A Christmas Carol

by dossier

Notes & Warnings

Mulder lay on the worn leather couch in the new apartment, snoozing to the flickering light of the television. The couch was about the only piece of furniture he'd taken from Hegel Place, and it was woefully out of place in this new apartment, which was nothing like his other, old apartment. This one was bright, airy and completely devoid of any personality.

The television began to slowly roll through the channels, gaining speed. The curtains billowed as in a sudden, stiff breeze, and the temperature dropped rapidly. Mulder woke with a start to find an apparition of the dead lounging across from him in the only chair.

"Morning, Muuldderr." Krycek curled his voice around the syllables, and he was wearing a smirk on his face that was the granddaddy of all Alex-smirks, but the nasty bullet hole streaming blood down his face detracted from the effect.

Mulder began to reconsider the fortuitous discovery of the local Thai takee-outee. Surely the coconut milk had gone bad! "Excuse me, but you're dead."

"Dead as a doornail, thanks to you, and Skinner. So how's life, A.F?" Alex wiped ineffectively at a trickle of blood from his eyes with the back of his hand, but his reply held no rancor.

"AF?" Mulder was fascinated by his indigestive vision, and missed what Krycek was saying to him. As Usual.

"After FBI. Are we having fun yet?" Krycek shifted in the chair he occupied, throwing one leg over the arm to get more comfortable.

"I didn't know there was a 'we', and no I don't think I'm having fun yet." Mulder replied a little frostily. For a bleeding ghost, it was behaving much like the way he remembered Krycek-but that was to be expected, if this was indeed his own psyche regurgitating bad Thai food.

"Huh. That figures." A quick look of annoyed disgust passed over Krycek's face. "So. Let's cut to the chase, shall we?" Mulder-Baiting wasn't as much fun as it used to be.

"If it will keep you from bleeding on the furniture, then by all means, let's cut to the chase." Mulder dryly fell into the spirit of the conversation.

"OK, Mulder, here's the deal. It's Christmas Eve, and I'm allowed one visitation, to offer you a deal that will show you the error of your ways, blah, blah, blah. Like it would do any good."

"What do you mean?" Mulder looked confused by what Krycek said.

"It's a visit from beyond the grave, Muuldderr."

"No, you said it was Christmas Eve?"

Alex looked at him with disbelief. "Yeah, Christmas Eve. 12-24. Santy Claus making midnight visits. Mulder, have you been paying attention to anything lately?" There was a slight riff of pain shot through the pique in his voice.

"I knew it was soon, I just didn't realize it was today."

"Typical, so pathetically typical. Mulder, even when I was living underground like a rat we celebrated Christmas." Krycek shook his head at his former partner/erstwhile adversary, causing a fresh flow of blood from his bullet hole. "Let's start over. It's Christmas Eve, trust me on this one. I'm dead, and here to give you that wakeup call you obviously, so desperately need. You'll have three spectral visitors, Christmas Past, Christmas Present and Christmas Future." Krycek paused at the look on Mulder's face. He snapped, "Surely this isn't a new scenario to you, the movie has been an annual TV event for your entire life, not to mention the book was written a century and a half ago."

"I just can't believe I forgot it was Christmas Eve, that's all." Mulder looked a little forlorn. He'd forgotten Christmas Eve! Well, no wonder-no family, and he'd been forced to abandon his entire raison de être by some fucking FBI paper pusher.

Krycek softened his attitude at the desolation on Mulder's' face. "Hey, you've been busy, it's been a bad year. Forget about it." The last was a mockery of a Philly accent in an attempt to jolly Mulder out of his mood.

The change in his visitor's voice brought Mulder out of his reverie. "So, you were saying something about an overused plot device?"

"Yeah, too bad. A classic gets hacked to death. I think Chevy Chase was the death knell for Dickens. So, three visitors, you know the drill."

"Chevy Chase wasn't in A Christmas Carol! You must be confusing him with Bill Murray in 'Scrooged'. " Mulder sounded indignant.

"Whatever. Three Visitors, and at midnight the bell tolls, it tolls for thee." Krycek smirked beauteously.

"No man is an island, Krycek?" Mulder returned the smirk in spades.

"Knew that Oxford education would come in handy one day. Just think of it as the theme of the day." Alex pulled an ornate pocket watch out of his long dark coat and checked the time. "I'm outta here, Mulder. Don't blow this opportunity, okay?"

"You never carried a pocket watch, Krycek." Mulder figured that detail must have been picked out of another classic that will remain unnamed, except that its initials were Alice in Wonderland.

Alex gave Mulder an exasperated look. "Just pay attention, Mulder." With that he stood up and walked out through the open patio doors.

Mulder stared at the portal, and then suddenly jumped up to check the tiny balcony only collide face-to-face with Mulder's one-time partner Alex Krycek; who could only be the Ghost of Christmas Past.

The GOCP was replete with both of his arms, a sturdy suit and rakish haircut. Mulder stepped backwards into the apartment as Alex walked towards him.

"Hi, Mulder. Ready for your trip down memory lane?" The smile on his lips never made it to his eyes, which glowed like tornado storm skies.

"I don't suppose the answer no *is* acceptable?" It was kind of hard to believe that a literary classic was the motif for a bad dream caused by either a guilty conscience, or food borne bacteria.

"Come on Mulder, it'll be fun. We'll wallow in the past, and wake up all those warm fuzzy feelings about what has gone before." The look on Alex's face was clear and serious, guileless.

Mulder remembered. He remembered the hot August night so many years ago when they had each drowned in what the other had to offer, burying the pain and horror of Augustus Cole. He had a sudden flash of insight: it was never going to be possible to see Krycek's point of view. He might get clues; explanations, reasons and justification, but he would never completely understand Alex Krycek.

Why would he want to?

A flash of déjà vu, Alex smiled and offered his hand. The smile was curious, shyly confident. Mulder grasped the given hand, and was shocked by the warm, electric feel of live flesh under his. Alex squeezed his hand in a gesture of reassurance as the room melted around them like so many Picassos.

Mulder closed his eyes briefly when the effect was too overwhelming, and when he opened them they were nowhere he had ever recalled being before.

The room was filled with old dark furniture; the fire burning in the huge fireplace that was large enough to roast an ox flickered off the Christmas tree. The decorations were simple; tiny candles burning in the branches glittered against the hand-blown ornaments and ribbons woven through the branches. The other small acknowledgments of the Christmas spirit were scattered around the room.

The two time travelers stood in the center of the room, unnoticed by the young inhabitants that were playing a game together. Most of the children were similar in build and coloring: sickly-thin and blond with pale eyes and evidence of a lack of poor dental habits. There were three dark haired children, a boy and his sisters who were all healthy and good looking. The boy was the youngest of his siblings and cousins, and he was trying hard to keep up with the complicated game; but they were making it as difficult as possible for him and laughing at him. They teased him in Russian, and he looked stung to the core that his older sisters would participate in this mild torment.

Mulder looked over at Alex, who was watching the scenario with a smooth, implacable expression on his face. It didn't take much in the way of deductive reasoning to assume this was Krycek's past.

"So, Krycek. Why did you bring me here? I thought I was supposed to see my 'happy' childhood memories."

"You're already self-centered enough, I guess they thought you needed to see this." The tone of his voice said Krycek hadn't expected the turn of events either.

"Huh." While Mulder was known to flagrantly rush in where fool fear to tread in most situations, some tiny voice in head had advised him to let this go, for the moment. He did wonder who 'they' were, but turned his attention back to the unfolding scene.

An elderly woman came into the room, the Grandmother. She was rotund, stooped and had the same poor dental habit as the blond children. She spoke in Russian to break up the squabble, scooped up the object of their ridicule; thereby offering him comfort, and insuring that he would be subjected to even more derision and jibes in the near future. The child didn't realize this was going to be the result of accepting her affection as he clung to her wide breast, burying his face in the warm soft comfort, reveling in the pure love she had for her youngest and last grandchild.

"But I do nothing upon myself, and yet am mine own executioner." Alex spoke the words softly, though Mulder heard them. "Let's get on with the program." A quick tug of Mulder's hand that he had not relinquished, and again with the vanishing reality which made Mulder sick to his stomach. The churning stopped and they materialized in another room, but this one was very familiar to them both-it was #42 Hegel Place.

It didn't take Mulder long to place this moment in time. It was the last time he and Alex had sex. He'd shied away from calling it 'making love' even when they were doing the wild thing, but obviously from his grievous reaction to the treasonous betrayal it had been just that. Many a man had betrayed him in his life, professionally and personally but Krycek's had been the most devastating.

The dim light provided a fitting backdrop to the faint gasps and murmurs of the two men in the clutches of coital bliss. The sound went straight to Mulder's sex, and the double whammy of remembering and watching the shared orgasmic explosion with the ghost of that paramour gripping his hand was nearly too much. The smell of sweat, semen and lubrication filled the room and Mulder's head.

Spirit-Alex refused to look at him. The Past Alex in front of them writhed under the ministrations of the Past Mulder. It was obvious that under the carnal act was a deep, abiding love that flowed out of him and enveloped the two, so intense it was almost visible to the incorporeal doppelgangers. Past Mulder responded to it unconsciously, and the post-coital tenderness he lavished on his lover was sweet and soft.

"It's Christmas Eve, Mulder." The sex roughened, scotch-and-chocolate voice licked his ears. The sentence was a non-sequitar, but then Alex was never too coherent when Mulder got him to this state.

Past Mulder grinned and rolled away slightly to look at the bedside clock, "Actually, it's Christmas Day. Merry Christmas, Alex." He nibbled on his lovers' neck, tasting and smelling his warmness.

"I guess we'd better go to sleep so Santa will come, hmmm?" Alex's voice was fading into sleep even as he finished the sentence. His lover smiled and wrapped him in an embrace deep as the ocean, and entwined together fell asleep too.

This was hell, Mulder was sure of it. He'd spent the last decade forgetting, denying the short-lived affair, compensating with anger and fear; here his disturbed mind was dredging it all up again. But if that was all it was, then why did he remember the incident in Alex's past? Visitor Mulder turned to his ghostly guide. "Why?"

His companion on this voyage looked at him at last; a faint glimmer of sadness painted a bright sheen in his accusatory eyes. "Why, what? In the end, what do you really want to know?"

Uncharacteristically, Mulder shut his mouth in the face of vehemence. Indeed, what did he want to know from this incarnation of the love of his life? Anything he could discover at this point would be pointless--too little too late and would only add to the store of pain and regret that he held dear in his heart. Though in the dark recesses of his soul he was glad to find that his guide had also been tormented by the viewing the episode, it also made Mulder uncomfortable. It was his protective mechanism-- he had long ago stopped regarding Krycek as a human being.

It was a hard denial to make in the face of the regret Krycek was wearing. He had returned his stare to the lovers curled together, and Mulder knew that the crossed bridge was long since burnt to the pilings.

"I'm sorry, Alex." It seemed the right thing to say at the moment.

Krycek looked at him; his eyes were again composed and jade-cool. "Sure, Mulder. I know." No sarcasm chilled his voice. Alex pulled a familiar pocket watch out of his suit. "Our time here is over."

Mulder was amused by the unintended double entendre, but his black humor was swiftly overtaken by the discomfiting special effects that surrounded their departure. As he closed his eyes, the warmth of Alex next to him seemed to move closer, until he felt the touch of soft lips against his, and all queasiness vanished. The kiss was sad and tentative, and for a brief moment Mulder forgot that he was osculating a ghost. When he dared to open his eyes, the Skippy!Alex was gone, replaced with an older, post-amputation, stupid-ass-haircut Alex. In the switch Mulder could, for the first time, see the rich integer of pain in Krycek's eyes. His imagination?

"Welcome to Christmas Present, Muuldderr." The cocky purr in Krycek's voice was of vintage proportions.

The reminder of their appointed rounds brought Mulder up short, and he noticed his surroundings.

Margaret Scully's home. Dana Scully with infant, Bill, Tara, and their two children are present, but the brother that disappeared after season one is still missing. You'd think someone in the FBI would be more concerned about missing family members.

The scene is nearly idyllic. The tall fragrant Scotch pine is groaning with the weight of decorations, the floor beneath is piled with gaily-wrapped gifts. Handmade felt stockings were hanging from the mantle, held in place with heavy pewter anchor pieces. The dining room table is set with the Christmas china and crystal in advance of Christmas dinner. Margaret was feeding little Will, and Dana sat next to her, sipping a glass of wine. She didn't look very contented, however; nay Scully looked worried and pensive. Margaret was chiding her.

"Oh, come now Dana. Will is fine-he's a perfectly happy, healthy baby. It's just a case of new mother jitters, you've waited a long time for this blessing." Margaret went back to cooing at the feeding child.

Dana didn't look convinced. She had seen the abnormal development; couldn't tell her mother all the information that related to the 'miracle' birth, or the evidence that started appearing after said birth.

Mulder looked at Krycek. "What is it?"

Krycek knew what Mulder meant, but answered in his own oblique way, "I was too weak to do what had to be done, I knew what she meant to you. I knew that would be the final straw, and I sacrificed the opportunity to save her from this, because…" Krycek was watching the child with an undisguised horror and fascination.

"You knew what, Krycek?'

"Dana Scully won't have that child in her possession for more than a few months, maybe a year, tops."

Mulder gave Krycek a flat stare, while he considered the information. "Who is going to take him?" He asked, but the query fell on deaf ears.

"I doubt they'll use alien abduction, though it worked so well with you, Scully won't believe the way you did. They won't fake the child's death-Scully won't fall for that twice."

"Who, Krycek?" Mulder asked again, his anger started to boil up in him.

"Doesn't matter, Mulder. It's too late and we can't stop them. I'm dead, you're out of the game completely, with no credibility to speak of."

The bald statement was the catalyst for Mulder's physical assault, but it was easily turned aside by Krycek, who managed to land a blow to Mulder's face. "If I had known all it was going to take was a slap in the face to get your attention, I would have done it years ago, Mulder."

Testing his cut lip with the tip of his tongue, Mulder glared at Krycek who directed his attention back to the scene still playing out before them.

"Mom, I think I'm going to leave the FBI."

Bill Scully came in from the kitchen just in time to hear this revelation. "It's about damn time. I don't know why you let that kook lead you on for so many years. It's probably his baby and you're just protecting him again. Too chicken shit to stay and raise it. Good riddance I say."

Dana regarded her brother with one of those priceless blue glacier stares, but she didn't say anything.

"Not even gonna defend the prick, are you?"

Margaret decided that she'd heard enough. Mulder had meant so much to Dana; she had even followed him to the end of the earth. Bill was her son, but he had no vision sometimes. "Bill, that's inappropriate language at any time of the year. If you don't understand, that's fine, but you cannot ridicule Fox, or Dana for following their hearts."

That defense pierced Mulder's heart. So many regrets, so many chances lost forever. Two roads diverged, and he had taken the one less traveled-had it indeed made all the difference?

"Looks like you still have at least one fan left, Mulder. Though after what has happened to her family, it kind of surprises me she still has any faith in you."

The cut on his lip reminded him that this Krycek wasn't above defending himself, and Mulder stayed his fury. "What the hell--Me? I believe that you were single-handedly responsible for most of the damage done there!"

Krycek flinched slightly at the jab. "I merely carried out orders that were based on your presumed search for the truth, Mulder. If you hadn't wooed Scully to your cause, if you hadn't continually blundered about in your crusade it is likely none of this would have happened. But then, subtlety was never your forte."

"Fuck you Krycek-they were wrong, and someone needed to bring them down and you know it."

"Didn't say I disagreed with your end, merely the method."

"Oh, and you were such a great success, eh Krycek?"

Alex shrugged. "I have never denied my culpability, or failures. You win some, you lose some." Krycek pulled out his pocket watch and checked the time. "Gotta fly, Mulder."

With that Krycek vanished, and Mulder was pulled into a whirling storm of ghosts who clawed at him, dragged him down with clinging hands and howling their agony.

Mulder landed ass over teakettle with thump on his apartment floor. Breathlessly, he checked his arms and legs; there wasn't a scratch.

"Metaphors of our guilt rarely leave visible marks." Bleeding Krycek was back, lounging comfortably on Mulder's anchor to his past life.

"Thought you said you were only allowed one visit?" Mulder asked him querulously.

"So I lied-sue me." Krycek smirked through the blood that was streaming down his face.

"Figures."

"Actually, they ran out of suitable incarnations, so I had to double as ghost as Christmas Future, too." Krycek grinned. "It's good to be needed, eh?" He stood up and strolled over to where Mulder still sat on the floor in an undignified position, and offered a hand to pull him up. "Let's go see what the future holds for those whose lives you've touched, angel."

There was no disorientation involved this time, only exhilaration as they fairly flew through the firmament.

The euphoria lasted until they arrived at their destination.

"The ubiquitous graveyard scene. What a lovely touch." Mulder poured as much sarcasm into his comment as possible to cover the archaic thrill of fear that was running the 440 in his body.

"Heh. Yeah, sure."

They strolled through the small plot, the uneven stones upended by tree roots, and snow has drifted across the pathway. Gaunt, piteous remains of a floral bouquet cling to the poorly filled grave marked only with a single year on its headstone.

"Whose grave is this, Alex?" The year meant nothing, really. Mulder had been buried once in this year, though his marker was more verbose.

"It's mine." Krycek stared at the cold ground impassively, and he voiced no fear or regret; but his eyes betrayed a tiny sweep of something that was gone before Mulder could name it. "Who thought that this device might be some way To make their souls, at the last busy day, Meet at this grave, and make a little stay?"

Mulder ignored the commentary, and got right to the heart of the matter. "Why are we visiting your grave, Krycek-you were already dead, that's a known quantity. I thought the GOCF was about things that were yet to be?"

"Do you know what really died with me, Mulder?" Krycek pinned Mulder with a knife edge glance, and he couldn't reply, merely shake his head in the negative. "Your future. You threw it away for your short term goal when you let Skinner murder me."

"I have only your authority on that, Krycek-you've lied to me again and again, and I have nothing on which to base my trust." Mulder was prepared for this 'believe poor me" routine-he had heard it before.

Krycek shrugged. "Truth is relative, I guess. You may well regain some professional standing in the law enforcement community-but with your track record of hijinks, mayhem and follies trailing you, I doubt it. You might salvage the remains of your family-your son, and Scully. Speaking of which, let's go check on the Virgin Mother and her 'miracle' Son."

The change of scenery was getting easier to take. The atmosphere dissolved in waves to reveal an older Scully being consoled by her even more aged mother. She looked terrible, and her mother looked equally distraught.

Mulder ground his teeth, he was NOT going to fall prey to the obvious and have Krycek lecture him on the way he should have lived his life. The gesture was for naught, because Krycek decided to narrate for him anyway.

"You see she did quit the FBI, and thought she had found the perfect husband, in whom she placed her faith and trust. Turns out he was a plant, a mole. He stayed long enough to get the child and then disappear, and Scully can't get anyone to believe that the case was more than a simple case of parental abduction of a child."

The words fell out of Mulder's' mouth before he could stay his tongue. "What about Skinner?"

The evil grin that lit Krycek's face was one of vindication. "Lessee, Skinner, Skinner… oh yeah-he's been fired from the FBI while he's under indictment for murder, and that cloud is going to hang long and heavy over his head. You see--they know the murder was committed, they have it on videotape from the FBI garage. But they can't prosecute just yet, as the body seems to have disappeared." Krycek chuckled.

Mulder watched the inconsolable Scully as she crawled back to bed and pulled the covers over her head. There was no white knight to come to her rescue; no one to rectify the horrendous situation, and restore her child to her… like she had been restored to him those many years ago. He grasped at the last branches hanging over the chasm. "Reyes? Doggett?"

"Discharged on her last psyche evaluation and sent to the nice men with white coats and butterfly nets." Krycek waved his real hand and the scene changed to show Monica Reyes in the grip of electroshock therapy, mouthpiece set between dry cracked lips and her hair cut off in ragged hunks. "Doggett, now there is a different story, the man knows how to keep his nose clean once he's seen the error of his way." Another wave and Doggett appeared, manning the new FBI outpost in Pt. Barrow, Alaska.

The realization that Krycek could be right about Mulder's future dying with him shook Mulder to his very core. "This can be changed right, I mean the future is not yet written, and we can yet change the course of events?"

"I thought there was no "we", Mulder. I'm dead, remember? Any help you could have asked for is past my giving." Despite the harsh words, Krycek spoke softly, as the ring of the final truth echoed in Mulder's head.

The last fade out and Krycek returned them to Mulder's stark, bare apartment. The things he'd seen in the infinitely short time he was led by Alex Krycek were whirling in his mind. How much was real? What can he do to change the way things will be?

As he watched Krycek leave, Mulder realized how alone he will be. "Wait!"

Krycek turned to the sound, and with his head tilted just slightly, waited as Mulder asked. All he ever had to do was ask.

"Stay with me, just a little longer." The raw emotion of the plea was honest, and Mulder saw the return of the sweet guileless smile that he had thought extinguished a decade ago under the weight of his own emotional betrayal of Alex.

"I can stay for a while." Alex returned to the couch, and sat close to Mulder.

"I meant what I said, I am sorry." Mulder could feel Krycek's warmth radiating through the denims they both wore.

"Everyone is sorry when they are confronted with the critical mass of their combined failures and wrongs. Affliction is a treasure, and scarce any man hath enough of it." Krycek chided Mulder, but gently, his duty as messenger was dispensed.

Mulder knew he could beat Krycek at this game, any time. "O my black soul! Now thou art summoned By sickness, death's herald, and champion; Thou art like a pilgrim, which abroad hath done Treason,".

Alex laughed out loud at that, Mulder could always come up with the perfect repartee. "Ok, I surrender, you were always better at this than I was."

The sound of Alex's laughter rekindled the arousal Mulder had felt when he had been with, rather watching with… oh hell. It was so hard to separate the dream from his spirit guide. He had never realized how much intensity they had generated together. The sex had always been incredible, but he had shunned thinking about the emotional attachment until it was too late. "I have missed you, too much."

His reply was Alex leaning in and kissing Mulder. No chaste buss this; it was a slick hot exploration of silken tongues. He had felt so real, alive to him, and had all night. After all, Alex had paid the ultimate price for his and everyone else's sins and blunders, and if this was a dream he never wanted to wake up.

The smell and coppery taste of blood diminished, and when Mulder opened his eyes, the wound in Krycek's forehead all but vanished. He dragged a finger across where it had resided, and there was not even a dent.

"I was sort of looking forward to a little blood sports, too." Mulder wasn't given a chance to make any further comment on it.

"You don't need any more fetishes, Mulder." Alex reclaimed his mouth, his hand claimed and dragged across his groin while clasped to Alex's. Thought fled, and the tenuous hold reason held over Mulder followed Thought when Alex climbed into his lap, and rocked their groins together.

Panting in his ear, Alex released his kiss as he continued to rub his engorged member against Mulder's similarly afflicted parts. "But we by a love so much refined That our selves know not what it is,
Interassured of the mind, Careless eyes, lips, and hands to miss."

Mulder held Alex by the shoulders to still him, while he undressed him. "If they be two, they are two so As stiff twin compasses are two; Thy soul, the fixed foot, makes no show To move, but doth if th' other do".

"I know a stiff member I'd like to move." Mulder knew there was only one weapon at his disposal when Alex started to make smart-ass comments in the heat of sex.

After a brief struggle that Mulder lost, he was willingly wrestled to his back on the sofa, and his denims pulled off. Mulder gasped as Alex began to lick and suck on his cock. "I think ectophilia would be a very good fetish."

Alex groaned through his blowjob.

"That's even better. God Alex, have I missed your beautiful mouth."

Alex stopped sucking Mulder's cock, and kneeled between his thighs and pulled him up into his lap, with the head of his cock nestled in position. He lifted Mulder upright, impaling him with a single stroke, then with hands on hips, Alex urged Mulder to move. "Let's see what you really missed, Mulder."

Mulder had forgotten what an ample boy Alex was, and nothing had changed. He spasmed around the thick intrusion, but quickly grew accustomed to the width and he began to move. This was what he missed the most, and to be rejoined with his lover this way was ecstasy indeed. He leaned backwards, dragging Alex with him. "Can you still do it, Alex?"

The hopeful look on Mulder's face was too much to resist, and Alex found a way that he could balance on his knees, and still fuck while he gently leaned his weight against the hand that was wrapped around Mulder's throat.

"Oh god, Alex, that's perfect, I feel light as an angel…"

****

"…Had opened the apartment to investigate a really bad smell after a complaint from the neighbors. Initial results indicate autoerotic asphyxiation. The pathologists believe the death to have occurred approximately seven days ago, on or around Christmas Eve…"

Scully threw down the police report, though the FBI wasn't officially involved, they had been notified once fingerprints and dental records identified the body.

She would cry later, afterwards. There was an autopsy to perform; the most difficult one she'd ever had to do, bar none.

~fini~


Notes

Fandom: The X-Files

Category/Rated: Slash/Adult

Year/Length: 2001/ ~5100 words

Pairing: Mulder/Kryek

Spoilers: Major Spoilers Ahead. Assume every thing that has been televised in the USA for the last 80 years, especially everything on Sunday nights for the last year-- or so. (or at least they were at the time. You're not going to be very surprised anymore.)

Disclaimer: deepest apologies to Charles Dickens and all his heirs and literary successors. I've taken many, many liberties with the time-space continuum and canon. Nothing is to be taken seriously. All John Donne quotes taken out of context and subverted for my own evil purposes; no permission was obtained from either author. 1013 and Chris Carter? Bite Me, Boyz.

Warning: This proceeds into territory many find untenable. Read at your own risk-this is NOT a warm cheery holiday confection.

Summary: In which I slay Dickens and Donne and Mulder.

Author's Notes: Cover by Jamie, from when it was hosted on her Holiday Story Archive, for which the story was specifically written. Both she and the site are out of fandom, but I was able to save a little bit.

Beta: My darling Sue, of course!

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