood splashed up past his elbows as he tried to stop a sucking chest wound. He snapped, "Call an ambulance."

I ran to the nearest phone book and fought through the used condoms and wads of chewing gum to dial the number. I didn't have to look it up and they knew my name when I uttered it.

Back at the scene, I saw the sniper was Louisa Cardinal. Her brown complexion was fading to yellow and the red blotch at her lips wasn't lipstick. She looked at me and said, "You killed him. The only man I ever loved and you killed him."

She was a tough dame...one of the bad gals, but it looked like love was her downfall...that, and a truly bad case of poor aim.

I said, "Cardinal, Spender was dead when I arrived. The safe in his office was opened. Think about who had the most to lose... Who told you where I lived and that I killed Spender?"

Her beady black eyes widened and she said, "Fowley! That daughter of a dog Fowley!"

Louisa coughed, spitting up bright red arterial blood. Her hand clawed out, fingers digging into my arm. She said, "Get her. Get Fowley and send her to hell. She's got Krycek at some old house she owns. She's going after Jeffrey."

Skinner leapt into action as the ambulance arrived, siren yowling like a cat in heat. Louisa coughed once more and I saw her body quiver spasmodically. A moment later she took one more ragged breath and then she was gone. I stood up and moved to the side, watching the vain efforts to revive the bad gal. I knew it was a lost cause. She died as she had lived, a tough woman on dead end street. I lit a cigarette and let the smoke curl around my fingers even though I didn't smoke. Call it a one cancer-stick salute to a hopeless love gone fatal.

The beat cops showed up shortly after. Ignoring me, they secured the scene. However, their comments showed they were aware that I was here. I had run-ins with these red necks before.

Irene Murphy was the third generation in her family of Irish cops in this town. She was a heavily muscled gal with a mustache that would have looked good on a dime-a-dance guy. She was powerful and squarely built, looking as if she had forgotten to take off the shoulder pads she had worn to play high school football. Murphy was so mean that her nervous habit was cracking other people's knuckles.

Her partner, Jasmine Bates, was a tall, lean, blonde woman. Bates was the brighter of the two, which in their case meant that she was the one who didn't get frostbite waiting to see the refrigerator light to go out. Both of them were known for brutality and an inborn hostility to male witnesses and victims.

Jasmine snickered and said, "Mulder again. Like I told you, what he needs is a real woman. A good fuck would get that libber stuff out of his system."

Irene laughed and said, "Yeah, although I think I'm the one who could do it. Might give you the leftovers though if you don't mind sloppy seconds. Wonder what the hell Skinner was doing here though? He doesn't shove it your face like Mulder did, but he's another one. Too bad about his face. He's got a nice figure, but I like them pretty."

Jasmine said, "Oh hell, all tom cats are alike in the dark. I'd put a bag on his head and get me some prime cock."

Skinner had just finished examining Louise, who was now officially a corpse. He would have a shooting report to file and a shit load of paperwork besides the dreaded internal affairs interview. He had heard the last two comments and scowled at the beat cops. He said, "Now if you two are done with your little fantasies, can you mark off the scene?"

Skinner looked at me and said, "Back to headquarters. You'll need to make a report to back me up."

We were just finishing the interviews when Mary Brant rushed up to us. She was one of the good gals, an honest hard working inspector in major crimes. She said, "Skinner, you asked me to let you know if there were any problems with Jeff Spender. He's been kidnapped from the safe house!"

Skinner threw down the form he had been signing and charged out the door. It took him a moment to realize that I was right with him. "You're a civilian!" he growled.

"I'm a civilian who knows where Spender might have been taken," I riposted.

I could about hear the wheels turning behind that massive skull. Likewise, I could hear the sound of a rulebook being torn in half. Skinner nodded and said, "What the hell. My career's probably shot anyway."

Skinner blew the sirens until we were a few blocks from the house. I had been here once with Fowley...it was her grandmother's house. It was a pink painted monstrosity that perched behind a barricade of iron-spiked teeth. A tower rose from the steep roof, its one window a balefully watching eye. As we approached, I heard a gunshot...my heart went cold. Had we arrived a moment too late to save Alex?


Half-heartedly, I held out my glass to Sam. She shook her head and said, "You've had enough, Fox."

"Don't you think I can hold my liquor?" I asked, as my shaking hand dropped the glass and the few remaining drops of Scotch onto the floor.

"You never could," Samantha observed as she went around to clean up my mess. "Of all the gin joints and of all the towns, he has to hang out in mine!"

I would have made a snappy comeback but the bar reached up and hit me in the face. Next thing I knew, I was staring at the ceiling in the back room. There was a cot back there for the less classy clientele. My tailbone had worn a comfortable spot in the rubber-covered mattress of that bed. From this position, you could see the cracks in the ceiling. If you looked really closely, you could see one that looked like the big bear. I stared at it until my eyes stopped blurring.

Samantha came in and dropped a cold wet cloth in my face. "Mulder, if this keeps up, I'm going to write a new will and leave everything to you just to have the pleasure of disowning you."

I said, "Do that Sam, and I'll tell everyone that you cheat at Stratego."

"I do not," she said on reflex.

I grinned up at her.

Sam said, "Fox, grow up! Sometimes I wish the aliens hadn't brought you back. Dad said you would grow out of the stage of asking constant questions, teasing and rebelling. When, Lord, when?"

I frowned as she reminded me of that dreadful day. Abducted by aliens and returned with a sympathy note...they couldn't take my curious babble and the constant splatter of sunflower seed shells in my wake. I told everyone that the sign stamped on my forehead was really meant to be detective not defective. That abduction changed my life, redirected it in my single-minded quest to try to prove my defensive explanation was the true one.

Sam asked, "Why are you letting what happened to Krycek tear you up? You barely knew him, Mulder."

Shaking her head, she added, "Maybe it would help to tell me the rest of the story?"

"Maybe it would," I agreed.


Skinner stopped me from running directly into the house. "She's dangerous," he said. "Use your brains, Mulder."

I calmed down enough to keep from punching him. Skinner asked, "What's the best way into the house?"

The basement, I thought. There was an old coal chute that might work. I told Skinner and we crept through the overgrown yard. I gritted my teeth as I ran into bramble roses as thick as the ones said to have grown around Sleeping Beauty's castle. As I let go of a branch, it swung back and hit Skinner who yelped, "Prick!"

I turned around and he said, "The rose bush, idiot. I was snagged by a thorn."


The coal chute was exactly where I remembered. Photographic memory was a wonderful thing... except when the Kodak Company sued me for copy-write infringement. I looked around for something to break the lock. Skinner reached past me and snapped the rusty hinge. I batted my eyelashes at him, impressed. He said, "I used to carry a forty pound purse before I joined the force. It really builds those muscles up."

Skinner had loaned me a spare gun from the arsenal he carried in his trunk. Quite a hope chest for a guy who claimed to be by the book. I held onto it as I sped down the few feet of the chute and landed with a puff of black dust at the bottom on the old coal bin. Someone in that house was into major league deceit by all the tangled webs I encountered on the way.

I got out of the way before Skinner's two hundred pound body landed on mine. While there might be a time and place when I would relish a close encounter with the man, this wasn't one of them.

The basement was huge. I could hear a trickle of water from some place and the hollow moaning of the furnace. After a moment, I heard a voice. It was high pitched with pain, but I recognized Jeff Spender. He said, "I don't know, Fowley. He never told me."

A shriek of pain punctuated that answer. I heard Fowley say, "Don't lie to me. The pictures weren't in the safe in his room. They weren't at his office. You tell me! Now!"

The cry that echoed wasn't even human. Skinner and I slammed through that door like a crazed bunch of househusbands the day after Christmas at a discount sale. Fowley stood over Jeff Spender. He wore nothing but a peek-a-boo black lace jock strap. He was bleeding freely from a gunshot wound in his side. Fowley held a gun in one hand and a canister of salt in the other. Jeff writhed in his bonds; she had poured the agonizing stuff into his wound.

Fowley turned around. Her voice snapped in that abusive, controlling tone she had used in the final days of our relationship...before I had the guts to run away to the battered man's shelter.

I reached out my hand, hoping to remind her of our relationship. "Let me help you, Diana," I said.

I saw her hand rise, but I couldn't believe she would shoot me. Skinner shouted a warning and then he fired. Her gun discharged into the rough concrete floor. As she fell she uttered a sound of disbelief.

I knelt over her. Her face was rapidly turning a yellowish-gray hue as if she had become one huge bruise. Skinner said, "I'll call for backup and an ambulance."

"Tell them Mulder sent you," I quipped, despite the grim circumstances.

I leaned close to Diana and said, "Diana, what did you do to Krycek?"

She laughed even as her arterial blood pumped her life out onto the floor. "I raped the little slut," she shot back. "And he liked it. Pretty, perfidious little rat. He's where you'll never find him until it's too late."

For the second time that day, I watched my information die with a suspect. Frantically, I went to Jeff and roused him from his stupor. I asked, "Jeff, did she show you where she was holding Krycek?"

Spender shook his head and whispered, "I heard him screaming for a while, but it stopped. She came after me. I'm sorry. I think that she killed him. It's all my fault." Jeff gave into masculine tears. He said, "If I hadn't tried to get him away from dad, none of this would have happened."

I took one of my lacy monogrammed hankies out of my suit pocket. Hey, a guy had a right to keep one or two pretty things around him. I swabbed at Jeff's tears and then untied him. I said, "I have to look for Alex. Don't be afraid. Skinner's gone for help and Diana can't hurt you anymore."

Jeff closed his eyes and nodded. He was a brave kid and deserved better than his father had given him.


We searched the house from top to bottom and sideways. Not a clue presented. I wandered about shouting Alex's name, not hearing a squeak of a reply. This huge house held a million nooks and crannies. We found Alex's jacket in one of the bedrooms. Silk ties, one of Diana's favorite toys, dangled from the four-poster bed. I could smell Alex's musk in the room and I knew it was here that she ravished my beloved rat. I found his green silk boxers and clutched them to my face. Alex...sweet, sweet Alex...would I ever see him again?

By the third sweep of the house, the policewomen were tired. I noticed that they had police dogs sniffing in the yard. I knew what they thought. They thought he was dead and buried.

I could have fallen in love with Skinner. He didn't give up hope. We stood in the attic having just opened all the huge steamer trunks. Skinner sighed and shook his head. He said, "There has to be something that we're missing. She wouldn't have time to move him or bury him by what Spender said."

Skinner walked over, glanced out the window and groaned. He said, "Mulder, I can't keep the search team here much longer."

"Fuck!" I said, slamming my fist into the wall. To my surprise, the panel swayed with the impact. I pounded on it. It was hollow.

"Rum-runners!" Skinner said, "It's a false wall!"

We pushed and prodded with no success. Finally, Skinner picked up a heavy iron coat rack and ran at the panel like a dragon-slaying knight. The old wood gave way with a resounding crack. I screamed as bats swirled out of the dark hole. Skinner said, "I see something. I see a wondrous thing."

Pushing past him, my gun in hand, I bravely risked further winged rodents. Alex was tied to a beam. His white shirt was streaked with blood. His head hung limply. I couldn't bring myself to breathe, much less touch him to see if we were in time. As I finally screwed up my courage, his head moved. He fluttered those luscious black eyelashes at me and my heart skipped a beat. Green eyes met mine and he said, "Fox...my hero"

One of us passed out after that. It might have been me.



Krycek's room was full of chocolate, flowers, stuffed rats, and beautiful doctors. Earlier he had looked at me with those unfathomable green pools he called eyes and asked in a puzzled voice, "Fox, why are the doctors so worried about me? So far three of them have given me a through physical, including a prostate exam." He fluttered his velvety lashes and said, "Not that I'm really complaining...it's not bad when they take their time and are gentle. Almost as good as you are, Fox."

I set his guitar down and sat on the bed. He really looked healthy for someone who had been at death's door when he was brought into the hospital. All the doctors had vanished when Alex had asked about the prostate exams. I'd have to remind myself to have a talk with those doctors...

Alex was dressed in a black velvet robe. He hated the hospital gowns, saying he would rather go naked. Popular vote to the contrary, the head nurse had agreed on this compromise. The bruises on his face had faded and he was recovering well from Diana's harsh treatment. He felt healthy enough to ask for his guitar and, adoringly, I had borrowed the keys from Jeff Spender, surprising Fowley's other victim in a more than grateful kiss from his doctor, Marita Covarrubias. Jeff had beamed at me and said, "This is the woman I've been dating. She asked me for my hand."

My dad would be eaten up with envy. It looked like little Jeff had snagged every father's dream for his son; he was going to marry a doctor.

Alex reached for his guitar, the cover sliding aside to reveal the unfastened robe and every inch of his gorgeous body. He smiled beautifully as he saw his faithful instrument, and he was glad to see the guitar too.

I helped him settle the guitar and watched worriedly as he adjusted the strings. He strummed and promptly frowned. "Something's wrong!" he exclaimed, "I hope it's not warped." He examined the instrument, sensitive fingers gliding over the wood's patina. He peered into the cavity and said, "Hey, something's in there."

Carefully, he loosened his guitar strings and reached into the cavity in the body. He withdrew an envelope. He opened this and out fell a packet of pictures. "I think I'm going to toss my cookies," he said with a grimace.

They were Fowley's lost pictures. Twenty or more poses of her dressed in frilly male underwear. In some of them, she was even wearing a realistic strap-on dildo. Her breasts, never very large, had been taped flat beneath a camisole tee shirt. The man she was penetrating did not reveal his face, but I guessed that it was Spender. Fowley had been an ambitious woman. She hoped to make commissioner and, had these come forward, it would have ruined her chances.

My inclination was to take the pictures and burn them, but I decided to give them to Skinner. He was in hot water despite the clear evidence against Fowley. This might resolve any remaining questions.

Alex said, "Fox, I need you to hold me."

Sounded good to me. I crawled into bed and was in the process of kissing it all better when the head nurse caught me.

A few moments later as the big nurse gave me the bum's rush out, I turned around and snarled, "I've been thrown out of better places than this!"

Which explains why I was holed up in my sister's bar while Skinner collected my sexy Alex from the hospital. The ceiling had stopped spinning so I decided to resume my little chat with Sam. I climbed out of that cot and climbed back on the bar stool that threw me.

Sam glared at me and said, "You're cut off, Fox. Pull up a cup of joe and sober up.

About that time the room darkened. Skinner filled the doorway and said, "Come on, Mulder. He's waiting in the car."

I can't say that the room filled with singing bluebirds and fire works didn't go off, but I can testify that I teleported to that beat up Ford Fairlane. Alex and I settled in for a clinch the whole way back to my place. Kissing Krycek takes precedence over breathing in my book. Who needed air when there were those hot, pink lips?

In a daze, I stumbled out of the car. Alex carried his overnight bag and I carried his guitar. We posed for a moment at the steps to my apartment. I looked at Skinner and said, "Walter, you've been a life saver through all of this."

I struck a pose and said, "Why don't you come up and see me some time? If you want me, just whistle. You do know how to whistle, don't you? Just put your lips together and blow..."

Walter fell back in the car. You know I think he might just pay a visit and, hell; Alex and I needed the big stooge. You did notice he was the only one with a car?

As Alex and I tumbled into my bed, I heard a tuneful voice singing, "As time goes by."

I glanced out the window. A chubby man in a kilt was serenading us from the fire escape.

I knew it was all over. The fat laddy had sung.

The Posterior

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Come home, foxy darling. All is forgiven. Your Alex


September Challenge

Ursula's stories

Fandom: X-Files AU
Pairing: Mulder/Krycek with a soupcon of Walter Skinner on the side.
Rating: NC-17
Status: New
E-mail address for feedback: Fan4Richie@aol.com or Ursula4X@aol.com
Series/Sequel: I ain't no squealer, you dirty rat! Whoops, wrong word. Carry on.
Other websites: Homeless but for ned and leny
Disclaimers: X-Files characters belong to Chris Carter, Fox TV and et al.
Notes: Fan4Richie is writing this to try to pacify Ursula, who really wants at least three major stories and a few pictorial ads to fill the Theban Bands PULP magazine challenge.
Summary: Really, really AU with shades of Sam Spade... in a universe far away where a few gender roles are skewed differently.
Warnings: Not to be taken with water over your keyboard.
Thanks to Sebastian for volunteering to beta this monster.

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