TITLE: LOVE DOESN'T NEED A TITLE
AUTHOR: Josan
BETA: Get real! Though Solan did look at it and RJ did insist on the warnings.
DATE: February, 2000
PAIRING: Well, since this origainlly posted to SkinnerKrycek, I wonder, eh?

DISCLAIMER: Hey! You don't use them, don't complain if someone else does....

WARNING: If you are diabetic, you may want to delete or have some insulin around...

I had suggested to Sk/K that we do something different for February rather than a love story. So, of course, someone who shall remain nameless (you know who you are!) dared me to write a really sickening sweet Valentine's Day story.

Well, a dare, eh?

Oh, well....

You have been warned.

*********************************************************

Skinner looked at the lump that was still in the middle of their bed and gave a little sigh. Not that Alex had to get up for work, but over the last few months, he usually joined Skinner for breakfast before he left for the Bureau.

He shrugged to himself. Not this morning, he guessed.

Oh, well.

He gulped down juice, grabbed a coffee for the drive in and set off to beat the morning rush hour.

He was working his way through the pile of reports on his desk when, around ten o'clock, Kim knocked on his door.

"Yes?"

"Sir." She stuck her head in around the door. He could hear some soft laughter, a giggle or two from behind her. "Something's just been delivered for you. Shall I bring it in?"

Skinner frowned. He wasn't expecting anything. And just what was going on in her office? Sounded like several people were having a meeting of some kind.

"Yes, Kim. Of course." He stood up to take a package, an internal envelope from her...and froze.

A large bouquet of what must have been two dozen red roses in a crystal vase preceded her into the room. With a huge grin on her face, she set the vase down on his desk, re-adjusted a couple of the flowers which were in various stages of opening, from bud to full bloom, their perfume filling the room.

He was stunned.

"There seems to be a card." Kim, eyes brimming with delight, pointed out the small white envelope nestled in the flowers.

Carefully, Skinner pulled it out, awkwardly opened the small envelope with his large, blunt fingers. Pulled the card out.

Read it.

Blushed.

With her hand over her mouth, trying hard to muffle her giggles, Kim backed out of the room. Back to the feminine voices that whispered and giggled as she closed the door behind her.

Skinner stood staring at the little piece of card in his hand, a sappy grin slowly taking over his features.

Very carefully, he put the card back into the envelope, slipped the envelope into his breast pocket. He leaned over to sniff the flowers and tried hard to stifle the feelings that spread throughout his body. Gave up. Gave in.

He sat in his chair, pulled out the little envelope, partially removed the card, just enough to read again: Love you. Forever.

He put the message back in his pocket and finally, after several minutes, forced himself to go back to reading reports.

But every time he looked up and saw the flowers, every time a whiff of their perfume came his way, he would smile, his heart would beat faster and he would pause to accept the feeling of contentment that filled him.

 

 

He had a meeting to chair, another of those damn budget things. On his way to the conference room, he caught some of the glances that were sent his way. The wide grins on the women, the raised eyebrows from some of the men. Word had certain spread quickly.

The meeting was less boring than usual. Mainly because of the way people kept looking at him. Old Stone Face had gotten a delivery of red roses from some unknown source and well, that was worth more than any gossip about budgetary restrictions for the next month.

He found he had to get a grip on himself or he would be squirming in his seat at the obvious question they were all dying to ask, but wouldn't. He assumed speculation was running rampant throughout his department.

He found out just how rampant it was, when, on his way back to his office, his cell phone rang.

"Skinner." He was brusque. He hated answering a cell phone in the hallway of a building filled with regular phones.

"So," Scully's voice barely repressed her laughter, "what's this I hear about roses?"

Skinner hated the blush he could feel colouring his face. "How...For God's sake...Scully, haven't you got anything better to do?"

He hung up to the sound of her laughter.

And things didn't get better.

He went striding past Kim, daring her to say anything, on his way to his office when...

On his desk, along with the flowers...

"What the hell...Kim?" he snapped.

"Sir?"

"Just what is that on my desk?"

"I believe it's your lunch, sir." Kim was biting hard on her bottom lip.

"I didn't order any lunch, Kim."

"No, sir. It was delivered just a few minutes ago. There's a card with it. Sir. On the plate."

Kim waited until the door closed behind her befuddled boss before picking up the phone.

Skinner sighed. He knew what she was doing. He went to his chair, raised the silver dome that covered a tray and found himself looking at an array of seafood appetizers surrounding a dozen oysters on a half-shell. The card said: For tonight.

He sighed, trying hard to feel put-upon. Found he couldn't maintain the expression. A grin was taking possession of his face. He picked up one of the oysters, squeezed some lemon on it and swallowed it whole.

He was going to need all the strength he could gather for what he intended to do to the person responsible for his being the source of Bureau gossip.

Throughout the afternoon, several of his fellow AD's, the DD all found reasons to drop into his office. By the time he left the office, he was feeling past uncomfortable to plotting definite revenge. Especially, when just as he was about to step into the elevator, Kim came running after him. "Sir! Hold the elevator. Sir. You forgot this." And handed him the vase with its flowers.

He glowered and growled at anyone whose mouth even hinted at the remote possibility of opening.

In the garage, coming out of the elevator, he almost ran, literally, into the Director herself.

Jana Cassidy grinned at him. "Nice flowers, Walter." And stepped around him before his temper got the better of him.

He sighed. He set the flowers down on the roof of the car, opened the passenger side and carefully belted in the vase.

He found himself looking at the flowers every time he hit a red light on the way home. Once he even reached out to lightly caress one of the open petals.

The car horn blasting him from behind couldn't dent the feeling he had that life was pretty good these days.

 

 

Except for the soft light on in the kitchen, the house was dark when he pulled into the driveway and parked the car in the garage. Funny, he would have thought...Oh, well.

He dropped his briefcase on the kitchen table, walked into the dining room and carefully placed the vase in the centre of the table, gently re-arranging the blooms, now almost all open.

The quiet of the house was broken by a soft sound that he identified as coming from the bathroom off the main bedroom. He went up the stairs, undoing his tie, thinking of how he was going to torment his lover for those little surprises that had been sprung on him.

He was pulling off his tie as he opened the door, "Alex, I've got a ..."

And froze in the doorway.

The room was lit by candles, dozens of them, all sizes, all red. A small table draped with a red tablecloth had been set up near the foot of the bed: a bottle of champagne in an ice bucket stood on a stool next to it.

There was the sound of music softly playing on the sound system that took up a corner of the room.

And then there was the bed.

Made up with red satin sheets. Open as if waiting for him to slide in.

To join the man stretched out on the other side of the bed.

A man, head propped up on his elbow, smiling at him. Enjoying his reaction. To the room. To the set up.

To the fact that he was dressed in a scarlet red cropped top with matching thong. With a red bow around his neck.

The tie slid out of Walter's hand and onto the floor, hitting it at about the same time as his chin.

Alex gave a soft laugh and snaked his way across the bed to slide off it and slowly, green eyes brimming with devilment holding onto warm chocolate ones, he came to stand in front of his stunned lover.

It was then that Walter noticed that the cropped shirt had a red arrow printed in the centre of it, an arrow pointing downwards to the sequined heart that was strategically placed on the thong.

Alex fingered the bow around his neck. "I thought you might like to open your Valentine's Day gift later on." He placed his good hand around Walter's waist, the fake one on his shoulder and pulled the man who looked as though he still couldn't believe his eyes into his arms for a deep, passionate exploration of his mouth.

When Alex pulled back, his breathing was barely under control. Walter's eyes remained closed until he could breath without gasping. Then he looked his lover over and smiled. "Your heart seems to be growing." And he placed his hand over the red heart. Alex's hips pressed back and his smile grew positively lecherous.

"We'll get around to that. *Eventually*."

Walter's eyebrow raised in query. His smile spread even more across his face. "And meanwhile, what do you have in mind, dear heart?"

Alex looked surprised at the endearment, and then pleased. His hands started removing the jacket of Walter's bureaucratic uniform. "Many things. But first, I want to dance with you."

"Dance!" Walter chuckled. "I didn't know you liked to dance."

Alex tossed the jacket onto a chair by the dresser. "Depends." His voice seemed huskier than before.

"On?" Walter took a compliant Alex into his arms. They slowly rocked in time to the music.

Alex blew into Walter's ear, took the lobe into his mouth and gave a gentle nip. "Who I'm with."

Walter nibbled on the line of the neck that rose from the shoulder. "Is that important?"

Alex closed his eyes and gave a little shudder as Walter's teeth nipped that particularly sensitive spot under his ear. "Crucial," he finally whispered.

They swayed on their feet, entire bodies touching as they pretended to dance to the music. Walter's hand caressed the back of Alex's head as he held it close to his, cheek on cheek, savouring the delightful smell of freshly scrubbed Alex. Alex began softly humming along to the music.

"What is that?" Walter's hand slipped down the long back to cup one of the tight rounded globes that was just begging for his touch.

Alex let his real hand copy Walter's, even if it had to grip harder past the barrier of finely cut wool. He sang, softly, in a very acceptable tenor:

Hier encore j'avais vingt ans
Je caressais le temps
et jouais de la vie
comme on joue de l'amour
et je visais la nuit
sans compter sur mes jours
qui fuaient dans le temps

Walter laughed softly. Of course his ex-Consortium Russian assassin lover would know French. He rested his head against Alex's and enjoyed the feel of him in his arms, the slight vibrations along his throat as he sang along with the voice that Walter now recognized as belonging to Charles Aznavour.

Sharon had been to see him once, in New York, but he'd been called out on a case and she'd gone with a friend. The two women had gushed about that night for weeks. Back then their apartment had echoed with that mournful voice until something happened and some other singer had taken precedence.

"What do the words mean?"

Alex sighed. "He's singing about the foolishness of love when you're young, and the importance of it when you're older."

"Hmmm."

One of Walter's hands was rubbing circles on Alex's buttock while the other was holding him close by the nape. Alex's was slipping under the waist of Walter's pants and fingertips were stroking whatever skin they could touch.

Both were sporting erections that neither paid any attention to.

Alex shuffled his feet, slowly yet surely directing Walter into the bathroom.

The room was lit with the soft light of more candles giving the entire place an other-worldly aspect. Walter let Alex undress him, hindering more than helping with his attempts to kiss whatever part of Alex's body was closest. It took a while but finally Walter was gloriously naked, his skin golden in the reflected light of the candles.

At Alex's silent urging, he got into the tub, sat in the water that must have been hot when the bath was poured but was now just the right temperature to unwind muscles tightened by a day's work.

Alex didn't join him, but, much to Walter's surprise, began washing him. When Walter started protesting, Alex shushed him. "Please. Be good, love. Let me do this for you."

Of course, the kiss went a long way to convincing Walter to lie back in water almost to his chin and just enjoy it. It was then that he noticed the petals floating on the surface of the water. He caught one on the back of his hand, raised it to his nose and sniffed. Rose petals.

Alex grinned at his momentary discomfort.

What the hell, thought Walter, it was that kind of night. And blew the petal off his hand onto his lover's hair. Alex's soft laughter filled the room.

Walter wasn't allowed that much time in the water. As it cooled down, Alex played with his body, paying special attention to his genitals. Even in the water, Walter could feel himself getting harder.

Then Alex pulled away, held up one of the extra large bath sheets that they used and Walter stood up, water running off his body and stepped out of the bath into the towel.

Again Alex wouldn't let him do anything. So he stood there and watched as Alex dried him off. He did manage to grab him as he finished for a kiss during which he practically devoured the man.

He really thought bed was next, and it was, but not for what he had in mind.

Alex placed a fresh towel on the bed and had Walter lie face down on it. He placed a kiss on the top of Walter's spine. "Wait," he whispered.

Walter realized that the scent of roses was strong again and, closely examining the bed, was surprised to find red rose petals were scattered over the red sheets. With a smile that even he would have to acknowledge as being incredibly sappy, he began gathering the petals that were within reach of his hand, piling them together. Alex was back in mere moments with a small container that stood in a mug of hot water. He dribbled some of the warm liquid along the line of Walter's spine and, once more, the smell of roses filled the air.

By now Walter was too much under the spell Alex had set out to cast: he barely noticed as he played with the petals, scooping them up, letting them fall from between his fingers, that the oil being massaged into his skin would make him smell like a garden. Frankly, he didn't care. All he cared about was the sudden discovery that his lover had a wide romantic streak in him. He would remember that.

Alex went slowly. He had only one hand that he really could use and the touching as important to him as was the man being touched. He hummed along with the soft romantic music, as turned on by his scenario as he knew Walter was.

But there was no rush. Not tonight. Tonight was for lovers and he celebrated the fact that he had found someone who loved him as much as he loved that someone. He placed a kiss on the small of his lover's back. Walter made a barely audible sound of appreciation.

When he had Walter turn over, Walter's arousal was splendidly displayed. Alex couldn't help himself. In spite of all his careful plans, he bent and took the rampant beast into his mouth and revelled in the taste of it. Walter's hands rested on his head, fingers playing with his hair, encouraging, but not directing.

Alex released Walter's erection and looked up: Walter licked his lips in appreciation of the wicked glint in those darkening emerald eyes.

"I had intended feeding you before we made love," his voice was heavy with his arousal.

Walter pulled until Alex lay on him, his sex rubbing against the silky heart of Alex's thong. "Come feed me this way, first." He pulled the loose end of the bow and tossed the ribbon to one side. His hands pushed and tugged the thong off Alex, who casually kicked it to the floor. As Walter's hands gripped his ass tightly against him, their cocks slipped and slid against each other and Alex moaned into Walter's mouth.

The cropped top joined the thong on the floor and Walter moved Alex's body up his so that he could have easy access to the small brown nipples, playing with them with his mouth, his teeth, his tongue until he was sure Alex would come if he kept on tormenting them.

One of Alex's legs settled between Walter's and the rocking motion of Alex's body on his cock nearly sent him over. What finally did was the way Alex was pressing his groin over his stomach, using the friction to find his way to his own orgasm. Their grunts, moans, groans added dimension to the songs of love coming from the corner.

They lay silent in each other's arms, coasting in the glowing aftermath. Walter's arm rested on Alex's back, attempting to hold him down when he moved. "I'll be right back," promised Alex, and he was, with a cloth to wash him off. Walter smiled at the feel of the warm wetness on his skin.

Alex came back to lay next to him. Walter opened his eyes and studied the face looking at him. "I love you." He shook his head slightly. "I shouldn't."

"No," agreed Alex, "you shouldn't."

Walter stroked his lover's face: Alex leaned into the caress. "I can't imagine life without you, Alex."

Alex's smile was shyly pleased. "Thank you. I used to wonder what it would be like to have someone love me. I never knew it would be like this. I love you so much, Walter."

Their kiss was more romantic than passionate.

"Did you like the flowers?" Alex lay his head on Walter's shoulder.

Walter gave a soft laugh. "Remind me to get my own back on you for that one. I even heard from Scully about them."

"I thought she was at Quantico these days."

"She is."

Alex laughed, "Oh. Dear."

"Like I said, watch your back."

"Well, surely the oysters compensated for that."

Walter gave Alex's hair a sharp tug. "That's two."

Alex propped his chin up on Walter's collarbone. "Hmm. Sounds like I'm in deep shit."

"The deepest."

"Maybe I've got something that will get me out of it. Wait here."

Walter watched Alex leave the room. He sighed. Stretched his body, twisting it a bit, feeling incredibly well relaxed. Also a bit hungry. He propped up the pillows, sat up waiting for the next part of the evening's entertainment. He waited about ten minutes, playing with the rose petals, before he heard Alex carefully making his way up the stairs.

He entered carrying a tray with both hands, his lower lip caught under his top teeth as he concentrated on keeping the fondue pots level. He set the tray on the table with a sigh of relief. With a grin, he dragged the table next to the bed and lit the two heat sources under the pots. He seriously played with the openings until he had a low flame under one pot, a higher one under the other.

From the top of the dresser he brought over a large bowl with cubes of crusty bread and some long fondue forks. When Walter reached for one, he got his hand slapped away.

"Not tonight. Tonight you save your strength for better things," Alex grinned.

So Walter accepted each wine and cheese soaked cube of bread, insisting that Alex had to kiss him for every piece of bread that slipped into the pot. When too many ended up in the pot, Alex insisted on a kiss for every one that made it into Walter's mouth.

"What's in the other pot?" Walter's curiosity finally got the better of him.

"Dessert." Alex licked a strand of cheese off his lips.

"Aren't you dessert?"

Alex grinned like a lascivious alley-cat. "Part of it."

The bottle of champagne was finally opened. Alex coated the flutes with kassis before adding the champagne. They toasted each other, voices silent, eyes shouting their intentions.

Dessert proved to be another fondue: chocolate this time.

For dipping strawberries into.

With fingers that needed licking.

With fruit that dripped warm, sweet chocolate on skin on its way to mouths.

That left mouths chocolate stained and strawberry flavoured.

That led to licking. And tasting. And kisses.

And...

Later, as the candles began going out one by one, and the two lovers were slipping into sleep, Walter remembered. His getting out of bed roused Alex who watched him rummage around in his jacket pockets until "Ah!" and Walter came back to the bed, pulled Alex back into his usual place against him and dropped the jeweller's case on his own chest.

"What's this?" asked Alex sleepily.

"Did you think you were the only one who could celebrate St. Valentine's Day? Open it, Alex."

Alex reached over and flipped the lid off the case.

He tilted the case towards him and grew very still. Almost forgot to breathe there for a moment. His eyes grew suspiciously bright in even the fading light of the room.

In the case there were two silver identification bracelets. Obviously designed for men's wrists.

On the flat surface of both was etched, in an intricate design of Tudor influence, two entwined sets of initials: WS and AK.

Walter held out his right wrist. With an awkward clumsiness born more out of emotion than inability, Alex closed the clasp of the longer bracelet.

Then he held out his right wrist.

Walter closed the clasp on his lover's wrist and placed a kiss in the centre of the palm that lay trustingly on his chest.

Alex closed his hand on that kiss and its promises.