an X-Files fic
Key Words: Epiphany, Mulder pov, implied Mulder/Reyes UST
Archiving: Ephemeril, Gossamer, XFMU, and for Julie to do with as she likes. All others please ask before you archive this.
Spoilers: Empedocles, DeadAlive, Three Words
Summary: Four Agents come to a crossroads, but are they ready to turn the page to a new chapter in their lives?
Disclaimers: The X-Files, Mulder, Scully, Doggett, Reyes et al belong to Chris Carter, FOX and 1013. They aren't mine. I don't own them. I don't own anything. Basically, I'm a poor nut trying to amuse myself.
Dedications/Authors Notes: Well, I'm going to perfectly honest with you. If you're a die-hard Shipper or you don't like Doggett or Reyes, then you shouldn't read this story. You won't like it. In fact, if you do read it, no matter how well-written it was, you're going to want to flame me. If you do, be prepared to be ignored, because personally, I think flames are childish and inappropriate behavior. So... if you even think you're going to flame me, just save us both the trouble and don't bother reading this story.
That being said, I feel I should explain myself. I am a Shipper, or at least, I have called myself one since Season 5. I love Mulder & Scully dearly, and don't deny that they love each other. However, Season 8 is a whole new game for me. While I am a Shipper at heart, I cannot deny that Doggett is head over heels for our Scully. And after last night's episode, I also cannot deny the possibility of something else-the chemistry between Mulder and Reyes. Maybe I'm vulnerable because I'm hanging out on the SkepticsandBelievers list (e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org for details) or maybe I just see something special there. Or I could be temporarily nuts. Whatever the reason, I'm writing this story anyway. Will I still write MSR? Yes. Do I still think Mulder and Scully are perfect for each other? Yes. But I find that I can write all things, because there are many facets to this show and its characters, just as there are many facets to my heart. And my heart is telling me to write this regardless of what any critics say.
Part 1: Mulder
I must admit, I've been feeling kind of useless and out of place lately. It could have something to do with having been abducted and then dead and buried for three months. Or it could be because my partner, the only woman in the world I ever truly felt a strong connection to, is about to give birth and I don't have the nerve to ask her if the child is mine. Sometimes I think this has a lot to do with my feelings of inadequacy... but then I see him. I see him talking to her and working with her, and I see how her life went on without me. I see things that I don't think she does, in fact. I see her trusting him and counting on him in ways I'm not sure she ever relied on me. And then I see him... storing that trust in his heart and guarding it-guarding her-so fervently. And until recently, I hated him for it: hated him for her trust of him and for his love of her.
And then I got this phone call... a woman I never met before asking for help on an X-File of all things. The X-Files has been my life's passion for so many years, and now it is the one thing I can't go back to... because the FBI gave my job to him. I told her to call him, told her that I couldn't help her. Scully had just been wheeled into a room and I wanted to be with her. I wanted to keep her safe-and him out. Even as I spoke his name, I could see him standing there, hovering outside her door like a vulture waiting to feed upon her.
And then she-this woman I did not know-told me that she couldn't go to him. It had to do with him. Everything has to do with *him *, I wanted to tell her. But I didn't; I went to that basement instead.
And that's when I saw her for the first time... standing there pouring over old files listed under the name "Doggett." Files for a case I never knew existed. Held by a woman I suddenly couldn't get out of my mind.
At first, she seemed nothing like Scully, and yet the more I listened to her, the more I worked with her while Scully lay in that hospital bed *not * needing me, I found that she challenged me every bit as much as Scully used to. She awoke something in me that had been dead since my return from the grave-passion for life and a desire to move forward. I also found something else-a kindred spirit. Someone who believes in the paranormal and the inexplicable as much as I do and isn't afraid to show it. I quickly realized that if this woman had been assigned to the X-Files all those years ago, we wouldn't be sitting in some musty basement right now. She'd have seen to it that the world did not ignore our work.
And now the case is over, and here I am with Scully once again, but a part of me doesn't want to be. That's a hard thing to say because I still love her. I'm still connected to her, but I'm starting to realize that the part of her I'm connected to was left behind when she moved on without me. And she did move on. She's been dropping clues to that effect for a while now, but I've been too blinded by my own misery to see it. I finally did see it, though. It was there in her soft smile when she said Doggett was worth it-worth helping, worth getting to know-and it was there when she said she liked Special Agent Reyes.
"I like her." Do you know what that is? That's a code for "she's a lot like you, Mulder. You'd like her if you gave her the chance." Well, I did like her. I liked her from the moment she called me out in my own-what *used to be *--my own office. She said she hoped my friend got better so there'd be at least one person in that basement with an open mind. That's when she had me. Up until then, I'd been trying to keep her at a distance-to keep the X-Files at a distance-but as soon as she said the words, implying that *I * was being close-minded, I knew I had to give in. "You'll say anything, won't you?" I'd asked her, smiling like I haven't smiled in ages. At that moment, I felt so light-hearted and free. Being with her makes me feeling that way.
Being with Scully right now makes me feel the weight of all that went wrong in my search for the Truth. I know she doesn't mean it, but when I'm with her I feel so trapped sometimes: trapped in the past, stuck in a limbo that began when I was abducted and only ended the moment I smiled and took up Monica Reyes's challenge. I think, thanks to the connection we still share, Scully knows this to be true. Funny thing is, she knows and yet I don't think she minds.
When she thanked me for the doll, saying how I gave her courage to carry on, I knew that she would understand what I was about to say. "Scully," I take a deep breath; this is harder than ever could have imagined.
"Yes, Mulder?" Her words are so simple, so perfect and to the point... so Scully.
"Do you... would you... mind if I stepped out for awhile? There's..."
"Something you have to do?" she asks, filling in my sentence while I flummox about. I smile and nod once. She smiles back slowly. She knows. "Of course, you know I'll be alone until the pizza man gets here."
"I'm sure you'll manage without me," I say, kissing her thankfully on the forehead and all but rushing to the door in my haste. I stop and turn around to say good-bye.
"Don't say anything, Mulder. Just go."
(Continued in Part 2)