She Hides Behind Her Face
- Part Two: A Time for Truths
Sara B. 3/2005
Mulder sat in his car staring
up at her apartment window. The lights were on, beckoning him to go up. He had called her from the bar immediately after Frohike left. She was somewhat distant on the phone but she said it would be okay for him to come over. That was fine and dandy but what bothered him was what he’d heard in the background; a man’s
voice. At first he thought it was her TV but then she told him to wait a minute
and he heard the voice say, “Dana I have to get going. I’ll pick
you up at seven-thirty tomorrow. Be beautiful; look at that you already are.” He then heard her giggle and the unmistakable sounds of a kiss. A light kiss but a kiss all the same. Scully had entertained
a man and she was going out with him tomorrow.
Mulder was immediately overcome
with the rage and fury of his jealousy. He was hit with the despair that this
was his fault. Scully had waited for him for years. He’d always put her off with jokes and innuendo that she knew would go nowhere. Maybe after all he’d put her through she was no longer waiting.
Something inside his chest ached and made it hard to breath. He’d
always counted on the fact that Scully would be there when he was ready but now...
Mulder’s thoughts were
interrupted by his phone.
“Are you going to sit
down there all night or are you coming up?” Scully’s voice held that
lilt in it he’d missed for almost a year. He smiled sadly knowing he’d
taken that from her and jealous another man returned it to her.
“I’m on my way.”
Scully was leaning on the
door jamb of her apartment as he exited the elevator. She looked so stunning
he actually stopped in his tracks. Her hair was pinned up and tiny tendrils were
cascading down all around. She wore a snug white sweater with a deep ‘V’
neck and a pair of navy blue slacks. Her feet were bare with hot pink toenails
poking out. Casual sexy. The another stab of jealousy trebled in his gut. She’d dressed this way for someone else, someone she would be seeing again tomorrow. Mulder took a second to compose his thoughts before proceeding down the hallway.
Nothing was said by either
of them as they entered her home. She took his coat and they sat on her sofa. Coffee and cheesecake sat on the coffee table waiting for them. He noticed there was a sizable chunk missing from the round cake.
‘She’d shared this with the other man,’ he thought as he watched her slice him a piece.
He took the offered slice
and tasted it. It was incredible. It
was creamy and rich and just delicious.
“This is really great
cheesecake, where did you get it?”
“I made it.” Mulder couldn’t hide his surprise and she couldn’t hide her disappointment
at his reaction. “My own recipe.
In fact, an earlier version of that recipe paid for some of my medical training.”
She said proudly.
“I guess I never thought
of you as a cook before. Really Scully this is great.” He was trying hard to soften the sting of his earlier reaction.
“Only because whenever
I offered to cook you opted for take out or delivery. I stopped offering about
the second year of our partnership.”
This was not going well. Mulder had come here to try and make up with Scully and so far he’d only succeeded
in insulting her.
“So what was the occasion
for making this?” Mulder asked not sure he was ready to hear her answer.
“I had company for
dinner and this is his favorite dessert.” Scully replied.
Mulder waited for her to
elaborate but realized none was coming. Whoever he was she’d known him
long enough to know his favorite dessert. Mulder’s mind reeled with the
implication. Had he been so out of touch that he failed to notice that Scully
had started seeing someone?
“So, Mulder, what is
it you wanted to talk about? You sounded a little frantic on the phone.”
He didn’t know where
to start. There was so much he needed to say to her but his only thoughts revolved
around the man Scully was seeing. When had they met? Where did they meet? Were they introduced or was it an accidental
meeting? He was not letting her go without a fight. His thoughts darkened as
his jealousy grew. Scully belonged to him, she had for a long time and he knew
it. It was time she knew it too.
“Mulder if you don’t
have anything to say then just leave. I have -”
Mulder interrupted her. “Scully, I just want you to know that I’m sorry. I’m sorry that I didn’t listen to you. I’m
sorry I embarrassed you in front of the guys. But mostly I’m sorry that
I’ve pushed you so far away.” He took his first breath and looked
at her. She looked like she didn’t believe him, like she doubted his sincerity.
Slowly she spoke, “where
is all this coming from Mulder? For weeks now you haven’t given a tinker’s
dam what I thought or how I felt. Suddenly you call me from some bar and tell
me you have to speak with me immediately. My company overhears and takes off.
Then you get here and you just decide to be sorry for everything? You offer no
reasons for your actions. No reason why I have to ask the guys about that woman. No reason why when you told us you knew her your voice took on that dreamy quality
of a lover. Nothing. And I ‘m supposed to do what? Say, ‘that’s okay Mulder I’ll stick around some more and just be your doormat?’”
Her words flew over him like
an ice storm. Mulder watched her walk to the window. Her movements were stiff and a little disjointed. He’d
seen other people move that way. People who’d faced major losses in their
lives. Their minds jumbled and their bodies just barely function. With all the losses in Scully’s past he had never seen her move like this.
Mulder had no idea how many
moments had passed while he considered the implications but Scully must have grown impatient for him to reply.
She turned back to him but
never looked at him but her face, her so beautiful face, was stained with tears. “I
never expected, nor do I want you to tell me everything about your relationship with Diana Fowley.” Her head shook. “I never wanted that. But I do need
to understand why and how she can make you throw away six years? Six years of
a wonderful partnership, trust and loving friendship. Why her word is worth more than mine?” Her voice was
raw with emotion as she beat her chest to prove her point. “How can you
just . . . ” Scully dropped into the chair as if her legs couldn’t hold her anymore. She hid her face in her hands and her shoulders shook with the strength of her sobs. The few times Mulder had seen Scully cry had never been like this.
This was like her very soul was broken. Mulder moved to go to her but
she raised her hand to stop him.
said with reverence. He wanted to answer all her questions. To explain but he didn’t know where to start. Her tears
became his and for a time they were lost in the shared emotions.
“Scully, you are right
and you are wrong. I owe you the answers to your questions but I’m not
sure I can.”
“Mulder where does
it leave us if you can’t?”
Her question was simple yet
complex. It held no threat yet it could end everything because they couldn’t
continue the way they were.
Mulder took a moment then
started., “I know I should have told you about Diana last year. I really
didn’t think she would become and issue between us. I never thought we
would lose the X-Files or that she and Spender would be assigned to them.” He
stared at his hands as if they would give him the words. He silently pleaded
for Scully to say something. Something that would let him off the hook like she’d
done so many times before; she remained quiet. This time she needed to hear him.
“I never saw it as
a choice between the two of you. Diana was a woman from my past. Our relationship ran its course and we remained friends. When
she left it was for a prestigious position and promotion. I’d been surprised
because I thought she was going to work on the X-Files with me.”
“When she came back
she hinted that she wanted more than a working relationship and I suppose I let that cloud my judgment.” He chanced a look at her. Scully was faced toward the window
with her chin lightly resting on her hand and her eyes closed. She was so still
that only her quiet sniffles told him she was awake. His hand moved toward her
of its own volition stopping only a whisper away from touching her.
“You see Scully, before
now I never considered the possibility that I could do anything that would make it so I lost you. You are my one constant in this life and I always knew you would be there.
I was arrogant enough to believe I could hurt you and ignore you and somehow you would always forgive me. I let that arrogance fool me into thinking that somehow we would be alright.”
“Tonight I had dinner
with Frohike. I told him about the way you’ve been acting and he let me
have it. He made me realize that losing Samantha, as tragic it was, is a mere
pebble compared to what you have lost, what was stolen from you.” Mulder
saw the corner of her mouth curl up and her eye lids tighten. “Frohike
can be very persuasive when he wants to be.”
“Don’t I know
it?” Scully added quietly. She
turned and looked at him for the first time since he started speaking. “I
was ready to leave. I had submitted a transfer request. Skinner and my mom tried to talk me out of it. It was Frohike
who convinced me to stay. I went to tell the guys and Langly and Byers said some
things but Frohike took me to dinner and we talked. I’m not going to tell
you about the conversation except to say I stayed and he is really your friend.”
Mulder was shocked. “When?”
“After El Rico.”
“Why didn’t you
“Honestly I think it
was because I was afraid you’d tell me to go, I don’t think I could have taken that. I know I couldn’t.”
“You really thought
I would . . .?” Mulder was really starting to understand the depth of Scully’s
“After the way you’d
been acting how did you think I’d feel?”
“God, Scully! Never, and I mean never would I ever want that.
Never.” Mulder bolted from the couch to the floor next to her chair. “I don’t think I can ever forgive myself for treating us so cheaply but
I hope you will. Do you think we can get back to where we were?”
Scully’s eyes went
skyward and her hand cupped his cheek. “I don’t know, I really don’t
know. I want it but I just don’t have it in me to really trust you like
She knew she’d wounded
him with her words but they were the truth. If he wanted her trust he needed
to deserve it.
Mulder felt his chest tighten
at her words but he conceded their honesty. He’d done nothing to deserve
her trust in the past yet she had trusted him. This last year his carelessness
had chipped away at it. He couldn’t let that go on.
They were both emotionally
Mulder looked deeply in Scully’s
eyes and he realized that for the first time since their first year together he really didn’t know what she was thinking.
“Are we ok?”
Scully averted her eyes and
shook her head, “no we’re not. We may be on the way to being ok,
but we aren’t there yet.”
“Do you think we ever
will be ok?”
“I’m not sure.” Scully looked toward her hands then she looked back at him “I hope so, I really
There was a knock at the
door. Scully wiped her eyes and went to answer it; there was a tall sandy haired
man in a Navy lieutenant’s uniform. “Dana, sorry to interrupt . .
.” He looked at her tear stained face. “Is everything okay?” He looked past her toward Mulder and saw matching stains on his cheeks.
“Yeah things are okay. Come in what happened?” Scully
asked keeping her eyes down.
The man’s eyes never
strayed from Mulder’s face. “Forgot my case, I left it in your bedroom
could you get it for me?” Mulder’s look of defeat was not lost on
she said as she walked toward her bedroom.
The two men sized each other
up, deciding if the other deserved her. Scully walked back in carrying a suitcase
and handed it to the man. “You know, Dana, it might be nice if you introduced
us.” His hand pointed toward Mulder.
“Oh, for heaven’s
sake, I’m sorry I forgot you two haven’t met.” She grabbed
the sandy haired man by his left arm and leaned her head on his biceps. “Fox
Mulder I’d like to introduce you to Lieutenant Charles Riley Scully, my baby brother.
Charles this is Mulder.” Mulder felt the relief flow from him and
apparently the other man noticed it too as Mulder saw a slight smirk grace the man’s mouth.
Charles Scully extended his
hand and they shook. “It is really nice to meet the man who has watched
over her for so long. I’m really pleased to finally know the man behind
The phone rang and Scully
went to answer it in the kitchen. “Mulder, she hasn’t told me anything
but I can tell there is something wrong between you two. I’ve never seen
her in such a state before. I could tell you were quite jealous when you thought
I was another man and I know she’s jealous of someone in your life.” Charles
saw the question in Mulder’s eyes. “Don’t ask just understand
I know. You two need to resolve this and fast.
I know for a fact that mom is ready to start setting blind dates up for her.
I . . .” He didn’t get to finish because Scully came back. “Well sis, I really need to get going.
Remember I’ll pick you up at seven-thirty.” He turned toward
Mulder and said, “why don’t you join us? I’m taking her out
for an early birthday celebration. I ship out Sunday. Think about it. Tomorrow Dana,” then he opened the door and turned back to her.
“Be beautiful; look you already are.” He was gone.
“He always says that
to you when he leaves?”
“To Renee’, Mom,
Tara and me. Why?
“I heard it when I
called earlier. So where is he taking us tomorrow?”
Author’s Notes: Sorry
people I just couldn’t wrap this up and tie it with a bow. During the show
I was always frustrated that Mulder got away with so much. He never had to apologize
or even acknowledge the hurt he caused Scully. Also the few times our Scully
‘strayed’ the guy was either duller than dish water or a psychopath. Mulder
played around (Phoebe, woman on answering machine in ‘Little Green Men’, the Vampire wanna be, Bambi, Detective
Angela White and, the she bitch of all time, Diana) and he never so much as has his face slapped.