by Nicholas

Title: Fragile
Author: Nicholas


Pairing: M/K
Category: Unclassified
Rating: PG

Disclaimer: Fox Mulder and Alex Krycek belong to Chris Carter, Ten-Thirteen Productions and 20th Century FOX Broadcasting. No copyright infringement is intended and no profit is being made from their use.

Notes: Beta'd by Gaby. Thanks girl. :)


"And don't forget the plants. Fox? Fox, you hear me, don't forget the plants," he half-yells through the apartment, the last pieces of stray clothing dragged from beneath the bed, sniffed, scrutinized, and wedged between razor and the second pair of shoes he never forgets. "And do eat something," he continues out of breath, a last flashing look through the room before he snaps the suitcase shut, "you know, I don't want to come back to see your bones shining through." He slides the suitcase from the bed, dragging it through the apartment to the door. "And do remember Miss Doherty's birthday next week. You know," he stops in front of his smirking lover, skidding to a stop with a breathless gasp, "you know, that's the woman next door." He stares at his lover. "What?" he says irritated, blowing an errant strand of hair from his face, his hands on his hips, the challenge gleaming in his eyes.

"Yes, Dad," Mulder says, the amusement playing around his lips. "And I will remember to brush my teeth twice a day." He rolls his eyes exasperatedly, his eyebrows raised.

Alex huffs out a laugh, drawing his fingers through his hair, setting the suitcase down before his eyes move from his lover to the ground. "You know I worry," he says softly, blinking up once before he studies the patchwork carpet. " forget so much these days, Fox." He bites his lip, once more daring a glance to see whether he has gone too far.

The amused gleam leaves Mulder's eyes, a dull serious shadow settles there. "I know," he admits quietly, sighing dejectedly. "How could I forget, with all the yellow post-its everywhere?" he tries the weak attempt at humor before shuffling closer to his lover, leaning his chin on the suit-clad shoulder and feeling the strong arms hold him. Mulder closes his eyes. "Some days I almost think it's getting better, Alex, really, some days it almost feels like before the, well, you know. How can you deal with me the other days when I wake up in your embrace, trace your features and have to ask you your name?" He cries softly, the tears falling from the hazel eyes.

"Sshhh, Fox," Alex coos, his fingers brushing through his lover's graying hair. "We can do this. It's okay. We will make it."

"But doesn't it," his lover insists, "doesn't it hurt?" He pushes off of the shoulder, focusing on Alex's face, his fingertips tracing lines over it. "I hate to see the pain here," he whispers almost inaudibly. "I hate to see the worry and know I have caused it. And to know that it will be so much worse..." He trails off, his eyes searching for the wall on the other side of the room, for the doorway, anything but the face of the one he loves.

Alex gently grips the chin, forcing Mulder's eyes on his. "You're you, Fox. You are the person I love, everything included. You won't lose me. And I won't lose you." He seals it with a kiss and a smile, his eyes tracking his lover's, grinning at the timid smile he encounters. "See, it's all right." He brushes another kiss across those lips then grabs the suitcase again, smiling openly at his lover who has shuffled back, the hands buried in his pockets.

"You left the number, right?" Mulder asks shyly, glancing at Alex from below his lashes.

"On the kitchen table," Alex replies patiently. "Along with the emergency numbers. And Miss Doherty knows that you are alone and I'll call you. But don't forget to eat something, you know how you get, and don't throw away that eating-note just because you believe it is stupid. And right, the plants, don't forget the plants..."

"...and if I do I am sure there is a yellow sticky note somewhere reminding me of it," Mulder continues mischievously, the amused gleam back.

"Exactly," Alex breathes, grinning widely. "I overdo it sometimes, eh?" he asks.

Mulder answers with a sloppy, wet kiss to his lips and a last ruffle of the hair. "You'll miss your plane," he says, shooing his lover out of the door.

"I know," Alex replies, pausing once more in the hallway. "I'll miss you," he whispers once more, another quick kiss to Mulder's lips.

"I will, too," Mulder adds softly, and a grin settles back on his face, "at least when I remember you," he deadpans, the well-used joke still eliciting a smile on Alex's face.

"Take care," Alex whispers through the gap of the half-closed door before he turns to walk down the hallway.

"One week," Mulder whispers to himself as he leans against the closed door, his eyes shut. Only one week, he tells himself with a deep breath. He slowly opens his eyes, grinning at the sea of yellow sticky notes tapped to every available surface. He sighs once more, then sits back down at the kitchen table, his crossword puzzle still open. He takes the pencil and begins filling the squares with shaky letters. The morning light spills onto the kitchen floor in a myriad of colors.

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