Title: Guardian Angel
Author/pseudonym:Nightshade
Website: http://purenightshade.tripod.com
Characters: Krycek
Rating: unrated
Pairing: Non-shipper, non-slash
Status: incomplete
Series/Sequel: series
Spoilers: As of yet, no spoilers
Disclaimers: All X-Files characters are copyright to their respective owners. Brooke Summers is my original characters and should not be taken or used without my permission.
Summary: Krycek is stabbed and left for dead on the side of the highway. A young woman finds him and treats his injuries. He learns what it’s like to be treated like a real human being and not as a cold blooded killer
Send all comments to nightshade@catlover.com

The black car squealed to a halt on the side of the highway, its bright yellow headlights doing little to dispel the gloom of the foggy, moonless night. As the engine idled, the back door opened and someone inside pushed a man out onto the grassy slope beside the road. He landed with a thud, rolling a short distance. While he got his bearings, another man climbed out of the car, walking down to join the other man. The first man eyed the second warily. “You really should know better,” the second man told him. “You don’t betray your employer. Even a scum bag like you should have learned that much by now.”
“What the hell do you want from me, Davies?” the first snarled.
“Want? I don’t want anything from you.” Davies brandished a knife. “You’re going to pay for your mistake.” Before the other man could move, he rushed forward and plunged the knife into the first man’s stomach. The man’s eyes widened in shock as the knife plunged in to him again. He collapsed to the ground, clutching his stomach as he writhed in pain.
“A bullet is too good for the likes of you,” Davies sneered. “I hope you suffer.” He cleaned the knife off and put it away as he walked back up to the car. He got in and closed the door before the car took off as fast as it could. The car and its passengers arrived back at an apartment in New York. They got out and went up to an apartment on the top floor where a group of men waited. There was a faint haze of smoke in the air, mostly around one of the men. They all looked at Davies expectantly.
“Well?” the smoking man asked.
“Alex Krycek is dead,” he reported.

On the side of the highway, Alex Krycek looked down at his wounds, trying to slow the bleeding with his hands. That didn’t go as well as he hoped; there was just too much blood. The pain was unbelievable. He’d always heard that this was a painful way to die, but he’d never quite believed it before now. He tried to scramble up the slope, but the area he was in was so slick with his blood that all he managed to accomplish was to slide further down, jarring his injuries. On his last attempt to get up, he landed on a rock. It dug in to the torn flesh of his stomach and he screamed in pain. He lay there, clutching the spot, taking deep breaths. When the pain from the rock subsided enough for him to move again, he took his blood soaked jacket off and tied it around the deep gashes. He moved over to a spot that had less blood and tried to climb up again, hoping to flag down a passing car.
He made it up to the road side and collapsed, panting with the effort. His vision blurred from the blood loss. He managed to pull himself up into the shoulder of the road before his strength gave out and he faded in and out of consciousness. He thought he felt hands on him; gentle, cool, soft hands examining his injuries and feeling his forehead. There was a brief feeling of floating before he passed out completely.

Krycek woke to the sound of a crackling fire. He opened his eyes a crack. He was lying on a bed in a small room. There was a fire going in a fire place set into the wall opposite the bed. It was the only source of light in the room, so he couldn’t really make out much of anything. He tried to sit up, but found that his body wouldn’t listen to him. His head spun. He closed his eyes again, groaning.
“You’re alive,” a soothing female voice observed. He heard the sounds of footsteps coming towards him. A cool hand touched his forehead. “How do you feel?”
“Terrible,” he croaked. “Where am I?”
“You’re at my place. Don’t worry; you’re safe,” she assured him. “I was wondering if you were going to make it.”
“How long have I been out?”
“The better part of three days now. I managed to get your injuries patched up, but you lost a lot of blood.”
He opened his eyes. “You saved me? How? Why?”
“I drove past you on the highway. I had to stop and see if you were ok. When I saw those slashes, how could I not have helped you?”
He turned his head away from her. “My life isn’t worth saving.”
“Everyone has worth. It might be buried deep within, but it’s there all the same.” The hand moved away from his forehead. “Well, your fever is gone. It must have broken while I was out. I need to check your injuries now and see if there’s any infection.”
“What are you, some kind of doctor?”
“I teach emergency first aid,” she told him, gently pulling back the blanket and unbuttoning the shirt he was wearing. “Lucky for you. You would have died otherwise.”
“That was kind of the idea,” he muttered.
“Beg your pardon?”
He shook his head. “Nothing, it’s not important. I guess I should thank you.”
“Don’t thank me yet. You aren’t entirely out of the woods. I really should have taken you to a hospital.”
Panic flooded through his body. “No, you shouldn’t have. It sounds crazy, but there are men trying to kill me. They would have succeeded if you hadn’t come along. They think I’m dead. I’d rather keep it that way.”
She frowned. “This is serious. Shouldn’t you tell the police?”
He laughed bitterly. “The police can’t help me. My best bet is to let them think they succeeded.”
“Are you in some kind of trouble?”
“I don’t really want to talk about it. If they find out I’m alive, the less you know the better off you’ll be.” She sat down beside him. He hissed in pain as she peeled back the bandages.
“Sorry,” she apologized, fingering the stitches. “Well, this seems fine. I don’t suggest that you try and move for another day or two at least.”
“I don’t really have any where to go, so that won’t be a problem. Besides, I tried that earlier. I can’t move even if I wanted to.”
“What’s your name?” she asked. “You didn’t have a wallet on you. I’d like to be able to call you something.”
“Krycek,” he replied. “Alex Krycek. People usually just call me Krycek, though.”
“Uh huh. What do you want to be called?”
He met her eyes. In the firelight, they looked black. “I think I’d like to be called Alex.”
“Alex it is, then. I’m Brooke Summers.” She reached down and clasped his hand, giving it a bit of a shake. “It’s nice to finally talk to you.” His stomach growled loudly, causing him to blush furiously. She laughed. Not a mocking laugh, but a gentle, understanding laugh. “Would you care for something to eat?”
“Yes, please.”
Brooke patted his arm and stood up. “I’ll be back in a minute. In the meantime, you just relax.”
Alex watched her leave the room and sighed. Well, this was certainly an interesting situation. Despite his injury, he refused to let his guard down. For all he knew, Brooke was working for the Syndicate and had been sent to finish the job. She’d sewn up his injuries, true, but could he really trust her? What did she want from him? Why was she doing this? She said he’d been out for three days. Maybe she could be trusted after all. He was still alive. Maybe he should be grateful to her for saving his life even though her true motives were unknown.
The door opened again and Brooke came in carrying a tray with something steamy on it. “I wasn’t sure how strong you are at this point, so I just brought you some chicken soup and some crackers. I hope that’s ok. I don’t know what you like to eat either.”
“Soup will be good,” he said, his stomach rumbling loudly.
She set the tray down on a table and came over to help in to a sitting up position, pilling pillows behind him for support. She brought the food over then. “Want to try it yourself first?” she asked, handing him the spoon.
Alex tried to take it from her, but it fell from his limp fingers. Frustrated, he tried to pick it up again but he couldn’t get a grip on it. Smiling gently, Brooke picked the spoon up and put a small amount of broth in it, cooling it off before putting it up to his lips. Looking very annoyed, he opened his mouth to take in the spoon. He swallowed and looked at her.
“It’s good.”
“I’m glad you like it,” she said, pleased, as she held more broth up for him. He finished the soup in silence, looking like he could have eaten more. She broke of pieces of cracker and held them up for him. He took them eagerly. When they were all gone, she held a glass of cool water to his lips, holding the back of his head to help him drink. With the glass empty, Brooke moved the tray away and helped him to lie back down.
“There. Feel any better?”
“I don’t feel like my stomach is going to start eating itself,” he replied, giving a satisfied sigh. “Thank you.”
“You’re welcome. You should probably get some sleep, get your strength back.” Alex grabbed her wrist as she tried to walk away. “Listen, Brooke, I…thank you. For saving my life, that is.”
She smiled down at him, placing her other hand over his. “There’s no need to thank me. It’s just what I do. Good night, Alex. I’ll bring you some breakfast in the morning.”
“I don’t eat breakfast.”
“That would explain why you’re nothing but skin and bones. I’ve never seen anyone as thin as you are.”
“I’m not that thin!” he protested.
“You’ve barely eaten anything in three days. When I first saw you, you were thinner than my twelve year old brother.” She folded her arms and looked down at him. “You need a serious amount of meat on your bones.”
“I suppose you’re going to make me eat.”
“That’s right. Don’t worry; it’s been a long time since I’ve cooked for anyone but me. I like cooking. There’s just a limit to how much I can eat.”
“I don’t want to impose-“
She cut him off. “You’re not. Now, what do you like to eat?”
He shrugged. “Anything, really. I’ve learned to not be too picky about food. I eat what’s available.”
“You’re making this really easy.”
Alex squirmed uncomfortably. “I don’t want to be any trouble.”
“You’re not. Get some rest.” She walked over to the table and picked up the tray. “Good night, Alex.”
With Brooke out of the room, Alex reevaluated his opinion of her. She seems to genuinely want to help me. I can’t stay here, but I can’t move, so there’s no choice in the matter. I need to know more. Where am I? She said this is her place, but what is it? Not an apartment; those don’t generally come with fireplaces. Unless it’s a penthouse, though somehow that doesn’t seem likely. I wish I could move. It would be nice to get out of bed and have a look around.
That was his last thought before he fell asleep.

The next morning, a bit of sunlight streamed into the room through the curtains woke him up. He groaned and rolled over, closing his eyes. He lay there for a few minutes before an urgent need to use the bathroom hit him. Wonderful, he said to himself, shoving the covers off. How’m I going to manage this one?
Alex managed to pull himself into a sitting position. The room spun wildly around him. Looking down at himself, Alex saw that he was wearing a pair of loose flannel pajamas. Deciding to not wonder how he’d gotten into them, he waited for the dizziness to pass before trying to stand up. That failed miserably. They buckled under his weight. Fortunately, it wasn’t far to the floor. Grunting in annoyance, he managed to crawl into the adjoining bathroom and relieve the building pressure. Relieved, he managed to get himself back into bed. He lay there for a time, shaking from the effort. He pulled the blankets up just as Brooke walked in with a tray in her hands.
“So you are awake,” she said, setting it down on the table. “Did you sleep well?”
“Reasonably so. My stomach hurts like hell, though.”
“Do you roll in your sleep?”
“No one’s been in a position to tell me yes or no on that score in a long time. I might, but I’m not sure.”
“Moving a lot before those wounds are healed could cause that kind of pain.”
“I did get up to use the bathroom,” he admitted.
She blinked in surprise. “Really? How’d you manage that?”
“I crawled.”
“That makes sense. Hungry?”
“Starving.”
Brooke helped him pile pillows behind him. “Want to try this on your own today?”
“Not with cutlery, but I think I can try something.”
She smiled and brought the tray over. “Nothing here should be eaten with cutlery, so go nuts. We have blueberry muffins, plain toast, cheese biscuits, slices of fruit, and orange juice. Eat as much as you want.”
He eyed the tray cautiously. “You made all this just for me?”
“For myself as well. I had to eat, too, you know.”
“You’ve had breakfast already?”
“I’ve been up for hours now. It’s ten in the morning. Those muffins have been keeping warm since eight.”
“They smell wonderful,” he said, picking one of the halves up. It felt warm on his fingers as he took a bite. It had a very cake like texture and the hot blueberries burst when he bit them, oozing warm berry juice down his throat. He closed his eyes in a moment of ecstasy. He licked the crumbs off his fingers and looked up at her. “That was good.”
She had an amused look on her face. “I noticed. Have another.” A guilty look crossed his face. “What did I tell you last night about needing to eat? I can always make more later. I just want you to eat.” She picked up a muffin half and held it up for him. “Or do I need to sit on you and feed it to you piece by piece?”
“Well, if you’re going to put it that way, I guess I have little choice.” Alex took the muffin from her hand and ate it and then turned his attention to everything else on the tray.
While he ate, Brooke got up, pulled back the curtains and opened the windows to let in the fresh air. Faint birdsong could be heard. He looked over at her, admiring the long golden brown hair tied in its neat braid. She was wearing a pair of loose light blue jeans and a forest green t-shirt. She wasn’t wearing any shoes, but had on a thin pair of socks. She turned to check on his progress. He paused in his chewing. She had a pleasant face with deep, soulful brown eyes and generous lips. She looked puzzled.
“Do I have something on my face?” she asked, fingering her cheek.
He shook his head. “No. This is the fist time I’ve actually seen your face. It was so dark last night I couldn’t make it out.”
She came back over and sat down on a chair beside the bed. “It’s not much to look at, I’m afraid. I’m unfortunately plain.”
“Plain is not the word I would use,” he said setting down the piece of fruit he was holding.
She cringed. “This doesn’t sound good.”
“I think you’re cute.”
“You’re just teasing me.”
“No, really. You’re not the most beautiful woman I’ve ever seen, but somehow that makes you all the more attractive. You’re reachable and honest. You don’t make any pretensions about your looks. Of course, this is just my opinion.”
She blushed. “Now I’m positive you’re teasing me.”
“I’m serious!” he protested. “Does it bother you?”
“A little,” she admitted. “I’m not accustomed to people saying such things about me.”
“I’ll stop then,” he said, his voice gentling. “I can’t go around making my savior and caretaker uncomfortable. That’s just bad manners.”
“Thank you, though. It was nice of you to say.”
He nodded, feeling a knot twist in his stomach. “You’re welcome.”
They sat there in an awkward silence for a few minutes before Alex turned back to the breakfast tray. “So you say you can make more of these muffins?”
“Given an incentive, yes.”
He turned his best puppy dog eyes on her. “If I ask nicely?”
“If you ask nicely and eat your breakfast, yes.”