Tell Me Again, Scully

Title: Tell Me Again Scully

Authors: FoxfireX and Girlie_girl7

EM: Foxfirex_00@yahoo.com, Girlie_girl74@yahoo.com

Date: 03-30-03

Rating: G

Category: MSR, MT

Spoilers: Nothing past JS

Archive: anywhere

Disclaimer: Fox owns ’em

Summary: Mulder and Scully and a mermaid, what more

can we say.

~ Tell Me Again Scully ~

“Tell me again, Scully, why we’re going all the way to Diamond Lake, Arkansas.”

“Mulder, I already explained it on the plane.”

“I know. I just like hearing you believe in mermaids.”

“Well, I wouldn’t go that far, I just wanted to choose the least dangerous and most enjoyable case for us to investigate.  There’s a small cabin on a small body of water where hopefully very soon my small body will be pressed against yours.”

“I like the way you think.” He shot her a sidelong glance, while keeping his eyes on the map and the road. Navigating wasn’t something he was used to doing, it was usually her job. But she wanted to trade

places, so he humored her. Little did she know that they were in danger of getting completely lost, as he had a bad habit of just not paying that close attention to maps.

“I thought you might. We haven’t had a break in so long I’ve forgotten what it’s like not to work.” She smiled lazily at him.

He could plainly see the small lines around her eyes, and the faint bruising under them. She was tired. They’d been pushing themselves too hard lately, he thought they were somehow trying to make up for being involved. They were so afraid that their work would slide because of the attention they were paying to each other but they were working themselves into the ground.

What neither of them realized was they hadn’t paid attention to anything but each other in years, eons before they began having a physical relationship. They were the only ones that didn’t see it.

“The legend goes that at the turn of the century, two young lovers living in the mountains around Diamond Lake were separated by their families.”

“Sort of a Hatfields and McCoys type thing?” Mulder mused.

“I don’t know Mulder, just listen, will you?”

“Okay.” He said contritely. She knew better.

“Anyway. The two young lovers decide to each paddle to the middle of the lake to meet, where they won’t be detected. A storm blows up and overturns the raven-haired woman’s canoe and she drowns, leaving her lover to slowly go mad.”

“I like that story.” Mulder responded, after a heartbeat passed.

“I knew it was right up your alley.” Scully smiled again, this time the corner of her mouth turning up like a woman with a secret.

“You mean the going mad part, don’t you.”

“I didn’t say that.” A giggle escaped as she spoke.

“Sure, make fun of the certifiable. Just remember, you sleep with me.”

“Every chance I get, G-man, your lack of saneness doesn’t scare me. To get back to the story, every night the locals swear a half- woman, half-fish can be seen slicing through the water looking for her lover.”

“Which half? Turn here.”

“Which half, what?”

“Which half is fish, and which half is woman?”

“Mulder. What difference could that possibly make.” She slid him another look, this one without the smile.

“It could make a huge difference. Okay, okay, since I am playing your typical role, what makes this an X-File, Scully?” Mulder turned the map around in his hands, wondering if it would make more sense upside

down.

“Directly it isn’t. But local kids keep trying to find the mermaid and end up drowning in the lake. Local PD had decided to put an end to this nonsense one and for all. Besides, I managed to finagle us a nice little cabin on the lake.” She raised an eyebrow suggestively at him.

He loved it when she used her eyebrow for good and not evil.

“Scully, I like the way you finagle.”

“Mulder just admit it, you’ve gotten us lost.” They had been driving along winding roads, skirting the lake but so far had no luck finding the one that lead to their cabin.

“I am not lost. I am…temporarily misdirected. Have a little faith, Scully.”

Up ahead an old rusted out pickup truck was parked along side of the road, it might have been a Dodge, at one time, but was so badly patched, it looked like a hybrid of several makes. Next to it stood three men, deep in conversation.

“Hey Jim, what time did that guy say he’d be here? We’ve been waiting nigh on an hour.” Tom, the youngest of the group and the one with the worst attitude was losing his patience.

“Relax, will ya? He said he’d be here with the semis. He’ll be here.” Jim replied, leaning negligently on the door of the truck with his arms folded.

“Good thing we ran into them AK47’s in Natches, weren’t it, Jim?”   Jake asked, sniffing and wiping his nose. Jake always had a runny nose a fact that drove Jim nuts and he was the dim bulb of the group, which was a distinct honor. Jake paced the edge of the road. Keeping a nervous eye out. He was the first to spot the late model sedan creeping toward them. “Jim?”

“Who the hell is that?” Tom demanded angrily.

“Sure ain’t our contact, that’s fur damn sure.” Jim replied with an edge to his voice. No one drove this road; these people must be lost.

The car slid to a stop next to the trio. The window slid down and a man’s face appeared from behind the tinted glass. “Hey you fellas wouldn’t happen to know how to get to Waterline road, would you?”

Tom spoke up. “Ya missed it ’bout a quarter mile back. Turn around and look fer a dirt road to the left. Take it until it dead ends and that’ll be Waterline. Ya’ll lookin’ for the cabins down there?”

“Um yeah. Hey thanks.” Mulder rolled his window back up. Scully swung the car around.

“What do you think they’re doing out here, Mulder?” She watched them in her rear view mirror.

“Stop right there, Scully. We’re looking for a mermaid and a quiet place to go skinny-dipping. We’re not here to look into suspicious looking hillbillies. This is as close to a vacation as the X-Files gets, don’t go looking for trouble.” Scully smiled at him and rolled her head to the side to pop her neck. Relaxing. That was not something she was used to.

She found the road and turned, at the end of the dusty drive they found another road crudely marked as Waterline and turned down what looked like a cow path. The path ended at a small clearing.

Mulder jumped out of the car, and headed toward the first small building nearest them. “This must be the office, I’ll get the key.”

Scully exited the car and surveyed their surroundings. Quiet, near the water, just what she wanted. She could make out three small cabins through the trees, separated by at least one hundred yards. Skinny-dipping. She had to admit the idea had merit.

Loading the guns into the bed of the truck, the trio covered them with a tarp and jumped in the cab. Tom fired up the engine, and turned around, taking the dirt road he had sent the strangers down an hour before.

“Where we goin’ Tom?” Jake asked. He was tired and hungry, waiting all this time for the man with the guns to show up.

“I want to check out those two what asked fer directions. They don’t look like they belong out here. It’ll just take a minute.” Tom knew just where to pull the truck so he could cut through the dense trees

and slip unobserved to the edge of the clearing near the Waterline Cabins.

The mountain men crouched down, watching the cabins for some sign of life. “Who you think they are, Tom?” Jake whispered.

“I dunno. Feds like as not. Bet someone done ratted on us.” Tom glanced around to make sure both the other men were down and hidden from view.

“What we gonna do iffen they are Feds?” Jim asked, spitting a stream of tobacco juice into the brush nearby.

“Kill ’em. Both of ’em.”

Mulder carried their bags into the cabin. He had to admit, for such a rural area it was well maintained. “Look Scully,” he said turning on the faucet in the kitchen, “running water.”

“Good, cause I’m going to go wash up, then we can figure out what we’re going to do for dinner.” She grabbed her smallest case and headed for the bathroom.

Mulder watched her go. He considered joining her in the shower, but figured there wasn’t going to be enough room for him alone in there, much less two of them. He stepped out the front door and closed his eyes, absorbing the quiet solitude their location afforded.

A twig snapped somewhere behind him. He turned slightly and listened, but didn’t hear anything else. He continued a few steps toward the lake, stretching his arms above his head. He was wearing his black

leather jacket, as the air was cooling quickly the later it got. He was also wearing his gun strapped to his narrow waist, on a clip on his jeans.

The setting sun glinted off the warm chestnut of his hair. As Mulder arched his back his T-shirt pulled taut across his shoulders and upper chest.  Here he stood, looking like an image from a fantasy when

Scully glanced out the bathroom window to see what he was doing. Her hair was wrapped in a towel and she was struggling not to bump into the sink, walls or towel rack in the tiny bathroom.

Scully hesitated briefly, content to watch the beauty of her lover before she finished up and went in search of her hair dryer. As she turned, Scully just missed seeing the three men creep out from the

edge of the woods where Mulder was standing.

Tom had not missed the gun strapped to Mulder’s waist, either. That had solidified the idea in his head that these two weren’t here on vacation, and needed to be dealt with.

Mulder closed his eyes again just for a moment, and was grabbed from behind.

He was crudely blindfolded, and tossed into what he assumed was the bed of a truck. Someone sat near him, to forestall any ideas of jumping while en route. A strip of cloth replaced the rough hand that had covered his mouth when they grabbed him. He could tell it wasn’t tied well, he was moving it with his jaw.

The truck came to a stop several minutes later and he was hauled out and dropped on his feet. The blindfold came off and the three men he had asked directions of stood before him. The back of the truck was covered with a tarp that hid something. From sitting on it he wasn’t sure what it was, but he wouldn’t be surprised to find that they were guns.

Mulder’s hands remained unbound, and he spit the gag from his mouth. They were still at the lake, how far from the cabin he wasn’t sure but they stood at the water’s edge while the sun dipped from the sky.

Jake, Tom and Jim surrounded Mulder. His hazel eyes flashed from one to the other, but he remained unmoving.

“We know why you’re here.” Jake said, taking a step closer to Mulder’s right side.

“You’ve got it wrong. I have no interest in your ‘activities’. Whatever they are.”

Tom stepped in, grabbing Mulder’s left arm, and jerking it behind him. The pain was quick and sharp, but Mulder made no sound. His teeth clenched, the telltale muscle along his jaw jumped but he managed to

keep his outward calm demeanor.

“You lie. You’re a fed, an’ so is that lil’ red-head that’s with you.”   Jim said. He took position in front of Mulder, balling his hands into fists that Mulder kept an eye on. He was fairly certain he was about to get his ass kicked but good.

“We are FBI, but we’re not here investigating you.” Tom jerked up again on Mulder’s arm, the socket threatening to give way. “I’m telling you the truth.” He panted a few times, blowing out through the pain. He’d die here, he decided, before he let these backwoods thugs know they were scaring the hell out of him.

“Jake, go git the boat.” Tom yelled. Jake jumped to do his bidding, running off around a bend. Mulder spared him little thought, keeping his eye on the remaining two. They, no doubt, were going to beat him

senseless, at the least. They might even kill him here, and dump him overboard on the lake.  That  prospect didn’t hold much charm for him.

“Look, I can see that privacy is very important to you all. I can promise you one thing, if I don’t come back the one thing you aren’t going to have is privacy. The FBI will come looking for me, I guarantee it.” He could hear the roar of the small engine attached to the boat coming for him. If he could stall them long enough maybe Scully could find him she’d at least be armed.

“Let ’em come. We’ll kill s’many as we can, then take to the hills. Ain’t a fed in this country who can find us if we don’t wanna be found.” Tom pushed Mulder into the boat, Jim following close behind.

Jake navigated the fishing boat out into the center of the lake, where he knew it was deepest. He stopped and cut the engine.

Scully pulled her phone from her pocket. She’d lost track of Mulder over an hour ago, and so far came across no sign of him. She skirted the edge of the lake, hoping to find footprints or something. “Help me

out here, Mulder, you were the Indian Guide, not me.” She muttered impatiently to herself.

A rustle in the underbrush startled her, but after pausing a moment, she decided it was an animal that had no intent of eating her so she went on.

From the brush, a pair of glowing green eyes watched the woman search for the man she loved. The being hiding behind a felled tree knew exactly what was happening to the woman’s mate, but she felt

uncertain. Should she help? She feared discovery, her green eyes narrowing; she would have no peace here if she was found, but knowing the pain of love separated, she had her answer. She would help, and

hope she could still remain undetected by the outside world.

This is it, Mulder thought. Fight now or die. He braced himself for battle, as he was sitting in the center of the boat unbound. The men were talking among themselves, presumably over the best way to kill

him.  Mulder shifted his weight onto his toes, wondering if he should try to take them all on or just jump overboard and swim for shore.

Suddenly, his phone rang.

The same phone that hadn’t worked worth a damn way up here rang as clear as day, making him jump and causing the three stooges to grab their guns. They apparently weren’t accustomed to the chirp of a cell.

“It’s for me.” Mulder deadpanned.

“Answer it, and make who ever it is believe that everythin’ is hunkey dory, you got that?” Jim pointed his gun for emphasis.

“What in th’ hell are ya doin’? Just let it ring!” Tom yelled.

“It’ll buy us some time, if whoever it is he talks to thinks he’s alive and doin’ fine.” The other two nodded, but dubiously.

“Mulder.” He said into his cell, crouching now and keeping an eye on the dim trio.

“Mulder, where are you? I’ve been…” Scully’s voiced faded for a moment. Their connection was not good and might not last.

“Scully, listen to me. Get off this mountain. Get somewhere safe call out the Calvary, go, now..”

Tom reached out and slapped the phone from Mulder’s grasp, it fell to the floor of the boat, still on. “Damn it! I tol’ you not to let him talk on that durn thing. Now look! That other fed’ll git away.” Tom

reached a meaty fist back and slammed it into Mulder’s face, splitting his lip.

Mulder spat blood, but he also managed to notice that the phone had not been switched off, lying on the floor. In a moment of desperation, or inspiration he wasn’t sure he started saying goodbye to Scully.

“I’m sorry Scully!” He shouted quickly as Tom grabbed his arms and pushed him back down to a sitting position. “They’re going to kill me, baby, and I’m sorry. I love you, never forget that.”

“Shut UP!” Jim roared, searching on the bottom of the boat for the phone. Jake cocked his gun and pointed it at Mulder’s head.

Mulder never missed a beat, if he was going to eat lead soon, so to speak, he was going to at least say goodbye to the woman he should have married a long time ago. “You have to get off this mountain

Scully, don’t stay to look for me. Do this for me, go!”

On the other end of the phone Scully’s brow furrowed, tears slid down her cheeks and her mouth worked silently. She knew he didn’t have the phone any longer and couldn’t hear her. She also knew he was about to die as she listened. She looked around desperately, walking to the edge of the water but having no idea where he was or if she could even swim that far.

At that moment, something came out of the bushes, brushed past her leg and splashed into the water. She didn’t get a clear look at it, but she had the feeling it had long hair, like a woman. No woman could

move that fast, though, or take off that smoothly into the water.

Jim found the phone and searched its panel for the ‘off’ key.

“Leave it on.” Jake said, in a shaky, high-pitched voice. “Let her hear him die.” Oh no. That was not what Mulder wanted. Not this, Scully would never be able to shake it, he knew her too well. “Be a man, you little shit. Turn off the phone.” He growled at Jim, Mulder had to make him switch it off.

Scully wouldn’t turn off her phone.

Scully heard most of the exchange, the connection getting fuzzy as someone was moving Mulder’s cell phone around. She could hear him screaming for her to turn off the phone and leave.

How could she do that? She wanted to, she knew she was just waiting to hear the shot that would end his life, but how could she cut off the last moments of her connection to him? How could she turn off the phone when she could still hear his voice? The voice she heard night after night on the phone when he couldn’t sleep for all those years. The voice that so recently she had come to love as he called her name while making love to her.

Across the cool, dark surface of the water Isabella skimmed silently. She could sense where the boat was sitting she knew these waters like no one else ever could. She created virtually no wake behind her and

counted on the element of surprise.

As she neared the boat, she picked up speed. Her only chance to make it in time was to go quickly and hit the boat with all her might, and hopefully dislodge its occupants.

Jake began to squeeze the trigger and time slowed to a crawl for Mulder. No way, at this range would Einstein there miss him. No way he was going to survive being shot from this range with that caliber. His

eyes glazed over, thinking of Scully, her creamy skin, her soft lips, her tiny, strong hands. No matter what came after this life it would be his own personal hell being away from her.

Something crashed into the side of the boat, flipping it onto its side in a heartbeat, throwing its occupants into the water. Mulder was so surprised, at first he didn’t think to start swimming for shore. He broke the surface of the water and blinked rapidly to clear his eyes. He could see Jake and Tom flailing wildly. Evidently they couldn’t swim.

The boat had a hole in the side and was sinking fast. The only man able to tread water was Jim, and he had the bad fortune not to swim clear of his partners before they grabbed on to him in hopes of being

saved. All three sank to the bottom, Mulder knew that would be the last of them. He spun in the water, trying to determine which direction he should take to shore when an arm circled his waist and he was tugged sharply to the left.

His first instinct was to fight, thinking somehow one of the mountain men had managed to grab him. Orientation set in, however and he realized that he was being pulled along at an amazing pace. The water was slapping him in the face, filling his mouth and making it difficult to see so he extended a hand and touched cool, slippery skin next to him. It almost felt like, well, a fish. He managed half an

amazed chuckle when his mouth filled with water again and he began to sputter.

The mermaid they had come to find was saving his butt. Scully was going to love this.

As Mulder and his mermaid rescuer neared the shore, she slowed. His feet found purchase in the sandy bottom and he stood, squinting in the darkness to see her. For a moment she raised her torso out of the

water, droplets sliding down her bare breasts. He could just glimpse the area around her waist where the skin took on a definite scale appearance, when she turned and left.

“Mulder!” Scully sobbed, hearing a commotion near the waters edge she ran to it to find him standing soaking wet knee deep.

He turned just in time to catch her as she launched herself into his arms, she was crying and clinging to him, asking if he was hurt, asking how he got there.

“Shhh I’m okay, Scully, don’t cry. She saved me.”

Scully wiped her eyes and took a deep breath. Mulder was walking toward the shore, carrying her slight weight against his chest, “Who, who saved you?”

“The mermaid. You should have seen her, Scully…”

“Mulder.” Scully’s voice warned. “Not again.”

~ The End ~

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