Title: A Man Who...
Author: DC Luder
Disclaimer: FM, DS, MS, WS belong to them crazy CC and Co. out in LA.
Summary: Scully has attempted to leave Mulder after his disappearance in Oregon, but
memories of what she once had with her partner do not surrender so easily.
The November sky was brisk that evening, as threatening rain clouds seized the moon and its diamond stars. I sat on the swing porch, wrapped in a gray wool blanket and sipping steaming apple cider. I rocked back and forth; the only sound heard was that of the creaking swing. However, when I had first come out a half of an hour ago, the howling winds had not drilled its tolerance into my eardrums yet. Now they had.
A warm hand grips my shoulder and is followed by a hard flat stomach pressed against my back. I leaned into it, feeling the comfort envelope me. I could sense the smile that I presumed to dominate his face. I was about to ask him what he was thinking when the warmth disappeared. I turned to see...
He was nowhere in sight.
"Mulder?" I called out. I set my mug down on the gray wooden porch and got up, leaving the blanket bundled together. I looked down towards the road and around the porch. He was nowhere. Then I remembered. He was gone. Taken by the unknown in the woods so many years ago. I couldn't bear the memories of what could have been, so I had left DC and moved to New York. I had Mulder's son, a gorgeous little boy who had his father's eyes. Eyes that sometimes make tears fall from mine when I look at them...
And I had met Dave, and he had replaced the empty feelings I had when I left Mulder behind in DC. He didn't mind raising another man's child. He understood the circumstances I told him and accepted the boy as his own. He wanted to name him Travis, but I wouldn't let him. I think he understood that I needed to name him, although he never asked.
And here I am, Dr. Dana Katherine Baker for six years now. Six long happy years with a caring husband and a wonderful child. Or at least I have tried to convince myself that I'm okay, and that I can go on without Mulder. But sometimes, just one look into Will's eyes and I question if I had done the right thing by marrying Dave. Images of Mulder's face, of his mind and body haunt me forever. I love Dave with all of my heart, but then I love Mulder with all of my soul. He made my life complete, even before Will. And to think he might be out there, not knowing where I am or if I'm safe...
I grab the mug and blanket and enter our house. My body tingles with the shock of temperature difference. A smile replaces my empty frown and I head for the den. Will is up in bed, recovering form a nasty little cold bug that was running through all of the first graders. I've never told him about Mulder being his real father, although I had planned on doing so. Then Dave convinced me it would be too difficult for him to comprehend his father being a man he'd never meet and another man living in the same house. So Dave is called Dad. Not Mulder.
Entering the den, I see my husband sitting on the sofa. Dave is pecking away at his laptop, his brow contorted in thought. I sit across from him and finish my cider. Folding the blanket, he realizes that I am there. "Hey, Dana. Why did you go outside?"
"I needed some quiet time."
He frowned, "In thirty-seven degree weather?" he asked, removing his glasses. He saved what he had been typing and closed the computer. He ran a slender hand through his dark gray hair, clipped close and neat. With the same hand, he rubbed the bridge of his nose and looked up at my with the caring green eyes I had come to know so well.
"Yes, in thirty-seven degree whether. The blanket and cider prevented hypothermia, so don't worry."
His frown reversed into a slight smile. He got up and sat beside me, taking me into his long muscular arms. We rarely had quiet time, and when we did, it usually ended in uncomfortable silence. "Dana, is something wrong?"
I looked at him, "No, why do you ask?"
"You seem... Detached somehow. Is it work?"
Well, Dave, honey-bunch, you see there was this man I left behind in another life, I left my soul with him and lately I've been experiencing odd moments when I feel he is sitting next to me, holding my hand, embracing me, kissing me...
"No, just thinking about Mom," I lied.
"Yeah, I think we should go visit her this weekend. Check out her new boyfriend."
"Mom doesn't have a boyfriend..." I retort, smirking at him.
"She told me this afternoon. Seeing a man you know... What was his name...?"
"Well, she said he was tall, a little younger than her, he served in the war... Walter maybe?"
"Walter Skinner?" I blurt out.
"Yeah, that's him, Walter Skinner. She said you used to work for him when you lived in DC."
I was stunned. My mother going around with Skinner... Yuck. I love Walter Skinner dearly, but him going out with my mother. It was bizarre to even ponder it.
"So, do you want to?" Dave asked, caressing her cheek.
"Want to what?" I asked, leaning against him, just as I had thought I had been doing with Mulder moments ago...
"Go see Mom and Walter."
My voice was constricted in my throat. Going to DC would mean going to where Mulder once was. Memories that I have tried to rid of would flood my senses by just being in the area where we became Scully and Mulder. Where we became partners. Where we became friends. Where we became lovers...
"Um... Uh, I'll call Mom and see."
With that I got up to call my mother when the doorbell rang. "I'll get it, Dave," I called out. I briskly walked to the door, unlocked the chain and opened it. I didn't look through the fish eye lens, and greeted the nocturnal visitor with a smile of curiousity. I nearly passed out at the sight of the tall lanky man, wearing blue jeans and a black leather coat. A man with graying hair and unruly bangs that never had been tamed completely. A man I hadn't seen in six years, and was thought to never see again. A man holding a small bouquet of roses and baby's breath.
A man who had stolen my soul many years ago.
"I made this!"