With each aggravating trill of his alarm clock, his desire to slap himself upside the head grew. He was sure he didn't need to worry about that though, Scully would likely take care of it herself. It was Saturday. The one day of the week they got to sleep in until an ungodly hour and languidly wake up in each other’s arms. Between getting up for whatever work needed to be done during the week and Scully’s occasional morning church visits, Saturday was their day to simply relax. The blaring in his ear was the furthest thing from that.
He rolled on his side and hit the offending item without even opening his eyes. He stayed still for a moment and let out a sigh of relief when he didn’t hear any words of frustration come from the other side of the bed. Hoping the alarm when completely unheard by Scully, he decided to roll back over and try to fall asleep for a little longer. Only he was more cognizant now than he had been a moment ago. Now in his semi-awake state, he realized the bed had far more give than he was used to, that his back didn’t have that kink in it that he usually had to endure when he woke up, and, more importantly, when his arm reached out to touch Scully, he was met with the cool sheets of the bed instead.
He cracked open his eyes and they widened impossibly large. In his eye line, he saw yellow walls, a framed jersey, and the sheets he had on his old waterbed. The sheets he threw out nearly fifteen years ago when he moved into the house he now shared with Scully. He shot up in bed and looked around and realized he was in his apartment from the 90s. Not just a look alike, but the actual thing. With a sinking fear and an uncomfortable amount of confusion, he looked up and saw the face of thirty-something Mulder staring back at him in the tacky mirror over his bed.
He darted out of his bed, almost tripping as his legs tangled with his blanket, and ran to where he knew the bathroom was. Gone were the wrinkles he’d became accustomed to, instead it was the face he only saw in photo albums. This didn’t make any sense. He turned on the sink and cupped his hands under the stream, allowing his palms to fill with cold water before splashing his face. He looked up, hopeful his plan worked, but he was met with the same concerned face looking back at him. He wasn’t dreaming. Maybe Scully’d know what to do.
Shit, she was probably panicking by now. He ran over to his phone and frantically typed in her number with shaky fingers, playing with the cord of the phone as he listened to the ring.
“Scully,” her voice rang out from the other end of the line.
He sighed in relief and exclaimed, “Scully, what happened to us?”
“Isn’t it a little early for an existential crisis, Mulder?” she teased and her jovial tone almost relaxed him. Almost.
“Scully, where did you wake up this morning?” he asked. Maybe she hadn’t even opened her eyes yet and hadn’t realized. “Have you looked at yourself in the mirror?”
“I woke up in my bed,” she stated in her no-nonsense tone. “And, excuse me?” she added.
“Well, have you?” he repeated.
“Yes, Mulder. I did look at myself this morning. Do you mind telling me what exactly you're insinuating?”
He let out a loud sound of frustration and had to keep himself from yelling, “Scully, we were at our house last night! I don’t know about you, but I just woke up at my old apartment in Alexandria, and I look like I’m twenty years younger.”
“Hey, are you okay? Did you hit your head?” she asked, no trace of humor in her voice. A sinking feeling settled in his gut when he realized she wasn’t confused. This Scully woke up this morning with everything in place.
He was alone.
“No,” he answered definitively before realizing that made more sense than whatever was happening. “Shit, maybe. I don’t know.”
“Mulder, I was on my way to work. I’m maybe five minutes from your apartment. Stay there alright? Drink some water for me and try to calm down.” She was using her professional Dr. Scully voice on him and he realized how delusional he must sound.
Resisting the urge to keep her on the line until she came, he set the phone down in the cradle and simply did as she said. He went to the tap for water and he almost beside himself when he saw his old alien mug sitting next to the sink. He shattered that at their house in 2006 when he was too busy going down on Scully to notice there were dishes on the counter he'd set her on. Mulder felt his eyes sting as an uncomfortable lump formed in his throat. This isn't fair. He was supposed to wake up this morning with the taste of her still lingering on his lips. He wanted to wake up to the feeling of her warm body pressed against him as she kissed him into consciousness. He should be going in for another round right now, but instead, all he could taste was old toothpaste and longing on his tongue.
He turned over the offending mug, filled it up, and drank it sip by sip. The longer he drew this out, the sooner she would get here, and the less time he would spend pitying himself. He didn’t know if his plan had been effective, or if she had been speeding to get to him. Maybe a combination of both. What he did know was that she was knocking on the door now and he practically threw the mug in the sink to race to get to her.
Mulder swung open the offending door and was speechless when he saw her on the other side. It was Scully, but Scully in a way he only saw in his memories. Her auburn hair was dancing above her shoulders and her face looked painfully young and innocent. “I came as fast as I could,” she exhaled. Did her voice really use to be that high? He felt like he was watching an old home video but in real life. She was even wearing one of her classic pantsuits and the sentimentality of it made his throat clench with emotion.
Granted, he should have known better, but he couldn’t help it. His hands came up and grabbed her face, relishing the way she felt so familiar and yet so different at the same time. She looked up at him in shock and her hands came to rest gently on his wrists. He didn’t even notice though. He moved to run his fingers through her hair as he examined her. She hadn’t worn that shade of red lipstick in years. He remembered how upset she was when they discontinued it.
He realized in this moment how much her eyes had stayed the same. A lot about her was the same from this Scully to the one he was so intimately familiar with, but her eyes were still that striking shade of blue that always managed to take his breath away. Though, had he been paying more attention, he would have noticed the confusion in their depths.
Consumed by relief brought on by her presence, he removed his hands from her face and threw his arms around hers, drawing her into a tight hug. “Thank you for coming,” he murmured into her hair, relishing the smell of the shampoo she stopped using years ago. He felt an overwhelming surge of protectiveness wash over him, despite him being the one in trouble. This young girl in his arms had no idea what the future held for her.
He didn’t have much time to give that more thought as her body squirmed away from his. He released her immediately and saw her face was bright red and she was avoiding looking at him. “Mulder, what’s gotten into you?”
“I don’t know,” he answered honestly.
“Why aren't you dressed?” she asked. She tried to look him in the face, but her eyes were drawn downward before flitting away again. His brows furrowed in confusion and he looked down to see what was bothering her. He was just wearing his boxers, what he always slept in, and it wasn't like he was in the mood to have any morning wood that he might've accidentally pressed into her.
Realization washed over him like an icy wave. “We haven't had sex yet, have we?” His tone practically dropped an octave as the severity of the situation dawned on him. This was a lot earlier in their relationship than he’d realized. He wished he could take a moment to gather his wits about him because he was having a hard time orienting himself without scaring the one person who could help. Begrudgingly he considered it was because this was the Scully where there were still pretenses, some protective walls still in place around her heart. They might be honest about everything, but they were still probably in the phase of their relationship where they hadn’t admitted their feelings yet. Based on the look of pure incredulity on her face, he assumed his guess was right.
“Excuse me?” she practically shouted. He realized this wasn’t a conversation he wanted to have in front of all his old neighbors, so he grabbed her arm lightly and coaxed her in, locking the door behind him. As soon as he turned back around she was staring at him like he'd grown a third head, “Mulder, I don’t know what has gotten into you, but I suggest you start explaining yourself. Now.”
“What year is it?”
“Scully, what year is it? Just humor me,” he requested, trying to timeline the situation.
She rolled her eyes and indulged him, “It’s 1998.”
"What's the date?"
She replied with a furrowed brow, "December 14th, it's Monday."
Oh my god . The kiss as the ball dropped, that date on the baseball diamond, when she slid into his bed for the first time, those years on the run. Then his stomach plummeted, William. None of it’s happened yet. Where were they even in their relationship? 1998, that case in Texas, the hallway, was that the last advance their relationship had? Hell, he didn’t know anything.
“What’s in the news right now?” he asked, trying to spark something.
“Mulder,” she started with an exasperated sigh.
She pursed her lips before contemplating for a moment. “Bill Clinton’s going to be impeached soon for the Monica Lewinsky thing.”
“Clinton’s president? Well, I guess there’s an upside to everything,” he mused sardonically. The impeachment? What were they doing in December of ‘98? Shit, he didn’t know.
“Mulder, you've never cared about Clinton,” she whined out of frustration.
He grabbed her by the shoulders and solemnly said, “I do now. It gets worse. So much worse, Scully. You wouldn’t even believe me.”
She slapped his hands away and backed up. “You’re right, I wouldn’t believe you! You’re not making any sense. I’m seriously considering 911 and reporting a mental breakdown!”
“Come here, sit down and I’ll tell you everything,” he begged, practically dragging her to the couch.
She followed him, but pled, “Fine, but could you maybe put something on?” He realized she was still flustered by his nudity and he found it endearing, despite the situation.
He ran into his room, threw on a pair of basketball shorts and a shirt he found at the end of his bed, not caring if they were clean. When he returned, he was glad to see she had taken a seat on his couch with her hands fidgeting in her lap, waiting for him to return. He plopped down next to her and laid it on her, “Scully, when I went to bed last night it was 2018.”
“What?” she asked, her eyebrows shooting upwards as she tilted her head towards him as if she couldn’t have possibly heard him correctly.
Call him paranoid, but in this moment he remembered every single piece of sci-fi literature he’d ever consumed. In every single one there was a recurring plotline; if someone went back in time, it was important not to mess anything up lest possibly ruining the entire timeline. He realized anything he possibly said might affect the future. More importantly, might affect the possibility of them getting together. He decided to tread carefully. Hell, his Scully was still stubborn, but it had dimmed in the years. He remembered the adamance of this Scully. It was possible he could say “Hey, we’re going to get together,” and she refuse from the sole principal that he told her.
He couldn’t risk anything. He had to get back. He had to see Scully. He already missed out on one pregnancy and he’d be damned to let it happen again. Every passing second was a second he should be with her.
He decided to try and stick with the basics, “When I fell asleep last night, it was 2018. I was 56 years old. When I woke up, I apparently woke up as myself, but twenty years ago.”
“You said our house," she blurted, biting her lip afterward as if to silence herself.
“When you called this morning, you insisted we had fallen asleep at ‘our house’,” she spoke slowly as if going too fast would stress his fragile psyche.
Shit, he’d probably already said too much. “Um, yeah. I should have kept that to myself.”
“You also declared, ‘We haven’t had sex yet, have we?’,” she added air quotes while mimicking him, making sure to draw out the ‘yet’.
He sighed and ran a hand through his hair, “It was in the moment. I don’t want to say anything that might mess up our timeline.”
“Our timeline?” she repeated with a disbelieving scoff. She stood up and threw her hands against her sides in resignation, “Listen, I don’t know what’s happening, but I’m going to call Skinner and tell him we need to take a personal day. We're going to the hospital.”
She started walking towards the phone and he called out, “Wait,” and started after her, “Scully, I’m telling the truth.”
“I’m sure you think you are, but you’re not making any sense. Which is arguably just as important.”
She was about to take the phone out of the cradle and he decided to lay it on thick. “You have a dimple above your left buttcheek.” She froze in place and turned around to look at him. He took that as a good sign so he continued, “Part of your morning routine involves stretching by the bed for a few minutes because a counselor you liked when you were in Girl Scouts told you it was good for you.”
“How did you know that?” she asked, curiosity lacing every word.
“Because you told me! Not now, but a few years from now,” he explained.
She shook her head in dismissal, “This has to be a prank. My mom must’ve told you.”
She started turning around and he gave her the whammy, “You like being on top during sex because you can regulate the momentum better. You’re very good at it too.” Now she whipped around, and he knew he had to continue quickly. “You have a freckle on your left labia lip. You mumble in your sleep and you moan.” She was walking slowly towards him now with an unreadable expression on her face. “Your first vibrator was a purple rabbit. You got it as a teen and your mom got mad because batteries kept going missing and you never told her.” Now she was practically in front of him. “Do you think your mom told me all of that?”
“How did you know all that? Seriously," she asked with deadly intensity.
He sighed and grabbed her arms again, “I told you. Because you told me yourself. Scully, I’m not going to lie. I’m scared. I need to get back to my time. I miss my Scully, she needs me, and I need your help so I can get back to her-er-you.”
She stared at him for a good moment, analyzing him with a serious expression. “Alright, so let’s say I did believe you,” she sighed, irritation from the confusion lacing her voice. “We need to figure out what might have caused this-whatever this is. What is the very last thing you remember doing last night before you went to bed?”
He inadvertently chuckled and he could tell it only frustrated her more. Memories of tangled limbs, sweaty bodies, and multiple climaxes came to mind. He rubbed his hand over the back of his neck and answered honestly, “You.”
He initially thought it was a wet dream; the feeling of a warm body sliding and rubbing against his own only seemed to live in the recesses of his mind nowadays. It wasn’t all that common for him to have them, so he liked to indulge them when they did happen. With a sleepily content exhale, he focused on what this particular dream was gifting him with. He felt a warm, small body wrapped in his arms. They were slightly gyrating their feminine hips against an impressive hard on, sliding up and down his shaft at a painfully slow pace. He felt light pants of hot breath come out and, realistically, tickle his neck, the same neck that was being suckled on less than a few seconds later by that same hot mouth. It felt so good that he couldn’t help but buck against the body rubbing him, earning a small chuckle from the dream woman.
Then he felt a small hand play with the bare skin of his waist, their nails raking downward through his patch of pubic hair before grabbing his shaft with a pleasurable intensity. He felt a loud moan escape his throat, so loud that it startled him. “Good morning,” Scully’s voice rasped, so realistically that it did startle him. His eyes shot open and he realized he was awake and this was not a wet dream; he was in a place he didn’t recognize, even though some items here and there were familiar, and there was most definitely a female hand stroking his cock right now.
Wait, that was Scully’s voice.
He rolled away and raised his hands to her shoulders so he could get a better look, just to make sure. He was stunned, to say the least. In his arms was most definitely Scully, he could recognize her from anywhere, but there was something different. Her mussed hair had a slightly oranger tone to it and she looked older? Lines that came out when she smiled at him, or frowned, or laughed now had a more permanent home. Slightly visible even though her face was contorted into a sensual stare he had definitely never seen on the face of the Scully he knew. She was enchanting, startlingly beautiful almost to the point of intimidation. He groaned as her grip tightened and his confusion did too, this Scully was also doing things he only experienced with his dream Scully.
Mulder decided to stop the guessing game and he stammered, “S-Scully?”
He didn’t know whether it was the questioning tone or the confusion in his eyes, but new Scully withdrew her hand as her brow furrowed. “Hey, are you okay?”
He laughed breathily because he didn’t know what else to do, “Um, don’t get me wrong, I’m having a great time, but I-I’m a little confused.”
She rolled her eyes and the confirmation that this truly was Dana Katherine Scully just started to grow. “Mulder, what’s confusing? It’s Saturday. We don’t have anywhere to go today, and the only thing I want to do for the rest of the day is you,” she purred as she closed the gap and kissed him on the mouth. Her lips felt like velvet and he simply couldn’t believe this was happening. She threw a leg over his abdomen and moved into a straddling position, never letting up her mouth’s relentless conquest. When he felt her bare breasts graze his chest at the same time he felt her wetness hit his groin he gasped and jolted like a volt of electricity shot through his body.
She must’ve been concerned that he wasn’t reciprocating because she leaned upwards and looked at him with worry in her eyes, “Mulder, what’s wrong? You love morning sex.”
His jaw gaped open and he stared at her in shock. Well, the best he could being his eyes kept falling to her bare breasts, trying to grapple with the fact she wasn’t even trying to hide them from him. If the blanket wasn’t draped in front of where she was sitting on top of him, he swore he would have had a heart attack. He’d seen a glimpse in Antarctica, but he was busier saving her life in that moment. Oh, and Antarctica Scully wasn’t straddling him while making advances on him and telling him that he loved morning sex. He kept telling himself this couldn’t be real, but the throbbing in his groin constantly reminded him his heart was beating and that he was most definitely here.
“Are you real?” he asked. It sounded stupid, even as he said it, but he was still at a loss for words.
At this she slid off of him and sat at his side, grabbing the sides of his face to examine him. “You’re starting to worry me” The sensual tone of before was gone and was replaced with unabashed concern.
“You look different,” he explained sitting up, noting that he felt an acute pain in his back. As he sat up, he caught a glimpse of his hands and was struck at their appearance. They looked wrinkled, not obtrusively so, but much more than they had when he went to bed. Before he could put much thought into it, he was struck by her next statement.
“Well, the doctor said it might not be noticeable from day to day, but might strike you on occasion. I didn’t think it would be this startling for you.” He could hear she sounded almost hurt, but nothing she was saying was making any sense to him.
He held up his hand and implored, “I don’t know what’s going on, but I want to make it clear I find you very attractive, always. But, what’s wrong? Why are you going to the doctor? What would become more noticeable?” She put up her own hand to stop his barrage of questions.
“What do you mean you don’t know what’s going on? Mulder, you’re not making any sense,” she asked, frustration threatening to break through her tone.
“Are you sick?” he asked. He felt like he was on a bad acid trip. First their about to have sex and now she’s sick?
“Mulder, did you fall and hit your head or something? I’m referring to the pregnancy. What else would I possibly be talking about?”
He felt his whole body freeze and he stared at her in awe. “You’re pregnant?” he asked. He sat in shock for a second before adding, “How?”
“That’s it,” she exclaimed, getting up and throwing a closet open. “Get dressed. I’m taking you to the hospital,” she commanded, throwing on a pair of underwear and a bra. Before she could put on anything else, he had sprung out of bed and crouched in front of her, grabbing her arms, and he was surprised when she didn’t try to pull away.
There it was. A swell. A slight bulge in her lower tummy that he didn’t see a few months ago in the Arctic. He raised his hand and placed it tenderly on her stomach, reveling in the softness and her acceptance. “I can’t believe you’re pregnant,” he whispered, almost to himself.
“Yeah,” she deadpanned, “No one can. Though I assumed you would being you were a major factor in it happening,” she joked without humor, grabbing a sweater and throwing it over her head before shimmying some black stretch pants on.
He stood up immediately and looked at her in complete shock. “What?”
She sighed again and grabbed his head, checking for bumps like she usually did when he was being extra outlandish. He didn’t know what inspired him to say it, but he grabbed her hands and clasped them in his own. “Scully, what year is it?”
“Mulder-,” she started.
“Scully, this is important.”
She regarded him for a moment before answering, “2018.”
Scully wasn’t one for practical jokes. She didn’t tease when a situation was tense like this was. “Where are we?”
Her brows furrowed once more and she squeezed his hands. “Mul-, our house,” she answered, looking almost stricken.
“Did you say, our house? We live together?”
“We’ve lived together intermittently for years. Mulder, this is our house, we’re married, and I’m pregnant with your child,” she explained slowly, trying to gauge if anything she revealed was a shock to him.
It was. Every word.
He was married to Scully? They were going to have a baby? This was everything he ever wanted, but he couldn’t remember a damn thing. He was happy and he was devastated, he didn’t know which made him start to cry. “Hey, hey, hey,” she comforted, grabbing him into a hug. “What’s going on?”
“Scully, I don’t remember anything,” he admitted, his voice cracking with the force of his emotions.
“What do you mean?” she asked.
“When I went to bed it was 1998, Frank Sinatra died, Clinton is president,” he explained.
“I wish,” she chuckled sadly against him.
“No one wishes Clinton was president,” he whined.
“We do now,” she said cryptically.
She eased away from him and ran a hand through his hair and kissed his forehead and then his lips before realizing it might make him uncomfortable and backing away. Apparently, that was something they did in 2018, kiss, show intimacy. “We’re married?” he asked, wanting to hear it again.
“We have been for a while,” she reassured.
"I-I don't understand," he whispered, fear lacing his tone. "Am I- Are you sure this is real? This sounds like a dream."
She smiled just slightly and nodded, "It does feel like a dream, but I promise it's real. It's a dream we earned."
He simultaneously felt like the luckiest and unluckiest man in the world. He didn’t feel like he was in any pain? How did he get a twenty-year amnesia spell in a night? He saw she was staring at him and his heart felt like it was going to burst. Here was pregnant Scully, which as far as he was aware was medically impossible, looking at him like he was the only person in the world. He didn’t mean to sound so needy, though he figured she’d forgive him with the circumstance, and the question tumbled out of his quivering lips regardless. “You love me?”
She laughed, but she looked like the question made her sad too, he even saw her lip quiver in sympathy. “Oh yes, Mulder, so much. I love you with every bit of my heart. You mean the world to me,” she reassured, kissing his knuckles with every sentiment. Tears ran down his cheeks as she mirrored him. He supposed they were both mourning the possible loss of twenty years of development.
He reached out and hugged her tightly, being he felt he could and was elated when her arms wrapped around him. It also made him aware that he was still naked as the day he was born, though his erection was long gone from the stress. She raised her head so that she was resting her chin on his chest. “Hey,” she whispered, getting his attention. “How about you get dressed and I’ll make us breakfast? Then I think we should talk about what the last thing you remember doing was, okay?”
He simply nodded and watched as she left the room, sparing one last sympathetic glance over her shoulder to him. His body missed her warmth and comfort, so he did the only thing he could at that moment. He got dressed and tried to remember everything he possibly could.