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Title: The Fool
Author: Langleigh
Disclaimers: Doggett´s not mine. Scully & Mulder aren´t mine. (I wish) Neither are the words to the song in this fic. Basically nothing´s mine except the idea for this fic. I might also note that this is my very first Doggett fic and the first XF fic I´ve written in so long I lost count.
Category: VA
Key Words: DUA (Doggett Unrequited Affection), MSR, Doggett POV
Archiving: Ephemeral, Gossamer, Julie (put it where you want it.) XFMU. My site. All others must ask.
Feedback: Send comments to Langleigh75@cs.com or debchilson@yahoo.com
Spoilers: Season 8, most specifically DeadAlive
Rating: G/PG
Summary: Mulder´s alive and Doggett realizes just exactly what that means for him.
Acknowledgements: To Julie, for bringing my back to the X-Files after all this time and for introducing me to Doggett. And for the beta-reading. And suggestions.
Another Authors Note: I have 4 other stories archived at Goassamer under a different name (Sammy C). The stories are: Noel, A Kiss is a Kiss, Elation and My Heart Leapt.

"The Fool"

I always turn on the radio when I go to work in the morning. My favorite station is WXFD, a country station that plays a little bit of everything—old and new. I didn´t know the artist whose song they were playing as I headed into work, so I turned the radio off. But not before the song got stuck in head. I found myself humming the tune, mostly to myself, all morning.

In the afternoon, I headed to the hospital to find out how Agent Mulder was faring. Agent Scully was there; I don´t think she´d actually left that waiting room at all since yesterday except to sit by his side until a nurse shooed her out. Seeing her there, waiting patiently--playing the vigilant wife--made my heart ache. For some time now, I´ve wanted to do more than just help her find her missing partner, and now that we´ve found him, I don´t know what else I can do. Except watch.

Behind Scully was the open door where Agent Mulder lay hooked up to machines, barely alive and yet alive enough to give hope to the woman who obviously loved him. Part of me wanted to go inside that room; part of me wanted to tell him how long I´d watched his partner grieve for his safe return and mourn when she thought he was dead. I hesitated, trying to decide if it was worth the effort to speak to a man who might soon be dead, the words of that song popped back into my head.

You don´t know me, but I know who you are.
Mind if I sit down?
Do I look familiar? If I don´t well I should
I´m sure you´ve seen me around.

But what would I really say to this man if I did go? What *could* I say? He didn´t even know who I was. I meant nothing to him, nothing at all. I was just the unknown man who´d been assigned to help his worried partner find him—-dead or alive.

By now you´ve probably heard my name
Though we´ve not been introduced.
I´m the fool in love with the fool
Who´s still in love with you.

My mind flashed back to the horrifying moment when I pulled Agent Scully away from his body, my heart wanting to comfort her and yet fearing it at the same time. At that moment, I came to hate the man who now lay helpless in the room before me. His wild fascination and impossible quest were what brought her to that point-—brought her so much pain and suffering.

If you´ve got a minute, I´ll buy you a drink.
I´ve got something to say.
It might sound crazy but last night in his sleep
I heard him call out your name.
This ain´t the first time, he´s done it before
And it´s hard to face the truth.
I´m the fool in love with the fool
Who´s still in love with you.

What hurt the worst, and made it so hard for me, was knowing that I could never have the kind of relationship—-the kind of rapport—-with Scully that she has with Mulder. I want it. I want the freedom to call her Scully instead of "Agent Scully." Or maybe even to call her Dana. I have called her Dana in my dreams for quite a while, but only in my dreams.

I know love is a fragile thing
And I´m trying hard to make it last,
But it ain´t easy holding onto a dream
When he´s holding onto the past.

I must have decided it wasn´t worth it to pour my heart out to a man who probably couldn´t hear me and who was likely not to live past tomorrow anyway, so I turned my attention to the red head seated nearby. She looked helpless and fragile, still recovering from the double shock of losing and then regaining the man she´d been search for all year. I immediately wanted to comfort her, but when I finally made my presence known, that´s not what happened.

We wound up arguing instead. I´m sure she does think I´m bullheaded by now. I´ve certainly proven it enough times, but it´s hard to listen to her spouting the kind of nonsense that´s supposed to be coming from Fox Mulder´s lips. Especially when I know that there was a time in her life when she agreed with my way of thinking more than she did his. So I left. I told her that I was going back to the real world, silently implying that she was living an unrealistic dream.

Just one more thing before I go.
I´m not here to put you down.
You don´t love him and that´s a fact
Girl I´ve seen you around.
But you hold his heart in the palm of your hand
And it´s breaking mine in two.
Cause I´m the fool in love with fool
Who´s still in love with you.

I didn´t want to hurt Scully, and I know I did. But it´s so hard for me to see her like this and know that I can´t do anything about it. It´s not my comfort or my love that she wants-—it´s his.

I´m not exactly sure when I started loving Dana Scully. I just know that I do, and that she may never love me back. Monica even noticed it the first time she saw Scully and me together. Like a good friend, she made fun of me for acting like a lovesick teenager, but at least she called it like it is. And now that Mulder´s back, I finally have to admit it to myself.

I´m the fool in love with the fool
Who´s still in love with you.


(Note: the song is "The Fool" as performed by Lee Ann Womack. Lyrics courtesy of LyricsDot http://lyrics.lipetsk.ru/)