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Storm Front

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They were never going to make it to Shinesburg. They were thirty miles from their destination in snow that was so thick having the headlights on made visibility worse rather than better.

They had gotten a late start and the weather had turned as they hit the mountains. The last town they had passed through was at least an hour behind them, and the only things nearby that Mulder could make out through the curtain of snow was The Lone Pine Party Store (dark, with a For Sale sign in the window), and the Sleepy Hollow Cabins, a line of tiny brown log cabins that sat along a snowy riverbank that ran parallel to the road. While lit, their sign said “No Vacancy,” though there were only a smattering of cars in the parking lot.

They were hungry and overheated from the air blasting out of their rented Mercury Sable, which seemed to have only two settings: High Heat and You’ll Die Here .

Scully had a white knuckle grip on the Oh Jesus bar above her door when the car tried to fishtail for the third time in five minutes. It was the last time Mulder would rent a rear wheel drive car anywhere north of the 40th Parallel 

“Okay, Mulder, we’ve got to stop,” she said, bracketing the hand not already holding on to the dashboard in front of her, “we can’t keep driving in this.”

Mulder reluctantly agreed that she was right and pulled into the parking lot of the Sleepy Hollow, having to give it a lot of gas to get through a line of snow a plow had recently left across the driveway.

He threw it into park and cut the engine, rolling down the manual window a few inches to let cold air blast in from outside.

“Think it’ll die down any time soon?” he asked, turning to her, and couldn’t figure out why she  leveled a glare at him. “I mean, it says ‘No Vacancy.’”

He gestured toward the sign that was just to the left of their parked car. Most of the sign was taken up with a picture of a cartoon sleeping Bambi, the ‘No’ part of the vacancy sign a slowly blinking neon pink.

“I don’t suppose the Disney copyright lawyers get out here very often, huh?” he asked her. She remained silent and not amused.

She pushed out an annoyed sigh and unclipped her seat belt. She wouldn’t look at him.

“This storm is supposed to last for close to 40 hours. It wreaked havoc in the upper Midwest for the last two days and just picked up a bunch of moisture from the Great Lakes.”

“Oh,” Mulder said, feeling guilty and stupid for not checking the weather ahead of time, “well, let’s go see if we can get rooms. We’re in the middle of nowhere, I doubt it’s actually full.” He still couldn’t figure out why she was pissed.

Scully reached up to where her neck met her shoulder and rubbed it, wincing.

She sighed again, “let’s go.”

The wind hammered at them as they walked a short way to the lobby, which was only slightly larger than the cabins on its property. There was a large sign sponsored by Coors Light that said ‘WELCOME SNOWMOBILERS’ tied to one wall, snapping sharply in the wind.

The clerk looked up when they walked in, a gust of wind and snow coming in with them. It smelled of Pine-sol with an underlying current of mildew thrown into the mix. They were close to the river, probably nothing ever stayed dry. 

There was a vending machine in one corner with a portable table set up next to it supporting a small microwave and an ancient coffee maker Mulder recognized from an episode of Hill Street Blues.

“Can I help you?” said the clerk.

“Two cabins, please,” Mulder said confidently. 

“I’m sorry, we don’t have any vacancies.”

Mulder threw the clerk a look of incredulity. 

“You mean to tell me that every single one of these cabins – 30 miles from the nearest… anything… are completely booked?”

The clerk looked offended. 

“All but one, yes,” she said, “we’re right on a snowmobile trial sir, and have excellent ice fishing on Pucksataw Lake,” with this, she hooked a thumb over her right shoulder, ostensibly in the direction of the aforementioned lake. “We stay pretty full year round.” 

“All but one?” Scully said quietly from Mulder’s shoulder. She had managed to keep a hopeful edge to her voice and the clerk’s eyes softened as she turned toward her.

“The heat hasn’t been working in that unit and with this weather, I cannot in good conscience rent it out to anyone.”

Scully pulled at Mulder’s elbow and he turned toward her. 

“Maybe we just wait for a plow to go by and we can follow it to the nearest town,” she said, her voice low.

Mulder was about to answer her when the clerk piped up.

“Oh, there won’t be any plows coming by.”

Mulder turned back toward her. 

“Don’t tell me we’re on a seasonal road,” he said. His normal affable charm had left him fifteen miles ago.

“The plow's already been by today,” she said, “and with this weather the county’ll have all the plows out on the highway and closer to the county seat. We probably won’t get dug out until tomorrow at the earliest.”

Mulder chanced a look out the window at their rented sedan, which was perched somewhat haphazardly in a makeshift parking spot, already building up accumulation of snow on its roof.

“How does your conscience feel about two people freezing to death in your parking lot?” he asked.

The clerk bit the inside of her cheek and considered them.

“You’re dressed pretty warm, considering,” she finally said, and Mulder couldn’t help but think considering what ? “I’ll give you the room,” she said, leaning under the counter. She stood and slid a key on monstrous green keychain across the top of the desk. “No charge,” she said,  “and no paperwork,” then leaned forward, “if y’all get hypothermia or frostbite, there’s no record you were ever here.”

“Are you planning to dump our bodies, or…”

“I’m planning not to let you sue me.”

“I promise we’re not litigious,” Scully piped up from his elbow. He’d almost forgotten she was there.

 The clerk narrowed her eyes at them.

Mulder stood at attention and raised two fingers in a salute.

“Scout’s honor,” he said, picking up and glancing at the key, “unit 11?”

The clerk nodded.

“Last cabin down,” she said, “it’s a double. I’ll bring some extra blankets by in a bit.”

Mulder thanked her and they made their way carefully through the accumulating snow, stopping at their rental car to pull their overnight bags out of the trunk.

The pathway leading to the cabins had been shoveled earlier in the day, but was already carpeted with several inches of new snow, which squeaked under their dress shoes as they walked.

The cabins were set up prettily along a river that was too fast moving to freeze, and raced along beside them, dark and gurgling. There were towering pines between each cabin and Mulder had to admit that in any other circumstance he might have found the tableau charming and quaint. As it was, considering he was about to have to spend a cold night under the same roof as a still-fuming Scully, the entire scene was rather less than captivating.

Both their shoes were soaked through by the time they reached the cabin, a less than auspicious start to an already inauspicious evening.

When Mulder finally got the cabin door open, he noticed that snow had drifted a few inches in under the door. It hadn’t melted. 

Scully shuffled in behind him, dropping her bag in a small chair just inside the room. She turned to assess it as Mulder shut the door on the storm.

“I thought she said it was a double,” she said, looking skeptically at the small bed in the center of the room. Other than a table and two chairs (one of which was currently holding all of Scully’s belongings), and a small dresser with a TV on top, it was the only furniture in the room.

“I guess she meant the size of the bed,” Mulder said, giving it a skeptical eye of his own. His six-foot frame would barely fit in it, as is. 

Scully looked over at him and her expression said I am not fucking happy about this .

“Maybe I can sleep in the tub,” Mulder suggested, only half-serious.

Scully walked over to the bathroom door and peeked her head around the corner. She turned back to him, the look on her face even less amused, if it were possible. 

“There’s only a shower.” 

Her attitude was getting to him. 

“You know, if you hadn’t insisted we go back and pack up more warm clothes, we probably could have made it to Shinesburg before the storm hit,” he threw at her.

“And if you had listened to me telling you the weather report yesterday when you told me about this case, you wouldn’t have needed to go back and repack!” He tried to remember whether or not she’d told him about the weather. She probably had. He probably hadn’t been listening. He was about to apologize to her when she went on. “And you’re going to be damn happy I told you to pack warmer clothes now that we’re stuck in this piece of shit cabin with no heat!”

And like that, any thought of apologizing went out the window.

“Well,” he said, his voice dripping with sarcasm, “I’m just glad I’m stuck somewhere with such pleasant company.”

She glared at him for a moment and then went into the bathroom, slamming the door closed behind her.


The clerk stopped by while Scully was in the bathroom and dropped off three extra blankets. They were good, of high quality wool. Mackinaw blankets, he’d once heard them called. Before she left, Mulder asked her if there was any place to get food. It was dinner time and they hadn’t had lunch. 

“Most people bring it in themselves,” she said, sympathetically, “we mostly get outdoorsmen. There’s not much around here. We do have a vending machine and a microwave in the lobby.”

She shrugged and walked off, pulling the hood of her parka over her head. Mulder reluctantly shoved his feet back into his soaking shoes and followed her back to the lobby.

The vending machine selection wasn’t great. There was some candy, a couple different cans of soda, a few dry-looking sandwiches of dubious freshness and a smattering selection of pre-packaged foods that were probably processed to within an inch of their life.

“The burritos aren’t bad,” the clerk said from over her shoulder as she took off her jacket and hung it up.

Mulder shook the change in his hand and thanked her.

He opted for two of the burritos, and stuck them both in the microwave, getting a few bags of Doritos and a couple cans of soda while he waited for them to cook.

Once the microwave beeped, he filled all the various pockets on his trench coat with his haul and made to duck back into the snow. Just as he reached for the door, the clerk spoke up.

“I usually lock up the lobby at about 8:00,” she said, “but I’ll leave it open tonight. If it gets too cold in cabin 11, you guys should come and wait it out down here. There’s not really anywhere to sleep, but it’s better than freezing to death.”

Mulder once again thanked her and made his way back outside, wrapping his hands around the warmth of the hot burritos pressed into his side.

He tumbled into the room on a burst of frigid air just as Scully was coming out of the bathroom, rubbing at her neck, seemingly having regained her composure. 

“I’ve got some food,” he said, starting to pull everything out of his pockets to deposit on the small table by the door. Scully walked over, a look of anticipation on her face. “Don’t get too excited,” he warned her, “it’s not exactly haute cuisine.”

“At this point…” Scully trailed off, swiping a bag of Doritos and flopping on the bed to eat them. She’d taken off her soaked shoes and tucked her stocking covered feet under her legs, tucking in her jacket around them.

She made a satisfied humming sound as she crunched through a bag of Cool Ranch, and he felt his body give an involuntary twitch at the sound.

“If you like that,” he said, kicking off his cold, soaked shoes, “you’re going to love this.”

He tossed one of the burritos to her and it landed expertly on the mattress in front of her. Her eyes widened at the sight and she finally looked at him.

“Thank you, Mulder,” she said sincerely. 

He nodded and sat down next to her, their shoulders bumping companionably on the small mattress. They tore through the food quickly, hungrily, not bothering to talk, barely bothering to breathe. When Scully finally wadded up the burrito wrapper, Mulder had only a bite left.

“I don’t suppose you got anything to drink?” she asked.

He popped the last bite into his mouth and reached into his jacket pocket, pulling out a can of soda with a flourish and presenting it to her with his head bowed. 

She took it gently out of his hands.

“Root beer,” she said softly, her tone lingering in the air, broken only by the snap of her opening the can. “I’m sorry I was snippy with you earlier,” she went on, “I was ticked off at you for ignoring me, and I was hungry, and I was afraid we were going to die in a snowy crash…”

“You had every right to be mad,” Mulder responded, cracking open his drink and knocking it into hers in a toast, “I’m sorry I wasn’t listening yesterday. Excitement of a new case and all,” he shrugged. 



They sat for a few moments in comfortable silence, when Scully finally spoke.

“I hate to complain about the temperature after burning up in our rental car, but it’s cold as balls in here.”

Mulder laughed out loud at her un-Scully-like phraseology.

He stood.

“Here,” he said, grabbing a couple of the blankets that the clerk had dropped off and wrapped them around her.

“Thanks,” she said, holding his eyes for perhaps longer than necessary. Then she went on, “I wasn’t going to tell you this out of spite, but the hot water in the bathroom works.”

Mulder faked an offended look.

“And how long were you planning to spite me?” he asked.

“Oh, probably only the first stage of hypothermia,” she said, quirking a grin at him, “the second stage if you kept on being an ass.”

“If you’re not careful,” he said, joking with her, “I’ll steal all the covers in the middle of the night.”

Mulder saw her cheeks flush and she turned sober.

“Right,” she said, “the bed.”

“Would you like me to sleep on the floor?” he asked gently.

“Don’t be ridiculous,” she said, though she wouldn’t meet his eye, “we’re adults. I think we can make it work.”

He missed her joking mood from minutes before and tried to get it back.

“Afraid I won’t be able to stop myself from putting on the moves?” he joked. 

“No,” she said, her face serious, “I’m afraid I won’t be able to…”

His stomach dropped and he felt a tightening in his groin. He didn’t know what to say.

After a pregnant moment, she let out a delighted guffaw, a sound he’d heard only on the rarest of occasions. Scully’s laugh was something you had to earn, and he felt a rare mix of accomplishment and fear.

“Oh my God, Mulder, your face!” She brought a hand to her chest, laughing. “You’re making your Panic Face.”

She wiped a tear from under her eye in that careful way of women, when they were trying not to muss their makeup.

“That wasn’t funny, Scully,” he said, which just made her laugh again, “you shouldn’t toy with a man like that.” He was feeling embarrassed and cautiously delighted. 

She tucked her chin to her chest and took a balancing breath.

“I’m sorry,” she said, then quite suggestively, “how should I toy with him?”

“Scully!” he scolded.

“I’m sorry ,” she said again, chuckling, “I’m done. You’re just making it so easy.”

She stood then and started collecting the wrappers of their makeshift dinner, tossing them in the trash while he tried to regain his composure.

He eyed her critically, while her back was turned. What had gotten into her? He almost asked her what the symptoms of altitude sickness were. Instead, he said, “my toes are freezing, I think I’ll jump in the shower to warm up.”

Scully had hopped back on the bed, wrapping one of the extra blankets around herself, and was reaching for the TV remote which was on the bedside table next to her. She flicked it on, and said without looking at him “okay.”

He grabbed his overnight bag and took it into the bathroom with him, turning on the shower to get it really steamy before even contemplating disrobing.

He let the stinging heat pound into his back, and it only took a moment or two until he could finally feel his toes again. The water, practically scalding, felt fantastic and he was contemplating how long he had before he should get out and save some hot water for Scully, when the sound of her satisfied humming from earlier involuntarily ran roughshod through his mind, knocking other, more appropriate thoughts aside like bowling pins. The thought of her in the shower exacerbated the situation, sending blood directly to his groin. He quickly turned off the water and got out – the temperature of the bathroom now more early spring than dead winter.

He toweled off quickly and shoved his boxers and pants on, his cock at half-mast. He grabbed a long sleeved shirt, thick wool socks and a sweater (silently thanking Scully for making him pack them) and waited until he was more or less presentable before he came back out into the main room of the cabin, where it was ice-box cold.

He made an appropriate “brrr” of disapproval and grabbed the other extra blanket, jumping onto the bed, sending Scully a good three inches in the air.

She shrieked once, his name, and he knew it would be the second Scully Sound today that he would file away into the auditory spank bank deep in his brain.

She shot him a look which he ignored.

“Whatcha watching?” he asked, wiggling himself as far under the blankets as he could go. His feet popped off the end of the bed. It could barely contain them side-by-side. Tonight would be torture.

“Something on the mating habits of big cats,” she said, turning to him with a look like satisfaction on her face, “the Discovery Channel is the only one that comes in.” On the screen, a dark-maned lion mounted a female, who scowled beneath him, showing teeth. 

Mulder thunked his head back into the headboard.

Scully laughed quietly beside him and flicked the TV off.

“You’re enjoying my discomfort,” he accused her.

“Yes,” she said, still chuckling.

“You’re in a mood,” he said, starting to laugh a bit himself. 

“I’m a little punchy, yeah,” she said. 

“Well, go hose it off,” he said, “I saved you some hot water.”

She rose from the bed and bent her neck to the side, wincing.

“Maybe a hot shower wouldn’t be such a bad idea,” she said, and disappeared into the bathroom.

The light from outside was waning, the windows turning a purplish-black in the dusk. Wind still buffeted the side of the cabin, sending occasional bits of snow and ice tink-tink -ing into the glass. He tried not to think of Scully naked behind a thin knotty-pine door.

Mulder turned on the three lamps in the room, lending it a cheery brightness, unmatched by its temperature. He spent the next few minutes snooping around the cabin with the blanket wrapped around him, pulling out drawers to see what he could find. Aside from the usual Bible, he found a lighter, a deck of cards, and a 5 year old issue of Field & Stream .

He was flipping through the magazine when Scully came flying out of the bathroom, wrapped only in a thin towel, with another around her head, a blur of white.

“I forgot a change of clothes!” she rushed, grabbing her bag off the chair by the door and flitting just as quickly back into the bathroom. The towel had been short, a typical cheap motel issue, and he caught a glimpse of more Scully thigh than he’d ever seen.  

“Torture, thy name is Scully,” he said to the empty room, and reread the same article on duck blinds three times without processing any of it. 

She emerged a few minutes later on a plume of lavender-scented steam, fully dressed, toweling her hair dry. She jutted her chin at the magazine he was reading.

“Where’d you get that?” she asked.

“In the dresser,” he said, “I snooped.”

“You didn’t happen upon a hair dryer did you?” 

“No,” he said, sympathetically, “but I did find a deck of cards.”

“I knew there was a reason to live,” she said, and tossed the towel back into the bathroom.

She quickly got back into the bed, tunneling under the covers.

“Care for a little sport?” Mulder asked her, shuffling the cards.

“What’d you have in mind?”

“Strip poker?” he couldn’t help but ask.

“And what would you do if I said yes?” she said, propping her head up on her hand and turning toward him.

“Probably, I’d develop hypothermia,” he quipped, and dropped the deck on his bedside table. 

Scully once again reached for her neck.

“Hey, what’s going on there?” Mulder asked gently.

“It’s nothing,” she said.

“That’s like the fifth time I’ve seen you grab at your neck and wince.”

“It’s just… I tensed up a little,” she said, “my Levator scapulae is spasming a bit.”

Mulder reached over and put a hand on her.

“May I?” he asked.

She nodded. 

“Turn around,” he said softly, and she turned her back to him. He got onto his knees behind her, trying to find the best angle.

He laid a hand gently on her shoulder and began a slow, light exploration with his fingers, but encountered too many layers.

“Do you want to take this off?” he asked, referring to her coat, which she shrugged her arm out of.

 He slipped his hand inside the top of her shirt to get at her shoulder; her skin was hot to the touch, blazing his fingers.

 “My hand’s not too cold?” 

“Mm,” was all she said, “feels good.” 

He squeezed, pressing a thumb into the delicate arch of her neck and the muscle beneath, which was hard as a baseball, a tightened rope beneath her skin.

“Found it,” he said, pushing hard. 

She hissed, a sound of relief mixed with pain. He lightened his touch slightly, but kept at it, working the kinks out as best he could.

Eventually she reached up and put her hand over his, stilling his movements.

She looked over her shoulder at him.

“Thank you,” she said.

He nodded, reluctant to pull his hand away. She seemed to feel the same way and kept her hand on his, holding him to her. 

Her hair was drying slowly in the chill, turning wavy. She dropped her hand and so did he.

“Your hair is curly,” he said, settling back onto the bed, “I didn’t know.”

She burrowed back under the blankets and turned toward him.

“I go to great lengths to keep that secret,” she said with a shy smile. 

“Why?” he asked, “I like it.”

“Careful peeling back the layers of my mystique, Mulder,” she said, “you might not like what you find.”

He reached out a hand and tugged lightly on lock of hair near her face. It was stiff with cold, practically frozen. 

 “I’ll take my chances,” he said. 

 They ended up playing cribbage, keeping score on the back of a receipt Mulder found in his coat pocket. By the time they finished (Scully won), their hands were cold and Scully had her feet pressed against Mulder’s shins to keep warm. 

“Why are women’s feet always cold?” he asked her as he shoved the cards back in their box.

“You have a lot of experience with women’s feet, do you?”

“Enough to know they’re pretty free-wheeling with shoving them into a man’s warm flesh when they’re cold,” he said, “with or without permission.” 

She quirked an eyebrow.

“Sorry, Mulder,” she said, “permission to warm my feet on your person?”

“It’s obviously too late, but, granted.”

She smiled at him.

“Is this how you scare off all those guys clambering to be your boyfriend?” he asked, “shove your cold toes where the sun don’t shine and watch them limp off into the sunset?”

She laughed, not taking offense, and kicked him in the shin. 

“Hey!” he laughed.

“Maybe I should have tried it on Padgett,” she said, looking to the ceiling. Mulder mentally tripped at the man’s name. They’d never talked about him or the case after it was closed, not once.

Scully narrowed her eyes at him.   

“Do you know that I told him that loneliness was a choice?”

Mulder shook his head. The mood in the room had changed, and he felt his stomach dip in anticipation.

“What I was really saying,” she went on, then paused, as if gathering courage, “was that I’d rather be lonely with you, than lonely without you. If I could only be your work partner, that was enough.” 

Agent Scully is already in love

He swallowed once, hard.  

“Scully…” he said, a whole conversation packed into her name.

“Mulder,” all conviction. He knew exactly what she was getting at, and so did she.

“The last time we did this,” he said, “... you tried to leave me.”

“’Tried’ being the operative word,” she said.

“You wouldn’t have done it?”

“It wouldn’t have taken.”

He looked at her for a long moment. 

“Yeah,” he said, “I know what you mean.”

She reached under the covers for his hand and grasped it firmly. Mulder felt like he might combust. 

“Your brother would’ve been thrilled, though,” he said, joking to try to mask the emotion blooming inside him.

“Bill can be an ass,” she said, “he doesn’t get us.”

Mulder let that hang there for a moment, and she spoke again, reaching out to put her other hand on his chest, directly above his thumping heart. 

“It’s like taking a picture of the moon,” she said, “to your eye, it looms large as life, so close you can reach out and touch it. But the photograph of it is thin, distant, a speck of dust on the lens.” He caught her eye and she went on. “What we have between us, we can see plain as day. It’s big, otherworldly. Everyone else is just looking at the picture.”

Her lips had the perfect curve of Cupid’s bow and he’d spent many nights wondering how it would feel to kiss them. He’d always suspected that if her lips were a bow, her tongue might be the arrow that could pierce his heart anew.

“So this big, otherworldly thing…” he said.

“It’s love, Mulder,” she said, like she was explaining lab results, “...isn’t it?”

He had that same feeling that he had his hallway over a year ago, a feeling of inevitability. Scully, the center of his universe, her gravitational pull stronger than any other force, and he leaned toward her, never one to fight the laws of physics.

“Yes,” he said, just before his lips captured hers. 

Their kiss was electric. In fact, his galvanic skin response spiked to a personal lifetime high.

She rolled toward him, not having far to go, and brought her arms up and over his head, pulling herself up and over him slightly. That was all it took to turn him feral.

He deepened the kiss, claiming her mouth with his tongue and pulling her tightly against him, his hands on her backside.

Her breathing turned sharp, lusty, and she craned her hips in his embrace until she was sitting atop him fully. Her hips gave an almost involuntary half-thrust and his cock hardened painfully.

He pulled away from the kiss only just enough to drag his tongue down the length of her jaw to her ear and he whispered thickly “there are too many clothes between us right now. 

She quickly sat up and pulled her sweater up and over her head, tossing it, as well as her bra to the side of the bed.

Mulder leaned back only just enough to get an eyeful of her, her cheeks rosy, her eyes half-closed with lust. He saw goosebumps rise on her flesh and the nipples on her perfect breasts tightened into cherry-red pebbles. He reached down behind her and draped the Mackinaw blanket up around her shoulders.

She reached down and grabbed a fistful of both his sweater and the shirt underneath it. She seemed as impatient to feel his bare skin against her own as he was. She lifted it up and over his head in one swift movement, falling back into his lips almost before the shirt cleared the top of his head.

Kissing her was exquisite, better even than in some of his dreams, and in his dreams he was generous to a fault.

His hands went to her breasts as though they were magnetized, and he pushed them, heavy and full up as far as he could, gently pinching her nipples until her mouth opened under his in a lubricious sigh.

She was wanton, feral, as het up as he was.

She started shimmying down his body, planting open-mouthed wet kisses on his chest and stomach until she reached the waist of his pants. 

He was holding onto the blanket so she would stay covered and warm, and she looked up at him from beneath it, her shadowed face like a treasure hunter who’d found a gold-filled chest in a cave. He would never forget the look on her face so long as he lived.

His hips bucked involuntarily under her as she unbuttoned him and pulled jeans and boxers down his legs, leaving them at his ankles for him to kick off.

Before he’d finished even toeing them off, she had her hot little mouth on the tip of his cock. There was a blood rush in his ears and it was all he could do to keep his eyes open and watch her, lest he wake up and discover it was all a dream.

She held him at his base, her other hand gently lifting his balls as she slowly sunk her mouth down and around him, alternately adjusting the intensity of her sucking. It was mind-bending. He did math problems in his head and tried not to think about where she’d picked up the skill.

He didn’t want her to stop, didn’t want this to ever end, but wanted nothing more than to be inside of her when he came, so he reached down and gently pushed her head back, while trying to say her name.

“Sc—“ was all he could get out, and she rose up, his penis sliding out of her mouth with an audible pop.

She smiled like the cat that ate the canary as she crawled up his body, and as she was leaning in to kiss him, he swiftly grabbed her by the hips and flipped them expertly over, hoping to wipe the dirty little smile off her face.

She inhaled in surprise as she landed on the mattress, and he gave her his own predatory look, mumbling, as he drifted down her body, “turnabout’s fair play, Agent Scully.”

He had her pants and panties off in flash thanks to a helpful boost of her hips, and he could smell her desire as his lips descended slowly down the inside of her left thigh.

He ran his fingers gently up and down her mons, and then parted them lightly with his thumbs, leaning in to flick her clit with his tongue. He heard her hiss her approval, and he applied himself to her with vigor, laving her, as sweet and wet as a ripe peach. 

After not nearly long enough, he felt her nails scrape along his scalp, and felt her tug him gently by his hair up and along her body, letting him pause at her breasts on his ascent. 

His kissed her again hard, boldly, and then pulled back to look at her. She smiled once, her eyes flitting between his. She then licked her lips and he reached down, aligning himself to her entrance. Her nails on his back in a light scrape was all the encouragement he needed, and he sunk into her slowly, his breath catching in his throat as he reached her apex.

She gave one breathy sigh and he felt her shift her hips slightly to accommodate him. He started to move, pulling back a bit to look at her, the blanket falling down his back, pooling at their joined hips.

He tried to memorize everything about the moment: the way she looked with her eyes closed, her head thrown to the side. The art on the knotty pine walls, the blankets, blue-checked and rough against their skin. The sound of Scully’s puffy breaths and the slow, wet slap of their coupling. The smell; coitus and snow and a hint of her perfume.

He could see their breath in the cold cabin, the around them a fug of sex and steam. The air on his back was frigid, but he still felt as though he might combust, sheathed in the volcanic heat of Scully’s sex.

She reached up a hand to his rough cheek and ran a thumb along his lower lip, which he sucked into his mouth, his body on the edge. They connected eyes and Scully softly said “Together?”

He nodded and she dropped her hand. He braced his arms on either side of her head and held her gaze until she squeezed them closed as she unraveled. He followed her, his orgasm as hard as it had ever been, pulsing until he collapsed on top of her, having nothing left.


When they awoke, twisted around each other, their skin hot and sticky, they found the windows frosted over on the inside, the pale light of morning diffused and opaque. A light dusting of frost covered the blankets atop them, sparkling like sand.

They marveled that they had slept naked and Scully wondered out loud what the temperature was inside the cabin.

“I don’t know,” Mulder said, slipping out from under the blankets, on an urgent quest for the bathroom, “but it’s low and doing me no favors. I ask that you avert your eyes.”

She did not.

“I like that I get to look,” she said, and he had a momentary thought about getting immediately back into the bed.

He finished his morning ablutions hastily and when he emerged from the bathroom, Scully was already dressed, patiently waiting her turn. He kissed her as they traded spaces for the bathroom, and he felt as though his heart might burst. 

She was light years out of his league, could easily have any man she wanted. Why she threw her lot in with his was an X-File in itself. 

Just as he was briskly putting on the last of his clothes, there was a light knock at the cabin door. 

He opened it to find the clerk standing there, her look anxious. 

“Oh good,” she said, relieved when she saw him, “when I didn’t find you in the lobby this morning, I thought the worst. You two stay warm enough?”

“You could say that,” Mulder said with a smirk, and she leaned to peer around him into the cabin just as Scully was emerging from the bathroom, her hair riotous, her eyes hooded. She had the look of someone freshly bedded. 

“Well,” the clerk said, her cheeks and ears turning pink beneath her stocking hat. She took a half step back and gave Mulder an assessing look. “The plow just went through if y’all want to get back on the road.”

Mulder turned and rove his eyes over Scully before turning back to the clerk. 

“We’ll let you know,” he said, and shut the door with a snap.