Title: It's a Wonderful Abnormal Life
Author: Spookyteacher
Category: V, A (Scully angst)
Rating: PG (a few salty words)
Spoilers: US8
Archive: Spooky Awards, Epehemeral, Exemplary, HOF are okay. I've already sent it to Gossamer via atxc. All other site managers who want to archive it-- please just e-mail where you have it. I want to visit your very tasteful sites!
Feedback: Please send feedback to spkyteach@aol.com. I'd love to hear your comments!
Disclaimer: Mulder, Scully, the Lone Gunmen, Skinner, Krycek, and the Smoking Man, et al, are the creative property of Chris Carter, Ten Thirteen Productions, and Fox Television. You guys have written them so well I can't resist having a go at it myself. I really am a classroom teacher, which is synonymous with POOR. Hint, hint...
Summary: Scully receives some disturbing news from her doctor then is led on an amazing, and perhaps more disturbing, journey by Cancer Man.
Notes: The dust cover for this story, along with my other stories, can be found at my archive, http://www.geocities.com/spookyteacher (Spookyteacher's Classroom X).
Special thanks to Susan F. for her constant encouragement and beta-reading. Thanks, too, to the ladies at X-Files Cafe (www.geocities.com/verminatrix), a great place to talk X-Files. Y'all inspired this, actually!

"Dana, I know this news is disturbing, but I am not overly concerned about it right now. I'd like to have them rerun the amnio to recheck the accuracy of the results. Beyond that, there are more tests we can run. There's...."

Scully sat unfocused, frowning. She felt like her head was swimming and it was giving her a headache. She hadn't heard a word Dr. Goodwin had said since, "The amnio results show a possible biochemical anomaly..."

She could see Emily's smiling face as she drew Mr. Potato Head. Then, she saw her fighting for life, with that green mass on her neck. Finally, she had to close her eyes to dash away the memory of Emily dying in her arms.

As she tried to push away the memories, she realized Dr. Goodwin was calling her.

"Dana?.... Dana?"

Scully opened her eyes and focused on the doctor. She cleared her throat and struggled to answer but her "Yes" came out barely audible.

Dr. Goodwin leaned forward and looked intently at Scully from across the desk. Her gaze dropped to the floor.

"I'm sure your baby is fine. I know you know what all this means, but I want you to try to put it aside and just concentrate on getting some rest this weekend. Have some hot soup and watch some old movies, but rest... with your feet up." She stopped talking to make sure Scully had gotten the point. When Scully looked up, she continued. "I want you back here Monday morning so we can run those other tests."

Scully sat in silence, her expression blank.

"You understand?" the doctor fished for some feedback as she could not read her patient right now.

Scully nodded. "Rest with my feet up," she repeated.

Dr. Goodwin did not appear convinced, but resigned herself to the fact that she could not expect more from Scully. "I'll see you Monday, then."

Scully took her cue and rose from the chair, struggling just a bit. She pulled her jacket tighter over her slightly swollen abdomen. This had become a habit as she struggled to keep her pregnancy a secret.

She headed to the door in silence. Opening it, she half-nodded back at the doctor, and walked out.

As Dr. Goodwin watched the door close, her mouth went into a thin line. She was worried about her patient.

6 Hours Later

Scully sat on the couch in Mulder's apartment. Her eyes were puffy and her cheeks were streaked with wetness. It was clear she'd been crying. Now, she was silent as she stared at the I WANT TO BELIEVE poster draped across the coffee table.

After she'd left the doctor's office, she had driven to her apartment, but she was so troubled she couldn't sit still. After an hour of restlessness, she finally gave up and got in her car. She hadn't known where she was going, but somwehow she'd arrived at the Hoover building, which was nearly empty at 7:30PM. She'd been grateful for that. After getting the poster from the basement office, she got back in her car, still not knowing where she was going. She'd ended up at Mulder's.

She'd spent a sleepless hour lying in his bed before she moved to the couch, where she'd been for two hours now. She kept hearing the doctor's voice over and over in her head:

"a biochemical anomaly..."

"a biochemical anomaly.."

"a biochemical anomaly..."

The baby had been restless earlier, which had added to her sleeplessness. Now, it was quiet. She wondered if it somehow sensed her dilemma, her fear.

She looked at the poster again. Her face darkened as a painful thought occurred to her. She said it aloud, as if saying it would banish it. "If we'd never met... If I hadn't joined the FBI..." She struggled with her emotions. "If I hadn't been born we wouldn't be in this situation. You'd be here, alive and well. And this..." She touched her abdomen, though not tenderly, "whatever it is wouldn't..." She couldn't finish the thought. She closed her eyes as new tears fell down her cheeks. A low, plaintive, "Mulder," escaped her lips.

"a biochemical anomaly..."





Her eyes flew open. The tears had stopped. There was a strange look in her eyes and her mouth tightened. It was as though she'd made a decision.

She reached for her jacket on the coffee table. From the pocket, she pulled out her gun. She held it uncomfortably at arm's length for a time. Then, she pulled it closer and fingered the trigger.

Once again, she closed her eyes. As she exhaled, she placed her other hand against her abdomen, but then quickly pulled it away. She stayed like that for several minutes. Still, though not calm.

Finally, she moved. Tightening her grip on the gun, she moved it closer to her. When the gun was parallel with her abdomen, she slowly began to raise it upward, but just as it was even with her chin a loud banging on the door startled her. Her eyes flew open and she dropped her hand with the gun to the couch. She frowned as she looked over at the door.

The loud banging continued.

Still frowning, she rose from the couch and slipped the gun into the back of her pants. "I'm coming. Hold on," she complained to the closed door.

Finally arriving at the door, she unlocked it and opened it. Her eyes widened when she focused on the person at the door. She tried to form words to speak, but was unsuccessful.

"Well," a low, familiar voice asked. "Aren't you going to ask me in?"

This brought Scully to her senses. "What the hell are you doing here?" she blurted out.

"Hello, Agent Scully. Nice to see you, too," Cancer Man replied in an overly cheerful voice.

Scully started to slam the door, but he moved to stop her. "I wouldn't do that."

"I am in no mood to talk to you, you smoking bastard! I have other things to attend to," she retorted.

"Yes, you do," Cancer Man agreed. "You really think THAT is the answer?"

"What?" Scully was clearly thrown off-balance by his tone and words.

"Your gun."

Scully's eyes widened as shock flooded her body.

Cancer Man took advantage of her shock and slid past her into the apartment.

"Place hasn't changed much," he remarked sardonically as he surveyed the place. "I was hoping you might've addded a woman's touch."

Scully frowned at the remark and closed the door loudly. "What the hell do you want?"

Cancer Man spun around. "I see motherhood hasn't softened you at all."

For the second time in just a couple minutes, Scully stood in shock, but this time she quickly moved to cover it. "What are you talking about?"

"Your baby. I know. And soon the whole world will," Cancer Man offered as explanation. "This is not something you can keep secret for very long, Dana."

Scully's eyes snapped up at the mention of her first name.

"You don't mind if I call you Dana?" he schmoozed.

"Don't call me anything."

Her rebuff did not deter him. "Killing yourself is not the answer." He enjoyed seeing the shock return to her eyes. "Neither is killing your baby."

Scully started to protest again. He stopped her cold.

"It's plain to see, Scully. You're having a baby. And you think something may be wrong with the baby. You think it may be like that girl in California. And you can't go through that again."

He studied Scully for her reaction. He seemed pleased with the look of horror on her face.

She marched to the door, opened it, and found her voice. "Leave."

Cancer Man smirked and lit a cigarette. After taking a long drag, he rebuffed her. "No, I'm not leaving. Not without you. We have places and people to see."

Scully's face was a mixture of anger and confusion. "What the hell are you talking about?"

"If I hadn't been born we wouldn't be in this situation. You'd be here, alive and well," he quoted.

Scully's eyes widened.

"Now, Agent Scully, do you really believe that? Do you really believe if you were gone, everything would be right?"

Scully suddenly realized she was still holding the door open. She pushed it shut and walked past Cancer Man to sit down on the couch.

"Well, Agent Scully? Do you still wish you'd never been born?" He studied her intently and with mild amusement.

Scully was struggling with her reply. "Yes," she finally answered.

He waited for more, but she just stared at the poster in front of her. He studied her for several moments before taking another drag on the cigarette. As he exhaled the smoke, the lights in the room flickered.

Scully looked up from the poster at the lamp. She shivered as the temperature in the room suddenly dropped, then shifted her attention back to Cancer Man, who was watching her.

"You have your wish. You've never been born." He said between puffs.

Scully's forehead furrowed. "What?" she asked, incredulous.

"You've never been born. You never existed." He tried to gauge her understanding. "You've never worked for the FBI. You NEVER worked on the X-Files." He stopped, wanting to be sure this last part would sink in. "You never met Fox Mulder."

Scully's eyes narrowed. "What the hell....?" She stood and moved toward Cancer Man. "What did you do?"

"I just gave you your wish. You were never born."

She studied him piercingly.

He didn't flinch under the scrutiny. "You were never born. You never met Fox Mulder. You never worked for the FBI," he repeated.

Scully's mouth dropped as Cancer Man exhaled once again and a fog of smoke, an extremely large amount of it, enveloped them.

Scully gagged slightly before the smoke retreated and her eyes popped wide open as she realized she was no longer in Mulder's apartment. They were standing in the street and she recognized the home in front of them.

"What are we doing here? How did we get here?"

"You don't want to be here?" he countered.

Scully frowned at his return volley. "What is this?" She glanced around frantically. "How did we get here?"

Cancer Man didn't answer. He just had a bemused expression on his face.

"How did we get here?" she yelled through clenched teeth. She glanced around again and noted the emptiness around her: no people, no animals, no sounds. "Or am I dreaming?" she mumbled to herself.

"I just thought you'd like to pay a visit to your mother," he said matter-of-factly as he lit another cigarette.

Scully's eyes narrowed. "Why?"

He didn't speak. Instead, he just motioned her toward the house.

Scully frowned at him as she started up the walk to the house. She stopped at the door and raised her hand to knock when he came up behind her and swept her through the closed door. Scully gasped as they easily passed through the wood door and she found herself in the foyer.

At first, everything seemed normal, just as she remembered her mother's house, but then she winced. It smelled awful, like cat litter. Confusion filled her face: her mother didn't own a cat. She was a dog person.

Before Scully could investigate the cat issue, the front door opened behind her. She gasped again when she saw her mother. Maggie Scully looked so much older. Her hair was totally gray and she was hunched over, which Scully's clinical mind told her was a sign of osteoporosis. Her hair was unkempt and her clothes were mismatched.

Scully felt a mixture of disbelief and sadness. "Mom," she called as Maggie walked right past her without even looking at her. Scully was confused. She looked to Cancer Man before turning back to see her mother continue to the kitchen as if she'd heard nothing. "Mom," she called louder.

"She can't hear you. Remember, you were never born. You really aren't here."

Scully had trouble grasping this. Instead of arguing with him, she decided to go after her mother. She followed her into the kitchen and was surprised to see Maggie surrounded by a dozen cats of all sizes and colors.

"How?" escaped her lips as she viewed the scene with horror.

"How'd she come to this?" Cancer Man finished her question. "Well, she has no one now. No one but her cats."

Scully's attention snapped to him. "What do you mean?" Her tone was angry.

"I told you. You were never born. She has no one since your father died six years ago."

Scully swallowed, trying to understand what was happening. "Well... she still has Bill and Charlie."

"Yes, doesn't she?" he asked sarcastically.

She noted the glimmer in his eye. "What?"

"Bill stops by every six months. He calls her once a week, too. That's more than before your father died. He was demoted in rank after that Tailhook scandal a while back and he just couldn't face your father. Charlie? Well, he hasn't been home for ten years. He talks to her about once a month, maybe, but that's better than Melissa."

"Melissa?" Scully's voice rose when she heard her sister's name. "She's alive?!"

"Oh, yes. Krycek and Cardinal never tried to kill you so..."

Scully looked away.

"But, she joined a cult in Utah and hasn't talked to any of the family for twelve years now." He seemed to take great pleasure in relating this information.

Scully closed her eyes tightly, trying to block out this painful information, before returning her attention to her mother.

"Oh, there's enough for all my babies." She said happily to the cats. Two cats fought over the bowl of food she'd set down for them. "No, no. Babies don't fight now." She separated the cats, who settled down and ate happily with the rest of the felines.

Maggie turned to the stove and turned on the tea kettle. "And some tea for Mom, now."

Scully winced at the scene before her.

"Her days are spent at church praying for her family and going to daily Mass and confession. She does take lunch to two elderly ladies of the parish. When she gets home, she feeds the cats, has tea, takes a nap, then spends her evenings knitting or doing needlepoint while watching the Learning Channel. The Crocodile Hunter seems to be her favorite." He watched Scully digest this information before adding, "No time for a social life."

That remark prompted a stern look from Scully.

"Why are you showing me this?" she asked in a low voice, watching her mother fuss over her teacup and sing "Danny Boy" to the cats.

"You made the wish. You should see how it affects everyone."

She gave him a sharp look. "I don't want to see anymore. I want to wake up."

"But you're not asleep," he informed her.

She gave him her patented "give me a break" look.

"You want to go, we'll go," he agreed.

As she walked out, Scully looked over her shoulder one last time to see Maggie hovering over the cats singing to them. She turned away and walked out.

Cancer Man again grabbed her, this time by the shoulders. She grimaced and pulled back as he pushed them back through the front door. Just as they were going through the wood, Scully forced her eyes closed.

"Aaaahhh," she moaned through clenched teeth.

A few seconds later, she knew they were through the door and she opened her eyes. She looked around, puzzled. She was in a house, but she realized it wasn't her mother's house. She didn't recognize it at all.

The carpeting was white and everything seemed to sparkle and shine, as though it had been scrubbed and polished. She wondered if it was a museum.

Suddenly, she heard angry voices coming from the kitchen. She looked around, but Cancer Man wasn't there. Shaking off her frustration, she headed into the kitchen. She hesitated as she touched the door. This time she was able to open it and walked through. Once in the kitchen she saw two women. She inhaled sharply when she at last recognized the older woman.

"This will not do!" Teena Mulder yelled at the younger woman.

"What's wrong now?" the younger woman asked, exasperated.

"These tarts. They need... something. I don't know... maybe some whipped cream. Kate, do we have any?" She turned away from the younger woman. "Fix them," she ordered.

"Yes, your majesty," Kate said loud enough for Teena to hear.

Teena Mulder carried on as though she hadn't heard her. "And these canapes. They look... flat. Fix them, too." She seemed to fly around the kitchen. She looked at her watch and frowned. "Oh damn! They're due now!"

The doorbell rang just then and Teena made a flustered sound. Scully moved out of Teena's way as she flew past her heading for the door. Kate made a face behind her, prompting Scully to smile.

Scully followed her down the hallway to the door and watched as Teena primped momentarily in front of a mirror near the door. Before she turned away from the mirror, Teena smiled. Then she held this faux smile as she moved to answer the door.

"Welcome," she warmly greeted her guests at the door. Several women, most of whom were her age, filed in.

"Teena, so nice to see you!" one woman called. "And you remember my daughter, Lara?"

Teena nodded to the woman. "Hello, Esther. This can't be Lara?" she asked in mock shock.

"Yes it is," Esther answered proudly. "Married and has a family of her own now. I believe she went to school with your son Fox."

"Yes," Lara confirmed. "How is he?"

Teena's face darkened at the mention of her son's name. "I'm afraid I haven't heard from him in ages. Guess he's too busy or something." She worked to regain her composure, the fake smile reappearing. "I am so looking forward to today's meeting. Aren't you?" She quickly moved into the living room, among the other women.

Lara and Esther looked at each other, belwildered by Teena's words and behavior.

Scully watched Teena mingle among the women, her gestures very animated as she spoke loudly with them. But, her attention was pulled back to Lara and Esther, who had been joined by another woman.

"She's so... I don't know...," the woman said, looking at Teena in the other room.

"Cold," Esther stated. "That's the word you were looking for. Did you hear her talk about her son, Fox? No emotion whatsoever. And, geez! We all know he disappeared years ago, just like his sister. Although, you'd never know it from her. She never spoke about it to any of us. And neither did Bill, God rest his soul. Of course, she said more today about her children than I've ever heard her say in the twenty years I've known her! I tell you, this was one strange family!"

"I could certainly miss this."

Scully whirled around and saw Cancer Man walking up beside her.

"Are you enjoying the bi-weekly meeting of the cat club?" Sarcasm dripped from his words.

"Where have you been?" Scully asked, a bit perturbed.

"I needed another smoke and thought it best not to smoke in front of the baby." He motioned toward her still pregnant abdomen.

Scully looked down at her stomach for a moment.

"I'm bored with this," Cancer Man stepped in front of Scully and interrupted as the women continued to gossip behind him. "Have you seen enough?"

Scully looked at him evenly. "Where's Mulder?"

He smiled. "I was wondering how long before you asked that."

"Where is he? They said he disappeared."

He didn't answer. Instead, he just headed to the door. "Let's go."

She followed him, not even looking back at Teena or the other women.

They walked down a hallway that slowly changed until Scully realized they were at FBI Headquarters.

"Mulder's here?" she asked, clearly doubtful. She struggled to keep up with Cancer Man as he dodged people walking in the hallway.

He didn't answer as he continued at a steady pace.

"Wouldn't he be downstairs? In the basement?" she queried again.

Cancer Man stopped suddenly and she nearly ran up his back.

"What?" she asked, flustered.

He pointed to the door. Looking up at it, her eyes widened. The door read, "Walter S. Skinner, Deputy Director."

"Well, he certainly made the big time," she remarked.

Cancer Man didn't answer as the door opened and two men walked out. They stopped just outside the door and glanced back over their shoulders.

"Bastard!" one said through clenched teeth.

"He had no right. Our investigation was on the money." The other agent was pacing as he spoke. "Just because we overstepped a little..."

"Oh, come on! What agent hasn't entered a house without clear probable cause? I mean, they USUALLY give us plenty of leeway with that, but no!"

"And USUALLY the deputy director doesn't reprimand you himself. USUALLY he lets your ASAC handle it, but not that bastard! He loves knocking us down a couple pegs. Y'know, I heard he fired a guy just for padding his expense report a little."

"That's nothing. I heard one ASAC got demoted for taking his wife with him on one of those conference weekends."

Both shook their heads in disgust.

"Russ! Crandall!" An agent passing by called. "How'd it go with Skinner? Did he skin you, too?"

Russ and Crandall turned quickly and headed off down the hall without answering.

"What the hell was that about?" Scully asked, clearly confused.

"Obviously, your dear Walter Skinner is a bastard. At least according to most agents around here."

Scully started to speak when the door flew open again and this time Skinner walked through it.

"Schedule Agent Fields to see me tomorrow. I'll be back from the Attorney General's in about an hour." He shut the door behind him and headed quickly down the hallway.

Scully fell in step behind him. "I want to talk to him," she called back to Cancer Man.

"What?" Cancer Man asked, moving to follow them.

She continued after Skinner. "I want to talk to him," she repeated, enunciating every word for effect.


Scully had to quickly sidestep as Skinner headed around a corner. "Dammit! I want to talk to him, now!"

Cancer Man stopped. "So, talk to him," he answered.

Scully looked back, but he was gone. She nearly rammed into a female agent. The woman's pert, "Pardon me," before walking away told Scully she was now visible to them. If they could see her, then they could hear her. Probably.

She quickened her pace to catch up with Skinner before he reached the elevator.

"Sir!" she called. "Assist... Deputy Director Skinner!"

Skinner stopped short and turned around, searching for who had called him.

"Excuse me, sir, but can I have a word?" she asked as she moved up to him, a bit out of breath.

"Excuse me?" Skinner asked, clearly confused.

"I wanted to ask you about one of your agents," she hastily explained. "What happened to Agent Mulder?" She waited expectantly for his answer.

Skinner's face darkened at the mention of Mulder's name. He studied her intently before answering. "Ma'am, you've obviously gotten lost from your tour. Let me get an agent to escort you to the lobby."

"What happened to Agent Mulder?" she repeated.

Skinner looked at her, his eyes narrowed. "Are you one of those fanatics? Surely not..." He glanced down at her abdomen.

"I'm Scully," she reminded him. "Don't you..."

He didn't let her finish. "I don't know how you got in here, but I'll fix that. Let me get an agent..." He looked around. "Agent Doggett!"

Scully whirled around and saw John Doggett stop walking and look their way.

"Agent Doggett, will you please escort this woman to the exit?"

"Sure," Doggett replied and started toward them.

Skinner didn't say another word as he turned on heel and walked away.

Scully was obviously frustrated. She stared after Skinner for several seconds before Doggett cleared his throat and got her attention. He motioned for her to go ahead of him toward the elevator. Scully looked up at him before moving that way.

Once on the elevator, Doggett broke the silence. "When are you due?"

"What?" Scully had been abruptly pulled away from her thoughts.

"Your baby," he motioned with his head toward her. "When are ya due?"

"Oh, I've got about three more months." She returned to her thoughts, trying to figure out how to find out about Mulder.

"That's a nice time. The anticipation," Doggett mused aloud.

Scully wasn't listening. Instead she changed the subject. "Do you know anything about Agent Fox Mulder?"

Doggett looked down at her. He didn't answer for awhile. Finally he simply said, "No. I didn't know him."

Scully nodded and dropped her gaze.

"So, what? Did you lose your tour or something?" he asked.

Scully considered her answer. "Something."

Doggett nodded as the doors opened.

He walked with her through the lobby to the door. He opened it for her. "You take care," he offered warmly. "And I hope you have a healthy, happy baby."

Scully half-smiled and nodded as she headed outside. Once out there she looked around. She spotted Cancer Man leaning against the building across the street. She headed to the corner and crossed the street.

"I want to talk to the Gunmen," she demanded as she approached him.

"You're in no position..."

"The Gunmen. I want to talk to them. Now," she interrupted.

Cancer Man took a long drag on his cigarette, and Scully felt herself being pulled. The buildings and people seemed to melt and distort. She felt dizzy and nauseous all at once. She closed her eyes. When she opened them again, she was standing outside the Gunmen's place.

"Thank goodness some things never change," she said as she stepped forward to ring their doorbell. Before she could even ring it she was startled by Byers' voice. "Can I help you?" Scully looked up and saw the speaker and camera.

"I'd like to talk with you about Agent Fox Mulder," she said looking up to the camera. She understood now that no one remembered her. No one knew her.


"There are some things I need to know," was her simple answer.

Silence. Then, she heard footsteps and heard door locks being thrown. Shortly, Langly's face appeared as the door was opened.

He looked her up and down. "You carrying anything?" he asked suspiciously.

"No," she answered truthfully.

"O-kay," he answered, though it seemed he did not believe her. He stepped aside to let her in.

Scully walked past him and entered the same computer-filled room she'd entered many times over the last seven years.

Frohike peeked out from behind one of the computers. "Woo, Momma!" he exclaimed.

Scully ignored this and searched for the third Gunmen, Byers. He promptly appeared from behind a bookcase. "You want to know about Agent Fox Mulder. Why?" He walked toward her and stopped about three feet away.

Scully struggled for an answer. "Because... it's important to me. It's important I know what happened to Mulder." She looked intently at him, hoping he'd understand though he didn't know who she was.

This answer must've satisfied them as they all seemed a bit more relaxed.

"What do ya want to know?" Langly asked.

Scully exhaled. "What happened to him?"

"Well, it was about seven years..." Byers started, but Frohike interrupted.

"Wait!" He stepped toward Scully. "Look, why don't you and I go have a couple drinks and I'll tell you everything you want to know."

Scully smiled and looked down.

"Frohike!" Byers and Langly chastised in unison.

"Geez, man! She's pregnant!" Langly further admonished.

"Yeah, but she's hot!" Frohike answered.

"Look, just tell me what happened to Mulder, please," she pleaded with them to get back on track.

"He was investigating strange lights and happenings in Idaho," Byers explained. "He went to an air base out there."

"Ellens Air Base," Langly corrected.

"Ellens," Scully repeated. This news hit her hard, and she fell back onto the stool behind her.

All three men moved toward her in concern. "Are you okay?" they asked in unison.

Scully closed her eyes, remembering that case in Idaho. She nodded.

Byers continued, a bit hesitant. "There was this colonel out there who'd disappeared. They couldn't find him. Then, he apparently showed up, but was acting weird. Mulder disappeared the next night. We think he was out at the base and they took him."

Langly nodded. "He was officially listed as missing, but we're pretty sure of what happened."

Scully sat still, with her eyes closed for quite awhile.


This startled her and she looked up at Frohike.

"You okay? You aren't going into labor or anything are ya?" Frohike asked, concerned.

Scully let out a short laugh. "No. It's way too early for that." She sat up a bit straighter. "So, the FBI couldn't find Mulder? I'm sure they must've done a thorough search."

"Who are you?" Byers asked.

Scully just looked at him.

"You keep calling him Mulder. All the Mulderites call him Fox Mulder. Or some call him Saint Fox."

This horrified Scully. "He'd hate that."

"Yeah," Frohike agreed.

"How do you know? You talk as though you knew him." Byers moved closer. This was getting curiouser and curiouser.

"You mentioned Mulderites? Who are they?"

Langly fielded this one. "Followers of Mulder."

Scully's eyes widened in disbelief.

"When he disappeared, he became a martyr for the UFO and paranormal communities. Some even worship him. Others just do what they can to validate his theories."

"And you're obviously not one of them," Byers concluded. "So, who are you?"

Scully considered her answer. "I met him awhile back. I just wanted to know what happened to him." She stood, fighting back her emotions. "Thank you for your help." She headed towards the door.

The three men looked at each other, bewildered.

"Wait!" It was Frohike.

Scully stopped and he walked up to her.

"You gonna be okay?"

"I'll be fine," she said, but her shaky voice and pale face betrayed her true emotions.

Frohike fumbled for words as she continued her departure. "Well, ummm..... take care of that baby."

This made Scully stop andd face him. "Why?"

"Why?" he repeated, confused.

Scully nodded, challenging him. "Why did you say that? Why do you think I should take care of this baby? You don't even know me!"

Frohike looked at her, once again searching for words, but this time the words came quickly and easily. "Because all babies are special. And this one is very special, isn't it?"

Scully's brow furrowed as she tried to understand his meaning.

"Yes, it is," Langly agreed.

Scully looked his way, more confused.

"And you must take of yourself. You have people counting on you now," Byers added.

Scully was completely bewildered, but her hands automatically covered her abdomen. She turned and left.

Ten minutes later, she was walking down the street, struggling to make sense of it all.

Mulder was gone...
Her mother was a lonely widow taking care of a passel of cats...
Her siblings were jerks...
Teena Mulder was a cold socialite...
Skinner was a ruthless, dispassionate deputy director...
And Mulder was gone.
He had been gone for seven years.
And nuts worshipped him.

Mulder was gone.

But, where was she?

At that moment, she realized she'd caused this and had to fix it.

But how?

She hailed a taxi and rushed to Mulder's apartment, where this had all started. She got up to his apartment as soon as she could using the elevator. She took out her key and tried to open the door, but it didn't fit the lock anymore. Looking up, she noticed a small wreath hanging from the door, and then it dawned on her: someone else was living there. She thought about picking the lock, but she knew it was futile.

She had nowhere to go. She had no home.

Confused and defeated, she slumped to the floor and cried. She closed her eyes and began saying over and over, "I'm asleep. I'm going to wake up now." After six times repeating this mantra, she snapped her eyes open. Her hope quickly faded as she saw that she was still outside what was now formerly Mulder's apartment.

"I want to live, okay?" She pleaded in a low voice to no one there. "Is that want you want to hear? I want to live! I want to live!!"

She waited. Nothing.

Then, she remembered. "The baby? Is that it?" she whispered. "The baby could be really sick. Like Emily."

She shifted to get more comfortable.

"Of course, it could be something known to man, like spina bifida or cystic fibrosis. Or..." she mused aloud about the genetic test. "It could just be an error in testing."

She sat in silence for a minute. Her hands wrapped around her abdomen, as though cradling the baby. "But, it's my baby and I want it. I want to have this baby." Her voice was getting stronger as she spoke. "Mulder deserves that."

She looked up as though trying to send this message to anyone listening. "I want my baby, and I want to live. I have to find Mulder, and I have to be alive to do that." Her voice grew louder. "I want to live. I want to live."

She said this over and over until she felt very sleepy. She dozed off for just a moment and when she opened her eyes again, she was back in Mulder's apartment on his couch.

She looked around her. Everything seemed as it was when she last remembered being here, before Cancer Man showed up.

Letting out a sigh of relief, she leaned back against the couch. She gingerly stroked her abdomen for a minute or two, humming quietly as she did so.

Then, she reached for the phone and called her mother. "Mom? You want some company? I need to talk to you about something very important.... Okay... I'll stop by China Dragon and get us some dim sum and the rest, okay? How's that sound?...Oh! And Mom... you didn't happen to get any cats recently, did you?"

The End

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