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Everybody’s Got Something To Hide Except For Me And My Monkey by Xenoprobe
Title: Everybody’s Got Something To Hide Except For Me And My Monkey
Category: Challenge-fic, MSR
Spoilers: none at all
Summary: Mulder and Scully investigate the murder of a man in a closed, hippie community.
Feedback: God yes!!! Can’t live without it- or www.xenoprobe.com
Archive: I post to Ephemeral, but anywhere else is fine- just let me know 🙂
Disclaimer: Oh- they’re definitely NOT mine! I just like to play.
This challenge was issued to me by my friend Belle. She asked me to improvise a story that included chickpea dip, a penis candle, the move ‘The Goonies’, a Magna Doodle, Charles Scully and a picture of Mulder at 15- dressed like a girl. (She also mentioned the tasty Australian treat Tim Tams, which I am working to add into the fic as well.) You will find not all of the above appear here- this is only the first half of my tale. So, please feedback me- let me know if I have incorporated these elements satisfactorily.
*Please note- this has not been beta’d, forgive me 🙂
Everybody’s Got Something To Hide Except For Me And My Monkey- part one
A low growl cut the silence in the darkened chapel and Scully clutched her stomach, as if it would stop her hunger from vocalizing itself.
“Was that you?” Mulder whispered, stifling a snicker. Scully swatted at his sleeve and made a face at him. Her cheeks turned red.
“You got me up at four in the morning to come here Mulder- I haven’t eaten all day.”
“What about on the flight? I thought you had your fruit plate.” He smiled weakly.
“It was too early to eat then… now I’m starving.” She rubbed her tummy for emphasis.
“Well, as soon as we’ve wrapped up here, I’ll get you to a diner asap. I promise.”
She nodded and turned away again, examining some items on a table across the room. She played her fingers over a few things; a silk scarf full of bright colours held her attention for a moment.
“Tell me again why we’re here Mulder.”
“Yes, that much I know. But a murder does not an x-file make…”
“In this case Scully- it actually does. You see, there has never been a murder here- not of any kind. No humans, no animals, no fish, birds or insects have been killed in this community since its inception in 1966.”
“I see. Interesting I guess. I’d heard of this town when I was little- my father used to mock the hippie movement. He couldn’t understand their fight. I suppose it took me a while to understand it too.”
“Well, in our defense, we kinda missed that era. Still, I can’t help but wonder if I would have been better off in bell-bottomed corduroys than in my velour jumpsuit.” he smirked.
“Velour jumpsuit?” Her voice rose an octave and Mulder put his finger to her lips to silence her.
“Shh. We promised to be quiet in here.” He smiled down at his partner who was biting back her laughter. “Ok.. Yes. My mom bought me a brown velour one-piece outfit when I was in middle school and made me wear it until I grew out of it. I was devastated. I wore than damned thing for two years before my growth spurt.”
“And bellbottoms would have been preferable?” she asked.
“Well, it always seemed cooler to be a hippie than… what the hell were we called in the seventies?”
“Point taken.” He cocked his head to one side and lead Scully across the room to a tiny altar. “This community was created by a group of people who wanted to live meat and cruelty-free, so they left San Francisco before the march to Haight-Ashbury that buried the hippie movement for most Americans. They’ve been here ever since. All of them are vegetarian and pacifist.”
“Sounds quite nice actually. Quiet and safe.” She leaned over to look more closely at a shrine ornament. It was a pentagram. “Do they practice Wicca?”
“Not really. Their form of worship is really about whatever people bring to the altar here. There’s no organized religion at all- no defined property lines either. In fact they rarely use money too- they borrow and trade between themselves after their community meetings here in the chapel.”
“‘Imagine there’s no heaven, it’s easy if you try… no hell below us- above us only sky.'”
“Lennon, Scully? I never knew you listened to him.”
“There’s plenty you don’t know about me.” She peeked at a few other trinkets, a metallic palm-sized yellow submarine, a hand-knit pair of mittens in rainbow colours. “Interesting collection here.”
“Yes, how about this as a talisman.” Mulder turned around clutching a long candle, it had a distinctly bulbous head- it was shaped like a penis. Scully laughed out loud at the image and caught herself quickly. She doubted the sight of her partner gripping a larger-than- life sized penis candle would ever completely leave her memory.
“I think we need to get some air- it’s dark and stuffy in here.” She stepped through the doorway ahead of her partner, still snickering.
They took a seat at a nearby picnic table under the hot California sun.
The town was small, the houses generally large and shared by families or groups of friends. The whole place held an air of commune that was both inviting and yet exclusive. This community was not prone to taking in strangers, in fact they’d spent a great deal of time and energy keeping themselves off the map. So, it was an interesting period of adjustment when, once in a blue moon, they would welcome a new person into their homes.
Mulder and Scully’s presence was not unwelcome however. Gerry Franklin actually seemed glad to have them there- the murder of a young man was shocking and he was ill equipped to investigate the situation without external help.
As the agents sat, discussing the facts, Gerry pulled up in a battered Westfalia, smiling as he approached.
“Yes hi, I’m Dana Scully.” She showed him her badge quickly before extending her hand. “And this is my partner Fox Mulder.”
“Fox- great name, man. I’m Gerry Franklin. I’m the closest thing to a cop in these parts- in my old life I worked for the SFPD but we don’t condone law enforcement here.”
Mulder winced under the sun.
“Gerry, can you tell me just how the body was found?” he said, shaking the man’s hand as well.
“It’d be easier if you just called me Mulder.”
“Right, whatever you say man…” He looked around glancing back at Scully to smile again. “What was I saying?”
“The body.” Mulder repeated.
“Yeah. Mona found the body by the altar in there and came to get me right away.”
“I see, can you tell us when that was- what time of day?” Scully inquired.
“Not really sure about that point. You see, Mona stopped by and I was sleeping, my mate didn’t wake me right away- she and Mona had tea first. I think it was after lunch.”
“After lunch, and was there any indication that the body had been there for very long, like overnight for example?” Scully swung her legs over the picnic bench as Gerry scratched his scruffy chin.
“No, don’t think it was overnight. He looked to me like he was still alive at first. His eyes were open still and he wasn’t overly stiff when we took him to the clinic.”
“The medical clinic? Does that mean you have facilities to do an autopsy?” Mulder chimed in. Scully glared at him quickly.
“Yeah, I suppose we do.”
“Scully, I’d like you to take a look at the body this afternoon- I can look over the other evidence.”
“What other evidence is that Mulder?” she inquired.
Scully looked to her partner who in turn looked to Gerry- Gerry cleared his throat.
“A magna doodle. It still hasn’t been dusted for prints- I put it in a plastic bag to keep it fresh for you guys.”
“A magna doodle.” Scully repeated flatly.
“A magna doodle- etch-a-sketch, whatever… it had a partial message drawn on it.” Mulder added. “Gerry, is there somewhere we can grab lunch around here?”
“We’ve got a juice bar. But I’d be honoured to have you back to my place for something more substantial. My mate made fresh hummos and falafel this morning, she told me to bring you home.”
“Oh, we don’t want to impose Gerry- if you could just point us in the direction of a motel, we can get unpacked and grab a sandwich before starting in on the evidence.” Scully smiled apologetically.
“Well, that’d be another issue we have to work through. You see- there is no motel. At least not one within a three hour drive from here.” He turned to Mulder and offered his solution. “We have really nice guest space at our place, Star’s brother comes to visit twice a year.”
“Star?” Mulder looked to Scully, her blank expression mirrored his.
“Star’s my life mate man… makes a mean veggie burger too, you should really come stay at our place, everyone loves Star’s cooking.”
“Well, it would seem that it is the most logical place to stay- if we aren’t putting you both out.” Scully offered.
“Not at all man, just follow me up to the house, we’ll get you two settled in right away.”
In the safety of their rented vehicle, Mulder turned to Scully with a weak grin and said, “Star?”
She replied with, “Magna Doodle?” and they both broke into laughter.
Gerry led the agents to his front door, explaining the few ‘house rules’ involved with their stay.
No loaded guns indoors, no shoes, no meat… everything else was one’s personal choice. Scully took the magazines from their weapons and put them in Mulder’s overnight bag.
The house was large with tall ceilings in all the principle rooms. A number of cats and one rabbit roamed between pieces of furniture as Scully took in the environment. She was grateful for not being allergic to house pets. Mulder sneezed in the hallway behind her- the walls shook.
“Hey Star- babe- we’re back… come meet the FBI people.” Gerry bellowed into the home.
A middle-aged woman appeared. Her black hair was peppered with grey and her blue eyes sparkled- like stars.
“Hello- welcome to our home.” She shook each agent’s hand firmly, her warm smile was instantly inviting. Mulder sneezed again- with just enough warning to not explode all over everyone. “Allergies?”
“Must be.” He coughed out.
“I have some antihistamines in the bathroom- we’ll get you fixed up in no time.” She took Scully by the hand and walked with her into the living room. “Why don’t you take Mr. Mulder up to their room and get him something for his sneezing.” She spoke to Gerry over her shoulder. “Miss Scully and I will be in here.”
Scully glanced back at Mulder and watched as he mouthed ‘their room’ at her questioningly. The men disappeared up the stairs.
“So did Gerry show you the Magna Doodle?”
Scully shook her head, “Not yet. I’m afraid Mulder will be looking after that part of our investigation- I have an autopsy to do this afternoon.”
“Oh how awful. I mean, all that death. Doesn’t it ever bother you?”
“Well, sometimes it gets to me- especially when it involves the wrongful death of a child. Most of the time, its pretty straight forward- the science speaks for itself.”
“I’m afraid I was never much good at math and science.” The older woman offered. “I was better at writing and drawing. Its good that there are women like yourself out there though- I feel it lends compassion to a man’s world.”
“I suppose it does. I don’t often think in terms of sexual roles though.”
“I like you.” Star leaned forward and hugged Scully around stiff shoulders. She then wandered into the kitchen only to re-emerge with a platter of Middle Eastern foods.
Mulder reappeared in the doorway and motioned for Scully to join him for a moment. He slipped his arm across the back of her shoulders and led her to the foot of the stairs.
“Um, Scully… I think we have a little problem.” He cleared his throat as his hand fell to the small of her back, guiding her up to the first landing.
“What is it?” She turned around at the top of the staircase, her eyes were level with his- he was two steps behind.
“Well…” he leaned in closer, their faces only an inch apart. “It would seem that our meaning of partner, and their meaning of partner, mean two very different things… Go see for yourself.”
“Scully walked into the open doorway and gazed around their room, she spun around twice, taking it all in. There was a large king sized bed with crisp white linens, a bright orange throw lay across the foot. Beside the large window was an antique washstand, complete with pitcher and basin. An oak armoire stood along one wall while a small television and VCR had a home atop a small table beside the bed. The feel of the room and decor was that of an old country farmhouse- it held none of the downstairs’ hippie feel. It was a room Scully could relax in.
She opened a closet door to find extra sheets and pillows, room to hang her clothes and a shoe rack. The next door lead to a large bathroom. The clawfoot tub beckoned to Scully’s sore muscles immediately but the grumble in her empty tummy snapped her back into the present.
“Notice anything?” Mulder muttered from the edge of the bed. He put a hand out at his side and patted the sheets. “We’re in for a cozy sleep- partner.”
“I don’t see why you’re making a huge deal about this Mulder. They have obviously gone to trouble setting this up. We’ve slept in the same bed before. Don’t you think you’ll survive one night with me here?” She smiled and Mulder felt his chest expand.
He could certainly survive the night- it was the following day he was concerned about. Mulder never slept a wink if sharing sheets with Scully, he took too great a pleasure in watching her rest. He could relax and snuggle close to her, brush the hair from her face and watch her dreams surface in her changing expressions. Tomorrow he’d be the walking dead, but tonight he’d wait for the soft even breathing of his partner.
“Ok then Scully. I was going to offer to drive out to the motel and let you have this nice room all to yourself. But since you don’t seem to mind bunking with me, I’ll stay.” he smirked and showed her the door. “After you ‘partner’.”
“Why thank you- ‘partner’.” She winked back at him before descending the stairs.
The lazy afternoon sun illuminated the living room. Mulder sat, awkwardly crossed-legged on the carpeted floor, munching on celery sticks as Star wander about the room, chatting about their lifestyle away from the rest of the world. Scully and Gerry were seated on the sofa enjoying the full flavour of pita bread dipped in chickpea dip.
“Do you ever miss San Francisco?” Mulder inquired.
“Well, I’m not actually from Frisco Mulder, I came down to check things out in 65′ but I was born and raised in Toronto- Canada.”
“Really? This must be so different from your native environment Star- don’t you ever miss the northern elements?” Scully smiled around a bite of pita.
“To be perfectly honest-” she began to answer.
“To be honest, this is home to us- right babe?” She glanced disapprovingly at her mate. “I barely remember life before moving here, Star and I have been here for an awfully long time now.”
“You barely remember last night Franklin, but I won’t hold it against you.” Star laughed. “Which reminds me…” the woman bent over a large tin box and opened it to Scully, “care for?”
Before her, Scully could count at least three bags of fresh weed and some hashish putty as well. The older woman handed her a rolled joint but Scully declined, not actually touching it. The same offering was made to Mulder and he made a mock gesture to accept, but Scully swatted his out-stretched arm.
“You *do* know we are Federal Agents Mr. Franklin.” Scully declared.
“I know, I know- but not in this house… we have no laws here and we have nothing to hide Miss Scully. You understand, right man?” He looked to Mulder for support.
“We aren’t going to arrest you or anything. But Scully and I do need to get moving on this investigation. Perhaps you could tell us a little more about the position of the body when you arrived on the scene.”
“Well, I can tell you that Mona was in a state when she got here. Gerry was passed out in the hammock out back so I waited a bit before waking him. Mona said it was the strangest thing… the young man was face down, with his head to one side- his arm was stretched out with his one hand still on the knob of the magna doodle.” Star explained.
“And sure enough, the dude was just like Mona said he was when we got there,” Gerry continued. “It looked like he was trying to draw something on the screen.”
“May we see it now Gerry?” Mulder asked, standing up- shaking the stiffness from his limbs.
“Yeah sure. Babe- can you get the evidence from the storage pantry for Mulder here?”
Star got up and wandered from the room momentarily, she returned and handed over the bag.
Mulder bit his lip hard, trying not to laugh out loud. He handed it to Scully who reacted similarly.
“It looks like…” Scully began.
“It looks like a sketch of a…” Mulder couldn’t finish the sentence.
“Like a carrot!” Star declared, “that’s what we thought too!”
Scully started the car as Mulder settled into the passenger seat.
“Mulder if you start telling me that a giant, vengeful carrot has committed murder in a town of vegetarians, I will be given no choice but to quit the Bureau.” Scully stared straight ahead.
“It crossed my mind to say so, but only to see how you’d react. No Scully- I think it has to be some sort of statement. Don’t you?” He didn’t let her answer. “Maybe something to do with acting out against the norm here, or maybe he brought back a Big Mac and an angry mob got to him.”
Scully chuckled while paying attention to the Volkswagen ahead of her- they reached the clinic quickly.
The body of Jason Gallway showed little signs of decay, having been placed in cold storage only hours after his murder. Scully rubbed her neck reflexively as she made her way around the slab, documenting evidence.
“No signs of head trauma, no entry or exit bullet holes, no indication of a struggle- the nails are clean and there aren’t any cuts or abrasions to the superficial epidermis.” She paused her recorder when Mulder walked through the door.
“Find anything Scully?” He was grinning.
“Not really, at this point I’m suspecting it’s poison, there’s absolutely no physical evidence of a wrongful death.” She slid the paper cap off her hair. “How about you- anything conclusive on the Magna Doodle?” She couldn’t help the chuckle.
“I’ve sent it off for prints, the San Francisco lab should have it back to me in the morning. I’m thinking I’ll go back to the chapel, look around again.”
“See if there are any killer carrots lurking in the shadows perhaps?” she teased, “or maybe you just want another look at that phallic candle Mulder.”
“Cute Scully. Real cute. I’ll meet you back here in an hour or so.” He touched her arm before turning to leave then paused at the doorway.
“The tox screen will be back in the morning too Mulder.” She stated before he could ask. She hadn’t even been looking at him. Mulder shook his head and let the door close softly behind him.
“Amazing, Scully.” He muttered, smiling as he made his way out.
The chapel was as dark in the afternoon as it had been that morning. Mulder jammed a chair under the knob of the front door, letting the sunlight filter in. Dust moats danced along the sunbeams and the light cast odd shadows on the items left there for worship.
Mulder looked over the area where the victim had fallen. He crouched down, trying to look around at floor level to see if there was anything revealing or different in the view from there.
Nothing stood out as being odd or paranormal in any way. He stood up, straightening his posture and caught something out of the corner of his eye, mid-stretch. A young woman was sitting in the shadows, her eyes closed. She appeared to be lost in her worship so Mulder approached her tentatively.
“Hello agent Mulder.” Her low voice startled him and Mulder stepped back instinctively. Her eyes remained closed. “I know what you’re looking for” she whispered. “Before you go asking me all sorts of questions… Star told me about you and your partner and everyone knows why you’ve come. There are no secrets here… at least there used to be no secrets.”
“So…” he took up a seat next to the woman, “do you know something of these secrets then?”
“Secret. Singular, not plural.”
“Alright, do you know something of a secret?” He was already frustrated.
“I might. But I’d like to ask you something first.”
“Ok.” He said flatly.
“Tell me agent Mulder, have you noticed anything unusual about this murder?” The woman turned to him and finally opened her eyes. She was even younger than he’d first perceived.
“Well, aside from not really seeming like a murder to begin with, there are other elements of the evidence that are out of the ordinary.” He tilted his head in question. “What are you driving at?”
“Is that your specialty- the abnormal?”
Who was questioning whom here, Mulder leaned forward. “You could say that I have a vested interest in the unusual. If you have information concerning this case, now would be a good time to divulge it.”
“Right.” She nodded and turned to look back into the room, in the direction of where the victim had fallen. “That Jason guy was an accident waiting to happen.”
“Jason Gallway? Why do you say that?”
“From the day he rolled back into town he caused trouble.” She looked back to Mulder and smiled slightly.
“Would you say that people here didn’t like him?”
“Not exactly- some liked him a little too much and therefore, some not at all.” The woman’s double talk was getting under Mulder’s skin. She seemed to pick up on his impatience. “He was involved with a few women in our community, some of the men wanted him to move on to another city.”
“Alright then. Do you think anyone was angry or jealous enough to commit murder?”
“Perhaps. I really can’t say.” She rose to her feet; she was wrapped in a long knit shawl that dragged on the dusty floorboards. “Does that help you at all?”
“It might, it lends a little insight to his nature I suppose.” Mulder reached into his wallet and pulled out a card, “call me if you remember anything ok.” She nodded her response then walked off, slipping through the door into the sunlight.
Mulder went back outside to the car, fetching the file folder on Jason Gallway. He took a seat at the picnic bench again, donning his shades to block out the late afternoon rays.
Jason Gallway had lived all over the United States, seemingly trading one lifestyle for another. He’d been a member of the NRA for a few years, was part of a survivalists group in Arizona. He had a few arrests, one for traffic violations in Rhode Island, another for a Greenpeace protest. Mulder couldn’t formulate a decent profile on these details- the man was a chameleon. The only thing that tied Jason Gallway to his own murder was the fact that he was born in this community over 20 years ago.
Yet, perhaps that was the very issue, this man’s ability to blend into widely different communities. Mulder scratched his chin as his cellphone rang.
“Mulder.” he answered.
“Mulder it’s me, listen, I’m done with this autopsy. I have exhausted all physical leads- the toxicology will tell us more. Have you had any luck?”
“Not really, I spoke to a woman at the Chapel, I’m just reviewing the file on Gallway right now. I’ll pack it up here and come pick you up.” He smiled into the receiver.
“Ok, I’ll be outside Mulder, around the back of the clinic, they have a hammock out here.”
“You’re in it right now aren’t you Scully.” An image of his partner popped into his mind- she was relaxed and dozy in the sun, her guard uncharacteristically lowered.
“Yup.” Mulder could hear her smile.
“Enjoy Scully, I’ll be there in a few minutes.”
They disconnected and Mulder made his way to the medical clinic.
Mulder rounded the corner of the clinic with the evening sun behind him. There was a blush of purple in the sky that made everything look like a painting. He paused at the edge of the building when he spied Scully rocking in the hammock, eyes closed.
The look on her face was almost unfamiliar to him, yet not unpleasant- she was relaxed. Mulder smiled. He’d been worried that this trip to California would have pissed her off, given the lack of evidence and the weak murder case. But his partner had seemed to really take to the pace in this small town and it pleased Mulder to watch her relax from afar.
A strand of her red hair was blown over her mouth and he longed to lean over her and gently pluck it from her lips. Yet Mulder stood away, gazing at her, marveling at her beauty.
“Why don’t you sit down Mulder.” She spoke without opening her eyes. It startled him. He’d wondered for years on end how she was able to do that- identify his presence when he’d been as stealthy as possible. “It’s really nice out here.” She added to persuade him.
Mulder sauntered over and eased into a tall Muskoka- styled chair, exhaling heavily as he let the day drift from him. They sat in comfortable silence for quite a while, feeling the slow descent of the warmth of the sun leaving the sky.
“Hey you.” Scully’s soft voice broke the silence and Mulder opened his eyes. He was greeted by a plum- coloured world and Scully’s outstretched hand.
“Hey yourself,” he smiled, entwining his fingers with hers.
“Its nice here, isn’t it?”
“Mmmmm… it is.” He could hardly believe the intense sensation of her tiny fingers stroking his hand. The simple fact that she felt comfortable enough to make this offer to touch her was amazing to him.
The evening breeze kissed their skin; their hands remained linked. Scully made a low satisfying sound in the back of her throat as her partner traced slow circles on her skin. Mulder could feel the electricity between them rising with each careful breath. He broke the silence when he shifted in his seat.
“Yes?” She turned in the hammock to face him and a leisurely smile appeared. “What is it Mulder?”
“We should probably get going, unless you want to camp out behind the medical clinic tonight.” She nodded and he reluctantly broke their tactile contact. “C’mon, sleepy girl- I’ll tell you what I learned today on the way home.”
He led her to the car, his hand in its usual place.
As soon as they stepped out of the car, Mulder regretted having left the quiet of the clinic’s courtyard. Star and Gerry’s house was alive with townsfolk. Music spilled from the open windows and the distinct scent of marijuana was everywhere. A young couple was kissing on the front steps, too distracted to notice the arrival of two federal agents.
Mulder and Scully slipped out of their shoes by the door, abiding the house rules. They made their way past many people in varying states of intoxication until Scully spied Gerry in the hallway near the kitchen.
“Gerry.” She called over the noise.
“Hey, Scully, Mulder, c’mon over.” He motioned them through the crowd and pulled up two tall stools by the kitchen counter. “Care for a brownie?” Both shook their heads in unison. “Ok, what ever you want man. Any luck today? I mean, did you make any new discoveries?”
“Not many, but now’s probably not the best time to talk about it.” Mulder looked around at the bustle of folk, filtering through the rooms. “Party?”
“Yeah, sorta. We have community parties like this once a month. It was Star’s turn to host so, here we all are.” Just then, Star walked by and Gerry caught her by the waist. She squirmed and broke loose, looking to Scully with a weak expression.
“Gerry please. I don’t have time for that.” She went back out into the living room with a platter of brownies and a pitcher of brightly coloured liquid.”
“Star doesn’t know how to relax man…” Gerry offered.
“Looks more to me like she could use a hand hostessing.” Scully stated flatly, unimpressed by Gerry’s attitude. Somehow she couldn’t bring herself, an agent with the FBI, to take up serving illegal substances just to help out though. Mulder ran his hand down her sleeve and caught her hand in his. He gave a little tug as if to say they should go elsewhere.
“Hey, like if you guys wanna go up to your room, we’ll leave you alone man. Its not like we’ll be knocking on the door.” Gerry’s eyes were wide and dark; his loopy smile was unstable with bouts of laughter.
“We’ll be upstairs then. See you both in the morning.” Mulder placed his large hands at his partner’s waist, helping her off the tall stool. They disappeared into the throng of strangers.
Mulder paused at the foot of the stairs, recognizing the woman from the chapel earlier; she was engaged in conversation with someone, moving her hands widely as she spoke.
“Scully” he whispered, “that’s the woman I was talking about- I think she knows something about the murder.”
“Well now is hardly the time to approach her.” Scully smiled.
“I don’t know about that, if she’s had any of the treats going around here, she might be pretty relaxed right about now. Why don’t you head up to the room- I’ll be along shortly, I promise.” Scully turned and ascended the stairs.
“Famous last words Mulder.” She muttered quietly.
Scully was resting atop the sheets, doing her best to ignore the raucous sounds of the house party below. The television was on in an attempt to draw herself even further away from the noise. Every once in a while she’d laugh at a scene playing out in the movie but invariably she’d check her watch again, wondering if her partner had fallen into some less than favourable situation downstairs.
Suddenly the door flew open and Mulder came crashing in from a small crowd in the hallway. Scully sat bolt upright then rolled over and burst into a fit of laughter. Mulder put his hand up as if to silence her.
“Don’t Scully- just don’t.” he grumbled.
“Mulder- what the hell happened?”
“I got spilled on.” He traversed the room and flopped down on the edge of the bed.
“Spilled on? Couldn’t you just rinse whatever it was out?”
“It wasn’t that kind of spill.”
Scully couldn’t take the suspense any longer and she asked him again to explain.
“Ok- this is what happened. I was trying to talk to Allison, the woman I saw earlier today. It wasn’t going well. Her friend Mona-”
“The one who found the body?” Scully interrupted.
“Yes her- anyway, this Mona woman was plastered on something and she kept throwing her arms around, getting between Allison and I. It wasn’t long before I realized you were right-”
“Of course.” She couldn’t resist.
“Whatever- so, I was trying to make my way back to the stairs when some guy everyone was calling ‘Dude’ rounded the corner and tripped on a couple making out on the floor. He sent four glasses and a full pitcher of electric Kool-Aid flying into the air. I’ll give you three guesses at where it landed.”
“I see,” she still sputtered with laughter. “But Mulder… that does not explain what happened to your clothes. I mean, why didn’t you just come up here and change?”
“Well Scully- I couldn’t.”
“Couldn’t.” she echoed. The look on his face was unprecedented.
“Couldn’t. I only brought a fresh shirt for tomorrow- not an entire suit. I honestly couldn’t see us being here for more than a couple of days. I have my T-shirt for sleeping and fresh boxers of course, but hauling along a suit just didn’t seem necessary.” He lay down, stretching his arms over his head and Scully broke into a fresh fit of giggles. Mulder glared at her for a moment, then, seeing her utter abandonment to laughter, he gave in to it himself.
After a good five minutes they both made an effort to calm themselves.
“Stand up again, let me look at it.” She was still fighting hysteria.
“Don’t I look gorgeous.” He mocked. Mulder was wearing a long dress-like outfit. The pattern was a thick line in zigzags of brown over the most wretched orange Scully’d ever seen.
“Didn’t anyone have a T-shirt and jeans- shorts even?” Mulder chuckled when she hiccuped out loud.
“Apparently not. Apparently it was amusing to an entire community of has-been hippies to dress up a federal agent in a moo-moo.” They dissolved into laughter all over again. “I swear, I’ve never seen anything as hideous as this.” Scully went silent for a moment, her face still red and glistening. “What?” She shook her head ‘no’. “What is it?”
“Do you promise not to be mad at me.” she asked coyly.
“If I can survive this without being pissed as hell, I’m sure I won’t be mad.”
“Ok then,” she paused to clear her throat. “I saw the picture.”
“What picture?” he asked, confused.
“THE picture Mulder the one-” as soon as the words began to fall from her lips, Mulder knew where it was headed. The picture, of course.
“Ok- don’t wanna talk about it Scully.”
“Alright, but if its worth anything Mulder, you look much sexier in this outfit.”
Mulder looked like he’d either laugh again or explode in anger. Back in high school, his mother had dressed Mulder up for a Halloween party he was hosting. She’d promised to make him something cool but forgot about it until that very day. Mulder came to his own party dressed as a girl- at least that’s how it had looked to everyone, himself included. His mother even got up in front of all his friends to explain that her son was, in fact, dressed as a superhero (which one Mulder never knew) but it only contributed to the years of ribbing he’d endure following that fateful night. He was known throughout the school as ‘Foxy’ and even today Mulder shuddered at the memory.
“Hey you.” Scully called to him softly, pulling him from his memories. “C’mere.”
Mulder sat back down on the bed. She pulled the nasty orange garment over his head, freeing him from the bad association. He sat quietly in his boxers as Scully smoothed her hands down his back for a while.
“There,” she spoke quietly, evenly. Her ability to comfort him was unparalleled. “I’ll never mention it again, it was accidental that I saw it in the first place. I’m sorry.”
“It’s ok Scully, really.” He turned around to face her on the bed. They sat cross-legged to one another and Mulder took her small hands in his. “Did you really find me sexy in the moo-moo?” he teased.
“So what if I did.” Her voice caught in her throat and she sounded dry; all the laughter was gone.
Everybody’s Got Something To Hide Except For Me And My Monkey- part two
“It’s ok Scully, really.” He turned around to face her on the bed. They sat cross-legged to one another and Mulder took her small hands in his. “Did you really find me sexy in the moo-moo?” he teased.
“So what if I did.” Her voice caught in her throat and she sounded dry; all the laughter was gone.
Scully’s face reddened as silence claimed the room. Mulder could not tear his gaze from hers but was powerless to do anything but sit there. The sounds of the party downstairs tinkled all around- the White album was playing below in the room below their bed. Their bed.
“Scully.” He choked out.
She touched her fingers to his knee and looked down at the place of contact. Her hand burned, as did her head. She felt drugged and considered only momentarily that perhaps they’d both been slipped something in the water. She shook her head.
“What is it? What’s the matter Scully?” He’d obviously taken her gesture as a negative one.
“Its nothing Mulder- I was thinking of something else.” She looked back up at him, a quiet smile on her lips.
Mulder’s hand reached to caress the soft curve of her face and the smile disappeared. Mulder’s eyes closed at the sensation of her hot, soft skin and she shuddered, realizing the impact of this moment.
She closed her eyes as well, logging this minute in her memory as the moment of truth. She could feel him; see just how he was affected by her- as much as she was by him. When she looked at him again, he was much closer… so much closer.
“Scully…” The whisper of this word tickled her lips and she parted them to inhale his breath. Before she could register anything else, Mulder’s mouth was pressed to hers.
He was fierce. He rose on hands and knees, pushing her back against the stack of pillows, kissing her- hard. There was no turning back, the dam doors were opened and flooding his senses. If she had shown any hesitation Mulder may have reconsidered his passionate approach, but every ounce of his drive was met with equal force by Scully. They groaned as their bodies touched, hips to hips, his bare chest against the cotton of her top.
“Mulder… did you lock the door?” Scully puffed with the effort it took to break the kiss.
“Don’t remember Scully- no one’s around anyway, they’re all downstairs.” She relented, not truly caring about the prospect of being caught by a bunch of doped up hippies. “I can lock it now…”
“You’re not going anywhere Mulder. No way.” Her lips twisted in an evil grin as she grabbed his strong shoulders and pulled him against her small frame.
Gerry Franklin stepped out onto the back porch and lit a joint. He inhaled the smoke deeply into his lungs, and held his breath. When Star stepped up beside him, he let out the toke in her face and set her coughing.
“Thanks.” She managed to sputter.
“Hey baby, how’s the party- this one seems like a real pleaser.” His semi-compliment went unaddressed as Star sat down on the stoop. Their yard was black in the night, stretching out to the edge of a field. “Wha’s matter?”
“You know Gerry… you have really got a lot of nerve.” He cocked his head and stepped down a few stairs to stand in front of his mate. “You wander around like you’re some great host- offering electric kool-aid to everyone, acting like there’s not a care in the world.”
“People dig the kool-aid.” He offered lamely.
“Oh shut up. Do you know, have you even a inkling of how much work I do around here?” Star’s face was flush with colour- the anger danced around her in static electricity. Gerry stepped back.
“Is that why you’re so fucking unhappy here?” His voice rose with each word. “Is that why you want to leave? Or perhaps you were just looking for an excuse to bag that boy who blew into town.” Any hint of influence from the pot he’d smoked was gone. His face reflected an even rage.
“Are you talking about Jason?”
“You know I am…”
“Jason’s dead Gerry. In case you haven’t noticed, there are a pair of FBI agents in our home as we speak.” Star shifted, pulling a leg up under herself. “You know I had nothing to do with him… I’m not like the others Franklin.”
“No, but you would have been if he were still alive. You were headed straight to his bed woman and don’t you dare deny it!” Star stood up quickly, towering over Gerry in the moonlight. She looked as if she would strangle him.
“I felt nothing more than pity for him. Nothing! He reminded me of… of…” She could not finish her sentence as tears flooded her eyes, her throat closed around the words.
“Of what?” He demanded, stepping closer to her. Star’s tears spilled over her lashes, streaking her tired face.
“He could have been my boy. He was the same age. That’s the only connection I felt to him.” She stubbornly wiped at her cheeks.
“But he did come onto you.”
“I suppose he did- but I did nothing to spark his interest. It was his nature I suppose.” She looked passed Gerry at the stars in the night sky.
Gerry’s posture shifted and softened suddenly. He leaned forward and placed a careful kiss on his partner’s forehead. “Don’t think about it babe. What’s done is done- you gave it up for adoption and he’s probably leading a very different life right now. A life that our community just couldn’t offer back then.”
Star sniffled again then stood up, stretching her back as she arched her body. The tears were still visible and her temper had not completely receded, but she relented to her fatigue and turned to go back inside.
“Yes, Franklin.” He reached out to take her hand.
“Try not to think about him ok?”
She nodded as the screen door slammed behind her.
The strains of Beatles songs wafted under the guest room door, every once in a while reminding Mulder and Scully that they were not alone. They were facing the wrong direction on the bed sheets still tangled in kisses.
Her shirt was open, exposing a soft ivory bra, and Mulder greedily sucked and licked at her flesh until he found his lips at the crook of her neck. He paused, inhaling deeply. The combination of her deodorant, her perfume and her arousal overwhelmed his nostrils, making him hunger for her that much more.
“Mulder?” Her soft voice rang in his ears. He could feel the blood coursing through him, rejuvenating his senses tenfold.
“God Scully… you smell so good.” He dipped his head to her neck and licked the hollow of her throat. She shivered and her whole body trembled. His continued his assault by suckling at her pulse point, nipping at her skin until it was raised and red. She exhaled in his ear- a low satisfied breath that made him more hard than he already was.
Mulder groaned appreciatively as her body responded, twisting and dancing under his weight. Scully’s hands traveled up his back, feeling the muscles twitch as she raked her nails over his flesh. His mouth was unforgiving, and she loved it.
“Mulder… I want. I want…”
“What Scully- tell me what you want.” He raised his eyes to hers and could see the change in her. Her body was awake; her mind alert but drugged on lust. She looked like how he felt.
“You- just you… I want you.”
“Amazing.” He uttered, eyes sparkling as she lifted her face to his. She curled her arms ’round his shoulders and claimed his mouth with hers, delving her tongue between his lips. Demanding. Hungry. Insistent.
Mulder made quick work of her clothing, freeing her body of her top and bra at once then moving on to her pants. She had worked his boxers down, over the curve of his ass and was kneading the flesh there. Everywhere her fingers touched was transformed. Mulder could feel his entire body reacting to her- he was losing control.
Allison Brown made her way through the crowd to the front door. She inhaled deeply, stepping out under the night sky. The house behind her was illuminated with lights and laughter from within. She continued to walk away from the house down the lane-way, past a few cars and many bikes until she came to the main road. She wasn’t sure about walking home alone but as she rubbed the small bulge of her tummy, she reminded herself she really wasn’t alone after all.
“I’m so sorry little one.” She whispered to herself. “I don’t even have a photo of your daddy.” She attempted a smile but fell short.
In the shadows of the Franklin’s property line, Gerry listened to the younger woman chat quietly to her unborn child as she sauntered home under the stars.
Mulder threw the covers off their tangled bodies when a loud crashing noise pierced the night. Below him, Scully lay naked and smiling. Her parted lips were kiss- bruised and glossy and visible marks formed a scattered chain around her neck.
Mulder looked over his shoulder, remembering that their door was still unlocked. He smiled inwardly. Skinner could barge in and he could not have cared less- he was close, so close, to making love with Scully. Finally.
“Mulder? S’everything ok?”
“Just fine Scully.” He looked back to her again, “better than fine in fact.” He dipped down, closing his lips around her taught nipple. She moaned loudly- free and unashamed. She ran her fingers through the silk of his hair and savoured the stages of their first coupling. It was high voltage passion at a steady even pace. Each were bursting with the need to feel, taste as equally as their need to learn and share. It was going to be a long delicious night.
As the music and partying carried on, so did they. Each moment was a lesson learned, each minute was a lifetime’s sweetness and each kiss was a shower of electricity. The voracious hunger each had demonstrated leveled into a steady burn.
When Mulder, at long last, slid his hard length into her, both he and Scully had to stop for the moment. Everything in the world outside was wiped away and replaced with a universe made of only them. Fierce emotions begged to be freed in their teary eyes but the words would have to keep.
He pushed her apart with a determined grunt and she responded by lifting her hips to his rhythm. They moved together, always together, as the creeping sensation of pleasure blurred everything else.
Mulder was transfixed as Scully slammed her head to the pillows, calling his name. She tossed her hair from her face and smiled. His hand came up to cup her flushed cheek and the quiet reverent act exploded when she took his fingers between her moist lips. Mulder’s head lolled at the sensation and his elbows nearly gave out.
It was like tunnel vision, the night closed around them as they danced a slow crawl between bed sheets.
Scully concentrated on the sound of his voice as he panted her name out, riding the wave of the impending orgasm. She was so close herself that every second was like flying in the face of the sun- hot, scorching, brilliant and consuming. As the tide of climax swallowed them both, Mulder howled out her name, broken and jagged. Only the soft murmurs of his partner soothed him back to earth in the wake.
Star leaned against the doorjamb of the kitchen, surveying the damage. It would be a while before they recovered from this party. People still milled about, grinning through hollow conversations as the night neared dawn. She wandered through the house aimlessly as her thoughts drifted back in time. She remembered the day too clearly. Only eight days after giving birth to her baby boy, Star had made a life choice. She was young and unprepared for parenthood and her boyfriend was even less prepared than she. The Gerry Franklin she knew then was a protester and had been fighting ‘the system’ for years, well past the hippie movement’s fall at Haight- Ashbury in the late 60’s.
Star had changed her name the year before they moved from San Francisco. Gerry gave up policing that same year and instead was satisfied taking odd jobs in exchange for petty cash and marijuana. They were happy then. The community was like an exclusive party; it consisted largely of familiar friends and some family as well. Their homes were their own and the farming was good.
Star smiled inwardly at the thought of her first garden- the plump tomatoes and long green beans were staple items at dinner-time.
A couple of summers went by before Star realized the isolation was getting to her. She had gone to Gerry to tell him of her intentions to return to Canada, he’d been livid- almost violent. His reaction had shocked her then- his pacifist facade was quickly dropped in light of his true nature.
During her weeks of preparation and packing, Star found out she was pregnant. She was never more happy. Gerry however, was not. Soon after her son’s birth it was decided that they would take the baby to the city and leave him at the police station. The deed was done quickly, leaving her forever changed.
She walked back into the kitchen, stroking her flat tummy with tears in her eyes.
Scully lay on her side, watching the television over Mulder’s sleeping frame. He’d been unable to stay awake after making love too her- as if he’d drained his very life force into her body. In this exchange, Scully had awakened, her senses alert and heightened. She giggled softly at the movie on tv. The Goonies. It was a film she’d watched several times, secretly loving it for its adventure and imagination. It had come in handy while babysitting her cousins on rare occasions.
Beyond the television, the morning light crept across the windowsill. Scully eased herself out of bed, kissing Mulder’s cheek quietly before moving. She stood by the window holding the orange moo-moo around her torso like a wrap.
“You make that look sexy Scully.” Mulder said groggily. His smile was brighter than the coming sun.
“Hey sleepy. Did you get some rest?” She sat at his side on the edge of the bed, admiring his half-covered body. He certainly was a delicious vision.
“Mmhmm… didn’t you sleep at all?”
“Not a wink, yet. But I feel good Mulder- I haven’t felt this good in years.” She leaned over him, tucking a strand of red hair behind her ear before kissing him greedily. “That has everything to do with you.”
“Well, I haven’t slept that peacefully in years Scully- and that has everything to do with you.” He chuckled at the opposite effects of each other affections and basked in her smile. Her face became serious suddenly and she leaned in again for another kiss. This time Mulder sat up, pushing her back into his lap until they sat face to face.
He pressed tiny kisses to her brow, to her eyelids, to her jaw before returning to her rosy lips.
“We complete each other.” She whispered against his kiss making him weak with hunger for her.
“Yes Scully. We do.” He lowered his partner to the sheets, pulling the garment from her grasp. As he blanketed her slender frame the soft sounds of crying filtered under their door.
“I think someone’s crying.” He pulled back for them both to listen. “I think its Star.” Scully pushed up on her elbows and glanced at her partner.
“I should go talk to her. We are, after all, here to solve a crime, not make love at all hours.” Mulder couldn’t be sure if hearing her say ‘make love’ turned him on even more or made his heart soar- likely both. He released his hold and she got out of bed.
Scully dressed in her pajamas quickly and slipped into the hallway.
Star sat on the bottom step to the attic stairwell, crying softly into her palms. Scully approached; careful not to startle her.
“Oh. Dana I’m sorry- did I wake you?” Star rubbed at her eyes, wiping tears with her shirt sleeves.
“No, I was awake. I was enjoying the sun rise actually.” The older woman smiled. “You have a lovely place here Star.”
“I suppose it would appear that way to someone new. But after all these years, I can’t see the beauty in it anymore.”
“Is that what’s upsetting you?” Scully crouched down in front of her. “Or is it something else Star.”
“It’s a part of it- yes. But there’s so much more, so much more.” The woman began to cry again and Scully lay a soothing hand to Star’s knee.
“C’mon, let’s go downstairs. I’ll make coffee and you can talk to me while I start cleaning up down there- it must be a disaster.” She took Star’s hand and led her to stand and they made their way downstairs.
“…So he was given away then, the police took care of him and found him a new home?” Scully’s look of concern was genuine as she sat listening to Star’s sorrows.
“Yes, Gerry told me that an old friend of his on the force took the baby in himself. I was so relieved. But now, now I just ache at the decisions I’ve made.” She poked a finger at a leftover brownie, all dried up on a platter. “You must find me a very selfish woman Miss Scully.”
“No, no I don’t. Actually, I find you a very strong woman- you have endured a lot, living here, maintaining this lifestyle and moving on after such a pivotal decision.” Scully stood, stretching her back. “Would you like some more coffee.”
“Sure. You might as well have more yourself, I have plenty more to tell you if you don’t mind listening.” She declared. Scully nodded and offered a sympathetic smile.
“So what brought all of this on so suddenly?” Scully asked, resuming her seat at the country-kitchen table.
“Well, it would have been my child’s birthday, 29 I think, just last month. That started me thinking about him. Besides, things with Franklin have been unstable for a while now too- I guess it all just piled up. And then there was that boy- Jason Gallway.. When he came to town, everything just went awry.”
“Jason Gallway, the murder victim?” The investigator in her suddenly awakened and Scully leaned in a little closer. “What does he have to do in your being upset, if I may ask?”
“Well, he was my son’s age, or at least close. When he arrived here, he’d seemed like the perfect candidate to stay on- live here- become a part of our community, you know.” She sipped from steamy mug carefully. “But it didn’t take long to see what he was doing.”
“Well, he was just here to cause trouble it seemed. He’d steal from people, he stole Gerry’s stash at a party once. But it seemed like all he wanted was sex. He went through the women in our town so fast, no one could keep track. Now, very few of our friends here are actually married- but I can assure you that people’s partners did not take kindly to a wolf in their beds.”
Scully sat back and exhaled, she felt like a reporter digging for the scoop. The information was of good use though, it would certainly help to flesh out the profile on Jason Gallway. “Did he try the same things with you?”
“What, you mean the sex? I suppose he came here looking for that too. I turned him away. Gerry has never believed me on that though, he thinks I was like all the others who took that kid into their beds.”
“So Gerry felt like the other men. He thought you’d cheated on him?”
“He still does- we argued about it just last night. How can he think I could do that when all the kid reminded me of was my son?” Scully took Star’s hand in hers and gripped it reassuringly.
“I’m sure time will take care of the issue. Gerry obviously still wants you here. If he were really convinced of adultery, I doubt he’d be holding parties and inviting two FBI agents into the house.” Star looked up through watery eyes, her expression was flat.
“That’s just the thing Dana. He * does * want me here. But I am more a slave to him than a partner. We have our good days, but mostly I cook and clean, tend the garden. He hasn’t treated me like an equal in years. I was going to leave him you know. I was going to dig out my birth certificate and leave my entire identity here behind and return to Canada.”
“Wow.” It was all Scully could think to say for the moment. “Did Gerry know about your intentions?”
“Yes, he did- only he thought I was going to run away with Jason. He was furious. That’s why I’ve stayed…”
“Because of his anger over the issue?” Scully’s confusion was apparent in her furrowed brow.
“I stayed because of two things. I wanted him to come to understand that leaving was my idea and that I’d had nothing to do with the boy. And, I knew, deep down that Gerry would never really let me go.”
Scully felt sad for the woman across from her. She was a beautiful, intelligent and capable person- trapped by fear and control. She cleared her throat, “why don’t we put this conversation behind us and start off the day. We can talk later- for now, we should get this place tidied up.”
“Thank you Dana. Thank you for just listening to me. I haven’t had another woman to really talk to in years.” Star stood and hugged Scully firmly.
Scully stepped into the living room, expecting to see ground zero. The party had gone on all night and the level of damage was bound to be drastic. But, instead of laying eyes on a wrecked room, she found Mulder stuffing garbage into a bag.
“What are you doing?” she smiled.
“Cleaning. You should have seen this place.” His expression was flat as he surveyed his progress but as Scully approached his lips formed an infectious grin. “Good morning Scully.”
“Good morning yourself Mulder.” She stood on tip toes and placed a quick kiss on his lips and his tongue darted out, tasting the coffee-sweetness of her gift. “I have a lot to tell you about our hosts Mulder. When we’re done here, I’d like to get down to the lab for the results of the tox screen, I can tell you what I’ve learned along the way.”
Scully turned on her heel and strode into the hallway, picking up cups and mugs to take to the kitchen.
“Beautiful… so beautiful.” Mulder whispered to himself.
Mulder sat in the driver’s seat, waiting while Scully went into the clinic to retrieve the results of the toxicological. All the information Scully had related to him about Jason Gallway and the community swilled around in his head, dropping into place as he reviewed what he knew of the deceased.
Scully punched through the doors with a scowl on her face, Mulder smiled at her, attempting to defuse her apparent anger. She got into the car nearly slamming the door.
“What is it?” He asked.
“The tox results. The lab tech said that Gerry Franklin already picked them up. Those documents aren’t supposed to be released to anyone but a qualified doctor Mulder, Gerry didn’t even sign for them…”
“He just waltzed in here and took the lab results. Didn’t anyone question him?”
“Likely not Mulder, the man is considered law enforcement, albeit loosely.” She huffed, putting her seatbelt back on.
“Well, let’s get back to the house- after what you’ve told me, Gerry Franklin has just stepped up into prime-suspect position.” Mulder put his foot to the gas and took off.
The agents pulled up outside Star and Gerry’s large home. The morning sun was still low in the sky as the day had started earlier than most. Scully was already at the front door, toeing off her shoes when she heard a scream from inside.
Mulder darted past her, not stopping to abide the house rules, his gun was drawn at the threshold. Scully kept up behind him as they carefully made their way through the rooms. Another cry tore through them and Scully motioned to the kitchen.
As they blasted through the doors they found Star rolled into a ball on the tiled floor.
“Star.” Scully called to her, rushing to her side to check her vitals. She reached her hand into the crook of the woman’s neck, seeking a pulse. “She’s alive.”
Mulder let out a breath of air he’d been holding just as Star began to roll towards Scully.
“It was him…” She muttered. Her face was stained with tears and she was clutching something to her breast. “It was really him…”
Scully pulled the hair from Star’s face, exposing sad eyes and a grimace of pure anguish. “Who was it, Star? What happened here?”
Mulder carefully pulled the piece of paper the woman was gripping, freeing it from her fists. He turned to his partner.
“It’s a birth certificate. Dated 29 years ago.”
“Looks like it, her signature is right there.” Mulder pointed it out.
“Star, why did you scream? C’mon, you can tell me. Was it about your son Star?” The woman began mumbling something. Her mouth moved quickly but nothing could be distinguished. “Star, we don’t understand. Did something happen to your son? Did you get news of him?”
“My son…” she uttered, “…my son is dead.”
“How did you learn of this?” Mulder asked, leaning over the two women.
“Gerry. Gerry told me just now.” Star whispered. “It was Jason. Jason was my baby boy.” The sobs began anew and Scully looked to Mulder openly.
“Mulder, go see if you can find Gerry Franklin. I want to know what he knows.”
Mulder nodded, grabbing the birth certificate from the table where he’d placed it.
“Mr. Mulder… Gerry said he was going to see Allison. She’s two lanes over from us…”
“I’ll call as soon as I track him down Scully.” Mulder darted out the back door and ripped up the driveway as the car sped off.
“Shhh. It’ll be ok. Let’s get you into the living room.” Scully helped the woman to her feet and guided her to the sofa in the front room. There, they talked softly as Star related all that Gerry had told her.
Mulder spotted Gerry’s truck by the gate of a small house. He grabbed his gun and cell phone off the passenger seat and jogged up to the front door. He knocked. He called out to the woman he’d met in the chapel. He heard nothing in response but the low hum of something electrical.
“This is agent Mulder, I’m coming in.” He declared, opening the unlocked door.
From the hallway, Mulder could see clear across the house to the opposite side. He remarked that one could see right out onto the main street from the large window that ran the length of what he thought was the kitchen. As he closed the distanced though, he could plainly see that this was the juice bar that Gerry had mentioned the day prior. Mulder rounded the corner, finding a blender and juicer, both on and unattended.
“Allison?” He called again. Glancing out the window, he saw Gerry Franklin and Allison heading toward the chapel. The woman did not appear to be going willingly.
Mulder ran out into the street and to the chapel door. He could see the two inside. They were arguing, but stood a safe distance from each other. Mulder pulled out his cell phone and dialed Scully.
“Scully.” she answered.
“Scully, I found Franklin and the girl, they’re in the chapel.”
“Keep a close eye on Gerry, Mulder. I think he’s responsible for the murder. I found the tox results here- looks like it was poison.”
Mulder held the phone away briefly, checking on the pair inside.
“Yeah- sorry Scully, just checking in on things. What did the tox results reveal?”
“Arsenic. It was in a large amount of carrot juice that Jason Gallway had consumed.”
“How soon can you get here Scully?”
“I’m on foot Mulder, five minutes I think.”
Mulder disconnected just as the arguing began to escalate between Allison and Gerry Franklin. Mulder decided to intervene.
“What seems to be the problem here?” He inquired as he stepped into the dark room.
“None of your business agent Mulder, I assure you.” Gerry stepped between Mulder and the woman.
“Actually Gerry, this looks exactly like my business. You called me out here to solve a crime and here you are, arguing at the very scene of it- I’d say that’s my business wouldn’t you?” Mulder took a step closer.
“Back off man. This is between me and Allison.” Gerry swatted at the air.
“And now its between all of us.” Mulder took a seat in a chair along the aisle. “Care to tell me how you know so much about Jason Gallway?”
Allison’s face went white at the mention of the victim’s name. She too sat down, a few rows from the FBI agent.
“What I know of that kid is that he was rotten, man. He was a disturbance to our entire community and I’m glad he’s gone. In fact I don’t want even a trace of him left behind.” Gerry looked to Allison and pulled a plastic container from inside his shirt. It was full of something orange. Carrot juice. “Now, Allison here is gonna drink this all down like a good little gal. She needs her vitamins on account of her being pregnant and all. C’mon, be a good girl and take your medicine.”
The man lunged forward, grabbing the girl by the back of the head. He held her by the hair and brought the jug to her lips.
“Now you know what happens to sluts like you. You pay for your mistakes.” He tipped the container.
“Stop. Gerry Franklin, step away from the girl.” Scully’s voice pierced the darkness of the room. Gerry looked up once and turned right back to his task. Scully fired and took out the juice container between the suspect and Allison.
Gerry was stunned but not deterred, his large hands quickly closed around the throat of his hopeful victim as he choked her to the ground. Scully let go another shot, clipping the man in the left shoulder. Gerry Franklin dropped to the ground, freeing Allison. Mulder helped her to her feet and sat her down away from her attacker.
“It’s over Gerry.” Scully rushed to the man she’d shot and cuffed him. Star came to Allison’s side and held her close, like a mother.
“We’ll be alright. I promise.” Star whispered to her friend and the mother of her grandchild. Both women smiled at each other, understanding the new relationship they were about to embark upon.
The flight to DC was riddled with turbulence as they headed toward Washington airport. Scully sat with her head to Mulder’s shoulder but went rigid every time the plane lurched. Her partner was reading to her, going over the casefile before they reached home.
All the details were in place. Gerry Franklin had poisoned Jason Gallway after believing the boy had seduced his own mother. He had lost all reason upon learning that Allison Brown was pregnant. He’d used arsenic in the carrot juice to kill the young man and had intended to do the same to the woman were it not for the intervention of the two FBI agents that Gerry Franklin had invited to investigate the crime.
“One thing still puzzles me Scully.”
“What’s that?” she asked, straightening up in her seat.
“The magna doodle.” He scratched his stubbly chin for a moment. “Was Jason Gallway actually drawing a carrot? Could he have been trying to tell us that the juice was poisoned?”
Scully smiled, suppressing a giggle.
“Actually, Allison told me that the image on the magna doodle was pointed in the precise direction of the seat that Gerry Franklin occupied regularly at the chapel. I think he was pointing to his killer.”
“But why draw it Scully? Why not just point his own finger in the same direction. Surely it took more of his last energy to draw on the screen than to point his own arm the right way.” Scully shrugged.
“Maybe so. Maybe he really was drawing a carrot.”
Mulder looked at her with a dubious grin before they both started laughing.
“You know Scully, we don’t laugh enough.” Mulder stated, his shoulders still shaking.
“Just remember what happened the last time we laughed together like this…” She looked up at him with a challenging glint in her eyes.
“I remember like it was yesterday- wait- it * was * yesterday…” Mulder looked over his shoulder before leaning down to place a suggestive kiss on Scully’s parted lips. “If all our laughing ended with us in bed together, I’d be howling every day Scully.”
“Promises, promises…” She whispered, pulling on his collar for more. “You’re taking me home Mulder.”
“I am.” He returned, unquestioningly.
Just then, the plane dropped a few feet and stabilized. Scully drew in a sharp breath before they both began to laugh out loud.
Scully’s overnight bag hit the hallway floor with a thud. Mulder gripped her face in both hands as he kissed her back against her front door.
The trip home had been long and painful, not being able to touch each other until they reached the relative privacy of her apartment building. Now they were glued at the lips.
His hands traveled down over her shoulders, her arms and hands. Their fingers laced together mimicking the joining of their bodies. Mulder brought her hands up beside her head, pinning her to the door as he claimed her throat in dangerously passionate kisses. She let out a moan and felt their bodies connect at the hips.
“I want you.” He growled. She smiled in return, understanding the same need in herself. She cupped his face in her hands when he finally freed her and pressed her mouth to his. Instead of kissing his, as he’d expected, she whispered.
“Oh you’ll have me Mulder.”
She then turned away from him, seeking her keys in her coat pocket. Mulder continued to plant kisses in her hair, at the base of her neck- he couldn’t stand to not touch her. The door swung wide and Mulder grabbed her face, turning her to him as he kicked their luggage across the threshold. His fingers slipped between her lips and she smiled, sucking them suggestively. They kissed, his fingers still in place, before she turned away again, looking towards the kitchen.
With one of his fingers still between her lips she muttered,
“Tim Tams- oh shit.”
“What?” Mulder groaned as his partner whirled around to fully face her living room. The realization struck them both simultaneously- they were not alone.
Sitting on her couch was Maggie Scully and a man that Mulder had never before laid eyes upon.
“Charlie!” Scully yelped as she rushed to him.
Mulder’s head sank as he smiled. They would not have tonight alone, Scully would visit with her brother instead.
“Mulder, this is Charlie- my brother Charlie.” The words came out like a song. Mulder stepped forward and shook the man’s hand. He was handsome, more so than Bill Jr.
“Nice to meet you.”
“And you Mr. Mulder, I’ve heard so much about you- from everyone.” Mulder wasn’t sure if he should smile or duck, just in case this brother thought the same as Bill did. Something between a grin and a grimace came across his face and everyone laughed but him. “You needn’t worry about me. I know my baby sister can handle herself and besides, I know how much she loves you.”
Scully swatted her brother’s arm. Mulder’s eyes softened.
“Hey, blame mom Danes, she’s the one who’s been telling me that for years.” Mulder and Scully both looked to Maggie who stood her ground firmly, smiling.
“I brought you Tim Tams Dana, I was in Australia last week and didn’t dare return home without some for you.” Charles stepped into the kitchen and passed the package to his sister.
“Thanks Charlie.” Scully waited all of two seconds before ripping off the plastic and opening her treat. Mulder watched her carefully, noting the childlike glee she possessed and how it warmed his heart. She kissed her brother’s cheek then walked back to Mulder.
“Tim Tam?” she inquired on tip toes. Mulder took a bite of hers and smiled.
“I should go- let you folks visit.”
“No- stay, please. We can all visit, together. Besides, there’s bound to be lots of laughter…” She winked at him before kissing him again, in front of her brother, her mother and the open box of cookies. He hugged her to him and whispered into her hair.
“I love you Scully.”
“Me too, me too…” she answered leading him by the hand to her sofa.
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