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Title: Quantico Love Story

Author: Sara B.


Feedback: Greatly appreciated including constructive criticisms 

Spoilers: Leonard Betts

Category: AU MSF, Angst, Mulder/Other Sex, Scully/Other tiny romance, MSR

Rating: Adult themes – no one under 17

Summary: Profiling wonder boy Fox (Spooky) Mulder has a mild heart attack.  He is reassigned to Quantico to teach.  His new office mate is Dr. Dana (Ice Queen) Scully, darling of the pathology department.  This is your typical ‘Boy meets girl, boy doesn’t know what to do with girl, boy screws up and loses girl and so on.  To find out more you have to read the story.

Disclaimer:  The recognized characters are used Without Prejudice and are the property of C. Carter, Fox and the wonderful actors who breathed life into written words, most notably G. Anderson and D. Duchovny who were able to make us believe in the improbable.  No Infringements of these copyrights are intended, and are used here without permission.  The story and before unknown characters belongs to me.

Gratitude: To Kim Knight, wonderful friend, singer and beta.  Without her encouragement you would not be reading this.  To Dennis for just about everything.  To CC and Company, who created the X-Files.  Lastly to the readers who I hope will hopefully enjoy this..

Archive: I’d be honored.  Please keep my name attached and let me know where it will be.  Thank you.

Author Notes:  Years ago I remember reading a story where Mulder suffered a heart attack.  I remember thinking that the way he lived and with his stress level that a heart attack could easily be in his future.   

Dedication:  This is dedicated to Lily, get well – you are missed.

Quantico Love Story

Sara B. 01/06


Monday - Quantico Virginia FBI Training Facility 3:20 PM


Dana Scully walked toward her office where she was to meet her new office mate, Fox Mulder.  Mulder was the top profiler but due to stress he’d suffered a mild heart attack.  Normally he would have been given early retirement but the FBI wasn’t going to put a talent like Mulder’s out to pasture so easily.  The ‘powers that be’ transferred him to Quantico to teach new recruits. 

Scully reached the office door to see Mulder unpacking a box.  She waited a moment to make her presence known but he noticed her anyway.  In a not unkind but slightly annoyed voice he said, “No, I do not want coffee, tea, water, paper products, pens or pencils.”

“Good I wasn’t offering any.”  Scully replied and turned on her heel.

“Way to go, Mulder.” Reggie Purdue, Mulder’s friend and former partner, said walking up to the office door.  “Not two minutes and you’re pissing off your new office partner.”  Mulder’s face fell and he and Reggie followed her through another set of doors.  Mulder wanted to apologize fast; anger was no way to start sharing an office with someone.

Dana Scully was not angry with Mulder; she knew what he must be going through today.  A specimen like him was not unheard of but most of the men in the Medical and Psychology departments were either geeks or more than a little over the hill.  Mulder was suffering from secretarial pool overload.  She had been the subject of such attention from the male population when she started here.

Mulder and Reggie walked through the double doors just in time to see Dana Scully standing on a chair addressing the throng.  “Yes we have a new member of our team and yes we want him to feel welcome but there is a thing called moderation.  Dr. Mulder will eventually know everyone of us but give the man a break.  Let him get settled.  I know you are all trying to be friendly but I’m sure Dr. Mulder would like to find out ‘for himself’ where to get supplies and the beverages of his choice.” 

A look around the room showed that though she had gotten through to the women it was obvious they were upset and one was heard to mutter, “Easy for her, she shares the office with him.”

Scully got down and approached the two men who were smiling.  She extended her right hand to him.  “Spooky Mulder meet the Ice Queen or Doc Ice or any number of equally flattering nicknames.”  Mulder couldn’t contain his smile, they shook hands casually and Mulder introduced her to Reggie.

Reggie stayed for a half an hour then had to leave. “Breaking in a new partner since you deserted me.  You know, Mulder, if you wanted out there were easier ways than having a heart attack.”  He then turned to Dana.  “It was nice to meet the legend.  Well, I’ll be seeing you around.” 

“Reggie seems like a really nice guy.  You were lucky to work with him,” Scully commented more as a way to open conversation than anything.

“Yeah, Reggie is one of the great ones.  I wouldn’t have made it as long as I did if not for he and his wife, Terri.  They looked after me in a fashion.”

“I noticed that he calls you Mulder, do you prefer that over your first name or . . .”

“Yes,” Mulder responded a tad too quickly.  “Do you prefer Dana or Scully or what?”

“Whichever you seem comfortable with.  Some call me Dana, a few call me Scully and some of the others call me Dr. Scully.”  Then a sly smile graced her lips and her eyes twinkled.  “That is when they aren’t using one of those oh so complementary nicknames.”

“Ice Queen?”  Mulder asked, he couldn’t believe anyone would call her that.

“That came from my old paramour Jack Willis, need I say more?”  He shook his head.  “I already know how you came by your moniker. You really are good, Mulder.  I remember when you guest lectured for my class.  You had everyone mesmerized, it was stunning.  Also, I’ve read a few of your cases along the way.  I try to follow your logic.  Usually I can but it takes me a while.”

“You’re good for my ego, Scully.  I may have to keep you around.”

“It’s just too bad that bastard Patterson took advantage of you. That man should be locked up.”  Scully’s anger came out clearly then he saw her blue eyes sparkle. “Hey, you want me to show you where they keep the supplies?”

Mulder couldn’t contain his laughter and Scully joined in. 


Monday - Fox Mulder’s Apartment 6:10 PM

Mulder didn’t know what to make of his new office mate.  Scully was friendly but not overly so; she didn’t hover.  She helped him unpack his things and moved some stuff to accommodate his clutter.  He hadn’t missed the look of horror as his things took over her formerly pristine office.  But she didn’t say anything, just continued helping.  Mulder had always been a loner but he felt comfortable with her. 

He munched on the oriental chicken salad that made up his dinner; God he ached for a pizza or even Frohike’s cheese steaks.  Those days were gone, now it was health food and minimal stress.  He typed at the keyboard searching Dana Scully’s personnel file.  Okay, he wasn’t supposed to have access to these files but with a little luck and a lot of help from Langly and miracles of miracles, her entire file was on his computer. 

Dana Scully’s record was impressive.  She’d been in the field for a short time, two years earlier, but she’d been injured on a case. Her injuries left her with a permanent reminder that made her ineligible for field duty.  ‘Looks like I’m not the only damaged goods.’ 

He pulled up the details.  ‘Whoa, shot to the stomach from her partner.’  Some snot nose named Peyton Ritter shot the suspect and the bullet passed through and hit Scully.  She came close to dying but she tried to re-qualify for field duty only a month and a half later.  ‘Ballsy woman,’ Mulder thought.  The FBI decided to pick her brains rather than put her out to pasture, just like they had him. 

Mulder continued to read and he found himself very impressed.  He remembered Reggie’s words when he was leaving this afternoon ‘nice to meet the legend,’ he wondered what that meant.

Reggie answered on the third ring.  “Mulder, do you have any idea that it is after two in the morning?”  Reggie knew from experience that Mulder was the only one likely to call this late.

Mulder chuckled.  “Sorry man, I didn’t think . . .”

“You never do.  What do you want?”

“Today you said something about Scully being a legend, what was that all about?”

“Shit, Mulder, that couldn’t wait till morning?”  Reggie exhaled loudly.  “No, I guess it couldn’t.  Haven’t you ever heard of Doc Ice or the Ice Queen?”  He paused for a moment, “no I suppose the way Patterson dogged you it kept you from any of the gossip.  If I said Dana Scully is to pathology the same as Fox Mulder is to profiling what would you think?  Really, Mulder, she’s great.  They assign all the hinky cases to her.  Now can I get some sleep?  I have to face that dick head Patterson at eight.”



Friday - Quantico Scully/Mulder Office noon

Two weeks later Mulder pulled his lunch out of the fridge and sat at his desk.  His morning classes had been a disappointment.  Out of the entire class there was only a handful that had a chance at even basic profiling.

Scully walked in and took in the sight of him.  “Bad morning?”

He just nodded and snarled at his salad.  “Mulder, do you only eat salads?”

Mulder choked back a laugh.  “Seems like it.  I have to eat ‘healthy’ and it’s the only thing I can figure out that fits the bill.”

“Well, you don’t seem to enjoy them much.”  Mulder shook his head. “You know there are plenty of healthy choices out there and they aren’t that hard to make.”  He looked at her sideways.  “Oh, I get it.  Not much for cooking, huh?”

“Scully, my kitchen could be missing and I wouldn’t even notice.”

“Okay roomy, how would you like a home cooked meal, healthy meal?”

“Sounds good, please tell me there is no salad with this meal.”

“Not a lettuce leaf in sight.”  She wrote something down and handed it to him.  “Directions to my apartment, seven sound good?”

If Mulder had taken a moment to think he would have thought she was asking him over for a date but it didn’t have that vibe.  “Can I bring anything?”

“Nothing more than a good appetite and a good attitude.”  She grabbed something from her bag.  “For now, here.”  Scully handed Mulder a plastic thermal container and took its mate to her desk. “I can’t stand to see you suffer through another salad. Home made soup and home baked bread.”



Friday - Dana Scully’s Apartment 6:55 pm

Mulder arrived five minutes early, a first for the man famous for the ‘Mulder fifteen’ minutes late.

Scully opened the door and Mulder nearly didn’t recognize her.  Out of her boxy suits, Dana Scully had a very curvy petite hourglass figure.  She’d also taken her makeup off and Mulder got his first glimpse of the beauty mark above her lip. ‘Wowza!’  Her hair, which was always in a very controlled, very business like style, tonight was a mass of soft curls that haloed her face. 

His perusal was not missed by her, who rewarded him with a shy smile. 

After a dinner of salmon, brown rice and a medley of steamed vegetables accompanied by a white wine that Mulder had no idea what it was but liked, they took their coffee and dessert to her living room.  Dessert was strawberry shortcake.  Mulder was surprised that the coffee was decaf, he never knew decaf could taste that good, but then he hadn’t had any coffee for a while so any would taste great.

“I may have to hire you to cook for me all the time.  That was wonderful.”

“I have a feeling that after all those salads I could have given you sugar free Jell-O and you would’ve loved it.”

“That might be true but it really was great.  I’ve been living off of Healthy Choice and salads, this was a real treat.”

“Mulder, you said you don’t like to cook but I could teach you a few dishes that are quite simple and I have a friend who is a nutritionist and she runs a business that creates meals designed for individuals and then all you have to do is heat it up.  I could arrange it for you, if you’re interested.”

Mulder looked at her for a moment.  “What does heat it up entail?”

“It really is heat and serve.  If you have a sauce pan, a frying pan and a baking dish you should be fine.”  She looked at him over her cup.  “You do own some pans don’t you?”

“Maybe, who knows what lurks behind those doors in the kitchen? Seriously that sounds very interesting, thanks.”

“No need to thank me; we ‘walking wounded’ need to look out for each other.”

“Do you mind talking about it?”  Mulder asked tentatively.

“Not really, how much do you know?”  Dana responded.

“Just that you were shot by some fresh out of the academy know-it-all.”

“Well, I didn’t have too much more experience at the time so I won’t even say it was his inexperience.  But he was a major know- it-all.  Ritter found this case of this photographer who freelanced for the New York Police Department working crime scenes.  Somehow he found these photos that didn’t add up.  The report said the body was found at ten-fifteen yet a photo showed a clock with a time of nine-ten and there were a few instances that the man was at a crime scene but no one remembers calling him in.  Odd things like that.  Since he found the case, Ritter took the lead and we butted heads right from the start.  I started looking into the background of the man and . . .” She stopped for a moment and looked at him, “you are not going to believe what I found, hell, I found it and I don’t believe it.”

“What was it?”  Mulder prodded.

“I found his police photographer pass renewal requests that dated back to 1922.”  Mulder’s eyes got wide and she giggled.  “No, it’s true.  I thought it was some mix up or coincidence, the original man’s son and grandson, but it wasn’t.  The finger prints were all the same.  Sometime in the 1940’s they started keeping photos of the applicants and they were all the same man and on each application his age was listed as 58.”

“Wow, what did Ritter say?”

“Nothing, he ignored the whole thing but rushed forward getting an arrest warrant.  I was sent to sit on the guy until they could get the warrant and we ended up talking.  He told me a really far out tale.  He said that he’d had the flu during the 1918 pandemic.  While he was fevered he started seeing ‘Death’ come into the wards and take souls.  He decided that if he refused to acknowledge Death then he wouldn’t die.  He told me that some nurse died in his place.  Fellig, that was his name, was a very sad man.  He told me that he’d had enough of life and that he had tried to kill himself several times.  Obviously he never succeeded.  Somehow he’d developed the ability to see who was going to die and that was how he was able to be at the scenes.  He said he was trying to see Death so he could be taken. It was all really pathetic.  Fellig had lost joy.  He said the saddest thing I ever want to hear.  Once he actually had to go to city hall to look up his wife’s name, he’d forgotten it. 

She poured herself another cup of coffee then she continued.  “While he’s talking to me, I notice that he started puttering with one of his cameras and then he said, ‘you are really lucky you know.’”  It was then I realized that he was telling me I was about to die.  A few moments later Ritter broke in and shoots.  No warning at all.  I was standing right behind the photographer and the bullet went through him and into my mid section.  Suddenly I heard Fellig tell me not to look; he died, I lived. 

“The next thing I know, my mom is sitting next to my hospital bed and the doctors are writing a paper on my miraculous recovery.”  She put her hands up in a ‘ta-da’ fashion.  “Your turn to share.”

“I had a heart attack,” Mulder said flatly.

“Come on, what led up to it?  Where did it happen, who found you?”

“Okay, I was on a case.  I knew I needed a break and I knew something was wrong.  I felt lousy but that had become the norm. I’d tried to take vacations but they never lasted more than two or three days and then Patterson would track me down and have me out on another case.  When I get into a really bad case, I don’t sleep or eat.  Reggie was as much sitter as partner.  He and Terri always pulled me back to reality.  A few years back I was seeing someone, actually we were living together.  She was another agent so I figured she’d understand.  I woke up one night to her screaming at me.  I was in the corner of the bedroom crying.  I was ranting about the latest case and she’d been trying to wake me for about ten minutes.  Two months later she took an assignment out of country.  So you see, I was going down hill for quite a while. 

“Last year, at my annual physical, they told me I had high blood pressure and a few other indicators.  I was restricted for a time and my levels evened out, so Patterson had me back on the front line again.

“One night Reggie and I were in Indianapolis and I was reviewing the crime scene photos and I got this pain in my back then my left arm.  I woke up in the hospital and Reggie was outside my door arguing with Patterson.

“I don’t understand why the FBI let’s that bastard get away with all the crap he pulls.  He’s ruined several good agents.” 

“He’s a jerk and a bastard but he gets results.  After my attack, they put him reporting to A.D. Walter Skinner and I hear that things are changing.”

Suddenly Dana yawned and Mulder looked at his watch it was twelve-seventeen.

Scully smiled and apologized.  “No, don’t apologize.  It’s late but this was fun.”  Mulder said and surprised himself when he realized it was true.  “So, when do I get my first cooking lesson?”

“When would you like to start?”  Scully replied.

“Tomorrow, I mean today?”

“Sure, why don’t I swing by your place at ten and let me see what you have in that kitchen.  We can get anything you might need for cooking.  Then we’ll go to the market and we’ll cook dinner.” Mulder saw Scully’s expression change from friendly to shy.  “I’m sorry; you probably have plans for Saturday night.”

“Scully, I don’t have any plans other than my first cooking lesson.” 


Saturday - Mulder’s Apartment 10:00

Scully arrived at ten on the dot and she immediately started searching his cupboards.  Mulder noticed her list of items seemed to be growing with each opened door or drawer.  Suddenly she turned to him.  “Warm up your charge card Mulder, we’re going shopping.”


Mulder hated shopping malls with a passion so he was delighted that Scully took him to specialty shops.  By the end of the trip Mulder owned a new set of cookware, table ware, glasses, knives, mixing bowls, cooking utensils and a sundry of mystery items that Scully insisted he would need.

They took everything back to his apartment and Scully washed everything and arranged his kitchen for ease of use.  Then it was off to the grocery store.

Scully explained that he really owed her because she was breaking one of her cardinal rules of grocery shopping; thou shall never shop on weekends or Friday nights. 

“Okay, I get the weekend thing, too busy with other people who don’t follow your cardinal rule, but Friday?”

“Mulder, I never said don’t shop on Friday, I said don’t shop on Friday night.” 

“So you did, but I still don’t see the difference?”

“Friday nights at the grocery store should be called a meat market.  People who shop then are usually unattached, and, well it’s like being a tuna swimming with sharks.” 

Scully saw when her words dawned on Mulder.  “Got it. Their not just grocery shopping.”  He winked at her and was surprised she winked back.

 “It can get really ugly.”  She paused and gave him a sideways glance.  “Unless that is your thing.” 

A few minutes later they walked into the grocery store and Scully grabbed a cart.  They hit each of the sections and Scully explained the nutritional value of one thing over another.  She told him to avoid certain canned things because of the sodium or sugar.  Mulder’s head was swimming with all the information she was giving him.

“Don’t worry, you don’t have to learn it all today.  Soon it will become second nature to you.”

He was surprised she put tortilla chips in the cart and questioned her about it.  “These are baked and unsalted and I’m going to teach you how to make salsa.”

One of the purchases that Scully insisted on was a cart to carry the bags from the car to his apartment.  They were able to bring in all of the bags in one trip using the cart and Scully carrying the remaining bags.  Mulder was sure their accumulated weight was twice hers but she reminded him he wasn’t allowed to pick up anything heavier than a gallon jug of milk yet.

They put everything away and now it was time to cook.

“One last thing,” Scully said and she pulled out a gift wrapped box from her bag and handed it to him. 

Mulder opened it.  She’d given him a recipe box.  He opened it and found around three dozen recipes.  “I printed them out this morning.  Those are all easy to make, tasty and very healthy.”

They sat on his couch after cleaning up from dinner.  Mulder couldn’t believe how simple the Rosemary Chicken and wild rice dinner had been.  Scully had shown him how to dice and slice, use the various appliances and what spices to use with different dishes.  Mulder realized why she was such a successful instructor.  Her instructions were well thought out and clearly explained.  She took questions well and never made him feel inadequate or insecure.  She shared anecdotes about learning to cook from her mom.

“I was fixing my brother’s old Charger.  My mom came out, pulled me from under the hood and told me she was going to make sure I had one feminine talent if it killed me.”  Scully laughed while she told the story.  “It nearly did kill me when a pressure cooker exploded.”

“Well, I’d have to say she did a good job.”  He leered at her, “now tell me about fixing the car.”



Sunday - Mulder’s Apartment Afternoon

It wasn’t long before their Saturday cooking lessons turned into Friday night dinners and soon they spent three out of five weeknights with each other, every Saturday and the occasional Sunday afternoon. 

They shared an office, nearly all of their lunches and most of their down time with each other yet they never seemed to be at a loss for conversations nor did they ever exhaust wanting the other’s company. 

Mulder and Scully settled into a routine and everything moved along fine.  They were moving ahead slowly and soon it was a year since they’d met.

Reggie was glad that Mulder had found someone that he felt comfortable with and whose intellect rivaled his.  He was also grateful that Mulder found someone else to call during his, too frequent, sleepless nights.

Reggie knew that Scully had a lot of influence over Mulder but when he stopped by Mulder’s one Sunday he was genuinely surprised at the changes. 

For as long and he’d known him, Mulder’s his apartment was dark and uninviting with all the charm of a cave.  Someone would be hard pressed to find two matching glasses or plates. 

Mulder’s place was just functional and offered few real comforts. Reggie had once wandered into Mulder’s bedroom and found that the bed was covered with boxes containing textbooks, old case files and any number of Adult magazines.  He decided that Mulder must sleep on that leather sofa and his back gave a sympathetic spasm.

Terri was out of town and he didn’t have any plans so he called Mulder and they were going to play some basketball at the courts a few blocks from Mulder’s.

Reggie walked into the apartment and if Mulder had not been the one who answered the door, Reggie would have thought he’d gone to the wrong place. 

Not only was it completely clean and dust free, the walls were painted and the window shades were open and letting sunlight in.

New kitchen appliances, new area rug in the living room.  Reggie couldn’t help himself from checking out the bedroom.  Not only was the bed uncluttered but the bedding was tasteful and the bed was made.

Mulder chuckled at his friend’s reaction.  “I think I should be offended.”

“It’s a big change, Mulder.  What happened to the ‘frat boy’ motif?”

“I guess Scully helped me with more than just cooking lessons.”

Reggie smiled and patted Mulder’s shoulder.  “She’s good for you, I’m glad you two found each other.”

“It isn’t like that, we’re friends.”  Reggie snorted slightly.  “We’re really good friends.”

Reggie could not believe what Mulder was saying but he could tell that it seemed Mulder really believed this.  “Mulder, you spend all that time together during work.  Then you spend most of your evening hours together.  Every Friday and Saturday you are together.  When you aren’t together you’re on the phone with each other.  Mulder, let me clue you in, you and Dana are dating.”

Mulder was clearly stunned.  He liked Scully, she was his best friend, but she was not anything like what he was attracted to.

Reggie dropped Mulder back at his place.  He knew something was wrong because he’d beaten Mulder three games straight.  In all the years they’d been playing he’d never won, even after Mulder’s heart attack.  Mulder was distracted all the while they played.  Reggie figured it had something to do with their earlier conversation and he just hoped Mulder wouldn’t pull one of his monumental bone-headed antics and screw up what could be the best thing that ever happened to him. 


Mulder couldn’t stop thinking about what Reggie said.  Sure, he was attracted to Scully, who wouldn’t be?  Dana Scully was a beautiful woman.  Hell, he’d had to run to the nearest men’s room or bathroom just to get himself in check on numerous occasions.  But that was just normal being around a lovely woman.

Scully, was his friend; his very best friend.  The person he counted on.  Who he called to make the nightmares go away.  She was interesting and interested, they laughed and cried together. They . . .  Oh crap, they were dating.

What the hell was he going to do before he lost the only person he really needed in his life?



Friday - Quantico noon

Scully didn’t know what was wrong.  Mulder had been acting strange all week.  She’d called him on Sunday night and he couldn’t seem to get off the phone fast enough.  He was acting distant and they hadn’t spent any time together, even in the office.  She would walk in and he’d need to go to some un-before mentioned meeting or consultation.  He was conspicuous with his absences at lunch time and they hadn’t had dinner together once, nor had there been any late night, ‘sorry to wake you, Scully, but I couldn’t sleep,’ phone calls.  She had no idea what she’d done but Mulder was treating her like she had a contagion.

She walked into the office just after her last class on Friday to find Karen Dent in the office.  Karen had been nicknames ‘Karen Dense’ by a number of the instructors.  No one quite understood how she’d gotten into the program and she was already slated to be in the first round of cuts. 

Karen was not dumb but she was one of those truly beautiful women who went through life solely on their looks and didn’t bother to really apply themselves.  This type of woman was a cancer to all other women in typically male dominated fields because it justified the prejudices of the old boy network; nice distraction but don’t take her seriously.

“May I help you?” Scully offered as she placed her things on her desk.

The woman looked Scully up and down and didn’t bother to hide that she’d determined Scully wasn’t worth too much of her time.  “No, I’m waiting for Fox.”  With impeccable timing Mulder walked in and Karen gave him a meaningful kiss and hug.  Mulder’s eyes lowered, not in passion but embarrassment.  He chanced a look at Scully and saw a glint of embarrassment mingled with a lot of hurt.  He wanted to get Karen out of there fast but it wasn’t fast enough.  “I really enjoyed last night, Fox.  That bed of yours has a lot of ‘spring.’”  Karen purred.

Scully’s expression clearly said, ‘message received loud and clear.’  She was out the door before they could move.  “See you Monday, Mulder,” she said over her shoulder.  Mulder watched his friend leave and he felt a clenching in his chest.  For a moment he feared it was another heart attack but soon realized it was the anxiety of loss.


Saturday - Mulder’s Apartment 5:15 am

Mulder walked into his apartment early Saturday morning in emotional agony.  He threw his keys toward the catch-all table and heard them clash to the floor.  He knew he’d regret that later when he needed them but he was in no humor to crawl around in his perennially dim hall to find them now.

Yesterday had been a disaster, hell, the whole damned week had been a series of cluster fucks.  It started with Reggie telling him that he was in a relationship with Scully.  It scared him; big time.  He’d never been too successful with romantic relationships so in typical Mulder fashion he really screwed up. He hid from Scully.  He didn’t call her or answer her calls. He made sure he wasn’t in the office much.  When he did have contact with her he was short with her, projecting the anger for himself on to her.

Karen Dent had been in Paul Scott’s profiling class that ended two weeks earlier.  Mulder had filled in for a week while Paul’s wife recovered from a car accident and Paul needed to stay with her until her mom arrived.  Karen constantly flirted with Mulder but he’d just ignored the come-ons.  She was just barely making the class minimum requirements and that was only because she had, somehow, gotten into the study group that had all of the brightest recruits for her class.  Mulder was fairly sure she wouldn’t be around long. 

By the time she appeared at his desk following his last class on Monday, Karen Dent was a long forgotten issue.  If it had been any other Monday, nothing would have happened.  But Mulder was still whirling from Reggie’s revelations and he felt he needed to prove something.  This time he took Karen up on her offer.  They went to dinner that night and every night during the week not to mention every lunch too.

It had been a nightmare.  Karen was a fairly intelligent woman; unfortunately she didn’t feel the need to cash in on that intelligence.  Conversations with her were as pleasant as oral surgery.  After the first night Mulder took her to clubs where the music drowned out attempts at conversation; during lunches he’d been able to tune her out by thinking of classes. 

Thursday she insisted on a night in.  Sometime he must have mentioned about Scully teaching him to cook and Karen demanded that he cook for her.  He spent the entire evening thinking how different it had been with Scully.  How they played off each other’s comments and sparred with words.  He longed to hear one of Scully’s hard earned laughs.  Where Scully’s laugh was charming Karen’s grated on his nerves.  Scully could talk on any number of interesting subjects; Karen seemed only able to voice opinions on the most trivial of matters.  By the end of dinner, Mulder had been so desperate for her to shut up he fucked her.  Yes, the only term he could use was he fucked her.  To him it had been a cold calculated manipulation.  There was nothing soft or gentle about it.  He’d put no thought into the act, it was pure unadulterated animal instinct.  When he came he realized he’d choked out ‘Scully.’  He didn’t care if Karen heard it but, since she was screaming at the time with her own release, he was pretty sure she didn’t.  He was surprised she’d derived any pleasure from the encounter but apparently she had.  

That had been the first sexual encounter he’d had since his heart attack and it was the coldest, least satisfying experience of his life.

Yesterday he hadn’t gotten back to the office to spirit Karen away before Scully got there.  Mulder could tell Karen’s comments in front of Scully were designed to hurt her.  It had infuriated him and when he saw Scully’s reaction he was infuriated with himself. 

Last night he took Karen home and left her there without explanation.  He looked in his rear view mirror and saw her screaming at his retreating car.  He found his way to Casey’s and drank himself stupid.  Or smart, depending on how you looked at these things.  Sometime the bartender called Reggie and Mulder spent the remainder of the night camped out on the tiled floor of Reggie and Terri’s guest bathroom floor alternating between puking, crying and pleading with God to help him fix things until he was sober enough to go home.

Mulder didn’t know how long he’d been sitting there wallowing in self pity before he noticed the flashing light on his answering machine.  He hoped at least one of the calls was from Scully but he was disappointed. 

The first call was from Dr. Merewether asking to meet with him at eight on Monday to discuss the issue of Karen Dent’s dismissal.  Mulder was sure he was in for a lecture on proper conduct between instructors and recruits.

The second call was from Karen demanding to know what the hell was going on?  Who the hell did he think he was and if he thought she hadn’t heard him call out for Scully, he was stupid.

The third call was Merewether again saying that after speaking with Dr. Scully he saw no need for them to meet on Monday.  She explained how he would never let his personal feelings interfere with his professional dealings.

He dragged himself from his couch and went to take a shower.


Saturday - Scully’s Apartment 6:00 am

Scully was leaning against her kitchen counter, holding ‘another’ tepid cup of tea.  She’d been up the entire night not really understanding what she was feeling or how to stop feeling it.  Every once and a while she’d find herself holding a cup of cold tea and only barely remembering making it, then she’d go make some more.  She couldn’t seem to keep her thoughts cohesive enough to finish even one complete cup before it had gone cold. 

She needed to take a shower and get ready.  Yesterday, after her encounter with Mulder and the beauty queen, she’d been called to

Dr. Merewether’s office to discuss the issue of Mulder and Karen Dent.  Ms. Dent was on the list for dismissal and Merewether wondered if she thought Mulder would interfere or be compromised. She told him that to her knowledge, Mulder was a man of principals and whatever his relationship with Ms. Dent should not be of any concern.  Besides, Mulder was only Dent’s instructor for one week and no papers or exams had been given during the time. 

Scully went to Wendell Coombs office after she left Merewether, with a trip to the ladies room to pull herself together in between.  Coombs controlled office space and had told her about an office that had opened up nearer the autopsy bays earlier in the week.  Both she and Mulder were at levels that allowed single offices.  Their original arrangement of sharing was supposed to have only been temporary but they’d never minded it and declined several offers to move.  In fact, she had originally declined this offer but then the events of yesterday changed her mind; clearly her relationship with Mulder was not what she thought it was.  Mulder’s message was clear and she was not about to embarrass either of them like that again.  She checked with Coombs to see if it was still available and it was.  She was moving her things today; it being Saturday pretty much ensured she wouldn’t be running into Mulder and his paramour.  Now if she could just get her crying jags under control.



Saturday - Quantico Afternoon

Scully opened her office and hauled in the boxes and pull cart that Coombs arranged to leave outside the door.  She looked around; taking in Mulder’s clutter that had started in a little less than half the space but had now migrated to encompass everything except the small area near her desk.  Somehow it had never bothered her before.  It had seemed symbolic as to how he’d insinuated himself in her life.

She packed.

Scully started unpacking her last carton when she heard voices down the hall moving toward her office.  One she recognized as Reggie Purdue so she looked out. 

“Dana? Dana, what are you doing here?”  Reggie pulled her into a hug.

“I’m just moving to my new office.”  Reggie noticed her embarrassed look.  He’d spent the night listening to Mulder’s tale of woe so he suspected this was a sudden development and her next statement confirmed it.  “Uh, Reggie, if you speak with him don’t say anything to Mulder, okay?”

“Fine, girl, no problem.”  He turned to the man standing next to him.  “Dana, this is Mike Cushing, my partner.  Mike, this is Dana Scully, I think you might have heard me mention her on occasion.”

Mike nearly jumped over Reggie to shake Scully’s hand.  “It is a pleasure to meet you, Dr. Scully.”

“Dana, please, and it is nice to meet you too.”  She turned back to Reggie.  “Is it a case?”

“Yeah, and maybe I can persuade you to lend your expertise.  The body is in bay one.  Would you please take a look?”


Scully sat at her desk dictating her notes.  The body, Mr. Leonard Betts, had been originally autopsied by Dr. Dwight Fielding the only physician in Heaver Town.  Scully was sure he was an adequate physician but he wasn’t qualified to do an autopsy of this nature.  Hell, she couldn’t believe what she’d found and she was considered an expert in the field.  The man’s body was cancerous, but it wasn’t what caused his death; he’d decapitated in a vehicle accident.  The truth of the matter was the man seemed to have thrived on the cancer.  It was like it sustained him.      

Scully presented her findings to Reggie and Mike, such as they were.  They went back into the autopsy bay and found it empty.

Reggie could tell by Scully’s reaction that something was wrong. “Reggie, I left the body right here.”  She patted the table. “It was right here on this table.”  She started opening the storage locker doors looking.

“Could someone have put it away for you?” Mike asked.

“Who, none of the techs are in today?”


Security was called and an investigation was launched.  Scully, Reggie and Mike couldn’t believe the security recording.  The bays were not monitored but the hallway was.  The tape revealed a man wearing scrubs walking down the hallway and out the door.  One camera caught the man’s face and it was Leonard Betts; complete with head.

The three sat in Scully’s new office drinking what the vending machine called coffee silently.  None of them understood what they’d seen.  Finally Reggie suggested they just go home and he and Mike would tackle it on Monday. 

Scully was shutting off her lights and locking the door when Mike turned and asked her to dinner the following night.  Out of habit she nearly declined, but stopped herself and agreed.



Sunday - Scully’s apartment 11:10 pm

Dinner had been nice.  Mike was a nice man but she could already tell things were going to no further than friendship, at least until she got Fox Mulder out of her system.  The best part was that Mike seemed to understand and he was okay with it.  He also said he wouldn’t stop hoping for something more.

Mulder, now there was a puzzle.  She’d been sure their friendship was moving toward something deeper but last Friday showed her the truth like a bucket of cold water tossed on her. 

“Buck up, Starbuck,” she whispered as she tried to fall asleep.



Monday – Quantico Mulder’s office.

Mulder wasn’t looking forward to facing Scully but he didn’t want her to think he was avoiding her either.  Besides, after a weekend of not seeing her, he was really suffering from withdrawal.  Why hadn’t he realized what she was to him a week earlier, it would have avoided so many mistakes.  He stood in front of the door and was surprised to find it locked.  Mondays, Scully had an early class so she was always in before eight; it was now eight fifteen. 

He opened the door and looked to see if she’d been there and gone; she hadn’t.  In fact there was no evidence that Dr. Dana K. Scully shared this office with him at all. 

Her books were gone, her diplomas were gone, everything from her desktop was missing and the few mementos she did display were gone.  All that was left was the furniture and her phone. 

Mulder checked the name plates outside the door and found that hers was missing.  Scully had moved out.

Mulder turned around and slammed his door.  What the hell was he supposed to do?  He knew he had no one to blame but himself.  He’d put Karen in between them.

A knock at the door caught him off guard.  “Scully,” he called out. 

“Uh, no, Dr. Mulder, it’s me, Wendell Coombs.”  Mulder opened the door and the man walked in.  “I just came to see exactly what needed to be removed.”  He worked on a clipboard and checked off desk, desk chair, lamp, etc. “Would you like to keep the extra file cabinet and the phone so you can have another extension?  Dr. Scully’s office came fully equipped so we don’t have to take any of this to her.  We can get you a larger conference table now that you have more room.”

Mulder just stared off for a moment.  “Scully took another office?”

The other man looked sheepish.  “Well, yeah.  I told her about it last week and she turned it down but then Friday afternoon she asked me for it; she is entitled and all.  She came in over the weekend and moved her stuff by herself.  She just asked me for boxes and a pull cart.  She’s one independent lady, our Dr. Scully.”  Coombs wrote down something on the paper, ripped it off and gave it to Mulder.  “That’s her new location.”

Mulder thanked the man and they arranged for time that the excess furniture could be moved.  He had the impression that the other man knew more than he said; or thought he did.

Mulder had to get to his classes so he couldn’t do anything right away but this was not going to be the end of Scully and he.  Not if he had anything to say.

Mulder hadn’t made it back to his office until three-thirty.  He played his messages and read his e-mail.  One e-mail was from Merewether suggesting that in the future it would be prudent to wait until an appropriate amount of time had passed after a class graduated before an instructor seeks a relationship with a recruit. 

Another e-mail was an interdepartmental memo telling of the relocation of Dr. D.K. Scully effective immediately.

Then, the last one was a list of the recruits that had been dismissed.  Karen Dent, along with fifteen of her classmates had been sent packing.  The list showed their class standings and Mulder realized that the reason Merewether’s admonishment had not been harsher was that Karen Dent was dead last.  Her score was 43, which, if he recalled, was at least twenty points less than the last lowest score in FBI history.

Mulder decided to check his phone messages.  There was the usual requests for appointments and one tear choked message from Karen demanding that he do something to keep her in the program or she’d tell Merewether.  ‘Not a problem Karen,’ Mulder was going to out himself to his superior.  He forwarded her voicemail to Merewether with a comment from himself explaining the entire situation, somewhat. 

It was now or never time; he got up to go find Scully. 


Monday – Quantico, Scully’s office 3:47 pm

Mulder rounded the corner and saw the office.  The door was open and he heard voices, Scully’s, Reggie Purdue’s and a third he didn’t recognize, it was a man’s.  Mulder knocked on the door frame.  “Is this a private party or can anyone join?”

Scully went noticeably silent and the tension crept up.  Reggie introduced Mulder and Mike.  Then made excuses that they had to get going. 

The twosome had almost got out of the office when Mike turned back.  “We’re still on for tomorrow right, Dana?”

Scully smiled and nodded, “Six on the dot.  I’ll be ready.”

Mulder closed the door.  “Was that for my benefit?”

“No, it was for my benefit.” She countered unapologetically.

Mulder fell into one of the guest chairs.  “Scully, why’d you move out without telling me?”

“This office was available and more convenient.”  She paused and squared her shoulders.  “It isn’t like we need to pass things by each other, now is it?”  Her accusation clear.

Mulder looked up and straight into her eyes and saw everything he’d ever wanted looking back at him.  Shit!  He had to fix this or he’d lose the only thing that mattered in his sorry life.

“Scully, I’m going to tell you a story of a really screwed up man.  His name was Fox Mulder.  Growing up he never really felt loved by his parents and what he saw of their marriage was enough to scare anyone off the idea of the institution.

“This man escaped to Oxford where he met a woman and fell into a relationship with her.  She turned out to be abusive.  So abusive that he just had to fall for her, he thought he was in love with her.  It was his first real experience with romantic relationships.

“He wasn’t a virgin but his experiences were limited to back seat quickies with girls as inexperienced as himself.  They were all about the physical and didn’t engage his emotions.  This English woman was well schooled in the sexual arts and she was cruel.  Soon she had this foolish man doing everything she wanted including living with her.

“One day he came back to their flat and found her in bed with two of his friends.  But even that humiliation and betrayal wasn’t enough for him to break it off.  That scene or similar ones played out several times before he was strong enough to finish it off.”

Mulder wouldn’t look at her while he continued his narrative of failed romances.

“So, when Reggie pointed out that you and I were dating, I got scared.  I saw the only successful relationship I’ve ever had with a woman doomed.  I panicked and took the path of least resistance.” 

Mulder’s eyes got dreamy.  “Every time Karen said or did anything I thought, ‘that isn’t what Scully would say or Scully would do that so differently.’  I did her a great injustice by comparing her to you.  There just was no way she could compete.”  He put his head in his hands. “Scully, you are my best friend and I can’t afford not to have you in my life.  But, I know how badly I’ve messed it up.”

Scully didn’t know what to say about his revelation.  It may explain, a little, but it didn’t lessen the pain he’d caused her.

“Mulder,” she started but she wasn’t quite sure what to say to him.  She tried again, “Mulder, I don’t know how to begin to respond.  I,” Scully took three quick disjointed breaths trying to stanch her tears.  “Mulder, you ripped me apart.  I don’t know how to deal with that.  I’m not sure you are going to believe this but I’ve had offers in the last year; men have shown interest in me.  I turned them all down.  At first I didn’t know why but then I realized that I was in a relationship with the man I wanted to be with.  I knew what I wanted but I never pushed you in any way and I can’t understand why what Reggie said to you had you thinking things would change between us.” 

Scully stood and looked out the window.  “I can’t tell you how much pain I felt when she said those things about your bed.”  She huffed, “the bed that I helped you find under all that trash you had collected on it.  But I got the message, you didn’t want me the same way and that would have been fine.  Hurtful, yes, but I would have been fine in the end.  But you shoved me out of your life.  You didn’t respect me or our relationship.  You didn’t even give me the courtesy of talking to me, of telling me about Dent.  Those were not the actions of a friend.”

Mulder looked up to see that she’d wrapped her arms around herself.  He wanted to pull her into a tight hug.  “Scully, is there anything, anything that I can do to begin to fix this?  To make you cancel that dinner with Cushing?”

That bothered her.  How dare he tell her not to go out with someone?  Was he only interested now that he knew someone else was interested too?  “Is that what this is about, my dating Mike? That I’m not sitting home waiting for Fox Mulder to grace me with his presence?”

Mulder watched as her body language changed.  She unwrapped her arms from her torso and pulled back her shoulders.  Scully stood up straight and turned toward him.  “I think it would be best if you left now, Mulder.  I have some work I need to attend to before heading home.”

“Scully,” Mulder pleaded.  Her only response was to return to her desk and put her glasses on.

Mulder left but this wasn’t over, not by a long shot.



Friday – Reggie and Terri Purdue’s residence

Mulder manipulated Reggie into inviting him to dinner. Terri had shuffled the two men to the living room while she put on coffee and got the dessert.  She’d been around Fox Mulder enough to know that he wanted something from Reggie and she had more than a small inkling that it involved his drunkenness the weekend before and Dana Scully.

Mulder didn’t pull any punches he wanted to know about Scully and Mike.  Reggie explained that Mike was a great guy and he liked Dana a lot.  They’d been out three times, including tonight.  From what Mike told him, Dana was up front with him and said she might not be able to move beyond friendship with him but the man was not discouraged.  “Mulder, Mike told me that Dana Scully is everything he ever hoped to find in a woman. He’s going to do his best to win her over.”  Reggie patted Mulder’s arm.  “You may have met your match.”

Mulder smiled.  “You forget, I was there first and she’s admitted to wanting a romantic relationship with me.”

“Yeah, Mulder but you threw that in her face now, didn’t you?”

“I’ll get her back, Reg, I have to.”  He folded his hands. “I have to,” he repeated quietly.



Monday – Quantico Scully’s office noon

Scully opened the office door to find Mulder busy laying out a picnic on her conference table.

She was about to ask what he thought he was doing when she realized she’d locked the office before she’d left. “Hey, how did you get in here?”

Mulder laughed, “I can’t say so let’s just leave it with I have my sources.”

She nodded her head skeptically.  “And the picnic?”

“We haven’t had any time together in over two weeks.  I knew you wouldn’t go anywhere with me so I decided to ambush you.”  Mulder placed his finger to her mouth to halt her response.  “And, yes, I know it was me who put this wedge between us.  It has to be me to try and cement it closed.”  Mulder moved very close to her and whispered, “Don’t under estimate my determination, Scully.” She felt his words more than heard them. “And I am very determined.” It forced a shiver through her body.

“Mulder, I,” Scully tossed her books and notes to her desk.  “I don’t know what to think.  I feel like the blue ribbon at the fair.  Like when you thought no one was interested you could just ignore me but now that you know you are not the only cock on the walk I’m worth something to you.  I’m so confused.”

Mulder pulled her into a tight embrace, pleased that she didn’t shrug him off.  His cheek found its way to rest on her hair.  This felt so right to hold her.  It was also more erotic than having sex with Karen had been.  Suddenly Scully pushed him away but her hands remained on his arms.  Mulder was afraid he’d rushed things but then he saw her look.  Her face was not one of anger but astonishment.  She looked at his face then her eyes darted down to his obvious erection and back up again.

Mulder pulled her back into his arms and she came limply.  “You, Scully.”

“But I didn’t do anything.”  Her voice was filled with shock.

“You don’t have to.  Just being you is enough to set me off.”

“Why all of a sudden?”  She asked and Mulder knew the question wasn’t as simple as it seemed.

“It isn’t sudden.  I’ve had this problem being around you almost from the beginning; I just chose to ignore it.  I’d excuse myself and take care of things then return.”  He put his fingers under her chin to turn her to look at him.  “You have filled every piece of me for so long and so well that I didn’t even realize it.  You have starred in every fantasy and reality of my life for nearly a year.”  Mulder pulled away slightly.  “I won’t lie to you.  I did sleep with Karen Dent but it was the most unsatisfactory experience of my entire life.  I had to think of you just to, well, you know.”

Mulder was ashamed of his actions and Scully knew it.  She moved the small distance between them and this time it was her who pulled Mulder into a hug.  “Mulder, there’s nothing I can do; I always was a sucker for a man who’d cook for me.”

“Scully!”  Mulder lifted her up and twirled them around.

“Don’t get me wrong, not everything is back to normal and I’m not sure it ever will be.  I am willing to try to work things out but right now I’m not sure I can trust you.”

Mulder was saddened by her last statement but not discouraged.  He would just have to prove himself.



Fifteen Months Later

Saturday – William and Margaret Scully’s residence

Mike Cushing’s smile was so wide it looked like it might break his face.  Standing next to him was his beautiful bride.  She was resplendent in her antique wedding dress and lace veil.

Family and their friends filled the house to celebrate the nuptials. 

Mike walked over to Reggie Purdue who was talking to a group of men.  Mike didn’t notice that Fox Mulder was among them. 

“You are a very lucky man Cushing,” Mulder said.

Mike looked his one time rival up and down before replying.  “Don’t I know it?  Beauty, brains and she puts up with me.  What more can a man ask for?”

Dana walked over and stood next to her husband.  The men of the group couldn’t believe how she radiated happiness and contentment.  “I hope I’m not interrupting some male bonding ritual?”

“No, I was just saying how I have everything a man could ever want.”  Mike paused then nodded toward her. “Except for maybe one of those.”  He was pointing at her barely there stomach bump.

Just then Melissa walked up and put her arms around her new husband.  “Hey, give me some time.  We just got married two hours ago.  They tied the knot last spring.”  Mulder tightened his arm around Scully’s shoulders and kissed the top of her head.

Mike pulled his new bride into a tight embrace and kissed her. “That won’t stop us from working on that new addition tonight.”

“Okay, Lover-boy, it’s time to cut the cake.  Get moving.”  She left him in her wake.  “Dana,” Mike started, “I can’t thank you enough for introducing us.” He scurried off to catch Missy.

The little group disbanded and Mulder and Scully stood alone.  “Ya did good, wife.”  He had one hand rubbing her rounded belly.

Scully’s hand joined his on her stomach and she gave him a saucy smile and looked at him through her lashes. “So did you, husband, so did you.”





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