Redemption

by dossier

Notes & Warnings

He awoke in a strange place, and for Alex Krycek that was a feat some magnitude not just because he had been in a lot of strange places in his short life, but it was the fact that he awoke at all that shocked him most.

The last thing he truly recalled was passing through to the other side. Cliché, yes-- but nonetheless, here he was. There was no light at the end of his tunnel, there was no lightness of being, no relief, almost nothing.

He'd had a pair of escorts, though. They didn't speak, and offered no succor for his pain, and there was plenty of that.

Staring down the barrel of Skinner's gun; the hot, burning pain that coursed through him. Krycek had been shot before; the gunshot scars that crisscrossed his fine white skin were testament to that-- and the knife and burn scars, too. This pain was different, the shocking realization that this was the end, finis, kaput-it made the pain more shockingly real. His own blood had never held such a sharp fascination for him either-the slowing of the heart as he felt the fluid pump out of the wound so fast that he went down into the black unknown almost immediately.

His sight dim dim dim gone; and then the angels. The two faces appeared to him out of obscurity. They were angels-- that was the only thing that they could be, but with visages of horror and grief. Like Scrooges' visit to the Christmas Future, these bleak harbingers made him tremble with fear.

Krycek was no stranger to fear, either, but the bone scrunching dread he felt at seeing them was pure, and unadulterated, and it suddenly defined his entire being. No kind words of compassion or reassurance from these dark twins of Azrael to ease his journey into the unknown.

He walked, on and on in the dank tunnel, glowing eyes staring out from the clefts and the smell of rank malodorous slime assaulting his nose. On and on they trudged, the peculiar puddles splashing with his passage. His companions made no mark as they followed him.

At last the tunnel began to transform and change; the evil eyes receded into the dark, and he no longer trod through wetness. The slime slowly faded away and then the tunnel ended abruptly.

Alex Krycek looked around, suddenly alone, disoriented and confused. For all that he could tell, this was the drawing room at his grandmothers' dacha on the Moskova River, beyond Usovo. It was the formal room where dignitaries, Stassi and lishentsy alike rubbed elbows, and little Alexei had been taught the orthodox faith in secret. The gleaming samovar he had spent hours polishing as punishment for childish pranks still sat on the sideboard, the worn hand loomed carpets on the floor-he recalled having to drag them out to the yard and beat them with a large broom. The fireplace they lay in front of was large enough to roast a small ox contained a small fire, filling the room with warmth and a soft, gentle light that flickered over the walls and draperies.

Alex walked through the room, touching the heirlooms he had all but forgotten in his adult life so far from this place. He knew this place could not exist here and now, he had seen the building burnt in the holocaust that had set his life on the strange path that had led him back to here.

The small icon that was the focus of his childhood catechisms was in its customary place, and out of old habit he made a small genuflection before he realized it. He looked around sheepishly, wondering if he had been caught, and he saw his old benefactor sitting in a chair that faced the fire.

The Old Man looked the same as Alex last remembered him. The lined face that could smile with such warmth or spear you with a steely glance was open and waiting for Alex to acknowledge his presence. Alex knew The Old Man hadn't been there when Alex had appeared in the room, so he assumed they had arrived in the same fashion. Whatever that was.

Alex Krycek leaned over and kissed him on both cheeks then sat in the empty chair next to him. The Old Man offered him a cup of hot tea, from the suddenly steaming samovar. They sat quietly together sipping the fragrant tisane, watching the fire, Krycek waiting for some enlightenment. This wasn't their dynamic-the other Krycek had always questioned the course of action or the context of some idea in the picture as he had it in his mind, and was rarely patient.

This new relationship seemed appropriate, considering Alex's new status as a dead person. He had all the time in the world or out of the world he now appeared to be.

As the two former associates shared the silent companionship, Alex felt himself suffused with an abrupt understanding. He looked at The Old Man with amazement, and his only reply was a knowing smile.

Alex Krycek finished the tea, and stood as he set the cup down. The two escorts who had brought him here were back, but they were changed-or was it that his perception of them had changed?

Krycek took the Old Man's face in his hands, kissed his thin, papery lips, and looked him in the eyes.

The transformation was complete; Alex Krycek understood what his new mission was, and how he was meant to accomplish said tasks.

Little Alexei Krycek had crossed on through to the other side, and there would be no stopping this seraph from the commission of his supernal duties.

~fini~


Notes

Fandom: X-Files

Category/Rated: Gen, E

Year/Length: 2001/ ~940 words

Spoilers: Excressence, er rather Essence. What ever.

Disclaimer: Not mine, no profit, only having fun. Maybe Alex only belongs to himself now.

Summary: My version of what happens next, For the Not Really Dead challenge at the NickZone.

Author's Notes: I had intended on writing more, but on re-reading it, decided screw it. Maybe later. Maybe never.

Beta: My darlinge Sue, of course!

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