Title: At Christmas
Author: Gaia Less
Authorlink: https://www.fanfiction.net/u/69450/
Category: X-Files
Genre: Angst/Romance
Rating: K+
Disclaimer: I don't own Mulder, Scully, or anyone else you might recognize from the series. They are owned by Chris Carter, 1013, and Fox. I don't own them. No copyright infringement is intended. I borrowed the song At Christmas from Hanson. It's on their Christmas album, Snowed In. Hanson rocks. I didn't write the song. Or create the characters. I'm just playing with them. I'll give them back when I'm done. Promise!! Please don't sue me...
Archive anywhere, but please get my permission first :) tis as easy as emailing me and saying, Yo, Gaia, I wanna put your fanfic, [title here], on my site, okay? You can even simply cut and paste that sentence into an email document! I will reply with something along the lines of Hey, that's cool. Promote me! Yeah! Sweeeeet. See? Tis VERY easy :) Wowwww. Hehe

Summary: Mulder and Scully's daughter grows up without a mother, and not close to her father. When she runs away from home, she finds something amazing.

The snow's falling down
As you step out of your car
Presents in your arms
And you've traveled far
Someone opens the door
With a smile on their face
And you know you've come
To the right place

Family nestled by the fire
Christmas hopes to inspire
Loved ones by your side
You know you'll kiss your babies tonight

At Christmas
No matter who you are
How far you've come
This is where you belong
At Christmas

The mem'ries round
The Christmas tree
Are the sweetest ones
That are made with me
It's a comfort deep inside
That you can stop the race of time
To know that Christmas will always be

Family nestled by the fire
A Christmas hope will be inspired
Loved ones by your side
You know you'll kiss your baby good night

At Christmas
No matter who you are
How far you've come
This is where you belong
Where you belong

Can't you feel the changin'
Sense the anticipation
You can tell we're almost there
Precious time we're takin'
Memories we're makin'
There's Christmas in the air

This is what Christmas means to me
Being together with your family
And the wise men who followed the star
To where a baby Jesus lie

Family nestled all around
With baby Jesus asleep so sound
His star shined so bright
On the very first holy night

At Christmas
No matter who you are
How far you've come
This is where you belong

At Christmas
This is where you belong
(At Christmas)
At Christmas
(At Christmas)
No matter who you are
How far you've come
This is where you belong

Christmas Eve, 2003

I sit, talking to my mother-in-law, when suddenly I feel a tug on my sleeve.

I turn. "What is it, Madelaine?" I ask her.

"Daddy, can we dance now?" She looks up at me with that special innocence every four-year-old has. "Please, Daddy? You promised we could dance on Christmas Eve."

"Did I? I don't seem to remember that," I say with a small smile.

"Daddy! You promised."

"Fox, you did promise," my mother-in-law echoes.

I grin at my daughter and pick her up in my arms. "That's right. I remember now." She smiles gleefully and we go into the other room.

I stare down at her as we dance. She looks more like her mother every day. But she never knew her. Dana's been gone for four years. I haven't seen her since she went into the hospital... the baby came out, but I never saw Dana again. I don't even know if she's dead, but chances are she isn't alive.

The whole pregnancy was unexpected. We weren't married, but we'd been seeing each other, trying to stay behind work, seeing each other without Skinner finding out. He didn't until Scully's pregnancy developed and she had to take her maternity leave. We got married then. I wanted to be with my wife as much as I could, but work made that difficult. A month and a half before she was due, I got a call at work. "Fox... I need you here now."

"Dana? What's the matter?"

"I need to go to the hospital," she whispered, her voice trembling.

"Oh, God," I said. "Are you home?"

"I'll be there in five minutes."

"Please hurry."

I've never driven faster.

Ten Minutes Later

I helped Dana into the car and took her to the hospital. I could tell she was really scared. I wasn't sure what to do for her, so I held her hand and told her everything was going to be all right. And I thought everything would.

"I love you, Dana," I said, kissing her goodbye, as the doctors wheeled her away for an emergency C-section. I was worried about her, and I was worried about the baby.

"I love you too, Fox," she replied. I saw the tears in her eyes, staring back at me before the doors swung shut.

I wish I'd known then that it would be the last time I saw her.

"Daddy?" Madelaine asks, breaking me away from my reverie.

"What is it, honey?"

"Merry Christmas."

"You too, Madelaine."

And Mommy?

"Merry Christmas to Mommy, too."

Twelve Years Later
Christmas Eve, 2015
7:01 p.m.

I checked the lock on my door, making sure Dad can't get in from the outside. "I'm staying here!" I yell, throwing stuff into my backpack.

"It's Christmas Eve," he says. He's right outside the door now.

"Leave me alone!"

"Grandma wants to see you."

"I don't care! If you won't let me go out with Jeremy tonight, I'm not going anywhere!" Dad hates my boyfriend. Hell, he hates *all* my friends. They aren't such bad people. Sure, most of them are older than me. So they party a lot. They've never hurt anyone. Not me, and not Dad.

"Come on. Unlock the door."

Reluctantly, I do. I snap.

"Please come with me. It's your mother's family. They--"

"I don't care about Mom's family! I've never even *met* Mom!"

Dad reacts as if I hit him. Or as if it's my fault Mom's gone.

I grab my backpack and my coat, brushing past Dad and toward the front door. "Are you coming?" he asks.

"No. I'm out of here. Merry Christmas," I say coldly, slamming the door behind me.

I wake up in the passenger seat of Jeremy's car. I wonder where we are. It must be after midnight by now--it's Christmas.

God. I can't believe I left Dad like that. I feel horrible, sick to my stomach. *But you're free now,* I tell myself.

I feel the car shudder to a stop, and Jeremy parks it. "Where are we?" I mumble sleepily.

"I don't know," he replies. "I'm tired."

"What time is it?"

"About three a.m."

I yawn. "Thanks for getting me out of there," I whisper, moving over and snuggling into his arms.

"Anything for you." He grins, leaning down to kiss me. I put my arms around his neck, kissing him back. One great thing about Jeremy is that he's a great kisser. Dad probably hates him so much because he's eighteen. But that's only two years older than me. I trust Jeremy. He's a nice guy and he'd never hurt me. Plus, Dad's two years older than my mom was. It doesn't matter to me, and it shouldn't to him.

Jeremy holds me tight as his mouth moves from my lips down my neck. He lowers me down on the front seat. I'm a little nervous--I've only been dating Jeremy for a month and a half. We haven't gone very far yet. But I don't say anything, scared of what he'll do.

He reaches behind me, trying to unhook my bra. "Don't," I say softly.

"What is it?"

Trembling, I say, "Don't."

"Don't what?" He sounds upset.

"Just... I don't--"

"Hey, I got you away from your dad. Would you rather be back there, or here with me?"

I'm torn. He leans down to kiss me again. "Let me out of the car, Jeremy."

He looks at me angrily. "Fine. Get out." He gets up and I hurry to get out of the car.

As soon as I shut the door, he speeds away. "Hey! Jeremy! Don't go!" I scream after him. But he's too far away, and doesn't care anyway.

I shiver, having left my coat and backpack in the car. I see him throw my bag out his window, but it's far up the road and I'm too scared to move.

I wonder where I am. And how I'm going to get home.

I cross the street to a church, hoping for some warmth. I try the door, and amazingly, it opens with a creak.

The church is darkened except for the candles that illuminate the front of the room. Sniffling, I walk up the aisle and sit down. I don't really know what to do. I haven't been in a church in ages. I sit in the pew for a few moments before bursting into tears again. Oh, God... please help me, I sob, holding my head in my hands. I haven't prayed in years. Will God accept me? God... Mom, I cry. Mom, please forgive me.

My sobs finally quiet down and I sit in the pew, still sniffling softly. I hear a sound behind me, and I look up. The door creaks open and shut. A woman enters the sanctuary, her head bowed. She's crying, too. Well, at least I'm not the *only* one having a terrible Christmas.

The woman doesn't look up at me. She walks past me, not noticing me, and sits a few rows in front of me, on the other side of the aisle. She sits in silence for a while, looking up at the cross mounted on the wall in front of us. Then she begins to pray aloud, her voice soft yet strong. I don't purposely listen to her, but I do catch a few words: "...find my family... please... so long... sixteen years." Her voice gets a little louder. "Help me find them. Please, God... help me find Fox, and my daughter... Oh, God, Madelaine... I've never met her. Will she remember me?"

My eyes grow wide. Fox... that's Dad. And Madelaine is me. I'm sixteen... I put these facts together and gasp.

The woman turns around and faces me, hearing me.

I lean forward, seeing the woman's face in the candlelight. I know this face. The face Dad says looks so much like Mom's.

I know this face. It's a bit older... in her forties, maybe, as opposed to the younger one I know. The face in the pictures.

"I'm sorry," the woman says. I didn't know anyone else was here.

"It's okay," I say. My lips tremble as I avoid the question. "M-merry Christmas," I say, as the woman stands up and walks over to my pew, sitting next to me.

"It's not all that merry, but thank you." She sees me shivering, wearing nothing but a t-shirt and jeans. "You must be freezing," she says. "Here, take my coat."

"Don't worry about it. I'm fine."

"No you aren't. You're shaking." She puts the coat around my shoulders and I enjoy the warmth it provides.

"Thank you," I say gratefully.

"If you don't mind my asking," the woman says, "what are you doing in New York City at three in the morning on Christmas?"

A tear falls from my eye and a quickly brush it away. "I ran away... and my boyfriend left me here."

"He left you? What a jerk."

"Tell me about it." I sniffle.

"Why'd you run away?"

"My Dad... he didn't want me to see my friends."

"Well, I can't really blame him if your boyfriend would do that to you."

"I guess." I shrug. "So, what's wrong with you? I mean, why's your Christmas so horrible?"

The woman sighs. "I want to spend Christmas with my family. I was... taken away... sixteen years ago, and now that I'm free again I just want to find them. I miss them so much... I never even got to know my daughter. I was taken away the day after Madelaine was born. My husband probably thinks I'm dead..." She swipes at her eyes, probably embarrassed as I am to be crying in front of a complete stranger. I'm Dana Mulder, she says, introducing herself.

Oh my God.

My eyes fill with tears. I try to form the word Mom' on my lips but I can't. It's hard. I take a deep breath. "I'm Madelaine. Madelaine Mulder."

The woman turns to me, looking in my eyes. "Oh, God," she whispers. "It can't be." Her eyes are brimming with tears.

My voice cracks as I say, We both start to cry at the same moment, and hold each other.

"I can't believe it... are you really my daughter?"

"Are you really my mom?" I ask. I sob as she holds me, comforting me in the way that I only dreamed a mother could do.

"How's Fox?" she asks me.

"Dad? He's..." I trail off. "Right now, he's probably worried sick."

"Do you want to call him?" she asks, offering her cell phone.

I nod, taking the phone from her. "Thank you so much." I dial the number and wait as it rings.

Dad answers. He sounds restless and distraught.

"Hi, Dad," I say in a small voice.

"Madelaine! Where the hell are you?"

"I'm in New York..."

"...in a church."

"Are you alone?"

"Yeah. No," I correct myself.

"Who else is there?"

Dana--Mom--is staring at the floor with tears in her eyes. I hand her the phone. She looks surprised.

I can hear Dad's voice through the phone. "Who is this? What have you done with my daughter?"

"Fox?" Her voice is shaking, and she sounds scared.

A pause on Dad's side. he finally says. "Dana, is that you?"

"It's me," she whispers.

December 26th
5:54 p.m.

Dana parks her car outside of my house. "This is it," I say. We get out of the car and she follows me up to the house.

I open the front door, and Dana and I go inside. I call.

""Madelaine!" he cries, rushing into the living room to give me a hug. "Are you okay?"

"I'm fine," I reply.

Dad lets go of me and looks at Dana. They stare at each other for a moment, unmoving. "Is it really you?" Dad whispers.

I slip out of the room, leaving them alone.

"It's really me," I whisper back, taking a step forward.

"Oh, God," Fox says, opening his arms. I rush to him, and we embrace each other, both starting to cry. "I thought I'd never see you again," he says.

"Neither did I... I was so scared."

"What happened to you?"

"When I had Madelaine... they took the baby from me... I saw her, she was crying, and so was I... and then I lost consciousness and woke up somewhere... I don't know where. They kept me there, they did tests... so many tests... I was so scared... and when they finally let me go, I couldn't remember. Anything. I was in Los Angeles then, and I started seeing a psychiatrist, so I could remember what had happened to me... and then, a year or so ago, I finally remembered everything. It took me so long, and it was so hard... but I knew I had to find you."

"And how did you find Madelaine?"

"I didn't."

"She found you?"

"Not, not really."
"Then what happened?"

"I went into a church in New York City last night, and I sat down and started to pray to find my family... and I turned around, and she was there... and..."

"That's amazing."

"It's a miracle."

Fox smiles at me. "I missed you," he says.

I look back up at him. I did too. I smile and say, Merry Christmas, Fox. He leans down to kiss me. I'm so glad to be home.


Author's Notes: I got the idea for this story at a church retreat. Now, I'm not the most religious person in the world, but the story the keynote speaker shared with us on the last day really struck my curiosity. I had to twist a few details to make it fit, but the story went something like this:

A girl and her single dad spend each Christmas at her maternal grandmother's house. The girl's mother passed away when she was born, but her father still spends time with his late wife's family. As the years went by, the daughter kind of started slipping away from her father and eventually wanted to have nothing to do with him. So she runs away.

In the original story, the girl found her way home through god.. so I had to change it a little bit so it would fit my own story =)

Erm, also.. I wrote this during season seven, before we found out that little baby Scullymulder was a William, so please forgive me. Hehe.. I chose to write about a daughter. But that is where the kid came from; the whole Scullypregnant thing from season seven.

::bows:: the end

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