Title: Hole in the Ground
Author: Amy B.
Pairing: sorta M/K, K/o implied
Feedback: More than welcome at email@example.com
Disclaimers: The XF characters do not belong to me--CC, 1013,
Fox, etc have
that privilege. A few folks I did make up, but you'll know which
which, I'm sure.
Notes: This story is expanded from a snippet that I posted to
a list or two
a while back as "Dreaming in Poetry". Thanks to Mouse
and Nicole for
stupendous beta and to Jenny for research help.
Summary: Alex in the silo after Apocrypha.
I had a dream last night...at least, I think it was night. Sometimes
hard to tell. Sure, I have dreams all the time, but luckily I
remember most of them. The nightmares can stay buried in the murky
from which they come for all I care. That 'confronting your demons
them weaker' idea is just so much bull. If you bring them up into
light, not only do you have to see how incredibly ugly they really
have see them every damn day until you finally come to your senses
So anyway, I had this dream where I'm standing in the middle of
grassy meadow, which is scattered with the obligatory wildflowers
surrounded by dense old growth forest. Above the trees, the sky
rolls with black and gray thunderheads. Gold and silver threads
lightning give the storm depth and fury. Yet over the meadow,
the sun is
shining and the sky is a most mesmerizing shade of cerulean blue,
with fluffy white clouds that look like cottony bunny tails to
eye. And I stand there in the warm still air, looking around,
just sort of
soaking it all in... the beauty of the place, the complete, unnatural
I hear a quiet sound, a tiny little whuff in the air and a shadow
over me. It's small but so out of place that I notice it right
look up and see a hawk flying overhead. Well, I think it's a hawk.
exactly Marty Stouffer or Marlin Perkins. I watch the sheer grace
hawk as it wheels around and flies back toward me, overwhelming
giving new meaning to the words 'poetry in motion'.
Suddenly, I become the hawk. I'm soaring through the sky, the
past in a torrent of sound, but I am silent as I tuck in my wings
I'm an arrow, a meteor streaking toward earth, utterly unstoppable.
power of the moment consumes me. I *am* the hawk.
The small brown rabbit stands frozen in the grass. Its tiny brain
that if it holds still enough I won't see it. Stupid rabbit, your
won't work on me. I aim for the rabbit with the deadly accuracy
sharpshooter. Now that's an analogy I'm intimate with... only
I'm the bullet.
I silently swoop down, death from above, and snatch the rabbit
ground. My razor-sharp talons dig into the soft fur and firm flesh
prey, which squirms and squeals in useless protest. I devour it
sharp beak rips small bits from its bloody flesh as my claws hold
It feeds me well and when I'm done, I hunt again. For another
gopher, a prairie dog, whatever small defenseless creature I can
That's nature. It's what hawks do, how we live.
I am beauty and blood and truth and brilliance and death and freedom.
an immutable power. I am the hawk.
When I wake up from the dream, my first thought is of Fox Mulder.
where he is and what he's doing. Maybe I'll pay him a little visit
get out of here. Somehow I'll see him, even if I don't speak to
the briefest bit of contact would be enough. I think.
My second thought is of hunger, as it so often is. By my count,
in this silo for nearly two weeks. I wonder if it's possible to
body starving to death? I've gone hungry before, but never like
Sometimes I think that I can actually feel my cells trying to
feed off each
other then dying by the millions. Then I tell myself I'm being
that with my body mass (or whatever the important factor is) I
survive for quite a long while before turning into a pile of bones.
mostly I try not to think about it. Instead, I think about freedom
hurts too much, then I think about Mulder until that hurts too
I found a pipe whose steady drip gives me enough water to live
on. At first
I wouldn't drink it because I didn't know where it came from and
I was so
sure someone would come for me. After awhile I knew I had been
abandoned. I'm too strong-willed not to fight for survival, so
I drink the
water, even though it tastes rusty and brackish and may eventually
anyway. It also makes me feel like a hamster, but I have to try,
If I could just get out of this room, I know I could get completely
the silo. I know it because I tell myself every single day. But
is solid steel with a reinforced frame and locks that are virtually
unpickable. Even if I had some tools, I couldn't get out of here.
nothing in here to work with. There's nothing in here at all except
and the ship, and I can't get close to it--not since I woke up,
against the door with the dawning realization that the Oil was
gone and I
was me again. I've tried a few times, but my instincts or subconscious
something starts screaming at me to get back.
Maybe it's the last vestiges of self-preservation begging me not
to the Oil again. Like I had some kind of choice the first time.
right. I was minding my own business, taking a leak in a Hong
bathroom, when I looked up to see a woman. I thought it was funny
was in the men's room, until she slammed me up against the wall,
feet from the floor. Of course, now I realize the Oil gave her
to do that, but at the time I thought some insane lady bodybuilder
attacking me. It was scary and so unreal that I almost didn't
was happening. Except for the wall, cool and hard against my cheek,
feet, dangling in midair, I would have thought I was hallucinating
Black Oil started to slither out of her and into me. It was cold
so wrong, so *alien*, for lack of a better term, that I would
anything to get rid of it, but it already had control of me. And
I've lived through the actual process of getting rid of it, I'm
in no hurry
to repeat the experience, so I don't fight the compulsion that
keeps me away
from the ship.
Thinking about the Oil and the complete control it had over my
body makes me
shiver and curl up against the wall, hugging my knees to my chest
parody of comfort. I hated not being in control, my actions not
my own. I
watched everything from so far away that it was like sitting in
the back row
of the movie theatre and seeing myself on the screen. I would
myself to do something, to *say* something to Mulder, to let him
the alien presence that was between us, but the words never made
it to my
lips. I don't know if Mulder ever figured out that I wasn't me
It's not like he really tried to talk to me on the flight back
Washington. It's not like he ever really knew me to begin with.
want to get to know me and since I wouldn't have let him anyway,
probably for the best that he didn't try.
It's ironic that I was such a good little drone for the Syndicate
they tried to kill me. Do everything you're told, Alex, and look
reward we'll give you. A fiery horrible death. So I escape with
trump card, my ace in the hole, and what happens? I become a drone
Black Oil alien, and then get trapped here to die, slowly withering
nothing. Personally, I'd have preferred the car bomb, or a nice
bullet to the back of the head. I can appreciate efficiency, and
prolonged suffering if it's for a good cause, but this is all
At first I was scared. I mean, that thing could decide to come
out and get
me again. That sounds like a kid afraid of the closet monster,
true. The monster is real and it's in here... with me. The cold
horror of that unavoidable fact kept me awake for three days straight.
couldn't close my eyes for fear that the Oil would take me again.
over, under, *away*... away from myself, and that is one terrifying
prospect. After awhile of inactivity on the alien's part, the
muted--it's still there but no longer edged with panic. I don't
idea what the Oil is doing in there, but at least it seems to
in the ship. I don't know how long the reprieve will last, but
I have this
feeling that I'm going to get out of here soon. I don't know how,
I'm deluding myself, but I can feel it just the same.
I sometimes wonder if I'm going insane, being locked in here with
*thing*, but then I think that if I can ask the question I must
Most normal people probably don't give a lot of thought to sanity,
always been something highly prized to me. Maybe it comes from
grandfather drift off into his own little world as he got older.
know where he was or what he was doing or even what year it was
most of the
time. They finally locked him away in a nursing home where he
would lie in
his bed--often in his own filth--fighting a war that had been
over for forty
years. Forgetting all his English, he would yell at the nurses
orderlies in Russian, until they would call my father and if they
get him they'd call me, threatening to strap the old man down
him. He thought he was fighting the bloody Nazis and they want
to give him
a tranquilizer--like that's going to make it okay? He'd still
them in his head--suffering in silence. Fuck that. I'm not going
crazy and I am sure as hell not going to suffer in fucking silence.
I have to get up and move around. At first, I would get up and
the perimeter the room, but I realized I had to conserve my strength.
getting pretty weak, but I have to get moving every once in awhile
from getting so sore that I *can't* move. Don't want to just sit
give up, and I have to fight the boredom somehow.
The boredom is truly unbelievable, and often becomes so hypnotic
entertain thoughts of trying to astrally project myself right
out of this
hole. A couple of times I felt myself drifting and thought for
breathless moments that it would actually work. But of course,
out of it and crashed back to earth, the irrational disappointment
bringing me to tears. At other times, it's almost psychedelic
and I imagine
all sorts of ridiculous things. I refuse to call them hallucinations
because that implies I have no control over them--over my own
is something I can never accept. All those years of avoiding anything
stronger than vodka and here I am, tripping on *boredom* of all
Just say no. This is your brain...this is your brain on boredom.
questions? Damn, I'm doing it again...
A week ago I cooked an entire Thanksgiving dinner in my head,
out the grocery list to setting the table to finishing off that
last bite of
pumpkin pie. It took hours to go through each little detail, but
it kept me
busy. It was also painful, reminding me how hungry I was, so I
tried anything like that again.
Instead I practice the multiplication tables, the periodic chart,
Cyrillic alphabet, and try to name all the high holy days of the
Orthodox Church and all the saints that I can remember. I conjugate
in French and Latin and try to list all the curse words I've ever
heard in a
dozen languages. I plot the downfall of governments, and plan
assassinations--the Morley smoking old man is at the top of that
Occasionally, I relive pleasant childhood and teenage memories--
bike, playing first base in Little League, the first girl I kissed,
first girl I got naked, the first boy I kissed, learning to drive.
remember the time Tommy Kirk and I both snuck out of our houses
summer evening and went over to Robert Tanner's house. Robert's
worked nights and his dad had died three or four years before
that and he
had just found where his mom hid the key to the liquor cabinet.
temptation was too great for a trio of fearlessly curious twelve
and we proceeded to sample every single bottle in the cabinet
at least once,
and going back to the ones we liked several times. It was great
got so drunk that Tommy passed out under the kitchen table and
Robert and I
were in no shape to try to get him home. We finally left him there
staggered home, stopping once to throw up in old Mrs. Grayson's
petunia bed. When I tried to climb the tree to get back to my
room, I fell
and broke my arm. I cut off the memory right there, because what
falls into the category of "not so pleasant." My hand
creeps up to my jaw
before I can stop it. Those bruises faded years ago, and there's
in dredging up the pain again now.
Rubbing my fingers over my prickly new beard, I try to think of
else. I wonder what I look like now. I've never worn a beard before,
have to wonder if I look like a dork. I don't consider myself
a vain man,
but looks are important and I'm looking pretty bad right now.
which are hanging loose from the weight I've lost, are ragged
from being the
only thing I've had to wear since I've been in this hellhole.
It's been too
cool to take them off, although I have taken off my shirt a few
tried to rinse it out in my meager water supply. I don't know
if it has
much effect on the smell--I've grown rather immune to it--but
it makes me
feel like I'm *doing* something. I try to wash myself off the
with the same questionable results.
Mulder would probably greatly enjoy my current condition. He'd
cruel smile on a mouth that wasn't made to be cruel, and he would
ass off...that skinny ass that looks so good in a red Speedo...
there, Alex. There be dragons-- big, scaly fire-breathing dragons.
what? When has that ever stopped me? Why shouldn't I fantasize
Mulder? He sneaks into my thoughts quite often, and it doesn't
anybody. It's not like I can do anything about this desire while
here and he's out there in the world...free, damn him. I can't
anything with *myself* at the moment. I sure hope that problem
when I get out of here. I'm too young to be impotent forever.
When I get out of here, I'm going to do several things: eat, take
longest, hottest shower I can possibly manage, shave, burn these
eat some more, find someone to have sex with, and go see Mulder.
determined the order yet, but that's what I'm going to do.
What will I do when I go to see Mulder? I know what I'd like to
like to sneak into his apartment while he's sleeping and wake
sticking my tongue down his throat. Yeah, that's it. He wouldn't
bite either. Oh, no, he'd be happy to see me. He'd throw his arms
my neck, kiss me back, and pull me into bed with him. I don't
actually has a bed, but in my fantasy he does. Sofa sex is fine
hot and bothered enough, but I'm going to be looking for comfort
when I get
out. So...he'd pull me into bed with him and he'd be naked and
just for me. He'd strip off my clothes while I kissed him some
think I could kiss him for hours, but after awhile we'd start
gently at first then clawing wildly at each other. I'd pull his
and sink my teeth into his throat, marking him where everyone
could see that
he belonged to me. And I'd stare into those chameleon eyes as
I took him
hard and fast and he'd love it. He'd scream and beg for more because
the best that he'd ever had--no, the *only* man he'd ever had.
be a virgin, and he'd be scared and I might--if I felt like it--try
soothe him as I rammed my cock into his tight, tight ass. I'd
tell him how
sweet he was and he'd tell me how much he loved me. And then I'd
get out of
his bed and go home. And if I was feeling really generous, I might
off before I left.
Maybe I'd go to Scully's place next... I wonder if Mulder's ever
Scully? I don't think so, because everyone would expect that and
seldom does the expected. I should dislike Scully because of the
treated me when I worked with Mulder at the Bureau, but I don't.
lust after her because she's a beautiful woman, but I don't...
So how do I feel about the enigmatic Doctor Scully? I respect
her for the
incredible amount of crap she must go through just being Mulder's
and yet remains by his side. I'm also amused by the fact that
with him, when a sensible person would have run for her life long
ago. So I
really wasn't too broken up that it was her sister and not her
when Cardinal panicked like a stupid rookie. Although now that
I can really
sit down and think about it--what else have I got to do? -- have
if Cardinal actually panicked after all. The man was a stone cold
professional who'd come through a lot of fire. He was probably
kill Scully or *whoever* showed up, and nobody mentioned this
little fact to
me. That's what pisses me off the most about the Syndicate, the
mentality. They only tell you what you absolutely need to know,
they *think* you need to know. But the old man's not out in the
a little information can make a big difference in how an operation
The old man-- the Smoker-- is high on my hit list right now. That
is going down as soon as I get the chance. That's where Mulder's
prove to be useful. Man, when did it get so hot in here? I believe
still thinks he'll be able to just bundle the whole lot of them
off to jail,
like they were petty drug dealers or bank robbers. His...what?...
innocence, naivete, pure blind devotion to his own cause is an
thing. Hell, I don't see how he has the energy to keep it up.
Heh, heh. Mulder keeping it up-- now there's an image for you.
hot in here! I wipe my forehead and find it dry. OK, that can't
can it? Great, I'm gonna die of a virus or an infection--of the
earthly kind-- now instead of a bullet or a bomb. What a fucking
disappointment that is.
I go over to the door and inspect it for the thousandth time,
for a way out. I don't want to die here, abandoned and forgotten.
No, I can't... can't... "NO! I don't want to die I don't
want to die I
don't want to die. Alone alone no no not alone... I have to get
here. I don't want to die in here. Do you hear me, fucker? DO
HEAR ME YOU FUCKING BLACK OIL FUCKER?? I don't want to die in
some of that superior technology to get me THE FUCK out of here."
Just like a dozen times before, I bang on the door until my hands
bruised and my knuckles are bloody, still screaming and cursing
until I fall
into an exhausted heap. Shivers wrack my whole body as I fall
over to one
side of the door. I hurt all over, my already sore throat feeling
abused now. Every muscle seems to have turned to water, and I
headache again--still. Opening my eyes--when did I close them?
-- when I
think I hear something. I've heard other phantom noises that teased
the possibility of freedom, but they always turn out to be nothing,
Wait, there it is again. It sounds like footsteps. I listen carefully
a minute, holding my breath, but my heart is beating so loudly
in my ears I
can't be sure if what I hear is real this time. Then my heart
seems to stop
all together as I hear a faint scratching from the other side
of the door.
I slide up the wall to my feet and start yelling again.
"Help! I'm trapped in here! Hey, can you hear me?" My
voice is a hoarse
croak, and I suddenly have doubts that whoever's outside would
be able to
hear me. "Please, help me! Get me out of here! Please, help
voice breaks and I stop screaming and just listen for a moment.
There's a clank, and oh, thank you, thank you, the door is OPENING.
yes, get me out of here," I mutter and lunge for the door.
A couple of big
guys in black fatigues appear in the doorway then and I bounce
right off one
of them, like hitting a brick wall. I hit the concrete floor hard
knock the breath out of my chest. After a panicked moment of being
completely unable to draw in a breath, I lie there gasping and
the two men as they look at each other, then down at me, and back
other with no expression whatsoever. After a moment of silent
communication, one reaches toward me and I lift my hand, thinking
offering to help me up. He ignores my outstretched hand, and goes
shoulder. What the fuck-- is he gonna do a Vulcan neck pinch or
No, he's got something shiny in his hand...
My first thought is to get the number of the truck that hit me.
hurt, and I feel like I've been out for hours, maybe days. I open
and even the low lights of the room sear into my brain like flames.
okay, that's a bad idea. For a few moments, I lie on the floor
breathing and aching. Finally, I open my eyes again, and sit up
fighting off a wave of dizziness in order to do so. Fuck, I'm
still in the
silo! Where are the guys? Noticing the utter silence, I look around...
The fuckers are gone! They left me here. Damn it all to hell,
they left me
here. The ship is... They took the ship and left me behind. Okay,
should be glad, but that'll have to wait until I'm not so pissed
just about to scream out my frustration when I notice a slight
draft over to
"Ahh, YES!" They left the door open! Yeah, I can get
out of here.
Finally! I pull myself to my feet and walk out the door. Elation
overwhelms me and I feel tears in my eyes for the first time in
I don't know
how long. I'm free... sort of. I still have to get to the surface,
not even sure how far down I am.
Standing in the corridor, I feel the elation start to fade and
takes its place. There are probably miles of corridors, and me
map. I close my eyes and try desperately to remember how I got
it's all a garbled mess of indecipherable images.
"Okay, Alex. You have two choices, stand here until you die,
walking." No choice really. I start walking... well, actually
myself along the wall, my legs too weak to hold me up. At the
first fork, I
have to decide again which way to go, and I can't stand up any
randomly choosing the left corridor--and hoping it's the *right*
start to crawl.
After a long straight stretch and another turn, I collapse onto
exhausted and shaking. I can't go another inch. I'm so tired,
maybe if I
get some sleep I can continue later. I'm so close to freedom,
speaking of course. I swear the air seems so much fresher out
here that I
think I could get high from just breathing.
"Is he dead?" A shaky male voice brings me out of the
stupor into which I
seem to have fallen. I'm trying to open my mouth to answer, when
foot nudges me in the ribs. A faint groan is all I can manage,
"Nah, he ain't dead. Whew, but he *smells* like it."
The second voice is
also male but sounds older, more confident. This second guy speaks
again, sounding farther away. "Leave him. Let's get what
we came for and
get out of here."
"But Terry, he's not dead! We can't just leave him. He might
die if we
do." The kid speaks again, sounding indignant and shocked.
Bet he's never
stood up to old Terry before, but I'm glad he's got the guts to
do it this
Finally getting my eyes open, I swallow hard and gasp, "Please...
Footsteps move closer and scruffy combat boots stop right in front
face, and Terry says, "Fine. Tommy, you have to carry him.
The rest of us
have real work to do. Come on, men." And I hear at least
sets of footsteps echoing off into the endless corridors.
Tommy... My rescuer's name is the same as my childhood friend.
I wonder if
this kid's got flaming red hair and a beautiful sister named Moira?
have time to wonder any more as he hitches me up over his shoulder
fireman's carry. He carries me for what seems like days.
When he stops to rest, he props me up against the wall and I get
good look at him. He's a strapping young man whose brush cut hair
blonde, not red after all. He asks my name, and I don't even hesitate,
"Arntzen. But call me Alex."
"How long you been in here, Alex?" His nose twitches,
but he doesn't make
any comment on my condition.
"Couple weeks, I think."
He nods at my answer, and I wonder what that means, but before
I can ask he
lets out a long breath and says, "Well, let's get going."
I take a few steps and collapse against the wall, he stops my
slide before I
hit the floor and hitches me back up over his shoulder.
"Sorry," I gasp out the words as I hang over his shoulder,
my face almost
even with his ass. "I'll... I'll...uh, make it up to you....
"My mama's a retired nurse so she'll get you back on your
feet. Then you
can repay me." To my surprise, he brings his free hand up
smacks me on the ass.
Well, color me speechless. So, I'm in with Tommy and his mother,
am I going to do about Terry and the rest of the boys?
Tell them the truth-- a *small* portion of the truth that I will
spin to my
advantage. I'll tell them what they want to hear, whatever will
get them on
my side. Maybe I can use them to get to the old man. A backwoods
group and Fox Mulder, what a delightful combination to play with.
And a hot young Aryan stud to play with for as long as he's useful--
as I get my strength back.
God bless America.