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And On The Third Day

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And On The Third Day

The sound of the gun shots still echoed in their ears as Walter Skinner took Fox Mulder's arm in a firm grip and guided him away from the dead body of one Alex Krycek lying in a pool of his own blood in the underground parking garage.

For several minutes after the F.B.I men had left, the garage was strangely silent. Not a sound of passing traffic, no hollow footsteps of someone seeking out their car on the many levels. Just the still of the silence of the dead.

In that eerie silence, no one saw the shadowy men step out of the darkness of the parking garage. No one witnessed the criminally insane Anson Green scramble into the light. No one could testify to seeing Jerome Horne at his side. Not the shadowy Tom Foss or the suave nightclub owner, Chris Bezich. Not Ethan MacKaye or even the Immortal, Cory Raines.

But they were there.


"He is merely sleeping for a time, my brothers." The purported faith healer, Philip Padgett stepped into the center of the circle and knelt at the body of the first. Tears streamed from his eyes as he looked up into the eyes of Vic Mansfield. "Only for a brief time. Believe."

"Believe." Vic took a step back and waved the others forward. "Bring him. Hurry, brothers. Time isn't going to wait for mourning."

The multiple look-a-likes silently approached the body and gently lifted Alex Krycek into their arms, carrying the lost first into the concealing shadows.

~ ~ ~ ~

A glance between the men was all the communication they needed. A white cotton sheet was spread over the alter of the snake and the body was laid out on it. Swift, silent hands stripped off the clothes he'd worn in life and tossed aside the plastic arm that marred his perfection in life. He would not need it any longer.

Mansfield dipped out a bowl of water from the fountain spewing under the ornate snake of the now abandoned temple. Padgett's lips moved, silently uttering the words that blessed the tepid liquid. That done, the others began the loving process of bathing the body. Taking special care to cleanse the blood and preserve the watery remains.

When the cleaning was done, the men gently lifted the body and laid out a clean dry sheet, wrapping him in it as if he were a new born in need of the tight support. A second, slightly heavier blanket was wrapped around him as if to provide warmth to the already cold flesh.

The body wrapped and squeaky clean, the men each leaned over and brushed a chaste kiss on the chill lips. Padgett made the sign of the cross on the body's forehead before he added his own kiss. Mansfield was last, kissing the cold, dead lips before he draped the end piece of the blanket over the face so like his own.

The gaggle of identical folk formed a circle, fingers interlocked, round the cloaked body and bowed their heads. No words were needed. Each man's lips formed the words they silently spoke. The prayer complete, they exchanged one final glance among they and faded away leaving Padgett and Mansfield alone. They would stand vigil through the day before they also would disappear into the next night's shadow, leaving the body under the passive gaze of the serpent icon.

~ ~ ~ ~

And on the third day, the blankets shifted, sliding open under a tearing hand.

And the man, complete and healed, rose and walked the earth.




Note: The men who retrieved the body are all characters that Nick has portrayed