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fic: Humans, Creatures and Little Gray Men
elis_xf


Title: Humans, Creatures and Little Gray Men

AUTHOR: Elis@

E-MAIL: eleryra@googlemail.com

DISTRIBUTION: Archive freely. Drop me an email pleaaaaase.

RATING: PG

CATEGORIES: Story, Mulder/Scully Romance, Angst

SPOILERS: The-truth and pretty much everything else before that.

Disclaimer: X-Files characters belong to FOX Corporation and 1013..

Summary: "She understands, he thinks surprised, then he wonders why he ever
questioned it in the first place. She is still Scully to him. She is still
his one in a billion."

Achievements: 1st place X files Ultimate Best Written Fanfiction
2009,1st place Best Relationship Fanfiction 2009, 1st place Ultimate
Fanfiction o f 2009.

Author's Notes: Desperately looking for a BETA for my next project. Anyone interested please email me :)
This one goes out to
Anasilv, who pushed me to write this in the first instance. No one
else could understand the madness. To my one and only ER, whose
support is beyond the call of duty. No one else could love the
madness. To Dasha, who unknowingly inspired the madness. To Princess
Leia, because your intelligence sometimes baffles me. And finally to
Little E, because she's the sun, she's the smile, she's happiness with
the big H.

FEEDBACK: Feedback is the mother of inspiration.





1. Endurance

As she sits on the cheap yellow folding chair on the side of the room, she
looks at her legs as the robe she wears loosens up slightly and her skin is
revealed. She sighs. She thinks she's getting old. She closes the robe
tighter against her skin and sinks into the chair. Just a few feet away she
looks at the sleeping form on the bed and she secretly thanks her God for
having spared her life. She doesn't want to admit it but she secretly thanks
Kersh too. She shakes her head and considers that in the bliss of the
moment, she had forgotten that running away could have so many implications,
unexpected consequences. The room is briefly lit by the light of a passing
car, and then falls into darkness again. How must his mind work. Perhaps
similarly. Immerse into oblivion, he experienced briefs moments of clarity,
so rare and ephemeral, only to be thrown into deeper darkness and despair.
He found his truth only to realize it was the very thing that would pose an
end to everything. She cringes. Typical luck. He stirs in his sleep and she
shifts on the uncomfortable chair. He looked so much older than when he had
left DC. She wonders what he must have endured. He would not say. They had
barely spent only a few hours talking to each other, with long intervals of
silence, he would not share with her, he did not appear distant, he appeared
tired, abandoned, as lonely as he ever did. Planning would be their next
step. In the rush of the run, they had abandoned every chance at deep
planning, and she had been happy to leave rationality and logic behind in
exchange for his sleeping form on the bed, alive and breathing, resting. He
is asleep on his stomach, and she finds herself smiling sadly as she places
that image of him next to one of her favourite memories of her son,
peacefully asleep on his stomach, breathing lightly in the silence of the
night. She wonders if things will ever change for them, if the brief
resemblance of normality they had so briefly experienced after William's
birth could be somehow regained in the future. Or if they will always be
fugitives. Alone with their monsters in the dark, sharing the burden of the
imminent prophecy, the weight of the terrible truth.
" You couldn't sleep" his voice sounds husky and she is briefly startled, he
is now awake, and for a short while she cannot see his face, until he rolls
around and sits on the bed, he looks behind his shoulder towards her. His
chest is bare, his shoulders seem to sink, he looks more tired than before
his sleep. He stands up and walks towards the window.
" I wanted to look at the map" she says. She lies. She wanted to sit and let
it sink in. Him. Them. The truth. The loss. Grieving. The big escape. Him
alive back to her. All that's been lost.
She sighs. He understands. He always does.
He leans on the window frame with one hand and looks outside.
" Gibson..." he whispers.
" He is going to be fine." She says. And she knows if Gibson had been there
to read her mind he would have known she wasn't sure about that. That she
was afraid. She was nervous. She had resigned to the truth but had left the
consequences untouched. Gibson. Skinner. Doggett. Monica. Kersh. She lets
out another sigh.
" We need to drive up north." She says. He shrugs his shoulder and doesn't
reply. She knows he has lost everything. His fight to the truth. He cannot
change things. She knows he feels powerless. A man without a purpose. For
the first time in his life he has no purpose no truth to seek, no
profession, no aim, no target no conspiracy to expose. She knows he probably
feels like he is living his life on autopilot, outside of his own body he
sees himself. He is spent and it must feel like learning to be a child
again. Learning new things, getting a new life. She has him. His presence.
With a pang of guilt for being so selfish she wonders if she will ever be
enough for him. She knows the answer to that, sadly. His nature, his being,
his truth has now been revealed to him. And he cannot accept it. He will
never accept it. She looks down, her hands in her lap look small now, had
she ever noticed that before? He turns to her.
" You think too much, Scully, have I ever told you that?" he says and walks
towards her. She smiles quietly, softly and reservedly, he takes silent
notice of her usual gesture, her signature smile. He sits by the bed and
leans forward towards her to catch a rebellious strand of red hair between
his fingers. He lets go.
" What must have you seen, Scully." He says quietly and for a moment she
sees him leaving the bubble of personal pain to sneak into her own sorrows.
She breaks eye contact and tries to calm herself down mentally, his words
can still make her eyes water, she thinks, after so long, so much has been
lost and he has never changed. Nothing ever really changed. She is still
Scully to him. He tries to look into her, like he could read her mind, like
he had perhaps seen Gibson everyday hiding with him. He does not have the
boy's powers but he never needed them. The contact is broken, she is not
ready to speak yet, the world is still asleep to her and so is reality,
their escape has yet to sink in, as she looks outside the window and the
rain starts to pour over the dirty glass.



2. Awakening

His heart pounds so fast he thinks he might faint in the middle of the
parking lot, right by the coke vending machine, as he leans against the
dirty wall, hiding from the light and from the sight. He could swear someone
followed him, and for a fraction of a second he sees it, the needle go
through his vein, Scully crying behind the glass in the room with the
observers as he catches one last painful breath before closing his eyes
permanently... No, he shakes his head. No one has followed him, he keeps
saying to himself that no one is really out there to get him, that if he
believes that intensely as he has believed his truth for so many years,
maybe it will turn out to be true, and no one will get to him, and they will
be safe, she will be safe, she will be happy and smile again. The same wide
and joyful smile she gave him one afternoon in her apartment before giving
birth to their son as she laughed about his jokes on the pizzaman. His head
sinks down in front of him and he thinks the adrenaline rush might make him
throw up his tomato and cheese sandwich right there, but he fights back. She
is just a few yards away, lying asleep in their hotel room, the 3rd this
month. The 15th since they escaped almost 10 months earlier. The funds are
running miserably low but finding a job with virtually no credentials is not
easy. He has not been able to find anything yet. Scully was still looking in
Vancouver, but they had both agreed that they could start off somewhere
smaller, less visible. So they had started moving around again. Up north,
then back down south, across south-west Canada. And today, today he thought
this is where it ends. This is where they stop us. And for a moment his hand
goes to his gun in a reflex and he thinks, never, ever. We will never give
up for them. What a disgrace, he thinks, to think that she would give it all
up, that she had already given all up for him, for them. He feels ashamed,
secretly but cannot show it to her. Cannot say sorry for all that happened
because in this story he is the fallen hero, the voice of the truth that
falls victim of its own words, he is defeated and will not admit it, he
cannot admit that the truth itself sent him to the gutter. He cannot admit
that to her because it would signify to admit he hates the truth now. He
does not want to be right. He thinks he is hiding pride behind false
humility, he knows he is lying to himself and to her. But he does not want
to admit defeat. Not to her. She has not said a word to him about William in
months. In 10 months on the run she never mentioned the time they spent away
from each other. Never mentioned all the feelings they had exchanged in
short but strong emails read quickly in random internet caf=E8s. She fell
silent, another victim of his truth. Their son had left un unbearable
weight over their shoulder. The proverbial elephant in the room. They never
spoke about it. He lifts his head and looks across the road to their room,
the light is on. He walks out of the shadow and steps towards the door,
turns the knob slowly and for a second stops to enjoy the sound of routine.
He hears the shower running in the other room and the tv is left on to keep
company, he walks in and closes the door behind him walking slowly towards
the bathroom door. He leans on it carefully and touches the white wood with
one hand, trying to listen for sounds coming from beyond that. She doesn't
take long baths anymore. Not like she used to. She takes practical and quick
showers. She doesn't cut her hair that frequently either, so it has grown to
her shoulder and she looks more tired and older but he would never say that
to her, because she still looks stunningly beautiful to him. He closes his
eyes and wishes he could say that to her again. Their shared intimate
moments are condensed with tension and passion, but no-one speaks and she
lets him run his hands on her skin, she lets his hands speak words of love
that he cannot bring himself to, and he lets her lips heal the scars of
isolation and deprivation, he lets her kisses warm his heart and set it
beating again. And they look at each other again, for a long time in the
aftermath of their intimate lovemaking, they try to speak but prefer to
smile at each other shyly. Their relationship seemed to have gone through
all the steps possible in all the impossible ways, they had a child
together, mourned the loss and went back to shy passion. He sighs and sits
on the armchair on the corner of the room, she opens the door to the
bathroom and emerges in a cloud of steam, her bare feet are hugged by the
creamy carpet of the room and she walks casually naked into the room, not
having noticed him. He smiles to himself.
" Keep going G-woman." He says. She is startled, turns to him and blushes.
"Mulder. I thought you were out." She says and walks to the side of the
bed near him and grabs the silky pale pink robe. She sits next to him.
" You were gone for long. What happened." He looks down and she takes his
hand. He looks at her now. He does not want her to worry unnecessarily.
Shrugging his shoulders he brings her hand to his lips pensively and places
a small kiss on the palm. " Mulder? Is everything alright?" she asks,
concern visible on her face. He looks at her and smiles quietly. " We should
go back to Vancouver, you could find a job there." He says quietly. She
arches one eyebrow and he loves it when she does that. " I thought you said
Vancouver was too dangerous." She says. " It is" he says quickly. "But you
are the only one that can get a job. And Vancouver is far enough from DC."
He finishes with a soft smile. She closes her eyes. "What about you."
" What about me." He says. She looks at their hands together. " What will you
do if I find a job".
" I will grow wild vegetables in the massive garden of the massive house
you will buy for us with your big bucks, Scully." He says and her smile is
wider. He is happy to have been able to do that. To cause her to smile.
" Mulder you make fake fish die. What makes you think plants will survive
you." She jokes quietly and he allows them to slip into the so familiar
pattern of complicity. His left hand slowly caresses her chin and she
blushes again. " I have faith." He says. Never underestimate the willpower
of a man who has lost everything. He thinks. He looks at her. She smiles
still. Please don't stop. Please don't stop. He looks at her hair now,
it looks darker. She must have dyed it a few shades darker not long before
that. How could he miss that? She notices his eyes on her hair and touches
one long curl resting on her shoulder.
" I grew tired of my colour." She says.
" You look good in any colour Scully. You should try alien green. Word on
the street that's the new black." He grins. She looks happier. Maybe, he
thinks, maybe if he can lift himself up from his misery, he can drag her
with him as well. Maybe if he ran away from the darkness she would be his
touchstone again. Maybe if he faced the truth, did not give up and fought
for what they had left, maybe if he did allow them to take her soul away
from him too, maybe he would have won. Maybe they would have. She sees
something in his eyes and her lips close in a serene smile. She understands,
he thinks surprised, then he wonders why he ever questioned it in the first
place. She is still Scully to him. She is still his one in a billion.





3. Loss

She sits by the back yard of the flat they rent in Vancouver, on the
outskirts of the city. It's cold and the day is drawing to an end quickly,
the winter takes its toll on people, and her heart feels pangs of ice
stabbing through. She cradles the mug of coffee in her hands and her long
dark red hair dangles in front of her, past her shoulders like a warm
blanket, she looks at the waterless fountain in the middle of the communal
garden, then at the closed windows of the other flats around. She wonders if
they will ever have the privacy of their own home. The silence of the
freezing December afternoon embraces her, and she thinks about snow in DC,
how little of it they ever saw, how briefly they could enjoy it, just for a
few hours in the night before it would be cleaned away to make the roads
safe for drivers. She closes her eyes. Snow. She remembers the feel of the
white hard snow of Antartica against her barely covered limbs as she reached
out for him to keep him warm and alive, silently praying, the snow almost
blinded her sight with its ruthless candor. She opens her eyes and sighs, it
might snow soon. She clings on her woolen sweater and sips from the white
mug. In her right hand she holds a small and apparently innocuous piece of
scrap paper. The city lights seem so far away and she wonders what would he
think of her if he saw her there, holding that piece of information. What
would he think. Skinner had informed him of her choice, and it almost feels
like so much time has passed, when he left her alone to fight the end of the
world. She silently chuckles. How funny must that sound like to strangers.
Monster-chasers, that's what they had been for so long. And now they were
fugitives. She looks at the numbers on the paper numbly, she tries to keep
it that way, detach herself. Just numbers, she thinks, they are just
numbers. She looks at the fountain again and wonders what had his reaction
been when Skinner told him. Had he cried? Why hadn't she asked anyway. She
sighs. Looks down and a chill runs through her spine. She feels ashamed now.
She stares at the paper and her heart leaps, she shakes her head in sorrow,
not now. You don't need this, she says to herself, neither does he. He is
upstairs, she thinks, taking a bath, watching television, reading the paper
or sleeping. So much routine in his life these days, he looks tired,
bizarrely content to be around her, she is flattered, she secretly wishes
she would be enough, and she thinks about three years ago, about their first
nights on the run. About not being able to sleep unless he had her back.
Unless she knew he was safe. She thinks about all the things she had not
told him. She has had him back for three years, yet so little has been
discussed about things that could make or break them. Never a word about the
time he had disappeared, not much reference to the months he had spent
hiding in New Mexico, she still hoped she was the only one he trusted, but
his dissatisfaction with the truth might have contaminated the milestone of
their relationship. He was afraid to share his fears with her, maybe that
cigarette smoking son of a bitch had been right after all. he was afraid to
ask. To ask her to let him in, to talk about their son. About her choices,
about her time alone. He was afraid to share, to give in, to admit defeat
and to abandon himself to sorrow. She did not want him to. And perhaps, to
believe that the truth was still out there was the best for everyone in the
face of the upcoming storm. 2012. She sighs and thinks about their son, what
will he look like in 2012. She looks at the numbers on the paper and a warm
hand leans on her shoulder. She turns her head to meet his enquiring gaze,
he sits on the concrete next to her. She smiles softly.
" A rerun of Men in Black is on, Scully. Thought you should know.".
She stares at the lifeless fountain. " I have been wondering.. -- he starts
as he plays with his hands in the cold -- "...maybe it is about time I start
working on my monograph."
"Your monograph?" she asks and her hand closes in a fist, hiding the piece
of paper.
" Yeah" he says " Yeah, you know *Humans, Creatures and Little Gray Men*,
how about that for a title, uh?" he leans closer to her and she enjoys the
warmth emanating from his brown sweater.
" Do you intend to write fiction, Mulder?" he smiles,
" No one will believe any of what I write about is true, Scully, I might
have to specify it in the first few pages...you know...This book is inspired by
true events, really, cross my heart. " he places a hand on her knee.
"I could write about us, you know. About all of our cases." She raises
an eyebrow.
" I am not sure people are that interested in the mediocre lives of two
underpaid FBI field agents, Mulder."
" Oh, but I can include some spicy details. You know, to appeal to all
audiences. I can think of a couple of times.." he says playfully, she elbows
him lightly and he chuckles.
" I think it's a good idea." She says after a long pause. She worried
about him. About all the time he spends on his own. About the time he spends
without a purpose.
" I guess that would keep me busy."
" I guess so. Enough to keep you away from your recent hobby of extreme
cooking." She says and smiles.
" Hey, my chicken fajitas =E0 la Mulder is superb. It's not every day you get
a deal like this. Smart, intelligent, good looking jobless man trained for
body-to-body combat cooking impressive dishes just for you."
He put one arm around her shoulders and she keeps looking at her
surroundings. He can hear her think. She tries to smile as much as possible.

" Are you going to tell me what you are hiding in your hand?" he asks
softly, squeezing her left shoulder. She looks pensive. She lets her hand
unfold and the piece of paper remains there. He doesn't pick it up. He wants
her to explain it. She worried he wouldn't understand.
" It's a phone number." She says simply. As that was the world's worst kept
truth. The chilly breeze brushes through his brown hair and he tentatively
takes the paper in his hand, brushing her palm with his fingers briefly.
"Agent Doggett gave this to me the day you...the day you were sentenced. He
said he was not supposed to. But that if I ever needed to know, needed to
know ...William was okay, I could...use this." She says. As she stared atthe
phone number of the family who had adopted their son. He remains quiet and
observes the paper. She wonders what he must be thinking. " Why now." He
asks. She shakes her head. " I don't know. I guess it's sinking in now. I
guess I miss him, I guess." She looks down. " I didn't think I was going to
call him. I don't think I could do that to him. But now that I know the
truth...I wonder if we.... I don't know. I don't know what to think about
anymore, Mulder. Our son will see the end of the world and we won't be there
with him." She finishes so quietly. She wonders if this was a good idea.
Sharing this much with him. He wants to hold her, he thinks about how many
dramatic moments in their lives required solemn words, words of comfort and
courage to lift them from the darkness. He desperately wants to tell her the
world won't end. He wants to tell her they will see their son again. But
he knows that is not the truth and cannot ever be the truth. She looks down.
They both need so much to hope, but words of faith and love fall silent in
the December night, and she holds on to the piece of paper like a lifeline.
If this were a movie he would hold her and promise everything would be okay.
But she knows, as he holds her shoulders to shield her from the freezing
cold, as his lips rest on her right shoulder in silence, that there is no
script for them. Not tonight. Not ever.



4. Belief

He feels nervous, he finds that funny, that he could feel nervous about
someone else. He wonders if it is common of married couples or long-term
couples to feel nervous about each other's endeavors. He glances at his
watch and looks around himself, scanning the coffee place for her. She's
not here yet. He casually scrubs the stubble growing on his cheeks and looks
down at the menu. He feels more comfortable about being in public now. It
has been four years since he ran, he wonders whether his case was now
closed. He wonders if they thought he and Scully had actually died in the
blaze at the anasazi ruins. He looks at his hands, they look coarse and
rough now, maybe too much time spent in the garden, too much time spent
exercising with weights in the back yard to keep fit. He laughs. Not much
space for joining the local gym when you are a federal fugitive. He chuckles
to himself again. From federal agent to federal fugitive, he remained in the
shadow. Not even a surname in a letterbox. He simply didn't exist anymore.
In more ways than just one, losing his battle to the conspirators, he had
lost a piece of himself long before the death sentence, long before the
trial, long before running away. He never fully comprehended the extent of
the consequences of that little detour off life and into death. He shakes
his head. Could he ever understand. From the table closest to the glass
window he spots her, walking steadily across the pavement with a pace that
is uniquely hers. And for a moment he sees the woman who thirteen years
before had held a gun to his face in some hidden refuge for ice research.
She looks older now, she looks so much different that not many people would
be able to recognize her. Something in her, yet, remained fundamentally
unchangeable. The soft expression she assumed when she stroked her face, the
frown on her forehead whenever he explained some paranormal phenomena of
interest to him, the defeated half smile she would grant him as if to say I
know you are nuts but I still trust you. He cherishes this. Each year has
marked her within so much more deeply than he could tell about himself,
maybe, and he cherishes her ability to remain just Scully to him. He looks
down at his paper. Maybe he should tell her now. He considers. Maybe he
should ask her. He looks at the advert on the paper and wonders how he can
make it look casual, make it look less obvious, as if he had not spent the
past months thinking about it. Images play within his mind, of his beautiful
son, and he remembers the joy of receiving those rare emails from her
containing pictures of him. He closes his eyes and for a moment he can see
her and hear words pronounced by her long ago. And the scene materializes
itself in his head, he sees his old apartment, he sees her walking back and
forth in front of his couch, too nervous to sit down and rationalize her
request calmly, he sees her and remembers the way the evening artificial
street lamp lights lit up her auburn hair as he tried to concentrate on her
features as she asked him to be the donor for the IVF procedure. He
remembers feeling numb for a few days. He remembers running a lot. He
smiles. He had wanted nothing more than to be in her life permanently and
their relationship had started to unfold slowly and when she had asked him,
before becoming physically involved, he had been scared. Scared of what
failure would have cost her, and them. He remembered Emily and how he had
bluntly told her he was afraid of what this little creature could signify to
her and what her loss could do to her. As she had stood in front of him
telling him that the IVF had failed, her hopes shattered and her faith
scarred, he had felt ashamed for ever questioning it in the first place. He
breathed her sorrow and pronounced words of hope he truly and deeply
believed for once. Now, years down the line, he felt a different man. He was
afraid to ask. For reasons other than Scully's reaction. He was scared of
his own reactions. He too feared the possibilities. He feared failure, he
feared that the void the loss had left behind had scarred them permanently.
Her heels tap on the hardwood floor and she sits next to him.
" You don't look awfully paranoid, Mulder."
" Glad I have actually changed that." He says as he hands her the menu. She
moves her hair behind her shoulders and looks at the menu. " Did you manage
to finish the chapter you were working on, Mulder? You were up all night."
She lets out the second part of the statement in a quiet whisper, as if
acknowledging his presence or lack of in their bed was still something new
and secret to them. He lifts up the side of his mouth. " There is something
deeply complicated in explaining how chupacabras operate, Scully. It
requires time. " He says shaking his head. **Maria!!! Maria!!!* *She smiles,
at the memory, perhaps. " So.." he clears his throat. --" how did the
interview go." He says. The long legged blonde waitress comes to take
Scully's order of coffee, cream, no sugar. He smiles at his theory. Some
things never change. She looks at him. " Fine. I think. They said the lab
has vacancies I could fill. They said there might be in the future the
possibility to teach some classes to external universities using our
facilities." She finishes.
" That's good." He says. And maybe he sounds unsure because she raises an
eyebrow towards her coffee and silently sips the black liquid. "Yeah."
She says finally.
" You are not happy?" he asks simply.
" I am. It's a start, Mulder." She says. A start. What a thing. A start at
their age. He finds this tragically amusing. He sips his latte and remains
pensive.
" What's that?" she asks and pulls one magazine from the pile of daily
newspapers he buys every morning. Her eyes linger on the laminate cover
page, her hand grazes the title and he notices her eyes water. " Where did
you get this." She says. He smiles sadly and leans closer as he always does
when they share a moment only the two of them can comprehend. He reads
outloud " *The Lone Gunmen: Special Edition. The Secret Books of the
Presidents. From the Sacred Graal to the treasure hunt for the Mayan lost
world. July 1998" *He finishes softly. He looks at her. She seems to go
through images in her mind, memories, moments. She looks down. She wants to
tell him about them. His best friends. How they sacrificed themselves. He
holds out a hand and she holds it, looks up at him. " There is something
I need to ask you." He says quietly. And her eyes lock on his. She scrutinizes
him. Looks through him to find the answers. He knows he very seldom is
direct about asking things to her. He knows answers are not very
straightforward with them either.
" If I said that I knew things have been hard for you since William I'd
be lying. I don't know." She is quiet now. His lips become thin when he focuses
on the words, he keeps them pressed against each other and looks at the
napkin by her left hand. She looks focused, she frowns slightly and he looks
into her azure eyes. " And I know things aren't exactly as you envisaged
your life 10 years ago. Well not even 5 years ago for that matter." She
looks down. "Mulder.." she tries to reassure him and urge him to talk on.
Her hand poses on his left wrist and an image flashes through his mind of
another diner in another time, as he read his sister's diary and she
companionably listened to his interpretation of her tired words. She is
still the same Scully. This reassures him. He feels a warm feeling emanating
from between his shoulder blades, maybe this is what comfort feels like. He
can't tell. He can do this. He can ask. This is Scully.
" And this may not be the right time to ask. But I wonder if there will ever
be a right time, Scully." He looks at her with intense fascination.
" Mulder, you're scaring me. I don't understand what you're asking
" She says and her frowning becomes more accentuated
He takes her hand and nods reassuringly.
" I am not sure either." He looks down at her small white hand in his dark
tanned one. He takes a deep breath and pauses to think of the words.
" A child, Scully." He finishes quietly. Her brows arch upwards in surprise.
Her chin shakes now. Damn it, he thinks, sadness was the last emotion he
wanted to evoke. He thought by asking her he would ask for a truce, an end
to the silent emotion war raging between them in years.
" Mulder. I can't. You know I can't." she says and it sounds like she feels
hurt for his forgetfulness. He shakes his head.
" We already had a miracle, Scully. Who's to say we can't hope for another
one." Her eyes burn him now, she purses her lips in pain.
" William was not a miracle. Not in the sense we want it to mean. It wasn't
God we were supposed to thank, Mulder. You know that." She finishes firmly
but quietly.
" Scully the IVF had failed, he was a miracle." She shakes her head.
" From a barren mother and a father experimented-upon more times than a lab
rat? Mulder. I have seen what he was capable of doing. He was my child. I
loved him dearly. But he was no coincidence, no natural conception. And I
can't. I just can't bear the thought of failing him again." She finishes
quietly. He looks down.
" I asked you never to give up on a miracle Scully. To believe." He leans
closer and her eyes water now.
" I have believed the lie, Mulder. I know the truth now. This is why I gave
him up. They would never give up. They would never believe he was normal. I
am as certain of this as you are of your truth. I cannot conceive a child.
And I do not want to fool myself with the pretense that if I believe a
miracle hard enough it will happen." She finishes quietly. His hand moves
up to wipe her tears off her cheeks.
" I just can't accept that." He says quietly. " I refuse to believe
that."
She shakes her head. " I don't have the strength to believe this anymore,
Mulder."
He holds her hand to his mouth and smiles to her lightly.
" Then I will believe for the both of us."



5. Rebirth.

She closes her eyes as the sun bathes her, arms crossed at her chest clad in
a dark red top, she lets the summer heat warm her bones.
" This is not fair, Scully." His voices reaches her and she smiles with
out opening her eyes. A little cutout piece of normality, she would like to take
a picture of this moment and burn it in her memory, but she knows she
doesn't need to. It will remain within her. As she leans against the white
ford fresh from the car dealership, she opens her eyes and brushes her hands
on her faded jeans , she looks at him as he walks up the steps of their new
home. All windows are open to let new air and sunlight go in and she enjoys
the view as he reaches the front porch and drops two cardboard boxes full of
unidentifiable objects, books most probably, on the wooden planks of the
patio. He brushes the dust on his dark jeans, leaving dark marks like
streaks from his fingers across his thighs and knee areas. He reaches to the
hem of his dark green tshirt and quickly pulls it over his head, waving it
in front of himself like a banner before throwing it on the chair by the
decking. He wipes sweat from his forehead and she smiles at him amused, he
has not changed, he is so casual with his occasional semi-nudity. She is
glad the new home allows them to enjoy a degree of privacy they had almost
forgotten could in fact exists. She looks proud of them, for so much has
been lost, so much has been sacrificed, so much drama had turned their
existences into a hero-like fantasy story, and still they could enjoy small
moments, insignificant at first but fuller than any big discovery in their
angst filled drama. She smiles at him, moments like this are so underrated,
she thinks. She walks towards the house and he leans on the white fence. He
looks down at her from the railing. She looks at the scar on his shoulder,
he notices and gives her half a smile.
" In some States you could be arrested for public indecency, you know."
She says playfully and moves her weight on one foot.
" Well I've been accused of worse." He says and she shakes her head
smiling. She cannot believe it. Six years and a half down the line and the
case was closed, cold. She sent a silent thankful prayer as she closed her
eyes for an instant and was rewarded with the warmth of the sun, as the
breeze slowed down for a moment only to pick up again as she opened her
eyes. He looked amused, mesmerized by her. Could he tell? Could he tell that
for once in a long time this was as close as she ever got to happiness? And
true to form, she didn't care.
He holds one hand to the solid wood of the front wall, pats it proudly and
looks at her.
" Am I betraying my cool exterior if I say now in a decisively girly voice
that I am dying for a glass of ice tea, Scully?" he says and her smile
widens, he must be in good spirits too, he very seldom is these days. For
all she can remember of the past six years spent on the run his humor and
sarcasm have been ever present, but not very often have his remarks been
underpinned by the sweet undertone of contentment. She is a little proud.
And part of her is also scared that this will soon vanish, that the
happiness of the moment will be replaced by paranoia, angst and routine in
a few months. He looks down at her, detecting her faltering.
" What's the matter, don't like the woodwork?" he says and she thinks that
whatever the deal, she had better not question the moment. She seizes it
then, smiling at him she walks up the stairs, counting them mentally as she
goes, she counts all that has been lost and one by one those steps grow in
meaning, achieve full consideration and at the same time are slowly passed,
as she encounters those which follow in her path, she looks up and he stands
at the end of the staircase. She smiles at the metaphor, it seems like
everything leads to him. She remembers one afternoon sitting in a Buddhist
temple shaking with realization, sorrow and fear that the very same
understanding of her life had irremediably led her to him. This has not
changed. All paths leads to this very moment, he had said. They do indeed,
she thinks, and all other choices were wrong, her voice echoes in the
backroom of her mind. She reaches the end of the stairs and he looks
pensive, as he detects the faint thought trail in her eyes.
" Well, Mulder, I don't know..." she says as her hand mimic his early
gesture and she holds the wood of the small column at the side of the door "
... it's afine piece of ash alright." She says and she is rewarded
with a full toothy Muldersmile, a personal best, she thinks, score one
for me, thank you, goodnight.
" I thought we would go for something smaller" she says, as she looks at the
house.
" So it has two spare rooms, big deal. Consider one of those my spooky
studio. Somewhere you can eventually lock me up when I lose my mind,
Scully." He walks closer and puts one hand on her shoulder, she arches an
eyebrow. " Besides.... -- he continues casually as he leans closer to her and
his forehead is now brushing hers. - ... who knows we might need one of those
rooms at some point." He finishes quietly and although the subject had very
often been avoided in the past, they had made a silent deal of not letting
this be an issue, of not letting it tear them apart, of allowing it to seep
to the surface but never hurt them directly of never being an item of attack
one of them could use on the other. Perhaps of letting it rest as a silent
hope, a distant belief in the powers of change. He seals the deal with a
quick brush of lips as the electricity washes over them like it always did.
She smiles against his lips and caresses his cheek with one quick touch.
No, she thought, there is no point in questioning this.
" Say, how about giving that 'ice tea' thing a try, would ya, Scully. A man
has needs." He says as he takes her hand closer to his lips. She enjoys his
occasional romance, a small piece of Mulder she has the luxury of experience
every once in a while. Combined with contained Mulderhappiness, relative
calmness and peace, she does not dare to wonder the reasons, dares not leave
her thoughts wander in paranoia and darkness although she knows the time
will come for that too. She smiles, for now, and pulls him inside the
threshold of their home.
" Who knows, if there already is ice tea in the fridge it could be love."
She smiles to herself and the end of the world can wait just for now.

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