By Christine Leigh
Summary: Season eight. Scully POV during the immediate weeks following Mulder's absence. I've mixed canon with fanon here.
Category: V, A, MSR
Her bedroom at night is bad. Scully can count on her hands the number of times she and Mulder had made love in her bed since they actually spent more time at his place after becoming lovers, but that doesn't really matter now. What does matter is that she enters an empty room each night and that she sometimes in the seconds before finally dropping off to sleep, will hear echoes of his voice. The first time this happened she shot up off her pillow as though struck by lightening, desperate to see the face to whom the voice belonged, only to find that nothing was changed in the room. The echoes continued still, but she now knows they will have gone away before she awakens, and that the room will be even emptier than it was before.
And then there is the office. Today had been the start of the third week in Mulder's office without him there, and so far it is no better than the first two weeks were. Scully doesn't know what to expect and she hates that. She had assumed that Agent Doggett would make an appearance sometime today, but so far he has not. She never asks, and frankly doesn't care about his schedule, since to hear a male voice in this office that isn't Mulder's is untenable to her. So as she sits in her area with the only companion she can tolerate these days, the quiet, she is grateful that there are no echoes and for the moment, no Agent Doggett.
How empty can a room be, she wonders? Far too, her heart tells her. She has never before felt this alone. Not after her father or sister died, or even after her horrible first round of chemo. She'd wanted to die herself after that. She couldn't tell Mulder at the time, but she'd willingly have died without ever seeing him again, she'd felt so miserable. For the thousandth time she thinks about that, and wonders if perhaps this is God's way of paying her back for being so weak. She feels ashamed remembering.
Scully's eyes wander across the room to his desk. The interlopers that had come that first day had taken many items away, but Mulder's desk still looks very much as it did when he was last here. The mess isn't nearly as bad as it has been on occasion, but if he were here she'd tease him about finding a home for some of his precious stacks away from the wonderfully cluttery surface. Now, though, she won't touch anything on it. She remembers when she was twelve and her grandfather died. Her grandmother wouldn't let anyone near his things for nearly two years after that. This memory has been coming back to Scully a lot recently, and she hates that because Mulder is not dead. She shivers. Would she ever be warm again? She turns and looks toward the small window in the office and waits for her respite.
Scully has a secret afternoon ritual. For a few minutes, if she is positioned just so, she will catch the sunlight as it briefly shines through the small window and reflects off Mulder's nameplate. In the past when this had happened she would get up or shield her eyes until it moved on. Now she finds herself waiting for the moment. When it is over, she will get up and cross to his desk, and sit in his chair. For a few precious minutes each day while sitting there, she contemplates a future that she prays will be. It's a safety net of sorts, she figures, a small indulgence that she has allowed herself and that has helped to keep her sane during these strange days. Here it is. She turns to catch the reflection, closing her eyes and taking pleasure in the warm, orange glow that lies beyond. He'd gone to the end of the Earth for her. That she might have to go him one better was as amusing as anything she could find amusing these days. But whatever it takes, she will do. The glow faded and she rose.
Several years ago he'd told her that he waited for a miracle every day, and more recently that she should never give up on one. As Scully sits there at his desk, she places a hand on her abdomen, a gesture she has to be very careful not to make when Agent Doggett is here. She has regularly occurring dreams, or nightmares, depending on their outcome, of the events of that early rainy morning that brought about the surprise of a lifetime. Scully has hated surprises all her life, but the ultimate one that she received three weeks ago changed all that. Mulder's miracle. If for no other reason, he needs to come back so that they can debate over the definition of 'miracle' she tells herself. She brings her other hand to her throat. This space on her skin that ordinarily would feel naked without its adornment, oddly does not. She sees the cross around Mulder's neck, and can only hope that it is still there. She wants to believe that he is somehow protected by it, and that it reminds him of her love for him. She looks up at the poster on the wall.
Yes, Mulder, that's right. I want to believe.
~ End ~
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This story is (c) Copyright 2003 by Christine Leigh. "The X-Files" and its characters are the property of the Fox Network and Ten-Thirteen Productions and are borrowed here without profit or intent for profit.