TITLE: Playing Poker
SPOILERS: Three of a Kind, The Unnatural, Milagro, etc.
ARCHIVE: Gossamer yes, anywhere else okay too, just let me know.
FEEDBACK: Please, I love it, even one line will do. :)
SUMMARY: Fluff and smut, cunningly disguised as a post-ep fic for Three of a Kind.
DISCLAIMER: Nuh ... aw, okay, not mine, belong to CC, 1013, et al.
THANKS: To bugs, Shawne and Shannon for the beta, and to Caz, for the eggplant recipe. <g>


I hate waiting. Hate it. It's one of my least favourite activities, right up alongside filling out expense reports, getting shot, and watching Scully doze in a hospital bed. I don't do it well, not at the best of times, and certainly not right now, not when I have a plan ... a great plan, waiting to be put in action ... if only I have the guts to carry it out.

I crunch down on another sunflower seed and spit out the shell, flicking it onto the growing pyramid at my elbow. Ignoring the pointed stare from the businessman seated opposite me, I stretch out an arm across the back of the row of hard plastic chairs to my left. Just for kicks, I allow my leather jacket to gape open far enough to reveal the holster sitting on my hip.

I'm bored, impatient and wired.

Scully's plane is late ... at least, the plane I *think* she's on is late.

She doesn't know I'm picking her up. I figured a ride home is the least I could offer, since she apparently zipped across to Vegas at six a.m., so she said, all thanks to me. Actually, this isn't my fault - for once. Why she'd think I'd believe the Gunmen could be onto something *big* is a testament to her trust in me. It's flattering, actually. Or not, perhaps, knowing that she doesn't find it out of the ordinary for her inconsiderate partner to wake her at ... what was it? Oh yes, 2:34.a.m. She remembers irrelevant details like numbers, and so do I, after she's repeated them to me half a dozen times.

So I decided that saving her a long, expensive taxi ride was the least I could do. Especially right now. It's raining, and it'd take her forever to catch a cab with the hordes of other escapees returning to DC at nine o'clock on a Sunday night.


Shit, she's here and I didn't even notice. I jump up and manage to knock half my pile of shells onto the floor, a bumpy grey waterfall onto the mottled blue carpet. "Hey, Scully."

"What are you doing here, Mulder?" Brisk and to the point, that's my partner. She's dressed in a black suit with matching slim pants, and she's wearing a pair of those shoes I try not to fantasise about, the ones with the chunky heels. She looks tired, crumpled, a little pissed off, and gorgeous. What a combination.

I take a deep breath. Remembering the pep talk I gave myself earlier, I fold my arms behind my back and bend down, nonchalantly brushing my mouth across her cheek, way back in the safety zone near her ear. I delicately spit out a mouthful of hair. "I'm saving you a taxi ride."

One half-arched brow is all the reaction I get, but the tense expression on her face lessens somewhat, the tiny commas beside her eyes disappearing. "I left my car in long-term parking," she states, and I can't stop the flash of disappointment from crossing my face before I manage to shift gears back to neutral.

"Oh." Struck dumb, I'm at a loss for something intelligent to say, for anything to say. She takes pity on me.

"But since you're here, you might as well drive me." I nod stupidly, glad for the favour. I reach across and pick up the carry-on suitcase she's placed on the ground beside her. She arches one eyebrow but indulges my desire to play porter, and I trail after her towards the nearest exit.

She's silent on the drive back to her place, a tiny frown creasing her forehead as she stares out the window. Is she watching the passing scenery, the verdant parklands and bloodstone buildings dripping with darkness and rain? Or is she seeing nothing at all?

"What happened in Vegas, Scully?" I sense her startle at the sound of my voice, and I glance over at her as I slow down for a red light. The car is a cocoon, warm and fuzzy, and a little bit suffocating.

She's quiet for so long I'm about to repeat my question, but then she finally answers. "I told you. The Gunmen compiled a recording of your voice to persuade me to go to Vegas to investigate a case for them." She's distracted, with a small touch of impatience. She's going over familiar ground here.

"Oh." I consider that for a moment. "Did you have a uh, a good time? Did you ..." I trail off, not really sure what I want to say, and she sighs.

"Mulder, I'm really tired. Can we just leave this for now?"

Twisting my fingers around the steering wheel, I nod before I realise she's closed her eyes. "Okay." I clear my throat. Damn cold or something coming on.

I pull up to her apartment and switch off the ignition. I clamber out of the car before she can tell me she doesn't want me to come in. I grab her case out of the trunk, and we walk briskly up to her apartment.

Shifting back and forth on my feet, waiting for her to unlock the door, I studiously avoid her gaze. I missed her this weekend. Can I tell her that?

Her door opens and I carry her suitcase inside, taking it down the hallway and leaving it just inside her bedroom. I turn around; she's right behind me. "Coffee?" I ask, and she shakes her head.

"Mulder, I just want to take a shower and fall into bed."

She's in a strange mood tonight. "Are you okay, Scully?" I ask quietly. She's pale. I worry. She closes her eyes for a moment, and leans back against the door jamb. But she's not relaxing, not in front of me; her posture is still straight and ever-so ergonomically correct.

"I'm just tired. It's an after-effect of the drugs."

I swallow. "Drugs?" I try and keep my tone level but she sees right through me, clear and sharp as glass.

"Anoitic histamine. I was ... injected with it in Vegas."

Shit. What the fuck did those paranoid idiots do to her? No wonder she wants to kick their asses. "The Gunmen?" Two words is all I can manage. I allow myself to touch her in a safe spot, her forearm; my thumb rubs rhythmically against the coarse material of her jacket. The gesture soothes me.

She shakes her head. "Mulder, no, of course not. It wasn't them. It wasn't their fault." She looks down at my hand and I loosen my grip when I realise I've been clutching her arm too tightly. "Look, go make yourself some coffee. I'm taking a shower. I'll be out in a minute."

She steps away from me. My eyes fumble after her as she shrugs off her jacket, hanging it neatly in her wardrobe. Her shoes go in the empty space at the far end of the closet, heel to heel. She collects her pyjamas from the third drawer in her dresser and goes into the bathroom. The sound of the door shutting breaks me out of my trance. Slowly, I wander back down the hallway into her living room.

I don't particularly want coffee. It was an excuse, a reason for being, for staying here with her. I grab the remote off the table and flick on the television, sinking down onto the soft pastel warmth of her couch. My weapon digs into my side and I sit up to remove it, placing it carefully on the table. I shed my jacket too, draping it over the back of the nearest armchair.

I watch the images flickering back and forth on the screen without much interest. They shapeshift like me, except that I began to shapeshift years ago and Scully is the genesis. Love changes everything and nothing.

Last weekend was incredible, better than I could have ever imagined. We played baseball together, and I held her, I actually *held* her in my arms. And since we got through the vertical spooning without simultaneously combusting, I figured I could take it further. Increase the routine intimacy threshold.

From now on, I'm going to kiss her, if she'll let me. Not on the mouth ... yet. A friendly kiss. She doesn't have to take it to mean anything else. A kiss hello, and a kiss goodbye. Two kisses a day, maybe more if we're going back and forth separately on leads. Lousy maths skills aside, I've already calculated that could average out some weeks to as many as twenty-two kisses; more if I can find her an autopsy a day to perform since I hardly ever go with her to watch them. I could manage that.

I could even factor in solitary forages for our lunch at the FBI cafeteria. Yoghurt, salad, eggplant-surprise, whatever; I'd collect them and trade them for something as priceless as a frozen alien fetus ... a kiss from Scully.

That's the plan, anyway.

First kiss was tonight, and that wasn't too difficult. She didn't pull away, she didn't tell me to fuck off in that cool, clear voice; she just accepted it like it was a natural extension of our normal greeting. I hope that's a good sign. Although of course she could have been too tired to notice, or have brushed it off as one of my new and irritating personality quirks to be stoically endured.

I realise I'm being selfish trying to press my agenda on her tonight because she's so tired, but I can't seem to leave her alone. Like some sort of pathetic puppy, I want to snuggle up against her, nuzzle her face, and give her a big, sloppy kiss. I wouldn't mind being petted either, but mainly, I just want to be near her. I missed her this weekend, and I was worried about her too; the Gunmen are fortunate that I didn't report her as a missing person.

The credits start rolling on the tv, and it occurs to me that I haven't heard any noise from down the hallway for about half an hour. I sit up, listening. Nothing.



A shower is just what I need. The water is soothing, washing down my face and over my body, cleaning away all the dirt and grime and spurious atmosphere of Las Vegas. I'm hot and tired, both of which are thanks to the drug or the antidote. And I'm a little depressed too, which has everything and nothing to do with the trip to Vegas.

I grab a container of shampoo and squeeze a small amount into the palm of my hand. Half-heartedly, I lather it into my hair. I want to be clean again.

I was gonna kick the Gunmen's asses. That's what I told Mulder, and that's what I told them too. Sheer, unadulterated fury was my first biting reaction when Langly gleefully told me what I'd done when I was under the influence of the anoitic histamine. Naturally, I had to know *exactly* what happened, so I interrogated them all. I knew they weren't lying when their stories matched, right down to how far my blouse was unbuttoned. Trust them all to notice. They weren't even exaggerating. Meet Special Tramp Dana Scully.

I rinse. The shampoo stings my eyes and makes them water.

After the first initial burst of anger, I calmed down. I'm not really that annoyed with them, despite what I let them think. While it's irritating that Frohike had to witness it all, I'm more than a little grateful that he rescued me from myself. Langly would have enjoyed the show too much to make the party end. Byers might have helped me, as long as I didn't embarrass him too much in the process, and unfortunately, the chances of that were zero or nothing.

But the long and lonely plane ride home started me thinking, leading to stage three ... depression.

How *could* I have allowed this to happen? It's not like I haven't acted in a similar fashion before; long ago memories of drunken college parties come to mind. I know I shouldn't be tearing myself up over it. I should be grateful I wasn't directed under the nearest bus, or that Mulder wasn't there to witness the fun.

I slide down the wall until I'm sitting on the floor of the shower stall. The tiles are cold, snapping at me, but I welcome the physical discomfort. The water pours over my head, trickling down my face like a tide of tears.

For some reason, the whole situation depresses me. My life seems to be nothing but endless, mindless, pointless circles; futile and meaningless. I'm forever running around, chasing leads that peter out and suspects that disappear. Sometimes it feels like I'm running on empty.

Am I crazy to blindly follow Mulder wherever and whenever he asks? The Gunmen didn't use *my* voice to wake *Mulder*. For some reason that bothers me. Would Mulder follow me if he thought I'd called him in the middle of the night?

But then of course, he has to do something sweet and normal like meet me at the airport with those damn sunflower seeds falling all over the place. And kiss me too, but even that wasn't enough to bring me out of my strange lethargy. I wanted to wrap my arms around him and bury my face in his chest. I didn't, of course, because that's not what we're about.

Loneliness is a choice, but is it my choice?

The water is getting cold, or is it just me? No, I feel hot, I think.

Mulder needs me to care for him but I do not know if he is capable of returning the same sentiment. He jokes; he asks me to marry him, he kids about china patterns and he even tells me he loves me when he's under the influence of drugs, but only once was he ever serious and that was interrupted by an arthropod and never spoken of again.

Is that my answer?

I suppose I should ask him. I should, but I can't. Mulder takes all the risks in this element of our partnership. I am confident and assertive in Agent Scully mode, but not with this, not with us.

I turn the water off. I don't want to face Mulder again tonight. I want him to go away and leave me to my thoughts. My partner is not the only one who can wallow in the joy of anguish and misery.

I dress slowly, rubbing a towel over my wet hair and unenthusiastically pulling a comb through the darkened strands. I take the towel into my bedroom and drop it on my bed. What's wrong with me? Is it the drugs? Are they opening my eyes? Am I seeing things with greater clarity now? Is that why I am examining the issues I never want to think about?

I flop down on top of the covers and huddle up into a tight little ball, drawing my knees up against my chest. I think I will just rest here for a minute, and then I'll kick Mulder out. Everything's going to be fine.


Quietly, I walk down the hallway, pausing at Scully's bedroom door. The light is switched off, and she's curled up on the bed on top of the covers, clad only in a dark pair of emerald-green pyjama shorts and a short-sleeved top. My legs bring me to the side of her bed and I watch her for a long moment, trying to calm the heavy thumping of my heart.

She's definitely asleep. I crouch down and watch her carefully. Listening intently to her steady breathing, I can convince myself it's a natural sleep, and not a result of any side-effect of the drug. I reach out and place the back of my hand across her forehead. Her face is flushed and her skin is warm despite the air-conditioning cooling her apartment. Is this a consequence of the injection?

I was annoyed with the Gunmen before; annoyed that they'd use me to get to her, irked that they'd play off our trust in one another, and irritated that they knew us that well. Mixed in with that was a wry appreciation for their resourcefulness. Now however, the irritation and annoyance is turning into anger. If my partner is sick because of them ...

I move back down the hallway and grab my jacket off Scully's chair. Without pausing, I pull my cell out of the pocket and toss the jacket in the direction of the couch. It slithers to the floor and I let it lie. Punching in speed dial three, I walk into the kitchen and stare out the window, waiting impatiently, my back stiff.

It takes a while for them to answer and I'm not surprised. They've had caller ID for years, and right now, they're probably engaged in the technically perfect equivalent of drawing straws. "Lone Gunmen." Frohike loses.

I don't bother to tell them to turn off the tape. It's not like they will anyway. I shove a fist into my jeans' pocket. "What the fuck did you do to Scully?" My voice is a low hiss, the hostility surprising even me.

"She'll be okay, Mulder. She'll sleep for a few hours and then she'll be alright. She may get a bit hot. Make sure she's got some cold water to drink. She'll be fine. Langly is."

I don't give a shit about Langly. "What happened to her?"

"She didn't tell you?" Frohike sounds hopeful, and I clench my teeth.

Bitingly, I grind out, "You *used* me to lure her to Vegas, Frohike. Tell me what happened." I'm getting loud and I take a few calming breaths. I don't want to wake Scully.

I hear a scuffle on the other end, and then Byers comes on the line, clearing his throat nervously. "Uh, it was my idea, Mulder. Not the drugs, that was inadvertent. But uh, bringing her across was my doing. The others wanted to phone you, get you to come, but I didn't think it was wise." I open my mouth, ready to ream him out, but then he says quietly, carefully neutral, "Susanne Modeski was there."

Oh. That throws me. Once, a few years ago, over huevos rancheros, two six-packs of beer and the studied inattention of Frohike and Langly, Byers told me about Suzanne. Oh, he didn't say he was in love with her, or anything like that. He told me about her work, about the men who kidnapped her, things like that. But I knew. I knew there was something, some feeling he had for her, a passion of sorts. I recognised it, because I saw it paralleled in my own psyche, even if I couldn't admit it then. Scully. I soften. I would do anything to get her back if she was taken from me, even hurt a friend.

My shoulders slump and I sigh, the anger draining out of me. "Just ... what happened to her?" I ask quietly. "I need to know."

"Mulder ..." Byers hesitates. "Uh, you want to come over? You know how we feel about talking over an unsecured line."

I didn't expect the Gunmen to be back in DC yet. I figured they'd redirected their phone when they answered earlier, like they'd done when I'd called them yesterday, looking for Scully. "No, I'm with Scully now. I'm not leaving her." I don't say she's subdued and withdrawn. But I'm worried about her, and I don't care what the Gunmen read into it. I sense Byers' hesitation and I break in impatiently. "Come on."

He coughs delicately and I frown at my dark reflection in the kitchen window. "We uh, I guess we ... blackmailed her. It was Langly's idea," Byers adds quickly and he must sense how close I am to igniting again, because he hurries on. "She was injected with a substance that caused her to behave ... unusually. She was rather embarrassed about it. She didn't want you to know and we threatened to tell you. She thinks we have video evidence. She said she was gonna kick our asses, Mulder. We had to do something."

Yeah, messing with Scully isn't a good idea; she probably has innovative doctor forms of ass-kicking that involve hooked instruments, but still ... "So, what did she do? What was so unusual?" I ask, and I feel Byers cringe all the way down the phone line. "If you don't tell me, *I'll* kick your asses. And it won't be pretty." I mean it too. They know it, and I know they know it.

There's silence for a moment, and then a click as the connection is switched to speaker phone. I can hear a low buzz from a tv or radio in the background. I walk back down the hallway as Frohike chimes in with the details, aided with the gleeful assistance of Langly. Is this real? Scully doesn't behave this way. I don't believe it.

"She called Langly cute?" I ask incredulously. "*Langly*?"

"So did everyone else. An unexplained side-effect of the drug," says Byers, an apologetic shrug in his voice.

I shrug too. I mean ... Langly? Maybe it's something to do with the blond hair.

I'm standing outside Scully's bedroom door again now, my cell still glued to my ear. I keep my voice low, but I'm losing interest in this conversation, because what I am interested in is right in front of me.

Enough. I hang up the phone. I watch her, I just watch her sleep for a while; it's a helpless fascination that I can't pretend to disguise any longer. An unexpected surge of tenderness wells up inside me, and I gently tug the sheets out from beneath her and draw them over her body. She murmurs but doesn't wake, and I stand beside her bed, watching her breathe.

A part of me, the twitchy, self-centred part, wants to wake her up. I don't give in to it. Her hair is damp. I touch it carefully, very carefully, just once, running my fingers through the strands at the base of her neck. It's curly and messy, like she only dragged a comb through it once or twice before giving up.

She's left her towel on the end of the bed. It's a light blue, the colour of the sky, brilliant and new. I pick it up and hang it back in the bathroom. Scully is normally so pedantic about everything in its place and a place for everything. She's even left her clothes lying in an jumbled pile on the bathroom floor. Is she usually messy when she's tired, first thing back from a trip on the road? These are things I want to know about her.

I know so much but so little. I know how she likes her coffee to the nth degree. I know on the third day of her yogurt and bee pollen kicks, a wise man will have a Twix stashed in his desk drawer. I know she likes to sleep on her stomach when she's really tired, and I know she can slosh around in a soup of ten-day-dead body parts and still eat chicken for dinner an hour later.

But I don't know what movies make her laugh or cry, I don't know where she buys her sharp, black business suits, I don't know if she ever talks about Emily with her mother, and sometimes, I don't know if she *is* fine. I don't know how to make her happy, and I want that more than anything. I want the responsibility for her happiness, I want the responsibility for her heart, I want her to know that I can, I will, I do, love, honour, and cherish her. I want her to believe, to trust in me.

It wasn't a revelation, knowing that she is my reason for being. It came to me stealthily, out of the night, lodging inside me before I had a chance to shut it out. I did fight it. I resented it. I didn't want it. I pushed her away before I could accept it, but now, I love her so much that it must be obvious, even to her. She must know. She has to know.

I crouch down on the bathroom floor, and pick up her cool, white bra. The delicate lace cups fascinate me. Weak and shameless, I press it against my nose and mouth, smelling it, breathing her. I rub it back and forth across my lips, tasting the smooth texture. It carries her scent. I imagine it's still warm from being nuzzled up against on her body. I picture my hands touching her while she's wearing it, fondling her nipples. I visualise plucking the lace aside, and kissing the soft, creamy flesh. I imagine how she would taste under my tongue, what I would do, and how it would be between us. I would be tender and rough, leisurely and frantic.

There was a time, long ago, when this was still new to me and I was sensitive about it. I worried about what she thought of me. After a long, funky day chasing suspects and pissing off our superiors, I'd try not to stand too close to her until I could shower the sweat away. I'd try not to drool on her shoulder as I slumbered in the sleepy intimacy of eternal aeroplane flights. Instead of arriving with my customary insipid takeout, I'd tentatively suggest dinner at the upmarket Italian restaurant near her apartment; sometimes I'd even pay.

But then I realised ... this is Scully.. She's seen me at my worst, she puts up with my shit; she truly knows me, warts and all, and still sticks around. I guess that must mean something, something positive and good.

There are still things I must find, and truths I still need to know, but without Scully, everything is meaningless.

The tiles are cool. I pick up her clothes from the floor, allowing myself one hurried peek at her underwear before screwing it into a tight little ball and shoving it beneath her dark blouse. I place the bundle neatly on the bathroom vanity. I don't take them into her bedroom. I can't, not tonight.

I move away from temptation, back down the long, long hallway, and into her living room. The television is my saviour, a distraction. I'm going to stay here tonight, on her couch. I can handle that. I want to keep an eye on her and anyway, I haven't kissed her goodbye, and I refuse to do that when she's unconscious, because it doesn't count if she doesn't know.

I'm familiar enough with Scully's house to know where she keeps her spare blankets, and I grab one from the linen cupboard. I switch all the lights off, and after a moment's hesitation, I shed my jeans and bunk back down on the couch.


It's the thirst that wakes me.

I sit up in bed, yawning, pushing the sheet down to my waist. Automatically, I glance over at the clock. It's partly obscured by a glass of water sitting in front of it on the bedside table. My brow creases. I don't remember leaving myself a glass of water. It's not something I normally do. It marks the table if I don't use a coaster.

Then it all comes back to me in a rush. Las Vegas. The Gunmen. The injection, and Mulder waiting for me at the airport.

I down the water in three great gulps, and stretch my arms up, yawning again. I'm starting to wake up now, and the timid early-morning sunshine is beginning to chase the shadows out of my bedroom.

I slip out of bed and pick up the glass, intending to take it back to the kitchen. I don't put on my robe; it's still packed in my suitcase. I stop when I reach the living room. There's a leather jacket gracing my floor, a pair of blue jeans decorating my armchair, and Mulder is asleep on my couch. A blanket covers his chest and waist, but his feet are sticking out the end. The television is whispering the secrets of infomercials.

Quietly, I put down the glass on the coffee table. What is he doing here? I bend over him. He's lying on his back, with one arm flung out and crooked up at right angles to his head, and the other, the one nearest the back of the couch, is folded over his chest. His fingers are splayed loosely across his stomach. The remote for the television is wedged down in the cushions beside his waist, and I ease it out from under him and snap off the picture.

The loss of sound is barely noticeable, but it wakes him up. He gives a little snort, his mouth opening and closing like a stranded goldfish. He stirs restlessly and rolls onto his side, and his eyes flicker and open. He peers up at me, blinking hazily.

"Hey, Scully." His voice is gravelly, the sound of morning. He smiles at me sluggishly, and stretches his arm out, curling his fingers around my bare thigh. He tugs me towards him.

I take the hint and sit down on the couch beside him. His hand moves up to rest on my hip, his thumb rubbing against the slippery satin of my pyjamas. "You stayed on my couch all night, Mulder?" I watch him for a moment as he pushes away the last vestiges of sleep.

"Mmmm. I was worried about you." He yawns, and pulls himself upright. The blanket slips below his waist. He's wearing yellow-striped boxers, and they're gaping open, and I can see ... something I shouldn't. I turn away hurriedly, but he must have noticed, because he covers himself again. I don't miss the fleeting grin at the corner of his mouth even as he ducks his head to conceal it. Very funny. I'm glad you found that amusing, Mulder.

He pats at my waist to get my attention and I look at him again. "How are you feeling this morning?" He places the back of his other hand against my forehead.

"Mulder, *I'm* the doctor, and I'm fine. Really." He cocks his head to one side and gives me a sceptical, if-you-say-so look, and I remember that fine is a four-letter word. His hand drops away from my temple and settles down on his lap.

He shrugs. "Okay. I just wanted to make sure." He blinks and yawns again and picks up my hand, absently twining my fingers through his. I wonder if he realises what he's doing. What's with him? He's being so ... tender and he keeps touching me, and it's ... odd. I've woken him up before, and normally all he bestows on me is a drowsy frown or an incoherent mumble that sometimes sounds suspiciously like the theme song to Shaft - not that he believes me when I tell *him* that.

"Scully ..." He waits for me to look at him. "What was wrong, last night?" My withdrawal is automatic, but I'm surprised into stillness when one of his hands slips further around my waist, holding me steady. His other hand tightens around my fingers. "I spoke to the Gunmen. They told me everything that happened."

I look at the now-blank television screen, fighting my confusion. "Everything?"


I bite down on my lip and stay silent, and he sighs, slightly exasperated. He leans forward, and I smell the clean, masculine scent of him. It's both appealing and disturbing, and I shift uneasily. He smells of sleepy warmth, of sunshine, and of those ridiculous sunflower seeds, which, by the way, I hope doesn't mean I'm going to have to spend hours vacuuming the tiny husks off my couch again. I swear sometimes he eats them just to bug me.

"Scully?" I look back at him with reluctance. Slowly, he says, "I was ... worried about you this weekend. I didn't know where you were. I thought ... something might have happened." He shrugs self-consciously. "I even called your mother."

Oh, Mulder. "I'm sorry," I tell him, meaning it, and my eyebrow wings up when he tugs me closer.

He smiles a little. "It wasn't your fault." His gaze drops to our joined hands. I'm puzzled when he closes his eyes and takes two deep, calming breaths. "Scully?" I look at him curiously. "I, uh ... does it make you uncomfortable to be sitting here with me like this? You know, together? Touching? Do you ... are you uncomfortable?"

I don't even have to think about it. "No," I tell him. It's true. I'm not uncomfortable. It does feel strange, but in a way it's comforting too.

"Ah, good." He nods his head and gives me that funny little half-smile again. "Because ... I like touching you. I want to touch you." He checks my reaction and I know I only have my cautious, neutral expression on, but it must be close enough to a green light for Mulder because he continues, watching me carefully. "And ... I want to ... kiss you. Hello and goodbye and all that. Like friends do. Well, not all friends. Not Frohike, but ... maybe Langly. What do you think?"

My heart, which stopped when he first mentioned the 'k' word, starts up again. Friends. Of course. What else would he mean? What else could it ever be? An unexpected surge of anger grips me, but I keep my face impassive and then I realise ... Mulder, you are a dead man. "Langly?" I ask, my voice frosty.

"He's ah, cute, wouldn't you say?" Mulder's grinning from ear-to-ear, and I pull my hand away from his. I fight the uncharacteristic urge to dig a knuckle into his ribs. "Hey, I'm sorry," he says, ever apologetic. He'd better be. His tone is sincere but still shaded with the lingering remnants of a smile and I narrow my eyes in warning. But I know he's trying to lighten the mood between us, and for once, I'm grateful.

He allows himself one more full-bodied grin, but he must take me seriously because he sobers again, quiet. "Hey, Scully?"

I look at him, considering. "What?"

He cocks his head to one side, watching. "Come here."

I stare at him warily, eyes narrowed. "What for?" Suspicion laces my voice, and Mulder gives a little shrug of his shoulders and murmurs something I can't catch. "What did you say?"

He nibbles on his bottom lip. "Scully ..." He sighs and waits, then shuffles along the couch towards me, crab-like. He stretches up and brushes his fingers along the lobe of my ear, and then lets his hand fall back into his lap. "Scully ... I'm worried about you," he says, barely audible. "I'm worried ... that my partner is ... hurting, in some way or because of something, and ... I don't know why. Talk to me, Scully."

I don't expect this. "Mulder ..." My voice quavers embarrassingly and he reaches for me, hauling me into a loose embrace. After a moment of shocked stiffness, I relax against him. Is it wrong that sometimes I want to give in, want to let him hold me and banish the demons? Only a few weeks ago I had a valid defence; someone had literally tried to rip out my heart. Now there is no excuse, but still, I'm sitting here, relaxing in the easy warmth of his arms.

"Don't argue." His voice rumbles in my ear, and I almost smile.

I'm not arguing. And how could this ever be an argument? We don't argue like this. Suit, office, arms crossed, science drilling holes in paranormal theories; that's our everyday formula.

But now, he has an arm wrapped around my waist and is stroking my back soothingly, while the other hand is holding my head against his neck. His chin is resting on the top of my head, and his pulse is thumping in my ear. The doctor in me automatically counts the beats. It's raised.

He nuzzles his mouth in my hair, and I try and work out whether he just kissed me or if I'm imagining it. He draws his head back and brushes his thumb across my cheek and back to my ear, his eyes on mine. Calmly, he says, "Look, I don't know what's wrong. And I don't know if this helps, but ... I would do anything for you. Anything." I feel irrational tears stinging the backs of my eyelids and he smiles gently and tucks a strand of hair back behind my ear. "You know that, don't you? I mean ... Scully, I'm in love with you."


Oh no.

No, no, no.

Did I really say ... that?

Shit, shit, shit. I did.

What the fuck is wrong with me? Of course she knows. How could she not know? I stopped trying to hide it a long time ago, but I have never forced her to openly acknowledge it before. Never. I was drugged the last time my mouth ran away without me. But now it's official: I've revealed my hand, and playing poker is not my game.

She hasn't moved, she's gaping at me with wide, surprised eyes. Her breath is fanning across my mouth. She could easily kiss me and I ache for it; it would only be one small tilt of her head forward, but she doesn't kiss me, she doesn't do anything but stare, and I know what that means. It means I've lost my best friend.

I feel angry tears burning my eyes and my belly twists up in a painful knot of raw, tender flesh. Time is heavy and suffocating. For a moment, I think I am going to be physically sick, the rip in the vicinity of my heart is so acute.

Everything is in slow motion. I move sluggishly. I take my hands off her gorgeous body. I make my eyes drop away from the slim, cool legs dusted with soft freckles, and from the golden cross that dips invitingly into the seductive v between her soft breasts.

I make my mouth work, but my voice doesn't sound like mine; it's a rasping lisp of sound, choked and strangled. "I'm sorry, I have to go." The blankets melt away and I clutch at my jeans on the back of the couch. The fabric is harsh and stiff. I can't seem to catch my balance and I stagger into each leg like I'm drunk or drugged. I have to work hard to suppress a harsh bark of laughter at the thought. If only.

Then, like magic, I feel her arms around me, sliding across my back and circling my waist. Despite myself, a jolt of raw sensation spikes through me and I feel a familiar throbbing in my groin. "Scully?" I croak, wondering, needing, unsure.

Her hands are cool and strong and small, they slip across my stomach and lace through my own large paws, stopping me before I can button up my jeans. She holds me tightly, her head resting against my back. Distantly, I hear her murmuring my name, she's saying "Mulder, Mulder," over and over again like some sort of unnatural refrain.

Now is the time I need all my wits about me, but right now I can't even think out of the box. She has to let me go. I want to tell her that. Let me go, Scully.

"I can't, Mulder," she says, and I freeze, because they were my thoughts, not my words. I realise that she's still touching my skin, she's holding me, and the sheer wonder of it is too impossible to comprehend. It's incredible how her touch can ground me, make me silent and still when nothing else can. Even now. It's not fair that she has this power over me.

She moves. She's in front of me, her hands resting on my waist. I know she's looking at me but I can't meet her gaze. My eyes skitter across the room and fix on the armchair, the table, the photos on her mantelpiece, the door, at anything but the deity in front of me.

She doesn't speak, but I sense her concern. A hand feathers across my wrist and her fingers twine through mine. I look down at where we're connected. She's so small; it's something I don't notice most of the time. Her hands are fine-boned, and her skin is soft and warm against my palm. Her nails are painted the palest shade of pink. I suppose I should make an effort to do up my jeans, but I can't move my hand away from hers. I can't, I just can't.

And then, she surprises me again, because she presses her body up against me, cupping a hand across the back of my neck. Her fingers are a sensuous caress, fluttering against my sensitive skin.

She feels wonderful. I can't help but be conscious of the firm softness of her breasts, and how erotic it is to have them against my chest. Tentatively, I slide my free arm around her. I drop my head on top of hers and shut my eyes. I'm still holding her hand and it feels like we're dancing a slow, intimate waltz.

I don't know what this is about, but I know I don't want to let her go. Is she holding me because she loves me, because she's afraid, because she wants to comfort me? Why?

She snuggles closer and the friction makes my cock, already hard, hop against her stomach through the thin cloth of my boxers. Her breath catches, and I swallow deeply, wondering if I should pull away. Dammit, I should have buttoned my jeans when I had the chance. Is my desire disgusting to her? She's caught me with hard-ons before, at the office, in the car, on a plane, fucking everywhere, I think. We both studiously ignore them and eventually they settle down and disappear.

Shit, I can't do this. I just can't. I can't hold her without knowing what this is about. Gently, I disentangle myself from her. I have to know.

I have a tendency to behave fearlessly and jump into things head first. I act as if I am fearless, when in fact, I am afraid. Like now. I am afraid. But I can't stop this. Everything in my life over the past six years has boiled down to this minute and this woman. I have to know how she feels about me.

I open my mouth, intending to ask her what this means, to put in words my hopes and fears, but my voice is an ineffectual squeak of sound, mouse-like and small. She looks up at me. I notice again how beautiful she is, and I remember ... to me she has the bluest eyes.

She places her hand over my fragile paper heart, and pushes against my chest. The back of my knees meet one of her armchairs, and I sink down into the cushions. She leans over me. Her pyjama top is gaping at the neck and I get a glimpse of two softly rounded breasts. God. I look again, I have to, it's a compulsion. It's Scully.

Scully. I swallow deeply and squeeze my eyes shut, trying to control my breathing, but it's pointless, because Scully climbs on my lap and settles herself on my knees, and I'm helpless to control the crazy flip-flop of my heart.

I can hardly believe it when her breath brushes my face and her lips touch my mouth. My eyes are closed, I'm fantasising again, I must be. But then the match, her tongue nudges my mouth, seeking entry, and I groan, a harsh, feral cry exploding from deep down inside. I kiss her, I'm kissing her, I'm kissing her like I'm starved, I'm frantic, oh god, I'm practically eating her mouth, and she ... oh yes, Scully, you taste so good, so right, so perfect.

She's making little murmuring noises against my mouth and her hands are moving in soft strokes through my hair. She's returning my frantic, needy kisses, and trying to relieve the avalanche building inside me. I gasp against her mouth, heavy and harsh. Burying my face in her throat, I squeeze my eyes shut, battling for control of my emotions. She smells pure and new and familiar all at once. I clutch her tightly to me and she murmurs something in my hair. Her fingers slip down and rub gently back and forth against the base of my head.

"I didn't expect this," I stammer into the crook of her neck. "Why now, Scully? Why?" I think of all the innuendoes and advances I've made to her throughout the years; there's always been an odd sort of comforting reassurance in knowing that she'd brush them off.

"Why?" Her voice hums against my ear, thoughtful, considering. Her fingers stroke my skin; they tickle, and I shiver right up to the roots of my hair. "I guess ... I didn't know, Mulder. I didn't know how you felt, not really. I thought, I hoped, but I didn't allow myself to believe that our partnership could be rooted in anything more than friendship. I didn't know if ... love ... had any basis in reality."

Love. I smile a little, then nuzzle her throat and kiss her mouth. "You love me?" Oh shit. I meant that to sound like a confident statement, but it comes out as a pitiful question. God, I'm soft-bellied.

"Yes, Mulder. I love you." She's serious, with a tiny glimpse of humour buried beneath the layers. It's familiar behaviour, and it's reassuring to know that this development between us is not just a new beginning, it's part of the circle.

I think I murmur, "Good," or something approximating that, but I'm not sure. Her mouth is distracting me again, and I have to kiss her. I must.

The kiss is a long, slow exploration of touch and senses, and it seems to last forever. I want it to last forever. Instinctively, I rock against her and slip a hand beneath her top so I can feel the soft, delicate skin across her back, on her hip, and the curving underside of her breast.

I'm hard, painfully so, and my erection is trapped between our bodies, bound firmly in a spicy cage at the junction of her thighs. I manoeuvre her on my lap, so I can feel her better through the slippery cloth of her pyjama pants, and ... oh god, she's wet for me, she really does want this as much as I do.

I want to take this into her bedroom, to her private sanctuary. I want to be surrounded with sheets that smell of her and I want to make them smell of us. I want to put my mark on her territory, so to speak.

I want this unplanned chance of making love to become conscious decision. By moving it into the bedroom, chance becomes intent. While we're on the couch it's almost like we could stop at any minute, I could slink home, and we could both pretend this never happened. Denial is policy.

But we've come too far for that, and I want a commitment from her; I need it. I don't want to find myself thrusting away inside her because we've both gotten carried away in a random moment of lust. This is more than that. I want it to be about how much I care for her, respect her, admire her, need her. I want it to be about our deep friendship and how we complete one another. I want it to be about love.

I nibble on her ear, drawing and sucking on the tiny lobe of soft flesh. "Come to bed with me," I breathe, and she shivers.

"We're, uh, going to ... make love?"

"Don't you want to?" I kiss her slowly and fully on the mouth and then draw back, dropping my hands away. I try to sound like this isn't one of the most meaningful moments in my life. "We'll only go as far as you want to, Scully. You decide."

She takes a deep breath and looks at me for a long moment as I fight to keep my expression open and neutral. I want her so badly. Her face is flushed, and her lips are red and swollen from our kisses. From me. Her nipples are peaking against her shirt. She's sitting almost directly on top of my cock, and the sensation is just about killing me.

What is she thinking? What will she decide for us? Now or later? Just don't let it be never.

Her answer, a seductive little smile, spins my soul into a wild whirlwind of colours. She picks up my hand, pulling me from the chair and leading me down the hallway to her bedroom.

Giddy, I sit down on the end of her bed, drawing her into the gap between my legs. I take her in my arms again and hold her tightly. I revel in the warmth of her, the closeness of her body, and the knowledge that soon, very soon, I'm going to touch and taste every last inch.

"Mulder?" she says quietly and I don't pay too much attention because I'm busy with other things.

"Mmmm?" I lift my head from the pillow of her breasts, pulling her down on my lap. I kiss my way up her throat, around the curve of her neck to her ear, and finally, back to her mouth. I've managed to multi-task enough to undo the top two buttons of her pyjama top, and I slip a hand beneath the fabric and cup her breast, brushing my thumb across the nub of her nipple. "What?" I breathe against her mouth.

She kisses me softly, reverently, in a way no one ever has. "This ... this is us, isn't it?"

I frame her face with my hands; it's a masterpiece of truth and tenderness. "It's us, Scully," I affirm with kisses against her mouth. "This is part of who we are, and what's between us."

It's us, and we're really going to do this. She smiles at me, then her lips touch mine again and I'm lost, hopelessly, completely and irreversibly.

Still kissing, we fall back on the bed together, sinking into the sheets. Twisting her beneath me, I settle between her open legs and suck hungrily at her hot, wet mouth. God, she feels good; she makes me feel good too, and I don't have to disguise it, not anymore.

I'm fast losing control; any finesse I once had is rapidly spiralling away. I need this, I need her. Bracing myself on an elbow above her, I shove my tongue down her throat and push my hips up against her groin. The head of my cock rears through the opening in my boxers, butting insistently at the damp patch of satin barring its way. She whimpers and gasps, and I shudder at the sound, the sound of Scully wanting me.

I move off her a bit so I can work a hand inside her pyjama pants. I want to feel her, touch her, love her.

"Mulder, please, oh please ..." She's whimpering and pressing up against my hand. I slide two fingers inside her, brushing her clit with my thumb, watching her face intently until I know I've found the right angle and pressure. Yes, Scully.

I stare down at her flushed face, the tiny, functioning part of my brain awed that we really are finally, irretrievably, stepping over the line. "God, Scully, I can't believe we're really doing this," I murmur as I nibble on her bottom lip.

She doesn't want words; she reaches up and pulls me down to her again and I feast on the plump fruit of her mouth, sucking, biting, gorging, swallowing. Her legs curl around my waist and I fall down against her. My cock digs into her thigh and I can't stop myself humping it, just once.

It seems Scully takes that as a hint to get things moving, because the next thing I know she's got a hand down the back of my jeans and the other tugging my t-shirt up. God, good idea, she's not a Special Agent for nothing.

I slide off the bed, standing up to feverishly rip off my shirt, jeans and boxers. I fling them in a jumble of fabric on the floor behind me. Her eyes lock onto my cock and my brain turns to mush when she licks her lips. I mean, she *licks* her lips. It's a gesture I recognise, she does it when she's concentrating, when she *really* wants something, or when she's nervous.

She's not nervous now.

She starts to pull her clothes off, but I stop her. "I want to undress you, Scully. Let me." She gives me an indulgent smile, small and secretive, and I fall in love with her all over again.

"Get to it, Mulder."

Oops, I'm just standing here gazing at her. Yes, I gaze. So what?

I bend down, kicking aside the sheets and kneeling on the bed. Her clothes dissolve beneath my hands and soon she's naked before me. Naked. I stop and look, just for a minute. Then I smirk. "A natural redhead, so I see." Uh, yes, my brain definitely has all the intellectual abilities of a bowl of gummy porridge.

"Mulder ..." She rolls her eyes, supine on the bed, elegant and courtly, the queen of my heart.

I crawl over to her, sitting back on my haunches between her legs. "I thought you were, but I always wondered." I grab the backs of her knees and tug her towards me. Look at that view. I can. I do.


Oh, hold on, she's speaking again.

"Mulder? She waits. "-if I'd known you'd be so interested-" She trails the heel of her foot across my ass, the only part of my body she can easily reach lying flat on her back. "-I could have shown you photos to prove it, you know."

I take my eyes off her breasts, shocked. "Scully!" There's no mistaking the dirty little trail my imagination puddles down. She's confused for a moment, then she grins and pulls me against her.

"No, Mulder. I meant photos from when I was a kid." We kiss, nose-to-nose. "Not the other ones you seem to be familiar with."

Ha ha, you're too funny, Scully. I growl and bite down on the lobe of her ear, not too hard, but enough to make her squeal. I laugh out loud, full-bodied and free. I love her, and I tell her so.

"I know, Mulder, I know." For some reason we become sober again, and I stretch out on top of her, propping myself up on my elbows. We look at each other for a perfect, endless moment, then slowly, I bend my head down, not taking my eyes away from hers.

I cup her head in my hands and we kiss, we just kiss, for a long, long time, beginning all over again, touching and learning and discovering and knowing.

It seems hours later when the hazy lethargy that's kept me in check starts to disappear. I think it happens when Scully grips a handful of my ass and tries to pull me closer to her. I ignore it, because I'm the agent in charge here and I have other plans. Big plans ... if you know what I mean.

Languidly, I kiss my way across her face, worshipping her nose, her eyes, the smooth skin on her cheeks and the intriguing bud of her earlobe. I kiss her throat, delighting in the little shiver she gives when I find a ticklish spot at the base of her neck. Slowly, I reach her breasts.

I stop. My breath brushes across the nub of her nipple, and I shut my eyes for a moment. I take in her scent, and luxuriate in the bliss of her body beneath mine. Then holding her gaze, I lower my head and take her nipple into my mouth, circling my tongue around the hardened peak. Her face is flushed, and the sheer intimacy of my mouth on her breast while we gaze into each other's eyes is an incredibly profound experience.

This is everything; it's nirvana. She could break me of the sunflower seed habit because I've found something so much better. Although regretfully, I admit, there's probably not much hope of convincing her to go along with this scheme. I guess she would be pretty pissed if I unbuttoned her blouse in the middle of a budget meeting so I could nuzzle her breasts.

But hey, I can multi-task now and then; I'd still pay attention to the meeting, possibly even take notes. It could be done. Of course I'd have to use shorthand. Then again, Skinner would probably have a heart attack or have me committed, so ... maybe not.

Maybe she'd be more agreeable to cunnilingus. She could write up reports and fill out our expense claims while I minded my own business, head down, working diligently away between her legs, only knocking off after five o'clock each afternoon. Oh God, she's got a desk now, it could work after all.

I really, really, want to try that. Heck, we'll leave the desk out of that fantasy and examine it right away.

I take my mouth off her breast and begin to kiss my way down her body. My hand hurries on ahead, and I touch her; oh yes, she's still wet, her flesh soft and swollen and waiting.

But then, just inches short of my target, I'm thwarted. With a move I hope Scully never uses on any male suspect under the age of sixty, she has me flat on my back and is straddling my hips, very much the Special-Agent-in-Charge. I'm temporarily incapacitated, but hey, if she wants to wrestle without a sleeping bag in sight, then I'm willing to go along for the ride, more than willing.

I still want my entree, my little taste of Eden between her thighs, but Scully goes right for main course, shimmying over me, lips and legs and hands, and leisurely ... with what I am sure is a deliberately torturous lack of speed, she ... oh God, oh yes, she's touching me right there, right where we both want it, sliding down, lowering herself, and I'm in and it's tight, so tight. I'm inside Scully, deep and full and ... yes, it's good, so good, so hot; I've won the jackpot.

I bite down on my lip, my hands trembling on her waist. It's almost too much; a sensory overload. It's impossibly erotic, having her draped over me, impaled on my cock. I begin to pump up into her, trying to be slow, trying to make this last.

Scully ...

Her breasts float enticingly in front of my face as she languidly rocks back and forth and up and down, like a long, lazy summer day, a little circle of her hips here, a jab there. I rear up and nuzzle her soft skin, my tongue flickering over her nipple. I touch her everywhere, on her hips, on her back, on the alluring sprinkle of freckles on her upper arm. I'm like a ten-fingered octopus, but I hope I have more class.

I shuffle us up the bed in a sitting position until I feel pillows and the headboard against my back. I bend my knees up and she leans back against them. Her hand reaches down behind her back to clutch at my ass, her back arches invitingly, and my mouth opens onto her breast, feeding, sucking, pulling, tasting.

When I finally I come up for air I'm hypnotised all over again. I watch her with rapt intent. It's too amazing; this is Scully, naked, riding me hard. She's close, I know it by the expression of pleasure washing across her face, and fluttering of muscles in the hot, tight fist gripping my cock. Now is the time to think Love-God thoughts. I mustn't come yet, I mustn't come yet, I mustn't come yet.

I clamp my hands around her hips to hold her steady. She mumbles 'more' and heck, I'm an obliging type of guy, so I give three deep, full thrusts inside her. It must be the angle because it's enough and she comes, her mouth falling open in a long, soundless cry. The visual stimulation combined with the ripples squeezing my cock is almost too much for me, and I battle not to follow her into oblivion. Face it, I only get one shot at this first time, and I'm not ready to give up yet.

"God, Scully." She collapses on me, breathing heavily, and it takes every ounce of willpower I possess and then some, not to flip her on her back and start mindlessly ramming my way home.

Half-time break. I'm having oranges.



What happened? Did I lose consciousness for a moment there? Slowly, the world slides back into focus, and first thing I notice ... I feel ... is Mulder's erection, which is twitching every now and then inside me. Second thing that registers is Mulder's arms, which are wrapped around me and are brushing slowly up and down my back. Third thing is Mulder himself, the complete package, my very own gift. He smells of sex and heat and me and it's wonderful.

I lift my head and reach for his mouth, the tip of my tongue slowly licking its way around his lips. He sighs, closing his eyes and letting his head fall back against the pillows.

Breathing heavily, he lets me bathe him, submitting quietly until I push my tongue inside his mouth and tease him with little darts and licks. His eyes become slits, and his arms tighten around me. They're trembling, just a bit, with his efforts to stay in control. We share a deep, slow, thorough kiss, and then ... my clock radio alarm goes off.

Shit, it's almost seven a.m., time to get ready for work.

The DJ is loud, the Beltway is going to be gridlocked, another senator has amnesia, and apparently it's not going to rain today.

I can't stand this.



I look down at him. His eyes are glazed, his face sweaty. His hair is sticking up in about ten different directions, and his hips are starting to push into me again, smoothly rocking. Evidently he has no difficulty in focussing in on one thing at a time.

"I've gotta turn that off, okay? Just stay there a minute."

"'kay," he mumbles, and dips his head, running his tongue across my throat, pressing moist, open-mouthed kisses onto my sensitive skin.

I shudder. God, that feels so good. His hands clamp down on my waist and pull me hard against him, and he gives my shoulder a little nip with his teeth. For a few moments I'm distracted, but then ... I really don't want to listen to a politician talk about his plans for modernising Union Station while we make love.

I slip off him and his eyes snap open in protest, his hands pulling frantically at my hips. "No! Scully, what are you-"

"Shhh," I soothe him, crawling on my hands and knees to the other side of the bed and thumping a palm down on the offending source of noise. It stops. "I'm just turning this off, I'll be back in a-"

Ohhh. I don't finish my sentence. There's a big hand caressing the back of my thigh, slowly slipping up across my ass, feathering and tickling. I twist my head back over my shoulder. Mulder is on his knees behind me, managing to appear both lazy-lidded and alert, and obviously not willing to chance me getting any further away from him. His erection is shiny and glistening, slick from being inside me and impossibly red.

"What are you doing?" I ask, knowing exactly what he's doing. He doesn't bother to answer; he just gives me one of those annoying little smirks and continues his exploration.

He moves closer. I watch him over my shoulder as he crawls up to the head of the bed until he's kneeling between my thighs. He bends over me, and his erection presses against the small of my back, right where my tattoo is.

He rocks against me, and I close my eyes, propping myself up on my hands as Mulder nudges aside my hair and begins pressing a warm trail of kisses down my neck. He balances himself with one arm and idly slides his other hand up my waist and across my belly, stopping when he reaches my breast. He kneads it gently, murmuring nonsense against my throat. I press back against his erection, wanting him inside me again.

I grumble in protest when he stops kissing me and tugs me back across the bed. He soothes me with wordless noises and rubs his nose back and forth against the base of my neck.

"Scully?" His voice is a throaty sliver of sound and I try and crane my head to see him, but I can't, because he's cloaked himself over me again. His body feels warm and good, like a big heavy coat on a cold winter's day.

He tugs me upright a bit and kisses my cheek, whispering in my ear. "Look at us," he says, and I turn my head.

Oh God.

I can see our reflections in the mirror of my dresser. Mulder is draped over me, his skin a dark, rich blanket against my pale body. He straightens, snaking an arm around my waist and pulling me back against him. I can't look away from his eyes in the mirror as his hand dips between my legs and fondles my clit, slipping and sliding through the warm folds of flesh.

He plunges a finger inside me and I bite down on my lip with the effort not to cry out. "I love you, Scully," he says, deep and low, his expression fierce, and it brings tears to my eyes.

He breaks our gaze then, but I can't stop watching him as he lowers himself between my thighs, fumbling a little awkwardly because of our height difference. The tip of his erection presses against me and I quiver, moaning his name, wanting him. He kisses my neck and spreads my legs apart a bit further.. Then, with a few experimental nudges, he pushes up inside me until he's buried to the hilt. It feels like the best thing ever.

I hang onto the headboard for dear life as he plunges in and out. His urgency is all-consuming. He breathes into my ear. "Watch us, Scully. Watch us make love."

His body ripples with each thrust, the muscles in the side of his gorgeous ass clenching then relaxing. His face is feverish, eyes wild, like mine. Leaving one hand propped against the headboard, he takes one of my hands down to where our bodies are joined. "Feel us, Scully. Feel me inside you." I touch the thick turgid flesh of his cock as he pumps in and out, in and out.

God. His eyes haven't left mine in the mirror. They're joined, like our bodies.

I get this sudden flash of how we'll look in two hours' time, sitting properly clothed in our office. And then I imagine him walking over to me, unzipping his pants, pushing my skirt up and thrusting into me, on the desk, against the door, in front of the slide screen as the overhead projector clicks away behind us with pictures of exsanguinated cows. Jeez, when did I become such a nymphomaniac? I can't believe I'm fantasising about having sex with Mulder while I'm having sex with Mulder.

"What are you thinking?" He pants the words into my ear.

Thinking? I was thinking? That's right, I was. I struggle for a moment, as he pumps faster into me, becoming a little sloppy as his orgasm approaches. "I'm, uh, I'm thinking you'd better hurry if we don't want to be late for work." Yeah, that was it.

I gasp as he speeds up, his fingers pressing against my clit. He grimaces. "Somehow, I don't think hurrying is going to be a problem, I'm going to-" He screws his face up again and bites down on my shoulder, groaning. "Oh God, Scully, I can't, I can't wait, I - oh God-"

I can't wait either. "Come for me, Mulder," I tell him and he falls across me, pressing me into the pillows, his hips pumping furiously as he shudders and grunts his way to fulfilment. Unexpectedly, another orgasm hits me at the change in position, and I squeeze down on his cock, spasming around the rigid flesh. It's the trigger that breaks him; I twist my head around and he manages to catch my lips with his mouth. I absorb his harsh feral cry as he spills into me.

He lies on top of me for a minute, a dead weight, then pulls out and rolls over onto his back. His arm wraps around me and I snuggle up against his chest. He sighs in contentment and nuzzles his mouth in my hair as he catches his breath.


That was too good. It was wonderful. In fact, give me an hour and I could do it all over again.

I slide down the bed and kiss Scully once more. Mmmm, she tastes like heaven on a stick, my own little Popsicle, sweet and cherry-flavoured.

I lie back down, closing my eyes. I smile like an idiot, and I think that maybe, just maybe, playing poker is my game.




MORE NOTES: If you spotted my shameless borrowing from a few songs, blatant pilfering from x-interviews, if you want to know more about oranges and team sports <g>, or if you just liked it ... email me at finn1013@hotmail.com. I'd love to hear from you!

PS: Sorry about the high sugar quotient: I just can't help myself. <g>


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Since 26 September 1999