When Fate Takes a Hand by Madame F

Summary: Two single parents. One running from a dangerous past, the other running from pain. What happens when fate steps in?

Keywords: Scully/Other married Mulder/Other married then Scully/Mulder Romance/married

More Authors Notes: I got the idea for this while I was at Fudruckers. They have real good hamburgers there. Anyway, I saw a frazzled looking mother and her kids at one table and a busy looking man with his kids at two other tables. And the woman asked the man for his ketchup and I thought wouldnít it be cute if two single parents met by chance at a restaurant and got together. Cute huh? Well I was gonna start it with that scene and make it simple, but I decided against it. Hope ya like it. And on with the show......

When Fate Takes a Hand

By: Madame F

allstars70@hotmail.com

Fox Mulder didnít think it was strange that Phoebe didnít want to come with them. She hadnít been feeling well a lot lately and she needed her rest. And a trip to the lake didnít seem like a good remedy for what ever it is that ailed her.

He had gathered the kids together and stuck them in the car after theyíd said goodbye to their mother.

"You sure youíll be okay, Pheebs?" Fox asked with concern. She did seem a little hot and jumpy of late.

"Iíll be fine Fox. All I need is a little rest. You and the kids have fun at the lake." Phoebe said smiling. Fox bent over and kissed her softly.

"Take care." He whispered. Phoebe felt herself choke up. He really does love me, the poor bastard, she thought. The only reason she married him was because of the money his father left him when he died. He was also good in bed and always willing to please her. She didnít want children, but Fox did and not to make a big issue of it, she gave him three. The only thing she felt for him now was pity. He was a fool.

"I will darling." She replied. He got into the car and the kids waved.

"Bye, Mom!" Alex waved. Phoebe waved back smiling, sadly. Jenny did not wave, Jenny knew her secret. She had insight into everything, that one. She was only seven years old yet wise beyond her years. She had inherited her father's eidetic memory. She was a thinker and she was quiet, but a tomboy as well. When you didnít think she was listening, she really was, and that was why she knew.

"Bye-bye!" Joey, the one year old, screamed from his car seat in the back. Her poor baby. Too young to know. And Alex only five. Could she go on like this?

Jenny watched her brothers wave goodbye to their mother. And then looked at her father with a wise eye as he blew a kiss to her. Oh barf, she thought. She didnít truly understand what was going on, she was only seven mind you. But she did know that what her mother was doing was a sin, a bad one. Her mother had told her it was okay, but she knew otherwise. She knew it every time she felt the tight knot in her stomach when her father kissed her or tried to show her affection.

Her mother was in denial. How stupid did she think she was! Ever since she had over heard the phone call, her mother had been extra nice to her. Telling her casually not to talk to her father about the phone call as though she didnít know. But she knew. She didnít want to believe it at first, but in her heart she knew.

She watched her mother ring her hands and bounce lightly from foot to foot. Like she couldnít wait to get back inside. Jenny continued to watch as they drove away. Her mother hurried into the house. Jenny knew. Her mother wasnít sick at all. Not in the sense that she meant when she said it. How stupid do you think I am? Jenny though angrily to herself. Didnít they know she was always listening? She was, she was always listening and that was why she knew about the other man. The man her mother was carrying on an affair with.

**

Phoebe hurried into the house as soon as they were out of sight. She didnít like the way Jenny was scrutinizing her. Since the phone call she overheard, Phoebe had felt as though Jenny could see straight through her. See into her thoughts, into her womb, where the worst secret of all was being carried.

She picked up the phone and dialed the number she knew by heart. "Jay, itís me. Theyíre gone. Come over, I need to talk to you." She British accent lilting over the phone.

"Is anything wrong baby? Did Fox find out about us?" The "other" man, Jay Wilson asked.

"No, no. Nothing like that. Itís just, Iím, Iím pregnant." She said in a tight voice.

"Pregnant?! Are-are you sure, I mean how could this have happened. We were so careful." Jay ranted.

"Well nothing is one hundred percent, Jay."

"Well are you sure itís mine?"

"What do you mean is it yours!? Who else would it belong to!?" Phoebe yelled, enraged.

"Calm down, baby. I meant, well couldnít it be his. Foxís" Jay said calmly. Phoebe snorted. She and Fox hadnít been intimate for seven months, ever since this started. Cutting it very close with Joey. Every time sheíd come home from Jayís house, sheíd be too sexually exhausted to do it with him. And Fox, being the decent man that he was would back off, like a thwarted puppy.

"I seriously doubt it, unless nature found a new way of doing things. No Jay Iím positive itís yours." She said, whimpering.

"Okay honey Iíll come over since they wonít be back until Monday, we have the whole weekend together and weíll figure out what to do." Jay said.

"All right." Phoebe hung up. What was she going to do? Fox was an Oxford educated man. They hadnít had sex for months and now....

Phoebe shook her head. Donít think about that now. Jay was coming over and she felt positively horny. There would be time to think about this later.

**

Gas Station

"Damn." Fox muttered. Jenny looked wide-eyed at him and then looked around to see if her brothers heard him. Her father never cursed in front of them.

"Sorry Starbuck. We forgot the tents." Fox laughed.

"Oh no!" Jenny giggled. "Now what do we do?" She asked.

"We sleep on the forest floor with the bugs." He said exclaimed triumphantly.

"Ew no, daddy. Thatís gross." Jenny said, laughing again.

"Joey would catch his death of cold if we even tried that. I guess weíll have to turn around and go back home for them." Mulder said smiling and closing the trunk. Jenny nodded slowly and got into the car. She felt sorry for her father. She had a feeling that they wouldnít like what they found when they got home.

**

Jay had come over and now they lay in she and Foxís bed, talking about their current problem after making love twice.

"We could get rid of it." Phoebe suggested again.

"No. We wonít kill it. Itís immoral." Jay said, closing that subject. Phoebe snorted.

"Donít *you* talk to me about immoral. Youíre lying in the bed of a married woman, with a married woman. There is no other way. Fox wonít believe itís his. If I tell him the truth, Iíll lose him."

"Would that be so bad? You donít even love him, yet you gave him three kids. I want a child of my own, with you."

"What is it with men and wanting children these days." Phoebe huffed, turning over.

"Hey baby, donít be mad. You donít even love this guy, but you do love me right?" Jay asked hovering over her. Phoebe turned.

"Of coarse I love you. Itís always been you." She said seductively.

"Then leave him and come live with me. I canít bare the fact of you going home to sleep with this guy and play happy family when youíre miserable." He replied kissing her nose.

"My kids-"

"Weíll take them." Jay said simply.

"But Fox wonít stand for it. His children mean more to him than anything." Phoebe argued.

"Hey, itís America. Land of the free. Everyone thinks a kid should be with its mother. Weíll live together, all six of us. Us, your kids, and our new baby." Jay said, spreading his hands as though it was so simple. Phoebe hesitated a moment and then nodded.

His hands trailed up the sides of her thighs and she sighed. They came together once again and just as they could feel the climax coming they heard him.

"Hey Pheebs! Weíre back! We forgot the tents!" Came Foxís voice. Phoebeís eyes went wide as she looked over and saw the tents wrapped up at the side of the bed.

"Damn!" She muttered. "Iíll be right there!" She yelled back.

"No honey stay where you are, you need your rest." Came the considerably closer voice of Fox.

Jay looked at her wide-eyed and pulled out fast. Both shaking, at the release they were denied. Jay reached for hurriedly put on his briefs and reached for his pants but he was too late as the door swung open and Fox stood there with Joey in his arms and Jenny and Alex at his feet.

Foxís mouth opened and then closed, as he hid his sonís eyes from the sight in front of him. Jenny had turned away immediately, seeing the half naked man.

No body said anything. Everyone just looked at each other. Phoebe vainly trying to hide her nakedness.

Fox could only recall two things he felt at that moment. Confusion and absolute sorrow. For himself and for his children, seeing their mother like this. I am such a fool. He couldnít expose his children to this.

"Jenny." He said, in a suprisingly calm voice. "Take your brothers to your room and stay there. Iíll be there in a moment."

"Yes, daddy." She said taking Joey and glaring at her mother. Fox closed the door behind them. And then there were three. There was silence again as they stood there, Fox looking from one to the other. Finally Phoebe spoke.

"I can explain Fox."

"An explanation would be nice. But then again what is there to explain. You *lied* about being sick so you can weasel your way out of a family trip so you can invite this guy over to do it in *our* bed." Fox realized his voice was rising and calmed down. "How could you? In our home! In front of the children for God sake."

"Well, I didnít exactly invite them in." Phoebe spat.

"*Sorry* Iíll knock next time." Fox replied sarcastically. "How many times have you lied to me Phoebe? How many times has he been in our bed, huh? How many other men has there been, you slut."

"Hey, youíre out of line." Jay interrupted.

"Jay stay out of this please." Phoebe pleaded.

"Jay is it? Well Jay I donít think this is any of your damn business and I want you to get the hell out of my house!"

"This *is* my business-"

"Jay no!" Phoebe tried again, but Jay put a hand up.

"Why is *my* wife any of your business?" Fox asked, his lip curling in disgust.

"Because *your* wife is carrying *my* child." Jay said with satisfaction.

He was just punched in the stomach. No, he was just told that his wife of ten years was having a child with another man. *Jay*. He looked to Phoebe, not believing.

"Iím sorry Fox, but itís true." Phoebe said, sighing. It was all out. Fox felt another blow. He felt numb, he was numb. He also felt ashamed. This man was making him felt like he didnít belong in his own room. He looked up at Jay.

"Get out."

"Excuse me?"

"I said get out!" He yelled. Jay looked at Phoebe and when she nodded, he gathered his clothing and left. He looked at her, his wife.

"Put on your clothes." He ordered. She stayed put, pulling the blanket up higher. So that was it. She, his own wife, was embarrassed to be seen naked in front of him. He turned around, unable to look at her. He looked down at his feet. A pink silk negligee that heíd never seen.

So she was putting on underwear for some other man but not for him. All those times he caught glimpses of Victoriaís Secret bags, thinking that they would be intimate, she was buying it for some other man.

He felt the tears somewhere deep inside but they didnít come. When she was finished he turned around and looked at her.

"How long has all this been going on?" He asked in a low voice.

"Seven months." Phoebe answered in an even voice.

"Well....Itís over now and you can keep the baby, Iíll be like a father to it." Mulder said, feeling his anger drain away, hoping that they could be a family again.

"What makes you think itís over?" Phoebe asked indignantly.

"Phoebe in case you havenít noticed we have three kids. What about them?"

"Iíll take care of my children Fox, but it wonít be with you. Iím leaving you, plain and simple. Iím sorry but thatís just how it is." Phoebe said, crossing her arms.

"But....I thought you loved me. Phoebe ten years of love and marriage canít just mean nothing to you." Fox said, his eyes pleading.

"Ten years of lies Fox. I donít love you, I never did. I married you for your money and you were my ticket to America. I never wanted kids or this little country life." Phoebe said spitefully.

"The kids Phoebe. Canít you try and make it work for the kids. For Jenny and Alex? Joey? Heís just a baby, Phoebe I love you." He pleaded.

"Well I donít love you Fox. Youíre a fool. I will take care of my kids. I love Jay and Iím going to be with him."

"You spiteful, selfish, bitch. How could you do this to the kids, to me? I havenít done anything but love you. How could you be so selfish?" He asked.

"Iíll take care of the kids." She said again.

"Oh youíve taken care of them already. Youíve probably corrupted them for life with that despicable display you just put on." He said, dripping disgust. He moved to the drawer and opened it and started to pack things into a suitcase.

"What are you doing?" She asked. He didnít answer her, he just left the room.

He opened the door to his daughterís room and found his kids huddled on the bed. Jenny was teary-eyed, Joey was crying, and Alex looked lost and confused. Fox bent down on one knee and opened his arms. The all went to him and they hugged.

"Daddy, how come Mommy doesnít want us?" Alex asked, in a small voice. It made Fox want to crawl under a rock and die. They must have heard that part of the argument.

"I donít know son. I wish I knew." He replied.

"Why was Mommy naked wif dat man? Who was he? What was dey doin?" Alex asked.

"Itís what *were* they doing and stop asking so many questions. Youíre too young, you wouldnít understand." Jenny replied. Fox smiled at her as he jiggled Joey.

"Look, I want you guys to help me out. I need you guys to pack some clothes and underwear in your suitcases. Can you do that for me?" They all nodded, even Joey, who had stopped crying.

"Where will we go?" Jenny asked.

"Grandmaís house." Fox replied.

"No camping?" Alex complained.

"Some other weekend, kiddo. Right now, weíre gonna be going through a bad time, but I will always be here for you." Fox said giving them one last squeeze. They all separated. Fox took Joey into the nursery and started packing.

Phoebe came into the room looking around slowly. "What are you doing? What are you doing?" She asked coming in front of him when he didnít answer her.

"Iím taking the kids to their grandmotherís house. I wonít let them stay here. You said it yourself, itís over." Fox said looking her straight in the eye.

"You canít take the kids from me." She said in a hard voice.

"You wanna bet?" He countered, before scooping up Joey and going into the hall. "You kids ready?"

"Yes." Jenny answered. Phoebe followed them to the front door.

"You think youíll get away with this, youíre sorely mistaken." She said to him harshly.

"And if you think Iíll let you, youíre a bigger fool than I thought you were." Fox countered. "Cheerio." He said sarcastically mimicking her British accent. Fox drove away. It was time to start over.

**

California, Los Angeles

Dana Scully pulled into the school yard, searching. Adam had forgotten to pick the kids up after school again and being a doctor, she hardly had time to pick them up herself. She wouldnít allow them to take the bus home, in case she had to work overtime, and Adam came home in a bad mood or high or with a woman.

He would take everything out on them and she wouldnít be there to take the blows for themÖ like she always did.

"Mommy!" Carrie yelled as she ran towards her mother, hugging her around the knees. Her eight-year-old waited patiently for his hug.

"Hi Sweetie Iím sorry you two had to stay here so long." Dana said, feeling sorry for her daughter, who looked strangely happy.

"Thatís okay when he didnít come, I was glad." Carrie said in her usual sweetness, that only a five-year-old could possess. Dana smiled sadly at her. Carrie didnít call him dad or daddy. They were told to call him Ďsirí. He liked to control. He was controlling her. She looked up and caught the teacher staring at her, her hand shot up to her face. And remembered there was no bruise there. The teacher was looking at them in pity. She knew what was going on.

"Thank you for staying with them." Dana said, feeling embarrassed. She felt so angry at Adam for forcing her to feel like less of a person in front of everyone, even when he wasnít there. She never used to be like this. She used to be a strong woman. But now....she was juggling, work, kids, and, trying to please her abusive cheating husband. He cut her down. Something had to give.

On their way home, Carrie babbled about kindergarten, and Nathan a sat silently looking out the window, telling Carrie to shut up when she got carried away with her story.

Dana looked at Nathan out of the corner of her eye. He was eight years old and he had seen more than a child should. Wide blue eyes, contemplative. Nathan looked like her, except for his dark brown hair. He was more of a help raising Carrie than her own father has. If you could call him a father. Drinking, drugs, bringing home women in front of the children.

She didnít know what to do. He was out of control and she was afraid of him. No one knew the full extent of the abuse. She wasnít even sure if she loved him anymore. But she didnít even dare leave, especially with the kids. He would surely kill her and there was no way she would leave her babies alone with him and his cheap whores.

**

By the time they got home it was dark. Dana saw Adamís car in the driveway. She took a few cleansing breaths before she turned the key in the door. If she went in mad, someone would get hurt.

When they stepped in, they didnít bother making themselves known. Quietly they went upstairs, glancing at her kids she stepped into her bedroom and stopped abruptly. He was home all right, but he sure wasnít alone. He was in bed with another woman.

"Oh my-" She wasnít able to finish.

"What the hell are you doing here!" Adam interrupted here harshly.

"I think I live here." Dana replied, making the mistake of making the sentence come out sounding sarcastic. Adam, who hadnít fully undressed yet leapt out of the bed and shoved her hard into the hallway. The blond looked on with boredom as he began to hit his wife.

Nathan and Carrie stopped when they heard the familiar sounds of their father hitting their mother. Carrie teared up and Nathan turned red with anger. Before he could stop her, she jumped off the bed and ran into the hallway where Adam was kicking her mother, who was on the ground in a fetal position.

"No! No! Stop it! Donít hurt Mommy no more! Stop it you mean, mean man!" Carrie shrieked with her unnaturally loud voice. Dana looked up in horror at the stance her daughter took to defend her.

"NO! Carrie go back into your room and lock the door!" She saw Adam going for the belt. "Now!" She screamed. Carrie looked torn and Nathan did as well. He tried to look brave as he stood in front of his sister. He had to protect her.

Adam came back out with his belt and looked at his kids. Dana scrambled to her feet as he raised the belt over the kids. She knocked him in the back of the knees and he lost his footing and crumbled. He turned around in fury. Dana didnít know what hit her as she was looking at her kids.

She tumbled unceremoniously down the stairs and crumpled in a heap at the bottom. She was so dazed, but she heard her children crying and screaming at the top of the stairs. If he hurt them, God help her, sheíd kill him.

The blond called Adam back into bed before he could make a move towards his kids. He gave them a stare and locked the door to the bedroom behind him.

Carrie and Nathan ran down the stairs to their crying mother. They helped her up the stairs and into Nathanís bedroom. Carrie whimpered and Nathan went and got the first aid kit. This was somewhat of a routine, Dana thought dismally. One that had to stop. Nathan cleaned his motherís wounds and laid her down in his bed. She reached out for her kids and they came to her. Carrie choked on her sobs, knowing that if they interrupted whatever was going on in the next room, they were in trouble.

They already were in trouble. They lay cramped into Nathanís bed, trying to block out the moans and screams of pleasure in the next room. They let the sweet darkness of sleep consume them. Their dreams a temporary escape from the nightmare that was their life.

**

Gaithersburg, MD

She held him and kissed him with such passion. He couldnít see her face, and he knew it wasnít Phoebe.

"Oh Fox, I love you." A throaty, sultry voice whispered.

"Who are you? Tell me so I can find you. I want to stay here with you forever." He moaned back.

"Itís fate Fox. Fate that weíre together like this. Oh, I love you Fox." She whispered again. "Youíll never know how much."

"Please donít go!" He pleaded. "Donít make me go back! Thereís too much pain! I canít trust again! Phoebe doesnít love me. No one does! Please!" He cried. He felt her hot lips trail fire up across his chest. "Oh, please." He whispered.

"Itís fate, love. Fate." She whispered back, as she began to disappear he caught a glimpse of the most beautiful blue/green eyes heíd ever had the pleasure of seeing.

"Fate, fate, fate, fate, fate........."

**

Over a thousand miles away

He held her and kissed her with such tenderness. She couldnít see his face, and she knew it wasnít Adam.

"Oh Dana, I love you." A deep sultry voice whispered.

"Who are you? Tell me so I can find you. I want to stay here with you forever." She whimpered back.

"Itís fate Dana. Fate that weíre together like this. Oh, I love Dana." He whispered again. "Youíll never know how much."

"Oh please donít go!" She pleaded. "Donít make me go back to Adam! I donít love him! Heíll kill me! Please!" She cried. She felt his hot lips trail fire up and down her neck and throat. "Oh, please." She whispered.

"Itís fate, love. Fate." He whispered back, as he began to disappear she caught a glimpse of the most beautiful hazel eyes sheíd ever had the pleasure of seeing.

"Fate, fate, fate, fate, fate........."

Dana woke up sweating from the dream sheíd just had. It was so....vivid. So vivid in fact that she could still feel the lips of this dream lover on her body. She took a few breaths, remembering the gorgeous, deep, hazel eyes that looked at her with a love she desired to feel more than anything in the world.

She took a look around her and the sharp pain in her stomach, reminded her of the night before. The tears came soon afterwards, soft and silent.

"Mommy?" Came Carrieís small voice. Dana stopped mid-sob.

"Hi honey. You awake so soon?" Dana replied, wiping her face. Carrie stuck the raggedy doll, she refused to part with in her face.

"Annie says youíre sad. I agree wif her." Carrie said matter-a-factly. A genuine smile spread across Danaís face. She pulled the small girl to her, ignoring the pain in her stomach. Carrieís innocent smile and Nathanís rather sarcastic looking face could always brighten her spirits. They were the main reason she was still alive.

"Youíre a very smart girl, ya know that?" Dana asked.

"No sheís not. Sheís a peanut-head." Nathan interrupted, his eyes still closed. Dana leaned over and tickled him. Nathan laughed and fell off the bed with a thud. They were silent for awhile, listening, making sure Adam didnít hear. They all broke out in a chorus of giggles.

"*You* are a-um-a-a big pickle-puss!" Carrie countered.

"Okay okay enough name-calling." Dana said, chuckling at Carrieís choice of words. "Weíre going to go see Vickie and Jake McKinnon today. How bout that?" Dana asked.

"Goodyy-yyy-yy." Carrie exclaimed, bouncing on the bed. The kids loved visiting Jake and Vickie McKinnon. They often went there after worse nights than the last.

"Okay then, letís get ready to go. Up and atíem."

***

Gaithersburg, MD

Mulder Residence

"Fox, Youíve got some mail!" Caroline Mulder yelled to her son from downstairs.

"Thanks mom." Fox said, dourly. Caroline looked anxiously. Ever since heíd moved out of his house with the kids, he had been ridden with worry at what Phoebe might do in retaliation. Not to mention the impact his failed marriage had on him. Caroline hated Phoebe for what she was doing to her son and grandchildren.

She never approved of the marriage in the first place. Not that she had any say in it. They had eloped and she was so angry at what he had done that they hadnít spoken for months. She had thought it was his idea to elope, but she found out from a friend that it had been Phoebeís idea to elope. Imagine her dismay when she heard this little bit of information.

Caroline noticed that Foxís face had darkened as he read the note, his jaw clenching and unclenching.

"Fox? Fox what is it?" Caroline asked her son.

"Itís a court summons. Phoebe wants the kids *and* money. She claims itís child support. But her loser of a lover has no job. That little wench." Mulder spat.

"Fox, weíll fight her. We wonít let her take our kids." Caroline insisted.

"Damn straight."

***

Los Angeles, California

McKinnon Residence

"Oh Dana. What happened. Did he-?" Vickie stopped as she saw the kids come in.

"Hiya Vickie!" Carrie greeted, happily. She loved leaving the house. There was no question why. Vickie picked up the little girl and grinned at her.

"Hiya, Carrie." She replied, jiggling the girl around a bit. Nathan smiled an identical smile to his mothers. Vickie smiled back. "How ya holdin up kiddo?" Vickie asked.

"Iím doin okay. How bout you?" He replied, with a rather reserved expression.

"Iím fine thanks." Vickie answered, nodding slowly. "Hey I think Jake has some chocolate ice cream in the kitchen. You guys wanna go check?"

"Really? We get ice cream? Honest?! Chocolate ice cream?" Carrie asked in a hushed tone of excitement. Nathan even looked excited. Vickie fought off a wave of sadness for the deprived children.

"Yea, really." She said softly. Carrie and Nathan looked to their mother and she nodded. Vickie let Carrie down and she and Nathan high-fived each other as they ran into the kitchen. Dana watched them run off and wiped away the tear that formed there. Adam barely supported them, most of the good stuff in the house was marked "his". Dana barely made enough for the rent, so such pleasures as ice cream werenít often.

Jake motioned for her to sit on the couch. "So you want to tell me what happened?" Vickie and Jake were the only ones who Dana came to about the beatings. But she made them swear never to tell anyone about them, telling them that they werenít that bad.

Danaís mother didnít even know about it since Dana hadnít really spoken to her in years. Not since her marriage to Adam. Her father and mother never approved of her marrying him. They said that he was a control freak and he could never make her happy. They were more right than they thought. When the beatings started she was too stubborn to admit that they were right, so she and Adam moved to California. Adam didnít like Danaís parents, so even if she wanted to contact them she couldnít. Even when her father died he wouldnít let her go back. She wouldnít go back and face them a broken shell of a woman. She couldnít go back.

Dana looked up at her long time friend Vickie. She was small, about 5í4. Blue eyes and short blond hair, arched eyebrows, pert little nose, and a full pouty mouth. Always willing to lend an ear. She and Jake were so silly together. She envied them. What they had.

"Um, Adam forgot to pick-up the kids. They were there until five." Vickie made a silent Ďohí with her mouth. "When we got home, he was in bed with another woman. In *our* bed." Dana said, her voice wavering. "When he saw me, he got mad and...." She motioned to herself. "Carrie came out and yelled for him to stop, I was on the ground and....he got the belt," Dana began to cry, and Vickie moved closer horrified, placing a comforting arm around her friend.

"Oh jeezuz Dana did-did he hit Carrie?" Vickie asked.

"No. I got to him before he got to her and Nathan. He hit me and threw me down the stairs. And then he went back in his room." Dana cried. Vickie was appalled as she held her friend. How could she just sit here, knowing her best friend was being abused and cheated on by her husband?

"Oh honey, why didnít you come over? Are you okay?" Vickie asked with concern.

"I couldnít come I was so....It was an effort to just get up the stairs. Iím okay now, my stomach hurts a bit. He......kicked me." Dana hesitated on the last sentence. A while ago, before Carrie, Dana had been pregnant, but Adam didnít know heíd beaten her and kicked her in the stomach.

She miscarried by herself. To this day not a soul knew about it. Another weight to her broken, tattered soul. "I slept in Nathanís room, with Carrie and Nathan. We could here them....in the other room." She ended with a high-pitched whimper. Vickie held her as she cried.

"Oh honey, we-we need to tell someone." Vickie said. Dana pulled back in horror.

"No!"

"Honey you have to. Look at how this is affecting your children. Look at how itís affecting you. Dana this is killing you. I wonít stay silent any longer. You arenít the strong-willed person you once were. You arenít the same." Vickie reasoned. Dana looked frightened.

"If I tell, heíll kill me. No, Iíll fix it, just, let me talk to him." Dana said, wringing her hands.

"Dana no-"

"Please! Just let me talk to him. Please. Itís not like he wants to hit me, itís just that I havenít been a good wife, thatís all. The women are there because, because I havenít had time to satisfy him."

"Dana that is the biggest load of *crap* that I have ever heard in my life! You are twice the woman that any of his whores can ever be. If he likes cheap and nasty, Fine! He doesnít deserve someone like you." Vickie said, getting angry. How dare this monster do this to her friend.

Danaís mouth opened and closed. "What?" Vickie asked. "What is it?"

"I-I had a dream, last night." She said, quietly, as though Adam would come storming through the door any moment.

"What was it about?" Vickie asked. Dana hesitated.

"W-well, I was with a man. He-he touched me and he loved me. I could feel it. Coming off of him in waves. He said it too. His voice was low and...sexy. He felt so good and he touched me and kissed me with such tenderness. He said it was fate. No it wasnít Adam. Adam is rough, but *he* was gentle and warm. I didnít see his face. Just heard his voice and felt his skin like a ghost on mine....and I saw his eyes. They were the most perfect hazel eyes youíve ever seen in your life...." She tapered off.

Vickie sat there a tad warm. "Wow." She breathed.

"Yea, wow. I knew that this was what love felt like, being loved. I want to be loved like that." Dana said ruefully.

"Then leave Adam." Vickie said, bluntly.

"I canít. Please just, let me handle it okay? Please?" Dana pleaded. Vickie looked at her for a long time.

"I am giving you *one* chance. If I even *think* that there is a new bruise on you, I will call someone." As Vickie warned her, Dana said "Okay okay okay."

"That was a threat, in case you donít know." Vickie wagged a finger menacingly and Dana chuckled.

"I know you hold true to your threats, Vick." Dana said, smiling.

"You know it honey." Vickie said with mock-cockiness. "Letís go get some ice cream."

"Iím all for it."

**

Washington DC

3 months later

The divorce was now final and so was the custody of the kids. Fox had custody of all three of the kids. Phoebe had visitation rights every other weekend. The house was being sold, both had agreed to doing so. Fox had gotten a town house on the border of Virginia.

They were leaving the courthouse, Fox feeling like a new man. Not that it didnít still disgust him to see her pregnant with another manís child. It saddened him to see it as well. It made him wonder what he had done wrong to drive her into the arms of another man. He wondered that every night he lay down alone in bed.

Phoebe came out frowning with Jay, her lover, at her side. Fox glanced at them and opened the car door and was about to put Joey in the car seat, when Phoebe called out to them.

"Fox wait!" Fox straightened up and watched them approach with detachment. Jay put a possessive arm around her. Fine with me, sheís your problem now, Fox thought. "What?" he asked.

"I have a doctorís appointment." She said. Fox raised an eyebrow.

"So what? Itís not my kid." Fox said without much emotion. Phoebe huffed and said,

"I want the kids to come. To see the sonogram."

"Why?" Fox asked, innocently.

"*Because*, the new baby will be their brother or sister." Jay piped in with annoyment.

"Actually only *half* brother or sister and my children do not concern you." Fox said to Jay.

"Fox, donít be difficult." Phoebe said.

"I have custody of them, since you obviously forgot. I donít think this counts as every *other* weekend. If the kids went with you, I would have to go and *I* sure as heck donít wanna be there-" Fox was cut off by Jay.

"Why donít we ask the kids."

"Why donít you mind your own business." Fox cut in.

"Weíll ask the kids." Phoebe said standing between the two tense men. Phoebe walked over to the car. "Hey guys, how about coming to the doctor with me to see your new brother or sister."

"No thank you." Jenny said overly politely.

"I donít want a brother or sister." Alex said bluntly. Phoebe bristled.

"Well donít you want to come anyway?"

"Um...no." He said a matter-of-factly. Phoebe turned to Fox. He raised his eyebrows and shrugged.

"Say bye-bye Joe." Fox said, walking to the car.

"Bye-bye." Joey complied. Bye-bye and Ba were the only words he knew. Phoebe kissed Joey and hugged Alex, uncomfortably, Jenny was in the car before she could even think of hugging her.

"This isnít over Fox." Phoebe said with venom.

"Oh isnít it. Youíre out of a fortune, but," He motioned towards Jay, "at least ya have *true* love." Fox deadpanned, before getting into the car and driving off, leaving a furious Phoebe in his wake.

**

Los Angeles, California

It had been three months since her deal with Vickie, and Adam was really trying. Theyíd even been intimate once or twice. But it wore her to the bone. Sheíd had to plead with him to try and make the marriage work. Sheíd laid herself down in the mud, put her pride on the line, and had gone out of her way to make him happy with her. Heíd yelled at her a few times and grasped her a little too hard, but otherwise he had really tried.

Now Dana scrubbed the bathroom, while the kids played in their room. Adam had gone out somewhere. She never questioned him. He hated to be questioned. Dana jumped feeling a presence behind her. It was Adam. And he was drunk.

"Adam youíre drunk."

"So?" He began to grope her and she didnít like it.

"Adam stop." She said, trying to push him away. He pinned her arms to her sides as he straddled her hips, forcing her to the floor. "Adam please. Stop!" Dana cried. He slapped her hard across the face and forced her skirt up. "No, please!"

"Shut up! Come on baby." He hissed, the smell of bourbon made her gag.

"Adam please stoo-hop." She whimpered, beginning to cry. He ignored her ripping her panties off harshly. He began to undo his own belt.

"Mommy?" Carrieís curious voice came. Dana slammed the bathroom door.

"No honey itís okay, go play with Nathan." She yelled. Adam pulled his pants and boxers down around his ankles. The sight of him made her sick.

"Please Adam. I thought we were doing so well." Dana whispered.

"Be quiet." Came Adamís curt response.

"But the kids-"

"I said *shut* *up*." He growled kneeling between her legs. She began to cry again.

"Adam, donít. Please, Iím begging you. Stop." She whimpered between sobs. He ignored her pushing into her. She cried out in pain. He looked at her in disgust, but continued anyway. Long painful, jolty strokes. She cried and whimpered, but he wouldnít stop and he hurt so badly. He held her down by her hair. His eyes were dilated and all she saw was a monster. A stranger. Dear God, her own husband was raping her. The one who promised to honor and obey, to love in sickness and in health till death do they part. And he was raping her.

When he came, he called out a name unfamiliar to her, bringing forth a fresh stream of tears. Who was Roxanne? He pulled out and looked at her in disgust and slapped her just for the heck of it, drunk as he was. He got up pulled his pants on and left. She heard the main bedroom door slam. And she cried some more, sitting herself up. She leaned against the tub and cried for all it was worth.

They had been doing so well! How could this have happened? Whatever happened, she didnít want to be in this house. She got up and put back on her tattered panties, stumbling into the childrenís room where Nathan and Carrie sat huddled in a corner, looking frightened.

"Oh my babies, come to Mommy." She whispered through her tears. They ran to her and they hugged tightly. "Put your shoes on, we have to leave." She whispered, urgently. They didnít question her. They just did as told. This was routine and thatís why it was so sad.

They ran out to the car and drove off. She didnít know where she was going. There was no one to go to. Not even Vickie and Jake. No where to turn. She found a parking lot and leaned on the steering wheel and began to cry. Carrie began to cry as well. Dana gathered her to her. Nathan leaned over and rested his head on her shoulder.

It was done. Dana was completely empty. He had broken her.

**

Los Angeles, California

Dana waited until she thought Adam would be sober to go home. Maybe this was just a one time thing. This would be the last time she made an excuse for him.

When they came in carefully, they found him on the couch with a woman. Not only was there a woman but there were Vodka bottles on the floor. They were completely drunk.

"You BITCH!" Adam yelled seeing her and the kids at the door. Picking up Nathanís baseball bat, left on the floor he came at her.

"OH GOD!" She cried. "RUN! GO!" She screamed at her kids before the first blow caught her in the arm. Carrie screamed for her.

"MOMMY MOMMY COME ON! RUN!" She screamed. But Dana was on the floor. Adam had dropped the bat and was kicking her.

"MOMMA! MOMMAAAA!!" Carrie shrieked, running towards Adam, fists flying.

"CARRIE NOOOO!" Dana Screamed from the fetal position she had taken on the floor. She fought to get up. Adam raised his fist to Carrie, as she hit him, crying. Nathan pulled her away from him in time and he pulled her out the door.

"NOOO MOMMYYYYYY!!!" Carrie Squealed.

"Weíre gonna go get help!" Nathan yelled as they ran from the house.

Adam turned his fury back to his wife. She had managed to get up, holding her broken arm to her chest.

"You pathetic little bitch." He spat as he began his assault once again. He stopped suddenly and went back to the couch with the blond. Dana cried on the floor.

"Why Adam? Why?" She whimpered, trying in vain to get to her feet. Adam rolled his eyes.

"Because youíre an ugly, stupid, no-good, un-satisfying bitch." He said, as though asked what color the sky was. Dana whimpered again and licked her split lip.

"I thought you loved me!" She cried.

"Will you shut up!" He yelled.

"I hate you, I hate you, I hate you!" Dana shrieked on weak hand and knees. Adam didnít respond, only kissed the blond on the cheek.

"You are a terrible husband and father!" She screamed at him. Thatís when he got really mad. He got up took her by the front and threw her into the wall. Before she knew what hit her he threw a lamp at her and everything went black.

Adam went towards her, still angry. The blond, Roxanne, watched her on the ground bleeding, broken, and unconscious, and something in her clicked.

"Adam stop! Donít touch her. Letís go. The cops will come and I donít want to be here when they do. Letís go."

So they did. Dana Scully-Jones lay on the ground, bleeding, and waiting for death to come. Alone.

***

McKinnon Residence

They heard the pounding and screaming at the door and came running. Jake peeped out the window, because you could never be too careful in Los Angeles.

"Oh Jeez. Vick open the door, itís Nat and Carrie and theyíre alone." Jake said, feeling the worry creep up. Vickie swung the door open and Carrie threw herself at Vickie, sobbing.

"Oh Lord, Whereís your mother?!" Vickie asked, in a panic.

"Please! Dad was drunk and a lady was there and he took a bat aní aní Mommy told us to run aní we did aní he was hittin her aní....aní...." Nathan was half-way in tears. Vickie looked horrified at Jake.

"Iím there Vick, call the Police. Donít worry kids your mommy will be fine." Jake said, running out the door. Vickie picked up Carrie and ran to the telephone. When she finished her call she looked at the hiccuping kids and prayed for all three of them and silently asked why life was so unfair to innocent children and good-hearted people like Dana.

***

When Jake got there, the door was unlocked. No one was there, but the place looked a mess. He looked around frantically and then spotted Dana laying in a crumpled heap on the floor, a bloody gash in her head, a broken lamp next to her, her arm purple and swollen, in a strange direction, and she was bleeding in several different places.

"Oh God no." He exclaimed kneeling down next to her, afraid to touch her. She looked so fragile, so small. He felt for a pulse. It was weak, but it was there. "Stay with me Dana. Come on now." He heard sirens in the distance. "The ambulance is on its way. Hold on now. Youíve got two great kids to live for, not to mention me and Vickie." He whispered. Her pulse beat a little stronger. She needed to live.

***

Los Angeles Mercy Hospital

the next day

"I wanna see my mommy!" Carrie yelled at the top of her lungs. Vickie shushed her.

"Honey weíre gonna go see your mommy now." Jake assured. Carrie pouted.

"Is she okay? Did did, sir, make her not alive no more?" Carrie asked. ĎSirí is what they were supposed to call Adam.

"Honey your mommy is still here. Weíre gonna go see her okay, but donít be frightened at what you see, all right? Itís all to make your mommy better. And she may or may not be awake. She was unconscious when Jake found her."

"Whatís, whatís un-consheeus?" Katie asked.

"Well, it means your mommy is in a very deep sleep." Jake explained.

"Well wake her up. I wanna talk to her." Carrie said looking at the floor and shuffling her feet.

"I wish we could talk to her honey, but....she canít wake up. But maybe if you talk to her, sheíll know youíre her and sheíll wake up. Both of you." Vickie said looking from Carrie to Nathan. They looked at one another, back, and nodded.

When they walked into the hospital room, Dana was hooked up to several tubes. One from which a yellowish-red fluid came out. It was attached to her stomach. Jake wrinkled his nose, realizing that it was blood.

Vickie picked Carrie up and carried over to her motherís bedside.

"Mommy? Mommy, itís me Carrie." Carrie touched her mother's hand, minding all the tubes. "Mommy, donít go away okay? Okay?" Carrie shook her hand a little and pouted.

Nathan, with his constantly raised eyebrow, walked slowly over to his mother. Her beautiful face was bruised black and blue, her lip fat and swollen. A cast on her arm. There were bandages around her head, hiding her silky red-hair. The wide, blue eyes that matched his, swollen shut. What had that man, his....father done to her?

"Why didnít you run Mommy? Why?" He asked, sadly shaking his head. If he ever saw that man again, it would be too soon.

***

Dana had woken up a day later. The kids were ecstatic and they had cried, upon seeing her awake. Jake had taken the kids to the cafeteria to get something to eat. Vickie sat in a chair next to Danaís bed. Dana stirred.

"Dane? Honey you awake?" Vickie probed.

"Mmm," She licked her lips and sighed. "Vickie," She rasped. "I need your help."

"Of coarse honey anything." Vickie said.

"The kids are staying with you right?" Vickie nodded.

"Adam hasnít come back yet?" Vickie shook her head frowning.

"No the big bum." Vickie said.

"Good. I need you to go pack all of the kids things, I mean everything. I need you to pack all my stuff as well. And then I want you to go buy three plane tickets."

"Plane tickets?!" Vickie exclaimed. "Why?"

"Itís like you said, I need to leave for my kids and for myself." Dana said.

"But I didnít mean-"

"No. I need to start over Vick. I need to start a new life for myself and for my children. I canít live like this anymore. Please." Dana pleaded.

Vickie sympathized. "Where do you want to go?" She asked resignedly. Dana would have smiled if it didnít hurt so much.

"Maryland. I need to find my mother." Dana said looking out the window.

**

The plan was set, bags packed, and plane tickets bought. When Dana had told Nathan and Carrie, they took it like troopers. There was nothing here for them, there was nothing keeping them here. Leaving Vickie and Jake would be hard, but it was time to move on.

Dana was discharged from the hospital today. Nothing left but some bruises and a broken arm. Jake had all their luggage in his jeep. They went straight to the airport from the hospital.

"You ready to go?" Jake asked ringing his hands. Dana nodded and placed an arm around Nathan.

"Weíre ready. Thank you so much for this. I owe you everything, for what youíre doing for me and my kids." Dana said. Jake nodded.

"Anything for you guys." He said, quietly. Vickie walked up behind them, shutting her cell phone.

"Hey Dana, guess what? I just found your mother. She lives in Arlington. Sheíll be at the airport when you get there."

Dana gasped. "You found my mom?" She enveloped the taller woman in a tight embrace, as tight as she could with one arm. "Thank you so much. Oh thank you."

"Hey you really wanna thank me, youíll write everyday. And donít be afraid. I got the tickets under different names. He wonít be able to find you. I promise." Vickie said teary-eyed.

"I write you every single day." Dana whispered.

"Now we all know thatís a down right lie but, youíll do your best and so will we. Take your time and get your feet." Jake said with his usual mischievous/innocent grin.

"We will." Dana said. Just then the woman on the loud speaker called for the flight to Washington DC. "Thatís us." Dana said nervously. "Kids."

Nathan and Carrie stepped forward and exchanged teary-eyed hugs.

"Last call for flight 2037 to Washington DC." The woman announced. Taking one look back they stepped on the plane and into a new life.

** **

Washington DC

Dulles National Airport

Maggie Scully had not seen her daughter in ten years. She had not seen her grandchildren at all. She got pictures, but that didnít compare to actually seeing them. She didnít understand why Dana had just picked up and left with that Adam so suddenly.

So after almost ten years, imagine her surprise when childhood friend Vickie Hudson McKinnon calls and says that Dana needed her help and that she was coming down. Vickie hadnít said anything else, just that Dana would explain when she got there. The first thing she felt was....nothing. But now. She felt anger. Ten years. Dana hadnít even come home when her father had died!

She heard Danaís flight being called and looked around for her daughter, trying to keep her anger in check. She was still her daughter, after all. Then off the plane came a small woman, arm in a sling, and face bruised in several different places. By her sides, two small children trailed. She was so small. She instantly knew where the bruises had come from and with this realization came pain for her daughter, all her anger melting away.

Dana looked up at the sound of her name. It was her mother. And suddenly the tears came. "Mom!" She cried dragging her children with her. She fell into her motherís arms.

"Oh Dana! My baby girl. He did this to you didnít he. Oh why didnít you tell me? I would have understood."

"I was so scared momma. Iím sorry. He almost killed me, I had to run, my kids-Oh, my kids. Mom, these are your grandchildren. Nathan and Carrie Margaret." Dana stepped aside and Nathan and Carrie stepped out. Carrie pursed her lips and decided that she was a nice looking grandma. She stepped up to her.

"Hello honey." Maggie Scully said with tears in her eyes. They looked like Dana.

"How come youíre sad. Donít ya like us?" Carrie asked, timidly.

"Oh Sweetheart I like you very much. Iím not sad. Iím very very happy." Maggie said, wiping her eyes at Carrieís befuddled expression.

Nathan stepped forward. "Grandma, where are we gonna live?" He asked. He was scared of the new surroundings.

"Youíll stay with me. Where your mom grew up." Maggie answered.

Nathan grinned. "Cool." Maggie hugged the both of them and cried. Dana looked on and couldnít help but think of how much time she wasted with Adam.

"Oh look at me. Iím getting you all wet." Maggie laughed. "Your luggage was forwarded to my house. Letís go home." Maggie said taking Carrie and Nathanís hands.

Dana sighed. "You donít know how good it feels to hear that." Dana said. Maggie stretched a hand out to her. She was going home.

***

Scully Residence

They reached Maggieís house and Dana felt a whirlwind of emotions as she stepped into her childhood home. Nothing had changed. Maggie prepared some tomato soup and cheese sandwiches for them all and sent the tired children upstairs to sleep. Carrie in Danaís childhood bedroom and Nathan in her brother Charlieís bedroom.

Dana and her mother now sat at the kitchen table talking.

"The beatings started about five months after we were married. We moved to California and they got worse after Nathan was born."

"Why didnít you tell me? Why didnít you call for help?" Maggie asked, leaning over the table.

"I was afraid and ashamed I guess. You told me you didnít like him and you were right. It wasnít that I didnít want to come to Daddyís funeral, itís that he would let me. He was never a father to the children. Always getting drunk, bringing home women."

"Oh Dana."

"He was really trying for the past four months. He really was, but one day he came home drunk and he....he raped me with the kids in the house. He didnít even say *my* name." Dana cried. Maggie didnít trust herself to speak.

"I came back hoping he was sober. He was with a woman on the couch. He came at me with a bat. He almost hit Carrie. I told them to run. He beat me and then I yelled at him, he threw a lamp at my head and I woke up in a hospital. He disappeared and I had to run. I couldnít stay there Mom. He was killing me....and my kids. I came here to start over. Maybe be a nurse someplace. Iíd like to stay here, if thatís okay. Until I can find a place of my own. I wonít go by Jones anymore. Iíll go by Scully."

"You know that thatís fine with me Dana. As long as youíre happy and safe. You're safe now honey. Come now. You need your sleep."

**

Four months later

"Well, what do you kids want to do today?" Phoebe asked her kids. This weekend she had the kids. Alex and Jennie regarded their mother with boredom.

"I donít know." Jennie and Alex said in unison. Phoebe pursed her lips and turned to Joey.

"Hey Joey what do you want to do today?" She asked not expecting him to answer.

"Ba ba?" He inquired. Phoebe sighed and the kids sighed. Hey and this was only the *first* hour. Phoebe looked at Jay for help.

"Um, hey Alex. You like basketball?" Jay asked the young boy. Alex popped his thumb in his mouth and answered,

"Yea, Daddy aní I wike de Knicks. Wight Jen?" Jennie nodded.

"Yup. Daddy even took us to a Knicks game in New York once. After Joey was born. Mom I think you were sick or something." Jennie said. She did the hidden sarcasm thing well. She got it from her dad.

"Yea well, how bout we go shoot some hoops Alí." Jay continued.

"My name is Alex." Was all Alex said, before Jennie jumped in.

"Why are you only asking him? Cause heís a boy isnít it? Just because Iím a girl, you think I donít want to play basketball. Heís five years old for crying out loud. How is he supposed to beat you at basketball?"

"Jennie." Phoebe said warningly.

"Well itís what heís doing isnít it? Forget it. Youíre just gonna defend him cause heís your boyfriend." Jennie said neutrally.

"Okay okay. Do you want to come play too Jennie?" Jay asked. Jennie looked at him for a moment and then sat back in her chair.

"No thank you Mr.Wilson." She said, looking at her shoes.

"Aaalright then, how about it Alex." Jay said turning to the younger boy. Alex shook his head and concentrated on sucking his thumb. Phoebe sighed. This wasnít working. The kids refused to accept Jay and there was this tenseness every time they came.

"Okay children, I know this is hard for you and Iím not sure what you father said tha-"

"Daddy didnít say anything about you!" Jennie yelled, jumping to defend her father.

"Okay, but the way you're treating Jay is unfair. Heís just trying to be your friend. Canít you think of him like a-a second daddy?" Phoebe pleaded.

"I donít want another daddy! I donít like Jay! He tried to take us away from Daddy and so did you. I donít know what you and Jay were doing before you and Daddy got divorced, but I know it was bad! You were always mean to Daddy when he tried to be nice to you, but youíre nice to Jay! What does Jay have that Daddy doesnít? Daddy is a whole lot better than Jay! At least I never saw Daddy naked with another woman!" Jenny ranted.

"Thatís enough young lady! You will apologize to Jay immediately!" Phoebe yelled.

"No! Why should I apologize him? Alls he did was ruin our family and so did you! You never loved daddy, ever, did you?" Jenny yelled, crying. "Did you!?" She screamed again. Phoebe was silent.

"You're upsetting your mother." Jay said, going to Phoebeís side.

"I donít care! I want my daddy! I want my daddy!" Jenny screamed. Joey, sensing the tension in the room started to cry.

"Dada?" He inquired. Alex looked scared. He was confused at all the screaming. Didnít he hear his mother say she didnít want them? And he could never really look at his mother, really without remembering what happened in the bedroom. Seeing her naked with that man. The man who wasnít Daddy.

"Youíre upsetting your brother now. Go to your room and think about what youíve just done." Phoebe said, getting up with some difficulty because of her round stomach.

"I want Daddy. Mom, please? I w-w-want t-to go h-home." Jenny hiccuped. Phoebe looked at her daughter for a moment and then nodded. What else could she do? Maybe in time they would grow to like Jay. Even think of him as another father. It was always hard for kids at first.

**

Arlington

Fox had just walked in when Phoebe called and said, to come and pick up Jenny.

"What? Is anything the matter?" Heíd asked. "No just come and get her." So once again, Fox Mulder was on the road and driving back to Phoebe and Jayís house. He was only a few minutes from their house when his cell phone rang.

"Hello." Fox answered with a sigh.

"Wow, Fox you sound pooped." Came the female voice on the other end.

"Hey Sam."

"Hey big bro where are you? Iíve been trying at your place for awhile. I thought youíd already dropped the kids off at the Ďwicked witchesí house." Samantha Mulder- Carter said.

"Phoebe called and told me to come pick up Jenny."

"Something wrong?" Sam inquired.

"I donít know. She just said to come get her and I wish you wouldnít refer to her as the wicked witch." Fox said.

"Why? After what she did to you, she deserves to be called worse. You arenít even having any fun anymore. Youíve completely immersed yourself in your work and what is she doing? Living with her lover and pregnant. Hmm which sounds better?" She asked faking stupidity.

"Can it twerp. Iím here. Iíll call you later." Fox said, hanging up has cell phone and going to the door. He knocked twice and Jay answered it.

"Whereís my daughter? What happened?" Fox asked, trying to step inside.

"Sheís inside, sheís fine, but I need to talk to you." Jay said.

"What do you need to talk to me about?" Fox asked, folding his arms.

"Look Jenny just threw a tantrum in there. I donít know what youíre saying to theses kids but I suggest you stop, for Phoebeís sake and for the kids." Jay said folding his arms as well.

"I have no idea what the hell youíre talking about. My kids are no concern of yours. If they donít like you, tough. They did see you naked with their mother, what else should they think of you?" Mulder said mildly.

"Look-look I know you still love Phoebe. I mean after over ten years together, I wouldnít expect any less, especially with a wonderful woman like Phoebe."

Mulder let out a bark of unbelieving laughter. "Oh yea. Loyal Phoebe to the end." He muttered.

"But think about her Fox."

"Itís Mr. Mulder." Fox interrupted.

"Fine Mr. Mulder. She wants to be with her kids. Sheís getting upset over this and it isnít good for her pregnancy. Pregnant women shouldnít be upset and..."

"I-I know that. I went through three pregnancies with her already. What do you want me to do? Theyíll think what they want to think. A child just doesnít get over something like this. If you want them to like you, just give it time. I donít control their thinking." Fox said, ticked off.

"Daddy! Daddy!" Jenny cried, as she ran past Jay. Fox picked up Jenny and spun her around.

"Hey Starbuck. Whatís the matter? How come you donít want to stay?" Fox asked his daughter.

"I just donít, Daddy. Please take me home. I donít want to stay here with Jay and....and Mom." Jenny cried. Fox looked up at Phoebe who had Joey by the hand.

"Maybe I should take Joey too. You canít even pick him up Phoebe."

"Dada!" Joey squealed. He looked from his mom to his father, expecting something. Fox set Jenny down and picked up Joey, who had toddled over to him.

"Fox, Jay can take care of him." Phoebe said.

"Jay does not have legal custody of him. I donít want him taking care of my son." Fox protested. "Alex, you can stay with your mother if youíd like." Fox said to his son.

"Um, no thanks. If itís okay wif you mom, I wanna go wif daddy." Alex said with his slight lisp.

"Go ahead. Itís okay." Phoebe said, clearing her throat. Fox was just being difficult. She thought awhile while she watched them pile into the car and leave. She was alienated from her kids. Joey spent most of his time with Fox, as well as the other kids. She had one on the way and Fox sure didnít need any money. There was no obligations on her part to the kids. None financial anyway.

**

When they got home, Alex and Jenny went to their rooms to change there clothes. Fox put Joey in his playpen, gave him a bottle, and made himself a cup of coffee. He looked down at Joey and knelt down next to him.

"Hey bud. What do you think of Jay and your mommy? Yea she wasnít around much was she?" He asked. Joey placed a small hand on his nose and Fox chuckled. "Love ya champ." he whispered, laying his head lightly on the small childís chest. The baby patted his father on the head.

"Wuv woo dada." Joey mumbled around his bottle. Fox'sí head shot up from his chest and looked at his baby boy with awe.

"Thatís my boy." He cooed kissing him on the top of his head. He then thought a moment and picked him up and carried him into Jennyís bedroom where Alex and Jenny were giggling over a book. Jenny looked up.

"Hi Daddy."

"Hi Sweetie." Fox replied, sitting on the bed with Joey. "Look can I talk to you kids for a minute?"

"Kayí. What is it?" Jenny asked.

"Um, can you put the book away for a moment?" Fox said, motioning to the book Alex was trying to read upside down. They put the book away and got back on the bed.

"Thanks. Look, Jay isnít really important at the moment, but itís your mom I wanted to talk to you about." Fox started. The kids just looked at him. "What are your feelings about her, I mean do you feel angry at her? Or at me?"

"No daddy, you didnít do anything." Jenny said with wide eyes.

"What about your mom?" Fox asked, his eyes imploring. Jenny pulled on her corduroy pant leg a bit and then looked at her teddy bear, Mr. Snuffles.

"Jenny?" Fox tried, knowing she was hiding something. "You know you can tell me anything."

"And you wonít get mad?" Jenny asked in a small voice, sounding seven instead of twenty-one, which is what she usually sounding like.

"No honey." Fox answered. Jenny bit her lip and then said.

"I knew about mom and Jay, before you did. I heard her talking on the phone. And she said never to tell you. She never told me....um, um, whatís that word when someone knows you know, but they give hints, but donít really give hints?"

"Specific?" Fox suggested.

"Yea that. She didnít tell me pecifically that she knew I knew. You know she said it just in case I knew." Jenny said.

"Why didnít you tell me?" Fox asked, knowing it was a stupid question. She was seven and she knew her mother was cheating on her father, what was she supposed to do? "Never mind honey you donít have to answer that." He said.

"How does that make you feel? Now." He asked. Jenny poked her lower lip out.

"It made me mad and sad. It still makes me mad and sad.

"Mad at your Mom?" Fox asked, looking up.

"Uh hm. Cause youíre better then Jay and she was sayin bad things about you and I donít understand what they were doing but I know it was bad. Her and Jay arenít even married."

"I know honey. What about you, Alex? How do you feel?" Fox asked his son.

"I donít know. Iím confused an, an I saw mommy naked." He said with hushed tone, conspiratorial tone. He seemed a bit ashamed too. Like every time he looked at his mother, that was all he saw. That scene in the bedroom.

"But you donít hate your mother do you?" Fox asked. Alex thought a moment and then replied,

"Youíre not assposed to hate people, specially your parents, right?"

"Son you canít help your feelings. How do you feel about your mommy?" Fox asked.

"I, I donít know. I wanna love her. But she isnít around a lot. But I donít like Jay. Heís tryin to be our new daddy an I donít wanna new daddy. I like you." Alex said with the innocence of a five year old. Fox chuckled and ruffled his sonís hair. Oh Phoebe how can you not want to be a part of this? Fox asked her silently.

"I like ya too Alex." Fox replied laughing. "Look kids. I know mommy isnít around a lot and weíre not together like you want us to be-"

"If mom stayed, you would just be more sad. She wasnít around a lot like real mommys. Mom didnít really love you did she? I asked her and she didnít say anything." Jenny interrupted.

"Yes, well, thatís not the way it is. I know youíre mad at your mommy right now, but I want you to try and forgive her for what sheís done to us. Do you know what forgive is?"

"Yes." Jenny answered. Alex shook his head.

"Forgiving is when someone does something wrong to you, you say itís okay and your not mad at them anymore. But if you're still mad at them, it really isnít forgiving. You donít have to do it over night, but work on it. Do you understand?" Fox explained.

"Yea, I think so." Alex replied, nodding slowly. "Daddy do you forgive mom?" Alex asked. Fox struggled for a moment and then nodded slowly.

"Yes I do. It was not easy for me." He said laughing. "I was mostly mad at her for you all, but Iím okay now." Fox said, raising his eyebrows at his son. Alex nodded.

"Good. You know mom is gonna have a baby too. But the only difference is Iím your daddy, but Jay is that babyís daddy. I know that you want nothing to do with Jay right now, or your mother but the baby, is going to be your half brother or sister. You need to accept this child too. Itís important that you do and itís not bad to love the baby your mother is carrying no matter who the father is. The baby never did anything, it didnít get to choose its parents or ask to be born into such a family, but it is. And we need to try and welcome it. Okay?"

"Weíll try Daddy." Jenny said, solemnly. Alex nodded quickly.

"Yea Daddy weíll twy." He said. Fox smiled and looked down at Joey who had fallen asleep and was now lightly snoring. The three awake Mulders laughed.

"Hey I think thereís some ice cream in the freezer, but you donít like ice cream do you?" Fox asked with mock-disgust. "Hey I could cook you up some nice green broccoli. YAY!"

"Ewwww!" Alex and Jenny giggled. "No Daddy, we like ice cream!" Alex squealed as they went into the kitchen.

"Ohh, but itís so smooth and creamy, yuck. And all that sugar, who wants any of that? Itís a cavity waiting to happen." Fox mock-argued. The kids giggled at the funny face their father made and got some spoons. Laughter trailed from the kitchen.

**

Georgetown

Dana opened the door to her apartment with a sigh and dropped her keys on the coffee table.

"Mommyyyyy!" Carrie squealed, running into her mother, as she was taking off her pumps.

"Hey baby girl." Dana grinned. "Hey Mom Iím home!" Dana yelled. Maggie popped her head out of the kitchen, tilted her head, and smiled at her daughter sympathetically.

"Hi sweetie, you look horrible." Maggie said.

"Thanks." Dana replied with good-natured sarcasm.

"Doctor Carrie can fix you!" Carrie piped up. Dana laughed and detached herself from her daughter.

"Lemme go change and when I come back Dr. Carrie can do whatever she wants to me." Dana said, in happy resignation.

"Hi, Mom." Nathan yelled from his room.

"Hi, honey!" Dana yelled back, on her way to her bedroom. Carrie and Maggie watched her go.

"She looks pooped." Carrie stated a matter of factly. Maggie laughed.

"You got that right. Well thereís only one of your Mommy and two of you." Maggie said.

"No there isnít. There is only one of me and one of Nathan." Carrie said with, tilting her head up to her grandmother.

"Sorry button-nose. I momentarily forgot how to count." Maggie said as though it was the most bizarre thing to ever happen to her. Carrie laughed.

"Gramma, you're funny."

"Aren't I though?" Maggie quipped looking up to the ceiling. Nathan came out and sat at the kitchen table.

"Whereís mom?" He asked.

"Changing her clothes. Go check on her Carrie. If sheís asleep donít wake her." Maggie said.

"Okey dokey!" Carrie squealed scampering off in the direction of the bedroom.

"Momís tired a lot isnít she?" Nathan asked.

"Yes she is. The hospital is a very busy place to work." Maggie said setting food on the table.

"Maybe if we went to the hospital and helped, mommy wouldnít be so tired!" Carrie said, running back into the kitchen.

"Thatís a sweet idea, honey, but I donít think so. Is mom asleep?"

"Yup. She is out like a light." Carrie said, a matter of factly. Maggie couldnít help but laugh at her granddaughter's sweetness.

"Well time to eat. Weíll just have to put this stuff in the fridge for her." Maggie said. She sighed, thinking about her daughter. Dana was your typical frazzled mother, just barely making it with her two kids. Theyíd bought a nice apartment in Georgetown and Dana had gotten a job at the hospital. Despite her degree, she didnít have time to become a full time doctor, although she could. But she had her kids to think about. Her mother took care of them when she could and her friend Pauline took them other times.

Lately Dana had been coming home late and too tired to even eat. She barely spent time with her kids, but did so when she could. Time just wouldnít allow. Not to mention the fact that she didnít want to be high profile. She wasnít sure what was going through Adams mind, but it had been months and he was slowly becoming a distant memory.

Maggie sighed again. Dana didnít even have time to date. She wanted so much to introduce her to Carolineís son, who had recently divorced, but since Dana didnít even have time for her kids, how was she supposed to get a social life?

Maggie put the kids to bed when they were done eating and got ready to leave. She felt bad leaving, but she had to. My poor baby, she thought before leaving. She was barely making it. Something had to give. And soon.

***

Arlington

"Fox, you look frazzled." Samantha said to her brother, following him outside.

"Sam donít you have a family or something?" Fox asked, leafing through his mail.

"You shouldnít look frazzled." She went on, ignoring his last comment. "You gave me three rainchecks for lunch in the past two weeks. What gives?"

"Sam, Iím busy. I have work and the kids."

"But weekends Fox. Week-ends. Remember those?"

"Vaguely." He mumbled, frowning at a letter.

"Fox, even ADsí of the FBI get time off. You need a social life. Itís been over seven months Fox. You havenít even been on a date yet. When was the last time youíve been with a woman?" Fox scowled at her. "Okay bad question. But really Fox, you need......"

Fox toned out the rest of her lecture as he read a letter addressed to him, from Phoebe.

Dear Fox,

I know Iím the last person you want to hear from, but this needs to be said and then I will be out of your hair. Jay and I are moving and I think it best that you raise the children on your own. I love Jay and I want to start a new life with him. All new. Just him, me, and the baby.

Itís obvious the kids hate me and Iím not going to wait and pretend everything is going to be fine. Because itís not. I know you think Iím being selfish. Maybe I am. But those kids were never really mine, because I never really wanted them. You did. No matter what you think, I do love my children. Tell them so. But I have no responsibilities to them, not financially anyway, and I want to live my life the way I deserve to. I hope you can understand that.

Love, Phoebe Green

Love Phoebe *Green*?! Understand? Oh yea I understand! Fox fumed, in his mind. Any lingering feelings he had for Phoebe *Green* died right then and there.

"Shit."

"....And further more Fox MulderÖHey whatís the matter?" Samantha asked, mid-lecture. Fox had stopped cursing after the kids were born, so it was a surprise to hear him say that.

"Phoebe wrote to me. She says that she and Jay moved and she wants nothing to do with the children anymore. That they arenít her responsibility." Fox spat with disgust.

"Oh geez. Whatís her deal?"

"Dammit! How could she do something like this? These are her children for crying out loud! How can she say she has no responsibility to them?!" Fox ranted. He stopped hearing a noise to his left. Alex and Jennie were standing there.

"Mommy doesnít want us anymore?" Jennie cried. Fox bent down and they ran to him, crying.

"Iím sorry Daddy. Itís all my fault. I was mean to mommy." Jennie cried.

"No baby. This is not your fault. None of it is. This isnít anybodies fault." Fox murmured, soothingly.

"But I was mean to mommy." Jennie cried insistently.

"But it still gave her no right to leave you, without talking to you first. Iím sorry your mommy had to go away." He whispered. Samantha bent down and hugged them from behind.

"Hey guys you know your daddy loves you very much. He will never ever leave you. And neither will I." She said. The kids nodded, sniffling, but didnít let go.

Mulder, silently cursed his ex-wife once again. And silently asked forgiveness for lying to his son. He never really forgave Phoebe.

***

Two months later

Thursday

Dana groaned. It was her first day off in ages and all she wanted to do was sleep. But someone was bouncing on the bed. Cursing mentally, she remembered that it was the first day of summer vacation. The kids were home. She opened her eyes carefully and came face to face with Raggedy Ann.

"Annie wants you to wake up." Carrie said.

"Itís too early for Annie to be making orders." Dana mumbled.

"But mommy-"

"Carrie go back to bed. Mommy wants to sleep." Dana said, irritably. Instantly sorry for the tone sheíd put into that sentence as Carrie poked her lower lips out and slowly made her way off the bed. Eyes watering she said, "You never have any time for us. Donít you love us anymore?"

"Oh baby come here. Mommyís sorry, sweetie. Mommyís sorry." She cooed, rocking her baby girl. She looked at the clock. It was 10:45. No wonder Carrie wanted her to wake up. Thinking back, sheíd barely spent anytime with her kids lately. This was not right. She looked at Carrie, with a determined look on her face.

"Ya know what? We are going out today." She declared.

"Even Nathan and Annie?" Carrie squealed.

"Even Nathan and Annie."

"YAY!" Dana smiled and hushed her a little.

"First Iím going to make blueberry pancakes for breakfast. Howís that? Then the park and whereever."

"Yippeeeee!" Carrie swung Annie around.

"Hey will you pipe down." Nathan said, walking into the bedroom. "Hey mommy your awake." He said with surprise.

"Weíre going to mommyís making blueberry pancakes and then weíre going to the park." Carrie squealed. Dana nodded when Nathan looked at her.

"Alright!" He exclaimed.

"Look," She reached a hand out to him and he came on the bed. "Iím sorry I havenít been spending a lot of time with you. Itís just been so hard you know?"

"Ya."

"I love you guys." She hugging them both.

"We love you too mommy." Carrie replied, grinning

***

Arlington

"Call me when you hear anything Danny. I want to be informed the minute something breaks in the case." As soon as Fox hung up the phone it rang again.

"Hello." He answered.

"Darn. I was hoping to catch you in the middle of getting ready for a date. You donít sound like you are." Sam said.

"Sam." Fox said warily. "I have the kids to take care of and my job. I donít have time for that kind of thing. Iím not interested."

"You know there is such a thing as a babysitter. You need to get over Phoebe and get on with your life. Jumping head first into work so that you donít have a social life is not exactly what I had in mind."

"Sam I have no time for this. Donít you have any other brothers to nag? Or better yet go find that husband of yours." Fox suggested. He could hear her scowl over the phone.

"Youíre my only brother, unfortunately. Iím just worried Fox. Momís worried. She really wants to introduce you to Maggieís daughter. She just moved her from Cal-"

"Iím sure sheís nice and everything, but I-am-not-in-ter-es-ted." He said, as though talking to a two year old.

"But Fox-"

"No Ďbut Foxí, Sam. Iím fine. Really. Please stop worrying about me. Iím expecting a call, so Iím gonna hang up now. Iíll call you later." Not waiting for an answer, he hung up.

He knew his sister meant well, but he didnít want to go through what he wen through with Phoebe. He couldnít risk getting hurt again. Never again.

"No Alex. Daddyís busy." Jennie hissed.

"I donít care. Iím bored. He doesnít do anything with us anymore."

"Well......Heís too busy to do anything with us." Jennie said, to him. Fox perked his ears and sat back thinking. He hadnít been spending a lot of time with the kids lately. An idea popped into his head. He jumped up.

"Hey!"

"Sorry daddy! We were just going-" Jennie started.

"Iím bored!" Alex wailed. Fox grinned.

"How would you kids like to go out to oh saaay Fudruckers."

"Really!?" Jennie and Alex squealed.

"You mean youíre not to busy?" Jennie asked.

"I am never too busy to take my children out for something fun. Now everybody in the car."

"Yaaaaay!" Jennie and Alex squealed, running towards the door. Fox smiled and picked up Joey and his baby bag. It was time for some fun

***

Rockville Maryland Fudruckerís

"An french fries, an a soda, an a cookie." Carrie finished with a giggle. Dana smiled at the young woman and set Carrie down.

"That will be all thanks Dana said smiling. She paid and steered the kids to find seats. They sat down next to the window, not noticing the tall man with his three kids come in and sit at the table adjacent to them.

Joey hummed the sesame street song to himself as Fox swirled his iced tea around. Dana, sipped her own iced tea at the next table. Both unaware of what was about to happen and who they were about to meet.

Some where far away clouds rolled into a field....

"F Mulder, your order is now ready." A woman said over the loud speaker. They all got up and went to pick up their get their order, going in the opposite direction.

"DanaS, your order is now ready." The woman said over the loud speaker.

"Yay, thatís us!" Carrie squealed, jumping up. Dana smiled and walked up with her kids, just as Fox and his kids left.

A rumble of thunder....

"Daddy I want some ketsup." Alex said.

"Sure." Fox replied getting up.

"Mommy I want some cheese sauce." Carrie said.

"Okay sweetie come on." Dana replied picking up the tray of catsup covered french fries. The minute Dana turned around she slammed straight into a man. The tray of catsup and fries, smushed into his jacket.

"Oh! Oh my goodness Iím so sorry!" Dana exclaimed aghast, looking at the stain on the manís jacket.

"Oh-itís all...uh Geez." This was his favorite jacket too, Fox thought sulkily. Dana made a mad grab for some napkins wiping at his jacket.

"I am so sorry." She couldnít even look at his face, she was so embarrassed.

"Oh itís all right. You donít have to-" Fox said trying vainly to wipe his jacket off. The kids sat, snickering at their parents' embarrassment, except for Carrie who was, distraught over her lost fries.

Finally Dana looked up at him and he looked down at her. Their gazes locked.

The storm began.

"Oh." Was all she could get out, staring into his beautiful hazel eyes. She was hyper-ventilating. This was not good. His mouth moved to form words, but it didnít happen. She was breath-taking.

"Iím so sorry." She breathed, tearing her eyes away from his. He was so handsome.

"Itís all right. Really." He replied. It was an old jacket anyway. Who the heck cared about Armani.

"I uh-You should soak that. Your wife might want to soak that in cold water before she washes that."

"Iíd have to mail it to her and Iím sure she wouldnít appreciate it. Where ever she is."

"Oh. Iím sorry. Please let me wash it for you then." Dana offered.

"Really, you donít have to." Fox replied, swinging his arm, as though to dismiss the whole thing.

"No please. I feel awful, just spare me a bit of dignity and let me wash it for you." Dana said, bowing her head. He looked at her for a long moment and she fidgeted under his gaze.

"Okay. If you insist." He said, smiling at her. She sighed and helped him take off his jacket although it was not necessary. "Um, call me....Hereís my number. I carry my cell phone with me everywhere, otherwise Iíd lapse into a catatonic state." Dana smiled and read the card.

"Fox?" She raised an eyebrow and Fox thought it was utterly sexy. He grinned at her.

"My parents claimed temporary insanity when they named me. How can I contact you miss...." He waited for her to give her name. She hesitated and then replied,

"Dana. Dana Scully. Weíre unlisted."

"Dana Scully?" He asked, taking a step forward. She resisted taking a step back. Fox knew he was towering. He had a habit of standing too close. "As in Maggie Scullyís daughter?"

Dana gave him a strange look and took a step back.

"No, donít freak. Itís just that, my motherís friends name is Maggie Scully and, now that I think about it I see a resemblance." Fox explained.

"Yes. Thatís my mother." Dana replied.

"Small world. Iíve met your mother a few times. Nice lady. Lemme give you my home phone number. Now that I think about it, Iíve gone through five in the past year." Fox took out a note pad and pen and sat down at their table.

He was extremely witty. Not to mention gorgeous. Something about him was terribly familiar though.

Fox looked up at Nathan and grinned. "Hey."

"Hi." Nathan replied, smiling. Fox turned to a pouting and crying Carrie.

"Sweetie, whatís the matter?" Dana asked, bending down.

"My fries." She whined. Before Dana could say anything, Fox popped in.

"Hey sweetie, how bout I buy you some new fries."

"Oh you donít have to-" Dana started. Fox waved his hand.

"I want to. I should have been watching where I was going. Me and my clumsy long limbs. Please. Itís the least I could do." Dana opened her mouth and then closed it.

"Itís up to you. Carrie?"

"Yay! Thanks Mister!" Carrie squealed.

"No sweat and call me Fox. Could you watch my kids for a minute while I go order?" He said turning to Dana. She nodded, not trusting herself to speak. He gave her his number and walked off with a wink. Dana hadnít realized that she was staring, because when she turned back, the kids were looking at her funny, causing her to blush beet-red.

She walked over to Foxís table and bent down.

"Hi. Whatís your name?" She said.

"Iím Jennie and thatís Joey and Alex. Whatís your name again?" Jennie asked.

"Iím Dana. Hi Joey." She said, moved to the high chair and smiled at the baby. Joey, who had been busy smushing his french fries, stopped and looked at her. He picked up a new one and tried to feed it to her, making an inquisitive grunt.

"Why thank you, but those are your fries." Dana said politely. Joey looked at her for a long moment, much like Fox had earlier and persisted to stick the fry in her mouth. Laughing, Dana gave up and let the baby give her the fry. Joey clapped and was ready to give her a piece of his cut up hamburger when Jennie cut in.

"Whatís your daughterís name?"

"Oh her name is Carrie. Carrie come say hi." Dana instructed. Carrie came over and grinned at Jennie. Jennie grinned back.

"Iím Jennie."

"Iím Carrie. How old are you?" Carrie asked, delighted to make a new friend.

"Iím seven. How bout you?" Jennie replied.

"Iím five. My brother over there is eight. His name is Nathan and he had cooties." Carrie said all in one breath. Dana rolled her eyes, while Jennie giggled.

"I do not." Nathan exclaimed, stomping over.

"Nathan say hi." Dana ordered.

"Hi." He said, eyeing Jennie and Alex. "How old are you?"

"Iím Five. I like the Knicks." Alex added at the end.

"Hey me too!" Nathan exclaimed. Fox came back and smiled at Dana, shyly. She smiled back.

"Alex did you say hi to Carrie? I think you two are about the same age."

"No." Alex replied as though heíd asked him if heíd willingly eaten carrots yet. Fox pursed his lips.

"Why not?"

"Girls have cooties." Alex declared.

"I do not! You do!" Carrie yelled back. Both parents rolled their eyes.

"Sorry. He isnít usually this rude." Fox explained, giving his son a look. Alex stared back evenly. Fox sighed in resignation.

"Itís okay theyíre at that everyone of the opposite sex has cooties stage." Dana said smiling.

"Where are my fries?" Carrie asked.

"Carrie!" Dana said, aghast. Carrie just pouted. Fox laughed and handed her the fries.

"Thanks Fox!" Carrie squealed. He smiled at her and turned to Dana.

"Thank you. You didnít have to do that, after I ruined your jacket." Dana said, quietly.

"I wanted to. Dana." He said, adding her name as an afterthought. "Your husband wonít mind you coming home with some strangers jacket would he?"

"Oh. My husband and I are not together anymore." Dana replied, quietly.

"Oh. Is it just me or is no one staying together anymore." Fox deadpanned. Dana graced him with a smile and then they stood uncomfortably for a moment and then retreated to their respective tables.

Carrie chomped happily on her fries, while Dana tried to keep her self from looking at Fox. He caught her staring once and winked at her. She turned as red as her hair.

Fox smiled to himself, when he caught her staring. It wasnít like he wasnít doing the same thing. He hadnít felt like this in a very long time. She looked so familiar too. Especially in the eyes. Joey looked at Dana and pointed at her.

"Pwitty?" He inquired. Fox smiled softly.

"Yes. Very pretty." He replied. Jennie looked at her father for a moment and then at Dana. She smiled to herself. It was about time.

**

Carlinoís Restaurant Friday

"So? Dish girl! I know that look!" Pauline prodded.

"What look?" Dana looked innocently at her.

"Oh! Now I *know* somethingís up. Tell me who the guy is!" Pauline said, grinning from ear to ear.

"I donít know what your talking abou-"

"Save it for Hollywood, kid. Spill." Pauline ordered. Dana sighed and then smiled.

"Donít laugh. His name is Fox." Dana said, feeling like a teenager talking about her latest crush.

"Get out! As in Fox Mulder?" Pauline asked.

"What? Does the whole world know him?" Dana asked throwing her hands up.

"No, but I do. Heís the Assistant Director of the FBI. Joe has worked with him on a few cases before. Heís a family friend. Wow, howíd you meet him?"

"I bumped into him. And I mean that in the most literal sense." Dana replied, turning red.

"Wow. So are you going for him? Heís a real catch. Obviously Phoebe was too stupid to realize it. Phoebe is his ex-wife. She ran off with her lover. Theyíd been having an affair, but Iíve said too much already." Pauline said. Dana chuckled. Pauline and Carrie would have field day with each other. They had such big mouths.

"I understand what heís went through. I donít know Polly, I mean. After what I went through with Adam, I donít know if I can trust another man again. Let alone be with one. Anyway, who would want me?"

"Now donít start with that crap Adam planted in your head. Youíre a beautiful, intelligent woman who deserves more than what that sorry excuse for a human being gave you. Dana, listen to me and listen to me good. After I had Dantae, I wondered if Joe would still want me. I was fat and I still am, but Joe did nothing but love me anyway. He loved me for me. All of me. Body and soul." Pauline took Danaís hands with her own. "Thatís what a husband does. And despite what you think of the whole male population right now, there are some decent men left in the world who wonít hand you bull. Fox Mulder is one of those men." Pauline paused for a moment. "Besides, you and Fox would look so cute together."

Dana burst into laughter and then sobered. "Iím so scared though. Iím so scared of getting too close. I havenít even....Iím scared."

"I know honey, I know. But you have to nip this thing in the bud. If you hide yourself from the world and close yourself off from love then youíll grow up into a very lonely woman. We all need love, Dana. *That* kind of love. You canít hide because the unknown scares you. Nathan needs a male role-model in his life and Carrie needs a daddy, who wonít raise his hand to hurt her, but to hug her. You need someone to hold you the way you deserve."

"I want to. I want to so badly, but......he isnít even interested. He never asked me out. Iím just fooling myself. And the funny thing is, he seems so familiar to me, but Iím positive Iíve never met him before. In the eyes." Dana said with a shiver. Pauline sighed.

"Just give it time honey." Pauline replied. Dana nodded. Time. How much time did she have before Adam found her and the kids?

***

Cin Cin Restaurant Saturday

"You look different Fox. Whatís up? Did you meet someone?" Samantha asked, dropping her fork and knife. Fox gave her a withering look.

"I meet lots of people." He replied.

"Cut it out butt-munch. Tell me who she is!" Sam demanded. Fox chuckled and sat back.

"Her name is Dana. Dana Scully." He whispered as though it was reverent. Sam beamed.

"That was the woman I was trying to tell you about!" Sam exclaimed. "Howíd you meet her?"

"At Fudruckers. She was there with her kids and she literally plowed into me with a tray of french fries. Anyway, she has my jacket. She insisted on washing it." Fox explained.

"Ohh, so are you gonna ask her out? Or have you already and you did it with her all last night?" Fox gave his sister another withering glare.

"I havenít asked her out and Iím not sure if I ever will." He replied.

"For the love of God, why?" Sam asked, incredulously. "Donít you think sheís pretty? I do."

"Itís not that. I think sheís the most incredible woman Iíve ever met. And I donít even know her. Sheís breath-taking. I havenít felt like this in a long long time. But after Phoebe....If I couldnít keep her, whoís to say I wouldnít lose Dana? Iím a first class failure when it comes to love." Fox said, looking painfully up at his sister.

"Fox, you are an incredible, handsome, wonderful man. A woman would have to be crazy not to want to be with you. Itís obvious Phoebeís crazy. Trust me she is, Iíve seen Jay." That one earned her laugh from Fox. "Fox you canít let one experience with a woman keep you from others that might last forever. How do you know Dana isnít your soul mate? How do you know that she isnít the *one*. Phoebe wasnít the one. I knew it the moment you brought her home. I know you want to ask her out Fox. Whatís the worst that can happen? She can say no. Big deal. Or she could say yes and you live happily ever after."

"Sam, thatís not how life goes." Fox said, folding his arms. His face was growing hard.

"Oh really Fox. How does life go?"

"You get married you get cheated on, but if youíre lucky, you get kids out of the deal and you get to keep them. Then you learn life is just a cruel joke and you just try and survive. For yourself and for your kids" He replied. Sam frowned at him.

"Thatís not life Fox. If it is, Iím not living life am I?"

"Apparently not." Fox deadpanned.

"Cut the crap, Fox. If you live your life thinking that, how will it affect you? How will it affect your kids. Youíll grow up a lonely old man, thatís what will happen. Joey and Alex need a mommy. Someone to love and cuddle them. Jennie, oh dear God, Jennie, your little twenty-seven year old trapped in a seven year olds body, she needs a mother figure. Someone to do that girly stuff with. Some needs to show her that life isnít all cheating and bad. You need to learn that youíre not a loser." She said pointing at him. Fox wrinkled his nose at her and his cell pone rang.

"Mulder." He answered.

"Um Fox? It Dana." Came the smooth, sweet voice of Dana Scully. Foxís bad mood, melted away.

"Oh, hi. Hi."

"You can come pick up your jacket now. I got the stain out and itís as good as new." Dana said.

"Okay, uh where?" Fox asked, fumbling for a notepad. Sam smirked knowingly. Dana gave him the address to her laundromat. "Okay, Iíll see you then." He said, before hanging up.

"I have to go." He said getting up. Sam shook her head and laughed. "What?"

"How can you give up on a woman youíd drop having lunch with your sister for?" Sam asked, smiling.

"A cute one." He replied, dropping money on the table.

"Fox!" Sam called to him. "Remember what I said. Donít be afraid."

Fox nodded and left.

***

GeorgeTown Laundromat

Fox walked into the empty laundromat and tapped Dana on the shoulder. She jumped and turned.

"Oh! You scared me." She said, sighing.

"Iím sorry." Fox apologized.

"Itís all right. Here." She handed him his jacket. "Good as new."

"Yea. Thanks a lot." Fox said, smiling back. He turned and Dana held her breath. He wouldnít ask her out. Pauline was wrong.

"Dana are you busy Friday night?" Fox asked, suddenly turning back around.

"N-no. I donít think so." Dana replied, after letting loose the breath sheíd been holding.

"Do you think-I mean would you like to go to-um-dinner with with me? If you donít want to I understand, you hardly know me and-"

"Are you asking me out on a date?" Dana interrupted his stuttering.

"Um, yes. Yes I am." He replied after pausing a moment. Dana hesitated and saw in his eyes that it took a lot to just ask her.

"I-I canít." Dana said. Fox'sí face went from hopeful to blank and he turned quickly to leave.

"Not Friday anyway." She continued, picking at a piece of lint. "Saturday is better for me." She smiled a zillion watt smile that melted his heart, when he turned around.

"How is seven o' clock for you?" He asked.

"Seven is wonderful." Dana replied, shyly. He smiled just as shyly at her.

"Iíll see you on Saturday then." He said, grinning. Dana nodded at him and grinned back.

When Fox got into his car he let out the breath that heíd been holding. He had a date. A real live date with a woman. A beautiful heterosexual woman. This was going to be the longest week of his life.

**

Dana Scullyís Apartment Saturday

"Mom what am I doing? I havenít been on a date in years. I donít even know him!" Dana cried, slumping on the bed.

"Honey, itís nerves. Everybody has them when they get back on the dating scene. Fox is a wonderful, charming man. But donít take my word for it. How about this blue one?" Maggie asked, holding up a blue dress.

"Mom please. You gave me that dress for my birthday." Dana said, looking at her mom, with the infamous "Mom pu-lease" look.

"So what?" Maggie asked, baffled. Dana gave a strangled sigh and threw the flowered dress back into her drawer.

"I have nothing to wear!" Dana groaned, falling back on the bed.

"Oh Dana you have to have some thing sexy in here to wear." Maggie sighed going through her closet.

"Mom! I donít have any....sexy clothing. Iím a working mother. I never needed them then and I didnít think Iíd need them now." Dana said, looking wide-eyed at her mother.

"I canít believe you didnít go shopping." Maggie muttered. "Hey whatís this?" Maggie pulled out an ice blue dinner dress with a matching cardigan. "I think weíre in business." Maggie said, smiling.

"Mom I canít wear that!" Dana exclaimed.

"Why?"

"Because....because...." Why couldnít she wear it? She thought haughtily to herself. She marched up to her mother, took the dress grinning and went into the other room. Good for her, Maggie thought with a smile.

**

Fox Mulderís apartment

"Sam, what am I doing? I havenít been on a date in years! I donít know what to do or say! What if she thinks Iím spooky?" Fox asked, slumping down in a chair. Fox had eidetic memory and was a basic genius. He freaked people out with his smarts and it was a turn off to most women when he started rambling about a certain topic. Sex appeal wasnít everything.

"Fox, itís jitters. Everybody has them, when they re-enter the dating scene. Youíll be fine and youíre not spooky. If she thinks so then you just werenít meant to be, but I donít think thatís the case." Sam said, going through his ties. "For the love of God man, get some new ties. Getting a girlfriend will be good for you Fox. Hopefully, sheíll improve your poor fashion sense." She stuck her tongue out at a particularly ugly one and threw it in the hall way.

"H-Hey. Gimme that. Geez, have a heart Sam. Iím color-blind." Fox said, retrieving his tie.

"You sure are." She replied frowning at another one. "You are not wearing any of these, if you know whatís good for you. I canít believe you didnít go shopping."

Fox shrugged and pulled out a blue dress shirt. "What if she doesnít like me?" He asked, suddenly, feeling like a thirteen year old on his first date.

"Fox." Sam gave a sigh of exasperation. "Youíll do fine. Here, wear this one." Fox took the tie she gave him and sighed, looking at her. She looked back.

"Well do you mind? I have to get dressed." Fox said, waving his arm towards the door. She turned pink and turned to leave.

When sheíd left Fox got dressed and looked in the mirror. Heíd never been more nervous in his life. Whoís to say she wonít think heís spooky or boring? It wasnít that he didnít think he was attractive or anything. He knew he had a certain way with women. Heíd been hit on before and about every woman heíd hit on did whatever he wanted all night. But, something about this woman, Dana Scully, made him feel as though he had to fight for her approval. Something about her told him that she was not any other woman.

It was odd that he was so attracted to her, because he didnít usually go for her type. She was short, about 5í3, red-hair, striking blue eyes, that was the first thing heíd noticed. Her hair and her eyes. She had a beautiful curved figure, but her chest wasnít as big as he seemed to prefer, but she still attracted him. Her skin was milky white, dusted with freckles. A basic Irish woman. Heíd heard somewhere that they had a bad temper, but were animals in bed. He knew it was a stereo-type and he had no intentions of seducing her into his bed. He was not like Phoebe. Anyhow, he didnít know why, but he could picture what it would be like to make love to her. Vividly. He shivered and pushed the thoughts towards the back of his mind.

He stepped out into the living room where, his family sat, watching TV and cleared his throat. Sam wolf-whistled and the kids, "Wow, daddy you look great!"

"Whoa, you look real neat daddy."

"Dada, Danee, Danee?" That came from Joey. Fox twirled once, arms spread.

"Thank you, thank you. I gotta get going if I want to be there on time." He walked over to kneel in front of his kids. Heíd talked to them earlier that week about him dating. He wanted to know if it was alright that he did that. If they said it wasnít all right, Fox would have called it off and Jennie knew that. Theyíd told him, they liked Dana a lot and that she was nice and her kids were funny. Fox had sighed in relief. He really wanted to go out with Dana.

"Are you kids sure youíre okay with this? If you arenít, just say so."

"Weíre sure daddy. Go have fun." Jennie said, sighing.

"Sure?" He asked again.

"Sure." Jennie and Alex said.

"Arf, arf." Was Joeyís answer. They all laughed and, Fox got up. Not before kissing his kids goodnight.

"Thanks for staying with them Sam." He said.

"No problem bro. Donít come back till three in the morning." Fox gave her a smirk and waved at his kids.

"Be good for your Aunt."

"We will." They chorused, except for Joey who was sucking his thumb like the world depended on it. Fox nodded and left. A moment later he opened the door and peeped his head back in.

"Sure?"

"Sure!" They yelled back. He nodded and left. They sat waiting. He opened the door again.

"Are you positively sure?"

"Weíre sure!" They yelled.

"Go!" Sam ordered. He nodded and really left.

***

Dana Scullyís apartment 7:00

"Mom." Was all Nathan could say as he looked, with eyebrows raised at his mother.

"You look pretty mommy." Carrie grinned.

"Thank you baby." Dana said, hugging her. Dana had added a light touch of make-up to her face and after arguing at length with her mother, was talked into not covering the mole above her lip with make-up as she always did.

Her shiny, red hair was down and in curls around her face. Her blue cocktail dress hugged her body and came down just above her knees and her black pumps gave her at least another three inches.

"Honey you look lovely." Maggie said, smiling. Dana smiled at her.

"What if he doesnít-"

"Dana donít start. He wouldnít have asked you out if he wasnít interested." Maggie said, quelling her daughterís worries.

"But itís 7:01." Dana said, starting to pace. Maggie rolled her eyes.

"Honey, one minute. Saturday night traffic." Maggie reasoned. Before Dana could voice another worry, there was a knock at the door. Dana jumped about a mile. Maggie smiled at her and motioned towards the door. Dana nodded and got up to answer it.

"Hi." She breathed, taking in the sight of him. He was even more handsome than she remembered. It took a moment before he spoke himself.

"Hi." He replied. She was even more breathtaking than he remembered and he said so. "You look lovely." He said.

"Oh. Thank you. You look wonderful too. Please come in." She stepped aside to let him in and noticed that he was holding a bouquet of roses. "Are those for me?" She asked, motioning to the roses.

"Oh yes. I forgot I was holding them." He laughed. "Here. I know itís a bit old-fashioned, but you looked like someone who needed to be given roses. You remind me of roses....Your hair I mean and...." He stumbled over his words and turned red.

"Itís okay. Theyíre beautiful thank you." She said, touching his arm. He shivered at her touch and she did too, pulling away, biting her lip. "Iíll go put these in some water."

"Are your kids here? Nathan and Carrie was it?" Fox asked.

"Theyíre in the living room with my mom." Dana replied.

"Maggieís here?"

"Yea. You can go say hi if ya like." She said, shuffling here feet.

"Could I really?" He teased. She smiled shyly at him and he winked at her.

"Yea you can." She replied enigmatically. He chuckled and walked off in the direction she pointed in. She watched where he had gone for awhile and then moved to put the flowers in a vase.

"Knock knock." Fox said, popping his head into the living room.

"Fox, hi." Maggie exclaimed, getting up to hug him. "Oh you look handsome."

"Thanks." He replied. He looked down at the kids.

"Hi Carrie. Nathan. Remember me?" He asked, kneeling down.

"Yea. Youíre the french fry guy with the funny name." Carrie replied.

"Yea thatís me." Fox laughed. "Iím Fox. Are you guys okay with my taking your mother out?"

"Weíre okay as long as youíre nice to her." Nathan answered in all seriousness.

"Yea, not like Ďsirí." Carrie added, pouting, and hugging Annie to her.

"Sir? Whoís sir?" Fox asked, smiling a little.

"Our dad." Nathan replied. Fox looked at Maggie, who was frowning and looking at the floor, then back at Nathan. He could read the look in his eyes. Before Fox could ask another question, Dana came back in.

"Ready?" She asked, not noticing the seriousness in the room.

"Yea." He replied, still looking at Nathan. He got up and went to the door. Dana kissed her kids and her mother, who winked at her. Dana grinned and walked to the door that Fox held.

"Donít come back till four!" Maggie yelled to them. They laughed as they closed the door behind them.

"Sorry, but my curfew is three o' clock. My sister is very overprotective." Fox deadpanned. Dana graced him with a smile. He returned it. He had a feeling this evening would be the start of something good. Some thing very good.

***

Restaurant

"And so here there I was stranded in the middle of the naval base with Vicky and Pauline, all of us with green hair." Dana finished with a laugh. Fox laughed with her. "That was not one of my brighter moments. You should have seen mom and dad when the officers brought us home. I thought they were going into cardiac arrest."

They started laughing again and settled down when people started to stare. Theyíd talked about anything and everything over the past hour and were having a great time. They had differing opinions on certain things but found they enjoyed bickering with one another.

When Fox thought he had settled down again a whole new round of laughter came.

"What?" Dana asked smiling. He laughed a little more, waving his hand for her to wait a minute for him to settle down. Dana couldnít help but chuckle at his laughter. He calmed down a bit and said, "I just pictured Pauline with green hair." Fox doubled over with laughter again. Dana chuckled and looked down at her plate. They sat for a moment in a comfortable silence and then Dana spoke again.

"Whatís it like working as the Assistant Director of the FBI?" She asked.

"Umm, itís different. I used to be a field agent and a basic annoyance to my peers, they called me spooky." Fox replied.

"Why?" He looked at her a moment and then asked.

"Do you believe in the existence of extraterrestrials?" She stared at him for a moment and then replied.

"Logically Iíd have to say no. Given the distances needed to travel from The far reaches of space the energy requirement would exceed spacecraft capabilities...." Fox interrupted her.

"Conventional wisdom, though when convention, and science offer us no answers might we not finally turn to the fantastic as a plausibility."

"What I find fantastic is the notion that there are answers beyond the realm of science. The answers are there, you just have to know where to look." Dana replied, enigmatically.

"That is why they the ĎIí in FBI." Fox said, grinning. She smiled back.

"Iím not completely skeptical ya know. But Iím a scientist. Thatís the way I think. How come you believe in such things anyhow?" She asked.

"The paranormal fascinates me. Thereís too much proof to believe otherwise. You think Iím paranoid donít you." It wasnít a question.

"Well...." She raised her eyebrow at him and made a face. He laughed and said,

"Just because youíre paranoid, doesnít mean theyíre not out to get you." She thought about it a moment and nodded.

"So, tell me about your ex-wife....If youíre okay with that." Dana added looking down at her napkin.

"No itís all right. Uhh, my ex-wife. We met at Oxford in England. Sheís English. She was charming and intelligent, I was young and foolish. We got married and three years into the marriage I wanted to have a baby. I guess I nagged her about it too much. She gave in, we had Jennie, then Alex, then Joey a little over a year ago." He sighed and Dana placed a hand on his, smiling shyly. His eyes shot up to meet hers at the feel of her skin on his own.

"Itís okay." She said. He smiled back and started.

"She....wasnít around a whole heck of a lot. Even when Jennie was a little girl. She wanted a nanny, but I didnít so I was around them more then she was. Lately she had been claiming to be sick, going out of town on business a lot. We found out it wasnít business. We went on a camping trip. She said she was sick and didnít want to go. So we left and halfway there we realize we forgot the tents, if you can believe it. We come in go up to the bedroom, thereís Phoebe laying naked in bed, a guy, Jay, trying to get dressed. I took the kids and left." he finished, looking down.

It sounded all too familiar to Dana, but heíd gotten away without bruises.

"Oh Fox, Iím so sorry. That must have been horrible for you." Dana said squeezing his hand. He nodded and continued.

"Oh it gets better. It turns out she was pregnant with his child. She threatened to take the kids from me, but I got custody after they heard the story. She got weekends. Anyway, thing werenít working with her and the kids, they didnít see a mother anymore, they just saw a pregnant woman who hurt daddy. And right when they were ready to try and accept what sheís done to us, she writes me, telling me that itís not working and that she and Jay are moving to be a family with their baby, that she has no responsibilities to them financially. Weíve been fine without her, but it still hurts that she could leave her children like that. Especially Joey and Alex. They donít deserve any of this."

"They donít. Iím sorry for what she did to you. Iím sorry that she hurt you so badly." Dana said, reading the pain in his eyes. He looked up into her eyes, seeing the tenderness there.

"You seem so familiar to me. I feel like I know you." He whispered.

"You do know me." She said looking down, from his intense gaze.

"No, I mean, like Iíve met you somewhere before." He said, shaking his head.

"Past life?" Dana suggested smiling. He suddenly grinned at her and called over the waiter.

"Check please." He said. Dana tried to hide her disappointment. Maybe bringing up his wife wasnít such a hot idea. She wanted to talk to him more. He was brilliant and witty and....wonderful. He had so much passion, conviction, and integrity. Who are you kidding anyway Dana, she asked herself. No use. She watched as he paid the bill and got up, rounded the table to pull it out for her.

They walked out to the car, his hand floating to the base of her back, as it did all evening. He stopped at the passenger side and opened it for her. She smiled a small smile at him and stepped in.

She seemed to have lost the sparkle she had earlier. Maybe she didnít like him. maybe she was realizing what a loser he was, after he told her about Phoebe. Fox sat a moment and she looked inquisitively at him.

"Why arenít you moving?" She asked.

"Thereís this place, I want to take you to. If you donít want to I understand." He added quickly at the look she gave him. "Please, I wonít try to seduce you I swear. Do you trust me?"

She looked at him a moment. He didnít want to take her home and she wanted to stay with him, meaning he was still interested. And she felt like she new him, better than herself.

"Yes." She replied. He smiled softly at her and sighed in relief.

"Letís go then."

**

Reflecting Pool

11:21

Theyíd walked for awhile in companionable silence. Fox was throwing around trying to hold her hand when they reached a bench. He gave up on the thought, mentally calling himself a loser and sat down with her. She looked out over the water a sighed.

"Itís pretty here." She commented.

"I go here when I need to think." Fox said, looking at the water as well. She nodded and shivered a bit. The crochet cardigan she wore wasnít protecting her from the night chill. It was oddly cold for a summer night.

"Are you cold?" He asked, taking off his jacket. "Here. And avoid Ketchup if you can. A beautiful woman bumped into me the other day and almost ruined one of my favorite jackets." He joked, looking at her fondly. She blushed and looked down.

"Thank you and Iíll try and avoid ketchup." She replied, chuckling. She looked out over the water again, thinking.

"What is it? You look a million miles away." Fox inquired, touching her arm. She looked at him after a moment, before replying.

"Water reminds me of my father. He was in the navy. I worshipped-I wor*ship* the sea he sailed on. He died a long time ago. And I couldnít go to the funeral because-" She stopped, before going on, taking a deep shuddering breath. "I never got to say goodbye. And every time I see water I think of my Ahab."

"Ahab and Starbuck." He echoed. She looked at him.

"He used to call me Starbuck. How did you-?"

"Itís what I call my daughter. I call her Starbuck and she calls me Ahab." He explained. She looked at him a moment and then smiled.

"You love your children very much." She stated.

"I do. So do you." He replied, looking back at her searching.

"I would die for them. Iíd do anything to keep them safe." He saw more meaning behind the words and following his nature, probed.

"Tell me about your husband. You said you were separated." Dana seemed to back away at the mention of her husband.

"Thereís nothing to say about him." She said, shrugging off the question. He set his face closer to her.

"I think there is. Sir is a strange name." She turned to look at him, eyebrows completely furrowed. "Donít you think?"

"How do you know." She demanded, getting up. He go up with her.

"Please donít be angry. When I asked your children if it was okay for me to take you out, they replied as long as I was nice to you. Not like sir. I asked who sir was and they said their dad. I didnít mean to make you upset. I want to get to know you more Dana. I really like you." He hesitated for a moment and then said. "And....I really think I could grow to love you. I think I already have. I donít want you to think Iím too forward, but I feel as though Iíve known you my whole life."

"Me too." She said, looking up into his eyes.

"And I thought to move forward we should put everything out on the table. I know this is just our first date but....I want to see you again." Fox said, searching her eyes for rejection.

"I want to see you again too." Dana replied, smiling coyly. Fox sighed in relief.

"Was he that bad?" Fox asked after awhile. They sat back down on the bench.

"He...He beat me." She replied, suddenly. Foxís expression changed to horrified shock.

"What?" He gasped, hoping heíd heard wrong.

"He beat me." She repeated. "He was abusive not only physically but mentally. He told me I was stupid and that no one could ever love me. He-" Her face crinkled and he thought that she might lose it. He placed an arm around her shoulder and pulled her closer to him.

"He was wrong Dana." He whispered. Dana shook her head.

"I should have left sooner. I waited until he raped me, and almost beat me to death to death to do something. Itís the reason I came. There were so many nights that I thought heíd kill me. Then what would my kids do? One night I came home with the kids. Adam, thatíd his name, forgot to pick them up as usual. We came in and I walked into my bedroom to find him there with another woman."

"Sounds all too familiar." Fox said, quietly.

"Yes but she didnít get up and beat you because of it, in front of the children. He threw me down the stairs and I was so afraid heíd hurt them and that whore he had in bed sure as hell wouldnít help. I couldnít get up. It hurt so much. That night Nathan tended to my wounds and it was so sad because it was like they were used to it. The three of us slept in Nathanís bed, trying to block out the sounds of my husband and his weekly lover having sex."

Fox had long since closed his eyes to the images her tale brought. "Did he ever hurt the children?" Fox asked.

"He only got one good hit in with Carrie, before I stopped him. He beat me for it, but as long as the bastard didnít touch my baby girl. I always got there in time, before he could touch them. It didnít take much to piss him off, so I got most of the kids beatings. I would have taken more as long as he didnít hurt them." She cried.

"One night, I didnít get there in time. He took Nathan and locked the door and I donít know what he did to him. Alls I could hear was him crying "Daddy daddy stop! It hurts." Then he cried for me and I banged and banged on the door but he wouldnít let me in! And I stopped banging. It was so hard because, Nathan thought Iíd left him. He kept yelling, mommy mommy come back. Donít leave me. But I knew the more I banged the more heíd hurt him. And I could not allow it!" She was crying hard now, tears streaking her face.

"Dana stop. Youíve had enough. Please stop." Fox pleaded. It tore him apart to see her like this. How could that bastard do such a thing?! Dana had settled down, but wouldnít stop.

"After Nathan and before Carrie, I got pregnant. He didnít know, but he beat me and I miscarried in the bathroom. By myself." She whispered through her tears. Fox closed his eyes and held her close to him. She tensed and then relaxed, wrapping her own arms around him. This felt so good. He felt so good.

"Iím so sorry." He whispered, harshly. He felt her nod against him.

"He liked having control. Thatís why the kids call him Ďsirí. They never called him daddy. Because he wasnít. Up towards the end of our marriage-No thatís not right. Our marriage ended a lot sooner then that. Up towards the end of our days in living together, he made an effort to change. After I literally begged him on hands and knees. Things were going good. I did everything I could to make him happy with me and the kids. But one day he came home drunk....and he raped me. I cried for him to stop. The kids were just in the next room. I donít know what hurt the most, the fact that he hurt so much....or the fact that it wasnít my name he called when he came." She ended the last word in a whimper.

"When he was finished I ran out with the children. I drove and drove. I donít even know where I went. I went back home at night, hoping he was sober. I was wrong. Not only was he drunk, but he was with a woman. He was so angry when he saw us. He came at me with a bat. I yelled for the kids to run. He almost hit Carrie. The last thing I saw after he yelled at me and told me how worthless and terrible I was, was a lamp hurling towards my head. With the help of Vickie and Jake, who I told you about, I found my mother and we came here to start a new life. But sometimes I wondered to myself what I had done to make him hate me so much. I only loved him."

"Do you think Iím pitiful for holding on so hard to something that would have ultimately destroyed me and my children?"

"No. I think youíre a beautiful, strong woman, whose been through hell and deserves more than what that bastard did to you." Fox said, touching her cheek. Dana hesitated and then said,

"One night, the night Adam threw me down the stairs, I dreamed. I dreamt about....a man." She looked up into his eyes. Those familiar hazel eyes.

He looked straight back at her, into her eyes. Those familiar blue eyes. He nodded, remembering.

"I know." He said.

"You do? How can....How can you know what I dreamt about?" Dana asked.

"Because I dreamt the same thing. Only it was about a woman. And the one thing I remember clearly is her eyes." Fox said, tilting his head to one side.

"But...." She remembered him. This man. Her dream lover who helped her through that long horrible night. She didnít know how, but it was Fox Mulder. "how is this possible?" She whispered, looking down at his mouth.

"Stranger things have happened. Do you believe in fate?" Fox asked. He knew it was her.

"I...donít know." She gasped. He nodded slowly and leaned in a bit.

"May I kiss you Dana?" She looked up at him and felt herself nod.

"Yes." Her reply was almost indiscernible. It didnít matter. Fox moved in and slowly, tentatively, his lips touched hers....And there was electricity.

And in an instant they both knew, that this was right and they were destined to be together, somehow. Two souls had finally found each other over centuries of being apart. As the kiss intensified, both souls knew it was right, but they could not join just yet. There was still darkness to overcome. Because as much as Dana wanted to be with him, there was still one thing she hadnít thought about.

Adam Jones was still her legal husband and he was coming after her soon.

**

Dana Scullyís apartment

1:30

After the kiss Dana and Fox had decided to take things slowly. There were still a lot of wounds to heal from their previous marriages. Theyíd driven around town and talked for the past hour. Now they were standing in the hallway, wondering what do next.

"Would you like to come in?" Dana asked.

"I canít. I left my sister with the kids and theyíre probably driving her up the wall right about now." Fox replied smiling a bit. Dana nodded.

"Oh yes, I understand." She said quickly. He placed a hand on her arm.

"I want to see you again. Can I call you?" He asked.

"Yes. Iíd like that." She replied. His hand moved up to her face. She looked up into his face.

"Iíd like to kiss you again. But Iím afraid if I start I wonít be able to stop."

"I guess weíll have to take that chance now wonít we." She replied in her usual enigmatic way. He grinned at her.

"I guess we will." He said, before interlocking his lips with hers. Her arms went around his neck. The kiss was tender, not lustful. It was....sweet. They let the kiss escalate a moment and then pulled away, looking at one another.

Dana had never felt so much tenderness in her life. And that was just one kiss!

"Good night Dana. Sweet dreams." He whispered, smiling at the last sentence. She stepped away from him.

"Good night Fox and thank you for a wonderful evening." She replied, smiling softly. He took her hand and kissed it softly, his lips lingering.

"Thank you for a wonderful evening." He replied. He stepped away from her and let go of her hand.

"Call me when you get in. I want to make sure you make it home safely." Dana called. He nodded and with a wink he turned and left.

She watched him as he walked away. She opened her door and went in quietly, walking quietly passed her mother sleeping on the couch, to the window to watch Fox getting into his car. He looked up at her window and they regarded each other. He waved and she waved back, and he got into his car and with one last look, drove off.

Dana didnít hear her mother get up and watch her daughter at the window. She smiled to herself. She hadnít really been asleep.

"Dana?" Maggie tried getting her attention. Dana jumped and turned around to look wide-eyed at her mother.

"Mom you scared the life outta me!" Dana gasped.

"Oh Iím sorry, honey. How was your date with Fox?" Maggie asked. Dana blushed and bowed her head.

"I had a nice time." Dana replied. Maggie knew this meant she had a great time.

"So will you see him again?"

"Oh yes. He said heíd call." Dana replied, yawning.

"Oh you must be exhausted, itís almost two. Go on to bed sweetie. Weíll talk more in the morning." Maggie said, pushing her daughter in the direction of the bedroom.

Dana complied and changed her clothes and got into bed with a sigh. It was a while before she started o dose off, but the phone rang.

"Hello?" She answered.

"I woke you. Iím sorry." Fox said.

"Oh, Fox. No itís okay. I couldnít sleep and I was just dosing off when you called." Dana replied.

"Canít sleep?" Fox asked.

"Too wired." She said yawning.

"You sound sleepy. I wonít keep you on the line too long. I just called to let you know I got home safely."

"Good. Thanks for calling and telling me. Is your sister up the wall?"

"No." Fox laughed. "I got here just in time." There was a silence on both ends as each thought of the other.

"Iíll let you get some rest now." Fox said after a moment. Dana nodded although she knew he couldnít see it.

"All right. Goodnight Fox."

"Goodnight Dana. Sweet dreams." Fox replied, before hanging up. She hung up the phone carefully and lay back down on her pillow. Her last coherent thought was of Fox laying beside her, oddly enough, calling her by her last name.

**

**

 

Fort Grill Restaurant

"Whistling? Since when does Fox Mulder whistle?" Sam teased as Fox came in. He was indeed whistling. He only whistled when he was in a good mood. He was defiantly in a good mood. He and Dana were having lunch the next day. Ever since their first date, three weeks ago, she was all he could think about. One thought about her brought a smile to his face. She was walking sunshine and she was shining on him.

"So what if Iím whistling?" He answered, haughtily. Sam grinned.

"How now brown cow? Whatís the 411?" Sam inquired.

"Has anyone ever told you, you hang out with teenagers too much?" Fox jabbed.

"Bite me, Iím a school teacher. Sooo, I havenít seen you like this....ever. You have to introduce me to her. So is she a keeper or what?" Sam asked. Fox smiled at her.

"She has definite potential." He said, cryptically.

"Oh come on! Iím dying of hunger, donít give me crumbs! I want details." She demanded. Fox smiled and complied.

"You know I told you she was breathtaking at the restaurant? Well she was wearing jeans and a sweater and she looked frazzled then, just think of how she looked made up and unfrazzled. Sheís stunning. She has a wonderful, enigmatic personality. Sheís warm and funny. I can tell her anything."

"Wow, you sound pretty serious about her."

"I am, I guess. I could so easily fall in love with her. I think....I already have."

"What? Are you saying you found your soul mate, Fox? *Finally*" Sam asked, raising her eyebrow. Fox smiled.

"I think I have. Iíve never felt his strongly about anyone before. Not even Phoebe. Itís a little scary though. Sam when I kiss her, itís like electricity. Itís was even more incredible than my dream." Fox whispered in astonishment.

"Dream?"

"That dream I told you about. The woman I dreamt about."

"The one you ah...made love to?" Sam asked, turning slightly pink...

"Yes. She had the bluest eyes Iíd ever seen. It was her. Dana. I know it, because she dreamt about me too. She told me. Sheís everything Iíve ever dreamed Sam." Fox said, with a quiet smile on his face.

"How come you didnít tell me this three weeks ago?" Sam asked.

"I was afraid the whole relationship was to heal wounds and move on. I was afraid it wouldnít last. Like she was fall back or something." Fox replied.

"And I take it she wasnít." Fox grinned at her.

"Well, Iím glad to see you happy, Fox." Sam replied.

"Weíre having lunch tomorrow." Fox said, chewing on his straw.

"Oh Fox, you spoil me."

"Not you. Dana and me." Fox replied, glaring at his sister.

"Aw Fox, one look at a pretty girl and Iím outta the picture." Sam said, with mock-hurt. Fox smirked.

"Didnít I say the same thing when you got married, gender-flipped?" Fox raised his eyebrows at her. Sam laughed.

"Yea Fox, I think this woman just might be good for you."

**

FBI Headquarters

"Damn." Assistant Director Mulder cursed. Just when he thought he was having a good day. He threw the pink card on his desk and rubbed his nose.

"Sir? Miss Scully is here to see you." His secretary called. He perked and sat up.

"Send her in." He replied, looking at the door expectantly. Dana walked through, looked around and smiled at him.

"Hi." She greeted.

"Hi yourself." He replied moving to kiss her. She returned the kiss, wrapping her arms around his neck. He stroked her back and dipped her slightly.

"Is this normal bureau behavior?" She mumbled into his mouth.

A surprised "Mmm." was his answer. Chuckling into his mouth, she pulled away a bit and looked up at him.

"I know this sounds silly, considering how long weíve known each other, but....I missed you." Dana said, looking down. Fox tilted her head up with his finger.

"It isnít silly. Weíve been together for three weeks. Anyhow I missed you too." He leaned down and kissed her tenderly. She shivered and moved closer to him.

"Working on anything interesting?" She asked.

"Not really. Kind of a slow day." Fox replied. She saw something brewing behind his eyes. "Fox are you okay?" She asked. He couldnít help, but smile. She read him so well. He sighed and moved to his desk, picked up the card and handed it to her.

"Itís a girl?" She read befuddled.

"Itís from Phoebe. She and Jay had a girl." Fox said, looking down. She walked over to him.

"Oh Fox. I know this still hurts. I understand." Dana said. He looked at her and cupped her cheek with his hand.

"Youíre so good Dana. So wonderful." He murmured. He kissed the top of her head. "Iím gonna have to tell the kids and I donít know how theyíll react to this. Iím fine, really." He explained.

"Would you like me to come with you?" Dana offered.

"No Dane, but thanks for the offer. It was sweet of you, though."

"I know." She replied. He gave her a look and laughed as he picked up his jacket.

"Lets go get some lunch. Iím starved." He took her hand and guided her out the door.

***

Carlinoís Restaurant

"The more I think about it the more, it makes me mad. I mean, she gets up and leaves the kids to start another family cause she has no responsibility to them, expecting them to understand and then writes and tells them about her new baby! Talk about twisting the knife in a little deeper." Fox fumed.

"I donít see how she could leave those wonderful kids. And little Joey." She shook her head. He smiled softly at her and took her hand across the table.

"Enough about Phoebe now. I think we should take the kids out somewhere. All our kids together, so they can meet and we can get to know each otherís kids better in the process." Fox suggested.

"That sounds like a good idea." Dana replied, nodding. "But it canít be this weekend. My mom has the kids Friday night." She looked up at him suggestively. "We could rent a moooovieee."

Fox laughed. "I wouldnít miss it for the world." He leered. She leaned over and kissed his cheek. "What was that?" Fox asked, with a raised eyebrow. He leaned over the table and caught her lips with his own. Their tongues touched briefly and he pulled away grinning.

"Was that better?" She inquired.

"Any time you touch me baby." He grinned. She flushed and played with the straw in her glass.

"You two ready to order?" Pauline asked, smiling deviously at them.

"Yes we are Pauline thank you kindly." Fox replied sarcastically.

"I aim to please." Pauline said, waggling her eyebrows at them. Fox and Dana chuckled.

"Ookay Iíll have the Caesar salad and the chicken sandwich." Dana said.

"Okay and Fox?"

"Philly cheese steak with the fries," Fox said, grinning at Dana at the last part.

"Anything to drink?" Pauline asked, scribbling down the orders.

"Iced tea." They both said at the same time. Pauline giggled.

"Thatís priceless. Must be fate you guys." She said, before walking off to get their orders ready. Fox and Dana looked at each other.

"Fate." Dana quipped.

"Must be." Fox said.

***

Dana Scullyís Apartment

Dana was sitting contemplating her life up to this point. Her kids had long since left and now she was just waiting for Fox to arrive. She sighed.

Where was her relationship going with Fox? They were talking about their kids getting to know each other. That had to be serious. But the question was how did she feel about getting so close to a man this soon? After Adam, Dana was wary of any man who approached her. But Fox, Fox was different. Something about him touched her. She felt like she knew him inside and out, though there was still much to learn about him. Like maybe, somewhere in another life, theyíd loved and fought side by side. That iced tea thing was weird. Sheíd been sure to buy some iced tea, for their evening.

Her thoughts were interrupted by a knock on the door.

"Who is it?" She called.

"Steven Spielberg." Fox answered. Dana smiled and opened the door. It was Fox . He wore a tight black tee-shirt and jeans. She like how his pants always slung low on his hips. Yummy.

"Hi-" Was all she got out before he stepped in and swept her up in his arms.

"Fox!" She exclaimed. He grinned shut the door with his foot and walked into the living room.

"I can walk ya know." Dana said dryly.

"Nope. Tonight, you relax. Meaning no necessary movements," He let her slid to the floor and proceeded to kiss her softly.

"And your wife left you for someone else?" She asked in quiet incredulity.

"Unless it includes getting me dinner." He added smiling.

"Ah the truth is out." She said dryly, with a raised eyebrow. She sat down and brought him with her. He chuckled and kissed her neck.

"Are we gonna neck Fox?" Dana asked wiggling against him.

"Not unless your momís not home." He replied, with a devious glint in his eye. She grinned and made a show of looking left and right.

"I donít think sheís home." She whispered close to his mouth. He nodded, let out a breath allowing his breath mingle with hers. His lips nipped hers and she shivered in delight. He did it again and again and then nuzzled her face, all over with his in catlike movements. Her mouth caught his and his tongue teased her mouth insistently until she let him in. She slipped her tongue into his mouth and he moaned, wrapping his arms around her and pulling her body closer. She gasped at his movements. Slowly they explored each others mouths, for taste and texture. His hands moved enticingly over her back. They pulled away, breathing heavily.

"Do you realize that weíre actually alone? Not out in public like we usually are?" He whispered huskily, brushing feather-light kisses along her mouth and face. She pulled away from him suddenly.

"Would you like something to drink?" She asked getting up off the couch.

"Uuum, yea. Iced tea." A rather confused Fox answered, running a hand through his hair. Dana nodded and practically flew out of the room.

She leaned against the kitchen counter, wondering what had come over her. One minute she was kissing Fox, the next, she completely freaked. Was it because heíd mentioned that this was their first time alone together? Was she afraid he would try to seduce her? Or afraid that he wouldnít? She was so confused right now she couldnít think straight.

"Dana?" She jumped at the hand on her shoulder. She turned around to face a confused Fox.

"Whatís going on, Dana? Does this not feel right to you? Are-are you having second thoughts on having a relationship with me?" He looked genuinely hurt. Like a lost puppy, she thought fondly. She quickly solaced him.

"Oh Fox itís not you at all. Itís-me-you-us I guess. Where are we going with this? I mean after our first date we decided to see each other again. Third date turned into fourth then fifth then sixth, now weíre making out on my sofa and talking about our kids meeting. Everything changed between us without us saying anything. Iíd like to know where this relationship is headed."

Fox nodded his understanding. They never really said anything to each other. It was like an unspoken agreement. "I understand what youíre saying. So do you want to call it all off or see other people or what?"

"No. I just want to know where we stand and take it slowly. We both came out of our previous marriage with a heck of a lot of baggage. I just need time to process it." Dana explained.

"So you still want to see me?" Fox asked, hopefully.

"Yes." Dana answered. He sighed audibly, making her smile.

"So do you want me to leave, so we can do things...slow?" Fox asked, barely containing his disdain at the prospect of leaving.

"Oh no Fox. I donít want you to go. It doesnít mean we canít still do things together or we only kiss each other on the cheek for physical contact." Mulder sighed again and Dana laughed.

"Okay Dana, but seriously. I donít want to make you uncomfortable, cause I donít want to lose you. I donít exactly know where this is headed, but all I know is I want to be with you. Youíre the best thing thatís happened to me since my kids. I lo-I care about you a lot." Heíd almost slipped and Dana caught it, but never brought it up. "We can still neck right?" He asked, for a quick save. Dana laughed and threw a dishrag at him. The tension eased up a bit.

"Hey. You arenít supposed to be walking. Iíll get the iced tea." He said. She smiled at him.

"Oh Fox I forgot to put something on the stove. I thought we could order a pizza." Dana said.

"Mmmm piiiiizza, ahhhh." Fox said with a frighteningly good impression of Homer Simpson. Dana laughed and kissed the back of his neck and walked into the living room. Fox watched her go and smiled.

"What do you want on your pizza?" Fox hollered from the kitchen.

"I donít know. Anything but anchovies? Mushrooms!" Dana yelled back, lying on the couch

"Ew!" Fox replied from the kitchen. Dana chuckled and rolled her head to one side.

"Just nothing thatíll clog our arteries too much. I wanna live to see Carrie have kids!" Dana yelled. Fox grunted something in reply and a moment later he reappeared carrying two glasses of iced tea. He hand one to her and she accepted graciously.

"I ordered mushrooms on half." He said, settling into the couch.

"Thank you." She grinned.

"So whatís our movie? You didnít get anything girly did you?" He asked, raising an eyebrow at her.

"Fine maybe the kids will watch Lassie with me tomorrow." Dana said in mock disappointment.

"Youíve got to be kidding me." Fox said, looking incredulously at her.

"I am. Donít worry you big macho man. I know you and your manly self wouldnít watch Lassie." Dana replied patting his leg. Fox grunted in reply and Dana shook her head.

"No seriously what did you get?"

"Umm Pillow Talk? Iím sorry. I know itís girly and stupid, but I love that movie." Dana said, biting her lip. Fox thought it was cute so he let her off the hook. He thought Doris Day was pretty cute anyway.

"Síokay Dana. But I pick the movie next time." He warned. She grinned and bounced a bit pressing play. Now he knew where Carrie got her bounciness from.

The pizza arrived and they ate in companionable silence as they watched, Doris Day and Rock Hudson talk to each other in the bathtub on split screen.

"Iíd hate to have a party line. Then I wouldnít be able to talk dirty to you on the phone." Fox said, with a serious expression on his face. Dana elbowed him, but he didnít seem to mind. Half-way through the movie Fox moved to the end of the couch to lie back, Dana crawled over to him a moment later, eyes still glued to the screen. His arm moved around her and he put his leg up on the couch so that she lay snuggled in between his legs and against his chest.

Some where in between the car trip, they fell asleep.

***

Dana Scullyís apartment

10:01

Maggie opened the front door with her key, not bothering to knock. The kids bounded into the apartment stopped short, Maggie came in wondering why the kids stopped. She stopped her self. A delighted smile spread across her face. Well.

There tangled together on the couch was Dana and Fox, sleeping soundly. It didnít look like anything had happened. She looked at the TV, which was snowing. She walked over to the TV and pulled out the tape. Pillow Talk. Oh how cute, she thought, grinning. Just then Fox stirred.

Hm, itís been awhile since I woke up with someone on top of me, Fox thought groggily. He sighed and took a few breaths and then suddenly had the strange feeling that someone was watching him. He opened his eyes and was greeted by a grinning Carrie, Nathan and Maggie. Oh crap. Dana stirred in her sleep and burrowed deeper into his embrace, sighing sleepily.

Her breathing became more normal and she realized she was being held. Itís been a very long time since I was held like this, Dana thought. Maybe it was a beautiful dream. She couldnít be awake, could she? She slowly opened her eyes and saw her mother and kids. She sensed nothing amiss, until she realized that her comfy bed was actually a person. Fox Mulder to be exact.

"Oh." She got up and winced at Fox as he moved his neck painfully from side to side. "You must have an awful crick in your neck." She sighed. He shook his head, instantly regretting it.

"Itíll be okay. Iím used to sleeping on the couch. Uhh," He eyed their audience. "Whereís your bathroom?" He muttered. She smiled and gave him the directions. He got up, smiling sheepishly at everyone and then walked off.

"Well." Dana said, brightly.

"Well." Maggie echoed with a conspiratorial gleam in her eye.

"Mom." Dana warned. Maggie put her hands up innocently.

"I just callíem like I seeíem." She said. Dana gave her a ĎYea right lookí and held her arms out to her kids who ran to her, happily.

"Did you have fun at Grandmaís?" She asked them.

"Yup we did. Mommy are you an Fox gonna get married?" Carrie asked. She was never one to beat around the bush. Dana looked slightly taken aback.

"What gave you that idea, Sweetie?" Dana asked.

"You was sleepin together aní when people is married, they sleep together aní you kiss." Carrie finished with a giggle. Nathan rolled his eyes at his "immature" little sister. Dana didnít really know how to respond to that, but was saved when Fox walked back in. He stopped at the quiet and looked around self-consciously.

"What?" He asked, running his hands through his hair. "I know my hair looks like beast in the morning, but...." He explained, before Carrie got up and walked over to him. She looked up expectantly at him and that was his cue to squat down to her level. "Yes Carrie, what can I do for you?"

"Can I call you Daddy?" She asked, in all innocence. You could have heard a pin drop a mile away.

"Oh dear." Maggie muttered under her breath, as Dana sucked in a breath. Foxís eyes darted to hers and then back. He wasnít to sure how to respond. No one had ever asked him that before.

"Carrie dear you canít-" Dana started, but Carrie pouted and looked straight into his eyes.

"You donít want to be my Daddy?" She asked, in a small voice. Dana closed her eyes and got up to go to her, when Fox spoke.

"Honey you can call me whatever you like." Fox said.

"Even Daddy?" Carrie asked, starting to grin. Fox brushed a stray strand of hair from her face.

"Even Daddy." He replied, smiling softly. Carrie grinned from ear to ear and threw her arms around his neck.

"Thanks Daddy." She said, happily. He chuckled and picked her up. "Youíre my first real Daddy!" She exclaimed.

"There isnít a man alive who wouldnít wanna be your daddy." He said, giving her a squeeze. He looked at Dana, who had tears in her eyes.

"Fox-"

"N-Not here. I have to go pick up the kids from my moms house now, but....Hey Maggie have they eaten yet?" Fox asked.

"No, why?"

"How bout I take you guys to IHOP. My treat." Fox proposed.

"IHOP, really!?" Carrie exclaimed.

"Cool! Could we mom? Please?" Nathan pleading, pulling on his mothers arm. Dana looked like she was in deep thought for a moment and then sighed loudly.

"I donít know guys. Are you sure you like pancakes?" She asked, shivering in mock-disgust.

"Yes!" They both yelled insistently.

"Weeeell." She dragged out, while the kids said "pleeeaaaase". "Okay." The kids cheered and slapped each other five. Fox grinned. He set Carrie down, after giving her another hug.

"Great, weíll be back around a half an hour." He said. He ruffled Nathanís hair and winked at Maggie and Carrie, as he picked up his belongings. Dana followed him to the door.

"See ya later Daddy!" Carrie squealed. Fox chuckled and waved at her. When they were out the door Dana took his head in her hands and pulled him to her, kissing him thoroughly. They pulled away panting.

"What was that for? So I can do it again." Fox asked, laughing a bit.

"For being so wonderful. For letting Carrie call you...Daddy, for making me feel like a woman again. For making me feel....feel loved again." She said tearfully. He bent down and took her lips with his own, kissing her tenderly for a long time, his hands caressing, and holding her close. He pulled away a bit and said softly,

"I lo-You mean a lot to me Dana. Youíre kids mean a lot to me as well. Carrie and Nathan have been too long without a father figure. And I canít think of anyone else better for the job." He whispered, kissing her softly once more.

"Do you think itís wise to let her get so attached to you? I mean what if it doesnít work out betwe-?" He stopped her with a finger to her lips. Removing it her said,

"Dana, youíll jinx it. Anyway you canít get rid of me that easily. Iím FBI remember? She deserves a father, Dana. Her and Nathan, whether it works between us or ,God forbid, not."

"I-" She breathed. He stopped her with a finger to her lip again.

"Iíll see you in a about a half an hour." He said, replacing his finger with his lips. Their tongues played for a moment and then they parted.

"Iíll see you soon." She breathed, looking at his lips. He graced her with a smile and she returned it. She leaned against the door, watching him leave. Oh Fox, youíre so wonderful, she thought. Why didnít she meet this man eleven years ago? But they were together now and for the first time in awhile she thought that maybe this would really work.

***

International House of Pancakes

They all sat at the table laughing and getting to know one another. Maggie had gone home, insisting that this was a good opportunity for everyone to get to know each other. It had been awkward at first, but then Joey had burped and Carrie and Jennie said "Eww.", at the same time, and everyone started to relax.

None of Foxís kids seemed to mind Carrie calling Fox Daddy. They kind of thought it was funny and Dana suspected that Fox told them about their real father. Alex had shyly attached himself to Dana, asking her questions. Dana thought he was enchanting, all of Foxís kids were. Nathan had attached himself to Fox, Dana noted early on. She was overjoyed when she saw he and Nathan and Jennie talk excitedly about the Knicks.

Now all five of the kids were deeply consumed in a conversation about their experiences at the beach, except Joey who babbled his two cents in when he could. Dana and Foxís eyes locked over the table and he winked at her.

"Sir? Is your family ready to order?" A waitress asked, breaking his steady gaze with Dana. Family? He looked around the table and smiled softly to himself. They did look like a family.

"Hey guys ready to order?" He asked. They nodded excitedly and started shooting orders at the woman at the same time. The woman looked from Fox to Dana, at a loss. They both chuckled and settled the kids down. They ordered one by one, Carrie whispered her order to her mother and Dana told the waitress. Carrie had suddenly gotten shy. When they finished ordering, the woman came back and gave them their drinks. The kids started talking to each other again and Fox and Dana went back to staring into each others eyes.

"Uh oh." Everyone turned to Joey, who looked suspiciously pleased with himself. Fox sighed and picked up his diaper bag.

"Iíll be back in a min-"

"Iíll do it." Dana interrupted him. Fox looked at her for a moment to see if she was serious. When he said he wanted them to bond, he didnít mean for her to change his sons stanky diaper.

"Dane are you sure? He can smell very....ripe." He finished with a wince. She smiled and got up, taking Joey with her.

"I donít mind. Could you hand me the diaper bag." She said, hand outstretched. He handed it to her sighing in resignation. She grinned and walked off to the ladies room. Joey looked around for urinals.

"Pee-pee?" He inquired, loudly.

"Nope. This is a ladies room. No winkies here." She replied setting up the built in baby changer on the wall. Joey giggles and lay down obediently. She smiled and tickled his tummy before removing his overalls and taking off his soiled diaper. Joey watched her as she changed his diaper. Didnít mommies do this sort of thing? Hmm, maybe this was his new mommy. That other lady who he used to call mommy wasnít there anymore and he wanted hugs. Daddyís chest wasnít nice and big like this ladies. Yea, this lady had to be his mommy. He decided to try it out.

"Mama?" He inquired. Dana looked up at him and sighed sadly.

"Sorry honey. Mamaís not here." Dana said. Joey got agitated and tried again.

"Mama?" He reached his hand up to her, just as she buttoned up his overalls again. She just looked at him, confused. Mama? Was Joey calling her mama? Geez these kids attach quickly, Dana thought to herself. Joeyís lower lip began to tremble. She wasnít answering him. Maybe mama didnít like him anymore. He started to cry.

"Maaaaamaaaaa." He wailed, reaching for her. Dana picked the baby up and hugged him to her chest, murmuring soothingly to him.

"Itís okay sweetie. Iím here, Iím here. Shhh, no more tears baby." She murmured, silently cursing this Phoebe for causing this little baby such distress. Joey calmed down as soon as she held him and stuck his chubby little arms around her neck, whimpering and hiccuping a little. She picked up the diaper bag and walked out of the ladies room. By the time they got back to the table, Joey was babbling a story to her and she was chuckling at his baby talk, which made perfect sense to him.

Mulder smiled at her when they came back, "Howíd it go?" He asked, Dana set him in his high chair and he pouted, cause he was about to sing her a new song he learned on Sesame street. She walked over to him and knelt down and he bent over.

"He um-he-I think he called me Mama." Dana whispered. Fox smiled and then looked at her.

"Are you okay with that?" He asked, suddenly concerned.

"Um-Yes. It just took me by surprise thatís all. It thought he was calling for Phoebe the first time he said it, but then he reached out to me, and I didnít know what to do, so I just stood there dumbly and then he started to wail, and I picked him up and he was fine." Dana explained.

"I think he likes you." Fox stated. She kind of snorted.

"Well yea. Thatís an understatement. And you know what Fox? I donít mind at all. Youíre kids are wonderful and Alex is so cute with his little questions." Dana gushed.

"I could say the same thing about your kids." He whispered back. "I think this is the beginning of something good." She nodded and they kissed, neither noticing their kids were watching them. Jennie and Carrie looked at each other grinning, and Nathan and Alex, wrinkled their noses. A chorus of Ewwís and giggles started and Fox and Dana parted to see what was so amusing. It was them.

"Arenít ya afraid of cooties?" Alex asked, wide-eyed. Dana and Fox chuckled and Dana got up. Their food finally arrived and Dana cut up Joeyís pancakes and fed him, while Fox and the kids talked about trivial things. Joey pointed at her soda and she gave him a sip. He squinched his little face up and Fox and Dana thought it was adorable. Joey burped and drank his orange juice happily. How could big people drink that stuff anyway?

"Daddy, could Dana and Nathan and Carrie come over for dinner?" Jennie asked.

"Huh?" Fox asked.

"Could Dana aní Carrie, aní Natían come over fer dinner?" Alex asked.

"Uhh, thatís a nice idea. How bout it Dana?" He asked turning to Dana, who was busy wiping Joeyís mouth.

"Huh? Oh yea. Thatís a nice idea. But on one condition." Dana said, turning to them.

"Whatís that?" Fox asked.

"I get to cook dinner." She replied. He nodded smiling.

"Sounds like a plan." He said, giving her that smile that made her shiver with want.

"Yes!" All the kids exclaimed, exchanging high fives. Dana and Fox smiled warmly at each other. Things seemed to be looking up.

But unknown to them, they would have to get past some road blocks and close chapters to their past before they could truly be happy.

**

Mulderís Apartment.

Sunday night

"Sweetie could you pass me that spoon?" Dana asked. Jennie got up and got Dana the spoon in question. A few weeks had passed since IHOP and having dinner together on Sunday nights was becoming a habit. Every Sunday night, theyíd meet at one or the others apartment and have dinner. The kids were already like brothers and sisters and they looked to Fox and Dana as parent figures. Alex and Jennie even called Dana, Mommy sometimes.

"Dana are you and my Daddy ever gonna get married?" Jennie asked, signing. Dana looked at Jennie. She was ever surprised at this girls level of intelligence. Sheíd had more meaningful conversations with this girl then with half the adults she knew.

"Yea when?! Then we could all live together!" Carrie squealed in delight. Jennie nodded in agreement.

"Well...." Dana didnít finish her sentence thankfully. Fox came in and held her from behind, his chin on her shoulder.

"Whatís cookin good lookin?" He asked, she grinned and wiggled around to face him.

"Your favorite." She replied, arms about his waist.

"Iíve got lots of favorites Dana. Are you gonna make me guess?" He asked. She nodded, trying to keep a straight face, but ended up grinning ear to ear.

"Itís Lasagna!" Carrie shrieked, jumping up and down.

"He was supposed to guess." Jennie said, rolling her eyes. Fox chuckled and scooped her up and tickled her.

"Remind me never to tell you any secrets." He laughed. Dana laughed and reminded them, no roughhousing in the kitchen. Just then the doorbell rang.

"Iíll get it Fox. Keep an eye on the Lasagna." Dana said, picking up Joey on her way out of the kitchen.

"Yes?" She said upon opening the door.

"Is this the Mulder residence?" The man asked, eyeing her. Dana got a bit nervous.

"Yes it is. May I help you?" Dana asked, trying to look intimidating despite her height. She used to be able to do that well, before Adam.

"If I may speak to Mr. Mulder." The man asked. She was about to turn to call him, but he was right behind her.

"Can I help you?" Fox asked, stepping protectively between the man and Dana.

"Mr. Mulder?" He asked. Fox nodded. The man took out some papers, gave them to him, looked Dana up and down again, and walked away. Fox scowled after him.

"Bye!" Joey called, smiling at the use of his new word. He pouted, when the mean man did not reply. Dana looked at him after he closed the door. He was reading the papers and turning quite red. She put Joey in his play pen and pulled Fox into the kitchen.

"Fox? Fox what is it? What do the papers say?" Dana asked. He was scaring her. He looked like heíd gone into shock. "Fox. Fox please. Youíre scaring me. Please tell me." that seemed to have gotten through to him.

"That was a lawyer. Phoebeís lawyer." He said, quietly, trying to keep his anger in check.

"Oh Fox. What does she want? Does she want money Fox? Is that what she wants?" Dana asked.

"No." He laughed. "She doesnít want money. She wants my kids. Dana she wants my kids." Dana held him close. Phoebe was back. And she wanted the kids.

**

Mulderís apartment

Friday night

"We can fight this Fox. You got them the first time. Whoís to say you canít get them again? She wonít win, Fox. We wonít let her." Dana said to Foxís hair. His head was resting on his coffee cup. His head shot up at her words.

"We?" He asked with an amused raised eyebrow.

"Yes we." Dana replied. He reached across the table to hold her hand.

"Thank you." He whispered to her. "Iím not too worried that sheíll get custody, but I am worried about the effect itíll have on the kids, not to mention your kids and you. I mean after all this time and Joeyís calling you Mama, how could she just blow into our lives like this. Why would she do this? Not to twist the knife further cause Iíve already pulled it out and moved on." He said, looking at her. She smiled softly and put a sympathetic hand on his.

"Weíll get through this Fox." She whispered, stroking his hair. There was a knock at the door.

"Iíll get it, honey." She said, as though it was the most natural thing in the world to her. He looked at her fondly.

"Iíll be here, sugar patootie." He replied. She chuckled and opened the door.

"May I help you?" Dana asked the woman, holding the baby. She looked a bit familiar.

"I think I have the wrong apartment. Iím looking for the Mulder residence." The woman said, with a thick British accent.

"This is it." Dana said, shifting weight to the other leg.

"Nooo," She said slowly. "Fox Mulderís residence?"

"Yes this is it. May I ask who you are?" Dana asked. I could ask you the same thing, Phoebe thought.

"Iím Phoebe Green and you are?" She asked, raising her eyebrow, looking down at her. Dana frowned at the name. So this was Foxís ex-wife.

"Dana Scully." She replied. She eyed the baby. Her lovers baby no doubt. How dare she bring it here.

"Is Fox at home?" Phoebe asked, summing up the diminutive woman.

"As a matter a fact he is." Dana said, unmoving. Hm, if they were involved, Fox would have told her about her and sheíd be dripping jealously, Phoebe thought, but this woman was not doing or saying anything. She was just standing there.

"Could I see him?" Phoebe asked, with exasperation. Dana frowned. She wasnít about to put Fox in anymore pain. Before she could think up a good excuse, Fox slipped his arms around her waist.

"Whoís there Dane?" He asked, before looking up and frowning. Phoebe was doing the same. So......he moved on, she thought sourly. Oh well, she was the one holding the baby.

"Fox. Could I come in?" She asked. Dana squeezed his hand for support. Lips pursed, he stepped back, as she came in, just noticing the bundle in her arms. Dana saw what he saw and squeezed his hand again. He squeezed back. Phoebe saw what he was looking at and smiled.

"Isnít she precious? Her name is Jewel. It was Jayís idea. When I saw her, I knew it was the perfect name." She said, smiling and cooing the chubby baby.

"Hope ya wonít abandon her with her father for yet another man like you did my kids." Fox said, bitingly.

"I did not abandon them." Phoebe bit back. Fox barked out some laughter.

"You coulda fooled me. Oh but I guess you did. What do you want? How dare you come back after all this time, after what youíve done and demand the children on a silver platter." Fox said, unaware that his voice was raising. Dana placed a hand on her arm and squeezed.

"Fox." She warned. He looked at her and drew strength from her.

"Anyhow Fox, you seem to be doing fine for yourself. Not missing me at all I see." Phoebe said, eyeing Dana.

"Like you ever missed me, Pheebs. What, you wanted me pining away for you the rest of my life? I think not. I moved on and so have the kids so whatever crap youíve come to dish out, you can stick it back up your ass." Fox said angrily. Phoebe looked indignant and pulled her baby closer to her.

"The language Fox. Is that suitable behavior for a parent?" She asked, smirking.

"I canít believe I ever loved you." Fox whispered, shaking his head. "Youíre like a stranger to me." He said, looking down and thinking about all those wasted years, when he could have been with Dana. Phoebe looked affected by his words for a moment and then was back to normal.

"Thatís the problem with you Fox. Youíre too quick to trust. Are the kids here?" Phoebe asked.

"No. Not all of them anyhow. Joey is asleep." Fox replied.

"Where is Jennie and Alex?" Phoebe asked.

"With Danaís mom and her kids." Fox replied, sighing and wondering when she would leave.

"You have kids of your own?" Phoebe asked, interested.

"Yes I do. Two." Dana replied. She didnít like his woman.

"Whereís your husband?" Phoebe asked. Dana shuddered at the thought of him and Fox put a hand around her waist.

"In California. We arenít together anymore." Dana said, leaning against Fox for support. Phoebe didnít seem to care much and turned to Fox again.

"I want to see Joey." She said.

"No." Both Fox and Dana said at the same time.

"Excuse me, but I donít think this any of *your* business." She glared at Dana. "Why canít I see my son?" She asked Fox.

"Well you donít have custody, one. Two, you didnít seem so keen on seeing him before. Heís confused as it is after you did what you did. Heís just adjusting."

"Mama!" Joey called sleepily over the monitor. Dana and Phoebe both looked at it.

"You call that adjusting?" Phoebe asked, smirking.

"You donít understand." Fox said.

"Mama! Wawa." Joey wanted water. Dana got up and went into the kitchen and brought out a glass of water, heading into the nursery.

"Where does she think sheís going?" Phoebe demanded. Fox just stood there and stared.

"Mama!" Joey squealed. They heard Dana enter the room.

"Hereís your water sweetie." She whispered.

"Up." He demanded. She chuckled and picked him up. Phoebe looked at Fox with an accusing glare. He matched her glare with a cool steady look.

Dana walked out carefully, with Joeyís head on her shoulder. Phoebe turned her death glare to Dana.

"How dare you." She huffed.

"How dare I what? Be a mother to this child when his real one is off boinking some jerk and having babies, while her husband and kids are suffering? Oh yea, how dare I." Dana shot sarcastically. Fox mentally applauded her. Ohh, Touche. Nice one Dane.

"Joey." She called. "Joey itís mommy." Phoebe said. Joey looked up at Dana. Then turned himself around. Phoebe smiled. "Look at you. Youíve gotten so big." She whispered, walking closer to him. Joey looked at Dana eyes wide. She gave him a squeeze.

"Mama?" Dana gave him another squeeze.

"Itís okay, sweetie Iím not going anywhere." Dana cooed.

"Joey listen to me. Itís me. She is not your mother. I am honey." Phoebe insisted. Joey squealed.

"No! Mama!" Burying his face in Danaís clothes, willing the lady to go away. He wanted Dana, not this lady who talked funny.

"Phoebe stop it. Youíre upsetting him." Fox said, stepping forward. Phoebe shrugged away from him and stalked to the door.

"This is not finished Fox Mulder. Whether you like it or not, I am these kids mother. And no one, NO one," She glared at Dana, "will take my place. You havenít heard the last of me." With that, she turned and left. Fox looked after her, vaguely wondering what she had up her sleeve.

***

"Daddy, I donít want to live with her! Danaís a better mommy than she is! Danaís my mom now! So there!" Jennie yelled, folding her arms.

"Sweetie. Dana and I arenít married. Weíre just dating."

"Then why donít you marry her? You love her donít you?" Sam cut in. Fox gave her a look and turned to his kids.

"Sweetie I wonít let anyone take you from me. You arenít going anywhere."

"Good. Now when are you marrying Dana?" Jennie asked. Fox sighed.

**

"Aw Vick, I donít know what to do. Fox is in there right now waiting for a verdict. I donít know why Phoebeís doing this. Itís tearing up the kids." Dana said, looking in the direction of the courtroom.

"Why would she come back after all this time?" Vickie asked.

"Well apparently Fox has a fortune he didnít me about. I donít care about the money much, but Phoebe does. Phoebe and Jay. Her lo-husband. Yea they got married. Their argument is that they can give the kids a stable home."

"Well what do you think?" Vickie asked.

"I think itís a load of bull. All she wants is money. If they win. Foxíll have to pay child support."

"Man. Thatís rough. I know! Marry him!"

"Vickie." Dana warned.

"Oh come on! From the way you talk about this guy, and his kids are calling you mommy, its a given. Heíd the same guy you told me about in your dream. Your dream lover." She said teasingly.

"He hasnít asked me. Weíre taking it slow and right now he needs support. Look I gotta go."

"Okay. But Dana, guess what?" Vickie said.

"What?" Dana asked, boredly.

"Adam is in jail."

"What?!"

"Heís in jail for drug pushing, assault and battery. Youíre in the clear Dana." Vickie said smiling. Dana couldnít believe her ears. Adam was in jail. Jail, behind bars.

"Oh Vickie." Dana gasped.

"Isnít it great? Dana I donít want you to be scared anymore. Be with Fox. The way you want to be." Vickie said. "Talk to ya later."

"Bye Vick." Dana hung up the phone and turned around, almost bumping into someone.

"Sorry." The tall brunette said. Didnít she know her? Sheíd been in the courtroom everyday. Dana stood for a moment and then walked into the courtroom. The judge was making his closing speech.

"And further more, I find it cruel and despicable that after throwing away your children, you should come back to claim them. They have a perfectly good home and a loving father and no one has any right to take them away from him after you took just about everything else. The children will stay with their father. Court is adjourned." He banged his gavel and the court dispersed. The kids ran to their father.

"I love you." Fox whispered, hugging them close.

"We love you Daddy." They replied. Mulder shook his lawyers hand and thanked her graciously. Phoebe and Jay walked over, tightlipped to them, holding their baby.

"You have to let them see us. This child is their half sister, whether you like it or not." Jay declared.

"Settle that with the court. Iím taking my kids home. And Phoebe, next time you decide to come and wreak havoc in our lives, call ahead of time." Fox said, turning. He stopped.

"Congratulations Fox."

"Diana." Fox said, hugging her. Jennie frowned.

Towards the back of the court Dana watched Fox hug the woman she had bumped into. They seemed to know each other.

"Diana Fowley." Dana spun around to look at a smirking Phoebe.

"Excuse me?" Dana asked, frowning with disdain.

"Her name is Diana Fowley. Foxís old squeeze. She was in love with him since he first said I do at our wedding. Hm, seems to me theyíre picking up where they left off. Cheerio." She said, smiling to herself and walking off with Jay. Dana turned back, dismayed to see Fox kiss her cheek. Calling up all her courage she walked up to them. Jennie smiled gratefully and yanked on her fatherís arm. He looked up.

"Dana." He sighed. He went to her and hugged her. "I gotíem. Did you hear?"

"I did. Itís wonderful." Dana replied, glancing at the frowning woman. Oblivious, Fox leaned in and kissed Danaís lips long and tenderly. Danaís heart soared.

"We should celebrate. Take the kids and go out somewhere. I donít know....how bout Fudruckers?" He suggested with a glint in his eye. "Iíll be like our anniversary." Fox grinned at her and she grinned back.

"Sounds like a plan." Dana said, kissing his chin.

"Um, Fox? Iím gonna go. Iíll see you at work." Diana said, eyeing Dana. Fox nodded, faintly.

"Uh huh. Bye Diana." He said, distractedly. Dana watched the woman walk away.

"Whoís she?" Dana asked, trying to look casual.

"Uh? Oh, thatís Diana Fowley. Sheís an agent at the Bureau. We used to be partners when I was a field agent." Fox explained, packing up his things.

"Oh." Was all she said, as she took Alexís hand. Fox sensed something brewing, but decided not to bring it up until later.

They walked out of the court room hand in hand, hoping that the worst was behind them. Unfortunately for them the worst was yet to come.

**

**

"Oh Fox. You didnít have to do this." Dana whispered as Mulder pulled out a long velvet box. they were sitting at a fancy restaurant.

"I wanted to. I saw it and I couldnít help myself." He replied. Dana bit her lip and looked at the box. "Open it." He said.

Dana sighed and opened it. She gasped. "Oh Fox."

"Do you like it?" Fox asked, grinning with hope.

"I-I love it, but...."

"You donít like it." He stated.

"No! I do. I love it. Itís just that......Itís just that no one has ever given me anything like this before." She whispered, finger the diamond necklace.

"You deserve more. I saw it and it reminded me of you and I had to get it." he said, shrugging bashfully. Heíd never done this sort of thing before and Dana could tell.

"Please say youíll keep it." He said. Dana exhaled softly and looked up at him.

"Yes. Iíll keep it. Thank you so much. I love it. I love-I love it." Dana said, feeling herself flush.

"Let me put it on you." He said, getting up and moving over to her. Dana nodded and took of the cross that usually hung there and put it in her purse. He knelt behind her and she pulled her hair up and away from her neck. His arms circled her shoulders and Dana felt herself shiver at the close proximity. Fox clipped the necklace, his fingers lingering near her neck. He hesitated and then smoothed his hands down her shoulders. She turned around and looked into his eyes and felt a deep ball of heat rise in her stomach. His lips rose to hers and she sighed as his lips interlocked with hers.

Dana felt the electricity and the heat rise as he deepened the kiss. She always felt the heat and electricity when he kissed her. She knew she could fall in love with him. She already had and this time the thought didnít scare her. She embraced it. She needed to know how he felt about her, before she could go on.

"Fox?" Dana whispered, pulling away.

"Hm?"

"Fox do you-Do you lo-" Dana didnít finish her question, because another voice cut her off.

"Fox?" Dana turned around to see a familiar face. It was Diana Fowely. The one from the court room.

"Diana." Fox acknowledged.

"What are you doing here?" She asked.

"Oh Iím having dinner with my girlfriend. Diana this is Dana Scully. Dana, Diana Fowley." Fox introduced. The two women shook hands uncomfortably.

"Are you here alone?" Fox asked getting up.

"Oh no. Iím here with Spender. Just a *friendly* dinner." Diana replied, emphasizing friendly. Fox began to stroke Danaís hair possessively and unconsciously.

"Oh."

"I just thought Iíd say hello, cause I saw you. Oh and I also have some files that I need to go over with you if thatís okay."

"Oh." Fox looked down at Dana. "Well Iím kinda gonna be busy tonight. Canít it wait until Monday?"

"Uh-um sure sir. Iíll just talk to you on Monday." Diana said, backing away.

"Monday Morning." Fox said, with raised eyebrows. He then turned back to Dana.

"Um. Does she work with you?" Dana asked.

"Yea. Sheís just a colleague. Nothing to worry about. You were about to ask me something." Fox said.

"Oh, well. Nothing." Dana sighed, looking down at her hands. Fox looked at her for a moment and then shrugged.

"Hey I was thinking, maybe we could take the kids to the park this weekend." Fox said, sitting down.

"That sounds nice." Dana replied, smiling again. Fox sighed and nodded.

"Dana look, thereís something bothering you and Iíd like to know what it is." Fox said. Dana stayed silent. "Is it the necklace? You donít want me spending money on you ?"

Dana looked up at him. "No. No itís not that. Can we go take a walk."

Fox nodded and got the check. They walked past Diana and Jeffery Spenderís table hand in hand.

"Huh. I wonder how much he paid her." Spender whispered to Diana. Fox spun around and looked at Spender with a flaming glare.

"Did you say something to me Agent Spender? If you are I would hope that you would have the guts to say it to my face." Fox said to the agent.

"No sir." Spender said, tightly.

"I donít like what you just insinuated about my date. I suggest you apologize immediately." The taller man said to the younger agent.

"Iím sorry maíam." Spender said, completely embarrassed and angry. Diana was trying to disappear into the woodwork.

"What?" Fox made like he couldnít hear him.

"Iím sorry maíam." Spender said louder. Fox looked at Dana and she nodded, completely floored. No one had ever stood up for her like that and the man, Spender, didnít even say anything directly to her.

"Good. I trust youíll have a report on my desk by Monday morning. Have a nice night." Fox said, icily. He turned and placed a hand on Danaís back. They left feeling a whole heck of a lot better.

**

"Fox you didnít have to do that. What you did back there." Dana said quietly in the parking lot. He turned to look down at her.

"I wanted to. That idiot Spender never did like me much and I hate that he even insinuated that about you." Fox replied.

"No one has ever done that for me. Stuck up for me. Adam would have just let anyone say anything about me. Hell, heíd join in. But then again, he wouldnít take me to dinner either." Dana laughed. Fox looked at her for a long moment and then took her head in his hands and brought her face up to his own.

Dana sighed into his mouth and melted into the hot kiss. This man was incredible. She knew then that she loved him. She wanted him and needed him with an intensity she never knew before. This was nothing like when she first met Adam. Nothing.

Fox pulled away, flushed and panting. "I-"

"What?" Dana asked, quickly. "Tell me."

"I think-"

"Tell me Fox. Tell me how....Tell me how you feel about me. I need to know because-"

"I think-no, I know, I love you." Fox whispered, looking into her eyes intensely. Dana sighed. Those words. She hadnít heard them in so long.

"Oh Fox."

"I havenít scared you have I? I just needed to let you know. I know that you wanted me to go slow but-"

"No Fox. I-I love you too," Dana said in one breath. Fox grinned and let out a sigh. "I love you." She said again more surely.

"I love you too." He whispered back smiling softly at her. Dana returned it and he brought her lips to his once again in a sweet, tender kiss. Dana kissed him without reserve. Without a care in the world. With fervor. Her husband was in jail, Fox loved her, and Phoebe was gone. Life was good.

She intensified the kiss, tilting her head up so he would have better access to her mouth. Their tongues dueled hotly and passionately. She pulled away, gazing at him, as he kissed her lips softly. She noticed, Diana and Spender leaving. Diana put her head down quickly, when she was caught staring.

Dana looked back up at Fox, who was completely enthralled in her. She cupped his face in her hands and rained butterfly kisses all over it.

"Where do we go from here?" She whispered. He shook his head.

"I donít know, but I do know that where ever we go, itíll be together." He replied. She beamed at him. "Lemme take you home." He whispered close to her mouth. Dana shivered and nodded. She had a faint idea as to what would happen when they got there.

**

Dana Scully Residence

Dana unlocked the door and turned around to look up at Fox.

"My kids arenít home. Theyíre with their grandmother for the night." Dana said, her voice low and wavering slightly.

"Do you want me to go?" Fox asked, his own voice low and husky.

"No." She whispered. " Stay." Then she was in his arms touching him and kissing him. His hands were everywhere and no where at once, his lips like fire across her body. Dana pushed off his suit jacket and he unzipped the back of her dress.

"Wait." Fox stopped thinking he did something wrong. He slowly began to pull away.

"No. I-I havenít been with a man in so long and I...donít think I remember how to-" He silenced her with a finger to her lips.

"I havenít either. Weíll refresh each otherís memories." He whispered. He kissed her neck softly and she gasped. He picked her up in his arms.

"Tell me where." He said.

"First room on your left." She replied, nibbling on his ear. He walked in and kicked the door shut out of habit. He placed her gently on the bed and squatted before her.

"Itís okay Dana. I wonít hurt you. I wonít be like Adam. Let me love you." He whispered.

"I want you to love me." She whimpered back. He slowly came up and began to kiss and suck on her neck.

"I love you. I wonít hurt you. Let me make love to you." He whispered, his breath hot on her neck.

"Yes." She breathed. "Make love to me."

Fox got up and so did she. He finished unzipping her dress and it pooled to the ground at her feet. She stood before him, wearing cream silk panties and a matching bra. He continued to stare at her and she began to squirm, thinking she wasnít pretty enough.

"Oh Dana. Youíre even more beautiful than I imagined. Youíre so lovely." He husked, in adoration. He stepped forward and took her elbows in his hands and pulled her forward. He kissed her mouth passionately and lustily.

Her hands were on his chest and she reached for his buttons. She undid them all and smoothed her hands out over his chest. She undid his tie and used it to pull him to her for another hot kiss. Fox pulled away and reached his hand up to unclasp her bra. It fell off and he sighed, aching to touch her breasts.

He cupped a breast with one hand, his thumb rolling over her nipple. She threw her head back and moaned and arched her back, wanting more of him. He tweaked the other nipple and looked up into her flushed face.

"You are so beautiful." He whispered, shakily. "So Beautiful." He pulled her up to him for another kiss. His tongue teasing hers by touching and retreating. Moaning, Dana took hold of his tie and pulled him onto the bed, her legs on either side of his torso.

"Iím going to love you the way you deserve to be loved." He whispered with a hiss. Their hips ovulating and grinding against each other. Dana could feel his hardness against her belly.

"I want you so badly." She moaned. He kissed her ear softly and then kissed her nose. Dana pushed off his tie and shirt and threw them on the floor. He hugged her hard, loving the way her bare chest felt pressed against his own bare chest. Dana moaned loving it too.

Fox caught her mouth with his own and sucked and kissed her lips hungrily. He couldnít get enough of her. It had been so long since heíd felt like this about anyone, since heíd done this with anyone, to anyone. He wanted it to be good for her. He wanted to make up for everything that bastard husband of hers did to her. He wanted to make up for all the lost time. He was sure that this woman writhing below him was his soul mate.

Dana was tugging at his pants. He slide off the bed and pulled off his pants and boxers. Danaís eyes, devoured him. He was so beautiful.

Fox crawled back in between her legs and nipped in between her thighs. Dana bit back a squeal and her thighs tensed. She felt his nose between her legs insistently nudging her mound.

"Ohhh Fox." Dana groaned. He kissed his way back up her body and latched onto a nipple. He sucked and kissed it, Dana began to writhe uncontrollably. Sheíd never felt this way before. Not like this.

"Now." She gasped. "I need you now." Fox let go of her nipple and took hold of her panties, slowly pulling them off. She lay before him naked body and soul.

"So beautiful." He whispered. "Youíre so beautiful." He covered her body with his own and they reveled in the feel of their hot naked bodies touching and rubbing. He felt so good and she felt so safe and most importantly, loved in his arms.

His cock was at her entrance and he stopped realizing that they had no protection.

"Fox?"

"You wouldnít happen to have a condom wouldja?" He asked, hopefully. Danaís eyes fell. Sheíd forgotten.

"No. I didnít expect....this." She gestured to their position.

"We could stop if you like, but I donít think I have any diseases. I sorta live in the hospital."

"I donít want to stop. I donít think I have anything, but Iíd hate to find out that Iím wrong and I gave you something. With all the drugs and women, Adam might have given me something. The last time I went to the doctor I had a clean bill of health, surprisingly."

"Do you trust me?" Dana nodded. "Good. Because I trust you and I love you and I want you." With that he plunged deep within her and she gasped in delight. He looked into her eyes, intensely. He didnít want to hurt her. She was so small and he was so large. "Are you okay? Did I hurt you?" He asked. Dana smiled. Adam never cared about her needs like this before. All he wanted was a quick orgasm.

"No you havenít hurt me." She gasped. "I havenít done this in a very long time. You feel so good." She grasped his bottom and pulled him in all the way, moaning.

Fox groaned. She felt so good, so soft. "Oh Dana. Youíre so wet. You feel so good." He moaned. Dana laughed a little. This was so different to when she was with Adam. She hadnít really lived, hadnít really been loved. Now she was. She felt alive. She felt so alive.

He began to move slowly. All the way out and then back in. With each thrust they moaned. They wanted this. They needed this. They needed each other.

His lips found hers and they kissed passionately as their hot sweaty bodies writhed against one another.

"Oh oh geez you feel-Oh you feel so good. I love you so much." Dana husked, against his mouth. He nipped her bottom lip and smiled.

They held each other and kissed each other with such passion. This was nothing like being with their former spouses.

"Oh Dana, I love you." His throaty, sultry voice whispered.

"I want to stay with you forever." Dana moaned. "Forever."

"Itís fate Dana. Fate that weíre together like this. Oh, I love you." He whispered again. "Youíll never know how much." He hissed, remembering a dream a long while back.

He felt her hot lips trail fire up across his chest. "Oh, please." He whispered.

"Itís fate, love. Fate." She whispered.

"Fate." He echoed, as he felt his climax coming close. He grasped her behind and she spread her legs wider and he pumped his hips harder and began to grind his hips after each long thrust. Dana felt herself coming.

"Oh my ga-oh Fox Iím coming. Iím so close." Dana cried, as she rode him hard. Fox reached down between them and began rubbing her clit between his fingers. Dana cried his name out over and over again as she came. Fox climaxed a moment later, shuddering above her and crying her name in reverence.

Bodies sweaty and tired, they pulled apart slowly and lay there together and promptly fell asleep.

**

Dana Scullyís apartment

8:28

It was a strange wonderful feeling. She felt warm. Loved. She heard a sigh behind her and new why. Last night she and Fox made love for the first time. It was as though their bodies were made for each other and theyíd been making love together for years. They fit like a glove.

Dana turned slightly and sat up, fear creeping in. What if he regretted it. What if he regretted being with her, making love with her. She slowly began to creep out of bed when she felt a hand grab her wrist.

"Stay." He whispered. The one word got Dana back in bed. He looked at her for a long time, wondering if she had any regrets about last night. "Dana, you donít......regret what happened last night, do you?" Fox asked finally. Dana looked at him, trying to read him.

"No. I donít." Dana said, looking at him, closely. He sighed in relief, and nuzzled her face.

"Good Iím glad." He whispered.

"I thought youíd have regrets." Dana whispered back. Fox held her close.

"No. Never." Fox said. Dana sighed and cuddled closer to him, loving the feel of his naked skin against hers.

"When is your mom, coming back with the kids?" Fox asked.

"Probably around eleven." Dana whispered, smiling.

"Now what can we do to pass the time?" He asked, smiling.

"Fox we need to talk." Dana said suddenly turning serious. "Now what happens. Weíve taken our relationship to a whole other level. What am I to you? What does this mean for us?" Dana asked.

"Iím hoping it means we can have many other nights like the one we just shared."

"What, are you talking like moving in?"

"Not necessarily that. Not yet. You said that you wanted to stay with me forever last night. I want the same thing. I love you. So much. And I want to be with you always, but I also think we need more time to heal. Weíve come out of our marriages so broken and although youíve healed my heart beyond words can say, we still need a bit more mending. As long weíre together we can fight anything." Fox said. Dana looked at him, eyes watering.

It was the most beautiful thing anyone had ever told her. "Yes." She whispered. He covered her mouth with his to seal their promise to each other.

"Now." He whispered, his voice growing more husky. "I think we have a little more time to kill."

"Whatever shall we do?" Dana whispered, before Fox covered her body with his own.

**

"You did it with him didnít you?" Melissa asked her sister the next day.

"What?!" Dana exclaimed incredulously.

"Oh come on. Youíve got that I had sex glow. And since you havenít seen him since yesterday, it must have been good. Better then Adam anyway. A wet noodle would have the same affect." Melissa said, sipping her coffee.

"Would you mind keeping your voice down, Missy. The kids might here you." Dana hissed.

"Well did you? Donít lie to me, Kat. Youíre a lousy liar."

"Okay. We did, although I donít know why it is any of your business." Dana said, folding her arms.

"Did he tell you he loved you?" Melissa asked, ignoring her sisterís glare.

"Yes." Dana said, quietly smiling at the memory. " And I told him. It was the best experience, sexual, experience Iíve ever had. He was so warm and caring and loving. Nothing like Adam. I love him so much, but Iím so scared. I have this sinking feeling that happiness like this was never meant for me, that itíll end soon."

"Dana, love is not easy. It never was. If it was the fun and challenge in life would be gone. You and Fox are soulmates. You belong together. The question you should ask yourself is when the waters get rough will you still swim with him?"

"What if I canít swim?" Dana asked sadly.

**

Wheaton Regional Park

It was two weeks after they became lovers. Their relationship was flourishing and they were becoming closer than ever. They were at the park with their kids playing football and Dana couldnít have felt more at peace.

"Catch dad!" Nathan yelled, throwing the football towards Mulder. Mulder caught it easily and yelled as he saw a bunch of people barreling towards him. Carrie and Alex grabbed his legs and Jennie tackled him. Nathan jumped into the fray and Joey, not liking to be left out, got up out of Danaís lap and toddled over to the group.

"Careful, Joeyís coming over." Dana called to them. Joey half-ran half-toddled his way over and stopped to turn around and look at Dana. "Go on." She coaxed. Joey toddled back and screamed.

"Mama!" Smiling, Dana got up and walked over to Joey. Taking his cherubic little hands with her own. She helped him run over to them.

"Yaaay, comeíere Joey." Carrie squealed opening her arms. Joey laughed and ran to her. Carrie loved Joey. The kids amused themselves with tickling each other while Fox pulled Dana, laughing into his lap.

"Happy?" He asked, kissing her. She nodded, smiling. "Good. I want it to be like this forever Dana. I want to be with you forever."

"Mmm, me too. I love you." Dana whispered.

"I love you more. Then again Iíll love anyone whoís game enough to take on Joeyís diaper." Fox grinned. Dana threw her head back and laughed and as she brought her head back down a figure caught her eye. She froze. God no. It couldnít be him. But it was and he was looking right at her.

"Dana?" Fox inquired.

"Iím fine. Iím fine." She said, turning back to Fox. She smiled for emphasis and Fox smiled back and kissed her full on the mouth. She accepted it as it warmed the cold feeling inside her stomach. She caressed his back and he hers as they changed the direction of the kiss.

"Get a room." Nathan said, interrupting their passionate embrace. Dana laughed as Fox threw the nerf ball at him. Discreetly Dana looked over to see that he was gone.

It couldnít have been him. If it was....it would mean everything sheíd built up here would die. Legally she was still his wife and she had kidnapped her own children. Please God. Please let it not be Adam.

**

Scully Residence

Dana rushed the kids to bed after saying goodnight to Fox and his children. Fox had been a little confused at her strange behavior. Sheíd been tempted to ask him to stay, if Adam had found her. It was ridiculous. It couldnít be him. He was in jail. Vickie would have called if something had changed.

Dana noticed she had messages and played them. There was three frantic messages from Vickie to call her and then finally a third one that she wouldnít forget for as long as she lived.

"Dana! God, Iím praying you get this message. Adamís out of jail. Since you never showed up in court they just let him out. I havenít seen him and Iím sure heís gone looking for you. Iíve already warned your mother, because I know heíll try and contact her. *Please* call me back, Dana! I havenít spoken to you in days and he was let out three days ago. Just call me and let me know that youíre all right."

Shaking and crying, Dana picked up her phone and dialed Vickieís number.

"Hello?" Jake answered.

"Jake."

"Dana?! Hold on a sec-VICKIE!! ITíS DANA!!"

"Nice to know you miss me."

"You donít know how worried we are. Adam just gets out of jail only to learn his wife and kids up and leave. Iím afraid of what heíll do when he finds you, Dane."

"Iíll be okay." Dana said.

"Hello Dana?" It was Vickie.

"Vick?"

"Oh thank God! Dana weíve been so worried. Have you....I mean,"

" I thought it was my imagination." Dana whispered.

"What?"

"I saw him Vickie. He was there at the park and he saw me with Fox and our kids. He looked right at me. We made eye contact. Oh god Vickie!" Dana was beginning to panic."

"Dana, Dana itíll be okay. You have Fox there right? Heís FBI I mean he can protect you."

"Mm-no. I canít. I canít allow him to get mixed up in this. He has a small son, what if Adam came with a gun. I couldnít-I canít do that to him. I love him too much to let them be hurt like this." Dana sobbed.

"Oh Dana he loves you. He can handle it."

"No. He doesnít know that Adam and I are still legally married, that I ran from California. For God-sakes Vickie I kidnapped my own children!"

"To protect yourself! He was beating you Dana. You did the right thing." Vickie yelled back. Softly now, she asked. "Now whatíll you do?"

"I donít know." Dana whispered, shivering. She looked around feverishly. She felt so alone. "I canít stay here and let Adam find us. He might already know where we live." She said with a tremor in her voice. "We need to get somewhere safe."

"Oh-oh Dana you arenít thinking of running again are you? Where would you go?" Vickie asked.

"Somewhere Adam canít find us. Somewhere I can forget about Fox and how much I love him and his childre-" Dana gasped and began to sob hard. "Iím so tired Vickie! Iím so tired of running!"

"Oh honey. Itíll be all right. Youíll see. Thingsíll work out for the best. You donít have to leave Fox. Just tell him the truth. If you love him, tell him."

"Thatís the reason I canít tell him! I love him. I love with all of my heart and I canít hurt him. He can do fine without me. Itís me who canít live without him." With that she began to cry again and Vickie could do nothing but listen and wonder where her best friend Ďthe rockí was. But then again, even rocks can wither away.

**

Ceasarís Restaurant

Dana was nervous as she walked into the restaurant. Sheíd bought an apartment in Boston already an she had thought it too risky to move her furniture, so she bought new furniture and decided to only take important unnoticeable things. They were up and leaving again. Their flight was five hours away and all that was left was to tell Fox it was over.

Sheíd ignored all of his calls over the past week and sheíd finally called him and asked him to lunch. It was the hardest thing sheíd ever have to do, to look him in the eye and say I donít love you. She walked into the restaurant and realized maybe she didnít have to say anything.

Fox sat there laughing with that Diana Fowley person. She saw her coyly reach for her drink and brush his hand with her own. Hoping he didnít see her she turned to go, but it was too late. He saw her.

"Dana!" Fox got up and jogged over to her side. "Hi, baby." He whispered, leaning in to kiss her. Dana sucked up all her courage and pushed him away. "Honey, whatís the matter?"

"Itís not going to work anymore Fox." She whispered. He blinked.

"What?"

"Itís over. Itís not going to work." Dana said, her voice quivering.

"Why?" He asked, looking and sounding like a lost little boy. "Dana why?"

"Because-" Dana looked down and saw her knuckles turning white. Her answer was almost inaudible.

"What?"

"I donít-I donít love you Fox." She said stoically. "I never did." She said, looking at her feet.

"I donít believe you." He stated.

"Thatís too bad. Here." She handed him the necklace heíd given her. "Take it I donít want it anymore." She had to go before she broke down and cried. The look he was giving her was enough to make her fling herself in his arms and never let go. "I need to go."

"Dana-" He called, grabbing her arm. She jumped and looked up into his eyes and at that moment a glimmer of understanding passed over him.

"Please let go of me."

"Dana-"

"Please let go of me now!" She said, pulling on her arm.

"Dana please-"

"No! Please Fox. Let go. Please let go." She whispered, harshly. Fox reluctantly let go and ran after her onto the sidewalk, where a taxi waited with Nathan and Carrie inside.

"Wait. Where are you going?" Fox asked. Dana walked to the taxi and stopped before opening the door.

"Please go away Fox! Let me go!" She was beginning to cry and she couldnít handle it.

"Dana please. Please donít leave me. Please. Alex and Jennie and Joey, Dana. Joey. Please donít leave us." He pleaded. This was like a Phoebe repeat.

"I canít stay here anymore. Donít follow me." She whispered, her eyes screaming ĎPlease Fox hold me in your arms and never let me go. Save me Fox. Please rescue me.í

Dana opened the taxi door and got in. "Daddy!" Carrie yelled, Fox pressed his hand against the window desperately. No not again. He couldnít lose someone close to him again. Not like this.

"Daddy!"

"Carrie!" He yelled. "Nathan!" Dana spoke to the driver and Fox had to jump back from the car as it drove off. He could see Carrie crying and from the angle of her head, Dana was crying as well. Swiping at his tear-streaked face, Fox turned around to go back into the restaurant, but decided he wasnít at all hungry.

**

Flight 1127

Dana was quietly sobbing, as she thought of those last few words with Fox. Oh I love you, I love you I love you, she yelled in her mind, hoping he could somehow hear. Her body shook with sobs, as Carrie lay against her asleep.

"Hey you okay?" A man across the aisle asked.

"Yes, Iím fine. Thank you." Dana whimpered back, realizing that sheíd just taken Carrie and Nathan away from the only real father theyíd ever known. Iím so sorry. One day youíll understand. "Mommy?" Dana turned to Nathan.

"I thought you were asleep?" She asked, wiping her eyes.

"No. I heard you crying. You miss Fox." Nathan said, already distancing himself by calling him Fox not Dad or daddy.

"I do. I miss him a lot." Dana said, sadly.

"Itís him isnít it? He found us." Nathan said, fear creeping into his eyes. Dana nodded.

"But he wonít find us again. I promise Iíll protect you and your sister."

"Whoís gonna protect you?" Nathan asked. Dana didnít know.

**

Mulder Residence

One day Later

Mulder rocked Joey in his arms, a slow rhythmic movement, something to keep his mind off the intense ache in his heart. He didnít feel like this when he lost Phoebe. This hurt his very soul, or what was left of it. A tear tracked down his face and into Joeyís thick blond curls.

He placed a kiss on his small head. His children were what was keeping him from doing something drastic. Joey looked up at him and touched the tear on his face.

"Saí?"

"Yea. Daddyís very very sad." He whispered. Joey sat up and hugged him.

"Wew Mama?" He inquired. Whereís mama? It was the most heart breaking question to hear him ask. Heíd been asking him that all week. Oh Dana how could you leave like this? He asked her silently.

"I donít know baby." He replied. "I donít know." He said, breaking down and crying in front of his one year old son. Jennie and Alex came in from listening to their father cry in the hallway to stand next to him in the rocking chair.

"Is Dana gone forever?" Alex asked. Jennie hushed him hearing her father choke on a sob.

"Itíll be okay Daddy. Youíll see. Itíll be okay." She said in a small voice, sounding like her seven years. Mulder used his free arm to bring Alex down into his lap.

Jennie didnít know why Dana left , but she couldnít believe it was because he didnít love them anymore. Sheíd never leave her father in this state. But she couldnít help but be a little bit afraid. Sheíd never seen him cry like this before. Sheíd be making a special prayer request tonight.

**

Boston Massachusetts

9:00

Carrie watched her mother sit at her window and look out. Her mother had been so sad lately. She couldnít blame her. She had been very sad too. She missed Fox and every time sheíd tell her mother this, sheíd cry and she didnít want to make her mother sad. Nathan had told her that they left because Ďsirí had found them. Carrie didnít like running and she was almost certain that Fox could protect them. All she wanted was for her mother to be happy and right now, she looked lost and broken.

Sighing Carrie scampered into her room and climbed up onto her chair to look up into the sky. Fox had pointed out all the constellations to her.

"Well stars I hope youíre listening." She said up to the night sky. "Twinkle twinkle little star......

"How I wonder what you are......" Jennie whispered, leaning up against her own window.

"Up above the world so bright......" Nathan said.

"Grant this wish......" Alex said, his eyes squished shut.

"I wish tonight." The kids finished.

"Mr. Star, my mommyís real sad and scared cause ĎSirí is gonna find us aní she loves Fox, but...." Carrie said matter-a-factly.

"They canít be together. Heís real miserable and he cries a lot and well if you can just bring Dana back..." Jennie went on.

"Everything would be okay cause then at least weíd all be together. Iíve never had a real dad before and Fox is the only one whose ever treated me like a real son. I want him back. I love..." Nathan whispered.

"Her. Sheís pretty and nice and gives nice hugs and daddy loves her a whole lot. So please could you just let them be together? Please?" Alex asked.

"Just let them be happy." The kids finished.

"Waní Mama." Joey whimpered, sadly to the ceiling. Miles apart Fox and Dana sat at their own solitary windows wondering about and loving the other. And as a single tear slid down each of their cheeks, the stars twinkled and fate got ready to make another appearance.

**

**

McGee Residence

Boston

It was almost a month now that she had left Washington and Fox and his kids. It didnít get any easier. Not for her or for her kids. Especially after a disturbing phone call from her doctor. Sheíd wrestled with the news, but thought in time things might work out, but it didnít. If it was possible, it hurt more with each passing day she was away from him, until there was nothing left, but a dull pain in her heart. Her life wasnít hers anymore. It was Adamís, it was her kids, but it wasnít hers.

She was constantly looking over her shoulder and she was cautious of anyone who approached her. This paranoia was the reason she changed her last name. She had no friends at the hospital. They thought she was a cold bitch. They didnít know that she had two kids at home, a secret from a past lover and was running from an abusive husband. They didnít know her heart ached for that lover and happiness she thought she could never have. They assumed they did know everything about her. She was a quiet cold woman with an attitude problem so no one reached out to her.

Dana didnít care really. It had hurt at first, but it was all a matter of surviving now. Anyhow all her happiness left when she left Fox. He had her heart in a box and although she didnít know it, she had his.

"Mommy?" Carrie asked climbing into her mothers lap.

"Yes baby." Dana answered, blinking herself out of the haze she was in.

"When are we gonna go back to Washington?" She asked.

"I donít know baby." Dana whispered. She stopped crying a long time ago. Now she was just numb. A numb broken shell of a woman. She was angry as well. This was the second time Adam cheated her out of happiness. He was the reason she couldnít be happy. But she also knew, in the back of her mind that it was her fault as well. maybe if she had been stronger, sheíd have been free of Adam a long time ago. If sheíd been stronger, sheíd have stayed and she would be in Foxís arms happy about the secret instead of alone and miserable about it. Her weakness had also cheated her children out of a real family, a real life. And she hated herself for it.

"Mommy?"

"Yes Carrie."

"Do you still love Daddy?" Carrie asked. She still called him Daddy, because she truly believed sheíd see him again.

"Oh little one, I-Go to bed now, baby. Go to bed," Dana said, warily and fighting back tears of guilt and hurt. Carrie, eyes downcast did as told.

"Oh Fox." Dana whispered, allowing a tear to fall. "Can you feel me? I can still feel you. And thatís why itís so hard to let go." Her chin wrinkled and she began to cry, wondering what her heart was doing that night.

**

Reflecting Pool

"I really enjoyed tonight, Fox. I-Fox? Fox." Fox snapped to look at the woman beside him. "You havenít heard a word I just said, have you."

"Yea I have." He insisted.

"Okay, what did I just say?" Diana asked, crossing her arms. Fox opened his mouth and then closed it.

"Iím sorry Diana. I wasnít listening at all, I just-Well Joey is sick and he still misses Dana. I guess he just half-expects her to come back and hold him. Half of him still canít believe she left him." Fox explained, with a far off tone. Diana looked at him, closely.

"Why do I get the feeling you arenít just talking about Joey?" She muttered.

"Iím sorry. I just-"

"I donít understand why you canít get over her. She wasnít anything special. Did you have sex with her? Is that it?" Diana asked, her temper flaring. Foxís own temper flared.

"Thatís none of your business. Iím taking you home. Itís been a long night."

"Fox! Fox Iím sorry. I didnít mean it that way. Iím just so frustrated. For you. This is a repeat of Phoebe and I care about you too much to see you get hurt. She played you for a fool Fox."

"I canít believe that. I canít and I wonít. Not about Dana. Not the Dana I knew." Fox said, looking out at the fountain he and Dana had gone to on their first date. The fountain she had bared her soul to him at, the fountain where he first kissed her.

"You thought you knew Phoebe. You knew her for over ten years. You only knew Dana for what a few months? Fox I know you were smitten with her, but she left and sheís not coming back. You have to get over that if you are ever going to get on with your life. Your kids need a mother and since she abandoned them, I donít think sheís fit to be one to your kids."

Fox looked away from her, jaw clenched. "She didnít abandon them." He said, with a low voice.

"So what do you call what happened in the restaurant? Look, sheís been gone for almost a month now, Fox. I care about you a great deal. I remember a time when we meant more to each other. Donít tell me you forgot about what we had." She said, placing a hand on his cheek.

"That was a long time ago Diana." Fox said, quietly.

"But it doesnít mean I stopped feeling the way I felt about you. Even when you married Phoebe I loved you. Weíve come together again, Fox and I think itís fate that weíre together like this." Diana leaned up and kissed his mouth.

There was a niggling in the back of Foxís mind. Fate. Dana. He could see her face, feel her touch still fresh in his mind. This would be a lot easier if he couldnít feel her still.

Maybe he thought, Maybe itís better off this way. Maybe she just wasnít happy with me, like Phoebe. Fox promised himself that heíd let her go as soon as he knew she was happy. Iíll be miserable for the rest of my life, but as long as I know youíre happy, Dana.

With that last thought, Mulder tried to kiss Diana back with as much passion as he could muster. None.

***

Maggie Scully Residence

"Aw Dana, I wish youíd come back. Adam came by yesterday. I was half tempted to shoot him where he stood. He was so slick with me it was disgusting. I told him I knew nothing, so Iím sure he wonít come bothering Mom and me anymore. Dana I wish youíd contact Fox. Making yourself miserable is not helping you." Danaís sister Melissa said.

"Missy I told you I canít. I wonít risk him and his childrenís lives." Dana replied, with her new quiet demeanor.

"Oh really? Youíre carrying one of his children right now so I donít believe your answer. Are you ever gonna tell him that youíre pregnant with his child? He has a *right* to know."

"I....I canít. Not now." Dana whimpered.

"You know what Dana? I donít think youíre protecting them at all. I think you are afraid to be happy. I think youíre afraid that what happened with Adam will happen again. You feel like you donít deserve to be happy and I think thatís a load of pure horse manure."

"I am not afraid of being happy-I....How dare you!" Dana yelled, half-heartedly. Melissa chuckled on her end of the phone.

"Youíre very pathetic Dana. Youíre so bent on being miserable, we canít even argue right anymore. Hold on, thereís someone at the door." Melissa got up and walked to the door before her mother got to it.

"Fox!" Melissa wasnít too surprised to see him. He looked tired and dis-spirited.

"Hi Melissa." He greeted, "Look, I need-Do you know if Dana is happy....where she is now?" He asked. Melissa smiled.

"Why donít you ask her yourself." Melissa replied. Foxís eyes lit up.

"Is she here?" He asked.

"No Fox, but sheís on the phone. Hold on a sec." Melissa picked up the receiver. "Dana? Thereís someone here, whoíd like to say hello to you." Melissa handed the phone to Fox.

"Dana?" He tried. Danaís breath stopped. Sheíd go back. Just to kill her sister for doing this to her. "Dana?" She realized she hadnít said anything yet.

"F-Fox?"

"Dana." He sighed. "Dana I just need to ask you-"

"I canít tell you where I am, Fox. I canít." She said hurriedly.

"No thatís not what I was gonna ask you. I just need to know, Dana. Are you-Are you happy?"

"I-Iím very happy. Iím-" Dana bit back a sob. "Iím very happy." She whispered. Tears in his eyes Fox nodded.

"Thatís all I wanted to know, Dana." He whispered, his voice caressing her ear.

"Um, are you happy?" Dana asked, needing to hear more of his voice.

"Of course. Remember Diana? Yea well sheís been keeping me company and I-I am fine." He replied, she needed to think he was happy, so she could be happy. Believe the lie. Melissa rolled her eyes and looked away. Great, just great. Two people in denial.

"Oh. Sheís....nice." Dana said, through clenched teeth. What was left of her heart was breaking

"Yeah, she is. Dana, Joey misses you a lot." Fox said suddenly.

"He does?"

"Yes he does." Foxís want and need for her radiating through his words.

"I miss him too. So much." Danaís own need being heard through her voice. "Fox I-Nothing. Never mind." Dana said, squelching down the need to tell him about their baby and how much she loved him.

"What. What is it?" Fox asked.

"Itís nothing. Please donít tell anyone you talked to me."

"Why."

"Just-please. Donít. Okay?"

"I promise you." Fox said, something niggling in the back of his mind.

"Goodbye Fox."

"Dana, are ever coming back?"

"I canít." Dana whispered through her tears. "I canít." Fox closed his eyes.

"Tell Carrie and Nathan I love them. If you ever need anything Dana. Anything. You know where to find me. I will be waiting. Goodbye Dana." Fox whispered.

"Goodbye Fox." Her farewell barely heard. Fox handed the phone to Melissa and she looked at it for a moment.

"She hung up. Whyíd you lie to her?" Melissa asked, not in accusation.

"I didnít lie."

"Oh please. You have miserable written all over your face."

"Iím not here to argue with you. My happiness is not an issue here." Fox said, walking past her.

"Isnít it?"

"No. As long as sheís happy, Iím happy." Fox said turning around. Fox went to the door and left.

"Oh, and tell Maggie I said hi." He said, turning and leaving.

"Fox!" Melissa called. "Donít turn your back on fate. Follow your heart. If it doesnít feel right, donít go for it." Fox nodded and got into his car. He turned the key in the ignition and noticed a car pull into the driveway.

A man about as tall as he, give or take an inch, stepped out of the car and went to the door. Melissa answered it. She looked a bit frightened and defiant at the same time. Fox could here what they were saying from where he was parked.

"Has Dana contacted you at all? At all?"

"No! For the umpteenth time I donít know where she is, Adam! Why would she come back here after so many years of no contact at all! I want you to get the hell off my mothers porch before I call the police!" Melissa yelled boldly in his face. The man, Adam looked about ready to hurt someone. His hands were clenched into balls so tight, his knuckles turned white.

"Fine. Iíll find her myself." Adam said, turning and stocking off. Fox sat for awhile. Adam. That name sounded familiar. Shaking his head he drove off, trying to forget about the whole thing. Diana was coming to dinner that night to meet the kids and his mind couldnít be on Dana. She was happy without him and he was just gonna have to live with it.

The niggling in the back of his mind continued.

***

Mulder Residence

6:30

"Why do I have to wear this stupid tie?" Alex asked, pouting.

"Because weíre having a guest. Now be good and donít get your clothes dirty." Fox replied, taking a pot of spaghetti off the stove.

"Who? Diana?" Jennie asked with unhidden distaste.

"Yes Diana and sheís a very nice woman, so please be on your best behavior."

"I donít think sheís nice." Jennie muttered.

"You donít know her." Fox said.

"I donít wanna know her. Youíve forgotten all about Dana!" Jennie yelled, Foxís head shot up.

"You know I havenít forgotten about Dana." Fox said.

"You have too! Youíre trying to forget her, by going out with Diana. Their names rhythm, for goodness sake!"

"They do not!" Fox yelled back. He stopped and rolled his eyes, realizing he was arguing with a seven year old. "I am not going to argue with you Jennifer. Now go to your room."

"You werenít this mean when Dana was around." Jennie muttered, stomping of. "Fine Iíll go to my room, but Iím not cominí out!" With that she ran off, to her room and slammed the door soundly.

Fox shut his eyes and collapsed into a chair. Mean? When had he become mean? He didnít feel the same. He hadnít felt the same since Dana left and he didnít get the closure heíd hoped for when Dana said she was happy over the phone. In fact, she didnít sound happy at all. She sounded as though she was fighting off tears.

Foxís brooding was interrupted by the knock on the door. He got up and went to answer it.

"Hi Fox." Diana greeted.

"Hi Diana." Purely out of curiosity, he kissed her. He stood back and studied her after they parted and kissed her again harder this time. Just as he thought. Nothing. He felt nothing. He turned around and found his kids , including Jennie who had come out of her room, standing there frowning at him.

"C-come in." Fox said, standing aside. "These are my kids. Jennie, Alex, and Joey."

"Hi." Diana said, smiling and squatting down. They stared at her.

"Say hello." Fox said, frowning at his kids.

"Hullo." They said dourly, except for Joey who just stood there.

"Um, dinnerís just about ready." Fox said, showing her to the table.

"Okay." Diana said, smiling. They all sat there for a moment, Diana trying to think of what to say. "Um, so Jennie what kind of things do you like to do?" Jennie shrugged and started to play with her napkin. "Oh. How about you Alex?"

Alex looked at her for a long time and then asked. "Did you know Dana?"

"Mama?" Joey inquired looking around, excitedly. He did this every time, they mentioned Danaís name.

"Uh, not well. I met her once."

"Isnít she pretty?" Alex asked, smiling.

"Ummm, yes she is nice looking." Diana said, nodding lightly.

"I said, isnít she pretty." Alex said, accentuating pretty. Before Diana could answer, Fox came in with dinner.

"Oh that looks good Fox." Diana said, glad he was there so she didnít have to take more staring and questions about Dana from his kids.

"Yea well, it looks better than it tastes," He said, distractedly. Diana laughed and they all sat down to eat. The table was quiet as they went through dinner. It was quiet as Fox sent the kids off to bed, and it was quiet as he and Diana sat on the couch together. Foxís mind was off somewhere else.

The image of Danaís face bombarded his mind. Images of her the last time he saw her. It wasnít until that moment that he saw the fear in her eyes and heard it in her voice. He remembered the man whoíd come to Maggieís door. Adam. He closed his eyes in realization.

"Oh my gosh." He whispered in horrified realization. Danaís ex-husband. Heíd come looking for her and thatís why she ran.

Melissaís words came to his mind. Follow your heart. Do what you feel is right. And being without Dana sure didnít feel right. It didnít feel right at all. Neither was being with Diana.

"Youíre thinking about her arenít you." Fox looked up at Diana. It wasnít a question.

"Iím sorry. I love her. I love her more than anything and being without her just doesnít feel right." Fox said.

"For goodness sake Fox itís been over a month! She wasnít anything special. Sheís gone. She left you without heart or feeling. How can you love a woman like that?" Diana asked, looking at him in frustration.

"She didnít want to leave Diana. She was afraid. You donít know her like I do. She ran because of her husband."

"Oh you got involved with a married woman, eh? That explains a lot. What, was she pay back for Phoebe? A rebound? Did the slut go back to her husband?" Diana asked with a slight smirk. Foxís temper had slowly been growing, but after that comment, heíd never found himself so close to hitting a woman. This woman

"Get out. I want you to get out. Now." He said in a dangerously low voice.

"Youíre a fool Fox. When you get hurt again, remember what you threw away and give me a call when you come to your senses." Diana said, backing away from him.

"Donít expect a call anytime soon." He sneered, eyes narrowed. Diana, lips pursed, left. Fox slammed the door and turned around to go to the phone. If anyone knew where Dana was, it was her mother.

"Hello?" Came Maggieís voice over the phone.

"Maggie? Itís Fox Mulder. I need you to listen to me and listen to me well. If you love your daughter, I mean really love her, youíll tell me where she is. I need to find her." Fox said, hurriedly. Maggie smiled on her end and then asked,

"What took you so long?"

***

Boston Massachusetts

8:30

Dana came home from work physically and mentally tired, as always. She ordered pizza, like she usually did when she was this tired. It had been three weeks since her last phone call with Fox and sheíd felt awful when she hung up. He was seeing Diana. Heíd even had the nerve to tell her so. Well what else do you expect? You left him, she told herself. He deserves to be happy. You didnít even have the guts to tell the man that he has a baby on the way. If he was happy with Diana than so be it.

Squelching down the need to cry again, Dana looked into her mirror. She looked awful. Her skin was pale, and she was terribly thin. She was going on three months now and her pregnancy was starting to show a lot. She then decided that this just wouldnít do. If she couldnít have Fox than she would have this baby good and healthy and if she was lucky the baby would look like Fox and sheíd have a reminder of him everyday. Okay so that wasnít good for healing, but at least sheíd have a memory of him. Dana sighed and went into the living room to see how her kids were doing with their homework.

"Need any help?" She asked.

"Nope." Nathan replied.

"Nope." Carrie echoed. Dana nodded and sat down. If she had any friends sheíd call one up. If Fox was still with her, she wouldnít feel so lonely and the children wouldnít be so sad all the time. Dana looked out the window. It was pouring rain. Typical, Dana thought miserably. Someone knocked and Dana jumped, then got up to look through the peep hole. It was the pizza man.

"Thatíll be fifteen dollars." The wet boy said. Dana paid him wordlessly and shut the door.

"Pizzaís here guys."

"Yaíknow mom, youíre really taking all the fun out of me going to college someday. I wonít be able to eat regularly there cause I wonít even be able to *look* at pizza." Nathan said, picking up a slice.

Dana laughed lightly and ruffled her sonís hair. She rarely laughed at all these days. Her children were her saving grace. The phone rang and Dana went to answer it.

"Hello."

"Dana honey, itís mom."

"Hi mom."

"Hi honey." Maggie replied, her heart was breaking for her daughter. She always sounded so sad. But that will soon change, she thought smiling. "Howís the baby?"

"Fine." Maggie sighed and said,

"Honey could you turn on your radio to 95.5FM?"

"Why?" Dana asked in confusion, going to her radio.

"Just do it honey. Have a nice night." With that Maggie hung up. Dana looked at her phone for a long moment.

"Okay." She mumbled turning to the station her mother asked her to turn to.

"And that was Celine Dionís My heart will go on. Well this next song goes out to a very special lady and he wants to speak to you in person.

"I know that youíre afraid,"

"Oh my gosh." Dana whispered, placing a hand to her mouth. That voice.

",and I know what made you run. I love you and I shouldnít have let you go. I should have seen what was going on. It was fate that brought us together. Itís fate."

"This one goes out to Dana. Hereís Just Run by Xscape. And Dana look out your window." The deejay said, as Dana made her way to the window, the music began.

You just run to the arms of the one who loves you

You just run

to these arms and these two arms will keep you warm

When rain has found your heart

Never Fear, Iím never far.

You just run to the arms of the one who loves you

Dana brushed aside the curtain and looked outside. There was a man standing there. But it wasnít just any man. Dana let out a gasp. It was Fox. He was just standing there. He was standing there in the pouring rain looking up at her window.

I want you happy

I want whatís best for you

And if you have to leave to find your dream

I hope that dream comes true

But if the world you find brings you hard times

If someone makes you cry.

Iíll be there to hold you

Iíll be standiní by Ohhhh

You just run.......

As the song picked up Dana pressed her hand to the window, sheíd never felt so relieved. Had she wanted him to find her? Dana thought of every moment she was without him, every moment sheíd cried for him, every lonely moment and then she couldnít wait. She longed to be in his arms. She turned and ran out of her apartment, with her children at her heels.

Meanwhile, Fox was worried when she turned quickly away from the window. Maybe heíd made a mistake coming here. He turned back to look at his children in the jeep, looking at him like heíd gone mad. His head snapped back, seeing Dana run out to stand on the porch.

They stood staring at each other, him soaking wet, both breathing heavily. Dana could hear the words to the song, blaring on the radio in his jeep where she saw his kids. Fox reached into his pocket, pulled out a box, and dropped to his knee. Danaís jaw dropped.

Ohh, my love is strong enough you know

Strong enough to let you go, but Iíll always hold you inside my heart

"Dana Katherine Scully I know that I should have asked a long time ago, but....Will you marry me?" He yelled over the rain. Dana stood for a moment and then laughed.

"Yes." She whispered. "YES!"

And if you should ever change your mind

you can come back anytime and when you do (And when you do)

Youuuuu.........

Almost in slow motion, she jumped off the step and with a choked sob she ran to him, he jumped up and met her halfway and they fell into each otherís arms. He picked her up and they held on tight as he spun her around.

"You found me." She whispered in relief. "You found me."

Youuu just run to the arms you the one who loves you

(You never have to worry, no babe)

You just run to these arms and these two arms will keep you warm

When rain has found your heart

Never Fear Iím never far you just run to the arms of the one who loves you

Nathan and Carrie, all grinís waved excitedly at their "siblings". Jennie and Alex giggled and waved back.

"Thank you Mr. Star." Carrie whispered towards the sky. She looked down and watched her mother and Fox hold each other like theyíd never ever let go. They were both soaking wet and neither seemed to care. Both were oblivious to everything around them.

Run to these arms and these two arms will keep you warm

When rain has found your heart

Never Fear Iím never far you just run to the arms of the one who loves you

"Never leave me. You never ever leave me again." He whispered, tears mixing with rain.

"Iíll never leave you." She whimpered, caressing his face, desperately as though trying to convince herself that his was real.

"Never." He whispered.

You just run to the arms of the one who loves you

You just run to these arms and these two arms will keep you warm

When rain has found your heart

Never Fear Iím never far you just run to the arms of the one who loves you

(Iím here for you baby, yeahh)

Run, to the arms of the one who loves youuuu.

The song ended and Dana looked into her belovedís face. "I love you, Fox," she cried, clutching his clothes. "I never stopped. I never stopped and I never will."

"Dana," Fox breathed, looking into her eyes intensely and then finally bringing her lips to his in a frantic, desperate kiss. He held her body to his tightly, caressing whatever part of her he could, without letting go.

Jennie giggled and Alex grew fidgety as did Joey. At this rate theyíd never get a hug. He doubted they even be able to let go of each other they were holding onto each other so tightly. They were probably stuck. "How long are they gonna kiss like that?" He asked his sister.

"I donít know. They missed each other a lot and youíre supposed to kiss like that when youíre in love." Jennie replied. Alex screwed up his nose.

"Iím never falliní in love. Thatís gross."

"You wonít think itís so gross when you grow up. I think itís romantic."

"Youíre a girl. Youíre supposed to like this stuff." Alex said. Jennie sighed and rolled her eyes. Joey was whimpering and trying to unbuckle himself from his car seat. If Mommy wasnít coming to them then heíd go to her.

Fox and Dana finally parted from their frenzied kiss panting and began to kiss each other softly, reveling in the feel of the their loverís, now fianceeís lips. Suddenly through their fuzzed up world that only consisted of each other they heard a cry. "Maaaaaaa maaaaaaaa!!!!!!"

Dana pulled away from Fox and looked to the van. "Oh!" She gasped, she then looked at Fox, just seeming to realize that they were standing in the rain.

"Mama! Mama!" Joey cried from the jeep. Dana ran to the jeep and opened the door and cried upon seeing Joey and the kids. How she had missed them all. "Oh Joey, baby. Donít cry. Donít cry. Iím here. Mamaís here, baby." Dana unbuckled him and held him close to her, raining kisses over his small, head covered in golden curls. His chubby little arms circled her neck and he held on tight, whimpering. Crying, Dana held an arm out to Alex and Jennie who crawled over and held onto her.

"No go, mama." Joey whimpered.

"Iím not going anywhere, baby. Iím not leaving." Dana said, kissing his head.

Meanwhile, Fox was on the porch hugging Nathan and Carrie. "I knew youíd find us daddy!" She squealed.

"Iím sorry I didnít come sooner." Fox said, smoothing Carrie hair out.

"Itís okay." Nathan said, smiling at him. "As long as youíre here....to stay."

"I am. Iím never leaving you guys and I will never let Adam hurt you or your mommy again." Fox said, with conviction. He hugged them once more and stood up. "Stay right here for me, okay?" He jogged over to his jeep where Dana and his kids were still having their little reunion.

"Fox youíre soaking wet." Dana said, lovingly.

"As are you. You should get inside. Weíll sleep out here, itís okay." He said, sighing loudly.

"Well you can sleep out here, but Iím taking the kids inside." Dana smiled and took the umbrella Jennie handed her.

"Ah good. I was hoping I wouldnít have to sleep in the car." Fox said, grinning at her. Danaís smile turned wistful.

"I missed you so much." She whispered, swallowing the lump in her throat. Fox reached out and caressed her cheek with the back of his hand.

"I am right here Dana. Iím not leaving you." Fox whispered. He reached over and kissed her cheek.

Together, they all walked back inside. Now they had a chance for happiness.

**

Dana Scully/McGee Residence

9:00

They changed out of their wet clothes and Dana heated up some Pizza for them all. Joey refused to leave her side and he happily sat in her lap eating his cut up pizza, while Dana and Fox exchanged loving gazes and an occasional tender kiss.

"Mommy are we gonna sleep here tonight?" Jennie asked, Dana around a mouth full of cheese and sausage.

"Yep. Itíll be like one big sleepover." Dana said, tickling Joey a bit who giggled and wiggled around in her lap.

"YAAAYYYY!!!!" The kids yelled. Dana and Fox laughed.

"Itís getting late guys and youíve had a long day." Fox said.

"Jennie you can sleep with Carrie and......"

"Aw, mommy canít we pull out the sofa bed?" Carrie whined.

"Yeah!" The kids exclaimed, even Joey who had no idea what they were talking about.

"Well-"

"Pleeeaaaasse."

"Okay, okay." Dana acquiesced.

"Yes!!" The kids squealed, high fiving and running off to gather things for their slumber party. Joey toddled off after them.

"Finally." Fox muttered, moving to Danaís side and kissing her neck.

"Fox, the kids are coming back." Dana chuckled a little.

"Yea but are they here now?" He asked.

"No."

"Alrighty then." He whispered, kissing her lips. Dana gave in. We deserve it, she thought kissing his mouth softly.

Fox moaned and smiled into the kiss, feeling that heat that he didnít have with Diana. Fox slipped his tongue into her mouth and Dana groaned, her tongue dueling hotly with his.

There was a chorus of "Ewwwwís" from the doorway and they jumped apart guiltily.

"How do you breath?" Carrie asked innocently.

"Uhh....Never mind that." Dana said getting up hurriedly. "Letís pull the bed out." They set to work setting up the childrenís little slumber party and by nine thirty Fox and Dana kissed each of them and left their snickering children with Joey in their arms.

Fox had gone out and brought out the portable crib for his son. They placed it and a sleeping Joey in Carrieís room, set up the monitor, kissed him goodnight, and tiptoed off to Danaís bedroom. Dana shut the door behind her and turned to find Fox standing right behind her.

"Hi." She breathed.

"Hi." Was his husky reply, before dipping his head to capture her lips with his. Dana moaned and wrapped her arms around his neck.

"I missed you." She mumbled into the kiss. "I missed you so much."

"I missed you too. I couldnít think of anything else." He whispered. A thought struck Dana and she pulled back.

"What about Diana? Iím sure she kept you company." She whispered sadly and pulling away.

"Dana. It was nothing. She meant nothing to me. Yeah we went out a couple of times, but I-It meant nothing, Dana."

"Donít tell me you didnít know she had feelings for you Fox. It was written all over her face." Dana said turning away. Fox held her shoulders and turned her around to face him.

"Yes she had feelings for me and perhaps she still does, but I donít share those feelings."

"I didnít even look at another man Fox, I couldnít." Dana whimpered. Fox pulled her to his chest.

"I know, Dana, but I thought youíd left me for good, and that part of me just....I donít know what I was thinking then, Dana. I was hurting and Diana offered me some comfort."

"Did you sleep with her?" Dana asked quietly. Fox was quiet for a moment and Dana pulled away from him.

"Dana, if you mean after you left then the answer is no. I have slept with her before. We had a relationship before I knew Phoebe, but that is all over now, I swear to you. It was over over ten years ago. I donít feel anything when she touches me. I didnít feel anything when she kissed me. I was empty Dana. You complete me. You make me a whole person. Diana didnít do that. Phoebe didnít do that. You do. You mean everything to me. I love you Dana, more than words can even say. Sheís the past, but Dana *you* are my future." He said passionately, his intense hazel eyes looking into hers deeply.

Dana was crying softly as she wrapped her arms around him and held on.

"I never thought love like this existed." Dana whispered, into his clothes. "I was so afraid that I was kidding myself. Like you were too good to be true. But youíre real and you love me."

"More than life Dana." Fox whispered.

"Oh Fox. I love you. I love so much. I was so empty when we were apart. It was so hard to leave you, especially when I found out-" Dana cried.

"Shhh. No more tears, love. Weíre together now and that is all that matters. Iíll protect you, baby. I wonít let that bastard hurt you anymore. Weíll be together forever." Fox whispered with conviction, and touching the sparkling diamond engagement ring on Danaís finger.

"So you arenít mad?"

"About what?"

"That I didnít tell you that I was still legally married. We wonít really be able to be together unless I get a divorce from him and I know he wonít let go without a fight and theyíll take my kids from me, because I kidnapped them!" Dana cried. She was getting frightened at what was to come. Sheíd have to face Adam again.

"Dana Iím not angry with you. He has no right to be called a father to those children because heís done nothing, but abuse them and hurt them. I donít care if he fights it. *We* wonít let go of those kids without a fight. Youíve helped me fight my demons, now Iím going to help destroy yours."

"Oh Fox. You arenít mad now, but you will be when I tell you the news."

"What news?"

"Fox I-Iím......pregnant." Dana whispered.

"What?!"

"I know youíre mad-I-I was afraid to tell you and-and I-"

"How long have you known?"

"About one and a half months. Iím three months pregnant now." Dana explained, trying to gauge his expression. It was shock and something else that Dana decided was anger.

"Dana." He gasped raising his arm to run a hand through his hair. Dana jumped back in fright. "Geez baby, come here. Hon, I wasnít going to hit you. Iíd never raise my hand to you or our kids. Never. Never ever forget that, all right?" Fox whispered, stroking her cheek tenderly. Dana nodded in relief and was pink with embarrassment. "Baby donít be embarrassed. Itís okay. Oh honey, lemme look at you."

Fox stood back, holding her hands. He could see the bulge at her stomach. He looked up at her grinning like an idiot.

"Thatís our baby. Our very own baby." He whispered in joy. Fox pulled her to his chest and held on for dear life. Iíll protect you, my love. No one is going to hurt you or our baby."

"I love you Fox." Dana whispered, after kissing his fingers. Wordlessly, Fox picked her up and slowly placed her on her bed.

"Fox, the kids are in the next room and I donít think Iíd be able to stop myself from screaming your name. Itís been so long and I want you uncensored."

"Is it just me or are you looking for excuses?" Fox quipped. Dana opened her mouth, but Fox placed finger to her lips. "Iím just kidding. Donít wanna stretch our luck."

"Itís not that I donít want to make love to you, Fox. I do. You know that, right?" Dana asked.

"I know Dana. As long as Iím able to hold you and kiss and know that youíre still there Iím fine right where I am."

Dana reached up and brought his head to hers, moaning they spent ten minutes just touching and kissing and caressing each others bodies passionately and desperately. Fox pulled her shirt off and ran his hands over her rounding tummy. His shirt came off and they stripped until all they wore was their underwear. They held one another tightly and eventually closed their eyes to dreams that were no longer plagued with loneliness because of the warm body laying next to them, holding on tight.

**

Dana Scully Residence

The next morning

"Mmm, morning." Fox whispered, gazing into her face. "I remember the first time I woke up to your face." Fox whispered, kissing her temple.

"Yea. Will we get to wake up like that again?" Dana asked him playing with the sparse chest hairs that sprinkled his chest.

"The rest of our lives." He whispered, kissing her mouth softly. "Tell me youíre real and not another dream." He whispered against her mouth.

"Iím real. Iím very real. Are you?" Dana answered then asked.

"Yeah. Yeah Iím real." He replied, nipping her lips. "Let me convince you." He breathed, taking her lips with his own. They were just about to blow the fact that they had no protection and the kids were in the house, when they heard a soft whimper over the monitor.

"Joeyís awake." Dana noted, sitting up. "You know one of the things I missed the most?"

"Me?" Mulder grinned. Dana chuckled.

"The kids. I feel like theyíre my own. Especially Joey. Iíll never forgive myself for leaving you all the way that I did." Dana said sadly.

"Dana, honey itís okay. I understand."

"But does Alex and Jennie? Or little Joey? Phoebe left them and then I did the same thing. Theyíll never trust me again."

"I talked to them before we left. I know Joey and maybe Alex might not understand yet, but they will. You have the rest of our lives to prove it. I believe in you Dana and those kids will too."

"But you canít look me in the eye and tell me it didnít hurt Joey." Dana said, looking at him with her big blue eyes. Fox paused and looked down.

"How can it not Dana. Youíre the only mother he knows. I wonít lie to you Dana it did hurt him, like it hurt me. We missed you Dana, but we werenít the only ones suffering."

"Mama!" Joey called in bewilderment.

"How long has he been calling me like that?" Dana asked, looking at the monitor.

"Since you left." Fox answered, quietly.

"Mamaaaa." Joey began to cry and Dana shot up. Grabbing a robe and throwing it on she ran into Carrieís room and cooing in a soft voice, picked Joey up out of his crib.

"Mama!" Joey squealed in delight and relief.

"Yes baby. Mamaís here. No more tears, baby." Dana whispered. She danced around the room with him for awhile, "You okay now baby?"

"Mama!" Joey squealed happily, throwing his arms in the air. Dana laughed.

"Iíll never ever leave you again." Dana whispered to the child. Joey smiled and hugged her around the neck. Dana took Joey into the living room where Fox was sitting on the bed with their kids.

"Morning guys. Howíd you sleep?" Dana asked, setting Joey down on the bed so he could play with his siblings. All four of them.

"It was great! Are we living here forever daddy?" Alex asked his father. Fox looked at Dana.

"Well...."

"Dana isnít going away again is she?" Jennie pouted.

"Mama no go!" Joey squealed, getting up and throwing his arms around Danaís waist.

"Iím not going anywhere. Fox and I want to be together. Weíre getting married and weíre gonna be a family. That might take awhile though, because-"

"Because of sir?" Carrie asked, holding onto her doll, Annie tightly.

"Well....Well yeah." Dana said, shrugging.

"Hey donít look so glum." Fox said to the kids. "Dana and I love each other and we love you. No one is going to stop us all from being a family. Not Adam, not Phoebe, and not-"

"Diana! I hated her!" Jennie exclaimed.

"Jennie." Fox said, warningly. "Be nice."

"Well you were gonna say her name next right?" Jennie asked politely. Fox hesitated and then said,

"Well yea, but you still need to be nice." Fox said while Dana laughed.

"Well Iíd say we all had a long night and long nights deserve big breakfasts and I say we make pancakes!" Dana proclaimed.

"Goody! Can they be blueberry?" Carrie asked, standing up on the bed and beginning to bounce.

"Sure why not." Dana said walking off into the kitchen. "Who wants to help?"

"I do!" Carrie and Jennie squealed, jumping off the bed and running to the kitchen.

"Well I guess that leaves us guys." Fox said. "Make way for dad!" He yelled grinning and minding Joey, he jumped on the bed.

"Weíre a real family arenít we dad? " Nathan asked.

"Yea Nat. Weíre a real family. All eight of us" He said grinning.

**

Carlinoís Restaurant

Diana sat, mulling over her cup of coffee. She thought heíd call, that heíd come to his senses and come to be with her, but no. He hadnít called and she hadnít seen him since that night heíd told her to get out of his apartment. She couldnít believe heíd leave something so good to go after a married woman. Damn that Dana Scully, she thought. She was the one thing standing between her and Fox.

Diana looked up at the commotion up made by a sandy haired-man.

"Look Adam. I am going to tell you one last time and it had better stay in your hard head this time. I do not know where Dana is and if you had half a brain in there, youíd stop looking for her. Leave her and those children alone. Theyíre happy now." Pauline said, red-faced and shaking with anger.

"Happy with who? That sorry GQ model with the three kids? She isnít happy with him. She doesnít know what she wants." Adam said, shaking his head sadly as though Dana was a lost cause.

"You sorry sonuva-That 'GQ model' as you put it loves her and she loves him. Let it go. Let her go. Let her be happy." Pauline hissed.

"Sheís my wife." Adam said, crossing his arms. Diana raised her eyebrow. So this was Danaís hubby, come lookiní for his woman, eh? Diana smiled. She knew exactly where Fox had gone. Sheíd casually gone into his apartment and played all his messages. One from Danaís mother telling him where Dana was. In his haste, he probably forgot to erase the message.

"Yeah do all men beat their wives?" Pauline hissed in a low voice so only he could hear. Adam glared at her as she turned. "If I see you back in here Iím calling my husband."

"Oh Iím scared." Adam mock-whimpered.

"My husband is the chief of police." Pauline sneered, walking into the kitchen. Adam sneered in her direction and slammed his fist into the counter angrily. Turning to leave he stopped when a dark haired woman beckoned him over.

"Hi."

"Hello there." Adam said, leering at her.

"I couldnít help overhearing and is the woman youíre looking for happen to be named Dana Scully?" Diana asked.

"Yeah, yeah. Do you know where she is?" Adam asked sitting down.

"Yes I do. Youíre her husband right?"

"Yes. Married ten happy years." Adam said, smiling falsely.

"Oh thatís sweet. Itís a shame what sheís doing to you. Well I assume youíre going to try and work things out with her, right?" Diana asked.

"Yeah. We do have two kids together. Sheís confused right now. She doesnít know what she wants. She hasnít been taking her medicine."

"Sheís on medication?" Diana asked, eyes twinkling in excitement.

"Yea. She isnít right in the head. She needs help immediately."

"Well the sooner you find her the sooner we can both get on with our lives." Diana said, smiling and un-knowing she just made a deal with a madman.

**

Boston Clinic

"Well Ms. McGee-"

"Scully. My real name is Dana Scully."

"Oh. Okay. Well, you look a whole lot better than you did the last time I saw you. To tell you the truth, I was a bit concerned for you and the baby. You seem to be doing much better now though."

"I am." Dana said, looking lovingly up at Fox, who smiled down at her.

"Well, everything seems to be in order, so just keep up with our check-ups and you two will have a beautiful baby in about six months." The doctor said.

"Thank you Dr. Dreis." Fox said.

"Nice of you to join us Dad." The doctor said smiling. Fox gave the doctor a nervous smile as she left. The door shut and Dana looked up at Fox and beamed.

"Iím so glad you were here, Fox." She whispered.

"Iíd have been here for all of them if I knew Dana. I donít wanna miss one appointment."

"I know Fox. Iím sor-"

"No more apologies. Right now. I am gonna go take my wife to be and children, all six of them out to eat. Howís that sound?"

"It sounds wonderful." Dana said, turning to her fiancé. "I love you." Fox dropped a gentle kiss on her nose.

"I love you more." He whispered. He helped her off the table. They kissed each other softly and then packed their things and left.

As they were walking to the car they held hands and talked and laughed about various things, like the upcoming Lamaze classes she would take. Although it was her third , technically fourth pregnancy she didnít need to go to classes. Fox didnít need to attend them either, since heíd gone with Phoebe, but since this was their first baby together, they wanted it to be a beautiful, new experience for both of them.

"Fox my mother hasnít seen me pregnant. She never really got the chance to hold her grandbabies so I want to have the baby in Maryland close to my mom so she can be there at the delivery with you and the doctors. Your mom also if she wants to." Dana said to Fox as they drove back to their apartment.

"I understand, baby. We have a lot of planning to do what with the wedding and the baby, we also need to move back home find a place for *all* of us to live, plus tie up the odd ends with Adam." Fox said, taking the luxury to glance at her only once. Dana shivered at the mention of Adamís name. Fox stopped at a traffic light and looked at the woman he loved more than anything.

"Dana, I know youíre scared. We are together and I promise you, if he so much as touches you I will kill him." Fox said with conviction. Dana saw that he wasnít lying either.

"Oh Fox..."

"Do you trust me to take care of you Dana?" Fox asked, brushing an awry strand of hair away from her face.

"I trust you with my life." Dana whispered. Fox leaned over and tenderly kissed her cheek, before the light turned green.

As they drove off, Adam watched from the cross-walk, only five feet away from were their car just was.

 

 

**

Scully/McGee Residence

8:45

Fox and Dana and the kids came back home, after a day at the park. It was Foxís kids first time in Boston and Dana wanted them to see the sites. Dana carried a sleeping Joey into her bedroom and lay him on the bed, surrounding him with pillows so he wouldnít fall off.

"Sweet dreams precious baby." Dana whispered, kissing her fingertips and pressing them to his small head. Dana walked back into the living room and laughed, finding Fox trying to talk the kids into going to bed. They were jumping around on the couch and in his lap and pulling at his legs and arms laughing, but Dana could tell they were tired.

"Aw come on guys. Itís time go to bed. Come on now." It sounded like Fox was doing the whining here.

"Nope Daddy. Iím not tired!" Alex yelled, jumping around.

"Yeah! We arenít tired!" Carrie exclaimed. Fox groaned and looked at Dana as if to say, ĎHelp me out hereí! Laughing Dana stepped up and stilled Carrieís jumping.

"Okay kids! Bedtime. No arguments now, come on. Move it," Dana said to them lightly. Moaning the kids went off to get ready for bed.

"Howíd you do that?" Fox, asked, narrowing his eyes at her.

"Mommy radar. Theyíre just really wired. Youíd think after eight years of child rearing youíd have a little more control over kids." Dana said with a raised brow. Fox shrugged, bashfully.

"Mom." Nathan walked out of the hallway in his pajamas and over to his mother.

"What is it sweetheart?"

"I donít feel good." He pouted.

"What?" Dana sat him down in her lap and placed an experienced hand on his forehead and neck. "You feel a little warm to me. Fox?" Fox stepped over and felt his forehead and neck.

"Yeah. Youíre right. He does feel a little warm. Iíll go get the thermometer." Fox disappeared and then reappeared, with the thermometer. "Here bud. You know the drill."

They sat quietly for a moment until it beeped. "Heís running a fever," Dana said, handing the thermometer to Fox.

"Yea. I noticed you donít have anymore cold medicine in the medicine cabinet. Certainly nothing there youíd give a kid. Lemme take a quick run out to the pharmacy. We passed it on our way back form the hospital right?" Fox asked, already getting up and putting his coat on.

"Youíre leaving?" She crinched, her voice sounding incredibly small in her ears. Fox walked back to her and knelt before her.

"Iíll be back, baby. Iím just running down to the pharmacy. Iíll be back before you know it." Fox reached up and kissed her with reassurance. Dana nodded, feeling silly, and bid him a safe trip after scooting Nathan off to bed. After Fox left Dana went in with Nathan to make him as comfortable as she could, not knowing that her ex-husband was making his way up the walk and to her apartment.

**

Danaís phone rang and she went to pick it up. "Hello?"

"Hey Day-nuuu." The cold voice sang over the phone, sending chills down her back. It was a voice she hoped to God sheíd never hear again.

"Hellooo, ya there? Guess where Iím calling from?" Dana stayed silent, breathing hard. "Iím right outside your door." Dana began to cry and shake uncontrollably. "You know how many times I could have just walked in and taken those kids? Hm? *My* kids? You think you could take them from me and I wouldnít find you?!" He yelled. "Do you think Iím stupid like you?!" Dana jumped as his voice became louder. "You leave me and you sleep with that GQ model reject?"

"Well Mr. GQ ainít there no more, Day-nu. Watched him leave myself. So letís see that just leaves you....and all those cute little kids!" She heard a bang at the door and jumped. Crying she hung up the phone and dialed Foxís number.

"F-Fox," Came Danaís wobbly voice when he answered.

"Dana?" Fox asked alarmed.

"Itís Adam. Please-Ah!" She screamed as he banged again. "Heís at the door. Heís been watching us the whole time! Heís at the door Fox. He wonít go away!"

"Dana stay where you are. Iím on my way there. Hang on," Fox said desperately.

"Fox, the kids-" He heard her scream and then the connection was cut off.

"Dana! D*mmit you bastard if you hurt her!" Fox threatened hanging up the phone. He stepped on the gas and sped back to Danaís apartment.

Dana was backed up against the far wall, looking for something to defend herself. She was frightened to death that one of the kids would come out. She looked up at Adam in the doorway, trembling.

"Hey lover." He said, tauntingly.

"Please Adam. Iíll do anything, just leave the kids and Fox alone," She whispered, praying the kids would stay in their rooms.

"Oh is that his name," Adam said, pacing a bit. "*Fox*. What the hell kinda name is that, huh? Fox?"

"What do you want?" Dana asked, trembling hard as he came closer.

"In case youíve forgotten," He said quietly. "Youíre my WIFE!" He yelled her face, causing her to whimper loudly. "Huh? Have you forgotten?" He grabbed her left hand and held it up. She wasnít wearing her wedding ring anymore.

"Adam. Please. Youíre hurting me." Dana whispered. Adam slapped her.

"Shut up! Stupid bitch!! Leave me in jail to rot will you?! Then run off and take my kids! Go and fuck this bastard, Fox, huh?"

"Heís not a bastard," She hissed. "You-"

"Oh *me*! Iím a Bastard? Is that what youíre gonna say?" He yelled, shaking her hand and pushing her into the wall. Dana through her blurry eyes saw Alex wandering out into the living room.

"No! Adam letís go outside. Please, letís go." Dana said, looking him in the eye so he wouldnít turn and see Alex. Adam narrowed his eyes and turned to look at Alex, who was now staring in horror at the stranger in the apartment.

"Mommy?" He asked frightened.

"Itís okay honey. Go in your room and lock the door. Lock it. Tell your brother and sisters to lock theirs too. Hurry," Dana cried.

"Well who is this?" Adam asked, letting go of Dana and walking towards the frightened little boy. "Is this my childrenís new brother? Is this who it is? Hey kid, come 're."

"Stay away from him!" Dana yelled, pulling Adam away from Foxís son. Adam turned and hit her across the face, sending Dana to the ground. "Alex run! Lock your door! Please!"

Alex ran away, crying, to do what he was told. "So youíre his mommy are you? Donít let him get to attached. Wasnít there a baby?" He taunted. "Now where is he? Baby! Where are you baby?!" He called, walking towards the bedrooms.

"NO!" Dana screamed, looking around frantically for something to hit him with. Dana decided she might as well make him mad. It was the only way to keep him away from Joey and the rest of the children. She pick up a book and threw it at him. He stopped and turned slowly.

"If you take one more step you bastard," She hissed. Dana was terrified as he slowly walked towards her. She wrapped her arms around her stomach, in a feeble attempt to shield her baby. This man would not cause her to lose another child, especially this one.

"You are one sorry, stupid *bitch*." He spat, before hitting her square in the face. Dana was so dazed, she didnít see him swing his fist again to hit her in the face again.

"NO! NO! NO!" Danaís eyes widened hearing her daughter scream.

"Carrie GO TO YOUR ROOM AND LOCK YOUR DOOR!" She yelled to her daughter desperately.

"Please donít hurt mommy nomore." Carrie cried.

"Shut up. Get your brother. Weíre leaving." Adam growled, stepping menacingly in Carrieís direction. Dana kicked him from her position on the floor. Adam turned and looked down at Dana, noting the way her, arms never left her stomach. He smiled a little and then the smile turned into a sneer.

"Youíre pregnant with that bastardís kid." He said, coming towards her and pulling her up harshly by the collar.

"No! Leave her alone!" Jennie yelled, pulling on the manís arm. Adam pushed her roughly away. He turned back to Dana and sneered,

"Say bye-bye to your bay-bee." He pulled his fisted back, and smiled as Dana closed her eyes, trying to fight him. But Adamís fist never met with his intended destination. He found himself on the floor, looking up at a very angry Federal Agent.

"Kids go to your rooms." Fox said in a dangerously low voice, his eyes never leaving Adamís. Carrie and Jennie ran to their rooms. He turned his head to look at Dana, feeling his anger grow to boiling hot rage, seeing her precious, bruised, tear-stained face and her feeble attempts to wipe the blood from it. Jaw clenched, he turned back to Adam.

"Get up." He ordered, quietly. Adam sat there. Fox kicked him in the stomach, making Dana jump. "I said get up you sorry sonuvabitch!" He yelled. Adam got up and Fox grabbed him by the collar. "You feel big, a**hole? You feel big beating up your wife you sonuvabitch?! Look at her!!" Fox yelled, grabbing Adamís face and turning it so he could see what heíd done to the woman carrying his child.

"Look at her, fucker! You see what youíve done to her?!" Fox yelled in rage. Fox pulled his fist back and hit the man square in the face. Dana watched, as Fox delivered punch after punch and kick after kick to Adamís face stomach and groin. Dana looked up at Fox in amazement. He didnít just want to hurt Adam. He wanted to give back to Adam what Adam had given to her.

With each punch thrown, Fox remembered each tear that fell from Danaís beautiful face as she told him the horrorís she went through with him.

"Fox." Dana whispered. "Fox." She said louder. As much as she wanted Adam to hurt the way he had hurt her, she wanted it to end. She was afraid Fox would really kill him. "Fox, I need you. It hurts."

That got his attention. He turned around to look at her and then back to Adam. Roughly handcuffing him to the couch leg, Fox went to Dana, and she sank gratefully into his arms.

"Oh Fox." She whimpered.

"Did he hurt you badly?" He asked, gently, pulling out his cell phone.

"I donít know. My nose might be broken. Iím afraid Fox. The baby." She cried. Fox felt anger built up inside of him again, and Dana clutched his clothes. "He canít hurt us anymore, Fox."

Fox nodded, and throwing Adam a hard look, opened his cell phone and called the police.

A short while later the police came to the door. Mulder motioned towards Adam and merely said,

"Arrestíim." The two police officers glanced at each other and to the small woman he was holding.

"Are you all right maíam? Can you tell us what happened here?" The officer asked, while the other cop read Adam his Miranda rights.

"Iím, Iím pregnant. My ex-husband, came and he threatened myself and our children. He-hit me. I need medical attention. He might have hurt the baby. My fiancé, Fox Mulder-"

"Assistant Director Fox Mulder. Federal Bureau of investigation." Fox popped in.

"He came and neutralized the threat," Dana said.

"I can see that." The cop said, raising an eyebrow at Fox.

"I need to get her to a hospital," Fox said.

"Mommy?" Carrie peeped her head out, with Alex, Jennie, and Nathan.

"Oh baby. Itís over. Mommyís okay. Mamaís fine." The kids ran to their parents. "It okay. Itíll be okay," Dana murmured.

"Is Sir gone?" Carrie asked. Dana nodded.

"He canít hurt us anymore."

"Maíam, the ambulance is ready."

"Oh thatís not necessary. Weíll drive. Fox, Joey." Dana said, getting up. Fox sat her down and went to get Joey. "Fox wait. I donít want the kids to have to stay at the hospital. Go next door and ask Mrs. Curruthers if sheíll come watch the kids. And tell her that Nathan isnít feeling well, so if she has anything...." Fox nodded and walked next door.

By the time Fox got back with Mrs. Curruthers and some cold medicine, Carrie was sitting in Officer Mulroonyís lap, wearing his hat. Fox smiled and motioned to Dana. They kissed their children goodbye, leaving instructions with the sitter and told their kids everything would be okay.

Dana and Fox walked out of the building. Adam was sitting in the ambulance, where the medical team was taking care of the bruises and cuts Fox gave him. Dana told Fox to get the car, assuring him that sheíd be okay. Dana walked over to where Adam sat, in cuffs and looked at him. She stayed silent for a moment and then suddenly she spoke.

"Why?" She whispered. He looked up at her. "Why Adam?"

"Does it matter?" He spat. She looked at him for a long moment.

"I want a divorce. You canít be angry or surprised that I found someone else. Our marriage ended a very long time ago. Itís not like you donít have anyone. Whatís her name? Roxanne is it?" Adam stayed silent.

"Never love anyone the way you tried to love me," She whispered. "I wouldnít wish it on my worst enemy."

"Happy I got what I deserved?" He asked, with a sneer.

"No," She whispered, sadly. "I pity you, Adam. I really do." Dana placed something next to him and turned to find Fox standing behind her.

"Ready?" He asked, rubbing her back. Dana nodded. Hand in hand they made their way to the car.

Adam watched them leave and picked up what Dana had left next to him. Her wedding ring. The one he gave to her when he promised to love honor and obey. Adam hung his head in shame.

 

 

**

 

Boston Clinic

Fox and Dana sat, side by side in the doctorís office, waiting for the tests to come back, telling them their child was okay. Dana had been treated for cuts and bruises. Her nose was broken, but that would heal soon. Some things would take a while longer. But not too long. Dana smiled and looked at Fox. He turned his head and smiled softly at her.

"You okay?" He whispered.

"Yes," She replied, resting her head on his shoulder.

"Iím so sorry I didnít get there sooner." Fox said, looking down.

"Iím glad you got there when you had." Dana countered, looking up at him. He raised his eyes to hers and she smiled. Chuckling, softly, Fox gently placed a kiss on her lips.

"I love you. No matter what the tests say, no matter what. I love you," Fox whispered to her.

"I know." Dana whispered back. Fox encircled her with his arms. He knew she was still afraid for their baby. They sat awhile longer, drawing strength from one another.

The door opened and they both looked up. The doctor sat down and smiled. "You and youíre baby are fine." She said. Dana and Fox sighed and held each other.

As they left the hospital to go home to their children, Diana Fowley ran up to them.

"Oh-Oh my gosh. I heard what happened! Oh my gosh, I didnít realize heíd do this-"

"Wha-What do you mean you didnít realize?" Fox asked, stepping up to her. "Did you tell him where Dana was?" He asked with incredulity.

"I-Fox he told me she was married and on medication."

"Did he also tell you that the last time he saw Dana he almost beat her to death? Did he tell you the reason she left was because he was abusive?!"

"Fox I didnít think-"

"No! You didnít think, did you? Because of your stupidity, Dana and our child could have been killed tonight!" Fox yelled in her face. Diana looked at Dana and then back to Fox.

"Fox Iím sorry."

"Get out of our way." Fox muttered, taking Danaís hand and guiding her to their car.

As they drove home. Dana smiled at him.

"Fox as soon as the divorce comes through, I want to marry you."

"Anything for you, my love. Anything. As long as weíre together."

"Fox?"

"Yes?"

"I donít want to live in Boston anymore. I donít need to hide anymore and thereís someone waiting for me back in Maryland," Dana said, looking at him intently.

"Yes there is." Fox replied, smiling.

Nothing was standing in their way now. Fate was smiling down on them.

**

Epilogue

Maryland,

One month later

There was a hush in the garden , besides the violins, playing the wedding march, as Dana, in her off white silk wedding dress, made her way down the makeshift aisle to her husband to be.

Dana and Fox had found the perfect house, large enough to fit their large families and their coming bundle of joy. The wedding was being held in the back yard of their new home.

Fox smiled as Dana approached on Jakeís arm. "Who gives this woman to this man?" Father Mcque asked.

"Her mother and I do." Jake replied. Dana took Foxís arm and noted the roundness of her belly. The dress hid her pregnancy well, since she wasnít showing too much. The ceremony was beautiful and uneventful, until halfway through, Joey decided heíd been ignored long enough and attached himself to Danaís leg for the rest of the ceremony. Dana had picked him up and kissed both him and Fox and they made their way back down the aisle as husband and wife....and son.

When they were back inside, Dana plopped Joey on the couch and turned to Fox. He kissed her deeply and whispered to her, "Forever."

"Forever." She echoed. This marriage would last.

**

Five months later

"Oh guys here they come!" Samantha shouted, running away from the window. The kids giggled and scampered behind furniture, while the adults got into place. Fox and Dana were bringing their new baby home from the hospital that day. Maggie peeped through the curtain and watched as Fox got Danaís bags out of the back of the car and Dana pulled out a tiny bundle from the backseat. That would be her new granddaughter.

She now thought of Foxís children as her own grandchildren. They even called her grandma. She was so happy that Dana finally found someone who could love her the way she deserved to be loved.

"Everyone hide! Theyíre coming! Mom, get away from the window." Melissa exclaimed. Maggie shooed her off and went to stand beside the fire place. The door rattled and then opened.

"Surprise!!!!!" The kids screamed jumping out of their places.

"Welcome home!" Samantha and Melissa yelled. Fox and Dana exchanged smiles and looked at their family and friends.

"Were you surprised?" Carrie asked, looking up at her parents.

"Oh very surprised. You wanna see your new baby sister?" Fox asked. Carrie nodded enthusiastically as the other kids crowded around their mother to try and see the new baby.

"Okay well wait a minute. Let Mommy sit down first."

"Why isnít she saying anything?" Alex asked, peering up at Dana.

"Oh sheís too small to say anything yet, sweetheart." Dana said, as she sat down with the tiny wriggling baby.

"Okay. Say hello to your new baby sister, Maggie Caroline Mulder." Dana whispered. The kids looked at the baby in awe.

"Sheís so little." Jennie whispered. Dana looked down at a pouting Joey. She suspected that heíd be insanely jealous of the new baby.

"Joey, honey. You want to hold your sister?"

"No. Waní Mama." Joey pouted, looking up at her. Fox sighed and shrugged at her. "Hey honey, could you take Maggie for a sec?" Dana asked.

"My pleasure." He cooed, scooping his daughter up from her motherís arms. The kids ran in the direction of the baby, leaving Dana on the couch with Joey. Dana tickled his knee.

"Hey little man." She whispered. Joey pouted at her some more. "Here, come sit in mommyís lap. Ohhh, what a big boy you are." Dana sighed as Joey snuggled into her lap. "You know I love you right?"

"Wuv woo Mama!" He declared, looking up at her, smiling. Dana teared up and looked up at Fox, who was beaming at her as everyone cooed over their baby. Dana wrapped her arms around her son and gave him a tight squeeze.

"How did I ever get so lucky to get a baby boy like you?" She whispered.

"Staws," Joey answered. Dana laughed. Yeah. Stars.

**

"Maggieís finally asleep," Dana said, walking into their bedroom. Bedtime in the Mulder home was not at all an easy task. Besides getting a newborn to sleep, they had to coax five other children to bed and when Maggie didnít sleep neither did the kids, or the parents for that matter.

"What about Marsha, Greg, Peter, Jan, Cindy, and Bobby?" Fox crooned. Dana chuckled and slipped of her robe.

"Donít forget Alice. Sheís out with Sam the butcher tonight, coppiní a feel." Dana said. Fox grinned and turned to look at her.

"Ohhh, think I can cop a feel? Come to bed Carol." Fox husked.

"Ohhh, Mike." Dana moaned, slipping into bed. They giggled and kissed. Dana sighed and lay in Foxís arms, going over the events that happened in the past several, months. Her reunion with Fox, that fateful night in Boston, her divorce from Adam, their marriage, their first explosive night together as husband and wife, and the birth of their little girl, Maggie.

"I never dreamed my life would turn out like this." Dana whispered into her husbandís neck. Fox sat up and looked at her.

"How so?"

"When I was with Adam. I thought I was trapped. I never knew love like this existed and even if it did I never thought it could happen to me. I thought I was dirty, because of the way Adam treated me."

Fox sighed deeply and swallowed the rage that built up in his throat. He remembered that night when heíd burst into the apartment praying that he wasnít too late, to find Adam over a bloody and crying Dana threatening to kill her and their baby. The sight enraged him to no end. It shook him to think that if he were even a second too late, that precious bundle in the nursery down the hall wouldnít be there and neither would Dana. If Dana hadnít stopped him from not killing Adam, they probably wouldnít even be there together.

Dana sensed his anger and pressed a kiss to his pulse. "Itís all right, honey. Iím fine. Weíre all okay. In a way Iím glad everything happened the way it did. I was able to confront Adam and I came out stronger because of everything that happened. Iím stronger because of you. You showed me my self worth and you showed me a love that I never though existed for me. You never gave up on me, even after I left. You came so far on simple faith in me. And you will never know how grateful I am that you didnít give up on me. On us." Dana whispered, tears in her eyes.

Fox cupped her face with his hands and leaned in, interlocking her lips with his tenderly. He sucked on her cupids bow lips and she sucked on his bottom lip. Warmth spread through them both.

"I am so in love with you." Fox sighed. "Weíve come so far on simple faith. When I think about all the time I wasted with Phoebe, I canít say Iíd change it otherwise I wouldnít have Jennie, Alex, and Joey, you know? But that weíve come together as a family after everything thatís happened with our ex spouses, it was all written in the stars. Youíve restored my faith in true love, in family, in myself, in great sex...."

Dana laughed and snuggled closer to him, reveling in his scent and touch. Fox took a long whiff of her sexy feminine scent that was now mixed with that sweet smell of baby and new motherhood.

"But seriously, you make me whole Dana. I never had this feeling of assurance when I married Phoebe. I do with you. I know in my heart that this is forever. Our life starts now," Fox said, looking intently at her.

"Yes." Dana whispered as Fox lowered his head to hers and they kissed deeply, moving closer to each other. Dana moaned and as Fox lowered her nightgown to feel her naked body pressed against his own, Dana couldnít help smiling into the kiss. They had come far, but then again funny things tend to happen when fate takes a hand.

 

THE END!

I hope you liked it! I had fun writing it. I doubt Iíll do a follow up story. I might write some stories in the WFTAH universe, but not any real continuations. Thanx to everyone who wrote me feedback on my past chapters! Keep in mind that we writers are partially fueled by feedback.




Read More Like This Write One Like This
Children with Others list
Non-Canon Kids list
Other Family Holidays Challenge
Children With Others Challenge


Return to The Nursery Files home