It was just another case. Just another abandoned storage facility that Mulder wanted to investigate.
The project was terminated, the consortium defeated and Samantha’s fate uncovered. Scully felt like there was nothing left for them to investigate and they were just wasting their time. Even if they found something new, it would hardly matter, since the enemy was thoroughly defeated, in every way.
Yet Mulder was still restless. He was still searching for something and Scully doubted that even he himself knew what or why. The files on his desk kept piling up, the new locations emerging fastest than ever and they just kept running and gathering evidence that would’ve endangered their lives not so long ago, yet now was useless.
Scully wondered if Mulder would ever stop, if he even knew how, after all these years. She was ready to stop and she planned to tell him that same day, if only she manages to gather the courage, look into his eyes and break his heart. She kept trying for the past few weeks, but the words never left her mouth. She was entering her sixth month of pregnancy and would soon not be able to follow him even if she wanted.
She didn’t want. Not anymore. Her heart wasn’t in it for a while. She yearned for a simpler life, away from the darkness, for herself and her baby. And Mulder, though she more and more doubted he would ever be satisfied with a life that even remotely resembled normalcy.
“I’m leaving The X-files,” she gathered the courage to say. “There’s nothing left for me to do there anymore and frankly you should ask yourself if your heart’s still in it.”
He didn’t hear her. Or maybe he just ignored her. That was another thing she was growing tired of, speaking to a wall.
“Scully,” his voice was shaky, as if he was afraid. “I found it.”
“You found what, Mulder?” she approached him. “Have you even heard what I said?”
“You… what? Sorry, I… What, um, did you say?”
She looked at him, really looked at him. There was definitely fear in his eyes, and not just fear. He looked terrified and it alarmed her.
“Mulder,” she touched his arm. “What’s wrong?”
He handed her the file he was holding. “They had me, Scully. They didn’t just take Samantha instead of me. They had me before they had her.”
She looked into the file. Mulder, it said. Fox William. Followed by Mulder’s date of birth, blood type, medical history, school grades… She flipped the papers full of information and Mulder read it all with her above her shoulder.
“They had me, Scully…” his voice was getting softer, quieter, as if he was trying to hide.
“Do you recall being taken?” she asked him, still flipping the papers. “Being away from home?”
“No,” he was trying hard to remember, but his mind was blank, even though his body started to shake for some reason. “No, Scully, how could I forget something like that?”
She closed the file and turned to him. “Maybe it’s for the best. When faced with a severe trauma a mind can shut down and lock the memories inside, to protect itself from the pain that it’s unable to handle. You know that, Mulder. Whatever is in this file, it might be best left alone.”
“I need to know the truth,” he demanded, trying to take the file from her. She pulled it away from him.
“You may not be ready for what’s inside.”
“As if I will ever be ready,” he grabbed the file and she let him. She couldn’t argue with him. If it was the other way around, she would need to know too, no matter the consequences.
The info, though detailed, was generic enough, but then came the pictures. Horrible, impossible pictures.
“Oh my god,” Scully gasped. These pictures… They didn’t show atrocious tests and experiments. It was even more evil than that, worse than Mulder and Scully could have prepared themselves for.
It was pedophilia.
“No,” Mulder handed her the pictures, turning away from her. “No. I don’t remember that. I don’t remember.”
Scully tried to say something, but the words didn’t come out.
“I don’t remember,” Mulder kept repeating, walking up and down in front of her. “I don’t remember… I don’t remember… I don’t remember… I don’t… I… I remember. I… remember… Oh, GOD!!!”
He fell down on his knees and Scully felt his scream penetrate her bones, permanently imprinting itself on every cell of her body. It was a horror she would never forget.
Her knees gave up as well and she found herself on the floor, next to her partner.
“Mulder,” she tried to reach him, but he rolled away from her, screaming the desperate plead, “Don’t touch me!”
Through tears that were flooding as if the dam had been broken, she watched him crawl to the corner and curl himself in a fetal position, leaving the wet trail of urine behind him. She watched the little boy from the pictures trapped in an adult body in front of her, going through the nightmare that she couldn’t save him from, because she wasn’t there, she hadn’t even been born then.
She closed her eyes for a second, in a silent prayer to the God she wanted to believe in, offering to lay down her life in exchange for his suffering to be taken away.
Alas, it wasn’t what her God had in mind for them.