Author's Note:, I'd like to emphasize that this is my first attempt at an X-Files fic, so please refrain from throwing any rocks. Secondly, realize that this story is not to be taken seriously. Ir's the product of a sleepless night, and my way of getting away from the romantic angst I usually write. It's a joke and nothing more, so all you Twilight fans, do try not to kill me or anything. Reviews are welcomed and appreciated.
Disclaimer: If you recognize it, than it isn't mine. The only payment I get is reviews, so try not to sue me.
Saying that Dana Scully was not a happy woman would be the equivalent of saying that Fox Mulder had a passing interest in extraterrestrials. Returning home from a twelve hour day, Scully's fondest wish was to consume a gourmet dinner of leftovers, after receiving a warm welcome from the man she loved. As she entered the home she shared with Mulder, the redhead quickly deduced that her wish would not be coming true.
Ridding herself of her coat, Scully noted the thin layer of dust covering every surface of the living room. Wandering into the kitchen, she admitted that any ideas of reheated dinner wouldn't reach fruition. The dishwasher had broken last week, and every plate they owned currently resided in one of two places. Most were stacked in the overflowing sink, the rest spread across the surrounding counter space. Every piece of dishware was either dirty, very dirty, or so dirty that Scully doubted her ability to get rid of the hardened bits of food.
Conquering the urge to scream into a pillow, Scully made her way down the hall, stopping at the closed door to Mulder's home office. "Mulder," she called, rapping hard on the door.
Cautiously, Scully pulled the door open, revealing the cluttered workspace within. Mulder, stationed behind his desk with his back to her, didn't look up from the book in his hand. "Why this sudden need to announce yourself?" he asked. Not waiting for an answer, the former FBI man abruptly turned in his chair, tossing the well-worn paperback aside. It struck the omnipresent UFO poster, formerly housed in their basement domain, with an impressive bit of force.
"That's why," Scully replied, watching the thick paperback slide to the floor.
"How many apologies can I make?" asked Mulder, shifting so he could face her properly.
Scully decided not to dignify that with a response, thankful that he'd at least switched to soft cover editions. She'd come in here last week, barely avoiding the hardcover novel he'd meant to throw at the door. She'd knocked since then, ignoring the foolishness that came with making her presence known within her own house. "I see you got busy on those dishes."
"I plan to make them into a kind of tower, like in the old days?"
"The old days, Mulder?"
"The days of partnership seminars and stacking up chairs as a trust exercise. It wounds me that you could forget our greatest achievements so easily."
"Mulder," she interrupted.
"How was your day?" he questioned, effectively cutting her off.
"Wonderful," she deadpanned, "the highlight being the eighty-year-old man who vomited on me while I was examining him."
Making a vague hissing noise that could've conveyed sympathy, Mulder put his back to her again, focusing on the screen of his newly acquired laptop. "Was this accidental, or have you turned into one of those crotchety old doctors that everyone loves to hate?"
"I would've said accidental, if he hadn't done it again the next time I came in."
Uttering a low whistle, Mulder leaned closer to the computer on his desk. "My sympathies. Though really, having choked down on numerous occasions the tasteless sludge that is hospital food, I can't say I completely blame him."
"Have you noticed that the dust bunnies in the living room are rapidly producing more dust bunnies?"
"Can't fight nature, Scully," he said, clicking a link on his Web browser. "Procreation is the way of all things."
Exasperated, Scully crossed the room, bending to retrieve the novel Mulder had so skillfully discarded. Placing it atop one of the filing cabinets, she prepared herself for round fifteen. "Mulder—"
"Scully, much as I enjoy being a maid—"
"Mulder, you're obsessed. Even for you, this is ridiculous."
"Scully, I don't think you're grasping the magnitude of—"
"How many times have you read this book?" she asked, waving the dog-eared paperback in his direction.
"Six," he supplied, still focusing on his computer. "And each time I do, I lose just a little more faith in writing as a profession."
She didn't roll her eyes, but the restraint was difficult. "Mulder," she began slowly, "if you hate it that much—"
"Hatred isn't a factor," he argued, twisting around to look at her again. "Incredulity and righteous indignation maybe, but hatred doesn't apply here. To hate a work of fiction in and of itself is irrational--"
"Rationality? You're talking about rationality?"
He pretended not to hear her. "To despise a work of fiction simply because it exists doesn't make sense. No, Scully. My disgust for this terribly written travesty of a book series doesn't lie with the terribly written books themselves. Despite the fact that reading these things makes me feel like a lobotomy patient, I have enough brains to center my feelings on the author, not the sacrilege she slings to the American people. To the world population, actually, since these things are popular abroad, too."
"Sacrilege, Mulder? Isn't that a little much? And other than fulfilling some masochistic need that I wasn't aware of, what purpose does this serve?"
"This woman's never seen a Dracula movie. Can you believe that? How is that even possible?"
"Mulder, I've never seen a Dracula movie."
He stared at her as though she'd divulged some life-altering secret, the kind that would shake their relationship to the core. "Excuse me?"
"I've never seen a Dracula movie."
Mulder stood from his chair, but was apparently too shocked to move closer. "How could you not tell me that?" he demanded, sounding very much betrayed. "Nearly two decades of partnership and you never think to mention this to me?"
Shaking her head, Scully gave in to temptation and let her eyes roll. "Forgive me. I honestly didn't think that my lack of experience with vampire films would have that much of an impact."
"You didn't play baseball, you didn't watch Dracula films, good God, Scully, what did you do with your childhood?"
One eyebrow crept towards her hairline. "Studied, sailed…interacted with the outside world."
"My social skills aside, how do you go through life without seeing a Dracula film?"
"Easily?" Scully ventured. "Happily?"
"All right your lack of rudimentary film knowledge aside, you didn't set out to write about vampires. You're not filling the public's heads with sacrilegious ideas about vampires and werewolves and other historic and noble creatures."
"Historic and noble creatures? Mulder, you're talking like--"
"Scully, remember the cows. Remember the-?"
The redhead put up a hand, begging for silence. Twelve years on and they were still arguing about the cows and the sheriff and the sheriff's supposed overbite and… She derailed that thought train out of necessity. For the sake of their relationship, as well as their continued sanity, they'd agreed to disagree on that one.
"It's an injustice is what it is, Scully. Look at this," he said, waving an arm at the computer screen.
"I'd rather not if it's all the same to you."
He pretended not to hear that. "This used to be the top website for information on vampires, werewolves—"
"What about leprechauns?" she wondered. "No verifiable, proven facts about leprechauns on there?"
"Leprechauns have their own webpage," he replied, unwilling to be sidetracked. "This Meyer woman admits to having no prior knowledge about any of the creatures she writes about, and look at the results. Millions of people are getting these absurd notions about vampires sparkling in the sun, werewolves masquerading as steroid-crazed Native Americans, and this site," he waved at the laptop again, "once a respectable place of information, has been reduced to message boards filled with people engaged in the Team Edward/Team Jacob debate."
Scully was quiet for several long moments. The fact that Mulder was faulting someone else for having absurd notions… Steeling herself, Scully pinned him under an imploring gaze, hoping that three weeks of this madness would be enough. "Mulder, I don't want you to get angry. Angrier than you already are," she amended. "I just want you to view this objectively. I want you to understand that the world is supposed to end in two years, and you're sitting here dissecting vampire romance novels written for sixteen-year-old girls. Can you at least understand why I'd be worried about that?"
"Scully, we've been over this. I'm not suffering from cabin fever; I'm trying to understand this so I can stop it."
"Stop it?" she mimicked, "Mulder, it's a book series, can you grasp that? A fictional book series, written for a group of adolescent females who—"
"That's just it though, Scully. If it was only a small group in a select market, I could understand. But it's not, its spread everywhere. Like a virus," he added. "Like a disease. A poorly written, lie-filled disease. And it's all because of this Stephanie Meyer woman."
There was a burning, almost maniac glint in his eye that she hadn't seen in awhile. In this case, Scully couldn't say she liked that glint very much. "So, is there an actual reason you've been poring over these things all day every while I finance the madness?"
"I think these books may contain some sort of coded or subliminal messages," he replied seriously.
"Uh huh. And what exactly are you suggesting?"
"Well Scully, if you'd stop interrupting and nagging me about playing housekeeper, I might be able to nail down a theory. It may be that she's some kind of advance agent of that apocalypse you mentioned earlier, or she could be linked with Cigarette Man."
"Cancer Man? You think a Mormon who writes vampire fiction is involved with Cancer Man? Dead Cancer Man?"
"Anything's possible," he shrugged.
"Right," Scully muttered, backing out of the room. "Just let me know before you decide to track down her home address and run a stakeout."
"Why? You always fall asleep during stakeouts. Where are you going?"
"To find some paper plates and a takeout menu. That's if I don't suffocate from all the dust."
"Scully, wait," he called, following her out into the living area. "Let's go out for dinner."
"Mulder," she sighed, "I've been up all day, I had to take Rosie's shift..."
"Come on, we'll go to that Mexican place you like."
"There is no Mexican place I like," she refuted, watching him with arms crossed over her chest.
"Then we'll go to the Chinese place I like. Stop at that movie rental place just down the street, pick up a few Dracula flicks."
"You always did know how to sweep me off my feet."
"Truer words were never spoken. But before we commence with the sweeping, I need fifteen dollars."
Scully's eyes narrowed, even as she kept up their gentle banter. "Didn't I already give you your allowance for this week?"
Mulder fidgeted on the spot. "Remember the third book; the one I said was heretical?"
"You said that about all four of them, as I recall. Something about understanding for the first time why people burn books?"
"I borrowed the book from that girl. The one with the braces?"
"Exactly. And while you were busy getting vomited on, I temporarily forgot that the copy was borrowed and—"
"—you tore pages from the book of our twelve-year-old neighbor."
"That would hinge on your definition of neighbor. She doesn't live that close to us."
"Keep telling yourself that, Mulder."
Sighing, Scully abandoned all hopes of a quiet evening in and went to get changed. It appeared they'd have to stop at the bookstore after dinner.