Title: Go mBeir an Taibhse
Disclaimer: Not mine, no profit, no harm.
Summary: St Patrick’s Day, Ireland and
leprechauns…it’s gotta be an Xfile. Originally to
be submitted to IMTP for VS11 St Patrick’s Day
Feedback: firstname.lastname@example.org Love all feedback.
Thanks in Advance!
Author’s notes: My dad is from Killarney so every
summer for two weeks we all packed into the car to
head south like a flock of ducks. With usually about
8 of us traveling in a small car with a dog it was
never much fun until we got to Torc Waterfall. My
dad told us horror stories about banshees and
leprechauns so it was always the highlight of the
*The title of this fic roughly translates “To Catch
the Ghost” It’s one of my favorite Irish poems and my
dad used to recite it as we climbed the waterfall to
scare us. Go mBeir an Taibhse. (Pronounced “Guh Mare
awn Tie-v-shuh”) Other Gaelic words in the fic are
Bodhrán (bow-rawn) which is a drum held in the hand
and hit with a wee stick, Poul an Ifrinn (Pool awn
If-reen) The Devils Bowl and Scéalta (sch-k-ale-ta)
that is Irish for Stories. Oh and of course Sláinte
but then when your holding a pint of Guinness in your
hand and you say Sláinte…I don’t need to write a
meaning do I.
**You really can climb up and behind Torc. To view
pictures of Torc Waterfall go here:
Go mBeir an Taibhse
The waterfall stood impressively in front of them
spilling a continuous flow of heavy water over its
sheer drop onto the rocks below. The rain that
dropped heavily from the sky did nothing to diminish
the view as they sauntered up the sandy path to the
bottom of the falls.
Patrick Murphy took the lead and leapt over the small
brick wall to land on a wide flat rock. The water
flowed quickly beneath the rock but would only wet
his ankles if he fell in.
“Keep close lads, it’s not too tricky until we get to
the pool that’s about half way but to climb in behind
it we’ll need to keep focused.” Patrick looked back
at the two men that followed him. When they arrived
at his tourist office three days ago he spotted their
American enthusiasm immediately and dollar signs rang
up in his mind. Then when they explained what they
were researching he knew only the personal touch
would do. He offered to take them up to the top of
the waterfall through the caves that sprawled out
behind it, and told them the tales that he’d heard
from his father about the folklore of these ancient
caves. With every tale their eyes lit up and when he
picked them up at the hotel this morning, they could
barely contain their excitement.
He had instructed them to wrap up warm and bring rain
gear. Paddy supplied the food and they had backpacks
full of equipment that he didn’t think they’d really
“Is it much further Mr. Murphy?” the tall one said.
Paddy glanced back and looked between them both. One
named Charles Parsons and the other Frank Gellar but
he couldn’t tell which was which.
“Call me Paddy…and no, once we get to the pool it
will only be a little further.”
He jumped up to another flat rock and turned back to
help the others over. He’d been climbing this route
since he was a kid and knew every loose rock and
stone in the place. As he circled the wide natural
pool he told them to be careful, as it was deeper
than it seemed.
“This is the skinny dip pool you mentioned?” Frank
said smiling through his thick beard.
“Yeah and it wasn’t raining we’d probably have to
sidestep a few lovely maidens!”
“Damn this Irish rain,” Charles laughed as Frank
helped him onto the next rock.
They managed to get around the pool and climb up to a
table like rock that was big enough to hold all three
men. Paddy rubbed his hand over his face to wipe it
free of the rainwater and took a deep breath. He
pointed up to a cave opening that stood behind the
fast falling water and showed them their destination.
“Stick close lads and follow me. Stand where I stand
and yell out if you need me to slow down.”
The two men nodded and Paddy took off at a moderate
pace, climbing up the side of the waterfall to a
ledge that stood eight feet above the pool and a foot
wide. Pressing his back to the rocky wall Paddy
inched his way behind the water, ignoring the mist in
his eyes, he carefully moved past it and finally made
it to the cave entrance. He remembered it being a
lot easier when he was a kid, Paddy mused with a
smile. Shortly afterwards the tall American, Frank,
with the backpack now resting on his chest walked in
his smile wide and elated. Charles finally made it
through, his face more panicked than elated but his
smile was present.
“Right so lads. This is where it gets tricky…these
caves are like mazes. Don’t wander off. We each got
our own torches but if you want to see what you came
looking for keep them off.”
The cave was all but pitch black with little or no
light to follow their leader but they held their
torches off in their hands as instructed, the hopes
of maybe finding what they came all this way for out
weighing the need for light. Paddy’s footsteps
stopped and Frank and Charles bumped into the back of
“Shhh…did you hear that?”
“No…what did you hear?”
“They are a tricky folk…they can make a man think
he’s seeing things that aren’t really there.” Paddy’s
voice was hushed and he bent low to the ground. He
flicked on a small penlight and Frank knelt next to
“Where’s yer man?” Paddy said nodding his head behind
Frank to the empty space where Charles should be
standing. Frank glanced round and was surprised not
to see Charles kneeling next to him.
“Charlie? Hey Charlie?” He switched on his torch and
shone it round the empty cave way. Standing, he took
a few paces back the way they came calling his name,
but a loud scream from ahead in the cave startled
both of them.
“What the hell was that?” Frank came back to Paddy’s
side and searched the cave again with his torch.
“They’re here,” Paddy, sounded almost surprised. He
glanced back to his anxious partner and waved him on
to follow him. “C’mon this way, it came from over
“What about Charlie?”
Keeping their torches on, Paddy rushed ahead racing
around the stalactites with a surefootedness Frank
wished he possessed. They reached an opening with a
blowhole on the top letting the light from outside
stream in. They stilled in the sunrays and held
their breath for another clue, but as Paddy turned
around to speak to Frank he found he was alone.
“Hello? Mr…Eh…Parsons? Gellar?” Going back the
way he came he took slower steps, retracing his track
all the way back to the cave entrance. “Hello?”
Stepping away from the misty falls outside, he went
back into the caves slipping on the wet rocks and
falling hard onto his knees and hands. He looked up
wanting to see the two men standing over him but all
he heard was their screaming voices filling the air,
that shook him to his bones. Scrambling to his feet,
Paddy backed away from the cave and jumped over the
edge through the falling water, landing in the deep
Gasping for air he resurfaced and swam to the rim to
climb out. He rushed down the rocks with little
care, falling several times. The path was empty as
he barreled down calling for help all the way. He ran
straight out of the park entrance and onto the road
without looking. The lorry couldn’t stop in time and
it crushed him to the fender, dragging him for three
hundred yards before it finally stopped.
The rain kept falling and the roar from the falls
disguised the screams as the driver called the police
and turned from the gruesome sight under his wheels.
FBI Basement Office
“Top of the morning to you Scully?” Dana Scully
halted in her tracks half way across the office and
spun on her heel to face her smiling partner. His
grin was suspiciously wide, spanning his whole face
even reaching his eyes making them twinkle wickedly.
“Skinner just approved our next case.” Mulder sat
back into his chair enjoying the satisfying creak as
it moaned under his weight and propped his feet on
“What case?” She approached his desk and placed her
case on the chair in front of it, dropping her coat
“I thought we were desk bound for the next couple of
“Well I submitted a few cases for Skinner to look
over and he approved one. I guess we get a pardon
this time Scully.”
“So what is the case?”
“Missing person? Who?”
“No missing persons. A government funded team who
were researching…for purely scientific reasons…”
“What were they researching Mulder?”
“Folklore.” He sat forward and rummaged through a
pile of papers on his desk, avoiding her eyes.
“It began five years ago. In different parts of the
country and was so successful in debunking local
folklore that it has expanded worldwide. They
traveled to Scotland to-”
“No don’t tell me…The Loch Ness Monster?”
“Correct. Then to Ireland at the beginning of this
year…January 15th to…” He glanced up at her to
see if she would pre-empt his answer. She was half
smiling looking down at him shaking her head.
Finally his exploring fingers found the elusive file.
“To search for Leprechauns.”
“Leprechauns? Oh come on Mulder give me a break.” She
collected her case and went over to her desk.
“Skinner approved this investigation?”
“Well in essence we’re searching for the team not the
leprechauns.” He followed her to her desk where she
was booting up her PC. He dropped the file in front
of her and perched himself on the corner.
“Why didn’t you tell me you were submitting cases to
Skinner?” she glanced up at him with more than a
“To be honest I didn’t think we’d get approval for
any of them.” She took the file he left down,
opening it. Reading through the personnel data of
the missing team, she noted they both had scientific
doctorates and published works in many magazines.
“But it seems that without this team a lot of the
research will be wasted.”
“So when do we leave?”
“This evening. Flight is direct to Shannon and
leaves Dulles at six thirty. Check in is at four.”
He stood away from the desk and straightened his tie
but leaned down closer to her, resting one hand on
the desk and the other on the back of her chair.
“Wrap up warm Scully, it’s cold over there at this
time of year.”
It was raining. It was raining heavily. And it was
cold. Mulder stood beside her with the keys to the
rental car jingling in his hand merrily. She glanced
up to see him smiling and pulled the collar to her
coat higher around her neck. Pulling her bag from
the boot she dropped her bag to the ground and jammed
her hands in her pockets.
“Well it’s just after nine so after we check in we’ll
get some food.”
“Breakfast…doesn’t feel like breakfast time.”
Mulder locked the car and caught up with her as she
went in through the large ornate hotel entrance.
Gold trimmed door handles and a marble tiled floor
pleasantly surprised her as she stepped up to the
The receptionist spotted them walking in and smiled
as Scully approached the desk. Her weariness was
obvious and she could tell she was just off a
transatlantic flight so she softened her smile a
“Hello. Welcome to Jury’s Inn Killarney.”
“Hi. We have a reservation for two rooms.” Scully
put her bag on the ground and turned to see Mulder
join her dropping his bag too.
“Under Fox Mulder,” he said.
“Ah I see. Rooms 213 and 214.” The receptionist
busied herself for a moment setting up their card
keys as Mulder fished out his credit card and signed
the check in receipt. “There will be food served all
day in the restaurant and of course room service is
“The elevators are through those doors and your rooms
are on the second floor. If you have any questions
dial zero for reception.”
After unpacking her clothes Scully stepped into the
bathroom and turned on the shower. Looking down at
her watch she saw it was just after eight in the
evening but the room clock told her otherwise.
Resetting it to local time she left it on the bedside
locker and undressed. The hot water poured some
vitality into her weary body and she basked in it for
a moment longer than necessary. Finally stepping
out, she wrapped up in a large soft towel and
returned to her room. Mulder lay stretched out on
her bed, the case file in his hands and a frown on
his face. He had removed his tie and shirt and his
shoes were trailing from the door.
“What?” she asked sitting down on the edge of the
“Just some of these things don’t add up.”
“Well isn’t that why we’re here?” she chided over her
shoulder making him smile.
Rolling onto his side, he slipped an arm around her
waist and pulled her down next to him to kiss her.
She let him for a moment then pushed him away to sit
“C’mon. The sooner we get out in that rain the
sooner we can get back in here.”
“And finish up the real work.” Laughing she walked
over to her wardrobe and pulled out some fresh
Main Street Killarney
“Mister Patrick Murphy was seen speaking to them in
the lobby of Ryan’s hotel on the morning of the
“That’s doesn’t mean he killed them.”
Mulder glanced at Scully as she took a step forward,
drawing the attention of the bartender. He continued
to wipe the glass clean with a well-worn cloth. The
pub was small and smoky but he didn’t seem too
interested in cleaning anything but the glass in his
hand. Scully let her eyes wander briefly around the
room at the three other patrons that nursed pints
even at this early hour.
“We’re not here to accuse Mr Murphy-” she began but
the bartender shook his head with a frown as he
“God rest his soul.” He put the glass down, leaning
over the bar towards the two agents as if he was
about to impart with some secret wisdom. “Something
frightened him up there. He saw something that
scared the bejeezus out of him.”
“What do you think he saw Mr Reilly?” Mulder asked
leaning on the bar too.
“Not what…who…” Reilly tapped the side of his
nose, turning away to serve a customer. Scully
turned on her heel and walked swiftly out of the bar,
not waiting to see if Mulder followed.
“Mulder…we checked out the tourist office…Patrick
Murphy’s brother and now the bartender at his
favorite watering hole,” she said when she heard his
quick footfall behind her.
“You don’t think he’s a suspect do you Scully? That’s
a bit easy. He’s dead.” Mulder was walking behind
her, yearning to turn her round to face him but he
knew better than to stop her when she was in this
“He was killed on the N71…a main road outside the
gates of a national park. The path from that park
has quite a steep incline leading to that road. If
he was coming down that hill he could have lost his
footing and raced out in front of the truck that hit
“He was running…running from something Scully…I’d
like to know what. A horseman at the park gate who
saw Murphy and two other men that have been
identified as Parsons and Gellar entering the park,
said Mr Murphy came racing down that hill, soaked to
the skin and screaming for help.”
“We’re here to look for Professor Frank Gellar and
Doctor Charles Parsons. Patrick Murphy’s death-”
“Patrick Murphy was the last man to see these two
“So we’ll work from there.”
“We’re going to the waterfall aren’t we?” she knew
his answer before he spoke.
“It’s supposed to be a beautiful view.”
She didn’t reply but she didn’t argue. Her pace
slowed and her eyes finally took in some of the
sights in the streets. Flags and banners were being
hung up all over the place with huge inflatable
shamrocks and leprechauns joining them on rooftops.
Bunting criss-crossed the streets, hanging from shop
to shop with green white and gold colors everywhere.
“It’s St Patrick’s day.”
“Well not till the 17th.”
“We’re in Ireland on St Patrick’s day…searching for
leprechauns…oh god Mulder!” She was laughing with
a rueful smile.
“Oh come one Scully, everyone’s looking for
leprechauns this time of year.”
“My Dad loved it this time of year. He was in
Ireland once for St Patrick’s Day when his ship
docked in Dublin and he told us about it over and
“Your family is of Irish decent isn’t it Scully?” he
asked as they ambled down the street turning towards
a trio of musicians who started up an old Irish tune
on a bench outside a crowded pub. One of the played
a guitar, one a tin whistle and the last beat on a
hand drum Mulder remember being called the bodhrán.
“Yeah. It goes way back but a few Scullys moved back
here in the 70’s.”
“Never been tempted? With your hair you’d fit right
“No not me. My dad talked about it a lot but, well,
he never did.”
They walked on in silence for a few minutes enjoying
the music and the party atmosphere in the street.
Spotting an advertisement that was bragging the best
guides to Torc Waterfall in town he took her arm,
leading her towards the tourist office. A small
jingle alerted the receptionist as they entered and
they both produced their badges as they approached
the desk with perfunctory smiles.
“Agent Mulder FBI.”
“Oh sure aren’t you the ones investigating Paddy’s
death?” the small receptionist asked as she blessed
“Well not exactly…” Scully slipped her badge back
into her pocket. “We need to get to Torc waterfall.”
She tried a different approach.
“Well you’ve come to the right place.” She switched
immediately to business mode and slid a few brochures
across the table. “We’re quite busy at this time of
year as you can understand.”
“Of course but we need a guide who would have known
where Patrick Murphy was taking the two tourists that
“They were going into the living caves that run
beneath the Devils Punch Bowl.” The receptionist
blessed herself again at the mention of Murphy’s
name. “John will take you. No man knows those caves
better than John Byrne.”
“Great.” Mulder’s eyes lit up at the mention of the
caves and the name of the area.
“When can we leave?” he asked, reading through the
brochures with restrained enthusiasm.
“Sure he wont be ready to go until tomorrow morning.
He’s out at The Gap today,” she said with an air of
incredulity as if the guides schedule was common
“There’s a Gap in town?” Mulder looked up in
“Yeah the Gap of Dunloe.” Her gaze turned to one of
amazement at Mulder’s ignorance of the land.
“It’s a mountain pass Mulder, not a clothing store.”
“So should I get him to meet you at your hotel?” The
receptionist asked pulling out a copybook to jot down
“Please. Jury’s Inn.” Mulder passed her his business
card and turned to Scully smiling. “Call me if there
is any problem.”
“Rightso. He’ll be calling at around nine-ish. Have
a good breakfast and wrap up warm.”
Jury’s Inn Lobby.
“Maybe he couldn’t come.” Scully sipped her coffee,
looking out the window at the pelting rain. People
rushed by with umbrellas, coats and scarves pulled
around their necks tightly protecting them against
“They would have called, I left my card.” Shifting
uneasily on the soft leather chairs, Mulder strained
his neck to see the door as the swoosh of it opening
reached his ears.
“Maybe the little people got him!” she jibed over the
rim of her cup.
“Maybe Scully maybe!”
“Agent Mulder?” A soft-spoken voice called his name
making him turn to see a tall brown haired man
walking over from the check in desk. “My name is
Jack. Jack Byrne.”
“We were expecting a John.” Mulder stood to shake
“Jack or John…it’s all me. I understand you want
to go up to the Devils Punch Bowl on Torc.” He
glanced at Scully as she drained her coffee and
stepped round the table to join Mulder’s side.
“We wanted to go on the route that Patrick Murphy may
have taken two American researchers.”
“Paddy took them up to the falls and then on the path
that leads behind it into the caves.”
“Well then that’s where we want to go.” Mulder
smiled and looked down to Scully who was standing
“Rightso. Follow me. We’ll take my truck.”
Jack turned round and walked out into the heavy rain
without a second thought. He crossed the road with a
lazy gait and started to climb into a dark blue pick
“You going up to Torc today Jackie?”
They all turned to see an old man approaching the
truck; one hand swinging before him as he walked the
other one nestled in the small of his back. He wore
a tattered pair of trousers that were tucked into a
green pair of wellies and a tweed suit jacket. On
his head he rested a threadbare cap that had seen
better days but he didn’t seem to notice or care.
“Yeah Míchál I’m taking these on a trip up to Poul an
“Well you be careful up there. I can feel it today,
the mountains are close.”
“Don’t worry Míchál. I’ll catch you later in
“Rightso Jackie, I’ll have a pint of the black stuff
waiting for ya!”
Jack smiled and sat into the truck closing the door
behind him. Mulder climbed in beside him, while
Scully got in the back, and with a quick glance over
his shoulder at the traffic he pulled out into the
“So you’re from the FBI?”
“Yeah. Agent Fox Mulder and that’s my partner Agent
“How are you doing ma’am?” John gave her a warm smile
through the rear-view mirror and she could do nothing
but return it.
“Did you know Patrick Murphy?” Scully asked leaning
“Yes. We were good friends. Terrible shame what
happened to him.”
“What do you think he was running from?”
“The caves.” Jack said it without question as if he
thought there could be no other answer.
“What’s in the caves that made him so scared?” Scully
asked trying not to meet Mulder’s excited eyes.
“Well Torc Waterfall is a very enchanted place. It
has a lot of history.”
“Enchanted?” As if sensing her cynicism Jack glanced
round at her with a wide smile.
“This is Ireland Agent Scully…the whole place is
enchanted.” He turned back to the road and drove away
from the town. Soon they were driving through tree-
lined roads with glimpses of the lakes to their left
and mountains all around. “Torc Wood was once home
to the Pookas and Fairies, but a man named Larry
Hayes owned a farm that bordered it. He was a good
honest man but every morning when he came out to tend
to his stock, he found they’d been hocked, hipped or
even missing. Sometimes dead.”
“Sounds like a case for you Mulder.”
“Cattle Mutilation is a common phenomena in the
“Well I don’t think Larry was afraid of aliens,” Jack
replied, surprising Scully with his perception.
The rain hadn’t eased up by the time Jack pulled in
to a space by the park entrance. He jumped out of
the car and zipped up his raincoat, pulling the hood
up over his head. The agents joined him, each
pulling up their hoods too.
“Anyone who’s not wearing a coat today doesn’t own
one!” Jack smiled at Scully as she shoved her hands
in her pockets to protect them against the cold wet
“So what happened with Larry?” Mulder asked glancing
between them both and catching the smile on Jack’s
lips as he winked at Scully.
“A long time ago…” Jack began, walking up the
incline that led to the waterfall.”
“In a galaxy far far away?” Scully suggested, her
voice dripping with sarcasm.
“No not quite…” Jack looked back at her with
laughing eyes. “Larry was wondering who would hold a
grudge against him to hurt his livestock. But he
couldn’t think of anyone.” As he spoke he walked on
the gravely sandy path away from the car park and up
towards the waterfall. The closer they got the
louder he had to speak, as the roar of the water was
tremendous. “So even though he was afraid of the
good people of the forest, he stayed up one night to
see if he could catch the culprit. He walked the
fields over and over and suddenly before him appeared
a large boar.”
“A boar?” Scully asked but both men ignored her
“He was afraid but he asked the boar what he was
doing in the forest. And the boar admitted it was he
who killed his animals, but promised to make it up to
him if he followed him to the caves.”
“A talking boar no less,” Scully added but again to
“So Larry followed the boar into the forest,” Jack
continued chuckling at her reaction. “So they walked
through Torc Wood and came to a large rock. The boar
opened a door in the middle of it and walked in.
Carefully Larry followed only to find himself
standing in the finest room he had ever seen. He
turned to speak to the boar but standing in his place
was a handsome young man.”
The path became steeper and Mulder reached back to
take Scully’s hand but she batted his offer away,
passing him out instead. If Jack noticed the
altercation he didn’t comment, only continued with
“In less time than it takes to tell, he had treated
Larry to a fine meal of beef and mutton and a large
jug of whiskey punch, then from nowhere, he produced
a bag of gold and handed it to Larry. He then told
him that he could have as much gold as he liked but
he couldn’t utter one word of this place to another
“Uh oh…here it comes.” Mulder glanced around him
and took in the beautiful sights of the forest and
the river that flowed beside them over soft rocks and
“Larry vowed he would never tell, hocked the bag over
his shoulder and made his way home. Soon the
neighbors not to mention his wife became curious how
he’d become so suddenly rich. But Larry never said a
word. Then one night his wife followed him into the
forest and watched him enter the rock. When he came
out she taunted him to tell her his secret and she
berated him so much he finally gave in and told her
“Women!” Mulder joked rolling his eyes to heaven.
“Shut up Mulder.”
“Then the boar appeared on the top of the rock and
yelled out to Larry so loud that the mountain on
which they were standing rocked again and again. And
he was whipped up into a sheet of flame to Poul an
Ifrinn where no sooner had he plunged into the Devils
Punch bowl the water spilled out and became Torc
Waterfall ever since protecting the rock.”
“That’s some story,” Scully said emphasizing the word
“What about Larry?” Mulder asked always wanting to
take it a little further.
“Larry is said to roam this forest protecting the
rock for eternity.” Scully let out a small laugh and
Jack turned to face her, an exaggerated frown on his
“Well let’s just get up here and see what we can then
we’ll know who’s skeptical?”
As they turned a corner in the small path the
waterfall came into view. They all looked up at the
magnificent sight of the pristine water spilling over
the many rocks in its path. Jack reached the small
brick wall and rested one foot one it. His hands
slapped his knee and he pointed up to the waterfall.
“See that ledge up there jutting out from behind the
falls? It leads to the cave entrance.”
“We have to climb up there?” Scully pulled her hood
back to get a better view. The rain had eased down
but the crashing water at the bottom of the falls was
wafting a fine mist over them.
“Yeah.” Jack hoisted himself over the wall onto a
flat rock and Mulder followed. As they bounded onto
the next one Scully followed. “They are supposed to
live in these caves. But you can’t just walk in and
“Walk in and see who? The boar?”
Both men stopped and turned to face Scully who was
jumping one rock behind them.
“Na Fír Beag,” Jack answered in his native tongue.
“Who?” Scully asked unaware of the scrutiny she was
receiving from both men as she jumped onto the next
“Leprechauns.” Jacks voice was so matter of fact
that she found it hard not to expect to see them.
“Agent Scully is part Irish,” Mulder offered
“Oh so she knows all about them then.”
Scully pursed her lips, jumping over to the rock
where Mulder was standing. He steadied her with an
arm around her waist and smiled at her ruffled hair.
“C’mon Scully we’re nearly there.”
“This pool is a lot deeper than it looks do be
careful.” Jack called out to them. “It’s also a
skinny dippers haven so try to keep your clothes on.”
“Pity it’s raining,” Mulder muttered earning him a
jab in ribs from Scully.
Jack had climbed up onto the small ledge and was
inching his way behind the powerful water. Scully
followed, and with a quick glance back to see if
Mulder was behind him, she carefully stepped behind
the water and met Jack in the cave.
What little sunlight managed to shine through the
water was refracted around the cave. Jack was
pulling a torch from his jacket pocket but he didn’t
switch it on. As Scully went to turn hers on; he put
his hand over hers to stop her. Without a word he
shook his head, putting a finger to his lips.
Mulder stepped in and looked between them both. He
resisted the urge to turn on his own torch as stepped
protectively up to Scully, placing a possessive hand
on her elbow.
“We can’t use the torches,” Jack whispered. “They
hide from the light.”
“We’re here to examine a crime scene Mr Byrne. That
can’t be done in the dark.” Scully’s voice was a
little higher than a whisper but her frown added all
the volume it needed.
“I understand that, but if you don’t keep your torch
off we wont get much time to examine it.”
“What do you mean?” Mulder asked.
“They’re here.” Jack walked on and slowly made his
way deeper into the darkness.
“I don’t like this Mulder.”
“We’re both armed Scully. And besides…I could do
with a pot of gold.”
“You’ll need more than lucky charms if something goes
Chuckling Mulder looked up to find Jack. Barely able
to make out his shadow he walked on, dodging the low
cave roof in a few places. He felt Scully’s hand
gripping the back of his jacket as she followed
“Hey! Jack! Wait up!” Mulder called ahead not able to
see Jack’s shadow any more. When no one replied he
looked back at Scully who without hesitation flicked
on her torch and shone it ahead.
“Where did he go?”
A loud scream startled them both and Mulder reached
for his gun. Scully kept the torch steady as they
walked on, holding her gun rigidly by her side.
“Hello?” Mulder called out. “Yell if you can hear
Another scream from behind made them spin round to
see where it came from. Scully took a few steps back
and reached a hand out to the cave wall. It was wet
and cold beneath her fingers but it glistened beneath
her torch light with an unnatural sheen.
“Come here Mulder look at this?” He walked over and
she held the light up closer to give them a better
“What is that?”
“I dunno…it looks like…it looks like gold.”
“It’s not in a pot though.”
Mulder stood away from the wall and spotted small
stream of water running on the floor but disappearing
behind a rock. He knelt lower to the ground and ran
his fingers along the streams trail feeling a breeze
as they brushed against the bottom of the rock.
Calling Scully over with her torch, he holstered his
gun and tried to move the rock but it wouldn’t budge.
Sitting back and leaning on his hands he ignored the
freezing cold water that soaked through his jeans and
levered his feet onto it to push it away. It moved a
little then with a grunt he pushed harder and it
moved away. Scrambling to his knees he followed the
water with his fingers again and found the hole that
it was flowing down.
“There is something down there. I can feel the air
“The must be another entrance.”
Scully locked her torch onto the stream and followed
it in the other direction. Mulder was behind her
fumbling in his pocket for his own torch, but as he
pulled it free of his pocket it fell to the floor
with a splashing clatter. Following it to a curve in
the wall he grabbed it and was relieved to see it
“I see the light Scully!” he mused, turning to follow
her, but as he swung his torch around the cave he saw
she was gone. “Scully?”
Her scream shook him right down to his bones and he
rushed forward to chase it. The ground was wet and
he fell to the floor scraping his palms but his
momentum kept him moving and with some difficulty he
got back on his feet and scrambled further into the
“Scully!” he called again louder this time and more
urgently, his heart ramming in his chest so hard he
was sure if she couldn’t hear his voice shouting she
would hear his heart calling out to her.
“Mulder…I’m down here!” he heard faintly. Stopping
all movement and even holding his breath he waited
for her to call out again. “Mulder.”
Running forward he noticed a slip in the ground where
a tunnel ran under the wall. It was pretty well
hidden but he figured she must have fallen in.
Getting down onto his chest, he got as close as he
dared to the tunnel noticing how it went into a sharp
“Scully…can you hear me?”
“Yeah Mulder. We’re down here…call the paramedics
and get help out here quickly.”
“We? Did you find Jack?”
“And the researchers. But get help Mulder…quick.”
Her voice sounded urgent so he jumped up and rushed
out to the cave entrance. Pulling his mobile phone
out he checked it for a signal but there was none.
He edged his way out onto the ledge but lost his
footing and fell down into the pool.
Splashing his way to the edge he raced down the
rocks, bouncing form surface to surface with an
agility that belied his stiff cold wet limbs. He
reached the path, watching his mobile until finally
the signal lit up. Mulder dialed the 911 emergency
services and stared in confusion as it dinged funny
noises at him, flashing a message of no such number.
“What the hell…” he tried again but it failed a
second time and then it dawned on him where he was.
“Shit…” He reset the phone and dialed 999 rejoicing
in the instant connection.
“Killarney Emergency how can I help?” the clear voice
“This is special Agent Fox Mulder with the FBI. I
need all available emergency vehicles down at Torc
“Wait hold on a sec there boy…FBI?”
“Agent Fox Mulder…with the FBI!”
“Is this you Brian?” the voice came back laughing.
“You gotta stop calling here like this. You’ll get me
“Sorry this isn’t Brian look, I’m at Torc Waterfall.
Some people are trapped in the caves…they need
“Yes!” Mulder couldn’t believe what he had to go
through to call the ambulance. “Hurry!”
“I’ll send two units straight out.”
Already running up the hill, Mulder pocketed the
phone and climbed back in to the cave. He was
freezing cold and shivering from the wet clothes but
he made his way back to the tunnel entrance and
called out to Scully.
“Can you hear me Scully?”
“Yeah…a bit bumped and bruised but I’m okay.”
Scully shone the light around the small cave and held
it over Jack’s pained face. He was holding his leg
at his knee and wincing at the pain he was obviously
feeling from the bloody wound. The researchers were
unconscious but she could feel slight pulses.
Removing her coat she draped it over Parsons who
seemed to be slightly worse off then Gellar.
“You okay?” Scully asked Jack as she crawled over
towards him seemingly oblivious to the small bloody
wound over her left eye.
“My knee. I think it’s broken.”
“I’m a doctor…let me see.”
Reluctantly he released his grip on the leg and tried
not to wince too much as Scully probed his knee with
her fingers. She refrained from rolling up his
trousers and pulled the scarf from his neck. Binding
it tightly in place she rested it back on the ground
and told him help would be there soon.
“It shouldn’t be long now. I can’t believe no one
checked the caves for the researchers,” she mused as
she looked them over again checking and rechecking
“A lot of people are afraid of these caves.”
“Because of that story?”
“You don’t put much weight into stories like that do
you?” Jack was watching her from under hooded eyes
and she wasn’t sure if he was in pain or trying to
add an air of mystery to the cave.
“No. I’m a scientist,” she replied matter of factly.
“Maybe you shouldn’t disregard everything without
As he spoke Jack’s eyes lifted to an area behind her,
towards the tunnel they had fallen through. Scully
whipped her head around and in a flash the ghostly
outline of a young man shabbily dressed disappeared
in a cloud of mist. She blinked a few times and
shook her head but the sight was gone, replaced only
by two boot-clad feet as the rescue worker jumped
through the tunnel and landed in the middle of the
“What have we got here then…” The seriousness of
the situation seemed to dissolve under the soft Irish
brogue of the rescue worker who was already assessing
When the emergency team arrived they went down the
tunnel with an efficiency Mulder was afraid they
wouldn’t possess. The bodies were lifted out and
carried down the waterfall to waiting ambulances.
Scully was the last to be lifted out, having waited
for all the others to go first. Jack smiled ruefully
at him as he was winched down. The waterfall did
nothing to help their decline to the path but the
rescue team didn’t even seem to notice it was there.
Finally when Scully crawled out, he helped her out of
the cave and they made their way down the waterfall
hand in hand carefully stepping from rock to rock
until the steadiness of the gravel path was beneath
their feet. Sitting on the ambulance bed in the back
of the truck, Scully let the technician sew up her
small wound and place a light bandage over it. She
still hadn’t said a word as they took Jack’s car back
into town. Leaving the keys at reception as Jack had
asked him to do, Mulder walked beside her to the
“You okay Scully? You seem very quiet.”
“I’m eh, I’m fine Mulder. Just tired.”
“Well have a rest. I’m going to go to the hospital
to find out about Gellar and Parsons.”
“Okay.” He helped her out of her wet clothes and into
the bed. She had fallen asleep almost as soon as her
head touched the pillow so with a soft kiss he left
her alone and walked out.
It was some time later when Scully woke with a start.
The room was dark but it was a fading darkness that
barely shadowed the shapes and contents of the
unfamiliar surroundings. It took a moment to realize
where she was and spied Mulder laying next to her; a
warm protective arm draped over her waist. She
smiled. Rising from the bed she slowly made her way
to the bathroom and it all came flooding back.
She cupped her hands under the running taps and let
the cold-water spill over the uneven edges of her
palms for a moment before splashing the cold liquid
over her face. The immediate shock stung her temple
and she reached up and carefully padded the small
bandage. It came off easily and she cringed at the
sight of the jagged stitches over her eyebrow.
Back in her room she fumbled in her case for the
first aid kit to replace the dressing as Mulder’s
warm arms embraced her from behind. She leaned back
against his bare chest and he kissed her head.
“How are you feeling?” he asked as he loosed his grip
and let her continue search for the kit.
“Much better. What happened at the hospital yesterday
evening?” she replied immediately taking the focus
off her and into the case.
“Parsons is still in a coma but Gellar woke up this
morning. He said that he fell down into the cave and
found Charles Parsons lying there unconscious. He
yelled out for help but nobody answered.”
“How did they survive?” Scully asked sitting in front
of the mirror to apply the thin dressing over her
stitches. He stood behind her his fingers rubbing
gentle circles into her shoulders.
“Until the day before yesterday he was okay. He was
able to keep them both alive by feeding them water
from the falls that trickled down the walls.”
“Then he passed out,” she summarized turning as she
stood into the circle of his arms.
“Yeah. If we didn’t find them when we did.” Scully
didn’t reply but her arms snaked around his waist and
she held him close. “You okay?”
“I spoke to Jack. He said you got a bit of a fright
down in the cave…did something happen?”
“Happen? No nothing happened.” Mulder didn’t believe
her but her words seemed to close off any more
“So shall we go into town an see the parade?”
“It’s St Patrick’s Day today?”
“Yeah and the parade kicks off in about an hour.”
“Sure but I’d like to go into the hospital first and
“I thought you would. Well lets get dressed and go.”
It seemed that at least one thing in this world was
universal, Dana Scully thought as she walked swiftly
through the hospital corridors. No matter which
country she was in a hospital still smelt like a
hospital. The sound of bedpans clattering to the
floor sent a nauseating shiver up her spine and old
men didn’t know how to tie robes. Mulder knew where
the rooms were so they didn’t need to ask for
directions. He led them to the researchers room
first and they were pleased to see both men awake.
“Doctor Parsons. My name is Fox Mulder.”
“Ahhh the FBI Agent who saved us.” His voice was
raspy and soft and Mulder could barely make out what
he was saying.
“Well that accolade should probably go to my partner
Dana Scully.” Mulder waved towards Scully who was
examining the chart at the end of his bed.
“Thank you very much,” he managed to say too weak to
sit up but too grateful not to smile in her
“Do you remember anything from your time down there
Dr Parsons?” Scully asked coming around to the side
of the bed and taking a closer look at his pallor.
“Nothing at all. I remember falling and a flash…I
guess that was when I banged my head.”
“What about you Professor Gellar?” Scully turned to
face the other bed and faced the other patient. His
eyes seemed to shift between the two agents but he
said remained silent, “Nothing?” Scully persisted.
“Just worrying about being found.”
Scully stared at him for a moment and Mulder almost
called her away, but it seemed she finally accepted
his answer and walked out of the room with a brief
wave. Mulder wished them well and followed her into
“What was all that about Scully?”
“The third degree…what did they see? What did you
see?” he persisted taking hold of her arm.
“Nothing Mulder. Where is Jack?”
“He’s in orthopedics. This way.” They took the
elevator to the next floor and found Jack in the
communal room sitting by the window.
“Jack?” Mulder said softly not wanting to disturb the
“Ah Mr Mulder. You’re back.”
“Agent Scully wanted to make sure everything was
Jack’s eyes lit up at the sight of Scully walking
towards him a careful smile on her lips.
“How are you doing Jack?”
“It’s just a twisted knee. I’m going home tomorrow.”
“That’s good.” She glanced over her shoulder at
Mulder who was keeping one eye on the TV sport’s
channel. She didn’t recognize the game but it looked
like soccer. A local sport she presumed, as she
turned back to Jack grateful for Mulder’s
distraction. She stepped closer to him and rested a
hand on the table beside him “I was wondering if you
could tell me…”
“It’s not my story to tell Dana.”
“It’s not my story.” He covered her hand with one of
his own and squeezed it gently. “We both saw the same
thing so we both have to tell our own stories.”
“What did you see?” she asked tying to keep the plea
out of her voice.
“Scéalta. Scéalta Taibhse.” At her frown he smiled
a little and turned back to the window but not before
she heard his faint whisper. “Ghost stories.”
Scully stood away from the table and touched Mulder’s
elbow to let him know they were leaving. He smiled
at Jack whose focus was on the scenery out the
window. Following Scully out to the car they drove
back to the hotel and parked the rental car back in
“What did he say?” Mulder asked unable to take the
silence any longer.
“Ghost Stories Mulder, he was talking about Ghost
They climbed out of the car and turned walked out
onto the street in time to see a large paper maché St
Patrick drive by on the top of a lorry. Mulder
smiled and even Scully’s reverie seemed to have
melted. Taking her hand he pulled her over to the
side of the road where they could watch the rest of
the parade go by. With an arm over her shoulder he
pointed out the various floats that caught his eye.
They ate green candy floss and watched as the teams
of Irish Dancers danced by, oblivious to the wind and
light rain in their short skirts and curly hair.
“I’d really love a pint of Guinness,” Mulder muttered
as he spied the doorway to a pub behind them,
littered with parade watchers who didn’t seem to want
to commit to the rain fully.
“When in Ireland…” he said smiling as he took her
hand and led her over to the pub. Fighting his was
to the bar he ordered two pints of Guinness and
smiled at Scully as the bartender left two half full
glasses on the bar to settle. After taking the money
from Mulder, he bent lower to the glasses as if
evaluating their status then arched them under the
tap to fill them to the brim. Grabbing what looked
like a small jam jar lid from a shelf behind them he
pressed it onto the top of the creamy pint head and
gave them to Mulder.
Mulder took them and held them high above his head as
he fought his way back onto the street again. They
managed to reclaim a spot near the curb again and
Mulder handed her a pint, grinning like a fool.
Scully took it with trepidation and realized that now
they were out in the sunlight the stout wasn’t black
as she expected, but a dark green color and had a
shamrock stamped carefully onto the head in the
cream. Her eyebrow went up in surprise as she looked
to Mulder in surprise.
“Sláinte!” Mulder said clinking his glass to the side
of hers before taking a deep breath and tasting his
drink. Scully watched him swallow a big portion and
grimace at the sour taste. “Oh that’s good
“Try telling your face…” she said joking before
taking her own taste. The dark green liquid was ice
cold and the taste exploded on her tongue and buzzed
all the way down to her stomach. Once the initial
surprise dissolved she was left with a cold trail of
stout that begged to be filled. Mulder watched in
amazement as she took another swallow and another
licking her lips free of the creamy residue.
“You like it Scully?”
“Oh yes. But sure Mulder I’m practically Irish, of
course I like it.” He laughed out loud delighted to
see the dark clouds of wonder had disappeared from
her eyes replaced by the now familiar twinkle of joy
that escaped when she smiled. Especially the smile he
brought out in her when he looked at her with all
that charm and love. He clinked their glasses
together again and slipped an arm around her shoulder
to hold her close as they watched the rest of the
parade. She felt a strong urge to lick the Guinness
froth from those gorgeous lips of his, but what her
mouth didn’t say her eyes made up for. Nothing in her
gaze was lost on Mulder.
Soon they too didn’t seem to notice the misty rain
that came down from the mountains and covered the
town in a damp sheen as the festivities went on
“Happy St Patrick’s Day Scully.” He bent to kiss her
and nuzzled her lips, tasting her.
“You too Mulder.”