Slashx: 30 July 1998
ArchiveX: 30 July 1998
Nuktos 'Agalma
-- MJ
Disclaimer: Mulder, Skinner, and Scully are in bondage to Chris Carter, 1013, and FOX. I have released them temporarily, but will be forced to return them eventually, unless they can escape. Jonathan Craigie can belong to whatever prison he can get shoved into (the sooner the better).
Author note: PG-13 at best; language, visits to a fetish shop, trips to a leather bar, some implied S&M, a religious sicko, all that fun stuff. M/Sk slash, M/Sk slash, M/Sk slash! If you don't like any of it, don't be here. "Nuktos 'Agalma" is Ezra Pound's bad Greek for "the glory of night". It seems appropriate. If you're looking for my usual - this ain't it.
Slashx: 30 July 1998
ArchiveX: 30 July 1998
I should mention that I was one of the gay activists who protested Al Pacino's flick "Cruising". However, I always wondered if the concept could be redeemed if the cop wasn't a homophobic SOB and was into leather himself. I was thinking more of Jeffrey Dahmer when I started this story, but the Pacino movie came to mind later on into the writing.
Thanks to JiM and Pares for betas and encouragement. Pares, I promise I'll do an NC-17 version...


Nuktos 'Agalma
-- MJ

The telephone in my bedroom rings, awakening me. I wake easily; I have allowed myself the luxury of becoming unused to sleeping alone as of late. Alone tonight, as I have been for the past six nights, I have slept far less soundly. Wearily, I reach over to answer it, half-expecting the voice on the other end to be my lover's, hoping that it is. I am wrong, and disappointed. Instead, it is Agent Scully. From her greeting, I know that something is not right before I even hear her statement.

"What do you mean, he's missing?" How can you tell if Fox Mulder is missing when on an investigation? He's not the king of information dispensing, or of leaving his backup a forwarding address. Besides, why doesn't she just dial his cel phone? I don't think I'd given them that outrageous a task; I'd sent them to help the Philadelphia field office profile and locate a ritual killer. Mulder was the obvious choice for the task; not only have we no better profiler in this agency, but who else writes articles on serial killers and the occult? You've got a Satanist running loose with a string of bizarre killings? It's a Mulder assignment. What could make Mulder disappear? He's probably stupidly following the scent of whomever he'd pinned down on the profile without notifying backup, as usual.

Scully continued. Gone for two days? That's a little bit different. Now I'm uncomfortable. He should have checked in with her. For that matter, why didn't I demand that he call me? No, I know the answer to that one. Too controlling. I don't want him to think I'm possessive. I am possessive, as far as that goes, but we haven't been together long enough for him to see that side of me yet. He may, however, be about to find out about the fact anyway; I tell Scully that I will be there as soon as possible this morning. Kimberly can fend off my usual unscheduled appointments and unexpected meetings while rescheduling my scheduled and expected ones. She is protective of me. I like that about her; sometimes she's my last line of defense. With this unplanned detour from my week, I'll need that defense. I don't think she'll mind. I think she knows I'm seeing Mulder; she's got that "I've got a secret" look all over her, and she gets it every time he stops by my office these days. That means she's ahead of Scully, who makes it clear that she's surprised by my decision to handle this myself.

I rise, shower, pack an overnight bag. I won't be able to get back to sleep; I'll meet Scully at their hotel for breakfast. I ought to be able to drive up there by seven-thirty. She'll fill me in, and I want to search Mulder's room first thing. If his laptop's still there, I want to look at what he's logged in on this case.

* * * * *

To know your suspect, you must become your suspect. I've always believed that, and when I do the occasional profiling workshop at Quantico, I preach that. I do it well; maybe too well. I'm doing it too well now; I know that, but I can't help it. I don't have to become my suspect; I am my suspect already. I need only ask myself, what would I do in his circumstances? I can tell you about him in no time. He's white, in his thirties, a college-educated professional. And he's so far in the closet that you can't even find the closet door to let him out. My gut tells me it's a religious hangup; I'm banking on his having a clergyman for a father. He's into leather, and he's an S&M bottom - he's working out his guilt by using his sexual habits to punish himself for his own sexuality. I'm the king of guilt, no doubt about that - I can see this guy in the mirror. I'm not quite as bad as he is; I've always left my closet door ajar, anyway. And I don't have the religious guilt - but I could, easily, if I were a believer. If I were Catholic, like Scully, I'd be doing the same thing this jerk is, and getting off on hair shirts. His only real problem - oh, yes, it's a problem - is that he blames his sex partners for attracting him. He lets them punish him for being a queer, to relieve himself of his guilt. Then he kills them, because it's their fault he's slipped off the path of virtue.

I can't ask Scully to help me with this one. It's too dangerous, and where I'll have to go to find him she'll be too obvious. I don't want these Philly boys helping me out; they're too straight, and way too vanilla. The lead agent is obsessed with the idea that it's a college-age Satanist who's looking for power by making human sacrifices. I knew these weren't based on anything metaphysical immediately. No X-File here, but it's still something I know about. If I'd known before I'd left, I'd have packed my leather. I wasted a huge wad of cash yesterday getting outfitted, and a huge block of time trying to get the newness out of the leather. I don't think the Bureau's going to reimburse me for this outfit, either. I have to admit that these boots I bought off of South Street are nicer than the ones I have at home, though. Wonder if I can get Walter to approve the payment if I wear this to the office so he can see it? Two and a half months now, and I don't know how he feels about leather. God, could I see that chest of his in a leather harness... damn, he can top me anytime, any place. It took me two years, but I finally got him to come on to me, thank God.

I don't see my guy anywhere around here yet. This isn't the best leather bar I've ever been in, but it's fairly large; I'd guess most of the leather men in town come here. Damn, the one in those leather jeans, over by the bar - he could eat me for dinner anytime he wants... but that's not what I'm here for. And I have to remind myself - if I want to meet this guy, I've got to project "top", not "do me". Nice thing about this, though - I can leave my handcuffs in reach at all times. I was here yesterday, too; I've got a feeling he's out on weeknights. The after hours club here, downstairs, sees a lot of action. It reminds me of a couple of back rooms I've known, with the addition of some nicely constructed dungeon equipment for the ambitious. I have to admit that the show last night was something; I wouldn't have minded volunteering to help but I didn't think it would do to get too tied up -literally - while doing a lookout. By the time this place is shutting down, Scully may be getting up. She's probably looking for me, if I know her. Do I go back to the hotel or not? If she finds out I'm trying to pick up the killer by trying to pick him up, she'll want to tie me up herself - which would be interesting in an odd kind of way; I've never let a woman do top on me... but I don't think I could get Scully to do that for fun. She'd just be trying to keep me in one place while everyone else fucks up this case. The only way this guy won't be a needle in a haystack is here in his own scene. And I'm not going to waste time training other agents to pretend they're leather men - let's be realistic about this. So - where do I crash for a while?

* * * * *

The manager lets me into Mulder's room. Scully follows, hard on my heels. I ask her to boot up Mulder's computer while I search; after all, she knows his passwords. I could venture a guess, but I don't know for sure, and I've respected his privacy on his computer to date. I may also see things around the room a bit differently than Scully might - like these charge receipts he's left in the drawer, and a couple of sales slips. Black jeans, black tee shirt. Leather jacket. Motorcycle boots. Leather wrist cuffs. A receipt from a store called Condom Nation. I don't think he took Scully with him when he went on this little excursion, and as nothing on these slips is here in the room... Yes, there it is; the local gay bar guide. Two leather bars here in town, and he's got them both circled. I'm not altogether stupid; I've looked in Mulder's bedroom closet since we started seeing each other. I know he owns leather. I've never asked him how far he's into the scene, and he's never mentioned it to me. I haven't been sure if he keeps it for show, the way a number of men do, or if he really is into it. It occurs to me that he might think I couldn't handle the subject; after all, I don't exactly radiate "kink". I console myself with the thought that sex with me apparently hasn't bored him too badly so far; after all, we've been together nearly three months and he's still enthusiastic about it, not to mention exhausting. I'm not as young as I used to be; keeping up with him is a challenge sometimes.

I don't suppose he's bought all of this just for a night on the town. I could see him hitting a bar or two; I could see him making a pickup, as long as Scully didn't know about it. I'd hope that he wouldn't, although I certainly haven't approached him about my feelings on that matter. At least he buys condoms... But nobody's going to go to the expense of buying full leather gear just to get a couple of drinks and try to score. And he and Scully drove up together; how would he explain buying all of this and carrying it back, unless he thought it was case-related? I try to piece the picture together in my head. Scully calls over to me; she's found a file on one of the disks in Mulder's case. She says he's run a few pieces of it past her already, but not everything she sees here. I come over to the table to read what she's found.

Jesus, Mulder. You think you've pegged someone who's doing ritualized killing as part of an S&M scene and you're going to play do-it-yourself? Scully hasn't seen the shopping receipts, but if this is what you think this bastard does, I know enough about the warped way your genius works to know that you'd decide to beard the lion in its den. I can understand why you didn't tell Scully all about it - hell, she'd probably have sedated you and had you strapped to the bed. I wish she had, come to think of it. If you go get yourself killed on this one, I'll... I'll... well, I'll think of something. If you don't get killed I'm sedating you and having you strapped to my bed. And you're not leaving, ever. Even if I have to learn to like leather to make sure. Now, how the hell do I explain to Scully that you're cruising leather bars looking for this slimeball? And where are you right now? The bars have been closed for six hours. I hope to hell you haven't met up with this one already.

* * * * *

I need to shower. I feel really, really dirty. The things my mind does to me - if people knew, they'd never speak to me again. I put that choir robe on every Sunday morning, and I go up in that loft, and it's like that altar painting of Jesus can just see right through my skin. If you think we're dirty on the outside, imagine what Jesus sees when he looks inside us. How can we ever be clean enough to worship Him? Thank God there are people to punish me for what I do. I've got the scars on my back to prove it, Lord. If they beat me long enough, maybe the sin will go away - is that what I enjoy about it? But if I enjoy it when they punish me, then it's not punishment, is it? How dare I enjoy being punished? But how dare they make me like it? I ask them to punish me, and they make me enjoy what they're doing to me.

 Which sin is greater - enjoying the punishment, so that it fails to punish me, or their ruining my punishment and holding me in this sin? When they do that, Lord, I have to punish them. They're keeping me from you, Jesus; they don't want me to meet you. Even thinking about some of those men and the way they've punished me can get me worked up, like right now, thinking about that one a few weeks ago, with the cock rings. I need to shower again; I need to clean these feelings out of me. I ought to be punished for feeling this way; Romans says the Lord doesn't like it. Sodom and Gomorrah; my Dad preached a fine sermon on that once, made me feel like I was right there. God was right to punish that kind of filth, just like I need to be punished for thinking about it.

* * * * *

I don't know where he is right now, but I can guess where he'll be tonight -at one or both of those two bars, looking for an unsub that fits his profile. Going after a serial killer who's into S&M with no backup? Mulder, you're a moron. Have I ever told you that you don't have the common sense you were born with? Well... yes, I guess I have. Okay, options. I get the Philly boys out after him. No way... I can't think of anyone in the office here who doesn't just radiate "federal agent". And going into a leather bar in a gray suit and wingtips is just not going to cut it. Besides, they've got to be pissed enough at him already for disagreeing with the SAC's profile, though they've got to be aware he's invariably right... Option two - Scully? Forget that one. I don't care if she's tougher and meaner than every leather master in the place, and I haven't the slightest doubt that she is... I'm not being a sexist to say that I can't send a woman in; I just can't send a woman in there without her getting way too much attention. Too conspicuous. Option three -I go in myself. If you want something done right, you've got to do it yourself anyway.

Jesus. I've got to explain this to Scully. She's looking at me like she thinks I know something she doesn't. True enough; I do. Now, how much can I get away without explaining to her? Stick to facts on this. Mulder's out trailing a gay male serial killer who hits leather clubs, so to find Mulder we wait until the bars open and start scouting, because the paper trail in his room says that's where he'll be. We presume that he hasn't met up with our unsub because he hasn't contacted anyone, and because this guy ditches the bodies in pretty conspicuous locations and a new one hasn't been found. And if you'll excuse me for a couple of hours, I'd better get the names of those stores Mulder hit because I'm not going in there looking like a federal bureaucrat. I wonder if Scully's ever fainted in her life, but I'm going to find out.

* * * * *

He did WHAT? I do not believe I'm hearing this. No, it's Mulder; I believe it. He's bought enough leather to denude an entire herd of cows, and he's out looking for Mr. Goodbar. Shit, Mulder, I'm going to kill you myself if this bastard doesn't get you first... Oh, fuck, I want to laugh. This is so infernally stupid... no news; we're talking about Mulder... Mulder in LEATHER? I just cannot imagine... uh, no, if I try really hard, maybe... oooh, sorry, I CAN see that... damn, he's probably pretty hot... it's only a look, anyway; I mean, he wouldn't actually... I am not going to think about it; there are some things you really shouldn't know about your partner and I think this is one of them. I'd hate to have to scratch him off my cheap thrill fantasy list.

Okay, head on straight, woman. Skinner has a plan? That's better than I was doing. Okay, he goes in to look; I follow and wait outside in my car. I'd rather have him miked, but I probably couldn't hear over the bar sounds anyway. He finds Mulder; he drags Mulder out of there, and if I get my way I'm sending Mulder to a psychiatrist for this one. That begs the question of how anyone finds this unsub, but the boys here don't want to look for anyone who doesn't fit their profile anyway. Why they call us in to help and then get pissed when we do it is beyond me. They asked for profiles; Mulder gave them profiles. I don't think he gave them a couple of the speculations he's got on disk; I don't recognize them. Leave it to him to prove it himself rather than to pass on something he's not absolutely certain about.

Huh? We're going shopping? For... WHAT? I think I'm back in "I don't believe this" land... I get to help my boss, the AD, buy leather gear? The nuns didn't warn me about this back in Catholic school...

* * * * *

I need to be punished. What would be the best way to do it? Perhaps a riding crop? I don't have one... but I can get one. I'll have to leave work for a couple of hours this morning, but that's all right; I have to make a Post Office run anyway. I can make a detour. Lord, free us of our sins. There's a better world than this one, and I need to find my way. Dad said there was a white robe for everyone up there, but you have to be free from sin first. I can do that; I know I can.

* * * * *

So... I've got a lot of time. Maybe I should check the cycle clubs? No, I don't think this guy rides. Porn? Fetish books? Maybe, but I doubt it. He probably burns porn, at least during the week. I'll bet he's a browser, one of the guys that stands around and reads, but won't buy. Too many places in this town to check out; besides, he'd be at work right now. I'd better find some place to clean up and grab a newspaper and a burger. Shave? Nah, I bet anything my boy's into stubble. I don't know; I've just got a feeling about this evening. Those bodies have all been found on Friday mornings.

* * * * *

I'll bet Mulder wishes he could see this... Poor Scully; I think she's going to die from embarrassment. I just hope she doesn't check the next room; I think the dildo collection might do her in. That clerk's getting a kick out of watching her... Hmmm... you know, this jacket's pretty damn nice. I wouldn't normally go for a leather jacket, but this would be worth keeping; I could get some actual wear out of this. What to go under it? Let's not overdo it here... those rigs there are expensive and they probably have some kind of purpose I don't know about... although Mulder probably does. I wonder if - no, I'd probably better bring him along and have him tell me. I doubt if any of the Philly agents ever come here; I think we could drive up here some Saturday and... I know, I'll do the jacket, no shirt. Thank God for bench presses.

Okay, studded leather belt; that works. Wonder if I should hang my cuffs on it. Oh, geez; Scully's really squirming, isn't she? That guy checking out the leather paddles and the riding crops is driving her nuts. It must be that spiked paddle that did it. Keep a straight face, Walter. There could be some real fun teasing Scully later about that. Cap - yes or no? Covers the bald spot, but I could probably look tougher without it. Ugh - I wish that guy with the riding crops would bug out of here; he's cruising me and I do NOT feel like dealing with him. I have no idea why he's irritating me so much, unless I'm being overly sensitive about trying all this stuff on. No, I won't ask Scully if I should do bare chest, leather vest, and wrist gauntlets; I think she'll pass out. Besides, I'd almost have to do the cap then.

Walter Skinner, why are you making this much of a fuss out of picking this gear up? It should be a nice, simple "grab a leather jacket and a pair of black jeans" procedure. That would be enough to pass muster on most evenings at the average bar, even a leather bar. So why are you worrying this much about how it's going to look?

Because we have to impress lover boy, that's what. Because Fox Mulder better take one look at this and decide he's my love slave for his next three lives. If I get even one snicker out of him for wearing this, I will personally break every bone in his body. I want one look and abject worship. I wouldn't have gone through any of the rest of this myself for any agent other than Mulder -well, possibly Scully, but that's about it. I do not, I suppose, really need to buy any of this at all; I could walk in and do the "federal agent" thing perfectly well. Except I'm vain enough to know that I am going to look great in this, and therefore I'll impress Mulder no end. Next thing you know I'll be going to the carnival and playing for the really big stuffed animals just to show him I can do it. Love is turning my brain to mush.

* * * * *

Bartender recognizes me - he ought to; it's my third night in a row. I've been tipping him well enough, too; you never know when you're going to need them. Do I order the club soda and lime or the nonalcoholic beer this time? Crowd's bigger tonight - well, they're pushing that Thursday nights promotion. Guy probably hits during the crowds, so there's not too much notice being paid. Hmmm... time to play "spot the homicidal maniac." There's the guy in the leather jeans again... God, does he look like dinner... What I need to do is check the new crowd... no, he won't be a top; he won't be butch... no, the guy with the tattoos is not it by a longshot... he's gonna look fairly straight... sort of... like... him, in the corner. Oh, lordy day, check out the crucifix. No vampire's gonna mess with him... and a bottom if I ever saw one. Bet he's never switched roles once in his life... Time to pump the bartender, see if I should send our boy a drink... Single... bottom... in occasionally on Thursdays... nobody actually knows him... some of the regulars nicknamed him "the choirboy"... okay, what's he drink? Make eye contact, start staring... okay, quit staring, look around the room a few times... look back, make eye contact again... I hate cruising... I want to go home and curl up with Walter... okay, he's got the drink.

He's moved in a bit... okay, how far do I play this out? I can't bust him yet, got to get him out of here... could be wrong but I don't think so... nice riding crop, sweetie; bet you don't know how to use it... if a suspect engages you in consensual S&M before you bust him when you were planning to bust him first, is it police brutality? You know, I never bothered to think about how this is going to sound in court... "Yes, that's correct; I did pick the defendant up at a leather bar and we went back to his place, whereupon he requested that I tie him up and tickle his feet with feathers until he achieved orgasm. Upon release he then lunged at me with a butcher knife that was not mutually agreed upon beforehand as part of the scene we were creating, which alerted me to its likelihood of being a homicidal attack." Do I care? He's nailed seven poor bastards already... Hell, if I can get him to come straight at me I can always plug him; sure they'll investigate it, but he won't get off...

Walter's going to kill me when he finds out about this one... guess I'll find out if he loves me or not, huh? Okay, here comes trouble; time to give him The Look... I remember what Walter did when I gave it to him - but I meant that one... God, is it loud in here... might have to talk to him outside... why does it suddenly occur to me that I wish I had backup?

* * * * *

Deep breath, Walter. She's parked right across the street from the place. We've both got weapons and handcuffs, just in case. All I have to do is go in, find Mulder, haul him off - I'd probably get a round of applause if I cuff him to do it - and order the SAC here to change profiles for the unsub. I wish Scully would quit staring. She's trying really hard to pretend she isn't, but she is. I'm not sure if she's amused, interested, or alarmed. Neighborhood's safe enough; I don't have to worry about her... wonder if Mulder's in here yet? There are at least two floors to check... yes, I do have my cel phone; Scully calls me if she sees him coming in... as if I'll hear it over the noise... the music's going to be pretty painful...

Cover charge on a Thursday? That takes nerve... Nice enough place; I thought it might be more of a dive... push my way through here... yeah, buddy? Like what you see, huh? Good for you; you're not getting any. Same for you, sweetie; this top's taken, got it? Hmmm... the "looking for my boyfriend" routine's believable enough, and it's true anyway... Don't see him anywhere... better check out the downstairs... oh, great, I always wanted to get groped by a guy with purple hair... I didn't think I was going to draw this much attention... maybe Mulder's right? I didn't think I was that hot... better not let it get to my head...

Uh... is that legal? A dungeon setup? Boy, am I ever out of the loop... if this is what I'm missing, I'm not sure I'm missing anything... I can sort of see the leather business generally - but getting tied to a frame and flogged in public had better not be Mulder's idea of a good time... or else he'd better find a substitute I'll tolerate... don't see him anywhere down here either... oh, God, groped by another reject... better ask the bartender, and it won't be a problem at all to sound like a pissed-off boyfriend... because I am very pissed-off at Fox Mulder right now...

Huh? No way. Oh, fucking wonderful. Mulder meets some clown here tonight and does the dungeon floor show with him, and they've left? Fifteen minutes ago... that's maybe three minutes before I got here... Process information, don't blow up... Okay, the guy was the bottom... that fits Mulder's profile... I refuse to imagine my lover swinging a riding crop at anyone... uh, riding crop? I just saw someone buying one today... get the description... whoa, the bartender thinks I'm going to blow up - I just about could, actually... shit, that's the jerk from the leather store... that place is open until midnight; wonder if they've got that guy's address... wonderful, some idiot's shoving a phone number at me... I'd better not wear this to the office... I don't want to have to beat up the secretarial pool...

* * * * *

Mulder, I am fucking going to kill you. It's not bad enough that you've gone off with a homicidal maniac and we don't know where you are... but on top of that, I have my boss hauling me with him to some kind of really weird shop full of leather and latex outfits and stuff that I absolutely do not want to know about, not just once but twice in one day. Worse yet, my boss appears to know what he's buying... which I do not find encouraging. I won't lie - he really looks good in it, but that doesn't make me any more comfortable about feeling that Skinner's not uncomfortable enough. And judging by your shopping list, big guy, either you knew what you were looking for or someone did a pretty good job suiting you up... am I surrounded by lunatic men, or what?

Okay, Skinner, I'm interviewing the sales clerk in the leather harness and chaps with the pierced nose. I hope you're happy. I'm sure this is just because I look a lot more like an FBI agent than you do at the moment - hell, if you ask for this jerk's name and address they'll think it's a pickup effort no matter how close you shove that badge to their faces... but I am still fucking embarrassed enough to die... Oh, my God, that guy is looking at what has got to be a thirteen-inch - um... one of those. Jonathan Craigie, Apartment 133, 422 Sansom Place... that's not all that far from here... Mulder, if anything's happened to you, I am going to kill you, do you hear me?

* * * * *

The riding crop didn't work, Jesus. Even the public humiliation didn't work. I was sure this one could save me for you, but it didn't work. I still liked it. I might even have liked it more than I usually do... and that makes it an even bigger sin... I've brought him back here, father, because he's another one that's done the same thing to me, making me enjoy myself when I'm supposed to be repenting. I'll have to do what I've done to all the others... where did I put those Percocets? I can put those in the coffee... despite what I have to do to them, I hate it if they know what's happening...

* * * * *

I don't see anything interesting here... no dungeon equipment in the living room, the bathroom, or his bedroom... as long as he's in the kitchen making coffee I can keep looking around... he's probably got the murder weapon in the kitchen, so I should watch when he comes out of there... didn't Jeffrey Dahmer invite his victims back for coffee? Something's bothering me; what am I not remembering here? Dahmer... okay, he'd bring out coffee loaded with sleeping pills and wait for them to pass out... Coffee? Four of the seven victims had recently had coffee... and all four had muscle relaxants in their systems; okay, he's doping the coffee. Potted palm right by the sofa - that's where the coffee goes... how long should it take me to look like I'm starting to go under?

* * * * *

Knock and announce time, lady... give 'em my best "FBI! Open up!" before I politely let Skinner kick the door in for me... I could probably kick this one in myself, but the guys seem to think it's their prerogative... and I am not going to argue with a very large man wearing boots like those. What on earth will he do with them after this case? Of course, what's Mulder intend to do with that cow and a half he must be wearing? I just can't see him on a Harley...

* * * * *

Hey, backup! Nice idea, Scully; how'd you do it? However - watch me handle this myself, lady... One grab for the wrist and a sucker punch... and I get to play with the handcuffs anyway. Hey, Walter, watch this - Walter? What's he doing here? More to the point, look at what he's wearing... damn! Got to keep the mind on the work here...

* * * * *

Thank God he's in one piece - he's going to do the "I had it under control the whole time" thing now, I know it... like hell you did, Mulder; if we hadn't startled this jerk you'd be confetti... don't think I could handle that... nice bust, I've got to admit it, but without backup... Oh, am I going to ream you out, Mulder... well, maybe I'll wait to ream you out until after I'm done reaming you out... God, is he hot in that outfit... wonder what they'll think when we head back to the hotel... oh, my God, we've got to take him down to have him booked, and we're wearing this? I will never be able to show my face in this office again... Hmmm - Scully's not looking...

* * * * *

Did I just hear Mulder call him "Walter" or not? Uh... yeah... he must have... because I think I'm going to check out the kitchen very quickly... because I think if I turn around I'm going to see something I am not up to dealing with this evening...or it sure sounds like it, anyway... how long has * that * been going on? And how have I missed it? Boy, have I been leading a sheltered life...

* * * * *

Jesus H. fucking Christ... I just realized I've gotta get this dude booked... wonder if I can send Scully to do it? No, I'm gonna have to go in... wonder if Scully can get him down there herself while I change clothes? Uh - which reminds me - where did I put my badge? It's gotta be here somewhere... I'll look for it when I'm done saying hello here... mmmmm, Walter Skinner half-naked in black leather? Works for me - damn this timing; I've got Scully in the next room, a murder suspect in handcuffs, and Walter looking like the top man from hell in here kissing me hello - shit, how * are * we gonna explain this to Scully? Like hearing her partner and her boss, in matching leathers, slobbering over each other in the next room requires explanation, right. Shit, Walter's going to transfer me to Sioux City...

* * * * *

I am sweltering in this jacket. That's all there is to it; I'm dripping. The bar was too hot, this is too hot. Should have bought the vest and gauntlets instead... it would've saved me about seventy bucks, too... on the other hand, if I'd known I'd get this kind of reaction from Mulder, I'd've bought both... fuck it, Scully's going to notice this in a minute. Mulder, if I weren't so glad to see you I'd kill you. Now, how the hell are we going to explain this to Scully without my sending someone to Jackson Hole, Wyoming? Maybe I can just have anyone who sees us tonight transferred to Jackson Hole before they tell the rest of the Bureau about how this bust got made? Will Mulder kill me if I send Scully to Jackson Hole? Before Scully kills me for sending her to Jackson Hole?

* * * * *

Wonderful. Just wonderful. I've got a serial killer in cuffs, my partner and my boss are making out in the next room - they can quit drooling "hello" at each other any time, now - you hear me thinking this, Mulder? And I get to go with them to drag this guy in while they're dressed like a cycle gang? Sure. Fine. Whatever. The Philly office is never going to let us up here again -not that that's necessarily a bad thing... I sure as hell don't ever want to run into the guys from up here at any seminars again after we haul this scumbag in, because I will never live down the reaction those two will get when we book him... Maybe I'll transfer. Someplace far, far away from Philly. Why do I always have bad luck in Philadelphia? Oh, God, send me to Fargo. Or Butte.

* * * * *

Mulder's had a really rough time, hasn't he? Guess I'll give him tomorrow and Monday off. Maybe I need to take tomorrow and Monday off... break in this jacket? I may be lucky if Mulder lets me get out of this jacket - of course, I'll be even luckier if he doesn't... shit, we really do need to get the locals called and get this guy hauled out of here. The sooner we do that, the sooner that Friday off starts. Book 'em, Dano.