RATales Archive

All Of It

by Loren Q.

Title: All of It
Author: Loren Q (loren.q@att.net)
Website: http://lzl.dreamhost.com/
Fandom: X-Files
Pairing: None
Rating: PG for violence. PG? An LZL story with a PG rating!?
Archive: Basement, RatB, CKoS, all others please ask.
Spoilers: Big absolute fat one for Existence.
Summary: Just a snippet - no sex, no UST. My version of what really happened in the garage.
Beta Thanks: Louise Wu, Zoe T
I disregarded a lot of good beta advice, so don't blame them--it's all me.
Disclaimer: Chris Carter and 1013 Productions own the X-Files series characters. Although based on how CC & Co. treat them...
Warning: All but the end of this story is the actual dialog from 'that scene' in Existence.

I turn my head sharply toward the sound of shattering glass followed by the unmistakable snick of a gun being cocked.

Moving cautiously, quietly, I peer around the wall and see Alex Krycek, gun raised and pointed through a smashed car window

"Get out of the car," he says in a voice that betrays... sadness.

I watch as Mulder exits the driver side door.

"Doesn't seem fair now. Doesn't seem right, coming down to this." Krycek's voice is strained, almost apologetic.

"What would you know about fair or right, Krycek? You're a coward." Mulder's reply is cold, ice-bound rage.

Krycek's eyes narrow, his shoulders move up slightly... protectively. "I could've killed you so many times, Mulder. You've got to know that." Mulder's eyes narrow as he makes his way around the back of the car, a look of disgust crossing his face.

"I'm the one that kept you alive," Krycek continues, "praying you'd win somehow."

"Then there really isn't a god." Contempt dripping from each word.

"You think I'm bad, that I'm a killer. We wanted the same thing, brother. That's what you don't understand."

Mulder's momentary look of surprise is replaced by disdain. "I tried to stop them. All you wanted was to save your own ass."

"No. I tried to stop them. Tried to kill Scully's baby to stop them. It's too late. The tragedy is that you--you wouldn't let it go." The passion in Krycek's voice, the pain on his face, surprises me. "That's why I have to do this. Because you know how deep it goes, right into the FBI."

"You want to kill me, Alex, kill me." Mulder's arrogance... just daring Krycek to fire. "Like you killed my father. Just don't insult me by trying to make me understand." A flicker of... something in Mulder's eyes is quickly replaced by a look of indifference.

His apparent lack of emotion shows just how deeply this is impacting him. I didn't think he cared.

Krycek aims, his resolve wavering... just long enough.

A shot rings out, and Krycek yells in pain, his body moving with the impact of a bullet hitting his arm. I wince in sympathy and look away. When I turn back, I see Skinner, gun held at the ready, walking toward them.

Krycek struggles to reach his own weapon only to be shot again. Down and groaning, gasping in obvious pain, Krycek pushes his prosthetic hand against the gun butt.

What is he doing? Is he trying to pathetically pick it up, or is he pushing it away? An offer in exchange for his life? Or suicide by Skinner?

Through his agony, he looks up at Skinner. "It's going to take more bullets than you can ever fire to win this game." His breathing becomes harsher. His words come hard. "But one bullet and I can give you a thousand lives." Krycek turns his head to Mulder, then back to Skinner. "Shoot Mulder."

An impassive Skinner looks at Mulder. Mulder, unusually restrained, looks back. Krycek watches them both and rises to his knees.

Skinner raises his weapon slightly, Krycek's eyes show a glimmer of hope until the shot hits him.

With all the deaths I have seen, this is the first time I've heard what they call a death rattle. I move back and rest my head against the wall. Closing my eyes, I wait.

"I'm going to go to the airport, I need that location from Agent Doggett." Mulder's voice... strained, but oddly subdued. Despite what he just witnessed.

The sound of a car door opening, then "Skinner, you with me?"

"You just go. I'll get him." Skinner says with the barest hint of... remorse.

I peer around when I hear a car drive off.

Skinner is halfway to the elevator when he stops and returns to Krycek's body. He holsters his gun and runs his hand over his mouth. His eyes squeeze shut as anguish crosses his face, replaced a moment later by resolve.

He bends over Krycek's body and rifles though the jacket pockets. Skinner stands up, empty handed. "Damn, " he quietly mutters. He closes his eyes again, and I watch his shoulders rise with a deep breath. He turns and leaves the garage.

I hold my position until I hear the elevator, then walk out to the now-dead Krycek.

It's strange... staring at your own lifeless corpse. I hope when my time *really* comes, it will be more... dignified.

I'm oddly at peace, other than a sense of the macabre in witnessing my own death. I thought I'd be vengeful, angry. But seeing the faces of the men who killed me put me at ease.

Mulder will always be tortured. Nothing I could do to him will ever equal what he does to himself. He's always regretted that one night in New York. Maybe now he can feel delivered from it.

Skinner... he'll have his own demons to face. He'll rationalize that it was needed, self defense. I reach into my pocket and pull out the nano-control pad. I wonder if he knows he's free now. I wonder what he would give for that knowledge.

Putting the pad back, I pull out a switchblade and flick it open. I kneel next to my replicant and, with a grunt, flip it prone. Using the knife, I cut the nodule from its neck.

Standing up, I watch it melt away. Soon there will be no evidence, just another X-File. These replicants... each so unique. Some feeling, thinking, almost sentient. Others--automatons to a specific mission. Each destroyed differently.

Cadres of replicants. Some working to save mankind, some in opposition.

Mulder and Skinner... my valediction in blood gives them the *direct* knowledge of how deep this goes. Their need for redemption will drive them tirelessly to expose the corruption, the conspiracy.

Placing the nodule in my prosthetic hand, I use the tip of the blade to disable it. No more extra Kryceks needed... for a while.

I walk back to my car, noticing the lightness of my own step. It worked... all of it.

The End