The Third Ring
By Christine Leigh

Summary: Mulder POV during One Breath.
Rating: G
Category: MSR, V
Spoilers: None.

She's left him, and there is nothing more he can do. He doesn't know how he knows this; there is no hard evidence, but he believes it to be true. It may kill him. He remembers that he held her hand and spoke to her. The words were clumsy, but they were all he could squeak out. He remembers laying on the floor of the apartment and sobbing, and then he doesn't remember anything more. He wonders if someone came in and picked him up, depositing him on the couch. He thinks he is sitting up, but isn't sure, and to open his eyes is not an option. Would it ever be?

A part of him, the most precious part, that he hadn't even known was in his possession had gone, and he is frightened in a way that he has never before experienced. He hears words that have been spoken to him by her mother and her sister, and he wants to share in the wisdom of those words. He needs to know how the two women can do this; how they can let her go. And then he keeps coming back to the realization that this will never happen. Their realm is not his.

When the sound comes he knows what it is and he doesn't know how to face it. He might as well be a statue for his arms feel as though made of cement. He wants to move them, but isn't able to do so. Then, for a split second he sees her face. Not as it was last night, but whole, and more beautiful than he's ever seen her. He wants so to touch her, and tell her in more coherent language what he is feeling, but then she's gone. How cruel of her to go. But she has left him with something, and now he is able to move, which he somehow manages to force himself to do. And he picks up, on the third ring.

~ End ~

Archiving: If you would like to archive anywhere, I'd appreciate a quick note first. E-mail:

Feedback: Always happy to receive it.

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.