24/7: 9. Suits You, Sir


The room was dark, and there was something warm and heavy resting on his thigh. Mulder felt disorientated, wondering where he was, and why he felt so damn good. He shifted his hip, and the weight on his thigh moved, then settled again a bit lower down. Mulder wondered what it was, and what it was doing in his bed. He opened his eyes, then closed them again with a contented smile. Skinner’s arm. His Master’s arm was draped over his slave’s body.


Mulder frowned. Something soft and furry was nestled under his chin, and it was vibrating. Mulder opened his eyes again, and glared at Wanda. She notched her purring up a decibel, and rested her head proprietarily on Skinner’s shoulder. Mulder nudged her out of the way with his chin, and claimed this prime position himself. It was strange seeing his boss, his Master, at such close quarters – asleep, unguarded, emitting his powerful Skinner pheromones that made his slave dizzy.


Mulder studied his Master carefully for several minutes. Skinner looked so different asleep and at such close, intimate quarters. He looked much younger for a start. Without the aura of power that usually surrounded him, without the trappings of his office, his trademark white shirt, without his glasses…he looked serene, and he had a rugged, intensely masculine beauty that turned Mulder on.


Mulder pressed his lips gently against his Master’s shoulder, enjoying the feel of the bare flesh under his lips. His welted butt ached, and his nipples were sore, but he had never felt more relaxed in his whole life. He felt somehow different this morning. Mulder kissed his Master’s shoulder again, and pondered the change. He felt…happy. No, it was more than that, it was something much more profound. A wave of peace and radiance swept through him as he remembered last night. Skinner had said he loved him. More than that, he’d loved him for years. Mulder went through every single one of their confrontations in his head, since the moment Skinner had taken on the X Files, and tried to figure out how the hell that had happened. He remembered drug induced tantrums, throwing a punch at his boss, his constant rebuttals of the other man’s authority, to say nothing of his own paranoia and distrust. He winced as he recalled the numerous occasions when he had accused Skinner of betraying him, or his work, and yet Skinner was here, solid, unmoving, like the proverbial rock. He had always been here, catching Mulder when he fell, cleaning up after him, and yes, disciplining him when he needed that too. It was as if Skinner understood him, in a way nobody else ever had, or ever could – not even Scully. Skinner saw the darkness inside his slave, and neither allowed Mulder to drag him down into it, nor held back from reaching into the void to anchor him to sanity. Mulder remembered calling him his beacon in the night once – he’d meant it facetiously at the time. He would never have guessed the resonance the words would one day hold for him.


The hand on his thigh shifted, and Skinner muttered something in his sleep. Mulder moved closer, and pressed his body against his Master’s as if he wanted to melt into him. He could feel Wanda’s soft, furry presence between them, the three of them warm, close, sleepy. Usually, this was the time when he ran. He had managed to separate love and sex quite happily for several years. He hadn’t wanted this. He still wasn’t entirely sure how it had happened. He had been looking for an extreme thrill, a way of satisfying sexual urges that wouldn’t go away, and he had found this instead. Last night had been the first time he had ever made love to another man. Love. Love, as opposed to sex. Love, as opposed to giving his body over to sensation, to use and abuse in order to get the high he craved. And it had been good. Mulder shivered, and burrowed his head into Skinner’s warm chest, whimpering softly to himself. He was scared by how much he wanted this, by how completely he’d fallen in love with his Master, his boss, in just this short space of time. By denying him his liberty, Skinner had effectively forced him to stay around long enough to care, and more importantly, to be cared for. Mulder wasn’t used to the sensation. A part of him wanted to run, while another part, one that he had denied for so long, wanted to rest his head on Skinner’s shoulder forever, and never leave his Master’s side.


He was so busy thinking, that he gave a start of alarm when he looked up to find his Master’s eyes open, and his gaze fixed on his slave.


“Awake, little one?” Skinner kissed his hair.


“Yeah.” Mulder smiled, and stroked his hand along his Master’s thigh.


“And thinking hard, I see.” Skinner drew him into the circle of his warm, strong arms, and held him.


“Yeah.” Mulder shrugged.




Mulder hesitated, then looked up into his Master’s eyes. “Love,” he admitted honestly, “and what you said last night.”


“Ah. Love,” Skinner murmured absently.


“Yeah. I never thought I was interested in all that emotional crap,” Mulder confided.


“But?” Skinner prompted.


“Today I woke up happy, Master, for the first time,” Mulder whispered.


“Good.” Skinner grinned.


“No, you don’t understand.” Mulder looked up again. “I woke up happy for the first time ever, in as long as I can remember. Usually, every morning I wake up to the same old angst of being me, of living my life the way I do. I wake up thinking ‘fuck, another day.’ Today…I woke up thinking that being me could be pleasurable for a change…”


“That’s good.” Skinner’s hands ran up and down his slave’s back.


“…and I wanted to run away,” Mulder finished.


Skinner’s hands found his welted buttocks, and stopped, pressed hard on the sore flesh, making Mulder squirm. “Well, that’s not an option, slaveboy,” he growled. “You belong to me, and the penalty for running away isn’t one you want to pay.”


Mulder’s eyes were alight and curious, and his cock lurched to attention. Skinner in he-man mode always did it for him. “What would you do, Master?” he asked, in a faltering tone.


Skinner’s expression hardened, and his eyes were deadly serious as he replied. “I’d track you down, drag you back here, and whip you within an inch of your life,” he promised.


“Oh.” Mulder wasn’t sure why he found that reassuring.


“And when I’d finished tanning your hide, I’d hold you down, hold you damn tight, and keep you there, until you told me why you’d left. I wouldn’t allow you to be dishonest, or flippant, or to get by on those half truths, and that half baked crap you tell yourself, in order to hide from what you want most,” Skinner informed him.


Mulder thought about this for a moment, then kissed the other man’s lips, tenderly.


“Thank you, Master,” he whispered.


They drifted off, dozing for a while, then, without warning, Skinner angled his knee forward, and pulled Mulder’s body over it, so that his butt was raised a little way in the air, then the big man thrust a finger inside his slave’s body. Mulder moaned, and wiggled, accepting the finger, opening under the caress. Another finger followed. Skinner’s other hand came down on his slave’s back in a hard, fluid motion, pinning him to the bed, immobilising him there. One more finger joined those already probing inside Mulder’s ass.


“Have you ever been fisted, boy?” Skinner asked, in the low, throaty tone that made Mulder’s cock ache.


“No, Master,” Mulder whimpered, his rectal muscles clenching in response to this horrifying question, trapping his Master’s fingers in his body.


Skinner laughed. “Not today, little one, not today,” he soothed, “but one day soon.” He slid his entire hand into Mulder’s body, keeping the fingers straight. It didn’t hurt – a part of Mulder liked the sensation of accepting any part of his Master’s body into his own. It seemed to be the ultimate expression of his Master’s power and authority over him. Another part of him remained frozen with fear at the very mention of the word “fisting”. Skinner had big hands, and Mulder was sure they would make very capable, very large, fists. It didn’t bear thinking about.


“Scared, boy?” Skinner asked, one hand stroking his slave’s trembling body, as the other caressed insistently inside him.


“Yes, Master,” he replied.


Skinner laughed, and kissed the back of his neck, nipped at it like a lioness picking up her cub by the scruff of his neck. “Good,” he replied, in that low, sexy drawl.


“Master, can I come?” Mulder asked, writhing, pressing his cock into the bed.


“No. I thought I’d made that clear,” Skinner replied. “Unless I tell you otherwise, you can only come with my permission, boy. You’ll experience pleasure entirely at my discretion.”


“Yes, Master,” Mulder’s body tingled at his Master’s words and tone. He felt Skinner’s tongue on his buttocks, tracing a line along the welts that had been raised there the previous day, and he squirmed, and moaned.


“Keep still,” Skinner advised. “I’m in the mood to play – that’s one of the consequences of waking up to find my naked slave in my bed. If you don’t like it, then don’t insist on sharing my bed, boy.”


“Yes, Master,” Mulder panted, privately thinking that being played with was hardly a disincentive to asking to spend a night wrapped up in his Master’s arms.


Skinner stroked light, gentle circles on his slave’s buttocks, then pressed harder, his large, blunt fingers massaging Mulder’s sore ass, making his slave cry out, at the same time as the younger man’s cock got harder within its golden prison. Skinner moved down the bed, and trapped Mulder’s body beneath his own, covering him with a heavy thigh, and strong, furry chest. Mulder lay, inert, trying to remember to breathe. He felt Skinner’s tongue on his ass again, then his Master pulled his buttocks open, and Mulder gave a squeal of pure pleasure, as the sensitive nerve endings on his asshole responded to his Master’s wet caress.


“Have you ever been rimmed before, boy?” Skinner asked, his voice muffled by the bedclothes, and his close proximity to Mulder’s butt.


“No, Master,” Mulder panted, taking a fistful of sheets in one hand, and slipping the other one down to caress his aching cock.


“Hand back up.” Skinner slapped his butt hard, and Mulder obeyed him quickly, flushing. “Okay – I think we need to invent a new rule, slaveboy. The only time you touch your cock from now on is when you use the bathroom. Other than that, it’s out of bounds to you. It belongs to me, and I’ll say when, and if, it’s going to get any attention. If I catch you touching it you can bet the punishment will be swift, and painful. Understood?”


“Yes…Master…” Mulder agreed, writhing as Skinner dipped his head back down to continue rimming his slave. His Master never ceased to amaze him. If he had assumed, after last night, that he had any rights, or any new privileges, then Skinner had been quick to disabuse him of that notion. Last night Skinner might have treated him as a lover, but this morning he was quite clearly back to being a slave again.


Skinner’s hands massaged, and kneaded Mulder’s sore buttocks, at the same time as he skilfully licked his slave’s sensitive opening, overloading Mulder’s nervous system with the twin sensations of pleasure and pain in a way that threatened to make him black out. He gasped, and began to rhythmically thrust against the bed in time to the kneading, licking rhythms until he was sure he couldn’t last any longer.


“Please let me come, Master,” he begged.


“No,” came back the inevitable reply. “Do you seriously think the slave should come before the Master? Do you, boy?” Skinner slapped his butt again, and Mulder yowled.


“No, Master…I’m sorry!” he cried.


Skinner returned to his work, and Mulder endured the delicious torment, until his entire body was drenched with sweat, and he wasn’t coherent. He kept himself from coming by the skin of his teeth, his cock almost going into spasm with need. He longed for it to stop, and to go on forever, at one and the same time. Finally, it came to an end, and Skinner’s head reappeared beside him on the pillow.


“I’m hard – ride me,” Skinner ordered.


Mulder gulped, and nodded, trying to pull himself back together for long enough to obey. He got up, pushed the sheets back, and found his Master’s large, hard cock standing out straight. Mulder fished a condom out of the night-stand, and placed it reverentially on his Master’s cock, then he took it in his hand, and straddled his Master, facing him. He concentrated for a moment on opening his body, then slid the cock into position against his entrance, before impaling himself on the hard length, allowing it into his body, sliding down on it all the way until it fit snugly inside him. He stopped, the sweat still running down his face, his own cock hard, and neglected. Skinner grabbed his hips.


“Hard – and fast,” he ordered, and Mulder began to rock, rhythmically, taking his Master’s penis deep into his ass, then sliding back up the solid shaft, up and down, over and over again. He flung back his head, his adam’s apple bobbing in time to his moans.


“Good boy…” Skinner murmured. “Oh, that’s good…keep going, boy…” His hands stroked Mulder’s thighs, and his body moved up urgently to meet his slave’s movements. At the moment he was on the verge of coming, Skinner suddenly wrapped his hand around Mulder’s cock. Mulder felt his rectal muscles go into immediate spasm, and that was enough to finish his Master off. He came with a shuddering sigh of satisfaction, and then continued pumping Mulder’s cock.


“How long can you hold on?” Skinner grinned, sliding his hand along his slave’s hard shaft, milking it.


“Not much longer when you do that, Master…unnnhhh!” Mulder screamed in pleasure, and need, his body protesting that he couldn’t hold on any more, his mind, and his Master, insisting that he had to.


“Do you want to feel my crop on your ass, slave?” Skinner asked. “If you come, you will.”


“Please, Master…don’t…I can’t…” Mulder begged helplessly. He could feel Skinner’s cock softening inside his body, even as his Master’s hand pumped up and down his own hard cock. “It’s not fair…” Mulder whimpered, his body limp, wrung out with effort. “How can I hold on…if you’re going to do that…?” he accused.


“You’ll have to learn. Think of something else,” Skinner grinned, still continuing his caress. “Come and I’ll punish you.”


Mulder tried to think about work, about wading through sewers, and running through forests being chased by monsters. In desperation he even thought about AD Kersh, but nothing worked. He could still smell his Master’s earthy scent, see his half-naked body, feel him inside his ass…


“Come!” Skinner said the word at the very moment Mulder was unable to hold on, and he pumped out onto his Master’s chest. Then he looked down on the semen apologetically.


“Sorry, Master.”


“For what? You came on order. That’s good.” Skinner grinned. “Now go and turn the shower on – I think it’s time we got moving. We have a busy day ahead of us.” He glanced at the clock, which read 8:30. “We won’t do your normal morning discipline today. We have some unfinished business to take care of anyway,” Skinner commented. “That will suffice.”


Mulder stopped in mid-stride, his heart suddenly sinking like a lead balloon as he remembered what would take place today.


“Fox?” He heard Skinner got out of the bed behind him but his legs wouldn’t move.


“I forgot.” Mulder hung his head, his whole body trembling. “About the whip. I forgot about it.”


“You had what you wanted, sweetheart,” Skinner said gently. He put a hand under his slave’s chin, and lifted his face to look into his eyes. “It was your choice. You do have to be punished.”


“I know, but not the bullwhip, Master. Please.” Mulder got down on his hands and knees, and kissed Skinner’s feet. Last night it had all seemed so different. Last night, he had been so focused on what he wanted, that he had been prepared to pay any price to attain it. Today, in the hard light of day, he wasn’t so sure of himself.


“I promised the bullwhip, so the bullwhip is what you’ll get,” Skinner told him firmly, pulling him to his feet. “What kind of Master would I be if I didn’t keep my promises?”


Mulder swallowed hard. “A compassionate, kind, and sympathetic Master?” he asked hopefully.


Skinner laughed out loud. “No – a bad Master,” he said, aiming a swat at Mulder’s ass. Mulder hopped into the shower to avoid it.


“I want you to think about this in relation to your life, Fox,” Skinner told him seriously, as his slave washed him.


“What do you mean?” Mulder frowned.


“Well, how many times have you pursued something, and regretted it later?” Skinner’s eyes were dark, and intense. “Do you weigh the risks and possible outcomes, Fox, or do you ignore them? You always assume that you can deal with the pain of the consequences – but one day, that might not be the case.”


“Today?” Mulder hardly dared ask.


“If not today, then one day.”


Skinner took hold of his slave’s shoulders and pushed him against the cool, tiled wall of the shower. Mulder tensed, uncertain what was coming next, but Skinner didn’t hurt him. He just lowered his head, and kissed his slave’s wet lips, pinning him against the wall with his large body, keeping him upright with his hands, as his mouth plundered his slave’s. When the kiss was over, he kept his slave standing there, and looked at him with that serious, dark-eyed gaze. “Your actions, and your decisions, always have consequences – both for you and the people around you. Remember that, Fox,” he advised, and his tone was a world away from the deep, throaty, sexy growl that Mulder loved so much. It was firm, but curiously vulnerable, and for the first time Mulder saw himself as others must see him: running headlong into trouble, risking his life in pursuit of his quest…and hurting those who cared about him.


“I don’t know that I can change,” he said.


Skinner sighed. “You don’t have to. I don’t want you to,” he said. “I just want you to make some better decisions than you have in the past.”


“Choosing to sleep with you last night wasn’t a bad decision,” Mulder declared angrily, pushing his Master away. Skinner caught hold of his arms, and pinned them behind him, placing him roughly back into position.


“You haven’t felt the kiss of my whip on your back yet, boy,” he replied.


“I don’t care.” Mulder assumed an air of bravado that he didn’t feel. “It was still worth it.”


“Maybe this time,” Skinner warned, his brown eyes seeming almost black, as if in despair, or grief. “Maybe not next time. One day, you might pay the ultimate price for a poor choice. If you don’t care about your own life, think about the others who do care.”


Mulder stared at him for a moment, unable to reconcile this side of his Master with the man who had been training him all week. He bit on his lip. All eroticism had gone from the situation. Skinner was taking him back to reality – and he didn’t like it one bit.


Mulder went about his tasks in silence – washing his Master, then drying him, but inside he was scared. Scared of his decision, scared of the newly revealed depths of his Master’s emotions, and most of all, scared of that damned whip. He’d seen enough flogging scenes, in enough movies, to be seriously worried about it. Skinner had said they were going shopping today. How the hell was he going to manage that when the flesh was about to be torn from his bones?


Mulder dressed Skinner in a pair of stone colored chinos, and a white henley, then towel dried his own hair.


“Time to take care of business,” Skinner said grimly.


He opened the bedroom door, and gestured his slave through it. Mulder walked slowly, as if going to his execution. His legs felt like lead as he climbed the stairs to the Playroom. He knelt without even thinking about it, when Skinner clicked his fingers, and watched as Skinner made the room ready. His Master got out the bullwhip and laid it on the table, and then he pulled out some cuffs, and fastened them on his slave’s wrists.


“We’ll use the whipping post,” he told Mulder gravely. Mulder’s throat was so dry he wasn’t even sure that his mumbled “Yes, Master” was audible. “Before we begin – what are you being punished for, and what lesson will you take from your correction?” Skinner demanded.


“I’m being punished for…” Mulder closed his eyes, and thought back. It had only been last night, but so much had happened since that it seemed like a lifetime away. “For hitting a guest, Master?” he offered, his entire body flushing as he remembered the altercation with Lee.


“What else?” Skinner asked.


Mulder swallowed. “Disobedience.” He hung his head.


“All right – that’s part of what you did wrong last night, but it’s not what I’m really getting at here. What else?” Skinner demanded. Mulder sat back on his heels and thought about it, but he couldn’t make his brain work while that bullwhip was sitting there, waiting for him.


“Jealousy?” he offered at last. He looked up in surprise as Skinner tapped his head.


“No. I would never punish you for an emotion. I can’t dictate what you feel,” Skinner told him firmly. “And I wouldn’t want to. The crux of what you did wrong last night is the problem you have all the way along the line – the problem we keep coming back to. Now, what is it?”
Realization flooded through Mulder. “Honesty, Master,” he sighed. “I should have come to you, instead of, uh, losing it like that.”


“Yes – you should. Look, Fox, I don’t need you to come running to Master every time you have a problem, but I placed you in deep submission last night. That made you vulnerable, and removed the normal weapons you would have had for dealing with an obnoxious little shit like Lee. It’s my duty – my responsibility – to take good care of you while you’re in that state. I can’t do that if you don’t follow my orders, and tell me if there are any problems.”


“No, Master.” Mulder bit on his lip.


“Are you ever going to learn this lesson?” Skinner shook his head wryly, and fondled his slave’s hair. Mulder leaned into the caress eagerly.


“I hope so, Master,” he said with a shrug.


“Do more than hope, slave.” Skinner took firm hold of his shoulders, and looked down into his eyes. “Try harder,” he ordered. Mulder nodded, awe-struck. “Honesty goes hand in hand with trust,” Skinner continued. “You have issues there as well.”


“Yeah. I know,” Mulder agreed. “I will try harder. I promise.”


“Good. Go and stand by the whipping post.” Skinner turned away, and picked up the whip. When he turned back, Mulder was still frozen to the spot. “I believe I gave you an order, Fox,” Skinner said firmly. Mulder licked his lips. “There won’t be any reprieve – no last minute cavalry riding over the hill to rescue you. This is real life. Today my whip – tomorrow maybe someone’s gun. All consequences of your actions, and your choices. Now get up, and go over to the post.”


Skinner’s tone wasn’t harsh, but it was firm. Mulder knew there was only one way out of this. He got to his feet, shakily, and walked over to the post. Skinner followed him, and strapped the cuffs onto his trembling slave, checking them in his usual thorough way. Mulder clamped his mouth shut, and tried to still his nerves, wishing that Skinner would just get on with it. He wondered how good Skinner’s first aid was, and how much blood the whip would draw. He remembered the way it had sliced through paper last night, and his flesh crawled as he thought of it doing the same thing to his own tender skin.


Skinner moved away, pacing his steps with precision as he went. Mulder tensed. The whip cracked in mid-air as his Master did a little practice, and then Skinner turned to face his slave’s naked back and buttocks which were ready and waiting to receive the kisses of their Master’s lash. Mulder was determined to show Skinner that he didn’t regret his decision, but all the same, he was sure he would pass out during those few seconds waiting for the whip to fall. He clenched his fists tight, and offered up a prayer to any deity that was listening. He could feel his heart beating in his chest, the noise so loud that he felt sure it was echoing around the room. He had memory of a dozen different hurts. Of gunshot wounds, of his finger being broken, and he had taken each and every pain, defiantly, faced up to them, and endured, but this was so different. To go willingly into this dark arena was so much harder than to have it happen to you, without your collusion. Mulder hung his head, and wondered at the darkness of his own soul, that he was offering himself up like this, to be flayed alive.


There was silence behind him, then a sudden rush of movement, and Mulder cried out the minute he heard the whip crack, his over-anxious body convulsing in his bonds, but he felt no pain until a split second later, when the burning lash caressed his skin. He clung to the post, yelling his head off, more in anticipation of pain than any real sensation of it.


“Hush, little one.” Skinner’s voice, close to his ear. He felt his Master’s hands on his body, soothing him. “Think, Fox. How much did it hurt?” Mulder calmed down as his Master’s fingers continued with their stroking. He started to relax. It hadhurt, but now that Skinner mentioned it, it wasn’t as bad as he had expected. “All right?” Skinner’s lips nuzzled the back of his neck. “All right, little one.” His Master’s big body was folded around his back, warm and reassuring. Mulder put his head back, rested it on his Master’s shoulder, and nodded.


“Yes, Master,” he whispered.


“You can take more, sweetheart, can’t you?” Skinner’s hands were so comforting on his naked flesh, gently rubbing little circles on his skin.


“No.” Mulder said, automatically and emphatically.


“The truth,” Skinner whispered, his voice tickling Mulder’s ear.


Mulder was silent for a moment, then he sighed. “Yes, Master,” he agreed. “I can take more.”


“Good boy – my brave Fox.” Skinner pulled his slave’s head back, and kissed his lips, gently parting them. He gave Mulder the sweetest, most loving kiss, and then gently pushed him back against the post.


Mulder gave a whimper when his Master walked away again, and paced back to his former position. He closed his eyes, and his whole body flinched when he heard that terrible cracking sound, but this time he was dimly aware that the whip didn’t actually touch his body until a split second after it made that sound. It hurt! It was a quick, flashing, bite of pain that stung deep into his flesh. There was a pause, and then another crack, and he felt the lash land on his shoulder – adjacent to the other two licks. Then Skinner was at his side again, unlocking the cuffs from the post. Mulder fell on the floor at his Master’s feet.


“Am I bleeding, Master?” he whispered.


Skinner laughed, picked him up, and held him tight against his chest. “I didn’t break the skin, sweetheart!” he exclaimed. “Did you think I’d want my slave scarred?” He pushed Mulder back and looked into his eyes.


“I don’t know,” Mulder mumbled.


“Come with me.” Skinner led him over to the mirror, and showed him his back. There were three distinct red welts on his shoulders, but they weren’t any worse than those on his butt, and they were a damn sight smaller.


“How…?” Mulder looked up at his Master, mouthing the word soundlessly.


“The crack isn’t the sound of whip on flesh,” Skinner told him, holding him close, and soothing his hair gently. “The whip hits the floor first – that takes most of the power out of the stroke. If I hit the skin direct, then you wouldn’t have any skin left, little one. I paced my position to ensure that only the very tip of the whip touched you at all. What you felt was the last inch of it – that’s how long the welts are. You were more scared of what you thought it would be, than what it actually was. I can do worse than this with it, little one, but as we have a busy day planned, I had no intention of giving you any more than that. Three strokes didn’t do you any harm – I think your anticipation was more punishment than the lash, yes?” He tipped Mulder’s chin up.


“You bastard,” Mulder muttered. “You let me think…?”


“What you think, and what you feel, are two entirely different matters,” Skinner told him tersely, unbuckling his cuffs. “Using language and anticipation to keep you on edge is a trick I’ve been using on you since you arrived. You’re smart, Fox. You must have figured that out.”


Mulder closed his eyes. He remembered the first time Skinner had entered him. His Master had talked about being rough, and fast, as he thrust into his slave, but in actuality he had gone slowly, and carefully. When he talked of ‘using’ his slave, it was a turn on to Mulder. It helped create the submissive head-space that he enjoyed so much.


“And as for being called a bastard,” Skinner sighed, and without warning placed his foot on a shelf in the cupboard, and tipped Mulder over his knee, then he applied half a dozen stinging swats to his slave’s upturned butt with his hand. “Don’t do that again. It really pisses me off.” He righted Mulder, who immediately went down on his knees, and kissed his Master’s feet.


“Sorry, Master.” He made a face. “It’s just…nobody’s ever got into my head and freaked me out like that before. Let’s just say I’m not use to being played so well.”


“Fox.” Skinner lifted his chin, and looked down on him. “You’re the only one playing a game,” he warned. “I’m deadly serious. The sooner you come to terms with that, the better it’ll be for you. Now, go and get dressed.”


“Dressed?” Mulder repeated blankly.


“Yeah – unless you want me to walk you down the street on the end of your lead stark naked.”


“Uh, no.” Mulder got to his feet.


“Fox – take another shower first – you got all sweaty just now. And Fox?” Mulder paused, his hand on the door. “You’ll wear briefs, blue jeans, and that navy blue sweatshirt. Timberlands on your feet.”


“Yes, Master.” Mulder nodded. It felt weird to have his choice of clothing dictated to him, but not as weird as the thought of actually being dressed after days of nudity. He ran along to corridor to his room, feeling curiously elated by the prospect of the shopping trip. Usually he hated shopping for clothes, and only did it twice a year in a frenzy of activity, desperate to get the whole event over and done with as quickly as possible so he could get back out chasing UFO’s as soon as possible.


Mulder’s bedroom door was ajar. He crashed through it, and came to a skidding halt. Wanda was sitting on his bed, viewing the contents of his fish tank with a predatory eye. She must have slipped through the door to the upstairs apartment, which was usually kept shut.


“You – out!” he ordered.


She gazed at him with the disdain of one not used to acknowledging commands.


“I said, out,” he repeated, picking her up, and looking into her haughty green eyes. “It’s a fish tank – not cat TV,” he told her firmly.


She glared at him, and he opened the door and put her down smartly on the floor outside his bedroom. “Don’t make me tell you the story about the enormous cat-eating mutant fish that wiped out every feline within a 5 mile radius of a small lake in Minnesota,” he told her. She put her head on one side, and began washing her ears with an air of studied disinterest. “It’s true – I have an X File on it at the office. I’ll bring it home and read it to you if you’re not careful,” he said, then looked up into his Master’s questioning brown eyes, and one raised eyebrow.


“I was just, um…oh fuck,” Mulder sighed.


“Clothes, Fox. Now. You have ten minutes – there’ll be one stroke with the paddle for every second you go over that time.” Skinner clapped his hands. “Daylight’s burning, slave.”


It felt strange to be wearing clothes. Mulder trotted down the stairs 9 minutes 57 seconds later, feeling decidedly weird. Having clothes transformed him immediately from Fox, slaveboy, into Mulder. Skinner, wearing a smart jacket, was already waiting for him by the door, checking through the contents of his wallet. He looked up when his slave came down the stairs, and assessed him for a moment, then clicked his fingers. Mulder stared at him, then suddenly remembered that, clothes or no clothes, he was still Skinner’s slave. He got down on his knees.


“A bit slow,” Skinner tapped his head reprovingly. “All right – this is your first trip out with me in public since you became my property, and that’s going to be difficult for you. I want you to remember one thing – you’re my slave. Clothed or naked, in public or in private, at work or at home, you’re mine. That’s the bottom line. If you keep it in mind at all times, you’ll do fine. If not…vell, ve haf ways of reminding you,” he grinned, affecting a silly accent. Mulder sighed. His Master was clearly in one of his jocular moods. That didn’t bode well for the outing. “You’re not in deep submission, and I don’t expect you to walk to heel. I don’t think it’d be very smart to address me as ‘Master’ out there either. You can call me ‘sir’. You should be used to that – you’ve been doing it for years after all. Do you have any questions or anxieties?”


“No, Mast…sir,” Mulder replied.


“Good – then let’s go.” Skinner opened the door, and Mulder leaped to his feet and ran out, like an eager little puppy being taken on a walk. Skinner laughed, and shook his head.


Skinner didn’t take his slave to the mall as Mulder had expected. Instead he drove him to an exclusive establishment of the kind Mulder never even knew existed before. A tall, silver-haired gentleman in his fifties greeted Skinner with a warm handshake.


“Walter – on time as usual.” The man had a smooth, cultured voice, and an elegant manner. He was dressed impeccably in a silver-gray suit, with a pink tie and matching handkerchief. He looked exquisite. His young assistant hovered behind him, shadowing every move his boss made. He was about 25 years younger than the silver haired man, with floppy blond hair, and the bluest eyes Mulder had ever seen.


“Elliott.” Skinner shook the older man’s hand warmly, and then waved a hand in Mulder’s direction. “This is Fox. He needs a couple of new work suits, a wide variety of casual clothes, and some tasteful,” he stressed the word with a meaningful glance at his slave, “underwear.” Mulder remembered the imaginative and assorted array of Star Wars, and Bart Simpson boxer shorts his Master had thrown out forcefully on his first day in his service. “In addition, I’d be grateful if you’d show him your tie collection.” Skinner winced, and Mulder rolled his eyes. His ties weren’t that bad. “Basically, his clothing tastes need…re-educating,” Skinner said ominously.


“Dear me, yes.” Elliott fixed Mulder with a disapproving stare, taking in his jeans and crumpled sweatshirt. Mulder was suddenly aware of looking so much less elegant than his neatly dressed Master, and he felt resentful. He was only wearing what Skinner had told him to wear. Of course, when he thought about it, he didn’t actually own any elegant, understated clothes of the kind Skinner was wearing, but even so – he still felt aggrieved.


“It would be a pleasure to help this young man, Walter,” Elliott mused, ushering them over to a set of comfortable armchairs. Mulder was starting to feel like Julia Roberts to Skinner’s Richard Gere in that scene from Pretty Woman. It wasn’t a good feeling.


Elliott’s assistant seemed to share his boss’s opinion on Mulder’s lack of sartorial elegance. He fixed Mulder with an appraising stare that made the agent’s hot temper rise. The younger man’s blue eyes traveled the entire length of Mulder’s casually dressed body, examining his ruffled, towel-dried hair, and faintly stubbled chin with a supercilious air.


“Donald, please fetch coffee for our guests.” Elliott waved his hand, and his assistant gave Mulder a smug smile, then disappeared.


Mulder glanced around, bored, while Elliott and his Master made small talk. Jeez, this was dull. He felt like he had as a kid when his Mom took him out shoe shopping. His busy mind needed distraction, and stimulation, and shopping just didn’t do it for him. Of all the Masters in all the world, he had to get landed with the one who had some weird fascination with fashion of all things. I mean, what the hell did it matter what clothes Mulder wore, when it was his slave’s naked body his Master was interested in? Mulder smirked to himself, enjoying that thought. His Master did seem very interested in his body. He flushed when he remembered being ‘played’ with this morning. Boy, that had been good. He could feel himself going hard just thinking about it.


“….Fox?” Skinner was looking at him expectantly but Mulder didn’t have a clue what he’d said.


“What? I wasn’t listening,” he admitted. Skinner fixed him with a frown, and Mulder’s stomach did a flip. “Sorry, sir,” he added contritely.


“Pay attention, Fox. I don’t expect to have to say things twice,” Skinner reprimanded. He placed one hand on the back of Mulder’s neck and squeezed lightly, making his intent clear. Mulder swallowed nervously. Donald had reappeared with the coffee, and he caught this exchange, doing a double take. Mulder flushed to the roots of his dark hair. Shit, they all thought Skinner was his sugar daddy, taking him out, buying him clothes, like he was some stupid 18 year old, bimbo toyboy. It was so damn embarrassing. And isn’t the truth even worse, slaveboy? A mocking internal voice asked him. He felt a sullen mood start to settle around him like a storm cloud.


“I was saying that you’ll be a regular visitor here from now on. You’ll collect items for me, as well as for yourself. I have an account here,” Skinner informed him.


“Yeah. I’d kind of figured that out,” Mulder muttered, thinking that the whole place was incredibly camp, from Donald’s prima donna body language, to Elliott’s exquisitely coiffured hair, and pink tie. I mean pink for chrissakes!


“If you’d like to go with Donald, he’ll measure you. We’ll keep your measurements on file, as we do for Walter,” Elliott informed him. “That way when you need any new suits…”


“I don’t,” Mulder snapped. “What’s wrong with my suits?” He turned to Skinner.


“Nothing,” Skinner replied, urbanely, his dark eyes belying his casual manner, as they bored holes into Mulder’s soul, warning him. “Maybe it’s the way you wear them but they do have a tendency to look a bit…crumpled. However, you can clearly do with some spares – especially considering all the wear your clothing gets, running through forests, falling into swamps, stepping in burning piles of green goo…need I go on?”


“No. I think you’ve made your point,” Mulder muttered sulkily. Skinner raised an eyebrow. “Sir.” Mulder added, after thinking about it for a few seconds.


“Good – get moving.” Skinner nodded his head in the direction of a curtained recess, and Mulder couldn’t quite manage to stop the cross between a growl and a sigh that emerged from his throat.


Donald’s superior air got on Mulder’s nerves even before the other man started measuring him.


“If sir would like to undress.” Donald pursed his lips, investing the ‘sir’ with a tone that implied profound disrespect. He’s so obviously gay, Mulder thought to himself, as he peeled off his sweatshirt and started tugging at his jeans. As opposed to me. I mean, I’m just a regular guy who likes being screwed by my, big, strong, macho Master- come-boss. Huge difference, asshole. His brain chuntered along at top speed as he stripped down to his briefs. Donald took in the sight of his nipple rings without comment, but Mulder caught his expression, and wanted to land a good right hook on the other man’s baby pink skin. He knew just what Donald was thinking, and how he was laughing at him. He turned away, to avoid the other man’s smug stare. Donald took a sharp intake of breath and Mulder remembered, too late, the three welts on his back. He swung back in time to see the other man’s expression of shock, before it was replaced by that polite, supercilious mask. Mulder was suffused by a wave of intense embarrassment. He was about to make up some story to explain the welts away, but couldn’t think of anything that wouldn’t just draw attention to them, and make the whole thing even worse. If Donald had been in any doubt about his relationship with Skinner before, then he wasn’t now. Mulder opened his mouth, and found himself saying:


“So, Don-baby, do you prefer to be called Donny as in Osmond, or Donald as in f…duck?”


Donald stared at him for a moment, then smoothed a hand nervously through his floppy hair. “Donald,” he replied politely. “Now if sir would…”


“Oh cut all this ‘sir’ crap,” Mulder snarled. “You’ve made it clear as hell that you think I’m something you walked in on the street.”


“Please, sir, I just need to take your measurements.” Donald pressed the tape against Mulder’s leg, and hurried through his task. Mulder felt his whole body flush, from the tips of his toes to his forehead. Hah, if Donald was intrigued by the welts on his back, he should see the ones on his butt. Oh shit. Mulder remembered that Skinner wanted him to buy underwear. It would be just his luck if his Master made him try it on for his approval. He fidgeted throughout the measuring process, then waited in sullen silence as Donald slipped back into the other room. Fuck. This whole shopping trip was his idea of hell, and he hated his Master for putting him through it.


Donald returned a few seconds later, his baby blue eyes full of some emotion Mulder read as barely suppressed amusement. Blondie was laughing at him.


“Your…um…” Donald hesitated, clearly unsure how to refer to Skinner.


“Master?” Mulder supplied, knowing he was behaving badly, some devil in him wanting to make it worse, trying deliberately to shock. Donald paled.


“Um…that is, Walter, Mr. Skinner, uh, he said to try these on,” Donald murmured weakly.


Mulder snatched the beige trousers and shirt savagely from the other man’s grasp, and pulled them on, then glanced in the mirror. Damn, he looked stupid!


“Oh, that looks good. It suits you, sir,” Donald said encouragingly. Mulder quelled his enthusiasm with a glance, and marched out into the other room.


“These, are crap,” he announced to his Master. “I’m not wearing them.”


Skinner looked at him coolly. “I think the shirt would benefit from being buttoned up properly, and tucked into the pants,” he observed. “Go back, and straighten yourself out, then come back out here, and present yourself properly.”


Mulder saw Donald out of the corner of his eye. The man was wide-eyed, his gaze going from slave to Master, and back again, and then flickering over to Elliott. Mulder felt a heat rising from deep within. He knew that the minute they left, these two ghouls would laugh their heads off. Mulder stomped off back to the changing room, and obeyed his Master, feeling his temper spiral out of control. He hated the beige shirt and pants. He’d never, ever wear clothes like this. Scully would laugh at him. Scully. Mulder felt a pang as he thought about his partner. This was the first time since he met her that he’d gone more than a couple of days without even seeing or speaking to her, except for when she had been abducted. He felt guilty about the fact that, much as he loved and cared about his diminutive partner, he hadn’t thought about her all week.


He rearranged his clothes, and stepped back outside. Skinner was deep in conversation with Donald, and the young man’s blue eyes were fixed on his Master in an expression of barely concealed awe.


“While you’re here, you might as well have a fitting for that new suit, Walter,” Elliott was saying. Donald nodded eagerly.Can’t wait to get his hands on him, I expect, Mulder thought angrily.


“Not today.” Skinner shook his head. “Today is for Fox. Another time.”


“Yeah, right. Like you really give a damn about doing anything other than showing off what a complete fucking wuss I am!” Mulder exploded. “How does this look?” he asked, doing an ironic twirl. “What am I? Some kind of fucking performing monkey for these goddamn clowns?”


There was a shocked silence, then Skinner turned smoothly to Elliott, and Donald, and smiled through gritted teeth. “My apologies. Please, would you give us a couple of minutes alone?”


“Of course.” Elliott quickly ushered his young protégé out of the room. Mulder was sure he could hear them sniggering as they went. That thought was driven out of his head by his more immediate awareness of imminent danger. He swallowed nervously as he realized that he was in deep shit right up to his eyeballs. He saw a big shadow looming over him and bit on his lip, then looked up defiantly into his Master’s dark eyes, but Skinner’s expression was puzzled, rather than angry.


“Fox.” Skinner put his hands on his slave’s shoulders. “I thought you looked pretty damn good in this actually.” His fingers smoothed along the silky fabric. “Of course, if you don’t like it, we won’t buy it. I don’t want to change your tastes – I’m sure there’ll be things we can both agree on.”


“I wouldn’t wear anything like this and you fucking know it,” Mulder snarled.


“Well, maybe you need to have your horizons broadened?” Skinner suggested mildly. “Now, tell me, what brought this on, sweetheart?”


“They think we’re sleeping together,” Mulder blurted.


“Hmm. We are,” Skinner pointed out. “Why is this a problem?”


“What I am. What I like…it’s private,” Mulder whispered.


“It wasn’t last night,” Skinner told him, his hands continuing to rub his slave’s shoulders. “Last night I displayed you naked in a room full of people. I told them you were my slave, and I your Master, and you loved it.”


“That was different!” Mulder protested. “That was us, in private, with people who understand. This is…”


“Public? Fox, I’ve known Elliott for years. His very name is a byword for discretion, and he wouldn’t employ anybody who didn’t abide by his rules on this. Whatever happens here won’t go beyond these four walls.”




“You’re ashamed.” Skinner lifted Mulder’s head, and looked into his eyes. “You’re ashamed of what you are, little one. Why? There’s no need to be. I love what you are, and at the end of the day, pleasing me is the only thing that should matter to you.”


“He’s laughing at me. He thinks I’m weak.” Mulder muttered, trying to hold onto his outrage in the face of his Master’s kindness, and failing.


“Who? Elliott? Of course he doesn’t…”


“Not Elliott – Donald stupid duckface.”


“Fox – he’s not laughing at you, and even if he were, it’s irrelevant. What’s important is that you focus on me, not anyone else, and not on your own fears.”


“Okay, okay. I know he’s just a stupid tailor’s assistant, but what will happen when someone important finds out?” Mulder snarled. “What will Scully think?” he asked in a broken voice.


“Ah.” Skinner rocked back on his heels. “That’s what’s behind this.”


“I suppose.” Mulder wrapped his arms around his body, and hugged himself.


“Well, Scully’s your partner, and a damn good friend. Why don’t you trust her not to judge you?” Skinner asked.


“Because. Because…”


“You judge yourself so harshly that you think that everyone else will too? And you’re always scared of love being withdrawn? Isn’t that why you try not to let anyone get close in the first place?” Skinner asked, moving in close, his eyes searching.


“I…damn you for knowing me like this,” Mulder whispered, feeling as if he’d been hit in the stomach.


“Fox – you’re mine. I need to know you. I’ve been studying you for a long time. I understand you, sweetheart. I can help you, but you have to learn to trust: me, Scully, and most of all – yourself.” Skinner’s eyes were dark in their intensity.


“Oh shit.” Mulder clenched his fists, and then thumped one angrily against the wall, his whole body suffused with self-loathing. “You’re thinking what a fucking screw-up I am. The first time you take me anywhere, and I fuck it up. I won’t be able to handle this in the real world, sir. I can’t do it. When we get back to work…”


“It’ll be tough.” Skinner shrugged. “We both know that. However, you’re only human, Fox. When you screw up I’ll punish you, and you’ll learn. Then we can go forward. I don’t expect you to adapt without any problems. It’ll take time. We have plenty of that. You’ve given me the rest of your life.”


“A life sentence, huh?” Mulder made a face.


“If you like. Let’s hope it’s a long and happy one, for both of us.” Skinner smiled, and pulled his tense slave into an embrace. Mulder stiffened, then finally relaxed into his Master’s arms, and buried his face in his shoulder. “Now, I’m going to punish you,” Skinner whispered tenderly into his ear. “You deserve that, Fox, don’t you?”


Mulder couldn’t disagree on that point. “Here, Master?” Mulder looked up, his eyes wide and alarmed.


“Yes. That way we can put this incident behind us, and you can stop wallowing in the guilt trip. Take off your pants, Fox, and your briefs, and bend over the armchair.”


“Master, please…not here.” Mulder glanced at the door, nervously. For all he knew, Elliott and Donald were lurking just outside. He couldn’t stand the thought of them hearing every last scream.


“Here. Now.” Skinner said firmly. “Then it’ll be over, and we can start again,” he promised. He gentled his slave, soothed him, ruffled through his hair, and caressed up and down his back.


Mulder swallowed hard, then nodded, and did as he was told. He leaned over the armchair with a feeling of dread in the pit of his stomach. Then he watched, out of the corner of his eye, as Skinner undid his belt. There was a familiar swish as the belt was pulled through the loops on Skinner’s pants, and then his Master doubled the leather, and slapped it against his hand a few times. Mulder closed his eyes. He felt the cool leather against his buttocks, and then it thwacked down hard on his bare butt.


“What’s the lesson you’re learning from this punishment, Fox?” Skinner asked.


“Shit!” Mulder buried his head in his arms, as another lick flashed down on his ass. “To…be polite, not to care what other people think…oh shit, sir, I don’t know!”


“All right.” Skinner’s hand stroked his back, calming him, and he paused the strapping. “I think it goes back to the issue of trust, and honesty. If you’d spoken to me about the way you were feeling before you exploded, we could have avoided this. Yes?”


“Yes, Master.” Mulder agreed.


“Like last night. Yes?”


“Yes.” Mulder sighed.


“Good. Keep that in mind then. I’m going to make this count.” Skinner swung the strap again, delivering a good dozen licks to Mulder’s butt. Mulder tried his best not to scream, but it damn well hurt, and he yelped out loud on more than one occasion. Then it was over. Skinner stopped, and ran a hand through his slave’s tousled hair. “Up you get, sweetheart. This incident is over – or it will be just as soon as you’ve apologized to Elliott and Donald.”


“Yes, sir,” Mulder mumbled contritely. Somehow he had just known that Skinner was going to insist on that. His Master had some kind of manners fetish.


“Ready for that?” Skinner asked, placing a big arm around his slave’s shoulder. Mulder heaved a huge sigh, and pulled himself back together.


“Yes, sir,” he agreed at last.


“Good. Later on we’ll go to a very expensive French restaurant I know,” Skinner grinned. “I want to spoil my beautiful slave after all. Fine clothes, good food, wine.” Mulder managed a wan smile, then he donned the hated beige pants again, and stood, head down, as Skinner strode over to the door and disappeared. He reappeared a few seconds later with Elliott and Donald in tow. Mulder took a deep breath, and stood up straight, the Mulder charm kicking in.


“I’m sorry for the way I spoke to you just now,” he said, smiling at them. “It won’t happen again.”


“That’s all right, Fox. Let’s start over, shall we?” Elliott beamed.


Mulder nodded, relieved. He caught sight of his reflection in the mirror and decided he liked what he saw. “These clothes aren’t bad. Can we have them?” he asked Skinner.


His Master grinned at him. “Of course, Fox,” he nodded.


“Next one then?” Mulder disappeared back into the changing room. Donald appeared a few seconds later, with another outfit, and a selection of briefs and boxer shorts. He put them down on the table gingerly, and backed away. He watched as Mulder pulled on another shirt, and then he edged closer, and cautiously began to help Mulder button the shirt.


“Did he…?” Donald swallowed hard, and looked around. “What did he do?” he asked, clearly taking his life in his hands. Mulder tried to remember what Skinner had told him. His Master was right. What did he care what this supercilious, baby-faced little brat thought of him?


“He whipped my ass with his belt,” he replied.


Donald’s fingers faltered on the buttons, and he closed his eyes. “Oh god,” he breathed. “You lucky bastard.”


Mulder looked at him in surprise. “What?”


“I envied you from the minute you walked through the door,” Donald confided, continuing to button Mulder’s shirt for him with shaking fingers. “I could see the way you looked at him, the way he looked at you…you were so right together, like you belonged to each other, fitting together like a hand in a glove. I wish…I want…that is…it’s hard when you work with someone, and they don’t even know how you feel…” He glanced towards the other room, his expression wistful.


“You mean…Elliott?” Mulder raised an eyebrow.


“I worship him,” Donald sighed. “But he doesn’t even take any notice of me. Sometimes I pull all kinds of crazy shit just to get his attention. If he’d just once throw me over his knee, and give me a good spanking like Walter did to you, I’d be in heaven,” he grinned, and Mulder’s jaw dropped open in surprise. “The way I fuck up sometimes, I’m lucky he hasn’t fired me,” Donald added.


“Donald – hang in there, buddy,” Mulder grinned. “I think it could all work out for you and Elliott. Trust me – stranger things have happened,” he winked. “Shit, I’ve been an idiot. I thought you were looking down on me, but…”


“Hell, no. I’m so jealous I could die,” Donald told him melodramatically. “You do know how lucky you are, don’t you? Having someone like that, who cares about you – who cares enough to correct you too?”


Mulder sighed, and glanced out into the other room. Skinner was deep in conversation with Elliott. His Master looked so composed, one long leg balanced over the other at a 90 degree angle, his Henley showing off a broad expanse of lean, muscled chest.


“Yeah,” he told Donald. “I do, buddy. I do.”


The rest of the day passed in a blur of activity. Mulder and Skinner emerged with Mulder dressed in a new pair of pants, and a soft, silky green shirt that brought out the color of his eyes, a pair of expensive Italian loafers on his feet.


“I’m starving,” Skinner grinned.


“Time to check out that very expensive restaurant then?” Mulder suggested, a gleam in his eye.


“Oh yeah. I think so.”


The restaurant was so classy it was untrue, and Skinner was clearly a regular, and honored guest as the maitre d’ fussed over him, and called him by his first name.


“Where the hell did you get all this money?” Mulder asked, taking a sip of the most exquisite wine he’d ever tasted.


“Well, I work hard, without having much by way of expensive pleasures, until relatively recently at least,” Skinner gave an amused little smile. “I’ve dabbled on Wall Street a bit – nothing much – I’m pretty cautious. Enough to finance more than you’d expect on my salary though,” Skinner poured himself some wine, and held up his glass. “To you, Fox,” he said, sincerely.




“Oh yes. My Fox,” Skinner told him, his dark eyes twinkling with pride of ownership in the lamplight. “This is our first meal out together – order what you like. I want you to enjoy it.”


“Thanks.” Mulder grinned.


It felt weird just sitting, wearing clothes, eating, talking, drinking like normal guys. At first, Mulder wasn’t sure he’d know what to say, but Skinner asked him some questions about his work, his life, his hopes, and before long Mulder found himself talking nineteen to the dozen in typical Mulder style. He hopped from subject to subject, making a determined effort to both amuse and entertain his Master, and it seemed to have the desired effect. Skinner was a pretty good conversationalist himself. He talked about his early career in the FBI, which had his slave listening with rapt interest, and before long Mulder forgot all about the Master/slave situation between them, and was firing questions at the other man, pulling his experiences apart, and digesting them. He relished the time and attention he was getting, and the wine loosened his tongue, and relaxed him.


He realized, glancing at his watch, that several hours had passed with him barely noticing the passage of time. It came as a shock to discover that he liked Skinner not only as a Master, and lover, but also as a friend – someone to talk to. Mulder had a kind of goofy, geeky friendship with the Lone Gunmen, and a close and unique bond with Scully, but he couldn’t remember ever having a male friend he could really talk to; someone to hang out and have a few beers with. Someone he could watch sport with, or talk about politics, history, the X Files, or any subject under the sun. Skinner was quirky, and smart, with his own distinctive views on a myriad of different subjects. Mulder sat and watched his Master run a finger around the rim of his wineglass, transfixed. This was so good. It was better than good. It was perfect.


“So, that’s what the X Files was like in the bad old days before we got assigned to you,” Mulder grinned, finishing an anecdote. “And before Scully made them respectable,” he added.


“Have you spoken to Scully this week?” Skinner asked.


“No.” Mulder shrugged. “You told me I wasn’t to speak to anyone apart from you.”


“You have your cell phone though. You could have made calls from your room.” Skinner looked at him keenly.


“Yes, but I didn’t.” Mulder shrugged, then he bit on his lip. “The truth is…that I didn’t even think about it. All this is so new, I didn’t have the head-space to even think about anything else. Scully will wonder what’s happened to me.”


“Call her.” Skinner got out his cellphone, and handed it to Mulder. Mulder looked at the other man uncertainly, but Skinner just nodded. Mulder punched in Scully’s number, and grinned across the table when she answered.


“Yo! Guess who this is?” he said.




His face lit up in delight at the sound of her voice.


“Where are you? Who is she?” Scully demanded.


“What?” Mulder laughed. “What the hell is that supposed to mean, Scully?”


“Mulder it’s been a week! Now I’m assuming it would have been all over the papers if you’d found Bigfoot, or the Loch Ness Monster, or ET, or something, so it has to be a woman.”


“Not necessarily,” Mulder reached over the table, and stroked his Master’s hand.


“Oh, all right, play it cool!” Scully laughed. “Are you coming back to work on Monday?”


“Yeah.” Mulder sighed dramatically. “I guess. Did you miss me?”


“Of course,” Scully replied. “I actually managed to get some work done without being interrupted for once!”


He talked to her animatedly for a few more minutes, and agreed to go out for lunch with her on Monday so they could catch up. Then he severed the connection and gave Skinner the phone back, with a grateful smile.




Skinner shrugged, and pocketed the phone, then drank some of his coffee. “How was she?” he asked.


“Fine.” Mulder chatted on for several minutes. He wasn’t sure if it was the wine, or the phone call, or just being with his Master, but he felt so high he was in danger of spinning off into orbit. Skinner just listened, tolerant, and indulgent as Mulder rambled on and on. Therefore it came as a total shock, when Skinner leaned across the table, looked him in the eye, and said one word:




Mulder tried to process what his Master meant – did they have to get back home because of the cat or something? Then he remembered his word – that word, and he glanced around the restaurant. True, it was late, and most people had gone home, but there were still several diners finishing off their meal. What the hell did his Master want from him? They couldn’t – not here, surely…?


“Master?” he protested weakly.


“Go and wait for me in the men’s room – and have a condom ready. I’ll be along when I’ve finished my coffee.” Skinner gestured with his head in the direction of the bathroom.


“Master? Please,” Mulder begged.


Skinner fixed him with a severe stare. “Are you questioning me, boy?” he hissed.


“No, sir. I’m just…” Mulder glanced around again, scared of being overheard, but even more scared of his Master. “Yes, sir,” he said at last, slipping out of his chair.


His stomach was churning as he made his way to the men’s room. He remembered that he and Phoebe had once made love on Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s grave, but that had been in the middle of the night and in the middle of nowhere, damnit! Not in the public restroom of one of the most expensive restaurants in town. All the same, his suddenly hard cock told him that he found the idea a turn-on, even while his mind was yelling at him to get out of there and run. He walked into the men’s room, and glanced around, relieved to discover that he was the only occupant. He went into one of the stalls, and fished a condom and the lube out of his pocket. He had remembered that much at least. He took down his pants and briefs, and lubed himself again, then spent a while stretching himself. Skinner had told him quite specifically that he’d enter him without prepping him, and take him hard and fast, in silence. Mulder’s cock ached in longing at the very thought of it. There was something so impersonal about it – the fantasy of being overpowered by a stranger, combined with the safety of knowing it was his own Master, who he was learning to trust, and whose body was now so familiar to him. He loved the idea of his body being so comprehensively used by his Master as a vehicle for the other man’s lust. It exhilarated and scared him at one and the same time.


Mulder stood there for a moment, wondering what to do next. Skinner had been very specific about what was expected of him when he gave him his ‘word’. Mulder shivered, his cock arcing to full erection, as he remembered the humiliating position in which he was supposed to present himself to his Master. He wondered if he had enough time to jerk off before his Master came and used him, but dismissed that thought almost immediately. Skinner had told him not to touch his cock, and he was sure his Master would know if he did. Mulder put the lube back in his pocket, and wondered where to put the condom. There was nowhere obvious in the small stall. Finally, scared that his Master would come in and find him unprepared, he placed his hands on the wall behind the toilet, and got into position, butt out, legs wide apart, pants around his ankles, ready and waiting for his Master’s attention. Then he reached up and put the condom on his own back, where Skinner wouldn’t have any trouble seeing it.


He waited in that humiliating position for several minutes – although it felt like hours. He started to get nervous. Finally, he heard the sound of the main restroom door being opened, and he took a deep breath. The stall door was closed, although it wasn’t locked, and that just made Mulder even more twitchy. Supposing this wasn’t Skinner? Supposing someone else came in? Then he heard the sound of a key turning in the lock of the main door, and he realized, without surprise, that Skinner had borrowed the key off his friend, the Maitre d’.


The stall door behind him was suddenly flung open, and he had to resist turning around to make sure it was his Master, and not a stranger. His cock almost went into spasm at the eroticism of the moment, of being found here, ass in the air, waiting to serve his Master. He took a deep gulp of air, trying to clear his head. He felt hands caressing his butt, and then the sound of the condom being torn open, and something hard nudging his anus. He placed his hands on his ass, spreading the butt cheeks to make it easier for his Master to enter him, and sighed as he felt the familiar, hard length of Skinner’s cock slide into his lubed passage. He placed his hands back on the wall to steady himself, and stood bent over, moaning as his Master began to move his hips.


Skinner was true to his word: he grabbed Mulder’s thighs, and buried himself deep in his body, sinking himself in, back and forward, in a series of hard, jerky thrusts that made his slave pant. It was, quick, perfunctory, and to the point, and the most devastating display yet of his Master’s power of him. Mulder struggled to keep his hands on the wall, as his Master’s cock devoured him, then suddenly it was over. He felt the shudder of Skinner’s climax, then his Master withdrew. Mulder got up, and turned around, suddenly feeling an urge to make sure that it was his Master who had just taken him, and not a stranger. He found himself looking into Skinner’s dark, amused eyes. Skinner removed the condom, threw it into the toilet, and flushed it, then adjusted his clothing, and left the stall without a word. Mulder watched him go, his heart beating fast in his chest. It had been everything Skinner had promised, and more. It had pulled him back down to the most basic level of his slavery. Mulder marveled at his Master’s skill. First he had allowed Mulder to be himself, chatted to him all evening like a friend, and lover, and then he had reminded his slave, in the most clear, and unsubtle way, just who he belonged to at the end of the day.


When Mulder went back into the restaurant a few minutes later, his Master was signing the check. He looked up, and smiled as his slave rejoined him.


“I’m tired. Time to head for home I think. How about you?”


“What?” Mulder tried to drag his head out from the surreal scene they had just enacted. He could hardly believe that Skinner was acting as if it hadn’t happened.


“Time for bed?” Skinner raised an eyebrow.


“Will you do that often?” Mulder asked, ignoring the question.


“As often as I want. You’re mine. I can use you whenever the urge takes me. Now, you’re looking tired. Tomorrow you have to clean the apartment – it’s still in a mess after the party, so I suggest we turn in.”


“Do I…I mean, is there any chance that…?” Mulder faltered, his eyes hopeful.


“No, sweetheart. You have to earn a night in my bed. You know that,” Skinner told him with an affectionate smile. “Don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying that last night wasn’t good – it was. However, don’t get into the habit of thinking it’ll happenevery night.”


“No, sir,” Mulder murmured.


He was tired, he realized, as Skinner drove them home. He kept yawning, and staring dreamily into space. He still couldn’t believe he was sitting here, in his new clothes, behaving as if nothing strange had happened, when all the time he was owned by the man sitting next to him. He had traded himself for security, and sexual fulfillment, and he didn’t regret it at all. Leaning back, he saw the street lamps light his Master’s face as they passed beneath each one, illuminating his strong jaw, and bouncing off the large expanse of forehead. Mulder was suffused with a combination of emotions that almost overwhelmed him. He closed his eyes, and swallowed down the lump in his throat. He had never been this happy in his life before.


When they got back to the apartment, Skinner ordered him up to his room.


“We didn’t have time for a confessional last night, but I don’t want you to get out of the habit. Go and get undressed, and wait for me in your room. I’ll be up in a few minutes.”


Mulder obeyed. He took off his clothes, and hung them neatly in his closet, then knelt by the bed. Skinner appeared on cue, a few minutes later, and sat down. Mulder immediately crawled over to him, and laid his head on the other man’s knee. Skinner smiled, and stroked his hair softly.


“All right, sweetheart. Say whatever you want to. I won’t interrupt, and you won’t be punished for anything you want to talk about – including any criticisms of me, and my treatment of you. Just as long as you keep a civil tongue in your head,”


“Yes, Master.” Mulder closed his eyes, and thought for a moment, but he was so tired. Skinner nudged him with his knee. “Okay…I…last night. I’d never had a man, a top make love to me like that. You know, I thought that vanilla sex wouldn’t turn me on to be honest. I thought I needed the BDSM stuff to get my kicks, but last night…well, I was turned on! And it was good, it was really good. You’re right, about trust, about honesty, about all of it, but don’t expect me to give it all up without a fight. I know it’s crazy, because it’s what I want, but I’ll fight it all the way. I’ll fight you all the way. You’ll have to be strong to tame me, Master, really strong, and I’m scared you’ll give up, because it isn’t worth the effort. I’m too much work. Shit, I’m rambling…I’m so tired…” Mulder closed his eyes, and zoned out for a moment, then started again. “You can be as strong, and tough, and as much a bastard to me as you like, so long as you don’t give up on me. I don’t want you to give up on me…” His voice faded into nothing again. “Tired…” he mumbled into Skinner’s thigh. His eyes closed, and opened, then closed again, and stayed closed.


He was dimly aware of a hand soothing his hair, for several long minutes, then he felt himself being lifted up. He opened his eyes drowsily, then closed them again, and buried his face in his Master’s neck. Skinner placed him gently on the bed, then covered him with the sheets. Mulder’s head lolled onto the pillow, and he sighed. He felt his Master kiss his lips softly, then he heard the other man walk towards the door. Skinner paused, and turned the light off, and only in the silence, in the anonymity of darkness, and the haze of sleep, could Mulder say the words his waking mind always refused to let him speak:


“I love you, Master.”


End of Part 9


Show Buttons
Hide Buttons