Stolen Moments

Debra Fran Baker

 
 
 

***Prologue***

May 14, 1998
Barryville High School
Barryville, Ohio
 

I had been Fox Mulder's partner for five years.  I had seen
him asleep on motel room floors, in cramped airline seats
and beside me in parked cars.  I had seen him unconscious
because of injuries, fever or shock, and I had seen him
drugged in hospital beds and his own couch, and sometimes by
my own hand.  Even then, even when he was so deep he
couldn't react to pain, I could see his questing, restless
spirit move in him, and make it impossible for him to be
completely quiet, completely at rest.

He was completely still on that cot in the makeshift ward.
Only the slow beeps of the EEG told us he was alive.  I
stole glances at him as I worked my way down the rows of
silent, unmoving patients.  Every so often, I could see
Skinner, Walter, steal time from his own tireless labors to
go to Mulder and just hold his hand for a moment, or stroke
his forehead, or kiss his cheek with a tenderness that would
have made me cry if I had any tears left.

Then, he would get up and bathe more patients, check more
IV's, comfort more survivors, and make more phone calls.
Meanwhile, I administered yet another experimental drug and
prayed for all of us, and wondered at the people who let all
this loose on the world, or at least on this small town.

***Chapter One***

May 7, 1998
J. Edgar Hoover Building
Washington, DC

Mulder's hair was wet when he entered the office that
morning, and his eyes were bright.  I knew he'd spent the
night by himself because he'd called me three times - once
to talk about Voyager, once to make certain I was watching
Babylon 5 and once just because he was lonely.

"Did you two have a good workout?"

"Yeah."  He grinned.  "People are used to us being in the
gym at the same time.  And I get to watch Walter pump up
without anyone noticing."

"Other people use the gym."

"We don't do anything out of line.  It's not like we're
necking in the parking garage."
 
"Ah, yes.  Steamed up windows on a Thursday morning in the
JEH garage.  No one will suspect a thing.  I could see *you*
doing this, Mulder, but I'm glad you couldn't talk Walter
into it."

He got out his coffee cup - the new one Walter had given
him.  "Me talk him into it?   There have been times I've
been the voice of reason."

"You, Mulder?   I'm surprised you don't jump him in the
gym."

He looked at me in shock.  "Scully!  That would attract
attention."

"At least you're keeping your heads."  One day, my partner
and my boss might be caught, and that would be the end of
their careers.  It wasn't just that they were both men.  We
all know that's time-honored here in the FBI.  It was also
that Walter was our supervisor, and that isn't permitted.
Frankly, I was worried, but better this than watching them
pine for one another.

"Good.  Now I can tell you about our plans for the weekend."
 
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